Best running pants mens

OK I might be biased with this article but my best running pants of all times are the Nike ones. I have 2 pairs of DRY-fit and man aren’t they the best!

But wait there is more to it! We also have some serious contenders, like adidas, Under Armour and ASICS. Ready for a wild ride? Let’s go!

Firstly I apologize to everyone for talking for the next half hour about Nike but they really have great running pants and is not hard to get excited. Kidding, I won’t talk for that long about Nike. In fact, the other running pants I like: the Under Armour, the ASICS and the Adidas ones are as great looking as the Nike ones.

First of all let’s define what a great pair of running pants is, not necessarily in order:

  1. can be used all year round with exceptions of very low or very high temperatures
  2. are not shrinking if you put them in the dryer
  3. are breathable keeping sweat away
  4. look great and can be used outside not just for running but other outdoors activities
  5. don’t need to be ironed
  6. don’t get stained easily, black color preferred
  7. they dry up quick so if you wash them in a rush, they will dry up fast so you can go for a run in short notice
  8. they are elastic enough so they won’t keep you from widening your stride when jumping over a puddle and such
  9. they feel smooth on skin and around waist
  10. non-prominent stitching for great comfort

I’m not sure what exact model I have from Nike for my running pants but this is how they look:

my dry fit nike running pants

They are the most comfortable running pants I do have at the current moment so you can get there is a huge rush to always wash them after my runs so I can use them for the next one. A couple of things to notice here.

They have zipper pockets on both sides and one zipped pocket in the back, plus zippers at the bottom back of both legs. While I found the zipped pockets very useful so I can put my key, some paper towel or what not in my pockets, zip them up and run with peace of mind I won’t lose them, the zip at the bottom of the pants I rarely used. However I saw that because of that, the back of my pants show a little pocket because of continuously pulling my heels up the pants. So ideally you should always bring the zipper up, pull the pants then move the zip back down. But life is too short to do that so if you plan to buy running pants with zippers down there just make a note of this.

Just be aware, the zipped back pocket is very small. Don’t even think you can squeeze your phone in unless you have a very small phone like an iPhone 5. Considering the trend of every growing phone sizes, there is a small chance you will ever be able to keep the phone there. I use it for the entrance key.

Another thing if you see looking at the picture is that they feature some reflective elements, those squares at the top end of the zippers and there is also the Nike logo which I hadn’t caught in the picture.

One pro tip before I forget, because the sweat pants are usually made of synthetic materials, they don’t shrink. So whatever you buy they will stay the same even if you put them in the dryer machine. Make a note so you buy the size the fits you the best and not a larger one…

And one more thing before moving on with our article is that, my pants have some internal padding, it feels less synthetic and will help absorbing the sweat and heat and dissipating it outside. It’s a nifty little thing but it works wonders for me at least.

Nike Mens Flex Essential Running Pants look very similar with the Nike DRY-FIT with a couple of differences:
– the waistline is a bit tall and thick. More support if you do gym weights but less helpful for running. I would say it might bother creating some chaffing if you sweat a lot, see picture:

my Nike Mens Flex Essential Running Pants

– the bottom follow the same design, higher and thicker
– as you can see in the below picture, there are 2 reflective vertical lines on the front of the pants compared to 2 squares on the back on the DRY-FIT

my Nike Mens Flex Essential Running Pants

The only identical part is that both have zippers for the top pockets, there is a similar back/side small pocket with a zipper as well and of course we have zippers at the bottom of the legs. Also as with all Nike’s pants there is a reflective swoosh on the front of the pants.

What I like:

  • despite my comment above, I kind of enjoy the low-profile elastic waistband
  • very elastic, following my legs, no resistance felt
  • nice black color, stain free
  • nice touch feel fabric

What I don’t like:

  • you might be able to see through if they are very fit
  • careful with the sizing. I found it tricky especially when switching from one brand to another as one brand could be medium and another could be large and so on

Under Armour Men Challenger ii Training Pants are as great as Nike’s with a noticeable difference –
they don’t have a back zipper pocket. Not a biggie since the Nike’s one is very small and you can barely fit anything in except maybe the entrance key. Still great to have but the side pockets should be enough never the less.

my Armour Men Challenger ii Training Pants

Something I forgot to mention for both Nike’s and the UA pants is that they go very well with a tracking suit jacket. But this apply to all the running pants we are talking about today. Just a thing to consider when buying, you might want to pair the pants with a jacket.

What I like:

  • comes in multiple colors like: black, graphite and overcast grey
  • similar to Nike’s they are build from one piece of fabric – I don’t like stitched together parts, they might bother me when I run
  • zippers at the bottom of the pants

What I don’t like:

  • no back zipped packet
  • they might run short in size

If you like more a bit larger pants (not everyone is that confident to wear very fit pants), ASICS Men’s Aptitude 2 Running Pants could be a great option for you especially if you have bulkier legs.

Simple pants to put on a go for a run. The material is stretchable but I found Nike’s one better for that reason. The bottom zipps up as well. I found the fabric to be very breathable so they will keep u cool and dry.

Thin elastic waistline feels great when worn for prolong periods of time. No other prints except the Asics logo on the front right side.

What I like:

  • simple construction
  • durable
  • very breathable

What I don’t like:

  • one color, black only
  • I could use more pockets with zips
  • a bit to sporty for daily life

Another pair again a bit baggier if that’s what you’re after is Nike Men’s Therma Tapered Running Pants.

They look really good, I hope the pictures below made them justice:

my Nike Men's Therma Tapered Running Pants

This is a nice pair if Nike’s men’s jogging sweatpants with a couple of drawbacks. Firstly the pockets and the bottom of the legs have no zipps. Secondarily, the pants are stitched together out of a couple of parts. Personally not a fan of this as I mentioned already before but it could be something you might pick without problems.

my Nike Men's Therma Tapered Running Pants

Comparing to the other pants I checked for you today, this ones are built for winter – the Therma fabric will keep you legs warm during cold runs.

What I like:

  • simple construction
  • stretchable
  • nice pure black color

What I don’t like:

  • no zipper for side pockets and lower legs
  • could be to warm for treadmill

And finally, we are talking about adidas Men’s Response Astro Pants. Not to be confused with Lululemon Astro. Here is a picture from front and back (they look pretty):

my adidas Men's Response Astro Pants

So what’s different about these running pants? First thing you will notice is that they again, like Nike Men’s Therma Tapered Running Pants, stitched together from different pieces of fabric. Secondarily you will see the 3 stripes specific to the adidas brand. They also have zippers down the legs as you can see in the pictures:

my adidas Men's Response Astro Pants

Comes in black in a regular fit size.

I’m not gonna go into too much detail here since they are simple plants, great for running but with not much bells and whistles.

What I like:

  • simple pants, easy to use
  • feel great fabric
  • lots of sizes
  • great for indoors and outdoors running

What I don’t like:

  • no zipper for side pockets


When shopping for running pants for men, ask yourself this: Do I need something for outside or inside? If you need for both, Nike does a very good job, followed by Under Armour.

My UA pants have the waistline a bit to too tight for my taste (or maybe I gained some extra pounds and I didn’t know) but my Nike’s one are amazing.

Second question will be, do you run outside all year round and if you do, does it get very hot and very cold? If the temperatures varies a lot, my reco is to pick the Nike Therma pants. They don’t just look great but they also help you against cold.

For summer I would recommend either Nike DRY-FIT or shorts – but that’s for another review.

Under Armour along with Asics and Adidas are just as great as Nike so going with the brand is not needed necessarily. The most important factor is the fit when it comes to running pants – you need something that are stretchable, feel great on skin, keep the moisture away while keeping your muscle warm over running to prevent cramps and feeling cold.

That was all for today, let me know in your comments what you end up buying. I hope my reviews shed some light on the running pants for men on the market as we speak and that you found something that fits you well and encourage you to run more. Cheers!

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Marathon runner with a passion for writing.

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