Fast Track: 12 Best Running Backpacks

Jul 3, 2018

Category: Gear

The great thing about running is that you can do it pretty much anywhere at any time. Running to work, if it’s not too far away, or to the gym is a simple way of racking up some additional miles, whether it’s for your health or to train for your next marathon. Not to mention, you can enjoy the outdoors and save some bucks on fuel while getting a solid energy boost.That’s why it’s paramount to choose a running backpack that will suit your needs.

It’s not advisable to use any old backpack that you dug up to carry your gear while you put in the road work, especially with the technology that we have today. There’s plenty of convenient features in well-made running backpacks, such as ventilation channels, ergonomically designed harness systems and hydration packs. Obviously, it also works great for carrying all your small essentials, especially if you’re planning to cover a longer route. Look around and you’ll find an overwhelming amount of running backpack designs with different features. We decided to narrow down the choices and round up some of the best running backpacks out there.

Under Armour Expandable Sackpack

Under Armour’s Polyester running backpack is highly water-resistant with an interior mesh pocket that zips shut so you can keep your small belongings organized on your run. It also has breathable mesh shoulder straps for comfort and webbing loops on the front panel for additional attachment points. And, this reasonably priced backpack even has zippered side gussets that add more space when its unzipped.

Capacity: 27L
Weight: 0.6lbs

Purchase: $40

High Sierra Propel 70 Hydration Pack

This versatile, compact hydration pack is perfect for those hotter days under the sun. The BPA free, antimicrobial 2-liter hydration system has a wide opening reservoir that’s easy to fill and clean. On top of that, it also has a hands-free reservoir pressure valve and a separate rear access hydration reservoir. You can put your gear in the large, front-loading main compartment or the easily accessible front pocket for external storage. The hex-vent mesh padded back and straps make this backpack comfortable to wear while you put in work.

Capacity: 7L
Weight: 1.3lbs

Purchase: $40

Nike Lightweight Running Backpack

Featuring a stabilized construction that helps to reduce bounce and a ventilated back panel for breathable comfort, this backpack is made for covering ground. You won’t have to worry about losing anything on your way to the gym, as it also has multiple zip compartments so that you can stay organized. There’s even an adjustable sternum strap to help in customizing the fit of the pack. Furthermore, it has a hydration pocket with a tube clip and reflective designs, in case you go for a peaceful night jog.

Capacity: 10L
Weight: 0.8lbs

Purchase: $80

Adidas NGA Backpack

Adidas’ running backpack has a secure, balanced fit and favorable ventilation with the help of its ‘Climacool’ and air mesh shoulder straps. For security, it also has a waist belt with easy-pull loops and compression straps for a snug, but pleasant, fit. In addition, its roll-top main compartment with pull-down buckle closure, along with a front zip pocket, will keep your items organized and easily accessible. It also has reflective details, keeping you visible during night runs.

Capacity: 21L
Weight: 1.35lbs

Purchase: $90

Gregory Miwok 18 Backpack

Fast and light is the perfect description for this running backpack. As you move, its ‘BioSync Suspension’ technology keeps the pack moving along with your particular flow, so your run will feel natural. It also has a zippered main compartment with two internal mesh pockets for your gear, and an expandable stretch front pocket with a tuck-away bungee that can fit a helmet. In addition, it has a hydration sleeve, a shoulder strap hydration tube clip and even a shoulder strap sunglass loop.

Capacity: 22L
Weight: 1.4lbs

Purchase: $100

The North Face Recon Backpack

Made from a combination of ‘210D Cordura’ nylon mini-ripstop, 600D polyester print and 1680D ballistics nylon, this pack is one of the toughest out there. Made in the USA, this backpack has a spacious main compartment, complete with a padded laptop sleeve and a hydration clip/port. For less strain on your shoulders, it has ’FlexVent’ injection-molded shoulder straps with additional PE foam, plus a ‘BackSaver’ bottom panel with compression and a padded air-mesh back panel with a ‘Spine Channel’ for extra support. Of course, it’s also water resistant.

Capacity: 31L
Weight: 2.7lbs

Purchase: $100

Deuter Speed Lite

Bringing you advanced ergonomics for exceptional comfort, Deuter’s running backpack has wide ‘AirMesh’ shoulder straps, a height-adjustable chest strip and a removable hip belt, comprehensively working to give you the perfect fit. Made with a tensioned Delrin U-shaped frame for stability, this bag was made for fast-paced sports. On top of that, it comes with the usual suspects, such as various mesh pockets, 3M reflectors, and ripstop nylon, along with a reinforced base constructed from ‘HexLite Polyamide’. A limited lifetime warranty is also thrown in there for good measure.

Capacity: 10L
Weight: 0.77lbs

Purchase: $100

Salomon Agile 12 Set

It’s all in the name, as the Agile 12 Set is a lightweight, flexible pack with a 4D reservoir compartment that’s made to be on the move. With 210T ripstop fabric and a 3D mesh, for more ventilation and cushioning, along with ‘100D Nylon Honey Comb,’ this is one of the most relaxed fitting backpacks out there. It’s also got an ‘Airvent Agility’ back system, providing a back-panel construction that adheres to your running style, composed of a light soft board that bends with your back and minimalist EVA pads located in the typically sensitive areas. Also, it has increased ventilation and highly wicking materials for a more enjoyable run. Topping it off, this backpack utilizes a ‘MotionFit Trail’ back system, which is a new design that allows you to move more freely.

Capacity: 10.5L
Weight: 1.14bs

Purchase: $110

Camelbak Ultra Pro Vest

Not quite a backpack, although it serves the same function, this ultra-light 3D mesh vest will provide you with optimal airflow on your long runs. Camelbak even equips the vest with two 17oz ‘Quick Stow’ flasks, and you can fill up the front storage pockets, which includes a phone pocket, with vital items you need to fuel a long distance run. Check out the back and you’ll see that it features several stretch pockets where you can store extra layers for those cold days. Set the dual adjustable sternum straps to improve a customized stability and you’re good to go.

Capacity: 3.5L
Weight: 0.4lbs

Purchase: $120

Lululemon Surge Run Backpack

For those that are looking for a minimalist design, this Lululemon running backpack, made with water-repellent, tough fabric, is ideal. It features ‘X-Static’ technology, which prevents the growth of odor-causing bacteria on the garment, so you can sweat all you want without worrying about stinking up your bag. If you need tech storage, it also comes with padded pockets to protect your laptop or tablet. For comfort, it has wide, adjustable shoulder straps, each with zipper pockets made for your phone or wallet.

Capacity: 15L
Weight: 2.2lbs

Purchase: $130

Patagonia Fore Runner Vest

For hydration on-the-go, this Patagonia running vest, which looks more like a backpack, has everything you need, like a 2 liter hydration reservoir that’s BPA free and comes with a quick connect hose. Additionally, it’s made with airflow mesh stretch pockets that can fit everything from salts and gels, to flasks and water bottles. The mesh vest also has soft edge binding for next-to-skin comfort; however, for even more comfort, this bag has a foam back panel with mono mesh that doesn’t absorb sweat.

Capacity: 10L
Weight: 0.7lbs

Purchase: $130

Osprey Packs Men’s Duro 15

Osprey’s vest-pack will provide you with bounce-free stability when you’re running, as well as pragmatic comfort for miles. Built with a tough nylon design, this backpack will hold up well in case you run through the likes of snagging branches or narrow slot canyons. It also features a hip belt wrap that aides in stabilization, while making your small goods quickly accessible. This pack also includes a ‘Hydraulics’ 2.5L reservoir with an attached hose and a sternum magnet for hands-free drinking.

Capacity: 15L
Weight: 1.79lbs

Purchase: $140

12 Best Men's Running Shirts

So, you’ve got yourself a lightweight, adjustable running backpack with a reliable hydration reservoir. Now it’s time to get yourself a quality running t-shirt. Take a peek at our picks for the best men’s running shirts out there.

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