Showing posts with label gear. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gear. Show all posts

November 30, 2018

Holiday Gift Guide for Fit Friends {$30 or less!}

Disclosure: This gift guide is not sponsored. Any ambassadorships or complimentary products are mentioned. As always all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

I know, another gift guide. So original. However maybe like me, all the things you bought during the Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend were for yourself, and now you actually need to buy gifts for others. I actually have bought or want to buy most of the items in this gift guide! I've compiled some of my favorite gift ideas for your friends or family members with a health and fitness theme. That could be a runner/gym rat/yogi or maybe someone who has a fitness goal for 2019. Inspire someone! 

I've kept things under $30 because I usually am not spending much more on gifts, besides for my boyfriend. Based on some of these gift guides I've seen, people spend more on gifts or have some nice loved ones, right?! Cheers to the holiday season and keeping things fun, stress-free, and festive!


Holiday Gift Guide for Fit Friends {$30 or less!}

1. Oh Look Wine!-Travel Wine Tumbler, Sarah Marie Design Studio ($27.50)

I have been eyeing up buying this tumbler for myself!! This cute travel wine tumbler is the perfect gift for the runner or wine-lover in your life! It's stainless steel and double-walled so it provides perfect insulation. It also comes in three bright colors. It is definitely something that is perfect for all year round. 

These are also available in store at Charm City Run in Locust Point if you want to shop small AND shop local in Baltimore. 

2. Kudos Coaster Plus, Kudos ($20)

I received a complimentary Kudos Coaster Plus to review and liked it so much I'm including it as great gift! It's a customizable display coaster with six colored inserts that allows you to showcase race medals or any other favorite memory of the year such as artwork and photos. You pop open the coaster, add your treasure, add in enough inserts to make it flush with the top including the colored insert you want displayed on top, and then simply pop the top back on. Right now I'm displaying my favorite medal of the year which I get to see every time I have a drink. I like it because you could give it to a friend to display a race medal or just pop in a photo or inspirational quote to make it a personalized gift! 


3. Inspirational top, pictured is Boss Tank Top from Adidas ($25)  

For any friend, gift them a top with an inspirational saying or quote. For your favorite boss babe, I love this Boss Tank top from Adidas along with some other empowering female shirts on their website. I was asked to check out their website, which I had not been on since buying some Boston Marathon gear earlier this year. I think a top with a motivational quote is a great way to inspire a loved one for the new year as well as gift them some apparel to work towards their goals in. I'm a big fan of mantras and inspirational quotes all over including on my jewelry and written in my planner so why not on a shirt staring back at ya in the mirror? 

4. In-Stitches Holiday Lily Trotters compression socks, ($29.99, limited edition) 

I'm a big fan and ambassador for Lily Trotters compression socks, but they really are a great gift for the runners and fit friends in your life as well as anyone who spends most of the day on their feet such as healthcare professionals. They are even great for anyone travelling this holiday to keep the blood flowing during long flights or car rides. Lily Trotters compression socks provide support as well as keep your legs and toes warm all season. These limited edition holiday socks are green, white, and red making them oh so festive for the season. 

There are lots of other cute options starting at $39.99 on the website too and a mystery 3 pack for $60 all holiday season, but you can save 15% anytime with my code "BREATHEDEEPLY" 😄

5. Copper Motivate Wrap, Momentum Jewelry ($20.99)

I told you I loved mantras and inspirational quotes! I seem to always mention Momentum Jewelry as gift idea because it fits so many occasions, not just because I've been an ambassador for them for years. They are beautiful, unique, and customizable gifts perfect for that person that inspires you in your life. I love the look of the copper motivate wrap which looks stunning! You can choose from one of the options for an inspiring phrase or customize with your own special phrase. I've gifted one of the motivate wraps to a friend running her first marathon as well as my sister with a Disney-themed phrase on it so these truly are a gift that can be for so many different people! 


6. Women's Pom Pom Beanie, BOCO gear ($27.99)

BOCO gear makes my favorite hats, including their technical truckers for runner which I am obsessed with. I recently purchased a BOCO gear Pom Pom beanie from Charm City Run (they customize hats for brands & businesses) and besides getting so many compliments on it, it is SO warm and comfortable! This fair isle beanie is perfect for winter weather or this chunky knit beanie is a more chic-looking option. Either way the beanie is a quality hat for any outdoor activity making it a great holiday gift. 


7. Christmas Ornaments for Runners, Run Ink ($14.99)

Once I saw these in my email, I was smitten with these marathon Christmas ornaments from Run Ink. I have a Run Ink customized race map with my PR from the 2016 Chicago Marathon and just ordered myself a smaller Berlin Marathon print to hang up next to it. They are unique and beautiful reminders of races.These ornaments are the perfect gifts for the marathon runner in your life who has completed or is dreaming of the six World Marathon Majors or the Marine Corps Marathon. For $4 more there are versions of the ornaments that can be customized to include a race finisher's time which makes for a really special gift that can be hung on the recipient's tree each year. 

Be sure to note that the last day to order for Christmas delivery is 12/9!


 

8. Sugar Plum Thin Sparkle band, Sparkly Soul (starting at $15)

Sparkly Soul headbands are my favorite way to add a little sparkle to my workout outfit. And also distract from my tired eyes and sweaty face, ya know. They are elastic all the way around and do stay on my head. There are a ton of widths, designs, and colors to match the personality of your gift recipient. My favorite are the sparkly thin headbands including the pictured Sugar Plum Thin Sparkle band which is gold and fabulous. There's even fun collections of headbands including bridal, Star Wars, and unicorn headbands! 


What is your gift idea for a fit friend? Do you have or have you gifted any of these items?

November 7, 2018

Rockay Accelerate Running Socks-The Perfect Combination!


Disclosure: I received a complimentary pair of Rockay running socks to review and share. As always all thoughts and opinions are my own.


After getting fitted for a solid pair of running shoes, I always recommend people invest in a few pairs of running socks with the main factor being that they are moisture-wicking. I have enough running socks that I end up wearing my athletic socks for mostly everything. This keeps your feet happy running and helps prevent blisters! I mainly run in Feetures running socks and some Balega socks but had the opportunity to try out a pair of Rockay Accelerate running socks. Rockay is a European-based running company focused on being environmentally friendly with a long-term goal of sourcing fabrics that are recyclable and turning plastic into fabric. Rockay sent me the Rockay Accelerate socks in navy blue which retail for $15.95.


The Rockay Accelerate socks were super comfortable and perfect for running. Also, I love the way they look with the pattern of fabric plus the blue color combo I was sent (there are 6 different colors). They offer compression around the arch and upper, which felt similar to Feetures running socks but may feel weird if you haven’t worn them before. The compression helps your feet feel supported as well as encourages blood flow. The extra cushion on the heel, toes and forefoot adds extra comfort and more protection.


My favorite thing about the Rockay Accelerate socks is the fabrics used. The socks are made from 30% organic Merino wool, 66% Polyamide (similar to polyester), and 4% Elastane. The Elastane is the compression, the Polyamide is on the top of the foot and is light and durable, and the Merino wool allows the socks to be breathable and good at regulating temperatures. Merino wool can be great for warm, cold, and rainy weather conditions. The combo of the Merino wool with the compression helps prevent blisters!


The Rockay Accelerate socks also have a LIFETIME guarantee so if they fail or rip you can get a free pair. Feetures and some other brands have this guarantee which is great, especially if you are paying almost $16 for a pair of socks, you want them to last!


Because of the compression and temperature regulation qualities, these socks are not only great for running but also for hiking and other outdoor activities. The socks felt really nice and snug on my feet but were also lightweight. The socks have a snug elastic top so they did not shift around or let any dirt in. These are definitely a pair of socks I want to take out on the trails and keep wearing through the winter. I am also happy to support a running gear brand with environmentally-conscious goals!

Rockay Accelerate socks can be purchased on Amazon (women and men sizes) or on the Rockay website.

What are your favorite running socks? Do you wear your moisture-wicking socks just for running or for other activities?

September 10, 2018

My Favorite Recovery Tools for Runners


Disclosure: The products from The Stick, NOW Foods, and Moji were received complimentary to review and share. As always all thoughts and opinions are my own.

It’s been 7 years since I started training for my first ever 5K, and now at the end of the week I will be running my 7th marathon. There’s a lot of miles in there which means a lot of sore muscles. Runners will try everything to get rid of soreness and prevent injury. While I don’t always use them as much as I should, I do have a whole basket full of various foam rollers and recovery devices that I have acquired over the years. If you have heard about foam rolling or maybe even purchased one but don’t know how to use it, I love this article on foam-rolling from Runner’s World showing you how to use a roller for different muscles with videos so you can see exactly what to do. Since we are entering the start of fall racing season, it is a good time to talk about my favorite recovery tools. Don’t be like me, and DO YOUR PREHAB and foam roll often! I have linked these products, but most of these can be found on Amazon or at your local running store.

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1 . The Stick, price varies

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The Stick is a classic massage tool that has been around since 1988. I bought a travel stick years ago and also received a full-size version when I was at the Runner’s World Half & Festival last year. It’s made of a flexible plastic and has a rod with spindles that roll over the muscles to release myofascial and inactivate trigger points. You can read more about how it works here.

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I really like using mine for my constantly tight calves, but it can be used all over the body. It also is waterproof and can be placed in the dishwasher for cleaning/sanitizing which is a cool feature. The only downside of The Stick is that some of the longer versions may be too big to fit into a bag for travel or taking places. I own the fuchsia Sprinter Stick which is a firmer, shorter stick that is great for legs (which is mainly what I use it for!) and retails for $34.95.

2. Moji Foot Massager Pro, $39.95

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Any photos with my foot looked weird, so this is all you get!
I have been using the Moji Foot Massager Pro since I received a complimentary one from Moji after trying it at the Chicago Marathon expo in 2016. These are also a hot item at Charm City Run, and I have sold many to people after they tried it out in store. Sure you can use a lacrosse or tennis ball to roll your feet, but the Moji Foot Massager Pro is a totally upgraded experience and worth the price. It has high-tech stainless steel balls which you roll your foot over to break up scar tissue and dig into your foot muscles. 

Having all the small spheres really massages your whole entire foot with you controlling the pressure. People suffering from Plantar Fasciitis or foot pain really like this tool! One of my favorite parts is that I keep mine in the freezer for an icy massage, and pop it out every so often to roll my feet over it while I’m sitting at my computer. It feels AMAZING. 

3. R8 from ROLL Recovery, $129.00

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The R8 is that thing that looks like a torture device. It is actually a magical recovery tool that gives your muscles a deep tissue massage. I can’t afford a massage every month so this was a good investment. It is expensive (ask for it as a gift, maybe?), but it WORKS. I love deep pressure, but if you are not a fan of that this may take some getting used to. It is TSA-approved (although you might get some questions) and a registered medical device made with stainless steel hardware and soft TPU. Again it can reduce inflammation and really provide myofascial release. I have the older version, but now there is a newer, updated version. 
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I place the R8 parallel to my legs and then flip it down so it gets pressure along all sides. You can use it sitting, standing, or laying down.  I like this because I am not rolling around on the floor doing work, rather the R8 is doing all the work, and I am just guiding it along my tight muscles. It hurts so good.

4. NOW® Solutions Joint & Muscle Cream, $14.99 (also available on Amazon!)

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This is a newer addition to my recovery arsenal. The NOW® Solutions Joint & Muscle Cream was in my goodie bag from my trip to the NOW Foods headquarters in May. It is made for active individuals to use topically around active joints and muscles. The cream is not super thick and contains Glucosamine (found in joint cartilage and used to keep joints healthy as a supplement) along with Boswellia, Capsacin, and natural Methyl Salicylate for skin care. 

My chemistry background comes out now because capsaicin is a chili pepper extract which has pain-relieving properties and makes this cream feel similar to icy hot. That being said, WARNING: do not apply this cream to your legs and then touch your eyes or face. The hot feeling does last a long time also so be warned, but it does make my sore legs feel nice. NOW® Solutions Joint & Muscle Cream is a great affordable and natural product for runners.

5. The Original Worm, $24.00 or $32.00 based on size

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The Original Worm is a portable massager that is a mash up between a foam roller and therapy balls. It’s a neoprene case surrounding 4 rubber balls (and looks like a worm!). This also release trigger points and can give you full-body therapeutic relief. 

While the Original Worm is great for legs and feet as well, I mostly use this for my back pain and neck pain. It’s similar to using lacrosse balls but more stable if I use it against a wall for my shoulders and low back. It also is a great release if I place it under my neck with a yoga block or pillow for my head. The biggest plus to this is that it’s super portable and smaller so it’s great for travel and is what I find throwing into my bag most for a weekend trip.

6. MojiHeat Massage Roller, $69.99

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Moji makes another appearance on this list with my most recent recovery tool addition of the MojiHeat massage Roller. When Moji reached out about me reviewing this I was excited because of how much I like the Moji Foot Massager Pro, but was skeptical that this would be another unnecessary variation on a roller. This roller is denser, weighing 3 lbs and 13" long, with a textured outside and combines massage therapy with heat therapy. 

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This roller comes apart into two pieces which then are popped into your microwave for 3 minutes. Once your massage roller is heated you twist it back together into one piece and use like a regular massage roller except you are receiving the therapeutic benefits of heat (which is great for recovery). It's made for larger muscle relief but just half could be used for ease when travelling. When I first used this and took it out of the microwave it didn’t feel very warm, but once I started using it I realized it was heating a little bit more after the microwave and felt AMAZING on my legs. The MojiHeat massage roller will hold heat for up to 30 minutes. Especially in the winter, I see myself reaching for the MojiHeat Massage Roller more often for recovery or even as a way to warm up my muscles before a chilly run!

What is your favorite recovery tool? Do you use a foam roller or massage roller?

This post was linked up with the Weekly Wrap hosted by Hoho Runs and Taking the Long Way Home

July 31, 2018

Gear Review: Ultimate Direction Race Vesta 4.0


Disclaimer: I purchased this Ultimate Directions vest on my own-this is not a sponsored post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.  

As a running coach and marathoner, I often am asked about hydration belts, bottles, and vests. I trained for and ran my first two marathons with a Fuelbelt hydration belt with 2 small bottles (that I picked up at a Marshalls on sale). I was never a fan of it, but it seemed to be an okay solution to carrying water on the course. My 3rd marathon, I ran with a handheld water bottle. For my 4th through 6th marathons I haven’t carried water on the course, but have relied on the on-course water stations. With big marathons such as Chicago, Philadelphia, and Boston there are so many water stations that it is easy to not carry any hydration gear with me if the weather is not hot.

The problem has been training in Baltimore hot & humid summers for long distance races. I have been using a Flipbelt with a water bottle or this Peak Hydration Nathan pack for training. I tried a Camelbak on a couple runs a few summers ago and did not like all the sloshing as well as cleaning out the bladder. This summer anything on my waist has been really annoying me. That fact, plus toying around with the idea of running a 50K later this Fall, I decided to start looking into purchasing a hydration vest with bottles.

After much deliberation, I decided to bite the bullet and purchase the Ultimate Direction Race Vesta 4.0 which I found on sale for under $80 (it retails for $114.95). This isn't a sponsored post, I am just sharing my thoughts on the vest because I've gotten a some questions about it. I chose it because it has two bottles that sit up front on the chest, it’s lightweight, and it had good reviews. I ran with the Race Vesta for the first time and had not properly watched the videos on how to adjust it so it bounced a lot. Since properly adjusting it, it has minimal bounce and is my new go-to long run gear.  Here’s an overview and my thoughts on the Ultimate Direction Race Vesta 4.0.
gear-review-ultimate-direction-race-vesta-4

Overall

(All information via Ultimate Direction
-Available in two sizes: XS/SM, MD/LG (I bought the XS/SM version)
-Available in two colors: pink or blue
-MSRP: $114.95
-Materials: 4-way stretch woven mesh, 30D coated nylon ripstop, micromono mesh, and 150g flex mono mesh.
-Includes (2) BodyBottles 500s (500 mL soft bottles)
-Volume Capacity: 494.29 in/ 8.1 L
-Weight: With Bottles-9.56 oz. / 271 g ; Without Bottles-6.1 oz. / 173 g

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According to Ultimate Direction, the women’s Vesta differs from the men’s Vesta in that it has a different configuration for pole attachment, is compatible with a 2L hydration bladder, includes two zippered pockets instead of stash pockets on the bottle pockets.  
This vest is one of the more lightweight hydration vests from Ultimate Direction, with larger vests including the Ultra and Adventure Vestas.

Features

-Sliding Rail Sternum Straps (adjustable!)
-Extensive Front Storage (2 zippered and 2 bottle pockets)
-Trekking pole holders
-Comfort Cinch TM Technology

gear-review-ultimate-direction-race-vesta-4_back

The Good

I love how lightweight the vest is. It doesn’t add a lot of bulk and feels really breathable on the run. The fabric is really stretchy too so the vest fits well to my body and feels like it moves with me. I have never used soft bottles before but like them so far. From the placement of the bottle pockets on the front, I am able to use the bite valve on the bottles to drink easily without removing the bottles from the vest.  The bottles in the bottle pockets sit right above “the girls” and feel comfortable and aren’t right up in my face when I’m running either.
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I have been using the zippered storage pockets for my gels and fuel as well as my debit card.  I love that the zippers mean everything is nice and secure. The fabric of the vest is stretchy so I can even fit my Samsung Galaxy S9 phone in one of the zippered pockets, but prefer to have it more easily accessible in one of the bottle pockets. I’ve been running with one of the bottles filled with water and Nuun Hydration in one of the bottle pockets along with an extra bottle filled with plain water in the large back compartment that I can switch out. Since I have been using this for running, I cannot speak to the trekking pole holders.

I love that the vest is easily cinched with the shock cords on the top and bottom in the back. On my first run with it, I did not pull the bottom shock cords tight enough and really tighten up the cords in the back to stop most of the bouncing. Once I adjusted it properly, the vest and bottles bounced barely at all.

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The fact that you can move the placement of the sternum straps up and down is awesome. I am 5’4” and bought the XS/SM size based on the sizing chart and did not adjust the sternum straps from their original placement.

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The Bad

I love the light pink and blue color options, generally speaking but always worry about gear getting dirty. After a handful of runs, I already have a dirt spot on the front of my vest. Sure, it’s easy enough to just throw the vest in the wash to clean it, but I would appreciate a gray color option as well.

As I mentioned, the pack is really stretchy. I haven’t tried to use a hydration bladder in it yet, but have been putting a filled water bottle, extra gels, or something like a light rain coat in the large back compartment. The large compartment doesn’t have any extra support on the bottom so I’m not sure how heavy it would feel if I loaded up the back compartment for a longer race and am worried it might wear out the fabric quickly due to the sagging strain on it.

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One last nit-picky detail is that in the right side bottle pocket there is also an emergency whistle which has its own little pocket. It sometimes comes out of the pocket and bounces around which can be annoying. I wish it was just a bit more securely fastened in the pocket.

Takeaway

I think the Ultimate Direction RaceVesta 4.0  is a great, lightweight option for marathoners or ultra marathoners who want a hands-free way to carry a smaller amount of fuel and gear during training runs or for a race. It’s a great option for ladies like me who need to do some longer runs with just the essentials-phone, fuel, and hydration.

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Do you use any sort of hydration belt or vest? How do you carry your gear with you on longer runs? 

November 22, 2017

10 Awesome Holiday Gifts for Runners (Under $50) 2017

Disclosure: I am Lily Trotters and Momentum Jewelry ambassadors and receive complimentary & discounted merchandise from both brands. I love both brands and did not receive any compensation for inclusion in this post. I also am a coach at Charm City Run. All thoughts and opinions in this post are my own. 

So I've got lots to update the interwebs on, like how I ran the Philadelphia Marathon on Sunday. Say what?! This week on the agenda I just have some rest, recovery, Thanksgiving and leftovers eating, and of course holiday shopping. Can you believe it's already that time of year again? I have been resisting getting into the holiday spirit, but really we only have 5 weekends until Christmas so the time is now! Here's 10 awesome holiday gifts under $50 for the runners in your life (::hint::hint:: to all the special people in my life). 

10 Awesome Holiday Gifts for Runners (Under $50) 2017

10 Awesome Holiday Gifts Under $50 For Runners

1. Runner X4 Pint Glass ($10) and 6-pack of beer (recommended: Union Craft Brewing Duckpin Ale, price varies)

Union Craft Brewing Duckpin Ale

This is a perfect gift for that fellow runner and beer-lover in your life. Grab this super cool pint glass for $10 (that I was lucky enough to receive during the RW Half weekend) and a 6-pack of your favorite local beer. 

2. Pair of Lily Trotters compression socks ($48)

October 31, 2017

10 Favorite Things from the Runner's World Half Festival 2017

So I've been stalling writing any blog posts about the Runner's World Half Festival because I had such an amazing time and there is so much to say. It was an absolute honor and pleasure to be invited as part of the RW Half Run Crew. I left with sore legs, sweet bling, and new running friends! Since I love lists, I figured I'd start out my post-race weekend recap the way I blogged about what I was most excited about pre-RW Half Festival! Spoiler alert: some of the things I was excited about beforehand DID turn out to be amazing.
10 Favorite Things from the Runner's World Half Festival 2017

My Top 10 Favorite Things from the RW Half Festival Weekend (not in order!) 

1.  The people: The RW Half Run Crew and all the Runner's World employees I met were so nice (Oh and RUNNING WITH RYAN HALL WAS PRETTY FREAKING COOL TOO). We had a such a great group of people in the RW Half Run Crew. 


RW Half Run Crew with Ryan Hall

2. Meeting Ryan Hall: See above re:running with Ryan Hall. It was great to hear him talk about his kids and biggest tip about marathoning is to relax! He said he races best when he is relaxed. 

July 17, 2017

Be Open with AfterShokz TrekzTitanium Wireless Headphones {Review}

Disclosure: Through my partnership as a SweatPink/FitApproach ambassador, I received a complimentary set of AfterShokz TrekzTitanium wireless headphones from AfterShokz in exchange for my review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

I love me some tech-free, music-free runs. However especially as I've had some rough runs lately as I try to rebuild my base mileage or when I've needed to give myself a big pep talk to attempt 3-4 mile runs in this heat and humidity, I've been relying more on my Spotify playlists. I'm also highly annoyed by my headphones staying in my ears and dealing with headphone cords getting stuck to me. I'm a super sweaty person so even the "sweatproof" earbuds" I find myself adjusting and pushing back into my ear throughout a run. I seriously don't know what took me so long to try some wireless headphones. 

I'm super grateful I jumped at the chance to try out the AfterShokz TrekzTitanium bluetooth headphones.  

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On the website you can choose from 4 color combos with black, and pick what measurements you want. It offers a mini size in addition to the regular, based on the length of the space between your ears. It took me 5 minutes to set-up after charging my headphones with a USB cord, mostly involving connecting the Bluetooth on my phone to the AfterShokz. 

I took them on an inaugural sweaty & humid Baltimore summer run and was pleasantly surprised. 

AfterShokz advertises the TrekzTitanium headphones as IP55 sweat resistant. They also use PremiumPitch+™ technology which gives a great sound with nice bass levels. I haven't let them run out of charge yet, but these are advertised as lasting for 6 hours of continuous music and/or calls on a single charge. Any weird blips in your music are related to your Bluetooth connection, not the headphones. 

May 11, 2017

What to Pack in Your Marathon Gear Check Bag

Disclosure: I received complimentary product from ShowerPill. As always, all thoughts & opinions are my own. 


When you cross the finish line of a half or full marathon, the first thing you are thinking is YAY, glad that's over. If you are me next you are thinking where can I get a beer, water, banana, and sit down, PLEASE. If it's a big event or one where you plan on hanging out around for the post-race festivities that so many races have now, it might be a good idea to pack a gear check bag. I find this especially true if you're running a big race where it's going to take you a while to get back to your hotel/lodgings/house or you'll be hanging out in your post-race clothes for a while. 

After the Chicago Marathon the past 3 years the weather has been nice, and I've been feeling good so I hang out with friends, have a couple beers, and listen to the music in Grant Park. 
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Post-Chicago Marathon 2016 with a beer in one hand and my gear check bag beside me
Now, I'm the type of person that is usually cutting it close to getting to a race start or at least isn't giving myself much time beforehand. Even with marathons which are big deal to me, I still feel like maybe I should give myself some more time to get around. This is particularly true if you're running a huge race or one with security checkpoints. 

I usually hope that I have a friend or my boyfriend to carry some stuff for me until I finish. If not then sometimes I'll quickly navigate the pre-race area and drop off a gear check bag, if available. For some of the bigger half marathons and marathons I've run bag check is usually offered, and the process is pretty organized. Races give you a clear plastic bag at packet/bib pick-up (security reasons nowadays!). Then you can drop it off before the race with your bib number attached, and pick it up after finishing the race. It's not recommended to store valuables in there, because it's not like locked-in-a-safe secure. 

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Here are 5 items that I always pack in my gear check bag

1.Clothes

December 19, 2016

8 Last-Minute Gift Ideas for Fitness Fans

I seriously can't believe it's the week of Christmas. SERIOUSLY. Between moving, bouncing around between doctor's and physical therapy appointments, plus finals, this past month has moved crazy fast. Luckily I have done some online shopping plus braved the crowds at Target this weekend so I only have a couple gifts left to purchase.  

If you have been mostly shopping deals to buy presents for yourself and now need to finish all your shopping in T-7 days, here are some great last-minute gift ideas for you! 


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I shared lots of products that you can purchase on Amazon because I'm an Amazon Prime addict with that free 2-day shipping. You can't beat getting things in 2-days if you are short on time!  Check out some of my favorite items for runners, yogis, and any other fit fans in your life. 


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8 Last-Minute Gift Ideas for Fitness Fans

1.  Believe or Complete Training Journal and Believe Logbook

I have been using the Believe Training Journal for the past two years to record my weekly workouts, log my miles, and write down my goals and progress.  I love that it includes articles on different topics like goal-setting and nutrition. This year I was given the chance to review the Complete Training Journal and Believe Logbook

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The Complete Training Journal is a souped-up version of the Believe Training Journal and focuses more on competitions and tracking progress towards goals and races more in-depth. The Believe Logbook offers an open and customizable, minimalist workout logbook with an annual calendar. 

All three are also available on Amazon with Prime shipping: Believe, Compete, Believe Logbook

2. Namast'ay in Bed candle

The Brooklyn Artists and Fleas Market is open Saturdays and Sundays in Williamsburg, BK and carries this cheeky 100% natural soy wax candle from the 125 Collection. The candle is hand-poured in NY and features one of my favorite quotes-perfect for the yogi (or sleepyhead) in your life.  
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If you're not near Brooklyn, you can order the candle from the store's Etsy site

November 18, 2016

{Friday Favorites} Grilled Cheese, BCAAs, and StrideBox

Disclosure: I received 3 complimentary boxes from StrideBox. As always all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Happy Friday! It's been a while so I decided to share some of my favorites from the past couple of weeks. I haven't run at ALL in 2 weeks, and it's been okay. I am letting myself rest and recover while I'm in the boot. 3 weeks of no exercise won't kill me. Besides I have a LOT of studying to occupy myself with this weekend.  Be sure to enter my blog birthday giveaway

Favorite Easy Cause to Support: Tab for a Cause

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So I I'm one of those people who always has tons of tabs open in my Google Chrome Internet browser window. I can't help it. I've always have a few tabs I'm actively using, a few that I am saving to work with later as a reminder, plus constantly am clicking on things. My friend Kate suggested checking out Tab for a Cause, an internet browser extension that replaces your tab page with a beautiful page that raises money for charity. It's free and for every tab you open, you earn hearts which you can choose to give to your favorite charity. The extension's sponsors provide money to charity divide all the money raised amongst the charities based on the number of Hearts donated to each charity/cause. 

 It hasn't slowed my internet down, and if my excessive internet browsing can help a charity that is awesome! 

Favorite Snail Mail: StrideBox

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October's StrideBox goodies

October 3, 2016

Running into Fall with Lululemon {gear review}

Disclaimer: Lululemon Baltimore offered me a complimentary outfit for review purposes. As always all thoughts & opinions are my own. 

As much as I love lots of different running gear, there are always some pieces that end up being worn the most. The couple Lululemon tops and tanks I have are an example of that.  I have only splurged on pieces from Lululemon every so often, but have been impressed in the comfort and quality I've found. I've actually worn Lululemon capris or skirts for all of the 4 marathons I've run-no chafing at all!


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Running the 2015 Chicago Marathon in a Lululemon Cool Racerback tank and PaceSetter Skirt 

I dare you to go try things on in that store and leave the store empty-handed! However I gained a lot of respect for the brand after running Lululemon's Seawheeze Half Marathon this summer and seeing what an amazing event they put on.  


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post-Seawheeze Half Marathon 2016 in a (tagged) Lululemon Run Swiftly tee and Speedsport shorts

When I was asked to review a couple piece of running gear for my local Lululemon store, of course I jumped at the chance. By the way, the Lululemon in Baltimore, Harbor East is a great store with fabulous employees and local ambassadors, in case you were wondering. 

With the Baltimore Running Festival coming up and the weather still a little bit variable, it was tough to choose what outfit I wanted to review. I run 'hot' (#thesweatylife) and am still loving wearing tanks so I chose out a Run Swiftly tank (MRP $58) in one of the newer colors for Fall, a mixed black/sapphire blue shade . I always think warm colors for Fall but since blue is one of my favorite colors, I love adding this almost midnight blue shade as a Fall favorite. 


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I love the Run Swiftly material because it feels soft, lightweight and comfortable as well as wicks sweat well. 


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One of my favorite features is that it is prevents you from smelling bad due to the X-STATIC® which inhibits the growth of odor-causing bacteria. The color is a deep blue that is perfect for Fall plus it has that Swiftly tech that I love.