Friday, February 1, 2013

What to Wear, What to Wear...

The gear-collection mania for Antarctica has begun in earnest!  I figured now would be a great time to start gathering my various layers, since 1) it's cold enough to get a basic feel for how effective they will be and 2) winter sales!  Huzzah!

So here's what I've got so far.  If you have experience with extreme cold-weather running, I would appreciate suggestions!!

Base layer: Craft Be Active long-sleeved shirt for the upper half, and lululemon for the bottom half.  I haven't decided if I'll be best served by the Runder Under tights, Ice Queen tights, or the winter pants that have mud panels on the bottom half of the leg, so there's some wind-resistance and water-resistance there too...will keep you posted on how that works out.

Thermal layer: fleece!  Between various North Face and Under Armor and R.E.I. pieces, I think I'll be able to find a warm middle layer that works.

Outermost/Wind layer: Frankly, this is the one I'm most concerned with.  I figure it's easy to add layers for warmth, but finding something that will effectively block those Katabatic winds I keep hearing about is a more difficult task.  I just ordered the Patagonia Solar Wind jacket and Marmot minimalist jacket so I can see if either of them might be up to the task.  I also found a jacket at a consignment shop (can't turn down $9 when most other options are over $100!) that I believe is designed for snowboarding, but could have potential.  It was made by a U.K. company whose name I cannot remember at the moment.  And for the bottom half, I'm going to try Gore Active Shell pants.

I've also got Craft mitten/gloves that are touted as good against wind, and one of those Turtle Fur neck warmers that you can pull up over your face if necessary.

Oh right, shoes.  I usually run in SmartWool socks, so those with a sock liner in my Saucony trail shoes (which are conveniently purple with bright blue accents, perfect for drawing attention if I end up head first in a snow bank) ought to suffice.  I hope.  I haven't lost nails or toes to a marathon yet; now is not the time to start!

I guess the biggest thing I still need to tackle is eye protection.

It still amazes me that I will be able to run a marathon on the world's coldest continent wearing regular shoes and (what seems to me is) not a lot of clothing!  I was fully expecting to start training wearing boots and a snow suit.  :)  Soon soon soon I will be able to start running again and test this stuff out!

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