Memorial Day has come and gone, which only means one thing. Summer has officially arrived. For a lot of runners, fall race training starts soon, if not now. Summer running can be one tough beast, but running gear has come a long way to helping runners stay somewhat cool. And after surviving about a decades worth of summer training in the South, I’ve got summer running gear essentials recommendations for you.
Think you’ve got all the running gear you could possibly need? Well, maybe. But I’ve also got recommendations on a few things that can make a world of difference in your comfort level this summer. So, here are the things I absolutely cannot live without this summer!
Summer Running Gear Essentials
Even if you have a dresser or closet full of running clothes, I’ve got a few recommendations to consider with the approaching soaring temps.
- New Balance Accelerate Tank – This easy, breezy, airy tank is made especially for runners. It’s made with light, sweat-wicking fabric, and will protect your skin from UV rays without making you hot(er).
- Oiselle Toolbelt Roga – Because once you add in heat and humidity, your fueling needs only increase. The Oiselle Toolbelt Roga short has you covered with plenty of pockets, and a comfortable design that won’t leave you chafing.
- Oofos Thong Sandal – Are you going to wear these during a run? I sure hope not. But after a sweaty run, your feet are almost guaranteed to swell up a bit (even if you’re not pregnant). Let those piggies breath in the most comfortable sandals, designed to help your feet and calves recover faster.
- Injinji No Show Toe Socks – Because the extra sweat and swelling can make those poor feet more prone to blisters, the Injinji toe socks can help make sure your toes aren’t rubbing up against one another. Which means a lot less opportunity for blisters. Trust me when I say your feet will thank you.
Stuff to help you deal with all the difficulties summer running can bring before, during, and after your heat training sessions.
Related Post: Summer Running: The Pros & Cons
- Squirrels Nut Butter – You already know that sweating = chaffing. For most runners anyway. Add in the fact that sweat tends to turn into salt crystals, which can rub and burn a hole in even the toughest of skin. Squirrels Nut Butter can’t keep you from sweating, but it can protect that precious skin, preventing chaffing and blisters.
- Nathan VaporHowe2.0 12L Running Vest – I am a huge fan of hydration vests, especially during the summer months. This particular hydration is my absolute favorite for summer running for a couple of reasons. First, the material is so light and breathable, unlike a lot of hydration vests that feel like a heater on your back. Second, the insulated water bladder can keep cold water cold for a LONG time. Smart runners will toss a couple of ice cubes in that sucker to keep things extra chilly.
- Carseat Towel – Because there aren’t many things that can get gross faster than a runners carseat during the summer months. The carseat towel is a great cover that will keep you from sticking to your seats, and is easily washed to stay fresh (unlike the inside of your car).
- Sunscreen Singles – If you’re running more than 90 minutes, and sweating up a storm, one sunscreen application is not enough. Toss one of these sunscreens into your hydration packs, and your long run will be sunburn-free.
Because when your running in 90% humidity, not just any old running fuel will do. Especially if you want to avoid GI Distress!
- Cold Brew – Ok, so I don’t recommend chugging this stuff DURING your run, but a little caffine can give you a small performance boost. As much as I love a hot cup of coffee, you honestly don’t need anymore heat June – August. This cold brew coffee can give you the caffeine kick, without making you sweat more.
- Tailwind – One of my absolute favorite ways to fuel during hot runs is to use more liquid hydration. Tailwind doubles down with simple carbohydrates and electrolytes, and makes sure you get in enough fluids to prevent GI Distress. I’ve run a full marathon using only Tailwind, and it is absolutely a fueling game changer.
- Frozen Grapes – If you’ve never tried frozen grapes, this is your sign to go and put some in the freezer immediately. They are the perfect post-run snack that is refreshing, anti-inflammatory, and natural.
This gear won’t make the summer any less hot, or the humidity any less oppressive. But it can certainly go a long way to making summer running a little more bearable and enjoyable. What are your absolute must have recommendations for summer running gear?