Time and again, as manager of a South Florida health club, Kristen Lemoine (pictured above) watched female clients start something that they chose not to finish. Women who showed enough initiative to join the gym would never use the membership.

Lemoine wanted to know why.

“I would give these women a call or run into them around town, and they would [say the same thing]: They [didn’t want to go until] they lost more weight on their own,” says the longtime fitness buff. “They were too intimidated or ashamed of their current physique to go to the one place that was going to help them.”

The irony was too much for Lemoine to bear. So the New York native turned to an age-old fashion truth: You have to look good to feel good.

Inspired by a flattering line of Brazilian active wear, she embarked on an entrepreneurial mission to offer fashionable, confidence-boosting workout clothes. The result is Palm Beach Athletic Wear, which debuted online in April 2010. Lemoine personally selects the items sold on her website.

“Athletic wear can change how you feel about yourself,” she says. “When you don’t feel good about yourself, it’s hard to find motivation to do anything, let alone working out.”

With help from a squadron of “ambassadors”—local fitness instructors who train in and tout the merits of her apparel—Lemoine is spreading the word about clothing intended to be durable, versatile and stylish all at the same time. Her most popular items include loose, flowing cover-ups, such as the Kiwi blouse or T-back top, as well as the basic capri and yoga pants.

“Not only can you wear these to workout in, but they look awesome with a chunky sweater and boots in the winter, or a long tank and sandals in the summer,” says Lemoine, who hosts trunk shows and shopping events to complement her website sales.

The success of Palm Beach Athletic Wear has spurred Lemoine to develop her own signature line of active wear. “In 2013, I’m hoping to launch The Palm Beach Athletic Wear Collection,” she says. “I am always asked about offering men’s active wear, so that is something that I am considering for the future as well.”

Lemoine is in discussions about a potential stand-alone store, but in the meantime, she continues to bolster her online business. Recently, she added an online chat feature that allows customers to ask questions and receive quick responses about her products. She also offers free shipping to customers in the U.S., a rare feature for many online stores.

Each order also comes with a handwritten note, straight from Lemoine. “I want my customers to know that I value them,” she says.

To learn more about Palm Beach Athletic Wear, visit www.palmbeachathleticwear.com or call 877/833-6053.