Miami Marathon 2020

Disclaimer: I’m promoting Miami Marathon and received free entry to Tropical 5k as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

We are now a little less than a month away from race weekend. I will be starting the race weekend like I have the past few years with the Tropical 5k race. It’s a great way to involve the whole family in race weekend, I usually am joined by my boyfriend and daughter gets pushed in her stroller for a nice little warm up for race weekend. Last year the temps were cool but it did rain the entire night before and stopped just before to then again start up right as the race began. Hoping for some cool weather with no rain or wind this year!

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I am going into Miami Marathon with no real time goals, training has been up and down in the past few months due to a lot of things. I ran Space Coast Marathon in December and used it as a training run as well as Vista View 360 ultramarathon. It definitely has been a strange training cycle, who else runs an ultramarathon (and further than I have ever ran ever, 29 miles!) to train for a marathon? Overall I am going to have fun and love running through my hometown.

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This will be my 8th year taking part in Miami Marathon weekend, It all started when I ran Tropical 5k back in 2013, about 6 months after I began running. It was quite an experience and to end by the beach was a pretty cool finish line.

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I’m looking forward to the expo for race weekend as well and hope to plan a meet up with my Oiselle volee teammates for the race as well! The expo is always fun, lots to see, lots of friends to run into and the VIP experience is pretty amazing too. I will take more advantage of it this year and spend more time in the Normatec boots 😉 I will be taking off the day from work to attend and urge you to also, even if you aren’t running any of the races that weekend.

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This year I will be running my 8th marathon, my 6th Miami Marathon! One day I may get that BQ there but this won’t be that year, eventually my goals and the stars will align to get me there!

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Still haven’t signed up? Use the code BIBRAVEMIAMI to get a discount when you register for the half or marathon distance! Hope to see you there! And check back here for a post race review also! Bet you didn’t know Miami Marathon is on the Bibrave 100 list of best races in America!

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Writers Block not Runners Block

The past few months have been a whirlwind of things happening in my life.

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Let’s start with end of March, I managed to fall on a sidewalk in a park, tearing off a big chunk of skin from my elbow and causing some hip pains for the next week.

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Then in April I managed to kill two treadmills in a week, well one was on its last leg after the thousand miles I had spent on it for the past 6 years or so. It was not such a shock but the replacement treadmill bought months before used also had major problems. From the first run on it till the whole belt folded and almost threw me off the thing! Trashed that one as well. I rely heavily on the treadmill certain times of year and during major training due to childcare things, I get in my early morning runs on the treadmill or late night runs while watching my kid sleep in her bed by baby monitor. I had to get a new treadmill ASAP so I got one from amazon, a Proform which is not the best as its had some rust issues after only a short time and not being exposed to the elements but it works and I can get my miles in! Then mid April my grandmother had a heart attack and almost died from it, major stress for the entire family. She ended up pulling through and is back to herself again.

May ended up being my 2nd highest mileage month for the year, which was surprising since I had to work early for half of the month. Also I turned the big 3-8! Ran the ALS 10k in Coconut Grove, it had been a few years since I had ran the race and ended up happy with my slower than usual time. Felt strong but steady in the race despite the high humidity and heat.

June and July were slow running months for me, probably in part due to the heat of the summer months and then planning Phoebe’s 4th birthday party and traveling to Seattle and Alaska. I hit 1000 miles for the year in June. I enjoyed running in Seattle, where the morning temps were 58 but I was not really feeling those huge hills! We stayed in the downtown area and I walked up more than one of the hills in the middle of the run. Luckily I was able to borrow a bob stroller so we could take Phoebe out for some runs as well while we were there, thanks to one of my Oiselle Volee teammates! It was a little more difficult to square away an hour while cruising through Alaska on a boat but I managed to run 4 of the 7 days we were onboard. July was my lowest mileage month for the year – just got in a little less than 100 miles.

August brought on a new challenge of getting back into a schedule again after being on vacation for 10 days! The first part of the month started off slowly as I tried to get back out of the running rut, then Phoebe got a cold and more things piled in front of miles. Also this was the month that I started my Space Coast Marathon training, slowly. Phoebe started VPK and I went to see Bush in concert, it had been awhile since I went to a concert and many years since I had seen them live.

September was the month that I started getting serious about my mileage goals again. I started extending my long runs past that 13 mile mark and hit 50 miles for 2 weeks in a row at the end of the month. Still trying to get back into being a morning runner but my evening road runs are getting faster and feeling easier and the weather hasn’t yet started to cool down yet. I look forward to cooler temps, but I don’t expect to see that happening for another few months. I took a hands only CPR class and learned some new things, feeling confident I can help someone out in an emergency situation.

October has just started but going to work hard this month with waking up early again to run. I don’t yet know what I can promise myself for accomplishing this goal but no doubt I can figure something out. Now I am in the middle of marathon training for Space Coast Marathon and at the beginning of training for Miami Marathon. Not so smart but what are you gonna do when you want to do both marathons and they just happen to be only 8 weeks apart? Simultaneously marathon training, fun times!

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At the beginning of the year I made a goal to read at least 12 books this year, I figured it would be extremely hard because ever since Phoebe was born I feel like there’s no time to read. I am happy to announce that I am currently only book #35 for the year so maybe I will adjust my reading goal to 52 instead?

Haven’t signed up for Miami Marathon yet and want a discount on your registration? Use this code for $5 off – BIBRAVEMIAMI

 

 

 

Win Detergent FTW

Disclaimer: I received a bottle of Win sports detergent 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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I have been on the lookout for a new sports detergent as the one I was using prior to Win was just not cutting it and my running clothes still had a sweat funk smell to them. Plus the other detergent was good but it was also not free and clear, it had a hint of fragrance that I was just not digging. There is also a fresh clean smelling one as well but I prefer fragrance free. The blue bottle is the fresh clean scented one and the green bottle is the free and clear, scent free, which is preferred by me as I have a daughter with extremely sensitive skin and prefer the one better for the environment.

Right now I am at the beginning of a run streak and I am going to have even more sweaty running clothes than usual since I won’t be taking my one rest day each week anymore till the end of this month or perhaps even longer if I want to continue for the runner’s world streak also. Plus my boyfriend runs with me 3-4x a week and I have his sweaty running clothes to deal with also. One thing I have noticed in the past year or so with running laundry is that it is best to hang the clothes so that the sweat dries before putting them together in a laundry basket. But even with hanging the sweaty clothes I would not get all the sweat smell with the previous detergent. I was lost on where to look to find another sports detergent, till I got the notification that I could test this one out. Something else that I enjoy about this stuff is that I can order it on amazon.com and get it shipped along with my other amazon goodies! Very convenient! Even more convenient is that in my area with Prime I can get it in one day, I can have my detergent tomorrow for no extra fee! Right now there is a promo going on that you can get 20% off your order when you use the code: WIN4RAVE – I am actually buying some more right now while I can get the discount and if you are an athlete, workout a lot or sweat a lot this is the detergent for you!

For more technical reasons your running clothes smell from the sweat is because the oils from your sweat attract the wicking technical clothing and get trapped in the fibers causing the smell, unlike other fabrics like cotton. But who can run in cotton? So how Win works is that the active ingredients separate the oils from the synthetic fabric to get back to that clean smell. Other sports detergents that I have used in the past have possibly taken out some of the oils but not all which means my running clothes retain some smell. Which is basically not good enough so check out Win for truly clean clothing. Definitely living in Miami I sweat for every run because we only have 2 days of cold weather where we sweat a little less.

 

 

 

Orange Mud Transition & seat wrap -Version 2.0 – no more sweaty seats – a review

Disclaimer: I received an Orange Mud Transition seat wrap towel 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 know about you but when I run long distances in training or short distance races I get very sweaty, this is Miami so pretty much everyone gets sweaty. Well, except for Phoebe who is cooled down in her running stroller while I do all the hard work of pushing her along for the race usually. So for almost as long as I have been running, I have kept a bath towel in my car for the post race/run drive home but now there is a product that is multi-use, the Orange Mud Transition Seat wrap towel. The problem that I always encounter with a regular bath towel over the seat is that it falls down constantly not protecting the back of your seat so you are constantly adjusting it while driving. This towel does not have this issue at all because it has a zippered headrest part that fits securely around the headrest to prevent all the slipping that normal towels will do. There are 10 colors to choose from, I choose red because it matched the exterior of my car but considered the black one as well since it would match my inte

I have been wanting to try out some Orange Mud products for awhile but just had not decided on which one to try, but this one is perfect for me and I can keep it in the back of my vehicle all the time (after being washed, of course). The other day we found another use for it when my toddler, Phoebe requested a blanket to keep warm while in her car seat, I threw her over the Orange Mud towel and she cuddled up in it. First way I used my new towel/seat wrap was after volunteering for a local 5k/10k I placed it on my car for the 40 minute drive home. That was a typical humid Miami race but with some sprinkles at the beginning, it was my first time volunteering at a race and it was a lot of fun, will definitely be doing it again in the near future!

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This weekend I did a short but very rainy at the start and humid 5k and the towel was much needed for the drive home. I even was able to change my soaked in sweat & rain shorts from under it in a parking lot before driving home (sorry, no pics of this!). So not only does it save your seat from your sweaty (butt) body but you can change underneath it discreetly without any issues. I haven’t attempted to change tops under it but I do not anticipate that there will be any issues with that either. It is definitely something you want to keep in your race day bag!

I think this seat wrap towel would be good for anyone really because you never know when you will need to protect your car seats or change quickly in a parking lot/in your car. From talking to running friends, they have sworn by this towel for years, I didn’t even know that it existed or I would’ve gotten one years ago when I first started running. Luckily I got a new car a year ago and haven’t sweated in these seats too much. Would’ve been very beneficial earlier this year when I was training the group in 5k distance and would have to drive home still a bit sweaty afterwards. But now I do not have to worry about that and am going to get another one for when my boyfriend runs races with me.

What’s even better is that I have a code for you to use to get 15% off of this towel or any Orange Mud product on their website: OMTRX” Transition Seat Wrap Towel 

Keep your car seats sweat free and change clothing ANYWHERE!

Want more info and to chat with other bibravepros? Joins us on twitter for Bibchat next Tuesday at 9pm est and use hashtag #bibchat

An Ode to Oiselle Roga Shorts

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Disclaimer – I was not gifted these shorts to review,  I have bought every pair of these shorts shown in the post. They are my favorite kind of shorts and I will continue to buy more as long as they keep making them (please never stop!) 😉

I have been thinking of making this post for years now!

My introduction to roga shorts started in the summer of 2014, I had heard of Oiselle for a few months at that point. It must’ve been when Kara Goucher joined Oiselle that I really took note of the company, run by a women, only women’s running/performance clothing. So thank you, Kara, for being the introduction I needed to this obsession. I remember subscribing to the emails and wondering if I would ever have the guts to run in shorts because the roga shorts looked really comfy and cool.  A few months before I joined the Oiselle Volee team I went on vacation to Washington DC and went to a running store that had some rogas on sale! I don’t remember the other colors they had but I grabbed a pair of burgen (burgundy color) ones and bought them immediately. I would be lying to say that I wore them to run on that trip, I didn’t but I did bring them along with me on a side trip to Philly that same vacation and used them to hang out and sleep in even! They were so comfy I figured if I never had the guts to wear them out to run I would be living in these shorts for hanging out at home.

Fast forward to a few months later and I had bought a couple more pairs, I started wearing them for walks with my boyfriend and out in public and it had been years really since I had owned a pair of shorts. My confidence was starting to grow with these shorts, who would’ve thought that would happen? Not me, for sure! A couple months later I started running in these shorts, starting with treadmill runs and then later on for evening runs (one memorably disaster of a run when I tripped and hit my head I was wearing these shorts even!).  When I found out that I was pregnant, the roga shorts became my go to short to run in, the capri tights I ran in were starting to constrict the belly too much and summer was hitting early and I was suffocating outside. I did buy one pair in a larger size but realized after one run that they were too loose and I could stick with my regular size throughout the pregnancy since they were low slung and the waistband was not tight under the belly. I ran a couple half marathons and some shorter race distances in 2015 wearing them. After that I never wore  capris/tights again unless it was freezing outside and even when it was 45 degrees for a 5k once I wore my rogas lol.

In 2017 I wore my rogas for the marathon distance at Miami Marathon, the cold rainy year and also the year I got my marathon PR. Was it the rogas or the weather that helped me PR by 40 minutes? Who knows? Maybe equal? I have worn other Oiselle shorts for races but I swear by the roga shorts.

I used to worry about chafing with shorts but that rarely has ever happened to me while wearing these magical shorts. They have performed through extreme downpours and major heat. I have even extended my love to other variations of the roga short family in the recent years: toolbelt rogas (for all the pockets), mac rogas (for all the shortness & air) , summer rogas (lightweight & airy), and recently OG rogas (like a go tank for your booty) . They also make a longer roga short that would work really well for hiking or running if you want more length to your shorts but I haven’t really tried them. And if you aren’t into shorts, they even have a couple different kinds of roga skirts (with short or with a brief under)! A year or so ago they even released a roga dress, basically a dress made out of the stretch woven fabric they make the rogas of! Is there any end to the awesomeness of roga material?  I hope that Oiselle never discontinues this awesome short/fabric and makes more awesome prints and more colors. You can never have too many rogas!

In daily life I get home from work and immediately change into roga shorts even if I am not going for a run after work, rare but it happens at times. I wear these shorts when taking my toddler to swim class and grocery/Target shopping days. They are comfy and don’t look like running shorts so you can definitely get away with wearing them nearly everywhere. In the 4 years I have been wearing my original burgen roga shorts and would you believe they still look as new as the day I bought them. Through the washer/dryer every time and still as awesome and stretchy as ever.

Here is the story of how the roga shorts came to be! Basically these shorts are a hybrid between a yoga pant and a running short, comfy like a yoga pant with the wide waistband but with the performance stretch and fit of a running short without all the bulk. I am glad the first running short I tried was a non poofy roga short instead of diaper butt  running shorts, I was lucky! But it’s never too late to change it up and try the roga shorts. These ultra stretch woven shorts dry super quickly after you stop running, I have even known some women who wear them to paddle board. Overall these are my favorite shorts and I hope to continue wearing them and setting PRs in all distances.

Get to shopping – here is the link the best running shorts : Oiselle

 

UnderArmour HOVR Sonic NC

“Disclaimer: I received a pair of UnderArmour HOVR Sonics NC 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!”

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So first thing is first, I really did not expect to ever own a pair of white running shoes but here we are and they are very white! The color aside I was not sure how I would like them. It did take a few runs before they felt broken in for me, which wasn’t too bad but I have been spoiled by some other running shoes that felt broken in out of the box. I think also it might have been my feet had to get used to the higher drop on these shoes. I am used to a 4 mm drop and these are 8 mm drop but after a couple of runs in these I didn’t even notice it.

These shoes are made with a lightweight fabric upper and lots of ventilation holes on the sides so they are perfect for warm climates like Miami. I have never felt my feet heating up in these shoes like other running shoes I sometimes wear. I do not like feeling sweat in the bottom of my shoes after a long humid run, worst feeling and good way to get some feet blisters, something I have definitely never encountered while wearing these shoes!

Responsive ride and neutral shoe so perfect for those who do not over pronate and are looking for something with some bounce but still want a firm running shoe. I will admit they felt heavy the first few runs in them, but that may have also been that sometimes I wear them for my 2nd run of the day and at that point my legs are pretty tired from early morning runs and working all day.

I would have brought them on my recent vacation but decided against in so that I could keep them white as long as possible. When running in Aruba white does not stay white for more than a few seconds, half of the roads I ran on were dirt so basically trail running most of the time. Dust is everywhere so I didn’t bring them with me but I did miss them which surprised me a bit.

At this point I have put in between 50-100 miles in these shoes and they are still remarkably clean but maybe that’s because I tend to not wear them on rainy days. Either way these shoes really have changed my mind about UnderArmour running shoes. So if you are looking for a quality running shoe with a low break in period of time, snatch these up.

Also there is a connect version of this shoe, which basically means you can track your steps, pace, stride length, distance and cadence with the connect version using the map my run app. Pretty cool and that version of the shoe only costs $10 more dollars if you are into all the tech and like to run watch less but want to know all the stats.

 

Run for cover

The last 3 weeks have been a whirlwind of activities, tragedies and low mileage. About 3 weeks ago I ran over to the neighborhood nearby mine to see the FIU bridge be brought over and placed over the road, 5 days after it collapsed taking 6 lives. I traveled under that bridge 4 of those days, each morning with my toddler in the backseat of my car. It could have been us kept going through my head when I heard the news, it was a bridge to connecting my work place to the city of Sweetwater. For a few days I really had a hard time sleeping and I think that my stress from it was affecting my toddler. I know the miles could’ve helped but I required more sleep and no long run that weekend. The following week started out okay and was able to start my week full of running but by that Thursday I just wanted to rest. I was starting to get a sinus infection and did not run at all that weekend, the next week brought on all new challenges. Phoebe ended up getting a very high fever last Tuesday night and my next couple of days were spent trying to get it down and a mix of urgent care/children’s hospital visits. Now she is doing better and I have a little less stress about her health this week and starting to ramp up my mileage again.

Life sometimes gets in the way of your plans, fitness goals, workouts and as hard as it is to wake up early after slacking off for a few weeks due to a lot of stressful situations I am happy that I am feeling better and getting back to my mileage goals. I started out the year hoping to run 40+ miles each week to be able to hit 2018 miles before 12/31/2018 and even though I sort of see that goal slipping away I know it’s still possible with some determination. I also wanted to run the Keys 100 50k this year but I’m not really sure that I want to this year. Maybe next year I will be ready for it, I don’t want to slack off this summer or anything, in fact I want to work harder and work on my speed for the fall season of races. I plan on doing the Space Coast Marathon this year and that means that marathon training would be starting again in July! Summertime marathon training, that should be fun, I know this humid/hot hot heat running will make me stronger when the weather gets a little better. I plan on getting serious too about my strength training too which I have not been serious about in a very long time, probably contributing to my slowing paces.

Socially the last few weeks have been pretty busy, Phoebe has met and took pics with 3 different Easter bunnies and did an egg hunt and even rode down a large slide ride with my sister and her cousin, Logan. Despite my exhaustion and our rounds of illnesses in the past few weeks it hasn’t been too bad lately in gaining lots of experiences and adventures.

Also something that I have been involved with lately is helping train some of my workplace’s employees in running a 5k race. I jumped at the opportunity to help with pacing duties for the program and have really enjoyed helping others conquer their goals. We are about halfway through the program right now and they are training for the Corporate run 5k at the end of this month and most of the runners are doing very well. Most of them also are not new to running but a few are very new to run, a couple are just getting back into it and want the accountability of a group run session to help them stick with it. Just 6 years ago I was training using a c25k training app on my phone, it would’ve been more helpful if I would’ve had a group to train with. I have been running/pacing with the group 2 days a week now and get in a few miles beforehand because driving home to change and back would take at least 30/40 minutes. It’s a nice and easy way to give back to the running community by helping others become better runners.