Depending on your location, the running clothes you need for summer and winter will vary wildly. Even in July, there should be enough sun left in the year to make use of Tracksmith’s newest line of summer-considered shorts and shirts. They are clever and embrace the summer heat in multiple ways for enjoyable, comfortable running gear. Most of this new Tracksmith apparel comes in both women’s and men’s options. I gave the men’s clothing some hands-on time.
Run Cannonball Run Shorts
Tracksmith is not asking people to choose between swim trunks and running shorts. Instead, it has created hybrid shorts, designed for both. It’s a tricky task to make shorts that work well at the pool and then can be used instantly to head out on a run, while wet. After trying them, I’m under the impression that these shorts do about as good of a job as possible. They are a compelling offering.
The company named these Run Cannonball Run Shorts after the activity that inspired them. Here’s how it works: Take a run in the summer heat to a pool, ocean, river or other swimming hole and then do a cannonball, jumping into the refreshing water. After a quick swim, go ahead and run back. The shorts should be able to handle it all, from start to finish.
The material is a little thicker than traditional running shorts’. Split between the two activities, they do feel closer to swimming than running trunks. That makes them usable year round for swimming or hot tubbing. There are two open pockets, one on each side. But there’s also a small hidden, zippered pocket on the right side that can easily hold a key or earbuds case. After a few RCR tests, the verdict is: solid swim shorts, perfectly acceptable running shorts, even while wet.
Run Cannonball Run Shirt
Although the Run Cannonball Run Shorts have been in Tracksmith’s lineup for a few years, that collection’s shirt is new for 2021. It’s a great shirt for running but also just wearing around. The lightweight tee is silky smooth and made out of a combination of cotton and polyester.
The men’s option is one of the first shirts from the company to feature a breast pocket. The women’s tank doesn’t have a pocket but is $10 less expensive.
Most, if not all, of Tracksmith’s running gear is tailored toward running in some way. It’s not a surprise. But every so often a product works just as well to wear even when not running. I jump on those because Tracksmith’s clothes are so well made—soft with a flattering fit. This Run Cannonball Run shirt is among them and will be used for fitness and lounging.
Strata Tee Shirt
Instantly, within 200 feet, the Strata Tee became one of my favorite shirts to run in. The nylon and elastane that make up the shirt keep it ultralightweight, without unwanted stretching or drooping. Typically, the superfine, thin shirts that feel like they hover over your skin are also the ones that sag low with the faintest pooling of sweat. If you pull up on any part to wipe your eyes, they also become stretched out, but that’s not the case with the Strata.
There’s a Strata Tank in the lineup, too, but I haven’t tried it. I assume it feels identical to the tee. A consideration with lightweight, ultrathin shirts is sun exposure. Tracksmith says Strata has an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) of 30-plus. I also noticed its included “active silver” finish helped with odor from bacteria. Or rather, because of the silver finish, I didn’t notice any odor, even after two days of back-to-back use (for testing purposes!). All in all, this shirt is gold, despite only coming in ivory and navy colors.
The Falmouth Shorts continue the trend of being able to pull double duty for multiple tasks. Here, instead of swim trunks, these running shorts are meant to be able to be worn throughout the day without being too flashy or fitness-oriented. Imagine going to the store, grabbing coffee or doing multiple errands in these shorts and then being able to head out on a run without needing to find a spot to change. That’s the goal here. Wear them for running, or just out, whatever suits the mood.
The shorts succeed at their goal of having a dual purpose. I wore them out, and they performed as regular shorts perfectly fine. There are no belt loops, so you’ll want to get a snug fit if you plan on loading up the pockets with a heavy phone and wallet. The elastic waistband is strong enough on its own but could waiver in the face of heavily stuffed pockets.
As running shorts, they performed equally as well. It’s a little strange to have a zippered fly, but it didn’t change any aspect of the journey. The $128 sticker price might introduce some hesitation. It’s nice that these can handle dual tasks well and may help ease the cost. Regardless if they make your cut or not, they are an attractive pair of shorts that work well on and off the road.
Buy at Tracksmith.
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