Milind’s nude running pic on his 55th birthday indeed evoked many emotions both in men and women (pun intended). It takes enormous guts to be comfortable as well as confident with one’s body to carry and show the way you want.
I remember once and yes only once that I ran at the marine drive in my shorts and sports bra. I thought and re-thought several times before I decided on this attire.
Then I was fixed on which bra to wear? Should not be plunging neckline, or deep cuts. Thankfully I had a high neck one, so I wore it.
As I unzipped my running jacket, I was still contemplating should I or should I not?
I also carried a running tee, just in case I change my mind at the last moment.
So, much of thinking.
But then I unzipped and started running. Several people crossed me, few runners waived, smiled and carried on with their running, few walkers who looked at me and then to my stretch-marked loose tummy, I didn’t see their reaction as I ran past them. I also came across a few female runners who waived and cheered loudly,” that’s bold, very bold, awesome.”
When I finished my run, I stood at the parapet of the queens necklace for my signature pose. I was no more shy or worried about my stretch marks.
This was just one of the episode.
I tried the same in the gym as well, and again several thoughts crossed my mind, but then I just went ahead and finished my workout in the sports bra and shorts. Check the fb post,https://www.facebook.com/hatkemom/photos/a.236046870598660/321724278697585/
I have never mustered the courage to run ever again in the bare minimum. I run around my complex and locality often, but I’ve always worn a tee and ran.
Wondering, why so much of hesitation when it comes deciding to run in a sports bra while I’ve seen men ripping off their tees in marathons and running bare chest.
Trust me a few of them don’t even look chiselled, and one has to bear the sight of that out of shape hairy upper body!
I have also come across many remarks about my running attire as I prefer wearing shorts and as light tee as possible. Surprisingly these comments are from women where the conversation is like- hawww.. Look at her, such super short, shorts for the run!
Milind’s nude pic was acceptable without any outrage but a woman wearing a backless blouse, or sitting with legs wide open or wearing a plunging neckline is always unacceptable and in question.
Well, our “sanskars” are different for men and women.
When I posted my running pics I got big queries regarding where I got the bra from? One common worry was- “its difficult to work out in plunging necklines, these men in the gym keep staring.”
In few houses, during peak summers men are seen rolling their vests on their pot-bellied tummy to get cooler air while women can’t even wear sleeveless, leave aside wearing shorts.
Men are free to change anywhere and everywhere, but women have to find an “appropriate” place to change.
The entire nature is free for men to pee (you’ll see this in most of the marathons) while women have to wait for a “proper” and “safe” place to pee.
To scratch is divine for men, but women will have to move meekly even for a slight scratch.
Why there is so much of demarcation and differentiation in “behaviour” for a man and a woman?
As a woman and a mother of two boys, with hell lot of stretch marks all over my body and with a loose tummy I should be comfortable enough to run my sports bra without any piercing eyes following me.
I know fellow runner friends who have started wearing shorts for their training after years into running. That’s the level of hesitation.
Not everyone has a toned body or six-pack ab to flaunt, but the confidence you carry in your body makes much difference.
I have had a bad experience with body shaming, and it has shaped me up to what I am today, fearless, unperturbed by – log kya kahenge and above all a runner who runs with freedom of mind. Read here, https://momthyname.blog/2016/05/10/body-shaming-give-a-damn-to-it/
I only hope that we create an equal society and less patriarchy, hidden or otherwise soon.
Next time wherever you see a female runner with a bulky body, or in a sports bra, or not-so-fitting-into-sanskars then do waive at her with a massive smile because it takes courage and grit to break barriers and run for her freedom.