A Runners’ Guide To Layers

What to wear when running in colder temperatures
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Wrapping Up

Last week I did my long run in shorts and t-shirt. This week I wore tights and a long sleeved top. It’s that time of year where runners delve into the back of their wardrobes and the bottom of their chest of drawers and pull out their winter kit. Like me, you may often wonder how many layers to go for and what accessories you need. To help us both, I’ve pulled together a list of what to wear in each temperature.

Remember these are only suggestions – you may prefer to vary the temperatures by a couple of degrees either way.

10 Degrees Celsius / 50 Degrees Fahrenheit

A long-sleeved technical top and it could be time to consider tights, rather than shorts.

7 Degrees Celsius / 45 Degrees Fahrenheit

As above but with thin gloves and a hat or something to cover your ears.

4 Degrees Celsius / 40 Degrees Fahrenheit

As above but with an additional short sleeve technical top over or under it.

1 Degrees Celsius / 35 Degrees Fahrenheit

A thicker long sleeved top or jacket with a short sleeved top underneath. The gloves and hat should now be fleece lined and you should wear thicker socks.

Below 1 Degree Celsius / 35 Degrees Fahrenheit

Your top or jacket should be fleeced lined. Consider getting some windproof tights.

If It’s Windy Or Raining

If your jacket isn’t wind/water proof then dress for 3-6 degrees Celsius/5-10 degrees Fahrenheit cooler than the actual temperature.

If You’re Racing Or Running Hard

In this case, I would dress for 3-6 degrees Celsius/5-10 degrees Fahrenheit warmer.

One Final Tip

And this is a really important one – as the evenings get darker don’t forget you need to be seen. Next time you’re in the car in the dark, have a look at how difficult it is to see people on the pavements dressed in dark clothing, and remember that there may be times whilst out running when you need to cross or run in the road. A lot of running clothes are black so, at the very least, invest in some fluorescent bands for your arms. It could be the best few quid you ever spent.

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