I started running in 2015 in February, so whilst it was chilly, the temperatures on really went upwards as my running and training increased. I feel like I spent most of the year trying to hydrate and worrying about the volume of electrolytes that were escaping my body through sweat. So now it's turned a bit cooler (despite winter being distinctly late to the party), here's 3 of my winter running essentials that have made the chillier days and nights easier when putting one foot in front of the other.
I have harped on about Helly Hansen Norviz (you can read my full review of the Norviz running kit here) kit since I first saw it in January last year. When I got my hands on some back in September, it didn't disappoint in performance. I love the top, but as much a surprise to me as anyone else, it's the tights I love the most. Comfortable, check. Warm, check. Pocket, check. Visibility patches, check. And the pink has grown on me, not to say I haven't been eyeing up another pair in black given they're reduced to almost half price at £33 in the sale.
Light up, light up....
FLASHING HAT! Sorry. I'm not sorry at all. My poor little ears suffer when it's windy and I get ear and jaw ache, this hat was a sale bargain from Mountain Warehouse (hat with flashing light available here) at £15 with an extra 20% off and keeps my ears tucked away and makes me nice and easy to spot amidst my running club buddies. It's the little things!
Another Mountain Warehouse favourite, I now have 6 of these base layer tops, because at £12.50 (again, I got an extra 20% off in my sale haul) and they are my absolute favouritest. They're not super skinny fitted like a traditional base layer which makes the ideal for running and other training in the spring and the autumn as stand alone shirts or under layers such as when freezing ones bits off when it's a mere 3 degrees above. Ahem. But seriously, they're a really flattering fit, they're stretchy, they don't have seams in annoying places that itch like fury (Nike, I'm looking at you) and they're dry about 5 minutes after being pulled from the washing machine (yay for winter laundry problems). The style is called Panna, they come in grey, green and a few other colours and they're cut true to size if not on the generous side. Oh, and they do a short sleeve t-shirt version for the spring. What on earth more could you possible want?!
Teeny, tiny little sale order... but seriously 3 tops, a sports bra, socks and some spare bike lights for £40....
Other less glamorous things I have come to love in cooler months... Victoria's Secret Everyday Perfect pants- they've got a smooth finish, no tags, come in a zillion colours and have substantial cotton inside bits. My favourite pants for exercising in. I bought 4 for $20 in the US, but you can get them here too.
I could buy a pair of gloves for running, or I could use my reflective bike gloves I already have.... They're not super padded in the palms, so I'm happy away using them on cooler nights.
Is it ever possible to have enough sports bras? I run and train 4+ times per week, so no, not really. I have a couple of higher end ones which are brilliant but I also have a medium impact one from H&M which is great for non-running training and a couple from Mountain Warehouse which are similar.
Will these things get you through snowy or icy runs, no. If the weather does turn super chilled as it's forecasted to do, I'm am class A screwed because I've never needed to own loads of super heavy weight outdoor running clothes. But for now, I'm content to wrap up in layers and there is something quite pleasant about coming in warm from a run on a cold day, feeling justified in the slug of amaretto going into your post-shower hot chocolate!