Tim Mosbacher is a staple in the Missoula running community. He is currently trying to run a marathon in every state and because of this runs thousands of miles every year. He recently tested out the Brooks Sherpa 7″ 2-N-1 Shorts for us. 

What makes a good running short? As I prepared to do a review of the Brooks Sherpa 7” 2-in-1 running short, I pondered this question. My preference for length of short has changed over the years as I age and get slower, and it also differs depending on the type of run. 

I used to always buy “short” shorts, believing if you look and feel fast, you run fast. Unfortunately, not everyone shares that opinion. An old running partner from Anaconda joked that he was “uncomfortable” running with me when I wore my “short” shorts. Twenty years later, he still teases me about it. I still wear them if I have a big race and want to have that “fast” mental advantage.  (I last bought a pair because Vicky from Runner’s Edge said they would look cute on me.) I now tend to buy longer shorts, mainly because it seems they chafe a little less.  Something in my stride rubs my thighs together, which makes using an anti-chafing product a must on longer runs.  That was, until I discovered the Brooks Sherpa 7” 2-in-1 running short.  2-in-1 means the inner liner is not the typical mesh brief, but a mesh boxer brief liner. The boxer brief liner is tighter, almost like a compression boxer brief, which provides a tighter material over the upper thighs.

This extra material is light and breathes as well as the traditional mesh brief, but with more chafing protection.  If the run is going to be longer than around 18 miles, I still will put on an anti-chafing product. The Sherpa short fits true to size. It does ride a little lower (shorter inseam). The only problem with this for me has been when I add gels to the pockets. The weight tends to pull the shorts down, when they are already running a little low. But the pockets are one of the short’s strong points.

The shorts have three types of pockets. On the rear outer hips there are pockets or “holsters” on each side. These pockets are not enclosed with zippers or Velcro, but with an elastic band. They are great for gels or other items that don’t really matter if they accidentally fly out. There is an additional zippered back pocket across the middle. This pocket is excellent and is lined on the inner side with a moisture-free lining, so it is a great place to secure money, toilet paper, keys, etc. It is large enough to fit Clif Bloks and smaller cell phones. An additional pocket is located on the right leg of the boxer brief liner. This pocket is held tightly against the leg and is great for larger gels or even a larger phone (fits my Galaxy S8 with a case). The only other disadvantage of this short, besides the short inseam, is the seam that goes across the bottom of the boxer brief liner. At times, especially in the rain, this seam can chafe your perineal area, which makes for a painful run. 

To be honest, I love the shorts so much I always wonder why every other runner is not wearing the Brooks Sherpa 7” 2-in-1 running short. Purchase a pair at the Runner’s Edge and tell them Tim recommended them.