XX2i Bahamas1

XX2i Bahamas1 Review

“Disclaimer: I received the XX2i Optics, Bahamas1 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!”

pictured with the zippered case they came in

Sunglasses!!! I can’t get enough of XX2i and their products, I was happy to try out another pair from their casual line, this time the Bahamas.

I had a choice in frame color, out of the 4 choices, I decided on the matte white/black with polar gray lenses. (Since I had another casual pair, the Bermuda in brown – hey a girl needs options!)


Features of this model include:

  • light weight, durable frame – they weigh 1.1 oz (thanks postal scale)
  • Polarized lenses with 8K optical technology
  • 100% UVA and UVB Protection
  • Glare cutting polarized lens technology
  • Lifetime Warranty
  • 365 day return policy – seriously, they give you a year!

Well besides wearing them everyday since I got them, I put them through the test by wearing them at an auction


Wearing them to mow the lawn and do yard work


Wearing them to drive


Wearing them so my husband wouldn’t wear them, until he bought his own pair

 

 

 

 


I wore them to sell goods at the farmers market


Eating Fro-yo or ice cream


Drinking beer/ coffee


I always have them with me, forgetting they were on my head, and then I reached for another of my xx2i sunglasses.


You get the jest of it… these sunglasses are good for any activity. They protect your eyes in a way you don’t understand, until you forget your sunglasses and end up squinting all day. Seriously, I don’t leave home without a pair of XX2i.

The only “con” which really isn’t a bad thing, these fit tighter than the other casual shades I own, so they are great for smaller framed heads/faces. I also love my running specific xx2i shades, so I have not run in these, they do not have an adjustable nose pad to keep them in place on a sweaty nose. However, I do know many others have ran in these – as I have run in my other casual shades too, it’s hard not to run in sunglasses even on a cloudy day…. ok I am rambling here…

Bottom line, get yourself a pair of XX2i sunglasses, your eyes will thank you – BONUS – use code “xx2irocks” for 50% off your purchase. https://www.xx2i.com/


Need more reviews? Check out what these Bibrave Pros had to say: Tedrick – Heather – Nicole – VanessaMeridith

As always you can find XX2i on TwitterFacebookInstagram or the Web

Running at night

How do you train for a night race?

“Disclaimer: I received entry into the RunMadtown 10k 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!”

Ok, I have run A LOT of races, however I still don’t have the evening or night race thing down. I am going to be running the Run Madtown Twilight 10k in Madison, WI on May 27th. It starts at 8:10pm. As someone who usually runs in the morning or goes on a #runch, I am still trying to prepare the best I can, I have come up with a list of things, I have done or should be doing.

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I ran the even in 2016 with Lisa, and will be meeting with her again in 2017

1.) Familiarize yourself with the course. Will there be hills, pacers, aid, trail? At this time of night it’s just starting to get dark, and the lighting can throw things off. Knowing at what mile I can grab a water, or at what point I might have to climb a hill will help keep me on pace to finish in a decent time. This way I can deal with my eyes adjusting to the light and looking out for unknown course hazards.

2.) Run at night. This may be the most obvious thing to do. Run at the same time the race starts, then your body is ready. However, this is just so hard for me. I want to get my run done, I am not a fan of waiting all day. Also by 8:10 pm I am tired and don’t want to do much. Hey – I am an old lady.

3.) Eating. Perhaps, this is tougher than the night running. In my everyday life, I do not eat an early supper. Some days, I might not eat until 9 pm. The solution is to eat an early light dinner so the food has time to digest. I wouldn’t eat a plate of nachos, covered in jalepenos, well unless that is your thing. Then when you are done, enjoy the post race food line up as a snack. This year there will be Rocky Rococo’s Pizza at the finish.

4.) Find something to do during the day. I get anxious, and waiting around all day to race drives me nuts, I need things to do to keep my mind occupied. This isn’t a long distance race for me, but if it were I would recommend finding something to do to stay off your feet, or try to relax – and you can never go wrong with taking a nap!

I will also need to get my bib, so I will have time to check out the expo at the Monona Terrace Community and Convention Center Lakeside Commons. There is no race day packet pick up, so I will have until 5 pm on race day to check out all the goods.

There are also a ton of things to do in Madison. I really like the farmers market on Capital Square – which is where the race starts/finishes. You can also check out many breweries, the lakes, tour the Capitol or the UW Campus. Many things to keep an anxious mind busy until 8:10 pm.

5.) Prepare your gear. By the time this race is over, you will be finishing in the dark. The course is well lit, but you want to make sure your outfit is ready for the FREE race pictures. I like to wear all the colors, but you can wear what is comfortable for you to run in, remember pictures last forever on the internet.

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I just need to work on the evening and night running thing, and I think I will be ready. As a Hawkeye fan it may be tough to travel to Madison for a sporting event, but for a race, I am ready to get back to Madison.

 

Peace of Mind

Road ID Wrist ID Elite – Product Review

“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!”


I jumped on the chance to try this model of Road ID, not only because I needed to upgrade my current name badge, but mostly because I am very passionate about runner safety.

 
What is Road ID?

Simple – an ID you can carry on you for safety reasons. There are various models depending on where you want to wear the ID. Each model has a name badge, that is customized online. Suggested information are people to call, allergies or blood type. However you can put what you like on your ID. This ID is great for all outdoor activities, your pets, your children, anywhere! It’s easy to wear.

They also provide interactive IDs, which will provide more information online, such as medical history. There is also an app you can use on your phone to notify friends where you are running.

My Road ID story:

I came across Road ID years ago when I purchased the Shoe ID. At the time I thought I would never forget or lose it as it would always be on my shoe. However, that all changed when I met a guy at the post race of the Shipyard Old Port Half Marathon. He said he was hit by a car once, and his shoe flew off… they never found that shoe.

Lucky for me, many name badges are interchangeable with the bands, so I bought the Wrist ID sport. At the time, the only option was the cloth with velcro strap. This ID was good, but it wasn’t my favorite as the cloth didn’t stand up to the sweat, and it didn’t smell pretty.

Road ID then came out with the Wrist ID Slim. A silicone banded ID. I had to have this!!! I upgraded to this model. The old cloth ID was demoted to luggage tag. The new silicone band has been my everyday ID until the wrist ID elite came along. I never took it off. It held up to the sweat. I always had it on me. I even bought a lot of badges for it.

Then came the Wrist ID Elite. I really needed to upgrade my name badge on my slim. I had a silver badge and because I wore it everyday for probably 3 years, it was scratching off and getting hard to read. I also had my eyes on the new black name badge, and I would be able to get that with the Wrist ID Elite


Wrist ID Elite

First, you choose the faceplate and clasp color, then you select the band color – all done online. I then easily filled out the prompts online to customize my new name badge. I have my name, year of birth, my home city, 3 contacts, and made sure to note I have no known allergies. I also added a “Go Hawks.”  I also added a badge, which is like a charm to my order.


I received many emails letting me know the status of my order and when it shipped. The emails were just as witty as the printing on the envelope it arrived in. They are number one in the customer service department.


I opened the envelope to find my ID in a nice little tin. There were also some coupons inside and the badge I ordered.

The thing to note with this particular model of ID is that you need to cut the bracelet to fit your wrist. This process is simple, well after a little help from an online tutorial, but I wanted to make sure I didn’t cut it to short and I didn’t want the bracelet too tight.


I clasped this on my right wrist at first. I wear a lot of bracelets on this wrist. Hmmm, it just didn’t fit on that one…. so I switched it to my left wrist with my watch.


This is where I wore my Wrist ID Slim…well and to be honest, I still am wearing the old silicone band with all my badges… because I want to wear all my badges, and they don’t fit on the Wrist ID Elite.


When I run, I don’t notice my wrist ID Elite is there, however in my everyday life I notice this model. I am not sure it’s an ID I can continue to where 24/7. When doing some yard work – raking to be exact, the name badge would push the start button on my watch. Also if I have the clasp to close to my watch clasp, it will pinch my skin. So, maybe I need to wear on the other wrist. This is just my own personal preference.


I do love that it has 6 lines to add text, and I love the black badges. I think I personally prefer the smaller band with no extra clasps. I was thinking I would get a new name badge for my old smaller band….but then, Road ID came out with some news…

They have been making name badge for watches or fitness trackers for a while now, and finally they are making one for my watch model. This is what I am going to get. I can wear my watch and my old band with the badges I have.

My personal soapbox:

I run all over – trails, sidewalks, streets, gravel. I am tired of hearing all the excuses as to why you do not run with ID, and don’t get me started about not running with a phone. You never know when a car will miss a stop sign, you might fall on the trail, a dog attacks, an undetected health problem happens, you get lost, you’re dehydrated…on and on and on. YOU JUST NEVER KNOW, so why not be proactive?


Bottom line… GET ONE! This is the simplest thing to wear on a run, and it’s super affordable. While the wrist ID Elite may not be the model for me or you, they have a huge selection to chose from depending on your preference to wear it.

This link will provide a $5 gift-card to use towards your purchase:  bit.ly/2ocFWMl   The $5 gift-card is valid for 2 weeks after sign-up (copy of the gift-card will be emailed.)

Make sure to check out Road ID on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. They are always coming up with new colors, badges and models. (um rose gold anyone?)

Looking for more information, check out these reviews: Heather – MaiMeredithMatt JeannineVanessaJames 

Rudy Fotonyk Glasses

“Disclaimer: I received the Rudy Project Fotonyk Sunglasses in Black Matte with Photochromic lenses 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!”


Yep, I did it again….I’m testing glasses……..but these are different and I will tell you why I am so excited.

These glasses are called the Rudy Project, Fotonyk Black Matte with Orange Fluo bumpers and the ImpactX Photochromic 2 clear to black lenses. That is a mouth full! In clearer terms, these are light weight running/active glasses, with protective measures and lenses that change darker when it’s brighter.

The glasses have many features beyond the photochromic lenses: (from the website)

rudy
The shades arrived in a light weight box. They were wrapped in a fabric “keeper” that protected the lenses only. I also received a cool trucker style or snap back hat!


I did get these shades on the week I was taking a break from running, however I still walk the dogs at least a couple times a day, and with the recent cold snap, and gloomy gray days, what better way to give them a try. The first thing I noticed was the changing lenses, even though it was cloudy, they still darkened up. In fact, they go from transmitting 9 percent light to 74 percent. The second thing I noticed is how they protect my eyes from the cold and wind.

I was getting more excited for these as winter can be brutal in Iowa. Also – remember that marathon I ran in August, I was in and out of the woods and constantly putting on and taking off my glasses.


I was annoyed at the bumpers, or those pieces that are “red” on the bottom of the lens. I really didn’t like the look, it was like I was a scientist. However, the purpose is to protect your face from the lens if you were to take a stumble. I found out how easy they were to remove, you just pull the lens from the frame, and the bumper comes off. A simple snap back into the frame and the glasses were complete again. (You can actually purchase other lenses here, if you want to change up the look)

 


It was time to take them on their first run, I decided to run 5 miles. It was cold, about 30 degrees, and not very sunny, there was even some light snow falling from the sky.  I was wearing a stocking hat, and nothing else on my face. I was having some issues with them fogging up, but once I pinched the nose piece, so they would sit farther from my sweaty face, the fogging went away.


Speaking of fogging issues. I have yet to find any glasses that wont fog in extremely cold conditions, and maybe I shouldn’t be running outside anyway. These lenses do have measures to try and prevent the fogging, there are vents in the lens on the bottom (another reason I removed the bumper, they are more exposed), and there are openings between the frame and lens on the top. If you are covering your face, especially your nose, fogging is just a problem no matter what glasses you are wearing.


My next run, I wore these indoors. Yep, I can do that, as they go to the clear lens in darker lighting conditions. It was also a “feels like” temp below zero….so I went to the gym, to hit the treadmill. I could go on about how I hate the treadmill….but how about I tell you about my sweaty run with the glasses.


I decided to wear the trucker hat too, it has a tech liner in it. With the glasses and headphones, I had to make some adjustments to get it all to fit comfortably on my head. (Note to self, try the glasses with another hat) I ran 3 miles, and it was sooooo hot in the gym and I was very sweaty. The glasses collected some moisture and there was a tiny bit of fogging. Otherwise they stayed in place, no slipping on a sweaty face.


I have yet to get back outdoors for a run, but I have been wearing them to protect my face when I walk the dogs, as it’s still stupid cold…and since the lenses go clear I can still see.


I also think the lenses take a while to transition, so for fun I was testing this. See the time stamp after a dog walk on the photos. This was for them to go from dark to clear. Looks like it took about a half an hour. Not sure if temperature has any effect. (If it’s colder and it takes longer?)

I also wore these driving. It was sunny, and there was snow on the ground, it was bright. I felt myself squinting, as they didn’t offer enough darkness for that. I am waiting for a sunny day to test running in them. Despite this trouble, these would also be great for lab work, safety glasses, or cooking. They are light weight,  and offer excellent, physical protection for your eyes.

I was able to get out for a sunny run. I really didn’t have many issues, except I don’t think they are as dark or protect my eyes from the sun like an actual “sunglass.” As I described above when driving in the sun.


I do like these glasses, but I think they will be my cloudy day, trail, and nighttime go to pair to wear. I never realized how much protection they provided to my eyes, especially as a contact lens wearer. Now I have something to wear when it’s not so bright outdoors.


If you would like to get yourself a pair, check out this link http://www.rudyproject.com/fotonyk.html#SP457306-0001

If you don’t find all the information in my review, check out these other reviews: Heather JeremyErica Emily  – MarkCasey Amy  – Brenda

OR check out the Rudy Website, Twitter, Facebook or Instagram

 

Taking on the Challenge

Taking on the Challenge

“Disclaimer: I received entry into the I-Full Challenge at the Illinois Marathon 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!

Some of you may know, but I am running the Illinois Marathon on April 22, but did you know I am also running the 5k the night before? Yep, I am doing the I-Full Challenge.

illinois-marathon-logo

I am no stranger to multiple races in multiple days, I welcome them!! I did the inaugural Dopey Challenge, back to back half marathons, the Deja Vu Challenge, Hospital Hill Re-Run, and many more multiple races in consecutive days.

To some maybe running a 5k before a full, isn’t a challenge…well make it one! Race the 5k and then race the marathon…let me know how that goes…

Me, on the other hand will be using the 5k as a shakeout, to prepare for the full the next day. Even after all the fulls I have accomplished, I still respect the distance. I am not sure what to expect, at this point it is my first marathon of 2017 (GASP) have I gone and lost it?…maybe I will traditionally train for this one….either way it should be a good time…mostly because my BRF, Heather will be there………ok getting off course

More details on the race:

What: Illinois Marathon I Full Challenge. This year they are celebrating the sesquicentennial of the University of Illinois

When: 5k Friday, April 21 – Marathon Saturday, April 22 (there is a half marathon too)

Where: Champaign/Urbana, IL – Home to the University of Illinois, Finish on the 50 yard line of the football stadium (don’t worry I will be wearing a tigerhawk or 5, Go Hawks 🙂 )

Who: you! (and me, and Heather, Andrey, and Melinda – come meet the Bibrave pros)

Why: why not?

Did I mention the finisher’s blanket?

marathonerfinisherblanket-1

Please check out the website, twitter or facebook for more updates as the race nears. Also this handy link will get you to an updated spreadsheet of hotels in the area as they fill up fast.

Register now with code “bibravebonus” which will  give $10 off all events excluding the Youth Run. The discount code needs to be entered towards the end of the registration, not at the invitation box code at the beginning of registration. http://illinoismarathon.com/

Bring on the Challenge!

BRP 

As most of you know, I have been part of the Bibrave program as a “pro” for the last few of years. I am excited  to announce I will be returning for 2017.


In 2016 I was able to test the following products:

I also had a chance to run these races in 2016 as a BRP:

As much fun as I had trying new things, traveling new places and participating in races, I really enjoyed meeting the people.


I am ready for 2017 and the races I will be running as a pro:

I am sure there will be more and I would love to meet you.

Cheers to 2017!

 

 

Top 5 Reasons to Run the Key West Half Marathon

Disclaimer: I received entry into the Key West Half Marathon 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!

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If you have been reading along, you might have noticed at the bottom of a post, I mentioned I was going to the Key West Marathon in January. I CAN’T WAIT!

Why am I excited? I will sum it up in 5 reasons:

1. Treating myself! I have been told to focus on self care, ok so maybe this in regards to stretching and rolling…oh well, I like this better. This will be a great reward as I wrap up my year of a marathon a month. What better way than to spend it on a tropical island. It will also be after the holidays, so escape the family and take yourself on a vacation!

2. The course! Flat, fast and scenic. Ok, I do enjoy some hills, but I can’t wait to run along the water front and pass the southern most point in the USA.

2017-race-map

3. The Rankings

4. THE WEATHER! Hello, I am from the Hawkeye state. I think the average temp Jan 15 is near 15 degrees, we have snow on the ground, maybe some ice…not the ideal conditions for running. Now Key West…ahh a sunny 70 degrees, sounds like a great place to go in the winter time.

5. Running with friends. I love traveling to races, not only to see the country, but to meet my running friends. I can’t wait to be re-united with Amy, and see Jessica S again, but I will also get to meet a new friend too, Lex. I also hope to meet anyone else, lets run Key West!!!

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So did I convince you? Well you can save on your registration, use code BIBRAVE25 for $25 Off the Half Marathon Run or Walk. Good till 12/26/16 http://www.keywesthalfmarathon.com/ See you in Key West!

There is also the virtual race option or the 5k that starts

Key West Half Marathon – WEBSITETWITTERFACEBOOK