“If I'm so meticulous about backpacking socks, why do I put on any old pair of mangy socks before heading out for a 5K run? Jogging has become a staple in my workout and it's time to peel off those paper thin, hole-in-the-toe ankle socks I was tossed at my one-year employee anniversary back in '99. How many of us are jogging the streets occasionally wearing '5 pairs for $5.00' specials?”
Call me a dinosaur, but you'll never get me out of my Thorlos! Plus, I love to wear them hiking, horseback riding, and to bed on cold Winter nights! The best running socks are getting better though. Just like running shoes, running socks are evolving. My old trusty Thorlos didn't even make Runner's World top ten list.
A good running sock should keep your foot dry and cool. If not, expect chaffing and blisters. Also, look for seamless socks. There is nothing more irritating than a sock seam poking your pinky toe for 5 miles (or 5 seconds). Wool with lycra makes an ideal running sock. A little nylon is OK. And now, drum roll please...the running sock honor roll!
These socks wick sweat away from your feet, repel water, kill foot odor, reduce blisters, breathe nicely, are lightweight—you name it!
Thorlo running socks are all about $13-$14 and come in a variety of styles and lengths. Thorlo.com says, “In order to provide these 'Quality of Running Life' benefits, Thorlo has spent 25 years in research and development learning about the 'demands' that running puts on your feet, and what specific sock design and construction is needed to protect the running foot from those specific activity demands.”
Likewise, SmartWool makes a variety of styles and lengths. They also offer 6 degrees of cushioning. SmartWool makes specialized running socks especially for the female foot, which is cool. SmartWool socks are around $14 a pair. Another thing I like about SmartWool, other than their water-resistant, sweat-wicking wool, is that they are a sustainable company involved in breast cancer advocacy.