As a runner, you’re always looking for something that can provide you with a competitive advantage – ways to train better, methods to increase your endurance, and gear that will help you run faster.
However, with the number of fake and ineffective items available on the market, it can be challenging to determine what gear can help and what is simply dead weight. Here are four must-have items that all runners should have with them while training.
Kinesiology tape is, essentially, a stretchy tape made with a blend of cotton and nylon that supports your muscles without limiting your range of motion the way traditional tape does. Research indicates that kinesiology tape can help reduce the risk of joint irritation. Additionally, some physical therapists believe that it can also reduce the amount of pain you experience from old injuries or when you push your body.
Aside from treating injuries, kinesiology tape can also be used to help improve blood circulation, retrain muscles, and, most importantly, increase athletic performance – including while running.
A good pair of sunglasses can help protect your eyes, as well as the sensitive skin around your eyes, from the effect of UV radiation. When buying a pair, look for sunglasses for hiking or running, as they are more durable and designed for use during athletic activity. Check to see how much radiation they can block – the best parts can block up to 98% of UV and UVB radiations.
Listening to music while you run can help put you in the right zone and blank out the rest of the world so that you can concentrate on your stride and on improving your speed. However, the wires in traditional earphones can get tangled while you run and become a major annoyance.
Wireless headphones or earbuds allow you to listen to your favorite music without worrying about getting distracted by the movement of the wires or struggle with untangling them from the rest of your running gear.
If you are a woman, a running headband is crucial – it helps keep your hair away from your eyes, so you don’t have to worry about stumbling and losing your concentration. However, it can also be helpful in other ways, including keeping the sweat away from your eyes. Many of the best options also boast built-in headphones and Bluetooth capability, making them an excellent option for people who like to listen to music when working out.
When choosing a headband, make sure to check how well it grips your forehead and whether it is designed to stay in place when you move. Other considerations you can think about include the fabric the band is made of, whether it is machine washable, and what colors it comes in.
The right equipment will help make you a better runner and help boost your run time. If you make sure you only carry the essentials with you while you train and work out, you’ll find that you’re a much faster runner before you know it!