Mornings are starting to get a little cooler… can Fall really be right around the corner? The leaves are turning and there’s a definite bite to the air, though days are still in the 70′s and 80′s.
I ran yesterday morning in 58 degree weather, and it was gorgeous. I seriously wished for a pair of those cool Pearl Izumi arm warmers I saw at Boulder Running Company the other day. What a brilliant clothing item for runners not quite ready for a jacket, but needing just a little something to keep the chill off. While there (again) today, I did a spontaneous purchase and plopped down $20 for these cuties. Can’t wait to try them on my next pre-dawn run!
Now that I have new arm warmers, I started to think: What do I have, and what needs to be replaced this fall season, as I prepare for my first Marathon? I’m running more now than ever, and the constant laundry is putting a serious crimp in my running style (not that I have much, but still…).
Pants: I have two pair of awesome Nike DriFit running pants. They’re both black, and I’m considering expanding the color palette to purple or green or blue or even PINK, just for some variety. I’m not a huge fan of running tights, though I have a pair of those too. This year, I need to get a few more pair of running pants so that I have a week’s worth of rotation during Marathon training season. I’m not married to the Nike DriFit brand, though so far those have fit the best. I am long-waisted and hate having anything sit higher than my hips. You could say that I’m HIPPIE, and it would be slightly accurate. :-)
Jackets: I have a ton of short-sleeved tech t-shirts that are great for layering, but my jacket selection is pretty paltry. I have one jacket, a pink Go-Lite zippered jacket that’s a good wind-breaker with wicking and layering capacity. Unfortunately, I can’t wear it every workout, because of the stink factor. I need a few more jackets.
Fleece jackets: I don’t have a single fleece or serious cold-weather jacket, mostly because I think I would sweat my way out of them. I like to layer with a good long-sleeve mid-weight shirt and a jacket that warms the air between my layers and allows for the sweat to be pulled away from my body. That being said, I could use a few more long sleeve mid-weight shirts.
Hats: I have two SmartWool winter hats. One has a pony-tail slit in the back, the other is an older model that just sits on the head. I usually braid my hair into two braids when I wear that one so that it sits firmly. I could use another hat, and probably one that isn’t black for those early morning runs.
Gloves: Again, I have two pair of gloves. One is a SmartWool pair that wicks the sweat from my hands and makes them feel dry even when they’re not, and the other is more of a “true” winter running glove, with reinforced fingers to keep the wind from chilling me to the bone. I choose which pair I wear based on the weather, obviously, and unfortunately, sometimes I choose poorly. Could I use another pair? Probably, to deal with the aforementioned laundry rotation issue.
Socks: I have three pair of awesome SmartWool socks, though they’re ankle socks that hit just above my shoe. I’ll definitely need more soscks before the snow flies, because wet shoes with cotton socks are enough to make my toes rebel.
I’ve managed to make this rotation of clothes work for three years of running, but now that I’m in Marathon training mode and running five days a week instead of 3-4 days, I can honestly see that I just need a few more items to make this whole thing work. This summer I rotated through four pair of running shorts for five days of running per week, and made it work, though there were days when I had to run to the basement and pull a pair from the dirty pile and wear them one more time. I’m not a big fan of doing laundry just to get one particular item of clothes cleaned, but I’m also not keen on sweating through a hat or jacket two workouts in a row, thus cementing my stink in that item for the remainder of its useful life.
Okay, Marathon veterans, speak up now! What other gear should I have that would make Autumn training a fabulous experience?