Running Gear Suggestions

Posted: February 17, 2011 at 12:38 pm

I continue to fall in love with running! Last night, I completed my next Couch to 5K workout and finished 2.57 miles in about 28 minutes.


I even oopsied and did one running interval over twice as long because I couldn’t see the time on my screen and was just in a groove. Amazing how time flies on a run when you’re into a song and into a groove!

I have also been loving the weather recently!


It’s been like that all this week and the forecast shows weather similar to this for the foreseeable future. I’m in love! Can it last pretty please?

The weather has certainly warranted getting outside as often as possible. I have enjoyed daily walks with the kiddos – Makenzie in her stroller and Baby B in his little carrier pouch with a blanket. 

 walk with pouchmakenzie stroller 

Walking along and playing “I Spy” with Makenzie and glancing down to baby B’s cute face always puts me in such a good mood. Wouldn’t it make you smile?

braedon pouch

For one of our walks we went up to the local Greenway path and it actually got me craving a Couch to 5K session outdoors. I think once I get to longer run intervals, and if the weather stays this nice, I may just do that. I know I want to get used to running outdoors some before that 5K race I’m working towards in April.

Although there is certainly a lot about running I will have to learn. Fortunately, I have you all to turn to for suggestions! So, today I will start with one of the simple ones – gear!

What is your favorite gear for running outdoors? Here are some things I have picked up from you all so far as useful and I could see myself using if I continue falling in love with running and do decide to continue:

Garmin 205

Peter actually found a deal for one for about $100 and I think he wants to get it. He is all about finding deals for electronic trinkets. I definitely think I would use this to help with pacing myself! I don’t know if it would be necessary but I wouldn’t mind having that extra tool that’s for sure.

Arm Band or Pouch?


Running = music. I have learned quickly how much that helps. I use an iPhone for my music and have no clue how I would keep up with it. Holding it on outdoor runs seems…annoying. So which is more comfortable to running? The arm bands? Or I’ve heard of little pouches where you can also store a key, fuel, ID, money, or phone. Another question – what’s good to even take on runs?! [Please note: The iPhone is not my phone. We’re cheap and I have an old school phone with no data plan. The iPhone is a disconnected one Peter took from a friend to fiddle around with and that I can use for music. I’m not even kidding.]


If I DO get into running and end up doing any longer distances, I have a feeling I will want one of these babies. Yet again, the thought of carrying water sounds…annoying. Added bonus? We could use it when we hike!

Running Fuel

Gus, Shot Blocks, SportsBeans, Gatorade, dried fruit, and even candy. So. Many. Options. I’ve got a long way to go before I need to worry about that though.

These are obviously all things I would not need to worry about until more solidly into running – although, let’s face it, that love affair has already begun. I mainly want to stay on top of the game with my running (ha! pun intended!) mental lists. Plus, its fun! I already get excited thinking about my next Couch to 5K session, trying outdoor runs, and learning more about it all.

So, you tell me…what gear do you find helpful? And if not a runner, any gear you must have for your workouts like a HR monitor? I must have my spin shoes when taking spin classes!

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97 Comments to “Running Gear Suggestions”
  1. Lauren says:

    Unless I’m doing longer runs, I usually just bring my ID/key & ipod. I carry my ipod just cause I’m so used to carrying it. It’s so warm down there! I’m celebrating cause it’s 40 degrees here, warm for the winter!

  2. Allie says:

    ahhh running gear… 2 words: Good. Shoes. 🙂

  3. Glad your runs are getting so easy – nice!! I love my Polar F7, my nike pegasus and I think a camel bak is a must for running outdoors!!

  4. I trained and ran my first half marathon without any gear but the whole time I wanted some. I got a tweet on Black Friday that Garmin 205s were on sale for 88! I sent the link to my mom and she bought it for me for Christmas!
    I absolutely love that thing! It is such a good training tool, especially for my long runs. I don’t have to be detailed when I plan out my routes and I can mix it up if I want. D: I highly recommend the Garmin 205.

    • Tina says:

      That is certainly at the top of my list! And for your comment about the foam roller – already got one and I use it almost daily. Love that thing. Hurts so good.

  5. Sorry to double post…I just remembered as I clicked submit…

    If you start running longer distances you really should get a foam roller to stretch out your muscles. I got one of those for Christmas too and it’s amazing!

  6. Stephanie says:

    I love my garmin but I hated my arm band for music. I hated looking around to find the button to change songs if I wasn’t *feeling* one that came on. It’s weird but I prefer to carry things in my hands than to have on the fanny pack thingy. 🙂 Good shoes have been the only thing I can truly say is necessary. I haven’t splurged much on clothing…I still wear old high school t-shirts and band shirts. 🙂

  7. Being “in the groove” and not realizing how far you’ve gone = running bliss! I love my Garmin! It’s totally changed my training (in a positive way). Camel backs are a great way to hydrate especially for hot and long runs, but my finicky self doesn’t like to have anything hanging off of my while I run 🙂 I am a pretty simple runner – I don’t go for the super fancy stuff. Baby B is too precious for words. How great to be able to get out in the sunshine with them!

    • Tina says:

      Yea…I’m a little concerned about the thing hanging off me bothering me as well. That would probably be the last thing I would get and only if I really felt like it.

  8. Shannon says:

    It’s actually warm here in Boston today too! It feels so good!

    I love my garmin. It motivates me and makes me want to beat my prior times and distances. I want a camelbak for this summer too 🙂

  9. Caitlin says:

    I have or have tried everything you listed here. I do love my Forerunner and I definitely suggest investing in one. It is so great to be able to track your runs – especially if you’re training for something. I have a spi belt which I used when I ran my half and for long runs where I may want to carry money, gu’s and my phone. I really liked that particular brand because it settled quickly once I got started running. I have a Camelbak and for this heat in the South, I don’t know how I could run without it. Personally running with any kind of bottle – whether it’s on my waist, in a strap or just in my hand – makes me sick, almost like motion sickness. Having the Camelbak lessens that swishy water feeling. Plus mine has a zipper I put my keys, etc in.

    One thing I would DEFINITELY recommend is a Road ID ( You can get one that attaches to your shoe that will list your emergency contact info, health conditions, etc. You never want to put yourself in a position of danger without having some identity on you – the world is too crazy of a place (and your kids are too cute!) They’re inexpensive and worth the peace of mind! Good luck!

  10. Melodie says:

    I have a Garmin and love my iphone arm band! I do not use my Garmin with every run though. I am a pretty simple runner 🙂

  11. It’s nice to hear how much you’re liking your Couch to 5k training. 🙂

    I love my Garmin, but I was running for over a year before I got it. Prior to that, I would use my watch for time and google maps to see how far I had gone. I stuck to a few routes that I had mapped out, so I wouldn’t have to look it up every single time.

    I have a SPIbelt pouch, and it works well to carry along my ID, phone, keys and GU.

    Yes, I use GU, but only if I will be running longer than an hour, which has been seldom for me so far.

    I have a Camelbak similar to the one you have pictured. I haven’t ever grown to like it for running, but I use it for hiking. I would like to find a better way to carry water for longer runs. So far, I either use the Camelbak, which bugs me, or carry a water bottle, which isn’t great either. I’m dreaming of including some long runs in my future, so eventually I will have to work it out. 🙂

  12. I think it’s awesome that you’re finding running to be fun… I like running extremely short distances with the dogs, and that’s about it! 😉

  13. Baby B would make me smile too!

    I have a water belt (spy belt) for longer runs and I will take some fuel on runs longer than 7 miles. I don’t wear a garmin or heart rate monitor, but I do wear a regular watch to keep track of time.

  14. I’ve been running for about 7 years now and I’m not big on gear at all. I used to run w/an ipod until mine died. Now it’s just my cell phone that I bring along, if that. I’ve had a few injuries while running alone and I’m allergic to bees so I bring my phone for emergencies. Other than that, I like to run tech-free 🙂

  15. Carolyn says:

    I love that your getting into running!! I fell in love with running after having my older son and now that I am pregnant with our third i am still loving running just as much.You will love a garmin, I don’t know how i ever ran without mine. Especially if you are planning on training for bigger races its nice to know how far you are running without having to do the same boring route or take your car out and clock it. I would say that is the #1 thing as a runner that I would not want to do without. The farthest I have ran is a half marathon and i have never carried water or a camelbak with me on any of my runs. I do not like holding anything extra, I don’t even like running with music because I like to enjoy the surroundings and i usually use my outside runs as my quiet time with God. If i know I am going to be running 10+ miles I try to fuel a bit before I leave and then pack some shot bloks along the way. I really try and get up early and not run in the heat on my long runs.Though I do have an arm band for my I-phone and it works great to use at the gym. Also, I would recommend a pair of nike tempo shorts, they are awesome for running and for working out in general!

    If you think you might really get serious a double jogger would be a good investment too. I have the BOB double jogger and LOVE IT! I probably love it more than my garmin if I had to choose between the too. Somedays I just don’t feel like getting up at 5am to run so it allows me some time to sleep in and then run with the kids when my husband is at work.

    Awesome job on your training so far. You are going to have no trouble completing the 5k!

  16. I’m so jealous of your weather! That is PERFECT for running! 🙂

  17. Heather says:

    I was really getting into running at the end of last summer before I fell and sprained my ankle (not a running injury, I’m just that classy and very accident prone). I got an armband for my iPhone and I like that I don’t have to hold it, but it’s almost impossible to change the song without stopping and turning it or taking it off your arm completely. I really really want to get a Forerunner! I can obsess so much over mileage that I will jump in the car after a run and drive the route I just ran! I usually run in my neighborhood which is still fairly new and never shows up on Google Map! 🙁

  18. Anne Marie says:

    This post makes me so jealous!! I miss running like whoa… I’m just too tired at the end of the day (I know, preaching to the choir…), especially once we do house-y stuff. I’m looking forward to a routine again…

  19. definitely if you’re running outside, you need to get yourself a road id just in case!

  20. Coco says:

    I have a Garmin and love it. It helps me monitor my pace, but I have to be careful about getting too caught up in the numbers.

    I run with an iPod Nano, but also have an iPhone. When looking at ways to carry it, make sure you test it out – I have a hard time fitting it in the pocket of one of my fanny packs. What I use is a fanny pack/water bottle holder that has small zipper pockets.

    Maybe something like this would fit the iPhone:

    You would still have to take it out to change songs – but I never do that while running.

    I had a Camelback but didn’t really run long enough to need it. A 20 oz. bottle is enough for me on 8-10 mile runs, but I don’t run in real heat.

  21. Kirsten says:

    I use an armband for my iphone. After a moment a couple times, you forget it’s there. I like the pouch to though.

    I will say that I’m not sure about running with a camelbak. I have one and used it to train & walk a half marathon last April but I’m just not sure about running with it back there.

    You may want to check out a fuel belt. That is my next purchase as I am working on my running as well.

  22. My sunglasses and ipod are all I need for my run 🙂

  23. I consider myself a runner so I’ll toss out my two cents…

    I have a Garmin 305 and love it…but I ran with just a $12 sports watch and google maps for two years – that worked just fine for me.

    When I run I don’t listen to music but I’ve found audiobooks and love them. I usually tuck my phone (where my books are) into my fold down waistband or sometimes into my sports bra – I always have my phone on me when running.

    I’d recommend against the camelbak – check out something like a Nathan Hydration Belt like this…

    As for running fuel – you have to experiment with what works with your body and your taste buds. I just discovered Honey Stingers and LOVE them!

    Whatever you do…have fun running and do your thing! 🙂

  24. Mac says:

    I’m running my first half marathon this summer… camelback or water belt? Any pros and cons on the two?

    • Tina says:

      I’m not sure but it seems like people either LOVE or HATE camelbaks. I guess it depends where you would rather have something bouncing on you?? Someone did make a point that the camelbak gets very hot covering such a large portion of the back. I had never thought of that!

  25. Mandy says:

    I use my iphone and armband and wireless headphones when running 🙂 I got to run outside this week and it was sooo nice! My iphone also has a GPS tracker on it with a stopwatch, so really I couldn’t do anything without my phone LOL!

    I don’t bring water with me … can’t handle carrying it. If I run a race though they always have pit stops 😉

  26. Too funny! I posted a similar post the other day “Daydreaming” about my wish list — must of which were all fitness related. I also fully intended to post a running gear question soon also. LOL!!!

    Q: Why do you want the 205 Garmin over the 305? I’m curious…Im looking at a wishlist for the 305 but wondering why you chose the one over the other..

    I have an armband for my ipod itouch. I got it at the 5 Below store. It doesnt trouble me at all or pose to be a pain in the arse. LOL! Your pouch idea is nice as I like the idea of holding an ID and Key (for safety reasons) but I dont know about you but I prefer to run w/less gear as it gets in the way (or so I feel) and weighs me down)….which leads me to..

    Camelbacks are nice. My friend has one for when he runs races. He only uses it when they are long distance runs. Another friend has one because she hikes A LOT and it works very well for her. I think you could probably hold out on this purchase for a bit.

    Im still reading up on runing fuel also but from what I am reading (or maybe missed something?) you really dont need any unless you are running something longer than a 5K..*shrug*

    Glad you are enjoying your C25K program. I really liked it last year. Im doing another C25K-alike program this year and will be finished in two weeks. I cant wait!!!

    You’re lucky to have the solid temps so many days in. I had only two this week (yesterday and today) and of course both days I couldnt run outdoors because they were my scheduled rest days (I did actively rest tho and go for a family walk…LOVE those!)

    • Tina says:

      Yea a lot of this stuff was just dreaming about my future running. And going ahead hearing what others like. The only things I would get or even “need” to use in the near future would be perhaps the Garmin to help with pacing and then the pouch or armband for my music.

      Camelbak and fuel will certainly be later this year if I keep up with it and need things like that for runs longer than 5 miles. I have my eye on a half to train for at the end of the year…so these would be more for if I reach to that point. I hope I do though! I’m really loving it so far. Dare I say I look forward to it more than weights right now? Eep!

      Also the Garmin – the only difference between the two is the 305 does the HR and I don’t feel I need that. Since I don’t care about the heart rate monitor and the 205 is cheaper, I figured I would go with that one. 🙂

  27. When I read your question, I immediately thought about a waterbelt. Hydration is sooo important whether your running 5km or 50km. Although, I don’t recommend a camelback. It’s good for biking and hiking but for running it just makes you sweat more. At least for me, I sweat a lot when I run and the thought of something else covering my back and sweating even more, does not appeal to me. I would go with a waterbelt over a camelback! Some of the waterbelts even have little pockets/pouches for your keys, phone etc.

    For long runs I like the clifbloks.. keeps me occupied and i think i’m eating jubjubes lol. I used to use the gels but they were hard to get down and made me gag a bit lol.

    PS: your baby is sooo precious!!

    • Tina says:

      Yea I didn’t consider the heat factor with the Camelbak. I think…no know…that would drive me mad. I sweat a ton too!

  28. You could also get a nike+ chip until you’re ready to plunk down the money for a garmin. I used them before I bought my garmin 305 (which I love!) and it worked really well and I found it to be pretty accurate! You don’t even have to run with nikes either. I found a pouch on amazon for $5 that attaches to your shoe laces. I think it was called a bean pod? It worked well and I never worried about it falling out.

  29. Megan says:

    I keep finding new running things I want too! I made an original running wishlist ( but keep thinking of new things! Running is expensive 😉

  30. Mac says:

    Thanks for the reply about the camelback vs water belt… I like the new page look by the way!

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