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4 Scary Smart Ideas for Running in Costume


Running in costume can be a lot of fun! Here are some tips for helping to make sure running in costume puts the functional in fun:

Choose materials wisely

There are a ton of cool things you can do with a cardboard box, but they don’t exactly work for running. Case in point: I was a sandwich board style snowflake

Here’s when I knew this wasn’t going to work: I took a step. The cardboard was so stiff, it knocked my knee down. Unfortunately, I didn’t test it prior to race day.

Start with Activewear

Use old items you already run in where possible. This stuff has already been tested, so you know it will work. Bonus points: you won’t need to spend any money.

Take my Katniss Everdeen “Girl on Fire” costume (and note this was prior to movies coming out, so the book text was what I had to go on)

“I am dressed in what will either be the most sensational or the deadliest costume in the opening ceremonies…it’s the flaming cape made of streams of orange, yellow, and red and the matching headpiece that define this costume.”

Cape and headdress (felt + feathers from a craft store) aside, I’m rolling with my favorite Under Armour Cold Gear top + CWX compression leggings.

I ran a 10 mile club run in this one and was perfectly comfortable!

The year I was pregnant, I went with the same starting point. This kettlebell costume was simply a long sleeve seamless running top with a big hole for my belly.

That’s a seamless maternity tank peeking out and felt “handle” glued on the chest area of the shirt. 

I did a 5K and a 4 miler in this costume, 39 weeks pregnant. Can you imagine if I had tried to use base materials that weren’t intended for running? Yikes!

Add to Store Bought

I get it- not everyone has the desire to DIY running in costume. It’s really easy to choose one of those short…ahem…risque type costumes and put shorts leggings underneath.

For 26.2 miles in this Dorothy costume, I wore shorts. Note the spray painted shoes- I guess there is some level of DIY, after all!

That’s a pair of Run Speeds under my short skirt!
Just add leggings

Add to Goodwill

We followed a similar formula here for Golden Girls- traditional running clothes under Goodwill finds.

If you run in a group costume, make sure you stay together. Otherwise, you’re an old lady and not Blanche with Dorothy, Rose, and Sophia!

Pro tip: don’t run in a wig!

Sophia (far R) had a speaker playing the Golden Girls theme for us when we needed a “power up”

I’m not sure if the Zombie thing is played out yet, but I love adding makeup to any costume like the bride below for a twist.

If you’re expecting, don’t miss the opportunity to gross everyone out by gluing baby doll limbs to a bloody shirt.

My husband was disgusted by this costume, worn at 38 weeks pregnant- “too close for comfort!”
Women typically find this hilarious. Men? They’re horrified!

Share your photos

Are you running in costume this Halloween? What will you be?

Send pictures from your race to suzy@runliftmompod.com for a chance to be featured + a surprise gift from one of my podcast partners!

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