The Gear You Need to Train for a Half Marathon

So you just signed up for a half marathon. Before you start training, make sure you have all the right gear. Having the right gear can mean the difference between running a new PR or developing painful blisters and chafing. Read on to find out everything you’ll need to train for a half marathon.

A Comfortable Pair of Running Shoes

A Fleet Feet employee holds up a Hoka shoe.

Having the right pair of running shoes is the most important thing you’ll need to train for a half marathon. A comfortable pair of running shoes that provide support and shock absorption will help reduce the risk of injury while you increase your mileage. If you’re not sure which pair is right for you, head to your local Fleet Feet to get fit for running shoes.

Some runners prefer to have a separate pair of shoes for race day in addition to their everyday trainers. Racing shoes are lighter, springier and feel faster than regular running shoes. You can also wear them during speed or tempo workouts.

Sweat-wicking Shorts, Tops and Bras

Whether you’re training in the dog days of summer or the bitter winter, you’ll want to have moisture-wicking technical running gear to keep you dry. Breathable, quick-drying fabrics keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

Cotton-Free Socks

A man puts on a pair of socks before a run.

The best way to avoid blisters, aside from having the right pair of running shoes, is to have the right pair of running socks. Cotton socks hold in moisture, leading to blistering and chafing. Investing in some technical running socks, usually made from polyester or wool fabric, will work wonders for your feet.

GPS Running Watch

While you can measure your distance on your watch or even use the old-school method of driving the route in your car, having all your stats on your wrist comes in handy. A GPS running watch will accurately track your distance, pace, heart rate and cadence to provide insights into your training.

Most GPS watches also have built in safety features, like incident detection and emergency alerts, so you can run with confidence.

Sunscreen

This is one of the most important, and often overlooked, pieces of running gear. No matter what time of day you run, wearing sunscreen provides protection from harmful UV rays. When you’re out in the sun for minutes and even hours, you want to do everything you can to protect your skin.

Visibility Products

If you’re an early bird or a night owl, you’ll likely log some miles in the dark. Visibility products, like clip-on lights and reflective vests, help drivers, bicyclists and other runners spot you on the road.

Nutrition and Hydration

Having the proper nutrition and hydration strategy is what elevates your performance on race day. You want to make sure you have the right fuel to get you across the finish line.

Energy chews and gels provide you with the much needed calories to replace what you’re expending, and hydration is critical to prevent cramping and fatigue.

It’s always a good idea to practice fueling before race day to avoid potential tummy troubles.

Recovery Gear

A woman massages herself with the Power Plate massage gun.

Just because you run is over doesn’t mean your training is. Recovery is just as important to the training process as running. Jump start your recovery process with tools like foam rollers, massage balls and massage guns.