Fitness Fridays: 4 AM Runner

Fitness Fridays: 4 AM Runner

In honor of our AEO Performance launch we asked a few of our fitness-obsessed Home Office Associates to choose pieces from the new collection that they rock before, during, and after their workouts.

For our first Fitness Friday, we’re focusing on the 4 a.m. runner. We couldn’t think of anyone better to talk about how AEO Performance fits their running workouts than our Social Media Coordinator, Cassie, who has been a distance runner for the past 10 years.

What are your favorite pieces from the AEO Performance line?

The AEO Performance Running Shorts are awesome – they have a zipper pocket in the waist which is great for carrying my house or car key on long runs. I love the Crossback Bra because of the back details and color. The windbreaker is great for cool mornings and makes it easier for cars to see me if I’m out running before the sun comes up.


American Eagle Outfitters 4 am runner

Take your look from the running trail to the streets with this look from AEO Performance.

Get the look:

AEO Performance Windbreaker

AEO Performance Mantra T-Shirt

AEO Performance Running Short

AEO Performance Crossback Bra

New Balance 792 Sneaker


What tips would you give people who are thinking about starting a running routine or are new runners?

Running is a mental sport – if you tell yourself you can do something, you will. Don’t psych yourself out. When I started running ten years ago, I thought a 5K (3.1 miles) sounded impossible, but now I’m running half-marathons (13.1 miles) on a regular basis.

What are your go-to running tunes?

It depends on my mood, but typically anything that is upbeat, a lot of pop and hip-hop. I have a Long Runs playlist on Spotify that I try not to only listen to when I’m running so I don’t get sick of the songs. Lately I’ve been into The White Panda, because of their really cool mash-ups.


pgh marathon american eagle outfitters fitness fridays

Cassie (right) with Emily, Aerie Assistant Pushup Bra Buyer after the Pittsburgh 2013 Half-Marathon


How do you stay motivated as a runner?

I truthfully enjoy running. I’m really active and have a lot of energy, so running is my way to get extra energy out and stay focused. I love running first thing in the morning before coming into the office – it’s easier to go out and run before you’re too awake to realize what you’re doing and make excuses of why you can’t do it.

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AE Friends & Family: Stacy M., Senior AEO Performance Designer

AE Friends & Family: Stacy M., Senior AEO Performance Designer

Learn more about our AEO Performance designer, Stacy M., and her passion for fitness, design, and American Eagle Outfitters.

How did you discover your passion for design?

I discovered my passion for design from my mother who owns a clothing boutique.  When I was in elementary school I would play dress-up in beautiful designer clothes, waiting for her to get off work and that was definitely inspiring.  From the time I was in seventh grade I knew I was going to pursue design.

How did you get your start as a designer?

My first college internship was for a company that designs dance performance costumes and gymnastic leotards.  While working there, they were designing leotards for the 1996 Olympics gymnastics team.  Having such an exciting experience there is what sparked my interest in performance wear.

What’s next on your “Life To Do” list?

Plan a proper vacation!  Basically, relax on a beach and catch up on a few good books.

What is a typical day at work like for you?

It’s unexpected and fast paced, so I guess there is no typical day.  I love my job because of the creativity and new challenges that come up every day.  One day I can be on the streets of NYC checking out what new, cool things are happening and the next day I could be traveling overseas looking at samples for future seasons.

How do you try to stay active in your life?

Living in NYC you walk everywhere, which is great exercise.  I also take pilates classes and love outdoor activities. I just got back from white water rafting and I’m still sore.  It was a great workout, a bit scary and exciting at the same time.

What is your favorite part of your job?

First and foremost are the people I work with: They are absolutely the favorite part of my work.  Second, is working every season to design the perfect items for our customers. I enjoy the challenge of finding the balance between functionality and fashion.

How does your work influence your personal style?

I have the chance to look at runway shows and magazines for inspiration, which definitely influences my personal style.  I also like to incorporate active inspired pieces into my every day wardrobe.  This is the idea we had when designing the line.

What’s on your summer workout playlist?

What I’m listening to now is Daft Punk, JT, Alt-j, Divine Fits and Jay Z.  I love music and try to find new upbeat albums that are great for working out.

What is your favorite piece from the Performance collection? Favorite jean fit?

My favorite piece is the tech crop.  The fabric is soft, has amazing compression and there is pop color stitching on the design lines which are so flattering.  I am also a big fan of our Crossback Bra (med impact) – it’s so comfortable and really works!!! My favorite AE jean fit is the Hi-Rise Jegging.  It’s a perfect fit and great for day into night.

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Behind the Seams: AEO Performance

Behind the Seams: AEO Performance

We spoke with AEO Performance Senior Designer Stacy M. about the technical advantages, fashion details, and inspiration for our new performance line. Read on to learn more about why you should buy AEO Performance.

Who or what did you pull inspiration from to design the AEO Performance line?

The AE girl!  It’s easy when you have such a cool customer to take inspiration from.  We wanted to incorporate her fashion trends with functional fabrics to create a line that is fresh, new and relatable.  The idea is to have pieces that are great to wear before or after your workout as well as during your favorite sport or activity.

How is designing performance wear different than designing everyday clothes?

There are many factors we take into consideration while designing AEO performance. Most importantly is the fabric and how it reacts with different workouts.  Secondly, the silhouette is designed with full movement and comfort in mind no matter what sport or activity is taking place.  We also think about how the seams and fabric effect your workout, such as breathability, chaffing, scratching or itching against the skin.  Lastly, we think about all activities from serious runners to yoga and pilates to a girl who wants to wear our performance line to class. 

What is your favorite way to live your life healthfully?

I like to eat healthy, try new workout classes and have fun while doing it.   I’m also a strong advocate for everything in moderation.  If you want that hot fudge Sunday or box of popcorn, make sure to balance it during the week with fresh fruits and salads.

How would you style Performance wear outside the gym?

The line is so great because it’s designed to be worn inside and outside the gym, any day of the week!  Our basic black bottoms and fleece crop pants are comfortable and perfect to match with our fashion tops.  The peplum tanks and tee are great to wear with our bottoms or your favorite AEO jean fit.  We also have a white windbreaker that you can layer with any outfit.

If you could spend the day with any sports professional, who would it be and why?

I’m a big sports fan so I have a few. NY Giants’ QB Eli Manning is high up on the list, but Carmelo Anthony, Serena Williams and a few of the amazing female surfers out there would probably have a lot to teach me. I would hope to gain a little bit of insight as to how they balance their demanding profession with everyday life.

How does AEO Performance fabric stand out from other fitness line materials? Tell us a little more about the construction.

We have worked really hard developing the perfect fabric for our customer and I think we’ve done it.  It has wicking, which keeps you cool and dry during your most strenuous workouts – and there is a moss finish added that gives the fabric a super soft hand feel.   Our black core fabric used in bottoms has black spandex to reduce the shine when bending and moving while working out.  The best part about this fabric is the compression (really sucks you in/everyone loves their butt to look great!) and of course has a really great price.

What special details make AEO Performance different than other lines?

AEO stands for quality and detail.  All of our bottoms have signature waistband stitch details on the back as well as a hidden waistband pocket to hold your ID and money.  We always think about feminine details like ruffles and pretty mesh fabrics along with function details like zipper pockets on our run tops and reflective trims on the bottoms and running jackets.

AEO Performance is constructed with flat seams – what do flat seams do for the customer?

Flat seams are used to decrease the amount chaffing or scratching to the skin, which makes our styles more comfortable to wear.  Sleep in them if you want – they are super comfy!

What physical activities is AEO Performance best suited for, or are there specific pieces for certain activities?

The line is designed for the most intensive activities to simply wearing it everyday. Hence our tagline “great for a workout or a hangout”.  We have styles suited for running, cardio, yoga, spin, dance and for just hanging out with friends.

How can customers best take care of their AEO Performance gear?

Always follow the care instructions on the inside of each garment!

How versatile are the pieces between different seasons?

All the styles are very versatile throughout the year.  Depending on your workout of choice, we offer four core bottom lengths that work year round along with an assortment of tanks and tees for any style of activity.  For colder months we also offer 2nd layer pieces that are amazing for layering to and from the gym or for outdoor activities.

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AEO Performance 5K Kickoff Event

AEO Performance 5K Kickoff Event

To celebrate the launch of AEO Performance, the American Eagle Outfitters Corporate Campus challenged its associates to take part in a 5K race. Each runner received an exclusive AEO Performance T-Shirt or tank and rocked their AEO style. Check out some pics from the event. Where do you wear your AEO Performance? Tell us in the comments below!


Its a racing day at AEO!


Addie P. and Angela I., from the Social Media team pose for a pic pre race.


AEO associates stretch pre race.


And they’re off!


Associates from the corporate office take off.


It’s a sea of AEO Performance!


Hussle, hussle, hussle!


Mackenzie W., from Human Resources smiles wide for the camera.


Christopher K., from Store Operations wins the entire race with a time of 17:50!


Lesley S., from Aerie Planning finished first for Women with a time of 20:35!


Ivan S. from Merchandising happily crosses the finish line.


Ben C. and Justin C., from the Photo Studio cross the finish line in a tight race.


Members from the Omnichannel Team are happy to have finished the race.


Way to go AEO!



Leah C., from Marketing praises her fashion forward pup, Bonnie for finishing the race.


BIG THANKS to Interns, Sasha and Cameron for organizing the event!


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