Paul Freary looks at new kit, tech, nutrition and more which could give you a helping hand
Pulseroll – Vibrating Peanut Ball
This versatile post training recovery aid (pictured above) helps with stretching in the same manner as a traditional foam roller, with the added benefit of vibration therapy. The vibration helps increase blood-flow further and reduce next-day soreness.
The neat design and unique shape makes reaching those difficult areas easy and, with a relatively small design, it’s easy enough to take with you when you travel. The USB rechargeable battery gives around three hours of use and there are four vibration speed settings to find the optimum desired effect.
USN – Trust Protein
Price: £28.00 (6x500ml bottles)
When speed and convenience is of the essence, this pre-mixed shake delivers 50g of protein from the 500ml bottle. A staple post-training product of many athletes, refuelling as soon as possible after training helps the muscles recover quickly, regardless of activity.
Thorlos – Experia Tiger Paws Socks
These popular socks get a seasonal make-over with this Tiger Paws edition. The extra padding beneath the heel and forefoot provides a luxurious feel, while the instep is highly breathable. Available in a wide range of designs and colours this winter.
Zone3 – Hybrid Puffa Quilted Jacket & RX3 Medical Grade Compression 7/8th Tights
Price: £85.00 (jacket) and £70.00 (tights)
Zone3 was founded in 2007 by elite triathletes at Loughborough University and has since expanded to offer high-performance kit “suitable for all sports and fitness enthusiasts”.
The puffa jacket (pictured below, left) is great for warm-ups or to wear pre and post training. It’s lightweight and offers great effective warmth without being overly bulky.
The 7/8th length tights (pictured below, right) offer medical grade compression and provide excellent support and coverage. Various density knit throughout their construction provides targeted support and higher denier sections ensure they don’t go see-through. There’s also a good-sized rear pocket that can accommodate keys or even a smartphone.
ZWIFT – RUNN
For those that regularly run on a treadmill and haven’t experienced the Zwift ‘app’, it really is a must-try. The app itself offers a virtual world to run in and interact with other users wherever they may be, anywhere in the world.
The app is free to use and can operate on a smartphone, laptop or appleTV. This neat sensor simply sits on the edge of your treadmill belt and measures the speed accurately, transmitting it to the app for a more involving running experience. It’s easy to install and provides details of speed, incline and cadence, giving instant on-screen feedback.
Shower in a can
When shower facilities aren’t available, shower-in-a-can offers up to 20 head-to-toe showers without the need for water, wet wipes or towels.
Initially created for use by children dashing between various sporting activities, it’s perfect for anyone – from active commuters to those attending festivals or while travelling.
It’s made up of a mixture of water and detergents but there is no foaming agent so it’s SLS-free, vegan friendly and comes in a recyclable can!
MP Magic Socks – Antibacterial Socks
Using their own ‘magic’ yarn, the manufacturers claim these socks (pictured below, right) will remain odour-free for six days! It wasn’t a test we saw through to the end, but the combination of Japanese cotton, Coolmax and Lycra make the socks extremely comfortable, durable and, for the couple of successive days we wore them, odour-free!
Under Armour – UA Rush ColdGear Long Sleeve
The mineral-infused fabric used in this garment (pictured above, left) absorbs the energy your body emits and then reflects it back into the tissues and muscles.
In short this creates a garment that is comfortable, moisture wicking, temperature regulating and feels incredible to train in, regardless of the activity.
The design allows a full range of movement and is great for winter workouts.
Voom Nutrition – Pocket Rocket Beta Blast Bar
Recommended for pre-training fuelling, these bars from new nutrition brand, Voom, deliver a mix of caffeine and glucose to provide an energy source to get you moving. We found the 45g bar the perfect size to provide just that little lift which is often required between meals and training.
The orange flavour we tried here provided a naturally zesty taste without being overpowering.
Zone3 – Cosmic Bound Back Swimming Costume
Swimming is one of the best cross-training activities for athletes, with low impact yet yielding great aerobic results.
The bound back design of this costume provides higher levels of support with freedom of movement. The flattering contour provides a stylishly feminine silhouette and with a double lined front section offers excellent support, comfort and coverage.
Beachbody Performance – RECOVER
Price: £69.99 (710g)
Recover from training quickly with this post-workout chocolate flavoured protein shake mix. The protein contained in the formula contributes to the improved recovery and growth of muscle mass by supporting muscle protein synthesis. Branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) are also contained and help support the building blocks of muscle mass. The mix is easy to make up and contains no artificial colours, flavours, sweeteners or preservatives.