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  • Compression Athlete

How to Secure Your Important Items When Running

Safe and convenient options for distraction-free runs.

Athlete running with secure running armband storage.

Here’s a dilemma that every runner is faced with at least one time or another. What to do with your valuable items—phone, keys, credit card, etc.— while you’re out for a run.


Holding items in your hand is risky. Tucking them in your waistband, bra strap, or shoelaces isn’t a great or all-too-comfortable fix.


And nobody likes the feel of things bouncing around in their pockets while trying to focus on the task at hand.


Even when you’re just walking you might find the feel of your phone or keys sliding back and forth kind of irritating. Kick up the intensity and those items will start banging all around like crazy.


And, of course, this isn’t just a problem for runners. Really anyone looking to ace an outdoor workout would benefit from free hands and safely secured personal items.


Finding a convenient and comfortable option that works for you will improve your running and simply make for a more enjoyable experience, regardless of how hard you’re pushing yourself.



How to Keep Your Phone and Keys Secure While Active


So, can you manage holding your keys, your phone, or other smaller important items while you run?


Sure. Maybe it’s on the riskier side but of course you could manage.


But given the option, wouldn’t you prefer to have your hands and mind free of distraction while you run?


This is a no-brainer. Thankfully, there are a few different solutions that have popped up over the years to combat this problem.


Athlete wearing running armband for storage.

In essence, what we’re looking for are methods that reduce any bouncing or shifting around from the item while still retaining your body’s natural full range of motion.


And there’s definitely a sweet spot that you want to hit.


Going overboard on securing an item usually reduces your ability to move in some way or another, while overprioritizing freedom of motion likely won’t keep your items in place.


Here, we’ve collected our top picks for safely securing your important items while running and working out. Find the one that fits your style best and take your workout to the next level.



Note: Featured products are independently selected and reviewed by Compression Athlete. If you purchase through our links, we may earn commission.



Secure Option 1: Compression Pocket


First up, we have compression pockets, which are the side drop-in pockets on compression shorts and compression tights.


We’re highlighting this one first because it’s the only secure storage option that doesn’t add an additional garment or item to your body, which many athletes appreciate.


While pockets on looser-fitting garments shift and bounce around as your legs move, the stretchy and snug fabric of compression secures pocketed items tightly and comfortably against your thigh.


Secure phone storage in compression pocket.

This way the item wont shift or bounce around, throwing off your concentration or causing you discomfort.


And even though the compression fabric lays tightly against your body, its stretchy properties offer a comfortable fit and allow a full range of motion.


The side drop-in pockets on compression shorts and compression tights are a great way to securely store your phone, keys, credit card, and other similar items.


Additionally, many compression shorts and tights also provide a zippered or fold-in waistband pocket that’s perfect for storing smaller items like keys, key FOBs, chapstick, gum, and more.


Secure item storage in compression shorts.

Check Out: Best Men's Compression Shorts With Pockets

Check Out: Best Women's Compression Shorts With Pockets


The other great aspect of utilizing a compression pocket is that is not only offers secure storage, but you’ll also enjoy the many benefits that compression shorts and tights have to offer your performance.


For example, the garment’s compressive pressure offers support to your muscles as you exert energy for improved endurance and its moisture-wicking fabric keeps you cool, dry, and comfortable while you sweat.


Additionally, the snug and smooth fit of compression fabric provides superior comfort for extended wear and reduces the possibility of chafing during activity.


So, whether you’re walking, running, working out, or active in any other way, if you’re looking to securely store important items while you exercise, a compression pocket is the way to go.



Secure Option 2: Running Armband


The next few secure storage options that we’re highlighting are items you can add to your running ensemble. In other words, items that you can anchor to your body in a comfortable and effective manner.


One such popular choice is the running armband, which you’ve likely seen being used by athletes as a way to store their phone while running or working out.


Athlete wearing running armband for phone storage.

Shop at Nike: Nike Pocket Armband Plus Shop at New Balance: New Balance Running Phone Pouch

Shop at Lululemon: Lululemon Fast and Free Armband


The running armband wraps snuggly around the upper arm and typically offers storage for your phone and smaller items.


This position also allows the runner easy access to their phone screen, which is helpful if you’re listening to music or want quick access to calls and messages.



Secure Option 3: Running Belt


Another popular option that offers great versatility is the running belt or running fanny pack.


This option is essentially a belt with an adjoined storage pouch worn either around the waist or across the chest.


Athletes wearing running belts.

Shop at Nike: Nike Slim Running Fanny Pack

Shop at Under Armour: Under Armour Flex SpeedPocket Run Belt

Shop at Adidas: Adidas Running Belts

The running belt design provides an adjustable fit to match your activity and preferences, and many athletes enjoy its customization.


Wearing your running belt snug to your body will allow for a bounce-free run, while for lighter activity you may prefer a looser fit that remains secure and comfortable around your body.


Running belts come in a variety of sizes and storage offerings, from slimmer options for small item storage to more detailed options that include a water bottle.


Hydration belt storage options.

Shop at Nike: Nike Flex Stride Running Hydration Belt Shop at Under Armour: Under Armour Sonic Flask Belt



Secure Option 4: Running Vest


If you’re a runner that’s all about going for distance, then a great storage option to consider is a running vest.


While you might associate wearing a vest with adding warmth to your ensemble, running vests are actually constructed with lightweight and breathable material that won’t cause overheating.


Athlete wearing running vest for storage.

Shop at Under Armour: Under Armour Sonic Running Vest

Shop at Nike: Nike Transform Packable Running Vest

Shop at Adidas: Adidas Terrex Trail Running Vest


The running vest design also offers one of the most secure and shift-free fits, as it anchors to your chest (i.e. not a mobile limb or joint) and is adjustable to your liking or activity.


As far as secure storage options go for runners, running vests will offer the most room for storage while still maintaining a high level of comfort and distraction-free running.


Running vests come in a variety of designs and storage options, however, many often come with multiple storage pockets and a hydration option (such as water bottle or hydration bladder), among other features.


So, if you’re going for long distances and require fuel storage and hydration along for the ride, then a running vest is often the best option.



Remember that it’s important for runners to stay hydrated! Check out these workout-friendly water bottles that are stylish, durable, and easy to incorporate into your routine.

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