What’s the Best After-Work Running Gear?
Six of our favorite items to keep you comfortable and visible on the road
Outside's long reads email newsletter features our strongest writing, most ambitious reporting, and award-winning storytelling about the outdoors. Sign up today.
Longer days mean fewer excuses to leave out your post-work run. The following six products will help keep you motivated, comfortable, and safe during evening workouts so you don’t have to think about anything other than leaving the office behind.
Ultraspire Isomeric 16-Ounce ($28)
That third cup of coffee may be what you need to get through the afternoon, but it’ll also dehydrate you. Ultraspire’s handheld water bottles are some of the most ergonomic and comfortable I’ve tested. They make it an easier decision to grab and fill with water before your run.
The North Face BTN Jacket ($130)
The BTN is one of the most breathable, versatile running jackets I’ve worn. It’s ideal for the massive temperature swings that happen in the spring and has 360 degrees of reflective accents—a key safety feature if your run continues after dark.
Nathan Zephyr Fire 100 Hand Torch ($45)
Dean Karnazes convinced me to swap my headlamp for a handheld light, and I’m now a convert. Pointing the light with your hand rather than your neck boosts your field of vision. I especially like the Zephyr, which features an ergonomic grip and strap that reduce hand fatigue.
Picky Bars ($33 for 12)
It’s easy to talk yourself out of a run when you’re starving. A 200-calorie Picky Bar, made from all-natural ingredients, will satiate you until dinner, and the ratio of four carbohydrates to one gram of protein makes the snack ideal for a short, hard effort. The calories will give you an energy boost that won’t linger like caffeine.
Brooks NightLife Arm and Leg Bands II ($15)
The more reflective accents you have, the more likely a driver will see you. I’ve hardly noticed these bands while running this spring, but they made me considerably more visible on the road.
Balega Merino Hidden Comfort Socks ($12)
I’ve run in these merino-synthetic-blend socks for months now and find them to be spectacularly comfortable with just the right amount of cushion. Bonus: The merino mitigates enough funk that I was able to go four runs before washing them.