Trail Running Gear
New to trail running and looking for the best trail running gear? Need to know what trail shoes to buy, what running watch is best or how to stop yourself from losing a toe nail? From the essential running gear to those items you don’t you need yet, we are here to offer our advice. From the best shoes to suit the terrain to the detailed kit lists you need for ultra marathons, we help you make sense of it all. Check out the various pages of our website for inspiration and advice and find yourself some great trail gear.
Amended 26th June 2023
Trail Shoes for Every Eventuality
Possibly the most important purchase for runners is the running shoe. What you need for off road running is different to what you would wear for a road run on a firmer surface. When running off road, you need a shoe that will deal with different types of terrain, that is comfortable, provides sufficient grip and that will withstand the long miles. While you may be wondering what the difference is in one pair of running trainers to another and how they differentiate for different types of running, there are significant differences, especially when it comes to road and trail trainers. You only have to turn them over and look at the bottom. Off road shoes are also a lot lower to the ground as well allowing you to get a better contact between your foot and the ground without all the cushioning and bounce of a road shoe.
Then there are significant differences between the different types and brands of trail running trainers. All shoes are designed to fulfil a specific requirement and what works for one person may not necessarily be suitable for the next. It depends on a number of factors including size, width of feet, how you land your feet, over pronation, under pronation, the shape of your feet etc. While you may have a hankering for the latest Nike shoes to the market, they aren’t necessarily going to be the right choice for you. Our site aims to give you specific information about choosing the right trail shoes for the terrain and type of running. From the best men’s trail shoes for mud to a unisex all rounder, in the content of our pages there is something for everyone. We aim to provide the latest information about shoes for him, shoes for her, unisex shoes, trail shoes for specific terrain as well sharing some of our favourites, and those of our running companions.
Want to know how far you have run, how long it has taken you, how much elevation you have climbed and how many calories you can eat later? A good running watch is key. It doesn’t have to be fancy, in fact there are entry level watches for less than £100 which do the job. Having been runners for many years now we have tried many of them and (shock horror) even run without a watch! We share some of the most popular watches to suit all budgets.
You may not be a regular night runner but at some point, you may find yourself out on the trails after dark. Perhaps you end up out longer than anticipated or you are taking part in an ultra that goes through the night. A head torch can cost less than £20, with more expensive models being upwards of £100. We take a look at a selection of our favourites and those that are well-reviewed, and share what you need to know about selecting the best head torch for the job.
A decent pair of running gloves is perfect for those cold, early starts and winter runs. Climbing over stiles and fences means that you can avoid splinters too. A pair of gloves can protect you from those brambles and stingers that inevitably at some point you will need to brush aside. Just a point to note here from our experience – stingers hurt all year round and brambles really sting when you’ve got cold legs!
The Best Shorts
Shorts – while you may think that all shorts are the same, there are plenty of things to consider here as well. Will they chafe, do they have pockets including that little pocket where you keep your key, are they short shorts or do you prefer a longer pair? Are they quick dry shorts that can cope with heavy downpours.
The Stuff No-One Talks About
Anti-chafing aids, silicone toe caps, blister plasters, runderwear… these are all considerations of the avid off road runner. Perhaps not so widely discussed but things that we’ve experienced ourselves. we share some of our favourite extras to put on before your run or to take with you. We like to call these items the trail gear that you don’t know you need yet.
The Additional Extras
Like to listen to music on your run? It’s a personal choice. Personally we aren’t great fans of running with music. It stops you being able to hear traffic noise (less of this off road) but also the sounds of nature. However, we appreciate that some of you like to escape to the hills with a pair of headphones on so we also look at electronics and other gadgets.
Please note – while we ourselves have used a lot of the trail running gear featured on these pages, these are just our opinions to help you make a more informed decision.
Disclaimer: This article includes affiliate links which may provide a small commission to me at no cost to you. The products we recommend are either those that we’ve used or that our fellow runners have used.