in search of the perfect running jacket

those who know me know that i don’t care a great deal about clothes. if at a particular moment i am dressed with any style at all it is because pam bought me those clothes. when i decide that something is comfortable and that i like it then i have a tendency to wear it a lot. take the sweater vest for an example. i never knew it until moving up to wisconsin but i was born to wear sweater vests. i wear them so often that devon (tapestry’s  all around tech guy) has declared the sweater vest/jean/chuck taylor combo to be the tapestry uniform and wears it on sunday nights to mock me (yeah i feel the love). pam and my parents can tell you stories from high school concerning a t-shirt i stole from chris lee that i wore every other day (it’s graphic said “cajun power” and it was awesome).

so that’s why it is with almost shame that i now admit that i have discovered i have a passion to find the world’s most perfect running jacket/windbreaker. i presently own 4 windbreakers and i find myself looking for new running jackets all the time. i almost bought a new yesterday because i saw one on sale. did i need it – nope – but it was on sale and had a hood (one of the things on my list of what makes a perfect running jacket). i didn’t buy it but i came real close to doing so.

so here’s my list of what makes the perfect running jacket.

  • weather resistant – it should block the rain and the wind. you would think this was a given but one of my four windbreakers is a rain magnet. if i run with it during a mist i gain 5 pounds of weight from the rain it soaks up.
  • supple – my current favorite running jacket is a sugoi versa convertible jacket which is so smooth it is like running covered in butter (which was meant to describe a good thing but now that i think about it probably isn’t). a good running jacket should be incredibly smooth and move well with you while still being weather resistant. this also helops the windbreaker to fit well next to your body.
  • lightweight – the less it weights the better. if you need warmth then put layers on underneath the jacket BUT the jacket itself should weight next to nothing.
  • good zippered storage – there needs to be plenty of storage for gel packs my cell phone and ipod. these pockets need to be zippered and positioned in such a manner that i can position my stuff in such a way that the jacket is balanced on my shoulders. my sugoi is perfect for this with unzippered pockets on the inside of the jacket, two front zippered pockets and a pocket in the small of the back of the jacket.
  • a collapsible hood – this is the only thing that my present sugoi jacket doesn’t have. if it did it would be perfect. i so wish my sugoi had a hood. it would be an absolutely amazing jacket then.

one advantage that my sugoi versa jacket does have that is not on my list is that it is convertible from a running jacket to a running vest. as i said at the beginning of this post i like vests. when i bought the jacket i didn’t think being convertible to a vest was that great of a thing but soon realized how amazing it was on a day of dramatic temperature change when i was able to cool off by removing and storing the sleeves during a long run.

anyway for a guy who doesn’t care about clothes and i am somewhat bothered by the fact that i now find myself drawn to and tempted by windbreakers every time i’m around them.

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