Best Running Clothes: What to Wear When Running?

If you’re looking to start running, or are eager to take your current workout to the next level, there are multiple things to consider before you start. Whether it’s the route you’ll be taking during your workout, planning which organised events you’ll want to participate in further on down the line, or considering if you’re in need of a motivating running partner, there are plenty of important points to think about when looking to commit to this sport. Amongst these considerations, however, the question of what you're going to wear for your run stands out as particularly important, and shouldn’t go unanswered. Although it might seem like a minor point that only requires a small amount of planning, once you start running, getting out of breath and working up a sweat, you’ll soon realise how important it is to wear the correct gear. 

From searching for running clothes that will last, to finding gear designed with a suitable fabric that keeps you cool and is appropriate for all weather conditions, finding the correct workout attire is no easy task. However, to make your decision easier, we’ve compiled this useful guide that shows you the most appropriate sports gear to wear for a run. We’ve also included what not to wear, which should give you full confidence that you’re prepared with the appropriate clothing for even the toughest eventualities, including heavy rain, extreme heat and long-distance runs.

What to wear when running

When you first start running, it can be challenging to know what gear to look out for, no matter whether you’re going to the shops or browsing online. After all, you’ll want to be prepared for all terrains, weather conditions and temperatures. As well as this, it’s important to ensure that the material you’ll be wearing is going to comfortably see you through all your running endeavours. 

To make preparing for your first run a breeze, we’ve compiled a list of the features you should be looking out for when choosing suitable running clothes: 


  • Quick dry fabric - Arguably one of the most important properties of running clothes, since you’re likely to sweat, their material should feature a fabric that dries quickly and efficiently. Sweat-wicking properties move any excess sweat away from your body, which can elevate your performance by ensuring you stay comfortable during your workout. And, if you’re caught up in the rain while running, this type of fabric will help to keep you drier than absorbant materials such as cotton.


  • Lightweight material - The last thing you’ll want to worry about on a run is your clothing being too insulated, or heavy, which can leave you feeling uncomfortable and at risk of overheating. It’s important for running clothes to have that professional, lightweight feel, as there’s no feeling worse than when your clothes rub, or feel too hot while exercising.


  • Comfortable fit - All running clothes should be made in a comfortable fit, allowing space for you to move freely, while keeping you focussed on your workout, rather than being distracted by uncomfortable-fitting attire. As a general rule, running tops should provide a relaxed feel that allows enough ventilation, while fitting well enough that they don’t risk being too loose. Workout clothes’ that should be designed in a tighter fit, but still be comfortable, are running trousers, leggings and shorts, which should feature a stretch fabric, but still provide enough support during your run.


  • Bright colours - If you’re running on a warm, sunny day, the last thing you’ll want to be doing is wearing dark running clothes. Although good for winter, these tend to absorb heat at a faster pace than other colours during the summer. And, if you want to be seen, even when running during the day, brighter clothes allow you to be easily spotted by cars, bikes and other road vehicles. However, if you’re running in the dark at night, it’s worth buying a reflector vest, or other reflective accessory, to ensure you’ll be spotted.


What should you not wear when running?

From sweat-wicking fabric to workout clothes that fit comfortably, the properties listed above provide a general idea of what to look out for when searching for suitable running attire.

However, to make sure that you’re on the right track, we’ve also included a list of what you shouldn’t wear when running. Although some of these may seem obvious, going for what you’ve already got in your wardrobe, rather than purchasing more appropriate workout clothes, can be an easy mistake for beginners’ to make, so it’s important to make sure you know what to avoid.


  • Jeans - The majority of us own at least one pair of jeans, which can make these a tempting go-to when you’re new to working out, since you’ll likely already have an easy-to-access collection ready in your wardrobe. However, if you decide to wear these when running, they will be likely to cause a considerable and  unnecessary amount of discomfort, which can be prevented by wearing proper running clothes. This is because when the thick, heavy, denim material gets wet, either from sweating or rainfall, it can rub and irritate your skin.


  • Thick coats or jumpers - If you’re looking to start running during winter, the cold temperatures can make it tempting to wear your favourite thick coat, or jumper, to work out in. However, this should be avoided at all costs. Keep in mind that, regardless of the temperature, you’ll already be working up a sweat while running and, if you add a heavy jumper to the mix, you’ll be made to sweat even more, putting you at risk of overheating.,  Instead, opt for thinner layers, as even though these might cause you to be cold at first, once you start sweating and warming up, you’ll be thankful that you chose these over thicker, heavier clothes. 


  • Thick socks - Although it might seem easier to wear the socks you already own, and use for general, everyday wear, it’s important to invest in thinner socks specifically designed for running. Wearing thicker socks can pose health risks, including painful blisters from the excessive rubbing caused by sweating. 


  • Cotton materials - Whether it’s a comfortable-fitting t-shirt, a pair of leggings, or a different piece of clothing entirely, cotton materials should be avoided. Even if they look like acceptable workout clothes, wearing them to go out on a run can potentially compromise your health. Cotton is a slow-drying material, which traps in heat and can therefore pose a health risk in hot weather, but this can be even more serious in cold conditions. This material can also cause chafing and blisters, which can leave you feeling uncomfortable, rather than fulfilled from your workout.


What should a beginner runner wear?

If you’re new to running, it’s likely that you’ll just be getting to grips with the sport, so it’s important to find clothes that you’ll feel comfortable in. This will help you focus on your run while staying cool, without being distracted by your clothing. However, with what seems like an endless amount of running clothes on the market, we’ve decided to cut these down to a few Avec Sport essentials that we believe will enhance your workout, and will leave you feeling fulfilled, so browse through the list of our running clothes below, and find gear you’ll love. From brighter to darker colorways, all our running clothes are available in a number of smart, appealing hues.

Our women’s classic jersey and focus classic jersey for men both feature a durable, sweat wicking material. Designed to prevent the build up of sweat and stop rain from soaking in, the quick dry fabric provides a comfortable option that is suitable for beginners and professional runners alike, allowing you to focus on your workout without any distractions. Also cut to a professional fit, the top will stay in place throughout your run.

The perfect option to keep runners’ warm when the cold weather hits, our overlay, available in durable styles for both men and women, is well insulated. Featuring a quick drying material, it won’t leave you feeling overheated or uncomfortable and, if you decide to wear layers under the top, it won’t feel too tight or cause rubbing. Specifically designed not to be too heavy, these overlays are made to be as easy as possible to workout in.

Boasting thumb loops to keep your sleeves in place, as well as an adjustable quarter length zip, the features of this durable overlay reduce the chance of overheating, making it the ideal piece to add to your growing collection of running gear.

If you’re brave enough to head out into the rain, don’t forget to take our focus half zip rain jacket with you, no matter where you’re headed. Designed to maximise your performance while keeping you comfortable and dry during light or heavy rain, sleet, or snow, this workout essential will see you through harsh weather, no matter whether you’re taking your regular run or performing other sports.

Made to offer long lasting, snug arch support, our black ankle socks are ideal for pairing with your favourite trainers. Designed using a lightweight material that features a smooth and comfortable feel, which won’t irritate your feet, the stylish socks provide a suitable grip so there’s less risk of slipping over. Featuring a reinforced heel and toe for added durability in high wear areas, these running socks are designed to stay in good condition for longer.


Is it better to run in leggings or shorts?

Whether you’re looking to wear leggings or shorts, deciding on the most suitable clothing to wear can depend on a number of factors, including the temperature outside that day. For instance, leggings tend to be a more appropriate option for wearing on cold days due to their tighter, more insulated fit. Sports leggings provide more warmth without causing overheating once you start to sweat, and provide more coverage than shorts, helping to prevent your legs from getting cold. However, for days where the temperature is warmer, shorts might be the better option, allowing plenty of air to flow freely around your legs and keeping you cooler for longer.

A great option for running on warmer days, our men’s focus tech short and our women’s classic shorts feature a convenient, sweat-wicking material, which means that this, along with your other Avec Sport running gear, will stay dry no matter how far you take your workout. Made to sit comfortably on your waist, these shorts feature an elastic waistband, and include a hidden drawcord for added style and functionality that can be used to maintain a secure fit for your run.

Our women’s leggings and men’s track pants have been designed as a more insulated, yet equally comfortable option. The professional quality, athletic fit of the material will help to elevate your run and allow for a more successful workout, even on those cold winter days where you might feel a bit less motivated. From rainfall to snow, the material has been designed to stay dry, as well as eliminate traces of sweat that might cause you to feel uncomfortable during your run.

Find running clothes at Avec Sport

Featuring comfortable, sweat-wicking tops, overlays, shorts, leggings and track pants, there’s something to suit runners of every level, all year round, at Avec Sport. So, whether you’re looking to get started with the sport or are already a professional, our range of running clothes and accessories provide the perfect solution that’s designed to last. If you’re looking for some gear for your running group, our workout attire also features a customisation option, so you can add each persons’ name, or the name of your running team, to add that extra, personal touch.