As the seasons begin to change (at least for some of us!), it becomes time to start looking for some new gear. When my training unexpectedly went into November & December last year, I needed to buy a ton more stuff to get me through the cooler temps. So on top of having to continue training, I also had to fork out gear for long-sleave shirts, gloves, pants and head wear (not to mention a new pair of shoes!).
The October issue of Women's Health has a big write-up on compression garments, including some product recommendations. Not only do these things keep you warm as the temps drop, but they appear to have some added benefits as well!
According to the mag, a 2006 study found that during 15 minutes of running at 80 percent of their maximum effort, participants wearing compression tights used 26 percent less energy. Apparently, the tights restrict muscle movement which leads to less fatigue.
Another study found that athletes wearing compression gear warmed up their muscles and skin temps faster than those in traditional gear. Warm muscles are both stronger and less prone to injuries than cooler ones.
The article suggests that compression shirts, that squeeze and support the lower back, can actually "ease back grief".
A 2006 study of runners who wore compression socks (compared to those that didn't) found that blood circulated to muscles more quickly. Faster circulating blood brings oxygen to the muscles at a more rapid rate. The article suggests putting on compression socks after a run to "streamline the blood flow in your calves, ankles, and dogs for faster, less painful recovery".
For product recommendations, check out the full article!