9 Strange Running Outfits

Weird Running Outfits

1. Local woman attempting Guinness World Record for fastest marathon … in high heels

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When Irene Sewell sets a goal for herself, she doesn't let anything stand in her way. Earlier this year, she came across a small blurb in a runner's magazine about a woman who attempted a Guinness World Record for completing a marathon in high heels. Sewell remembers thinking, " I  could do that faster." And before long, she was completely immersed in the idea.

Sewell will attempt to break the record at the 7 Bridges Marathon in Chattanooga next October, but her training has already begun. Her experience as a professional ballroom dancer has already trained her feet to be used to wearing high heels for long stretches at a time. She’s also completed several full marathons, half-marathons and the Ironman twice, so her athletic prowess is up for the challenge. And it’s no secret that Sewell enjoys being as weird as possible with her endeavors. For example, she recently ran Chattanooga’s 4 Bridges Half-Marathon dressed as a slice of pepperoni pizza. Why? Because she’d never run a marathon in costume before.

2. Tarahumara Woman Wins Ultramarathon—Wearing Sandals!

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A 22-year-old indigenous woman from Mexico came in first place during a 50km ultramarathon, defeating 500 other runners. Yet, the part that has the world in awe is that while her fellow marathoners wore shoes, María Lorena Ramírez, who is Tarahumara, ran the full 31 miles in huarache sandals. What’s more: her sandals were made of recycled tire rubber, according to reports.

The Tarahumara, also known as Rarámuri, hail from the hills and valleys in northern Mexico’s Copper Canyon and are renowned for their running endurance, wrote Cynthia Gorney, a contributing writer for National Geographic. “They are extraordinary endurance runners, having lived for generations amid a transportation network of narrow footpaths through the canyons,” she wrote. “Rarámuri means ‘foot-runner’ or ‘he who walks well,’ and they’ve been known to irritate American ultramarathoners by beating them while wearing huarache sandals and stopping now and then for a smoke.”

Ramirez’s full running outfit included a long skirt, T-shirt, and sandals. She allegedly has no professional training. When she’s not going viral by winning marathons in huaraches, Ramirez, who won the race in seven hours and three minutes, herds goats and cattle and walks between six and nine miles every day, according to reports. She won $320 for coming in first, zipping past runners from 12 other countries.

3. Utah family runs Indiana Mini-marathon in Crocs

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Several members of a Utah family posted impressive finishes at a marathon in Indiana despite wearing plastic clogs instead of traditional running shoes. Benjamin Pachev, 18, was photographed wearing a pear of khaki-colored Crocs as he placed 16th in the 500 Festival Mini-Marathon in Indianapolis with a time of 1:11:53. "People look over at me and say what the heck are you thinking?" Pachev told Fox59 of his unusual choice of footwear. His father, Alexander Pachev, said he and his other 10 children wear the shoes as a cheap and effective alternative to expensive running shoes.

"It's like having a little fan that's just streaming air over your foot," Pachev, 44, said of the Crocs. And we find the cheapest colors. If they're hot pink and that's the cheapest color we buy it. The father told The Indianapolis Star he stumbled upon the unique substitute footwear one day when his kids refused to take off the Crocs before a run, despite urging them to "put on real shoes." "I said, 'OK, let's see how it goes,'" Pachev said. And they ran, at fast speeds, and I could tell their form was better in Crocs. It looks more natural. I said maybe there's something to it.

Pachev said he and his children have worn the shoes to run ever since, including when he placed 44th in the 500 Festival Mini-Marathon and his 16-year-old daughter placed ninth overall in the 500 Festival 5K. "They basically feel like you're running barefoot on grass, except you're doing it on asphalt and you're not losing the speed," Pachev said. It's a very good feeling.

He said the Crocs are more durable than most running shoes and also don't cause blisters. "I've never gotten a blister when I've run in Crocs," he said. I've had plenty of marathons where I've gotten blisters. Pachev said he contacted the company about a possible sponsorship and possible changes to make the shoes more suitable for running, but said representatives weren't interested in any athletic affiliation.

"I tried to establish it multiple times without success," he said. They told me they were not interested in promoting the Crocs as an athletic shoe. Sponsorship or not, that's the best shoe on the market for our purposes.

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4. London Marathon Rhino Runners Wear 22-Pound Suits During Race To Save The Species 

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It’s hard enough running a marathon’s 26.2 miles, but going the whole way in a 22-pound rhino costume is another beast entirely. But that’s just what 15 competitors running for Save The Rhino did last Sunday in an effort to raise awareness and money for the charity. The fastest runner clocked in at just under 5 hours. The suits have become a symbol for the organization and were first introduced in 1992 at the London and New York marathons. They’ve since been to Paris, Dublin, Boston and the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro.

Rhinos have been having a tough time lately — some 633 were killed in South Africa alone last year. Their horns are considered a cure-all medicine in some Asian countries and there’s still a demand for hunting trophies. Radical measures have been deployed in an effort to stop poaching, including the use of drones and a new system to dye the horns bright pink.

5. Philadelphia Marathon Runner Wears Firefighting Gear

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Running a marathon is certainly no easy task, especially while wearing pounds of heavy gear. But that didn't stop Steve Bender, a volunteer firefighter, from running the Philadelphia marathon in full gear. "It's much harder," Bender said, saying that the gear adds about two hours to his finish time. Bender, who has ran 20 marathons, some of them in full gear, says he does it to raise awareness of the Firefighter Five Foundation. The foundation, which he started in 2013, aims to motivate first responders to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Bender says he doesn't just want to encourage first responders, though. "If I could motivate one person to run while I was there, then I have met my goal," he said. The annual Philadelphia Marathon was held Sunday morning.

6. This Guy’s Marketing Stunt Was So On-Brand That We’re Actually Writing About It

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Gihan Amarasiriwardena, who trained in engineering at MIT, likes to run his apparel company, Ministry of Supply, like a tech company. When Fast Company last checked in on him, Amarasiriwardena was articulating a philosophy of apparel design that closely resembled that of tech design: rapid prototyping, constant iteration, A/B testing of products, and so on.

Now, though, Amarasiriwardena has taken his philosophy to a whole new level, having attempted a new kind of extreme performance testing. Having recently brought a new suit, the “Aviator II,” to the market, Amarasiriwardena decided to test it in the ultimate way: by running a half-marathon garbed in it. In the process, he wound up setting a Guinness World Record for his finish at the Half MerryThon in Gloucester, Massachusetts, in December.

It all started, in true capitalist fashion, with news relating to a competitor. Amarasiriwardena saw that a man had set a Guinness World Record running a half marathon in a suit by another company, Indochino. Amarasiriwardena felt he could do even better, running in one of his own suits. Ministry of Supply specializes in dress clothing with a performance aspect, using novel manufacturing techniques to create garments with the structure of formal wear, but the breathability and moisture-wicking qualities of sportswear. And on top of being an entrepreneur, Amarasiriwardena was an avid athlete.

So Amarasiriwardena started training. For a half-marathon. In formal wear. He began by wearing dress pants and a dress shirt, then gradually moved up to a full-on suit.

7. Runner dressed as Elvis wins Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Marathon

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A 42-year-old runner dressed as Elvis won the Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Marathon on Sunday night, setting a record for the fastest marathon run by someone dressed as "The King." Michael Wardian of Arlington, Virginia, finished in 2 hours, 38 minutes and 4 seconds late Sunday — a feat he accomplished while wearing a black wig in an Elvis-style pompadour, gold sunglasses and a white Elvis jumpsuit with gold sequins.

"I wasn't sure how the suit would be, but the suit was actually pretty awesome," Wardian said. "You get this sucker wet, it just stays cool." With his finish, Wardian broke a Guinness World Record for the fastest marathon run by someone dressed as Elvis. The previous record was set by his friend Ian Sharman in 2009. Sharman completed a Seattle marathon while dressed as Elvis in 2 hours, 42 minutes and 52 seconds.

8. This woman ran the London Marathon on her period without a tampon

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When Kiran Ghandi got her period the night before she was due to run the London Marathon in April, she didn’t know what to do. She’d never run a marathon before and hadn’t ever trained while she had her period. “I thought through my options. Running 26.2 miles with a wad of cotton material wedged between my legs just seemed so absurd,” she has just written on her blog.

“But then I thought… If there’s one person society can’t eff with, it’s a marathon runner. You can’t tell a marathoner to clean themselves up, or to prioritise the comfort of others. On the marathon course, I could choose whether or not I wanted to participate in this norm of shaming. “I decided to just take some midol, hope I wouldn’t cramp, bleed freely and just run.” That’s exactly what Ghandi did. She didn’t put in a tampon or sanitary pad – she just ran the marathon and let the blood go onto her clothes.

9. The man who ran a half marathon barefoot at -20°C

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Wim Hof is a Dutch daredevil, commonly nicknamed "The Iceman" for his ability to withstand extreme cold, which he attributes to exposure, meditation, and breathing techniques. Hof holds 26 world records, including a world record for longest ice bath. In 2009, Hof completed a full marathon above the arctic circle in Finland, in temperatures close to ?20 °C (?4 °F). Dressed in nothing but shorts, Hof finished in 5 hours and 25 minutes. The challenge was filmed by Firecrackerfilms, who make productions for BBC, Channel 4 and National Geographic.

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