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Category: Running

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.

Luvo Frozen Meals 1

Luvo Frozen Meals 10

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. 

Luvo Frozen Meals 4

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.

Luvo Frozen Meals 9

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.

Luvo Frozen Meals 5

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.

Luvo Frozen Meals 6

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!

fridayfive

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Run Mag Mile Race Recap

Disclaimer:  I received free race entry to the Run Mag Mile 10K 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!

On Sunday I ran a 10K.  And it was so much fun!

I picked up my packet after school on Friday.  It took me one hour to get to Fleet Feet in Old Town and then 1 1/2 hours to get back home.  Definitely not happy about it but all of that went away when I saw the hoodie in my bag.  🙂  It fits well and I love the color.

Run Mag Mile 1

The race began at 7am so I woke up early to get ready and drink coffee with my Clif Bar. Usually when there is a race downtown I drive to the train station, leave my car there, and take the train.  This time I drove and parked about half a mile from the start line.  Now I have a new parking spot and it it FREE!!

On my way to the start line.  It was a bit chilly in the morning but then it was perfect for running.  I never got hot but just felt very comfortable.

I saw Heather, a fellow Oiselle girl and BibRave Pro Ambassador.  I also saw a couple of other friends before the race.

Run Mag Mile 5

Then it was time to run!  Part of the course was running down Michigan Avenue.  This reminded me of Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas where you also run down the strip.  

Run Mag Mile 6

Run Mag Mile 7

Saw this along the course.

Run Mag Mile 8

Even though I was feeling great, I did think about switching to the 5k.  Glad I didn’t.

Run Mag Mile 9

I enjoyed running along the lakefront except for the wind.  Gosh, it was terrible but surprisingly I kept running and stopped for a few seconds at the turnaround point.

Run Mag Mile 10

Run Mag Mile 11

Run Mag Mile 12Done.  I checked my splits and was surprised because I ran faster than I thought I could run. It isn’t a PR but I definitely enjoyed this race.  Official finish time is 1:07:09.

Run Mag Mile 13

Run Mag Mile 14

Run Mag Mile 16

Post race every runner got a box with food.  The chicken sausage was delicious!

Run Mag Mile 15

Can you tell I am happy to be done?

Would I do it again?  Absolutely!  And here are 5 reasons.

  • The hoodie.  I like how it looks, fits, and feels.
  • The medal.  And it is a big one!
  • The food and beer.  I enjoyed everything in the box.  Also, I didn’t take a picture but each runner had a ticket for one drink, Revolution Brewery beer or a Moscow Mule (I picked the beer).
  • The course.  It was never crowded.  Plenty of room for everyone.  The best part was running on Michigan Avenue.
  • FREE race photos.  I love a race that provids free race photos even if many times we don’t like how we look.  🙂

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

Hoping everyone had a good week!

fridayfive

Brilliant Reflective, my latest favorite running song, and I am still running.

Disclaimer:  I received Brilliant Reflective Safety Strips to try and 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 rarely run when it is dark.  During the summer it is bright as early as 5am and doesn’t get dark till about 8:30pm.  The few times I run while it is dark, I wear a reflective vest and a headlamp.  I was more than happy to test and review Brilliant Reflective Safety Strips.  The company sent me both Iron-On and Stick-On strips.

Brilliant Reflective 1

So what exactly are these strips?  They’re pieces of tape that you can stick on to your gear so that when light hits you, you are seen.  They’re easy to peel and can be placed on pretty much all of your running gear such as shoes, shirts, hats.  They’re available in black, red, blue, and purple so they either blend in or stand out.

My niece liked them on her shoes.

I used them in my shirt, shoes, and running hat.

Brilliant Reflective 4

Brilliant Reflective 5

Brilliant Reflective 6

I will admit that I removed them from my shoes to put on another pair and somehow one of the strips fell off during my race.  However, they stayed on the shirts even after washing them.

Brilliant Reflective 7

I haven’t used the Iron-On strips but am excited to use them on my Oiselle Power Stretch Beanie and Softshell Gloves.  <<Definitely not ready for cold weather as I am enjoying the cool and fall like weather we are having in Chicago.

Join us on Tuesday, September 12th as BibRave and Brilliant Reflective will be hosting a #BibChat at 8pm CST.  Come by and chat with us about this great product and you’ll have a chance to win some of your own.

My latest running song is “Mi Gente”.  Have you heard it?  Not a big fan of the video but I do like the beat and it makes me want to dance too.  🙂

I had some great runs this week.  Monday and Tuesday was 5.02 miles.  Fall weather is here and that makes the runs much more enjoyable.  I was pleased and surprised with my negative splits!

On Saturday I ran the Run Mag Mile 10K.  It was so much fun!  The weather was perfect and it was fun running down Michigan Avenue (it reminded me of RnR Las Vegas when the strip was closed for the race).  I didn’t get a PR (old one is from 2010) but I ran faster than I thought I could and also had a blast.  I think that definitely counts more than a PR, right?  🙂

So what did you think of the song “Mi Gente”?  What is your favorite running song now?

I’m linking up with Holly and Tricia for their Weekly Wrap.  This week’s host is Sara @ Sara Runs This Town.  Please stop by her blog and show her some love!

Hoping everyone had a good week!

WWGuest

Changes and I signed up for the Illinois Marathon!

I live in a two flat building with my older sister.  My younger sister, nephew, and mom lived on the first floor.  This past weekend they moved to a condominium in Palos Heights (about 40 minutes from where I live).  My nephew is a freshman in high school and my sister wanted to live closer to this school.  It is weird coming home and not seeing them here.  Eventually I would like to buy a house for the two of us.  Maybe next year in the Spring.  I guess now I need to limit my Oiselle purchases. I told myself that I will only buy stuff on sale.  🙂  So here is what I got today: Long Rogas in Plum, Heather Grid Dolman, and Portman Pants in Plum.

With the move I inherited a piece of furniture from my mother.  I am pleased that I now have one place to store my running gear.  For now I have my shoes.

I have been running here and there.  I went back to work last week.  I am feeling more overwhelmed and exhausted each day.  I don’t remember feeling like this in previous years.  Last year I was training for the Chicago Marathon (running 6 days a week) and managed to do my runs.  Hopefully in a few weeks things will settle down and I won’t feel too overwhelmed.  Today my students behaved well.  I even got compliments from two teachers telling me that I have a good group of students.  🙂

On Saturday I signed up for the Illinois Marathon on April 28 in Champaign, IL.  I did the marathon relay with some friends in 2015.  Despite the tornado warning/watch (can’t remember what it was), we had a great time and managed to finish the race.  I am actually excited about the marathon next year!

From the Illinois Marathon website: Along with the marathon, there is a 5k, 10k, and half marathon.  Runners who complete the 5K on Friday and then the 10K, half marathon, full marathon, or marathon relay on Saturday will receive a special I-Challenge medal.  This means, in all, you will receive:

  • Two shirts (5K shirt plus the 10K, half marathon, marathon, or marathon relay shirt)
  • Three medals (5K medal plus the 10K, half marathon, marathon, or marathon relay medal as well as an I-Challenge medal [different for each I-Challenge])
  • Bragging rights

The I-Challenges.

  • Full I-Challenge = 5K + marathon
  • Marathon Relay I-Challenge = 5K + marathon relay
  • Half I-Challenge = 5K + half marathon
  • Mini I-Challenge = 5K + 10K

Registration fees are below and will increase after August 31 so make sure to sign up today!
Marathon-$90
Half Marathon-$65
Marathon Relay-$140/team
10K-$35
5K-$30
Full I-Challenge-$120
Marathon Relay I-Challenge-$260/team
Half I-Challenge-$95
Mini I-Challenge-$65

Any race challenges?  I’ve done the Goofy Challenge and Dumble Dare Challenge in 2014.

Linking up with MarciaPatti, and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

TuesdaysOnTheRun

Under Armour Horizon RTT shoes, back to work, and a giveaway!

Disclaimer:  I received a pair of Under Armour Horizon RTT Trail Running Shoes 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 don’t normally run on the trail.  However, when I was training for the Lake Michigan Marathon, I would do my long runs on the trail.  I wanted a different place than running along the lakefront.  Also,  I realized that I would recover much faster when running on the trail.  Plus, there is a certain smell (dirt) that comes with it.  It may sound weird but it is true and I actually enjoyed it.  

Last month I received a pair of Under Armour Horizon RTT trail running shoes.  Under Armour reminds me of Michael Phelps (and his cool video) and running clothes. Definitely not running shoes nor trail shoes.  I was still very interested to check them out.

The Horizon RTT comes in 5 colors.  I picked marlin blue/neptune and I love the color .

UA Horizon RTT Trail Shoes 1

Product DNA (from the UA website)

  • Durable PU & textile upper for breathability & reliable protection
  • Reinforced welded synthetic material in critical areas for increased durability
  • Mesh heel with dual protective welds
  • Molded collar foam package for added comfort
  • Charged Cushioning® foam puck placed under the heel for responsive comfort
  • Lightweight, full-length EVA midsole for optimal cushioning
  • High traction rubber lug outsole for dependable traction on a variety of conditions
  • Offset: 7mm
  • Weight: 9.2 oz.
  • Imported

While they weren’t heavy, they felt more stiff than my regular running shoes.  My first run in them hurt my right foot.

UA Horizon RTT Trail Shoes 2

A few more runs in them and the shoes feel a little bit more comfortable.

UA Horizon RTT Trail Shoes 7

While they’re primarily trail shoes, they also did well on the road.

UA Horizon RTT Trail Shoes 3

I also wore them to work (in my skirt).  🙂  I like that they’re wide enough for my feet.

UA Horizon RTT Trail Shoes 6.jpg

Check out these lugs!  I have a feeling these will be great to run in the snow.

Overall, I am pleased with my shoes.  My only regret is not sizing up.  I wear a 9.5 and remember reading some people suggesting to size up.  I don’t know why I didn’t.  I have been wearing thin socks and no longer run more than 5 miles in them.

Monday was my first day back at work.  In the morning I worked in my room and then parents dropped off school supplies from 9-10 am.  Then meetings, lunch, and another meeting in another building.  Long day.  Thankfully we had a break to see the eclipse.  It was cloudy but did manage to see a bit of it.

Eclipse glasses

Tuesday was more meetings.  It went by fast.  I couldn’t stay late because I had a doctor appointment for my yearly checkup.  I had to step on the scale and was very surprised at the number.  No, it didn’t go down but instead went down.  I was tired so I didn’t really care.  But now I do.

My first day with the kids was Wednesday.  Some of the teachers used chalk to write messages for them.  Pretty cool!

I have 24 students in my room.  Wow!  At the end of the day I wanted to cry.  I was exhausted.  My back, feet, and legs hurt.  I have a rough group of kids.  I remember my first year and it wasn’t that bad.  These kids talk a lot and don’t know when to stop talking. They’re also distracted and looking elsewhere but me.   

Tired cat

The next two days were rough too.  Something new this year is that the kids eat breakfast in the lunchroom.  They come in at 8:30am, grab breakfast (if they want), and go to the classroom.  They have 15 minutes to put stuff in their locker and eat.  It isn’t enough time because they like to talk which in the morning is fine but they also need to eat.  In the meantime I take attendance and track who ate breakfast and who brought a lunch.  The kids need to stop eating at 8:45, throw away the garbage, and clean up because at 8:50 they have a special (gym, media, art, gym, or computers).

I know the first couple of days/weeks are rough.  I am ready for that.  I need to remember those moments that make teaching so worth it.

Teacher Inspiration

Now time for a giveaway!  The winner will receive a Momentum Jewelry inspire-ring.  I have one and love it.  

Momentum Inspire-Ring

Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter.  This giveaway will run until September 2 at 11:59 pm.  The giveaway is open to US residents only.  The winner will be contacted via the email address associated with their Rafflecopter account and will have 24 hours to claim their prize.   All entries are verified, so please be sure to complete them or a new, random winner will be selected.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Do you prefer road or trail running?  Or both?

I’m linking up with Holly and Tricia for their Weekly Wrap. This week’s host is Teresa @ Finding Fabulous at Fifty .  Please stop by her blog and show her some love!

Hoping everyone had a good week!

WWGuest