Gear review: Zensah compression sleeves

When I first heard about compression sleeves, I didn’t really know what their purpose was. I had seen people wearing them while running and also after running, but besides coming in cute colors I didn’t really get it. So, I started looking into it.

I took to Twitter and asked some of my followers if they use compression sleeves and what brand they use. After going through the responses I saw an overwhelming preference for Zensah Compression Sleeves. According to some of my followers, the Zensah sleeves aren’t as tight on your calves as some other brands and provide great support, so I decided to order a pair.

Of course I ordered the sleeves in the hot pink color (how could I resist?) and when they came in the mail I tried them on immediately. They felt great on my calves and weren’t too tight. So what are the benefits? Well according to Zensah, “gravity can cause a build-up of fluid in the muscles and surrounding tissue, which increases swelling and recovery time.” Long, hard runs can amplify this inflammation and cause recovery time to be much longer than needed.

Through their seamless compression technology, Zensah claims their sleeves can relieve these post-run symptoms and reduce any aches and pains related to exercise. After wearing them for a couple of weeks after my runs I have to agree. The sleeves pinpoint tension I feel in my shins and calves and leave my legs feeling fresher than ever.

Some other benefits?:

  • Improve performance- there’s a much shorter recovery period after long or hard runs when I wear my Zensah sleeves post-run.
  • Increase oxygen blood flow to your lower legs- this will help you legs feel strong and fresh. More oxygen in your blood, the better!
  • You can wear them before, during or after runs- So far I’ve only worn them after my runs (it’s too hot right now to wear them during) but they make my legs feel amazing! But you can test it out and see when it works best for you!
  • Provide stabilization for muscles during runs
  • Overall leg health- increasing circulation in your lower legs, ESPECIALLY post-run is so important for your overall leg health. Gotta keep that blood pumping!
  • Quite frankly, they make you look like a serious runner!

As you can see, I’m a big fan of these things. They can run pretty expensive (mine were about $40) but the benefits you’ll get for reducing your post-run recovery will be so worth it!

(Disclaimer: I was not paid for this review. I bought my Zensah Compression Sleeves with my own money.)

Gear Review: SparklySoul sparkly headband

This is me before a 12-mile run with my ice pink Sparkly Soul headband!

If you’re very into running and semi-active on Twitter with the running community, you may have heard of a company called Sparkly Soul, a sparkly athletic headband design company. (I apologize to all my male readers, this post may not apply to you.) The company was founded by two women, one is a marathoner and one is a triathlete. In search for the perfect headband to hold back those pesky wispy hairs, the two women designed this non-slip headband.

I read some reviews of the headband on other blogs and saw the praise they were getting on social media so I decided it was time to try it out for myself. I have to admit, I was skeptical. I have tried many athletic headbands before that claimed to be non-slip but each and every time, I’d get about a mile into my run and those headbands would slowly start to slip off. I saw these headbands and thought, “It’s impossible that these headbands are that cute and actually functional.”

Well, turns out, they really are that cute and extremely functional. I’ve tested the Sparkly Soul headband on different types of runs- tempo runs, easy runs, long runs, sprints- and without fail it stays glued to my head. It even stayed on during a 12-mile run without me having to adjust it at all! The reason this adorable, sparkly headbands stay in place is because they are backed with a velvet-like material that grabs onto the hairs on your head. The headband stays put during other exercises as well. I tried it with yoga and it was fantastic. It didn’t budge when I did downward dog or slip when I did my vinyasa. I swear, it doesn’t move.

Moral of the story? If you’re in the market for a highly functional and unbelievably cute and sparkly headband for your runs, check out Sparkly Soul headbands. They come in two different widths,the thin headband, 3/8 of an inch wide (the one I’m wearing in the picture), and the wide headband, 5/8 of an inch. They also come in an endless amount of colors, all of which are super cute! If you have any questions or if you already have a Sparkly Soul headband and love it, let me know in the comments section!

(Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this review. I bought a Sparkly Soul headband with my own money.)