Triathlete Kaisha Simmons gave us an inside look on an average day of training for the working mom of three.
“It’s 5 in the mornin’
And I’m goin’ all in, I’m busy ballin’….”
My alarm song “5 in the Morning” by Charli XCX plays softly. I jump out of bed before I hit snooze and drift back to sleep. I grab the gear I prepared the night before and head downstairs to my car.
I’m out the door driving towards the hills above Brigham Young University for a 5 mile trail run. I put on my pink Venture H2O SPIbelt and tuck my phone in the WeatherGuard™ pouch. I have one energy gel and one of the Companion water bottles clipped onto the belt resting on my hips.
I feel like I’m on top of the world as I arrive back home to shower and dress. My husband leaves for work and it’s about time for the babies to wake up. I make myself some protein oatmeal. Then I pack my lunch box with carrots, apples, turkey cracker sandwiches and yogurt. I load up the dishwasher with my son and ask him not to forget to put my SPI H2O bottle on the top rack ONLY.
Although I mostly work from home, today is Monday and that means meetings. Our nanny arrives and I leave for work and get to the office at 8:15 for my first meeting about marketing and events.
It’s time for a break from meetings so I roll over to the gym. Water, check. Phone, check. Headphones, check. Lifting grips, check. I grab my Original SPIbelt, tuck my phone in and clip it to my waist. I blast music as I hit the weights hard. It’s leg day.
I waddle to my car and head home to my three kids. We build a fort, play in the sandbox and have a tea party with all the stuffed animal cats in our house (about 20). It’s hard work being a kid again. Some work creeps in between the play although I try to not let it happen.
I start making dinner while the kids set the table. Daddy walks in the door at 5, right as the rice cooker beeps that it is finished. We are having BBQ chicken, rice and peas tonight.
After dinner, we head to the lake our house is on. Since it’s summer and a family night, we are looking for some water play. My husband hands me his phone as we reach the lake to put in my SPIbelt just in case: kids + water = unpredictable. I tuck my wedding ring in there too, since it’s a little loose these days.
We are home from the lake which means a quick shower, brushing our teeth, PJ’s and reading White Fang in our bed. We only have two chapters left, so we read a little longer than normal.
The kids are in bed and I have to put out some fires at work. I usually spend this time of night answering emails I hadn’t gotten to while with the family.
Electronics get turned off and it’s time for me to go to bed. Luckily I fall asleep fast, and by 9:05 I am asleep. My body is preparing this triathlon mama for the next beautiful summer day.
Paige Gottorff is a sophomore on the Grand Valley State University women’s lacrosse team. A top 20 Division II program in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She is a Biomedical Science major with a minor in Biology, plays defense, and she is a Type I diabetic. We sat down with Paige to get a better understanding on what it is like to be an elite athlete with T1D.
When were you diagnosed and how did you/your family recognize there might be something off?
I was diagnosed in 7th grade at age 11. I grew up playing lacrosse and always had the energy to make it through games and tournaments. Until one particular lacrosse tournament I was a lot slower, constantly drinking water, and using the bathroom. We just thought it was because it was hot outside. However, after the tournament my symptoms continued and worsened… Eventually I began to lose weight at that point my parents took me to the doctor. October 28th of 2012 I was officially diagnosed.
What kind of symptoms do you experience?
For low blood sugar I feel incredibly dizzy and nauseous, my legs get very shaky, I have trouble talking, and I will get headaches. For high blood sugar my head gets very foggy to the point it’s very challenging to focus, and I feel extremely tired.
What do you do when you start to experience these symptoms?
If my blood sugar is low, I will typically have a juice box and a granola bar. If my blood sugar is high, then I’ll take the correct amount of insulin to lower me back to a healthy level.
What does an average day of training look like for you with T1D?
It varies. I prefer to train in the morning so I’m not worrying about my blood sugar during training the whole day – but when you are a college athlete you don’t always get the choice of when you get to workout or how often. If I’m training in the morning I will eat a light but sufficient breakfast that will keep me full and energized throughout the practice or training. If the workout is later in the day I’ll eat normally but keep a close eye on blood sugar. For practices, we practice for two hours, so I will always take an additional 3 units of insulin. I will test 30 mins before practice and every 30 minutes during practice. After practice I always have a meal full of carbohydrates to make sure my blood sugar doesn’t go low later in the day. If my blood sugar is above 250 I will sit out of practice until it is below that value to make sure I’m at my best performance and not harming my body. If my blood sugar is below 80 I will drink a juice box and sit out for at least 15 minutes.
What is your biggest challenge with being elite athlete and how do you manage that?
Getting myself to do the same thing every day… Like testing my blood sugar the right amount on training days and eating the proper food. Just because you are never sure what will happen throughout the day. Our days are so packed with classes, practice, community service, and team activities so no one week ever looks identical to the next, but I try to maintain a strict schedule as best I can.
How do you prepare for away games/traveling?
When I am going on trips I make sure I have double (at least) of everything. I pack about 4 pens of both humalog (short term insulin) and lantus (24 hr insulin). I’ll make sure I have my glucagon to carry incase I pass out from low blood sugar. I’ll carry extra needles, test stripes, and extra glucose monitor, and snacks incase I go low while traveling. Glucose tabs are also always with me.
How has being apart of athletics benefited your life with T1D?
Being as active as I am my blood sugar definitely is lower than it would be if I wasn’t extremely active. So, I am overall more healthy in terms of my blood sugar and A1C since I maintain an active lifestyle.
What is one thing you wish your teammate understood?
Diabetes is hard. Sometimes I really, really don’t feel well and just because I appear healthy doesn’t mean I feel like it. I also don’t sit out of practices because I want to, but because I need to.
What is the best advice you have for someone in your situation?
Hang in there. It’s extremely hard, but the routine and strict schedule will really be worth it!
Unsure of how to get the entire family exercising? Sometimes it can be hard enough to motivate yourself to exercise… Let alone the entire family. However, it is important for everyone in your family to maintain an active lifestyle. Exercise improves heart health, muscle strength, and endurance.
Exercise also makes you happier! Exercise has powerful antidepressive effects and in many countries is the first line of treatment for mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety. There are many easy and fun ways to get your family active:
Incorporate it into everyday activities – Park further away at the grocery, do abs or any plyometric exercise (lunges, squats, etc.) during the commercial break of your family’s favorite show, make a walk before/after dinner a daily occurrence. All of these are small ways to incorporate exercise into your daily schedule!
Make it fun – Exercise doesn’t have to be a chore. Make it a fun, competitive “game night” for the family. Play volleyball in the backyard, invite the neighbors for a Smith vs. Johnson game of kickball, see who can do the most push-ups, or see who run around the block the fastest!
Holiday 5k’s – Every holiday our social media feeds become flooded with pictures from various “turkey trots” or “Memorial Day fun runs” but there are so many reasons why your family should be joining in on the fun. Holiday 5k’s are awesome because they are for people of any fitness level. You can run, jog, or walk your way to the finish line. This way even the little ones can be apart of the fun!
Holiday 5k’s are also great because while most gyms are closed on holidays there are 5k’s for just about any holiday! This means you can get quality exercise in before you all eat a little more than you should!
Keep each other accountable – There are times in our fitness journeys where we fall off of the wagon so to speak. Having the whole family on board with being active ensures a built in support system!
Remember to change it up – Not everyone is going to have the same preferences in exercises. Make sure to let every member have a turn in picking the exercise for the day! Differing your activities will ensure that you and your family will never get bored of the same old workout routine!
While those New Year’s resolutions may have gone poof in a white puff of smoke, it’s mid-year and time to re-evaluate your fitness. Summer may be hot and humid or very dry in some parts of the country, but that only means you’ll be sweating more and burning more calories working out. We mentioned previously on our blog some activities you can do to enjoy the warmth of spring. In this edition we’d like to go over some tips on how to stay motivated and keep your fitness up during the that mid-year hump.
1) Have a Clearly Defined Goal
While people find it hard to stay motivated in the winter when it’s cold, rainy and snowy, others find it just as difficult when it’s hot, and would rather sit on a patio sipping a drink. Taking the time to set a goal in your mind might be the difference between staying sedentary and getting out there and getting fit. Start small, don’t set any lofty goals which you might not be able to achieve. Thrive Global advises to set tangible and specific goals like, “I want run a 5k in 20 minutes,” or “I want to do 10 unassisted pull-ups.” While setting a goal is crucial to your success, it is also important that you focus on the process of getting there rather than the ultimate goal, as it will help you achieve better results.
2) Commit to a Routine
With longer days in the summer, an early morning will help you stay committed, so, plan ahead and stick with a morning routine. Starting your routine early in the morning is recommended because during the day or in the evening, undoubtedly something else will always come up, from work to social obligations to family. Plan for half-an hour to an hour to yourself, or with your partner, first thing in the morning. Maintain your routine while on vacation as well; use the hotel pool for an invigorating swim or the gym facilities. If you’re on the beach, go for a run and a swim. The possibilities are endless and research shows that if you commit to a routine you’re more likely to stick with it.
3) Reward Yourself
Positive reinforcement is always recommended as human brains respond better to a reward system, releasing endorphins and giving you a positive outlook. Rewards are dependent entirely on you and could include anything from sleeping in, getting a massage, or maybe a new SPIbelt 😉 . A reward can also be from a training buddy or your partner, who can hold you accountable and ensure you’re following your routine and motivate you on those days you don’t feel like working out. Ultimately, the biggest reward is your workout and commitment to getting yourself fit; once you make that paradigm shift in your brain you’ll see how that will be reward enough.
4) Use a Fitness Tracker
With technology permeating every aspect of personal life, the availability of wearables with an increased array of sensors means people are becoming more conscious about their health, reveals an article by Forbes. These trackers now provide progressively better feedback and insight into our health, allowing us to discover ways to improve. Tracking technology also helps to monitor heart rate and has the ability to pick up abnormalities to point out issues which would previously have gone undetected, points out an article on Coral titled ‘The Impact of Technology on Sport’. Knowing more about your body and how it works is a great motivator to getting over those doldrums and help you get fit. People love the details fitness trackers provide and they can help you stay committed to your goals.
5)Avoid Burning Out
If you’ve managed to stay motivated and dedicated to a routine, but find that your progress stagnates, maybe it’s time to take a short break. While your body also needs the rest, it is also the mind that gets worn out and occasionally needs a rest. Fit Day remarks that burnout is a looming threat that faces every athlete, with the combination of pushing too hard and getting insufficient rest. A mental break can do wonders to get your mind off things temporarily, as such, it’s a good idea to take some time off, get enough sleep and let your body heal.
While we’ve been enjoying spring-like (heck, even summer-like) weather here in Austin for a while now, we’re well aware that most of the country is just beginning to thaw out. If you’ve been cooped up with cabin fever and your last trip somewhere warm seems like forever ago, it’s time to come out of hibernation and refresh. With the trees starting to bloom, birds beginning to chip, and that all-around fresh spring smell in the air, try one of these four activities to get outside and enjoy!
Long walks are great, but try changing things up by hopping on a bike.Take the scenic route in the country or bike along the shoreline of a lake or ocean if you live near water. Another idea, why not go about your day-to-day business but sub a bike for you usual mode of transportation? If you live in a city, be sure to check if yours has bike share program which makes it so much easier.
Celebrate Earth Day on April 22d by taking a hike to marvel at the beauty of Mother Nature. Check out the blooming spring flora as well as the wildlife coming out of their winter slumber. Pack some trail mix, enough water to quench your thirst, and your phone so you can snap photos along the way. The SPI H2O Venture Series makes it so easy!
3) Roller Blading
Remember how much you loved roller blading when you were a kid? Get that joy back and try it again. Not only is it great fun, but a great workout—just be careful and make sure to wear a helmet. Get the whole family involved and teach your kids how you used to spend your free time when you were their age.
4) Enjoy A Music Festival
For all you music fans, the season of festivals has begun! Big-name Coachella runs the second and third weekends in April with other events in all genres happening throughout the spring and summer. Find one that fits your vibe and make sure to properly prepare so you can jam out and dance without worrying about your belongings. We recommend rocking a Luxe for a look that’s sure to stand out in the crowd.
How are you getting outside and enjoying the spring weather? Tell us on Instagram and make sure to use the hashtag #freetobe
Maybe you are finally taking that dream international vacation or perhaps you are just leaving for a short weekend getaway. Regardless, packing can see like a stressful and daunting task. Will I need this? Is this too much? What if I didn’t pack enough? How can I make this all fit into my carry-on? These questions fill our head every time we pack to go on a trip. But before you start haphazardly stuffing your entire wardrobe into a suitcase, take a minute to devise a packing strategy. By packing more efficiently not only will travel be easier, but living out of a suitcase will be no big deal. Below we’ve broken down our top packing tips that will have you feeling like a regular globetrotter in no time. Happy travels!
1) Choose Multitasking Pieces
Overpacking is a travel no-no. While you’ll want to have everything you need for all scenarios, accomplish this by packing pieces that do double duty rather than choosing to bring more stuff. Pieces that can be worn multiple ways give you more versatility to mix and match throughout your trip, allowing you to create more outfits with less clothing. Another trick is to keep everything you pack to a similar color palette to assure it can all be worn together.
2) Maximize Space
Once you’ve selected what you’re going to bring, it’s time to figure out how to fit it all in your suitcase. First, tightly roll up wrinkle resistant items like workout clothing, t-shirts, and jeans and arrange them along the bottom of your suitcase. Once you’ve formed this base layer, place folded items that are more prone to wrinkles on top and fill any extra space with small items like socks and underwear. Anything big and bulky, like a winter coat, wear or carry during travel. Not only will you maximize suitcase space this way, but you’ll help prevent creasing and wrinkles so you don’t have to spend your trip ironing.
3) Create a Travel-Only Toiletry Kit
Rather than trying to empty your bathroom cabinet and stuff it into your suitcase, create a travel-only toiletry kit to grab and go before any trip. Keep it stocked at all times with mini versions of the items you use daily so you’ll never be without something you need. Plus, if you decide to carry-on rather than checking a bag all liquids must be under 3.4 oz. as per TSA rules. A pre-approved kit will save you from getting stopped at airport security so you can start your trip on the right foot.
4) Store All valuables In Your Carry-on
You probably already know this one, but never put any valuable items in a checked bag. That goes for jewelry, laptops, your passport, or other expensive or sentimental items. Every time you check a bag you run the risk of it getting lost and you don’t want to chance these items disappearing along with your suitcase. Instead, always pack these items in your carry-on so they’re with you at all times.
5) Stash An Extra Bag In Your Suitcase
Between shopping for yourself and buying souvenirs for loved ones, chances are you’ll be coming home with more than you brought. In case you can’t fit it all in your suitcase or want to avoid paying extra for overweight luggage, always pack a collapsable duffle bag to use on your return trip. Believe it or not, on some airlines the cost to check a second bag is actually less than the overage fee for overweight luggage. You may not need to use the second bag, but better safe than sorry!
Are you heading on vacation soon? Don’t forget to bring your SPIbelt along and make sure to show us how you wore it during your travels with the hashtag #spibeltstyle!
Whether you call it the winter blues, cabin fever, or if you’ve been diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), this time of year can be tough. With the excitement of the holidays gone and shorter days, lower temps, and gray weather here to stay for the next few months, our mood can take a serious hit. If you’re lacking energy, finding it harder than usual to get out of bed in the morning, or just feeling all-around blah, you’re not alone! Try these tricks to boost your mood this winter:
1) Get Outside
It may be freezing, but bundle up and head outside. Studies show time spent outside can improve brain function and increase focus. Try snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, or take the kids outside to go sledding or build a snowman. The fresh air will perk you up and the activity will get your blood flowing. Afterwards warm up with ahot chocolate to keep the positive vibes going, because remember, moderation and balance is key!
2) Brighten up your space
If every time you look out the window all you see is gray, why not bring a little brightness and sunshine inside? Add pillows, blankets, or candles in bright colors to your space to lift your mood and in turn cozy up your space. The change of color palette will instantly make you feel happier.
3) Change your diet
We get it. When it’s chilly outside you’re craving pasta, grilled cheese, and all the carbs that sounds cozy and comforting. While of course you should enjoy them, make sure you balance it out with fruits and veggies. Carbs can cause your blood sugar to spike and then dip, so if you overdo it you’ll only add to that tired, sluggish feeling you’ve been experiencing this winter.
4) Plan an escape
If you wish you were anywhere but stuck in the cold right now, go with it. Plan a movie night with a flick set somewhere warm and sunny and pretend you’re there. Even if just for a few hours, it’ll feel like a mini vacation. Or if you’d prefer the real deal, plan a vacation! Studies show pre-trip happiness is a real thing with vacationers experiencing a serious mood boost during the planning stages of their trip. So even if you aren’t going anywhere just yet, start planning that vacation now!
In the dead of winter, heading to the gym or going outside for a run probably sounds like the last thing you want to do. But if you can push past that feeling and make it as far as getting started, you’ll find the benefits to be astounding. Once you start moving your body will release feel-good endorphins that increase your sense of well-being, squashing stress and lifting your mood. How can you say no to that?!
Head to our Instagram for more tips and motivation to get moving this time of year!
It’s an age-old question: what exactly does healthy mean? Is it a pant size, the number on a scale, a certain diet or workout? The truth is there’s no straight answer because health is something that’s extremely personal. What healthy looks like for one person might not be so healthy for another. One thing we can tell you though, is that healthy is not a quick fix. Healthy is a lifestyle and one of balance and moderation.
This time of year the pressure to “get healthy” is at an all-time high. While we encourage setting positive habits and making better choices, it’s important to always do what feels best for you. Although there’s certainly no one-size-fits-all picture of health, there are some things we all should do to treat our bodies right. By keeping these things in check you’ll be heading in the right direction on your health journey. Check them out below:
1) Prioritize Sleep
Did you know the quality of your sleep is actually more important than what you eat? When you don’t get adequate rest you’re more susceptible to weight gain, fatigue, illness, injury, and more. Plus, when you’re tired you lack the motivation to make healthy choices. Prioritize sleep and you’ll see an overall increase in your well-being. Everyone’s ideal number of hours is different, but aim to get between 7-9 each night.
2) Stay Hydrated
The average adult body is made up of about 60%water. Hydration is key to regulating body temperature, aiding in digestion, and keeping your body functioning properly. In fact, by the time you feel thirsty you’re already dehydrated. Make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day and increase your intake when you’re sweating or losing fluids through illness. Keep in mind foods with a high water content, like cucumbers and watermelon, can aid in hydration as well.
3) Get moving
No matter what type of physical activity you enjoy, get moving! Whether it’s running, taking a spin class, lifting weights, or going for a walk, you should aim for at least 30 minutes of movement each day. And don’t forget to be cognizant of how much time you spend sitting. According to Mayo Clinic, the more hours you sit, the higher your risk of metabolic problems. Even if you have a job that requires you to sit at a desk all day, make sure to get up periodically to walk to the bathroom or make a trip to the kitchen to get a glass of water.
4) Take Rest Days
Just as physical activity is important, rest days are crucial for recovery and to prevent overtraining. Giving your body a day off allows muscles to reconstruct, making you bigger and stronger. That’s right, increased strength and muscle gains happen during periods of rest, not in the gym! Plan for at least one rest day each week—or more if you need it—and make sure to listen to your body. If you wake up feeling super sore, maybe you scrap your intense workout plans and take it easy with some yoga or light stretching. Didn’t get enough sleep last night or feeling under the weather? Take the day off. You’re not doing yourself any favors by pushing your body beyond its limits.
5) Be In Touch With Your Feelings
Health isn’t just physical, but mental too. Our emotions, thoughts, and feelings have a huge impact on our overall well-being. In fact, stress, sadness, and anxiety can wreak havoc on the body and even manifest as physical symptoms. Make sure to check in with yourself daily and always put self-care first. Find ways of managing stress and negative feelings that work best for you and don’t be afraid to reach out to friends, family, or professionals for help if you need it.
6) Focus On Quality, Not Quantity
There are more diets out there today than we can keep up with, but the best diet is the one that makes you feel best. Eat to fuel your body all while focusing on the quality of the food you’re consuming, not the quantity. As with everything else when it comes to health, balance and moderation is key. Try for an 80:20 approach, eating a variety of high quality, whole foods 80% of the time and treating yourself to other items you love 20% of the time.
Are you resolving to improve your health this year? Join us on Instagram all month long for our #stickwithspibelt challenge. We’ll be sharing inspiration, motivation, tips, and even hosting some fun giveaways to help you stick to your goals and make your 2018 resolution a reality!
New Year, new you! You’ve heard it before and we can guarantee this time won’t be the last. Each year come January 1st we’re encouraged to set resolutions, planning ahead for how we’ll improve our lives in the coming year with fitness and health always a popular focus. While the intention is great and can lead to personal growth and achievement, oftentimes we find ourselves starting off full steam ahead only for that enthusiasm to quickly fizzle out along with any hope of ever accomplishing our goal. In fact, statistics say that 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail by February. But not this year! SPIbelt is committed to helping you live a healthy and active lifestyle so we’re giving you all the tips and tricks you need to set your perfect New Year’s resolution and stick with it. We have a feeling 2018 is going to be your year!
1) Set Realistic Goals
It’s easy to get caught up in the hype and set a goal that in theory sounds great, but at the end of the day just isn’t realistic. Are you going to go from being a couch potato to becoming a body builder in the next 6 months? Probably not. Choose a goal that doesn’t just sound impressive, but that’s actually tangible. “I want to lose 10 pounds by May and get stronger so I’m able to lift heavier weights than I can now” or, “I’ll consistently run at least 3 days a week and compete in my first marathon by the end of the year.” When the goal isn’t impossible, you’ll be far more motivated to work towards it.
2) Bring It To Life
Write down your goals to hold yourself accountable. Preferably in a place where you’ll see it everyday, like in your planner or on a sticky note on your desk. Not only will this physical reminder push you on days when you’re feeling less than your best, but each time you see it you’ll remember why you set the goal in the first place. It’s also a great idea to tell a partner, friend or family member who will not only hold you accountable, but also provide encouragement along the way.
3) Make A Plan
A good idea is never enough to succeed. You need a solid plan. Whatever your resolution is, sit down and devise a step-by-step plan for how you’re going to accomplish that goal. If you’ve resolved to workout four days a week, decide which types of routines or activities you’ll be doing so you’re ready when the day comes. If you’re trying to lose weight, figure out which types of foods you plan to eat, what kind of exercise you’ll do and how often, and what your daily schedule will need to look like to make all of that possible. When you’ve properly prepared, it’s almost impossible to fail.
4) Have The Right Tools
Whether it’s signing up for a gym membership, finding healthy recipes to cook, or buying a SPIbelt to hold your things while you workout, you’ll need the proper tools to help you accomplish your goals.
5) Set Check-Ins
Be it weekly, monthly, or however often you’d prefer, set aside time to take inventory of how you’re doing. If things are going well and you’re sticking to the plan, reward yourself with something like new workout gear or going to see a movie with friends. If you realize things aren’t going well and you’ve hit a road block, don’t give up. Instead, take a moment to assess why this might be and change your plans accordingly so you can make better progress moving forward.
Resolving to get in shape this year? Give our founder’s killer workouts a try! You can do them without weights or a gym and will see results in as little as 3 sessions.
Our ambassadors are a community of individuals who embody the core values that we uphold at SPIbelt. Active, adventurous, bold, determined—they choose to live life according to their own terms, or as we like to say, they’re #freetobe. In doing so, they inspire us daily to create quality products that better serve their lifestyle and help them continue doing what they’re passionate about.
Over the past year we’ve gotten to know 30 incredible SPIbelt ambassadors who have used our products as they’ve pushed limits and conquered personal goals. We know there’s many more of you out there, so if you think you would make an outstanding addition to our team in 2018, we want to hear from you!
Include the SPIbelt Ambassador badge on your website/blog (if you have one) with a link back to spibelt.com
Mention that you are a SPIbelt Ambassador in the bio of your social media accounts
Post photos of yourself wearing SPIbelt when you are #freetobe
Tag SPIbelt in your social media posts (when applicable)
Interact with SPIbelt on our various social media channels
Wear SPIbelt when competing/racing
Promote SPIbelt as your sole running belt
What we offer:
SPIbelt welcome package full of products and swag
Feature on our ambassador page
Ambassador coupon code to share with friends and followers
Shout outs and features on our social media accounts
Be first to know about SPIbelt news & products
Opportunities to test prototypes and provide feedback
Monthly and yearly prizes
Access to private SPIbelt Ambassador Facebook group
Support from SPIbelt on special projects including events and giveaways
Think this is a good fit for you? Applications for new ambassadors, based in the United States and Canada, are open now through Tuesday, January 9th. Follow SPIbelt on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for updates and check back here for application details! We will announce our 2018 Ambassadors by January 31st.
The best way to work your abs is in the gym as there are all kinds of equipment and machines that help you tone the muscles easily and effectively. However, not all of us have that luxury because sometimes we’re just too busy. That’s why you should consider working out at home. If you’re wondering: “How can I do that when I don’t have any equipment?”, don’t worry. There are tons of effective core exercises that require no weights or machines, all of which you can do while wearing the Flex which was designed with floor work in mind! If you’re ready to get to work, check out the moves below.
By: Marshall Evans
This is one of the most basic exercises when it comes to core muscles, but it’s definitely not easy. You have to use your abs to lift your whole body off the ground for as long as possible, so the more you weigh, the more difficult this exercise will be.
How to do it:
Step 1: Keep your hips directly over your knees and your shoulders directly over your hands with your palms facing down.
Step 2: Lift your head, use your forearms to support your body and extend your legs with the toes touching the floor.
Step 3: Round your back just a little bit in order to squeeze your abs.
Step 4: Hold that position for as long as you can.
Note: There are many different ways to plank, such as side planks and straight-arm planks, but these variations are much more challenging. If you’re looking for something simple and easy then the forearm plank is the best variation for your home workouts.
Most people are familiar with crunches, which work your upper abs. While often done on an abs bench, you can also do them on the ground.
How to do it:
Step 1: Lie flat on your back with your feet flat on the floor or you can rest your feet on a bench while bending your knees 90 degrees.
Step 2: Place your hands on either side of your head and flare out your elbows.
Step 3: Take a deep breath and use your abs to bring your upper body off the floor 4-5 inches while keeping your lower back on the floor.
Step 4: At the top of the movement squeeze your abs and hold the contraction for 1-2 seconds before exhaling.
Step 5: Come back down slowly to return to the starting position as you inhale again.
Note: Remember not to come up off the floor too high or lift up your lower back. Don’t use momentum to cheat yourself. Instead, focus on slow, controlled movements.
Variations: you can do crunches on an exercise ball, but this requires a lot of core stability. Make sure you master the technique of floor crunches before trying ball crunches.
At first glance, this exercise doesn’t seem much different from crunches. However, they’re totally different. Crunches isolate your upper abs, while sit-ups target your entire core and other muscles that stabilize posture, like hip flexors. A combination of both of these two exercises are best for your abs.
How to do it:
Step 1: Lie down and bend at your knees with your feet flat on the floor. *Tip: if you don’t want your legs to move during the sit-ups, place your feet under something heavy or have someone hold them for you.
Step 2: Keep your hands behind your head and flare out the elbows. This will be your starting position.
Step 3: Take a deep breath and use your core muscles to lift up your whole body until it creates a V-shape with your upper legs.
Step 4: Once you feel the contraction for 1-2 seconds, slowly to lower your body to get back to the starting position as you exhale.
If the crunch is a good exercise for your upper abs, then this one is a perfect choice for your lower abs. It’s very easy to perform so if you want to have nice abs and a strong V line, don’t skip this one.
How to do it:
Step 1: Lie with your back flat on the floor or on a bench with your legs extended and slightly bent at the knees.
Step 2: Place your hands under your butt with both palms facing down.
Step 3: Take a deep breath and use your abs to raise your legs until your body forms a 90-degree angle.
Step 4: Exhale and slowly lower the legs back to the starting position.
The best way to spread holiday cheer is by singing loud for all to hear…and, of course, giving gifts. Who doesn’t love receiving a well though out gift?! While the holidays are all about the magical spirit of giving to those we love, it’s easy to get stressed out trying to find the perfect present for everyone on your list.
That’s why this year we’ve gone ahead and done the legwork for you! We’ve put together curated gift guides full of items they’ll love to help make your holiday shopping a no-brainer. In fact, with our ideas you just might be able to check every single name off your list in one swoop. Ready, set, gift!
She always has the coolest things before anyone else and you’ll help keep it that way by giving her the Luxe By SPI. A stylish chameleon with cool metallic hardware, it seamlessly transitions from workout to chill out and beyond. Whether she’s heading to the gym, to brunch with friends, or even to a music festival, the Luxe fits everything she needs and always takes her look to the next level.
These gifts are technically half for the parent and half for their pup, but being a good dog owner is all about sharing. We promise both will think the SPIleash is a total gamechanger, and for good reason. With a built-in pocket to stash keys, phone, treats, and other personal items while out for a walk, mom and dad’s hands will be freed up for playing fetch or taking selfies with their number one pooch!
Cruising through airport security or exploring a new area is a whole lot easier when all their personal items are securely stored in one place and they can go hands-free. Our Large Pocket SPIbelt in this fun limited edition print is big enough to fit passports and even the largest smart phones on the market. Stash a portable charger inside and they’ll have everything they need, no matter where in the world they are.
If you know someone who spends early mornings and late nights logging miles or whose idea of the perfect weekend is heading to a race, we can guarantee they’re going to love everything here! Our SPI H20 Venture Series belt features built-in gel loops and two removable water bottles to help keep them fueled on long runs. Throw in touch screen-compatible gloves and a mini foam roller to massage tight muscles, and nothing can slow them down this winter!
Alex Reidy is a Development Coordinator at JDRFand writes about her experience with Type 1 Diabetes on her blog, Iced Coffee & Insulin. She will be running the 2017 TCS NYC Marathon with Team JDRF and is sharing her story about how her journey with T1D led her to this race.
At the time, I thought that my type 1 diabetes diagnosis was catastrophic. I left the hospital confused, upset, and completely alone. My perspective of diabetes had been flooded with images of overweight people who didn’t eat healthy, or “ate too much candy”. I felt so much guilt and anger because I thought that I had given this disease to myself. The lack of education that I received that day immediately spiraled my mind into anger and sadness.
I was diagnosed on June 23, 2013, about 3 months before I would be transferring to a new college across the country, and 5 months before my 21st birthday. I was an endocrinologist’s dream when I was first diagnosed: taking my insulin regularly, always checking my blood sugars, and eating and exercising regularly.
I shed that “perfect” patient persona when I found myself surrounded by a new environment at school. I hid my diabetes, I took my insulin when I wanted to, and I didn’t always check my blood sugar. I went out multiple times a week, in addition to having a heavy course load and being involved in any extracurricular activities. The combination of poor management, heavy drinking, and lack of sleep was devastating to my body. I was hospitalized multiple times and dealt with pneumonia, mononucleosis, and the flu.
The biggest reality check came when I returned back to my endocrinologist and received my A1C levels (an average of your blood sugar levels over a span of 3 months). It was dangerously high. My doctor was blunt, and he told me that my lack of care was going to cost me serious consequences down the road. That was the first time that someone had really knocked some sense into me about how serious type 1 diabetes is.
Over the next few days I had to take a step back and think about how I wanted my life to go. I could continue to be careless to my body or I could step up and take ownership of the cards that I have been dealt with.
In the end, I chose to fight. I threw myself into working with organizations that dedicated their missions to advocating, supporting, and ultimately finding a cure for type 1 diabetes. I started off as an intern for the American Diabetes Association, and eventually found my way to becoming a Development Coordinator for JDRF. My experience at JDRF has been nothing short of incredible and rewarding.
Involving myself with JDRF gave me the opportunity to become a part of Team JDRF events: endurance races across the country that grant a certain number of spots to those involved with JDRF. I jumped at the chance to get involved and saw that a majority of the events were about running.
Running and I have a funny relationship. In high school and college lacrosse, running was used as a punishment. Our coach would threaten us with running extra laps or sprints if we made a mistake on the field. Running meant pain, exhaustion, and failure to me. Running meant training all summer for the dreaded run tests, which I lost countless hours of sleep over. There was never a “runner’s high”; I never felt that feeling.
After my days of lacrosse ended, I started to get back into running more on my own time. I didn’t need to time myself or calculate the distance, I would just jog around and see how far I could go. At that point, I was able to truly ENJOY running. I was able to feel the power of my legs, hear the cadence of my steps, and hear my breath as I pushed myself farther and farther each time.
Running has also been an incredible escape from type 1 diabetes. Being able to plug in my headphones and let my feet carry me has not only lowered my blood sugars, but it’s a way to “check out” for a few hours. After about 30 minutes of running, I can usually feel that “runner’s high” kick into gear. I feel a sense of strength and power, and I want to go faster and farther.
I completed my first half-marathon for Team JDRF in March and knew that I wanted to fulfill a life-long goal of running a marathon. I immediately signed up to run the TCS NYC Marathon for Team JDRF and am proud to say that I convinced my older sister, Jillian, to run on the team with me.
Training for a marathon has been a mental and physical challenge. The mental side of training was tough: waking up at the crack of dawn or late night to fit in a run, dealing with aches and pains from training, fitting in the workout when you’re exhausted. Throw in running with type 1 diabetes, and that is another obstacle. I need to keep track of how much insulin I have in my system before I start running, carry emergency supplies when I’m heading low, and constantly be checking my blood sugar to see how I’m doing. There have been frustrating runs where I’ve had to stop and turn around because I was going too low, and runs where I was so mentally exhausted from a bad blood sugar day that I had to walk.
However, I motivate myself with the mentality that I CAN DO THIS. When my legs feel like iron rods, my sides are cramping up, and I can feel the salt forming on my skin, there is a moment when I take a step back and think about what I am truly running for.
I always have pushed myself with the mantra, mind over matter. A positive mind can give you the power to achieve and overcome obstacles that you didn’t think were possible.
I’m so excited to participate in the NYC Marathon this weekend and I couldn’t imagine running for any other organization but JDRF.
Receiving a Type 1 Diabetes diagnosis can be overwhelming, and we are committed to helping families looking for a pump carrying solution. SPIbelt is not only great for holding small personal items while running, but it’s also great for discretely carrying lifesaving medical supplies. Our medical SPIbelts can carry CGMs, insulin pumps, inhalers, and much more.
In the coming month, you may notice that orange and black aren’t the only colors you see trending everywhere. You’ll likely see pink take over, too, and for a good reason: October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month in the United States. This month, the color pink becomes more than just a girly shade. In October, pink is tough. It is strong. It works to honor survivors and raise awareness for a disease that has taken so much from so many people. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, SPIbelt has partnered with the Breast Cancer Resource Center, an Austin nonprofit staffed by breast cancer survivors that provides guidance, education, and assistance to thousands of women whose lives have been disrupted by breast cancer. Together, we’ve created the pink ribbon SPIbelt— $1 from each belt purchased will go towards helping the brave women fighting this terrible disease.
Breast cancer is the second most common form of Cancer in American women—so common, in fact, that one in eight women will be diagnosed in their lifetime. Keep reading to learn about how to assess your risk and help lower your chances of receiving a breast cancer diagnosis.
How do I know if I’m at risk?
If you’re a living, breathing person, you’re at risk for getting breast cancer. Even men can get breast cancer, although their chances are much, much lower. There are, however, a number of things that increase your risk—some you can control, and some you can’t.
If someone in your immediate family has been diagnosed with breast cancer, your risk of a similar diagnosis is almost twice as high as women without a family history of breast cancer.
Dense Breast Tissue
If a doctor has ever told you that your breast tissue is dense, meaning you have more connective tissue than fatty tissue, you’re more likely to get breast cancer.
If you’ve taken oral contraceptives for 5 or more years—even nonconsecutively—you have an increased risk of breast cancer.
You’re more likely to get breast cancer as you get older, and most women are diagnosed after they turn 50.
Studies show that for every one drink that you consume each day on average, your risk of breast cancer increases by 10%.
If you started your period before the age of 12, you’re more likely to get breast cancer.
Your risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer is higher if you’ve never been pregnant or if you had your first child after your 30th birthday.
If you don’t get an average of 30 minutes of exercise, 5 days a week, you have an increased risk of breast cancer.
An inherited mutation, such as BRCA1 or BRCA2, puts you at greater risk of a breast cancer diagnosis.
*This list is not a comprehensive representation of all breast cancer risk factors. To better assess your risk, please speak with your doctor or visit https://www.assessyourrisk.org.
How can I reduce my risk?
While there is no way to ensure that you will never receive a breast cancer diagnosis, there are a number of ways to reduce your risk.
Cut back on alcohol consumption.
Drinking less alcohol can lower your risk of breast cancer by 10% or more.
Get enough exercise.
30 minutes of exercise, 5 days a week lowers the risk of breast cancer. Kill two birds with one stone with our new pink ribbon SPIbelt —you’ll be able to exercise hands-free, and we’ll donate $1 from each purchase to the Breast Cancer Research Center.
Know your family history.
Take inventory of your family history. If you have an immediate family member that has been diagnosed with breast cancer, your doctor will likely recommend that you begin getting yearly mammograms at a younger age than women without a family history of breast cancer.
Know your own normal so that you can recognize when symptoms arise— when they do, visit your doctor.
While there’s no sure way to prevent breast cancer, knowing your risk is the best way to take steps toward reducing the likelihood that you’ll receive a diagnosis. Know your body. Know your history. Talk to your healthcare provider. Be proactive about your health. This October, SPIbelt is partnering with the Breast Cancer Resource Center to fight back against breast cancer, and we hope you’ll join us.
Are you heading to our neck of the woods for Austin City Limits? If so, you’re in for a treat. Not only is there a solid lineup set for both weekends, but aside from the music festival, you’re heading to one of the best cities in the world! Okay, we may be biased since Austin is our hometown, but there’s no denying that this little city has so much to offer. From fun things to do and amazing sights to see to delicious eats that’ll excite your tastebuds, there’s something here for everyone.
That said, we want you to make the most of your time in our hood so we’re sharing some our favorite places around Austin that’ll let you experience the city like a local. While we could keep going on and on, we capped the list at just our absolute can’t-miss faves, which you should be able to pack in over the course of a few days. Fair warning: don’t be surprised if you find yourself not wanting to leave come the end of the weekend!
1) Barton Springs Pool
When the weather is warm (which it is right now in October) Barton Springs Pool is the place to cool off. This outdoor pool is fed from underground springs so it’s always the perfect temperature year-round, about 68-70 degrees—talk about refreshing! Whether you’re up for a dip or just plan to lay out and soak up some Texas rays, don’t miss it.
2) The Rowing Dock
If you’re looking for some action of even a great workout, head to the rowing dock where you can rent a stand up paddle board on Town Lake. Take in views of the city as you cruise at your leisure and then paddle down to Barton Creek to check out the turtles. Other things you’ll probably encounter along the way: people practicing SUP yoga, pups joining along for the ride, and fisherman in kayaks looking for their next catch.
3) Bat Bridge
Want to know how Austin earned its nickname, Bat City? Head over to Congress Avenue Bridge right before sundown to find out. Home to the world’s largest urban bat colony, up to 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats emerge from underneath the bridge each night from May-August and look like a cloud overtaking the sky! While most people stand on the bridge to check out the spectacle, we recommend grabbing a spot on the Ann and Roy Butler Hike & Bike Trail below the bridge (on the southeast side) for a truly incredible experience.
In need of a healthy pick-me-up? Local fave JuiceLand is the place to go! Grab a nutrient-packed juice, smoothie, or bowl made with fresh produce and superfood add-ins that’ll bring you back to life. They even haveyummy vegan grab and go options if you’re looking for something a little more substantial. While there are 20 locations throughout Austin, we suggest stopping by the OG on Barton Springs Road which is conveniently located right down the street from Zilker Park (the location of ACL).
5) Mount Bonnell
If you’re up for a hike, this is the one to pick! While the steep 102-stair climb to the top may look daunting, it goes by quickly and trust us, it’s well worth the trek. Once you reach the summit you’ll be at the highest point in Austin—775 feet up!—taking in breathtaking scenic views of downtown, Lake Austin, and the surrounding hills.
6) I Love You So Much Mural
You know you’ve seen it all over Instagram and for good reason: the famous I Love You So Much mural is the ultimate “like” magnet. Stop by Jo’s Coffee on South Congress to snap a photo against the wall with your BFF, partner, or loved one. And while you’re at it, head over to the Greetings From Austin postcard mural (pictured at top), located at the corner of South 1st and W. Annie Street, for double the Instagram photo opps.
7) Eat Some BBQ
You can’t come to Texas and not eat barbecue! While some people stand in line at 6am just to get a taste of famous Franklin Barbecue when it opens at 11am, we get that you’ve got a busy schedule and lots to do. That’s why we suggest grabbing lunch at Terry Black’s just down the street from Zilker Park. No matter what you order, you can’t go wrong! Other delicious spots to check out if you have the time: La Barbecue, Blacks Barbecue (a branch of the famous Lockhart, TX eatery), Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ, Micklewait Craft Meats, and Lambert’s.
Not sure what to wear to ACL (aside from your Luxe, of course)? We’ve got your festival style cheat sheet right here!
January may technically be the calendar marker for a new year, but there’s something about fall that always feels like a chance for a fresh start. Perhaps it’s all the back-to-school buzz, which for much of our lives symbolized the beginning of a new year and a time to get focused.
While most of us won’t be heading back to class this fall, September is still the perfect time to get back into a fitness routine after the long, lazy days of summer and refocus your goals for the months ahead. Not quite sure where to begin? Just follow these five tips below and you’ll be back in a fitness rhythm in no time!
Having a clear cut long-term goal gives you something to focus on day-to-day. Instead of setting a generic goal like, “I want to get stronger”, make it specific. Maybe you want to shave a minute off your fastest race time, increase your endurance so you can run your first half marathon by the end of the year, or be able to bench x amount of weight in the gym. Whatever it is, write it down so you can actually see it. Every day when you wake up think about this goal and what it is you can do today to make progress towards it.
2) Make A Schedule
Every Sunday, sit down and plan out your fitness schedule for the week ahead. Do you want to go on one long run and a few shorter ones, take a workout class five days this week, practice yoga at least once? Write (or type) out exactly what it is you’re going to do, when, and where. Once these activities are on your calendar, treat them just like important meetings or appointments that you wouldn’t miss. If the time is set aside, you’ll find you have no excuses not to do it.
3) Find A Buddy
Skipping a workout is so much easier when there’s no one to hold you accountable. Instead of going it alone, sign up for a class with your BFF or plan to meet your buddy for an early morning run before work. Next time you feel like backing out, the thought of letting your friend down will discourage you from quitting. Plus, the social time will become something you look forward to and will make the workout go by so much faster!
4) Get The Right Gear
There’s something to be said for the power of proper gear. Treat yourself to a Large Pocket SPIbelt in one of our fun new fall prints (Peacock and Tiger’s Eye) so you have a place to stash your goods during your next workout. Maybe you’ve been eyeing a GPS watch so you can start tracking your miles more accurately, or a pair of wireless headphones so you don’t have to deal with getting tangled up in a cord anymore. Investing in quality gear will not only enhance your workout, but will keep you motivated to actually get out there and achieve your goals.
5) Switch It Up
Doing the same thing over and over can get boring very quickly. Not to mention, no fitness goal is ever achieved by doing just one type of workout. Throw a strength training day into your running mix, add a yoga class to your schedule to stretch out your muscles and increase flexibility, or instead of taking the same type of class four days a week, try something new two of the days. Switching it up will make you more fit all around and will keep things interesting so you never get burnt out.
How are you refocusing your fitness routine this fall? Tell us with #freetobefocused
Step into Fall with SPIbelts newest prints! Check them here!
“It is only in adventure that some people succeed in knowing themselves—in finding themselves.” French author and Nobel Prize winner André Gide perhaps said it best, understanding the innate need for adventure in one’s life.
Adventure can be so many different things and no two adventures are ever the same. One thing they all have in common though, is that they provide us with the opportunity to move past our comfort zone to experience, learn, and grow. Whatever your adventure may be—starting a new job, navigating the waters of being a first time parent, moving to a new city—get out there and live it! Life is too short to walk the beaten path. Instead, forge your own route so that you might discover something much greater along the way. Say yes to adventure. Be curious. Try new things. Take risks. Stay excited. The unknown can be daunting, but the things that scare us most are the experiences from which we have the most to gain. Looking for your next adventure? Any of these five ideas below are sure to satisfy your craving!
1) Take a road trip: Hop in the car, pull out a map (yes, an old school paper map, not your smart phone!) and head wherever the road takes you. Stop along the way to explore new towns, check out the local watering holes, venture into museums, and check out the scenery. Make sure you have a playlist stocked with plenty of good tunes and, of course, don’t forget the snacks! If you really want to go big, we suggest taking a trip down historic Route 66 or cruising the Pacific Coast Highway.
2) White water rafting: Looking for something a bit more extreme?Strap on a helmet, a life vest, and grab a paddle. Navigating through rough waters at extreme speeds will certainly get your adrenaline pumping! Just don’t say we didn’t warn you about the amount of strength and endurance it requires—your arms and core will certainly be burning after!
3) Hiking: Remember how transformative of an experience Cheryl Strayed had while hiking the Pacific Crest Trail in her memoir,Wild? The fresh air, scenic views, and peacefulness of being in nature are quite the trifecta for centering yourself. Whether you go somewhere completely off the beaten path like the Grand Canyon, Yosemite, or Banff or even just a local mountain or trail—get out there and get moving.
4) Surfing: Heading somewhere with waves? Instead of sitting in the sand and watching them crash at your feet, why not try getting up on a board and riding them out! Even if you spend most of your time splashing in the water rather than actually surfing, the experience (and workout) will be well worth it.
5) Skydiving: There’s nothing quite as exhilarating as the rush you get when jumping out of a plane thousands of feet above the ground with nothing but a parachute separating you from free fall! Find places in your area to make the jump or go someplace new—after all, you can’t beat the view from that high up! Our tip: try it in the fall to check out the changing leaves beneath you.
Coachella and Bonnaroo may have already come and gone, but lucky for those of us who didn’t get a chance to go or haven’t yet gotten our festival fill, there are still plenty of opportunities left this summer to jam out to your favorite tunes while soaking in the sunshine. Whether you’re getting ready for Lollapalooza next week, planning on heading to Made In America in September, ACL in October (our local festival!) or any other upcoming concert you’ve got plugged into your iCal, one thing you don’t want to forget to bring along is your SPIbelt! Stash your tickets, ID, cash, credit cards, phone and whatever else you might need inside the pouch and you’re set to rock out while going hands-free. Not sure how to show off your festival style? We’ve rounded up our eight must-haves that will have your look striking just the right tune. Check them out below!
Stay cool with a lightweight and breathable tank. We love the fun tie-dye pattern of this one!
You’ll be staring at the stage with the sun in your eyes, so go for standout shades like this gold mirrored pair.
3) Denim Shorts
Is there anything more quintessential to festival style than denim shorts? Nope!
4) Luxe By SPIbelt
Our Luxe belt’s cool metallic hardware makes it the perfect accessory to your festival look. Bonus points for coordinating the metal with you sunglasses like we did here! Not only will the Luxe turn heads, but it securely holds everything you need and keeps it safe from pickpockets.
5) Portable Phone Charger
Don’t let a dying phone kill your vibe. Charge up on the go right inside your SPIbelt so you can continue to Instagram and Snapchat to your heart’s desire!
6) SPF 30 lip balm
Because no one likes sunburnt lips.
You’ll be on your feet and dancing around, so choose a comfy pair of kicks that’ll keep your feet happy all show long.
For those who really like to push it, spice up your look with a funky kimono. The bold print will make you stand out in the crowd and the fringe trim will move with you as you get your groove on!
We want to see how you rock your SPIbelt! Show us on Insta with #spibeltstyle
This month on social media we’re focusing on all of the ways you’re #freetobebold while wearing your SPIbelt. While we think all of our ambassadors are bold runners for their confidence, courage and ability to take risks, Tasha Holland’s journey as a runner is one of the most bold ones we’ve ever seen! The mom of two started running to improve her health and within one year she had run not only a half-marathon and a marathon, but completed her first 50k ultra! We chatted with Tasha about her adventurous running experiences, what pushes her to continue challenging herself, and how SPIbelt has played a role along the way. Check it out below!
How did you first get into running?
I began running a little over three years ago to be healthier. I was overweight and have four endocrine diseases. I was desperate for change and wanted to be proud of my body instead of ashamed. I had little time to drive to a gym and running seemed to be the easiest option because I could walk out my door and just run. So I did!
How has running pushed you and inspired you to be more bold?
Running has pushed me in so many ways. It has definitely made me bolder and braver. When I ran my first 110 miles at Ozone I learned how to run on blistered covered feet and discovered how to dig deep and run through the pain. When I first began Vol State, I was scared to run at night. Everything made me jump! Running in the country at night is stressful and I second guessed every move. But by the end of my 314 miles I was at peace in the night. When you run across a state you discover things about yourself that you never knew. I grew so much during that race! With each new accomplishment, my confidence in myself has grown.
What races have you competed in that have pushed you to be bold?
My first Olympic triathlon pushed me like crazy! It was an open water lake swim and I’m not a strong swimmer. It was the scariest thing I have ever done during a race. I finished it in 42 minutes—double the time of everyone else, but I was thrilled! I had faced a fear and overcome it, smiling and triumphant.
I continued to push when I signed up for the Tarheel Ultra (378 miles along the North Carolina coastline). I ran that race solo, which means I was responsible for carrying everything I needed or finding it and buying it along the way. It was a new adventure and quite scary. It was hot during the days and freezing at night and I lived eating out of gas stations. For someone with Hashimoto’s, Celiacs disease, and that is also lactose intolerant the challenge to eat nutritional foods was huge. I finished that race in 7 days and was the first female finisher (setting the course record for females!) and placed 3rd overall. Less than 24 hours later I ended up in the hospital with cellulitis and a severe concussion. I had fallen and hit my head with 16 miles to go, but refused to stop until I finished. I was banned from any activities for a month so that I could heal. This adventure taught me how resilient I could be.
What does an ultra race like that entail and have you participated in any others?
Vol State and Tarheel are both 500k (plus) races across states that require 31-50 miles of running a day to finish in the required time. I ran Vol State last year crewed, but this year I’ll run it solo just like I did with Tarheel. For these races you carry everything you need and replenish supplies along the way in gas stations, dollar stores, restaurants, or grocery stores. You can sleep in motels or anywhere outside you can find—gas station benches, on the grass in town squares, on the side of the highway in a construction zone, and under trees in parks are a few of the places I have slept! These races test your endurance and resilience and it’s often a mental battle to keep moving. You’re responsible for your safety as well as finding your way, your shelter, and your food. They’re extremely tough, but are guaranteed to change your life!
What made you decide to take the leap from running casually to running in these types of races?
After my first half marathon I claimed I would never run a marathon. How little I knew myself! I love a challenge and wanted to be that small percentage that called themselves marathoners. It was only 13 more miles, which I figured I could do. I chose the Hatfield and McCoy marathon that is ranked as one of the toughest 10 marathons in the United States. I had planned on running it alone until a very nice 50 State Marathon finisher heard me telling someone it was my first and told me he would like to tag along. “No one should ever run their first marathon alone”, he said. It was the toughest thing I had ever done. I hit a wall at mile 20 and never recovered, but he refused to leave and stayed with me until the end when I finished around 6:30. Because of him, I have given up my own race multiple times to run alongside first time marathoners. When I discover it’s their first I ask if I can tag along, hearing my friend’s words of wisdom in the back of my mind.
After my first marathon I took a month off of running and got to thinking that if I could run 26 miles then I could run a 50k, and if I could run a 50k then I could run a 50 mile! I wanted to be amongst the few runners that have run mind staggering distances. I ran my first ultra—a 50k—within a year of when I took my first steps to running!
I love challenging myself and seeing how far I can go, both mentally and physically. I want to push until I feel like I can go no further, then push some more. It’s moments like these that show us what we’re made of. I want to show my diseases that they don’t own me. Running makes me stronger and more confident.
What type of preparation do you take to prepare for races?
I don’t do a lot to prepare. I run marathons to train for longer distance races and run bleachers and hills to train for trail races. I also bike and even swim a little, and do light weights and core work as well.
What goes through your head on race day?
The hours leading up to a race can be the hardest. I’m usually so excited that I can’t sleep—I’m lucky to get four hours! It’s just so hard to stay calm when I know I’m about to start something that I may not finish. I know I’ll hate it at some points and will love it at others. I’ll most likely curse, cry, and laugh during, but no matter the outcome I always learn something new about myself.
What do you do when a race doesn’t go as planned? Can you tell us about specific moments when you’ve really had to push yourself to be bold?
When things don’t go as planned, I stay calm and think of a new way to continue on. I ran into a lost, hurt, aggressive dog during the West Virginia Trilogy 50k last year. He was at the top of the trailhead, miles from civilization. At first I thought I was hallucinating, but when he raised his hackles and started growling I knew he was real. We had a 10-15 minute standoff during which I was certain I was going to be bitten. I talked to him and made my way slowly up the hill, stopping a lot and trying to appear harmless. He came so close to me that I could pet him and I held my breath as he sniffed me. He growled once and then ran away. I was lucky that day that I only lost time on the clock. It could have been much worse.
I have gotten blisters too early in a run, ran out of food and water, gotten lost, been stung by hornets, caught in thunderstorms, lost shoes in calf deep mud, fallen in stream crossings, had heat exhaustion, and fought hypothermia. Some of these things can be worked out, but some can end your race. All you can do is just deal with one mile at a time. I stay calm and do my best to stay positive and keep moving forward. If the mile I’m in sucks, the next mile could be better. You never know until you get there!
How has your SPIbelt played a role in you being such a bold runner?
SPIbelt accompanies me on every adventure. It has been with me since my first half marathon and I also wore it for both of my 500k’s! I can run knowing my possessions are safely by my side—mace, gels, car keys, phone, other food sources, charging accessories, and more. I love the reflective belts so I can run at night with confidence knowing that cars will see me, and the hydration belts come in handy when it’s too hot for a vest. Honestly, I cannot imagine running without my SPIbelts! When you have gear you trust and believe in, it makes it easy to be bold in your actions when on racing adventures.
We want to hear about your bold experiences while wearing SPIbelt. Share them on Instagram with the hashtag #freetobebold and we may repost your story!
6 Trends That Will Elevate Your Workout Wardrobe Style
Anytime you workout you’re already winning in our book for doing something to improve your health. But beyond your performance, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to look stylish while you sweat! That’s why we’re so excited about our new Luxe by SPIbelt. With its sleek all-black design and eye-catching metallic hardware, the Luxe is so chic you won’t want to take it off even when your workout’s over. And hey, we won’t blame you since it looks just as good outside the gym as it does in!
Elevating your sweat style is as easy as putting on your Luxe, but if you’re looking to go the extra mile we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite fitness fashion trends that’ll help you take your workout wardrobe style to the next level in no time. Check them out below!
Mesh and Cutouts
Nothing gives your look an edge faster than mesh and cutout accents that show off a peek of skin. Depending on your comfort level you can keep things more subtle (like the outfit below) or go all out with all-over detail.
Performance bralettes and crop tops are having a serious moment right now. Not only are they super trendy, but they also keep you cool during the summer heat! We’re also loving monochrome dressing (wearing pieces in the same color), which instantly pulls your look together and is an easy way to make a big impact.
This year is SPIbelt’s 10th year in business! All year long we’re celebrating this milestone by giving back to you, our customers, as a way of saying thank you for your support. If you haven’t already applied for our #SPIFORWARD program, go do it now! We’re giving away free SPIbelts to active living groups across the country all year long. Plus, on the 10th of each month we’re sharing behind-the-scenes peeks of the company so you can get to know more about the SPIbelt brand.
This month we figured what better way to get to know more about the company than to meet our founder and CEO, Kim Overton. Kim created the first ever SPIbelt in her Austin apartment back in 2006 after she went for a run and had nowhere to put her key except inside her bra top. After months of prototyping and filing the necessary patents and trademarks, Kim officially launched SPIbelt out of her apartment in February of 2007. Ten years later, SPIbelt has expanded to a much larger office and has a full team of dedicated employees working to make the brand even better. We thought it would be fun to do a Q+A with Kim so you could get to know more about her. Check it out below and try not to get too jealous that we have such a cool boss!
What motivates you to live an active lifestyle?
Mental and physical health. Running my business now as a mom of three kids, I find it more important than ever to have my mental health in check. I like to come home and be 100% focused on my family. Keeping active allows me to find relief to the pressures that can come with running my business.
My favorite way to stay active is:
Riding my bike to work, after work, or on weekends. I also like going for a run after work, but if I don’t have much free time I’ll put on my running shoes and take the kids to the park. They’ll ride their bikes while I run behind them, pushing the baby in the jogger stroller.
The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning:
When I wake up I take a moment to give thanks for a good night’s sleep and for life in general. I also reflect with gratitude in my heart on all of the positive things in my life and on the wonderful day ahead. I take a few extra deep breaths, then I start my day.
The last thing I do before I go to bed:
I meditate for 10 minutes each night before bed with the Insight Timer app.
The one wellness trend you’ll never see me try:
Diets. There are too many diet trends to keep up with! I eat what my body burns and what it needs to stay active on a consistent level. I don’t count calories and I don’t own a scale. Food and weight don’t dictate my health. My mind and body guide what I eat based on its needs for the activities I engage in.
How I stay active with three young children:
Staying active with kids is easy! Fitness doesn’t have to happen in a gym, group fitness class, or on the trail. When I take my kids to the park I throw on running shoes and run with them while they ride their bikes. I’ll play catch with them and do what I can to keep up. We also live on a steep hill so when we head home we like to see who can get up the hill first (the kids on their bikes and me on foot). I occasionally win!
My most memorable sweaty moment:
Riding my single gear bike to work for the first time! I rode in prep for Austin’s Bike To Work Day and it felt great! I rode my single gear bike versus my geared bike to see what it would feel like. It was exhilarating and challenging in a good way.
My go-to workout outfit:
You’ll usually see me in knee length leggings with a SPIbelt shirt on or a basic dri-fit material top. I used to wear midriff type tops, but those days are over—ha! If I’m running I’ll wear a pair of crazy color Asics or Sauconys. If I’m not running, but doing calisthenics or weights, I’ll wear my black Pumas.
My go-to workout jam that pushes me a little harder:
Anything house! 125 beats per minute is what I’ll stream.
My favorite healthy snack:
I love seaweed! I’m so addicted to this lately. My other go-to snack is unsalted, roasted nuts.
My favorite easy-to-prepare healthy meal:
A white fish (cod, tilapia, etc.) oven broiled in coconut milk, served with salad and/or rice. My family loves this one!
My favorite indulgence:
Baileys Irish Cream! I try to keep alcohol, sugar and dairy consumption to an absolute minimum, but this insanely rich adult beverage is so good that I’ll indulge from time to time (especially when the weather is cooler). Chocolate flourless cake is, of course, also on my list.
My favorite fitness/wellness Instagram account to follow:
I love following our brand ambassadors! They’re such a diverse group of amazing individuals that keep me inspired.
My favorite vacation spot:
Maui! My husband and I eloped to Maui along with our kids who participated in the ceremony. Hawaii has always been a magical place for me and my family.
How I stay active on vacation:
It’s easy! We tend to spend little time in our hotel room and lots of time exploring the island or playing in the water. I never feel I need to “workout” while on vacation, it just happens naturally. My family and I stay active and we eat healthy food–it’s the perfect combo.
The most surprising way I’ve used/worn a SPIbelt:
I’ll sometimes wrap a SPIbelt around the handles of my baby’s jogger stroller with his snacks and a toy inside.
Staying focused at the office on a Friday when you know the weekend is just hours away is never easy. But during the summer when the sun is shining and all you can think about are the fun activities you can’t wait to get outside and enjoy, it’s nearly impossible! At SPIbelt we believe everyone should be #FREETOBE active, so this summer our offices will be closing early every Friday so that our employees can take the afternoon off to get outside and enjoy the beautiful weather with their friends and family. We’re calling it #FLEXFRIDAYS. All summer long we’ll be sharing our employees’ Friday afternoon adventures on Instagram and we want to see how you’re kicking off your weekend too (even if it’s before or after a full workday)! Share your photos with the hashtag #FLEXFRIDAYS and let us know what you’re up to and how you’re bringing your SPIbelt along. Need some ideas? Here are a few of our favorite activities:
Take a bike ride
Go for a trail run
Try paddle boarding
Take a canoe out on the water with a friend or family member
Jump in a kayak solo and enjoy the scenery
Get your hands dirty in the garden
Take a walk to your favorite ice cream shop
Summer is never long enough, so make sure to get outside and enjoy every minute of it!
The weather is warm and the sun is shining, which means it’s time to take it outside—your workout that is! Nothing is as much of a motivator for getting in a solid sweat-sesh as a little fresh air and a change of scenery. But before you head out the door you need to be armed with everything you’ll need to get the most out of your alfresco workout without any distractions. So whether you’re crushing a HIIT session at the park, hitting the pavement for a five miler, or cruising on your bike, you won’t want to be without these five outdoor workout essentials!
The key to staying cool when it’s hot out is wearing as little clothing possible, but that means you’ll most likely be without pockets to stash all of your stuff. Forget about armbands which can leave you with ugly tanlines and instead rock a SPIbelt. Load the compact, bounce-free zipper pouch with your phone, keys, fuel, and whatever else you might need during your workout, then buckle the adjustable band around your waist for a custom fit. The SPIbelt is so lightweight and comfortable you’ll forget you’re even wearing it! Check out our selection here!
2) Water Bottle
Nothing makes you feel like you’re getting in a killer workout like a good sweat, but staying hydrated is crucial if you want to keep up. Choose a large water bottle that can hold enough liquid so you’ll never be left thirsty and add ice cubes to keep your beverage cold. Even better if you choose one with an easy-access lid so you won’t ever have to stop what you’re doing to take a swig. Also check out the SPI H20!
Look at you, exercising to improve your health! You know what’s definitely not healthy? Coming home with a sunburn. Protect yourself from harmful UV rays that cause burns and lead to skin cancer by applying sunscreen to all exposed areas before you head outside. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends choosing a formula with an SPF of at least 30 or higher.
Squinting to see when you’re trying to focus on your workout is such a pain. Eliminate the problem by rocking a hat with a visor—preferably one made of a sweat-wicking material—to keep the sun out of your eyes and your face shaded.
5) Wireless Headphones
Nothing kills your vibe and puts an immediate stop to all those endorphins that are flowing, faster than getting tangled up in your headphone cord. With a wireless pair you can pump up the jams and rock out while you work out without limiting your range of motion. Win, win!
SPIbelt was first launched by Kim Overton at the 2007 Austin Marathon marking this weekend the 10 year anniversary of SPIbelt!
Because of this, the Austin Marathon is near and dear to our hearts, and we want to share that love for the rest of the week. To celebrate we are offer 17% off your entire order site-wide until the end of the Austin Marathon this Sunday!*
Just enter the coupon code 10YEARS to apply the discount.
SPIbelt is the Official Fitness Belt of the Austin Marathon. If you are planning to go to the Austin Marathon Expo we’ll have 2 booths during the event. Stop by and check out our new gear!
Everyone assumes that all soldiers are runners. Not true. I’m an ex-soldier and since leaving the Army I have retained my fitness levels, but I have never been a runner. Put a pack on my back and I will hike up and down mountains until someone tells me to stop. When I do go for a run, I really have to work at it. I find myself listening to music, and thinking about literally anything other than the fact I am running.
November is National Running Safety Month and in my experience, a majority of accidents happen through a momentary lack of judgement, usually caused by being distracted, or fatigue, or a combination of both. I speak from experience, not only from close calls I have had while running, but also as the CEO of NOMAD SOS, an assistance company who has responded to several accidents and fatalities involving runners.
Take these precautions to protect yourself, no matter what activity you are doing outside, especially if you are walking, hiking, cycling or running alone.
It’s the time again – applications are now open for the SPIbelt Ambassador Program! This is one of our favorite times of the year as we get to connect with and hear from our amazing fans. Over the past year we have gotten to know 25 awesome ambassadors. If you haven’t, head over to our Ambassador page and check it out! Want to be a part of this amazing group? To apply click here and get the exclusive on new products, prizes, and special events.
Post the SPIbelt Ambassador badge on your website/blog (if you have one) with a link back to spibelt.com
Mention your SPIbelt ambassadorship in the bio of your social media accounts
Interact with SPIbelt via various social media channels
Wear SPIbelt when competing/racing
Provide photos of yourself wearing SPIbelt
Promote SPIbelt as your sole running belt
SPIbelt Welcome Package full of belts, swag, and other running necessities
Each Ambassador will be provided with a unique coupon code. Anyone who makes a purchase on spibelt.com with this code will get a free gift
Get exposure with a promo/feature on our social media accounts
Hear about SPIbelt news & products first
Opportunities to test prototypes and give feedback
Support from SPIbelt on special projects like events, giveaways, etc.
Monthly and yearly prizes
Private Facebook group with all SPIbelt Ambassadors to provide support and build community
Interested? Applications for new athletes, based in the United States and Canada, are open now through Sunday, 12/18. Follow SPIbelt on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for updates and check back here for application details!
We will contact you by the end of December to let you know that you were selected. Please do not email or message anyone at SPIbelt to check on your application. If you are not selected for 2017, applications for the 2018 year will open in December 2017, so please reapply!
Daylight Savings was earlier this month and we all felt the difference right away. How is it dark even before most of us leave work? Fall is perfect running weather but it’s not perfect visibility weather. That’s why November is National Running Safety Month and we have some tips on how you can stay safe in these darker days. CONTINUE READING
About Decibullz: Decibullz Bluetooth® Earphones are easily and quickly molded to the exact shape of your unique ears. This results in customized earphones so you can listen to what you love while doing what you love. Comfortable, secure, and noise isolating, Decibullz Wireless earphones combine easily formed custom-molded earpieces with the latest in Bluetooth® wireless audio technology.
About Liquido Activewear: Liquido is known for designing limited edition, all day activewear that can seamlessly transition throughout the different phases of one’s day, making their products exclusive and irresistible to those who want to make a statement in their activewear. New Limited Edition prints are released throughout the year and all production processes are sweatshop-free. The name Liquido was chosen because, just as water is essential to life, the founders of Liquido believe good clothing is a bare necessity that all people deserve.
Since Liquido’s inception, yogi and entrepreneur, Renata Facchini, has brought the brand to Australia and the United States. Liquido now offers everything from yoga pants to high-impact sports bras, and distributes worldwide. The brand is coveted by those in both the fitness and fashion industries.
About Feetures: Feetures! socks are designed with the ability to contour to each individual foot, with the perfect amount of compression to gently hug the foot and The PerfectToe™ construction that eliminates toe-seam irritation and prevents blisters.
About JLEW Bags: Designed and handcrafted in New York, JLEW bags are a collection of timeless carryall bags for the gym, work and weekend. Inspired by awesome people, boxing and surfing.
One reason Pokemon Go is Team SPIbelt’s new favorite thing is that it makes us get up and moving to catch all the Pokemon!
And we’ve found that the best way to prepare for those longer Pokemon Go adventures is to grab a SPIbelt, pack it with the essentials, and head out for a hands-free Poke-catching marathon. Here’s some ideas of what to bring: CONTINUE READING
It’s time to pop the champagne! We are so excited to announce our SPIbelt Brand Ambassadors! This is a group of 25 wildly interesting and passionate runners, cyclists, triathletes, bloggers, fitness coaches, parents, Boston qualifiers, and so much more.
This summer we’re using our Companion Bottle for on-the-run hydration AND post-workout cocktail bottles! We kicked off #SPIbeltSummer with a contest to find the BEST post-workout cocktail for our Companion Bottle.
Two winners (one for best virgin beverage, one for best adult beverage) get a set of 2 Companion Bottles.
Thank you to everyone who submitted a recipe, there were so many to choose from. After doing a lot of taste testing here at SPIbelt HQ we chose these winners:
Please welcome guest blogger Coach Mike, an RRCA Certified Running Coach, to the SPIbelt blog. He started running when he reached 235 lbs and felt terrible. After a first run of 1.9 miles, Mike thought I was going to die. But that was just the beginning of the journey. In less than 2 years of running, Mike completed a 100 mile ultra marathon. In 2013 he qualified for Boston twice in 2 weeks, ran back-to-back marathons and was featured in an article in Runner’s World Magazine about running streaks. Today, he shares his love of running by coaching runners at all different fitness levels: from couch-to-5K to ultra marathons.
I have people ask me all the time, “What do I need to do to run faster?”. My answer is simple. Just run faster. When I tell them this I often get looks and stares as if I am trying to be smart, but if you really think about it that is exactly what you have to do isn’t it? In order to get faster, you have to run faster.
We have exciting news — SPIbelt is starting an Ambassador Program! Do you use SPIbelt products during training or daily runs? If so, the SPIbelt Ambassador program might be for you. This program is designed for people who are passionate, motivated, and want to spread the word about SPIbelt. To apply you just need to have a blog OR be active on social media!
Post the SPIbelt Ambassador badge on your website/blog (if you have one) with a link back to spibelt.com
Mention your SPIbelt ambassadorship in the bio of your social media accounts
Interact with SPIbelt via various social media channels
Wear SPIbelt when competing/racing
Provide photos of yourself wearing SPIbelt
Promote SPIbelt as your sole running belt
SPIbelt Welcome Package full of belts, swag, and other running necessities
Two new SPIbelt products per quarter to use for giveaways or as you please
Recognition on spibelt.com in the form of a bio (& links if applicable)
Each Ambassador will be provided with a unique coupon code. Anyone who makes a purchase on spibelt.com with this code will get a free gift
Get exposure with a promo/feature on our social media accounts
Hear about SPIbelt news & products first
Opportunities to test prototypes and give feedback.
Support from SPIbelt on special projects like events, giveaways, etc.
Monthly and yearly prizes
Please note the SPIbelt Ambassador Program is limited to individuals within the United States and Canada. Application will be open through Tuesday, May 31st. Please do not email or message anyone at SPIbelt to check on your application, we will contact you by Friday, June 10th to let you know if you were selected for the 2016 Ambassador Program. If you are not selected for 2016, applications for the 2017 year will open in December 2016, so please reapply!
It was 2008, and at 5’3″ and 178lbs, I no longer recognized the girl in the mirror. My 110 lb, size 0 frame was long gone. I was sleeping 20 hours a day and wearing a heart monitor. My digestive system had shut down almost completely. I couldn’t even feed myself cereal. The spoon would be empty with shaking from the effort it took trying to get the spoon from the bowl to my mouth. I was depressed and weak. In fact, I was dying. It would take several years, numerous tests, and a partial diagnosis of a thyroid problem before I would start feeling somewhat normal again. The doctors would diagnose and treat me for an under active thyroid. We didn’t realize they were wrong.
Over the next five years, I would lose weight and gain energy, only to gain weight and lose energy a few months later when my body rejected my medicine. It was a slow, painful dance. The constant weight change and sleep patterns weighed heavily on me. I was full of anxiety and terrified I would return to that helpless, obese woman.
The Fall of 2013 was life changing for me. It was not because my doctors found the right answers, but rather a combination of two unrelated things. I had finally decided to start fighting aggressively for my life and I was desperate to find out what was causing my 10 year old to have tummy aches.
The SPI H2O™ Venture hydration belt will transform your long runs! It is bounce free and eliminates bulky bottle holders. The 2″ elastic supports up to 16 oz. of water or can be used on its own as a sleek running belt.
“I loved the Venture hydration belt on my Big Bend 30k run. It was a tough course, lots of steep jumps, rocks, etc. and I never really noticed the belt or the bottles. It’s a really great product so kudos to you guys.”
– Rob A.
“I used the SPI H2O Venture belt during a recent run and loved it! The water bottles did not bounce at all! I like to wear my bottles behind me on my back and love how you can place the bottles anywhere you want on the belt. And since the bottles are completely removable, you can wear just the belt without having empty clips on it.”
– Alli K.
“For 7 miles it was like it wasn’t even there. The bottles can be easily reached and clipped again in the front and “reeled” to the back again. I packed my iPhone 6S with cover, 1 gel and car keys.”
– Antonio L.
“I used the Venture belt with two bottles full of water for 12 km. No bouncing and no irritation at all. I was curious if I would feel the buckle on the belt, but it turns out that it was no problem.”
While most people look forward to spring because the trees start to grow new leaves, flowers pop up and bloom, and temperatures begin to rise, runners look forward to it for another reason completely—it means that race season is upon us. By default, this also means that it’s time to get your body ready for these competitive physical runs.
1. Gear Up
The first step is making sure you have the proper gear and that it’s in good condition so you can train without hurting yourself. Shoes are probably the most important piece of equipment for a runner, and they should be replaced every 300 to 500 miles. If the midsole pokes through the outsole or the heel appears to be crumpled, then it’s time to get new ones.
Other gear that you might need to invest in include performance socks, running shorts or pants, moisture-wicking tops, sports bras, fitness trackers, sunglasses, SPI H2O water bottles, aSPIbelt to carry your personal items, and anything else you need while hitting the treadmill or trails. Gather this stuff at the beginning of the training season so you can spend the rest of the time focusing on your runs.
Our team decided to do a fun contest today to celebrate Leap Year by giving away free SPIbelts to those who could find a hidden frog on our website.
We thought the response would be good but we had no idea it would be so huge – it literally crashed our server.
Due to server issues, our “while supplies last” stretched to more than twice the allotted amount of SPIbelts, seeing more than 2,400 SPIbelts claimed.
Although there were more than 2,400 of you who were able to participate, we heard from many others who tried to reach the website and found it either down or unavailable.
I want to apologize – I’m sure that was frustrating for all who tried and were unable to participate in the promotion. I can promise you it was very frustrating for us because not only did our fans respond in a huge way, but we were unable to reward you for participating.
Today’s contest was meant to be a fun Thank You to our great community and I’m sorry that some found it to be a frustrating experience. It was a great learning experience for us and I want you to know how much we appreciate your participation and your support.
In a few days, when the website is running smoothly, we will post a coupon for you all to thank you again for your continued support and understanding of today’s events.
At the end of it all, the good news is that we learned a lot, including that you all love a good contest, so keep an eye out for more fun contests in the future – you can bet we’ll be prepared!
Kim Overton Founder of SPIbelt
P.S. As always, feel free to email us if you have any further questions or concerns at email@example.com (I receive all messages addressed to me personally).
SPIbelt debuted the SPI H2O Venture Series hydration belt at this year’s TRE (The Running Event) trade show to much acclaim. We are so excited to announce that Active.com named the Venture Series “Best of Running.” Check out this review from Erica Shuckies, Running Editor for Active.com:CONTINUE READING
Please welcome George Melichar to the SPIbelt blog! He is guest posting today with a review of our SPI H2O™ Companion.
Running my errands and training in New Orleans has lead me to be creative when searching for water fountains, often making water stops at businesses or parks. If you see me running in the Garden District I usually have a backpack with an awkward bottle I refill. Incorporating the SPI H2O Companion into my everyday routine and training helped me in the following 5 ways. CONTINUE READING
Please welcome blogger Run Megan Run to the SPIbelt blog! She’s guest posting today with her list of fall training must-haves.
It’s supposedly almost fall (I’m celebrating a high of “only” 85 here in Southern California today!), and as the seasons change, it’s important to make sure the tools and gear you have on you for your training runs change, too. There are some things that I keep on me year-round, but it’s never too late to start adjusting as the calendar does too!CONTINUE READING
If I controlled the weather it would be 85° and sunny year round, but I don’t, and inevitably fall and winter still rear their ugly heads every year (no offense if you’re a fan). Once the days get shorter and daylight escapes us, I tend to get the winter blues and want to hibernate. So what do we do to stay active when all we want to do is wear our jammies and snuggle on the couch with our 4 legged friends?CONTINUE READING
At SPIbelt we understand that the right pair of shoes are a major component of any successful run. Wearing a good pair of shoes can help prevent foot and ankle injury and contribute to making your workout a more positive experience. Injuries and blisters can force you to take time off from training and get in the way of any weight loss or other fitness goals you may have.CONTINUE READING
With all of the different fitness belt options out there today, it’s easy to understand why consumers have a hard time making a choice. They all bring a lot to the table when it comes to suitable exercise belts.CONTINUE READING
We get so many fun pics of SPIbelt users. Our favorites, hands down, are the ones we receive from our young pumpers who’ve been diagnosed with T1 diabetes. Ava is one of these young rock stars who has gone through some pretty challenging stuff at a young age.CONTINUE READING
If you’re looking for something exciting to do during spring break in Austin, look no further than SXSW. This giant festival is chock-full of musical guests, interactive panels, and highly-anticipated film premieres. As exciting as SXSW can be; however, keeping your schedule organized can be stressful. Who wouldn’t get overwhelmed by all of the variety this giant festival has to offer?CONTINUE READING
The first time I ran a marathon I was focused on navigating through the expo and getting to the race on time the next morning. I never thought about what I was going to do with my keys, mobile phone, energy gels, identification/passport, and lip balm. In training I was accustomed to running with a large backpack or small plastic bag; but then I discovered 5 reasons to wear SPIbelt Water Resistant Pocket & Gel Loops!CONTINUE READING
The SPIbelt is a simple product with an infinite amount of potential. While most fans use their SPIbelts while running or to store diabetes accessories, there’s plenty more that can be done with this one accessory. Take a peek at some alternate ways to put your SPIbelt to practical (and sometimes silly) use!CONTINUE READING
Everyone likes to keep track of their personal accomplishments. Whether it’s books read, places traveled, or money saved, there are numerous resources for logging the goals you’ve achieved. For runners, once such resource is Athlinks, a site that keeps track of your race results.CONTINUE READING
When I first came out with the SPIbelt in 2007, I was fulfilling my own immediate need – to create a belt that does not bounce, will hold all of my running essentials, is secure, discreet and good-looking. As the brand grew and company grew, I learned from my customers that we had not only created the best running belt on the market for function, security, and flexibility, but we created one of the most comfortable and affordable solutions for people needing to carry special medial devices.CONTINUE READING
One of my favorite past-times as the owner of SPIbelt is SPIbelt spotting. I live in Austin, TX, and SPIbelts are made with passion here, which means there’s a good chance I’ll spot one of our products out and about at least once a day.CONTINUE READING
When you think SPIbelt, you probably think of a running belt that will carry your phone, gels, I.D. while racing or training for that next race, right? Well, although many of our customers use their SPIbelt for running or working out, a number of them use their SPIbelt to carry medical supplies including inhalers, EpiPens, and insulin pumps (for Type 1 diabetes).CONTINUE READING
Why should I run with a phone, you might ask? Not only can you track your performance or listen to your favorite playlist, having a phone on you is important if you ever (God forbid!) run into trouble. Mom, runner, and blogger, Helly, of Helly on the Run had a recent scare while out on a run this past March.
Erin Hood, SPIbelt’s International Sales Manager (pictured furthest on the left), is no stranger to the emotional stress that one must undergo when a loved one is diagnosed with cancer. As someone who has had not one, but both parents diagnosed with cancer, Erin knows all too well the kind of emotional support that is needed. Now in her 4th year, Erin raises money for The Flatwater Foundation’s annual event, Dam That Cancer which provides access to mental and physical therapies to patients and families dealing with cancer diagnosis.
It’s that time of year again, where those of us who live in the south (SPIbelt is based in Austin, Texas) step out of our a/c into the lovely 100+ weather and immediately start to sweat. Oh, Texas, how we love you. CONTINUE READING
We seem to bog ourselves down these days with all of the running accessories out on the market. Carrying extra gear from iPhones to water bottles can not only become an annoyance, but affect our running form.
SPIbelt is honored to have been a part of Austin Monthly’s Innovation Issue this past January. The January issue is full of detailed information on successful local Austin businesses who had “Bright Ideas” and how they came into fruition. SPIbelt is mentioned along with other local fitness accessories that help Austinites stay fit while being stylish and comfortable.
At SPIbelt, our main goal is to make it easy for you to carry your small personal items on the go – even for kids! Meet Kyle, a young athlete who doesn’t let his Type 1 Diabetes stop him from getting in the game. SPIbelt is an easy and comfortable way for kids to carry their diabetic pump accessories and personal items, including medications or ID cards.
Here at SPIbelt, we love customer feedback! We’ve compiled a list of raving SPIbelt reviews from our customers from around the world. Are you deciding whether or not SPIbelt is the right running belt for you? Read below to hear personal accounts of how SPIbelt has helped out our customers, and how it can easily be incorporated into your workout routine and daily life.
SPIbelt is proud to announce our sponsorship of the 2014 Austin Marathon & Half Marathon presented by Freescale. The Austin Marathon is being held on Sunday, February 16, 2014, and is expecting over 15,000 participants this year. It’s not too late to register! But hurry up and reserve your spot – the Marathon is fast approaching!
We now carry larger, higher capacity SPIbelts! Perfect for carrying mobile devices such as the Galaxy S4, Galaxy Note, Google Nexus, iPhone in an Otterbox, the list goes on! Now you can carry these large devices along with your cash, keys, credit cards, and everything else you need.
Check out SPIbelt in the April issue of Women’s Health. SPIbelt is featured along with 80s inspired leggings by SukiShufu London in the Fitness and Fashion section. The April issue of Women’s Health is full of exercise and fitness techniques that can help you start being fit and feeling sexy.
Have you entered our January One-a-day Giveaway? Hop on board! We are giving away a SPIbelteach day to one lucky winner, plus a Grand Prize at the end of each week! This week we have partnered with Map My Fitness who is giving away an MVP Membership to their fitness app, a blue tooth heart rate monitor, and an arm band.
As some of you might know, SPIbelt has had some pretty great media exposure. We were on “The Big Idea” with Donny Deutsch, NBC Today Show and featured on the Rachael Ray show just to name a few. Recently we taped a segment for (drum roll please…) CNN. This could not have been possible without your support so a big thanks goes out to you and you and you and you….
If you find yourself here, you may be curious to learn more about the SPIbelt. SPIbelt is the original small personal items belt. It’s discrete, sleek, expandable, secure and does not bounce, ride or shift while running or doing other activities. The SPIbelt can hold your iPod, Blackberry, smartphone, keys, passport and other small personal items – hence the name.