It feels like a long time since its been warm enough around here to throw on a pair of shorts and a shirt to go for a run. Fall is well entrenched in these parts, and on this first official day of winter I am grateful for the warmth and comfort the Pearl Izumi Ultra Thermal Top and Tights have provided me over the last couple of months. Pearl Izumi’s “Ultra” line is designed for longer distance running and typically has features like extra pockets to store gels, and other “stuff” that we need to keep going and going.
The Ultra Thermal Top has become one of my favourites. I have used it as a base layer, under a shell on cold days, and as an exterior layer on cool days. I liked the fit of the shirt as it was snug enough to wear under a shell without bunching up, but it still allowed for a base layer (or 2) underneath. It had a nice 3/4 length zipper to help get it on and off and regulate body temperature. The high collar was perfect to keep the chill out. The Ultra Thermal Top had a small zippered pocket on the sleeve along with a nice big rear zippered pocket to keep a phone, keys, gels, etc. The final nice touch on this shirt were the built in “fist mitts” on each sleeve. These were a nice place to tuck your hands into if things were a little colder than planned for.
The ultra tights were awesome. They were a perfect weight for colder days, without feeling overly bulky. They fit nice and snug, and have a super comfortable, wide waistband (I assume they feel kind of like manly yoga pants, but don’t tell anyone I said that.) They had a zippered ankle to make them easy to pull on and off and a scuff guard pattern of rubber appliques to protect the fabric around the lower shin/ankle. As with most items in the Ultra line, the Thermal Tights had a great set of storage pockets. There was a mesh pocket on each side of the rear hip that was perfect to stash a gel or two. There was also a zippered pocket in the rear centre below the waistband. This had enough room for keys, a bar, or even a phone. The only thing I wished these tights had more of was reflective areas. Most of my running during the time of year that I need these on is in the dark, and the more reflective, the better.
The Pearl Izumi Ultra Thermal Tights and Top will definitely be keeping me warm (and happy) for a few more months this year. Check them out if you’re a cool climate distance runner.