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Category: Product Review

Friday Five 2.0-Yes to Athlinks!

Disclaimer:  I am promoting Athlinks 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’ve been running for over 10 years.  Thanks to Athlinks, I have a record of every race (159 races) that I’ve done.  

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I also have a record of my PRs in all race distances.

Athlinks-2.jpgWhat is Athlinks?  It is a database that houses results for all athletes.  These include pretty much all timed endurance sports (running, swimming, and triathlon).

I don’t know how long I’ve had my account.  It is a FREE account so if you haven’t set one up yet, do so right now.  You can sign up with an email address, Facebook, or Google Account.

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With Athlinks:
1. See your most recent race results and your upcoming races.  This is in the Overview tab.
2. You can check your race results.  All of these races are listed in chronological order so the latest one is on top.  This is in the Results tab.
3. Search and be friends with other runners.  This is in the Following tab. 
4. See how you did compared to your friends that also ran the same race.  This will be shown by either a “Win” or a “Loss”.  This is in the Rivals tab.

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5. Find all of your personal records.  This is in the Statistics tab.

I use Athlinks mostly to keep track of my races and my PRs.  Maybe once in a while I’ll also check out how many wins or losses I have compared to my friends.  In my case, I have more losses than wins.  🙂  I also like filtering by race distance or a specific race and compare how I did.

Here are my results from the Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle beginning in 2006.

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There is also an Athlinks App you can download to your phone.  

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I am pleased with my experience with Athlinks.  It has been a positive one since the beginning.  It is FREE and EASY.  <<Nothing to lose.  If you don’t have an account, set one up right now.  Don’t forget to follow me on Athlinks.

I’m linking up with Running on Happy and Fairytales and Fitness for Friday 2.0.

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Detach Coconut+ Review

Disclaimer:  I received Detach Coconut Water 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’m in week 11 of training for the Illinois Marathon.  This will be my 9th marathon and I am excited but at the same time also nervous.  Over the years while training for various races, I’ve tried various energy gels and hydration drinks.  Everyone is different so what works for one person may or may not work for others.

While running I always make sure to drink water.   I will admit that there are days in which all I’ve had to drink is coffee.  I know, not good.  I do love coffee though.  I was excited and looking forward to try Detach Coconut+.  I had never heard of it and am glad I tried it.

Detach-2Detach Coconut+ was founded with the need for an all-natural drink that helped the creators stay hydrated, focused and supported their training.  They also donate and support initiatives that share their core values, through a portion of the profits, such as Alzheimers Association, World Bicycle Relief, and Sonoma Pride.

Detach Coconut+ is a coconut water-based drink with only a subtle coconut flavor, improved electrolyte balance, low glycemic energy and a micro-protein blend (Beta-alanine, Citrulline and Theanine).  These are vital for the following reasons:

• Beta-alanine – commonly found in trace amounts of legumes and seaweed, has been shown to improve the muscles energy production at intensity and in some studies improving 800m times by ~10s for 1 time use and ~15s after cumulative use.

• Citrulline – commonly found in melons is a known vasodilator, improving Nitric Oxide levels in the body.  This opens up your blood vessels and improves blood flow.

• Theanine – commonly found in many teas especially white and green teas. Theanine is also known as a neurotropic as it impacts feelings of positivity and focus.

In addition each bottle only has 60 calories and NO “fake” sweeteners which leave a nasty aftertaste.

It is recommended to take 1 bottle 30 minutes before a workout and 1 bottle during exercise.  I drank one bottle while on a long run (90 minutes).  It was a cold day but had no trouble finishing my run.  I enjoyed the citrus flavor and couldn’t really taste the coconut.  Actually I could only taste the lemon flavor which I liked.

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I also used it to make a smoothie to rehydrate and have some protein and carbs.  I used Detach, Orgain Protein Powder, and a banana.  I realized later that I should have added hemp or chia seeds for additional protein.

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In conclusion, Detach Coconut+ tastes great and provides an organic and alternative way to stay hydrated.  In addition, it is gluten free and certified paleo.

Would you like to try Detach Coconut+?  You can order it from Amazon or from the Detach Coconut+ website.  In addition, you can sign up for their newsletter to get information on coupons, promotions and giveaway opportunities.

Health Warrior Chia Bars Review

Disclaimer:  I received Health Warrior Chia Bars 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 like to eat.  However, I can be lazy and rarely cook.  I make pasta, quinoa, eggs, pancakes, etc.  It has to be easy with very few ingredients.  I told you I was lazy.  I also like to snack.  I know it isn’t healthy but many times I crave something salty and spicy.  My favorite is potato chips with hot sauce.  No wonder I cannot lose weight!!  Sometimes I also crave something sweet.

It was during this summer that I first heard about Health Warrior Chia Bars.  I believe it was before my trip to Alaska.  I didn’t think about it anymore and then just completely forgot about them till about sometime in October when the opportunity arose to try them out.  Sign me up!

Health Warrior makes Chia Bars, Pumpkin Seed Bars, and Chia Protein Bars.  I received two different flavors of the Chia Bars – Apple Cinnamon and Dark Chocolate.  What makes these so great and healthy?  They’re gluten free, soy free, dairy free, 100% vegan, and non-GMO.  Plus they’re only 110 calories, have 4-5 grams of sugar, 4 grams of fiber, 3 grams of protein, and 1100 mg of Omega-3.

I first tried the dark chocolate.  I liked that it wasn’t too sweet but yet it was enough to satisfy me.  I finished it in 3 bites.

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Next I tried the Apple Cinnamon and also liked that one too.  This one had pieces of apples.  Again, 3 bites later and it was gone.

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I realize that they’re meant to be eaten as a snack but I think these should be a bit bigger.  🙂  Also, I know chia seeds tend to get stuck in your teeth (dislike it when that happens).  However, I found that that was not the case with these bars.

I enjoy eating one or two of these after school.  I eat lunch at 11:30 am and am done with school at 3:00 pm.  You bet that afterwards I am hungry.  Depending on the day I either have a meeting, stay late to grade papers, or have Math Club on Thursday.

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Something else I received with the Chia Bars is a Marathon Training Coloring Book.  I like to color but don’t always make the time for it.  I laughed when I checked out each page because I could relate to many of the pictures in the book.  

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The Chia Bars come in 9 flavors:  Acai Berry, Apple Cinnamon, Banana Nut, Chocolate Peanut Butter, Coconut, Dark Chocolate Cherry, Dark Chocolate, Vanilla Almond, and Mango.  The Health Warrior Chia Bars are $15.99 for 15 bars (one time purchase) or $12.79 when you subscribe and save 20% off your order.  The company offers free shipping for orders over $25, hassle free returns, and a rewards program. 

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You can also try a sampler box of 3 bars for $4.99 and FREE shipping.  I ordered the Pumpkin Seed Bars in Cinnamon Spice, Dark Chocolate, and Honey Cracked Pepper with Turmeric.  You can also get the free coloring book with your order by going here:  http://healthwarrior.link/colorbookbr.

Have you tried these bars?  Thoughts?  If you haven’t, which one would you like to try?

5K Crate Product Review

Disclaimer:  I received a 5k Crate 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!

What is 5K Crate?  It is a quarterly subscription box ($59.99) that has premium apparel and accessories for runner of all types and fitness levels.  Each box is carefully hand picked to include 5-6 items that you will use over and over again.  You can select a women’s or men’s version and shipping is FREE.

I was excited when I received my box.  Inside my box were the following:

  • Mission VaporActive Alpha Running Shirt- $35.95
  • Mission VaporActive Cooling Towel- $19.99
  • Spigen Wireless Bluetooth Headphones- $45.00
  • Zensah No-Show Compression Socks- $19.99
  • (2) Epic Full-Size Body Wipes- $2.50 each
  • (3) La Fresh Travel Sunscreen Samples- $1.00 each

Total value is $128.93.  

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Mission VaporActive Alpha Running Shirt – I wear short sleeve shirts for running.  However, I like the color and the fit.  This shirt is supposed to dry up to 5 times faster than the leading shirt.  I really didn’t notice this but it could have been that when I wore this shirt it was mostly for shorter runs.

Mission VaporActive Cooling Towel – It is a soft towel that keeps you cool for up to 2 hours. All you do is wet it, wring it, and snap it.  I didn’t take advantage of it during these 90 degree days because all I wanted to do after a run was jump in the shower.

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Spigen Wireless Bluetooth Headphones – I rarely run with music.  It depends on my mood and run.  However, I have two pairs of headphones with wires that when I do use them, the wires drive me crazy.  Enter wireless headphones.  I wear these mostly for when I am working on my laptop entering grades for school or writing blog posts.  These were easy to pair up with my iPhone and the sound is clear and crisp.  

Zensah No-Show Compression Socks – Is it possible to have too many socks?  No way!  I own about 20 pairs and pick a pair depending on the shoes I plan to wear (I have 3 pairs in rotation).  I love that they’re thin, soft and comfortable.  No blisters either.  I didn’t think I would like the ankle height because I prefer no show socks.

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Epic Full-Size Body Wipes – I didn’t use these wipes but I know they’re big enough to wipe off the sweat and smell when you need to go somewhere else after a run and you don’t have time for a shower.  

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La Fresh Travel Sunscreen Samples – I’ve never heard of sunscreen wipes.  They’re the perfect size for a bag or even short pockets.  The lotion isn’t greasy and I didn’t notice any scent.

Final thoughts:  I like trying out the different products.  Most of these were new to me.   The one item I didn’t care for is the shirt but that is because I have enough in my drawer and I prefer to run in short sleeves.

Is all of this worth $60?  Definitely!  As you saw above, total cost is about $130 so you get all of this stuff for about half price. 

You can sign up HERE and every 3 months  you will receive a new shipment with 5-6 items. Join today as the Octobe boxes start shipping on October 16th.

Lola likes the box.  She says it is the perfect size and sends her thanks to 5K Crate.

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Have you tried any of these products?  Have you tried a 5K Crate subscription? Thoughts?

Friday Five 2.0-Luvo Frozen Meals Product Review

Disclaimer:  I received Luvo Frozen 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!

I love to eat but don’t like to cook.  My mother makes the best Mexican food and I look forward to it everytime I see her.  

I have a hard time deciding what to take to school for lunch.  I only have 30 minutes to eat and in that time I also have to finish up some work for the next two hours of class and use the bathroom.  Enter Luvo Frozen Meals.  The past few weeks I had the opportunity to try their products for a quick, easy, and healthy meal.

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Luvo’s philosophies for their meals consist of :

  • The right balance of protein, whole grains, and veggies
  • Not too much sodium or added sugar
  • No artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners

There are so many meals to choose from – either in a pouch or a bowl.  Below are the ones I was able to sample.

Kale Ricotta Ravioli – This one had a great smell!  Teachers asked me what I was eating because it smelled so good.  This bowl is nut free and vegetarian with 12 grams of protein, 14 grams of whole grains, and 1/2 cup of vegetables

Hawaiian Un-Fried Rice-I didn’t think I would like this but it is actually very tasty.  This bowl is vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian, dairy free with 10 grams of plant protein, 42 grams of whole grains, and 1 cup of fruit and vegetables. 

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Quinoa & Veggie Enchilada Verde-My sister and I both enjoyed this bowl.  I love green enchiladas as well as quinoa.  The salsa verde was tasty and definitely not spicy at all. This bowl is gluten-free, nut free, vegetarian with 10 grams of protein, 37 grams of whole grains, and 1/2 cup of vegetables.

Great Karma Coconut Curry-This is another bowl I did not think I would like.  I like coconut but not a fan of curry.  This bowl is vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian, dairy free with 10 grams of plant protein, 16 grams of whole grains, and 1 cup of vegetables.

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So Cal Kale & Bean-I know Kale is good for you (don’t eat it as much as I would like to) so I looked forward to this meal.  It was sweet which I liked.  This bowl is vegan, gluten-free, nut free, vegetarian, dairy free with 10 grams of plant protein, 23 grams of whole grains, and 1 cup of fruit and vegetables.

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Roasted Cauliflower Mac & Cheese-I loved the brown rice noodles and the panko style topping on top made it crunchy!  This bowl is gluten-free, nut free, vegetarian with 11 grams of protein, 55 grams of whole grains, and 1/2 cup of vegetables.

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I know frozen meals are never a substitute for real food.  However, with so many choices of frozen meals out there, I didn’t feel guilty having one of these for lunch.  Here are a few reasons:

  • A few have a high number of whole grains and/or protein.  I was able to stay full till dinner time.
  • Most frozen meals have a high number of sodium.  However, the meals I tried had sodium in the 300s.  The Great Karma Coconut Curry has the highest number with 390 milligrams.
  • A variety to choose from whether you are looking for a vegan, vegetarian, gluten free, nut free, or dairy free meal.
  • Great taste!  Seriously, I was surprised at how good they were.  I tried 6 different meals and I liked all of them.
  • They’re inexpensive!  I went to my local Jewel-Osco and they were on sale for $3.00 (regular price was $4.99) each which is affordable.  Click HERE to find out if they’re available at your local grocery store.

Have you tried Luvo Frozen Meals?  Which one did you like the most?

I’m linking up with Running on Happy and Fairytales and Fitness for Friday 2.0.

Hoping everyone had a good week!

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