Dan Jones works in our customer services team, and while he's been a keen cyclist for as long as he can remember, he is a relative newbie to running. Throughout the 2016 season though, he'll be testing and reporting back on some of the best running kit out there, from GORE Running Wear. Here is his first report of the season...
Dan – new to running – new to GORE.
I'm a recent convert to running, I guess it's a bucket list thing; I’ve always wanted to do a marathon, and trail running gained my interest over winter. A recent ankle and knee injury may have put my running on hold, and my bum back on the saddle, but I feel like I've started off with some pretty decent base-miles thanks to some handy GORE RUNING WEAR®
I'm one of those people that would always rather be outside, and GORE has helped me on my way this winter. I was happy to throw my old run clobber to the side (old sports t-shirts, a holey pair of tights, and a bin bag jacket). As I zipped into the fresh new gear from GORE, I had no idea how thankful I would be for its protection through a tough winter of training. I wouldn't have made it in my tatty old stuff.
My winter run training consisted of a weekly Park Run, a mid-week run to work, and an after-work boot camp (sprawling around on muddy paths). I wanted to get my running fitness up, so I could comfortably complete the Wiggle Judgement Day - a 12K Obstacle Course Race. This proved to be a great test of the GORE RUNING WEAR® in freezing and wet February conditions.
I had the pleasure of coupling the Gore Running Wear Air Long Sleeve Zip Shirt (SS16) and the Gore Running Wear Windstopper Active Shell Partial Jacket (SS16) on test. I would get to see first hand what all the fuss was about, with some WINDSTOPPER® textile tech.
I could tell before I put the shirt and jacket on that I was in for a real treat. I know from commuting to work year-round, the importance of clothing that can withstand the elements; and the quality of these GORE items was really impressive. I couldn't wait to run in them!
Gore Running Wear Windstopper Active Shell Partial Jacket (SS16)
Wow this jacket is great - The Gore Running Wear Windstopper Active Shell Partial Jacket (SS16) is designed for all year-round wear, and it certainly ticked the winter box this year, with some brisk runs along the seafront. It even withstood me wading up to my chest in freezing water, during the 12K Judgement Day event. A colleague I ran with was shivering at the end of the race, due to an unfortunate dunk in the water; he was thankful when I handed him my jacket to warm up in.
Windproofness is important for me; most my running is coastal, so I get blasted on every run. This jacket is nice and breathable, and it kept me at a comfortable temperature thanks to the sly underarm ventilation. I really felt the design of the jacket working, when compared to my old clobber. I'm comfortable from the moment I leave my house, until I finish my run. A lot of thought and technology has gone into making this a great jacket.
The red areas show that the WINDSTOPPER® technology can block the wind; so you remain comfortable and warm, and can maintain your level of physical activity.
The jacket has two front pockets, from which you can adjust the elastic draw-cord hem; keeping the warmth in! I could comfortably carry my phone and keys in the pockets.
Being windproof isn't enough during a British winter and I had my fair share of runs in the rain. The jacket is water-resistant, so it sheds any rain and dries quickly; this was handy as a shower often caught me out, most downpours would brush right off.
Gore Running Wear Air Long Sleeve Zip Shirt
The Gore Running Wear Air Long Sleeve Zip Shirt (SS16) is designed for changing seasons, and is suggested as a mid-layer. In fact, I used it as a base and mid; a testament to the jacket I was wearing!
It is nice and lightweight for a long sleeve shirt, and it feels soft and stretchy on your skin. It is a great fit; especially round the zip-up neck, which is important when zipping up tight in freezing conditions! I appreciated the thumb loops too, which kept the sleeves of the shirt snug under my gloves – a nice touch from GORE.
The shirt offers great ventilation and moisture management. You can see the ventilated mesh insert strips on the back and underarms, and they work very well. In my old run clobber, I would overheat easily in the cold: I would need to layer-up so I was warm enough to start; but I would end up melting by the time I I arrived home. The microfibers in this shirt have helped to keep me at a constant temperature; any sweat was wicked quickly, and the top remains remarkably dry.
The top is durable, too. It has lasted 3 months of regular washing, and I'm happy to report that it still fits like new.
I wouldn't have enjoyed my winter runs half as much as I did, if it wasn't for GORE. They promise to strike a proper balance between comfort, performance and protection; and I really think they do. They have worked hard on some clever clothing technology, and their reputation is testament to that.
I've heard stories of GORE jackets lasting 10+ years, and at this rate I think the Gore Running Wear Windstopper Active Shell Partial Jacket (SS16) will outlast my knees!
I'm hoping for a speedy recovery, so I can continue to test out the GORE Running Wear range.