I purposely don’t get overly excited about a product when I first see or use it whether I buy it or it comes as a media sample, because I have learned the hard way that how a product feels, looks and works when they are new are sometimes vastly different after a little bit of time goes by.
Perhaps with all the running gear that I have bought or tried over the years, I have become slightly jaded or skeptical, about manufacturer’s claims of greatness or maybe I just getting to be a crotchety old guy.
During the Runner’s World Half Festival, in the swag bag there were a pair of Swiftwick Aspire Socks, when I first saw them I thought to myself – just what I need another pair of socks and put them off to the side.
A little later I decided to take a closer look at them and went to the website and did a little looking around. What I saw intrigued me. I like products made in the USA (old-fashioned), a company that supports athletes and the claim that they would not stink – well if that was true, TheWife would appreciate that, because my feet and socks do STINK after running.
Swiftwick’s claim – “The best socks you will ever wear – Guaranteed”, made me want to see why they would be so willing to make this claim such a prominent part of their website.
So I decided to wear the socks and found them very comfortable. Actually I just put them on and forgot about they were on, which to me is what you are supposed to do with socks.
On Friday night we were coming back to the hotel and the Swiftwick Van pulled in at the same time, I couldn’t resist stopping and meeting Jillian and Hunter. Both were very gracious, even though they had had a long day and I could tell that they were pretty tired and just wanted to get in the hotel and relax, they stopped to talk.
When I told Jillian that I was wearing their socks and thinking about wearing them in the 5K in the morning because they were so comfortable, we got to talking more about their socks. She also provided me with a pair of the Pursuit 12 to try out.
Swiftwick Aspire Experience
How did the Swiftwicks do in the 5K? I didn’t think about my socks or feet during the race, I was able to focus on running, which is what socks are supposed to do. They worked so well that I decided to wear them during the half-marathon on Sunday!
Actually I was pretty nervous about wearing the Aspires in the half marathon, because I have had some really painful experiences on my long runs with socks that compress my toes together too much or blister my feet. However, at no time during the 13.1 miles of running did my feet bother me!
After 3 consecutive days of wearing the Aspire’s for racing and walking around, I did the sniff test – I was shocked – they didn’t STINK! TheWife will be very pleased with that, considering how much she complains about my socks stinking, especially after my long runs.
Swiftwick Pursuits Experience
I like to wear compression socks and calf sleeves after long runs and tough races, they seem to help me recover faster. The Swiftwick Pursuits are over the calf socks, so I put them on Sunday afternoon and they were very comfortable, but provided support to my calves. They didn’t crush my toes together and I didn’t take them off until just before bed.
The next day I had a 9 hour drive ahead of me and typically, I have to go sockless, or stop to take my shoes and socks off for a while, during rest stops. I wore the Pursuits all the way home and they didn’t bother me at all, my feet felt comfortable inside my shoes. This was the first time in a long time that I didn’t worry about my feet hurting during a long drive because my socks were uncomfortable.
When I wore them on my 4.0 mile recovery run on Tuesday, they caused no problems and I honestly believe that I could have worn the Pursuits during the half marathon without any issues.
The reality is that
I have been looking for socks that don’t compress my toes together when running and have tried multiple types of styles, materials, none of which have really worked to my satisfaction or to the standard of – put them on and forget about them, until now.
In the short time that I have worn them, Swiftwick Socks have really impressed me! To be able to wear the Aspires in both the 5K and Half Marathon, then to wear the Pursuits while driving 9 hours home and a 4.0 mile recovery run without any issues is a pretty tough test of how they would work for me.
The Swiftwick socks have impressed me so much, that I am planning to go out and buy a couple of pair of the Aspires in the near future. That is the highest compliment that I will give to any product, I am willing to go out and spend my own money on them.
Disclaimer: I was provided free media samples of the Swiftwick Aspire and Pursuit 12 to review and have not received any other forms of compensation to review this product. All opinions are my honest impressions of this product.