Checking out new performance running wear from Nathan

For most of us, when we hear the running company Nathan, our minds probably tend to gravitate in a couple areas – hydration, packs, and illumination tools. However, they just released their new apparel line designed for race day performance. We recently checked out a couple items from this collection – the Rise Tee and Essential shorts.

First and foremost, as far as we are concerned, this foray into the apparel landscape is a successful one. The construction seems top-notch and we really liked how both items fit and performed both on and off the road. Here’s a bit more detail about each of these items.

The Rise Short Sleeved shirt weighs in at under a pound in a men’s medium and truly feels great. Surprisingly, I tend to overuse the adjective “buttery” a lot when talking about both running apparel and Chardonnay, but it is what it is. The tee is just really soft on the skin and light to boot.

As far as the construction goes, it gets a little more fancy. Nathan has added a back panel (80% Polyester 20% Tencel) to assist with ventilation – which is a nice added touch. There is also reflective assets added to the top making it a viable option as we start to venture into more and more darkness.

It also looks really great and can be used in a fitness-only way or even as a casual standalone option. It fits a little more on the loose side, so it doesn’t necessarily scream out “only fitness”. We have really liked this top.

As for the Essential Shorts, these are really a nice addition as well as well. We tried out one of their longer lengths (9″) and really think that they also function well as both a running and casual pair of shorts. They are also very soft and forgiving in the stretch area, making them as versatile as they come.

They have a long liner inside that is also soft and I haven’t yet experienced any chafing – a concern of mine that is heightened with this sort of longer internal lining. This definitely is not a compression liner, so don’t go in expecting that. I know people fall on both sides of their desire on this issue, but this tends to fit more “casually” than super snug.

I did find that the shorts tended to fall down a little bit in the back during ongoing wear, especially when having multiple items in the pockets like keys and a phone. I had less of this occur when I was working out with nothing in my pockets – which is probably for the best anyways. It took quite a tight knot to keep them up when they were filled, which was a little bit of a bummer. Maybe it’s just me and my old-man butt syndrome, and I would recommend considering sizing down, but overall they still worked out pretty well overall, all things considered.

There are a ton of pockets (6 to be exact, with one hidden on the liner that fits a phone if needed) and reflective qualities in the Essential shorts, and they look both classic and stylish with the color scheme and notched legs. Maybe it’s just time to hit the squats a little more to keep these bad boys up better. Overall, these are a good option.


Products & Price:

  • Rise Short Sleeve Shirt | $49
    • Knit : Body: 89% Polyester 11% Elastane
    • Mesh Back Panel: 80% Polyester 20% Tencel
  • Essential Shorts | $55
    • Outer Short: 89% Polyester, 11% Elastane
    • Inner Short: 82% Polyester, 18% Elastane

Thank you to Nathan for providing us with samples. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.

About Author

Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching hockey, going to as many breweries (618) and wineries (152) as he can, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010.

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