Whether you're aiming to conquer your first, or 50th, Spartan race this fall, slaying single track and destroying obstacles involves much more than consistent training and mental grit. You also need the appropriate trail running essentials to get you through wildly unpredictable conditions as we transition seasons.
Be strategic about the gear you train and race in, and you’ll help optimize your performance overall. Think: form-fitted designs to avoid chafe, proper compression that boosts blood flow, and vented technology to regulate temperature, no matter what Mother Nature’s mood might be. This means you need sweat-wicking, vented material to shift moisture away from your skin, and flexible fabric engineered to respond to dynamic movement as you vault over rocks and roots.
When you're up against miles of mud, unforgivable terrain, and temps that swing from hot to cold in an instant, a little preparedness goes a long way. The good news? We’ve got your back with these Spartan-approved gear picks dedicated to those who never stop running. Use this list to build your fall-weather training ensemble so you can focus more on the dirt and less on what you’re wearing.
What to Wear When Training in Fall Weather
THE SHOES: Nordic Speed Trail
When you're burning through steep climbs and battling erratic weather, the last thing you need to worry about is what's on your feet. So don't. Fast meets fierce in the Spartan X CRAFT Nordic Speed Trail Shoe for men and women. These runners were born for the wild. Carbon-infused rubber outsoles help you keep pace over wet, slippery obstacles, a reinforced midsole provides max comfort and carry over burly terrain, and a durable upper protects you mile after mile, obstacle after obstacle.
THE TANK: Trail Hypervent Singlet
Long-distance running in fall’s warmer temps can be brutal when you’re drenched in sweat and it has nowhere to go. But now, you can kiss the drippage goodbye. Thanks to intentional body-mapped panels, the Trail Hypervent Singlet provides ventilation and cooling where it’s needed most. Lightweight polyester ensures max breathability and taped seams minimize unwanted underarm chafing. As you brave the last few weeks of hot-weather training, this will be your go-to, hands down.
THE SHORT: Trail Woven Short
When you’re leaping over boulders to haul up a mountain, or surfing dirt at top speed on the way down, you want shorts that can hang. (And by hang, we mean inseams that don’t choke, stretch that won’t fail, and weight that feels … well, weightless.) Enter: the Trail Woven Short. Supreme flexibility in this polyester-elastane blend makes this our favorite bottom for almost any weather above 45 degrees. A cinchable drawcord inside the waistband lets you loosen or tighten, and you can stash your keys in the hidden back pocket on shorter runs when you’re not carrying a hydration vest.
THE PANT: Hypervent Trail Pant
Busting into brush takes grit. And it’s a hell of a lot easier to bushwack when you’re cruising with full coverage. With the Hypervent Trail Pant, you can run just about anywhere. Perforated lower-leg panels enhance ventilation, and a looser fit at the thigh tapers to your lower leg so you have just enough room for big strides, but won’t risk tripping up. With these bad boys in your arsenal, comfort and breathability take all excuses out of the equation.
THE SOCKS: Compression Knee Sock
If you struggle with shin splints, achilles issues, tight arches, or fatigue from constant pounding, you should give the Compression Knee Socks a try. Pre-shaped arch ribs support your midfoot so you can maximize your strike on stride, and wide elastic cuffs keep the blood flowing so you can jumpstart your recovery process even before you get off the trail. Bye bye, foot issues.
THE HAT: Trail Hypervent Cap
Imagine this: You’re on a trail run through aspen groves and pine thickets. All of a sudden (and at full speed) you hit a high alpine meadow. Bright sun illuminates rocks and roots below your feet, and your vision — now compromised from dark exposure hitting white light — disorients the hell out of you. Maybe you twist an ankle. Maybe you don’t. But that's a “maybe” you shouldn’t be willing to risk. Cover your head (read: ass) and run smart with the reliable Trail Hypervent Cap. Interwoven mesh provides optimal ventilation, quick-dry polyester wicks moisture, and a generous bill ensures that you can see. Enough said.