Here’s Exactly What You Need To Start Running

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So you want to start running? Running is the perfect form of exercise because 1) You can do it anywhere, and 2) it doesn’t require a monthly gym membership. There are however, a couple of things you need to make sure you own before you get started – we’ll give you the basics first, and then the various add-ons.


ph: lululemon

Workout clothes
You need something you can run in. This is largely the same for men and women, with the exception of a workout bra, which is obviously only necessary if you have boobs. Otherwise you need, a workout tank or tee, running tights, sport socks and running shoes – these are our current favorites.


ph: swell

Bottle of water
Are you also shocked that this is classed as an add-on? I was. I spoke to Frida, our nutritionist and she said that most people only need water after 1 – 1 1/2 hours of exercise, but if you can’t be parched for that long, take some water with you.

Now for me, this is a must-have, if for nothing more than I need music. Yes I do. But the phone is good for more than just music, it’s good for measuring your progress – there are lots of different apps you can use to see your run in visual – we love Runkeeper, Withings, Endomondo, Fitbit and Moves (and they all sync with Lifesum!)

Phone holder
I mean you can run with your phone in your hand – but it’s not fun, and if you sweat well, yeah, you get the idea. Grab a phone holder like this one to strap your phone to your arm – you can get cheaper ones, but this one will keep your phone in place and has a hole for the headphone jack on both sides – win!

This ties into why you need a phone at all – and I’d say it’s pretty crucial as a result. There are quite a few running apps that will tell you when you’ve passed 1 km and so on, so it can be nice to get that motivation as you’re running.

If you have long hair, or a fringe, this is for you. Get that hair out of your face with a headband, like this cute one, or this one, if the other one is too cute for you.


ph: withings

Waist belt or water pack
Waist belts are genius! Wrap it around your waist and put in your keys, phone, and anything else you might need (subway card anyone?). Water packs are kind of like super light backpacks. You fill them with water and wear them on your back. Most of them have pockets for a wallet and keys too, like this camelbak pack, but pack light, you have to run with this.

In-ear wireless earphones
So we’ve already mentioned earphones, but these are better because you get to skip the messy wires, and everybody loves that. Jabra has some really great ones.

Fitness tracker
This could be an Apple Watch, Samsung Gear, Android Wear or any fitness tracking specific technology, like a clip on or a heart monitor. These aren’t always necessary if you already have a phone with an app, but they can often give you more accurate information.


ph: Aveeno

The market for sport sunglasses used to be awful, but thankfully you can get pretty nice ones these days, like these.

You’re already going to sweat(if you’re doing it right) so it’s nice to avoid burning or getting heat stroke. Personally I’d op for a visor because my hair grows upward not downward (afro problems) but if yours doesn’t caps are way cooler.

Does this really require an explanation? It shouldn’t. Lather it on folks, back burns from running are no fun.

Shorts instead of tights
You can obviously still run in tights if you prefer. You can get tights that stop mid calf, just below the knee or just above the knee, but I think shorts are nice as you get a little breeze, which can be beneficial when temperatures are already pretty high.


ph: The North Face

I know, I know, don’t we need underwear generally speaking? Yes. But our nutritionist (and serial marathon runner) Lovisa says you cannot underestimate the importance of the type of underwear you wear when running in minus temps. New Balance have some merino wool base layer briefs that will keep you warm, fit under your workout tights, and reduce chafing.

You can use ordinary gloves yes, but you can also not. These are light so your hands won’t sweat, and they’re bright, which is you know, fun. Check Nike, Karrimor or Gore.

Lightweight jacket
Nike has tons of these. It needs to keep you warm but at the same time not too warm. We like this one, but they have lighter options.

Long-sleeve tee
Let’s face it, nobody wants to run in freezing temps in a tank top. Nobody. Go for a long-sleeve tee, with room to breathe. When it comes to these, the fabric is extremely important as you don’t want to sweat from the fabric, both Adidas and Nike have developed different fabrics especially for this, so keep your eye out for those.

Tights that acclimatize
It’s hard to run well when your legs have turned into ice. Adidas knows this – we love their Climawarm tights which keep you warm when it’s cold and cold when it’s warm. what more do you need?

If you’ve ever had frozen ears or a frozen head you understand the need for this. You can get these pretty much anywhere, but just make sure to get something that covers your ears.


ph: Asics

Lightweight, non-sweat waterproof jacket
Some people like running in rain. I am not one of them. Stay dry with a light wind and water resistant jacket.


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