Keeping Cool In Fancy Dress

Womens Running Summer

Every year we see hundreds of you pulling out all the stops and dressing up for your chosen charities, or maybe you lost that bet down the pub. So, whether you’re wearing an inflatable T-Rex costume or a panda onesie, we have some tips on how to get round your run without having to ditch the outfit after mile one.


You might not be off on a picnic, but ice packs might be useful when it comes to event day. A great way of keeping your body temperature down is to freeze ice packs the night before then tuck them into your costume where you can and you’ll be able to ditch the extra weight once they lose their cool. 


We spoke to one of our Great Run fancy dress regulars, Big Pink Dress, for tips on keeping cool in fancy dress:

Tip 1: Always plan ahead. When deciding on your costume, check the weather forecast. Too cold, too hot, too wet – all these things can effect your whole run.

Tip 2: Train to least six miles in your outfit so you can get used to it and so you can make any tweaks to the costume if it rubs in certain areas for example.

Tip 3: Stay hydrated. I know you hear this all the time, but it is vital so you can enjoy your run. Work the crowds – they love a costume!


Costumes can range from tutus to morph suits, a pantomime horse to a giant whoopie cushion. Believe us when we say, we think we’ve seen them all. But one good piece of advice is whatever you choose, try to minimise the weight you’re carrying. The heavier the costume, the more effort it will take to get around. Be wary of donation buckets too – these can get heavy. So, you could try printing your fundraising link or text details for how people can donate online on your costume.


If your costume covers you head to toe in lots of fabric, then try to cut holes in your armpits and the back of your knees to keep the air flowing. It will be good to take advantage if there is any breeze on event day. 


The only way you will know if your costume is going to ‘chafe’. You might feel a bit silly heading out on the streets training in your outfit, but there is nothing worse than turning up on the start line not knowing how it’s going to go. Practise as much as you can in all weathers and over a long distance, so you know any pain points or adjustments you can make before you get to the start line. 


As well as making sure you’re well hydrated before event day, take advantage of the showers and water points on course, so you can douse your neck and back with water to help cool you down.

Most importantly, have fun! The crowds will be loving your costumes and cheering you on every step of the way. And we’re sure it will be worth it when you make it to the finish line having raised hundreds, if not thousands for charity.

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