Ready to run with a RooSport

Front view of RooSport, ID pocket on other side

Today’s run (treadmill): 30 minutes

It’s been a long time since I’ve done a post on Runner’s Tech Review but that will soon change. This morning I received a product called the RooSport, a pocket that attaches magnetically to running shorts or pants. The idea is similar to the SPIbelt but the RooSport does not attach around your waist while you run.

I’ve been a fan of the SPIbelt for years and I use it every time I run. I’m curious to see how the RooSport feels compared to the SPIbelt, especially when loaded up with a smartphone and other small items. I’m also wondering how comfortable I’ll be wearing the RoosSport on the inside of my shorts. This is the method recommended and demonstrated by Brenda Brundage, who created the product.

We’ve had a lot of rain over the last two days and that kept me inside for today’s run. I considered wearing it on the treadmill, but I wanted my first experience with the RooSport to happen on an outdoor run. I ran for about 30 minutes this morning, fast enough to get my heart rate to the edge of the anaerobic zone. If the weather cooperates tomorrow, I’ll use the RoosSport outside on my run. I’ll share that experience and will post the full review in a few weeks on Runner’s Tech Review.

What to try and what to buy?

Guessing it doesn’t Worx
Guessing it does

Today’s run (treadmill): 25 minutes

With so many runners buying products from companies who serve a $5 billion-plus marketplace, you’d think there would be a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t. Despite all the technology (and more recently, simplicity) that goes into running shoes, no one can definitively say that cushioned shoes protect better than minimalist trainers. While that debate continues, some things are a given: polyester shirts are superior to cotton for evaporating sweat. But there are still a few debatable items.

Among the giveaways offered at last weekend’s race Expo, was a sample shot of Worx Energy. This bottle looks similar to those ubiquitous products that sit near checkout counters and promise 4 or 5 hour sustained energy. Were it true, 2 ounces of Worx could have sped me through the half marathon with two hours of energy to spare. Did I use it? No. Would I try it? No way.

I made the mistake of trying a Barracuda energy shot, that was included in a race goody bag a few years ago. I drank the mix 15 minutes before a trail run and felt a slight lift as I began my run. It didn’t take long until I started feeling awful and I barely made it through my planned distance, at a pace far below normal. These shots may work for some, but count me out.

One item that’s trending right now, is a post-run recovery shoe. My friend TC had a pair of Adidas slide sandals that he put on after we’d run the half and the benefit was immediately clear. My feet were howling in my Kinvaras and it took a foot bath with peppermint oil to bring them back to near normal. I mentioned to my wife that I wanted to buy a pair and she suggested that any comfortable shoe could serve that purpose.

Do recovery shoes help any more than a casual shoe or a slipper? Should I invest the $40 or so to get “recovery shoes”? Hard to know. But at least they won’t make me feel sick.

A couple of products I wish I could buy

Today’s run (street): 3.5 miles

After yesterday’s difficult run that capped a week of tough workouts, I decided to give myself a couple of days rest in the upcoming week. Since today is Sunday, I couldn’t resist the chance to go out for a run without the time constraints that I face on workday mornings. You’d think that I’d take it easy today and ease into my upcoming rest period, but that’s not the way it went.

I’ve had some tweaking around my left knee and I felt some soreness when I got up today. I noticed that the pain came from lateral, not straight-ahead, movements. That meant I could run, so I put on my running gear and headed outside.

I thought about my current stamina issues and popped a couple of Sports Beans before I left. I’m not sure if they helped, but I did feel more energy at the start than I did before yesterday’s run. It made me think about two products I’d like to see: a time released carb/electrolyte supplement and an electrolyte drink that is neutral-tasting like water.

Right product, wrong geography

I used to buy electrolyte-enhanced water at Whole Foods after runs in the city, but it only solved part of the problem. I looked online and found a product called CNP Pro-Energy bars that supposedly release energy over time. The website is from the UK and I don’t know if the bars are available in the US. I think both of these ideas would find a market here.

Today’s run went very well. I didn’t plan to cover a long distance, so I ran harder than I did Saturday. My speed improved 2 minutes per mile over yesterday’s pace. That was good enough for me, and when I finished I was breathing hard but happy to take a break over the next couple of days.

I need to get in at least one 6+ mile run next weekend as I continue to build my base for May’s half marathon. In the meantime, I’m hoping to recover my fitness with a little R&R.