If you are not planning on getting a heat stroke while out on a run, have a look at the best summer running gear below. We have summer-ready running cap, shorts, vest and hydration pack recommendations, all in one place.
Blaming the weather not being perfect for the best running workout is an easy way to get out of exercising, although even then, you can just do the best home workout instead. If you are not looking for excuses but also don't want be uncomfortable either, get the right gear that's right for the how weather, a.k.a. the best summer running gear.
When running in hot weather, the less clothes you wear, the better – within reason, of course. You'll need a lightweight pair of running shoes with a breathable upper, some fast-wicking running socks, loose-fitted running shorts, a short sleeve running top (or running vest) and potentially a hydration running backpack. You can get a running hat too and don't forget to put sun cream on either.
For tracking outdoor runs, we recommend using the best running watch and/or the best heart rate monitor. The best fitness tracker is also fine to use but these type of devices won't track advanced running metrics like VO2 max or cadence. Knowing this can get you better at running and make you run faster eventually.
Hot weather running essentials
New for the 2020 spring/summer season, the updated On Cloudflow tones down the stiffness of the Helion foam and marries it with the best design we have seen from On Running yet. The Helion technology, combined with the Cloud elements, provides a running experience with great energy return and effective shock distribution.
The lightweight On Cloudflow sports a breathable mesh upper and it is just fun to look at too: the mix of vibrant colours and precise angles make this Swiss-made running shoe summery and fun. Light, breathable and quirky: just the shoes you need for your summer runs.
The Swiftwick Maxus socks use "structurally modified fibres" which, according to Swiftwick, "wick moisture away from your skin 40% better than competitive materials". We can't prove this statement wrong and one thing is for sure: during our test runs wearing the Maxus, our feet stayed dry, even though the weather was rather warm.
On top of excellent moisture and sweat management, the Swiftwick Maxus also provides comfort with its plush footbed that sort of extends the cushioning of your shoes, making landing even softer and less impactful. The Swiftwick even provides some compression, although not much.
Under Armour Qualifier Speedpocket 18 cm/7-inch Linerless Shorts
The main appeal of these shorts is the 'speedpocket': an expandable front-facing pocket integrated into the waistband. Given the position and the layout of the pocket, the huge iPhone you'll probably put in it won't bounce too much making you uncomfortable as you run.
The material used for the Under Armour Qualifier Speedpocket 18 cm/7-inch Linerless Shorts is light and fast wicking, plus there are also mesh panels on the side for even more ventilation. The fabric also has a 4-way construction moves effortlessly in every direction. No chafing here!
Sundried Dom 2.0 Running Vest
The Sundried Dom 2.0 Running Vest is part of Sundried's Eco Core range and it lives up to the promise of being environmentally-friendly as it is made from 100% recycled plastic bottles. Surprisingly enough, it is also very comfortable to wear, unlike those old synthetic tops from the 80s.
It might be made from plastic but that doesn't mean the Sundried Dom 2.0 has't got performance features. The fabric is sweat-wicking as well as having a multi-way stretch for added comfort. The Sundried Dom 2.0 is lightweight and has large armholes too so you can flex those guns of yours when you run. There won't be any chafing around the armpits running in the Dom 2.0 for sure.
Camelbak Dart Hydration Pack
Especially if you go for a longer run, it is good to take some water with you and hydration backpacks are more convenient to carry than those circular water bottles that can't hold much water anyway. The Camelbak Dart has a capacity of 1.5 litres (50 oz) which is plenty for mid-distance runs.
The new Crux up to "20% more water per sip" (according to Camelbak) and the Dart's ergonomic handle helps easier refilling too. There are some reflective details on the Dart so cars and cyclists can spot you earlier – not a bad thing, whatever the weather.
Salomon Soft Flask
No need to take a hydration pack for a shorter run, the Salomon Soft Flask will do just fine. The minimalist, collapsible design helps you save space in your bag and the soft walls make it easier to squeeze out every little drop of water from the flask.
Made from TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) material without PVC or bisphenol-A, the Salomon Soft Flask is easy to clean in the dishwasher. The bottle has a large opening and an anti-leak valve to keep the water where it needs to be (inside the flask). The Salomon Soft Flask has a capacity of 250 ml.
Nike Tailwind Running Cap
The Nike Tailwind Running Cap does what it says on the box: it will keep your head protected from the sun (although it won't provide a tailwind). Its lightweight design combines sweat-wicking technology, mesh side panels and an internal sweatband for comfort as you run. It is made from 100% recycled polyester.