7 must-have running tools for my journey from couch to 10K

August 24th, 2012 by Gallagher John 2 Comments

Over the past 14 or 15 months, running has become a regular habit for me.  I have completed five 5K races and just recently completed my first 10K.  Now, every carpenter needs tools in their tool-belt to do their work.  Runners need tools, also to help them measure, improve, and stay motivated.  Here are 7 tools that go with me on each run that I do:

1) iPod – I am still using the iPod classic that was given to me more than 6 years ago by a friend.  It holds my playlists for different lengths runs, different podcasts that I subscribe to, and I have even listened to 2 books while running.  This helps to keep my mind growing during the time I spend running.  (Does anyone still buy an iPod classic?)

2) Sony earbuds – I tried a few types of earbuds when I started running.  These Sony earbuds are the most comfortable, sound pretty good, and were reasonably priced ($15) (AND, they stay in my ears!)

3) iPod armband (with velcro strap) – When i started doing a little bit longer runs in my training, it was not convenient to hold the iPod, so I needed the armband.  ($15)

4) Garmin nuvi 210 watch – This watch has been GREAT.  It has GPS so I can track and upload my runs to the computer and see where I have run.  I have even used it when playing basketball with the boys, or recently when we walked in Colonial Williamsburg.  ($249)

5) Heart rate monitor – An absolute MUST for me to ensure I am not overdoing it.  This was included with the watch, but I listed it separately as an important tool.

6) Garmin foot pod – This little gadget helps in a couple ways.  It monitors and records my cadence when I run (I am coached to run around 180, but 160 average has been normal for me).  Also, when I run inside, the foot pod keeps track of distance I have done on the treadmill so I can still record my training distances. ($45)

7) Running visor – This seems like a simple tool, but those who know me personally know that I have trouble finding hats that fit me.  This fit AND it provides some side benefits.  It helps to shade my eyes when sun is out, and the built in headband keeps the sweat from running into my eyes. ($19)

So, if you see me out running, I am all wired up.  Not everyone needs this equipment, but because I am process driven and looking to improve, they are necessary for me.  Do you have any suggestions on what’s missing from my toolbox?  What other ‘power tools’ should I consider?