We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Some may have been sent as samples, but all opinions and reviews are our own. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.
1. Start with a good warm up (*not* static stretching) before hitting the pavement. You can do a few reps of front leg swings, knee hugs, lunges, and squats to help boost blood flow and lubricate your joints. Once you're done, you'll be ready for a cardio session.
2. Don't push yourself too hard if you're starting a new running routine. Gradually work your way up to a desirable pace by jogging lightly and taking short breaks, like running for a minute and then walking for three minutes. You can also wear a stopwatch to track your progress during workouts.
And if you're still unsure what RPE means, here's a handy chart that breaks down what it is:
3. Wear a high-impact sports bra that's comfortable and provides amazing support if you have DD+ breasts. This sports bra is perfect for runs because it has two-way stretch, quick-drying fabric, and wireless cups to help reduce bouncing. Topping it off are wide and padded straps that won't dig into your shoulders. 👏
4. Slip into a quick-drying T-shirt if you want a little sun coverage and breathability (so long, sweaty armpits) during your next jog or sprint session. Reviewers swear by it for cardio-heavy workouts, including outdoor races and running.
Promising review: "Wore this shirt for a 14-mile long Spartan race in the North Carolina heat and sun. It didn't get me overheated, kept my skin from burning, and after a wash (after sitting dirty for 36 hours) cleaned up like new! No sign of any dirt! Would definitely order again." —Amy
Get it from Amazon for $16.99 (available in sizes S–XXL and in 23 colors).
5. Look for two things when shopping for running shorts: Do they cover your thigh enough to prevent painful chafing? And do they have a high-waisted design that'll help them stay up? Basically you want a pair that won't cause painful rubbing or sliding when you're running indoors or outdoors.
6. Or! Wear a pair of anti-chafing bands underneath your running shorts to protect yourself from skin rubbing issues. These bands, which comfortably fit around your thighs, are designed to help minimize chafing and perspiration while you're on the move.
7. Find the right pair of running sneakers for your routine with Nike's Running Footwear Guide. It's important to provide your feet with proper cushioning and support to minimize foot discomfort. If you're feeling achy or frequently getting blisters, it may be time to buy a new pair of shoes.
Need help? These Nike running sneakers are adored by runners and have many positive reviews. Designed for road running, they have breathable mesh material, foam cushioning for comfort and responsiveness, ample toe space, and come in a bunch of colors that'll match your activewear wardrobe.
8. Make sure your feet are protected from sneaker chafing and over-sweating by wearing athletic socks designed to keep your tootsies comfy and dry. They each have a heel tab design (yay for less blisters!) and are made with breathable material. You can ~go the distance~ and not deal with stinky, sweaty, and irritated feet.
9. Build a running playlist that you actually like! You'll feel more motivated during your sweat session if you're listening to your favorite tracks and *not* fast-paced music that you can't stand. It also helps if your playlist is ad-free, because you can get through some mileage without interruptions.
10. And! Invest in a good pair of wireless headphones, so you can tune out any distractions and avoid tangled wires. These babies are sweat-resistant, have a comfy ear hook to prevent them from falling out, and have great sound quality.
11. Gradually wake up early if you want to begin a new morning run routine. Take small steps, such as going to bed a little earlier and laying out your gear the night before, so you'll feel better about your morning workout. By the end of week two, you'll actually look *forward* to tackling early jogs and runs 💪.
An extra helpful tip? Buy an extra-loud alarm clock *without* a snooze option, so you won't be tempted to hit snooze, fall back asleep, and wake up to find out that you missed your planned sweat session.
12. Begin each day with a filling *and* exciting breakfast that'll fuel you up for a running workout. Overnight oats are delicious, so easy to prepare in the morning, and contain 22 grams of protein. Just mix it with milk or a dairy-free alternative (like almond milk) before you go to bed, place it in the fridge, and enjoy it in the a.m. You're welcome.
13. Or drink an energizing smoothie before you head out for an early morning run. A heavenly combo of fruit, veggies, and some protein will help you beat early morning blues *and* crush your sweat session. Having a personal blender on hand will also let you clean up with ease and you can take your yummy beverage with you.
14. And prepare easy and fuel-friendly snacks to avoid a midday energy slump before your nighttime run. A Dash Rapid Egg Cooker is perfect for pre-workout noms, because you can easily whip up a batch hard-boiled eggs and eat 'em later on.
15. Keep thick hair in place and avoid annoying flyways while you run with extra-strong hair ties. Designed for curly and heavy strands, these gems will hold up a ponytail and prevent sweaty hair from falling into your face.
16. And slide on an athletic headband after putting your hair up in a bun or ponytail. No more baby hairs or loose strands slipping out mid-workout!
17. Safely attach your phone to your arm with an armband to avoid dropping it and damaging the screen (which would *not* be fun when you're in the middle of an intense run). Its non-squeezing design feels comfy on your arm, while silicone grip dots will help it stay in place.
18. Or! Keep *everything* in an accessible spot by attaching a FlipBelt to your hips. It has four pockets that'll securely hold your AirPods case, cards, keys, and phone. You can finally focus on your mileage without losing essential items.
19. Try a pair of calf compression sleeves for jogging or running! Reviewers say they can help minimize calf tightness and support you as you run. Whether you're a new runner or a seasoned marathoner, these sleeves could help you with long-distance sessions.
Many reviewers do say these help with the pain from shin splints, however they're not a cure and if you're in pain, you likely shouldn't be running and may want to discuss symptoms with your doctor. Read more about how to help shin splints.
Promising review: "I wore these compression sleeves during the 2019 Chevron Houston Marathon, and they worked just fine. I ordered a small, and they fit as expected. I never had any issues with shin splints or calf tightness. Good quality and nice material. I highly recommend these for any distance running." —Pon Bath
Get them from Amazon for $10.99+ (available in sizes S–3XL and in 16 colors).
20. Focus on an object on your running path if you're feeling less energetic during a workout. It could be a park bench, tree, or stop sign, and when you choose it, focus on it and don't stop until you get there. When you reach it, you'll feel great because you worked through those tough couple of minutes!
21. Try interval training to gradually increase your speed over time. You can avoid burning out by focusing on your form and controlling your pace, so you can slowly build up to where you want to be on runs. And if you want to monitor your progress, a fitness tracker can provide you with important stats, like heart rate, steps taken, and daily mileage.
22. Pick workout leggings that'll feel so comfortable for multiple cardio activities, like running, cycling, and more. Slip into these babies that have four-way stretch fabric, a small *hidden* waistband pocket for your essentials, and so many color options to match sports bras, tees, and sneakers.
23. Dress in layers when it's chilly outside to avoid feeling too cold or too hot when you exercise. Lightweight outerwear, like this running jacket, will keep you dry and warm, and it looks great over a T-shirt or running tank.
24. Make sure to stretch during your post-workout routine! This Stretch-Out strap helps minimize tightness in your calves and hammies after runs. Just slip it around your foot and take deep breaths while you flex your muscles.
25. Add in some quick total-body circuits on non-running days to boost your endurance and strength — all you need is yourself and a sturdy mat to get started. Lunges, push-ups, and walkouts will help improve your running time and put your muscles to work.
26. Recover with a muscle roller stick and ~roll away~ all the tightness around your quads, hamstrings, and calves. Use this massager before or after a run to give your stiff and sore muscles a little love.
27. Slip on glow-in-the-dark LED bands if you're running or jogging when it's dark outside. Each band can be worn on an arm or ankle for optimal visibility early in the morning and late at night.
28. Wear a water bottle waist pack so you can stay hydrated and not have to carry a heavy water bottle while you run or jog. You'll also appreciate extra room for your keys, phone, wallet, and more small essentials.
The reviews for this post have been edited for length and clarity.