Category Archives: running

Intelliskin Posture Apparel Review

intelliskin sports bra ©nikolklein

One of the reasons that my personal training clients come to me is to improve their posture. With my ballet background, they know that I have knowledge about proper posture. Let’s face it- when you’re not thinking about it, it is hard to constantly stand with shoulders back, chest up, etc. So we all eventually end up in a slump. Not to mention how our breasts can weigh us down as Women, forcing our shoulders to round forward. Enter Intelliskin Posture Cue™ Sports Bra.

I was fortunate enough to be able to try both sports bras: the Zipper Empower PostureCue™  Sports Bra (pictured above) and the regular Empower Sports Bra. These sports bras are designed to improve your posture as you wear them by supporting you in the front and the back. The unique “PostureCue” that this sports bra provides gently helps retrain and align your spine and shoulders.

intelliskin sports bra ©nikolklein

Back view of the Zipper Empower PostureCue™ Sports Bra

Sizing, Fit, and Feel- The Intelliskin Sports Bras are designed to fit snug, almost like second skin or Under Armour. They come in both black and white. I was between sizes and decided to go with the smaller size.  Immediately after putting it on, you will feel exactly what this product is all about. You will feel a more open chest, shoulders slightly pinched back (how we’re supposed to naturally stand). This product is extremely breathable and the mesh panels in the back not only ensure proper posture, but add to the breath-ability as well (pictured above). It looks great as well!

Function- These sports bras are great for everyone whether you are an athlete, a fitness enthusiast, or someone who simply suffers from shoulder and back pain. I have worn these sports bras for all types of activities like running, weight lifting, and even daily computer work. In all honesty, I didn’t want to take it off. My clients are always on the search for the perfect sports bra and, for me, I know that I have found it.

intelliskin instagram ©nikolklein

Empower Sports Bra in white & Eve shirt in Black/Silver

Recommendations- As a personal trainer, I know that all of my clients can benefit from the Intelliskin Empower Sports Bras. It is great for those who sit at a computer, athletes, and gym-goers. These products are even Chiropractor approved! I took my gear to my Chiropractor this week and he commented on the great design and support. Advice for those of you with sensitive skin- Make sure you hand wash your garment in cold water before putting it on…my sensitive skin started to itch after putting it on straight out of the packaging. Also, if you are a small frame with larger breasts, I might recommend going with the larger size as the compression could be a bit intense on the girls and the sizing chart on the website does not mention cup size.

On a side note: As a fitness expert I receive numerous products in the mail to sample and test every month but never have I received a product that I love this much. I am looking forward to offering this sports bra to my clients, family and friends! For more information about Intelliskin check out their website http://www.intelliskin.net.

Nike Fuel Band Review

After months of waiting, I was finally able to get my hands on the new Nike + Fuel Band. Nike had been teasing me with emails since January about this new device so I was anxious to try it out. Working with personal training clients on and off all day long made this seem like the perfect exercise tracker for me and my active lifestyle. I have always wondered just how much energy I am expending throughout the day.

The packaging made me feel like I was about to open a new Apple product. Could this product really live up to its expectations?

After charging, downloading and resizing my Nike Fuel Band, I was ready to see what this device was all about. Contrary to what I had originally believed, the Nike Fuel Band is not a heart rate monitor. It does however track steps, calories, and “fuel” which is really what this device is all about. While I do not feel that the Nike website does a great job of explaining exactly what this device does, I do feel that it will be a great tool for those who are trying to manage their weight and/or track their daily activity levels.

The main positive thing about the Nike Fuel Band concept is that it helps you and encourages you to reach your goals. You can set your daily goals and track them along the way.

Having the wrist circumference of a 10 year old girl, I was very pleased to see that the size of the Nike Fuel Band is adjustable. Just like a watch, it has links to either expand or take out.

So how do you use it? You simply charge it via USB and wear it. It will track your movement all day long. There is also a great option to sync it with your iPhone. Your iPhone will download your activity level and track it though your phone’s bluetooth.

How do I like it? I think this is a great accessory but to be honest, I could probably live without it. Did it tell me anything I didn’t already know? Not really, although it is nice to see how many calories it predicts that I burn each day.

Favorite thing about the Nike Fuel Band: Adjust-ability, calorie tracking, and the flashing LED lights when you reach your goal.

Least favorite thing about the Nike Fuel Band: That it doesn’t work as a heart rate monitor. (but again, it never claimed to)

Price: $149.00 http://www.nike.com/fuelband

Nike Vomero 6 Running Shoe Review

Since I like to have a healthy, injury free run I change out my running shoes every 6 months. Over the past 6 months, I have been wearing the Air Pegasus 28 (which I also wrote a review about) and the Nike Free Run 2 (which I reviewed as well) but their shoe lives were up and it was time for a change.

I finally had the opportunity to test out the Nike Vomero +6 on a run this afternoon. My favorite running shoe was the Nike Vomero 5 so I wanted to feel out the differences in the updated model. The difference: none that I could feel. I felt the same reliability, response and cushion that I had loved so much in the Vomero +5’s. This is great!
Overall my attitude on the Vomero+ 6 is the same as the 5’s although I think the colors that Nike is offering now are much more attractive. Here is my take on the specs:

Size: Fits true to size. I have to go a half size up in other running shoes.
Width: Runs wide. The toe box is roomy, cushioned and comfortable. Although I have a narrow foot, I have always preferred a wide toe box.
Comfort: Extremely comfortable. I could wear these all day.
Durability: I expect these to hold up just as the Vomero 5’s did.
Support: Neutral. Since these shoes are so gushy and soft inside, there is a lot of room for error if you’re not a seasoned runner.
Overall Grade: A. These are soon to become my favorite running shoes for both the asphalt and the beach. The comfort, control and cushion that I have come to expect from the Nike Vomero Running shoes.

Have you tried out the Nike Vomero+ 6 running shoes? If so, how did they rate?

Nike Free Run 2 Review

Today I am going to review the Nike Free Run+ 2 shoe that launched in the Spring of 2011. I have always been big fan of Nike running shoes because of their fit and durability and the Nike Free Run+ 2 is no exception. Here is how the shoe stacks up against the other Nike competitors.

I have primarily been running with the Nike Vomero’s or Nike Air Pegasus 28 so the Nike Free Run+ 2 is a huge contrast. The shoes that I have been running with are super plush and cushioned while the Nike Free Run is fairly stiff in the shank and neutral. As much as the Nike Free brags about the flexibility and freedom of movement, I actually tend to disagree when it comes to this particular model. And by the way, the Nike Free Run+ 2 is MUCH different than the Nike Free 3.0. I was expecting a bit more flexibility like the 3.0 would have.

As I have said in my other shoe reviews, I am a former professional ballet dancer so my foot sensitivity and awareness is high. Here is how I rate the shoe in the following categories;

Size: Fits true to size.
Width: Runs slightly wide, stretches with more wear due to the “slip-on” component.
Comfort: Medium. I wouldn’t want to wear these shoes for a long period of time.
Durability: So far no problems.
Support: Neutral. The shoe insert has an arch support which almost feels stiff like an orthotic (one that was not custom made) while the external and bottom of the shoe is flexible.
Overall Grade: B- While this is a solid shoe with a great design, I could take it or leave it. These shoes make running harder on my body especially asphalt running. My personal preference requires more cushion in a running shoe like the Nike Vomero offers. I will say that they are a great Nike Free entry level shoe if you are worried about the barefoot feel being too forgiving in the Nike Free 3.0 version.

Have you tried the Nike Free Run+ 2 shoes? If so, what was your experience?

Nike Air Pegasus 28 Review

Okay, I will admit it. I am a bit of a Nike shoe whore…Every season I replace both my running shoes and training shoes with Nike’s latest and greatest (or in some cases not so great).

I had actually been using the same running shoes for about 9 months and was quite content with them, the Nike Vomero 5. Being an educated San Diego personal trainer I know that you should replace your shoes about every 6 months so unfortunately it was time to move on. Instead of going with the same shoe in the newer, updated version (Nike Vomero 6 just came out) I decided to switch up my running shoe.

Nike Air Pegasus 28

I ordered the Nike Air Pegasus 28 and in the loudest, brightest colors that they came in. (Apparently I chose Florida Gators colors without knowing…)When my order arrived I was excited to see that these shoes did in fact look exactly as they are pictured on the Nike website. (Sometimes a shoe will arrive and you wonder how and why it looks completely different on the website.) Upon trying them on for the first time I thought that maybe they were a bit too small. Like the Vomero’s my big toe pushed the front of the shoe. Only a trial run would decide whether these shoes were the perfect fit or if they would be a victim of Nike’s 30 day return policy.

To my surprise my big toe tapping the toe of the shoe did not hinder or make my run painful in any way! The leather (?) or fabric on the top, sides and front of the shoe is very supple and soft. My toe hits the top of the Vomero’s too, but a half-size bigger is too loose for my taste. (Being a ballet dancer, I like a shoe that forms to or is one with my foot.) On the contrary, if you like a shoe that fits your foot more compact, DO NOT go with the Nike Lunar Glide 2…this shoe will bruise your toenails because of the plastic toe cap and narrowness of the toe box.

During my 3 mile jog both uphill and downhill I might add, the Nike Air Pegasus 28  felt perfect. Since I have a tendency to slightly over-pronate I felt that this shoe gave me the stability that I needed while not over correcting my natural running movement pattern. All in all it turns out that I like these much better than the Vomero’s.

Give the Nike Air Pegasus 28  try, I highly recommend them whether you are going for a run on the street or the sand!

Beat Workout Burnout

Starting to feel burned out with your current workout routine? Having trouble dragging yourself to the gym? Frequently canceling personal training sessions with your trainer? Here are 10 ways to beat workout burnout.

1.) Download a new mix of songs for your iPod. Changing up your tunes will give your workout a surge of motivation.

2.) Switch up your cardio routine. Since Spring is here try taking your cardio workout outdoors. You will feel revitalized and you will get to breathe some clean air as well.

Focus to beat workout burnout

3.) Reward yourself. You have been diligently sticking with your fitness routine and it is time to give yourself a reward for all of the hard work.

4.) Hire help. If you are not already working with a personal trainer your workout will soar to new heights if you give a trainer a try.

5.) Take a break. Sometimes the best thing to beat workout burnout is to take a few days off. Start back when you are feeling clear headed.

6.) Invite a friend to workout with you. Go for a hike or a bike ride with a friend and you will find that the conversation makes the time pass quickly.

7.) Write it down. Keep track of your fitness goals, nutrition, and workouts. You will be less likely to go o

ff track if you keep a workout journal.

8.) Look at yourself…naked! Checking yourself out in the mirror after a shower can give you the added motivation you need to stay motivated to reach your goals.

9.) Sign-up for a 5k. Giving yourself something to work towards. Start small and work your way up.

10.) Show off your body. Dare to wear a skirt, shorts, or a bikini. You’ve worked hard.

 

Try these tips the next time you are in a rut!

Reebok RunTones Hit the Beach

Here is what happened when I took my Reebok RunTone shoes to La Jolla Shores for a beach run…

As a San Diego Personal Trainer, I definitely recommend these shoes for my clients who enjoy jogging for cardio. They add a little extra “lift” to your workout!

Reebok Runtone Experiment

Reebok was nice enough to send me a complimentary pair of the Runtone shoes a few weeks ago, and I must admit that I’ve been slacking on testing them out. I was so hyped up about the Easy Tones that I didn’t get time to test the Run Tones! Here is what I think of these sneakers so far;

Thank you, Reebok!

When these gorgeous, light-weight shoes arrived at my door step I was stoked. My previous running shoe of choice was the Nike zoom-sister because of its plastic outside shell and element durability. I have to say, I am a bit hesitant to get these new Run Tones dirty…I love the fit, the feel, and the breathability of these shoes. Since they are so hard to find, I would hate to ruin them in the sand…my terrain of choice when I run.

This weekend I plan on putting some miles in with the Run Tones, and with the Carlsbad 5k coming up, I’d better break them in. Stay tuned for the Runtone experiment, and a huge Thank You to Reebok for sending these! (next up, the Zigtechs!)

La Jolla Boot Camp Meets Reebok EasyTone

After a month of rainy weather, I was finally able to conduct my La Jolla Boot Camp on dry land! I had been waiting to test out my Reebok EasyTone sneakers on the sand of La Jolla Shores. After a long week of standing and product demos at the IHRSA convention here in San Diego, I have to admit, my legs were pretty tired. I wanted to test how effective the EasyTones would be in Boot Camp.

As I tested a few weeks ago, the first thing I noticed was just how hard it was to lunge in these shoes. (you can watch the video here) This was especially true at boot camp on the grass.  We also did a set of lunges in the sand which really challenged our legs. The dynamic warm-up in the grass along with the 30 minute workout went well. Now onto the next challenge…jogging in the sand.

Tide was on the high side this week, so we were forced to jog in the soft sand. This was an extreme challenge in the Easytones as the sand kept moving under the balance pods giving me a feeling that my feet were not completely touching the ground. A good workout for me, but something that I might not recommend for a beginner.

(And let me just warn you, working out in the Easy Tone shoes is not for beginners. It takes a lot of core strength. Keep in mind that these exercises are a bit difficult for me, a fitness professional.)

When I woke up on Sunday morning, my calves were sore. This is probably from trying to stabalize on the sand during the boot camp jog. Reebok has been nice enough to send me out a complimentary pair of RunTone shoes, so I am willing to bet that they will be a bit better for jogging.

That’s all for now! Stay tuned for my RunTone testing videos and blogs!

Reebok Easy Tone Testing at IHRSA

It has been a very busy week, but don’t worry, I did it all with the Reebok Easy Tone shoes. I have definitely put some more miles on them. Here’s how the week went…

The most memorable part of my week was the IHRSA Fitness convention here in San Diego. I was hired by Marpo Kinetics to be a spokesmodel and to promote their rope training strength/cardio machines. Of course I saw this as the perfect opportunity to try out an experiment of my own. I knew that everyone who was everyone in the fitness industry would be at the IHRSA convention. I had to look my best.

At the Marpo Kinetics booth at IHRSA

My white and blue Easy Tones didn’t match my red and black convention uniform, but I was determined not to let it put a damper on my testing. For 5 hours on both Thursday and Friday I would need to be on my feet the entire time doing product demonstrations. The unique equipment that I was promoting primarily focused on using the upper body. My test was to see how my lower body would feel after day #1 of the convention.

Rope Training is a fun and effective way to get a cardio and strength workout in one!

I woke up on Friday morning sore…but not where I expected to be sore. I thought that my upper body would be sore from the rope climbing demonstrations. I was wrong. My legs were actually a bit more sore just from standing in the Easy Tones! Needless to say, Friday was a bit more difficult in the Reebok Easy Tones but I made it through comfortably.

I proudly showcased my Easytones even on Friday by wearing shorts. Afterall, since Reebok has acknowledged my efforts to create even more awareness of this product, I didn’t want to let them down! By the way, I saw hundreds of Women at the convention this week. None of which were wearing Reebok Easy Tones.

Sporting the Easy Tones with shorts at IHRSA.

So the result of wearing the Reebok Easy Tone shoes during IHRSA: Reebok Easy Tones are effective even while just standing in them for long periods of time! Oh, and the best thing about it…my feet never hurt! Hey, I even got a few compliments on them.

Check back tomorrow for my La Jolla Boot Camp blog. Yes…wearing the Easy Tones.