Deciding what to wear for a half marathon can be overwhelming – and surprisingly complicated. With so many options, it’s difficult to know what running clothes and gear you will actually need on race day.
Finding the perfect half marathon outfit will not only boost your confidence on race day, but will help you perform your best and stay comfortable. Add on some helpful gear and you’ll be able to refuel, hydrate and avoid any unnecessary pain.
How to decide what to wear for a half marathon?
Your ultimate decision will depend on a number of factors, such as the weather, location, altitude, type of race, etc. The first thing to consider when selecting a half marathon outfit is the weather. A hot, humid race day will warrant a very different selection than one that is cold and snowy.
The type of running shoes you select will depend on whether it’s a trail or road race, and many of your gear and accessories will depend on the amenities offered at the start and throughout the course.
Once you’ve narrowed down the type of running clothes and gear that you’ll need, you’re ready for the fun part: picking your outfit and deciding exactly what to wear for the half marathon.
What to Wear for a Half Marathon
As you begin the process of deciding what to wear for a half marathon, it can be helpful to narrow down the basics. Here are the essential pieces every runner needs, regardless of their climate or skill level.
Half Marathon Outfit
Regardless of the weather, you’ll need to be sure you have all of the basics covered in your running outfit. Here are some great options that will keep you comfortable, dry, and chafe free in all types of weather!
- Shirt: tank top, short sleeve shirt or long sleeve shirt
- Pants: shorts, capris or tights
- Sports bra
- Running shoes
Some runners prefer timeless classics for their outfits: basics that are neutral and fit them in a way that inspires confidence on race day. If you’re looking to stay comfortable, yet still remain stylish, here are some of my favorite options.
For Colder Temperatures
When the weather is chillier, you’ll still want to stick with the basics, but you’ll need to add some extra layers to stay warm. Here are some extra running clothes to consider wearing for a cold half marathon.
- Long sleeve pullover
- Running jacket
Half Marathon Gear Checklist
In addition to deciding what to wear for a half marathon, you’ll need to decide what you’re going to use and bring. The gear you bring with you to a half marathon has the potential to make or break your race day experience.
Using a half marathon gear checklist is a great way to ensure you don’t forget anything essential in the often chaotic lead up to race morning. Here are some key pieces of half marathon gear that many runners don’t want to forget.
- GPS watch
- Running fuel and/or hydration
- Hydration/fuel belt
- Hat >> my favorite running hat
- Anti-chafe glide
- Throwaway clothes (extra clothes to stay warm at the start that can be taken off and placed in donation bins when the race begins – thrifting is a great option!)
While deciding what to wear for a half marathon won’t necessarily determine your results, it can have a powerful impact on your performance. Finding the right half marathon outfit will inspire confidence and comfort. Complimenting the outfit with some helpful gear will allow you to stay chafe free, fueled, hydrated and safe from the elements.
Take the time to plan your outfit ahead of time, run through the half marathon gear checklist, and ensure you have everything packed and ready to go for race morning. You’ll ease your nerves, calm any anxiety and set yourself up for success!