Ladies' Guide to Warm-Weather Running Clothes

For us ladies there’s an outfit for every occasion. Running is no exception.
Even if you have clothes you work out in, running is a little different, especially if you are running a long distance in warm weather.  You’ll be repeating the same motions over and over again, increasing the oh-so-great possibility of chaffing. Also, if you’re like me, you probably sweat a bit more when you run a few miles than when you lift weights, especially in warmer weather.  For these reasons, it would be wise to invest in a few pieces of comfortable and breathable running clothes. If you select the right pieces, you won’t have to go back to buy more any time soon (unless you want to).  Also, purchasing the right gear doesn’t have to drain your wallet.

Here are some things to keep in mind when looking for women’s warm-weather running attire:
Every woman is different.
Just because a friend suggests one brand of clothing, does not mean it will work best for you. Along the same line, just because it looks good on a model in a magazine, does not mean it will fit your body the same way. But just because the clothes don’t look the same on you as the model in the magazine doesn’t make you any less pretty! God created us all unique and beautiful in our own ways so find what works for YOU.

Just because it’s expensive, doesn’t mean it’s the best.
This is true with all clothing, but newbie runners are especially drawn to fancy brand name pieces. As with most things, a higher price might correlate with better quality but not always. You might actually just be paying for the brand. Personally, I get most of my workout clothes at Target, where I can find cute, functional pieces that don’t break the bank. 

Proper fit.
If you are uncomfortable when you try the clothes on in the fitting room, there is no way you will be able to get very far on the trail. If you’re having to tug your shirt down or adjust your shorts every five minutes on a run, you’re sure to have a bad running experience.

Test it out.
In the dressing room, don’t just make sure you like the print or that the color brings out your eyes. Run in place a little. Do some jumping jacks (this is especially helpful in knowing whether a particular sports bra will work for you). Don’t worry about what the girl in the dressing room next to you might think — it’s important that you buy pieces that will actually work for you, not ones that will sit at the bottom of your drawer.

Moisture wicking/Proper air flow.
I know you have that all cotton shirt that looks so cute, but resist wearing cotton for running. Cotton is not efficient at wicking moisture and will make you feel hot and sweaty. The longer you can stay cool, the longer and better you can run.  For warm weather, look for shirts and shorts that are polyester or cotton/polyester blends.  

Try compression socks.
These tight-fitting socks can be worn during or after your run to help keep blood flowing and to reduce recovery time. Most of the ones you find are long and to the knee.

Good running socks.
If you’re not up for running in knee-length socks, I like ankle-length running socks with padding at the back to prevent blisters as well as a slight compression band around the arch.  Breathable running socks are usually made with a nylon blend fabric.

Sunglasses.
If you’re running outside, you will need sunglasses. Look for a pair that has UV protection to protect your eyes. You will also want to pick ones that won’t slide off your nose and/or won’t break if you drop them (It might be a good idea to sport the 80’s looking sunglass croakies).  Polarized lenses is another option, which can provide increased clarity and help you enjoy the views.

Another note:
Personally, I really think we need to bring back sweat bands, what do you think? They’re the perfect way to keep sweat out of your eyes…I don’t understand why they went out of style.

Do you run? What suggestions do you have for warm-weather running wear?

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Originally posted 2013-09-09 11:41:21.

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