The Complete Guide to Buying Mens Running Activewear

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The Complete Guide to Buying Men's Running Activewear

A good run in the morning is a very healthy habit, and a large number of men are active runners, whether they run in their neighbourhood, a park, a beach, a racing track, or a mountain track. As more and more people are realising the benefits of running, the supply of men’s running activewear has also been steadily increasing, both in variety and innovation. New materials offer new possibilities to enhance comfort and performance while running. There are many brick-and-mortar shops selling all types of activewear, but there are also many online shops that sell activewear as well. eBay has a fine collection of men’s running activewear

In some contexts, the word 'activewear' includes footwear as well as clothing, but for the sake of simplicity, only men’s clothing is discussed in the following. Before buying men’s running activewear, consumers should understand the different properties, features, sizing, and the different layers of the clothing.

Layered Clothing

When a man is out running, he must pay serious attention to his clothing. The clothing he wears should protect him from rain, cold, wind, heat, and sun, depending upon the weather conditions while keeping him warm but also dry from perspiration. When running, conditions are continually changing. It may be cold in the beginning, but as the body starts moving it produces heat that has to be dissipated. The body also starts to produce sweat to cool down. The simplest way to adjust to this change is to have multiple layers of clothing.

The inner layer of clothing is there to keep the skin as dry as possible by transporting sweat away from the body. The mid layer takes care of the insulation and keeps the body warm. The outer layer protects the wearer from the weather conditions. Different materials are used for different layers of running activewear.

Inner Layer

The inner layer is what is in direct contact with the runner’s skin. This includes underwear and maybe a base layer if the weather is cold.

For the inner layer, the traditional materials have always been cotton and wool as they both absorb and transport moisture away from the skin. The problem with cotton is that it can get very wet and lose its insulating properties. Wet cotton can become very cold on the body.

Synthetic materials, such as polyester and new microfibre fabrics, do not absorb moisture but transfer it efficiently away from the skin. These materials are called wicking materials. They transport moisture away from the skin by capillary action through tiny micropores. The materials themselves are water-repellent, meaning that they keep water out of the fabric. Due to the combination of those two effects, moisture is carried by capillary action to the outside of the wicking material where it sits on the surface in tiny droplets, ready to be evaporated or soaked up by the next layer.

Mid Layer

The mid layer offers heat insulation. In warm climates, or running conditions, it may not be necessary. Short- and long-sleeved shirts and tops keep the upper body warm while leggings or trousers cover the lower body. A tracksuit can also serve as mid layer clothing.

In warmer weather, loose fitting mid layer clothing is ideal as it allows for air circulation between the inner and mid layers and evaporation of moisture. Allowing for air between the different layers to serve as an insulating material enhances insulation. On the other hand, too much air in between the layers hinders the transportation of sweat away from the body in colder conditions. The trick is to find the right balance between those two processes.

Wool is very insulating, even when wet, and can also transport moisture well. Fleece is also a good choice of material as it insulates well and absorbs very little moisture. Synthetic materials, such as polyester fibre, jersey, and nylon, also offer insulation in combination with moisture transportation.

Shell Layer

The shell layer is the outer layer of clothing and serves as protection of the body against the outside world. An important aspect of the shell layer is whether it is breathable or not. Breathable materials offer protection from wind and water, while allowing moisture through to the outside. The cheapest sort of protective garments are plastic raincoats, which do keep water and wind outside but block perspiration inside, causing overheating and wetness. Breathable garments are available in two varieties, hard shell and soft shell.

Hard Shell

Hard shell jackets and trousers are made of synthetic materials that form a thin, porous membrane that keeps water and wind out, but is still breathable. These materials are relatively stiff and crinkly. They have been around for many years and offer the ultimate protection against heavy rain and snow.

Soft Shell

Soft shell refers to materials that are much softer and more breathable than traditional hard shell jackets. They are not 100 per cent waterproof, but are made of tightly woven fabrics and are treated with durable water repellant (DWR) to become water resistant up to 90 per cent. They offer much more comfort than hard shell jackets, as they are made of stretchy fabric that fits snuggly around the body, allowing for easier movement. They offer very good protection against wind, cold, and light rain or snow but cannot withstand heavy rainfall. Hard shell jackets have been the garment of choice, but soft shell jackets are becoming more popular as a comfortable alternative.

Track Activewear

A special category of activewear is clothing that is used on the athletic track to improve performance. As well as being breathable, lightweight, and insulating, other considerations become important when performance is the goal.

First of all, a runner must consider aerodynamics. Especially when running short distances, it is very important that a sprinter has as little resistance from the wind as possible. As a result, running uniforms for sprinters and jumpers have been steadily becoming tighter and sleeker over the years. Nowadays, activewear producers incorporate special aerodynamic novelties into their running uniforms that help shave fractions of a second off of track times.

Compression activewear is another recent trend. Athletes wear special compression clothing that applies surface pressure on specific parts of the body. This improves blood circulation to those parts of the body and has been proven to improve recovery from injuries. Some also claim that it can improve performance, but the jury is still not out on that count.

Sizing Men’s Running Activewear

Finding the right size is crucial when buying activewear. The different sizing systems used throughout the world can create confusion when buying online. Here is a sizing chart comparing men’s sizes and measurements for tops, shirts, and jumpers.                           

US/Canada Size

S

M

L

XL

UK Size

34-36

38-40

41-44

46-48

Europe Size

44-46

48-50

52-54

56-58

Chest (cm)

79-81

84-86

89-91.5

94-96.5

Sleeves (cm)

84-86

86-87

87-90

90-93

The following is a corresponding chart with sizes and measurements for men’s trousers and leggings. Rather than demarcations of S, M, L, and XL, American and Canadian trousers are sized using numbers.                      

US/Canada Size

30

32

34

36

UK Size

32

34

36

38

Europe Size

46

50

52

54

Waist (cm)

80

88

92

96

Inseam (cm)

81

83

84

85

Not all men wear the same size of running activewear for all brands of clothing. Some clothing brands may size their clothing differently, so it is a good idea to know the waist and inseam measurements for comparison.

How to Buy Men’s Running Activewear on eBay

To buy men’s running activewear just go to any eBay page and type 'men’s running activewear' into the search box. You can also find men’s running activewear by searching through the eBay categories. You can refine your search by adding different criteria, according to the category you are currently browsing. One obvious filter is the type of garment for which you are looking, and of course the size. Other useful filters are price range, brand, colour, material and feature. Pay special attention to feature, where you can search through special properties of the garment, such as lightweight, breathable, wicking, warm, compression, and more.

Buying online offers the buyer the possibility to compare prices and read reviews of the offered articles before making a definitive decision. When buying running activewear online you should always try to communicate directly with the seller to get answers to all of your questions and clear up any misunderstanding. To send an email to the seller, just go to their profile page and click on the contact link. 

Conclusion

Men’s running activewear includes a lot of different garments. To be able to adapt to changing weather and temperature conditions, a runner must wear layered clothing. The inner layer of clothing serves basically to transfer perspiration away from the skin as quickly and effectively as possible. Materials used for the base layer include cotton, wool, and modern synthetic wicking materials. The mid layer serves as insulation. Insulation is achieved by keeping air trapped inside the fabric or in between layers. Achieving an equilibrium between heat insulation and moisture evaporation is very important in the mid layer. Wool, fleece, and synthetic materials are the choice for this layer. The outer layer protects the runner from the elements. Hard shell jackets offer the best protection from heavy rain, but soft shell jackets offer more comfort and convenience, as well as decent protection from wind and cold. Athletic activewear incorporates aerodynamics as well as compression clothing to improve performance. Size is an important consideration when buying activewear. eBay has a fine collection of men’s running activewear.

 
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