Five Days of Fall: Tracksmith | Fall 2019
Thomas: Tracksmith does a phenomenal job of staying on brand and creating an ethos aimed directly at the upper east coast runner. I like to imagine all the apparel on the racks of Ivy League campus stores. If Tracksmith were to shoot a movie, Wes Anderson would direct it, and if it had a soundtrack, it would be scored by Vampire Weekend. After all, who really does give a f*** about an Oxford comma?
Some runners will identify with the athlete scholar/private school vibe, while others might feel Tracksmith is pandering to elitist wannabe track stars. But the fact is, Tracksmith takes the best of classic track and field styles and recreates them with luxurious modern tech fabrics that perform as awesome as they look. The price of the gear skews higher, but the quality and timeless styles hold up well over time.
Robbe, Meaghan, and I review some of their gear that will work well as those Ivy League leaves turn to orange and brown in the coming months.
Robbe: This is as light a jacket as you’re going to get without being a windbreaker. It’s also super comfortable, using Veloce stretch knit made in Northern Italy, made up of 86% nylon and 14% Elastene. The end result is a flexible jacket that doesn’t act like a “jacket.” It’s more like another layer that adds that needed warmth without overheating. In Tracksmith’s words, it is “ideal for long runs that start cold and end warm, or warm-ups that start slow and end fast.” I can attest that I wore it around in non-running situations as it’s starting to get chilly, and it didn’t keep me that warm. Which means it’ll be perfect for running.
Thomas: The weight of the jacket is perfect for chilly fall days. It is slightly more dense than a long sleeve shirt, but with the full-length zipper, it is easy to regulate your body temperature. The previous version had a hood, which was eliminated to save weight. Typically I like hoodies over no hood, but with this jacket, less is more.
This newer version is more streamlined. Paired the Brighton Base Layer (below), you are set for chilly fall mornings. If the wind is really whipping around or there is rain coming down, you can easily fit a shell over the fitted jacket. Personally, I can use the Session Jacket when the temps are in the low fifties over a light shirt and lose it once I am warmed up. With the Brighton Base Layer, I can take it in temps down to 30º F and no wind. Lower than that, you may need another layer on top, or a heavier layer altogether.Shop Tracksmith
Robbe: Okay, so while I haven’t done an actual run in these, I cannot wait to do so. I mean, just putting them on felt luxurious. The fabric is an Inverno Blend from Italy that fends off light precipitation and has a soft brushed back that feels incredible. The cut and fit is perfect, which is soooo hard for me to find in running tights. There’s none of those weird saggy parts or too-long pant legs.
Like anything Tracksmith, the details are nailed down. The back calf zippers are contoured and elongated so they won’t rub on the Achilles but it’s easy to pull them over shoes. Bonded seams reduce chafing. No doubt I’ll be putting these through some work in the coming months.
Thomas: This is my second pair of Tracksmith tights, the first pair has made it through three winters and will be in the mix this winter as well. Even though the tights feel thinner than some of the other brands I wear, the pants perform well on even the coldest days. While they are tights, they don’t feel restrictive and border on downright comfortable.Shop Tracksmith
Robbe: If you haven’t experienced Merino wool before, you probably should. It’s warm, but also wicks moisture well and continues to keep you warm, even when wet. Oh yeah, also it’s super comfortable. The Brighton Base Layer is made of said wool.
I loved the comfort of this garment but had to keep in mind that it’s a base layer, so it is quite snug to the body. It looks a bit looser on the Tracksmith models, probably cause they’re waifish thin; for me, it was like long underwear snug. There’s a bit more room in the midsection, but I don’t know I would wear this outside of actual runs. Makes me a bit too self-conscious.
Thomas: As Robbe wrote, this is a base layer, it fits like something you would use as a base layer to go skiing. It sits close to the skin providing warmth and pulls the moisture away from your skin. When this shirt is paired with the Session Jacket (or really any over layer), you might have a little less trouble getting out the door when the temps dip. The Brighton Base Layer is the most useful when temps are 40º F or lower.
Meaghan: I am loving the recent trend of pocket bras. Why didn’t we do this earlier? The Allston Pocket Bra is designed with two layers of performance fabric (the same material used in the Allston Tights) and it has a really nice balance of comfort and support. It breathes well, dries quickly and I didn’t have any issues with chaffing. The pocket is hidden between the bra lining in the front and can hold a phone, keys, or a few gels. I didn’t test it with a phone yet, but I can confirm it’s perfect for a couple of gels or a key. In fact, this may be my race day bra for that reason. The Allston Pocket bra retails for $68 and it’s a worthy staple.
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Tracksmith is to running as Rapha is to cycling, old school vibe with modern fabrics and tech. Rapha seems to be doing OK, and I bet Tracksmith is, too. They’re going to get a lot of attention from the Strava promo they are running (no pun intended).
No doubt! They definitely have their niche. It’s a cool one, and the gear really is top notch.
Can you please advise me on the sizing for the Tracksmith Sessions Jacket (non-hood version) ? What is your height and which size did you wear ?
Thank you !
Robbe’s height: 5’6″ – size small. Thomas’s height: 5’11” – size medium.