If you live in someplace that gets miserably hot or humid during the summertime, you know how tough summer running can be. In addition to slowing down the pace and giving yourself a bit of time to acclimate to the conditions, summer training often comes with extra planning to minimize the sweaty misery. This could include running at sunrise when temperatures are coolest, running in just shorts and a sports bra in your favorite pair of Nikes, or carrying a handheld water bottle that was frozen overnight. And while those strategies are great and all, it really comes down to the gear that elevates your summer running experience from something you're just trying to get through to something you actually enjoy.
Oiselle OG Distance Shorts, $48
These shorts have been my go-to for years (black only, since they don't turn see through when they're all sweaty). In addition to not being super-short, I love that they come with two zip pockets, which are great for stashing your keys, nutrition and maybe some cash for a Gatorade on a long summer run.
OxGord Sweat Towel Seat Cover, $12
I live across the street from Houston's Hermann Park, so 99 percent of the time I just throw on my running clothes, step right outside and start running. However, my running club meets further away at Memorial Park for weekend long runs, which means I need to drive to the starting point. The last thing I want to do when I'm done is drip sweat all over my car, so this seat cover is the perfect solution. The fact that it doubles as a towel also helps avoid that gross, sitting-in-your-sweat feeling.
Nathan Speedshot Plus 12 Handheld Flask, $24
Before moving to Houston from New York City, I'd never run carrying water, and I quickly learned that it's a must here, as a sip from a water fountain every few miles definitely won't cut it in the summer months. I fill and freeze this the night before—it'll quickly melt down within three miles, and there's nothing better than ice-cold water on a hot and humid run.
Oakley Radar Shield Sunglasses, $193
I know there are plenty of cheap running sunglasses out there—I used them myself for years—but these are definitely worth the splurge. If I start a run at sunrise (or even while it's still dark), I won't need to put my sunglasses on right away, which means I'll wear them on top of my head. The old, cheap pairs would become fogged up or completely streaked with sweat from my hair that I then wouldn't be able to clean on my sweaty clothes and ultimately couldn't wear once the sun was up because I couldn't even see out of them. These glasses do fog up a bit, but they quickly clear up on their own so I don't even have to worry about seeing through them when the time comes. They also protect against the sun's harmful rays, which is always a plus.
Oofos Ooriginal Sport Sandals, $60
These sandals have been a post-long run go-to for me for years. It's always a good idea to immediately change out of your running shoes after a hot long run to prevent your feet from swelling, and if your feet are sore or blistered up, they will thank you for it. These cushiony sandals are super comfortable and also support your arches, making them an excellent choice if you're also prone to plantar fasciitis.
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