It’s true that you don’t need any marathon running gear except a pair of shoes and really you don’t even need that (the 1976 Olympic Marathon in Rome was won by a barefoot runner). However many runners like to have certain gadgets and jogging gear to make they’re runs, especially their long runs more comfortable.
So what else might you need as far as marathon running accessories go?
PolyesterClothing- Yes, you can run in whatever you find
comfortable but anything made with polyester is usually hard to beat as
far as comfort is concerned. Polyester wicks away sweat and prevents
rashes. It also is a thermoregulating material that will keep you cool
in the hot summer and warm in the winter. How can you beat an outfit that does double duty for you?!
Sports Bra - wearing the right sports bra can make all the difference between a comfortable run and one that's not. It also will make a difference in the coming years so treat your girls right and follow these tips.
Running Skirts - it's easy to get in a rut with your running but adding a fun wardrobe change like a running skirt really can give you and extra boost of motivation while making you feel feminine and pretty. Plus there are so many different prints, patterns, styles and colors out there on the market that makes hard to choose from!
Compression Socks - We've all seen them worn by professionals and amateurs alike. What is the positive and negative research about these babies, and are they really worth buying? (Spoiler alert: they are)
For those who hate running in the heat - you have to get a Way 2 Cool Microfiber cloth! It works like a charm to keep you feeling cool and fresh DURING your run and it will stay cool and hydrated well after your long run is done.
Running Gear: Gadgets and Gizmos
A Good Running Watch - a good stopwatch will become one of your best friends during marathon training especially if you are trying to make a time goal. You don’t need to get an expensive stopwatch just one that works! It might also be a good idea to get a watch that helps you keep track of running intervals if you feel this is necessary for you. My first stopwatch cost me about $14 at Walmart and I had it for about three years. Not a bad price to pay for such an invaluable friend that you will surely become dependent on. See this page for an in-depth guide to what running watch suits you best.
Running Logs- are a fantastic idea specially if you are in a training program or are trying to improve your times. You will become a better, smarter marathoner by making this a part of your run. Logs help you figure out what works and doesn't work for you when it comes to running. Investing the small amount of time it takes to write about your run is invigorating and practical. Check the link out for more about running logs and why you should keep one it really is an essential piece of running gear! This is my favorite running log.
A Gymboss Interval Timer - if you don't have a smart watch where you can set up laps and a beeper system then the Gymboss solves that problem! With the Gymboss interval timer you can set an alarm (or vibration) to go off at different intervals signaling you to speed up or slow down. You just program your interval workout into it (how many minutes you need to run and how long your rest intervals are) and let it do the rest while you focus on your form and pace during your speed exercise. No more checking your watch to see if you are done with your interval. Best of all...it's actually affordable.
A good pair of jogging headphones - many runners find that listening to music, audiobooks, or podcasts makes their long runs more enjoyable and helps the miles fly by. Finding a good pair of jogging headphones can be a challenge though. Many tend to fall out of your ear and constantly need to be readjusted or start feeling uncomfortable during a run. Honestly, for me Bluetooth headphones are the only way to go! You don't have to worry about them falling out of your ear because you accidentally yanked the cord. They are less dangerous when running on the treadmill and strength training and are absolutely worth getting a pair! Find ones that hook over your ears for best results for runners!
Don't forget about your safety! Think about the times that you run. Should you be wearing a reflective vest? carrying mace spray? Accidents happen but many can be prevented.
Heart Rate Monitor: Some might like to know their heart rates and know the intensity that they are working out at but that is a personal preference. Just know that these aren't absolutely necessary even when training for a marathon but they can be fun to play around with.My husband loves his simple but effective MIO Heart Rate Monitor!
A Hydration Pack it is so important to maintain your body fluids while training for a marathon and especially during your long runs! When I was training for my first marathon my dad would bike next to me with water. I Could have saved him many a hour with one of these hydration packs. I have heard that wearing a hydration pack that has a fuel bottle on either side is unbalancing and annoying and that is why I prefer a side strap belt and bottle. If you do end up going the backpack route just make sure you take precautions to prevent chafing.
Running Gear for Recovery & Well Being
Body Glide will save your thighs, nipples, underarms, basically anywhere that rubs when you run or that is prone to blisters. You will completely avoid those horrible skin burns caused by increase friction and movement if you stay lubricated with Body Glide! I have found Vaseline to soak into the skin and therefore reduce it's effectiveness. It's not worth taking a chance to look like you have been riding a pony all day and to feel as if you need to scream in agony with each step after your run!
Vitamins C & Vitamin B. After a long run your immunity will be somewhat compromised making your more prone to colds and sicknesses that are in the air. Pop about 500 grams of Vitamin C immediately after a long run to help build that immunity back up! Vitamin B will help to boost your energy levels. Take this vitamin as a build up to your next long run.
Tennis Balls - are a cheap and highly effective massage tool for your feet after a long run. Just grab your water, take a seat and roll your balls underneath your feet for several minutes. So good!