A Little More Each Day

One working mama learning to run & to maintain my 100+ pound weight loss!

Tuesdays on the Run: Shirts and other running rules

on March 22, 2016

Today’s Tuesdays on the Run topic Race Shirts: To wear or not to wear on race day? Thanks as always to Patty, Erika and Marcia for hosting!

ToTR logo

This is one of the race “rules” I was actually aware of before my first race, weirdly enough. It also helped that my first race was in the dead of winter and yet they gave us a short sleeved t-shirt so wearing it wasn’t a temptation. 🙂 As a beginning runner, being aware of this “rule” to NEVER wear the race shirt to a race, I always religiously avoided wearing the race shirt to a race even when it would have been the perfect attire for the theme and even though I always see tons of people wearing the race shirt. You know what? There’s never any pointing or laughing at people wearing the race shirt. It actually always makes me smile to see people excited to be running the race. I say wear the race shirt if you want to and you know it’s a shirt that won’t chafe. Avoiding chafing is important so be careful about trying new a shirt style for a big race!

Once, I wore a race shirt to the race but it was because the organizers specifically requested it. They wanted all of us in the blue tanks to show solidarity for the fallen police officer the race honored, which I thought was really cool. I’ll confess – that’s the one and only time I wore that shirt.


I tend not to wear old race shirts to races either, because I don’t want someone to make the mistake of thinking I know what I’m doing just because I’ve run the race before! I have to say, though, that I like Patty’s approach in her post today. She sees wearing the former year’s shirts as a way to reassure new and slower runners that all kinds of people can successfully finish races. Very cool perspective.

A couple of other running rules I’ve been fuzzy on:

  • Start at the back of the pack if you’re slow or not sure about your speed. While I came across the “no race shirt on race day” rule before my first 5K, somehow I missed this one and lined up at the very front of the 5K. Oops! Thankfully, it wasn’t a huge race so I don’t think I disrupted flow too badly.
  • Is it okay to pass someone at the very of a race? I love to challenge myself to finish strong, but if it means I’ll overtake someone else at the very end I always hesitate because it somehow feels rude.

What do you think? Is it okay to wear the race shirt on race day? Is it okay to pass someone at the very end of the race when you’re a back of the packer and not really racing for a prize?


14 responses to “Tuesdays on the Run: Shirts and other running rules

  1. mkadens1 says:

    I’ve had PLENTY of people sprint past me at the end of a race and I don’t think it’s rude at all. If you’ve got something left at that point, more power to you. Thanks for linking up!

  2. I can understand how in the old days with no chip timing, passing people at the last min in the chute was rude, but now I think it’s fair game until the finish line. Look at Emily Infeld, she nudged Molly Huddle out of third place by racing all the way til the end. That’s how it should be.

  3. LaChicaRuns says:

    Your comment about whether or not to pass someone at the end made me chuckle. I met the woman who introduced me to my all-time favorite running group (Black Girls RUN!) at my first 5K. We ran most of it together, chatting and telling stories. Then when we were almost to the end, she rabbitted ahead, leaving my daughter and I in the dust. I was so confused! I can laugh about it now. Sort of. 😉

  4. Karen @ Fit in France says:

    Love the last question about overtaking someone. Someone did that to me in the last 5 seconds of the race after I had been out front for the entire things. It pissed me off but at the same time, it is called a “race”.

  5. Meg B says:

    Ha! I honestly, don’t notice if people pass me at the end of the race. Usually I am towards the back of the pack anyway. A lot of my shorter races I run with the guys in the stroller and I let them get out and run at the end if it’s a large enough finish so I usually end up slowing down at the end. If I am by myself and I can see the clock and have a goal time I am trying to beat I will usually give it whatever I’ve got left regardless of the people around me.

    However, I did run a race, which is my current 10K PR with a tiny finish line, maybe six feet across and got blocked out of my finish line pictures because two people crossed the finish line together holding hands and raising them up in the air. That bothered me more than if someone passed me. I get it, you’re celebrating but when the finish line is that narrow, it just seemed kinda jerky. Ha, this was almost a year ago and I am still pissed about it.

  6. I blogged about this a while back! I got made fun of by my team mates for not wearing the race shirt to the Hustle Up the Hancock, and I told them I don’t like to tempt fate. Someone asked if I thought I couldn’t finish, and I said, ‘No, I definitely can, but I don’t want to do it with a broken ankle!’ I really think it’s personal preference, but I’m with you…no race shirt on race day!

  7. HoHo Runs says:

    Give it all you got at the end and absolutely sprint by anyone in front of you. They’d do it to you (learned that the hard way). After all, it’s a RACE and you’ve run strong enough to do it! It’s OK.

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