Last Thursday, March 2nd was ridden with a combination of excitement and nerves, as runners around the country and world awaited news of acceptance into the largest 26.2 mile race in the world, the TCS New York City Marathon. This year’s non-guaranteed drawing raked in the largest volume of applicants in the race’s history, a staggering 98,247, all vying for a coveted bib. With a low acceptance rate of 17%, only 16,211 runners were accepted into the 2017 competition.

With two half marathons under my belt and a marathon up next on my bucket list, I eagerly entered the lottery this year for the first time, floored with the news of making the cut!

An occasional racer and recreational runner, I’ve tried a plethora of running gadgets to suit my needs, yet constantly remain in the pursuit of items that will help to strengthen my performance and offer increased comfort.

A recent article touched upon features and functionality still missing from the ideal running watch, and based on my personal experiences as a runner, here are my top 5 of the lot: 1) Extended (24 hour) battery life. Having your GPS die mid-run is aggravating to say the least, particularly given the painstaking preparation dedicated to following a marathon training regimen, so such a capability would be welcome. 2 & 3) Hydration and mid-run reminders. There’s nothing like getting into the zone and then forgetting to drink water until you’re beyond dehydrated or have completely run out of fuel. 4) A wireless key to lock and unlock the door. Less is more! I can literally feel the weight of any single addition to my running gear, and a single key is no exception. 5) Uber rescue. Quick access to a ride home would be wonderful, particularly when the run doesn’t loop back to where it started, or if it’s early morning or late at night and safety is paramount.

The more thoroughly and quickly running watch companies can pin point top runner’s complaints and discomforts, the better they will be positioned to offer enhanced and first to market features that will speak directly to their consumers most dire needs as they pound the pavement.

Sources: Runners WorldWareable