Gear

Our Editors’ Favorite Things in April

Members can win one of our editors' top picks.

Every month we spend hours and hours swimming and biking and running. Yes, we test the newest gear, but our editors also all have their old favorites—and what they find works (and doesn’t work for them). Each month, our staff will share their favorite things getting them through the tri-life right now and members can enter to win one of editors’ picks.

This month, members can enter to win a Nathan running vest. Enter by May 15 and check back next month for new picks.

Hydragun Percussive Massager

I’ve been bumping up my run mileage over the past few weeks and my body has done a not-so-subtle job of reminding me that I’m not in my twenties any more—so I’ve been a little more diligent about recovery lately. The Hydragun has made this unbelievably easy: I-t’s super quiet, easy to use, lightweight, and gets into all your tight trouble spots. I’ve been crashing in front of the TV for the evening and busting out the Hydragun on my quads, calves, hammies—and I can tell! It really helps loosen up tight muscles and has six different speeds, so you get a lot of control over the intensity. At $300, it’s not cheap, but it’s a worthwhile investment if you’re someone who prefers a quick and convenient recovery option.

– Emma-Kate Lidbury, managing editor

Nathan’s Vaporswiftra 4 Liter Women’s Race Vest

It took me way too long living in Arizona to realize that once April hits any run over about 30 minutes requires that I bring water. I’ve tried a few different vests and this is by far my favorite for these medium-long runs. The adjustability and women’s-specific design are ideal for making sure you get the perfect fit (size up if you’re in between sizes). This is the first water storage solution I’ve found that has zero bounce and doesn’t cause chafing. So far the best has been extremely breathable and doesn’t add to body heat—which will be key when the sunrise temperature is in the 90s in a couple of months. I’ve hand-washed it several times and it’s held up well. The 1.5L bladder has been plenty for my needs so far, but it’s definitely on the lower size of the offerings out there. As I up mileage, there’s space to add flasks or other nutrition. Running in the summer heat isn’t fun but I’m confident it’ll be slightly more enjoyable thanks to this vest.

– Liz Hichens, senior digital editor

MEMBERS: You can win a Nathan’s vest by entering here.

Wahoo Rival Smartwatch

OK, I’ll admit it, I went through a wave of emotions with this watch. First, I was excited that one of my favorite cycling computer brands was releasing a device for running. Then, I got to use the Rival, and it wasn’t quite what I had hoped. It didn’t have great smartphone connectivity—notifications were oddly limited; it didn’t have a lot of the basic functions like track running workouts or the ability to do unlimited multisport iterations for brick workouts or swimruns; it wasn’t even particularly intuitive. I was disappointed. But then I did fall in love with the transition handoff function that seamlessly transfers data and screens from the Rival to their ELMNT bike computer, and the auto transition that senses when you change sports. It’s been a real rollercoaster ride. Now with the recent updates to the Rival that finally added better multisport profile creation, more smartphone notifications (but not enough, in my opinion), and a very cool track profile, I find myself back on the Rival rollercoaster again, but having more fun this time. While I still feel that the design and lack of everyday functions make this more of a workout-only device, I’m OK with switching watches when it’s time to train, and I might be starting to fall back in love again.

– Chris Foster, executive editor

Rabbit EZ Tee T-Shirt

I’m a big believer in workout clothes that can also pass as work-from-home clothes. The key, I’ve found, is the thin line between fuctionality and fashion—you gotta ride that line, which is hard. And which is why I’m always on the hunt for perfect t-shirts or tanktops—also love my Varlo “Swim Bike Run Club” shirt. And it’s why I’m a sucker for roundups of cute running shirts and pants. That’s how I found this t-shirt from rabbit. It’s just the right amount of fitted but not too fitted. It’s very soft. It’s great for running or Zoom calls, plus I’m wearing it right now while I’m working. I almost didn’t order it because $45 is kind of expensive for a t-shirt, but good thing I did. Really you’re getting so many kinds of shirts in one.

– Kelly O’Mara, editor-in-chief