I’ve had the pleasure to try out the Naked Running Band (NRB) from Naked Sports Innovations. To be honest, I was a bit sceptical when I first saw it. It’s a very thin piece of 4-way mesh fabric that’s promising not to bounce. Well… Let’s see I thought.
I’ve tried it on multiple training runs for a couple of months now, during the Trans Gran Canaria 125km, during the Circuit des Grands Crus 27k, and recently during my preparations for the World Championships Ultra Trail Running. I have to say, I really got to LOVE it!
- It’s lightweight and you don’t notice it’s there once you’re wearing it. In order for this to be true, you need to make sure you order the right size. I also had to adjust, and the guys from Naked Running kindly sent me the right size after I first ordered one that was a bit too snug.
- IT DOESN’T SHAKE, BOUNCE, OR MOVE! Really. But again, you need the right size. The Naked Running band comes in 12 sizes, so there must be one that suits you well.
- It’s really breathable and dries very fast (you can literally look through it), which supports the fact you don’t notice you’re wearing it when you are.
- You can put A LOT of stuff in it. I mean A LOT. Much more than you would expect from a tiny piece of fabric. But it has the capacity of 3L(!), and the During the Trail des Grand Crus 27k I took a space blanket, my lightweight jacket, 6 energy gells, a cup, my phone, and a 500ml soft bottle of water. It fitted! And moreover, even though it was fully loaded, it didn’t annoy me, it didn’t bounce, and I barely noticed it was there. Really.
- It has external elastic bands with silicone strips on the inside, with which you can store your poles. I think they carried my poles during almost the entire 125k of the Trans Gran Canaria, they didn’t bounce, move, and I didn’t notice they were there. It’s easy to access and attach them, and you can decide if you want to wear your poles on your back or front. You can even easily move them around, though you can’t do this so easily when you’ve put a lot of stuff in it.
-It has a loop with a key ring to attach your keys. Since losing my keys is one of my biggest talents, this function is vital to me :).
- The fabric is lightweight and I’m curious to find out more about the durability of the running band. I’ve used the running band quite a bit now, and I’m starting to see some loose threads, but nothing serious yet.
- I sometimes find it difficult to detect the pockets, especially when running with gloves. So when I’m trying to put something into a pocket, I’m putting it in between my belly and the running band instead. The running band has yellow external loops that help you to open a pocket, but I don’t seem to get this principle when running. It could be me :)
- It’s not yet available in a lot of shops in Europe, so you’ll have to order it from the website in the US. It would be easier if you can just try them on before buying and deciding which one is the best size. So all European running specialist shops, go sell them!
I really really fell in love with this thing, and now wear it on almost all my training runs. I find it ideal if you don’t want to take too much with you on shorter runs, but also to supplement my running pack when running ultras. It just gives you more options for having things within hand reach. I hope it will endure a bit longer and I can continue to enjoy wearing it!