Disclaimer: I received SmellWell pouches 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! All opinions are my own.
Exciting news everyone! I have been given the opportunity to host my very first giveaway! I’m so excited and I hope you are too because I’m giving away Smell Well pouches! I promise you that they will make you and your stinky items smell SO much better. 🙂
You have from now until Friday, Jun 30th, 12 am ET, to enter my raffle located at the end of this post to win a brand new set of SmellWell pouches. (Each packet includes 2 pouches). I tried these pouches a few months ago on my smelly items and when asked to try them out again AND host a giveaway, I, of course, jumped at the chance.
Smell Well pouches prevent bacterial growth by removing moisture from your shoes (No bacterial growth = no odor/stink)
They are non-toxic and all natural.
They work 24/7 and last for 3 to 4 months.
They can be used for your smelly shoes, gym bags, cars, travel, boxing gloves, etc.
They leave your smelly gear smelling really nice.
If you don’t wear socks when you wear your shoes, chances are your shoes smell nasty. I mentioned in my last review that I had a pair of SMELLY flats that I didn’t dare part with. They were my favorite pair of shoes, but because they made my feet smell so bad, I just put them into a corner and hope that the smell would go away after a few days. Nope. It took ages for the smell to go away. Now, with SmellWell, I can just slip in the pouches and leave them overnight and the smell is gone.
They work with all sorts of shoes (flats, rockclimbing shoes, running shoes, hiking boots) My boyfriend doesn’t wear socks with his rockclimbing shoes. Nasty. LOL. I put those pouches in overnight and it worked like a charm. The smell caused by the bacteria disappeared and left his shoes smelling like flowers.
I also found that they work really well with my boxing gear too. I just slip them into my gloves or wrap the pouches with my wraps, leave them in my gym back overnight, and then the smell is gone. My wraps really have never smelled that amazing after a workout. LOL. Ever since trying these out, I’ve included them as an essential in my travel packs. I used to have to air out my dirty clothes before re-packing them into my luggage. Traveling through Europe with a backpack of dirty clothes was kind of gross. Now, I just put the pouches with the dirty clothes in my backpack and not have to worry about it stinking up my other clothes. 🙂
I love these Smell Well pouches and I hope that you have a chance to try them out too. You can enter the raffle below. Some options allow you to enter once a day so make sure to drop by and enter every day to increase your chances. I will notify the winner on Saturday, July 1st. 🙂
If you don’t win my raffle, you can order one for yourself here. You can buy 3 and get 2 free if you use the code “BIBPRO10.”
Disclaimer: I received 2Toms‘ FootShield 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! All opinions are my own.
Ever have a blister on your feet? Maybe from when you’re trying to break in those cute ballet flats or sandals? Or from when you’re running a half marathon in humid weather? Oh I definitely have and let me tell you, it’s not a pleasant feeling.
“2Toms mission has always been to provide the best comfort and care to athletes by offering the most technologically advanced products available anywhere.”
2Toms’ most popular products include the BlisterShield and Sportshield, a blister prevention and chafing prevention product respectively. Most recently, they came out with FootShield, a perspiration barrier for your feet. I was fortunate enough to try it out and here’s my review of the product. Enjoy!
How it works: FootShield comes in the form of a roll-on applicator. You roll the solution onto the bottom, top, and sides of your feet, wait a few minutes for your feet to dry, and voila, you’re on your way to a blister free day. As mentioned previously, Footshield creates a perspiration barrier. That barrier prevents your feet from getting sweaty, which also means it reduces your chances of getting blisters. As a runner, I cannot love this aspect of the product more. Blisters suck and if I can prevent them, I will.
Brought Footshield with me to Texas, where is was HUMID as hell
The formula 2Toms uses also contains natural anti-fungal ingredients that fight bacteria, which minimizes odor and your chances of getting Athlete’s foot. That’s a nice perk, don’t you think? 🙂 The roll-on also smells of spearmint, which I can totally get on board with.
My experience: I’ve applied FootShield several times before going out on long runs (even a half marathon on a super humid day) and never have I come back with blisters. I have also applied FootShield and gone out in sandals and ballet flats and have not experienced any irritation. I should mention that I’m not as prone to getting blisters nowadays, but I will say that my feet are not as sweaty after application, which I’m extremely grateful for. This will definitely help me during the humid summer. It allows me to wear socks for multiple days without having to do laundry. Hooray!
I will continue to use it all summer long (races and marathon training included) and hope that I never have to repeat my AFC experience. Ouch.
Join us for #bibchat on Twitter at 6 pm PT on Tuesday, June 27th. We’ll be giving away a bottle of Footshield to two participants. Also, if you would like to buy a bottle, they are $15 and you can use the code “2TOMS20” for 20% off your entire online order. 🙂
Check out other BibRave Pros’ review of the product below.
Disclaimer: I received a pair of Adidas UltraBoost X 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!
If you told me when I was 10 that I’d have a closet full of shoes almost 20 years later, I’d laugh at you. I’ve never been interested in shoes. Heels were too difficult for me to walk in and sandals didn’t really give me the support I needed. To me, shoes were just shoes…or so I thought. As a more serious runner now, I’ve found that a good pair of running shoes can make or break your training.
Here’s a short history of my running shoes: I started out with Brooks’ Ghost – a neutral shoe with cushioning (12 mm midsole drop) I ran through almost four pairs before giving another brand a try, not because they no longer worked for me, but because I had won a pair of New Balance shoes from a Strava challenge. I chose to try out the New Balance Vazee2090 – a neutral shoe with cushioning (6 mm midsole drop) and in all honesty, this shoe blew my mind. The Vazee2090s were more responsive and I got faster.
A responsive shoe means that the shoe is responding to the ground. It’ll allow you to spring faster after the initial contact with the ground.
So when BibRave gave us the opportunity to try out the new Adidas’ UltraBoostXs – another neutral shoe (10 mm midsole drop) that praised to have the most responsive cushioning ever, I was 100% hands down to try them. Here’s a little bit more information about them.
The first look and feel: I’ve never had more people compliment me on my running shoes before. LOL. The UltraBoostXs are a hug for your feet. Seriously. Their Primeknit material wraps around your foot and leaves it feeling pretty breatheable. The only thing I don’t like about the material is that I do have to put more effort into putting on the shoe. I can’t just push my foot into the shoe and wiggle it into a good fit. With these, I have to hold the collar open and insert my foot in. The sole is made from Continental tire rubber. Yes, you read correctly. Tire rubber. They’re meant to last. I obviously can’t say how true this is because I’ve only run 30-40 miles on these, but it’s comforting to know they are made out of tire rubber. These shoes also have a free floating arch that adapts to your running style. This arch felt VERY different from previous running shoes and definitely took a lot of getting used to.
The first 35 miles: For anyone trying out these shoes, I’d definitely walk around in them for a few miles before attempting any runs with them. Once you think you’re used to the floating arch, try running a few miles with them. Build up SLOWLY especially if you’re prone to injury. Like all running shoes, you should take the time to break them in properly or else you’ll risk injury. I made the mistake of taking these shoes out on an uphill 10k run and pulled a hamstring because of that. I’ve run on tracks, roads, and relatively flat trails and have found these shoes to work well on all of them. I would advise against running on any rocky trails. I found that the shoes don’t work very well on uneven surfaces. Personally, I find the shoes to not be as responsive as the Vazee2090s, but it could be that I haven’t fully broken in the shoes.
My overall experience with these have been a positive one. They’re wonderful to walk in and I’m sure these shoes will get better to run in over time. I will be putting these shoes into my rotating shoe schedule for marathon training this summer. Who knows? Maybe I’ll end up running my marathon with them. 🙂
If you’re interested in purchasing these shoes, you can find them here at Dick’s Sporting Goods. If you have any other questions, please feel free to ask me. I’ve also included a list of reviews from my fellow BibRavePros on the shoes below.
It’s been a month since I last reviewed a product, but I’m back with a review for the Aftershokz Trekz Titanium Mini headphones and it’s a good one. 🙂 I’ve been testing these out for almost a month and a half and honestly, I don’t know how I ever went on runs without them. Let’s get down to it, shall we?
What are type of headphones are they? The Aftershokz Trekz Titaniums are a set of wireless sports headphones that have an open ear design, meaning they do not stick directly into your ears. Instead, they rest on your cheekbones and sound is delivered to your inner ear through mini vibrations.
What advantages do these headphones have over other ones?
Wireless – There are no tangled wires that can get caught on things as you run. Ever run by a branch and have your headphones catch on them and pull your earbuds out? That will never happen with these. Wireless headphones are also huge right now ever since the new iPhone 7 came out and did away with the headphone jack.
Open ear design – The headphones sit over your cheekbones and are never directly put into your ear. This allows you to hear outside noises, which is especially important if you’re a runner. You’ll want to hear if others are running by you and if cars are nearby. These headphones allow you to be alert and safe while out on your run. If you really don’t want to hear outside noise, these headphones actually come with a pair of ear plugs that you can use. It may sound counterintuitive, but all you have to do is put in your ear plugs, put on your headphones, and ta-da, you’ll only hear your music, podcast, show, etc. I did this while on a 3 hour flight and it was a total game changer for me. I went from not being able to hear my podcast because of all the outside noise to hearing my show crystal clear. I will always try to fly with a pair of ear plugs and these headphones from now on.
Multipoint pairing – This is kind of a nifty function and I don’t actually use it all too much, but it is cool to note. You can pair the headphones to two different devices. The most common combination would probably be your iPad or computer and your phone. If you were watching Netflix on your iPad or computer and then got a call, your headphones will automatically switch to your phone. Once you’re done with the call, the headphones will automatically switch back.
Are there other noteworthy features? Yes, of course. 🙂 My favorite feature is that I can use these headphones to talk to people on the phone. Some headphones have mics that are inconveniently placed and I will have to move the mic closer to my mouth to talk. The mic is well positioned on these headphones and the person on the other line hears me perfectly fine.
Controls are very easy to use. If your music is playing, double click on the multifunction button to skip a song. Click once to pause or play a song. You can adjust the volume with mere clicks. If you don’t have music playing and someone is calling you, click once to answer and click again to end the call. Easy, right?
Despite the open ear design, the sound quality is surprisingly still very good. I’m not an audiophile or anything, but I’d give these an A. 🙂
The headphones are lightweight. They don’t bounce when you run and fit very well around your ears. Also, if you need to take them off, you can just have them hang around your neck without any fear of them falling off.
The battery life on these lasts anywhere from 5 – 6 hours. 🙂
Are there things you didn’t like about them? As I said before, these are my opinions and yes, I did find a few things I didn’t like about them, but I think they’re very minor issues.
If I wore them long enough, my neck would feel a little sore, but I think this might actually be due to “text neck” if anything. Also, if was very windy outside, I wouldn’t be able to hear my music very well.
If you’d like to learn more about these headphones, please feel free to ask me or check out other BRP reviews below. They have two sizes – the regular or the mini. I have a small head and tried out their mini and it fit perfectly for me.
You can order your own through bibrave.aftershokz.com and get a free Stainless steel water bottle with your order. 🙂 Also, join us on Twitter @BibRave for #BibChat on Tuesday, May 30th at 6 pm PST for a chance to win a pair of Aftershokz Titanium Minis.
Have you tried these headphones? How do you like them?
Disclaimer: I received an entry into the La Jolla Half Marathon 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! All opinions are my own.
That’s right. You read correctly. I just ran my 13th half marathon and it just happened to be on one of the most challenging courses I’ve ever run – oh lucky number 13. If you didn’t know, I was pretty nervous heading into the half. I pushed myself into not running too much during taper week, which I think I succeeded more or less. I logged 8.6 miles going into the race and with the race, I totaled 21.7 miles this week. Not bad at all. I will definitely have to increase my mileage starting in June when I start training for Chicago though. Ack!
Anyway, here’s my race report on the La Jolla Half marathon. *Spoiler alert* I am actually considering running this one again next year. 🙂
Expo – The Expo was held in Del Mar at the Hilton hotel right next to the start line. It was nice that it gave people from out of town an idea of where to go for the start. I dropped by Saturday afternoon and the expo was packed. I picked up my bib, my shirt, and browsed the vendors. The San Diego Craft Classic was there promoting their July race. Run for beer anyone? They even had free beer at their table. LOL. Also, got to try a phenomenal acai bowl from Sambazon. That was probably my favorite vendor of the day. Also saw vendors from Nuun, CycleBar, KT tape, and a few other companies.
Night before race – You know how you tell yourself that you’re going to go to bed by a certain time and then it doesn’t happen? Yeah. I planned to head to bed at 9 pm so I could get 7 hours of sleep, but I actually went to bed closer to 11 pm, which meant that I only had 5 hours of sleep. Eek! Considering that I hadn’t been sleeping well that week, I was really nervous about how I’d do during the race. Sleep is so important the week of your race and I managed to scrape by with the bare minimum.
Morning of race – Woke up before my alarm hit 4 am. My body always seems to know when I need to wake up the morning of races. If only it did that everyday. Grabbed all of my gear and headed out the door. Got to the finish line by 5 am and took the shuttle to the start line. (They sent out emails saying that we must be in line to board a shuttle by no later than 5:30 am so I panicked and got there early). To anyone running this in the future, DO NOT GET TO THE FINISH LINE AS EARLY AS ME. I ended up on the first shuttle that actually left for the start line, which meant that I got up way too early for the race. I ended up waiting 2 hours for the actual start of the race. Sigh. Luckily, I met up with a lot of people during this time. Met some people from Twitter and had friends running it too!
My friend Nicole, who is a race guard for various races in San Diego. 🙂
My friend Amanda who is completing the Triple Crown Challenge this year! Go Amanda!
Race time – I was in wave 4, which was the same wave I was in 2 years ago. When I signed up this year, I put a pretty conservative time down for myself: 2 hours and 10 minutes. I figured I’d be right around there. I know I’ve improved since then, but since this course is super hilly, I didn’t want to chance it. Only when I got to wave 4 did I realize my mistake. I had planned on following the 2:00 pacer this race so to conserve energy, only there was no 2:00 pacer in sight. The 2:10 pacer was in wave 4 meaning that the 2:00 pacer was probably in wave 3. Oops? At that point, I figured I’d just try and keep ahead of the 2:10 pacer and I’d be happy.
Mile 1 to 4: And off we went…just in time for the sun to start coming out. LOL. I clocked my first mile in at 7:40. Oops. The adrenaline of the race definitely got to me. Pacing is something I will need to work on later. At mile 2, we headed up our first hill with an increase of 75 ft for maybe a 1/3rd of a mile. Then, we headed back down and a little before mile 4, we ran on flat pavement for a mile or so before heading up our second hill. This hill lasted a little more than a mile and was more of a pain because we were turning a lot and we couldn’t see the end of the hill. With most turns, we’d just see another hill. Looking back on it now, it definitely foreshadowed our trek up Torrey Pines hill, which has a similar path.
Mile 5 to 8: Mile 5 is where the pep talk started for me. I started taking a lot more deep breaths and tried to conserve my energy as much as possible. At mile 5, we got our glimpse of the massive Torrey Pines hill. We ran downhill and ran by the beach and at mile 5.5, we started our trek up the hill. The highest point of the hill measures in at 445 feet. It does have dips in elevation before it gets to that point, but there are only a few. The first dip we hit was at 318 feet. Although, I didn’t run up the hill in it’s entirety, I am proud to say that I ran up 302 feet of that hill before I had to take a 10 second walking break. This is HUGE because two years ago, I struggled HARD on that hill. The balls of my feet went numb and I had to walk up a lot of that hill. This year, there was none of that and I made it out of that hill feeling like a champ. 🙂 It also helped A LOT that I actually saw the 2:00 pacer a few hundred feet away during this trek. Since the pacer started in the wave ahead of me, that meant that I was on pace to finish within the 2 hours I wanted. That kept me going.
Mile 9 to 11: Having lived in La Jolla for a good chunk of my graduate school career, this stretch felt at home to me. I’ve run around the area for years and I just imagined myself running it like it was any other day.
Mile 12: Flat. Suspiciously flat.
Mile 13: This mile contains what I heard someone describe as the “F*** you” hill. I think that’s it’s a very accurate description of that hill. The hill increases in elevation by about 150 feet and takes almost everyone by surprise because honestly, who designs a course that has a hill at the very end? LOL. The organizers of the La Jolla Half do. That’s who. Even though it was my second time running it and I knew about it, I still wasn’t well prepared for it. I took one more walking break here and once I hit the peak of that hill, I made a break for the finish line.
Finish line – As soon as I crossed that finish line, I immediately took out my phone and stopped my Strava app. And wouldn’t you know it, I finished it under 2 HOURS! Hooray! I knew I wasn’t going to PR this race, but I wanted to at least redeem myself and redeem myself, I did! 🙂 My official time was 1:59:10 meaning that I beat my course PR by 17 minutes. Holy moly, does that feel good! 😀
I grabbed my medals, all the my goodies (banana, Tru Moo chocolate milk, coconut milk, boxed water, another acai bowl from Sambazon), picked up my gear bag to put all my stuff in, took a photo in front of the La Jolla half marathon sign, and met up with some BibRave Pros who also ran the race.
The overall experience was fantastic. It was a challenging race, but it pushed me out of my comfort zone and I came out a stronger person for it. I wish it was a bit cooler and less humid during the race, but that’s weather for you. You can never depend on it when you need it most. LOL. Anyway, that wraps up my race report. Hope you enjoyed reading it!
So about how you? Did you run this weekend? Race? How did you do?
Disclaimer: I received a Road ID Wrist ID Elite 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! All opinions are my own.
Call me naive, but I never really thought about all the safety issues that came with running until recently. Sure, I’ve heard “stranger danger” and carry pepper spray with me, but I never really thought about other precautions I could take while out on my run.
First, what are Road IDs? They are a form of ID that you wear on your wrist like a bracelet. They contain whatever information you want it to contain – your address, emergency contact(s), allergies, etc.
And why do I need one? I’m a runner. I don’t carry ID with me when I run. Why would I? It’s just another thing to carry and then there’s a chance of losing it. I almost lost my ID during the NYC marathon when I was shuffling things in and out of my Flipbelt and you can bet, that would have been a nightmare to find/replace. With a RoadID, you can easily slip it on for your run and slip it off after. If have an allergy to a medication, a RoadID or other medical bracelet is SUPER important to have. If you collapse and need help, first responders will need to know what NOT to administer to you. The wrong move could be bad.
Ever notice that there’s an emergency contact form on the back of your race bib? I am SUPER guilty of not filling these out when I race. With my RoadID, I won’t have to anymore (as long as no one has ripped off my bracelet during the race). I won’t be a Jane Doe anymore. Yay! That’s definitely a plus for me.
Okay? But I’m not a runner? Even if you’re not a runner, there are a few other reasons to wear one. As stated before, if you have an allergy to medication, wearing a RoadID would definitely help you if for some reason, you were unable to speak for yourself. Also, if you have children that are too young to remember crucial information like your number, you may want to grab one of these for them. When I was younger, I would ALWAYS get lost at a supermarket. I even got lost in Vegas. LOL. With a RoadID, if someone had found me back then, they could have just called my parents (assuming they had cellphones back then).
What about the fit? You don’t have to worry about choosing the correct size because the wrist IDs come with a lengthy band that you can size yourself. All you need to do is cut CAREFULLY. I say carefully because once you cut, that’s the size. You can’t reattach it so make sure you are sizing yourself correctly.
From the picture above, you can tell that I was nervous about cutting my band. They recommend that you cut one section at a time and the closer I got to my size, the more hesitant I was about cutting it. LOL. I succeeded in the end though so not all was lost. The Wrist ID elite was pretty comfortable to wear. I think I could have left a little more wiggle room for the band, but now I know. I would recommend to anyone cutting these to leave a little wiggle room for band length and test it out on a run. You don’t want your wrist ID to cut off your circulation so trial and error is best. 🙂
What if I want to be fashionable? The great thing about these RoadIDs is that they come in all different flavors. If a bracelet isn’t your thing, they also have colors, band widths, and BADGES. Oh man. Badges are one of my favorite aspects of these IDs. Think of them as accessories. You can choose one of their designs or customize one to add to your RoadID. As you can see from my picture, I chose two badges that represent me well. Although I’ve run a marathon, I don’t quite consider myself a marathoner just yet. For now, I am Mai, half marathoner extraordinaire. 🙂 Also, telling my legs to shut up is a common occurrence nowadays.
There is one last thing. Customer service is a difficult job. I understand that. RoadID’s people skills have been nothing but phenomenal. And I’m not just saying that. They kept me informed of when my Wrist ID was shipped and the moment it arrived. Their emails are witty and a lot of the things you read from them are pretty funny. See below for example.
Okay, you got me. Where do I order one? Use this link, right here. That link will provide you with a $5 gift-card that can be used towards your RoadID purchase. The $5 gift-card will be valid for 2 weeks after you sign-up (a copy of the gift-card will be emailed to you). For $5, you can add a pretty badge to your Road ID.
For reviews on the Wrist ID from other BibRave Pros, click below and feel free to ask me any questions regarding this product.
I am not a morning person. The only way you can get me to wake up in the morning is if you tempt with a race and a medal and even on those days, getting up is a struggle. Because I can’t really get up early to run, you can guess that I’m primarily a night runner. Night running is very calming for me, but at the same time, it does pose some safety risks. One of the main safety issues is being seen. Neighborhoods are not always well lit and cars may not see you until it’s too late. I recently bought a dinky little red flashing light that I attach to my flipbelt on my runs, but it’s not extremely bright and sometimes, I’m not sure cars see me.
Running with the Brilliant Reflective strips has put me more at ease. I’m still really cautious running by cars (and everyone should be), but at least I know that I’m shining bright like a diamond and that cars will see me. I was able to try both their stick-on strips, which are removable, and their iron-on strips, which are permanent. These strips, when shined on, ARE EXTREMELY BRIGHT. You can see for yourself below.
The strips come in various colors – black, blue, red, and purple. When a bright light source like a flashlight or headlights from a car shines on the strips, the reflected light doesn’t just scatter and appear diffuse to driver. Some materials do this. These strips do not. The reflected light from these strips will shine directly back at the source. This phenomenon is called retroflection. Because light scattering isn’t occurring, the brightness is a lot stronger and will allow me to be seen from 300+ meters away. Hooray!
High visibility – Like I mentioned, these strips are extremely reflective and will allow you to be seen from far away. You want to be seen if you’re running at night. If you don’t want to be seen, you’re probably a burgular. 🙂
Easy to put on – Both the stick-on and iron-on strips are relatively easy to put on. For the stick-on ones, you just have to peel the material off the back and stick them on like a sticker. The iron-on strips require a little more equipment, an iron. I actually didn’t have an iron and had to borrow a friend’s to put mine on. Each strip takes 30 to 45 seconds to iron on and can be re-ironed on if the ends start to curl, which mine haven’t (yet).
Lasts long – I’ve used these strips for a few weeks and have had no problems with them. The stick-on strips, even after washing, stayed secure. I’m not sure how long they’ll stay on for, but I was definitely impressed they stayed on after a few washes. I did turn my shirt inside out when I washed so maybe that made a difference? If you’re worried about them falling off, you can always opt for their iron-on ones, which are permanent and exactly the same price. I would suggest using the stick-on strips on helmets, leashes, and other things that aren’t made of fabric and using the iron-on strips on your clothes.
Price – For a set of strips, it will cost you $9.95 (free shipping). You can probably light up two articles of clothing with one set. This is a great price if you’re worried about not being seen at night. Buying brighter colored clothes can cost a lot so why not just light up your darker clothes for $9.95?
If you are a night runner and need more reflective gear, this may be the way to go. If you are unsure or have more questions, feel free to join in our #BibChat on Twitter 6 pm, Tuesday, April, 11th, where we will be discussing the product and giving a free set of reflective strips. Woohoo! You can also ask me about them as well. See what other BibRave Pros have to say. Use the code BIBRAVEPRO25 for 25% off the already low price of $9.95 + free shipping! This code is valid from now until Tuesday 11:50 pm CT.