The Best Cardio Alternatives to Running

The Best Cardio Alternatives to Running

We all know running is fantastic, and if you’re reading this article, there’s a good chance you are at least curious about the sport, even if you’re not an avid runner. But most of us can’t run all of the time. Maybe you are nursing an overuse injury, you prefer indoor workouts when the weather is bad, or your routine is becoming a bit stale. The point is, there are many reasons — all valid — why running might not be for you right now. Luckily, there are great cardio alternatives to running that can provide many health benefits and more! 

Stay inspired 

Even dedicated runners can benefit from variety. Cross-training offers a chance to explore new places, meet new friends and expand your skills. Many people become bored when they spend too much time stuck in the same routine. Adding new activities to your arsenal will keep things fresh, boosting motivation. Cross-training also reduces the risk of overuse injury by working different muscles at lower intensities while increasing strength and endurance. 

 

Here are seven great cardiovascular alternatives to running: 

Brisk walking

Walking offers most of the same health benefits as running, burning nearly as many calories per mile while working similar muscle groups. Beginners working their way up to running will find that brisk walking is a great segue. Aim for 15- to 18-minute miles for a heart-pumping workout. You’ll still sweat, so make sure to bring hydration; a half-liter per half hour is often a good rule of thumb. Check out Fitletic hydration belts for a convenient and comfortable way to carry your supplies.

Hiking

Hiking on trails is fun to workout while enjoying nature, wildlife, and fresh air. It’s also a fun activity to invite friends and family along, combine exercise with social time. Hiking can be less risky than trail running (think tripping and falling) but still a heart-pumping exercise that will torch calories and improve fitness. Fitletic offers hiking packs and belts to ensure you’re prepared to fully enjoy your time on the trails. 

Swimming

If you have access to a pool, swimming is a great full-body workout that can burn calories while building strength. This low-impact exercise is also ideal for runners recovering from an injury. And swimming is fun! The feeling of gliding through water is tough to beat. 

Bicycling

Cycling is another low-impact workout that improves endurance and strengthens muscles in your lower body. It can be as easy or as hard as you choose; there are cardiovascular benefits whether you pedal as hard as you can or spin at a more casual pace. Cycling is another fun activity to share with family and friends or meet new friends in local cycling groups, which can usually be found online. The bicycle allows you to go farther and faster to explore new places. There are many affordable bicycles for beginners and occasional riders. It’s important to find a bike that is well-built and fitted to your body. Consult with your local bike shop. 

Elliptical machine

If you have access to a gym, an elliptical machine is a great way to mimic the motion and aerobic intensity of running without the impact. This challenging exercise works both the upper and lower body.

Stair machine

Also present in most gyms, stair machines will fast-track aerobic endurance, which can be great for those pressed for time. Stair climbing engages a lot of different muscles. They are especially good for the posterior chain. If you don’t have access to a gym, simply climbing and descending flights of stairs works just as well. The movement takes some getting used to, so be patient. But once you’ve found your rhythm, you may declare stair-climbing to be the best workout ever. 

Dancing

Dancing may be the best all-around exercise. Dancing increases endurance because the movements elevate your heart rate and breathing while building strength, balance, and coordination. Unlike more repetitive cardiovascular activities such as bicycling and running, dancing includes a broad range of movements to engage different muscle groups. The most beautiful thing about dancing is that you can do it anytime, anywhere. You do not need to be a skilled dancer to reap the health benefits. Just put on your favorite music and start moving! But if you prefer to improve your skills, many gyms and community colleges offer dance classes.

 

Stay prepared

Be sure to check out Fitletic’s array of products for anything you might need — staying visible on the road, holding your phone at the gym, or packing everything you need for a day on the trails. 

How to Feel Confident While Running

How to Feel Confident While Running

Here’s a secret that seasoned runners rarely talk about: Nobody feels like a “runner” the first time they hit the pavement. And yet everybody has to start somewhere. When tackling a new challenge, it’s normal to feel self-conscious or uncertain. Is everyone looking at me? Am I doing it right? Am I going to get hurt? A few simple tips can help novice runners build confidence and feel more comfortable in their own shoes.

How to feel confident while running

  • First of all, invest in quality clothing that feels comfortable on the go. If you look great in your clothes, all the better! It’s worth buying athletic gear that you enjoy using, but make sure it’s also practical for working out. Synthetic, quick-drying materials that are well-fitted to your body — but not too tight — are a great choice.
  • Recruit a friend to run with you. It can help if your running partner has more experience, so you can ask questions or seek advice. But you can also benefit from running with another novice runner, boosting each other as you tackle your shared challenge. 
  • Avoid overly critical or negative self-talk. Sometimes when our bodies are tired, our minds drift toward negativity. You can cut off these thoughts by pushing back with positive affirmations. It helps to think of a few mantras before you head out. Repeat them out loud. You’d be surprised how much a simple “You’re doing great!” can boost morale. 
  • Don’t compare yourself to other people or worry about what they think. Their situation is different than yours, and you can feel confident that you’re the best you on the run. 
  • Focus on the positives of running, such as the benefits to your physical and mental health. Think about why you started running, and remind yourself that you’re this much closer to your goals.

How to avoid frustration and injury

  • Build up gradually to let body and mind adapt. It can be challenging to decide where exactly to begin. One rule of thumb is to start with a pace that feels natural, where your breathing is steady but not difficult, and hold this pace for ten minutes. From there, you can continue to build both distance and speed in steady intervals. Search online for beginner training plans, such as Couch to 5K, which are a great way to establish healthy progression.
  • Create a goal with progressive steps to keep you motivated. Many runners enjoy training for a race such as 5K. Follow a training plan and then relish in the results. 
  • Don’t overreach. Injury risk is highest when you increase your mileage or pace too quickly, overtaxing muscles and joints that haven’t fully adapted to higher impact. Trying too much too soon is also more likely to lead to feelings of failure, which will make it more challenging to stick with your goals.
  • Use high-quality, well-fitting running shoes for the best results. Track the mileage on your shoes, and buy new ones when they become worn out — usually 300 to 400 miles for most shoes. 

How to feel safer

  • Run during daylight hours if possible. If you must run early or late, wear brightly colored clothing, a reflective vest, and a bright headlamp. If you’re wearing a hydration belt, clip a red flashing light to the strap across your back so drivers can see you from behind.
  • Run-on sidewalks, pedestrian paths, or road shoulders if possible. If spaces away from traffic are not available, run on the “opposite” side of the road while facing oncoming vehicles. This way, drivers will see your face, and you will be able to move out of the way if a vehicle is approaching too close. 
  • Obey all traffic rules and always yield to vehicles at intersections. 
  • Stick to familiar neighborhoods and areas known to be safe.
  • Dress for the weather. Layering is best, especially if the forecast calls for cold or rain. It’s better to remove a jacket and stash it away — or even tie it around your waist — than not to have a jacket when you need one. 
  • Pack safety items such as your phone, a safety whistle if you need to signal for help, and extra clothing layers, water, and food. Having a few additional items on hand will boost your confidence to go further or longer because you can handle an emergency if it arises. Fitletic running belts are a comfortable, convenient way to carry everything you need on your run. 

Here at Fitletic, we understand that starting your running journey can be hard, but with these helpful tips, you can help yourself become a confident runner in no time! Looking for more tips and tricks? Check out our blog page

Best Gift Ideas for Runners in 2021

Best Gift Ideas for Runners in 2021

It’s that time of the year again! And if you are like so many others, the holiday shopping season went by in a flash! 

If you’re running short on time and need some quick ideas for the runner in your life, check out our list of the best gift ideas for runners in 2021. 

Whether the runner in your life is into clothes, gear, or gadgets – Fitletic has an idea for you! 

Check out Fitletic’s list of the best gift ideas for runners in 2021! 

  • Reflective vest 
  • Wicking base layers 
  • Women’s ponytail hat 
  • Running jacket 
  • Runderwear 
  • Headlamp 
  • Crampons 
  • Foot massager 
  • Hand warmers 
  • Sport sunglasses 
  • Running belt 
  • Runscreen
  • Cookbook 

Reflective Running Vest 

Glo Reflective Safety Vest is perfect for runners who plan their outdoor workouts before sunrise or after sunset. This ultra-soft vest easily fits over a winter running jacket, but is lightweight enough for runs during the hot summer months.  

The Glo Reflective Safety Vest is visible at distances up to 600 feet and features a back zippered pocket for essentials, front and back loops to clip on a L.E.D. lights, and fully adjustable elastic side straps. 

Base Layers for Runners 

Regardless of your friend’s sleeve preference, the Adidas Terrex Drynamo base layer is a winner. Available in long-sleeve, sleeveless, or short-sleeve, this t-shirt is made with lightweight material and ventilation zones that help runners regulate their body temperatures in cold and hot seasons. 

Wicking Running Shirt for Men  

Runners can wear this fitting workout shirt during cold and hot seasons. It wicks moisture and releases heat to keep the runner comfortable for their entire workout. The attached face mask and hoodie blocks cold and offers extra winter comfort . The TSLA men’s long-sleeved shirt features a durable and elastic fabric material. It protects the skin from harmful UV rays, offering 99% protection. 

Women’s Winter Ponytail Hat 

TrailHeads ponytail hat comes with ear warmers, therefore perfect for running during windy and cold seasons. Thanks to the ponytail hole, women runners can keep their hair out of the way or hold it up when they wish. It’s incredibly soft and feels great on the skin! 

This fantastic hat is made using 55% polyester and 45% wool. It remains intact even after a machine wash. 

Women’s Hooded Running Jacket

The Nike essential running jacket is reasonably priced and comes with a hood to keep harsh weather elements off the runner’s face. The hood stays on when running and can be adjusted to fit perfectly. Plus, it features a ventilation design to prevent overheating.

Men’s Short-Sleeve Tech Tee 

This short-sleeve tech tee features a 100% polyester material interlock, ensuring runners remain cool and dry. It’s uniquely designed to provide comfort and function. A tech t-shirt looks incredible when matched with everyday athletic bottoms. It’s available in multiple colors. 

Runderwear 

Runderwear – also known as runners’ underwear! One of our favorite choices for men is the ExOfficio boxer, equipped with a lightweight, breathable fabric that allows adequate airflow to keep the runner cool. It features an antimicrobial treatment that makes it odor resistant. The waistband is secure and durable plus a diamond knit that stretches for a perfect fit. 

Headlamp

This sleek Ray Headlamp features a comfortable fit and works both with gloves and sweaty hands! The headband offers maximum support and comfort, while preventing bouncing while running in the dark. This ultra bright headlamp is super light, comfy and even rechargeable – you won’t find a better running headlamp out there. 

Micro Crampons 

Winter trail race micro crampons are incredibly lightweight. The hi-tech elastomer ensures the crampons bond fully to the runners’ shoes. 

Nortec micro crampons have steel plates, thus ideal for hard snow and ice surfaces and muddy, wet or dry grassland. 

Foot Massager 

Nekteck foot massager comes with 18 rotating nodes and six massage nodes. It eases tension, regulates blood flow, and relaxes leg muscles. 

Every runner needs this massager to improve foot wellness. They can operate this device using the toe. It comes with a handle for easy movement from home to office or any other convenient location. 

Hand Warmers 

HotHands hand warmers are handy when running outdoors during cold seasons. They provide approximately 10 hours of heat. 

These air-activated warming products include five packages, each with two warmers. They fit inside the pockets and gloves to generate gentle and quick heat. They are the perfect gift for runners who love running in winter, but whose hands get cold quickly. 

Sport Sunglasses

Knockaround sunglasses are not only functional but also stylish. They stay secure on the face even when running, all thanks to their rubberized nose and sturdy construction. 

Knockaround unisex sunglasses have polarized lenses that enhance visibility and reduce glare. They also offer UV protection. If you are looking for a durable item that can withstand scrapes and drops, don’t hesitate to purchase these shades! 

Running Belt

An absolute essential for any runner! Fitletic offers a LOT of running belts. Whether the runner in your life is training for their first 5K, or just completed their 10th marathon, Fitletic has something for them. If you’re not sure what kind of running belt to choose, check out this guide

Sunscreen for Runners

Serious runners need sunscreen that’s a bit more intense than what you’ll find at the drugstore. One of our favorites is Skinnies Sungel, which dries two minutes after application and forms a thin layer of protection. It’s more concentrated than ordinary sunscreen – a little really goes a long way. Best of all, it won’t sweat off! 

The Runner’s World Vegetarian Cookbook 

This vegetarian cookbook contains 150 healthy recipes for runners. Whether or not the runner in your life is vegetarian, they’ll love all the recipes in this book.  

 Conclusion 

Regardless of the type of runner on your gift-giving list, you can’t go wrong with any of the items in this guide. 

You can also check out more holiday gifts, including hydration packs, running belts, and armbands at Fitletic. For more holiday ideas, check out our gift guides from 2019, and 2020! Happy running! 

 

7 Fun and Simple Ways to Stay Fit This Holiday

7 Fun and Simple Ways to Stay Fit This Holiday

Did you know exercising (even in small amounts) presents many essential benefits to our minds and bodies? The best way to experience the majority of these benefits is to make your exercise routine a consistent one and not be too hard on yourself! Maintaining consistency during the holidays can be tricky, but there are so many simple ways to stay fit this holiday. 

Between buying gifts, entertaining family, preparing for vacations, or spending more time with friends, it’s natural that you’ll have less time for exercise. Though taking a break from your routine is perfectly fine once in a while, stepping away from your routine for too long can make it challenging to get back into the swing of things later on. It happens. We’ve all been there! Here’s our guide to some fun and simple ways to stay fit during the holidays.  

Simple Ways to Stay Fit This Holiday

  • Invite your family and friends to join you
  • Don’t forget the fruits and veggies
  • Stay hydrated 
  • Go digital 
  • Plan ahead 
  • Get a workout pal 
  • Put workout gear on your Christmas list 

Make Fitness a Family Event 

Spending extra time with friends and family over the holidays might mean having less time for yourself. This is totally normal, but don’t forget about self-care! 

Start by carving out time for yourself each day, even if it’s not as long as you’d usually take. For example, take a 20-minute walk and listen to a podcast, or just set aside 10-minutes to stretch before you start your day. Big or small, it will feel good to look out for your body during this busy time.

Alternatively, you can treat your exercise time as an opportunity to bond. Invite your family and friends to go on a run or hike. Find out if your gym offers guest passes. If there’s snow, organize a sledding trip, or build a snowman in the yard. It doesn’t have to be super hard or challenging. It can be fun! 

Remember to Sneak in Some Healthy Foods

Holiday meals can be some of the heaviest meals you eat all year long. After filling up, you can lose motivation to put on those sneakers.

If you’re entertaining guests for dinner, try to add some healthier options to your holiday menu. If you’re traveling to someone else’s home for the holidays, offer to do the grocery shopping so you can find foods that help boost your energy. Or, bring along your own healthy snacks that you can eat while you’re on the go. You can stash them away with other essential running items for extra convenience. 

And remember – Everything is 100% okay in moderation, and it’s all about balance. Take the time to appreciate having your loved ones around, and if that means having a second piece of grandma’s famous pie, then enjoy it! 

Watch Your Alcohol Intake

Celebrating with friends and family during the holidays often means increased alcohol consumption. And while that holiday buzz is undoubtedly fun, working out while dehydrated is not a pleasant experience! Remember to drink a glass of water between each alcoholic drink, avoid strong drinks, and stay away from sugary liquors. Worst case scenario, chug a big bottle of water with some electrolytes before going to bed. 

Go Digital With Your Workout Plan

Many gyms are closed during the holidays, limiting your options at the gym. However, who said you couldn’t work out in the living room? Thanks to technology, many online options are available for those who want to exercise at home or while traveling. Find out if your gym offers virtual classes or research apps and sites that offer free workout plans. 

Plan Your Workouts Ahead 

If you’re traveling for the holidays, research the area you’ll be visiting. Most fitness studios offer a free class or discounted week for guests. Apps like ClassPass provide a network for fitness classes in cities all over the country. Most running apps have a feature where you can find runs that other users have done in your area, and AllTrails can help you find the closest trails to you. 

Find an Elf to Keep you Motivated

If you are lucky enough to have a workout partner throughout the year, the holidays can be a great time to contact them! Working out with a buddy can increase the amount of exercise you do, thanks to your partner’s motivation and accountability. And if your workout partner is your life partner? That’s even better! It’s always a little easier to get a sweat sesh in with some extra motivation. 

Ask Santa for Fun New Workout Gear 

Going out shopping during the holiday rush can be exciting, but it can be stressful, and the effects of stress on your mind and body are more than enough to sap your exercise momentum. Instead of getting down on yourself for skipping a workout, use this opportunity to get extra steps in! To get more steps, try parking a little further away from the mall, do some extra laps, and take the stairs instead of the elevator. You’ll be surprised how many steps you stack up! 

If you are not a fan of in-person shopping, plenty of digital retailers offer holiday deals and discounts, and they can ship your products to you in time for a special occasion. And if your holiday wish list includes running gear that is optimized for functionality and comfort, look no further than Fitletic.

 

Fitletic wants to remind you that balance is key, and movement is medicine. The holidays are a special time, and it’s perfectly okay to enjoy all of your favorite meals, drinks, and desserts with the ones you love most. Interested in more running and fitness content from Fitletic? Check out our blog page

Walking vs. Running: Does it Matter?

Walking vs. Running: Does it Matter?

Autumn has arrived, bringing those cool, colorful days that make you want to get outside and breathe in the crisp, new air. Maybe you’re even inspired by the new season to start a new fitness routine! You want to keep it simple, but you’re not sure where to start. Well…walking and running are two of the most versatile and accessible activities out there, but which is better? And does it matter? Let’s consider the benefits of each.

Walking vs Running: Which Is Better?

  • Running typically burns more calories than walking
  • Walking is lower impact than running
  • Most people can walk for longer periods of time than they can run
  • Both walking and running can be done almost anywhere

Benefits of cardiovascular exercise

Both walking and running are complete forms of cardiovascular activity, which can have enormous physical and mental benefits. Cardiovascular activity increases stamina, boosts your immune system, strengthens your heart and muscles, and can even improve your mood. One study found that just 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise three times a week can reduce anxiety and depression. There are few simpler ways to give both your body and your mind the boost they need!

Walking or running? How to choose?

Weight loss certainly isn’t the only reason to adopt healthy habits and doesn’t need to be your goal. But, for many people, it can be a motivating factor to start a fitness program and can be seen as a benefit.

Whether you have weight loss on your mind, or simply want to be happier and healthier, here are some facts to consider:

  • Calories: Running burns nearly double the number of calories as walking based on time spent exercising. Running also burns about 30 percent more calories per mile. Power walking — an activity where you walk at a brisk pace with an elevated heart rate — is similar to running in terms of calorie burn per mile.
  • Impact: As a lower-impact exercise, walking causes less fatigue. If you’re worried a run will leave you useless for the rest of the day, walking is a great alternative. Walking is still a weight-bearing exercise that ultimately provides long-term health benefits, such as the prevention of bone loss.
  • Duration: Walking is sustainable for longer durations than running. You may tire out and stop after just a few minutes of running, but find you can walk comfortably for 30 to 45 minutes. The best workout is the one you can sustain.
  • Competition: Some people have races on their minds when they start a new fitness program. Whether it’s a 5K fun run or a marathon PR, your activity level will depend heavily on your goals. Plenty of people can and do walk entire races. This is fine, but many beginners have aspirations toward a faster time. Either way, you should start with walking to get into shape. As you become more conditioned, gradually increase your speed. To build up to running, try pace training. Run or walk at an increased speed for two minutes, and then slow down for two minutes. Increase your speed for another two minutes, and repeat this cycle for as long as you feel comfortable!

Benefits versus risks of running 

“Running will ruin your knees.” We hear this so often when talking to friends about our aspirations to run a 5K. This is not necessarily true, but it is important to start slowly and take precautions with any new fitness routine. Running is a great way to fast-track fitness, but it’s also a high-impact exercise. High-impact workouts can be hard on your body, leading to overuse injuries.

According to some studies, walkers have a 1 to 5 percent injury risk, while runners may have a 20 to 70 percent chance of overuse injury at some point in their lives. Overuse injuries from running can be avoided by following science-proven fitness plans — many of which can be found online. Those who don’t want to follow a set routine may feel safer walking.

Running, however, can be greatly beneficial for overall health. A 15-year study with over 50,000 participants found that running at least five to ten minutes per day, even at lower speeds, reduces heart disease risk up to 45 percent. The study by the American Heart Association found that walking was just as beneficial as running for lowering the risk of hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol.

So, to make things clear: although walkers have a lower injury risk, running is not bad for your knees as long as you listen to your body! Studies have actually found strong evidence linking higher impact activities with stronger knee tissue and healthier knees. The truth is, as long as you don’t overdo it, prioritize recovery, and don’t run when something is hurting, you’ll come out stronger with fewer aches and pains than people who don’t regularly walk and run. 

How to get started running or walking 

Starting new routines can be daunting, but it doesn’t take much to prepare for walking or running: A good pair of shoes, comfortable workout clothing, and hydration! Look for high-quality synthetic materials in your clothing, and find a running belt or backpack that allows you to bring everything you need for your desired activity. 

So what will it be — walking or running? In the end, it’s entirely up to you! Experts agree that the most beneficial workout for you is the one you’re most likely to do, so choose the activity you’re most excited about. Aim for three to four days of exercise per week at 30 minutes per day. Make a dedicated plan to keep you motivated and excited. Keep your workouts interesting by changing up your routes. And maybe find a friend to join. Running or walking with a buddy keeps you accountable and increases safety. A friend can also help challenge you. 

Finally, when you are ready, signing up for races or other competitions provides extra motivation. Walking or running, few things match the satisfaction of striding into the finish of a goal race and receiving a well-deserved medal!

Whether you’re hitting the path for a brisk walk or an adventurous run, Fitletic’s fitness gear and accessories adapt well to any workout routine. A wide range of sizes and styles help eliminate distractions so new and experienced athletes can focus on their goals. Check out Fitletic’s assortment of hydration belts and accessories

What to Look for in the Best Hydration Backpack for Hiking

What to Look for in the Best Hydration Backpack for Hiking

When you’re high on a mountain or miles along a remote trail, there’s often nothing worse than reaching for your water bottle and finding it empty. Or realizing you forgot your jacket when the rain starts pelting. Savvy hikers know that one of the most important mantras for an enjoyable day out is “be prepared.” A proper hydration pack can help you carry all of the things you need for a long trek comfortably and securely. But how do you find the best pack? Here are some features to consider:

Best Features in Hydration Backpacks for Hiking 

  • Ability to carry more water for longer hikes, and less water for shorter hikes 
  • Extra space for gear that doesn’t add bulk 
  • Hydration packs that fit comfortably

Reservoir Capacity

Hydration backpacks feature a reservoir or bottle holders that can hold anywhere from one to three liters of water. The amount you can carry depends on the size of the pack. A single liter of water weighs 2.2 pounds, which can add up quickly. When choosing which pack is best for you, ask these questions:

  • How long do you think the hike will take? On average, most people require 3-4 liters of water for a moderate day of hiking. However, if you only plan to be out for a half day or less, one to two liters should be sufficient.
  • If you’re not sure about how long a hike might take, take into account that a typical beginner’s pace on moderate trails is about 2 to 2.5 mph. If the trail is 10 miles long, plan for four to five hours.
  • Will you have the option to refill your reservoir or bottles along the route? Perhaps at a store or drinking fountain? Or, if you carry a small water filter or purification tablets, are there clear streams along the trail?
  • Take the weather forecast into consideration, as you will need more water in hot or humid climates.

Gear Capacity

Most hydration packs feature extra space and pockets for gear. When looking at the size of the pack, consider what things you might typically want to take with you.

  • Smaller packs (5 to 10 liters) can usually hold an extra layer such as a jacket, snacks, and a liter or two of water.
  • Mid-sized packs (11 to 20 liters) are better for longer adventures that could potentially require a change of clothing, a larger coat, emergency equipment, and a day’s worth of food. This is useful when you plan to hike all day in environments prone to sudden weather changes. These higher-capacity packs also typically have more pockets to help keep you organized.

Backpack Fit

If you’re going to wear something on your back all day long, you want it to be comfortable. It helps to take measurements of your torso and waist to ensure the backpack will fit you properly. A pack that’s too large can flop around uncomfortably. A pack that’s too small will rub and cause chaffing. Specialty packs often come in varying sizes and include adjustable straps to help you find the best fit. In packs with larger capacities, a waist belt will help distribute the weight. Padding on shoulder straps also increases comfort. 

Features

Some features improve the functionality of backpacks, while others are included solely for convenience. Whether they’ll work for you depends on your style of hiking. 

The best hydration backpacks include these features:

  • Wide-mouth reservoirs that are easy to fill with water and clean.
  • Quick-disconnect tubing, which again adds simplicity to cleaning. 
  • Antimicrobial coating.
  • A bite valve shutoff switch to prevent leaking.
  • Convenient tube portals.
  • Insulated tubing for cold weather.
  • Expandable storage.
  • Breathable fabric.
  • Extra pockets.
  • An emergency whistle.
  • Rain cover.

Stay Hydrated on the Trail with Fitletic Hydration Backpacks

Fitletic hydration packs are designed to meet your needs when you’re out on the trail. The HydRun Vest Trail and Hydration Pack is an ultralight, vest-style pack that will fit comfortably around your torso and offers enough carrying capacity (two soft-flask bottles and room for a 1.5 liter bladder) to accommodate a half-day hike. The Journey Backpack Hydration System is a stylish and robust option for longer adventures, with a two-liter reservoir, extra pockets, high-visibility reflectors, adjustable straps and 11 liters of capacity. Check out the Fitletic offerings for hiking here!. 

Waist Wallet vs. Neck Wallet: What’s Best for International Travel?

Waist Wallet vs. Neck Wallet: What’s Best for International Travel?

Deciding Between a Waist Wallet vs. Neck Wallet for International Travel

As more nations reopen their borders, travelers are once again taking to the skies in search of adventure. Because of the pandemic, many aspects of travel have changed — some countries require vaccination or testing records, and many have special entry forms. But one thing remains the same — the need to keep all of your travel documents safe and secure, whether you’re darting through the airport or hiking at Machu Picchu. Which type of compartment is best for your next trip abroad — a waist wallet or a neck wallet? Let us help you decide. 

Waist Wallet vs. Neck Wallet: Pros and Cons 

First and foremost, you should research the quality and construction of the wallet. Good-quality materials are important because you’ll likely wear them for the entire day, both moving and sitting, so you’ll need a wallet that’s comfortable and robust. A wallet with moisture-resistant material will protect your documents, phone, and other sensitive items from weather and sweat. Something bounce-proof will increase comfort and security. A stylish design that you enjoy wearing certainly won’t hurt, either. Both types of wallets can work in this regard, so what’s the difference?

Waist Wallet Pros

  • Discrete
  • Secure
  • Comfortable
  • Versatile

A waist belt travel wallet is essentially a pouch attached to an adjustable strap that you secure around your waist. Several styles offer additional pockets and compartments to allow space for a phone, passport, money, and more. Sports belts, with their water-resistant materials and sleek design, have become increasingly popular for travel.

Benefits of Waist Wallets 

  • When worn under clothing, a waist wallet can be discrete, discouraging theft. 
  • A belt is secure against the body, which also helps protect against pickpockets.
  • Because it’s worn around your waist, a belt is comfortable for prolonged use.
  • Fitletic offers several styles and sizes to fit your needs, and are large enough to carry essentials such as a passport, wallet, and phone 
  • Add-ons are available to increase capacity for water bottles, hand sanitizer, snacks, and more.

Things to Keep in Mind Wearing Waist Wallets Internationally

  • When worn over clothing, a waist wallet may give off a signal that you’re a tourist. However, reflective striping will increase your personal safety when walking through a city at night.
  • Accessing a waist wallet under your clothing can be difficult. 

Neck Wallet Pros

  • Can be worn like a necklace
  • Larger than a waist wallet in most cases

A neck travel wallet is a pouch that hangs loosely from a strap or chain around your neck. Some styles may offer pockets for specific items such as a passport or phone. These types of wallets also have their benefits and drawbacks. 

Benefits of Neck Wallets 

  • Can be discreetly worn under clothing. 
  • Easier to access than a waist wallet if worn like a necklace. 
  • Typically has a larger pouch than a waist wallet. 

Things to Keep in Mind Wearing Neck Wallets Internationally

  • The larger pouch often means it is heavier than a waist wallet, which can pull against your neck and become uncomfortable.
  • Wearing it across your shoulders improves security but makes it more difficult to access, especially when worn under clothing. 
  • Storing more items in a neck wallet can make it bulky, causing bunching and often becoming uncomfortable. 
  • When worn like a necklace, a neck wallet is susceptible to theft.

Find the Perfect Fitletic Wallet for Your Trip

For your next international trip, Fitletic offers sleek and stylish waist wallet options that are sure to work with your travel wardrobe. Fitletic also offers larger daypacks for a fun, sporty style with more storage capacity when traveling. 

Essential Running Gear for Beginners

Essential Running Gear for Beginners

“Running is one of the simplest sports in the world. All you need is a pair of shoes!”

While this is technically true, the right gear can make the world of a difference to run comfortably and efficiently. Here are seven pieces of essential running gear for beginners:

Essential Running Gear for Beginners: Fitletic’s Top Picks

  • Hydration solutions 
  • The right kind of running shoes 
  • High quality running socks 
  • Shirt 
  • Shorts or leggings 
  • Supportive undergarments
  • Jacket 

Hydration

Staying hydrated plays a crucial role in performance and comfort when running. Your hydration needs will vary depending on how long you plan on running. Here are some things to keep in mind: 

  • Volume. Short runs rarely need more than 16-ounces of fluid, making the Hydra Pocket Hydration Band an excellent option for short to medium-length runs. It has an adjustable strap to ensure a good fit and a quick-flow cap for easy drinking.  
  • Customization. Fitletic makes it easy to bring as much or as little water as you need on your runs. With the Extra Mile Holster Add-On, you can bring more water when you need it, or leave it at home if you don’t plan to run very far! 
  • Essentials. Carrying ID, a key, gels, and even a phone is vital in today’s world. Choosing a hydration belt, such as the Hydra 12 Hydration Belt, lets you have everything you need in a way that is both comfortable and stylish. 

Running Shoes

Running shoes protect your feet and joints with each strike on the path. While all running shoes are meant to do the same thing, the same shoe that is perfect for one person, might not be the best for another. 

With so many determining factors, how can you choose the right shoe for your needs? Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Type of Shoe. Where you run will determine which type of shoe you need. Trail running requires a shoe structured for the rugged terrain, whereas a lighter shoe can improve performance on the treadmill or road.
  • Your Gait. Although finding your gait (a manner of walking, stepping, or running) can be daunting, this guide helps you understand pronation and which type of shoe will work best for your unique gait.
  • Do Your Research. Running technology is continuously evolving. Sites such as Runners World and Sole Review provide valuable insight and reviews of the latest running shoes for beginners.
  • Shop In-Person. When it comes to running shoes, it’s all about the fit. Buying running shoes in person gives insight from knowledgeable sales staff who can help you find the right shoe and ensure you get the proper fit.  

Breathable Socks

Socks are easy to take for granted, but the reality is that runners put a lot of pressure on their feet. These tips will help new runners find their favorite type of running sock: 

  • Right Material. Most socks are cotton, which absorbs sweat and moisture – a recipe for blisters. Instead, look for socks made of polyester or nylon, both of which are breathable and help wick the sweat away. 
  • Ideal Features. Look for socks that have extra cushioning at the ball, toe, and heel. You may also want to opt for compression socks, seamless construction, or arch support. 
  • Quality. The pressure running puts on socks can cause them to wear them out quickly. High-quality socks will cost more than what you’ll find in a drugstore, but they are more comfortable, last longer, and are worth it in the long run.  

Check out some reviews of the top running socks at Gear Junkie, Wired, and Business Insider.

Comfortable Shirt for Running 

Wearing the wrong shirt can cause unexpected problems like chafing and discomfort. When shopping for the ideal running shirt, look for the following: 

  • Wicking Material. Opt for a shirt that is breathable by avoiding fabrics that hold moisture. This means staying away from cotton and choosing fabrics such as nylon, polyester, bamboo rayon, and merino wool. 
  • Construction. Fitted designs and compression shirts are less likely to cause chafing, plus they help provide support to your core and can improve blood flow without using extra energy.
  • Smooth Seams. Raised seams also cause chafing. Look for shirts with flat seam construction that are less likely to irritate the skin.
  • Reflective Features. Reflective gear features let drivers see you and keep you safer when running in the early morning or evening

Runners World, Running Warehouse, and Road Runner Sports all have reviews of the best running shirts on the market. 

Shorts and Tights

The wrong pair of running shorts can cause several problems and even delay your training. Here’s what you need to know about finding the best shorts for your next run: 

  • Proper Fit. Wearing shorts or tights designed for runners goes a long way toward maintaining your comfort while running. Bottoms that are too large or bunch up will ride up, cause chafing, and wreak havoc on your thighs and groin area.
  • Design. Look for features that will give you the performance you want. Some shorts have built-in liners to prevent bunching, while compression tights can help increase blood flow and help prevent injury.
  • Fabric. Stick with a blend of wicking materials like polyester, elastane, spandex, and nylon. The higher the percentage of nylon, the faster moisture will wick.  

Check out the recommendations from Runners World and Men’s Health.

Undergarments for Runners

The importance of high-quality undergarments for runners can not be overstated. Traditional undergarments are not designed for higher impact activities, so it’s important to choose a sports bra or underwear that fits well, keeps you dry, and reduces chafing. 

As a general rule of thumb, we recommend opting for breathable, wicking fabrics like polyester or nylon instead of cotton. Consider these additional tips when choosing the best undergarments for a beginning runner:

Sports Bras

  • Compression and Encapsulation. Since the “right” sports bra may vary from person to person, it may take a few “test runs” to figure out what works best for you. Many beginning runners find sports bras with individual cups that keep the breasts close to the chest are the most comfortable.  
  • Straps. Racerback straps will typically provide the most support for higher impact activities, like running. Many beginning runners discover that they prefer a sports bra with adjustable straps to get the right tightness without digging into your shoulders. 

Sports Underwear 

  • Moisture wicking fabric. We’ve already mentioned that cotton is generally a poor choice for runner’s underwear – but we want to say it again. A wicking fabric is a superior choice as it draws moisture from the skin, and helps to keep sensitive areas dryer and healthier. 
  • Stretchy materials. Stretchy materials stay in place. The last thing a beginning runner needs is their underwear bunching up and causing irritation. 

Running Jacket

Running outside means you’ll have to deal with the elements at some point. Having the right can keep you comfortable even in any weather. Features to look for in a running jacket include:

  • Waterproofing. Stay dry in the rain by choosing a jacket with a water-resistant coating. Some have more than others making them more suitable for heavy rain while still being breathable, so decide based on the weather you anticipate.
  • Insulation. Running jackets come with either down or synthetic fiber insulation. The level of insulation will vary depending on the temps in which you are running. Just remember that you’ll get warmer as you run, so choose according to your preference.
  • Vents. Jackets with mesh ventilation or zipped areas in the armpits can help improve the jacket’s overall breathability, reducing the chances of chafing. 

Here are Runners World’s and Wired Runner’s recommendations on which running jacket you need.

Find essential running gear for beginners at Fitletic

Ultimately, you want to make sure all of your running gear fits appropriately and is designed for comfort and performance. Fitletic has everything you need when it comes to running belts, hydration belts, armbands, and other running accessories to make your run as enjoyable as possible. Check out which Fitletic belts runners love today! 

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