Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Zensah Ultra Compression Sleeves Review

Disclaimer: I received Zensah Compression Sleeves to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!

Two bits of info to set the stage: 
  • My calves are awful. They will cramp up for no reason at all. I wake up with Charlie Horses more often than I would like and the pain tends to last the entire day.
  • This is my first ever experience with compression socks/sleeves/etc.

Having shared those two things, I imagine it is pretty obvious that I was super excited when I was told that we were going to be trying out Zensah Ultra Compression Sleeves!

To start with, ordering was a breeze. This chart is available on the website and I was able to quickly measure my calf and get it all sorted out.

With my luck I was, of course, on the dividing line between medium and large. I decided I would prefer a little extra squeeze and went with the mediums. When I got the sleeves in the mail I immediately knew I made the right choice. They are like a bear hug for my legs without being so tight I lose feeling below my knees. The most difficult part of ordering these sleeves was actually picking a color! I love anything neon and these are available in a great variety. I finally chose neon pink…because you can always use more pink!
Patience is not one of my stronger virtues – so as soon as I saw the Zensah box on my doorstep I ripped it open and put the sleeves on immediately. This is probably one of the moments I should be glad I live alone since they were over my black tights and paired with a lovely floral print pencil skirt. Not one of my better fashion moments, but my legs were immediately grateful.

A common mistake I made while training for the Space Coast Marathon last fall was believing that I was doing enough to recover just because I was taking a day off of running. What I often fail to account for is the amount of time I spend on my feet stressing the same muscles. Last year that resulted in a calf strain that derailed my training for a while, so now I am looking for recovery options that do not involve staying off my feet. Like many people I have a job that does not stop just because I ran a lot the past weekend and what is best for your body is often not a viable option. As much as I love my foam roller I have realized that I need to do more. This weekend was a fantastic opportunity to try out these sleeves on my overworked and exhausted calves.
Saturday I was on my feet for most of the twelve hours I spent volunteering for a conference at our barn (while wearing Toms because I do not plan ahead lol). Sunday was spent sitting in a car, standing behind a college fair table, and then sitting in the car again. All for a grand total of eleven hours. I won’t lie, my legs wanted to fall off on Saturday night already. By the time I got home Sunday I was done in. I pulled on the compression sleeves while I reheated some dinner and felt so much better immediately. It’s almost like the muscles breathe a sigh of relief because the sleeves are holding them in and doing some of the work for them.

Monday I went for a 2.25 mile run then went to a 75 minute warm flow class. I slept in the sleeves again that night and felt amazing the next morning. Tuesday night was a 5 mile trail run and the first time I tested out my sleeves while running. It felt so good. My legs didn’t get tired (despite having not run that far since November and tackling some crazy trails!). The only downside was that they got covered in mud so I couldn’t sleep in them!

For the sake of comparison, I ran my 10k on the 14th without the sleeves and, despite the less intense hills and footing, I noticed my legs being more tight and sore than they had been for my run on Tuesday.
Overall: I am sold on compression sleeves and in love with Zensah! I am planning on ordering more of these sleeves in many many more colors! I would highly recommend trying the Zensah Ultra Compression Sleeves if you want a good tight squeeze to help with shin splints or calf pain!

Check out other BibRavePro reviews:
Angie @ Angie Runs
Danielle @ Live, Run, Grow

For more information about Zensah, check out their website and social media- Zensah.comTwitter @Zensah Instagram @Zensah Facebook – Zensah

ALSO: use BIBCHAT20 for 20% off your order until March 31st!

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