There’s something about autumn running that’s unbeatable. The setting sun glowing through the trees, the foliage-dusted trails, the ideal conditions that mean you’re cool-but-not-cold. Ah, autumn. You really are the season for long runs. But just like your dear old grandma loved to say: all good things must come to an end. Welcome to the world of winter running.
We’re talking about those months where daylight is minimal, temperatures are sub-optimal and your motivation to lace up n’ run has begun to wane. But don’t worry, we totally get it. Trying to drag yourself out of bed and into your running shoes when it’s pitch black outside and your breath crystallises the moment it leaves your lips is hard. Then again, that’s what they invented the treadmill for, right? Wrong.
Winter running is all about having two things: the right gear and the right attitude. So, this winter, get ahead of it. Treat yourself (or your running family n’ friends) to some proper winter running gear that will fend off the worst Mother Nature can deliver (or close too) and embrace the elements on your winter runs. After all, getting out the door is always the toughest part, but you’ll be way more likely to stick to your run when decked out in the best frost-fighting apparel.
Best lightweight running raincoat
When the weather outside is already a bit nippy, the last thing any runner wants to feel is the first raindrops of a storm, especially on a long run. Flip that coin over, though, and you don’t want to be sweating away inside a thick winter raincoat either, wondering how it’s so darn hot. That’s where the 2XU Aero Jacket comes into its own. Constructed from a water-resistant stretch woven fabric, this lightweight raincoat has all the protection you need for those cooler runs. We’re talking about an environmentally responsible C6 DWR treatment that can withstand rain and showers, as well as an adjustable 3 piece hood and, a back vent that boasts… wait for it… “power mesh lining” so that you can enjoy enhance breathability and ventilation. Time to bring the intensity, whatever the weather.
Best gilet for runners
When the conditions are cold and dry, there’s only one thing you need to focus on and that’s keeping your core temperature warm(ish). That’s exactly what the Nike Therma-FIT technology was designed to do, managing your body's natural heat to keep you warm in cold-weather conditions. Combining water and wind resistant materials, the woven fabric is perfect for cooler temperatures, while the water-repellent layer will make sure you stay dry and comfortable on your long runs. But it’s the details that really set this gilet apart from the rest. From the mock neck design that keeps warmth in to the zip-up hand-pockets that are ideal for stashing small items, to the reflective design elements to keep you safe in the dark, this is more than just a gilet. This is a gilet for runners.
Best hat for cold weather running
Next up: the head. And ears for that matter, both of which offer no good times when they’re freezing cold. That’s what makes the Ignition beanie our go-to head warmer every time we’re preparing to brave winter’s harshest conditions, including snow, sleet and ice. Yet its versatility is what makes it the best pick. Designed to keep your hair out of your face and cold ears a distant memory, the Ignition Beanie uses a double-knit waffle that’s both warm and breathable, not to mention a quick drying option for those that want some convenient comfort this winter.
Best winter running gloves
With winter workout gear, the emphasis is almost-always on protecting your torso and legs. But nothing will have you turning on your heels and running back to shelter faster than a pair of ice cold hands. Thankfully, these running gloves from Adidas feature AeroReady technology, meaning they’ll wick any sweat away before it has a chance to freeze against your skin, while the mesh palm means you get the optimal amount of ventilation when pushing yourself on those interval sprints. Trust us: when your extremities are kept warm and dry, nothing can slow you down, not even the harsh wintery conditions.
Best waterproof trail shoes
If Nike’s aim was to create a running shoe that lets you feel confident, comfortable and raring to go even in the most unforeseen weather conditions, the React Pegasus Trail 4 can be filed under: Mission Successful. Made with a combination of sleeved mesh, fused overlays, a heel gaiter and single-density React foam, this shoe was designed with one purpose: to be the ultimate running companion for those days when the weather turns. And thanks to its layer of waterproof GORE-TEX membrane, you can pound the pavements, attack the asphalt or even take on the trails knowing that your feet will stay dry, while the transition between each terrain will feel as smooth as butter thanks to the reduced amount of rubber in the outsole.
Best running sunglasses
We know what you’re thinking: sunglasses aren’t exactly the first item of running gear you think about on cold, overcast days. But here’s the thing: not only are harmful UV rays present year-round, but the sun sits a whole lot lower in the sky in winter, making the need for good sunglasses pretty essential. Luckily, Humps Optics know exactly how to make a good pair of winter sunglasses, and their Blackjack frames are the best of the best. Boasting 100% polarized lenses and featherweight frames made from recycled plastics, the wraparound style offers epic eye protection from both the bitter wind chill and harmful sun damage. But that’s just the start because these shades are also scratch-proof, battle-tested, no-slip, zero-bounce, sold with a lifetime warranty and when you buy a pair, they donate a pair of reading glasses to someone in need. Now that’s what we call epic.
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