Running is one of the simplest forms of exercise because there are few barriers to entry. All you need are some decent running shoes and a safe place to run. However, if you want to experience next-level athletic performance, you’ll need the right gear to get you there. Below, we’ve put together a running gear list that will allow you to run longer, faster, and stronger.
Your running shoes are the foundation of your running – choose wisely. Women’s or men’s running shoes are available in a wide range of styles. You should choose shoes specific to your weight, gait, and any injuries or other biological considerations.
Ideally, you should visit a running store where professionals can help diagnose any gait issues and can recommend a specific brand or pair of shoes during a 1-on-1 session. Your shoes should last you at least a year, so choose based on durability and overall fit.
Believe it or not, running socks can make a serious impact on your comfort as you run. Good running socks should be seamless and wick away moisture and sweat. Running socks should also be designed specifically for athletic activity so they can help reduce friction and diminish the likelihood of blisters. Running socks are usually left and right-foot specific, so make sure you wear them on the right feet!
Running shorts are another running essential. Although runners have their own personal preferences for their running clothes, running shorts with a liner mean you don’t have to wear anything else. For women, we’re big fans of Oiselle and for men, check out the offerings at Tracksmith.
For women, you may want to consider a tighter bralette with a bra inside for minimalism’s sake. Or, you can opt for a loose fit running tank that keeps you cool and comfortable. For men, a loose-fitting tank is a great addition to your running wardrobe. Make sure you test out your running tank to ensure that it’s the right choice of fabric and fit.
Fitness tracker and apps
A fitness tracker can track your sleep, your steps, your pace, and more. Fitness trackers reveal a wealth of information about your fitness, VO2 max, and heart rate zones. They make an ideal companion for runs where you want to focus on a specific goal, like staying within a specific heart rate zone or staying within a specific pace.
You can also use apps like RunKeeper and Strava to connect with other likeminded athletes.
If you’re planning on going for a multi-hour run, you might be a little confused about how you prepare for long distance without water. Well, the short answer is that you don’t. It’s important to carry water with you unless you’re making planned stops along the way for water.
In order to supply yourself with water in an area where you won’t restock your hydration supplies, consider purchasing a minimalist Camelbak backpack that lets you carry water with you. Or, you can take a fanny pack and squeeze in water bottle and snacks. Just make sure that you’re prepared, no matter where you go.
Sign up for an event
If you lack motivation to train, there’s a way around it – signing up for an event. An event gives you a timeline and should inform your training schedule. Make sure you give your body adequate time to ramp up to the distance. If you’ve just picked up running as a hobby, for example, signing up for a marathon that’s happening in a month isn’t a good idea. Aim your sights lower at first so you don’t get discouraged. We recommend starting out with a 5k or 10k to see how you feel on longer runs. Then, you can start progressing toward longer goals like half marathons and marathons.
Conclusion: Training for running
At the end of the day, running is one of the simplest, most accessible forms of exercise. But that doesn’t mean that certain clothing and gear choices doesn’t have an impact. Focus on investing in quality gear that delivers the most bang for your buck. And, choose gear based around the distance you want to complete. If you’re just planning on running a 5k, a hydration pack is not necessary. But if you’re going to train for a marathon, you’ll likely want a mobile water system. With these tips, you’ll be out crushing the competition before you know it!