Thursday, March 23, 2017

Why prAna?

I've been thinking quite a bit lately about the foods I feed my family, the lotions I use, the clothes I wear.  How much of it is so bad for our bodies?   Then I find a company, like prAna, a company that offers gorgeous clothing that is sustainable, recycled, fair trade certified and hemp items.

I love that my prAna clothing is not only from a good place, it also looks and feels amazing.  The new prAna Spring line has me super excited for warmer days to come and more chances to wear this gorgeous clothing.  

I can see myself living in this new Cali dress and the new Lizbeth skirt this summer.  Both are absolutely gorgeous and timeless.  They will both make into my suitcase when we head off to Florida next month.   

I actually had to read more about why prAna makes clothing with hemp.  I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it doesn't require the use of chemical pesticides or fertilizers.  Hemp is actually a drought resistant plant and it very good for the soil it's grown it.  prAna's hemp looks a lot like linen.  It's lightweight, breathable and does amazingly well in the washing machine!  Note, you can wash this!   Plus, it doesn't wrinkle like linen, which is another amazing fact because I do not enjoy using the iron!  

It's time for you to check out prAna's new 2017 Spring line and use my code ib4pJB for 15% off all prAna clothing until 4/20/17.  

Thank you so much prAna for the opportunity to share my love for your products and to iBlog Magazine.   As always, all opinions expressed on my blog are 100% my own!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Hurry Spring! #Spring4prAna review (with a discount for you!)

I've had an obsession with prAna for a few years now.  It seems like no matter which prAna piece I put on, I feel great and look equally as great in it.   

My newest prAna additions are the Liana Sweater and the Lizbeth Capri.   We had a little sneak peak of spring for a couple of weeks.  It was heavenly.  My Liana Sweater and Lizbeth Capri came and I wore them - and it felt like spring was just around the corner.  

But then we got dumped on, 19 inches of wet, white stuff.  Yesterday.   I still have high hopes that it will all melt soon.  Track season is right around the corner!  But let's get back to the gorgeous prAna. The new spring line does not disappoint.  

Spring looks are here to stay, and prAna is at the top of my list in choices when it comes to what I want to wear this spring.  The organic and recycled materials make prAna an even more desirable company.  The styles are timeless yet bold and make me feel great when I put them on.  

I always find the cuts to be flattering as well.  Which, sometimes, I admit, I am far too hard on myself and the way I've aged over the years.  The Liana Sweater has a very open and airy feel about it that makes me feel light and summery.  It will definitely be the first item to be packed for our Florida vacation, as well as many other prAna pieces that I know I cannot live without.  

The Lizbeth has been on the website for a little while, but it doesn't take away that the light fabric, which is made from hemp and recycled materials, feels amazing.  I chose the charcoal color, but seriously could have picked any of the colors and been super happy.  They are all gorgeous.  

And the cropped look is so much fun and super springy looking!  Just a little exposure and it makes me long for warmer days without snow!  There are so many new styles in the spring line that are calling my name!  If you do check out the new spring line and fall in love like I have, please use code S4P17RWG for 15% off anything through March 28, 2017.  

Thank you so much prAna for the opportunity to share my love for your products and to Fit Approach, for which, my partnership with you is always an amazing one.   As always, all opinions expressed on my blog are 100% my own!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Here’s to YOUR Health with Genexa Health

I have seriously lost count of the number of colds that have passed through my family this past cold season.  And every single time, I cringe when I have to take medication or give it to one of my littles (or not-so-little anymore).   First, it tastes nasty.  Second, who knows what the heck is in that stuff!  I usually find myself in the cold medication aisle at the drugstore, looking at medication over and over again, looking for something that might be better for you. 


Guess what folks?  The search is over!  Genexa Health has Cold Crush for adults and children.  Never heard of it before?  It’s okay.  I hadn’t either.  Until I had the opportunity to review it.  Now, I cannot go back.  

Genexa Health is the world’s first and only USDA certified organic and Non-GMO Project Verified homeopathic over-the-counter medication.  Genexa medications are made from healthier, purer products, that definitely made me feel better about giving medication to my daughter.  She is my mini-me and I need to protect that little girl to the best of my abilities.  

The last cold that swept through my house was put to the challenge with Genexa Cold Crush.  First, I need to comment on the taste.  That is super important, of course.  The taste was a slight sweet orangey flavor, not overpowering at all.  Next, I never had an awful feeling from taking it.  No bad aftertaste, no dizziness, no drowsiness.  None of that!   I can definitely say that I felt like my cold symptoms were not as bad while taking Genexa.  It definitely helped me feel like an almost-human being, and that’s saying something!  

Normally, Izzy fights me with medicine.  This time, she said, “can I have that orange flavored pill? I don’t want the other stuff.”     Poor girl.  I hate seeing her sick.  

Definitely check out Genexa’s 11 products.   They make an excellent range of medications to choose from such as medications to help you sleep at night or help you feel less stressed.      The next Genexa product I’m going to try will be the Sleepology.  I’m heading to Portland this weekend, so I can swing by the GNC and pick some up.  To find out where Genexa is available in your area, check out the Where To Buy.


Wednesday, March 8, 2017

How To Choose Running Shoes for Beginners (and not-so-beginners)

Congratulations!  You have decided to start running.  Or you are already a runner, but are looking for some advice in finding the the right running shoe.  

First and foremost, we need to talk about fit.   The fit of the running shoe is very different than the fit of your casual shoe.  

Can you imagine running in these shoes?  No way!    That wouldn't feel good at all.    I usually wear a size 8.5 or 9 in casual shoes.  In running shoes, I wear a 9.5.    

The thumb rule applies here.  When you run, your feet expand.  In order to take into account for that extra space you'll need in your running shoes.   A very wise person once told me, if your running shoes feel too big, they are more than likely the right fit.  Now, I'm not saying if you're a size 8, try on a size 11.  That's silly.  

Unless you are the luckiest person on this planet and the first pair of running shoes you put on your feet are absolutely perfect of you, you are going to try on lots of shoes.  Lots of brands.  Lots of sizes.  Doing this is going to give you ideas of what you like and do not like in a shoe.  Cushion? More cushion?  Less cushion?  Zero drop?  There are so many options and you will only figure it out by trying on loads of shoes and understanding what you need.

A hint about trying on running shoes, bring a pair of your own running socks.  That way you get to know what you think about that shoe with the socks you intend on wearing.    If you happen to go to a running specialty store, ask for help.   Most running specialty stores have trained professionals who will tell you what kind of shoe will work for you based on the way you run.  

The way you lace your running shoes is quite important!  As crazy as this sounds, you will need to adjust and readjust the lacing until they feel right.  Your foot is unique to you and lacing your shoes play an important role!  Believe it or not!   Too tight in the forefoot?  Loosen the laces down at the bottom part.  And remember to not make them too tight but not too loose!   So many rules!  But practice will make perfect.  

That extra hole?  Yeah, use it! 

Another hint about lacing is to the runner's lace.   (seriously, check it out, it's a game changer) Yes.  It's a thing.   And it's the best!

much better feel!  no slippage!

This technique helps the shoe to fit your foot better and decreases the chances for slipping.   It works!  Trust me.   And then double knot.  It's annoying as heck to have to stop a run to tie your laces!

ahhh the double knot!  it rocks!  

And after you have figured out the lacing, go for a spin.  Yes.  Some stores have a treadmill you can use.  Others have an indoor track.   If you are shopping online, make sure you find an online retailer that offers a great return policy.    That way you can return the shoes if you find that the fit isn't right for you.

Trust me, you don't want to get a pair of shoes that you'll wear once and never wear again because they were on sale somewhere and you can't return them.   I'm a huge fan of retailers who offer returns.  

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Bradbury Whiteout Recap

Oh jeez!  I am SO late on this one.  This past weekend I ran the Bradbury Blizzard and was so excited to tell you all about it, but then I realized I hadn't done my Whiteout Recap!  I can't recap race #3 of a series if I hadn't done #2!   

So here you go!   The Bradbury Whiteout was nearly a month ago.  (oops!)    Maine had gotten hit rather hard with some snow in the week leading up to the Bradbury Whiteout Snowshoe Race.  Which made me super happy!  I know, I know.  I really do not like snow.  I hate driving in it.  I don't like running in it.  But I LOVE snowshoeing in it.  Then add in running in snowshoes and it was incredible!   
he looks SOOOO happy

The Bradbury Whiteout was a 4 mile race with a lot of single track and some of the course on some snowmobile trails.  The first Bradbury race I went to, I went alone.  But then I convinced Ward to come with me to the Whiteout.  In my head, he was going to go and be my paparazzi.  But in reality, he went to run it!   I am the one who bought the Atlas 22's - running snowshoes.  So they were MINE!  I wasn't sharing.   However, lucky for him (I think) we have an overabundance of snowshoes due to his job at LL Bean.  We get to frequent the employee store, and every time I see snowshoes, I buy them.   I don't care if they are kid/adult/pink/blue, whatever.  To me, I just want them at the house because I never know if the kids will have friends over and they may want to go snowshoeing!   

So Ward got to choose one of the "walker" snowshoes we had.  But even with the heavy "walker" ones, he still kicked butt!  Anyway, this recap is about me.  Not him!  

Like I said, the course had some single track.  And with a lot of snow on the ground, that made for some super difficult passing situations.  I didn't go out hard enough to get a comfortable place and got stuck behind a long train of people.  Which wasn't absolutely horrible.  But, I knew I could be running faster.  When I saw the opportunity to pass, I did it.  And maybe pulled something in my butt.  (It finally stopped hurting 3 weeks later - because I was bad and didn't really rest it).      

There was a little out and back point, that I loved.  Some people hate out and backs, BUT I love them.    I love to see the front runners and love to cheer them on and maybe get a high five here and there.  And then I saw Ward.... crushing it.  So of course I cheered him on.  This little out and back went up a hill for a bit, which was a bit of a challenge, but you know what?  Once I got to the top, I got to go back down... FAST!  That was fun!  I needed to focus on staying in control and I passed several people.  

Yay for Maine Running Photos being there!  You guys ROCK!

You know what I love about the Bradbury series?   It brings in a lot of really awesome people.  They are just super happy to be out on the trail and cheer people along the whole way.  I love that about this group of people!    There was one more single track part, which was challenging and windy... but still tons of fun!  Then I emerged from the single track and saw Ward waiting for me.  Then I knew... the finish was coming up!  Yay!  I pushed it real hard and made it to the end.  

so much fluffy snow stuck all over my legs and inside my legs! and all over my butt
(I spared you the butt shot photo - you are welcome)!

This time I came in 37th (out of 88) with a time of 37:23.  I had taken 10 seconds off my pace from the first race and I was super happy with that!   And with that, I ran my final race in my 30s.  Then next race in the series I'll be 40.  Gulp.  The faster age group!  

Oh, did I mention the shirt?  Oh my!  This one was fun!   I stand by it, TMR make the best race shirts!   Stay tuned for the 3rd race (and final race of the series).  

Don't you love this shirt?  And it's a women's cut.  Not unisex.  LOVE!  

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Tried It Tuesday

Happy Valentine's Day!  And if you're in Maine, happy late start or snow day for you.  The clean up is still going on from yesterday's blizzard dumping, just in time for another crazy snow tomorrow!  I can honestly say I am 100% done with snow.   But, from the looks of it, the snow will be here for a little while, so I may as well embrace it.   Sorta.  

I love snowshoeing and if I can make a trail or two, I'll get out and do more snowshoe running in my fields and woods.  But someone suggested I look into snow mobile trails.  I'm sure there are some in my area.  I just don't know where.   I'll do some searching and perhaps head out there.  That would keep me from the side of the roads where it is super dangerous (on my road especially!) and change it up a bit from my treadmill love-affair.  

Something I thought would be perfect to share with you today is my love for Red Ace Organics.  I've been trying them for a little while now and really do love them!  What are they?  They are shots of beet juice to give you energy all day.  

I love beets and the benefits of beets.  But I don't like peeling them and cooking them.   My problem is solved with Red Ace Organics, because all I have to do is open this cute little bottle. 

Red Ace Organics comes in three different flavors:   Beets Performance Shot, Beets and Turmeric Shot, and Beets and Greens Shot.  I cannot say if I liked one more than the other because they were all tasty.  

I am super sad they are all gone, but if I head over to the Red Ace Organics website to order, and use the code runningwiththegirls, I will save 15% off my order and YOU WILL TOO! Which I think is definitely worth it!   These little shots were tasty and definitely gave me a boost of energy that we all need!  

Have you ever tried beet juice before?  I have and didn't like it.  BUT, Red Ace Organics is FAR better and tastes amazing!  

disclaimer:  I was sent a case of Red Ace Organics to review. I did not receive any additional compensation and was not required to give a positive review.  As always, all opinions expressed on my blog are 100% my own.  


Monday, February 13, 2017

2017 MidWinter Classic Recap

My 6th MidWinter Classic is in the books.   If you live in Maine, I believe this is the must-do race in the winter.  I look forward to it each year and this year was no different.  

MidWinter Classic is a 10 mile race in Cape Elizabeth usually held the morning of Super Bowl Sunday.  You never know what the weather will be like.  One year the temperature was in the 40s and I wore shorts!  But this year was definitely not shorts weather (for me anyway).  

It was actually a pretty nice day.  Sunny, in the high 20/low 30s but windy.  I opted for my Spandits fleece lined Bandit, Spandits custom tights (half Abyss and half Fast Cat), Darn Tough socks, Mizuno gloves, Altra One 2.5s, and my Altra half-zip top.  

Before heading down to the race, I rolled out my tight hamstrings (and calves, quads, IT band... the works).  I love how my Trigger Pin does the job. 

I mostly chose my One 2.5s because they had my Momentum shoe charms "Finish Strong" on them; always the best inspiration on race day! 

Pre-Race photo op with Emilie, fellow Altra Ambassador.  Love repping Altra!  This is one race I usually don't care too much about being in the front.  It's a great race.  Not too big, not too small.   It's only crowded for the first 10th of a mile, then after that, you can find your pace rather easily.  So I usually just hang out in the back.  This time, I was definitely not ready when the cannon went off.   But I quickly kissed Ward, our pre-race ritual, then off I went.  

The hardest part of the race is to not go out too fast.  The first couple of miles are mostly downhill.  This year, I had been battling a cold the entire week before the race, so I knew going into the race that it was not going tone a fast one.  I just wanted a good workout.    As I've run this race 6 years, I know exactly when I need to smile and be ready for David Colby of Maine Running Photos.    Thank you, David!  

The course itself was great.  The hills were exactly where they were the last 6 years.  They didn't get any smaller, which is a shame.  But I was ready for them.   And finishing smiling is always a plus!     I finished in 1:25 and change, 6 minutes shy of a PR but 6 min faster than my slowest MWC, so I'm good with this.   And I didn't end up with Pneumonia like I did after the race one year.  

I couldn't wait to get out of my smelly clothes and put on something dry, comfy, and cute!   My #LoveRun t-shirt from Run Far Gear is a definite favorite of mine. (PS I'm a new Ambassador for Run Far Gear.  Use code RFG2017JB for 10% off!)

While it wasn't my fastest year, and I was FAR off from any age group placing, my husband was 3rd in his age group and scored this awesome backpack!  I love the different prizes MWC hands out to the winners and AG winners each year.  

After the race, we went to C Salt, a cute market just beside Cape Elizabeth HS.  We could smell the deliciousness as we ran past it toward the finish and had to check it out.  I chose the perfect breakfast/lunch - the burrito with green tea and a blueberry Kombucha.  My only question is why haven't we gone there before? We've been missing out.  

One more thing.  I do love how MidWinter Classic has kept the same style of race shirts each year for the past few years.  The simple style is something I really like, but the color this year is my all-time favorite.  Thank you, MidWinter Classic for putting on a fabulous race each year!  I am already thinking about next year's race!