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