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I Hated Winter Running And Walking. Then I Got These Mittens.
Cold weather wreaks havoc on my hands.
That’s because I suffer from Raynaud’s disease, a condition in which the small blood vessels constrict and reduce blood flow to the extremities. When it’s cold, my fingers and toes go numb and become a ghostly shade of white then blue, until the circulation returns. Without the proper hand gear, Raynaud’s would make it impossible to run comfortably anytime it’s colder than 60 degrees.
It was just something I felt I had to accept.
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But that changed a few years ago, when Lou Fliszar, the owner of Heat X-Change Technology, came to the Rodale Headquarters in Emmaus, Pennsylvania, to talk about his new product, one that’s made running in cold weather much more comfy for athletes of all stripes, but especially so for those of us suffering from Raynaud's: the .
I’d met Lou a long time ago, when our daughters went to elementary school together, but I’d had no idea that he had invented an accessory that promised to heat up cold hands. Likewise, Lou hadn’t known I was working at Runner’s World! This reunion felt more than a little fortuitous.
The moment Lou pitched his hand-warming mittens for runners, I couldn’t wait to try them out, even though the only version available at the time was a one-size-fits-all prototype. It didn’t matter: I was happy to test and give feedback on the fit, comfort, and functionality of the mittens to help develop the final product. ()
So how do work? Re-heatable gel packets fit in pockets inside the fingers and body of the mittens. You just pop the mittens into the microwave for 40 seconds, and they keep your hands warm for up to three hours. Ninety percent of the heat from the chamber inside the mitten transfers back to your hand via those gel packets.
Before going out for your walk or run, make sure you have the right gear on:
Finally, no more frozen fingers and painful post-run thaw!
And as an added bonus, not only do the HXT Marathon Mittens improve my cold-weather running experience, they save my hands on very important dog walks as well.
If only they came in a tiny dog size...
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