Marathon Running Gear
The basis for most running gear is about comfort and weight. Since you want to dedicate your effort toward the miles ahead of you, the last thing you want to worry about is heavy, wet clothes– or worse– chafing. Starting from the top and working our way down, let’s talk about the essential marathon running gear you need.
1. Marathon Hats and Visors
In colder weather, keeping your head covered helps reduce the amount of heat which escapes from your body. Wearing a hat or beanie while you run can keep you warm. And in warmer weather, the technical fabric will help pull sweat away from your skin and out of your eyes. If you prefer just to block some of the sun, but keep your head cool, a visor is a great option for a marathon running gear.
2. Reduce the Bounce with a Good Sports Bra
I would argue that the number one most important piece of gear for a female runner, above running shoes, is a good sports bra. A study published in 2008 from the University of Melbourne CHESM/School of Physiotherapy on breast support choices for physical activity concluded that, irrespective of breast size, a well-fitted and supportive bra worn during physical activity decreases the excessive strain on breast tissue. The researchers found that a woman’s breast tissue cannot support itself during high impact physical activity like running.
Without a sports bra, you may experience discomfort and pain in the breasts or the back. A good sports bra will keep the breasts close to the body with minimal movement to reduce discomfort.
3. Marathon Shirts, Shorts, and Layers
That cotton t-shirt of yours is great for lounging around the house, or even going for a quick run around the block. Cotton is great for one thing: holding moisture. When you start to sweat, that t-shirt will grab every drop and keep it right next to your skin. This can make you feel cold and wet no matter what the temperature is outside. So skip the cotton t-shirt and purchase professional marathon running gear that are made with technical fabrics. These clothes are designed to pull sweat away from the skin (called “wicking”) to keep you dry and comfortable.
You can find the same technical fabrics in shorts, capris, and running tights. Some runners prefer to wear tighter shorts, while others opt for looser fabrics. The difference in comfort is a personal decision.
It’s most important to buy technical apparel which wicks sweat for your first layer, or the clothes right next to your skin. From there, any additional layer should be designed to protect you from wind or rain. If it’s cold on race day, buy and wear inexpensive layers that you don’t mind getting rid of over your racing clothes. Then, as your body warms up, shed the layers. Most marathons will send volunteers out to collect the discarded items and donate them to charities.
Even with high performance, technical clothing, one common problem may occur: chafing. With the repetitive movement and the salt transfer to the top of your skin, you may find that you get a painful red rash at the stitches in your clothing. One way to prevent this is to apply a non-petroleum based lubricant to the areas you’re most prone to chafe: under the arms, between the upper thighs, on your nipples, and at the stitches of your clothes.
Important! Chafing can turn any run into sheer mightmare. Never run long distance without your Bodyglide Original Anti-Chafe Balm! You will never stop thanking this little balm!
5. Hydration and Marathon Nutrition Gear
While you are testing out your nutrition and hydration needs for a marathon, take note of how much fluid you need to take in for best performance. This will help you determine how much water to bring with you during your long runs and race. A good race will have an aid station every two miles on the course. Some races may only have water and some may even run out if they didn’t properly plan for the number of participants or the weather. So it’s a good idea to bring your own marathon running gear water, electrolyte replacement, and nutrition based on your needs.
For some, a water bottle is all they need and they will replenish it with water from the aid stations or water fountains as they go. But if you find holding something in your hand uncomfortable or you need to bring more with you, there are several options for fuel belts. Worn around the waist or hips, depending on your preference, these belts will come with two to six small bottles to hold water, gels, or concentrated mixes to keep you hydrated.
6. Marathon Running Shoes
Finally, of the essential gear you need for a marathon your shoes are important. Since the 1970′s when running shoes gained popularity, time and money have been invested in developing technologies to make shoes lighter and more cushioned to reduce the impact of the heel strike.
With barefoot running hitting the mainstream running market, minimalist footwear is also available from some of the established running shoe companies such as Nike and New Balance, as well as from newcomers to the sport such as Vibram and Newton. Check these Men’s by Vibram Fivefingers.
7. Marathon Running GPS Watch
Except from the running shoes, the watch is the most important running gear accessory a runner needs. There are plenty of running watches, types and brands. For Sunday joggers any $50 watch with a stopwatch and timer would be enough. For marathon training the watch should support more training features: heart-rate monitor, time and pace, distance memory, motionbased, provides online mapping & route sharing , calorie burn count, virtual competitor and much more.
The best running watches are made by Garmin. Garmin Forerunner watches are used by most of the marathon runners and athletes. Timex GPS watches are also very popular as they are slightly cheaper than the Garmin. Marathon GPS watches may cost between $130-$240. One outstanding watch is the NEW MotoACTV Motorola GPS watch is a runner’s watch and a music player!
See Amazon’s discounts GPS watches for runners .
Marathon Running Gear Conclusion
Marathon running is not like Sunday jogging, you need to begin to get used to the thought of using professional gear for a professional training. Once you declare you are aiming at the 26.2 you ARE a professional runner.
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