What with all the holiday posts recently I’m reverting to a fitness post as that is kind of what this blog is meant to be about. Except the primary purpose of this post is just to rave and rave and rave about a specific product …. no I am not paid to do so, I am not an ambassador, I just think this is really great and may have changed my running life… yes, that serious!
Last year when I was just starting to think about longer runs (we’re talking 10ks here) I thought perhaps I should buy myself some kind of running belt so I could take water with me on runs and maybe some fuel. I was just thinking about this when I was on my weekly grocery shop in Lidl and what did I spot but lots and lots of running belts, all sold for about 5 pounds! Well, cheapskate me was sold and one was immediately added to the shopping basket.
How was it? Well how good do you expect a running belt that cheap to be? It held two small bottles of water – I had to unscrew their tops to drink out of them as it was impossible to drink out of the caps. The belt moved around as I ran and I had to keep adjusting it, especially at the beginning when the water bottles were full. It was annoying.
When I started the long runs of marathon training, it was the middle of winter and I was wearing a LOT of layers. More layers = less bouncing. And in fact most of my long runs were done with a small rucksack as I knew I’d want to take off my hat / gloves / neck warmer at some point in the run. Fast track to the last few runs in the warmth of Madrid and I quickly realised the belt was not going to work for the marathon.
I bought another one. It was pretty big, and I was only able to run with it for 2 short miles in taper week but it seemed okay….
Then I arrived at the Barcelona Marathon expo to be faced by hundreds of running belts, all in different styles, shapes and colours. I dilly-dallied (what an awesome word!), dragging my hungover sister and her boyfriend back and forth between different stalls. Just as I was about to give up, I found the FlipBelt stall.
The FlipBelt is a compression belt – “a tubular waistband” designed to be worn around the hips. You insert your gels (or whatever) into an opening in the belt and then slide it round so it can’t fall out. As the material is stretchy, you can fit a huge amount of stuff in there that you might not originally consider. It comes in several bright colours – I of course went for the bright blue. On top of that, they also gave me a free visor when I bought the belt which saved me having to wear sunglasses during the marathon!
It fit snugly around my hips (it is stretchy and comes in an array of different sizes) and didn’t move for the whole marathon. I barely even noticed it. It held my gels, my phone and my headphones. On non-marathon runs, I was able to fit a small bottle of water into the back of it, and it even has a clip to attach your keys to.
If you are looking for a running belt, I’d say this one was pretty much perfect. I am so glad I didn’t wear my old running belt while running the marathon, and I now won’t go running without the FlipBelt.