Power Balance or Power of Suggestion?

This April at the Nashville CMM expo, there was a vendor booth set up and they were peddling a product I’d never heard of before:  the Power Balance bracelet.  Two small holograms in a black rubber band.  Looked cheesy enough.  So of course I had to stop for a demo.

I was very intrigued. The mini tests he put me through made it seem that there really was something to his claims that the bracelet made you more balanced, stable, and stronger with better endurance… but I walked away without purchasing one.  (Duh, this is an EXPO.  I don’t go to BUY stuff.  I go to get FREE stuff.)

I mentioned it to my husband and showed him the web site, but that was months ago and I hadn’t thought anything else about it.  But then a couple of weeks ago I received a package in the mail.  He had ordered one for me!  (That’s right.  I don’t get flowers or jewelry.  I get rubber bracelets.)

I wore it on my five-miler that night and couldn’t tell any difference whatsoever.  I tossed it in a drawer thinking, “What a crock.”

Then, funny enough, Amanda @ RunToTheFinish posted about her Power Balance Bracelet a few days later. She seemed pretty convinced that there was something to it, so I thought, “What the hell, I’ll give it another try.”

So I did.

Last Tuesday – On a 3-mile fartlek, I PR’d the distance.

Last Wednesday – On what was supposed to be a 6-mile pace run, I PR’d the distance.

Last Saturday – I was scheduled for a long run of 13 miles.  I totally bonked and quit even attempting to run after 8.  I walked two miles home for an even 10 miles.  I realized later that day I had forgotten my bracelet.


Tuesday – Even though legs were sore from Monday, I still had a very successful four miles.  It was meant to be an easy run and although my exertion level was low, I still ended it with an average pace that was way faster than I expected.

Thursday – An uneventful seven miles.  Can’t say anything good or bad about that run.  It was fairly tough, but I ran it after I had been at work all day, and it was still pretty freakin’ hot outside when I started it.

Today – I decided to try 13 miles again in light of the disastrous 13 the prior week.  It felt freakin’ awesome.  I kept a slow and steady pace throughout the whole 13, never overexerting myself.  I finished strong and even tacked on an additional tenth of a mile just for giggles to see how much I beat my current HM PR by.  Yep.  I PR’d the half mary distance on my first 13-mile training run of the season.

So is there really something to this bracelet thing?  Is it all in my head, the Power of Suggestion, the placebo effect?  I don’t care either way.  It’s earned a permanent place on my right wrist.