We asked our gear editor Tina Chantrey to pick out the best of the kit she’s been testing for us recently, and give us her honest views on it.
Whether it’s fully loaded up or has minimal kit stashed within, this vest hugs your body nicely. You can easily adjust the front for a tight fit to further minimise movement when the integral water flasks are full (which can be squashed and sucked without taking them out of their pockets). Three front and side-zipped pockets will carry your phone and nutrition, but there’s plenty of other pockets for kit and essentials. The soft inner mesh isn’t harsh on your skin, even when you’re only wearing a vest. You can grab everything you need without stopping, which we think is priceless.
Tina says: I loved running along the South Down’s Way in this vest as it’s so lightweight yet able to carry everything I need when running long on the trails (lots of food!). I preferred to only half fill the bottles, otherwise they felt quite heavy and made me look like Lara Croft!
You won’t find more stylish kit on the track this year. Unleash your inner track star in this elegant, lightweight retro performance mesh, created to keep you relaxed and cool. The fabric feels luxurious against your skin, giving you a classic look when you make the rest of the field eat your dust!
Tina says: This is one of my favourites this summer as it exudes style – it’s retro, understated, yet technical and cooling. I love the feel of the lightweight fabric against my skin.
With both style and support you will love running in this gorgeous bra. It’s designed with a central flat back panel, extra wide straps and high neckline to ensure minimal bounce and sideways overspill. With such vibrant colourways (perfect against your tan), it’s about as stunning as you could ask for.
Tina says: I’m not incredibly endowed in this area but this crop felt snug and comfortable, especially on the seams, and has a timeless, classic look, plus the colour looks gorgeous!
Pull on these high-rise crop tights for your post-run stretch. The quick-dry design is perfect for camouflaging damp patches and you can’t feel them as they’re seam-free at the bottom of the legs. Don’t just save them for running; they’re gorgeous enough for any workout or for everyday wear.
Tina says: Everyone should invest in at least one pair of Lululemon leggings! These are patterned perfectly for the summer heat and feel so soft against your skin.
Unbeatable value for a vest made from great quality fabric treated with Polygiene, to provide permanent odour control. Not only does it cut down your washing, it’s available in six colours and the comfy and flattering fit makes it versatile enough for any summer workout.
Tina says: How much?! Honestly, I think this range gives you the best value out there at the moment. I absolutely love the new kit from DHB and always choose it when I want comfy kit that won’t let me down.
When the sun is beating down, this extremely lightweight and quick-drying vest will keep you cool. There are no seams to annoy you on the run and you get the added benefit of mesh panels under the arms and on the sides. It’s a high-quality performance vest.
Tina says: I’ve been choosing this when I need a technical top under my running pack/vest, to protect me from chafing. It wicks away sweat perfectly, keeps me cool and doesn’t irritate – perfect for longer runs or races.
GPS watches keep getting cleverer – this latest addition to the Garmin range includes new performance-monitoring tools, as well as their Elevate wrist-based heart-rate technology. Training features include analysis of previous fitness levels, insight into whether you are training in the right zones, as well as tracking the aerobic and anaerobic benefits of your sessions. Using a Running Dynamics Pod that clips to your waistband, you can view your running dynamics on a compatible device. And it’s only 49 grams!
Tina says: Yes, it is a lot of money and yes, I would love one of these! Maybe we’ll all have to put it on our Christmas lists! I think it’s worth buying this model if you really love your stats and analysing your data, or if you’re in to multi-sports.
You can join Tina’s Strava Club, Shewhodaresruns, or follow her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter @shewhodaresruns.