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Step in to My Closet – Sports Bras

by Meghann on May 13, 2009

Some of the most common questions and comments I receive on this blog refer to my work out attire and any recommendations I have for great gear that is going to be supportive and fashionable without breaking the bank.

Over the last year and a half I have learned ALOT about work clothes and what works and what truly doesn’t. In the beginning I was all about the cheap and convenient. I wore $5.00 sports bras and ran in nothing, but cotton. Fortunately, now I know better.

I know that cotton is not my friend, in fact it’s actually my enemy. I know that dry wick material is the key to and that in this heat less is always more. I learned to not be ashamed for running in just a sports bra and I learned the difference a supportive sports bra could make. I learned sweat pants were meant to lounge around, not to run miles and miles in.

Now I invite all of you to take a step in to my closet and let me show you what I wear that keeps me running for miles on end. I have developed this series to dig deep and hopefully answer any questions you might have on some of my personal favorite work out finds.

Today we are going to actually take a slight detour from my closet and instead to the dresser where my top middle drawer houses my collection of Sports Bras.

I present to you my emptied Sports Bras drawer.

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Now, I know this may look like alot, but trust me it’s not what it seems.

I have what I like to call two parts to my sports bra collection, there are the ones I truly love and will last through ultra long runs and then there are the ‘low impact’ sports bras that are just like wearing a tight tank top on a run.

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Back when I first started running, I did not know what true support was for a Sports Bra, all I know was that I needed one to run. I headed to Wal-Mart and bought the Hanes Her Way 3 pack for $5.88. These bras have no support, are stretched out and cotton.

However, I am a pack rat so these stay safely in my drawer and I will wear them when I do yoga, go for a light run or lounging around the apartment. I would NOT recommend purchasing these, if you plan on doing any distance running at all. Save the ‘low impact’ variety for the light days or don’t even worry about purchasing any.

My second category are those ranked as ‘high impact.’ Basically these bras rock and will keep the ta tas bounce free for 10, 15, 20+ miles at a time.

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I have taken a liking to trying new sports bra and whenever I find a great deal on a new one I can’t turn back, which is how my collection has grown (please note not all of the sports bra I own are in this picture).

Here is a quick break down of some of my favorite sports bras, a mini review and where I purchased them!

Gracie Gear

For a full review of the Gracie Gear Bras you can read my review here.

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Honestly, from the moisture free fabric to the indie liner with elastic band for extra support to the great, convenient little pocket, this sports bra is a winner. I wore the teal one during the Gasparilla Half Marathon where I PRed and felt fresh and supported the entire time. Gracie was gracious enough to send me the first one to sample and review, but I loved it so much I bought another one!

You can purchase Gracie Gear products on her website or any of the retail locations listed on the front page.

Moving Comfort: Alexis Printed Bra

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This sports bra is A-MA-ZING! I wore this sports bra on my 20 mile run this Saturday and did no have one complaint. It stayed put, held the girls up and it’s great design allowed me to feel cute and comfortable in the just the sports bra. Which in 90 degrees weather is a real plus for me!

This bra also had a built in support system that worked double duty to keep the girls from moving.

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The extra underwire really made a difference in the 20 miles and I am seriously considering wearing this one for my marathon in San Diego.

This bra was a sample sent from the kind people at Moving Comfort and after testing this one out and playing with the site I know I will be back to purchase is more.

This sportswear site is ideal for any athletic women out there. Their sports bra don’t just run by S/M/L, they have different levels of sports bras meant for different size of women and different type of support. You can shop for sports bra by category of size, type and impact level.

They even have a helpful Bra Finder tool that will help narrow down the type of sports bra you are looking for. It’s a great tool if you’re not sure what you want for your support, you can put it your exact measurements and it will tell you just what you need.

The prices are not bad either and I love their slogan A Fit Woman is a Powerful Woman!® Amen to that!

Enell Sports Bra

Now many of you may not know this, but back in my heavier days I was quite busty. I basically spilled out of a 36D and low cut shirts were not a good option for me.

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I was always looking for the right support in all the wrong directions.

When I lost weight, the breast were the first thing to go. I swear those first 5 pounds came out of my bra. Of course now my breast still have the majority of the skin with out all the meat to fill it out (sorry to be so graphic here!) I can now wear a 34B, but still find I need the same support from my well endowed days.

The great thing about the Enell Sports Bra is that it is specifically deigned for well endowed women. It takes the boobs and locks them up tight!

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The patented design and construction – a balance of compression and encapsulation – makes it outperform the rest in the field.  Comprised of 90% Nylon 10% LYCRA® Spandex, the ENELL Sports Bra is a must have for well-endowed women who need superior support and comfort while working out. 

I tried this baby out and I have to say it really got the job done! It was a little tight to wear, but I was told that’s how it suppose to fit! My breast did not bounce at all and I felt I could go for miles and miles in this thing.

If you are a lady who needs that extra, extra support I highly recommend the Enell, please check out their website for more details on how to locate a retailer!

Old Navy

Old Navy has a great activewear line! It is all reasonably priced, especially when you find it on sale. I found this little baby on the Old Navy sales rack for $7.00 a few weeks ago. It’s made of 90% polyester, 10% spandex, is fully lined and has nice little mesh inserts for breathability.

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I would wear this sports bra for anything up to 13 miles, but any more I would need some added support. Still, this bra is great for my quick morning runs aiding just the right amount of support I need to complete them.

Target

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Target is another great store with a fairly reasonably priced line of sports bras, but you have to be careful here. They have their nice line of Champion bars like this one that are actually built for support in running and they have their sheer spandex ones that are cheap but I would be hardpressed to go for a vigorous walking.

Aspire (Sports Authority)

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Sports Authority sale racks are wear I can find some great deals on Sports Bras. They usually have a great selection of various brands with all levels of support. The Apire one above I recieved this past Christmas and I have returned to Sports Authority a couple times already for very similar bras. I love it and it gets the job done.

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Sorry that was so long, but I hope you really enjoyed the information you got out of this post. I know I couldn’t possibly name all the wonderful Sports Bras out there or where to get some great deals, but I hope you enjoyed this sneak peak into the sports bras that get me through my runs.

Please feel free to comment with your Sports Bras and where you purchased them. I am always looking for something new to try or a new place to shop! 🙂

Please let me know what you thought of this post! If you like it I will continue on with my Sports Tops, Bottoms and Socks. Or I may even just talk about my regular ole clothes in the closet…lol

1 Pearl May 13, 2009 at 9:12 am

ahh Meghann – thanks for sharing all that information! I never knew that sports bras had different qualities to them; I just got my Champion one from Target. I’ll look into the other bounce-protection ones 🙂

2 brandi May 13, 2009 at 9:12 am

i love the idea of all the gracie’s gear ones – i need to look into those.

3 Run Sarah May 13, 2009 at 9:18 am

Awesome review! I definitely need to pick up some better sports bras too.

4 j May 13, 2009 at 9:22 am

I’ve gotten most of my good sports bras at Marshalls or TJ Maxx! Obviously it’s hit or miss but I’ve gotten several Nike sports bras there for $15. (They retail for at least $35 elsewhere!)

5 Mel May 13, 2009 at 9:24 am

Thanks for the review, I know I need some new sports bras, so you definitely helped me out!

6 TorontoGirloutWest May 13, 2009 at 9:31 am

Ooooo I’m in need of some good sport bras. I’ll keep those in mind!

My personal favourites are the ones from Lululemon. They have a bounce breaker which is great but the one I heart (!) the most is their lift and separate bra. Mind you I don’t think I’d recommend running just in that bra alone as it might be a little too sexy! lol

Basically I love it because it doesn’t give me uni-boob! 😉

7 runnerskitchen May 13, 2009 at 9:36 am

Haha, love the sports bra post! One of my favorite sports bras is a dri fit version NIKE. It’s very tight fitting, so there is absolutely NO bounce (not that I have much on top to bounce anyway…oh well).

8 Meganerd May 13, 2009 at 9:41 am

Meghann,

Thanks soooo much for posting this! I was just doing laundry and thinking wow I really need some new sports bras. I have had the same ones since high school and they really suck. I have been wearing two at once bc i can’t find ones that are supportive enough. I’m definitely going to try at least one of these out!! 🙂

Megan

http://meganerdruns.blogspot.com

9 Tyler May 13, 2009 at 10:07 am

i love the c9 sports bras from target! those are the only ones i wear 🙂

10 Diana (Soap & Chocolate) May 13, 2009 at 10:16 am

EXCELLENT! I appreciate the advice because as much as I would like to ignore buying new workout gear, I really shouldn’t since I do workout regularly. I don’t think I’ve bought a new sports bra in the past 5 years! I know! Mostly because it’s not the kind of thing I like to blow the bank on, so I am grateful for budget-friendly suggestions from someone who has run around the block in them many times! 🙂

11 Shannon May 13, 2009 at 10:17 am

LOVED this post. I really like the moving comfort one, I am gonna go buy it. 🙂

12 FoodsThatFit May 13, 2009 at 10:18 am

I wish you would send some of that boobage that you lost my way. I’ve always wondered what it would be like to have cleavage 🙂

I keep telling Jason he needs to go into plastics so he can give me an “upgrade.”

13 Julia May 13, 2009 at 10:29 am

Like veryone else, I loved this post! I’m rather well endowed and I can never seem to find a bra that fits really well and stops the bouncing! Thanks for sharing your drawer/closet with us!

14 Melissa May 13, 2009 at 10:29 am

great post.

15 Sarah May 13, 2009 at 10:54 am

So informative. My girls are so tiny they can rock the Old Navy…little girls section…

16 Michelle May 13, 2009 at 10:58 am

I really liked this post! It was really informative! Thanks for sharing Meghann!! 🙂

17 Casey May 13, 2009 at 11:01 am

Very cute idea!!! I’ve been wanting to buy a new sports bar. Thanks for sharing!

18 Carrie H May 13, 2009 at 11:03 am

Yeah, I’m wonderin’ about undies … I wear my most comfortable cotton ones under more expesive wicking bottoms/shorts … I think it’s kinda counter-intuitive! What do you do? Thanks!

19 weight and meditate May 13, 2009 at 11:07 am

Great and informative post! I feel you on the still-there skin with not as much meat boob problem. Not TMI for me!

20 Melissa @ For the Love of Health May 13, 2009 at 11:11 am

I LOVE this post ! I have to go back and read again! I have a lot of sports bras too and I categorize them in a similar manner! 🙂

A good sports bra is SOOOO important!!
I should do an inventory of my own 🙂

Have a safe flight!

21 Justy2003 May 13, 2009 at 11:13 am

Thanks for the sports bra reviews! I could definitely use some new ones, but they’re always so expensive and I’m never sure I’ll like them. Since I’m rather busty (nickname was Busty Justy in high school after all!), I need to make sure I’ve got some support!
Thanks again!

22 carolinebee May 13, 2009 at 11:25 am

i LOVE this! haha it was totally informative and to the point on such an important subject! I really want to try the alexis one it sounds great. Bouncage is just no good. I love the Target ones too, have a great trip xo!

23 Anne K. May 13, 2009 at 11:26 am

Thanks for these reviews! They were definitely helpful. All of my sports bras are the Champion brand. They’ve worked pretty well for me, but then again I don’t need all that much support. Haha! That pocket in the Gracie Gear bras looks so convenient.
I’d love to read more reviews of your workout clothes– I’m always looking for new stuff 😀

24 Rachel May 13, 2009 at 11:26 am

Awesome post! I really appreciate all these reviews. I’ve gone from a 38D to a 36C and I’m still wearing some of the same sports bras… ugh. I mean, I think they’re still working fine, but this posts reminds me that I can do better! Environmental factors really affect my workouts and so I’m sure clothes are included in that. Like some others have said… what about underpants? 🙂

25 Yasmin May 13, 2009 at 11:30 am

Very informative post! Liking it…

26 redheadyellowdog May 13, 2009 at 11:34 am

this is great info!! I used to do the double up method with my sports bras! never again! Thank goodness they’ve developed great support for active women.

27 Hallie May 13, 2009 at 11:49 am

Great post! Please keep it up because I’ve been considering upgrading my workout gear, especially my bras. My sports bras are embarrasingly old, worn out, and unsupportive, but because I’m somewhat small-chested, I’ve never cared that much. But I’m at the point where I NEED to invest, especially if I’m going to try to be a more consistent runner 🙂 so thanks for the tips!

28 runeatrepeat May 13, 2009 at 11:57 am

I have that many sports bras too! They require a whole drawer just for them 🙂

29 Marissa May 13, 2009 at 11:58 am

Awesome!

30 Ann May 13, 2009 at 12:09 pm

Thanks for the reviews! I am hard to fit (30E) so I have been through my share of sports bras. I completely agree that the cheapy cotton stretch versions are useless. I have had the most luck with Victoria’s Secret and Title Nine. Title Nine has a rating system based on support, and includes very good reviews. They are a little pricey, but in the end most definitely worth it for comfort and sag-prevention!

31 Kayla May 13, 2009 at 12:12 pm

This is a great post! Some much needed info!

32 Rose May 13, 2009 at 12:16 pm

Great post! Moving Comfort is the only brand I wear – I actually own five of the same bra!

33 PRT May 13, 2009 at 12:27 pm

Wow! Thank you!

I’m going to look at some of your suggestions. My experience in sport wear has always been a trial-and-error routine, so I appreciate this entry.

Keep them coming!

34 jane May 13, 2009 at 12:31 pm

that was an awesome post, and very informative for all your active readers. since i work in a running store, i am constantly trying to tell ladies they don’t need to wear multiple bras just to get support while exercising and also that COTTON IS ROTTEN! especially for bras, considering how much sweat you generate in there (sorry for the gross mental picture). I LOVE moving comfort bras and think every woman runner should try em. I’ve never used the Alexis bra, i’ll have to look into that. I’ve heard the Enell is amazing too- endorsed by Oprah and everything 😉
You ought to do a workout clothes post sometime in the future to help readers understand what types of fabric (wicking) are best and why and how much it makes a difference!
Have a great day 🙂

35 Jennifer @ His N' Her Health May 13, 2009 at 12:47 pm

Great tips, I never know what kind of sports bra I should buy! I bought a champion dry wick from Target and it is amazing! its only about $16 too!

36 Trish (girlatgym) May 13, 2009 at 1:03 pm

Love this! Thanks for the reviews. It’s so hard to find a bra that is cute, comfy and also supportive. I am not really busty but I still prefer things to be locked in and not to move.

I usually get mine from the Champion website – they always run sales where they are all $19. Then I stock up! 🙂

37 Diana by Design May 13, 2009 at 1:18 pm

that’s awesome! i have a pretty intense one from victoria’s secret that i got like 2 years ago. a little expensive though, i’ve been looking for the best alternatives to the 45 dollar VS ones!

38 Jenn Eats Nutritiously Now May 13, 2009 at 1:28 pm

Those are some great tips. Thanks for sharing!

39 Emily in MD May 13, 2009 at 1:47 pm

Thank you for the review! It was nice to read during my hectic workday and also inspired me to finally go out and buy new sports bras, something i’ve been meaning to do for quite some time…

40 Quinn May 13, 2009 at 1:55 pm

Great post! Thanks for being so informative!

41 Danielle May 13, 2009 at 1:57 pm

Fun post, definitely some good recommendations!

42 Karena May 13, 2009 at 2:58 pm

great and timely post! totally in the market for a new sports bra since under armour discontinued my favorite one 🙁 might have to give gracie’s gear a try! just became slightly obsessed with the Nike Dri-FIT Core Bra…it comes in fun colors and it’s super comfy/supportive 🙂

43 bobbi May 13, 2009 at 4:05 pm

love this artical!!! It has inspired me to open up mu closet:) I too had HUGE boobs before I lost weight..hehe

44 Adi (oatonomy.com) May 13, 2009 at 4:13 pm

Great post! Thanks for taking the time to review the gear!

45 Eliza May 13, 2009 at 4:16 pm

Have you spent any time looking at the Title Nine website/catalog. I could spend a small fortune there on clothes. They seem to have an extensive sports bra collection for a wide variety of sizes and impact levels. I have such small boobs that even the thin cotton bras from Walmart work just fine. Seriously…we’re talking training bra size. *sigh*

46 Kathryn May 13, 2009 at 4:32 pm

Hi! I am a huge fan of your blog. I have been reading yours and Caitlins for months and I want to start my own. If you could look at mine and give me advice. I have no idea to set things up.

Thanks 🙂
Kathryn

47 Allison K May 13, 2009 at 5:13 pm

Good post! Bra support is sooo important. I need to try Moving Comfort Bras….
I have DD breasts (after a 30 pound weight loss) and I have yet to find a sports bra that supports while running. I always strap on two!

48 kirsten May 13, 2009 at 6:24 pm

awesome post, very helpful ! 😀

49 Meredith May 13, 2009 at 6:40 pm

I’ll be investing in some new sports bras very soon after reading your post. You’s put my cotton/cheap ones to shame.

50 Susan May 13, 2009 at 7:12 pm

I’m going to ignore the fact that you own so many sports bras because this is one stellar review!! Good to know that Old Navy carries some good, affordable ones 🙂

51 RunToFinish May 13, 2009 at 7:19 pm

wow..if I had anything to support this would have been a friggin amazing post… as it is I’m still trying to figure out why I even bother with a bra… oh maybe when i grow up

52 Danielle May 13, 2009 at 7:42 pm

Bras, bras, bras! So many bras 🙂 thanks though, haha, this was very helpful!

53 Dori May 13, 2009 at 8:10 pm

Great post! I heard about Enell and suggested to my mom (a DD) that she get one. You MUST try Lululemon TaTa Tamer — that is the only one I will ever wear anymore. I’d love to hear your review of it.

54 Kath May 13, 2009 at 9:14 pm

Great post!!

55 Bec May 13, 2009 at 9:47 pm

love the sports bra post, definitely keep up the clothing reviews!

56 Anonymous May 13, 2009 at 9:59 pm

Its spelled “A LOT”; two words, not one! OMG, that was annoying me. Have fun in San Antonio!

57 verbalriot May 13, 2009 at 10:11 pm

THANKS SO MUCH for this post! I have relatives who always give me presents and a lot of it is work out clothing (you can never have enough!). The sports bras are useless! I wear them to yoga but I can’t RUN in them because it actually HURTS!

Thanks for the detailed tips, it’s good info! Can’t wait for shirts!

58 Amy Pacheco May 14, 2009 at 8:19 am

Loved this post — Keep em’ coming!

59 catruns May 14, 2009 at 9:17 am

Thank you, thank you for the information! I’m on a pretty strict budget but I find that the clasps on my favorite sports bras keep breaking so I’m going to have to do some shopping soon! And I’d love to hear about the rest of your workout clothes too… something else I hope to upgrade in the future!

60 Beverly May 14, 2009 at 3:41 pm

Thank you so much for posting this! There is so much garbage out there that is advertised as “God for the boobs,” but turns out to be terrible. Thanks for the great info!!

61 Natalie May 14, 2009 at 4:50 pm

Hi Meghann!

I ran my 2nd half marathon about 3 weeks ago and at the fitness expo I ended up meeting Gracie and trying on some of her sports bras (I was sure to mention I heard about her on your blog.. lol shameless plug!)

Unfortunately, I didn’t end up purchasing one because they didn’t seem to pass the bounce test.. I mean I really was jumping up and down as if I were on a trampoline and movement was happening (I’m a busty gal!)

I usually buy my sportsbras from the sports authority… good ole Champion hasn’t let me down yet!

Thanks for posting this!

62 Rosel May 20, 2009 at 2:59 pm

For my 40DDs (“my women”, I guess), I have to go with the Champion Powerback Underwire Sports Bra. Not cute, but it gets the job done like no other. Even the black looks too much like a bra to get the job done, but i just put a really ratty tank top over it.

63 usasoldier August 10, 2009 at 2:16 am

I LOVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE my woman in sportsbras, just because. They are sooo sexy. I have a ? though… Im sure you all have heard of wifebeaters… I have seen one girl in my life with a sportsbra as the same material. I want to know where to find one and I’ve looked EVERYWHERE. Please help 🙂

64 Julie @savvyeats September 13, 2009 at 12:29 pm

Thank you for this post; I now have two of the Alexis bras and love them! I’d love to see a post/email on the running shorts/ running tops/ running socks portion of your closet sometime!

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