Hands-down, a cozy puffer vest is my first choice in winter running wardrobe must-haves.
Sure, I can dress them up with a funky scarf and they work for casual wear...
Puffer vests are also versatile. Not only can you vary the layering options (depending on the temps outside), but you can also play with numerous color combinations. In other words,you're not stuck wearing the same "winter running jacket" every time you head outside (did you notice I'm actually wearing the same vest in all three of the pics above?).
As most people know, I'm based in Iowa. I also run outside year-round, so my comfort level with winter temps (and weather conditions) will be quite different from those who live in warmer regions.
Although the puffer vest is my first choice of winter wardrobe necessities, there are several other favorites that deserve Honorable Mention status:
For starters- a 1/4 zip jacket. If the temps are approaching the high 40's or warmer, often times a 1/4 zip (or 1/2 zip) jacket is a great alternative. I usually still have a flannel-lined base layer (or two) underneath. This also depends on how long I plan to be outside.....a short run usually warrants warmer layers since I won't have as much time to thoroughly warm-up. Conversely, a longer run allows my body temp to stay elevated for an extended time, thus not needing quite as much warmth from clothing.
So, those are my main essentials. Additional info can be found here :For the Cold Weather Runner and here : Winter Running:101 (my version).
How about you? What is your #1 must-have necessity for winter running? Or do you stay inside? What's your preference...hat or headband?
I'm linking up with Marcia and Patty and Erika for their awesome Tuesdays on the Run link-up party, and also with Susie and Rachel and Debbie and Lora for the Running Coaches' Corner, and also with Nicole and Annmarie and Jen and Michelle for the Wild Wednesday Workout. Head over and check it out!