Lace, silk, cotton, boy short, bikini, there are literally so many options! About two months ago I was running with a teammate from Tucson (she wishes to remain nameless), and we got on the topic of running and underwear. She was shocked that I even run with underwear! I honestly did not know there were other options out there. Then I thought, could I have been wrong this whole time? I have been running since I was 12 years old and have been known to have my mother wash my lucky underwear before meets and then proceeded to have a lucky underwear style in college since I was too lazy to do laundry that much for just a single pair. After all this time, I didn’t even need to be wearing them!! I thought I should experiment for myself to see what this hype is about.
First I just started asking around, not just random people but my teammates and maybe just some other friends. They all replied the same, "your running shorts have built in underwear, why would you need to wear underwear?!"
I started a weeklong experiment: I will run without underwear for a week to see how it goes. After my first run I was sold. I was wearing my Lulu Lemon run speed shorts in the 4-way stretch with the built in underwear so I wasn’t too rebellious. Maybe it's because I had a great long run and workout but I contributed the athletic success to not wearing underwear. The next day I switched it up with Nike pro compression spandex shorts, again it was just amazing. I then switched to the Nike tempo short, with built in underwear the next day, it's like I am wearing new apparel. The next day was Workout Wednesday and I wore the Lulu Lemon boogie shorts and I was seriously so much faster, I believed I had just discovered this secret and new edge. The next day I ran in another pair of Lulu Lemon run speed shorts in the 2-way stretch and had the same success. Friday was my day off, and I decided I should wear underwear to work; I am not trying to lose my day job. Saturday was a shakeout run and I wore Under Armour spandex shorts and I was feeling ready. Then I came across a dilemma on whether to wear underwear to race on Sunday?! I opted to wear underwear with my new race uniform because its what I had been used to for so long. Well I didn’t run as fast as I wanted to, so I'm 99% sure the reason was because I was running in underwear, not because I rarely run on hills or I am getting back into shape or that I haven’t attempted a race in two years.
From this experiment I can report the following:
- Running without underwear is definitely better than running with underwear.
- You will also be faster.
- You will also have less laundry.
- This task works in multiple styles of apparel.
I guess I will be holding off on the lucky race underwear for a while, special thanks to my mom for putting up with my demands for race laundry through junior high and high school!