Sometimes you need that certain something to make your runs feel complete.
Dressing up to go running isn’t hard at all. A pair of shorts or tights, a decent sweat-wicking top (countless vests to choose from if you’ve joined many races), a high intensity sports bra for us girls, and some running shoes usually do the trick.
But for some of us it’s more than just putting on the uniform – it’s also about the accessories.
Call them modern conveniences or pure pampering, must-have items range from a myriad of things: your iPod and earphones (because really, what good is an iPod without earphones), smart phone with a runner’s app like Endomondo or RunKeeper, Garmin watch with its accompanying heart rate belt & foot pod, etc. For others it’s about carrying other essential items like an ID card or medical insurance card, some money, energy gels, water, fuel belt, and so on. These are just some of the extras that some runners feel they need to have on them to perform with peace of mind, whether during training or on race day.
For me personally, it is the humble head band and its equally useful sidekick, the wrist band. I can run without the iPod, and the Garmin watch can stay at home. But going sweat band-free is like telling me to go to run without shoes. Sure, I can run – but I will feel naked and incomplete.
If I left home to go running and forget to wear a sweat band around my head and one on my right wrist, the running – while still good – will feel unruly. My mood will also be affected as I feel restless. Why? It all boils down to controlling the perspiration of the face.
My reasons to absolutely have the sweat bands are simple and practical. The head band serves me three main purposes:
1.Keep sweat out of my eyes
2.Keep my hair out of my face (I am a girl after all)
3.Secure my earphones in place when I slide the band over my ears – they won’t jiggle out with every step, guaranteed!
Now, without the wrist band, I can’t wipe sweat away from the nose and mouth, and those areas can perspire like no one’s business in a jiffy. Sure you can do the whole tug-your-shirt-collar-up-and-wipe-your-nose thing. Guys can probably get away with it but girls? Not very ladylike, and plus if you tug your top too high you’ll expose your belly (try wiping your forehead that way – know what I mean?). And wiping your sweat away from the face with the back of your hand isn’t exactly ideal either.
I’m always on the look out for head bands when I go shopping at the sports store, and somehow I’ve always been drawn to the ones made by Adidas. I find the Nike ones too small, the same case with Reebok. There isn’t a whole lot of choices here in Malaysia.
I do have an issue with my Adidas head bands: when I need to wear a cap to shield my face away from the sun rays. they are too thick! Sure, my running caps have a built-in band to absorb sweat, but there’s not much in it.
Then I discovered a head band brand call Halo. I first saw Halo head bands at a runner’s specialist shop in a mall not far from where I live. It had an interesting demo setup: a mannequin’s head with the Halo head band strapped on. There was a contraption affixed just above the head, which released beads of water every 1-2 seconds to simulate the non-stop production of perspiration. The Halo head band did not break a sweat (!) and literally absorbed every single drop of liquid, leaving the mannequin face bone dry. Neat!
I was clearly intrigued, so I ordered one online to try (it was 50% cheaper than the shop price), and soon it arrived. The first thing I noticed about it was its elegant packaging and that it was made in the USA as opposed to China. Secondly, the Halo headband had an interesting yellow rubber strip design on its inner side that acts like a dam on your forehead and creates a barrier between the sweat and your eyes. And thirdly, what I loved most about it was how sliced salami thin it was and I could easily wear my running cap over it. Win!
So now you know, what helps keep my running mojo going. Good head sweat management.