Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Wednesday Reviews - Yaktrax

Hello and Happy Wednesday! Today I have a very exciting review for you all. I'll be talking about my new favorite running accessory- something that's allowed me to keep running outside even when there's an ice storm and the sidewalks are a mess - Yaktrax!



To give you some context, I am the world's worst walker/runner when the weather is bad.  I don't really mind the coldness or even precipitation, but ice and snow on the sidewalk just freak me out.  I honestly have a mini panic attack when I have to walk from my bus stop to my apartment and I see ice on the sidewalk ahead - we're talking pounding heart, whole body sweats, out-of-body experience.  I once even stopped walking and made Dan come meet me because I was so terrified.  What normally takes me about 10 minutes to walk home turns in to a 30 minute terror fest!  I wish I was exaggerating.  Obviously, I don't run outside when the weather turns bad, so I'm stuck either 1. on a treadmill, or 2. staying inside because I don't even want to walk to the gym.

Pittsburgh's "Winter Wonderland"
Yes, this is what I do every winter.

That is, until this year, when I finally bit the bullet and gave Yaktrax a try.

Have you ever heard of Yaktrax?  I've always known what they were, and saw some reviews, but thought that they were a complete gimmick.  You strap some metal springs on your feet and that's supposed to make you walk on ice without slipping?  Yeah, right!

I'm here to tell you that they absolutely DO work, and they've allowed me to run outdoors every single day since I picked them up.

Let's back up and learn a little about the company Yaktrax.   Here's their story, which I took from their website:
Yaktrax was originally conceptualized when an outdoor adventurer who was exploring the Himalayas encountered a seasoned Sherpa striding confidently across the slick, icy surface. What was seen on the Sherpa's feet sparked a revolutionary invention - the Yaktrax patented coil traction device.
Since then, a global company has grown and helped athletes, construction crews, public service workers, soldiers, outdoorsmen, and many more walk, run and work on packed snow and ice.
Named after the sure-footed Tibetan Yak, Yaktrax is proud to offer a wide array of ice traction devices for your shoes in addition to winter accessories. Whether you need the Walk for getting to the bus stop or mailbox or require extreme outdoor traction with our XTR, Yaktrax will always provide solid, predictable traction you are used to on dry surfaces.

There are several different varieties of Yaktrax: Walk, Walk+, Run, Pro, Xtr and Ski.  There's a type for everyone, and you can compare all the models here.  I currently own the Yaktrax Pro.
Yaktrax Pro- image from www.yaktrax.com

These are similar to the Yaktrax Run, with one main difference- the run also contains removable spikes that are in the front portion of the shoe.  If you've ever run in cross country spikes, these are very similar.

After running on many different surfaces with the Yaktrax Pro, I can definitely recommend them for both walking and running on any surface.  On my runs, I encounter a variety of sidewalk conditions- from perfectly shoveled and salted to untouched and iced over.  While these will work over bare sidewalks, they do feel a bit funny (as you'd expect!) and may wear out over time.  I haven't noticed any wear on my pair yet, though.

These also work well on trails that are covered in snow.  I did notice some slipping when the snow was particularly deep.  In these cases, I think the Yaktrax Run would be better.  I may add a pair to my collection at the end of the year to use specifically in trails.

This snow is no problem anymore!

Overall, I highly recommend Yaktrax for both running and walking.  If you're like me, and avoid being outside when the weather is bad, these are a life saver.  They can be ordered on the Yaktrax website, ranging in price from $19.99 to $49.99, or on Amazon (here is the specific seller I bought from - fast delivery and free shipping).

Have you ever tried yaktrax or other winter accessories?

3 comments:

  1. I'm going to have to look into these next year for walking my dog. Many early mornings these past few weeks I haven't really been able to walk him anywhere because so many sidewalks are icy. He gets confused if we try to walk in the street & I'm always scared about cars potentially hitting us. I wish people would clear their sidewalks. :-(

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    1. You definitely should! They make me feel SO much more confident going outside. Once you get used to them theyre easy to put on and off as well!! And I agree people are ridiculous.. Some never touch their sidewalk once the entire winter and it's basically an ice skating rink. What the heck! Let me know if you try them :)

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  2. Living in Bradford I needed these. I wear them when it's really icy. They work so well. Love your blog. I don't know if dan told you that I blog too if you'd like to visit its. Season-to-season.blogspot.com

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