running essentials

Summer training is officially in full swing and this year i’ve got my sites set on Portland. Call me crazy but I’ve actually come to enjoy training towards 26.2 in pursuit of nothing other than a cool, crisp finish line beer + some hardware to boot. Over the years, I’ve picked-up my fair share of running tips that have made pursuing this pastime worthwhile + even enjoyable. So, I’m here today to spill a few of these…

  • Music– A good playlist can make or break a run. Investing in Spotify Premium has been my favorite way to ensure I have a steady stream of upbeat tunes to soundtrack my run. Even better, there are hundreds of pre-curated playlists tailored just for runners.
  • Fuel– Distance running has taught me that diet is everything. Bananas are my go-to pre-run nutrition to provide sustaining energy that’s easy on my stomach. During a run, I’ll carry GU gels {salted caramel is my fave} for any training 6+ miles, to replace lost nutrients. Lastly, I replenish my body post run with a whey protein and fruit smoothie, glass of chocolate milk, or trail mix.
  • Shoes Asics have been my shoe of choice for years, particularly because they have special sizing to fit my narrow foot. I’d highly recommend visiting a running retailer before investing your next pair. Here, they will place you on a treadmill + analyze your stride to ensure your footwear fits your stride + your style. 
  • Headphones– I have been loyal to the Beats by Dre Earbuds for my last two races. Not only are the comfortable, but they provide great acoustics for those longer miles where I simply need to “tune-out.” The price point is a bit steep, so I’ve had success buying refurbished pairs on ebay.
  • GPS Device– On runs, I bring along a device to track distance, pace + other active metrics. I’ve trained with the Garmin watch, but recently have found myself liking the Nike+ app. This is a free + handy tool that has all the benefits of high-end running GPS + keeps my arms free of any added weight or distractions. Better yet, it reads off split times as you go + provides a full recap post runs. The perfect tool to get me to my next PR.
  • Hydration– Luckily trendy water bottles are the latest + greatest accessory. Swell is a new favorite, which stocks oodles of cute prints in their signature stay-cold thermos material. I keep one stationed on my desk, and one at home to keep me drinking water through the day. On days of further distances, i’ll double my intake.
  • Apparel– I learned the hard way after my first half to wear something comfortable + close to the skin. I prefer running in crops to shorts to prevent chafing + anything Lululemon {no brainier} or Zella is a good bet. Investing in a few high-quality pieces, rather than a slew of fun/thrify athletic picks has been a good move. Once I find something that works, stick with it, and never introduce anything new on race days!

Happy running!

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    @sarahakoller