Best running accessories for Apple Fitness+: Get more from Apple’s running-focused workouts

If you’re looking for the best running accessories for Apple Fitness Plus, then you’ve likely got an iPhone, iPad or Apple TV (or all of those devices) plus an Apple Watch and access to a treadmill. Now you’re on the hunt for some extras to help elevate that indoor running time.

In this guide, we’re going to help you find those add-ons that work with Apple’s subscription fitness service and key devices to make sure you’re getting the most reliable running stats, improve your running domain, and even change the way you can wear your Apple Watch when you pick up the pace.

What makes a good Fitness Plus accessory can vary, but there are definitely some standout qualities that separate a good one from a bad one. It needs to be well-designed and offer the kind of build that can handle sweatier use. It needs to be easy to use and truly enhance the experience of hammering that treadmill belt.

There are a lot of accessories out there to pick from, so in this guide, we’ve given you a good starting point for finding the best ones to add to your running-centric, Apple Fitness Plus setup, whether that’s at home or in the gym.

Quick List

Best running accessory

Belkin Magnetic Fitness Mount

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

Belkin Magnetic Fitness Mount

Best running accessory

Specifications

Fixture: MagSafe
Material: Silicon

Reasons to buy

+
Does securely hold iPhone
+
Rotates to varying viewing angles
+
Easy to position

Reasons to avoid

-
Could benefit from additional size strap
-
Just the one colour option
-
May not put screen directly in front of you 

We think the Belkin Magnetic Fitness Mount is an ideal accessory if you like to move your running-focused Fitness Plus time around and want to make sure you always have somewhere to have your iPhone in good sight.

It’s a well-made, MagSafe-friendly mount that does its simple job in a very elegant way, letting you strap it to poles that measure 1-inch to 1.5-inch diameter and then quickly remove it when you’re done.

The magnetic approach to keeping your iPhone in place can handle the typical shakes as you pound the treadmill belt and doesn’t budge if your phone starts to vibrate with notification alerts. The rotating ball inside is a nice extra that means you can quickly rotate your phone screen 

It does come in just the one colour, but that does mean it should match most treadmill setups. You can’t remove or change the strap, so if you can’t get it strapped onto your preferred treadmill, that’s going to be a problem.

We’ve tested it on different treadmills and had no issues getting it secured in place. Crucially, our iPhone has looked like it’s going to jump out of place. It’s also small enough not to draw too much attention and means it’s not a bulky thing to carry around with you if you're doing a Fitness Plus session at your local gym.

Best for Apple Watch

TwelveSouth ActionSleeve

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

TwelveSouth ActionSleeve

Best for Apple Watch

Specifications

Material: Non-allergenic polyurethane
Fit: Arms up to 15-inches
Compatabity: 40mm, 41mn, 44mm, 45mm Apple Watch

Reasons to buy

+
Easy to put on
+
Moves heart rate sensor to bicep or forearm
+
Can still access Digital Crown

Reasons to avoid

-
Doesn’t work with Apple Watch Ultra
-
Question marks on velcro strap lifespan
-
Feels a tad pricey

This is the updated version of TwelveSouth’s strap that lets you wear your Apple Watch on your forearm or bicep and still track your running metrics including heart rate away from the wrist.

We found it a comfortable strap to wear with TwelveSouth using non-allergenic polyurethane to help make sure it can handle longer running sessions. It now works with 44mm and 45mm sizes of the Apple Watch, but that puts the Apple Watch Ultra and Ultra 2 off limits.

It’s easy to drop the Watch in and there’s also a cut out for the Digital Crown to make sure you can still navigate and scroll through data screens. It uses a velcro strap to keep it in place and while we’ve not issues with the fit, we do have question marks over how well the velcro will hold up over longer term use.

We’ve used it with the Apple Watch Series 6, which is one of the supported models, and the Watch did not jump about inside the strap, was still accessible and produced good running stats including real-time heart rate to make sure you’re not missing out by moving the Watch up the body.

Best for improved tracking

Polar H10

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

Polar H10

Best for improved tracking

Specifications

Material: Machine washable textile
Connectivity: Bluetooth
Waterproof: 30mm

Reasons to buy

+
Accurate heart rate data
+
Comfortable strap 
+
Easy to pair

Reasons to avoid

-
Keeps features simple
-
Not the cheapest monitor available
-
It’s not rechargeable

The Polar H10 is Polar’s most feature-packed heart rate monitor chest strap and its priciest too, but the ability to pair it over Bluetooth to compatible Apple Watches ensures you get the most accurate heart rate information from your workouts. 

That’s because the H10 swaps the optical heart rate tracking on your Watch for ECG-powered monitoring. Polar’s tracking is regarded as the gold standard for heart rate measurement and does work pretty effortlessly with Apple's smartwatch.

The strap has been designed to sit securely and uses silicone dots to make sure it doesn’t slip when you start to sweat more. It uses the kind of lithium battery many traditional watches are powered by and can hold up to 400 hours of training time before you can quite swiftly swap it out for a new one. 

We’ve used it paired to the Apple Watch Ultra 2 and older Apple Watch Series 7 and had no connection issues while working out with the two in tandem. This isn’t the cheapest heart rate monitor chest strap you can get, but it’s arguably the most reliable of the bunch.

Best-fitting running headphones

Beats Powerbeats Pro

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

Beats Powerbeats Pro

Best-fitting running headphones

Specifications

Battery life: 24 hours
ANC: No
Eartips: Replaceable silicon

Reasons to buy

+
Super secure fit 
+
Good controls
+
Big, bassy sound

Reasons to avoid

-
Big charging case
-
Lacks Apple’s latest chip tech
-
Can’t tweak sound profile

Music is a big draw for taking your running workouts to Fitness Plus, so it’s good to have some headphones if you’re not blasting out playlists from your iPhone or TV speakers. The Beats Powerbeats Pro have been around for a while and they’re still around because there’s few other headphones that can touch them in terms of offering a strong, secure fit and delivering a really workout-friendly sound.

It perhaps doesn’t offer everything you’d expect from headphones at this price, like an ANC or Awareness modes or Apple’s latest chip technology. It does pack in well-integrated physical controls with Siri controls also available for the hands-free control kind.

They deliver big power and bass, which means if you go loud, then you might not miss the lack of ANC. Battery life is as big as the case you pack them into, giving you an impressive 9 hours off a single charge, which betters the new Beats Fit Pro for battery.

They stay put, sound good, and look good to help you look past some of the desirable extras it lacks and the big price you’ll need to pay to pick them up.

Best for sound

AirPods Pro 2

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation)

Best for sound

Specifications

Battery life: 24 hours
ANC: Yes
Eartips: Replaceable silicon

Reasons to buy

+
Balanced sound
+
Now offers sweat and dust resistance
+
Comfortable to wear for long periods

Reasons to avoid

-
Not best battery for the price
-
Not vastly different from first gen Pro 2
-
They’re not cheap

Apple’s latest truly wireless earbuds might not scream made for running but if you’ve only got room for one set of buds in your life, then these are more than up to the task.

Whether you’re pairing them up to your iPhone or Apple TV, seamless connectivity with fellow Apple devices is a big pull here. That’s not all. They sound great as well and offer an overall balanced sound profile. You want bass? You’ve got it. Need more finesse? It can deliver that too. Plus, you’ve got some of the best ANC support if you don’t want to drown out the world while you run or let them back in with the help of Apple’s new Adaptive Audio mode.

Built-in controls can often be a pain point for many headphones when it’s time to up the intensity, but the stem-based ones on the Pro 2 are more than up to the task. They also have improved durability now that they’re dust as well as sweat-resistant. The USB-C charging port replaces the Lightning one, but the battery life remains the same 6 hours with ANC in use. 

As far as passing the running test and Fitness+ test, the AirPods Pro 2 passes with flying colors.

Michael Sawh

Michael is a freelance journalist who has covered consumer technology for over a decade and specializes in wearable and fitness tech. Previously editor of Wareable, he also co-ran the features and reviews sections of T3, and has a long list of bylines in the world of consumer tech sites.


With a focus on fitness trackers, headphones, running wearables, phones, and tablet, he has written for numerous publications including Wired UK, GQ, Men's Fitness, BBC Science Focus, Metro and Stuff, and has appeared on the BBC Travel Show. Michael is a keen swimmer, a runner with a number of marathons under his belt, and is also the co-founder of YouTube channel The Run Testers.