Saturday, September 24, 2011

What to Wear?

A crucial part of my preparations for The Polar Circle Marathon has been determining the optimal running gear for a 26.2 mile race where temperatures are likely to be in the teens. I obviously need to wear clothing sufficient to prevent hypothermia. However I also want to avoid overheating and excess weight, while maximizing freedom of movement. Most importantly, I want to be sure my outfit appeals to the ladies.

As a Southern California runner, I generally don't spend much time thinking about what to wear during my jaunts on the road or trail. On virtually any day, one could run in the Santa Monica Mountains dressed in nothing but a thong. (Never having made that particular choice has earned me the gratitude of countless runners, hikers and dogs.) 

In Greenland, such a cavalier approach simply won't do. So, I have spent considerable time studying photos of past editions of The Polar Circle Marathon and observing what other runners, mostly crafty, winter-wise Europeans, donned to face the elements. I thus came up with a composite sketch of the proper layering. I then doubled it.

The photo below shows my planned marathon wardrobe (with a few alternate items for last minute adjustments due to race day weather conditions or cowardice). Starting roughly clockwise from the center, they include: a Craft Storm Jacket, a Broner Ski Cap, an OTHTC Neck Warmer, a Craft AXC Touring Stretch Pant, a Craft PXC Thermal Top, Manzella Gore-Tex Gloves, Sugoi Subzero Tights, Asics GT-2160 Trail Shoes, Kahtoola Microspikes, an LL Bean Scarf, Seirus Unisex Stormsocks and an L.A. County Coroner's Toe Tag. 

Have I made good choices? 

As you can see from the figure below, I'm going to blend right in.