The 6 Best Running Belts of 2022, According to Marathoners

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Nathan Hipster
SpiBelt
FlipBelt
Nike Slim Waist Pack 2.0
Naked Running 2L Band
collage of the running belts of 2022 isolated on a teal background
Lululemon Fast and Free
Finding the best running belt for you is all about fit, comfort and knowing what you want to bring on your runs.
Image Credit: LIVESTRONG.com Creative

One of my favorite things about running is the opportunity it gives me leave the rest of the world behind. Granted, I still bring a few essentials with me when I head out: on shorter runs, my keys, cards and phone and on those marathon training long runs, fuel, too.

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That's where a stellar running belt comes in. Not only can the right exercise belt stash your on-the-move must-haves, it can also help you keep better form on your runs.

"You want to focus on your run, not on carrying your phone in your hand or worrying about your keys bouncing around in your pockets," says Jes Woods, Nike+ Run Coach and ultramarathoner based in New York.

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The Best Running Belts

How We Chose

What should you look for in the right style, and do different distances require different features? We connected with avid runners to highlight the six best running belts of 2022 and what features to look for in the best belts. Along with our own testing, we made these picks based on criteria including:

  • Price
  • Material
  • Capacity/pockets
  • Adjustability
  • Washability

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1. Best Fit: Nathan Hipster

  • Machine washable:​ yes
  • Available colors:​ 13
  • Pockets:​ 4
  • Sizes:​ XS to XL

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Six-time marathoner Irina Lucaciu from Olympia, Washington, loves how this stretchy running belt lays flat and camouflages into most of her shorts or tights. "It looks like a waistband most of the time," she says.

Plus, its four pockets are all different sizes. "They're wide enough for wide and small objects, which is great, because then you don't have to cram a bunch of stuff into one single spot," Lucaciu says.

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Buy it:Amazon.com; ​Price: ​$7.80 to $61.21

2. Best for Phones: SpiBelt

  • Machine washable:​ yes
  • Available colors:​ 33
  • Pockets:​ 1
  • Sizes:​ one size, large, adjustable

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Despite looking small, this running belt stretches to fit all of the essentials. For Danielle Adam, a four-time marathoner, it's the perfect size to fit her not-so-small iPhone 11.

"Even though it stretches well, it still hugs whatever I put in it quite snugly and stays close to my body, not bounding on the run," she says.

Buy it:Amazon.com; ​Price:​ $26.99

3. Best Zipperless: FlipBelt

  • Machine washable:​ yes
  • Available colors:​ 13
  • Pockets:​ 4
  • Sizes:​ XXS to XXL

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Flipbelt has a dedicated fan club for a reason: It's about as streamlined and user-friendly as possible.

"It doesn't have any zippers or extra materials, which I like," says Mike Shapiro, a New York-based runner. "Plus, the neoprene material is super comfortable. I've even worn it directly on my skin, and have never had to worry about rubbing or chafing. I can't say the same for other materials."

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Available in two different sizes, it also has a handy inside clip to secure your keys.

Buy it:Amazon.com; ​Price:​ $28.63 to $41.00

4. Best for Style: Lululemon Fast and Free

  • Machine washable:​ yes
  • Available colors:​ 4
  • Pockets:​ 3
  • Sizes:​ S/M, L/XL

For Sunny Holub, a marathoner from Mount Vernon, Iowa, this running belt is as good as it gets. "I've tried a few, and this is the one that I come back to because it doesn't move, shift or bounce at all. Plus, it's not bulky."

Bonus: The waistband has a buckle closure for easy on and off, and it's adjustable to best fit your body.

Buy it:Lululemon.com; ​Price:​ $38

5. Best Reflective: Nike Slim Waist Pack 2.0

  • Machine washable:​ yes
  • Available colors:​ 4
  • Pockets:​ 1
  • Sizes:​ one size

If you're tackling early morning or late evening miles (especially in the winter months), a running fanny pack with hits of reflectivity is essential, Woods says.

"Living in New York, we're spoiled by well-lit streets," she says. "But once you get to the suburbs or the trails, it's really important that you lean into accessories that have reflective components to stay safe and visible to other runners, cyclists and especially cars."

Buy it:Nike.com; ​Price:​ $20

6. Best for Snacks: Naked Running 2L

  • Machine washable:​ yes
  • Available colors:​ 1
  • Pockets:​ 1 (3 compartments)
  • Sizes:​ 73.5 to 99 cm

This running belt comes in 12 different sizes. (Hello, options!) That's why it's a favorite of Mario Leroy, a marathoner from Costa Rica. "I loved that I was able to find the best size for my body specifically," he says.

"Plus, it can hold anything from full-size water bottles to gels, which made it the perfect pick for my last marathon," he says. It can hold up to 2 liters of stuff, which means that if you're the kind of person who wants to bring lots of snacks and fuel — this is your go-to.

Buy it:NakedSportsInnovations.com, ​Price:​ $49.99

3 Things to Look for in a Running Belt

1. Secure, Comfortable Design

Running is hard enough as it is. The last thing that you want to worry about when you're picking up the pace is managing an exercise belt that won't sit still.

On your quest for a style that's no-budge and no-bounce, look for something that has flush-to-body buckles and straps. And make sure to test out its comfort level both when empty and loaded up. In general, running belts fall into three main categories:

  • Tube-style belts:​ lightweight, minimalist belts that have compartments built into the band
  • Mini-belts:​ small waistpacks with usually one pocket meant only to hold only a few essential items, like your keys, ID and phone
  • Larger waistpacks:​ similar to a fanny pack with larger pockets that can carry essentials, as well as a water bottle, snacks and an extra layer

2. Room for All of Your Stuff

Running packs come in different shapes and styles, some of them with separate compartments to stash larger items like water bottles and some with only smaller pockets. Depending on how far you're going, the items you'll want to bring with you may vary.

Pro tip: When shopping in store, bring all of your running must-haves with you to trial the pack. And make sure you can easily access all the pockets — and the things in them — mid-run.

3. Machine Washability

Your running belt is coming with you on the move, which means that more than likely it's going to get sweaty. Seek out a style that's OK to go in the washing machine and make sure to hang dry or lay flat post-soak instead of tossing it in the dryer.

And yes, all of the best running belts on this list are machine washable. (You're welcome.)

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