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Shorts and I have had a turbulent relationship over the years. I love my thick thighs, but finding a pair of pint-sized pants with hems that don’t act like cheese wires, or chafe so badly that they leave me with painful welts down my legs has been tricky. With summer here, I’ve been looking for something more lightweight for the heat, and while historically you’d often find me on the men’s side of shops to get my sport short fix (the choice has been infinitely better), the women’s section is getting much better by the day.

If you’re looking to swap your leggings for something a little more airy this summer, these five workout shorts provide a step up on the competition in terms of design, tech and cut.

GapFit Drawstring Shorts in Brushed Tech Jersey, £32.95

Super soft and incredibly lightweight, this super stretchy pair is a personal favourite of mine. Available in three colourways - Pink Dust, Ruby Wine and Quiet Blue - they’ll keep you cool and extremely comfortable.

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Sweaty Betty Time Trial Run Shorts, £50

I’m always a little skeptical about shorts with in-built knickers however, this high performance pair has made me a fan. Made with sweat-wicking material to keep you dry, and available in two lengths - 7cm and 10cm (I'd personally opt for these) - they make for a great fit for sprint training or a particularly sweaty boxing session.

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M&S Performance Shorts, £14

If you’re looking for something more fitted, these are for you. Made with quick dry fabric and complete with a mid-rise waistline, they also work great worn underneath skirts or looser shorts on days when you’re looking for a little extra coverage and control.

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Adidas EQT Shorts, £34.95

First, off I love the colour of these. But they don’t just look great, they also feel great too thanks to their loose yet structured fit, breathable weave material and side slip-in pockets. They’re a statement short that looks as great out of the gym as they do in it.

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Nike Dri-Fit Academy Football Shorts , £16.95

A crisp pair of black shorts has fast become a fitness wardrobe staple of mine - they go with everything. Offering stretch and sweat-blitzing prowess, their appeal extends to footballers and non-footballers alike.

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Lorna Jane Easy Run Short, £52.99

These come complete with inner tight-fitting shorts inside for added comfort and security. They don't feel restrictive though and suit everything from circuits to a run around the park.

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Do you have any top short recommendations? If so, let us know in the comments section below.

Read more: 6 of the best tummy-flattering high waisted gym leggings

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