Running Shorts – Not Just Clothing, But a State of Mind

I have never been so co-ordinated in my life – purple may be my colour after all! In my colour matched Ronhill t-shirt and ladies running shorts I could only think this may be a new way forward for my running career. I’m usually just a ‘two clean socks equals a pair’ kinda girl so this was a whole new level of commitment and I just knew it was going to be a liberating experience.

It seems strange that in this age of girl power, running in shorts can still seem liberating, but in my experience shorts are more than just an item of clothing, they are a state of mind.

I have been a committed to capris during my 5 years as a runner. Come rain, hail or blazing sunshine, I truck round in my ¾ length tights knowing that they wouldn’t chafe, and cover up my runner’s thighs and nobbly knees. My collection of outfits for weddings has to take into consideration my below the knee tan lines. But 2015 is the year of change. As I completed the Brighton Marathon (my fourth, thanks for asking) under bright blue skies, with April sun shining down I realised I was ready to become a Shorts Wearer. Right after I sat down that is. Shorts are about confidence. Confidence in yourself as a runner and in your own skin. This is why deciding to wear shorts is a liberating experience you are taking the power back.

I am a commuter runner so I change in work where colleagues will see me in ‘casual’ wear. On the way home there is always a chance I could run into someone I know. After a stressful day at work, to pull on shorts and feel that you don’t care if colleagues, acquaintances and the general public judge what you are wearing can take more mental preparation than you feel you have.

These shorts, I have the Ronhill Aspiration Twin Layer shorts, can help with the transition. I have tried shorts before and always found they were too short, rubbed in the wrong place, or were just generally uncomfortable. But these shorts, with their twin layers, instantly seemed different. The bottom layer is slightly longer (and funky coloured) which on me came to about mid-thigh warding off any chafing issues, whilst the black over layer gives you the ‘runner’ rather than ‘cyclist’ feeling. They have a pocket at in the back which is large enough for keys, card and ipod for commuter running, avoiding the dreaded jingle, or for 2 gels and ipod for your more serious runs.

Even though the weather has been disappointingly overcast as I try to even out my tan marks from Brighton, these shorts have brought more confidence to my running. They empower me to be the runner I want to be which is not to hidden in my ¾ lengths. I am a real runner, lithe and (partly) tanned, with real goals and real strategies to achieve them (like in the adverts on tv) but I am now also secure in my twin layers as I pass the traffic jams on my way home in style.

So to paraphrase the Baz Luhrman song – my advice to you…. Wear Shorts. Set your legs, your inhibitions and your runs free like you never have before.

 

Helen was provided with the fabulous matching kit free of charge for the purposes of review.

Helen Wilkinson

Helen Wilkinson

Helen took up running in 2010 after having an epiphany watching the 2009 Great North Run. It turned out 13.1 miles was a lot further than it looked on the tv! But since then she has completed events from the Santa Dash 5k to the full 26.2 four times in some pretty cool cities. She is an average runner, who strives to do her best, beating her own PBs, even though Olympic Gold maybe just out of reach! She hopes her musings on everyday running are things that you will also feel about running, and will re-assure or inspire you to get out there and just run!

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