Saturday, August 13, 2016

Gear Review - Nathan Quick Shot Plus

Lately, I have had several runs that I wanted to have a little water with me, but not so much as to use my hydration belt. On some runs, out of desperation, I've used a 16 oz plastic water bottle and while that got the job done, I ended up with cramps in my hands from holding the bottle, so I asked for some recommendations from my running friends. One of the recommendations was a Nathan handheld.

Nathan has an entire line of handheld water bottles. I paid Amazon $16 to send me a gray/black/yellow Quick Shot Plus.

I used it on my 4 miles hill run last week. So these are first impressions and don't include any longevity points.

The Good

  • It's small enough to fit my hands and is adjustable for the tightness along the back of my hand.
  • There is an indentation vertically along the back of the bottle that the heel of my hand fits nicely into. This makes for a comfortable fit without gripping as well as gives a bit of leverage to squirt the water into my mouth on the run.
  • I can get a squirt of water into my mouth on the run without stopping, walking or otherwise thinking about it. No opening valves or biting down. Just upend it and give it a little squeeze.
  • When I say a squirt, I mean a squirt. A mouthful of water that's easy to swallow without choking me. But if you squeeze longer, you can get a larger amount of water. As soon as you stop squeezing the water stops coming.

The Bad

  • While the back strap can be adjusted, it doesn't adjust a lot. So if you've got large hands, skip this and find something else. My husband couldn't even get it on.
  • When the bottle is full, a small amount of water squirts out with every step. After a couple of oz are pulled out of it, that seems to stop, but it makes the bottle effectively 8 oz instead of 10 oz. To be fair, I had this trouble with my Amphipod bottles that go on my hydration belt until I replaced their Jett-Squeeze caps with Push-Pull caps.
  • The pouch increases the bulk between my hand and my body. My arm swing is fairly close to my body and the pouch annoyed me by brushing my hip, sometimes catching on it and interrupting my arm swing. I didn't even have the pouch full. It just had my house key in it. If I start trying to fill it up with gels and tissue and whatnot all, it'll just get worse.

The Verdict - Not for me

I think the bulk of the pouch will do me in. I'll keep it around as a spare, but I'm on the hunt for something better for me. Suggestions are welcome! I have a couple other options I'm going to try out and I'll review those later on.

What's your favorite handheld water bottle solution?

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