The nice folks at StrideBox sent me another subscription box to review. As usual, it's chock full of goodies that runners can use, and the value exceeds the cost, as you'll see in the list at bottom of this post. Here's what it contained.
The CogniTea was delicious: a black tea tinged with peppermint and other beneficial herbs, like ginkgo biloba. Who doesn't want a clear and focused mind? I drank a cup before a particularly trying meeting this week, and I remained on mega-high alert throughout. While I enjoyed it, in reality, I could not justify paying $2 for a single tea bag so I don't think I'll be purchasing it unless they lower the price. The iGloves are awesome and are a useful accessory for runners. They're light, keep your hands warm, and you can navigate your phone without removing them. They're not like most phone-friendly gloves. Instead of having a "tab" on the fingers, the entire glove is made of "phone-friendly" fabric.
As usual, the box comes with product details, a recipe, and workout or tip. This month's tip was appropriate for winter: how to attach spikes to your running shoes.
I washed a load of running clothes using the Win Sports Detergent. It bathed my attire in a gentle, fresh scent - pleasant but not overpowering. The PR Bars sounded good. Catchy name, right? They provide 15 grams of protein for about 200 calories. But a closer look at the ingredient list reveals unpronouncables that most health-conscious people try to avoid. I call ingredients with words like fractionated and isolate "Frankenfoods" because they're made in the lab, not on the farm. The vitamin and mineral profile is impressive, but they are mostly added – they do not come directly from whole foods. These are not vegan, but they are gluten free.
I'll definitely try EFS during a long, hot summer run. Looks like a good carb and electrolyte replacer.
Last but not least, something tells me I'll be trying out the Mission hand and foot warmers sooner rather than later. When it's super cold out, I sometimes wear ski mittens. This is a less-bulky alternative. I've worn hand warmers while skiing, but never thought to use them during a run.
Warning: science nerd tangent: I'm fascinated by how these suckers work. Basically, when a chemical inside the hand warmer is exposed to air, it triggers a reaction called exothermic oxidation. This causes the pads to heat up and warm your fingers or tootsies. Most pads use iron as a thermite, but Mission's process is patented, because they use zinc. According to a chemical reactivity chart I looked up, zinc is slightly more reactive than iron, so presumably, these warmers heat up faster than ones that use iron. You didn't need to know that. But aren't you glad that you do? Something else to talk about during your long runs.
StrideBox: a good value
As usual, StrideBox includes practical items runners can and will use and provides mucho bang for the buck. To subscribe, each box costs $15. Broken down, the retail value of the items in this month's box added up to $19.09 – more than $4 over the cost of the box. I think it's a great purchase if you like to sample the latest running grub and gizmos. It also makes a great gift for runners.
- $1.50 Mission 6-hour hand and foot warmer
- $8.99 iGloves
- $0.69 Win detergent
- $2.00 Cognitea bag
- $1.75 EFS
- $4.16 PR bars
$19.09 value is well over the subscription price of $15.