AMR GEARS UP: SPRING RUNNING ESSENTIALS
By Sarah Bowen Shea
Spring seems to have (finally!) sprung in all parts of the U.S.—woohoo! To celebrate, treat yourself to some new running gear because, as we all know, vernal weather can be fickle. Spitting rain at the start, the sticky-humid by the end of the six miles. The right fabrics, smart construction, and clever details (hello, pockets!) ensure you stay comfortable no matter how far you go.
As always with our monthly gear reviews, we had our brand ambassadors (“BAMRbassadors”) and AMR team members test a variety of gear. All 11 of these pieces got the thumbs up from our runners.
Korsa Proven 4-Pocket Skort
Pockets galore! The Korsa Proven 4-Pocket Skort is a stylish alternative to running shorts or capris with two side pockets on the inside shorts, plus two pockets on the waistband of the skort itself. The skort is a 4-way stretch-woven fabric, while the internal shorts are knit.
Pros: This skort can be worn for a variety of sporty activities: In addition to wearing it while running, one tester appreciated how “cool and comfortable” the lightweight, breathable skort kept her while watching her son’s baseball tournament on a 91-degree (!) day, while SBS swears by this move-with-her skort on the pickleball court. Both report the skort runs true to size, and the shorts stay put. “I was fully covered, and I did not chafe, either!”
Cons: Only available in (versatile) black: Both our testers would buy more colors if they were offered!
Take it from a mother runner: “The skort was both comfortable and supportive on my run—kind of like running with a BRF [Best Running Friend].”
Athleta In Motion Seamless Tank
Our runner/tennis-player tester loved this tank so much, she’s already bought two more as she plans to “wear them on rotation all summer long!” Made from recycled nylon, this tank is a seamless construction, which translates to fewer chafing hot-spots. “It’s breathable and breezy,” and “the cut is very flattering.”
Pros: This semi-fitted tank has a band around the bottom that gives it a cropped look “without it being too short for a 40-something mom like me.” Our tester reported, “the band also prevented the tank from riding up so it stays in place” during runs (and tennis matches). It’s available in sizes XXS-XL and 14 (!) colors (some of which are on sale). The fabric has what’s called “open hole stitchwork” (we’d call it “perforated”), increasing breathability.
Cons: It might prove too short on the tallest gals.
Take it from a mother runner: “I wore this tank on several runs and during tennis matches, and it worked great for both activities!”
Brooks All Altitude Jacket
Brooks designers say their goal with this lightweight, weatherproof jacket is that you shouldn’t know you’re wearing it, and our tester said it totally meets that goal. “It was perfect for a 45-degree, drizzly run.” She wore it over a light long-sleeve shirt, and “it provided great protection from the rain and wind. It kept me dry yet was breathable without the sauna feeling that some air-tight jackets provide.” And it’s fun as well as functional: “I love the colors, and I felt cute wearing it.”
Pros: It has a hood that can be rolled up and tucked away when not in use. Our tester actually wore the hood, reporting, “it stayed in place, which isn’t always the case.” This jacket also packs up very small into a pocket for when the weather improves later in a run (fingers crossed!). The fit was good, although if you’re between sizes, our tester recommends ordering up. “It hit at the top of my hips, which is more cropped than I would typically wear, but that was functionally good for not getting in the way of my stride or moving around much.”
Cons: “The pocket placement on my chest isn’t a place I typically like to store things. It would be good for storing a gel or something lightweight. I have enough going on in the chest area!”
Take it from a mother runner: “Loved this jacket: It fits the gap between a light vest and a heavier rain jacket. It could easily be worn in spring or even cooler summer mornings.”
UnderArmour Women’s Fly-by 2.0 Running Shorts
What a bargain: These quality shorts cost just $25 (and some colors are on sale)! These 3.5” inseam, track-style shorts offer a classic look with some modern updates, like a crossover side hem with breathable mesh panels. These have a built-in liner and a soft, knit waistband with an internal drawcord.
Pros: Available in sizes XS through 3XL and offered in more colors than a box of Crayola crayons! “There is a small inside pocket in the back, perfect for a car key or my must-have, Chapstick.” The 100% nylon fabric is “so comfortable and light.”
Cons: No phone-stashing pocket.
Take it from a mother runner: “ I always feel like I look fast when I wear shorter shorts.”
Rabbit Speed Capris
These 17.5” long capris are made from a quick-drying, semi-compression fabric that’s 75% nylon and 25% spandex. They sport five pockets, including two big-enough-for-your-phone ones on the sides of the thighs. The mid-rise waist has an internal drawstring, which testers appreciated. “The drawcord made the fit more individual.”
Pros: The wide waistband was “flattering and comfortable, especially when wearing a FuelBelt.” The fabric is “buttery soft.” Fit true to size. The back zippered pocket offers security for car keys, a credit card, or cash.
Cons: “They were a little bit too short for my big calves: I wish they were an inch or two longer.”
Take it from a mother runner: “I’d totally recommend these capris to a friend.”
Stio Women’s Crester Trail Tee LS
This looks like a basic long-sleeve running tee, but don’t let its looks deceive you: It’s actually made of an intriguing fabric called Floe™ that cools you more quickly when you start sweating. It also wicks moisture and fights odor.
Pros: After lamenting how tough it is for a short runner like herself to find long-sleeve shirts that fit, our short tester gushed, “This shirt fits me perfectly!” Minimal seams reduce chafing. This tee is available in three colors, including two very bright, notice-me shades that are “fun” instead of obnoxious. “The fabric is great quality,” the tester added.
Cons: “Nothing: This is overall a perfect long-sleeve tech shirt.”
Take it from a mother runner: “I have to admit, Stio is not a company I had heard of before, but I will definitely look for it in the future.”
Sunday Afternoons Vantage Point Trucker hat
If you’ve wanted to be a cool-kid in a trucker hat but couldn’t sport the look, this is the topper for you! This is the first trucker hat AMR co-founder Sarah can pull off, thanks to a “front crown” that isn’t billboard-big. It’s available in numerous colors (including some on sale).
Pros: One tester—a road and trail runner—loved that this hat’s fully mesh front panel “allowed the breeze to cool off my sweaty head as it was quite warm when I went for my test runs.” Numerous strips of reflective material on the back help ensure visibility. The “Sunglass Lock Technology” are pockets/slits on either side of the hat that allow you to securely stash your shades when you no longer need them. Quipped one tester: “No worrying about low-hanging branches knocking my sunglasses off my head!” This trucker is one size, yet it is fully adjustable with the snap back plus a little hidden elastic in back to ensure a good fit.
Cons: We’re still looking for a negative!
Take it from a mother runner: “This mesh hat rinses off easily in the shower or under the faucet, and dries super quick: It’ll be ready for the next run before you are!”
Another Mother Runner Tifosi Sunglasses
These Tifosi-brand sunglasses were made exclusively for Another Mother Runner, complete with our brand name on the inside right stem. The style name is called Swank (!), and the lightweight frame is designed for a no-slip fit and is equipped with shatterproof, scratch-resistant lenses.
Pros: Our tester raved, “The lens tint [smoke] is perfect for a spring day.” According to her, “the glasses are so cute” even her preteen was trying to wear them! Both gals love the go-with-everything satin-clear frames. The teen must have missed that on the inside of the glasses’ arm, it reads, “Another Mother Runner” in teal print.
Cons: Worn with a brimmed running hat, these glasses occasionally fogged up.
Take it from a mother runner: “I have run with Tifosi sunglasses for years, I absolutely loved these glasses!”
Ibex Springbok Short Sleeve Tee
We love wool activewear—and are often willing to pay for it. This 45% Tencel, 45% merino wool, 10% nylon, short-sleeve tee performs like a champ, wicking sweat as fast as our tester produced it. Our tester said the fit was great for her broad shoulders, and she appreciated the range of motion provided by gusseted underarms. Perhaps most importantly, she often finds wool apparel “itchy,” yet this tee “felt soft.”
Pros: Willing to take one for the team, our tester wore this shirt on three runs in a row without washing it, “and there was very little stink (yay wool and odor control!).” It’s “tagless, which is always a bonus.” Available in five colors.
Cons: Definitely needs to be air dried.
Take it from a mother runner: The natural fiber “pulled sweat away without feeling heavy or super-wet.”
Oiselle Pocket Jogger Shorts
All hail the size range on these versatile shorts: from size 2 to 24/26! They are made from a soft, stretchy fabric that holds you in (especially one tester’s self-declared “menopot!”) and wears like nails. These beauties have five pockets—three along the rear waistband (including one zippered pocket), plus two on the side legs. (We love these shorts so much, we even made co-branded ones that we sell in our online store!)
Pros: The cut of these shorts won praise: “The length of the shorts were perfect, and they did not ride up at all.” (Note: They are available in several lengths.) Our testers also loved, “how the shorts were very high waisted.” The side-thigh pockets on these shorts are brilliant: “They are large enough for any type of phone, and my phone did not bounce around at all.”
Cons: “I can’t think of a thing wrong with them!”
Take it from a mother runner: “I love the pockets on the thighs.”
Rabbit EZ Tee LS
This long-sleeve tech tee is a major bargain: It is super-soft, and it’s as well designed as tees twice the price. Its styling is basic, making it all-season versatile: layer it over a tank when you know the temps will be climbing, or wear it under a jacket or vest on wet or windy days.
Pros: This is “pretty much the softest tee I’ve ever worn!” The fabric dried quickly. The sleeves are long enough (a problem for some longer-limbed gals), without being sloppy. The heathered colors are a nice change from true solids.
Cons: It has a “tailored fit” so if you like your clothes a bit looser, either size up or skip.
Take it from a mother runner: “I am purchasing this top as a gift for my mom for Mother’s Day!” (Shhhh, we’ll keep it under wraps, girlfriend!)
Did we miss your item for running in spring weather?
Let us know in the comments below!