This article is sponsored by Energizer Lights.

There’s nothing like the freedom of running. You can run any distance, time of day or terrain you please, go solo or with some pals and even change your mind two minutes in and bolt on back home. As they say, all you need is a good pair of shoes to get going.

While that may be true, having a few other handy items on you can help you to actually keep going. The less obstacles in your way, the more likely you are to run further and more regularly. It’s a delicate balance though. Lugging an unnecessary item along with you can be very counterintuitive to clocking up the kilometres.

So, we’re keeping it simple with only five items that are actually worth bringing on a run. And depending on the time of day you’re leaving the house, you probably won’t even need all five at the same time.

Unless you’re one of those superior beings who can be left alone with their own thoughts for an extended period of time, listening to music, podcasts or an audiobook is a great way to entertain your mind as you’re moving. Go for wireless earphones to minimise your distractions. It was a game-changer the first time I went for a run with wireless earphones. Without cords tugging at my ears or holding me back, I could move more freely and focus on my movements instead of getting frustrated.

If you like to run early in the morning or in the evening, safety is a big factor. The lack of light means you’ve got less time to spy uneven ground or obstacles on your path. You’ve got little scope for any strangers that might be lurking around and cars can’t spot you as well, either.

5 Items That Are Actually Worth Bringing With You on a Run

Bringing a headlamp on a run helps your visibility but also, given a lot of workout gear is black in colour, it helps motorists see you, too.

Energizer® Lights offer a range of handsfree options, including the Energizer® Vision Ultra HD Rechargeable Headlamp which has seven light modes and reaches up to 400 lumens. The lamp is lightweight, has a smart dimming feature, so you don’t flash passersby in the eyes, and I’d argue that the head-strap doubles as a sweatband, too.

On the flipside, if you like running during the day, the sun’s rays can beat down on you and your endurance levels. For a bit of reprieve from the glare and heat, a lightweight, breathable hat can also keep sweat from dripping down your face. Plus, if you’re out for a while, chances are you’re sweating off that sunscreen so it’s good for your protection, too.

There are some essentials, like your phone and keys, that you just can’t get around having to carry on a run. But there are lots of nifty products around that you can use to keep your hands free. The right storage option for you depends on your kind of running. If you like a shorter run around the neighbourhood? A classic armband should do the trick.

For longer distances, you probably need to stash a snack or some water somewhere. Try a running belt (kind of like a mini bumbag) or vest. They’re made with runners in mind and have lots of pockets and dedicated spaces for your water.

READ MOREYes, Wearable Fitness Trackers Are Actually Good for You

Whether you’re a seasoned runner or have made it a goal to start this year, tracking your progress can help with achieving goals and accountability. A wearable fitness tracker to measure steps, heart rate and distance can keep you motivated to keep pushing.

There are not a lot of things worth bringing on a run, but you won’t regret these five trusty items when you’re pounding more pavement than you ever have.

You can check out all the handsfree options at Energizer Lights, here.