The Best Women’s Running Gear of 2020
Gear so light and comfortable, you’ll PR on your morning jog
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Patagonia Strider Pro Pants ($129)
These just-in-case bottoms are a no-brainer for road and trail missions. The DWR-coated, 100 percent recycled polyester is airy, and the loose legs and stretchy snap-up cuffs are easy to slip over running shoes.
Julbo Spark Sunglasses ($130 and up)
Protective shades can look space-age. Not the Spark. The large, slightly cat-eyed frame is functional and cute, and features Julbo’s trademark quality lenses and grippy nose and temple pads.
Black Diamond Distance Wind Shell ($129)
Water-resistant, lightweight outer layers are a dime a dozen. The ripstop-nylon Distance is made with PFC-free DWR, which Black Diamond claims works better and lasts longer than its fluorocarbon-laden counterparts. We love the soft feel and the handy chest pocket, which is slanted for easy one-handed zipping.
Arc’teryx Kapta Tank ($49)
The only summer running shirt we want is one that doesn’t stick to our skin. Enter the Kapta. Made from a soft polyester mesh, it’s flowy enough to let the breeze in but still ready for business, with a high neck that prevents running-vest chafing.
Rabbit Freespeed 2.5-Inch Shorts ($58)
The Freespeed marries pajama-like comfort and tempo-ready performance. The boxy cut is thigh-friendly and sits flat (no poufing!). The poly-spandex mesh is light and wicking, and the wide, flat-knit waistband is covered in soft polyester jersey.
Brooks Dare Crossback Sports Bra ($60)
To solve the problem of uncomfortably tight sports bras, Brooks built the Dare Crossback with overlapping back panels, which increase flex. It’s stretchy and easy to pull over your head, and it won’t dig in around your rib cage. Heat-molded cups lift and separate for support that doesn’t squash or constrict.
Biolite Headlamp 200 Light ($45)
Biolite’s second headlamp uses the same design as its 330-lumen predecessor: a soft strap that’s 3-D molded to encase the bulb, so it sits flush on your forehead and won’t slide down. The new version is lighter, without the bulky rear battery (but also fewer lumens).
Swiftwick Flite XT Zero Socks ($20)
Swiftwick knit the toe and heel of the XT Zero with synthetic fibers that grip your shoe to minimize slippage. Strong elastic at the ankle and heel kept our feet snug, and we appreciated the modest cushion underfoot—enough to add comfort but not heat.