Why I love Compression Gear: Zensah Socks and Sleeves

I love my compression socks, sleeves (and leggings too!). I have about six different pairs of compression socks and three different pairs of compression sleeves.  By far, the best pair of socks I have are the Zensah compression socks that I won in a #runchat tweet chat a few months ago. I recently bought a pair of Zensah sleeves that I love, too.

Why does compression gear work? Zensah’s got a great blog post on it, but here are some main points:

  •  Compression improves circulation and oxygenated blood flow to improve performance and enhance recovery.
  • Improved circulation reduces the buildup of lactic acid
  • Enhance athlete’s warm-up by increasing the temperature of the skin and the muscle
  • Provide an extra support to stabilize the muscle tissue, reducing inflammation and micro trauma

I mostly wear socks for recovery, but I’ll use my Zensah sleeves during ballet and sometimes while running.


Chilling in my Zensah socks in my messy room

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Getting Back in to the Swing of Things

Up until this last week, I had only been attending one ballet class a week. This has partly been because I’ve wanted to take it slow and partly because it’s been super cold this winter. This past week I finally decided to take the leap and take not one  but three ballet classes.

As HQ wrote earlier this week,  he came to class with me last Friday. Friday night class is quickly becoming one of my favorite classes because it’s earlier in the evening and because it’s in a pretty nice studio. I decided to take another class Saturday morning.

While I’m not a huge fan of back-to-back classes, I decided to go to a Saturday morning class as well. It went really well, but I was immediately sore afterwards.

But it was good to feel that sore again and not really be in pain. It was mostly my quads, but my calves still tend to get really sore, too. Compression gear has helped immensely with dealing with the soreness and I spent nearly all Saturday and Sunday in full compression gear.

It’s good to be getting back into  the swing of things. As I wrote yesterday, I went to another class on Monday and felt great as well. Yesterday I was super antsy since I hadn’t been active  the past few days, so I even did a few barre exercises at home.

Here’s to another great weekend of ballet classes!

What’s been going well in your ballet classes lately?

SLS3 Compression Sock Review and Giveaway

I was given two pairs of compression socks in exchange for this review, one for myself, and one for a giveaway. All opinions are my own, not SLS3’s.

A while ago, Sebastian from SLS3 e-mailed me after realizing I was a lover of all things compression because of this blog. And I do. My obsession with compression started after I picked up a pair from City Sports and now I have about 4-5 pairs, all from various brands. I’ve mentioned before that I love them both post-ballet class (as well as rocking compression sleeves during ballet class) as well as during and post-run. As you’ve probably noticed, I’m a big fan of everything pink as well! Almost all of my compression socks are pink or purple, so I loved it when SLS3 sent me a pair of bright pink compression socks with butterflies on them!

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They’re pretty cute!

I was slightly worried about the sizing when it came to these compression socks. I unfortunately have pretty tiny feet (size 6) but relatively large calves, so it’s a problem when compression socks are sized only by shoe size. Fortunately, SLS3 gives both sizes for their products and I was sent a small/medium pair which fit pretty snuggly. Although they fit pretty tight at the start, they’ve loosened up a little bit to better fit my ginormous calves (without stretching out too much).

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Ready for a run!

I love how these compression socks fit and stretch compared to some other brands and the graduated compression these offer seem to work really well for recovery for me, whether it be from a tough run or a painful ballet class. One of my favorite things to do post-run is to throw these on and apply an ice pack directly over the sock.

Interested in your own pair? Adult Ballerina Project is giving a way one pair of SLS3 compression socks, matching mine in a women’s small/medium (sorry men!) in the pink butterfly pattern! Enter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Contest is open to US readers only. (Sorry guys–this broke recent graduate can’t afford international shipping!)


Can’t wait? Order your own with the coupon code TRI15 at checkout when ordering through SLS3.



I was given two pairs of compression socks in exchange for this review, one for myself, and one for a giveaway. All opinions are my own, not SLS3′s.

Ballet Class and Weekly Workout Roundup

MAN, my legs are sore…But in a good way.

Between elliptical training and ballet, my quads are killing me. My severe shin splints have been kept relatively under control with compression socks/compression sleeves, stretching and a little bit of ice. I tried to avoid any activity in class last night that I’ve known has aggravated my shins (ie jumping and moving quickly in and out of a releve position).

For the most part, I attempted to hang out at the middle of barre/back of the studio so that no one would have to watch/follow my clumsy self. That was, until my ballet instructor had me move to the front of the studio in the middle of our center work and to explained to everyone who probably didn’t recognize me (since I haven’t made it to a class in about two months) that I was just back from an injury.

I was relatively pain-free–except when I accidentally attempted a pas de chat when I forgot that I was supposed be taking it easy because I was excited to be in the front of studio. For the most part, muscle memory kicked in and I remembered the moves, but I did have some moments where I thought to myself “Uhhh what exactly are you trying to do there, Kristen?” as I completely messed up a combination.

Overall, I’m really happy with the way the class went.

The rest of my week was:

Monday: Job interview, so other than the mile walk to and from the train station in the cold, I didn’t exercise and came home and crashed after being up at 6:30 am.

Tuesday: My boyfriend and I decided to try the manual treadmills in our school’s fairly new gym but neither of us really cared for them (note: I’m terrified of treadmills. Someone please help me get over this fear). The ellipticals here were kind of pointless because the resistance option was broke on all of them–so we left with me only roughly getting a ten minute workout in.

Wednesday: Finally getting into the swing of things, I did 30 minutes worth of interval work on the elliptical using a Couch to 5k running plan.

Thursday: Ballet class and another easier 30 minutes on the elliptical as to try to not wear myself out.

Friday: An easy 28 minutes  on the elliptical following my schedule. I’ll be doing some foam rolling and stretching tonight to help out my legs a bit.

This weekend the plan is:

Saturday: Ballet class in the am if I feel up to it followed by taking a really easy 30 minute work out on the elliptical.

Sunday: More elliptical training, hopefully a pilates class as well.

Part of what has helped kick me back into high gear with my workout plan (and back into blogging!) has been that I recently became a Sweat Pink Ambassador. They’re an awesome community of women who run fitness blogs.

pink shoelaces


Plus, they sent me a bunch of pink shoelaces some of which I’ll be giving away next week!

Tell me, how do you motivate yourself to get to dance class or workout?