Yay or Nay: Running Without a Shirt On

Tis the season for shirtless running. I had my first bra-only run of the summer today.

There was a great discussion on the post I wrote last year about running in just a sports bra. It’s just too damn humid in the South in the summer to run with a shirt on! And I’m still so pleased that I still have the confidence to run in just a sports bra – a few years ago, I would have NEVER. My body still isn’t perfect but I don’t think that should impact the decision to go “topless” or not. If you’re working out in tough conditions, you deserve to wear whatever you want to get through the workout!

I’m still OK with the stance I took last year; whatever is most comfortable for you, do it! Although I’m changing my stance on wearing a sports bra in the gym. I used to think it was weird and tacky but now, since I’ve been working out inside this summer because of a foot injury, I’m realizing how hot it can get inside the gyms in the summer. So hey,it sports-bra-only attire helps you be comfortable and will get you to work out, go for it. I personally don’t but it doesn’t bother me when women do it. Although, some gyms have rules against that. 🙂

So, weigh in: do you think it’s OK to run in just a sports bra in the summer? If you commented last year, has your stance changed? 


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  • sarahsouth

    yes!!! just did.

  • Annie @ What's Annie Making

    I’m the same way. I didn’t understand why so many women would run in just a sports bra until it was so hot I decided to do it myself. It really can make a huge difference in your work out and help you finish a few extra miles.

  • Ashley @ Sweat for Sweets

    If men can run shirtless, I don’t see why we can’t run in a sports bra! 🙂

  • Christy

    Girlfriend…. If my mid-section looked as good as yours, I’d be running around shirtless all day! (well, not really, but you know what I mean!). I’m a pretty conservative gal, and your sports bra look is fine with me! 🙂

    • Teri

      hehe. I’m sure your mid-section looks great! 🙂 And I’m glad to know that a conservative gal like you is ok with my sports bra look! 😉

  • Mary Legare Whaley

    Okay. I did not comment on this topic last year, but this has always been my stance. I’ve been running since high school, I’m now 26 (still running). I live in Charleston, SC. It gets sickeningly hot and humid from about now until mid September. Personally, I wear a Nike Sports Top. It’s a “Dry-Fit” extended sports bra, basically, covering my torso. It wicks sweat and is super comfortable. I have 5 of them. It’s basically a racer-back styled bra-tank. Honestly, I have a defined core. I think if I ran in just a bra, I’d turn the heads of men and irritate many women. However, I am super conservative and modest. I choose not to expose my stomach to avoid unwanted attention. I get enough honks and whistles as it is (which makes me super uncomfortable). I don’t mind if people wear a shirt or not, it’s a personal decision, but I can’t help but stare (and kind of judge…) a woman who runs in sports bra that look like underwear. Some sports bras are NOT intended to be tops. 3 cheers for confident runners, but if you need to run in the right bra. It’s all about what makes you comfortable. If you don’t care what passers by think, go for it! If you’re super modest like me, just cover the midsection. Boys run without anything on top. Makes me jealous. But think about it—you’ve seen the good AND the bad when boys run without shirts. It goes both ways.

  • Meghan

    Same stance as last year: sports bra only outside, no questions asked. It’s too dang humid here not to sometimes.
    Inside the gym, I confess I judge based on the person. Girl running a full spring on a treadmill? Rock on with your bare mid-section. Girl reading a mag on the elliptical and baring half your weight on the side bars anyways? Eh, you’re just doing it for attention.

  • Katie Heddleston

    I’m pretty sure last year I commented last year with yes on outside and no on inside — and I still pretty much agree with that. HOWEVER, I think women need to be careful when they are just wearing a sports bra outside because there are lot of people in this world who are jerks and might be more inclined to mug/rape/kill the girl with the sports bra on verse wearing something else. Of course depending on the perpetrator, it might not matter what you wear, but women need to be uber safe when running out doors regardless of what they wear.

  • Heather (Heather's Dish)

    i say do what’s going to be safe and comfortable for you! it’s hard enough running in the heat without having to worry about what you’re wearing too 🙂

  • Lisa (Im an Okie)

    To each their own is pretty much my stance on EVERYTHING. I don’t mind it, but I just feel like my boobs are all over the place and I feel awkward. But when it’s damn hot and humid outside, I will do it without question.

  • Andrea @ Vegvacious

    I think it’s totally personal preference! I wish I had the confidence to do it myself and hopefully someday I will! It certainly doesn’t bother me if a girl is in her sports bra….if anything, I might suffer a little “awesome abs” envy 😀

  • Lauren T

    Absolutely ok! If you’re doing something that’s good for your body then you deserve to feel comfortable doing it! As it gets hotter I plan on doing just that 🙂

  • Michelle

    A OKAY! If you can rock it – do it. I’m with Mary Legare Whaley though that one of the reasons I don’t run without a shirt on is because of the attention it draws. Not only that… I’d probably be concentrating more on keeping my stomach tucked in then keeping good form. Result: falling flat on my face. lol
    For now I’ll stick to my TECH shirts or tank tops from lululemon.

  • BroccoliHut

    I don’t mind bra-only running/exercising–as a girl raised in Alabama, I definitely understand how HOT it gets in the summertime. That being said, I’m not comfortable enough with my body to do it.

  • Laura

    I am all for it! Give me suburbs or parks and I’m fine. But now I live in Brooklyn and I don’t feel comfortable … you’ll get a HUGE boost of “self esteem” (aka you’ll get honked and whistled at constantly…) !