Choosing your race kit is a highly personal thing that requires a lot of research. I don’t expect all these things will be the right choice or fit for all women, in fact I know they won’t be. What I do know is that all the gear I’ve listed is super high quality, durable, and has been adventure-tested by moi. It’s always helpful to know what other people use and love, and why they love it. Below is my personal shortlist – the top 6 pieces of gear I always have close at hands for long runs, adventures or races.
I did a lot of asking around, Googling and general research before I chose this pack. I’m short and slim, so I wanted something I knew would fit snuggly when it’s mostly empty in addition to being comfortable when it’s chock full. I wanted a pack I could use for ultras, especially those with quite a lot of required gear, but was also comfortable enough for a 20 or 30 km jaunt. I also prefer a water bladder rather than water bottles. Ultimate Direction makes the water badder that comes with this pack, and it’s a fold-to-close style which means it’s much easier than the traditional camelbak to fill it up on the go, without taking it out of your pack. It’s also really easy to clean, which means I can fill it up with Tailwind for big missions and then rinse it out and dry it, easy peasy.
I like to have my snacks, tissues, sweatband etc in my front pockets. It has a phone pocket that fits the iPhone6 and it pretty waterproof. I settled on this pack and I’ve been very happy with it – I even run my commute some mornings with this bad boy on.
- Women-specific shoulder harness and torso dimensions
- Seamless back panel prevents abrasion and discomfort
- Rear stretch mesh pocket and bungee
- 2 front multi-use stretch mesh pockets
- 2 larger, front-zippered security pockets are phone compatible
- 70 oz. reservoir included
These socks are the bomb, and I wear them for long runs and races. They are a no-brainer. They’re comfortable, offer a bit of compression and recovery support and they absolutely stay in place. And by comfortable I mean they prevent any rubbing from your shoes and they also provide extra padding for a bit of bonus support. They are extra fabulous for protecting against brambles or “cutty” grass on narrow tracks. Added bonus: available in flash colours so you can really make a fashion statement.
- 20-30 mmHg from ankle to calf, 18 mmHg consistent compression over the calf
- Special design activates the flow of blood in the muscles
- Perfect anatomical fit
- Highest quality materials and premium craftsmanship for extreme durability
- Microfiber technology for superior comfort
- Extra-flat toe seam
Everyone knows New Zealand’s sun is NEXT LEVEL. So hats are pretty much essential when heading out into the great outdoors. Our WayWiser branded hats are legit. I have personally tested them out on a dozen or more adventures and they hold up. They’re comfortable and stylish and durable. What more could you want?!
Buffs are awesome. They are, as my cofounder Dan puts it “the swiss army knife of headgear.” You can use them any number of ways, which is pretty essential when you’re trying to pack light for a day on the trail. They dry fast and are made from high-quality thermal material so they really last and can help you stay warm if the weather turns. We worked together with Buff to design ours and are pretty stoked with how it turned out!
Everyone’s always asking for raincoat recommendations, so I thought I’d share my personal choice when it comes to rain gear. Outdoor Research’s Helium II is a seam-sealed, minimalist jacket that’s been absolutely pivotal in my gear / race kit. It’s super lightweight, pretty breathable, fits well and looks good. It’s so small and light that fitting it in your pack is never a problem, which means you always have it with you, which means you’re better prepared for when the weather changes on dime.
- Adjustable Hood
- YKK® AquaGuard® Zippers
- Zip Chest Pocket
- Internal Pocket Doubles as Stuff Sack
- Reflective Logos
- Carabiner Loop
- Elastic Cuffs, Elastic Drawcord Hem
There are some early, early, ungodly early race starts out there. Even big adventure days most often require a sunrise start. That means coffee is a pretty critical pre-game beverage. Not only does it help get those neurons firing, but it also gets things moving, if you know what I mean. Both of these things are extremely important before you set off. My LifeVenture mug, available at Red Moose, is always close at hand. It keeps the coffee steaming hot, which I’m forever grateful for on cold mornings. It’s watertight, which means it can be tossed in the car or your rucksack and won’t leak. Also available in a range of flash colours.
- Vacuum insulated and tested and approved by British Standards
- Pressure release lid
- Pressure release airlock chamber which is important for slow release of pressure when opening hot drinks.
- Watertight and can be packed into a rucksack and won’t leak
- Capacity: 330 ml
- Dimensions: 65 W x 65 L x 160 H mm
- Weight: 300g
So there you have it. I hope you find a piece of gear from this list that works for you. Happy adventuring!