Monday, February 12, 2018

Hot Chocolate 15K Dallas



This past Sunday I ran my 4th Hot Chocolate race.  It was my 3rd time to run the 15k.  I love this race, although it always falls on some of the coldest days!  This year it wasn't quite as bad as previous years as far as temperatures go!  I remember driving over one year and it was sleeting!  This year I think the temps were in the 40s which was actually pretty good.

For this years race I only had about 1 week of workouts prior to running.  I had been building and increasing mileage but I hadn't done any speed work work or goal pace runs so I wasn't real sure what pace I could hold going into this.  For that reason, my plan was not to PR, but to just maintain my pace and run a good, steady, consistent race.  This course contains a lot of hills, and in previous years I would tend to bonk on those hills so I had a goal to conquer those without slowing much.  My long run for the day was 1:20 so my hope was to finish around that time which was about a minute over my course PR.  So technically I wasn't there to race, but I did have a plan.

When we arrived that morning I had planned to meet up with some of the other bibrave Pros for a quick photo, but the we hit some major traffic.  We were there by 7am, but it would be about 8:00 before I arrived at gear check!  I think I ran an extra 2 miles from where we had to park!  Gear check went smoothly though and I was out the door in just enough time to take a quick bathroom break and get into my corral! Within 5 minutes we were starting!



The race went great!  There were plenty of water and electrolyte stops on the course and I was so thankful they were serving up my favorite thing to drink...Nuun Hydration!  So much better than the typical Gatorade or powerade.  They also had some chocolate on the course.  I passed on the sweets during the race though.  I knew the good stuff was waiting at the finish line!



I kept my pace pretty conservative.  I knew the big hill was coming between mile markers 8 and 9.  I hit that hill with ease.  It did feel like I was crawling in place, but my mile split never waivered!  I was so pleased with how I executed that!  After the big hill you're headed towards the finish line!  I crossed the finish this year at a time of 1:20:09.  Perfect finish and medal around my neck!  I love the chocolate bar medals!  1st stop was the hot chocolate and the treat bowl!  That chocolate fondue is delicious and well earned!


This race is just so much fun!  The atmosphere is amazing, and the swag is a nice perk!  If you're looking for race you need to run this one!  You can race it, use it for a long run or just go and have a 9 mile block party with your friends! Registration is now open for 2019 and prices will increase soon so snag this race entry up now!



Friday, February 9, 2018

Afterskokz Trekz Air Review

"Disclaimer: I received the afterskokz Trekz Air 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!"

I just completed week 2 of training!  Getting back into some intense training is exciting!  I was also so excited to get to try the Aftershokz Trekz Air headphones!  These things are amazing! I honestly had never heard of open ear headphones before this.  The Trekz Air have bone conduction technology and they deliver music through your cheekbones!  How freaking awesome is that?  They are also made of titanium so they are by far the lightest headphones I have ever owned!  I was in love with these the first time I took them out for a run!



The headphones are wireless, Blue tooth, and they wrap around the back of the head.  The speaker sits right on my cheekbones, which leaves your ears open for situational awareness.  I love that I can hear my music, talk to my friends and hear everything that's going on around me.  So much safer than the typical ear buds that I used to wear.  There's also no wires hanging out of my clothes!

I've used them on easy runs, treadmill runs, track workouts, hill sprints, and was able to wear them in a race as well.  They stay in place during windy, speed workouts like a champ!

They are so lightweight!  I barely know they are there! The battery life was also on point.  I got through almost 2 weeks of workouts before having to charge them again.  They advertise 6 hours of continuous music and I believe it!  I've always worried about battery life of wireless headphones during a marathon, but I would have no worries with these!




Here are a few other features that I really love about the Aftershokz Trekz Air!
  • They repel sweat, dust, and moisture from workouts or even bad weather
  • Voice prompts guide you through play, pair, power and talk
  • They are very comfortable on my ears
  • Very lightweight
  • Speech is clear when talking 
  • They have a 2 year warranty
If you're interested in checking out the Aftershokz Trekz Air visit this link  http://bibrave.aftershokz.com/ If you decide to purchase us the code "TRUCKER" and you can snag a free trucker hat as well!  

Friday, February 2, 2018

Hot Chocolate 15k Expo

Luci and I had a fun day at the Allstate Hot Chocolate 15k expo today!  I was actually shocked to several really good vendors there today!  It's definitely not your typical expo like you would see at a larger marathon or half marathon race but it was still very impressive! We were able to do a little shopping, sample some hot chocolate, and also some chocolate covered marshmallows!

I can't wait to head back tomorrow for an awesome 9.3 miles with my friends! This year I'm just using this run as a long run and will be very conservative with my pace.  I won't be setting a course PR or attempting one.  Just a nice, easy run!

Now let's get to bed!  5:30 comes early!!






Wednesday, December 13, 2017

The Comeback


"Disclaimer: I received free entry to The Hot Chocolate 15K and the Alamo 13.1 race 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"

I was finally released to begin building mileage...slowly.  I was given an 8 week rebuilding plan to follow.  The first week started with 15-20 minute runs and slowly progress to 70 minutes over the next 8 weeks.  So far it's going great! I'm currently on week 3.  The first few weeks I have no consecutive runs back to back.  Since my injury was so "weird", the Dr. said I needed to increase the load on that foot a little at a time.  It's tough.  I want to just jump right back into where I left off, but I know better!  I definitely don't want to end up injured again.  I pray I do things right this time around!
I've definitely stepped up in the strength training department too!  I usually get in at least 4 days a week, sometimes 5, right now while mileage is low.  I throw core work in every single day.  Apparently I have a weak core... or did.  When I finish this 8 weeks of rebuilding, I plan to start adding some speedwork and work on building my speed back up before marathon training kicks off in the summer.  I have a few marathons I'm looking at running but I haven't made any final decisions yet. 

This weekend I ran/walked the Dallas half marathon with my daughter and sister.  This is just a race that I just can't miss.  I ran this race for the first time on the anniversary of Colt's passing, and I've ran either the half or full every year since.  I was registered for the full as a training run for Houston, but of course had to step down to the half.  I'm being smart here. :)

I also am a part of the rock n blog team again for 2018, so I've been looking at the calendar and penciling in several races for the upcoming year!

First on the books is Houston.  Followed by the Hot Chocolate 15k in February!  One of my all time favorite races!  The swag is awesome and so is the bling!  If you want to join me use code BRHCDAL18 and you will receive a special hat in with your swag!

In March I am running the Alamo 13.1.  This is a new race for me, but I'm looking forward to it!  I had to miss out on Rock N Roll San Antonio due to my stress fracture.  I can't wait to run that city!  Also in March, I will be running the Rock N Roll Dallas half and 5K!  This is one of my all time favorites!  Can't wait for this one! I won't be training for it like I did last year so I'm not expecting a PR.  I still plan to get out there and run a good race though!  If you want to join me for the Dallas Rock n Roll there is a 24 hour sale starting tomorrow if you're planning to run any Rock n Roll races this year don't miss out on those prices!

I'm still working on the calendar for the rest of the year.  Although, I do have a couple races already on the books for December 2018!  My training plan and coaching is also in the works.  Still working out some kinks and making some final decisions.

I'm ready to get started!  I cant say 2017 was letdown.  I had PRs in every distance!  I learned a ton!  I also learned to listen more to my body and what it's trying to say so I'm going into this next year so much smarter!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Oofos to the rescue!

Disclaimer: I received a pair of Oofos recovery sandals to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a Bibrave Pro, and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!

When I found out we had the opportunity to opt in to review the OOFOS as part of their Project Pink campaign I jumped at it!   First of all, I was excited to be a part of supporting breast cancer research, and OOFOS are almost all I wear other than my running shoes!

We were given the choice of reviewing a pair from their Project Pink line  This line is a collection of sandals that with every purchase OOFOS will donate $10 to the Dana Farber Breast Cancer Foundation for breast cancer research.  My Mom and Grandmother are both breast cancer survivors so this cause is very important to me and to my family. 






I first tried OOFOS in 2015.  I was suffering from severe heel pain from Plantar Fasciitis.  I had travelled to California to Disneyland to run the Dumbo Double Dare.  My feet were killing me!  I saw OOFOS at the expo and tried them on.  I was hooked immediately!  I bought my first pair that day and I now own 6 pairs! As a nurse I wore the clogs to work and I wear the flip flops everywhere else!

Some of the technology that makes OOFOS so amazing is that they absorb 37% more shock with every step.  The arch support is awesome!  They also provide support to your ankles, knees, hips and lower back.  They are waterproof and machine washable too!  I will say that my PF is now gone and my OOFOS played a huge role in that!

I recently suffered a stress fracture during marathon training and my OOFOS have been a life saver during this time also.  I traveled to Chicago for the marathon.  Sadly, I wasn't able to run but was able to watch my daughter complete her first marathon.  I wore my OOFOS the whole time I was there.  We walked so many miles!  I had minimal foot pain from the fracture.  My OOFOS provided awesome support!  They were just what I needed to feel great and have a great time!

If you haven't tried oofas I can't encourage you enough!  They are heaven on your feet!  I couldn't live without them! Feel the OO!



Thursday, October 12, 2017

Amazing Grass is pretty amazing!

This picture below was my last really long run before Chicago Marathon.  I had been training for this race since the end of January.  Putting in so many miles of speed work, easy runs, tempo runs, hill sprints, track workouts, and long runs every weekend. 

I thought I was doing everything right!  I would do strength training about twice a week, core work a few times a week, stretching and rolling.  As the miles increased I began to notice how fatigued I was getting.  I thought it was just due to the fact that I was running almost 200 miles a month. I began to slack on strength training.  I always kept the hard days hard and the easy days easy, but I began to feel so tired that I would just skip my strength training.  I also didn't realize that I was slacking on nutrition.  Once I started tracking my food I realized that on some days I was barely getting in 1200 calories and when you're burning around 1000 per run or more where does that leave your body?  You're unable to rebuild and recover.  Your body begins to pull nutrients from other places like your bones and those areas begin to weaken. 
I suffered a stress fracture during that last run on September 17th.  I'm sure that bone was already under stress and weakening.  I had a stress reaction on my shin back in June on the same leg.  I'm not so sure that it wasn't fractured also.  It took around 6 weeks before I was able to run comfortably on it again.  I didn't get to run Chicago and I'm currently working on strengthen other areas to prevent this from happening again!  First and foremost my nutrition!


I say all this to say that during these last couple of months I have began to pay close attention to my nutrition.  I was asked to review Amazing Grass effervescent and they've made a huge difference.  I'm really bad at getting in the amount of vegetables I need.  I'm a work in progress!  These effervescent are an easy and delicious way to get in your daily dose of greens. They are made with an organic blend of alkalizing greens including wheat grass, barley grass, and alfalfa.  Plus blend of over 30 antioxidant-rich superfoods.  They also support a healthy immune system.  Since I've began adding these to my diet I've noticed an extreme increase in energy as well.  I was given the lemon-lime flavor and also the berry flavor.  The berry is my absolute favorite!  I just slip it into my water and there I have my Greens on the go! I could not have asked for a better time to for these to land in my mailbox!!  Please use this link to find out more and order your own!




Is this not the cutest travel bottle also!  Sporting my favorite city!! Get your travel bottle here!

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Luvo Meals Review

Disclaimer: I received Luvo Meals 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!


When you think of frozen meals what is the first thing that pops into your head?  For me it's processed foods that lack flavor.  When I got the chance to try luvo meals I was blown away.  I had seen other peoples photos on social media but had yet to actually get to the store to get some.  As soon as I had the coupons in hand I headed to the grocery store to get some to try!

My grocery store had an awesome variety.  I picked a few that looked great to me!  I was nearing peak week for the Chicago Marathon and I knew my nutrition had been lacking.  It was a great week to try these.  I needed to prepare for my last long run.  The week before I had failed on nutrition and bonked on my long run.  This training cycle has been difficult for me regarding fueling.  Consuming enough quality calories has been a struggle and I've paid dearly for my lack of food!  You can see some of my choices below!  One of my favorites is the Cauliflower Mac N Cheese!





Here are a few of my favorite things about Luvo Meals:
- The ease of having a meal prepared in 6-7 minutes.
-The ingredients are all real foods!
- Luvo uses antibiotic free meat and chicken
- They give back to the community through partnerships with local nonprofit organizations.

I really encourage you to try them!  I'm so glad I did and they are now a staple in my kitchen!  They are packed with protein and are going to be an important part of my marathon training in the future! 
My lean cuisine days are over!

Where can you find Luvo? Check out the store locator on their website. I was able to find them at Kroger.

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