Spring means its running season. Well running is year-round but spring-time is the best because the air is cool and comfortable. Normally you dress for about 10 degrees (celcius) more than the actual temperature because you’l hat up during your run. I bought another pair of of my Asics Kayanos. I can’t believe they’re on their 17th iteration (assuming Kayanos started at 1). I’m pretty sure when I discovered them 6 years ago they were at 12’s. Anyways, I always keep at least 2 pairs in the house and 1 pair at the office. I love them to bits and pieces.
I’ve also amassed a collection of water/fuel belts for my runs. My initial one was from Mountain Equipment Co-Op which carried “Ultimate Direction” brand. They hold 3 water bottles in the back. It wasn’t the greatest since the band around the waist loosened up considerably through the year and ended up being too baggy for me resulting in bouncing water bottles during my run. I got a second water/fuel belt brand called “Fuel Belt”. It’s got a zipper pouch to hold your gels/chews/shot bloks/cash/keys. The water bottles are also smaller and hold 4 on equal sides of your body (North/East/South/West). The even weight distribution, sturdier construction and thick velcro strap ensures there is little bounce in the water bottles as I run and won’t loosen up because the belt is not elastic like the other belt. I got this one at New Balance for about $50 (crazy for a water belt I know but very very much appreciated when you’re running upwards of 20km in 25C heat).
Ryan’s modelling my favourite water belt. Doesn’t quite fit him though. Plus he’s wearing it upside-down.
In addition to those two water belts. I also have my hand held water bottles for shorter runs. They have little zipper pockets for coins/cash/keys which is awesome since I don’t usually run with jackets and pockets. I love pockets and am finding more workout gear with nice hidden pockets for runners. These hand-held water bottles also have quick adjustable straps to tighten or loosen as I need them (tighter when the water bottle is full and looser when empty)
My favourite thing on 7km+ runs is these shot blocks by Clif. I tried gels for a while and felt they were just way too thick and disgusting down my throat. These ones are like chewy gummy bears and work really really well when I’m low on blood sugar and electrolytes. They seriously work. I get my first bout of fatigue at 7-8km and one of these taken every 2-3km keeps me going. Most long distance runners know that drinks like gatorade and even milder sport ones like Refresh just start tasting sickly sweet after drinking half a litre. I love that I can stick to plain water and these as an alternative.
And finally my Garmin Forerunner 405. Ryan got this for my birthday a few years ago when I was cycling through the Running Room’s half-marathon clinics. Its a great way to track your mileage week to week, see your progress, and race against your ‘virtual partner’ on your watch. I find that as the runs go by, you just know by feel of heart rate and rated perceived exertion exactly what level you’re at. You learn that it’s not about your speed that you train for or monitor but your heart rate. Speed co
mes with hills and intervals but knowing if you’re running hard enough eventually becomes intuitive. Still nice to have the watch to gauge your accuracy though ;). I think this watch is now for sale at Costco as Garmin has a new Forerunner out on the market. Awesome watch!