Five Reasons I love the Redemption Capri (gear review!)

If you’ve been following me for awhile, you know that I am a Skirt Sports Ambassador. I wrote about it a while back and still love being a part of the movement. In addition to the message it sends women (#RealWomenMove) about getting out there and accomplishing dreams and goals, the products themselves are very well made and fit all body types – and that is pretty awesome! They are made for women, designed by women and the company is great about taking feedback into consideration (they even have a “sewing room” where you can submit ideas and if others like it, you’ll see it made!).

One of my favorite products is actually not even a skirt, it’s the Redemption Capri! Here’s 5 Reasons Why:

1. They are very adaptable – and work for multiple types of sports!
I love supporting and showing off Skirt Sports when I’m outside, but one of the activities I enjoy the most is rock climbing. You can’t wear a skirt climbing, even if there are shorts underneath. Frankly, it’s not safe – the skirt can get caught in so many places – and it looks quite ridiculous when you’re belaying. I CAN wear the Redemption Capris on the rock wall! No risk of fabric getting caught in an ATC (belay device).

Running in them (and other activities) is perfect as well! I am always working and coaching in them.

2. They come in multiple fun patterns
I have the Tantrum and the Safari Print. It also comes in plain black, Frolic print, and Enchanted print. See Skirt Sports to see all their patterns.

3. They slightly compress
I LOVE this about these capris! They aren’t actual compression grade capris, and it could be that I bought too small of a size, but they feel slightly compression-like and  that is great for running!

4. Not too hot and not too cold
I wear these for running when it is between about 40 and 70 degrees. They keep you warm on those chilly runs when it’s not quite cold enough for pants. They are also  lightweight enough for the hotter days. Anything over 70, they are a little too thick to wear and I get overheated. Now, if you’re just wearing them out and about, they are just fine in hot weather. 😉

5. The back pocket comes in handy!
There is a small, zippered pocket in the back. It’s perfect for keys and a credit card/ID. They do have a new product out called the Pocketopia Capri that is almost the same as the Redemption but with MORE pockets. I find my Redemption Capri just fine, in terms of pockets. If I need extra storage, I have a handy-dandy run belt from SLS3.

If you want to check out the Redemption Capri, you can find them online HERE or stop by the store in Boulder, CO!

Compression the Right Way – LEGEND Compression Wear Ambassador

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“How many things are you an ambassador for!?” That’s my boyfriend asked me when I got my Legend Compression package in the mail last year.

legend_2017ambassador_logoIt’s true, I am an ambassador for a lot of companies. Yes, I get a lot of perks, but every single one of the companies I am very passionate about;  I won’t apply if I’m not. With LEGEND Compression Wear, I got an email asking if I wanted to join their Ambassador program. They were looking for bloggers and avid runners.

Hey, that’s me!

It couldn’t have come at a better time! I was super excited that my blog was starting to get noticed and I definitely need the compression gear to help battle these persistent injuries of mine. (Injuries is such a harsh word, more like troublesome spots.)

LEGEND Compression Wear’s mission is “to improve the performance of every athlete – from the casual jogger to the competitive triathlete.” I love this because it means you can be better, and achieve goals, no matter what level you are. They “promote the notion that LEGENDS are created from great people, great courage, and great accomplishments.” Hence: #BeaLegend

6f1edc61-01d3-4b29-beec-e4cd08de8c41They have compression products for just about every sport as well as everyday wearable compression.  The difference between LEGEND and other compression companies is that they focus on #RightNotTight. The hashtag comes from “Compression is Right not Tight!”. This is focused on their compression performance socks and leg sleeves which feature a 15-20 mmHg level of compression. From their background in the medical field, they’ve  seen that this is a more therapeutic level of compression which is better for you during training/competition. It’s a misconception that compression socks have to FEEL tight to be working.

I love their website because you can shop by sport, ailment, body part or everyday wear. I have the compression socks, sleeves and recovery socks. My favorite product if by far, the recovery socks. They are perfect for lounging in for long periods of time (whereas regular compression socks might be too tight for long wear). All the LEGEND compression products I own are great for running and climbing (yes, seriously, you’re on your toes a lot and thus contracting your calves!).

My recovery socks

My recovery socks


Check them out online and you can get $15 off with this link.

 

Gear Review – SLS3 Compression Foot Sleeve

20160511_110723 (I was given a free pair of the SLS3 Compression/Plantar Fasciitis Foot Sleeves in exchange for my review. All opinions below are my own.)

After trying the SLS3 running belt, I was stoked to try another product by SLS3. I use my running belt all the time and I had bought a pair of SLS3 compression calf sleeves I run in regularly.

I got an email to be part of a blogger group to try the plantar fasciitis foot sleeves and thought, “Well, I do have plant fasciitis and I like SLS3 products, so yes, I’ll try those!”

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I’ve been battling the dreaded plantar fasciitis, a bad word to runners, off and on for a few years now. Although mine is un-diagnosed by a doctor, I’m 99% sure I have it and it sucks. I am lucky that it hasn’t gotten to the point of side lining me completely. When I first discovered the signature bottom of foot pain, I did my research, read every book I could, and came up with a routine. Every time I feel a little twinge, I use my methods and it’s gone.

With my running being off and on as it has been over the last 6+ months and me admitting not taking care of myself due to low energy and lack of time, I haven’t been able to shake this bout of plantar fasciitis as easily. The foot sleeves were calling my name!

What are they? They are compression sleeves that just cover from above your ankles to right before your toes. Claiming to help with the relief of plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendon pain and stress fractures by applying  compression, increasing circulation, reducing inflammation, and providing support for weak ankle muscles.

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While, I can’t prove if they reduce inflammation and increase circulation, I can say they did relieve some pain!

SPECIFICS:

  • Come in black or pink
  • Three different sizes to choose from (S, M or L based on shoe size)
  • Moisture wicking fabric
  • Interchangeable (each sleeve is not right or left foot specific)
  • Machine washable

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PROS:

  • Alleviated my foot pain relating to plantar fasciitis and achilles tendon issues for a brief time
  • They fit under socks
  • Cool, in temperature

CONS:

  • Stiff when you run in them
  • Thick. Yes, the fit under socks but I could still feel them
  • Too tight for LONG periods of time

 

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Originally, I was wearing them to treat plantar fascitiis, now I have some weird achilles pain and I have been using them for that. While great for a temporary relief post-run, I don’t like them while running.

Althought the website says, “Helps relieve joint and muscular pain even during sleep,” I once, accidentally, fell asleep in them.  I did order my size based on their sizing guidelines, but they must have been too tight because I woke up to shooting pains in my feet! I quickly took off the sleeves and the pain was gone, leaving me to believe that they were cutting off my circulation.

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Would I recommend them? Sure! If you have achilles pain or plantar fascia issues. However, they aren’t a cure for either issue, just a temporary pain relief. I personally will put them on while I foam roll (my calves because that’s sometimes the root of feet issues) and then keep them on as a barrier while ice.

I would also suggest them for if you need some ankle support while running. I don’t necessarily need a brace or ankle support, and running in them was stiff and uncomfortable for me, but if that’s a need for you, they would work well.

I’ll save mine for recovering on the couch!

Find them:

On Amazon for $18.90

SLS3

Gear Review – Yaktrax

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(Disclaimer: I was given a free pair of Yaktrax Pro in exchange for my honest review of the product. Although, I do feel bad because I was supposed to do this last year but time, and snow, got away from me! Plus, the lady never followed up! Such is life, and without ado, here’s my review!)

Colorado is a strange place…when you want snow, there’s none to be found and just when you think spring should be starting…you get dumped on! This happened last year as well as this year!

Oh well, I do love Colorado! As they say, “if you don’t like the weather in Colorado, just wait five minutes!”

As an avid runner, sometimes it’s needed to run in the snow. If you don’t want to run on the wet, slushy roads dodging cars, you take to the trails. But snowy trails can sometimes be difficult. That’s why you need some sort of traction device. In the past, trail shoes have sufficed, or I just have stuck to the roads. Now, I’d rather be on the trails and trails shoes aren’t always enough to get up the steep slopes.

yaktraxOver a year ago, I was sent an email from a lady over at Yaktrax. She asked if I wanted to try them in exchange for writing a blog post about them. Super excited, and looking for a traction device, of course I said yes. This was the first product demo I got a request for (although not the first one I got around to doing). I had previously heard of Yaktrax from my shoe-selling days (a short-lived career at Dick’s Sporting Goods) and my co-workers all loved and recommend the Pro Version (versus the Run Version). I never bought them at the time, being a road-runner at that phase of my running life, but kept them in the back of my mind.

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When I first posted on my Facebook/Instagram that I had gotten them in the mail to try, I immediately had people responding to me with their different options on Yaktrax. From my friends, it was about half and half: Half LOVED them and used them all the time and the other half didn’t like them, AT ALL.

Obviously I had to try them for myself. I have since taken them on MANY runs over the last year.

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WHAT ARE THEY?!

Yaktrax are a traction device that fits over your shoes for when you run, walk or hike on snow and ice. They make a variety of different versions: XTR, Walk, Walk+, Run, and Pro. I received the Pro version. With this one, it’s just wires/rubber under your shoe. Some of the other versions have a plastic plate under the forefoot. I have not tried those.

You can look at the compare chart, but the Pro vs. other versions just means it has stronger steel on the bottom and a strap for the top of your shoe. This is good for running; they are strong and stay on your feet! Between the Pro version and the actual Run version, it lacks the spikes the run version has on the forefoot plate. From other runners, they like the Pro Version better than the run version.

You can get specific details on the Pro version I have HERE.

Disclaimer: In this picture, I have the toe part on wrong... The black part fits right inline with your shoe (lower than the picture shows) and it much more comfortable that way.

Disclaimer: In this picture, I have the toe part on wrong… The black part fits inline with your shoe (lower than the picture shows) and it much more comfortable that way!

MY PROS:

  • Provides great traction on ice and packed snow
  • When the snow is right, I can easily get up hills
  • Easy to put on and take off; that way if are running to a trail, you can carry them with you and put them on when you get there
  • Fit comfortably on my shoes
  • When conditions are right, you don’t notice they are there
  • Lightweight, by themselves
  • Affordable
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Cool design they make in the snow

MY CONS:

  • You’ll notice that I say, “when the conditions are right” a lot above….because if they are not, Yaktrax aren’t ideal
  •  Not good for slushy or loose snow, mud or rock patches
  • The toe part sometimes slips up and pinches my toes or falls off (this has only happened twice)
  • If the conditions aren’t right, you really feel them under your shoes, and it’s not the most conformable thing.
  • Sometimes they collect a lot of snow and/or mud and become very heavy or make your footsteps uneven; a sprained ankle waiting to happen

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THINGS I HEARD FROM FRIENDS:

  • “They break easily” (In my opinion, the people who have told me this have a very HEAVY running form.)
  • “There’s better [traction devices] out there” (I don’t know, I’ve never tried any other traction devices for running.)
  • “Watch out for solid ice though, they still side on that.” (I have used them on solid ice, and I haven’t slid!)
  • “I’ve had a pair for a few years and like them a lot.” (Me too!)
  • “I LOVE mine!!!!! And they make me feel like a total bad a$$ running in them!!” (I get that feeling too.)

CONCLUSION:

I like Yaktrax, but the thing about them is conditions have to be just right. If they are not, I won’t wear them and just run in my trail shoes. What are the right conditions? Packed snow (or ice). Not slushy, not loose and fluffy, and not sparse snow/ice.

After reading the reviews, the most common thing people complained about is they wear out really quickly. I have used them a dozen plus times and mostly when the snow is in the right conditions and they still are going strong!

When I do use them, they provide adequate traction, haven’t broken on me, and fit comfortably on my shoes. Since I have a pair, I probably wont buy another product and just keep using these! I have not yet used them hiking, just running, but I think they would be perfect for hiking during the winter months.

I definitely recommend these if you are looking for an affordable traction device (Pro version is only $29.99) and if it snows regularly where you run. I also have recommend them to my elderly clients that walk to places around town and they love them!

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Using my Yaktrax on Apex Trail!

Your turn: Do you use Yaktrax? If so, do you like them? If not, what do you use for snowy/icy runs?