The beauty of running in Virginia is that not only do you get to run in 100+ degrees with nearly matching humidity, but you also get to run in cold and snow. It doesn’t hit single digits (except with windchill) often, but there are plenty of opportunities to run in the teens and 20s. I’ve got my attire pretty much down to a science, so let me share with you my favorites.
1. Half Zips – I’m particularly in love with the one above from Athleta. It has thumbholes in the sleeves and a pocket in the lower back that fits my iphone. Not to mention, I happen to love the colors in it! Don’t want to spend that much? Target’s Champion C9 brand is awesome for the price. I pretty much own every color. They don’t have the fancier details on their cheapest style, but they still function well. I wear a half zip for nearly every run from October to April. All that changes is how much I have under or over it.
2. Capris – Somewhere along the way, I became a skirt girl. Still not sure how it happened LOL. Both Skirt Sports and Running Skirts offer capri versions of their skirts. Both are awesome. For me, Skirt Sports (the blue one above) has a slight edge, purely because the pockets on the legs fit my iphone. (See a pattern here? Yes, I always run with my phone and I like having it easily accessible.) Don’t like skirts? Athleta Relay Capri is my favorite capri out there. With a back pocket big enough to hold my phone and a tie at the waist that keeps my pants from falling down, these capris really fit the bill for cold weather running. I very seldom need tights as I wear compression socks. (Athleta Capri review here.)
3. Compression Socks – I have a cranky calf. I also don’t like being cold. Enter the compression socks! I wear them for every run over 5 miles and every race, regardless of the length. My two favorite brands are Recovery Socks and Pro Compression(review here). Both offer a comfortable amount of compression and I’ve had no issues with them falling down. The Recovery Sock has a slightly wider band at the top, which I prefer, but Pro Compression is good and offers awesome sales. There is usually one style/color on 40% off at any given time.
4. Running jackets – Honestly, if you can get your hands on a Brooks Essential jacket (not pictured above), you don’t need anything else. It’s a lightweight windbreaker style. I’ve worn it over layers down to a real temp of 19* with a windchill temp of 9* and been fine. Hopefully the “II” is as good as the original. Otherwise, for truly cold days, I love my Sugoi Firewall jacket. It’s pricey (I won it in a drawing), but I’ve been running in it for a couple of years now and it looks like new. Another good one is the Brooks Silver Bullet (mine is the original, not sure of the differences from the “II”). It’s windproof, water-resistant, and has thumbholes. My only regret is that I got black – around here if I need this kind of jacket, that means it’s grey out and I need to be brighter.
Looking for some stocking stuffers?
Here are some of my other favorites:
- nuun – I live on this stuff
- Gu – the only gel that sits well for me. I love vanilla, but I’ve heard great things about the salted caramel.
- Amphipod handheld bottle (review)- I have the small and the bigger one and I’ve carried each for a half marathon with no issues.
- Fitletic Armband – I have the old version of this, but the new one looks to keep the good about the old one and add some better features. Super comfy! I’ve run several half marathons with this on my arm!
What do you want under the Christmas tree? I admit I bought myself a new skirt capri, nuun, and a Moms Run This Town half zip. (Now you know the secret to our happy marriage – I get exactly what I want and Beer Geek doesn’t have to walk into a store. Win/Win!)
This post is linked up with Run to the Finish’s collection of gift guides. Check it out for more great ideas.