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Must Have Marathon Essentials

Here’s a breakdown of the essential gear you’ll need to train for a marathon and to take on the race itself.


A comfortable, well-fitting pair of running shoes is arguably the most important piece of kit you’ll need. Just remember that what works well for one person won’t necessarily be the best choice for another. Find out more about picking the right pair of running shoes for you, here.

You should never run a marathon in a brand new pair of trainers, but that’s not to say you should wear well worn trainers that have completed several hundreds of miles either. Ideally, you’ll have completed a few long runs in the trainers you plan on wearing for your marathon - walking around your house for a few hours in them the day before your race won’t cut it.


A sometimes overlooked piece of kit, but a good pair of technical running socks are a must to reduce friction, prevent blisters and provide extra cushioning. You’re going to be on your feet a lot during your marathon training and the race itself, so do your feet a favour and invest in a pair of running socks.

Always choose socks that are made from moisture wicking material and are ideally seamless so that they don’t cause unnecessary friction. For more information about buying running socks, check out this article.


Running 22.6 miles (42.2 km) is no easy feat and you’ll need to take on some form of nutrition during your race and your longer training runs. Energy bars, gels, electrolyte tablets, sweets are some of the nutrition options available to you.

Again, remember to always stick to the golden rule - never try anything new on race day. The last thing you want is an upset stomach 15 miles into your marathon because the new gel you tried didn’t agree with you.

Tracking device

A GPS watch that can also monitor your heart rate can be a really useful tool for training and to track those all-important marathon stats. Common features of GPS and running watches include the ability to monitor sleep, play music, track calorie burn, and sync with your mobile for alerts. Find out more about what you need to consider about buying a running and fitness watch, here.

If you use an app on your phone to track your training, then you could buy an arm pack to keep the phone secure and visible on your run.

Stay connected and on-the-go with the SonicMount, our new universal smart phone armband. Smart phones stay in place and bounce-free thanks to an engineered stretch elastomer and no-slip side grips.

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For your longer training runs, stay hydrated with a water bottle that will suit your needs. You can choose one with added pockets to keep your belongings safe or one that fits the shape of your hand.

But if you think that carrying a water bottle will distract from your running form then you could look at investing in a hydration belt that will secure a water bottle on your back and leave your hands free.


The clothes you choose to run in during your training depend on a few factors, including your personal preference and the weather. Some runners prefer to wear shorts all year round, but some like tights, the same with vests and long/short sleeved tops and compression gear. Whatever clothing you opt for, make sure it’s made from a technical sweat-wicking material (avoid cotton at all costs) that will keep you cool and dry on your run.

Depending on the season of your marathon, it’s highly likely that some of your training will take place under different conditions to what you’ll run your race in. If some of your training is going to take place in the dark, then consider the reflective properties of your clothes to keep you safe.

Again remember to test everything you plan on running in - don’t wear anything new on the day of your marathon. Although it might seem comfortable when you slip on your new running top the morning of your race, if, five miles in, your top is rubbing in all of the wrong places, you’ll make the marathon even harder for yourself than it is already.

Injury prevention gear

You put your body through a lot when training for a marathon, but luckily there are some bits of kit you can use to prevent and avoid injuries. KT tape, for example, can help to support and increase blood flow to the muscles. Foam rollers, massage sticks and massage balls are all good pieces of self-massage equipment that can release the tension built up in muscles and improve circulation.

Myofacial release of the muscles is key to better performance. The Fitness-Mad mini massage roller relieves tight muscles and targets fascia management. Portable and easy to use, perfect for before and after exercise.


If you know of a weak spot you have (for example your shoulder or knee), then you should consider buying a support strap that can help compress the area and reduce the chance of a recurring injury.

Need more help with your running and training needs? Visit realbuzz.com for more running advice and tips.

Picture credit: IR Stone / Shutterstock.com 


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