by John Stanton
I conducted an informal poll on social media by asking: “What is your must have running accessory?” Our readers responded loudly and clearly with their favourites. For more running tips, questions and giveaways, follow me on Facebook at JohnStantonRunningRoom.
Overall, the most popular response to the accessory question was two words: “My Garmin.” Clearly, many of you enjoy using a device like the Garmin Forerunner 35 to track your pace and distance, download workout data to your computer, review your history and much, much more. Other high-tech gadgets such as activity trackers, heart rate monitors and smart watches also got plenty of mentions.
“My go-to accessory is my Garmin. I find it indispensable for pacing myself during speed workouts and for running my plan during races.”
– Tony B.
“I absolutely need my Garmin to run. If it’s not recorded, it didn’t happen.”
– Rachelle D.
“You guessed it… my Garmin. It is so disappointing if I forget to hit start, or if the battery dies mid-run.”
– Heather R.
A large percentage of you rely on music to motivate you to put one foot in front of the other. This makes sense, as a favourite song can have an energizing effect and help you push through a tough run. My one safety tip is to make sure to keep the volume at a reasonable level so you can still be aware of your surroundings. Fortunately, Yurbuds Inspire 100 ear buds are ergonomically designed to allow in ambient noise while maintaining excellent sound quality.
“I must have my tunes on run day. I’d rather have surgery without anaesthetic than run a distance race without music.”
– Robert L.
“I always need my iPod for music or my phone for podcasts. I like to hide the sound of my huffing and puffing!”
– Lindsay C.
Carrying water with you is one of the best ways to avoid dehydration on the run. Some runners enjoy strapping on a handheld single bottle, while others like to go hands-free with a multi-bottle hydration belt or waistpack. For example, the unisex FuelBelt Ergo Belt securely holds two bottles at 150 mL each. If you need a quick refresher on how to stay hydrated, see my article on page 20.
“I always have to have water, no matter how cold or warm it is.”
– Sharon C.
“I love my handheld water bottle that also has a little pouch for snacks, keys, or whatever.”
– Marcella Z.
“My must-have is water – whether it’s in a hydration pack or handheld.”
– Jeannette G.
A hat is a smart choice in all weather conditions. In the summer, choose one made from mesh fabric to ensure proper ventilation and prevent overheating. Our Running Room Unisex Perforated Cap is adjustable, lightweight and quick-drying. Or, if you’ve ever participated in our annual Running Room 20 Minute Challenge, you probably have one of our commemorative mesh caps in your closet somewhere.
“I have to have a hat. Not so much for the sun/rain/snow, but to keep the hair out of my eyes.”
– Carole V.
“Must have my favourite running hat! Got to keep the hair and sweat out of my face.”
– Judy B.
“I’ve got to have a hat to protect my eyes from the sun and rain.”
– Dana S.
You Said It
Here are some other accessories that our readers said they simply can’t run without:
“My phone, for taking pictures of any beautiful scenery I may come across.”
– Tracy T.
“Compression socks! But that’s not an accessory. It’s a necessity.”
– Tricia P.
“My ID card for safety and a $20 bill in case I have to take a taxi home.”
– Fiona M.
“My handkerchief, because my nose runs with me.”
– Heather U.
“My must-have accessory is a good attitude! No negative-nellyness allowed on my runs!”
– Valerie L.
“Sunglasses and twin sister who motivates me!”
– Bev M.
“Other than my Garmin, my must-have accessory is my running buddies… without them, nothing else matters.”
– Barb M.
John Stanton is the President and Founder of the Running Room. He is the Author of 10 books on Running, Walking & Family Fitness.