Running Pain Update, I Shamrock Shuffled & An iFitness Review

April 12, 2013

Can Running Insoles Change The Way You Run?  Fleet Feet Insoles Saved My Step

So, last week- I put a very urgent question out to my readers about my running pain.  I had been suffering from runner’s knee seemingly out of nowhere since January.  The pain would come and go and I had no idea why all of a sudden it’d cropped up when my mileage hadn’t changed, (in fact, went down in winter) and I’d been using the same shoes…


Turns out, after heading over to Fleet Feet (local running shop), I got refitted for shoes and the Mizuno 15’s/16’s are still my ideal shoes- my stride hasn’t changed and I didn’t need bigger shoes.  The staffer asked me if I would consider inserts since the shoes were new and fit really well- and a lightbulb went off…

When I got fitted for my first pair of running shoes last year, the Mizuno 15’s, I also had purchased Fleet Feet’s special inserts and  had been running in them-  but I didn’t get the inserts for the new pair.  I couldn’t believe that the inserts would have made such a difference, but even doing a test lap in the shoes, they seemed to cushion my achy knees and I was willing to try anything.

I rested for a day and still opted to run the 5k & 8k I had scheduled over the weekend- so I iced, KT-Taped, wore my fave new compression socks and took some Aleve- hoping the new inserts would at least dull the pain.   The 5k on Saturday was so cold and windy that my asthma ruined the run… but great news… the Shamrock Shuffle was AMAZING….
Insoles for running shoes saved my stride


I ran the Shamrock Shuffle 8k  like a supercharged gazelle (well at least for me) and it was PAIN FREE.  I ran the first 5k without stopping, and only had a slight knee tweak and some pain when I did a crazy sprint to the finish line- but I could walk fine afterwards… HOORAY!  

Who knew a pair of inserts could make such a difference?  I’m sold!

Shamrock Shuffle Shamrock Shuffle 2013

I also had the opportunity to review some stellar products from iFitness. Let me first apologize to the kind folks at iFitness who have been patiently waiting for me to review. They sent this product out when I lived in California and was going to run two St. Patrick’s Day races there (which I did), but with a death in the family and a cross country move- I got a wee-bit-behind.

I decided that third time’s a charm and wore the iFitness gear to the Shamrock Shuffle last weekend to make sure I got plenty of experience before reviewing. Here are my thoughts on my running gear from iFitness…

The Ultimate Running Belt by iFitness:

ifitness review


ifitness gear review

The Ultimate Running Belt by iFitness is by far my favorite accessory- ever. Hands down.  While the Armband (below) was lukewarm, the belt is RED HOT.  This is by far one of the comfiest, most unobtrusive gear belts I’ve ever tried- it fastens around your waist securely and doesn’t get in the way. You can buy “fancy” gear all you want, but if it’s not comfy, it’s not worth it- luckily this product lives up to the hype!

I love this belt for several reasons:  First and foremost, it’s so comfortable you forget you have it on.  Secondly, it helps you attach bibs without annoyingly adjusting crooked safety pins and ruining your favorite running shirts.  Thirdly- you will never ever have bulging pockets again.

Gear check can be a total drag on race day (the Shamrock Shuffle had 40,000 runners or so, yikes!) and if you just need your basics- inhaler, car keys, headphones, ID and a Gu you will never have to rub your butt (yes, that’s a thing we do when you only have race short pockets on, ugh!) to make sure your keys or chapstick haven’t fallen out mid-race.

Now that I know I have asthma, running with an expensive inhaler that’s creating an annoying bulge on a lower back pocket or dangerously looming out of a tush side pocket, just waiting to fall out and leave me literally breathless… well, it’s not fun to have to replace a $50 inhaler or have it annoying you over 5 miles- the running belt is secure and comfortable.

Plus, perhaps most of all- it holds your junk and doesn’t look like a fanny pack. Everyone’s a winner!

The Ultimate Running Belt by iFitness comes in several awesome colors and retails for $27.95.  I give it two thumbs way up.



iPhone Window Armband by iFitness:

ifitness armband review


The iPhone Armband by iFitness has a few features I absolutely love-  it comes in two sizes, so ladies, no more annoying velcro strap dangling off your arm when your armband is designed for a man!  I’ve ruined many shirts by that little excess velcro- this one fit snug as a bug, even a bit tight when I had to layer in the cold weather!

I’m a notorious photo taker when I’m out on runs, so at first I was a bit annoyed that my iPhone couldn’t just slide out the top for quick photos, but with some adjusting- it’s easy to pop the iPhone in and out if you get photo happy like me.  The armband is designed to fit a variety of phones, so if you have an iPhone 4s or slip in an iPod, you may find there’s room to spare and the screen protector isn’t taught over the screen- making it hard to use while you’re moving.

The design is fancy and I like the reflective strips and color options on this armband- plus, there’s a safe pouch hidden behind the phone to store a credit card, ID or cash- perfect for a post run beer (or cupcake, find what motivates you!)  There are cheaper options out there for an armband- but if you want a more secure piece for your phone that comes in two sizes, this can be a great choice.

The iPhone Armband comes in several delicious zipper colors and retails for $21.95. I love it less than the fitness belt and wish the screen was a bit more tight for less frustrating usage on the touch screen, but it’s a solid, well made product.


So, are what gear/accessories do you love?

Any surprising running tweaks or gear that’s made a world of difference in your runs?


I was provided product to facilitate this review, but as always this sassy opinion is 100% mine.


13 comments so far.

13 responses to “Running Pain Update, I Shamrock Shuffled & An iFitness Review”

  1. Inserts may be the answer to the foot pain I’m battling with right now. Sesamoiditis… can be brought on by not enough support in the arch/cushioning under the ball of the foot. Let’s hope so 🙂

  2. Maygan says:

    Did your phone fit with the case on?

    • Shannyn says:

      Maygan- unless you have a really bulky case, it should fit just fine. Some are shaped like characters or have like an inch of plastic..but I had tons of room to spare with my case on!

  3. Renee says:

    I like this ifitness stuff I’ve been looking for a new holder and I’ve been eyeing peoples belts I’ve never run with one but for longer races like the halfs I’m running I think I may need one.

    I’m happy your knee pain is gone 🙂 Mine has been acting up again. AND fleet feet’s are the greatest running stores ever!

    • Shannyn says:

      Thanks for commenting Renee! I typically didn’t run with a belt for anything shorter than a half either, but now that I don’t have to fuss with pinning my bib on a shirt or skirt, it’s always with me! I never could seem to get the bib on straight and this makes it super easy!

  4. Sherry says:

    I’m glad you found a quick fix to your pain! I never run without inserts (I have custom ones now, thankfully my insurance paid for them completely). I completely forgot about the Shamrock Shuffle last Sunday and had to take a roundabout way to get from LSD to 290 – oops! We drove next to the course on the way home and my doggie was really excited to watch all the runners 🙂

  5. Molly Blonn says:

    Those inserts are the best. I also use (and absolutely love) them.

    • Shannyn says:

      Isn’t it amazing how one little thing makes a huge difference? I already had the right (expensive) shoes it just needed some help to make them perfect.

  6. So glad to hear your pain has subsided! I’m running the Color Run 5k this year so I might have to splurge on some insoles. I’m not a runner at all, but I’m going to attempt to train. If anything can get me to do it, it’s being splattered in paint powder!

    • Shannyn says:

      I haven’t done a Color Run (or a similar race) yet…I’ve done obstacle courses, mud runs and all kinds of road races but haven’t done the color variety. 🙂

  7. So glad the inserts worked! I ran the Shamrock Shuffle last year. It’s a fun run, although expensive and massive. By the time I crossed the start line last year, I could have been finished running! I still had a lot of fun, though. I hope you did too!
    – Heather

    • Shannyn says:

      Ya, it was HUGE! Luckily the beau surprised me with registration as “welcome home” gift when I moved back to Chicago. Starting like 30 min after the first gun went off was kind of a drag but after doing the Princess Half I was prepared.


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