What Run Oregon is Trying: Water bottles from 50 Strong & Nathan

Run Oregon sometimes receives products to review. In this post, Run Oregon's Teresa provides some thoughts on water bottles from 50 Strong and Nathan.All of us use water bottles and different water bottles serve different functions. They all work to keep us hydrated when it comes down to it, but it’s amazing how something as simple as a water bottle can have so many varieties. I recently tested the Simply Better Bottles from 50 Strong. Several things impressed me with this company. All of the water bottles are designed and manufactured in the United States, the company offers a number of styles, they are reasonably priced and ten percent of the profits go towards a scholarship for workers pursuing careers in the manufacturing field.

Insulated 24oz Water Bottle $9.99


Enthusiastic with the company on paper, I was excited to give these a test run. I started with the Insulated Bottle. They were generous enough to send me two, so I tested the more feminine looking one and let my soccer star test the more ‘boyish’ option. I liked that these were sleek and lightweight. They fit easily into the cage on the bikes at the gym, the cupholder in my car and were a good size to grip in my hand.  They definitely kept the water cold for a couple of hours and didn’t sweat, a huge bonus. Another plus is the flexible lanyard, so you can carry it by a finger or two or clip it into a carabiners on your gym bag. The insulated bottle held to its promise and didn’t spill or leak. The only complaint my soccer player had was that it wasn’t bigger. He loved the cold water at practice, he just wanted more of it. For 9.99, though, he can take a couple with him. The price is right and clean up is easy. These are BPA- free and can be used on the top rack of the dishwasher. I’d say they were a good find.

Tornado Mixer 30 oz. $7.99


Another good find was the Tornado Mixer. I’ve tried many bottles that have balls to help mix up protein drinks or hydration mixes. The balls have never really gotten the job done for me and there’s always sludge in the bottom that doesn’t ever get mixed in. The Tornado Mixer uses a cyclonic mixing action for your beverage, with the base getting most of the job done and the tip getting into the creases at the bottom.  For some reason my boys thought the shape was fun. They’ve never been into blender cups before, but this one impressed my teenagers. It, too, has the two -finger lanyard so you can strap it onto your gym bag until you’re ready to make your meal replacement or hydration mix. Convenience always scores big points with me. It has a wide top, making is easy to clean. If you really want to be lazy, you can wash these in the top shelf of the dishwasher. Tastes didn’t linger from one drink to another, as it should be. Good for a chocolate protein shake or fruity hydration mix, I thought the size was perfect. Another good find for me and my active boys.



Nathan FlexShot Water Bottle  24 oz $20/ 17 oz $16


I’ve had some bad luck lately breaking water bottles. I dropped a hard plastic one off my bike and it cracked, dropped one on the floor of the gym and it broke and my favorite glass one shattered after it fell out of my gym bag. I love how Hydroflask keeps water cold and glass water bottles are my favorite because the water tastes so good, but I’ve concluded there are times these aren’t appropriate for me. Hydroflask is durable, but heavy and glass bottles have proven they aren’t practical for someone accident prone.

I feel a little bit like Goldilocks with the Nathan FlexShot Water Bottle. After giving it a test, I feel like it’s ‘just right’ for me and not only because I can’t break it, although that’s a huge bonus. The spout is a perfect size to drink from, it’s lightweight, portable and convenient. It does take a little getting used to, since the silicone is super flexible. While it’s nice that these roll up and can be tucked into a pocket of your gym bag, the flexibility makes filling it up more of a challenge than a traditional water bottle. It’s still worth the awkwardness at the community drinking fountain or me.

It has a wide mouth so you can add ice and it makes washing easy. They are BPA-Free and dishwasher safe for the top shelf, but I try and limit plastic in the dishwasher so I’m fine hand washing it. The wide lid makes it easy to clean and it doesn’t have that funny plastic smell. Their website claims they have odorless and taste-free technology, which I have no idea what that means but I can vouch that they don’t hold smells or have a funny taste. I didn’t test this in extreme heat so I’m not sure about how well it keeps the water cold, but the silicone is insulated and did keep my water cooler in a warm car.

Available in 17 ounces ($16) or 24 ounces ($20), I thought the 24 ounce size was pretty much perfect. Besides it being indestructible, the best part was that it was weightless in my gym bag when I was done. Another huge bonus for me was an attached lid to the spout. I didn’t have to worry about the lid dropping since it was hooked on. When you’re in a hurry to grab a drink the last thing you want to fiddle with it a cap. With so many water bottles on the market, it’s sometimes overwhelming and hard to decide. The Nathan FlexShot Water Bottle is a good find. If you want something you can’t break, that’s compact, folds up when you’re done and is leak-proof, check it out.

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