Fleece is a soft material usually made from synthetic fibers. Due to its warmth, lightness, and breathability, fleece can be an excellent fabric choice for activewear, particularly for clothing intended to be worn while exercising outdoors in cool, dry weather. Popular types of fleece activewear include pants, jackets, sweatshirts, vests, hats, and gloves.
One of the most basic fleece activewear pieces is the running pant. This type of pant is generally held up by an elastic waistband. Its legs are usually loose-fitting, allowing the wearer an uninhibited range of motion while jogging, hiking, or engaging in other fitness activities. Some fleece running pants also feature elastic bands at the ankle, which prevent pant legs from dragging on the ground and becoming wet or frayed. Often they feature side pockets, offering the wearer a place to store small items like keys while exercising.
Many fleece activewear tops and jackets are designed for layering, allowing the wearer to regulate his body temperature while exercising. Fleece sweatshirts, for instance, often feature hoods which can be raised or lowered during a workout. Vests and jackets made from fleece often have a full-length zipper closure that runs down the front of the garment. This zipper allows the wearer to adjust his garment with minimal disruption to his workout, simply unzipping the piece partially or completely to allow cool air to reach his upper body. If the garment has long sleeves, he can remove it completely once he has warmed up, tying it around his waist until he reaches his cool-down period.
Fleece hats and gloves are also widely available. These pieces can be highly useful to the outdoor exerciser during the cooler months. They provide an excellent source of warmth but tend to be far less bulky than nylon gloves or woolen hats. Thus they can usually be taken off and tucked into the pockets should the wearer begin to feel too warm.
In most cases, fleece activewear is highly breathable and thus allows perspiration on the skin to evaporate fairly easily. Generally, it is also easy to move in, granting the wearer comfort and flexibility during a workout. It should be noted, however, that fleece activewear is generally not weather-resistant, and thus should not be worn in heavy rain or snow. In addition, it tends to be quite warm and should therefore be avoided in very high temperatures to lower the risk of heatstroke.