Purveyors of fine tuned apparel Tracksmith have a wide range of delights available for fall and winter. We checked them out!
Tracksmith Fall Collection – Cool weather comfort
Fall is the season most runners like the most and we are no exceptions. For this training season Tracksmith sent me three items to test. There is a long sleeve, the Session Quarter Zip, a pair of Allston tights and an Allston running bra. The Tracksmith Fall collection is also filled with goodies for the men too. I received a pair of the Turnover Tights, Fells Waffle Layer and a Session Quarter Zip.
Session Quarter Zip – £108
Tracksmith sent me their everyday training layer in a size small. The fit is shorter than most of my long sleeves and has a relaxed-fitting. The colour is a nice warm red and perfect to match the season. The material is lightweight and very stretchy. The arm length is just right to cover my hands partially on crispy mornings. It would have been perfect if the sleeves were just a little longer and have thumb holes. I have been wearing the session quarter shirt for runs around 10 degrees celsius. It does a good job keeping the wind outside while being light enough to not overheat. On colder days I think I have to wear a thin layer under the Session quarter zip and a high waisted tight to cover my waist better and to protect my body against cool air.
My go to warm-up top of the past couple of months, the Session Quarter Zip is as Silke describes, soft, stretchy and quite relaxed in fit. Perfect to wear as either a solo layer when the weather is slightly warmer where the zip can come down to add ventilation and avoid overheating. On the other hand, it can be worn as an easily thrown on and off top for when the paces are going to increase and the temperatures with them.
Unlike Silke, I have not felt the need for a longer sleeve with a thumbhole, whilst these can be handy, I find that little extra material adds so much temperature, I am happy with the length of the sleeves which Tracksmith have gone with. Long enough to not ride up on me when running but also not adding too much extra coverage. Overall, the Session Quarter Zip is a fine piece of clothing which is never too far from the front of my wardrobe when the weather is cooler.
Allston Tights – £138
Those long tights are really nice! They feel so comfy with their high waist cut. The touch is sleek and you feel a comfortable compression. The Allston tights have a wide waistband which I really enjoy when running in them because the tight stays in place perfectly. There are three pockets, one in the front and two in the back to store a phone, a gel and maybe a key.
It would have been perfect or even to be expected for a retail price of $180 that the phone pocket in the back, that even fits a big phone, got a zipper to lock securely. Although Tracksmith describes the length as “7/8ths finish to land above the ankles’ ‘ to me it is long enough to cover my legs when temperatures are falling. As I am wearing long tights usually at temperatures lower than 5 degrees celsius, the season for the Allston tight is yet to come.
The Allston Bra – £72
I could not test myself because I got them in a size xs and it is too small for me, it runs so small that I could not put it on. I guess even if it was small I would not have felt comfortable wearing it because I cannot stand the feeling of a tight bra around my chest.
This is sad, the fabric itself feels nearly perfect and I would have loved to try the innovative pocket in the front. My daughter who wears xs tried it and she says it is a bit tricky to put it on, but once it is on, it fits nicely.
Turnover Tights – £128
My first piece of the Tracksmith Fall Collection was the Turnover Tights. As soon as I had these in my hand, I loved the feel of the material. The Inverno knit is super smooth and soft. It holds against the skin very well and makes these the most comfortable tights I own in my collection. The fit is perfect for me, the stretch will allow them to form to all body types. Usually, I am a little nervous about Tracksmith clothing in a small size as their singlets can hamper those with a rounder rib cage. However, the tights fit perfectly.
The lining of the tights only adds to the comfort factor, these also come in handy during the colder, windier months where they add a touch of extra protection to the nether regions. The material is also quite versatile in use temperatures, I have used them from about 9 degrees c down to -2 at the moment and they have performed admirably in all conditions. They have even been useful in fending off some of the rain we have had recently. The little details make a big difference, the cut of the tights is great around my waist with no gaps or drooping. The zips are just the right length on the calves to allow easy fastening and unfastening.
Some storage please?
These have also become my go to autumn/winter session tights so far this year. The combination of stretch and breathability mean that they are able to accompany me on all my runs.
The only drawback I have with the tights is the lack of storage for a phone. Whilst those with smaller phones or those who run without won’t find this an issue, I could not fit my phone in the back pocket. However, this should not detract from the comfort, form and great look of the Turnover tights.
Fells Waffle Layer – £128
The Fells Waffle Layer from the Tracksmith Fall collection is a Merino wool base layer which has become a staple of my daily wardrobe. The cut is a fine mix of tapered around the waist but with enough room for movement around the chest without feeling either restrictive or too baggy. The Merino wool has worked for me as either a single layer directly against the skin or as an over layer with a t-shirt underneath when the temperatures have dropped into the freezing zone.
Whilst on the run, this is definitely an item for the cooler months. During most of autumn, we have had unseasonably warm weather which has meant that this has been a wardrobe item for my social events rather than the running events. Recently, we have had a cold snap and this has allowed me to put the Fells Waffle Layer to the test. The comfort and insulating abilities of the Fells Waffle Layer are excellent.
From pre-run at cross country events in the bitter winds to easy runs on frosty mornings, it has proven an excellent companion. It is definitely a versatile piece of clothing which is as happy in the pub as on the track. The aesthetic is top notch along with the design and thoughtfulness of the implementation. According to Tracksmith it has been designed for British weather, as someone living through British weather, they have achieved their aim!
Downeaster Crew – £138
Unlike the other pieces of the Tracksmith Fall collection, this was not sent to me by Tracksmith. This was a treat to myself during their Black Friday sales. Another piece where I very much enjoy the mix of aesthetics and performance which Tracksmith have combined. The Merino and polypropylene mix adds warmth and comfort to the run. This is definitely one for the colder weather.
The fuzzier inside feels very comfortable against the skin and the fit is slightly snugger than the Fells Waffle layer and definitely more so than the Sessions Quarter Zip. When I have run in it in the temperatures we have had since it arrived (5 – 11 degrees) is has definitely been too warm. However, it has made an excellent layer for spectating the European cross country championships in some typically fine Belgian December weather. Once I have had some cooler weather from January and February, hopefully I will be able to report back on its performance.