If all your workouts take place in the gym, you’re probably not too concerned about your safety. After all, if something happens — you fall off your treadmill and tweak an ankle or find yourself getting a bit dizzy after a few too many spinning back side kicks in your kickboxing class — there will be people around to help and your gym probably has your emergency information on file.
But, if you’re a runner or cyclist or just someone who works out alone, you’ve gotta have some sort of safety identification. No, I’m not your mother, and I don’t know your life, but trust me when I say that it’s really, really important that you have something on you during your solo workouts (or even group workouts with people you might not know so well) so that, in case there’s an emergency, any stranger off the street can get you the help you need and call your emergency contacts.
And, I’m sure it goes without saying, but this is doubly — no, triply or quadruply, even — important if you have any health issues like asthma (trust me on this one), seizures, diabetes, etc. You don’t want to play around with that.
Still, even if you’re seriously safety conscious, that doesn’t mean you want to pack up your driver’s license and a note explaining your medical history every time you strap on your running shoes. It’s far easier to have a dedicated ID band that you can slip on when you need it and store with your timing watch when you don’t. I recently tested out a couple of options you might want to check out for yourself.
The RoadID Wrist ID is probably the one I see most often among my friends and at races, and for a number of reasons.
Pros: It’s been around since 1999. It comes in three versions (slim, sport and elite), a wide range of colors and ranges in price from just $17.99 to $29.99. It’s lightweight, comfortable and durable enough to withstand all the swims and sweat sessions you want to throw at it. Additionally, there’s room on the ID for your home town, multiple contact phone numbers, any health conditions, and, if you want it, an inspirational message.
Also, because all the information is right there, there’s no requirement on the part of your would-be rescuer to know anything about ID bracelets — it’s all clearly spelled out.
Cons: If you need to change your ID information (new home town, emergency contacts, health issues), you have to order a replacement ID for your band for $16.99. Not a big deal if that information doesn’t change too often for you, but if you move frequently, that could add up.
The official emergency ID of Ironman, MyID brings a few new tricks to the emergency identification game.
Pros: The information you can include on you MyID is way inclusive, especially with the premium option, but the basic option has plenty to offer too. In addition to your basic profile, you can link your medical conditions and emergency contacts (one of each with basic, unlimited with premium), and, with premium, you can add allergies, medications, physicians and insurance information.
It’s also lightweight and comfortable, although, at $40, it’s a slightly pricier option.
Cons: Unlike the RoadID, none of your information is actually written on the ID — it’s identified as a medical bracelet with a Caduceus symbol, and a QR code and phone number to call is on the back side of that. Also, while the premium option is amazingly inclusive, it’s also not free — you get a year of premium coverage with the purchase of the band, and then it’s $8 to $10 per year (depending on how many years you purchase at a time) to continue it. Otherwise, you’ll still have the free basic coverage but none of the premium bonuses.
The Fit Bottomed Line
Honestly, these are both great options. I’m probably more likely to use my RoadID, largely because I’m asthmatic and I really like the idea of having that immediately visible to anyone who might need to come to my aid. If I’m in enough trouble to need help, chances are I won’t be able to tell them. If you’re more interested in making sure first responders have your top emergency contact number, MyID basic would serve your needs. And if you have a number of medical problems or a long list of medications or allergies, ponying up for the premium MyID would be a smart choice.
Do you wear any sort of safety ID for your workouts? Why or why not? —Kristen