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running gear: one mama's experience

As a reader of this blog you probably know there are lots of running mamas. There are three groups running Hood to Coast this weekend and two FaceBook groups; Run Mama Run (generally faster runners) and urbanMama Runners. The urbanMamas Runners group also has an email list. I (Courtney) moderate the urbanMama Runner FB page and email. I started running again in October 2009 after about 9 years away from it. I trained for the Shamrock 5k in March, and am now training for Run Like Hell 10k on October 24. I could not have done it without the support of my family, the mamas, and some good gear. This is not intended to be a blanket urbanMama endorsement or advertisement – just sharing this mama’s experience. Apologies to the email list readers and FB friends for double posting.


SHIRT: Nike Cotton Dry Fit is my favorite running shirt. I got one when I did the Run Mama Run race and have gotten two more since. I like that it is longer and the cotton feels better to me than other materials. They are a bit cheaper ($18) at the Nike Outlets, and if you are lucky as I am to have a friend or family member working at Nike, it is another 30% off.



PANTS: After a tyring a variety of too big, too much material, wrong material, too long, too short, badly designed, shorts and pants – I am in love with my Road Runner Capris. They are a bit longer than many, but in Portland have been great both inside and out. One small pocket for a key. Only time I wish had shorts or a skirt was the 90 day that we did 5 miles and I got a little hot. If you join the Road Runner VIP club, things are a bit cheaper.


HEADGEAR: When I had long hair, the ponytail was all I needed. After I got a shorter cut, I was on the hunt for a headband that did not slip or get super wet. I heard about SportyBands from the Run Like a Mother blog. I got two of the smaller/narrower ones last week. Love them. They stay in place with no movement at all. Not sure going to love the “hand wash only” aspect, but will see.


iPOD HOLDER: I tried using an arm band for the iPod and did not like it at all. It did not stay put, it was too hard to get on, and I could not access the controls to change music, check pace, or time (I use Nike+). So far many months I have just been holding it in my hand. I saw The Phubby in a magazine and ordered the sporty version. After one run I love it. Do need to press pretty hard on the controls to make it work. A different color other than black might be a better idea in order to see the screen better.


ID FOR SOLO RUNS: I have started doing more runs outside and on my own. I was a treadmill at the gym only mama for many months. My husband got me a Road ID after he starting using one. We even got one for the kiddo for soccer camp. Even though I have my phone, it makes me feel safer and I know it makes my husband more comfortable.


What are your favorites? Any suggestions for headphones – not the ear bud kind? What about rain gear?


Happy Running!



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I just made a cheap metal dog id tag at petsmart with my husband's name and phone number then and put it (without jump loop) on the laces of my running shoe.

After 5 years of running year round in Portland, I've given up on running in rain gear. Rain jackets I've had are too floppy or non-breathable. I now have two smartwool tops, different weights depending on the weather, that I LOVE to run in when it's rainy. Yes I get wet but they dry quickly and feel good. Those plus a hat to keep the rain from dribbling into my eyes does it for me.

I am also a big fan of the running skort. No particular functional reason. I just think they're cute.

Goodwill on 10th has high quality, nearly new running tops and bottoms in lots of sizes. I picked up a new looking Nike top for around 10 dollars. I love shopping there for work clothes too. I really can't imagine paying full price for running clothes. My criteria is that is has to have a lower neckline (v-neck) because I can't stand having things up around my neck. I'm not a huge fan of shorts, so I usually wear capri length or full length tights. I'm thinking about a skort because I don't like the material rubbing between my legs when I run.

I've run in a lot of different shorts/skirts/pants and, after gaining lots of weight on my thighs over three pregnancies, I've recently had a lot of problems with chafing on my inner thighs. the one pair of shorts that *never* causes chafing (and I say this after having run 16.5 miles in them over the past three days) is a Sugoi short -- I think it's the 'spearhead.' It's not just technically great but it seems more attractive than some of those split-sided shorts (that give you kind of a bubble butt when you're running if you're like me...)

of all the running skirts I've worn, I love the Lucy gazelle the best. it's flouncy and pretty and covers well. no pockets, but I wear a pocket-containing sports bra when I wear it.

I also love wearing biker's sports bras for running; those back pockets come in handy for carrying cloth shopping bags and wallets and cell phones and such. I'm often left doing errands combined with runs, and those pockets are key.

I recently splurged on updating my running wardrobe. It was time to get out of my husband's running shirts and worn out yoga pants and into some cute and functional clothes. My favorite piece of running clothing has to be the Lululemon Groovy running short. Spending that much ($54) on a pair of running shorts made me sick at first, but now I'm sold. I never thought a running short could be this awesome, but they are super comfy, have the perfect amount of coverage, dry super fast, and don't budge during a run. The furthest I've gone in them on one run so far is 8 miles and they worked great. http://shop.lululemon.com/store/productdetails.aspx?productid=1286&colorid=577&sli=1 (sold out online but there is a bunch at the store in the pearl.)

I love using an ipod shuffle on runs and use these headphones: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00012F8AY/ref=oss_product

I also switched into more of a minimal running shoe from the overpronation control shoes I wore in the past...over the last 6 years I had one problem after another with my knee and hip until switching out of those shoes. Now I use a light weight racing flat and haven't felt better.

What do you use to keep your ipod touch/iphone dry?

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