Many factors are present when it comes to having a great race, or a great training run. You have so many options on the table pertaining to setup, that what you actually choose to use can become daunting and quite honestly feel like a dice roll to buy certain pieces. This year we attended Western States to represent the brand and support our athletes, we were at many of the aid stations watching people battle their mental and physical to push forward as the miles continued to pile up. One thing became more clear as the race got into the nitty gritty, gear matters. Time spent in the aid station was minimal, gear that was intuitive was welcomed, things that didn’t add additional stress and hindrance were used for 2 reasons, practicality and the simple fact that at a certain point putting one foot in front of the other is hard enough without adding complicated gear to the mix. As I continued to watch crews setup to help their runner push into the next leg of the race I noticed a trend in those who seemed energetic even at the later stages, the gear setup was their secret weapon.

Focusing on one aspect of gear, survey data reports that when runners were asked the most important feature of a race vest, the majority reported comfort and fit above anything else. In summary, nobody wants to wear a pack that is going to rub a hole in their back, nobody wants to wear a pack that bounces, and nobody wants to wear a pack that fits like a blazer jacket.

CEO and Founder of UltrAspire, Bryce Thatcher, introduced a unique and logical idea for the known fact that human beings are not shaped like a square, therefore your pack shouldn’t be either. This system, ErgoFit™, is unique to UltrAspire and is present on all packs.

How does this system help you perform at a higher level? The answer is by not hindering anything your body naturally wants to do. Longer sloped shoulder straps come over the top of the shoulders and around the neck following the natural curve of the body so you never get any rubbing. As it comes across the front, the harness follows an S curve to avoid any restriction of the natural running motion. The Max02™ Sternum prevents any bounce no matter the capacity by keeping the pack pressed to your body as you breathe, run, or sprint. In use terms, it allows you to carry your essentials and have access to them on the go without ever feeling like you are wearing a race vest, truly.

UltrAspire Alpha 4.0 Race Vest

Your gear choice is a direct result of your race or training strategy. You have tons of options, tons of great pieces to add to your arsenal. Make sure what you are choosing to add to your setup is helping you without a cost to something else, our sport is hard enough as it is. Keep on running!