By Jason B.
I am always looking for new ways to carry gear and stay hydrated while running. For most of my runs, a vest is overkill, but I still need something to carry my phone, a few snacks, and some water. Ultimate Direction has a new line up of running belts called the Access 600 that I think will fill this need in my running gear quiver. I will be reviewing this running belt over the next few months.
Ultimate Direction has been around since 1985 and they make all sorts of hydration and storage solutions for runners. Their website is easy to navigate. The Access 600 can be found under the Products, then Running Belts category.
The Access 600 is their latest iteration of the running belt. It features a large zippered pocket, a mesh pouch, and a flex form 600ml bottle. The bottle is held in place by a plastic cage and has a small elastic loop that fits around the neck of the bottle for extra security. The pocket and pouch have an angled shape to them. There are a ton of reflective accents on the belt – especially on the pouch area and on the plastic bottle cage. The back of the belt features cool wick mesh and a soft suede feeling backing on all the edges. The hip belt is fairly wide and has elastic loops to hold excess belt fabric from bouncing around.
Ultimate Direction claims that the zippered pocket is iPhone 7 compatible. I have an iPhone 6s with a slim fitting UAG case and it fits in the pocket but does not leave room for much else. I was able to use the belt for the Rock and Roll San Diego 5k and I think it performed well. It stayed in place nicely with very little bouncing. I was able to reach the bottle to take a drink and replace it without breaking my stride and I didn’t feel like the bottle was going to bounce out even without using the elastic loop to secure the top of the bottle in the cage.
I have several races coming up over the next few months including the Rock and Roll San Diego Marathon and the Rock and Roll Seattle Half Marathon. I plan on using the belt for these races and my normal training runs. I will evaluate the belt on comfort, usability, durability. Please check back in around a month to see how the belt has performed.
Thanks goes to 4alloutdoors.org and Ultimate Direction for providing the Access 600 running belt for review.