You probably know by now that running is a great physical activity. People love running because it is so easy to get started. You do not need any expensive equipment to get away from the TV and stretch your legs, shares endurance coach Walter Keating Jr.
All the same, there will be a time when you want to take running more seriously. At that time, you will start thinking about the clothing you wear when you go out for a run. Maybe you want to look good as well as feel good – or perhaps you have started running with a group of people and would like to impress them.
The best clothes to start running in are the sporty garments you already have in your house. You do not need to spend any additional money. Nor do you have to make any difficult decisions! Wearing a favorite old T-shirt and shorts will give you a totally adequate start.
However, there are some downsides to non-specialist garments. Some natural fabrics, especially cotton, are less breathable than their synthetic alternatives. A cotton shirt is comfortable to wear when you are not busy, but it can make you sweat heavily while you are running. Worse still, those fabrics can pick up odors very easily. So even if you start out feeling great, you might regret your choice after a short while.
Getting your Shoes Right
One piece of equipment that you must think about is your running shoes. Choosing the wrong shirt or shorts will make you sweaty: by contrast, the wrong shoes will almost certainly lead to injuries if you go running several times a week.
How can you avoid injuring yourself with the wrong shoes? Go to a running store. You can try on many different shoes and find the most comfortable ones. The sales staff will look carefully at your feet and ankles before suggesting the right kind of support for you and the type of running you want to do. The addition of an orthotic insole for great arch support in your shoes will help to limit overuse injuries.
Shorts and Leggings
Covering your legs can be confusing and challenging. You have many choices. Running shorts are made from light and breathable fabrics, which you can purchase in whatever length you like. Not everyone likes to wear the shortest possible shorts, but they may help you to run faster.
Alternatively, you can choose running leggings, especially if you are planning to run in colder weather. Everyone gets warmer during their run, but it can be difficult even to get started if the weather is really chilly! Leggings will help you in that situation. Leggings are good for men as well as women. Anyone who likes the feel of leggings but doesn’t feel comfortable with the way they look can wear a pair of shorts over the top.
Finding the Right Running Shirt
Some people think that shirts are not as important as other gear. They are mistaken. A good running top is an aspect of your equipment that you should not ignore. Even between specialist running shirts, there are big differences.
Your decision about what to wear on your top half can be helped by participating in amateur running events. From a simple 5k up to ultramarathons, many events will give participants a branded sports shirt as a souvenir of the event. You can wear this and think about your running memories.
If you are buying a new shirt for yourself, you can make a choice about whether you want long sleeves, short sleeves, or no sleeves at all! You should be careful to buy tops that are made from light and breathable synthetic fabrics. Some cheaper garments may be synthetic but are so heavy they make you sweat more. Aim to try before you buy, and don’t be afraid to return any clothes you purchase that turn out to be unsuitable.
So, to sum up, if you are starting out with the wonderful hobby of running, some new clothing can inspire you to push yourself further. Whatever your shape or size, running clothing will be available for you. If you purchase any specialist items, you will quickly feel the benefits, especially if you are running in very hot or cold weather.
About Walter Keating Jr.
Walter Keating Jr. is a Toronto-based fitness coach specializing in triathlon coaching and corrective exercise training. He graduated from the Fitness and Lifestyle Management Program at George Brown College and immediately started his professional career. Mr. Keating has worked as an endurance coach, personal trainer, spinning instructor, and corrective exercise trainer.