Running Clothing for Windy Weather

Running Cloths when windy

If you are going outside to exercise, wearing the right clothing can make a big difference. I’ve been running in the wind several times, hiking, and walking a few times as well. It helps to wear clothing that protects and comforts.

During windy weather, you need to wear sunglasses and warm or cool clothing, and factor in wind resistance into your clothing. You may possibly want a windbreaker, a dust mask, and, in cold weather, gloves and a beanie.  

Running in the wind can be a rewarding experience when you are prepared with the appropriate clothing for the conditions.  

If you are running in warm weather, you will wear less clothing than in cold weather. It’s helpful to check the temperature each time you go out to run so you see how well the clothing you wore worked out.

Taking time to check the temperature and wind conditions is a great way to be prepared before each run so you can feel comfortable. Then, you can plan your strategy to run with the wind or against it at various points of your run.

How Long is Your Run? 

Some of the decisions about clothing might come down to whether you are running for 30 minutes or 1-2 hours. You may be sweating quite a bit, and if the weather is chilly, your need for warmer clothing later on in the run may be a factor.

The longer you run, the more your clothing will need to work with your body to help regulate your temperature. You should be able to perspire without getting too hot or too cold. The wind will then also play a role in body temperature regulation, so the type of clothing you wear can make a big difference.

(30 Minutes)

During a 30 minute run, you can wear just about anything that is warm or cool enough to keep you comfortable. Then, you can get out of the sun or cold and take a shower. 

You’ll likely be fine running for 30 minutes as long as you are dressed warm enough in cold weather and cool enough in hot. The wind will not have a significant role in your body temperature regulation unless you’re not dressed properly.

Just remember to wear clothing that is won’t blow away in the wind or cause too much wind resistance.

Here I am, running for 30 in the wind on a horse trail. I was warm enough with a t-shirt and hoodie, but my hands and face did get pretty cool. I think the temperature was about 50 degrees.

(1 Hour +)

A longer distance run will need a more precise use of clothing to regulate body temperature. During windy weather, you want clothing that can take advantage of the wind to help you stay comfortable. You may start to get too hot or cold during a longer period of running. 

-Warm to Hot Weather – In warm to hot weather, your clothing will likely be shorts, a light sports t-shirt, glasses, and a hat. You might consider using sunscreen and or SPF clothing as well.

The wind can be a nice way to help you stay cool since it will help evaporate your perspiration and help lower your body temperature. 

Be careful when running in humid weather, though. You will sweat, but you are less likely to cool down because there is so much moisture in the air. The wind should help, but you will need to take it easy when running and make sure to hydrate a lot. 

Male runner training in cold winter doing warm-up

-Cold to Cool Weather –  In cool to cold weather, your clothing will likely be tights, a long sleeve pullover with a t-shirt underneath, glasses if windy, and a beanie if cold. You might consider using layers and a windbreaker as well.

The wind can be helpful if it’s not too cold, but in cold weather, you need to stay warm and don’t want your body temperature to drop too much. 

I wear a bamboo undershirt when it’s cold for a 30-minute run. It works great at wicking moisture, but the moisture stays near my skin. This wouldn’t be a good layer to wear in windy weather unless I was using a windbreaker to completely cut off wind from my upper body.

The problem comes when the cold wind penetrates my pullover, and the wet t-shirt creates a cold surface for skin contact. Over time, this could result in lowering my body temperature more than is healthy. 

So, layering, using wicking/evaporative clothing, and using a windbreaker are all strategies that can use in cold, windy weather to stay warm. 

So, if I was running in cold weather I would use a wool t-shirt next to the skin, a layer or two of the breathable yet warm pullover(s), and possibly a light windbreaker. For my legs, I might use wool socks and leggings with an extra layer if needed.

This would let me regulate how much airflow I allow to penetrate my upper body and allow perspiration to evaporate through the breathable clothing I am wearing.   

(Other Factors)

The wind can be helpful or unhelpful in regulating body temperature when running. Clothing is great at helping you maintain proper body temperature when used properly.

Sometimes, you don’t need to use a windbreaker to help you stay at the right temperature, so looking at both the temperature and humidity is helpful.

Be careful when running in humid weather. You will sweat, but you are less likely to cool down because there is so much moisture in the air. The wind should help, but you will need to closely monitor yourself when running and make sure to hydrate a lot.

Keeping moisturized before you go out into the sun and wind is a good idea as well. If you are well hydrated, you will be able to endure wind and sun longer than if you haven’t been hydrating regularly. Your feet will thank you too. 

Clothing Attributes to Considering

Man jogging in winter nature

Depending on the temperature and humidity that you will be running in, you’ll want to choose various types of clothing that can function well with the wind. Here are some things to look for when choosing your next piece of clothing.  

These videos give you some ideas of what clothing you can wear in different running situations.

  • Clothing that wicks moisture from your skin can help you stay cooler in hotter weather and feel less cool in colder weather. You want to get clothing that can wick and release moisture so your body can regulate it temperature properly.
  • Some base layer clothing and underwear can help you stay warm when it gets really cold. They have good thermal properties and are not too bulky.
  • Natural animal and some plant fibers are usually good for warmth and wicking. Man-made fiber can also do a great job with warmth and wicking but may not be as antimicrobial and can smell.
  • Avoid bulky clothing. You will likely start to sweating too much and it makes running more difficult. Try warm and thin.
  • A good windbreaker might be thin enough to fit in your pocket and still stop a lot of the wind. You can also get a windbreaker that completely prevents wind and rain penetration.
  • A small backpack can be useful if we need to put on or take off a layer of clothing. Many smaller hiking or hydration backpacks can work well to carry a bit of clothing.
  • One factor that could be important in the wind is the ability of your clothing to release moisture. If your clothing helps your perspiration evaporate easily, you can stay cooler in warm weather and may stay warmer in cool weather. Different materials have various properties, so a little research is good to do.
  • It might also be a good idea to invest in clothing with SPF protection from the sun. Depending on how long you’re outside each run, having protection is a good practice when you’re outside for longer than 10 minutes in the sun.   

Some Types of Clothing to Consider

The best way to decide on what to wear in the wind is to have some prior experience with running in gusty weather. If you know how it feels at different temperatures, you can just modify your clothing a bit when the wind comes. 

For cold weather, you’ll need a warm layer and or a wind blocker. In warm weather, you’ll need clothing that will stay in place and is somewhat arrow-dynamic. Here are just a few examples of what you might consider.

In the Cold

In the Heat

For the Wind

The wind can vary from a gentle breeze to heavy gusts that are hard to run in. If you plan to run come rain, snow, or heavy wind, make sure to prepare with the gear you need to have your best experience. 

Some things might not matter much, but if you’re uncomfortable for the entire run, you’ll want to have something different the next time you go out. 

Try to choose items that can be multifunctional, such as wool socks. They keep you warm in winter and help your feet stay cool in summer by wicking and dispersing moisture effectively. 

Don’t forget a dust mask to help you breathe easier when running in dusty areas. Think about other accessories that may make running a better experience in the wind, such as hair ties and a bottle to making sure you’re hydrated

Looking for an Outfit

You can make your clothing look great together while running in the wind, but what clothing style should you choose? That’s up to your personal preference. I usually just wear a hat, shorts, and a polyester shirt. I’m not trying to match too much, but if I can I do.

Tina Muir has a good guide that is helpful when running in colder temperatures. She shows you the clothing that see wears and the temperature that she uses them at.   

Here are some outfits to look at for reference.  

Canva - Man Wearing White Sweater and Black Shorts About to Run
Beautiful young female running on the boardwalk
Black man running upstairs outdoors in urban background
Young woman running alone up stairs
Handsome man running in the city.
Runner climbing steps on the beach
Couple running


When you go running next time, I hope you feel prepared for whatever the weather throws at you. When the wind blows, you can be prepared to stay warm or cool. You’ll feel more comfortable and stay drier in all sorts of weather by getting the right clothing. 

My next purchase will probably be some light running gloves because they will help both on cold mornings and when running in cool weather. Best of luck with your clothing choices and have fun on that next run.

Thanks for visiting


I enjoy many types of outdoor activities including running, hiking, and walking. I was a former elementary school teacher for 17 years and now enjoy writing and sharing my love of the outdoors.

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