Friday, March 1, 2013

Getting into gear for springtime running




I started running about a year and half ago with the Couch to 5K program helping me along.  I started out quite overweight.  Some official chart said I was morbidly obese, which was quite right... I'd been my whole life despite being vegetarian since I was 17 years old and now vegan in recent years.  The lack of regular movement helped cancel out any of that.  I worked hard and pushed myself from being able to run a few feet to reaching over 7 miles at my best so far (I plan to go further soon.)  Over the winter I've been a bit of a slacker and now want some motivation to prepare for Daylight Savings to switch up and better weather to kick in.  So I had to bust out a sports bra and a sassy running skirt! 



I've been bra making for about a year or so but none is more easy then a basic sports bra.  I used Jalie 2563.  Holy cow this was simple!  I am sure because a sports bra is for smooshing and flattening... and my pretty bras are for shape and a natural look.  And it uses minimal material.  I used supplex from Fabric Mart for both the top and the skirt.  It's so smooth and comfortable.  It's described to resist punctures... I don't know how often I'll be jabbing a fork into my running garb, but hey, good to know.   



I went down two sizes in the bra as compared with the Jalie size chart.  I cut and made a size  U.  I want serious compression.  I think I could go down one more size for 100% jiggle prevention... I'd say I'm at 89%.   If I were making one for yoga, I'd stick with the recommended size, it would be fine for that. 


I've been wanting a running skirt but they never fit me right... huge waist, tight bum and too expensive.  I used Jalie 2796 for my pattern and cut a size W and graded to an AA for my back side and thighs.  I used the longest length on the pattern for my hemline.  A pretty sweet fit.  The waist is snug and should stay in place.  And check out the deep side pockets for key/mp3/etc storage.  I usually end up with my car key on a keyring on my finger as I run (I generally drive to a local park to run.)


I've not yet put the skort into action on the road but I knew I had to extend the length of the shorts under the skirt.  I tried it on and ran in place to see how everything worked out and to see where the skirt and shorts settled as I moved.  Oh, boy... the shorts rode all the way up.  I didn't have enough material to make a whole new set of shorts but plenty to add length.  I cut about an eight inches length, folded that in half and serged that to the hem.  Now there's a nice seam hiding under the skirt and the hem looks seamless.  I'm not terribly worried that the shorts peak out from the skirt hem some... better then riding up then paired with awful chaffing.  I love how the seams are all on the outside of the shorts... less chaffing on longer, sweaty runs!  I'm a little nervous the bra may chafe some since the serged hems touch the skin directly.

UPDATE (Mar 2, 2012): I wore the bra out for a little three mile run today!  It was perfect.  I didn't even think about it once while I huffed and puffed, rather I was thinking "keep running, it's only a giant hill in one direction, then sweet, sweet relief on the way back".  That's exactly what I want, not to to think about the clothes I am wearing while I run. There were no chaffing or rubbing issues with the seams. I will be making more of these sports bras ASAP!  


I'd likely never wear just a running bra without a shirt, especially this ensemble since it looks like I'm on some weird 30-somethings cheer squad... or maybe a super cool roller girl without her knee pads and skates?! It gets stupid hot here in the summer and I hate layering.  I plan to make the bra into a top and add a bottom half to another version of this.

27 comments:

  1. That is super cute! I'll be interested in knowing how the shorts under skirt work out. I don't run - but I walk. And walk fast!

    g

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    1. Thanks! I bet it would be great for walking. I always wear compression shorts (or tights) under my running shorts because I find RTW shorts are ... too short! Perhaps because I'm a little taller then the average lady? I bet this will be just like that for me. The fabric has tons of give and the design allows for easy movement. I'll share how these feel after running with them.

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  2. Replies
    1. Thanks, Tee! I wanted some colorful, fun stuff, I'm over the gray days here in Bmore already!!

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  3. I am soooooooooo glad you made up these patterns. I have looked at them online, but hesitated, because I wasn't sure how they would look on a real body. But now I feel brave enough to try them myself (paricularly the skirt!)

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    1. Thank you! And no problem. I studied the few reviews and blogs I found with the bra and skort and took their advice into consideration. (Fehr Trade and Miss Celie's Pants... check their reviews out on their blogs and PatternReview.com, they are even more detailed.) You need to try it! And then share! I want to see more people's results!!

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  4. That is so cool, Kathy! I might have to copy you yet again, LOL! I reeeeaally hate spending a bunch of money on sports bras. Making them myself would soften the blow. And that deep pocket on the skirt is The Best!

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    1. Thanks, Gail! These patterns are pretty nice. I got mine from PatternReview, I found that the shipping and the prices were the best online... plus they are in NYC which made for quick shipping to me.

      Everything was in my stash already but my estimated cost of the bra materials: $2 (fabric @ $6/yd on sale at Fabric Mart)+ $3 (elastic) = $5! Add a few more cents for the thread. The pattern costs $13... which will be used over and over.

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  5. Really cute! I can't believe you ere overweight.. Did you loose a lot of weight? Or width (even better:)? I need to loose a few pounds now, hate running, but love bicycles. There are not enough sportsy sewing posts! Great project

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  6. Thanks! I know I had a hard time trying to find many sports related sewing projects!! I should post an old photo! I lost about 70lbs (over 90lbs really because I started the weight loss a few months after having a baby-- I had baby weight,too)... I was very overweight my entire life and was just fed up with feeling yucky. And I need to keep up the regular exercise... I gained a few pounds back this winter, but no big deal. The reason I run and (try) to eat well is to FEEL good and be full of energy... weight loss truly was a side effect.

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  7. Thanks, Gail! These patterns are pretty nice. I got mine from
    PatternReview, I found that the shipping and the prices were the best
    online... plus they are in NYC which made for quick shipping to me.

    Everything
    was in my stash already but my estimated cost of the bra materials: $2
    (fabric @ $6/yd on sale at Fabric Mart)+ $3 (elastic) = $5! Add a few
    more cents for the thread. The pattern costs $13... which will be used
    over and over.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thank you! And no problem. I studied the few reviews and blogs I found
    with the bra and skort and took their advice into consideration. (Fehr
    Trade and Miss Celie's Pants... check their reviews out on their blogs
    and PatternReview.com, they are even more detailed.) You need to try it! And then share! I want to see more people's results!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Thanks, Tee! I wanted some colorful, fun stuff, I'm over the gray days here in Bmore already!!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thanks! I bet it would be great for walking. I always wear compression
    shorts (or tights) under my running shorts because I find RTW shorts
    are ... too short! Perhaps because I'm a little taller then the average
    lady? I bet this will be just like that for me. The fabric has tons of
    give and the design allows for easy movement. I'll share how these feel
    after running with them.

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  11. LOL, I had the same problem with the compression shorts. They rode up and might as well have been the "hot pant" liners, so I made all of mine with hot pant liners. But that doesn't work so well to prevent chafing. I love this color combination. So fun. I'm glad there are other folks out there making running duds.

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  12. Thanks, Caroline! I wish more people had running/activewear on their sewing blogs, especially since knits are really popular right now. Ooh.. do you have running gear on your blog?! I have to go look now :)

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  13. those are the cutest sports bras!

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  14. Thanks, Meg! I don't think I can ever go back to store bought ones now that I cracked the code of bra making.

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  15. I believe it! I'm working on making regular day bras right now, and even though I've only so far gotten one that fits I have been wearing it non-stop. I can't even put on my old store-bought ones now!

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  16. This is a really cute workout set! I have a hard time finding sports bras that really keep me in place when jumping around doing cardio, so I might have to think about making some for myself. I workout just about every day, so I need a lot of sports bras. The skirt is great, and I totally understand the problem with shorts riding up. I almost never wear shorts when I go for a run (even in the summer) because of that problem. With big thighs and butt and a small waist, it's difficult to find things that fit. I guess I need to follow your lead and make my own workout gear. :)

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  17. Yes, make some workout gear! I want to see other folks handmade running stuff... there is so little on sewing blogs and it would be twice as awesome to see someone with similar fit issues. I'm experimenting with drafting a running top right now.

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  18. I'm on it! :) It may take me a couple of months though; I've got a sewing backlog. Can't wait to see how the running top you're drafting turns out.

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  19. Just saw that you are vegan. Have you been to Land of Kush? I live for their ribs and mac and cheese. Mmmmm.

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  20. I've NOT been to Land of Kush!!!!! It's on my short list. I frequented the Yabba Pot for lunch when it was open and I was doing a 9 to 5 job... are the same folks running LOK? Maybe there should be a seamstress Land of Kush meetup?

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  21. I was wondering how the skort goes when running, I need a new one for netball umpiring and any others I get tend to ride up alot.

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  22. I would really love to make a sports bra my self (love to? who am I kidding I've even ordered the supplex and bought the power mesh), but actually... I am really in between in terms of sewing it. I have several RTW bras, but although each and every one of them has different material, cut and is from a different manufacturer, they all seem to share the same flaw - khmkhm "nipple visibility" I am not very large busted so I almost never have a probleem with not having enough support, but if it's rather chilly outside (or in the gym), I don't feel very comfortable with just a sheer shirt over my sports bra. Now, when thinking of making my own, I even bought some thin foam-like material to maybe somehow relive this problem,but I'm still not sure how it would turn out... Do you have any tips for avoiding this delicate issue?

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    1. I actually know exactly what you mean! I have a couple of RTW sports bras that included a little foam insert (like a mini bra cup that very flexible) to put into the top and bottom layers of fabric (they have a built in opening where I just slide the foam into). I've never used foam in my hand sewn ones but I would use a thin bra cup to insert into the layers of fabric as I sew. Try something like this: http://www.sewsassy.com/BraProducts/bracups.html They are swim cups that are super thin and should be a nice little barrier to prevent the area from being seen on cold days! Pin the cups the wrong side of the inner layer of fabric, make sure get them lined up with your bust, then use a zig zag stitch to sew them to the fabric. This is actually a technique I used in attaching my cups in a bathing suit. You can see it here on this post http://www.kathy-sews.com/2013/07/a-green-bombshell-swimsuit.html. Hope this helps!

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