Winter Running Apparel

Even though it’s been unseasonably warm in the DC area the past few weeks, I’ve been getting ready for the colder weather workouts. Recently some of my friends have mentioned that they hang up their running shoes in the winter. I think, however, if you dress appropriately (and don’t live in Buffalo), you can run almost year ’round. I actually love running in cold weather because I find if I can’t feel my hips and thighs, I can’t feel any pain. It’s a workout and an ice bath all in one! As long as the sidewalks or paths are relatively clear of snow and ice, and the temperature is at least in the high 20s, I’m game!

For workout clothes in general I tend to wear a lot of Under Armour, Nike, and Athleta, but when it comes to running, I’m usually pretty loyal to Nike. I don’t have a very good reason, except everything stays put (a tall order for my inefficient form!) and is more comfortable and durable than any other brand.

Pants

EpicLuxCrops

I’m a fan of Nike running crops in general but their Epic Lux line of shorts, capris, crops, and pants is really awesome. After a lot of trial and error, I’ve realized there are two small details I can’t live without: 1. a drawstring to prevent the pants from falling down, and 2. a pocket for my keys. Those two details along with pants that just stay up in general make me a happy camper. You would be surprised how elusive that can be! Epic Lux items can be pricey, but if you keep your eyes on sales, you should be able to get a discount.

Long Sleeve Outer Layer

Nikequarterzip

The quarter zip is a classic option for the outside layer. They usually vary in weight, so you want to pick a lighter weight for the fall and spring and a thicker one for the depths of winter. It can operate by itself in cold weather and be layered with an undershirt in even colder weather. I like this option from Nike because it’s sleek and functional. Most brands also have a basic quarter (or half) zip that start at about $50 and go up from there: Nike, Under Armour, Athleta.

Long Sleeve Base Layer

NikeBaseLayer

If it’s really chilly you’re going to want a long sleeve undershirt under your quarter zip or jacket. This shirt is as basic as it gets, and it’s the perfect weight for a base layer. The $28 price tag makes it easy too. If you want a low profile layering tank, check this out.

Vest

AthletaVest

I’m breaking from Nike for this one, because I like this vest from Athleta. I personally do not find many occasions for a vest, but if I did, I think I would wear this one. It looks warm, but not too puffy which makes it easier to move.

Gloves

NikeGloves

I actually do not ever wear a hat in cold weather because I find it annoying, and if I’m not working out, it’s also because I always prioritize my hair. That said, I CANNOT live without gloves for a winter run. These from Nike are a good mid-weight, and are surprisingly more affordable than several other options in the running glove market place at $25. They also have tech friendly finger pads making it easy to deal with all of your running technology.

Look Good, Feel Good, Run Fast! Now you have no excuse!

PS- While we’re on the athletic apparel topic, I need these, right?

NewBalanceSneaks

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Suns Out Guns Out

Even though I hit the gym year-round, there’s something about the spring that makes me think, it’s time for a gym wardrobe refresh! Here are a couple things I’ve grabbed over the last couple months and a couple things I have my eye on.

Gym Shoes:

NewBalancesneaks

I got these a couple months ago and I love them! They are super cute, comfortable, supportive, but very lightweight. Basically the best of all worlds. I was dabbling with Nike shoes for a while, but now I’m happy to be back with New Balance! (and they’re on sale right now at Athleta!)

UA Tank:

UAtank

Even though I’m not usually a logo girl, I love a placement print, and if there’s anywhere I will wear a logo, it’s definitely the gym. This top is easy breezy cotton. It’s perfect for those days when you’re not looking for a super skimpy, skin tight top (which is most days for me).

Coordinating Cropped “Joggers”:

UAjoggers

Again with the placement print. These aren’t necessary for my workouts, but it’s the perfect lounge solution. Comfortable, easy to wear, but not oversized and ratty like those college sweats. (I have them in grey)

Carrie Underwood Seamless Capris:

CUcapris

Have you seen Carrie’s new line of workout gear at Dicks Sporting Goods? There are some really cute things! Also, I did some comparison shopping and while her prices are not necessarily bargain basement, they are consistently lower than the big names in fitness apparel, and the quality seems very comparable. It seems like everyone sells a seamless capri these days, but these have some serious shaping properties (almost to the point of muffin top, so be careful about sizing). They are very comfortable!

On my wish list:

Nike Epic Run Shorts:

Epic

During the warmer months I like to run outside in 5 inch Nike Pro shorts. The only downside is that they’re very basic so they lack a couple features like a zip pocket for keys. These Epic Run Lux shorts are pricier than my typical shorts, but they’re designed specifically for running and the zip pocket might be worth it!

Nike Gradient Top:

NIKE-GRADIENT-TANK-646634_518_A_PREM

I like that this top has some interest but isn’t too obnoxious, and these also have a zip pocket for keys! It takes some effort to find the right kind of sports bra, or capris that stay put, but tanks are easy so I always forget about them. This would be great for my weekly summer runs, or just the gym.

Old Stand Bys

Workout clothes might be my favorite topic. I wear them everyday, I take a lot of interest in them. I love trying out all the new fabrics, patterns, and silhouettes that the athletic apparel companies come out with, but there’s something to be said for the basics. I have pieces in my dresser that are a little pricey, crazy, or activity specific, but at the end of the day there is core wardrobe of basics that are durable, comfortable, affordable, and awesome for every workout.

Here are my favorites that I will buy until the companies discontinue the style:

Tops

This basic Under Armour tank. It usually comes in several colors, and I love it for anything from weights to Pilates to cardio. It stays put whether you’re upside down or right side up!

UAtank

When it comes to a tee shirt, I love this Nike option. It’s a company staple so they come out with new colors all the time, and keep the style the same. I like it because it’s not skin tight so it’s perfect for days that I’m not looking for something comfy, but a big step up from a standard cotton tee shirt.

NikeLegendT

Bottoms

I think bottoms can be a little trickier than tops because they ride up, fall down, are see through when you bend over, or just plain unflattering. These ones from Under Armour though, are the definition of basic. They work for everything from spin class, to weights, to Pilates (no zipper on the back). Every time I wear these I wish I could wear them 24/7/365 because they are that comfortable.

UAcapris

When it comes to running I have a few requirements. I need a drawstring, a pretty high rise, and a little zipper pocket on the lower back for my keys. These Nike capris meet all the requirements, and I think I usually get an even more affordable version of these from the Nike outlet.

NikeCapris

Based on my observations over time, I’ve realized you can go two directions for running shorts. You’re either a spandex person, or a Nike tempo (or other brand equivalents) person. I am a spandex person. Always. These are my go-tos from Nike. Comfortable, light, and a slightly longer inseam (5 in.) than the shorter version (3 in.) makes them age appropriate for everyone older than 17.

NikeShorts

Sports Bras

I have done extensive research in this category. This is obviously very dependent on your body type, and I require maximum support. I cannot tell you how many times I have bought a sports bra because it claims to be my size and/or be extremely high impact/high support, and they just don’t live up to any of the claims (I will not name names…). Time and time again I come back to this very basic compression bra from Nike. I have tried all the imitators, but no one does a compression bra like Nike. Plus, just like all these other basics, they often release it in several colors and patterns every season.

NikeBra

Socks

I’m pickier than you might think when it comes to socks. After trying several of the fancier brands, it turns out Champion makes my favorite in their target line. They are the perfect combination of low profile, and fluffy. Socks are a goldilocks thing for me, they’re either too thin or too thick and fluffy, but few are just right.

targetsocks

Shoes

I am a New Balance sneaker girl. I like the lightweight, basic nature of these ones that I’ve been ordering at a discount from DSW for a couple years now. When you find a shoe that works you need to stick with it!

Sneakers

What are your old stand bys, when it comes to workout gear?