Our essential running checklist

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Whether a seasoned runner or a beginner fancying your first event, you need to ensure you have the correct equipment to succeed. Every runner has been there at some stage. Turning up for a race and realising they have forgotten something, or going out for a run and forgetting your GPS tracker.

Here is our checklist of the absolute essentials to make sure that, no matter how experienced, you have everything you need to thrive and reach your goals. So don’t worry, we have you covered!

Running shoes – first and foremost, running shoes are about as essential as it gets. Always break new shoes in before any event or long run, and ensure proper, well-fitted shoes are purchased in the first place. Most good running shops will let you try running shoes out, look at your running style, and recommend which shoe is best. You can even get shoes that cater for back pain, knee injuries, a more barefoot experience and so on.

Clothing – having the right clothing is probably more important than you think. A sweat-wicking top, that draws sweat away from the body, is a good place to start. It is important to look good when you run – looking good often helps with feeling good, which will improve motivation. Jogging bottoms, running shorts, compression clothing, running socks and headwear are all important, depending on the weather, when running.

Why not check out the Vivi Nation running top here.

Nutrition – energy gel sachets or bars are a great way to quickly fuel your body when the going gets tough. Fires need to be stoked, and so does your body. When preparing for a race, getting your food right beforehand is essential. Preparation should include a healthy, high-carb dinner the night before. For more about fuelling properly, read our blog here.

Water bottle – hydration is a vital part of any training or event. Always have a handy running bottle that can be sipped at regular intervals to ensure you keep cool and hydrated. Better still; why not fill your bottle up with an isotonic drink to replenish lost electrolytes?

Music – personally, I despise running without music driving me on. It can get boring and it can get repetitive. A good running track can keep you entertained, and also motivated, which can be the difference when trying to beat personal bests. With music in your ears, you will find that you can run further, faster and more relaxed.

Running watch/GPS – when training this can be a really good way to really drive yourself on and reach your goals, racing against previous times set. Being able to see your segment splits per mile or kilometre, your route, and your various speeds is a good way to analyse your training. During an event, this technology can help keep on top of time targets and add an extra incentive when the burn starts to kick.

Here are other things to consider on a race day:

Pre-race: race confirmation and directions to start, anti-chafing cream, suncream, lip balm, safety pins, comfortable clothing for travelling, an energy bar snack, ID in case needed to collect race number.

Race: sunglasses, plasters, headwear if the weather is hot (cap/visor), energy gel sachets.

Post-race: change of clothes (including socks and underwear), waterproof jacket, a recovery drink, food, a towel.

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Chris Smith
Founder of Vivi Nation, sports enthusiast, occasional triathlete, keen cyclist and optimistic Liverpool FC fan.

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