adidas has been a long-time proponent of female athletes, pushing product in soccer, basketball, and fitness. 50 years ago, the Three Stripes brand outfitted the first woman to ever run the Boston Marathon, Kathrine Switzer. Her shoe? The adidas Special. Compared to today’s Boost-ed rides, this shoe must have felt like rocks, but run she did, and she still wears the brand. Seriously, look at the differences.
“I’m thrilled to partner with adidas, a company that embraces barrier-breakers and desires to empower women,” said Kathrine Switzer in a statement. “Our relationship helps me tell important stories of women in the sport past, present and future. It feels like I’m home where I should be, with a brand that has been on my feet for more than 50 years. When empowered and made fearless, we will continue to change the world.”
adidas and Kathrine Switzer are also partnering with 261 Fearless, an international non-profit organization Switzer founded. According to adidas, 261 Fearless unites and empowers women globally through running clubs, educational opportunities and events. Over the next two years, adidas will equip the organization with running gear and expertise.
“Kathrine is a pioneer, and an absolute inspiration to women everywhere,” said Caio Amato, Senior Director of Sports Marketing at adidas Running, in a statement. “Both Kathrine and 261 Fearless share the same bold, positively disruptive attitude and ambition as the adidas athlete and for us, there’s no better way to celebrate the 50th anniversary of her iconic debut.”
adidas is also letting runners make history by sharing their own stories of running the Boston Marathon, using the #WhyIRunBoston and tagging @adidasrunning on Instagram and Twitter. The Three Stripes family will also add a live feed featuring the stories and images at adidas.com and at the adidas Expo booth leading up to the marathon. To really take it next level, adidas will have a map showing the locations that each image comes from during the race.
adidas running footwear available at the John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo includes the 85-time marathon winning adizero adios for $140 and UltraBOOST for $180.
A 2017 Boston Marathon limited edition adizero adios designed to represent the energy runners need to cross the Boylston finish line will be available exclusively for $170 at the Boston Marathon RunBase and Expo. Pairs featuring classic B.A.A. blue and yellow are emblazoned with the official 2017 logo and marathon inspired design elements BOS and 26.2 on the heel.
The official 2017 Boston Marathon Celebration Jacket ($110) and other marathon apparel are available now in the U.S. on adidas.com.
The push to raise awareness for female athletes all over the world is long overdue — these women work and play as hard as anyone else, and honestly, harder than most. 50 years ago, it was definitely a “man’s world,” and one can only imagine the “cute” things muttered to Kathrine at the starting line. She didn’t stop, and neither should the women in our lives.
Enjoy the images below and let us know: have you ever run a marathon? Also, think about the female athletes you know and next time you see them working out, keep walking. They deserve to be there too.