Fact: A high impact sports bra is 100% necessary for running. It rivals the running shoe as most important piece of running equipment a women needs. You wouldn’t go on a run in running shoes that don’t fit you properly or support your feet in the right ways… so why would you go without the right bra?
Fact: Your sports bra should never celebrate a birthday. Why? Because in order for a sports bra to do its job properly, it needs to be in good shape. And after a year’s worth of activity, your favorite sports bra is a little more stretched out, a little less supportive, and overall a little less effective than it once was. No bueno.
Fact: Spring is a great time to “Spring Clean” your sports bra collection. (I say collection because every gal should have at least 3: One on, one in the wash, one clean and ready for your next run.)
So which bra is right for you? It’s not simple. Bras are so not one style fits all. Instead of telling you which bra style to get, we’re going to tell you about the bras that we love. I asked some of the ladies around Running Warehouse to tell it like it is and get real. Which bra really does it for you, and why?
It offers SO MUCH support. Since I’ve basically been breastfeeding or pregnant non-stop for the past 6 years, I really need the extra support. What I like most about this bra is that it offers high-impact support without “flattening” or “squishing” my ladies. The front velcro straps allow for easy on/off, but more importantly, the ability to release a strap and easily nurse my babe pre or post run. The straps are also padded, which add nice next to skin comfort. For women (especially nursing mommas) who are looking for ultimate support, this is your bra.
Callie’s size: 34C or Small/Medium
Her run of choice: A few 2-3 mile runs in during the week with the double bob and kids in tow. Longer runs on weekends (when the hubby can hold down the fort at home)!
Shop the Brooks Juno Bra
It provides me some of the best support without having crazy restrictive fabric or a lot of padding. The fabric is thick enough to provide coverage for those colder runs, if you know what I mean. The style is simple, but cute – not your mother’s high impact bra. I would tell an online customer that this is a safer option to pick if ordering online. Like most Brooks bras, it has two places for adjustment for a more customizable fit, and padded straps for additional comfort. This model isn’t going to give you the most shapely look, if that’s of importance to you; while you don’t feel like your chest is smashed down, it is definitely minimized.
Kaitlin’s size: 34D or Small/Medium
Her run of choice: Can’t choose one, so here are three.
1) I really like an 8 mile trail run while listening to a suspenseful audiobook as the coastal views are both breathtaking and haunting.
2) I am a fan of listening to Reggaeton while scrambling up some single track and bombing down the hill.
3) I also enjoy a quick 6 mile tempo on the road in the evening.
Shop the Brooks Rebound Racer Bra
I like my sports bras to be flattering and minimally intrusive during activity while still providing smooth, functional, all-over coverage. This bra, for me, does that best. I appreciate that the straps are silky smooth and a subtle dark shade, but that the rest of the bra pops with a fun color. The material is soft but sturdy, giving it a “disappearing” feel on your skin while still providing a solid fit. I would tell someone shopping online that this bra doesn’t look like it has a lot of support, but that the adjustable straps and polyester/spandex blend provide a lot of structure without being bulky.
Elena’s size: 32B or Small (or size 4 in Oiselle’s sizing)
Her run of choice: An hour on the trails after work to soak in the setting sun, the scenery, and the silence.
Shop the Oiselle Hi Low Bra
Brooks Uprise Crossback – Juli’s choice
It’s the perfect combination of comfort and support. The Uprise Crossback has a surprisingly secure feel given that it’s a pull-over style. It’s perfect for smaller ladies who like a secure feeling. It feels more supportive than my Rebound Racer! It does have a little shaping but it doesn’t really get in the way, and the lined cups are perforated so that they don’t get too sweaty. It’s crazy comfortable, even for an all-day run, but the fun print/color and cute cut still feels really feminine even though it might be considered a little basic. I didn’t expect to love this bra as much as I do, but I bought one when it first came out, and now I have three. :)
Juli’s size: 32B or Extra Small
Her run of choice: 30 miles in the mountains. Enough said.
Shop the Brooks Uprise Crossback Bra A/B
I prefer a compression style sports bra as opposed to a structured one. This bra is compressive enough for running or any other activity I might do. I LOVE the straps. They are so cute with any tank or tee, and I like having the second strap for more security and to prevent them from sliding off the shoulders. The bottom elastic band is soft and comfy. It comes with removable pads, which I prefer to take out. A mesh panel on the backside is great for more breathability on warmer days, as this tends to be a high sweat area for me. I have this bra in two colors!
Becky’s size: 32B/C or Small
Her run of choice: Saturday morning long runs in the summer, either by the beach or on the trails, where I don’t have any time constraints and can soak up the sun and the beauty of the outdoors.
Shop the Nike Pro Indy Strappy Bra
This bra makes me feel securely hugged. All of the materials feel supremely soft next to skin and the thick, soft straps sit comfortably on my shoulders without slipping or digging. I prefer molded and encapsulated cups for modesty and shaping, and this bra is just right for my preferences. I’m held in all around (top, bottom, and sides) so that I can run confidently and comfortably. The fact that it’s actually a pretty bra, just makes it that much better!
Jenny’s size: 32D or Small
Her run of choice: It all kind of depends, but I am definitely an endurance run lover; I love the half marathon distance, but that means I’ll be training for speed because I want to do it fast. I also love slowing it down to go further when I train for the marathon distance.
Shop all Women’s Running Sports Bras
Rachel runs for fitness. It’s entirely about personal health and mental/emotional wellness for her. She’s one of those weirdos that finds proofreading to be thrilling. As manager and lead editor for the Running Warehouse Blog, THIS is her baby. She also recently started a graphic design business with her husband Ryan as a side hustle.