UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 Review
Long runs are hard on the body. They burn a lot of energy, so it’s imperative that you replenish your energy stores and stay hydrated. In addition, you need to keep all your necessities with you. For instance, your phone for music or emergencies, a windbreaker in case it gets cold, etc. That’s why hydration vests have become so popular. These vests are designed for long runs, with plenty of useful pockets for all your necessities and storage for bottles or reservoirs of water.
What stands out in the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 is its superb breathability and lightweight. In addition, its Ergofit design and MaxO2 Sternum cords take into consideration the human anatomy to ensure agility, comfort, and high performance. Its downsides are its sizing and pocket accessibility. However, for its great price, you still get a lot in return for what you pay. Read on to learn more about all the great features of the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0.
- Ergofit design
- Bottle and reservoir
- Excellent breathability
- MaxO2 Sternum cords
- Great price
- Inconvenient pockets
- Reservoirs not included
You can use the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 with both bottles and reservoirs, but it’s more suitable for those who prefer bottles. It comes with two UltrAflask 550mL Hybrid bottles, made with soft plastic and with a curved shape to contour the shape of your chest and ensure a comfortable fit. They have easy pull-up nozzles and can hydrate you quickly.
In addition, you can drink from them without using your hands. The reservoir goes in the rear sleeve while a tube goes over each shoulder, held in place by guide strips. If you decide to use this instead, then you can use the pockets for bottles in the front to store other things like bars to give you an energy boost.
However, the nylon mesh still feels a bit rough against the skin. Though it snug fit minimizes the friction, some friction is inevitable. During long runs, having the mesh against your skin could cause chafing. There are some good anti-chafing balms that you can use to prevent this.
But to avoid the hassle - just wear a shirt underneath your UltrAspire Alpha 3.0.
Reviewers say that breathability is the most outstanding feature of the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 vest. Even in temperatures over 90 degrees Fahrenheit, it keeps you feeling as fresh as possible. Because of this, they consider it the perfect hydration vest for hot sunny days.
Rather than having a traditional vest design, the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 vest has shoulder straps with an S curve. The straps stay out of the way when the arms are moving. They allow for flexible movements of the arms and minimizes the likelihood of neck and shoulder pain. In the long run (no pun intended), this small detail can save you a lot of aches.
The straps loop around the hooks on the other side. Some reviewers say they are easy to remove while others say that it was hard to undo. If you wear running gloves, if your hands are numb in the cold weather, or if you’re just clumsy, you might find the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0's straps inconvenient.
Theoretically, you can reach back when running to grab things from the two side pockets, but reviewers say that it’s not as convenient as it seems. One reviewer said the side pockets are hard to access when running, and that to take things out you need to stop running and interrupt your workout. Reviewers also said that the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 should have pockets to store energy bars to refuel you during your run and to store other things.
However, there is no extra small. Women tend to be of small stature, so those who have a narrower frame may find the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 vest too loose for them. What’s more, the vest may not fit comfortably with breasts. These are the downsides that come with a unisex fit. On the bright side, there are hydration vests designed especially for women such as the Ultimate Direction Ultra Vesta 4.0, which may be a better pick.
When running, you’ll probably find yourself stopping to maneuver something out of a pocket, particularly the smaller side pockets. This interrupts the flow of your workout and can get frustrating. If you don’t plan on carrying small things or using the side pockets, then this isn’t much of an issue - but otherwise, seek a vest like the Camelbak Chase, which reviewers confirm has nice and accessible pockets.
The inexpensive price makes this hydration pack great for amateur runners or runners who just want to test out a hydration vest for the first time. It’s not a huge investment, not a huge commitment, and it’s a good starting point because of that. And remember - more expensive doesn’t always mean better. Though this vest has its downsides, it also has great features for a great price.
Due to its water capacity, the UltrAspire Alpha 3.0 vest is suitable for long runs of up to 100 miles. The breathability makes it perfect for hot summer weather - just keep in mind that it’s recommended you still wear a shirt underneath to prevent chafing. With its low price, anybody can - and should - give this vest a try!