The 2018 Swim/Bike/Run Gear I Use List

It’s that time of year again – the “Swim/Bike/Run Gear I use List!”.  Well, ok, it was that time of year like 3 years ago.  Thankfully as part of The Girl’s new duties, she prodded me enough to get my list done, and tomorrow you’ll see her list. Yup, a daily-double. Actually, that’s just a back to back header. Who knows.

It’s funny, in many ways the core of my training stuff hasn’t changed a ton. The tech has, and even the bike, but there’s also a lot that hasn’t. I still use the same winter cycling/running gear, and the same swimsuits.  And lots of other things like that.

While there’s a lot of gear here (because I’m covering three sports), I think you’ll find I’m actually pretty simple when it comes to most of my gear (tech goodies aside).

I’ve divided it up into the three main sports (swim/bike/run), plus a random section at the end.  Obviously, I don’t use all this gear at the same time.  For example, cold-weather swim booties are reserved for those hideous cold weather triathlons that I’ve succeeded in avoiding in the past half-decade. This year I only did warm-weather triathlons (in Australia).

As anyone will tell you – there’s a lot of gear to be had for triathlon, and there’s unfortunately simply no getting around that.  I’m typically not one to buy the most expensive piece of fashionable stuff – and brands don’t tend to mean a lot to me.  I just buy what works for me.  None of these brands sponsor me or anything here.  It’s just what I’ve bought myself and use day to day.

Note: This is NOT my usual Gadget Recommendations post, that’s different. This is simply the gear I use.


Perhaps the easiest category, simply due to the least amount of stuff on one’s body.  At least most of the time.  I start off with the three basics, and then the drill stuff – and then the open water swimming pieces.

Swimsuit: Nike Victory Jammer: I know, I do dabble in the shorter square leg ones as well, but this is mostly my go-to suit – which is basically the same as it’s been for years.
Goggles: Speedo Vanquisher:  For the most part, it’s whatever I haven’t lost recently.  At present, this is what I bought the last time I bought three pairs, down to one left. Goggles are like socks in the dryer around here.
Swim Cap: Random Race Caps – Essentially whatever I pull from the massive Ziploc bag of past race caps.
Swim Watch: Garmin Fenix 5 Plus: I still have a soft spot for the thin Garmin Swim back in the day that didn’t need the battery charged, but these days I just want everything in one place – and my Fenix 5 Plus has become that place. I’ve had some accuracy issues with this earlier in the summer, but hoping to see if those are addressed this week swimming in warmer weather.
Openwater – Wetsuit: Currently Broke-Ass: Why is this broke? Well, because I severely tore my previous Blueseventy Helix and I haven’t gotten around to getting a replacement one yet. I managed to get away with doing all warm-water swims this year between being in Australia the first portion and now Europe for the summer.
Openwater – Visibility Buoy: Safer Swimmer – When swimming in openwater by myself, I use this to be seen by boats and the like, for example, during these swims.  I take this all around the world with me on virtually all my openwater swims.
Openwater – Booties: Blueseventy Swim Socks – For 60°F and below water, I use these booties to keep my toes warm.
Openwater – Swim Cap: Bluesventy Skull cap – Again, for super-cold water (looking at you, Boise 70.3), I use this swim cap – but I cut off the annoying chin strap (most people do).
Openwater – Anti-chaff: BodyGlide – To prevent any wrong rubbing of the wetsuit near my neck.  Works well, every triathlete should have it in their swim bag.

Invariably, a strictly pool swimmer will say that’s a lot of gear – but if you divide it up (normal vs openwater), it’s really not that much stuff…especially compared to cycling.


Note, for this year I’ve just gone with my core bikes. I’ve got a few other road bikes around, but I rarely use them these days.  You can look at my past ‘Gear I Use’ posts for details on those two.

Road Bike: Canyon Ultimate CF SL – I built this last winter and absolutely love it. It’s as much my main bike these days as my core test platform for new cycling gadgets. It was built with testing devices in mind (hence why I skipped aero handlebars, due to complexities with mounts). It’s working great for me as my workhorse, and I could easily see buying another Canyon down the road (mainly because they’re so darn cheap here in Europe).
Triathlon Bike: Cervelo P3C – This just happened to be the bike that fit me best.  I use all the stock components, minus adding Shimano Di2 (purely for product testing/compatibility – I wouldn’t otherwise bother).
The Commuter Bike: Trek Belleville: Here’s the whole backstory on that bicycle.  Though, in reality I also ride the new cargo bike just as much as this bike..if not probably more.
The Cargo Bike: Urban Arrow: This is how I get all my goods back and forth to the office, as well as get the kiddos (and The Girl) around town. Also, random visitors get stuck in it too. We couldn’t live in Amsterdam without a cargo bike (since we have no car here).
Power Meter: Everything? Seriously, I’m not sure what I call ‘my’ power meter anymore. On my main road bike, the three units you’ll usually find on are the Quarq DZero, Garmin Vector 3, and PowerTap G3. Also as of late, the Stages LR. I’m happy to call any one of them ‘my preferred power meter’.  I suppose if I were to give one my defacto usage edge, it’s the Vector 3 pedals, since that’s what I travel with.
Race Wheels: PowerTap G3 Carbon 46mm Wheelset: I’ve been riding variants of these for a while.  I also still own a pair of HED 3’s Tubular, though I think they’re still in a friend’s cave in Paris.
Bike Pedals: Garmin Vector 3 Pedals – Though, if testing something else I’ll use whatever Look-Keo compatible pedals are around.
Water bottle cages: Elite Custom Race Cages – Honestly, I’ve tried a number of them, and my only goal in life is that they don’t pop bottles, nor snap easily.  I’m good with these.
CO2 Kit: This little kit from Performance fits right into my rack system so perfectly you’d thought they were made for each other.
Regular Helmet:  Coros Linx HelmetThis has music built-in, but frankly I rarely use the music/mic portions. Instead, I just like that it’s orange at this point and looks aero-ish. Cars easily see me, so safety wins here.
Aero Helmet: Giro Advantage 2 Helmet – I haven’t bought a new aero helmet in a long time, as most of the European races I’ve done have been draft-legal and Olympic distance, so they’re less of a concern here.
Bike jerseys: DC Rainmaker kit by Pedal Mafia: Duh!!! I’ve got both the red and blue variants of course, and use them quite a bit. When not using either of these two I’m using another kit from Pedal Mafia (Cobbled Classic is the name). And failing that, just random bike jerseys I’ve got around that I’ve bought here and there.
Bike shorts/bib: DC Rainmaker kit by Pedal Mafia: Duh Part II! Same as the previous item
Cycling Shoes: Louis Garneau Men’s Tri X-Speed Triathlon Cycling Shoes I’ve actually used these a few years now, though roughly end up going through a pair every 12-18 months.
Cold Weather Bike Coat: Gore Men’s Contest SO Jacket – I layer this over a long sleeve bike jersey. Seriously, I still own this – like 8 years later or something. On one hand I probably do need a new coat. On the other hand, it works just fine.
Cold Weather Bike Tights: Gore Bike Wear Vista Tights – These work well, and are windproof and reasonably water-resistant – which is sorta the basic requirement for me.
Bike Case: Aerus Biospeed Bike Case – Here’s a bit more in-detail on the case, and how I use it while travelling.  Unfortunately, the Biospeed model isn’t made anymore, but, a new case that appears to be exactly the same is now out (links in that post). I still use this case at least a few times or more a year. My guess is my case has about 150,000-250,000 miles on it by now. No issues.
Bike Trainer: Tacx Neo Smart Trainer – Admittedly it’s been a number of months since I was able to consistently ride the Neo, since I’ve been on a flood of new trainer tests right now.  But for me the Neo has a heavy ‘just works’ factor from an accuracy standpoint (there’s no calibration). Also, I kinda like the rumble that it creates replicating cobblestones and such.  If you’re looking at buying a new trainer, expect my guide out in a couple weeks. Hoping to get a few more trainers in before it goes live (notably the Kinetic R1, Tacx Flux S and maybe the Flux 2, plus a re-look at the JetBlack).
Bike Computer/GPS: Garmin Edge 1030: Obviously, I’m almost always riding with 3-4 head units for power meter data gathering, but, on the rare occasions I’m not – I tend to gravitate to the Edge 1030. Another way to tell which unit I prefer is that I usually put it out on my out-front mount (there are occasional exceptions to this, but that’s usually my tell).
Speed Sensor: Wahoo SPEED: I don’t use a combo speed/cadence sensor anymore, and frankly I rarely use this speed sensor. But you will find it on my bikes for various test purposes. I prefer it over the Garmin variant simply because it has dual ANT+/Bluetooth Smart, whereas the Garmin variant doesn’t.
Heart Rate Strap: Wahoo TICKR-X/TICKR: I tend to use this the most when I’m not testing something else. I really like the Scosche sensors, and use them a bunch too – but I’m also sometimes a bit overwhelmed with all the things I have to charge for each ride/run these days, and sometimes just going with a simple coin-cell battery chest strap is my preference. Note that I don’t really differentiate in my use between the TICKR-X and TICKR, I never use the ‘X’ features. I have a few of both, usually 1-2 at each home and studio and just grab whatever is hanging on the towel rack.
Bike Computer Mount: Barfly 4 Prime Out-Front Mount: I like this one, it’s metal and has tons of options for swapping to different bike computer types if I need to (such as to Wahoo or what-not). The GoPro mount aspect is functional and the whole thing is solid. But again, it’s just what’s been on my bike the longest lately, I’m also totally good with the K-Edge variants, and in fact, usually ride a K-Edge under-saddle mount for my GoPro.

I should mention that I rarely wear arm warmers, and they are just a pair that I picked up at some random demo day somewhere.  In my little mind, if it’s cold enough for arm warmers, it’s cold enough for a long sleeve jersey.  And vice versa.


Running Shoes: Asics Gel-DS Trainer 22: I switched this up again this year from the 19 to the 22, just a minor change over the previous versions I’ve used.
Running T-Shirt: Whatever technical t-shirt I grab out of the massive drawer of dozens of them.  If you don’t have any running t-shirts, you’re not doing enough races. ;)
Running Shorts: Nike Dri-FIT running shorts: I mostly wear these first, but I’ve got plenty of pairs of shorts that I use.
Running Socks: Balega Hidden Comfort – No questions, these socks…forever.  So soft, just love them.  I’ve never had blisters with them.  Ever.
Running Watch: Garmin Fenix 5 Plus: Same as for swimming. Ultimately, finally having Spotify on this is what made me switch this past summer. That along with the maps that I occasionally use. I like the ‘middle’ version (not the S or X), as it seems to work best for me size-wise.
Long Run Hydration: CamelBak Marathoner – I still use this in the summer or on hikes. I also use it sometimes on runs to hold more GPS watches. :)
Place to stick stuff on runs: Spibelt – Most runs, I don’t bother with anything.  But for some random runs while travelling, this works as a great place to stick house/car keys, credit cards, or even gels.  I’ve tried a few brands, this one just works the best for me.
Cold Weather Running Top: I don’t have a specific top I use, rather, I tend to layer bits and pieces together. Here’s a post on all my cold weather running thoughts.
Cold Weather Running Tights: Sugoi Midzero tights – These are my favorite.  I’ve only got one pair, and use them religiously in cold weather (below about 42°F).
Cold Weather Running Gloves: $1.00 race expo gloves – That’s it.  It’s easy.  I almost never throw them away, I feel guilty.  So I use a few rotating pairs, all from expos – some even free!  I’ve got a pair of no-brand mittens that I toss on if the weather is super-cold, but like running tops in cold weather, you’d be surprised what your body is fine with once it’s up to speed.  All you folks in Minnesota though shouldn’t adhere to this section.  Just go to the Arctic section of REI instead.
Ice Running: Yaktrax – There’s no better way to run on compact snow and ice, albeit not much of that in Amsterdam most of the time. Though, I deeply regretted not taking them to Canada last week. Note that for deeper snow though, they aren’t as useful/necessary.

The Random Category:

Here’s a few random things that didn’t fit above into a specific category.

Bike/Run Nutrition: I know a bunch of folks will ask about this, but I don’t really have any specific go-to right now. Since I’m not training for iron-distance races at the moment, I can kinda get away with not having to be super consistent on this front.  Most rides/runs under a couple hours I’m just doing water and whatever random granola thing I find in a kitchen drawer somewhere.
Daily Action Cam: GoPro Hero 7 Black: It was the Hero 6 Black before the Hero 7 came out, but since having that for a bit now – the quality is worth the jump.
GoPro Accessories I use: Complete list here: It’s basically all the accessories I use daily.
Preferred Drone: DJI Mavic Air: While the new DJI Mavic 2 is great and all, I prefer the ability to use just my phone to control the Mavic Air when I’m travelling or just stuffed in the back of my jersey pocket for a quick pic. 
All Other Photography Gear:
 Be sure to check out my full photography page, which lists all the cameras I use when I’m not swim/bike/running.
Race belt: FuelBelt GelReady Race Belt –  For races, to put your number on for the bike and run.  It also holds gels, though, not as well as I’d like.  Better just as a race belt for the number than a storage platform.
Triathlon suit: 2XU: I got it down in Australia before a race there, but since I’m travelling at the moment I don’t quite have access to it. And it’s at this juncture that I realized I never quite published my Fremantle triathlon race report from then. Hmm…
Transition Bag: I’ve simply moved to a generic REI backpack, especially with many triathlons having ‘clean’ transition areas these days anyway (i.e. point to point races).  As long as it has places to clip stuff on the sides, you can carry a lot with a little creativity.



For long-term readers, you’ll notice that I don’t tend to change the apparel side very much. Most of that stays pretty much the same for years. Things like shoes only change a tiny bit between available variants of the same model. Same goes for other non-tech categories.  I tend to be a person that sticks with what works rather than re-invent the wheel.

Whereas on the tech side I tend to stay with the most recent. Obviously, this site sorta drives that a bit.


Obviously there’s a lot of gear there, but that’s primarily because you’re training for three different sports.  Actually, it’s sorta like 4-5 sports, with openwater swimming and pool swimming both having different requirements (i.e. wetsuits), plus you have specific gear you’d use in triathlon that you don’t use in road cycling (like triathlon suits).

It should be noted that none of the stuff seen above is stuff that I’m trying out for reviews.  Every single item above I’ve bought and use in my normal day to day training.  Obviously, you see me use gear outside of that in testing – but this is what’s left after you peel the testing and reviewing away.

As always, if you utilize any of the Amazon or Clever Training links – magic happens and you support the blog (and with Clever Training you get 10% off your order with coupon code DCR10BTF, and free US shipping for orders over $49US).  Your support is always appreciated around these parts.

Thanks for reading!

P.S. –  The Girl’s list is slated to automatically post tomorrow as well. We’re on top of it this week!


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  1. Tim B

    Hi Ray, do you have any Bluetooth headphones that you use for sport purposes? Safety aside, I’m looking for some input to pair to my new Fenix 5x Plus.

    • Bill

      Tim – I love my Trekz Air BT headphones. They are bone conduction, which some people like and some hate. I really like it because I can hear my music clearly, and loudly, but I can also hear what’s going on around me.

    • I’ve been using the Skullcandy Method ones lately, though I did something in the last day or two that’s made them unhappy. So I’ll probably use my older Beats the rest of the week until I can figure it out.

      Here’s the Skullcandy ones (The Girl also likes these in the gym): link to amzn.to

  2. John S.


    Do you wear the Fenix 5+ 24/7? Do you track your sleep with it? I was just curious how comfortable it is given it’s weight.

    • Phil S

      Hi John
      Hopefully Ray will answer but FWIW I’ve worn my Fenix 5 (Not S or X) every day and night since early 2017. I have moderately skinny wrists but have never had any issues with the weight or comfort. Battery lasts at least a week. This is my steps/activity tracker and sleep tracker.
      The strap has deteriorated over time and I probably should have got a new one after about 14 months (about £45).
      Works really well. It’s just a shame that the app is a bit rubbish. Simple issues like graph scales etc.
      Hope that helps

    • Generally I wear it 24×7.

      It doesn’t bother me after a day or two.

    • ekutter

      So you’ve gotten used to the comfort aspect of the F5+ vs the 935? I’d love the extra functionality of the F5+ but not ready to increase the size/weight (or shell out the money for a compromise). I’d probably get a 935+ (or whatever they’ll call it) in a heartbeat, almost regardless of the cost.

    • I think in large part me testing the Fenix 5+ series for so long got me used to it, especially since I first tested the 5X+ in its bigger size (which I historically don’t prefer). So after like a month or so of that before going to the regular 5+, it was like going from a semi truck to a Vespa.

    • Chris

      I have the Fenix 5, and one of the ‘hacks’ I’ve come up with is moleskin. I put a piece on the back (the ones for corns or bunions have a hole that fits perfectly around the hr monitor) cut out a wedge for the charging cable, stick it on, and then no chaffing, rubbing, or nasty buildup of sweat in your charging port. A pack of 12 costs like $3 US from your local drug store, and each one will last a week if you’re like me (run 40 miles a week, cycle 2x per week). While I wouldn’t recommend it swimming or showering, otherwise, it works great.

  3. Phil S

    Hi Ray
    Do you swim with a heart rate strap?

    • Generally no. I just don’t find HR while swimming all that useful.

    • I’ve found HR while swimming incredibly useful when I finally worked out what it was useful for.
      When swimming it’s all too easy to fool yourself into thinking you’re a faster swimmer by trying harder. This leads to an aweful lot of tiredness if you don’t have good technique. When I finally made progress on technique, my HR dropped noticeably for the exact same pace. This obviously represents an associated drop in muscle fatigue, so is useful to know when training.
      You could (and probably will) argue that you can feel this change so don’t need to record it. I find it useful to see the science in this instance though, and it also shows which training techniques are working and which are not. Since swimming is all about efficiency and technique, fitness and strength are secondary factors and times/pace don’t tell you much about how “good” you are.
      Of course, to see this in action you need to be capable of both good and bad techniques at the same pace. I got very lucky that I was wearing the strap on a day I had a breakthrough. I rarely have the strap on in the pool though, just makes me self conscious. The lake is full of Tri-data-geeks though…

    • That’s probably the best reasoning/explanation I’ve heard yet for HR while swimming.

    • Considering who you talk to, that’s a little worrying! Kinda makes me think I’m talking gibberish and I don’t yet know why ;)

    • Now I think about it, running power should be the same as this. You SHOULD be able to run at identical pace with good and bad technique and see drastic changes in power. May be the test method to show value. Any device that relates power to speed would be a fail in my book. There should definitely be scenarios where slower running has higher power.

    • Robert Mann

      What do you use?

  4. JB

    Hello Ray,

    Thanks for the post, I will try the Spibelt, I currently use an old money belt when carrying my phone running.

    Another question: Bike Lights? What do you use? For me there are two scenarios, urban where I am more concerned with being seen, and rural, where I want to make sure I don’t hit a badger.



    • I’m kinda mixed across a bunch of random lights. For my commuter & cargo bike, it’s just some random stock lights on there (non-smart). For my road bike I’ve used both the Garmin Varia and Bontrager lights most times.

  5. Robert C

    Great list as always. I do want to say the blueseventy Swim Socks (Black, Large) are listed on Amazon.com for the bargain price of $119,999.00 and free shipping.

  6. Robert C

    Since you use the Fenix 5x Plus and the Edge 1030, why not use the HRM-Tri?

  7. Tetervinas

    Thanks for sharing this list Ray, I was always curious what gear do you use besides all the tech stuff.

  8. Aaron G

    I only run (no bike or swim), and I’m doubtful I could put together a “what I use” list that would be nearly as concise as what you have for all 3 triathlon sports. Part of the reason is that I do live in Minnesota, so I/we appreciate your concession in this post about our need to adapting to better suited gear for our climate.

    Looking forward to the day you do a meet-up in Minnesota.

  9. Sylvester Jakubowski

    Triathlon Bike: Cervelo P3C – This just happened to be the bike that fit me best. I use all the stock components, minus adding Shimano Di2 shifting last summer (purely for product testing/compatibility – I wouldn’t otherwise bother).

    That’s quite a few years back for *last summer* :)

  10. Jilani

    Thanks for the post, Ray. Do you have a preferred training app on the bike trainer?

  11. Brandon L

    Cold weather cycling gloves?

    • I’ve got a pair of Trek gloves for lighter stuff, and then another pair of heavier gloves – but I’m not at home at the moment to see the exact brand. :-/

    • David Chrisman

      Brandon–I use Gore fingered gloves for 25-40 F and lobster gloves from Craft for below 25 (both windproof) but it looks like neither company is selling them now :(

      I’d definitely recommend windproof whatever you find. Maybe check out 45NRTH–they make great gear for cold cycling

    • The Real Bob

      I bike commute year round and have tried everything , at least it seems like it. I have found that there is not a single glove that can keep my hands warm at sub 20 temps.

      But I did find a solution. Bar mitts. They flat put work. Unless it gets real cold, like -10, I barely need gloves with bar mitts. Most time i actually end up taking off my gloves mid ride because my hands are warm.

      For the feet. Shimano winter boots with toe covers.. for some reason, every winter boots I have, I got 3, I still need toe covers to be warm.

    • Brandon L

      Awesome, thanks so much all!

    • Dan G

      I just use ski gloves

    • Chris

      Outdoor Research makes the tactical gloves we used to wear on missions. Lightweight, good tactile function, gortex lined, and extremely durable. Only downside is that they’re a military glove, so color selection is a bit limited. But imho, bang for your buck, you can’t really do better for 0<F<40 degree weather.

  12. Nate

    is there a newer version of the PowerTap G3 Carbon 46mm Wheelset? looks those are being made anymore from the link you posted.

  13. Hi there, Ray.
    Nice overview – good work.
    Just noticed that your links to Amazon are somewhat broken here in Germany.
    For example the link to the Nike Dri-FIT running shorts:
    link to amazon.de
    when you change amazon.de to amazon.com all works fine.
    Interestingly the links are correct just shortly after loading your page, but some seconds later all amazon.com urls change to amazon.de automatically…

    just wanted to let you know.


    • Thanks.

      Yeah, the challenge is the site will auto redirect to the nearest Amazon store based on where you’re coming from. It uses the Amazon SKU numbers to match items in the local store. For most popular items that works fairly well, but for lesser items it oft falls apart. :/

  14. John

    I used to buy the strawberry PowerBar energy chews you recommended a few years back, but they stopped making them. :-/ My replacement has been the Honey Stinger energy chews (the waffle people).

    GU gels have long been my favorite for insta-energy. It’s too bad Clif can’t seem to get on the gluten-free bandwagon.

  15. Tim

    What size tires do you run? Have you bought into the recent shift back towards wider tires for comfort and/or lower rolling resistance?

    • Tim Grose

      If Ray’s P3 is like mine (and probably is as we are both tall) then I have to run 23mm as 25mm would rub. 25mm seems pretty much standard on modern road bikes these days though.

    • Chris

      How would widening a tire decrease rolling resistance ? My (albeit dated) physics lessons tell me that if you increase the contact surface, you increase friction, thus increase rolling resistance.

  16. Kevin

    Ray – any plans to do a review on your Urban Arrow? Would love to hear more about your take on it. Thinking about getting one, but shops that have them are very few and far between here in the states. At least in my part of the country. Looking at it mainly for for errands, etc as opposed to transporting kids. Wondering how it does with minor hills (I realize your in Amsterdam so likey not much experience – I’m in Ohio – relatively flat but we do have rollers), battery life, speed, and maneuverability.

  17. Rick

    Any plans for Suunto to release a Spartan Trainer with baro or a smaller Suunto 9 (maybe Suunto 3…)? Spartan Sport is too big….

  18. Abdiel

    Are there no specific shoes for trailrunning? Doing all your runs off road in a DS-Trainer is quite impressive.., ^_^

    • Abdiel

      Damn those double post! Move along, there’s nothing to see here… -_-

    • Chris

      I do a lot of trail running, and my goto is a Merrell Trail Glove, but I’m also a barefoot runner.

      However, I will say that the Merrells are the first pair of trail running shoes I retired due to mileage (they’re my powerlifting shoes) rather than due to damage. I’ve had them for almost 5 years now, only had to replace the insoles. The Vibram soles on those shoes still look nearly brand new. I picked up a pair of Trail Glove 4s and couldn’t be happier with them.

  19. Abdiel

    Are there no specific shoes for trailrunning? Doing all your runs off road in a DS-Trainer is quite impressive… ^_^

  20. Richard Horák

    Hallo Ray, i m sorry but, do You need these things for “move”? How did people do sorts times ago?
    These expensive thing You can transform to hepl other people in need, it is only imagination.
    Ciao, Richard

  21. Craig

    I always presumed you’d be a running shoe tester too. No vaporfly or Pegasus turbo?

  22. Anonymouse

    Ray — You wrote that you “don’t use a combo speed/cadence sensor anymore . . . .” May I ask why? Is it because your power meter pedals handle cadence so you just have a speed sensor to deal with tunnels or other GPS drops? Thanks!

  23. Tim Johnson

    Being primarily a pool swimmer I would not consider your list huge. For my swimming I also use, pull buoy, leg strap, kick board, hand paddles, flippers, swim cap and an assortment of goggles. So your list is not really that long.

  24. Gennaro

    Hey Ray, are you saying you don’t measure cadence any longer? And speed mostly with GPS rather than sensor? Looks weird to me!

    Ciao Gennaro

    • I get cadence from my power meters. And for speed data, yeah, totally good with GPS speed for all my scenarios. Mostly because A) GPS speed is generally good enough on the road (vs trails), and B) I don’t tend to use the metric very much.

  25. Philippe

    Hello, I would like to congratulate you (the girl :) ) for your visible contribution to the blog!
    Your style is really entertaining and fits very well with Ray’s style as well!
    I enjoyed reading Ray before and now I even enjoy more reading the two of you!

  26. Hugh o malley

    Hi Ray, great list! Thanks for posting :) I just have a question regarding the watch, currently looking to upgrade. I don’t need mapping( have an edge 520plus) and don’t want Spotify as music while running isn’t my thing! so is there any point spending the extra on the 5s over the 935? As they seem to be the only extra bits and it’s quite a bit more expensive?

  27. Hugh

    Yeah, mapping not hugely important for me, apart from on the bike and the 520plus has that covered,dont think pay is worth the extra, no one wants me in a coffee shop with them after a run :) thanks Ray!

  28. Thierry

    Can’t wait to see if the pizza oven will make the 2019 random category …

  29. Marco

    Hi Ray, thanks. One question: can you specify when there will be a guide for the trainers? Actually I am in recovery and it would help a lot to buy a trainer for the weeks and months to come. The Kickr Core is of interest to me – but I am not sure if it makes sense to spend 200 Euros more, compared with tacx flux s, just to have it a little bit more silent. And then there is the direto from elite …
    Can you help brighten things up?

    • Likely next week. Probably not this week, as I’ve got a few things in the hopper already, and I’ve got a few trainers to unbox and such this week that I want to include.

      I believe a Flux S is supposed to arrive tomorrow at the studio, among others.

  30. John Caldwell

    How does the size of the Tickr compare to the HRM-TRI or other garmin straps? The Tickr has always looked like it sticks out a ton in their advertising pictures, but I figure it has to be mostly comparable since so many people seem to like it.

    • Nah, it’s honestly almost an identical to the pod that older-school Garmin straps used, just white instead of black. Same connectors and all that.

      It’s a bit thinner than the HRM-TRI (blue pod) or HRM-RUN (red pod) straps, but also a bit taller/wider.

      The one downside compared to the HRM-TRI is that it won’t offload swim data to your Garmin.

  31. WattsUp

    Were you connecting them to the Fenix 5+? I’ve had multiple Skullcandy Method earbuds die on me after doing so – and Skullcandy support was unhelpful to say the least (boilerplate response that I ‘may have inadvertently put the earbuds in programming mode’ but no advice on how to correct it). I no longer connect my Method earbuds to my watch, since it’s a PITA to keep sending it in and getting a replacement sent out; I use a el-cheap $19 pair of earbuds from some China maker for connecting to the Garmin. Not as comfortable and sound quality is worse, but the garmin doesn’t kill it…

    • I was attempting to, but I was pretty sure the battery actually died on the plane. So I hadn’t confirmed sign of life (any lights) post-plane prior to trying to get them to connect. :( So unclear if the Fenix did it, or something else (but am aware of some reports like yours about the Fenix Headphone Killer).

      Either way, still gotta ring up support.

  32. Jean-Philippe Baril

    I hope the Tacx Flux 2 will be included in your trainer buying guide as I’m waiting for it to choose between the Flux 2 and the Wahoo Kickr Core. Thanks for your site.

    • I doubt it. In theory a Flux S was supposed to arrive today, but maybe it’ll be tomorrow. I’ve gotta get tracking (probably would have been faster for me to pedal over to them and pick it up).

      But I haven’t heard of the Flux 2 being a near-term thing – I’ll ask though.

    • Ok, sounds like Flux 2 is slightly nearer than initially thought. I’ll probably have one in about 1-2 weeks.

    • Jean-Philippe Baril

      Yeah, I read somewhere it was supposed to go on sale near October 26th.
      Can’t wait to read your review!

  33. John

    Hello Ray,
    I tray to order the Saferswimmer from your website amazon.fr and amazon.com but is not longuer possible.
    Thanks for your reviews.

    • I don’t think it’s on Amazon.fr unfortunately. But Amazon.com I do still see it: link to amzn.to

      But it doesn’t appear to ship from Amazon US to a European address (if you switch to a US address, it works). Finally, Clever Training US does offer them, but intl shipping on that specific item probably wouldn’t make sense. Maybe I can see about getting them to ship a box of of them over to CT UK/EU so it’s easy for European folks.

  34. Angel

    Do you running with a heart rate strap?

    • I do – but it’s typically when I’m trying to do comparison tests. If I’m running with only one watch (a rarity), then I’ll often skip a HR strap (primarily if it’s a steady-state run).

  35. Allan Rube

    Ray, what is your favorite running training app. I have been using Strava for its social aspects but I prefer garmin connect. Now that I have the running dynamic pod I wish I could put more than 5 items on the running activity full page.

    • I use Strava for social bits, and then use Training Peaks for/as my official training log.

      I use Garmin Connect’s mobile app more as a holistic look at what I’m doing (steps/sleep/etc…).

  36. Allan

    Do you use a power meter while running – if so, Stryd, GArmin, runscribe or other?

  37. Ed P

    Just wondering what’s your go-to fan when you’re on a bike trainer?

    • I’ve ended up caving a bit and picking up the Wahoo Headwind. But, I also bought a pile of random cheap fans off of Amazon that I’m planning to construct into a mega-fan. :)

  38. Dafydd

    Hi Ray – I am looking for a simple charging type of heart rate chest strap. I’ve been a big polar fan for over 20 years for both the watch and strap, but the last few years using the H5/6/7 I find the battery being used up within a month or two and realistically its costing way too much. Any ideas on one?

    • That’s definitely super high battery usage. Aside from purchasing coin cell batteries in bulk (which is what I do, usually in 10-12 packs for a few dollars), it almost sounds somehow environmental. They should be lasting closer to a year, even with an hours usage per day.

      If it were one strap, I’d have said it was a simple short – meaning it’s basically burning the entire time. But to have three straps is weird.

    • Chris

      My guess would be either that:

      A) you got a batch of bad batteries or
      B) one of your devices is constantly pinging the HR strap, causing it to wake up and try to connect to it, and killing the battery. Perhaps you should try unpairing it from all of your devices, and then repairing it to only to the one that you’re going to use it with. See if that works.

  39. Etienne

    Fuel belt link isn’t working anymore…

  40. Patrick

    Hi Ray,
    what kind of glasses do you wear for your rides (runs)?

    • Chris

      While I’m not Ray, I am a retired Marine with photosensitivity as a result of PRK. I’ve used every ballistic, tactical, and fashion glasses out there, be they $150 Oakleys, $200 ESS or WileyX. For athletics ? I will throw my endorsement behind Tifosi. Lightweight, durable, and relatively inexpensive. Usually come with a nice case, and replaceable lenses. If you’re not planning on getting shot at or having things blow up in your face, they’re hard to beat. I most recently picked up a set of Camrocks with 3 lenses off Ebay for just over $20. Jet’s are also inexpensive. Not a fan of the Crits, but that’s because I flex my frames a bit I guess when I put them on and off, the lenses pop out.

      Other bonus, Tifosis are pretty common place in the triathalon scene, so you won’t look out of place running/riding with them.

    • Patrick

      Thanks for the suggestion Chris!
      Are your are eyes protected against the wind while riding? And do the glasses get fogged up in colder temperatures? These are the two main concerns I have with my current Uvex glasses.
      Also seems like the Tifosi ones are relatively expensive here in Germany.

    • Chris

      Wind protection is good. Especially with the wraparound styles (Podium, Jet FC) They have vents cut into the lenses to prevent fogging, but being I live in NC, it rarely gets below 0 Celsius here, so I can’t say I’ve tried them in COLD temperatures.

      Looking at ebay.de , I see prices from anywhere from 29,99 EU to 209,95 EU depending on style and what lenses it comes with. Unless you do a LOT of dawn dusk riding, I wouldn’t spend the extra money on the Fototech lenses. I bought them on a lark, and you just really can’t tell the difference.

      It’s been many years since I’ve been to Germany, so I don’t know if you have better local purchasing options.

      Viel Glück!

    • Fwiw – I use the Rapha ProTeam Flyweight. They seem functional enough to me. Though, the glue appeared to stop doing it’s job recently and one of the sides fell off, but I went to the grocery store and re-glued it on. :)

    • Chris

      I’m guessing that they’re cheaper in Europe than the US ? Or they were a promo ? If that’s the caliber of swag that’s given away to triathaletes now, maybe it’s worth competing again. I just used to get a tshirt, swimcap, and maybe a pair of last season’s Podiums.

      Are they worth the $$?

  41. Jason Ellis


    Didn’t know where else to ask this, but what happened to your Polar H10 in-depth review? I see a couple of search results when I look for it, but both appear to be dead links. I need your sage words of technical genius.

    I tried a pool swim tonight using the H10 paired up to the Polar Beat app. Started the session on the iPhone app, set the phone down on the starting blocks and got to swimming freestyle for 30 minutes. To my great dismay, my average HR for the session was a whopping 2 beats per minute. That’s right. 2. I was apparently in flatline until it hit a spike of 144bpm one single time. Then back to 0bmp. I guess that averaged out to 2bpm. The battery is full and the firmware is up to date. Last year I used the same strap with my Apple Watch to get some pretty solid HR data while I swam. No clue why it’s behaving this way now.

    I thought a stroll through the in-depth review might give me some clues. Any chance you can repair that link?

    Thanks so very much. I’ll be making a contribution soon. I’ve learned so much from your site.


  42. Psycholist

    Hey Ray,

    Do you have a light suggestion for trail running at night?

    I’ve tried two Black Diamond lights and found that the spot beam on them is not enjoyable to use. I hope to find something that has a wider beam, but have not found one yet, even with an extensive google search.

    Hope you have a good suggestion, thanks!

    • Eeks, i don’t have any good suggestions there. Sorry!

    • Psycholist

      Thanks for responding Ray!

      …maybe one just does not exist yet.

      If I do find something, I’ll post it here so the community can benefit!

      Thanks again! I appreciate all that you do!

    • JM

      Hi Psycholist,

      try Ledlenser. I’ve got the H7.2R and it’s perfect for my night running because I can adapt angle, focus as well as brightness (even the wife’s requirement to have a rear light).
      This model is a tad on the heavy side with a huge battery, though, but there’s a ton of other models too, depending on your requirements (lighter, with harness).

      Bought it for the rear light, got hooked because I could use the bright, wider mode on trails while toning it down on normal streets.

  43. Vivek

    I need your advice for selection of Smartwatch for Triathlon but I don’t want music in it. Can you please recommend some watch?
    I need watch specifically for,
    Running, swimming, cycling & heart rate monitor.

  44. Jerod Harper

    I know you probably get asked this a lot and I promise I tried to find a response before posting but couldn’t find anything, but do you sell your used/reviewed gear? I willing to bet that reviewed gear has to be returned, but didn’t know about used gear.