Whether you're running a marathon or just jogging around the block, it's helpful to have a way to carry a few essentials with you. The best running belts will allow you to bring your phone, some cash, a key, and possibly even some water along on your run. But what qualities make up a good running belt?
One big factor is the material. Ideally, you want your running belt to be stretchy so that it moves with you and doesn't feel tight or constricting. Look for flexible materials, like LYCRA, elastane, or spandex.
Another thing to keep in mind is the style of the waistband and its accompanying straps. Of course, you'll want it to fit comfortably around your waist, but the belt should still be snug so that it's not bouncing around while you run (which is not only annoying but can affect your performance, too). When you can't try on the belt before buying, reading reviews is a great way to get a better idea of how comfortable it is — fortunately, I've done this part for you.
Lastly, consider any additional features you might want, like reflective stripes for safety or a water-resistant coating to keep your items dry. To help you make a decision, I've made a list of the best running belts, keeping all of these factors in mind. Take a look to find the best fit for your training style.
1. The Best Overall
Weight: 3.5 ounces
Maximum waistband length: 40 inches
What's great about it: This top-grade running belt offers a wonderful blend of quality and affordability. Its simple design allows you to hold everything you need, like your phone, keys, and cash, without being too bulky. At 3.5 ounces, it's lighter than many belts of its kind. The stretchy, LYCRA pouch has been treated with a water-resistant coating, so if you ever jog in a wet climate, your phone won't get soaked. Meanwhile, the snug waistband prevents any bouncing around, yet it doesn't cause chaffing. The belt also has reflective stripes for running at night. This one is a perfect option if you don't need to carry water with you.
What fans say: "Love it! Doesn’t bounce or slide. Fits firmly but not uncomfortable! Holds my iPhone 6s Plus keys and cards without being bulky."
2. The Most Budget-Friendly
Weight: Approximately 3 ounces
Maximum waistband length: 42 inches
What's great about it: If you just want a simple, affordable band that will allow you to bring a few things with you when you run, this budget running belt is a great option. It's not super fancy, but it has everything you need: a flexible, elastic waistband; sturdy, adjustable straps; and a zippered pouch that's big enough to fit most phones. The lightweight material is made from a stretchy nylon-LYCRA blend that wicks moisture and dries quickly. It also has a water-resistant coating and reflective stripes for night runs.
What fans say: "I love this running belt! It's a little thinner than I expected, but I really just wanted it to hold my phone so I can run and weight train without an issue and for that....it does the job!"
3. The Most Lightweight
Weight: 2.7 ounces
Maximum waistband length: Not specified
What's great about it: This lightweight running belt comes with an 8-ounce water flask that fits inside the zippered pouch, yet the whole thing (flask included) weighs only 2.7 ounces. The result is that you can run longer distances and stay hydrated without feeling weighed down. It's built with a stretchy blend of polyamide and elastane that conforms to your body, as well as two built-in pockets (one in the front for your water flask and another in the back for your phone, keys, or other small items). The flask is durable yet flexible, and the pouch is accented with reflective material for safety.
What fans say: "Great belt. The best I have ever used."
4. The Most Hydration
Weight: 10.2 ounces
Maximum waistband length: 46 inches
What's great about it: If you're someone who likes to carry a lot of water with you when you run, this insulated hydration running belt is just the ticket. It comes with two built-in hydration flasks that carry a total of 20 ounces of water. The flasks are ergonomically shaped, and the push-pull caps offer one-handed access, so it's easy to take sips while on-the-move. The belt itself features a large, zippered pocket for your phone and an additional front pouch for other small items. While the exact materials for this belt aren't listed, reviewers noted that it offers a comfortable fit with minimal bouncing.
What fans say: "A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! I am completely in love with this belt ... The pouch provides plenty of room for my phone in its Speck case. The biggest winner other than it fitting my phone is how it doesn't bounce! I swear! The bottles are pretty cool too, easy to access and easy to use."
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