I posted a photo on Facebook (don’t forget to like my page) last week of me in my sports bra. I am really self conscious of my stomach and have never run without a top on, however I’ve been following Kelly Robert’s training for Chicago, and her awesome attitude to a runner’s body, so on Thursday I joined the #SportsBraSquad.
I ran 20 mins at 8.40 pace, 8 mins at 8.12 pace at my gym, where the heating seemed to be on full blast and I was sweating profusely during the warm up. Although I felt a little uncomfortable about it, instead of focusing on my exposed tummy, I thought about the marathon coming up next weekend, and how excited I am to work my ass off for Tokyo marathon when training starts…
This body may not look perfect, but it runs marathons, and that’s pretty awesome.
Sports bras have improved a lot in the past few years, I remember when I first started running in my size there was a choice of Black or White – and nothing else. Luckily things have changed, and even in a 32DD/E there are a range of options, styles and colours.
Boobydoo, the online bra retailer sent me a couple of sports bras to try from their collection, giving me the chance to try some new styles and brands.
A sports bra should never see it’s first birthday…
Your sports bra needs to be replaced every 30-40 washes. Running is one of the most high impact activities that you can put your bra through – no matter the size of your chest, meaning that your running sports bras need to be replaced more regularly.
Decent sports bras aren’t cheap, so extend the life (and integrity) of yours by following washing instructions carefully and never tumble dry them.
Ensure you’re wearing the right size bra, if it chafes that is an indication that it’s too big. If you don’t replace your sports bras regularly then the fabric will stretch, reducing support and potentially leading to some painful chafage.
My top tip would be to find a sports bra that you like or a few styles, and keep an eye out for sales and discounts – keeping a good supply of them!
Lets start with my fave of the bunch from Boobydoo – the Triaction Extreme Light sports bra from Triumph. It’s not a style I would normally pick, without a racer back, but I found this incredibly comfortable, easy to put on (and take off) and you can actually cross the straps over at the back if you like.
The padded straps, and thick ‘low friction’ band meant that I was happily chafe free after a super sweaty 16 miler in Atlanta, as well as last weekend’s half marathon. I actually love it so much, I may well wear it for the New York Marathon. The smart 3D powertech technology helps the bra mould and adjust to your body, prevent bounce and eliminate chafe, whilst the fabric is soft and antibacterial – great for this sweaty runner.
Another bra that I tried was the front zipping Falke Versatility Maximum Support bra top – nothing like anything I own currently. It looks like more of a yoga bra, but with a lot more support thanks to the double layer.
I didn’t love it for running as I just didn’t think it was supportive enough, however it was perfect for spinning, cycling and yoga. I also imagine it would be perfect for Barre and other classes.
The only one I didn’t get on so well with was the Berlei High Performance Sports Bra. The cups just didn’t fit quite right, and it felt more like a normal bra than a sports bra. Apparently it’s Serena William’s preferred bra, however with the underwire, it didn’t gel for me.