Best Women's Top: Nike Therma Sphere Element1 of 9
Fall temperatures drop quickly in some parts of the country, and if you're planning on hitting the pavement during especially cold weather, we can't recommend this Nike Therma running top enough. Made with the brand's Sphere fabric, it's a warmer alternative to most long-sleeves and feels similar to a thermal (hence the name) when you first throw it on.
Though the material is thick and warm, Nike kept the design streamlined, eliminating any unnecessary bulk. And with the tighter fit, it'll not only lock in your natural body heat but also stay close enough to your skin for the sweat-wicking technology to work its magic. If that's not enough, the top also has fold-over mittens with thumbholes for max functionality and a side-zipper pocket so you can throw your keys in and go.
Best Men's Top: New Balance M4M Seamless2 of 9
"Perfect" is a strong descriptor, but this shirt is close. As the name suggests, the New Balance M4M Seamless features minimal seams, which virtually eliminates rubbing and chaffing during a run or workout.
The tee also features NB ICE technology, which keeps the runner cool, while the wicking NB Dry fabric keeps them dry. The result is one of the most comfortable and consistent performance T-shirts you'll ever wear.
Best Women's Bottom: Roka Low Rise Split Short3 of 9
We thought $70 was a lot to pay for running shorts—that is, until the first time we ran in these Roka 3-inch split shorts. Available in five sizes and five colors (shown: abstract floral torch), Roka took over a year to develop these shorts—and the resulting quality is more than evident. Unbelievably soft and lightweight, the devil really is in the details with this product. To wit:
-Traditional sewn seams are replaced with premium Framis thermobonded tape to minimize chafing;
-A 5.5-inch back pocket has been specifically designed to securely hold an iPhone 6, and a hydrophobic membrane will keep it from getting wet;
-There's also a laser-cut integrated key pocket on the hip, specially constructed to ensure the key won't poke you if you stop for squats or lunges;
-The wide-knit waistband is super comfortable and doesn't inhibit belly breathing;
-And lastly, the shorts integrate Bemis thermobonded reflective tape to make you visible from behind when running at night.
Seriously, Roka has thought of everything with these shorts—and your runner will be thankful you thought of her.
Best Men's Bottom: Saucony Interval 2-1 Short4 of 9
For the anti-brief wearers among us—particularly those of us who aren't really short-shorts people—the Interval 2-1 shorts may well be the best you will ever wear.
The boxer brief liner ensures that there will be no chaffing, while the stretch fabric is an ideal light-weight option that falls naturally, but feels virtually weightless. The back of the short features a zippered storage pocket, perfect for storing a credit card and ID—just in case you want to run to brunch.
Best Women's Outerwear: Brooks LSD Thermal5 of 9
This Brooks jacket is the perfect staple for your early morning runs in the fall. It's lightly insulated so the morning breeze will wake you up, but after a quick warm-up, it'll keep your core at a comfortable temperature.
The jacket also has reflective details for running in low light as well as inner and exterior pockets to store your essentials. The jacket, as well as the hood, is fitted to cut down on weight and the number of times you have to adjust your garment, so you can stay focused on your run.
Best Men's Outerwear: UA No Breaks Balaclava Hoodie6 of 9
Under Armour really knocked it out of the park with the No Breaks Balaclava Hoodie. Essentially two products in one, the built-in balaclava fits high and snug around nose and cheekbones to keep you warm on those frigid runs, while the hoodie fits comfortably snug.
Your new favorite cold weather run garment leverages UA Microthread technology, which is a fancy way of saying that the fabric dries fast and stretches with you without clinging. Understated reflective graphics will keep you visible when it counts, but won't leave you looking like a traffic cone when it doesn't.
Best Accessory: Brooks Drift Glove7 of 9
If you began reading with hopes of eventually encountering the best running gloves in the history of fingers, well, you're in luck.
For the second straight year, Brooks' Drift gloves are the accessory we could not live without. The gloves feature a tech-tipped thumb and index finger, keeping you in touch with your phone and/or watch throughout your journey. That's great. But it's the flip over windproof mittens that take this item over the top. The mitten actually collapses beneath the outer layer of the glove on the back of your hand, so it's only there if you need it—and hidden if you don't.
Best Sock: Mizuno Breath Thermo Running Sock8 of 9
No one wants to open up a box of socks—unless, of course, they're receiving Mizuno's Breath Thermo Running Sock. Consistent with the rest of the collection, the Breath Thermo sock generates heat for a surprising level of warmth relative to its light construction, and the arch compression is as good as it gets.
These aren't just any 'ol socks.
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