OK so i’ll admit this… I occasionally buy things I don’t need, (shocking for someone who does triathlon, I know); and this FuelBelt is no exception. But in my defense I was buying something else from a US website and this was on special at $20, (which when you compare it to the nearly $80 it cost here in Australia it seemed like a bargain and I thought I’d give it a try).
After one, long ish, (30km) trail run with the FuelBelt I’ve got to say, I’m not particularly impressed;
- Comfort; I found the belt slipped and bounced a bit and had to be frequently re-adjusted. Now this might just be because I haven’t found the ‘sweet spot’ or I’m an ‘odd shape’, but I didn’t get on with it
- Carrying capacity for liquid isn’t huge – for a long run where I’m not going to have access to water i’d take a Camelbak or a Nathan handheld bottle
- Full bottles were a but leaky and I got electrolyte drink on my back
Now, I can see some up sides for training runs:
- Good place to stash gels and keys, (I managed to fit 3 GUs, keys and an MP3 player in the pocket)
- You can take 2 different types of liquid – e.g. one water and one sports drink
- If it’s not super long, (but long enough to need it) you can take enough hands free liquid to quench a thirst/fuel-up
But for races I just don’t get it – for anything long-ish it just doesn’t have the liquid capacity, (which counters the “I don’t want the aid station drink” argument… because you’d still have to) and for anything short… well, you just don’t really need it. I suppose you could use the flasks for your favorite gels – but i’d prefer to just stash them in the tri-top. There is also the time it takes to put on in transition, (which admittedly isn’t huge, but sometimes every little helps) and the hassle of 2 belts as the FuelBelt would’t really work for your race number and you’d probably need a race belt as well.
Now, I know I’ve not given it a huge road test, and I will try it a few more times and report back with any further impressions; but overall – I can’t see me getting much use out of the FuelBelt.