Let's start with the head:
Thursday, December 10, 2015
My favorite winter weather gear
Kind of odd to be talking about winter weather running when it has been 60 degrees but here goes, since it is the season for it! I wanted to share my favorite winter outfit piece by piece, just to give you an idea of what I do for our Kansas winters. We have been spared really bad winter weather the past year, and of course are starting into a very mild fall/winter. You never know when Mother Nature will finally kick in and get the snow/cold temps started. In our little part of Kansas, we get several days of negative wind chills and a little snow here and there, so I will show you what a typical winter day would look like for me to go out for a run.
Let's start with the head:
Let's start with the head:
First, I always cover my ears. I LOVE this brook's fleece lined head band. Covers my ears, doesn't move, and bonus, it's pink (which is my favorite running color). I picked this up at my very first half marathon expo, so it has special meaning, but you can find them at any running store or on Brook's awesome website! If it is raining/sleeting/snowing, I will cover my entire head with one of my cool running hats. Right now I am all about my trucker hat that I got from Another mother runner for the Chicago marathon. I never would have thought I would say that I LOVE a trucker, hat but I DO!
Moving down the body, I have my saucony drylete neck warmer. I just picked this up from my local running company this year, and have only got to try it out once but WOW! I use to try using a full face mask thing when the wind chill got worse. I don't like things covering my face and impeding my breath. I find that stuff like that just makes my face sweaty and hot, and I feel claustrophobic. Plus, even though I had the full face mask deal, my neck wasn't always covered, so I would have to put on yet another piece of clothing, a fleece scarf, to keep my neck warm. This does all of those thing in one piece of gear! Notice the little pocket looking thing at the top? That can be worn up over your nose and mouth and even has a little mesh vent for getting rid of hot breath. Plus even when this is pulled up over my face, it still covers my neck down into my jacket.
What makes this even better is the drawstring with clip on the back. You can cinch it as tight as you like. I love this little feature because that is the problem I have with a lot of the face masks, they just don't fit me and my little head and face. I can't wait to test the gear out more and more this winter. You can find these neck warmers at your local running store or at Saucony's website.
Moving down, I have my base layer. I have tried lots of brands, and the Mizuno breath thermo line is the BEST for me and my body. It seems so odd to go lighter when it gets colder, but I have found the more bulk you have, the hotter you get, and the more sweat you produce. The more sweat you have under all of those layers, the more chance you have of actually getting chilled. I love the breath thermo shirts for my tops and the Breath thermo tights for keeping me toasty warm. Both run around 70 bucks retail, but I found them on the clearance rack after winter a couple of years ago, and I snatched them up for MUCH less. This find has caused me to pay full price for some other pieces in their collection, but I still scour the racks post winter for great deals.
When we start having wind or a wind chill, I layer on top of my breath thermo gear with a light wind jacket like this one:
Honestly, I have had my Brook's jacket for years and LOVED it, but it was getting pretty ragged after a few winters of running in it all winter and fall. I wanted to get myself one piece of gear at the expo in Chicago, and when I saw this Saucony jacket, it was perfect for my "I ran a marathon" gift. Not only is it light weight, but it is also reflective, eliminating my need for my reflective harness thing i wear when I run at night and HATE.
Plus I just found this cute little pocket on the back. Never noticed it till a few days ago.
Just looking at the outside, it doesn't seem very big but look at the pocket from the inside! WOW! It is huge! That little pocket fits my iphone 5S in it's otterbox, no problem. I love the fact that it keeps it close to your body so no flapping and it keeps it warm with your body heat so it doesn't shut down due to cold during winter running. Having this pocket also eliminates my little fanny pack I normally wear for my phone, and the other pockets on the jacket are perfect for gels and whatever else you need to store. I LOVE It when a single piece of gear that is needed eliminates a piece of gear that you have to wear extra.
This jacket, or this type of jacket, has proven itself worthy in wind chills below 0. I think the coldest I ever ran in was -14 and I felt fine the whole time as far as warmth. I can't wait to test this particular brand this winter and I hope it serves me as well as my brooks jacket did for so long.
As far as gloves, that is a toss up. I really haven't found a brand that I LOVE.
I use these when it isn't super cold out. These came from Target and are part of their champion line. While the touch screen fingers really don't work on my phone, I have heard for others it works just fine. I am kind of sad because I wore these last weekend at the 10 mile trail race, and lost one of the pair. If anyone has lost a left one and has an extra right one they don't want anymore, I need two to make this work:)
If it is colder out, I will go with these. They have a layer of thinsulate in them and are toasty warm.
I got them at the local farm store, so I don't know what brand they are. If it is super cold or I think maybe my hands will get too hot, I will layer these on top of some thinner gloves. I don't like cold hands, so warm hands is a must. I have never run with hand warmers but may try those out this year too.
So there are a few of my winter favorites. I like to layer because you can always take a layer off, but I still keep my layers super light weight, even when it is below 0. I don't do any special socks, will usually just stick to my normal balenga's or procompressions and my feet usually are fine. I do have a fleece hat that i will toss on occasionally from time to time, but I find my normal running hats breath better and the fleece makes me sweat. I have friends who run much more bundled up than me, so it is a journey to find what works best for you but I wanted to share what works for me.
Have a great week!