Before I continue, I'm participating in the Tuesdays on the Run blog link up with My No-Guilt Life, MCM Mama Runs and Marcia's Healthy Slice. When you're done reading here, go check them out!
To be perfectly honest, I only really started to pay attention to what I wore while running after I had my twins. Yes, I always wore technical gear, etc. But my body changed so much with that twin pregnancy, all my pre-pregnancy running clothes didn't fit or feel all that well. I had a c-section with the girls and all my shorts had elastic bands and were really uncomfortable. That's when I discovered the wide waist band. I started wearing different running skirts and shorts that had wide waist bands and didn't annoy my surgery scar. But I was really self-conscious and just felt kind of lame in whatever I wore. It's hard to explain but I've always had body image issues and because my body was a lot different in places from my pregnancies, I just didn't feel comfortable in anything. It took me a long time to lose the baby weight and feel normal in this new body. My ribs and hips expanded with the twins, my joints felt weird and running was just strange for the first couple of years after they were born. So I just wore whatever felt good and just blended into the background.
After another couple of years of just wearing whatever, I started noticing all these new printed tops and fabulous patterned shorts and leggings. There was a lot of color everywhere. But I'd try on some here and there and just felt like a fraud. Loud colors were just not my thing because then I'd be standing out and all my self-consciousness would be front and center. Until I discovered Ink n Burn. I had noticed a couple of people here and there wearing these really interesting patterns and outfits. They intrigued me but I still felt that I wasn't worthy. I happened to be at my favorite local running (Running Center in Carlsbad) store, and saw that they carried some Ink n Burn stuff. Of course, I had to try some stuff on. And I was instantly in love. I felt really beautiful for the first time in a long time. I felt strong and I actually felt like I could pull it off and I wasn't a fraud. I bought the Paeon shorts, which are now my favorite shorts. All of their shorts have my must-have wide waist band but they are not mom shorts. They are cut so well, they flatter your figure. I kind of feel like a rock star when I wear them.
|My uniform for the LA Marathon. Wildflowers everywhere!|
Over time, I've made quite a number of purchases and their shorts and singlets are my running uniform now. They are well-made, right here in the US (in Orange County to be exact) and they are unique, exciting designs. Ink n Burn stuff makes me feel strong and beautiful. I feel invincible in their clothes and I don't feel embarrassed to stand out now. In fact, I want to show it off proudly, whenever I can. And I'm proud to say that I found out on Sunday that I was accepted as an Ink N Burn Ambassador!! So, I'm pretty excited, to say the least.
In addition to my Ink, I usually have a hat of some sort. I've been getting more into the trucker hat look, though I have a pin head and not all trucker hats suit me (they make me look like Elmer Fudd). I haven't made the complete switch to the trucker hat because of that.
My sports bra is the Moving Comfort Fiona. I always wanted to wear this particular bra but they didn't make them in, ahem, smaller sizes (if you catch my drift). I was stuck with the ridiculous bra that I had to somehow get on over my head and fight with to get in place. But when they started making the Fiona in smaller sizes, I jumped on it and have never looked back. The Fiona is so comfortable with the adjustable straps and regular hook-and-eye closure. It's like a regular bra. There's never a uni-boob and it's so freaking comfortable. Sorry, I'm not posting a pic of me in my bra.
I wear compression socks and sleeves every now and then, not every time I run so I'm not sure they are part of the uniform. When it's really hot out, the compression bothers me a little so I find it's better for after the run than during. I prefer Pro Compression socks and love all their crazy patterns and designs. But I do wear compression in colder temps, so they're part of the cold-weather uniform :) If I don't wear the compression socks, I typically run in Balega socks because they're yummy and fluffy. There's really no other way to describe them. They fit really well and feel really good.
Lastly, my uniform would not be complete without my Altra running shoes. The wide foot-shaped shoe suits me absolutely better than any other shoe I've ever run in before. I think my feet changed a lot with my twin pregnancy and every shoe I wore after they were born were too narrow. I really wanted to love Hokas but they just weren't wide enough. I tried the Altra Olympus and was instantly hooked. The Olympus are trail shoes and I just wore them for every run because they were so comfortable. But then I got the Paradigm (Altra's max cushioned road shoe) and now wear them for road and the Olympus for trail. And my feet are happy.
|The Altra Paradigms (and Balega socks)|
That's my uniform - a hat, Ink n Burn top and shorts, Fiona sports bra, Pro Compression or Balega socks and my Altras.
What would your running uniform be?