I am pretty sure that I have rolled over in bed on a Saturday morning because it was to cold to run. I might have 12 miles to run but I will hit the snooze if the conditions seem to… not conducive. Snow and cold wind, not this girl. I will just download Dirty Dancing or something to my Kindle and rock the treadmill for a while.
But hey, ask me to run 1 mile in 28 degrees and flurries and I will totally do that – In my bra.
When I was asked to run the Cleveland Cupid’s Undie Run I thought why not, it sounded like a blast. It was a party in Tremont, it was only one mile, and it was for a good cause. 600+ runners showed up at SouthSide in Tremont for the Undie Run to benefit the Children’s Tumor Foundation. Cleveland, you’ve got a big heart.
Cleveland also has snow and wind but that didn’t stop anyone from heading out. In the weeks leading up the big day, I recruited several of my craziest girls to join me on this rather ridiculous endeavor for charity. All of a sudden, we had “a thing” on our hands. It was no longer a giggle through the streets of Tremont, it had become a thing.
What kind of thing? A “what are you wearing, who has an extra tutu, what are your thoughts on body paint” type of thing. A “50+ string of emails in one chain” kind of thing. All of a sudden there was coordination, costumes, wigs, and a designated driver. I had no idea what I was going to wear.
Originally, I was going to run in a Valentine’s Day novelty tee and my running tights. Then I decided I might want to wear pink knee high socks, so I dug out some running shorts. Then I thought a robe would be fun. Did I have time to make a tutu? How about body paint or fake tattoos? I had a bunch of ideas but not sure what to execute. So I went to my favorite store, Target, and looked around. I had a busy week so my picks were last second.
But I couldn’t find anything. I couldn’t think of anything fun to wear and suddenly I felt a little panicked. Everyone had these great plans but I had no idea what to wear. So I just picked up a pink bra and a gray slinky robe and checked out. In the morning I put on my new bra and robe, threw on some bright running shorts, two different colored socks and tied up my hair. It was all I had.
Then something weird happened. I decided the craziest thing. I decided that since this is the undie run, I was going to run in this new pink bra. Yes. I would run in my bra. It is for charity after all and it was called the Undie Run for a reason. I was not going to run in my underwear though. My thunder thighs have the power to scare puppies and make children cry and just going in my bra and running shorts that I NEVER wear ever, was outside of my comfort zone enough.
Once in Tremont I began to get nervous. Not like pre-race nervous, I mean c’mon, it was a mile. I felt nervous because I was surrounded by beautiful, stick-thin women in even cuter bras and suddenly wished I hadn’t checked my robe in the drop bag with my jacket.
Yep, I had no shirt on and there was no turning back. VIP bar, where are you?
One beer and 2 vodka sodas later I was only kinda feeling ok with the fact I still had no shirt on.
We all know I beat myself up a lot about my running and weight. I know I shouldn’t and try not to everyday. Some days are better than others. But being surrounded by tiny girls in bras made me look at myself and think I had ZERO right to be standing anywhere without a shirt on. I was so self-conscious. Why would I even think that this was ok?
But then my friend Kate took this photo -
If you forgive the fact that I am sucking down liquid courage like a champ (trust me, I enjoy responsibly) and that I am using socks in place of arm warmers (so legit), is there really any reason for my panic attack? Not really.
When the mile run actually started, I learned a few things:
*It really doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks of you. If you don’t want to see me shirtless running for the Children’s Tumor Foundation, then don’t look. It’s not your business anyway.
*I am my own biggest critic. I think my mind and body would really appreciate me cutting it a break every now and then. It’s really not that big of a deal.
*Running in your bra is not as crazy as it sounds. It’s actually really fun and liberating.
*Drinking beer before a run, even if it’s just 1 mile, REALLY does not feel good.
*Cleveland winters are relentless.
*Everyone loves an Undie Run. Local businesses and residents could not help themselves. There were a ton of spectators.
*My friends are seriously fun.
*Self-confidence can show up in the weirdest places. Like in a tent full of people in their underwear.
This entire experience was really fun. I would totally do it again. I hope that next February the Undie Run comes back and that Team Am I There Yet would be interested in a reunion. Maybe I can get some dudes to join us.
Would you run a mile in your underwear? For a good cause even? If you are looking for tips or costume advisement I can totally give you some pointers. I feel like I got this one right.
***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cavs to help promote Cupid’s Undie Run. In exchange for my registration and a post on this blog, I received automatic VIP access to the post-race party. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.