Friday, July 28, 2017

Put the "OO" in RecOOvery | OOFOS Review

Disclaimer: I received OOFOS OOlala Sandals to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Every other morning of the week tends to start with a morning run. As this pregnancy is progressing, the earlier the better to beat the summer heat!


Then I spend the rest of the day (minus the event that both kids nap) on my feet. It's awesome! Active days are something I missed dearly while sitting in my old desk job but my legs do get TIRED. Add 6 months of pregnancy to that and my feet are throbbing by the end of the day!

Thankfully, as a BibRave Pro, I received OOFOS OOlala Sandals to take the stress off my feet, knees and lower back! The name OOFOS came to be because every who puts them on says "OO". Clever, right?!


After my usual morning run and a quick shower, into my OOFOS OOlala sandals I go and we're ready for the day! These sandals offer a cradling arch support so I can literally wear them all day long without hurting my feet.

While non-supportive sandals can cause plantar fasciitis, it's not the case with OOFOS sandals. The biomechanically designed footbed allows for natural motion and stride.


Throughout the day we walk/run A LOT. Mostly forward, sometimes backwards or in the form of skipping, jumping... or crawling. These boys are my energizer bunnies and I love it.

The OOfoam technology absorbs 37% more shock than other materials, taking that much more stress off my joints. Less joint stress = every pregnant woman's dream! Check out the OOFOS website for more details on this unique OOfoam technology.


I have worn my OOFOS sandals to the pool many times now and they are now, hands-down my favorite pair of sandals. My other sandals have had plenty of traction on the sole of the shoe but the top part (where my foot sits) gets super slick and hard to walk in when wet.

OOFOS sandals are moisture-resistant yet I didn't feel like I was walking on a slip-n-slide while wearing them. And, yes, I even wore them to my cousin's wedding last weekend. OOFOS style points!


These sandals are absolutely amazing! Honestly, my legs don't throb at the end of the day when I wear them and I chalk that up to the arch support and shock absorption in these sandals. Definitely try them out. Your feet earned this!

OOFOS OOlala sandals are available for $59.95 and come in 13 shades that will go with everything (my sandals are called "Blue Jay"). Join us for #BibChat with OOFOS on August 15 at 8 pm CT for a chance to WIN a pair for yourself!



B3 Pregnancy: Week 25 Wrap-Up

This week, Baby Rocket is the size of a CAULIFLOWER. Only 12 more weeks 'til baby is considered full-term. That was a nice realization this week! I'm feeling great minus being too hot pretty much all the time.

My belly button has "popped" (as much as it does at least) and E thought that was pretty funny. "Why does your belly button stick out, Mom?" Because the baby is pushing everything out of his or her way, I explained. Make room, baby. There's a lot more growing to be done!


MONDAY: 

3 mile run with our dog on the gravel roads.

TUESDAY: 

Stretching and non-running day.

WEDNESDAY: 

3.12 mile run with our dog testing out my new Under Armour Horizon RTT trail running shoes on the country roads.

THURSDAY

Stretching and non-running day again. It's hot, I'm tired. The kids and I pulled weeds instead!

FRIDAY:

3.1 miles with our dog out on the gravel again. Today heated up fast and I was glad I did run early! My tolerance for heat right now seems to be about zero :s The dog doesn't much like heat either.

SATURDAY:

Ekhart Yoga's Vinyasa Yoga Flow (17:55). Doing yoga again felt awesome! I need to get back into doing that two days a week and running three, especially as the third trimester is fast approaching. My muscles were too tight!

SUNDAY:

Rest.

What is your must-have recovery tool or technique?



Linking up with Holly and Tricia's Weekly Wrap Up.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Seeing In COLORS | Knuckle Lights COLORS Review

Disclaimer: I received Knuckle Lights COLORS to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Harvest is on the horizon and the days are getting shorter. It makes me a little sad to even write that! The bright, early morning sunrises are arriving later.

Come August, the sun doesn't rise until after 6:00 am (Gasp!). And then winter — the time of darkness and freezing cold — will be back for the next 6 months. Nooooo! I'm not ready.

Flashback to Snow :(

Whew. It's still July. Let's just enjoy the rest of this summer and fall!

While my usual light source for dark running has been a headlamp wrapped around my hand, I am taking advantage of some new technology as our mornings darken. As a BibRave Pro, I received Knuckle Lights COLORS to light up my early morning running all year long.

Knuckle Lights COLORS are available in Blue, Pink and Black.

Knuckle Lights are lightweight and small but they pack a big punch! Each light has three power settings — high, low and flashing — and the LED pattern is a wide flood beam, sending out light in all directions and providing a steady light source that doesn't bounce as you run.

I tell ya, these lights are very hardy, too! My 2- and 4-year-old have been playing with them (not gently either) and they have stood the test. They work as excellent handheld running hand-lights and as pretend "light sabers" for small children.


Key features of Knuckle Lights COLORS include:
  • 2 LIGHTS PER SET — The units connect together magnetically. The soft silicone straps can be adjusted to fit any size hand and even over gloves. 
  • 120 TOTAL LUMENS — The super bright lights provide a wide flood beam, providing a steady, even light in front of you that does not bounce around, even with your arms moving. 
  • BATTERIES INCLUDED — Each Unit Operates on 1 X AA Battery. 
  • WATERPROOF — Units can be used in any type of weather.


On this particular morning, a storm had just blown through and I knew I could run safely in the rain with my Knuckle Lights on! I love that the light doesn't bounce around as I run and the light beam covers a broad area, unlike my other headlamp/hand-light set-up.

According to the Knuckle Lights website, these lights will even operate in below freezing temperatures down to -20 Celsius (-4°F). I should be able to use these on many of those dark, winter morning runs, give or take a few crazy cold days.

Running with my Knuckle Lights COLORS is one thing I do look forward to this winter!


Knuckle Lights COLORS are available for $39.99 with free shipping in the U.S. They use your typical AA battery (two batteries are included!) and they have a 5-year warranty for any defects in materials or manufacture too. This product is very practical and the price is reasonable considering the high quality of Knuckle Lights COLORS. I'm a big fan!

Use discount code "BRKL2017" for 15% off at knucklelights.com (expires 9/1/17) and join us for #BibChat with Knuckle Lights on August 1 at 8 pm CT for a chance to WIN a pair of Knuckle Lights COLORS for yourself!


B3 Pregnancy: Week 24 Wrap-Up

Baby Rocket is the size of a CANTALOUPE this week with only 16 weeks to go (that's like the length of a marathon training plan!) 'til his or her due date. Heartburn has been "my thing" lately, especially in the evenings. Baby is very busy kicking and punching. I actually really love that part of pregnancy (minus the bladder kicks later on).

Running is still feeling comfortable though I have been very tired lately, likely due to too much summer fun. The parades, fair time and pool trips are just wearing me out but the kids think it's great!


MONDAY: 

3 mile run with our dog after the main part of the storm rolled through. Rain is okay but I don't like lightening!

TUESDAY: 

Major cleaning and packing prep followed by a walk/bike with the kids and a little pool time that night. Whew, I'm beat!


WEDNESDAY: 

3.15 mile run with our dog. Another beautiful run watching the sun rise and our first trip to this year's County Fair! The kids enjoyed rides and we shared a big corndog :)

THURSDAY

More fun at the County Fair in the morning and then another trip back in the afternoon. We fit in plenty of rides and a couple treats. Enough so that I was well one with this fair business by the evening. The kids could have stuck around longer though!

FRIDAY:

E got to ride his horse at Grandma and Grandpa's farm. I fit in a 3-mile run by my parents' farm and then we all cleaned up, packed up and left for a family wedding weekend.

SATURDAY:

Wedding festivities! The day felt full but it was a great time.

SUNDAY:

Rest. So... tired... The kids and I were clearly at the point of emotional breakdowns. Time to go back to normal life and enjoy being home again!

Are you an early morning or late night runner? How do you run safe?



Linking up with Holly and Tricia's Weekly Wrap Up.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Camping Trip Dos | B3 Week 22

We went camping for the pre-Fourth of July weekend at my favorite place ever, Itasca State Park. The wildflowers were in full bloom and summer storms stayed at bay, making it a perfect trip!

My mom has been keeping a count and it's crazy how much camping our kids have done in their short years! E (4) has been camping 10 times and W (2) has been camping 7 times. Granted, in an RV for majority of the trips, but that's my kind of camping when it comes to small children ;)

I did a lot of running with a half-loaded double stroller which gave me a little break on the rolling hills (37 less pounds at least). Little W and I found a couple patches of Showy Lady Slippers, the Minnesota State Flower, and some were a beautiful hot pink.

Like I said, it was wildflower galore along the bike path. I'm a little obsessed.




Itasca has a great network of paved bike paths, including a boardwalk, that are perfect for stroller running. The bumpy boardwalk tends to put W to sleep. There are some awesome non-paved trails, too, but those will have to wait for a time when I can run solo.


With no summer storms rolling through our camping trip, Saul was one happy camper! Honestly he is a perfect dog minus his crazy fear of thunderstorms.


We ate all kinds of food, the guys did a lot of fishing and I ran a few miles. Overall, it was another amazing camping trip and hopefully not the last of the year!

My Nasty Northern

B3 Pregnancy: Week 22 Wrap-Up

Baby Rocket is a COCONUT this week. I usually don't feel as big as I look. As I was leaving the campground bathroom, my very obvious bump caught me by surprise... and I wonder how baby is going to fit in there for 18 more weeks.

The heartburn has arrived and I'm feeling much "tighter" as Baby's growth is becoming more rapid now. Running is comfortable with the support belt and morning runs in the cool weather are best for me. I think that's how I will have to survive my first over-the-summer pregnancy!


MONDAY: 

5 miles on the boardwalk bike path at Itasca State Park with our dog and one in the double stroller.

E spent most of his time fishing with the guys so I spent some extra quality time with little W. We ran to the Headwaters and back (walking up hills, by the way) and enjoyed some HUGE ice cream sandwiches during our stop there.


TUESDAY: 

Packed up and back home we went! The kids didn't sleep a wink on the 2.5-hour drive home. That was a shocker but thankfully they napped later that afternoon.

WEDNESDAY: 

3 miles with the double stroller on a grocery run. And I was just getting used to pushing one kiddo in the stroller... I forgot how heavy two are! We went around 9 am that morning and it was already blazing hot, for me at least. 70 degrees with 70% humidity (all you southern runners can laugh at me). It's the humidity that kills me!


THURSDAY

We had a play date morning and then Teeny Ball that afternoon. I stretched my tight hamstrings that evening (still possibly tight from the Itasca rolling hills) and called it a night.

FRIDAY:

What a weird morning. The kids slept great, the weather cooled off beautifully and what woke my husband and I up at 4:45 am??? A robin! That's what! I left our windows open to air out the house and apparently that early bird is our new alarm clock.

My sweet husband made breakfast and coffee while I laid in bed, debating on waking up or not. Then I ate breakfast and poured rotten half-n-half (and I had just bought it at the store!!!) over the coffee he so nicely had made for me. Pregnancy hormones got the best of me and I figured it was best if I just went out for a run before tears happened (blame the hormones). I promise I'm not usually an emotional basket case!

I ran 3 miles at the slightly still emotional pace of 9:24/mile (fast for my pregnant self). After a quick stretch, I returned to the house feeling much more level-headed. Somehow the breakfast I ate immediately before running didn't come up. That was a pleasant surprise!


SATURDAY:

TBD: Run day planned.

SUNDAY:

Rest

Are you a camper? A fan of RV camping or hardcore backpacking?



Linking up with Holly and Tricia's Weekly Wrap Up.