This resources page is here for me to share with you some particular products and services that I have found useful as a runner and as a blogger/podcaster.
If you’re thinking about giving any particular item a try, but you’d like some additional information before you make a purchase, please feel free to reach out to me to ask any questions you might have. While I stand behind every resource on this page, each product does have its own pros and cons. There is no way that I can list everything on this page, but I’ll give you my 100% unbiased opinion on any product on this page, all you have to do is ask!
***Legal mumbo-jumbo/disclaimer: Some, but not all, of the links for the products/services that are mentioned here are affiliate links, which means that I earn a small commission if you click the link to make a purchase. As I said above, but just to reiterate, if a product/service is listed on this page it is because I use said product/service and I believe in the value the product/service provides. Please only purchase any of these products or services if you are confident they will provide you with a similar value.***
Are You as much of a #runnerd as I am? If so, you might want to check a few of these resources out!
- Shoes–If there is one thing that runners are most peculiar about, it’s gotta be the shoes. And I’m no exception. After making the transition into my Altra Zero Drops, I can’t think of any reason I’d ever go with another shoe brand.
- GPS Enabled Watch–It’s possible that I’m the worst runner ever when it comes to estimating my pace and holding it steady. If I’m doing anything other than an easy run with my dog, my Garmin is a must have. I’m currently using the old-school ForeRunner 305 model, which has been discontinued, but I am thinking about upgrading soon.
- Sunglasses–Running in Central Florida, or anywhere the sun shines, requires a good pair of sunglasses. I used to be cheapskate, refusing to buy “expensive” sunglasses, until I got a pair of Oakleys. Now, I don’t leave home without them. If you’re going to spend much time outdoors being active, running or otherwise, you really need to invest in a good pair of sunglasses. I rock my Half Jacket XLJ’s daily.
- Pocket/Belt–I’ve tried a couple of different options when it comes to figuring out how to carry my keys, fuel, iPhone, ID, etc. when out for a run, and by far the best option I’ve come across to date is the SpiBelt.
- Road ID–There are few things more scary to me than being hit by a car while I’m out for a run. If, Heaven forbid, that were to happen my Road ID has my wife’s contact information, my medical history information, and my advanced directives clearly stated. There are few “must haves” when it comes to running, but if you don’t have a Road ID, you seriously need to get one. Now.
- Pre/Mid/Post Race–I’m new to the Picky Bars scene, but I’m loving these guys. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that I have a serious gluten allergy, but I am definitely wheat sensitive. These bars are gluten free, dairy free, and some varieties are vegan, so they should agree with you unless you have a nut allergy. Then you’re kind of screwed.
- Pre/Mid Race–Energy Bits are fantastic over the long haul, as they are nothing but a natural source of energy. Energy Bits are made from 100% algae, and the concentration of vitamins and minerals will fuel you for hours. When I take my bits, I don’t notice the immediate lift that I get when taking in pure carbs, but there is absolutely no drop off either, which is super important to me. I’m proud to be #poweredbybits, and I know you’ll enjoy the extra energy as well.
- Mid Race–When I start to feel myself running out of steam, a quick sugar pick me up is always appreciated. On the course, there is usually some variety of Gatorade or Power-Ade available, but I always carry some Sports Beans with me. Sport Beans are made by Jelly Belly, and they are little bites of sugar and electrolytes. My favorite ones also have some caffeine in them, for a little extra boost. Sports Beans come in a variety of flavors, so you’ll have to experiment to find your favorite.
- Mid Race–Without question, my favorite mid-race source of fuel comes in the form of an orange. I’m not sure what it is, but some combination of the vitamin C, citric acid, fiber, and whatever else makes up this real food always gives me a great lift. While most runners steer towards the bananas, if there are oranges available those are my fuel of choice.
- Post Race–Chocolate milk gets a lot of publicity for being the ideal recovery drink, but the best way to refuel and recover is with real food and lots of water. Fresh fruit and/or fresh squeezed juice (with lots of greens!) is easily the best choice I’ve ever made, but a cold beer sometimes hits the spot as well. I typically want something a little sweeter than a beer after a race, but I did enjoy a nice dark ale after the Blue Ridge Marathon. Just make sure you’re taking in some type of fuel after a long race, because your body will need those calories to start repairing your muscles after the race.
- Foam Roller–Hands down, a good foam roller is a must for any runner. A foam roller is great for massaging sore muscles, treating/preventing IT Band issues, and warming up muscles before a run. It is really a jack of all trades. The above link is my preferred foam roller due to its higher density and cheaper price, but there are many different styles available. I promise, you won’t regret this purchase.
- The Stick–The Stick is another great massage tool, and it is ideal for the really tender areas of your quads, calves, and hamstrings. Since you’re able to control the pressure that you apply, you have the option of not digging as deeply if your muscles are really sore. While benefits of The Stick and a good foam roller are pretty much the same, and I have both and use both on a regular basis.
- Compression Socks–I am a compression socks convert. I used to think that the effects of using compression socks to aid in recovery were mostly mental, but I am a believer now. After wearing compression socks after my last several marathons, I know for a fact that they help to alleviate muscle soreness and speed up recovery. I personally use a pair I got from Pro Compression, which has a variety of colors and sizes available.
If you’re thinking about starting a blog or a podcast, these resources will help you get started on the right foot.
- Blue Host–In order to have a presence online, you a web-hosting service is a must. While I’m not the most techie person in the world, Blue Host is hands down the best hosting option around. Their customer service is fantastic, and their reliability is second to none. I mean, if some of the top names in online business trust their websites to Blue Host, you can be confident that hosting your website on Blue Host will work well for you too.
- Go Daddy–If you need to secure a domain name, Go Daddy is place to go. Making sure you get the right website is important to doing business online these days, and grabbing your URL should be one of the first steps toward creating your blog/podcast/etc.
- Blue Microphones–One of the coolest things about starting a podcast is that you need very little equipment to get going. The one thing that I can’t stress enough, however, is getting a good microphone. A lot of podcasters use some pretty fancy microphones that require additional equipment for their shows, but I rely on a relatively low-cost and low tech option that still provides great sound quality and clarity. I am happy with my Blue Snowball ICE, and would recommend it as a great option for beginners.
- Podcasters Paradise–If you’re thinking about starting your own podcast, there is no better time to get started than right now! Podcasting is rapidly gaining momentum, and now is your best chance to make your voice be heard. You can start a podcast with virtually no start up costs at all, but if you want to give yourself the best chance of success possible, I recommend learning from others so you don’t make some of the same mistakes that I, and other podcasters, have already made. When I started, I joined Podcasters’ Paradise, and this resource has been valuable beyond belief. There are video tutorials available to help guide you through every step of the process, other podcasters to offer insights and advice, and some insider tips and tricks that can help you get over the hurdles that you might face along the way. If you’re not committed to creating a great podcast, then Podcasters’ Paradise probably isn’t for you. But if you want to take your show to the next level, then you seriously need to consider becoming a member.