Home Lifestyle India’s Rare Sports Bra Runner – Anuradha Dutt

India’s Rare Sports Bra Runner – Anuradha Dutt

by Anuradha & Tanya

It was a regular Fb scroll down when I chanced upon the pic of a girl running in sports bra and shorts! Wait – she looks Indian? Her name is Indian too? She ran like this in delhi?ADHM? That fearless? That big an attention seeker? Or that Confident???? Is she unnecessarily sexualizing the activity by running in a sports bra instead of a shirt? Is it better to be old-fashioned in such issues? Because shirtless men are just fine, but liberated ensembled women are too tough to handle!

So here we go…and interview with Anuradha Dutt. Doing with elan something I don’t dare to! 

 I wasn’t raised to dress up the way you see me now! We 4 sisters were raised in a strict atmosphere of no short dresses, skirts or even sleeveless t-shirts . However at the same time it was also stressed on us that we should always be well turned out as the occasion demanded and the dictum ‘clothes maketh a man “was ingrained in our upbringing. On a more personal level I did not mind wearing clothes which were bought by my parents and being the second youngest of the four sisters, these were generally hand me downs from my elder two sisters.

The Real Turning Point! Two days before by 20th birthday I gathered enough courage and asked my father if I could wear a black short skirt for my birthday party promising to him that I would retract my decision if the skirt did not meet his approval. The moment of truth came as I wore the black number and sought my father’s approval and what prevailed was a long drawn silence in the room and it is hard to put into words what I gained from his silence that day.

My Man and my Marriage! The second man in my life was much more liberal and always encouraged me to follow my heart in all matters and this also included the clothes I wore. All along my husband was my companion and sounding board on all aspects related to running from the training, nutrition and all importantly choosing my running apparel.  Having a wider outlook on the international running scene himself and more importantly on women’s running gear , he gave me the confidence to experiment with a wide variety of apparel and my running gear slowly transformed from a more conservative running tracks / t shirt look to the  more modern and bolder boy shorts and bra top combination, a look  which I had seen international athletes  Shalane Flanagan and Kara Goucher carry off  with aplomb.

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My first Event in a Sports Bra –Shorts Attire! Airtel Delhi half marathon in 2015! Several  thoughts crossed my mind  –  would such an attire meet my in laws approval, would everyone think I was trying too hard to grab attention, would I be subject to any kind of harassment from any quarter?

To my pleasant surprise a lot of women many of them came up to me,complimented me for my fit body and and outfit and one elderly lady even congratulated me for having the courage to carry off something like this that too in a so called women unfriendly city such as Delhi . .I received a lot of fan mail post run with women flooding me with a variety of questions!It left me feeling good and any doubts about my ‘bold move’ were dispelled once and for all .

I see many women out there standing on the sidelines waiting to break free and my step had probably given them some kind of inspiration that ‘it’ was possible.  It’s a confidence thing for me! It comes to me naturally to be able carry off something which was considered bold to most without facing any harassment.

For me – It’s a confidence thing! I remember little sayings such as “It fits like a glove” and “that color brings out your eyes“ which encapsulates the overwhelming ensemble empowerment we women have experienced from time to time whether it’s a dress which looks better on your body than it looked on the hanger, a well-loved T shirt which hangs on your shoulders just the right way or that one pair of jeans which makes you feel like spending those extra ten minutes on the dance floor. The only person who was going to tell me how to feel was me!

Feeling sexy, confident and fearless in what you wear is the best part of getting dressed and when you feel confident in your clothes you get an automatic zing in anything you! The right outfit is powerful enough to make you feel intimidating, strong and fearless!

About Anuradha

Motivated by her husband and her school children  Anuradha took to running in 2011 ,at the age of 39 as a means to lose weight which then lead to doing her first half marathon in Delhi that winter. She is now a regular at the running events having completed 10 half marathons across the country podium finishes to her credit . Presently working as an administrator at a school for special children in Kolkata, she is trying hard that her children take up running as in her opinion it is really important for their mental health. For all the children in her school she continues to train harder to run better.


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Anuradha Dutt January 20, 2017 - 6:26 am

Thanks Tanya Agarwal ❤️❤️

Nirupma Singh January 20, 2017 - 6:47 am

Change is the way of life …… Bring it on ….. Soon we will have more women wearing what they are most comfortable in and everyone around will adjust and accept
Someone has to set the trend
Right ?

wellthy.fit January 20, 2017 - 8:15 am

Very true Nirupama! Bring OUT the change. Be the change. Set the tone. 🙂

Tanya Agarwal January 24, 2017 - 5:38 pm

Right! Walking the talk is always tough! But what you leave behind is worthwhile for everyone! So glad you read the story. Thank you!

Prateek Dubey January 20, 2017 - 7:38 am

Very proud of you Anuradha.

Subhash Arora January 20, 2017 - 7:47 am

If he’s doing vat he likes,
U hv every right 2 do vat u like.

Sandy January 20, 2017 - 8:02 am

Great to know Anuradha and Shaibal. She is truly inspirational not only for her running achievements but for her good work for her children in the school.

Alka Vyas January 20, 2017 - 8:27 am

thats the way to live ur life …..apni manziley apni daud apji soch

wellthy.fit January 20, 2017 - 8:43 am

apni manziley…very true Alka! and in the journey…let others get inspired too…

Sameer Bhargava January 20, 2017 - 11:33 am

Excellent article!! Good to see that wearing appropriate attire is being promoted. I know from experience how important it is to have the right clothes on for running and I am glad to see that an Indian woman is showing how practical and sensible it is to wear something in which she is comfortable. Thank you for sharing

Tanya Agarwal January 24, 2017 - 5:36 pm

Glad that you understand the sentiment of the right attire for running! thanks for stopping by the page!

Reet January 20, 2017 - 12:02 pm

So very proud of Anuradha.. she is one person who has always been an inspiration…. and not just because she is a runner but she is also what I call a complete woman… a beautiful person, a wonderful wife, a loving mother and a fantastic home maker… keep going girl…

Tanya Agarwal January 24, 2017 - 5:36 pm

I will pass on the message to her word by word 🙂

Dr sudhir January 20, 2017 - 1:01 pm

Very proud of her !! Seen her journey.. as I have met her and seen her movie Great going

huzefa January 21, 2017 - 3:51 am

i had run scmm 2017 with you for a few miles on sea link , and let me tell you , and also attended your movie screening before the race day, let me tell you are an inspiration for amateur runners like me

[email protected] January 22, 2017 - 2:24 am

Great show Anuradha . I too am into running. I found nothing wrong with your clothing. Continue doing what you like and you are a brand ambassador for a positive change in the country

Vikas Malik January 22, 2017 - 3:07 am

What men are doing should also be available to women. What we want in our girlfriends should be acceptable for the sisters, wives and mothers. The equal status to women cannot be achieved by giving lectures, providing reservation, or by opening special separate institutions etc.
To stand up for their equal status, we have to change our old visualisation of women, we have to start respecting the role reversals, we have to get ourselves used to seeing our women out of kitchens. We have to start accepting women in lead roles. We have to change our double standards. Anuradha you may not be raised up to dress up the way we see you now but you were born to be the way you want to be and to inspire other women to be what they want to be.

Tanya Agarwal January 24, 2017 - 5:39 pm

Well said, Vikas! Appreciate your liberated thoughts!

Vishesh January 26, 2017 - 3:48 pm

Three cheers to your super confidence Anuradha, and hats off to your brave heart husband. It’s not that husbands are not liberated but these poor guys are aware of the preying Hawks around you. I am sure u would have had lot of lechers in the run but that’s a different thing that u did not pay heed to it. It would take time in India for men to change. Anyways kudos to your confidence again


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