It’s always fun to learn from other runners what gadgets or training gear they use. Even if I’m not looking to make a change, often I find myself learning about something cool that I’m willing to try.
So, on that note, I thought sharing some of my favorite running gear would be fun as I’m asked regularly what “things” I use to make my training and racing successful. *Full disclosure: I’m not being compensated by any of these companies to share this with you. I’m a proud member of the Oiselle volee team and get an occasional discount on their clothes, but this is my own personal opinion about their products.
It’s All About the Outfit
Let’s start with the fun stuff: running clothes! ☺ I’ve always said if I’m going to be out there sweating and feeling like crap, I want to look good while doing it. My favorite running apparel is Oiselle. It’s pretty much all I train and race in. What I love most about it is the material. It’s really soft and comfortable. It’s also very forgiving so it moves with you while running. It’s not creeping up my butt or legs and it’s not constricting. I love the variety of fun colors and patterns.
I get asked a lot about my shoes. I’m sure most of you do, too. “What is your favorite shoe?” Honestly, I don’t have a favorite brand. It seems like most shoe companies are “tweaking” the make and model and that usually means it will be too narrow for my foot or not enough cushion and too firm. Currently, I am wearing ASICS. I have gone back to that brand a few times so I must really like them ☺. Their shoes are always reliable.
My racing flats are New Balance. I love them! They have a 4mm heel drop and are super light, perfect for short distances. I wear those primarily for road racing 1 mile and 5k distances. My track shoes are New Balance as well. They don’t have any support (most track shoes don’t have much support) but they do fit comfortably. Fortunately, I only wear them for track meets. I race the 800m and 1500m track races so I don’t have them on for long.
I also wear Spenco shoe inserts in all of my shoes for extra cushion, except my track shoes. I started doing this about three years ago to help alleviate some of my back issues exacerbated by running. They have helped tremendously!
Best Compression On the Go
Two words for my next favorite thing: TIME SAVER! I love the 110% compression capris and calf sleeves with the multiple pockets for icing. You pop an ice pack in one of the pockets of the pants or sleeves, walk around and get your chores done!
Speaking of compression I also love the 2XU recovery knee-highs. They have a fair amount of “snugness” to them which I like. My legs always feel good after I take them off. I like to wear the 2XU compression during my workouts, too, my legs seem to last longer.
Recovery Must-Have: Foam Roller and Stick
I think just about every runner has a foam roller or “The Stick”. I use both of mine daily. They are the next best thing to a massage and a great way to loosen up those tight muscles especially if you are traveling. You will see me just about anywhere using the foam roller or stick. I was recently in the middle of the airport terminal foam rolling! ☺
Safety and Peace of Mind
Finally, the two most important items for training and racing are the Road ID and training watch. For anyone new to running, one of the first things I highly recommend is the Road ID. We all like to think we are safe and nothing bad will happen to us on a run, but you never know! For your sake and the sake of your loved ones, buy a Road ID. They are very affordable and come in a variety of fun colors.
I use the Polar Watch for training. I used to be a big fan of Garmin but I found the wrist strap always broke. So I switched to Polar. I’ve used it for several years now and have had no problems. It’s very user friendly and does everything you could imagine. I’m sure there are functions I don’t even know about.
Now it’s your turn – what are your favorite things for training and racing?