Monday, April 25, 2016

Fuelbelt Spring ‘16 Review



Fuelbelt, Inc. was started by Vinu Malik, a runner and a triathlete athlete who wanted to find a more comfortable way to transport his drink during training and racing.  It started in Vinu’s one bedroom apartment at his kitchen table.  Fuelbelt was founded shortly after that in 1997.  Vinu has completed 36 Ironman races and participated in the Ironman World Championships 7 times.  Fuelbelt products have been used to break world records, set personal bests, and have even been used at the Olympics, where only the best products will do.  Fuelbelt athletes have won 10 Ironman World Championships.

Helium Sprint Handheld

Fuelbelt took what they claim is the most ergonomic 10 ounce bottle in the world and added a feather light padded hand strap to it.  Introducing the Helium Sprint.  This makes it the lightest handheld ever.  While there are no pockets for storage, this is the most comfortable handheld hydration product I have tested. 

The bottle is BPA-free and is extremely durable.  The hand strap has Velcro so you can adjust it to fit your hand and the back of the hand strap is padded for maximum comfort.  The lid of the Helium Sprint is a push-pull cap, but Fuelbelt added soft silicone to the cap to make it more comfortable. 

I really like the Helium Sprint.  It is extremely comfortable and really fits in the palm of your hand like it was meant to be there.  The strap is extremely comfortable and won’t irritate your skin.  It also comes in 11 different color combinations to fit your personality.  There isn’t much more I can say about the Helium Sprint other than it is simple, but amazing.  I will definitely be using this on my short to medium runs.  You can get your Helium Sprint at the Fuelbelt website for $14.95 or on Amazon for about the same price (but with free shipping w/Prime).  You can also find the Helium Sprint at a store near you (click here for locations).

Pros:
Decent price, starting at $14.95
Very light weight
Plush hand strap
Silicon push-pull cap
Extremely durable and comfortable

Cons:
Return policy is not as good as some competitors

H30 3 Bottle Belt

The Helium H20 is the lightest weight hydration belt ever (from what Fuelbelt’s claims).  Its weight is only matched by how comfortable it is and how good it looks, with several color options.  The Helium H30 is its big brother featuring 3 bottles instead of 2.

The Helium H30 has turned out to be one of Fuelbelt’s best sellers.  It allows you to run with two bottles if you are going for a shorter run, but gives you the flexibility to take a third bottle with you when it’s needed.  Even with three bottles, it is extremely light weight and comfortable. 

The Helium H30 comes with 3-7 ounce BPA-free ergonomic bottles.  They fit in your hand like they used a mold of your hand to make it.  The caps, like the Helium Sprint, come with the silicon push-pull cap.  The holsters securely hold the bottles but make them easy to take out and put back.

The back part of the belt is made with breathable Hex-Foam padding, which I found extremely comfortable and allowed my back to remain fairly dry, unlike some packs. 

There is a large removable storage pocket.  It is big enough to pack your keys, gels, or money in it.  The pocket is too small to store my Samsung Galaxy S6 with its case though. 

The adjustable waistband attaches with soft-touch Velcro.  It really is soft so it won’t irritate your skin if it does come in contact with it.  I really liked this feature.  

I will let you know right now that the Helium H30 is hands down the most comfortable hydration belt I have ever tested!  You can get your Helium H30 at the Fuelbelt website for $44.95 or on Amazon for $38.97.  You can also find the Helium H30 at a store near you (click here for locations).

Pros:
Decent price, starting at $38.97 on Amazon
Very light weight
Silicon push-pull cap
3 ergonomic water bottles
Soft-touch Velcro adjustable waistband
Extremely durable
Most comfortable hydration belt I have tested to date

Cons:
The pocket is not large enough for my Galaxy S6 with its case
Return policy is not as good as some competitors

Fuelbelt will accept unused items for returns or exchanges within 30 days of your purchase or for 90 days for any products that are defective (for a replacement or credit).

I have been reading about Fuelbelt products for years and finally got my hands on them.  The Helium Sprint and Helium H30 are awesome!  I would place them in the top of the handheld and hydration belt categories in both comfort and value.  Give Fuelbelt products a try and I have no doubts that you will feel the same way. 

Note:  I received this product in exchange for a review.  The review is my personal opinion of the product and I was not required to give a particular opinion of it.  I am not a doctor, so please use all of the products that I review at your own risk.

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