There’s no question that The Running Event delivered an incredible show to exhibit new products, old favorites, enhanced use of technology, and more. Day two included a few stops on the showroom floor.
The Zone approach – chafe, pain, burn – an all-in-one protection kit from MedZone:
Produced in the US, MedZone’s tagline is “prevent, manage, and treat.” A three-in-one approach, all packaged in a kit dubbed, “Activity Pak.” Included is a product for chafing and blister protection – the ChafeZone and BlisterZone – soothing burn treatment – the BurnZone – and penetrating pain relief – the PainZone. Packaged in a handy pack of four .125-ounce samples, these products are super to take in a hydration pack, or fanny bag on trail runs. The personal activity kit, new in 2016, is great for crews to keep on hand at aid stations with larger product sizing.
This family owned business was founded in 2001 and is based in Lenexa, KS. Learn more at www.medzonecorp.com.
Known for their chocolates, the Swiss will soon be recognized for their cool trail shoes from ON.
Four trail shoes were featured at TRE from ON. The Cloud Venture, the Cloud Venture Waterproof, the Cloud Venture Midtop, and the Cloud Venture Peak. ON operates on four core beliefs: From focus on correction to focus on experience and comfort; From one best way to run to billions of ways to run; From a look at the ankle to a look at the whole body; From a diagnosis for life to an evolution over time. Innovative and creative, worth a test ride.
Lighting the trail with Night Runner 270:
The Night Runner 270 was a three- year work in progress, which started after a running accident. “I came up with the idea after I fell on a run,” says the self-described accidental entrepreneur Doug Storer. “I came home and said to my wife, ‘Honey, I need headlights for my sneakers.’ There wasn’t anything that wasn’t strapped to you. We started with crud prototypes like flashlights duct taped to the shoe. We hired an engineer. Since my wife and I are both designers, the final product had to look good on the shoe and function well.”
The couple also knew that they needed a left and right design to get peripheral coverage and thus created an arc of light with a wing design. “We are advocates of no headbands, belts, or straps, and with a low trajectory beam of light, you can see more,” said Storer.
The Storer’s mantra when they were inventing the Night Runner 270 was “lighter, brighter, longer,” referring to the lighter weight, the brighter illumination, and the longevity of battery life.
The lights produce a 30-foot beam in the front and you can see and be seen 270 degrees. There is a white light in front and a red light visible from the side and the rear. The final product is water resistant, weather resistant, and costs $59.95 for the pair and comes with a charging cord along with the lithium ion rechargeable battery. The battery lasts for three hours on high, five to six hours on low. Each unit weights 1.5 ounces.
This Orlando-based husband and wife company sold over 17,000 units in 41 countries, including all 50 U.S. states since its launch in October 2015. What really helped the couple grow the business was an appearance on Shark Tank two months ago. “We got four offers from four sharks,” says Renata Storer. “We took the deal from Robert Herjavec. As soon as the episode aired, it was instantaneous. Our sales for the year tripled in one month and have held steady since then.”
To light up your shoes, visit: http://nightrunner270.com/products/night-runner-shoe-light
Altra continues to showcase cool products and gear:
Consider a built-in chip in a trail running shoe, a “game-changer of the running shoe market,” according to Trent Morrow, national sales manager for Altra in Australia. New for 2017, the Timp IQ will debut with this innovative technology.
Morrow shared new and/or updated models from Altra at TRE. The Superior for minimal cushion, the Lone Peak for moderate cushion, the Olympus for maximum cushion, the Timp IQ, and the Timp (without the chip). Another new shoe in 2017 is actually a beefier product, or rather a “mid boot.” One such mid boot is the Lone Peak Mid. Another new shoe will be the King MT, which falls between the Superior and the Lone Peak and has added a Velcro over-top strap to its lacing system, and a loop feature for the addition of a gaiter.
Brian Beckstead, co-founder of Altra, also shared the new Stash Jack, one of the apparel products that will join the line, which launched in 2016. The Stash Jack was available in 2016, but this new Jack has a full back. It is super handy to take on and off when the weather changes during a trail run. Stuffed into a belted waistband, the “jacket” can be removed easily and quickly from the pouch, with the waistband still in place arms slip into the sleeves and the jacket easily pops over the head. The Stash Jack is roomy enough to easily slip over a hydration pack and then, with two small Velcro tabs, attaches at the sides. When the weather improves, remove the jacket and stuff back in the bag. This is a very lightweight and handy piece to include in a trail runner’s repertoire.
Who doesn’t have stinky shoes following a run? Ready to Smell Well?
With a light, and pleasing fragrance, Smell Well™ absorbs moisture, which is what creates the bacteria and makes the shoe smell. According to Joakim Frisk, president of BlueChip USA, LLC, the US distributor for Smell Well™, “This product takes away the moisture and the smell.”
Comprised of all-natural minerals (the composition is a secret blend), and materials, the product is also non-toxic, (if your dog gets a hold of the packet, it will not be harmful).
Appropriately sold in pairs for $9.95, (one packet per shoe), the prescription is to put the packet in overnight, and the shoe smells good in the morning and is dry (dry of sweat…if the shoe is soaking wet from running through a puddle, dry the shoe first with the standard rolled up newspaper, and once nearly dry…place the packet in the shoe to get the fresh smelling result). Says Frisk, “Our product earned the Best Innovative Product of the Year in Sweden in 2015, and we’ve sold over 200,000 pairs in one year in Europe to 100% satisfied customers (ie: no returns). 2016 is our first year in the US (launched in US in August) and we’re hoping to grow our reach.”
Reebok – a trifecta for the trails:
Reebok has three main trail shoes in its footwear line. The All Terrain Freedom, which retails for $100 and features cushion and traction with a durable upper, and a water resistant upper. The All Terrain Super retails for $125 and has a thinner midsole (good for racing), is lighter weight, with decent-sized lugs on the sole. The Ridgerunner is more of a price point shoe retailing for $60. This shoe has a lot of value in spite of its reasonable pricing. Although not as many features, this shoe is still durable and is considered an everyday casual wear shoe, or for gentler trails. For more details, visit: http://www.reebok.com/us/.
Another way to “lace ‘em up” with the Boa Closure System:
Boa, started in snowboard and now is branching out into the trail space. In the coming year, Boa will be utilized in two trail running shoes, both from Under Armour, the Fat Tire 2 and the Speed Ascent.
According to Casey Ramer, Akimbo Communications (the PR agency for Boa), “You never have to worry about laces coming undone, the closure system is guaranteed for the life of the shoe (you can’t crank the dial enough to break it), the closure system creates no hot spots, and the user has a better connection with the fit and feel of the shoe.”
The nylon coated “cable” is more durable than a standard shoelace, made of a standard textile fabric. The tension can be changed with the click of the dial.
Boa is headquartered in Denver and the dials are produced in China and integrated into the shoe wherever the brand partner is manufactured. Asics is a new partner of Boa with product coming for summer ’17 with one trail model.
Adidas Outdoor is focused on growing their presence in trail:
The Adidas Outdoor line has been in place since 2011, and includes outdoor categories of hiking, trail running, and snow/après-ski, and water sports such as stand up paddling, thus covering trail, hike, winter, water. Adidas formerly had the trail category wrapped into a much larger “space” as it were, and about 18 months ago, moved trail to the “outdoor” line. TERREX was one of the products hyped at TRE in signage leading into the show, and this is the sub brand within the Adidas Outdoor brand. Attractive, and practical, with many different models, Adidas Outdoor has something for all levels of trail runners from the novice to the veteran.
LP Tent, USA, provides cover and protection (and some really cool inflatable furniture):
LP Tent, USA was integrated into TRE in several locations. Near the front of the show, there was an LP Tent Charging Station complete with the #baggymcbag lounge. At the rear of the show floor, inflatable arches were erected and branded ElliptiGO and Skechers. Additionally, LP Tent had a booth spot complete with inflatable furniture (and they have lots of functional products), and a heavy-duty aluminum pop-up (I watched while a fella hung on the structure with no visible swaying or bending whatsoever). The structure sustains wind speeds of 60 miles per hour and is weight bearing (as mentioned already). The unit can be purchased with integrated racks that attach to the poles as well as an integrated table, which can attach to the frame. Lights can be attached to the frame as well. The racks, tables, and lights are all add-ons from LP Tent.
The unique feature is that LP Tent provides enclosed system inflatables. You don’t need a generator nor constant power. To inflate, there are two options for the purchaser, a battery-powered pump or a plug-in model (of course both could be purchased and used in various situations).
“We sell to race directors, many of whom purchase the archways, and companies who brand the tents and inflatables,” said Scott Watson, marketing coordinator for LP Tent, USA.
Theraworx Active – say relief:
According to Justin Niefer, national account director for Therawork Active, this topical endurance and recovery formula, “essentially prevents cramps, releases muscle tightness, and reduces muscle soreness – three common things encountered in trail running.
“It is different than other products in the marketplace because it doesn’t hear or cool, rather it provides a deep tissue physiological effect,” says Niefer. “Theraworx Active increases deep tissue blood flow and reduces muscle performance limiting factures. It can be used pre, during, and post activity.”
New in the run market this year, the company’s goal is to develop relationships with run specialty owners and the endurance athlete. Available in spray or foam, an 8-ounce bottle retails for $19.99. Theraworx Active towels are also available for purchase.
The company is based in Asheville, NC, and is 100% made in the USA. More information at: https://theraworx.com/.