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For runners, this time of year is what separates the wheat from the chaff. Whether you’re a seasoned marathoner or just a hobby jogger, the transition to colder months is typically when people fall off their workout bandwagon. Particularly after the holidays’ bacchanalia, winter could find your running routine very much in crisis. Luckily, there is more high-performing winter running gear than ever before. So, you have no excuse for not continuing to clock miles through the colder months.
Here, the season’s running essentials for getting out there in style.
Vuori Langley Insulated Jacket
If you’re prone to running in the chilliest of climates, you’re going to need a topper that’ll insulate and allow you to move freely. Checking both these boxes is Vuori’s Langley, an ergonomically cut jacket that’s made of a performance fabric, coated with a water-resistant shell, and filled with heat-packing polyester. It also comes with an adjustable hood and storm flaps for added protection, along with interior pockets to hold all your essentials, enabling you to run with abandon.
Rhone Spar Jogger
Joggers are a dime a dozen nowadays, but Rhone’s Spar is truly singular. Why? The brand’s best-seller is made of soft stretch fabric and features a full interior leg gusset for maximum mobility. The drawstring waist is secure and incredibly comfortable. And the silhouette is one of the sleeksts around, the ideal bottom that will take you from trail to brunch table with no fuss.
Smartwool Classic All-Season Merino Base Layer Long-Sleeve Top
With a name like Smartwool, it’s no surprise that the brand delivers some of the best performance fabric. This tee, for instance, is made of environmentally-friendly merino wool that’s spun around a nylon core, which makes the material soft, insulating and hard-wearing. It also features flatlock seams offset shoulders that minimizes chafing as you’re running.
TravisMathew Wanderlust Full-Zip Hoodie
On brisk winter days when the weather isn’t too frightful, all you need is a great hoodie over a fitted base layer (see above). And one of the best in the market is TravisMathew’s Wanderlust, a full-zip topper made of a four-way stretch polymer that incorporates micro ripstop technology. This means that it’s designed specifically to provide comfort, stretch and durability for the most intense exercises.
ON Cloud Waterproof Sneakers
As any city or pavement runner will tell you, damp feet are the surest way to ruin a winter run. When the snow melts into hellish puddles of sludge, enlist the help of these lightweight, waterproof sneakers. They’re still breathable and have a great tread on them for those days when the streets are slick.
Arc’teryx Trino SL Hoody
The trick to dressing for cold-weather runs is to consider how warm you’ll be after you’ve broken a sweat. For this reason, this Trino Hoody from Arc’teryx’s superlight range is ideal. It’s lightweight, packable, has four-way stretch that follows your every move and is just breathable enough to keep you thermoregulated once you start heating up.
Janji Groundwork Tight
The perfect running tight should be ankle length, provide a compression fit that doesn’t constrict movement and, of course, keep the goods in place without too much of a VPL. Consider your quest for the ideal workout legging over. Janji’s feature deep pockets to store keys, phones, gloves and energy gels; a compression fit that won’t quit, sag or fall down; a double-lined front panel for added warmth and minimal privates flashing; laser-cut ankles that easily slide on and off; and integrated high-visibility reflective tapes down the side seams for added safety when you’re on the road.
APL x McLaren HySpeed Sneaker
If speed and style is what you’re looking for, it doesn’t get any better than a sneaker inspired by McLaren. The release of HySpeed collection marks the second time that APL and the automotive company have joined forces, and just like its predecessor, the styles are so tony, so comfortable and so great for running up and down clear trails that it’d be wise to jump on them while supplies last.
Tracksmith Downeaster Crew Shirt
We’ve sung the praises of Tracksmith’s stylish performance gear before and this proprietary technical merino blend crew is no exception. It can be worn on its own for those sunny winter days or as a base layer when things are truly frigid—either way, you’ll need this one in your running quiver all winter long.
Bombas Merino Wool Running Calf Socks
The right socks can make or break your runs any time of year, but that is especially true in the colder months. You want something durable, warm, wicking and plush without being too thick, and these calf-height Bombas socks provide all of that without ever slipping. They combine the natural moisture-wicking properties of merino wool with a hint of polyester and spandex to keep the fit just right. Plus, for every pair purchased, Bombas donates a pair of socks to someone in need.
Hoka One One Trail Code GTX Shoe
Don’t be fooled by the hiking boot appearance of this trail runner from Hoka—at just 13.2 ounces, it’s as lightweight as any winter runner but offers full ankle coverage for those snowy, slushy, muddy runs. The Vibram sole has super-charged traction to minimize slipping and sliding, while a Gore-Tex liner keeps things waterproof. They’re bound to keep your feet warm and dry as you go the distance this winter.
Trailheads Trailblazer Hat
The Trailblazer hat has the comfort and snug fit of a beanie (the back folds up or down depending on how much insulation you need), but also features a curved bill to reduce glare from the sun and snow.
Brooks Running Shield Hybrid Vest
Layering for winter runs can be more art than science, but a good vest is essential. It’s less bulky than a full jacket or hoodie and allows for more ventilation once your core starts heating up, keeping you just warm enough without getting sweaty. This one from Brooks Running comes with exceptionally lightweight Thermolite insulation, as well as both wind- and water-resistant paneling to keep the elements at bay.
Outdoor Research Gore-Tex Infinium Sensor Gloves
Stay with us here—while technically glove liners, the Infinium Sensor Gloves from the pros at Outdoor Research also double as an excellent running glove. They’re fleecy and soft but also come equipped with a Gore-Tex Windstopper lining across the back of the hand, striking that fine balance between cozy fingers and never getting too sweaty.
Alwrld ALRN Merino Zip Hoodie
Finding the right hoodie for extra-cold runs is a challenge. Too thick and you’re sweating after a quarter-mile; too thin and you might as well be wearing a sail in a wind tunnel. Then there’s the issue of material—wicking fabrics aren’t always the warmest, but bulkier fabrics tend to sag with sweat and lose their shape. None of these is an issue with Alwrld’s “ALRN” hoodie, made from a blend of merino and recycled polyester. The thumb holes are a smart touch, as they will keep your hands cozy until you’ve sufficiently warmed up on your run, without the need for carrying gloves. Plus, this off-white is just plain fresh.