Have you joined the Sports Bra Squad? (#sportsbrasquad)
What’s the Sports Bra Squad?
Check out this article in Women’s Running and you’ll know what I’m talking about.
The Sports Bra Squad is a recent social media movement started by Run Selfie Repeat. The movement is for us ladies to own the sports bra!
It’s a platform for us to be proud of our runner bodies, rather than feel embarrassed or shy about running in a sports bra.
It’s about not allowing other people to make us feel ashamed or self-conscious. It’s about taking away the power of other people to make you feel inadequate.
I was very hesitant to post pictures of myself in a sports bra on this blog- I didn’t want to put myself out there like that. I wasn’t ready to be judged by everyone who could come across this site. Coworkers, ex-boyfriends..I don’t know if any of them are actually lurking out there. But no matter, I was too self-conscious of my runner body. I wasn’t a card carrying member of the #Sportsbrasquad. Yet.
But over time, due to the nature of this blog, I became more comfortable wearing only a sports bra. I’ve had to share pictures as part of promotion or to review a product. It’s difficult to do this without getting comfortable with pics of myself in a sports bra.
I’ve also acquired a thicker skin against those who do come here to judge. I guess I joined the sports bra squad before the sports bra squad was the #SportsBraSquad !
But this movement isn’t just about pictures. It’s about standing up to an inequality; no one looks twice when a male runner runs shirtless. Not a second glance. No judgement. No comments that he should “put a shirt on!”
Exhibit A below. This guy doesn’t care. He doesn’t think twice about what people are saying or if he’s being inappropriate. It’s hot. He just takes off his shirt. NBD.
Yet women get body shamed. We are made to feel that we aren’t skinny enough or tan enough or fast enough to run in a sports bra. But that’s the thing- it doesn’t matter your shape, size, or speed.
Wear the sports bra.
At the Torchlight 5k last week, it was brutally steamy. I decided Aquatennial Parade spectators be damned, I’m running in a sports bra. This is my runner’s body.
As I was doing my warm-up, I heard someone say “Well, she’s putting it all out there.” I can’t guarantee they were talking about me, but it sure seemed that way.
(Now if only I would put it all out there in terms of race effort, right?? Ha!)
A better, yet more infuriating, example: my sister was training for a marathon during a hot summer in Michigan. She would do her speed work at a nearby park with a small one-mile “track.” On an uncomfortably hot day, she peeled away her tank and continued her workout wearing just a sports bra. A woman came over to her and said “please put your shirt back on because my KIDS are playing here and your attire is very inappropriate!”
What the what?? Seriously? My sister was embarrassed and quickly grabbed her shirt and made her way home. That scenario happened years ago but I still get riled up thinking about it…
There is nothing inappropriate about running in a sports bra. There is no reason why we should listen to that woman at the park.
I train hard AF to reach my goals. I’m proud of my runner’s body. But I’m 34 years old, not 22. My body isn’t Gigi Hadid perfect, but its never going to be and I’m okay with that. And you should be too. This isn’t a place for comparison or judgement.
It’s frickin’ hot out there and less is more for 100+ degree runs; I’m stripping down to the sports bra, deal with it.
If someone asks you to put your shirt back on? Take Run Selfie Repeat’s lead: just smile and remember how awesome you are for doing what you’re doing. Think about how great you’re going to feel after crushing that hill workout- IN A SPORTS BRA. Maybe feel a little sad for that mom at the park knowing that she has nothing better to do than to pass judgement on you.
Ladies, I challenge you to become part of the Sports Bra Squad.
Own your runner’s body.
What’s a runner’s body?
Look in the mirror. That’s a runner’s body.
Share your sports bra pics with #sportsbrasquad and help promote the movement!
Minneapolis- watch out!
Sports bra squad every day this summer from TRF. Join me.
Great post! I don’t have a selfie in my sports bra. Yet. We can take care of that this weekend. I use to think I needed to look perfect before running in my sports bra. But then I decided I didn’t care. It is hot, it was hot all last week and the sports bra was the only way to go. Now I’ll take the shirt off anywhere. It’s a nice feeling to not care what others think when I “speed” past them.
Yesss!!! Stop caring. Embrace the sports bra! (I mean, we invest good money in those sports bra. Let’s show them off, ha!)
Our mission for the weekend: #sportsbrasquad pics of you!
Love this post! This message needs to circulate everywhere!
I’m doing my part!
Great post Jessie. The Scottish “summer” is not generally conducive to running in a sports bra, but for every single run I did in Florida I was a member of the #sportsbrasquad. Far too hot there to wear any more than was required for public decency!
Rock on! “Florida” Allison is a member of the sports bra squad 🙂
Great post, Jessie! You bring up so many good points, and I love how positive you are! One thing that always gets me, too, is that how most sports bras have more coverage than a typical swimsuit… yet it’s totally OK and acceptable for women to wear bikinis and somehow so scandalous to wear a sports bra? Makes no sense. I think people have a problem with seeing women exercise- like maybe it’s not sexy, or sexualized in the way that wearing bikinis is??? Either way, stupid. Women’s bodies are not shameful. Telling someone to cover up can quickly creep… Read more »
YES. You are absolutely correct Katie. I didn’t touch on that here, but it is creeping into that.
That woman at the park never would have approached someone at a beach to say “please put on a shirt” yet she felt the right to do so to my sister- ridiculous.
Well said Jessie!
Thanks Adeline- miss you, hope you are well!
A great post!!!! I love this! If there is a way to spread this kind of message more, I would in a heartbeat. This is something everyone (especially that mom who judged your sister at the park, and all the other judging people out there) should read, not just us runners. I am scared of one thing though- and perhaps this is the main reason why I have not run in my sports bra yet- is burning. Even wearing a tank top scares me sometimes but for the races, I know I would die if I wore a shirt so… Read more »
Thanks so much Eri for your unique perspective!
As for the sun, it’s probably way more intense in Hawaii than Minnesota and I’m often running as the sun rises, but def a bigger concern for you! Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen!
Thanks for all your positivity- I love it!
I appreciate this post and your attitude! I used to wear a sports bra when I was in college, but then I stopped after I gained some (needed) weight. Accepting a more curvy body has been hard for me, but I am proud of my commitment to running and my health. I am not a string bean anymore, but I am still an athlete. Interestingly, it wasn’t until I’ve become a mom that I have been more willing to take off my shirt and run in my sports bra. My body reflects the changes that pregnancy brings, but I refuse… Read more »
Thanks Molly for your honest comments. I love this part “I’m not a string bean but I am an athlete.” I think that’s my new motto
Hope to see you along the river road- in our sports bras!
Since I’ve always opted for bra-only when temperatures soar, I was surprised moving to MN a few years ago at how few women here run in sports bras. I’m as self-conscious as anyone (hello 30º of scoliosis!), but if ever there’s a place to let go of that, it’s when we’re exercising and doing something great for our bodies. We get better workouts in when we’re dressed for the conditions, right?
Interesting. Minnesotans are modest I guess!
Totally agree- this is the place to not be self-conscious but to embrace the amazing-ness of what we are doing 🙂
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