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Finding the perfect pair of running tights as a plus size athlete is seriously like the quest for the holy grail. The amount of pairs I have in my wardrobe that I have to be wary of, ones I can only wear for CrossFit, but only if there is no running, and those that are only good for short distances, or the ones that fit great but look terrible….or are great, if only they had a pocket.

Well guess what?

I’ve found the perfect pair…well the perfect pair for me that is.

11207319_178366905848411_6396233584703630201_nSturdy by Design is the brain child of Charlene Harvey, weightlifter turned, marathon runner, turned bodybuilder.

When asked about her passion for leggings on her website she says,

Because I live in them. Fact! I love them and these leggings do everything you would want a pair of leggings to do.

They stay put, no matter how much you walk, run, lift. they are literally a second skin. They allow the sweat to evaporate off quickly but most importantly, they look amazing. I love the bold print style and I think you will love them too.

She contacted me a few weeks ago asking if she could send me a couple of pairs to review. They looked great on the website but I was sceptical that they would suit my (many) needs, but she was adamant that I would love them.

They arrived and I tried them on immediately.


They were every bit as good as she said they would be.

I had two pairs to try

Full length comic cartoon design Capri Paint Swirl  and I loved them equally.

22195764_10155740691025477_6692402063437748510_nThey are made from a high stretch Lycra material with a high waistband and a removable drawstring tie, the draw string is vital when you are plus size in my opinion as it is what stops them falling down.

They have the qualities of a compression material, but with a softer, more forgiving stretch.

Other features include

  • A small zip pocket in the rear of the waistband, perfect for your keys or a standard sized phone.
  • Fast moisture wicking capability which can help you to stay dry and maximize your workout comfort.
  • Flat stitched seams help to avoid chaffing and also help to give you that barely there, second skin feeling
  • They don’t go see through when bending over or squatting

So I wore the paint swirl pair at the launch of the Too Fat to Run programme in Barking & Dagenham and got lots of comments about them, and then again at a bloggers event where we did circuits…they stayed put which was fab.

But how would they stand up to 13.1 miles around the mean streets of Cardiff?

IMG_8631Well, I have nothing negative to say…other than the amount of times I had to say Thank You to people who complimented me on them.

But seriously, they were brilliant. Not a bit of chaffing, and I think their compression qualities helped me get round, and recover afterwards.

My Clubhouse ladies are loving them too, Lucy says…

Sturdy bird with thunder thighs, fit like a glove and they have a lovely soft waistband, perfect and worth the money x

And for Mandy, I think pictures speak louder than words…they went down a storm at the Spitfire Scramble race back in July.


I am so chuffed to find a company that understands that us sturdy girls want technical leggings but in cool designs too. Can’t wait to see how this partnership develops…I for one want to get my hands on every single pair!!!

If you are interested in securing yourself a pair or three of these beauties, check out their range at www.sturdybydesign.com use discount code Run15 for 15% all orders.

They go up to a size 22 in some sizes, and more designs are coming through in larger sizes.

Keep an eye out on my Facebook Page for a cool competition this weekend where you can win a pair to try for yourself.

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