Run Swiftly tech tees
For the past couple of years I’ve been wearing Lululemon gear for a lot of my runs – both training and races. Here are my thoughts on the Lululemon Run Swiftly Tech range of tops, designed for running and other sweaty activities.
I own the vest, crew neck t-shirt, scoop neck t-shirt and long sleeved top versions. It’s great having a few as I can rotate them and layer them up if it’s particularly cold.
I’ve found the sizing to be true to fit – I am normally between 8-10 UK so as Lululemon is a Canadian brand that translates to me wearing a size 4 or 6. If in doubt I opt for the 6 (UK 10) as the tops can cling so I’d rather they were a bit on the looser side than being skin tight, as this reduces propensity for tops to ride up around my waist, rather than sit as they are intended to, down at hip length.
Fit and comfort
I’ve worn each of these tops a lot and they are not showing any wear. They fit and look as they did the day I bought them, and I’ve never had any signs of chafing. That’s despite miles of running, including while wearing a laden race vest, which has the potential to make tops pill/bobble over time. Some other tops I’ve had from other brands have started to smell and become discoloured with use – to the point I’ve had to throw them away as even a hot wash won’t get rid of the smell/colour.
Not the case with these. They’re made using what Lululemon calls ‘Silverescent Technology’ which inhibits the growth of odour-causing bacteria on the top – which explains why they don’t smell even after a lot of wear and sweat.
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There is always a nice selection of colours to choose from, although the range is changed regularly, so if you are taken with a particular colour I would suggest you to buy it and not wait, as chances are it will sell out in your size and may not be stocked again – this has happened to me with a few Lululemon products. Not the end of the world but if you wanted the top to go with your shorts etc then best to get it when you see it! They’re usually plain block colours rather than the patterns you see on other products.
Long sleeve run swiftly top
The long-sleeved version was my go-to running top during the coldest months of (UK) winter. Paired with a waterproof jacket, and sometimes the vest underneath, this top kept me warm and dry – including on CTS Exmoor marathon in April and the first half of Keswick Mountain Festival 50k in May (until the sun surprised me with a sustained appearance and I had to swap to the t-shirt version).
The sleeves have nice thumb-holes (I love thumb-holes on a long sleeved top, they keep my hands warm), but are very tight on the lower arms, so that I can’t pull them up over my elbows. This means I have to be cold to wear it, as I can’t roll my sleeves up when I get warm and I have to wear my Suunto watch over the top as it won’t fit underneath. It can also be tricky getting them off when very hot.
Price-wise, the vest costs around $58, the tees around $68 and long sleeved around $78.
Lululemon products are priced at the higher end of the market but in my experience you get what you pay for – technical workout clothing that lasts, looks and feels great. These classic workout basics are no exception.