Running Pants vs Tights? (for Men) (Read 287 times)

    Which do you prefer? for running in cool/cold weather outdoors? what about for racing, any difference?


    Do you rock shorts over your tights?



    What about up top?

    I was planning to pick up a wind breaker/rain shell. Assume that won't be very breathable though.

    so if it's nice out and not raining, just cold, other options? those tech shirts won't block the wind at all...so hmmm I'm thinking something like running tights but for a top that might be windproof and wick?



    300m- 37 sec.


      A decent resource:




      I prefer tights to pants and do not wear shorts over them...

      And you can quote me as saying I was mis-quoted. Groucho Marx




        On top - I typically double-layer tech shirts down to ~mid-20's F, then I have a Gore-Tex running jacket for anything colder. Adjust as needed for wind chill factor rather than temp. Of course everyone's clothing vs temperature scale is different.


        On bottom - I wear pants rather than tights. It's just what I first bought when I started running, and they seem to work fine. It's pretty rare that I race in them, because I wear shorts down to about 30 F. I suppose tights would be more aerodynamic, but if you're racing in those conditions, you're probably not running a PR anyway.


        Pro tip - if you're a dude, and running in cold weather, get yourself some wind-blocking briefs. You will not regret it. There's an old thread around here explaining why.



          I prefer tights, although one of my tights is more of loose tight or tight pants.  I don't wear shorts over them.  I do sometimes wear shorts under them.  I'll wash the shorts and wear the tights a few times before washing.  I think the shorts over tights look is ridiculous.


          I have a shell with windstopper material.that works pretty well.  I unzip a bit if I get too hot.  Look for something with pit vents and/or back vents.  The vents let air flow through and cool you down and manage moisture.  No waterproof fabric breaths enough to keep your base layer from soaking in sweat if you are running (plenty are probably breathable enough for hiking or other light exercise).  Airflow is needed.


          Totally agree with windproof material up front.  The reason is avoiding frostbite on your penis.  (Is there some reason not to say the reason?)


            I've never seen windproof underwear. I have resorted to a sock on a few occasions...actually works fairly well!

            Interval Junkie --Nobby

              Pants and loose tights.  Shorts under -- mostly because I wash them more frequently than the top-layer.


              Windbreaker - for rain, this is mostly to keep the warm wet of sweat in, and the cold wet of rain out.  The idea of "dry" raingear is a myth.


              Also, can vouch for the windbreaker underwear.  -10F + WindChill, makes a big difference. (see "Dick hurt in cold morning" thread)

              2016 Goals: Lose the 10lbs I gained for not having goals


              Old , Ugly and slow

                Sweat pants

                if is really cold I have worn tights under sweatpants or

                shorts over sweat pants

                first race sept 1977 last race sept 2007


                2019  goals   1000  miles  , 190 pounds , deadlift 400 touch my toes



                  shorts over sweat pants


                  Why tho?



                    I wear shorts over tights because nobody wants to see me in tights. I wear long tights in the winter and short tights or compression shorts in the summer under shorts.


                    I wear tights long or short under shorts in all weather because chafing man, chafing.


                      tights. who cares how you look? the compression is nice and feels so much lighter than pants

                      Seattle prattle

                        tights if it's a workout (hard run or race). If it isn't, i would use either one depending on what i felt like wearing.

                          Both. Something like Sporthill running pants; are they baggy tights, or tight pants? You decide.

                          55-59 age group  -  University of Oregon alumni  -  Irreverent and Annoying

                            I use arm warmers (so, just the sleeves) and leg warmers (just the legs) so I can remove them as I get warmer. It doesn't get super cold here so I'm rarely below 20dF. I also use a vest sometimes, particularly if it's windy. For recovery runs where I don't really get warmed up I do have a merino wool jacket that I wear.


                            Runs with the pack

                              I've had tights and pants available in the closet, and I always grabbed the pants. The SportHill ones with the stirrups would be my choice (if I didn't currently live in CA), To me, they look better and feel better. Plus you can more easily layer them with polypro tights if it gets really cold.


                              Caffeine-fueled Runner

                                Tights.  I have varying weights for different conditions.  Two pairs of Hot Chillys tights with stirrups.  Used them for skiing and running. polypro or silk underwear.

                                PR's--- 5K  24:11,   10K  49:40,   10-Mile  1:26:02,  HM  1:56:03,   Marathon  4:16:17

                                Maniac #11112, Fanatic #14276, Double Agent #2335