Saskatchewan PBCM Super Ambassador Michyla Kielo:
I love running gear. Half my closet is running clothes, and I’m always checking out funky patterned shorts and original details on tank tops at races. However, equally important to me is the gear you don’t see.
1. Body Glide. Both running and horseback riding have left me with large, muscular thighs. Nothing is worse than thigh chafing during a run, but toe chafing is a close second. I have a few other chafe-prone spots as well, so glide is essential to my running comfort. After experimenting with several brands, as well as plain old Vaseline, I’ve found Body Glide to be my top choice.
2. A new sports bra. Every time I buy a new sports bra I think “wow, this is the best bra I’ve ever had!” and then I rush back to the running store and buy two or three more exactly the same. The fact that this happens every single time has made me realize that, for me it’s not the particular bra that is the best, it’s the simple fact that bras wear out and need to be replaced. The new one isn’t a better product than the old one, it’s just not worn out. Retired running bras find new life in the ‘horseback riding clothes’ side of my closet.
3. Smart Wool socks. After passing on wool socks for a few years, horrified at the price, I finally broke down and tried a pair after buying new shoes a couple of years ago. I was immediately hooked. I now run in wool socks year round, and my feet are never too hot or too cold. My feet don’t feel sweaty, and the socks don’t rub like some others have. I still use less expensive running socks for short runs, but my wool socks are essential for ‘the runs that matter:’ long runs, hills and speed work.
"...my wool socks are essential for ‘the runs that matter’..."
4. Ventolin. I have exercise-induced asthma. Cold air is also very hard on my lungs and exacerbates the narrowing of my bronchioles. Saskatchewan winters can make it hard to be a runner at the best of times, and asthma adds a new challenge. But it's not insurmountable! If asthma is holding you back from being physically active, talk to your doctor. A simple medication or dosage change may be all you need to be able to get moving and improve your health.
BC PBCM Super Ambassador Stephen Mogatas
I just returned from the 2015 Pan American Ultimate Championships in Cancun, Mexico. It was my first time at this tournament and it was a great experience. As always, traveling for tournaments requires a lot of preparation and packing of essential items. These are a few things that you probably wouldn’t notice, unless I pointed them out:
1. Comfortable, quick-drying socks. These are the best when I’m on the field. Ankle length socks are ideal to avoid slipping and chaffing my Achilles. An added feature of ankle length socks is to prevent itchiness from dirt, grass, or low flying bugs. Defeet socks work perfectly for me and they definitely add style.
2. Compression shorts and an anti-chaffing stick. These items are essential underneath my uniform. Ultimate requires a lot of sprinting (approximately 5 kilometers per 90 minute game) and a ten game tournament can take a toll on your skin.
3. Therapy items. I have always got a lacrosse ball in my field kit. I use it to roll out my shoulders, hips, calves and feet before and after games. I prefer the harder ball to release muscle and fascial tension to increase my body’s mobility.
"Intrinsic foot strengthening exercises are still part of my training, but my orthotics are a great supportive device."
4. Custom orthotics. These are key! Mine are specifically made for my cleats. They are low-profile, durable, and super comfortable. I used to have foot problems like plantar fasciitis and early developing bunions due to the little support offered by cleats. Intrinsic foot strengthening exercises are still part of my training, but my orthotics are a great supportive device.
These items are pretty common amongst ultimate players who, like any other athletes, have preferred routines, preferences and comforts.
Many thanks to my teammates on “Stache” for an awesome experience at the 2015 Pan American Ultimate Championships!