My memories of running in spandex are not fond ones. My frame of reference dates back to the early to mid-nineties. During this time, it was fashionable to wear colorful spandex (with matching scrunchie, of course... real athletes wore scrunchies... cheerleaders wore hairbows!) in cold weather.
It had to be REALLY cold for me to wear my red or navy spandex. Too cold for my Umbro shorts or my unlined, elastic bottom wind pants... because spandex became a means to an end... a necessary evil that would allow me to run in the cold.
While running, my legs were being squeezed by the fabric, and I would begin to feel suffocated and hot... even in really cold weather! Back at home, undressing would reveal a seam line impressed along my leg and around my waist from where I had gotten hot.
This all being said, when my Spartans have asked me about wearing spandex under their uniforms, I have been pretty hard core about saying, "No! You think it's cold, but I promise you will warm up and end up getting hot!" They have looked at me like I am crazy, and many of them have worn it anyway... I just figured they were either really cold natured or really uncomfortable by the end of the run!
Last week I went shopping for some winter running pants. (I have outgrown my old ones, and I am going to be running outdoors this winter.) Everything at Dick's was about six inches too long, and so I finally resorted to trying on a pair of under armor tights. Hmmm... for the sake of modesty and the size of my bottom, wearing a pair of shorts on top would be necessary, but these were surprisingly comfortable! Thanks to the generosity of my runners, I was able to get the pants and a new pair of running shoes (hooray, they were on sale!).
It was very chilly in the mountains, so I wore them on my runs in Gatlinburg.
Whoa, this stuff ain't your mama's spandex.... , and I bet my runners think I am an idiot for never wanting them to run in it! Here goes my little under armor commercial... (yes, I know... 5 years after the stuff became popular!) I never got hot, it never got tight, it really moves with you in a way that the old spandex did not, and I did not feel suffocated!
Man, that stuff is the bomb! I am a total fan- Sorry, Spartans... I now realize it does not have to be sub-freezing temperatures in order to benefit from wearing it! It actually keeps your muscles warm and helps them to stay loose!
Cheers to the new spandex!