If you have just started running exercise as a sport or are about to take your sport to a higher level, you need to know some important basics about running gear.
The correct gear will not only improve your performance but will make sure you run safely and avoid serious injury.
The most important piece of running gear you will ever own is your shoes.
The correct shoes will not only impact your performance, they will protect your feet, ankles and legs from injury. Ill-fitting running shoes can cause injury to joints in the feet and legs and can create lower back pain.
Get yourself fitted properly for your shoes by going to a specialty sports shoe store and be sure to tell them what activities you intend to do. They will recommend the best footwear for you.
Your shoes are the backbone of your running gear; they not only need to be suitable for running, they also need to fit you correctly. Never buy shoes you aren’t completely happy with.
Break in new running shoes gradually; when you are certain they feel good while training, buy another couple of pairs to be sure you always have a well-fitting pair of shoes in your running gear kit. Rest your shoes; don’t wear the same pair on two consecutive days. Allow your running shoes to air between uses.
The next aspect of your running gear to consider is your clothes. You need to be comfortable while training and competing; you don’t want to be distracted by shorts that chafe or a shirt that twists on your body.
Specialty material is now available in running clothes that wick the moisture away from your skin, to keep you cool and comfortable. You will find these at specialty sports stores.
In warm weather, you will need shorts and a t-shirt. If you are worried by chafing, wear a pair of short tights under your running shorts. These will absorb moisture and keep you comfortable as you run.
If the weather is hotter than 75 degrees, you might consider wearing a running singlet instead of a t-shirt. You will be cooler but you need to wear sunscreen to prevent getting sunburnt.
Consider the pros and cons of having a hat as part of your running gear. You lose heat through your head, so a hat may not be the best thing to keep you cool. Ask for advice from experienced runners.
If you are training when the temperature drops below 45 degrees, you are going to need some running gear that will keep you warm. Wear a hat or cap on these days, consider some gloves and you’ll need some long-sleeved t-shirts to protect your arms.
Go for several layers of clothing on cooler days that you can peel off as you warm up. Wear some warm-up pants over your shorts and a wind-breaker over your running shirt.
While it would be great to go off and buy all the latest, trendy running gear, you really don’t need to spend lots of money in the beginning. Many runners invest in a good pair of shoes and wear clothes they already have.
As you get further into the sport, you can gradually get some trendy running gear; look for the sales at the specialty sports stores to get some bargains. Just make sure you don’t skimp on the quality of your shoes – buy the best you can afford and your feet will thank you for it.