People take up jogging and running for various purposes. They may be trying to lose some weight or they may be running to take their mind off of things like the pressure at their office or anything else. Running helps them refresh their minds as well as prepare them for the next day or the next week. There are also a lot of people who may be preparing for a marathon or any other type of event. Even if you are not preparing for such an event, jogging or running is still one of the best ways that you can exercise and enjoy the great outdoors at the same time. There are numerous benefits of running that you simply cannot ignore. And once you know them all, you will immediately want to grab your running shoes and head out to the great outdoors to enjoy nature, the environment, socialize and get your daily fix of exercise. Now we all know that we need a great pair of running shoes if we want this exercise to feel great. Otherwise, it will just give us a lot of pain and misery and we might feel like giving up soon. But the question that most people don’t ask is what other running gears do they need if they have taken up running as a serious form of exercise and want to continue with it.
Here are 5 of the most essential things that you must own as a runner so that you are fully prepared and don’t miss a step.
One of the most essential thing that you need as a runner is a good GPS app that tells you where you are, where you started, and how much distance have you covered. As a Runner, it is imperative that you know whether you are doing good or not. Without GPS by your side, you have no way of knowing if you are getting better or worse. Suppose you start running near your home and cover several miles before calling it quits. With a device or an app, you can track your progress and find out if you can do the same the next day. Similarly, you can easily track your route and increase the distance gradually every week or as you see fit. Once you get into a routine, you will start recognizing various patterns in your route and can find out the best path that you can take every day and not get stuck into anything. For example, if there is construction going on you can easily select another path and meet your goal without being stopped or hindered in any way. You can get smart-watches that are multipurpose or smartphone apps with the GPS feature enabled. There are a plethora of such apps available for iPhones as well as androids.
2. Heart Rate Monitor
One of the most important tools that you can have as a runner is your very own heart rate monitor. Now, you might be wondering what a heart rate monitor could do for a runner. For one thing, it gives you important data that you can use to find out whether your heart is performing as it should or if there is a problem. Basically, you can track the efficiency of your cardiovascular system and act on it before the time is up. What a heart monitor does is to monitor just how many times your heart was beating in one minute. If you know what the normal rate for heartbeats is per minute, you can check your heartbeat against it and find out various things like after you are done with running, how long does it take for your heart to come back to its normal condition and how many calories did you burn in a certain session, among other things. This can tell you a lot about outside factors that affect your heart like overtraining, stress, dehydration, and others.
3. Hydration Tools
We all know that keeping ourselves hydrated during running is just as important as hydrating before and after the running session. Not only hydration, but you also need to give your body the proper amount of nutrition if you are running long distances. Otherwise, you may face some serious consequences. As far as water is concerned, you need to drink water if you are running for more than 30 minutes. But that doesn’t mean that you cannot drink before that. The simple rule here is to drink water whenever you feel thirsty. Your body will tell you when you need it. That is when you should not deny your body as it is already in an overheated state. But carrying your water bottle can feel a little awkward when you are running. So keep a hydration belt or any other tool that can carry your water bottle as well as a protein bar or a few other things.
4. Weather Specific Clothing
Most people don’t give a lot of importance to running gear when they go out. They have their cotton t-shirts and their gym shorts and that’s all they need to feel comfortable in. And on most days, that is enough. But what they don’t know is that as the weather changes, their running gear should also change. This will allow them to run comfortably in all types of weather and not make the excuse that they can’t go outside as it is raining or cold outside. Another thing that they don’t pay attention to is that when they are running long distances, cotton can actually work against them. Cotton tends to hold on to the sweat and that may chafe, making it impossible for them to complete their running goals. Also, you don’t want your shirts to absorb the smell of sweat and stink up your entire wardrobe.
5. Ice Packs
Surveys say that around 70 per cent of the people who run on a regular basis will get some sort of injury in a year. You might be among those 70 per cent. Even if you are not, you might suffer from muscle soreness. There is nothing more frustrating than leaving your running goal because of the twinge. You might get sore muscles because of an injury that you have suffered or it could just be because of delayed onset of muscle soreness. In both these conditions, ice packs are the most popular choice of runners and experts. When you apply the ice pack to the target area, it immediately decreases the inflammation and reduces any swelling that might have been caused by the injury.
Run like the wind! And make sure that you have these 5 essential accessories with you at all times so that you can be better prepared for anything on the way. Make sure that nothing gets in the way of you and your running goals.