Winter post-swimwear
November 16, 2010 1:46 PM   Subscribe

Point me to the ideal winter post-swim wear!

Lady swimmers of Mefi, what warm up pants do you put on after a swim in the winter, when you don't want to change into your street clothes at the pool? I'm looking for items that will pull on easily but won't feel gross on damp skin -- I don't like the way synthetic fleece feels after getting wet, for example.
posted by yarly to Health & Fitness (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I usually have a pair of fleece pants that I call my fuzzy pants that work well for me. I don't notice a weirdness with the water issue. I also have a pair of yoga pants that are just fine and they're just cotton mostly with some polyester for stretch and they're great.
posted by jessamyn at 1:53 PM on November 16, 2010

sweatpants and also shorts so i can slow down the "i just peed my pants" look
posted by raccoon409 at 1:57 PM on November 16, 2010

I swim 4 times a week and I usually change out of my suit into a pair of yoga pants and a tank with built in bra. Over this I throw a hoodie or coat. For my feet I usually go barefoot in a pair of slip on runners/sketchers.
posted by saradarlin at 2:06 PM on November 16, 2010

This is one of the PITAs of swimming workouts! When I swim I do so at night, so I use workout wear whose only purpose is to make me decent enough for the trip home and maybe a stop at the grocery store.

-I shower after the pool, and towelling off really well is essential to anything feeling normal against my skin. I don't want to be damp at all.
-I like a t-shirt or long-sleeve t-shirt with a fleece jacket or pullover over it, plus track pants. The fewer pieces the easier, but I find I still need layers (because it's New England and it's winter). Right after swimming I am kind of warm and still have an elevated heart rate, so I wear the t-shirt while getting dressed and getting my bag together, and then put the fleece on while heading outside or even after cooling off outside for a moment.
-the track pants are nice because they're slidey (some kind of nylonesque semi-shiny fabric, you know, basic track pants)...they just slip right on and off and don't stick to you
-socks are a pain over damp feet, but peds-style ankle socks or short athletic socks are a lot easier than dress socks or knee socks
-some kind of shoes you can slip on and off, like clogs or Crocs, are ideal. Some people can tolerate flip-flops in winter but not me

Wet hair is what I hate. I don't like taking time to blow-dry but I also don't like frozen hair. So a fuzzy wool hat is essential too. I towel-dry, then let my hair air-dry getting dressed, then pull on the hat for my trip outside.
posted by Miko at 2:11 PM on November 16, 2010

I have the same problem, Alaska-style. I usually wear a fair of fleece-lined workout pants, a sweatshirt, and a down jacket topped off with hat and gloves. I don't love the way the fleece lining feels either, so I'm looking for a fair of flannel-lined track pants. Flannel feels good and soaks up some of the water, outer layer keeps the wind out and doesn't show wetness well.
posted by charmcityblues at 2:16 PM on November 16, 2010

I think swim parkas are the ideal cold weather cover-up, but they are unfortunately lined with fleece (they feel less gross than wet fleece pants, though). They're great because you don't need the pants so much, at least if you are just heading to the locker room or the car. Especially if you are a total dork and slip into a pair of Sorel winter boots as well.
posted by oneirodynia at 5:11 PM on November 16, 2010

Apologies if this is not answering the question as asked, but I don't understand how you guys are staying so wet that the inside of your fleece pants is getting damp or you are at risk of a "just peed my pants" look. Do you not take off your swimsuits and towel off? (Maybe your pools do not have locker rooms?) I recently resumed lap swimming after many years' hiatus, and I went straight back to my old routine:
  • Pack two dry, clean towels. Always two towels.
  • Get out of pool, have a hot shower, strip off swimsuit.
  • Dry off whole body once with towel #1.
  • Wrap wet hair in towel #1 so that hair does not drip on semi-dry body.
  • Use towel #2, which I've kept bone-dry in my locker, to finish really thoroughly drying off body.
  • Flip head forward to drop towel #1, now quite damp, onto the floor while keeping wet hair away from dry body. Re-wrap hair in slightly damp towel #2.
  • Stand on towel #1 to keep feet / trouser cuffs out of puddles while getting dressed.
  • Finally release damp hair from towel #2 onto shoulders covered with moisture-resistant jacket. Throw both towels into swim bag and depart the facility.
The routine looks awfully fussy when I break it down point-by-point like that but in practice it's second nature and I get dry enough to hop back into my street clothes quite comfortably. I don't like the feel of fabric on damp skin either so I have always made a point of getting completely dried off before getting dressed. It's not clear to me why "getting dry" is not the solution to yarly's problem rather than "getting different clothes."
posted by Orinda at 7:32 PM on November 16, 2010

Response by poster: thanks for the suggestions!

I don't understand how you guys are staying so wet

It's not exactly wet -- just damp. The locker room at the city pool where I swim is both gross and steamy, so even if I towel off thoroughly I still end up damp. And because it's gross I don't like to spend a lot of time in there, so I try to do the bare minimum to be able to get out and go home and get dressed for work. But alas, maybe the solution is just more thorough toweling.

Flannel lined track pants sound perfect, but I don't think they exist! In fact if you google that, this thread is the 8th result.
posted by yarly at 6:57 AM on November 17, 2010

Seconding yarly - if I were getting dressed to work I'd towel off thoroughly and get into street clothes. But since i work out in the evening I'm just looking to get out of there ASAP. I do towel off pretty well but my skin isn't bone dry.
posted by Miko at 7:18 AM on November 17, 2010

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