Brooks Running sent me a big box of summer running gear a month ago, perfect for those hot, humid days and still functional and comfortable in these early fall days.
Trailblade Shoes ($85.00)
The Trailblade shoes are designed to work both on the trail or on roads, making them an ideal shoe for someone like me, who can run on the streets to reach forest preserves and their variety of surfaces. They sport an aggressive and luggy outsole for traction on trails, yet feel comfortable on paved surfaces. The upper and sole seem strongly bonded, well-built, and should last for quite some time. As with other Brooks shoes I've tried, my size 13s run a tad snug, though not uncomfortably so. Definitely not a light, minimalist shoe, the Trailblade is also not the heaviest trail shoe I've worn, yet feels like it could handle just about anything. Initially I wasn't keen on the color scheme, though I don't mind it as much after wearing them for a while.
Sunshield Visor ($11.00)
Fit: One size fits all - if you have a melonhead like me, this can be worrisome, but the visor fits just fine. Kind of funny as Tazer has a kid's Sunshield Visor, which is a bit smaller, and I wore it for a run, wondering the whole time if it had shrunk or something. That's what we get for both having white Brooks visors! The breathable mesh kept my head comfortable without feeling hot, while the fabric allowed for quick evaporation of the inevitable sweat.
Infiniti Short III ($38.00)
Fit: Semi-fitted - these are the first shorts I've tried with a boxer liner and I approached them with trepidation, but now they are far and away my favorite short. Combine that comfort with a 3½" inseam, which allows me to show off my legs and reduces the chances of chafing, and it doesn't get much better. The shorts are incredibly lightweight, wiht an unusual stretch-woven outer fabric that was really comfortable to run in. Add L.S.D. Lite windproof binding and splicing details for comfort and safety. One complaint is with the two holster pockets - not sure why I didn't like them, just didn't. However, they were functional and the hook and loop closure kept keys and maps securely. One thing I really like was the elasticized waist with an extra long drawstring - I never had to worry about the strings migrating into the waistband, which can be quite a bother when you just want to go.
Rev Short Sleeve ($32.00 )
Semi-fitted, with a heavy-feeling material that never felt onerous and never sagged or bunched, regardless of how much I sweated - much be some kind of voodoo moisture transfer! With a UPF rating of 40+, this adds sun protection along with 360° of Scotchlite™ retroreflectivity for safer running. While I've never really like shirt pockets, the Rev SS does come with a zip pocket on right hip for gels, I.D., or other essentials, which is a nice bonus for those who need the extra storage.
Brooks' True Blue Guarantee
Brooks products come with a no-questions-asked, 30-day satisfaction guarantee. If for any reason you are not completely satisfied with your new Brooks equipment within the first 30 days after purchase, they will replace or exchange your product. Good deal, right?
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(Disclaimer: I was sent these products for free to review on my blog - courtesy of Brooks Running. I did not pay for the items, receive payment for this review, or agree to give a positive review. Aside from information gleaned from the company website, the opinions are my own.)
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