Gear Alexo Athletica: Athletic Apparel for Armed Women Chad McBroom November 15, 2018 One Sunday afternoon on August 7, 2016, 27-year-old Vanessa Teresa Marcotte left her mother’s house in Princeton, Massachusetts to go out for a run before heading back to her home in New York. She never returned. Her body was recovered a few hours later in a heavily wooded area less than a half-mile from away. This tragic incident illustrates the inherent dangers of hitting the pavement or backwoods trail to challenge the cardiovascular system with an exhilarating run. A survey conducted by Runner's World found that 30% of the women who responded said they had been followed by a person in a vehicle, on a bicycle, or on foot; and 3% said they had been grabbed, groped, or otherwise physically assaulted while running. An internet search for “attacks on runners” yields dozens of news stories about runners being attacked by opportunistic predators, not to mention a list of animal attacks that range from dogs to black bears. While training for her first marathon, Amy Robbins recognized the danger of running alone in a Dallas park. This prompted her to carry a firearm while she ran, but she quickly found packing heat in her brand-name running attire to be a tedious task. After all, yoga pants and leggings historically have not been constructed with the intended purpose of carrying a holstered firearm. With necessity being the mother of invention, Robbins set out to create her very own brand of stylish active wear that would facilitate concealed carry. ENTER ALEXO ATHLETICA Amy Robbins is no newcomer to world of firearms. Being a Texas girl, Robbins grew up around firearms, but it was during her work on the NRA TV series NOIR with Colion Noir that she really developed her passion for shooting and bringing women into the gun world. She currently co-hosts the Not Your Average Gun Girls podcast, where she and Emily Valentine work to break the stereotypes associated with women in the gun world and bring awareness to the self-empowered lifestyle. Drawing from her knowledge of firearms and living a prepared lifestyle, Robbins merged these two elements to create the Alexo Athletica brand of activewear. Alexo comes from the Greek and literally means to defend. “We wanted a name that was as strong as the brand itself, and one that truly captured all that we were about. Alexo symbolizes our willingness to help women live confidently, and we believe a part of that is the ability of a woman to defend herself,” explained Robbins. PISTOL-PACKING LEGGINGS Alexo’s Signature Pant is where it all began. These leggings have nine pockets for any combination of EDC gear. There are two thigh pockets, one on each leg, large enough for carrying a cell phone, wallet, or even a 16 oz. water bottle. The high waist contains a horizontal pocket positioned for left-hand access, and three double pockets strategically placed for firearm carry at the appendix, four- and eight o'clock positions. To the casual onlooker, the patent-pending double pocket system appears to be no more than a divided pocket for added organization, but we learned from Robbins that inserting an ID, permit or credit card into the front pocket works as a hard trigger guard. Critics of concealed carry clothing often cite the absence of a hard trigger guard as a primary reason to avoid such products, so this feature may settle the minds of some who might be on the fence about packing heat in these hot pants. While not intended for heavy, large-frame pistols, subcompact pistols like the Glock 43 or M&P Shield fit neatly and securely in the Signature Pant. The female model we had test drive these leggings wore her Glock 43 on a three-mile run and reported that the gun stayed in place, and that it wore so comfortably that she was able to focus on the run, not the gun. HEADS EXPLODE Alexo was thrust to the forefront of social media when political commentator and 2nd Amendment advocate Tomi Lahren sported the leggings on Instagram. The anti-gun crowd came out in full force, attacking the idea of “gun-slinging yoga pants.” Reactions ranged from passive-aggressive, with comments suggesting the pants were a joke from an SNL skit, to verbally accosted, with an, “F you, Alexo.” The negative publicity didn’t faze Robbins. In fact, she welcomed the free advertisement! Like most efforts from the anti-gun community, the outrage over the Alexo pants had the opposite effect of what was intended. Instead of being shamed out of business, Alexo sold out of their Signature Pant overnight and has had a hard time keeping them on the shelf ever since. “To have someone question your beliefs is not a bad thing. It should make you analyze, dig deep, and even stand firmer in your convictions. That’s how change happens,” was Robbins’ public response to her supporters. “Our mission at Alexo has always been and will always be to see women live self-reliant, confident lives. And while that might be met with opposition, it doesn’t scare us.” MOVING FORWARD Alexo continues to develop new products to complement their existing clothing line. Some new items are on the horizon, like the Fit n’ Flow Jacket. There are even plans to introduce a line of men’s athletic wear in the future. Robbins also hinted that a major announcement was coming in 2019 but couldn’t share any details. While most women’s fashion trends will come and go, self-reliance and empowerment are always in style. Perhaps the best response to the “yoga pant” critics: “’Namast’ay‘ empowered!” Find out more about the Signature Pant and other Alexo products at alexoathletica.com. Explore RECOILweb:Louis AwerbuckGet Your Hands on the First Agency/Nighthawk CollaborationReview: Fire Control Unit X01, a Modular Pistol ChassisArtwork by Yanni Floros NEXT STEP: Download Your Free Target Pack from RECOILFor years, RECOIL magazine has treated its readers to a full-size (sometimes full color!) shooting target tucked into each big issue. Now we've compiled over 50 of our most popular targets into this one digital PDF download. From handgun drills to AR-15 practice, these 50+ targets have you covered. Print off as many as you like (ammo not included). Click here to get IMMEDIATE ACCESS to a digital PDF of this target pack!