Time for another exciting monthly edition of StrideBox review. I hope you think it's exciting, because I sure do. Coming home and seeing the smiling, cartoon faces adorning my StrideBox, and knowing I'm about to get a heaping helping of cool runner swag can make a sad day glad, not to mention make bills and junk mail a teensy bit more tolerable. This month's box was decorated with a St. Patrick's Day theme.
I've already tried and loved just about every flavor of Peanut Butter and Company's decadent nut butters. Even so, I was happy to find this sample nestled in my box. This combo reminds me of a blended Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, except that it's made with dark chocolate. Amazing on a banana. It's vegan, too. (My absolute favorite Peanut Butter and Company flavor is Cinnamon-Raisin Swirl. Straight out of the jar.)
Next up, Ultima Electrolyte Powder. With summer coming, you can never have enough electrolyte replacements, especially in Philadelphia where the humidity can reach steam-room like proportions. This one is vegan, gluten free and has zero calories or carbs. I only wish I knew what flavor it is, because it's not listed on the label. Because of the purple color, I assume it's grape. I guess I will just be surprised.
Speaking of summer, anything that helps avoid blisters is a good thing in my book. I'll be testing this out during my long runs.
Nuun Hydration Tablets are one of my very favorite products. They're easy on the tummy, are all natural, and have a mild flavor – which is nice because so many hydration products are too sweet, taste fake or are loaded with unmentionables. I was so excited when I heard Nuun came out with a hydrating vitamin. Two for the price of one! Only weird thing is that the package looks exactly like a condom package. Same size, same shape, same material. So make sure you store it in the correct drawer – or you may encounter an unpleasant surprise at an inopportune moment.
Where do you stash your keys when you're running? Most women on my track team tie their keys to their shoes. Since I usually drive to the trail, my car keys and beeper are much too cumbersome to tie to my sneakers. If I'm wearing tights or shorts with zippers, I put my keys in the pocket, but if I'm not, I stow them in my Amphipod along with my cell phone – which makes an annoying, clanging noise – not ideal. I tried this wrist wallet out during Sunday's long run, and I love it. It fits comfortably snug to the wrist and is large enough to hold a car key/car remote, plus money and/or lip balm. I wore the fuzzy beige side in/black side out, but you could wear it either way. Suffice it to say, this little number has changed my life and it is my favorite item in this month's Stride Box.
Runners need protein and this Jimmy Bar packs a whopping 21 grams for 260 calories. Peanut Butter Ice Cream? Enticing name. The ingredient list is fairly clean, except for Soy Protein Isolate; I'm suspect of it, especially if it's not GMO. This bar is not vegan, but it is gluten-free and only contains 1 gram of sugar. You can't tell from the photo, but it's huge and dense – like a small brick.
Carb Boom Gels provide 26 grams of carbs for 100 calories. The package is a bit large compared to other gels. "Orange Vanilla" makes me think of Creamsicles, which sounds yummy. The label touts "real fruit" ingredients (in the form of white grape concentrate). But I'm not a fan of their inclusion of the preservative Sodium Benzoate. It's not a horrible ingredient. But I don't happen to have any in my pantry, and I'll bet you don't either. I will try this gel, but I'd much rather reach for a gel that uses natural preservatives (eg, citric acid, vitamin E).
In the 5 previous StrideBoxes I've reviewed, the total value of the items I received exceeded the $15 subscription price, sometimes by as much as $3 or $4. This month was the first box where the value came in slightly under, at $14.44. On the whole, it's still a good deal and is a fun way to try new things. And it's a great gift for runners. Sign up here.
- Jimmy Bar: $2.50
- Boom Gel: $1.45
- Ultima Replenisher: $0.99
- Nuun Vitamins: $0.58
- Butter & Company Sample: $0.43
- 2Toms Blister Shield: $1.5
- Zippered Wrist Wallet: $6.99
Total retail value: $14.44
Previous StrideBox reviews