Winter Race Gear Question (Read 549 times)

    It's not often I find myself running races in the winter but I've got a 5k tomorrow morning. It's supposed to be in the low 30s with a chance of snow showers. What does everyone else do in terms of pants for a race in this type of weather? I have running pants but I've never raced in pants before because I've always felt too restricted. I did the race in shorts last year and my legs were beet red before all was said and done. I wasn't in very good shape at the time so I don't know what kind of impact it really had on my performance (too many other factors going on). Does anyone believe full leg spandex are the best way to go? I'd imagine I wouldn't feel as restricted or bogged down but I've never owned or wore a pair before. Please let me know if you have any suggestions. Thanks, in advance! Chris

    CPT Curmudgeon

      I've done both. My tights are regular spandex-type, though, they aren't lined or all that thick. I wear them more when it's really cold (below around 20 or so), or when it's windy. Other than that, I've been wearing shorts. My legs get red, but hey, I can usually live with that. Now, if it's raining, I might be more tempted to wear the tights (cold rain and snow can hurt on bare skin). I do wear thick windpants before and after, though.
        I can't remember the model name but New Balance makes a fairly lightweight tight that has windproof panels in the front and are breathable in the back. I have run in a pair of these down to about 18 degrees and was totally comfortable and never felt like they impeded my movement or slowed me down.


          its only a 5k you will be out of the cold in no time. man up and wear shorts Cool On a serious note. I just got a pair of these and they aren't too bad http://www.roadrunnersports.com/rrs/product/product.jsp?id=NKM144&prfc=8&sc=CDM-06121&PartnerName=Nextag&NG_urlID=9017294

          CPT Curmudgeon

            That reminds me....I just got a pair of 3/4 length tights from CW-X. Now they are cool. They have some special webbing to help straighten out your knees and legs and such. Wore them for one long run so far, they felt pretty good, too. Have to find the website.....
              Shorts! Just make sure you wear warm pants on your warmup and strip them off very close to the gun time. (i.e. 1 min. to go or less).
                Thanks for the feedback everyone! I think I'm gonna suck it up and go with shorts tomorrow. We'll see how that works out again this year. If it seems to negatively impact my race, I'll probably head out looking for some tights to wear at the next race a couple of weeks from now.

                  Does anyone believe full leg spandex are the best way to go? I'd imagine I wouldn't feel as restricted or bogged down but I've never owned or wore a pair before.
                  If you've never tried them, don't start with your 5K! I get pretty hot in the full-legged stuff (though my only pair are pretty thermal) and I think a 5K would be unbearable in them. Maybe you can find a pair that will be okay, but probably best to try it out on a few training runs first. I do like the spandex shorts (to wear under regular running shorts.. I'm not that bold!). I've got a pair from Underarmour.

                  still alive

                    I have a pair of under armor full lenght tights. They are very warm but still very breathable. I wear them anytime the temps go below about 40 and it's comfortable.

                    Greg in ND


                    One day at a time.

                      Figured I'd give an update on this morning's 5k. Unfortunately, the weather was actually closer to the low to mid 20s instead of the low 30s as I was expecting but I still went with shorts. My legs were definitely feeling the cold but I don't think it affected my performance since they weren't tightening up on me.