What types of clothes should one look for as a runner? Can a runner just grab anything from the closet and head out for a run? Ideally, yes. Wearing clothes that are comfortable is the best place to start while running. As one starts to run more, they may find that those everyday sweats are a little too heavy to run in, or that cotton tee is causing more chafing than preferred. Clothing for running is lightweight and designed to move with your body and is designed not to chafe. Running gear is generally made with technical fabrics to hold up for more cycles in the wash. The fabrics used are usually nylon, wool, or polyester. These fabrics allow running in cold weather to keep runners dry and warm, and in the summer they wick away sweat, keeping you dry and preventing chafing. Women will also need to look for supportive sports bras for running. Sports bras should fit comfortably and not be stretched out. For some general advice on essential runner gear, check out this Team RunRun article. In this article, we’re going to focus on gear that is inclusive of all sizing.
Runners come in all shapes and sizes and some sizes are harder to find than others in proper athletic apparel. Inclusive sizing is a new trend in retail, and one of the largest trends to emerge. Clothing before this trend would come in sizes small to extra large and anything larger than extra-large would be labeled plus sized and put in a separate section. The average American woman is a size 16 (waist size 36 to 38 inches) and the average American man’s waist size is 38 to 40 inches. Body acceptance and the realization that there is health at every size has created this trend in society and clothing retail has finally started to follow. Athletes come in all shapes and sizes as well. Below is a list (in no particular order) of brands that support inclusion of all sizes and the sizes that they carry.
Women’s clothing size xs to 3x
Bra sizes 28-42, cup size A-D
Oiselle is an athletic clothing brand for women made by women. Their mission is to bring in community and make athletic gear for all women of any pace and place; “Our mission is threefold: Make great product, improve the sport, and build the sisterhood.” Most of their clothing has pockets, they are anti-chafe, comfortable and are true to size.
Women’s clothing size xxs to 3x
Bra sizes 30-44, cup size A-DD
Athleta is a branch from the clothing brand GAP. Their mission is “to ignite a community of active, healthy, confident women and girls who empower each other to reach their limitless potential.” They have true athletic clothing, quality apparel that will not chafe, is comfortable, and is true to size.
Men and Women’s clothing size xs to 3x- Tall sizing available
Bra sizes 30-50, cup size A-DDD
Old Navy is another branch of the clothing brand Gap. They carry both men and women’s sizing and make tall clothing, which is 2-3 inches longer than the regular size. Their mission is “to ensure the world runs right by creating a better tomorrow for future generations through our Imagine Mission’s three pillars: inclusivity, opportunity and sustainability.” Old navy has a variety of activewear perfect for runners. They are a more affordable brand with a slightly shorter lifetime of clothes.
Womens clothing size Large to 7x
Bra sizes Large to 7XL(39-71)
SuperFit Hero is a womens clothing line that supports fitness being for every body. “We move. We Play. We celebrate our bodies without apology.” They have worked to phase out their small and medium sized clothing in favor of extending their largest size to a 7x. The CEO Micki Krimmel made the change after years of research on the needs of extended sizing for athletes. Her mission is to help athletes of any size feel welcome and not go through the struggles of trying on clothes with inconsistent sizing and lack of access to proper sizing.
Women’s clothing size xxs to 6x
Bra sizes xxs to 6x (29-60.5)
Girlfriend Collective is an ethical manufacturing brand. They believe in using recycled materials and no waste. They believe health and wellness comes in many shapes and sizes. “We believe in being transparent, taking care of the people who make your clothes and never putting our bottom line before what’s best for the planet.” Their fabrics are high quality and all recycled. Guaranteed soft and comfortable and made with the highest quality to fabrics lightweight and chafe free.
Men and Women’s Clothing size xs to 4x
Bra sizes xxs-4x (29-50)
Fabletics is an active wear company for men and women. They have a special VIP membership program and are geared towards making members completely satisfied with affordable products. They do market research every year to guarantee customer satisfaction. “Our mission = Our members”. Their aim is affordable pricing and high end clothing.
Womens clothing size xs to 6x
Bra sizes xs to 6x (30-60.5)
Yitty from fabletics is designed by three-time Grammy Award-winning artist Lizzo. Yitty is her lifelong dream come true. She has been working towards building size inclusive clothes based on the principles of self-love, radical inner confidence and effortless, everyday wear. The brand sells shapewear and some athletic gear. She wants women to look in the mirror and feel confident about how they look and what they wear.
Mens and Women’s clothing size xs to 4x
Bra sizes 30-36, cup sizes A-G
Nike is an American multinational corporation and headquartered in Beaverton, Oregon. Their mission is to “bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world”. They are in support of the movement “if you have a body, you are an athlete.” They strive to make continual improvements on their line to keep up with athletes and sports.
Everyone is born to move their body and find the movement that inspires them. Running is one of the most common forms of movement and the most simple to get started. Every body is a runner’s body and more brands are creating more sizes everyday to fit all shapes and sizes of athletes. The list above is just a start of brands that have inclusive sizing. Find the outfit that makes you feel comfortable and enjoy your run! You deserve it.
Ashley Brush is a coach with Team RunRun. To learn more about her or to work with her, check out her coach profile.