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Kit review: Ronhill Women’s running wear

Written by Fiona January 07 2011

It could have been that meeting at 9.30am instead of the usual 6.45am meant that the 3Ms were a little more alert than usual. It might have been the fact that it was Christmas Day and so we were all a lot more jolly than during our normal sparrow o’clock runs. But then again, the fact that I received several lovely compliments from my running buddies during our Special Festive Run could have been because my new Ronhill kit is really pretty!

Ronhill Women’s Aspiration Windlite Jacket

On Christmas Day I decided to celebrate the opportunity for a run with friends by wearing my new Ronhill Women’s Aspiration Windlite jacket in a fabbie violety/berry colour. It was a cold morning (isn’t it always just now?) and so I also had on the girlie version of Ronhill’s popular running beanie and gloves (I like pink at the moment). My two base layers included another Ronhill Aspiration product: the Ronhill Women’s Aspiration Reactive Half Zip long-sleeve top (to give it it’s technical name).

The minute that 1M caught sight of me trotting towards her along my road she said: “Oooh, nice new jacket. Is that a pressie from the G-Force?”

The G-Force says he’s given up trying to find running clothing that I don’t already own. So, no, it wasn’t an Xmas pressie. (Although if the G-Force is looking for ideas for spontaneous gifts then I wouldn’t mind a new Garmin GPS running gadget!). By chance the nice people from on-line store SimplySweat had sent me the Ronhill items to test and they arrived a day before Christmas. (A girl can’t receive enough Xmas pressies you know!)

Then 2M and 3M joined us just around the corner. “Fantastic colour,” said 2M. “It’s great to see great colours in women’s kit these days.”

“Yes,” joined in 1M. “Women used to have to wear all those unflattering running clothes that seemed to be smaller versions of the ones for men in blacks and navy blues but now all the running clothes are made to fit our female shapes and come in some great colours.”

They were all warming to the topic. “It’s so nice to have the choice of pinks, turquoises, bright blues these days, isn’t it?” commented 3M.

“So how does it feel to wear,” 1M finally asked.

Ronhill beanie and gloves set

As well as looking good thanks to the female tailoring of the Ronhill Aspiration Windlite jacket (the size 10 was generous enough in the length and sleeves to fit my 5ft 9in height) it makes a fantastic outer layer. It’s the lightest running jacket I’ve ever worn and still offered great wind resistance. The fabric is also breathable (this is vital on cold days when you’re sweating inside your jacket) and water repellent. It also feels soft and doesn’t make the crinkly noise that many other running jackets make when running along. This is not a jacket that should be worn in a torrential downpour but for light rain that comes on while running it will do a good job of repelling the water droplets.

The reflective detailing on the jacket is a great extra (especially as I often run on dull mornings/evenings) and I really appreciate the soft feel inner collar. There’s nothing more irritating than a jacket with a scratchy collar. Thoughtfully, Ronhill have added in a small zipped side pocket for a key or money or whatever.

I could tell that the 3Ms were becoming a little bored of my jacket chat so after briefing them of all the advantages I moved on to the gloves! “Nice and light but warm and with fab hi-viz pink detailing,” I said. All 3Ms nodded sagely and reported that they own at least one version each of the Ronhill gloves or beanie. They all like the Ronhill kit.

Ronhill Aspiration Women’s half-zip long-sleeved top

I didn’t get the chance to tell them about the Aspiration Reactive Half Zip long-sleeve top as the topics moved on to other more important things, such as broken down boilers, frozen pipes, roast turkey in the oven, holidays, kids, skiing and all the other stuff that keeps us going while totting up the miles on our morning runs.

Instead, I’ll tell you what I think about the Ronhill Half-Zip top:

* It fits well even on my slim frame.

* The Thermalite fabric feels lovely next to the skin.

*  It looks good enough to wear as a top layer (well, in my world outdoorsy anyway).

* It is less likely to become as whiffy as some other 100% polyester based base layers. This is because the top has also been infused with that clever product called merino wool. I’ve been very impressed with other merino wool products. The fabric still wicks away sweat but doesn’t end up being as smelly as other tops I own.

Does anyone else have a favourite item of Ronhill running kit?

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