The 9 Best Running Shorts with Pockets of 2020

Bring your essentials with you on the open road

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Our Top Picks

Best Overall for Men: Baleaf Woven Running Shorts at Amazon

"Feature a quick-dry fabric that wicks away moisture."

Best Overall for Women: Under Armour Fly By Shorts at Amazon

"The elastic waistband gives you a relaxed, comfortable fit."

Best Budget for Men: C9 Champion 9-inch Running Shorts at Target

"There's plenty of room to pack your running essentials."

Best Budget for Women: Tek Gear Side Pocket Shorts at Kohl's

"Will keep you comfortable while logging miles."

Best for Distance Runners: Brooks 2-in-1 Sherpa Shorts at Amazon

"Features a compression short on the inside."

Best Lightweight: Nike Dry Tempo Short at Amazon

"Users love that they don’t ride up or look sloppy."

Best Compression: Baleaf High Waist Running Shorts at Amazon

"The high-rise waistband allows for maximum coverage."

Best for Holding a Phone: Under Armour Shorts at Dick's Sporting Goods

"Threadborne Microthread fabric allows for great range of motion."

Best with Security Pockets: Amphibian Shorts at L.L. Bean

"Can hold up to some pretty tough outdoor running conditions."

Our Top Picks


Best Overall for Men: Baleaf Men's Woven Running Shorts

These shorts from Baleaf get our top ranking for men thanks to their comfort, quality, and ample storage space. With two deep side pockets and a large back zippered pocket, there’s plenty of room for your wallet, phone, keys, and other essentials.

They feature a quick-dry fabric that wicks away moisture, keeping you dry and cool. There’s also a built-in mesh brief to provide more breathability and support. The inner drawstring also helps you get a custom, comfortable fit. Available in a dozen colors, these very affordable shorts will quickly become a staple in your running wardrobe. 


Best Overall for Women: Under Armour Women’s Fly By Shorts

These lightweight women’s running shorts from Under Armour are sure to become your favorite, go-to shorts, especially when you need some space to hold running essentials. They feature side pockets as well as an inner pocket at the back waist. UA’s signature Moisture Transport System helps keep runners cool, dry and comfortable, and the breathable mesh side panels provide additional cooling and ventilation for especially hot runs.

The wide elastic waistband gives you a relaxed, comfortable fit and looks great underneath shirts and tank tops. With reflective detailing, they’re also a good choice when you’re running in lowlight conditions. With a very reasonable price tag, they’re an excellent value and worth stocking up on.


Best Budget for Men: C9 Champion Men’s 9-inch Running Shorts

C9 Champion Men's Running Shorts
Courtesy of Target.

For a comfortable, affordable pair of shorts with ample storage space, you can’t go wrong with these lightweight ones from Target’s C9 Champion line. With two side pockets and a zippered pocket in the back, there’s plenty of room to pack your running essentials. The inner brief has wicking fabric that keeps you dry and the stretchy fabric allows you to move with ease. And your shorts will stay in place thanks to the elastic drawstring waistband.


Best Budget for Women: Women's Tek Gear Side Pocket Shorts

Women's Tek Gear Side Pocket Shorts
Courtesy of Kohl's.

These shorts from Tek Gear are proof that you don’t have to spend a lot to get a pair of quality, comfortable, high-performance shorts with pockets for storage. Made of a soft, spandex/polyester combination material, they feature Dry-Tek moisture-wicking technology, so they’re an ideal choice for warm weather running. The 5-inch inseam, mid-rise waist, and elastic waistband provide excellent comfort and coverage.

With pockets on both sides, there’s plenty of room to stash your keys, tissues, money, or other items you might need on a run. Available in numerous fun colors and patterns, these shorts will spice up your fitness apparel wardrobe and keep you comfortable while logging miles. And with a bargain price tag, you may want to pick up more than one pair.


Best for Distance Runners: Brooks Men’s 2-in-1 Sherpa Shorts

Distance runners need high-performance running shorts that are not only comfortable over many miles, but are also have plenty of space to stash all the stuff that they need during long runs or distance races. As the name implies, these Brooks Sherpa shorts are perfect for carrying plenty of essentials. The two side pockets can hold gels while the sweat-resistant zippered pocket in the back is ideal for storing your phone, cash, and credit cards. The mesh liner also features another small security pocket.

These shorts also excel in the areas of comfort and performance, which are important for running long distances. Men love the 2-in-1 functionality which feature a compression short on the inside, to reduce the risk of chafing, and breathable, moisture-wicking shorts on the outside for additional coverage. With the adjustable drawstring, you can get the perfect fit. Brooks also offers similar shorts for women that have comparable storage space for all your running essentials.


Best Lightweight: Nike Women’s Dry Tempo Short

Need a comfy, lightweight pair of shorts that are perfect for summer runs? These Nike Dry Tempo running shorts may be exactly what you’re looking for. With a 3-inch inseam, curved hem, elastic waist, and a fully-lined mesh brief, they feature the coverage, comfort and flexibility you need. The breathable mesh side panels and Nike’s signature Dri-FIT wicking fabric help keep you dry and cool. Users love that they don’t ride up or look sloppy. The interior pocket is just the right size to securely stash a key and debit or credit card. These shorts come in dozens of colors and patterns and are super budget-friendly, so you may want to stock up. 


Best Compression: Baleaf Women's High Waist Running Shorts

If you have trouble finding shorts that don’t ride up or bunch while you’re running, these compression shorts from Baleaf are the perfect solution. The shorts’ lightweight, stretchy fabric gives you excellent mobility and helps prevent mid-run wardrobe malfunctions. With two roomy side pockets, there’s plenty of space for your phone and other essentials. These shorts also feature a gusseted crotch and chafe-free seams to allow for a natural, comfortable range of motion, as well as moisture-wicking, breathable fabric to keep you dry and cool.

The wide, comfortable, high-rise waistband allows for maximum coverage, even when you’re stretching or bending. The waistband also has an internal pocket to stash small essentials such as cash and sports gels. These versatile shorts come in two different lengths, 5” or 8” inseam, so you can choose how much coverage you want.


Best for Holding a Phone: Under Amour Men’s Speedpocket Running Shorts

Under Amour Men’s Speedpocket Running Shorts
Courtesy of Dick's Sporting Goods.

If you always like to run with your phone, but prefer to do it hands-free, the Under Armour Speedpocket running shorts may be the one for you. The large inner front pocket can comfortably hold even a large phone. These lightweight shorts will also keep you dry and cool, thanks to the moisture-wicking fabric and mesh side panels. UA’s anti-odor technology also keeps them from getting smelly. The super-smooth Threadborne Microthread fabric allows for excellent range of motion, while preventing clinging and chafing.


Best with Security Pockets: LL Bean Women’s Emerald Pond Amphibian Shorts

Women's Emerald Pond Amphibian Shorts by LL Bean
Courtesy of LL Bean.

If you’re worried that your keys or credit card might wiggle out of your pocket while running, these shorts from LL Bean will ease your fears. They feature two zippered, low-profile side pockets that are perfect or securely stashing your valuables. With abrasion-resistant fabric that has UPF 50+ sun protection, these shorts can hold up to some pretty tough outdoor running conditions. We love that they’re also quick-drying and moisture-wicking, so they’ll keep you cool and comfortable on hot days. The nylon/spandex blend provides excellent range of motion, whether you’re running, hiking, kayaking, or enjoying other outdoor activities.

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