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One of the best things about running is that it doesn't have to be an expensive hobby. You can spend as much or as little as you want on running shoes, apparel and whatever else you need to head out on a run. But there is something to be said about the comfort and functionality of great running gear

Whether it's the perfect-fitting running shoes for your foot shape or a weightless pair of compression shorts that stops chafing, the right running gear can make your runs so much more enjoyable. No matter where you run, how much you run or what your goals are, this is the gear that will keep you comfortable and keep you moving. 

The best running shoes in 2024

The most important purchase a runner will make is running shoes. These are the best ones you can get in 2024. If you're not sure what kind of running shoes you should be looking for, let me help. I've been running for years, and I recommend starting your search with my handy guide on how to pick the best running shoes for you.

Best daily trainer: Nike Pegasus 41


The Nike Pegasus 41 uses ReactX foam, the first time the new foam technology has appeared in the Pegasus line. It promises over 13% more energy return compared to the React foam in the Pegasus 40. After running in them, I can say that sounds about right. They felt slightly springier than the previous generation.

As much as I enjoyed the comfort of the Pegasus 40s, I did notice that they were a bit heavy and not as responsive as other running shoes. Since I'm predominantly a midfoot striker, I also had trouble activating the Air Zoom units which are located in the heel and forefoot.

While those Air Zoom units haven't moved, the addition of the ReactX foam means I still get decent energy return, even on midfoot strikes. Then, when I switch to heel striking at higher speeds, the Nike Pegasus 41 feels even more propulsive than my Pegasus 40s.

Overall, I would recommend the Nike Pegasus 41 to anyone looking for a comfortable, easy ride for maintenance or recovery runs. I also think they're a good pick for beginners thanks to the versatile design that feels comfortable no matter where you strike first.

Get the latest Nike running shoes for $140.

Best for:

  • Neutral pronation
  • Heel or midfoot strikers
  • Runners who prefer a snug upper and narrow toe box
  • Road or treadmill running
  • Daily or maintenance runs

Shop men's sizes:

$140 at Nike

Shop women's sizes:

$140 at Nike

Best running shoe for long-distance runs: Hoka Clifton 9


The Hoka Clifton 9 is one of the most balanced Hoka running shoes to date, featuring a more neutral footbed and enough cushion to keep you comfortable on both long and short runs. The newest model in the Clifton lineup also boasts a lighter weight, more responsive midsole so you can go the distance without feeling like your shoes are weighing you down.

Flex grooves on the outsole and a wider toe box give your foot the flexibility and room to move naturally through your stride. Combine that with the extra cushion and the Clifton 9 is one of the best running shoes to use for endurance training or longer runs.

While you can build up speed in these running shoes, they aren't super-charged with propulsive tech that makes it difficult to moderate your pace. So for longer distances or full marathons, it's easy to alternate between stretches of slower-paced running and bursts of tempo running.

The plush yet balanced shoe costs $145 for a pair at Hoka.

Best for:

  • Neutral pronation
  • Heel strikers
  • Runners who prefer a more flexible upper and wide toe box
  • Road or treadmill running
  • Daily or maintenance runs

Shop men's sizes:

$145 at Hoka

Shop women's sizes:

$145 at Hoka

Best super shoes for marathon running: Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3


For all their benefits, super shoes can be a bit stiff and unstable, mostly as a result of the carbon fiber plate that's acting like a springboard to propel you forward. While it can boost your speed, it takes some getting used to and can feel a little unstable at first. To get a feel for running in super shoes so you can take full advantage of them come race day, we recommend starting with a pair of Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3.

Rather than the plate most super shoes have, the Adizero Adios Pro 3 has two carbon fiber rods running through the length of the midsole. Designed to resemble the metatarsals in your foot, the purpose of using rods rather than a full plate is to allow for more natural movement of your foot.

This slightly more flexible carbon fiber technology is easier to get used to and still offers plenty of explosive speed. Built for distance, this super shoe also offers an extra wide base that flares out on either side of your foot to keep you stable. That and the tall stack of responsive foam will keep you comfortable through every mile of your next marathon.

Get the comfortable super shoes directly from Adidas for $250.

Best for:

  • Neutral pronation
  • Heel or forefoot strikers
  • Runners who prefer a snug upper and narrow toe box
  • Road or treadmill running
  • Racing or tempo runs
$250 at Adidas

The best headphones for running

A great playlist can help you push through the toughest miles, but not if you're constantly adjusting (or losing) your headphones. Here are my top headphone picks for runners, including my personal favorite, the Jabra Elite 8 Active.

Best earbuds for running overall: Jabra Elite 8 Active


The Jabra Elite 8 Active are solid earbuds with big sound and tons of great customizable options to tailor the fit and experience to you. But it was the IP68 rating that finally sold me. They're effectively waterproof and dustproof, so they shouldn't break, even when I'm sweating through a hot, humid summer run.

They're lightweight (5 grams per earbud) and have a soft matte silicone coating that helps the earbud grip your ear. This works well on my runs. They don't bounce or slip out even at higher speeds. I don't have to fiddle with them or think about them all.

I was also impressed with the sound quality of the Jabra Elite 8 Active earbuds. They deliver surprisingly powerful bass and crisp highs. But most importantly, this model has a really intuitive equalizer in the app so you can easily tweak the settings to the music you listen to.

$140 with code JABRAELITE at Jabra $180 at Amazon

Runner-up best earbuds for runners: JBL Endurance Peak 3


Boasting the same IP68 waterproof and dustproof rating as the Jabra Elite 8 Active, the JBL Endurance Peak 3 earbuds are a close runner-up for the best headphones for runners. To get a secure fit while moving, these durable earbuds use an over-the-ear hook design rather than the rubberized silicone texture on the Jabras.

With a 10-millimeter driver in each ear, they also promise rich bass. Though, reviewers had mixed opinions about their performance in the mid and high frequency ranges, which is why I ultimately went with the Jabras. Considering the JBL Endurance Peak 3 earbuds are about half the price of Jabra, the good-but-not-great sound quality is a worthwhile tradeoff for budget-conscious runners.

$100 at Amazon

Best bone conduction headphones for runners: Shokz OpenRun Pro


Called "magic" by multiple reviewers, the Shokz OpenRun Pros are some of the most popular bone conduction headphones on the market. "You can hear ambient sounds and things like the skateboard coming up behind you but can also hear your audio as if it was a high quality speaker that's following you around," said one Amazon reviewer.

They're great for running in hot weather, too, because they keep your ears open and they stay in place even while you're jogging. These best-selling headphones have earned over 14,500 5-star ratings on Amazon.

$180 at Amazon

The best running shirts under $30

You don't have to break the bank to get great running apparel. Here are my favorite running shirts under $30.

Best running shirt under $30 overall: CRZ Yoga pima cotton tank top


I absolutely love the buttery soft feel of the pima cotton fabric in this CRZ Yoga tank top. I got this tank top because I own a couple of pairs of leggings from CRZ Yoga and they are the softest, most comfortable items in my wardrobe.

I typically prefer cotton for running because it's breathable and doesn't hold onto odor the way a lot of synthetic materials do. I know cotton isn't every runner's favorite. It doesn't dry so quickly as some of the technical fabrics out there and cotton has a reputation for feeling rough against the skin. When you combine that roughness with chronic dampness, it's a recipe for chafing.

This pima cotton tank top is different. It's so much softer than a typical cotton shirt and it has flat seams, both of which minimize the friction that causes chafing.

Shop men's sizes:

$20 at Amazon

Shop women's sizes:

$20 at Amazon Shop the CRZ Yoga pima cotton collection

Best multi-pack of running shirts under $30: Real Essentials classic-fit cotton T-shirt (4 pack)


In addition to the price, I like that these T-shirts are made from a cotton blend that reviewers said felt soft against the skin. It doesn't quite beat the buttery soft feel of my CRZ Yoga tank top, but it's soft enough to stay comfortable on a weekday morning run. The 60% cotton, 40% polyester blend may even make these T-shirts suitable for chafe-prone runners, at least for your shorter runs when the risk of chafing is lower.

$30 at Amazon

For men, I found a similar four-pack of cotton T-shirts from Real Essentials. The men's version features a blend that's 70% cotton rather than 60% and, as usual, your version has pockets.

$30 at Amazon

Best compression running shirts under $30: Neleus compression shirt (3 pack)


For those chafe-prone runners who are tired of all my cotton running shirt recommendations, this Neleus compression shirt is for you. I actually own the long-sleeve version, which I love for fall and winter runs because the compression fit makes them easy to layer under jackets. I've had them for about two years now, and they still look the same as the day I bought them, despite repeat cycles in the washing machine and dryer.

This short-sleeve version features the same four-way stretch, quick-dry fabric that I like in the long-sleeve set I have. It's not as breathable as cotton, but it still feels light and airy compared to other technical fabrics. 

Shop men's sizes:

$28 at Amazon

Shop women's sizes:

$28 at Amazon

The best running shorts in 2024

Breezy and almost weightless, these running shorts are the best you can get for your summer runs in 2024.

Best running shorts overall: CRZ Yoga running shorts with mesh liner


CRZ Yoga has become one of my go-to brands for super comfortable performance wear at a fraction of the price of Lululemon and other leading brands. I don't own these lightweight running shorts yet, but they're on my list.

I like that they have a loose, breezy fit and side splits that should create plenty of airflow to keep you cool as you run. The zipper pocket is a nice touch, though I probably wouldn't put anything heavier than your house keys or chapstick in it.

$28 at Amazon

For men, CRZ Yoga makes a similarly lightweight running short with a longer, 7" inseam.

$32 at Amazon

Best compression running shorts: Lululemon SenseKnit


The Lululemon SenseKnit running shorts are everything a runner needs: breathable, sweat-wicking and offering just enough compression to prevent chafing during your marathon. They're also stretchy and have engineered grippers in the hemline so they stay put from the first mile to the last. 

That means no more fiddling with shorts that keep bunching up or rolling. No more painful thigh chafe. No more sweaty compression shorts that don't breathe. The extra long bike short length -- 8 inches for women, 10 inches for men -- means your entire thigh is protected from chafing. 

Shop men's sizes:

$128 at Lululemon

Shop women's sizes:

$108 at Lululemon

Best running shorts without a liner: Path Projects Sykes PX

Path Projects

Running shorts with built-in liners are convenient. But for runners who already have a compression layer or liner that they love, finding a liner-free running short can feel impossible, especially for women. Enter Path Projects. This is one of the few brands that sells shorts and liners separately so you can assemble the right combo for your needs, even if your needs involve a liner from another brand.

The Path Projects Sykes PX shorts are one of the most popular options the brand sells. The material is stretchy, lightweight, and breathable to allow optimal airflow and movement as you run. But the coolest feature is the variety of pockets built into the waistband. Three zippered pockets around the waist provide storage for your phone, wallet and other essentials. Then, a key fob pocket on the inside keeps your keys safe and locked down so they don't jostle while you run.

The brand only offers men's apparel. But with the lightweight material and 5-inch inseam on these Sykes PX, they're a popular choice for women as well. Just go down one size to get the closest equivalent to your normal size. So if you wear a medium in women's, try a small in men's clothes.

$58 at Path Projects

The best hydration packs for runners

Whether you're gearing up for a trail run or a marathon, these hydration packs will keep you hydrated every step of the way.

Best hydration pack overall: Nathan QuickStart 2.0


The Nathan QuickStart 2.0 is a lightweight vest with room for 1.5 liters of water plus 2.5 liters of storage space for your other essentials. Pack it with gels, sunscreen, tissues and whatever else you need for a long run.

The adjustable buckle straps on the front allow you to get the perfect fit to minimize bouncing as you run. Reviewers also love that the material is stretchy and moisture-wicking to keep you dry and comfortable.

$80 at REI

Best hydration belt for running: Salomon High Pulse Belt


If a vest or backpack just seems too bulky to run with, try the Salomon High Pulse. It's a stretchy belt available in five unisex sizes that wrap around your waist for a bounce-free fit. It comes with a 500ml soft flask that tucks away into a back pocket so you have easy access to water when you need it, and feel unencumbered when you don't.

The lightweight belt also has room for your phone, gels and other small essentials you might need on a run. It won't fit as much as the Nathan QuickStart 2.0, but it's a great alternative if you don't want any weight on your back and shoulders.

$40 at Salomon

Best hydration vest under $50: Water Buffalo Roadrunner


The Water Buffalo Roadrunner is a budget-friendly alternative to the Nathan Quickstart 2.0. The lightweight hydration pack comes with a two-liter reservoir that fits in the sleeve on the back of this pack. There are also extra pockets and a bungee cord system on the back so you can pack other essentials along with your water.

It only has one adjustable strap in the front and the material doesn't stretch to move with you. But at around half the price of the Nathan Quickstart 2.0, it's still a great lightweight hydration pack that holds plenty of water for your runs.

$35 at Amazon