Fashion Meets Function

In the summer, when the humidity is near 100% here in the South, running just isn't pleasant. One of the more unpleasant aspects is a little thing called chafing. My first summer of running (I started in June of '07), I learned a few things. First, cotton sports bras are a bad idea. The band at the bottom would nearly saw me in half during my little 2 and 3 mile runs. I soon realized that cotton anything is pretty much a bad idea.

Last summer, my 2nd summer of running, I was all about technical clothing. I had the socks, the tops, the shorts, the whole nine. But I discovered something insidious about my technical shorts. If the heat and humidity are just right, they still cause some very uncomfortable chafing. And these weren't Wal-Mart technical shorts, they were Nike, for goodness' sake! After my thighs actually bled on a six-mile run, I knew I'd better figure something else out. I got some Body Glide and it helped. Maybe it's the way I'm built, but I knew there had to be a clothing solution. So far this spring, I've been loving my running capris and tights, but that just isn't an option for the summer.

So, I did a little research, and the two best options for chafe-prone runners are compression shorts and running skirts. Since compression shorts scare me, and often lack the number 1 running accessory-Pockets!-it looks like I'm going to become a skirt wearer. I know that skirts/no skirts is kind of a debate in the running community. I know that guys certainly hate being passed by a "skirt." I know some women believe they are silly because running isn't about looking pretty. But if fashion can meet function---if I can have something sort of cutish that leaves my thighs intact.... that could be a great thing!

After reading a few reviews, I decided on investing in a top-of-the-line Atalanta Committment skirt from

And when I say "investment," I mean $54 plus shipping. Ouch. But I have to say, it's the CUTEST THING EVER. It felt fun and flirty and feminine. I may be a runner, but I'm still a girl at heart. It's got about 3 inch compression shorts underneath that peek out from the bottom (in a good way) and two big pockets. I could fit 4 Gu's and a cell phone in there.

I would sure love to try it out on my 20-miler tomorrow, but that's probably not a good idea. One, if the waistband or something causes issues, it would be a mighty long 20 miles. Two, it's going to be 35 degrees at the start of my run (though it will be in the 50's when I finish). I'm not subjecting my legs to that.

It's ridiculous to be this excited about a new piece of running clothing, but this far into training, I'll take excitement anywhere I can get it!


Lisa said…
I'll be interested to hear how you like it. I LOVE running skirts. I have four *blush* Ironically, the Target brand seems to be better than the Nike. Luckily, I don't chafe much, but I did chafe last year during my 17 miler wearing my Nike skirt.

I have also heard good things about but they are not cheap either!

Good luck on your 19 miler tomorrow!! You are getting close to taper!
I love that skirt. I am all about wearing the right thing while running and sometimes my dear, it just might be a skirt. I have one, but I haven't just loved it. I think it just isn't the right fit. I might try one of those litte cuties and see what I think. How did your run go? I am finished... felt great. Perfect day for a 20 miler.
Lisa said…
oops...I am not sure where I read you were doing 19. I actually thought that was an odd distance. ;-)
Jules said…
SHUT UP!!! I just bought this SAME skirt. last week. It arrived Thurs. I wore it around yesterday but ended up not I like it!! So funny!

I too have the thigh chafing thing, lol...LOVE tights & capris for running. And I wore the Target running skirts last summer, but this year they seem to be chafing...and last yr the shorts underneath were too short so they rode up.

yeah for the skirt!
I might have to copy your post and post somehting about my skirt, I thought about it but you inspired me.