Running is my favorite form of exercise, hands down. One of the reasons I love running so much is that it’s completely accessible. You don’t need to spend money on a gym membership or purchase a ton of expensive equipment – with a pair of sneakers you can run just about anywhere and at any time. Still, I like to kick my run up a notch and truly enjoy it with some great gear. In addition to using MapMyRun to track my runs, there are a few items I always like to have with me to help make the most of every outing.
These are a must-have on any long runs (along with an awesome playlist, but we’ll talk more on that another time). Whether it’s on the treadmill or the busy city streets, headphones help keep you focused and can even help control your breathing. If you can snag a pair of wireless ones, even better. Why have dangling cords getting in your way if you don’t need to?
This is especially important to have if you like to run at night. If you’re running in areas where streetlights are somewhat limited, or you just want to make sure you are visible to motor vehicles, a headlamp will get the job done. There are a variety of options to choose from, but I recommend models that are lightweight and waterproof in case you get caught in the rain.
Some runners use MP3 players to listen to music when they run, but others prefer to take their phones. After all, you never know when you’re going to need to make an emergency call. If you’re the kind of runner who likes to take your phone with you, there are many comfortable options out there that adjust for a variety of phone and arm sizes. The TuneBand is a great example of a well-designed armband. It’s not only adjustable, but it also keeps the majority of your phone’s body from making direct contact with your skin.
This should be a no-brainer because it’s important to stay hydrated while you’re running. If you find it difficult to hold a traditional water bottle for the entire length of your run, then consider trying the Nathan SpeedDraw Plus Insulated Flask. It’s touted as one of the most comfortable bottles to hold and drink from while running, plus, it has a lot of impressive features like a place to store your keys and special insulation to keep your water cold on scorching hot days. It’s also easily adjustable and can fit the hands of people from 5’1” all the way up to 6’3”.