Review by Laurie H
The FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt was provided for review.
FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt
The Product – FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt
The FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt is a lightweight belt designed to carry two eight-ounce water bottles. It is specifically designed to fit a woman’s body. The water bottles, which come with the belt, are BPA-free, so you don’t have to worry about Bisphenol A (a carcinogen) leaching into your water from the plastic.
There is a storage pouch for smart phones, which is completely detachable. Inside the pouch, there is a hole for a wire to be inserted, in case you are using wired ear buds. The pouch is held in place by Velcro and a zipper. Two detachable micro race locks are also included. These are used to hold a race bib in place without pins, saving expensive tech shirts from holes and snags (as shown below). The belt contains reflective accents for visibility when running in low-light conditions. Hex foam moisture wicking padding surrounds the inside of the entire belt.
Total weight of the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt, including the (empty) bottles is 350 grams.
How the Product Is Used
The FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt can hold up to 16 ounces of fluid. This is, in most weather, enough for a medium-long run for me. I would use this hydration belt for runs of 10 – 16 miles. For runs shorter than that, I would use a hand held system and carry less water. For longer runs, I would need a larger amount of liquid.
I inserted my Samsung Galaxy S7 phone easily into the storage pouch. This is a convenient way to carry your phone to use for fitness apps, music, or just to keep in touch or snap pictures of your run.
It is easy to put the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt on and take it off. It is very comfortable and light. The system that I now use contains four eight-ounce water bottles and tends to get heavy and uncomfortable. This system seems much more ergonomically designed. It only has space for half of the liquids that I am currently using, but this will be sufficient for all but my longest runs.
The straps that go around your waist are big enough to fit almost any sized runner. I usually wear a size (S), and the strap was long enough that it may interfere with accessing the water bottle. I will have to see how it works on an actual run.
The phone pouch of the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt is worn in the front, so it will be easy to access my phone during a run. The water bottles, however, are worn in the back. I had slight difficulty removing and inserting the water bottles from their holsters. This may improve at this with a little practice.
I tested the detachable micro race locks and found them easy to use. The test bib fits perfectly, and the locks held the bib securely in place.
Thank You. Check Back For My Next Review
I am excited to test the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt during my next 10 – 16-mile run. Check back in a few weeks. I will let you know how it works!
First Update FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt
I used the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt for a recent half marathon I ran on a rail trail. Race day was hot and humid, so hydration was a necessity.
I attached my bib to the belt using the micro race locks provided with the belt. I was apprehensive about the bib flopping around since I usually use 4 pins to secure my bib, but the race locks worked well. There were no issues with a floppy bib.
The belt was very comfortable and I liked having my own hydration for 2 reasons, even though the race had adequate aid stations. First, I could provide the hydration of my choice. I sometimes do not care for the hydration provided by races. Second, I could hydrate when I wanted to. Sometimes my need for hydration does not coincide with the location of water stops in a race. The amount of liquid in the two 8 ounce bottles was adequate for the half marathon, even on a hot day.
The belt did not make me hot, even on a very humid day. The bite valves were easy to use. I had no issues getting the liquid out of the bottles easily. In a training run, I like to unscrew the cap off of the bottle and drink directly from the bottle, rather than using the valve, but during a race, I liked the time-saving option of just drinking directly from the valve.
The phone carrier in the front pouch of the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt was comfortable and easy to use. I did not pull my phone out during the race, but carrying the phone was convenient and I did use my phone to take pictures before and after the race.
I liked the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt very much and would like to test it on a slightly longer run. Check back in a few weeks for my final update.
Final Update FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt
I have now had the opportunity to wear the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt for several runs. The distances that I ran to test the belt ranged from 10 – 18 miles, and all of the runs were in hot, humid conditions.
This belt is, hands down, the most comfortable hydration belt I have ever used. The reasons that I like it so much are that it does not get hot underneath the belt, even in very hot conditions, and the bottles are held very securely in the belt. They do not bounce or jiggle as bottles tend to do in some hydration belts I have tried.
My phone was held securely in the front pouch and was easy to take out and put back in. There was also room in the pouch to hold some snacks (almonds and dried apricots) for the longer runs.
I did spot two potential problems on one of my runs that I did with a friend. I usually stop and walk when I take a drink from one of the bottles. Because my friend usually keeps running, I tried to run while I hydrated. When I slowed down to a walk, the bottles were easy to remove and replace from the belt. When I kept running, the bottles fit so snugly into the belt they were difficult to replace. I think the snugness of the bottle in the belt, however, is a good thing. It made the belt much more comfortable to wear. It does make them more difficult to replace into the belt, however.
The second problem was the difficulty my friend had drinking from the nozzle of the bottle when I shared my water with her. I tried to coach her through the process, but she eventually had to unscrew the cap to drink. I did not have any trouble drinking through the nozzle, but I usually unscrew the cap to drink too. This might be a drawback.
I enthusiastically recommend the FuelBelt Ergo Hydration Running Belt. After using it for a race and several medium-to-long runs, it is my go-to source of hydration in hot, humid weather.