In life BC (before children) I was a really keen runner. In fact, I ran my first half-marathon when I was pregnant with my first baby. Sadly, I haven’t kept it up as much as I’d like to, and one day I would love to run a marathon, but for now, I’m definitely more of a Couch-to-5K runner. It is something that is really mindful for me, though, as well as the calorie burning, and I love that it gets me outdoors in nature.
One of the things that I really like about running is that there are events that you can sign up for, to give you something to train for. Whether it is just for a local ParkRun event or something like a 10k race. There is a lot of kit that you can invest in when it comes to running too, in order to make your training for events, or just recreation, much more enjoyable and comfortable. While there are a number of different things that you can choose from, I do think that there are some pieces of running kit that are much more valuable than others.
Here are some of the things that I have found essential over the years. Not all are specific to women, but there are some that only women will be able to make the most of.
Supportive running bra
This is a piece of any woman’s running kit that really is a must. There are an abundance of running bras to choose from out there, but you can easily choose the wrong one if you’re not careful. In order to be the most comfortable, no matter what size bra you need, you need to choose a running bra that has the right level of support that is needed for running. Think of one that you’d wear to a Zumba class rather than one that you’d wear for yoga.
Not only do you need to get the support right, but you need to get one that fits correctly. Jogger’s nipple is totally a thing and if you choose a running bra that is a little too loose, then it could hurt over time. You want to choose one that fits snuggly but that doesn’t hinder breathing or cause you any pain. You should replace it usually every six months, depending on how much use it gets of course.
I have found that this is something that really motivates me; having a record of what I have done, how far I went, and so on. If you’re training for something specific then it can be super helpful. If you can get a sports watch with a GPS then that can be really handy, but being aware of calories, fat burn, distance, and timings can all improve your running ad give you some stats to improve on for each run.
Ok, so this one is going to sound a little obvious. But no matter what stage you are at, having a good pair of running shoes is vital. If you want to improve your running then usually the old faithful pair of trainers at the back of the cupboard might not cut it. Ideally, runners should choose their shoes at a specialist store so their gait (essentially running style) can be assessed. Then you can choose the shoes that suit your style the best. This will help them be the most comfortable for you, and really make a difference to your running style. It should also reduce risk of injury too as feet and ankles will be supported in the best way.
Women are more likely to suffer from an iron deficiency than men (this is coming from someone who has been classed as anaemic for years). There is a lot of research into this, and for women who run, they are more susceptible to having this deficiency. I’m not sure why this is, other than a lot of women menstruate, but the iron deficiency can impact nearly half of female runners. If your diet isn’t rich in iron, then get yourself a good iron supplement; it will help with your energy levels.
Having some kind of salve, Vaseline (petroleum jelly) can be so helpful when running. Not only can it help to stop your lips getting cold in the winter on a run, but if you have any soreness or chafing, it can really help!
What are some of your go-tos from running? It would be great to hear what you think.
*this is a collaborative post, but all words and opinions are my own.