Born Primitive: X-Factor Sports Bra

Born Primitive is an athlete favorite brand for most gym workouts. They typically make gear for CrossFit gyms, but, their clothes are generally sturdy enough for tough OCR-based workouts. I’ve noticed that their clothes don’t stretch, and colors stay nice and vibrant, even through most washes. Not only that, but BP fans can get a kick out of a multitude of variety in their selection, which is arguably some of the sexiest apparel that is also completely functional.

One thing that I appreciate about the brand is that they keep us pretty in-the-know when it comes to releasing new products. One of their more recent products is listed in the title: the x-factor sports bra.

As soon as I saw it, I thought that it looked perfect for what I needed. It almost has a similar build to the new Human Octane “superhero” series bra. The Born Primitive sports bra itself focuses on a more supportive build, with a longer band and thicker straps. The backing also has many straps so you can ensure that everything is going to stay in place. When I noticed that the website advertised it as something that also can be doubled as swimwear, I thought it would be fantastic for staying in place in the dunk wall.

Product Features


The X-Factor sports bra is 87% nylon and 13% lycra for a lightweight and comfortable feel. The edges of the back (not where the “x” is formed) is made out of a mesh material; between that and the open back look, the sports bra is really breathable, even given it’s thicker material. The length is longer and the straps are thicker to provide more coverage.

This Sportsbra also features a slight v-neck, and there are removable pads for those who prefer to have even more support in the sports bra. Because this sports bra provides an emphasis on support, if you are not expecting it, it may feel a little tight around the waistband. I like to save this sports bra for wearing to a race or during intense workouts, but maybe less for lazing around in big t-shirts.

I was a little concerned with my original thought of it being doubled as a swimsuit, I was thinking it was going to be more of a dry-fit material (never-mind that the website clearly has the other material listed, I just wasn’t paying attention!). This sports bra held up very well in the dunk wall, mud, and whatever else I threw at it in the Spartan Race.

Product Usage

I first wore this sports bra to a few workouts. I like to use Yancy Camp to train, which can combine many vigorous exercises into one beautiful, terrible, monstrosity. A lot of times with cheaper, or less specialized sports bras, when you hit a certain level of sweatiness, you feel like your sweat is bleeding through. I did not feel this way about the Born Primitive X-Factor; I felt dry and supported throughout the entire workout.

This was purchased the for race day specifically. I don’t know about you, but once I establish some kind of “race day” outfit, it gets me in the zone. The black X-factor sports bra looks pretty intense, so I got my hands on that one. I put it on and instantly felt ready to take on the day. The first race to which I wore this was the Spartan race in Virginia. First of all, the way it makes me feel is awesome. It looks really cool being paired with even more black.. but that’s just me.

One of the first obstacles that we encountered was the dunk wall. This was the one that I was the most nervous about. I jumped in and, other than the fact that the water was seriously cold, I felt great. Actually, the thicker band made me feel a little bit warmer than I could have otherwise.

Another obstacle that I noticed a difference on throughout this obstacle was surprisingly the bucket brigade. I’m one of those women who usually wear sports bras as my top if the weather allows. On the bucket brigade, I like to hold the bucket close to my torso. This is usually helpful for my grip, but it pulls at my sports bra. Maybe that’s just me. Because the X-Factor has a slight v-neck to it, the bucket did not pull on it at all! I thought that was really awesome.

Lastly, the X-Factor just looks cool. I got several compliments on it, especially for the way that the back of the sports bra looks. If Born Primitive knows how to do anything, it’s making cool-looking sports bras.


  • Cool looking back design that features a big cross and meshing
  • Longer band for more coverage
  • Small v-cut in the front that prevents slipping on that dang bucket carry
  • Very supportive design
  • Durable; can maintain shape and structure throughout long races and difficult workouts
  • Comes in multiple colors.


  • Not necessarily dry-fit material
  • Thicker; although great for colder races, may not be the best if you are looking for something lightweight
  • Can’t buy in stores; if you’re interested, you have to buy online. So, you would not be able to try it on before you buy it.


Born Primitive’s X-Factor Sportsbra is fantastic for high-intensity workouts. It has really high support with a longer band for durability, and an open back that includes a mesh detail for breathability. I would not wear this if you were doing something more relaxed, or just around the house. I wouldn’t want to wear this with a lot of layers, because the long line would be uncomfortable. But, for wearing this as a top for an OCR, the X-Factor has shown what it takes to compete in an Obstacle Course Race.

Buy one here


OCR Training: King’s Camps and Fitness

King’s Camps and Fitness is a new 4,300 square feet OCR gym is located in San Carlos at the San Francisco Bay Area (Peninsula) in Northern California where they recently moved into brand new facilities, opening the doors just in May 2016. The location and gear might be new but Owner Mike King has been coaching clients and classes for five years now. The equipment offers treadmills, rowers, rope climbs, TRX, plyo boxes, 4- and 8-foot climbing walls, a 24-foot multi-rig, sleds, spears, a traverse wall, and a ton of other equipment aimed to improve functional fitness for OCR athletes.


Parents with smaller children will be happy to see that there is a play area in the same space as the gym. Depending on demand, an attendant will be present to take care of the kids while their parents can train just a few feet away in line of sight – without anxiety or stress.


Rig Practice

Everyone who has recently participated in a BattleFrog, Spartan Race, or Terrain Race, has become familiar with the rig setups: Obstacles which must be traversed using almost exclusively your grip and upper body strength and the right technique. Several races have been lost and won because of these rig type obstacles. King’s Camps and Fitness has ropes, rings, bars, and plenty of climbing holds to attach to their rig in order to deliver a training experience that mirrors what you will encounter out on the race course.



The founder, Mike King, is an experienced OCR competitor and coach with several OCR podium finishes and three trips to World’s Toughest Mudder under his belt, as well as several fitness certifications.

For anyone interested in OCR but unsure of how to start or how to take it to the next level, Mike offers a variety of training programs including an Obstacle Course Training Camp and a “Young Warriors” class for kids ages 5 to 12. Even aspiring police officers will find a program tailored to their needs: With a 50% failure rate on the police academy admission test there is clearly a need for intense preparation.


If you want to build fitness, King’s Camps and Fitness also offers HIIT classes, functional strength training, and running coaching. Mike opened his gym with the purpose to focus on “Warriors”: be it everyday warriors or performance athletes, this is for anyone that wants to feel good and look good or needs help to overcome the intimidation of running their first obstacle race.

Open Gym

Once per week the Open Gym offers a playground to everyone who is looking to fine tune their obstacle technique or put together a circuit: Run with a sandbell on the treadmill or around the block, do a spear throw, followed by a bucket carry, and then facing the rig is just one example of what you can do here.

Usually there is a group of people across all ages present and the open minded and welcoming atmosphere makes this gym a great stepping stone for everyone aiming to improve their fitness.


If you do not feel particularly creative there is always a workout posted on a whiteboard that will make sure to make you sweat. Fortunately there are wide garage doors and fans on the inside of the facility!


Over time you can expect to find ever changing rig configurations and new obstacles like a Delta Ladder or even Balls to the wall. As OCRs evolve, Mike will adapt his facilities and even combine existing obstacles for new challenges to keep all athletes on their toes.

(All pictures have been taken by the author)