by Barb | Feb 14, 2022 | Travel/Lifestyle
Sports and music fans worldwide are venturing back to games, festivals, and concerts after a couple of years of pandemic-related restrictions and cancellations. It’s exciting, but also a little confusing: What should I bring to the concert? How will I carry my stuff?
Many stadiums and event venues enforce a clear bag policy, which means patrons are only allowed a single gallon-sized clear plastic bag or a small clutch bag (the size of a large wallet) without a handle or strap. This can be limiting when you don’t want to hoist all of your things around in an awkward Zip-lock bag or leave everything but your wallet at home.
There is a way to wear your valuables in comfort and style: A Fitletic running belt! Here are a few creative ways to comply with stadium bag policies:
Tips for using Fitletic running belt at a festival
- Secure your valuables
- Keep items close
- Go hands-free
- Stay dry
- Quench your thirst
- Keep snacks on hand
Secure your valuables
Secure your phone, keys, and wallet in the zippered pouch. This will keep your valuables inconspicuous and safe from theft. During an outdoor event, the pouch will also keep your things dry in inclement weather.
Keep your items close
Have no fears about dancing the night away or wildly cheering your team: Silicone grippers and an adjustable waist belt will keep your stuff stable and secure. Bonus: you don’t have to worry about your purse getting dirty or stolen!
An adjustable belt will keep you comfortable no matter how long you’re at the event. You don’t have to hold your valuables in your hands or stuff a plastic bag under a seat.
You’ll appreciate sweat-resistant Lycra fabric after an exhilarating game or invigorating performance.
Quench your thirst
Bottle holsters can be useful for summer outdoor festivals so you can have water on you at all times to prevent dehydration.
Keep Snacks Handy
Larger Fitletic pouches can hold snacks like nuts or granola bars, so you can avoid spending money on overpriced concession snacks.
Best belts for use at concerts and stadium events:
- Blitz Sports and Travel Belt. A water-resistant, roomy pouch and interior pocket makes this a great all-around belt.
- Bolt Fit Running Pouch: This streamlined, two-compartment design is both roomy and comfortable, perfect for holding all of your supplies both over and under a shirt or jacket.
- Fully Loaded Refuel Belt: Four outer loops and a flask holder add extra storage capacity.
- Mini Sport Belt: Lightweight and discreet for those who want the most minimal presence from their gear.
- Swipe Running Belt: A clear touch-screen window allows easy access to your phone while you’re dancing and cheering.
by Barb | Jan 25, 2022 | Fitness
Winter means COLD in much of the world, and weather can make a runner’s life hard. Icy sidewalks, snow-covered trails, darkness, freezing fog, and wet roads (not to mention COLD!) can turn an easy-paced five-miler into a harrowing expedition. It’s a good time of year to move your training indoors, but there are also merits to braving the weather outside. Here is a look at the benefits of both, as well as tips on how to dress for winter weather.
Running in the Winter: Treadmill, elliptical, or outdoors?
- Treadmill benefits
- Elliptical machine benefits
- Outdoor running benefits
- Training considerations
Benefits of running on a treadmill
When faced with winter weather hazards, runners with access to a treadmill have an ideal alternative. Besides being relatively safe and more comfortable, indoor running has other benefits as well. Research has found that treadmills don’t change an individual runner’s biomechanics, which means they can be an effective training tool for outdoor goals. Treadmills also allow runners to control everything about their run, from pace to incline to recovery. This friendly environment can motivate you to push your workout to the next level.
If cold and darkness diminish your motivation to run, a treadmill will leave you with fewer excuses. They’re also a good choice for recovery from injury, as the moving belt absorbs impact and reduces pressure on your joints. While treadmills have a reputation for being monotonous, runners have many options to stay engaged while they run: Watching a movie, listening to books or music, or even working. A footpod can be linked to software that will connect you to a virtual world where you can run or race with others from around the globe.
Benefits of running on an elliptical machine
Elliptical machines are another option for runners interested in exercising indoors. These machines minimize impact while engaging similar muscles as running, making them ideal for injury avoidance or recovery. Elliptical machines are incredibly versatile, with settings for resistance and pace to mimic climbing or sprinting.
Benefits of running outside
Why would anyone in their right mind brave ice and cold to go for a run? There are still physical and mental benefits to running outdoors year-round. To start, outdoor running doesn’t require a gym membership or exercise equipment — it’s terrific if you have access to these things, but also okay to embrace the low-cost freedom of running outdoors. Running in nature engages more muscles and strengthens tendons as you navigate uneven surfaces. Hard surfaces such as pavement also prompt your body to adapt to impact, building stronger bones and joints.
There are emotional and mental benefits to being outside in nature as well: Vitamin D from the sun, beautiful scenery to boost your mood, interacting with other people, or engaging in a mini-adventure by exploring a new place. Running outside in the winter is also a great way to build mental toughness. It can be challenging but rewarding to brave the elements. You can do hard things!
Runners training for an upcoming race may also benefit from staying outside. If you have any reason to expect inclement weather during your race, outdoor runs will help you adapt to challenging conditions as well as test your gear against the elements. While many treadmills have incline and decline settings, it’s still difficult to replicate the undulating nature of trails and roads.
Running outdoors usually features wind resistance and other factors that increase difficulties. If you do most of your training on a treadmill, you may find you can’t as easily hold the same pace outdoors. On the flip side, if you’ve done most of your training in the cold and snow, a sunny spring race may feel like a breeze in comparison.
How to dress for winter:
The key to staying comfortable and happy through the winter is appropriate gear. As a popular saying goes, “There’s no bad weather, only bad clothing.” While this isn’t 100% true (think of lightning or tornadoes!), good gear goes a long way. Here are some tips for dressing for the cold and ice:
Having multiple layers that you can add or remove as you go is key. Start with a light base layer of long-sleeved shirt and tights, then add gloves, a light jacket, and a mid-weight hat. In deep cold, runners will often need to add an insulating layer such as a down or synthetic puffy coat, shell mittens, and a down skirt. Be sure you have space to stuff all of these items away, such as a Fitletic running belt or small pack. Usually, runners need to shed layers as they go. During long runs, layers will often need to come back on as energy becomes depleted.
Merino wool is a popular base layer material known for its superb breathability, comfort, and moisture-wicking performance. Synthetic materials such as nylon and polyester are also good choices. When woven well, synthetics retain almost no moisture and dry quickly. They also tend to be lighter than wool, although they can wear out more quickly. Be sure to avoid cotton altogether. Cotton retains moisture that will chill your body once you start to sweat.
Gloves and a hat will go a long way.
Even when temperatures are near freezing, once your internal furnace starts cranking, you often won’t need much more than a base layer to stay warm. But if a chill sets in, adding small items such as gloves and a hat will add a lot of warmth. Carry these items, along with a light wind jacket, in your Fitletic running belt.
A blustery winter day may make you feel like you need to bundle up heavily against the cold, but lighter layers that shield the wind are often all you need. In addition to a wind jacket, consider a lightweight pair of rain pants.
If there is snow or ice along your route, be sure to bring a pair of traction devices for your shoes. Yaktrax work for icy pavement and black ice. Consider a burlier pair of running crampons for mixed snow and ice conditions, such as Kahtoola microspikes. Traction devices are heavy and a little awkward, but they are far less expensive and more comfortable than one of the alternatives — ending up in traction in the hospital.
Daylight hours are short in the winter, and many runners find they need to be out early or late in the dark. Wear high-visibility gear such as a reflective safety vest, and invest in a quality headlamp.
As always, have fun!
by Barb | Jan 12, 2022 | Fitness
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!
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
- Elliptical machine
- Stair machine
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
by Barb | Jan 12, 2022 | 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.
by Barb | Dec 17, 2021 | Running
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
- Foot massager
- Hand warmers
- Sport sunglasses
- Running belt
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 – 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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!
by Barb | Dec 13, 2021 | Fitness
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.
by Barb | Oct 18, 2021 | Blog, Fitness
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!
by Barb | Sep 24, 2021 | 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
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.
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.
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.
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!.