Spartan races, mud runs, color runs…is this the year of the underwear runs?
I’ve gotten a LOT of emails lately asking me what I think will be the big, hot, juicy fitness trend in 2018. Since I lack a crystal ball and my magic 8 ball just keeps saying “concentrate and ask again“, I’m going with my gut.
Underwear runs are the the wave of the future.My first exposure (haha pun) to a stripped down run was the 2013 Underpants Run in Kona the day before the Ironman World Championships. Luckily I was with these two fearless women, who were ready to rock the skivvies, while I still went with shorts due to chafing concerns.
Kona Underpants Run
Because this is one of the longest running, it deserves a bit more of an explanation. Not only has it become a massive tradition, but now it’s spurred many triathlons like the NYC and Chicago triathlons to host their own underpants run the day before the big race. While now this tradition has become a great way for athletes to blow off steam the day before a big race, that was only part of the reason it began.
Originally, a few of the athletes in Kona found it humorous to see huge number of people during race week who would traipse about town in their teeny tiny speedos. They decided to do an underpants run to poke a little fun at it, not knowing it would attract a huge tribe of silly runners.
Now the run both creates a fun atmosphere and raises some money for charities in Kona to give back for all they do to support the athletes.
What’s the allure?
BUT Kona isn’t the only place you’ll now find underwear runs, so what’s the deal? Why are we suddenly stripping down to our polka dot panties to run through the streets? Has Instagram simply made us all voyeurs?I think the reasons are little bit grander…and a bit of that too.
Enforcing Body Love
Your own that is! You quickly forget about what’s jiggling once you start running and find that everyone is simply having a good time. While I’m not one who even likes to run in my sports bra, there is something freeing about choosing to just run because you love it and forget about covering up.
Celebrating A Day of Love
Certainly cupid runs around Valentine’s have made this trend take off more in recent years, thanks largely to Cupid’s Undie Run. Not sure if you’ll find your sole mate here, but maybe good for your current mate! Photo from Pittsburgh Cupid Undie run
Possibly the biggest reason these runs have taken off is their focus on truly giving back to charity. The Cupid’s Undie run started n 2010 entirely with a focus on raising funds for neurofibromatosis, but has inspired others who want to focus on a variety of cancers.
Superheros wear some pretty tight skivvies, so why not do that for Halloween! While you could do it unofficially at any Halloween costumed race, there are certainly superhero specific one’s popping up. Stress Relief
While running itself is a major stress reliever for many of us, sometimes stepping way outside your comfort zone with a group of friends is just as important for blowing off steam! It’s a great chance to remember how to be silly, to not take things so seriously and that tightie whities still exist.
A the end of the day, I think there is a body positive movement that’s growing.
These Underwear, Undie, Underpants runs are a great reminder that a runner’s body doesn’t have one specific shape or size, height or weight, breasts or man boobs, curves or flat as a board. Our bodies are miraculous.
What You Need to Know?
Have some questions about how all of this works? Me too!
- Wear what makes you comfortable!
- Remember to dress for the temps too.
- Wear your running shoes, even if they don’t match the outfit.
- Swimsuits are a nice idea because they already handle your sweat.
- Don’t go totally nude! Cover your private bits and bobs.
- Have fun, laugh, be silly…it’s all about letting go.
Where to find these runs?
Expect many of them to untimed or fun runs, as they tend to have a larger charity focus…and let’s be honest they’re a little more about not taking running so seriously!
Since I expect this to take off more, I’ll keep updating this list. And if I’m wrong, well start your own treadmill version. Photo source
- Cupid’s Undie Run – Nationwide
- Santa Skivvies Run – San Francisco
- Super Spooky Halloween Underwear Run – Dayton, Ohio
- Bonobos Underpants Run (for cancer) – NYC and Chicago
- CSU Undie Run – Boulder, CO
- Morning Moose Underweaer Run, Des Moines, IA
Have you done an underwear run?
Does it appeal to you?
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