All About Layers: How to Bundle Up Before Running Outside
By Natalie Rinn
What to wear to stay warm while running this winter
all photos by Jane Bruce
Runners, it’s time to face reality: It is about to be absolutely freezing outside.
“You want to be cold when you start your run,” says Kate Reese, manager of the Brooklyn Running Company in Williamsburg. “The first five minutes are just gonna kinda suck.”
Harsh words, runners, but don’t worry too much; there’s a simple solution to help soften the icy cold blow: layers. Reese helped us select three for men and three for women: a base for wicking sweat, something in the middle for warmth, and an outer shield for the worst possible scenario—wind and freezing rain.
Unlike running stores in other parts of the country, Reese’s shop is filled with shades of gray—Brooklyn runners do not wear color. But that doesn’t mean your choices are limited; alongside stalwarts Nike and Under Armour, there are niche brands like Oiselle, Outdoor Voices, and ICNY.
The bottom line here is that despair and winter runs do not need to go hand-in-hand as long as you layer up. And think of the ultimate finish line: the day you’ll remove them, one by one, as you finally cross into spring.
BASE: FLATIRON SHORT SLEEVE $64.95 New York-based Outdoor Voices makes a short sleeve base (it’s the core that needs the heat, not your arms) that is soft, stretchy, and does what a first layer ought—soak up your sweat and dry quickly.
MID: BEACON HALF ZIP $119.95 New Balance’s paper-thin half zip is the perfect outer layer for fall and a suitable mid-layer option for when the temperatures really drop.
OUTER: BEAM JACKET $249.95 This shell from ICNY acts more like armor than mere weather deflector. All ICNY apparel is designed with oodles of reflective surfaces—the company founder was struck by a car while riding his bike and wanted to save others from the same fate.
BASE: DRI-FIT CONTOUR $49.95 The Nike Dri-Fit base layer is an aerated, nylon-polyester blend: It breathes when you heat up and steals the sweat right off your skin. Use it alone on a mild day or as a solid foundation far more frigid outings.
MID: FLY BY SWEATSHIRT $79.95 Brooks’ cotton polyester pullover makes cold weather running feel and look good. The interior is quilted and plush and the exterior pattern looks like outer space–and it’s reversible.
OUTER: QUILTED HYBRID VEST $124.95 New Balance Heat keeps your all-important core warm, protects against the elements, and comes with a kangaroo pouch for glove storage. Pull the zip down for a difference of ten degrees.