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Articles on this Page
- 05/23/17--15:14: _The Best Women's Bi...
- 05/23/17--15:31: _The Best Women's Tr...
- 05/23/17--15:43: _The Best Energy Sna...
- 05/23/17--15:46: _The Best Headphones...
- 05/23/17--15:51: _The Best Go-Anywher...
- 05/23/17--15:59: _The Best Women's Gy...
- 05/23/17--16:24: _The Best Fitness Wa...
- 05/23/17--16:27: _The Best Watches of...
- 05/23/17--16:28: _The Best Camera Acc...
- 05/23/17--17:32: _The Best Running Ac...
- 05/23/17--17:39: _The Best Running Te...
- 05/23/17--17:45: _The Best Trucker Ha...
- 05/31/17--16:00: _2017 Gear of the Ye...
- 06/01/17--11:00: _2017 Gear of the Ye...
- 05/23/17--14:54: _The Best Summer Sle...
- 05/23/17--15:14: The Best Women's Bike Accessories of 2017
- 05/23/17--15:31: The Best Women's Travel Gear of 2017
- 05/23/17--15:43: The Best Energy Snacks of 2017
- 05/23/17--15:46: The Best Headphones of 2017
- 05/23/17--15:51: The Best Go-Anywhere Gym Gear of 2017
- 05/23/17--15:59: The Best Women's Gym Gear of 2017
- 05/23/17--16:24: The Best Fitness Watches of 2017
- 05/23/17--16:27: The Best Watches of 2017
- 05/23/17--16:28: The Best Camera Accessories of 2017
- 05/23/17--17:32: The Best Running Accessories of 2017
- 05/23/17--17:39: The Best Running Tech of 2017
- 05/23/17--17:45: The Best Trucker Hats of 2017
- 05/31/17--16:00: 2017 Gear of the Year: Santa Cruz Tallboy
- 06/01/17--11:00: 2017 Gear of the Year: Giant TCR Advanced Pro 1 Disc
- 05/23/17--14:54: The Best Summer Sleeping Bags of 2017
High-performance gear for trail and tarmac.
Wild Rye Kiah Shirt ($69)
This is the only bike jersey we’ve ever worn to the office without feeling underdressed. Slightly flared hips, a curved neckline, and the muted pink color make the Kiah cute and functional. The design kept us covered as we steered through technical Sedona trails. It has performance chops, too, with an odor-killing merino-nylon fabric.
Evoc FR Enduro Women 16L Pack ($180)
Evoc is known for its do-it-all hydration packs. Take the FR Enduro, which combines 16 liters of storage, a water bladder, and a rigid back protector into a slim package that hugs your torso through drops.
Giro Cartelle MIPS Helmet ($100)
Lots of protection in a good-looking, affordable lid: that sums up the Cartelle. The foam shell wraps down and around your neck, while the MIPS technology reduces rotational forces on your head in a crash. Fourteen big vents keep the whole thing light and airy.
Specialized 2FO Cliplite Lace Shoes ($120)
These shoes are meant for walking. Read: they’re perfect for sporty backcountry rides. The sole is stiff enough for efficient pedaling, but the deeply recessed cleat and reinforced upper will make you forget you’re not wearing hikers come portage time. Laces allow for a totally dialed fit (no hot spots here) while keeping the dork factor low.
Club Ride Traverse Shorts ($90)
Lots of mountain-bike shorts sacrifice suppleness and breathability for toughness. Not the Traverse, which is cut from a heavyweight polyester-spandex blend that put up with hundreds of branch snags yet still felt plenty breezy on days topping 80 degrees.
POC Octal X Helmet ($260)
We wore this helmet all season, and for good reason. It weighs less than half a pound, vents like a sieve, and fits like a headband, thanks to a simple strap-dial system.
Velocio ES Jersey and Bibs ($169 and $199)
The ES top feels like the cashmere sweater of the roadie world, with articulated sleeves and mesh panels ideal for 100-mile days. This East Coast apparel maker also knows a thing or two about premium bibs, building these with a midweight chamois that hugs without stifling and wide straps that don’t bite.
Rapha Classic II Sunglasses ($295)
Do not buy these shades if you’re prone to losing or scratching sunglasses. Do buy them if you’re obsessed with the British cycling company’s cool lines and pink flare. They fit and work well, but hey, if you’re coughing up almost $300 for a pair of shades, it’ll be the sweet looks that convinced you in the first place.
Tenspeed Hero Mountains Socks ($15)
Roadies wear high socks just because. Wisconsin-based Tenspeed Hero makes probably the coolest styles around, in dozens of fun prints.
Giro Factress Techlace Shoes ($350)
Combine old-school laces with a Boa dial and you have cycling’s most advanced closure system. It ratchets down the fit with such nuance that we felt like we were wearing a second pair of socks. Plus, these shoes have all the niceties you expect from Giro, including stiff carbon soles and lightweight uppers.
Essentials for wandering—and playing—in style and comfort.
Patagonia Glorya Dress ($69)
We hiked four miles in this poly-spandex dress, then turned right around and went to Sunday brunch on the beach. The cut, which bunches slightly at the hips, is flowy and 100 percent unrestrictive.
Goorin Marlon Fernandez Hat ($160)
Hopefully you’re traveling to some beautiful, remote Ecuadorean beach this summer. If not, this water-resistant straw fedora will at least make you feel like you’re about to embark on a tropical adventure, even when you’re stuck in city traffic.
RYU Tough Tights ($95)
The name tells the story: despite two seasons of pretty much constant wear, these tights refused to fade or rip. And the fit is snug yet not constricting, thanks to the wide waistband.
Filson Grab ’n’ Go Large Tote ($120)
At 17 inches wide and 16 inches tall, this canvas tote is big enough to swallow a small dog, if the need arises. Read: it’s perfect for stuffing full of carry-on essentials—a sweater, snacks, a water bottle, a book, and even a blanket, no problem.
Merrell Siren Flip Q2 Sandals ($70)
The footbed of these simple flip-flops offers support and traction to make short treks off-pavement a breeze. We don’t mind that the Sirens also look good enough for drinks at the bar post-adventure.
Pavepara Sandpiper Shirt ($82)
Made from soft merino and lined with a strip of colorful silk from a vintage sari, the Sandpiper is fitness apparel moonlighting as club wear.
Lululemon Non-Stop Bomber Jacket ($128)
Prana Lahna Scarf ($39)
This airy shawl is so lightweight it’s almost see-through, making it ideal for hot summer days when you just want a touch of color.
Electric Bengal Wire Sunglasses ($120)
Electric’s Bengal Wire, flaunting flared temples and a metal top bar above the bridge, marries a bit of Jackie O class with Mad Max punk. It’s functional, too, nestling comfortably on small faces.
Get the most out of your workouts with these energy sources.
Bobo’s Oat Bar ($4)
Thanks in part to its cakelike texture and rolled oats, this was without a doubt the best-tasting bar we tried. The chewy Banana Chocolate Chip flavor is reminiscent of mom’s banana bread but with enough carbs and sugar to keep us going mid-workout.
Runa Clean Energy Drink ($32 for 12)
The next time you’re bonking on a run or ride, skip the Gatorade and grab a can of Runa instead. Derived from a concentrated brew of South American guayusa tree leaves, which are packed with antioxidants and caffeine, this energy-boosting drink will power you through any type of workout. Our favorite flavor, Blood Orange, has no sugar or artificial chemicals.
Alpine Aire Grape Escape Dried Fruit ($6)
Grapes have always been too squishy and messy to be a practical backcountry snack. Until now. This seedless variety is freeze-dried for an easy, all-natural trail munchie. Sweet and crunchy, they’re great sprinkled on granola in the morning or straight from the bag at any point in the day.
Pro Bar Fuel ($30 for 12)
Gels are great, but sometimes all we want is a traditional bar. Made from coconut, fruit, nuts, and chia seeds, Pro Bar’s latest concoction is delicious enough to eat for dessert. And at 200 calories, it packs a punch. Picky eaters will appreciate that it’s organic, gluten-free, and certified non-GMO.
The New Primal Classic Turkey Jerky ($55 for eight)
We tested dozens of jerkies, and New Primal’s Classic Turkey was our favorite. Carved from free-range turkey breast with no antibiotics, the bite-size strips are among the leanest on the market, especially compared with the more common beef options. Pineapple juice and a touch of honey make for a subtly sweet aftertaste.
SiS Go Gel ($45 for 30)
Most gels need to be chased with water to prevent stomach revolt. Not this one. SiS’s already hydrated goop delivers a quick kick in the pants when you need it most. Each packet is loaded with 22 grams of carbs and can easily be zipped into a pack or belt. Flavors like orange, apple, and lemon are tasty enough to make refueling feel like a treat.
Turn on, tune in, rock out.
Beats Solo3 Wireless ($300)
The comfy, do-everything Solo3 offers rich, thumpy sound and is great during commutes and on runs, where the rubberized headband helps it stay put. Its Bluetooth boasts a nearly unprecedented range of 400 feet. Battery life runs 40 hours, and a quick five-minute plug-in gives your Beats three hours of juice if you’re rushing out the door.
iFrogz Summit Wireless ($35)
Lightweight and sweat-resistant, the Summit comes in at a remarkably low price for Bluetooth earphones and sounds surprisingly good. The earpieces wedge in snugly, and the cord snaps onto your shirt collar, which alleviates the constant tug you can get from other behind-the-neck models. Its plastic build and thin wires don’t inspire total confidence, though.
Shure SE215m+SPE ($119)
Don’t overlook wired earphones: they eliminate the need for charging—simply plug and play. Dynamic MicroDrivers produce stellar sound quality that doesn’t overdo the bass and is as crisp as that of any model we tested, while a secure fit is accomplished via moldable, Kevlar-reinforced over-ear cables.
Monster iSport Victory BT ($100)
With its solid build, sweat resistance, impressive sound that stays clear at high volumes, and reflective cable for nighttime safety, the Victory BT comes close to perfecting wireless workout buds. But best of all are the just-right rubber wings that leverage the shape of your ear to wedge them in place.
JLab Epic2 Bluetooth ($100)
The Epic2 emerged as our favorite wireless sports headphones this year. While the buds are a bit chunky (though not heavy) and might not sit right in smaller ears, the powerful oomph of its rich, bass-heavy audio makes up for the size. Plus it’s water-resistant and can be rinsed off briefly after a particularly sweaty outing.
Sony MDR-1000X ($350)
Sony has trodden into Bose territory with these frequent-flier-friendly cans. Throw together Bluetooth connectivity, customizable filtering for blocking out ambient sounds and voices, digital sound enhancement, supple over-ear cups with touch controls on the outside, and a 20-hour battery life and the result is the ideal—albeit expensive—pair of travel headphones.
Make any time sweatin’ time.
Lululemon Reversible (Un)mat ($48)
Thin, durable, and sticky, this pad was made for commuters and travelers who want to get yogic without lugging around a foam bazooka.
Brazyn Morph Collapsible Roller ($68)
A full-size foam roller that folds down to the size of a textbook—impossible? Nope. And at a scant 1.6 pounds, the Morph can still support 350 pounds when expanded into its circular shape.
Metolius Portable Power Grips Holds ($23)
These wooden holds come with slings that can be tied around any sturdy horizontal surface, so you can crank out pull-ups just about anywhere.
RYU Quick Pack Lux 1.1 ($185)
This sleek 22-liter bag has a burly drop front that folds outward for easy, locker-like access. Mesh pockets inside are tailored for water bottles, and the wax-treated body sheds precipitation.
Crossrope Starter Set Jump Rope ($69)
A classic tool updated for fitness buffs. This set comes with two cables—one is thinner, for agility workouts, and the other (shown) is beefier, for conditioning. Together they weigh two pounds.
Smartwool PhD Ultra Light Short-Sleeve Shirt ($70)
With a breathable mesh panel on the back that wicks moisture, this formfitting, featherweight tee stays cool during sweaty workouts.
Hanah One Go-Pack Gels ($49 for 12)
Stash a couple of these superfood-loaded packets in your bag and you don’t have to worry about a post-workout smoothie. Honey harvested in India lends just enough sweetness.
Saxx Kinetic Run Shorts ($75)
Male runners, rejoice: Saxx’s patented Ballpark Pouch—which is exactly what it sounds like—is sewn into a breathable liner to prevent chafing and add support. These stretchy, low-key shorts are technically designed for running, but we wore them everywhere.
Quality gear to make you feel like a million bucks no matter how hard you’re pushing it.
CEP Dynamic+ Run Ultralight Low Socks ($20)
Some compression socks feel as tight as tourniquets. Not these. The Ultralight Lows are just snug enough to reduce swelling, increase circulation, and support muscles and joints.
Adidas Women’s Voyager Jacket ($99)
Made from a surprisingly silky, 90 percent recycled polyester, this 9.8-ounce windbreaker was an impressively strong buffer against the elements on damp, 45-degree days, offering no excuse to stop training.
Coeur Sports Bra ($45)
Designed by veteran Ironman Kebby Holden, this buttery-soft bra has a hidden cleavage pocket and wears perfectly on its own—all the better to show off the retro wraparound stripes and shapely racerback.
TriggerPoint Grid STK Foam Roller ($35)
Look no further than Trigger Point when it comes to quality, compact rollers. The Grid STK’s ridged foam surface replicates a massage therapist’s hands—a godsend for relieving tweaked muscles after Pilates.
Patagonia Lightweight Black Hole 28L Tote ($49)
Two words sum up this bag: tough and simple. Sand, grit, and late-season snow couldn’t penetrate its ripstop nylon, which is treated with a water-repellent finish. True to its name, it swallowed everything.
Fjällräven High Coast Tights ($100)
The 50-50 blend of polyamide and recycled polyester in these leggings works double time, providing a cushy layer next to skin and wicking sweat as you ramp up the intensity.
Tasc Performance Rhythm Skirt ($54)
Comfortable but with a touch of whimsy, this anti-odor, UPF 50 poly-Lycra skirt hides inner compression shorts that add iron support for weary glutes.
Hoka One One Hupana Shoes ($115)
Not as beefy as its forebears, the versatile Hupana—with rockered mid- and outsoles—is a comfortable all-around trainer. The sleek knit upper fits in at the gym or in the urban jungle.
Club Ride Trixie Tank ($55)
No unnecessary bells or whistles here. This compression-knit, quick-drying top boasts a stretch-mesh back panel and two drop-in pockets for bike tubes or gels.
Wrist computers finally show their style.
Apple Watch Series 2 ($599)
Gear of the Year
The second iteration of Apple’s smartwatch earned our Gear of the Year nod for doing one thing insanely well: worming its way into every corner of our lives. It patches through texts and calls directly to our wrists. It tracks daily motion and automatically prompts us to keep active throughout the day. No wearable has simpler navigation, and it integrates that famous ease of use into each of its fitness functions as well. Want to go for a run? Just say “Hey, Siri, let’s run,” and once you’re on the trail you get verbal pace, distance, and elapsed-time updates. When you’re finished, the watch will keep track of your daily, weekly, and monthly mileage goals. Like its predecessor, the Series 2 is more welcoming than other watches when it comes to third-party fitness apps like Strava and MapMyRun. And those revamped good looks are indicative of a larger trend in wearables: shedding all that teched-out styling for something you’re not embarrassed to wear on a date. After all, nobody wants to broadcast “Look at me—I run!” even if that’s exactly what you’d rather be doing, every chance you get.
Garmin Fenix 5S ($599)
Best For: Superb on-wrist heart-rate monitoring.
The Test: The svelte 5S is one of Garmin’s smallest, most sophisticated models yet. It delivers up to nine days of battery life (or 14 hours of continuous GPS tracking), and its fitness diagnostics are superb. After a run, we synced our workout to the Garmin Connect app and manipulated overlay charts that showed, for instance, average steps per minute against pace to see if our form fell apart as we increased speed. There are also interval modes and custom alerts for pace and distance. On-wrist heart-rate capture was among the best in our test, matching the Suunto Spartan Sport. The only bummer: Garmin doesn’t allow onboard music storage.
The Verdict: A long-lifed wearable with fitness chops.
Samsung Gear S3 Frontier ($350)
Best For: Samsung devotees.
The Test: Too many timepieces that combine altimeter, barometer, and compass (ABC) functions feel like they’re stuck in 1999. Samsung’s Gear S3 Frontier, on the other hand, is wholly 2017, with analog ABC sensors that work together with Wi-Fi and a built-in SIM card to triangulate your precise location. Thanks to that SIM, the watch also lets you send an SOS beacon to friends and family. Three days of battery life make it a great weekend-escape watch, too. Did we mention it may have the most versatile pay-from-your-wrist system on earth? So you can leave not only your phone at home but also your wallet. The interface—a slick rotating bezel—is clever and easy to use. We especially love that Samsung’s proprietary S Health app automatically logs various workout activities. Plus, you can run other fitness apps, including Under Armour Record and MapMyRun.
The Verdict: ABC watches, welcome to the 21st century.
LG Watch Sport ($349)
Best For: Dialed user-friendliness.
The Test: Android wearables came out of the gate a bit clunky—physically big, with illogical, cumbersome interfaces. However, the new LG Watch Sport is one of the first timepieces to get Android Wear 2.0, streamlining things considerably. The watch has its own SIM, so you can listen to Spotify and make calls sans phone. Like the Samsung, navigation is smooth: rotate the watch crown to scroll through menus rather than tapping and swiping the screen, which can be a real problem with sweaty fingers in the middle of a jog. Android lets you download fitness apps (Runtastic, Strava, Seven, and more) directly to the watch. All told, though, we wish it had a slightly slimmer design.
The Verdict: The best Android Wear watch on the market.
New Balance RunIQ ($299)
Best For: Fleet-of-foot Android fans.
The Test: Strava fanatics, this is your watch. Sure, it runs Android Wear 2.0, but Strava comes preloaded and fully integrated; simply tap the upper-right button to fire it up. Plus, Strava boasts a few features just for the RunIQ that you won’t see on other Android or iOS watches, like footfall cadence, accurate speed metrics, and easy-to-use lap mode. The RunIQ’s five-hour battery life (with GPS running) doesn’t even match the half-as-costly Polar, but it’s fully waterproof down to 50 meters—good news for triathletes. And New Balance—with R&D by Intel—includes highly accurate heart-rate monitoring that held up impressively well during high-intensity intervals. Also, this puppy stores up to 50 hours of music.
The Verdict: A dedicated running watch with stealth wearable capability.
Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR ($499)
Best For: Going hard.
The Test: The name may be a mouthful, but the watch is impressive—12 hours of battery in GPS mode, water-resistant to 100 meters, and 80 different preloaded sport modes, including trail running, open-water swimming, and adventure racing. It has an easy-to-read touchscreen, but the physical buttons on the side were clutch when our hands got sweaty. On-wrist heart-rate accuracy was matched only by the Garmin, and GPS was top-notch. Workouts get logged in Suunto’s MovesCount app and desktop program, and you can use the latter to download nearby routes and preplanned training calendars.
The Verdict: A multisport workhorse.
Polar M200 ($150)
Best For: Giving you gobs and gobs of data.
The Test: The M200 is lightweight and comfortable, and despite its price, it tracks a ridiculous number of sports, including badminton, disc golf, and literally a hundred more. Using it couldn’t be easier, with just two buttons and an intuitive operating system. Like most wearables, the M200 has GPS and accurate on-wrist heart rate, and your workout data syncs to your phone via the Polar Flow app. The M200 also works with Android’s Google Fit and can populate Apple’s Health Kit. However, its six hours of GPS battery life left us hanging on all-day epics.
The Verdict: Looking to track your handball stats? There’s a watch for that.
Watches that mix modern technology with old-school appeal.
Tsovet SVT-RM40 ($325)
It was the Tsovet’s minimalist design that won us over. The solid stainless-steel case is water-resistant to 100 meters and houses a simple face meant to mimic the readout on an old fighter jet. Even more subtle: the date shows through a slot resembling a ship’s porthole. Only the metallic-blue hands convey a bit of flash.
Szanto Officer’s Classic Round Automatic 6304 ($375)
Szanto nailed the fieldwatch look with a round-edged case, subtle wave pattern on the face, and deco-like minute and second hands. Bonus points for the one-piece stainless-steel construction and SuperLuminova application, which makes the hands glow bright after dark.
Luminox Carbon SEAL 3813 ($675)
Where other brands merely copy military badassery, the SEAL lives it. Carbon woven into the polycarbonate case offers the toughness of titanium at one-third the weight for a barely-there watch that won’t fail you when things get gnarly. Tritium-tube hands and numbers stay lit for 25 years. Other features include an antireflective sapphire crystal and precise Swiss quartz movement.
Timex IQ+ Move ($149)
Appearances suggest that this is a basic analog wristwatch. But press the crown and it pairs with a free app (Android and iOS) to auto-set the time and log daily distance, calorie, and sleep data on your smartphone. A small subdial on the watch tallies your steps. Kudos for the one-year battery life.
Standard Issue Instruments Field Navigator ($250)
The Field Navigator is a stripped-down yet hardy watch made by Huckberry in the spirit of the mission timers used by Vietnam-era Special Forces. With a reliable Ronda quartz movement, this timepiece is a great value if you’re looking to keep a low profile.
Momentum Torpedo Blast 44 Rubber ($114)
Dive watches often break the bank. Not this one. For a little more than a Benjamin, you get 200 meters of water resistance and some nice details, like the offset crown to avoid wetsuit snags and bright luminescent hands and markers for underwater clarity.
Taking photos shouldn’t be a chore. Make it fun.
Danner Mountain 600 Low Hiking Boots ($160)
The best hikers protect your feet without feeling like cement blocks. The 600 Low fulfills both needs: it’s relatively light (two pounds per pair) yet burly, with a thick, water-proof suede outer and tough Vibram soles.
Flint and Tinder All-American Jeans ($98)
Good photographers kneel, crawl, jump, and climb to get the shot. These thick, 12-ounce denim jeans will stand up to all that abuse.
Mountainsmith FXpedition Monopod ($40)
Low-light shooting calls for a steady hand—and a bit of third-party support. That’s when you break out this quick-draw folding monopod. Perk: it doubles as a hiking pole.
Peak Design Everyday 20L Backpack ($260)
This is the most intelligently designed camera pack we’ve tried. Credit customizable dividers that let you organize to your heart’s content and easy-access side zips.
Patagonia Airshed Jacket ($119)
Think of this pullover as a poor-weather insurance policy. The stretchy layer packs down to the size of an apple but is still plenty tough to cut wind, add warmth, and hold off rain long enough for you to find shelter.
MacBook Pro Laptop ($2,399 and up)
Apple nailed the size-to-power ratio with its new 15-inch laptop. Weighing in at four pounds and merely 15.5 millimeters thick, it packs enough processing power to chew through big RAW files and lengthy segments of 4K video.
Sony Vario-Tessar T* E 16—70mm f/4 ZA OSS Lens ($1,000)
The only lens you’ll ever need. It has a massive range when paired with the a6500—from 24mm to 105mm—for capturing both wide landscapes and detailed portraits.
Sony a6500 Camera ($1,400)
If a DSLR and a point-and-shoot had a kid, this would be it. A crisp Zeiss lens, 11-frames-per-second machine-gun capture rate, and 24.2-megapixel sensor are packed in a body that weighs merely a pound.
Topo Designs Camera Strap ($29)
Your camera is only as safe as your strap. Buy this tough one from Topo, made from repurposed climbing rope.
Flylow Anderson Shirt ($60)
Antimicrobial bamboo and polyester keep the Anderson stink-free, while muted colors look good in the field.
All you need for city streets and wooded trails.
All Good SPF 30 Sport Sunscreen Spray ($22)
This push-button zinc spray rubs in without the greasy finish of some other sunscreens and offers 80 minutes of water- and sweat-resistant shielding.
Fits Ultra Light Runner No Show Socks ($16)
The Runner No Show plays to folks who value ground feel above all else. The thin wool-synthetic blend hugs without being overly constricting.
Spy Hunt Sunglasses ($160)
Any company can make shades with good polarized lenses, but few can keep them in place when the sweat starts to roll. That’s why we love the Hunt’s half-rubber arms, which help the robust plastic frames stick.
Polk Boom Bit Speaker ($30)
Nature’s nice, but sometimes you want to rock out while training. The tiny Boom Bit, which pairs to your phone via Bluetooth, lets you do so without blocking out the sounds around you—like traffic or an oncoming mountain biker.
Osprey Duro 6 Pack ($110)
The Duro 6 made multi-hour runs (relatively) painless, with vest-style suspension that reduced jostle even with a maxed-out main compartment and full hydration bladder.
Buff Pack Run Cap ($32)
Mesh side panels and a moisture-wicking polyester crown kept us comfortable on blistering days. When the sun went down, reflective hits made us visible.
Vuori Trail Shorts ($68)
This Southern California company is all about versatility. The Trail’s mid-thigh-length inseam was as appropriate for running as it was for refueling at the local brunch spot.
Run Gum Performance Gum ($22.50 for 12 packets)
Caffeine is one of the best performance enhancers a runner can use (legally, anyway). A single serving of Run Gum packs the same amount of punch as eight ounces of coffee.
Tracksmith Van Cortlandt Tech Shirt ($68)
Runners burn through shirts like gel packets, but the Van Cortlandt is one worth preserving. Tracksmith slimmed the usual boxy fit for a runner’s lithe build, and the Swiss-sourced mesh is soft and breathable.
Go faster, train smarter.
Strava Premium ($60 per year)
In addition to advanced metrics, post-race analysis, and the infamous Suffer Score, Strava Premium now offers an emergency service called Beacon, which lets three designated safety contacts follow your location on a map in real time.
Balega Silver Socks ($15)
Balega makes our favorite socks for blister-free running. The polyester-nylon yarn used in this pair is treated with antimicrobial silver to help ward off foot funk.
Garmin Forerunner 235 Watch ($330)
One of the most intuitive wearables we’ve tried, the Forerunner features Garmin’s über-accurate location tracking, an easy-to-read color screen, up to nine days of battery life, and a heart-rate monitor. Also included is 24/7 activity tracking for steps, sleep quality, and more.
LifeStraw Steel Water Filter ($60)
For trail runners who tackle epics, this 4.4-ounce straw ensures you never run out of water. It filters out bacteria and protozoa but not viruses (so best not to use it abroad). The stainless-steel body is rugged enough to survive a mountainside tumble.
FlipBelt Million Mile Light ($20)
The genius of this 1.5-ounce running light? There’s no battery to replace. Clip it to your belt and sliding magnets harness your kinetic energy to generate 30 lumens.
Oakley Radar Pace Sunglasses ($450)
Think of the Radar Pace as sporty shades, unobtrusive earbuds, and a personal trainer all in one. Its voice-activated system provides real-time coaching, tracks your pace, and lets you know when it’s time to push for a PR. The lenses offer great coverage and boost clarity—these are Oakleys, after all.
Hyperice Hypersphere Roller ($149)
We have yet to find anything that melts tight-muscle pain as well as Hyperice’s massage ball. There are three soothing vibration settings: strong, stupid strong, and completely insane. Two hours of battery life keep the post-workout magic coming.
Altra IQ Road Running Shoes ($220)
Add four accelerometers to a pair of top-rated trainers, sync them with a phone, and you’ve got your own on-the-go coach. The IQ gives you granular feedback data, including cadence, foot strike, impact, and balance.
A time-tested piece of headwear attracts a new cult following
Each year, we test dozens of bikes in Sedona, Arizona, putting them through their paces in a variety of terrain. This year, we found one stand-out bike that can do just about anything. Watch to see why our testers loved the 2017 Santa Cruz Tallboy (and its sister, the Juliana Joplin) and why the rigs won Gear of the Year in our Summer Buyer’s Guide.
Each year, we ride dozens of bikes in Sedona, Arizona, putting them through their paces at our annual bike test. This year, we found one road bike that stood above the rest. Watch to see why our testers loved the 2017 Giant TCR Advanced Pro 1 Disc and why the bike won Gear of the Year in our Summer Buyer’s Guide.
Sacks for a comfortable night’s sleep, wherever you lay your head.