I never realized it until trying them, but the Asics 55 shorts are what I've been waiting for since I began running regularly nearly 10 years ago.
First, they're comfortable. A top-quality liner keeps all the below-the-waist anatomy where it should be. The cut is also just right with its five-inch inseam - not so short as to make you look like a refugee from the 1970s, but not long enough to look like a goofy hipster. The legs didn't ride up high, as many shorts do. Here's the best praise of their comfort: I didn't even think about my shorts. I made no adjustments, and never had to hitch them up.
But there are lots of comfy shorts out there. What sets the Asics 55 is the addition of five pockets along the outside of the waistband. If you cover long distances, these pockets are a gift from heaven. Each will hold an energy gel or a Creative MuVo MP3 player (or something similar). Pocket number five, which features a zipper, is the ultimate place to stash a house or car key. The pockets are placed slightly high, so there may be a little interference from long shirts or those nifty water bottle-holding belts. But it's certainly better than not having them at all.
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The Asics 55 shorts are available in black, red, gray and blue with black mesh pockets on all versions.
Now for the frustrating part - as far as I can tell, this perfect pair of shorts is only made for men. A thorough audit of the ladies section of store from which I bought them turned up nothing. That's a huge oversight, because female runners have the same need for carrying energy gel, keys and MP3 players. I hope that's an oversight Asics addresses.
Also on the negative side of the ledger: These shorts aren't cheap. I liked the features well enough to indulge myself. But these shorts prove their worth, and I expect to buy a few more pairs of the Asics 55. They are currently my go-to pair of shorts for long training runs and races. I actually dislike wearing any of my older shorts after using these.
I've noticed a few recent sales at local running speciality stores that give a 25 percent discount on accessories with the purchase of shoes. That's a great time to splurge on shorts, since every runner needs new shoes at some point, too.
Bestselling Asics 55 Running Shorts Products in 2020
ASICS Men's 55 Running Short,Iron/Black,X-Large
- 100% POLYESTER MICROFIBER/WOVE
- Wrinkle-free, durable woven is lightweight and dries instantly
- Featherweight crepe liner provides chafe-free moisture wicking comfort
- 100% Polyester Crepe Lining
- 5" inseam
ASICS Women's Low Cut Performance Short, Atomic Blue, X-Large
- Inseam: 2 1/2
- CoolMax Crotch Gusset
- Flat Seam Stitching"
- Country of origin: United States
ASICS Men's 55 Short, Brick/Black, X-Large
- Inseam: 5":
- Wrinkle-free, lightweight, durable quick-dry woven:
- Featherweight crepe liner with key pocket:
- 5 Security pockets: