Coros Pace : multi-sport gps watch review

“Disclaimer: I received a Coros Pace multi sport watch 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!”

Let me start by saying I used to just rely on an app on my phone while running to track my time/pace/distance until about 3 years ago after I had my daughter, then I got a well known but slightly outdated gps watch and started using it. Probably not a great idea to get a watch after coming back from 6 weeks off and on the track of losing baby weight. But at the time I just hit start and would run, I never even figured or learned about all the features until years later. Then I got my Coros pace watch and wow, what an amazing watch, it does so many things that amaze me. I know I am behind in the gps watch world but this watch is a smart gps watch, I can even see texts, fb messenger messages and the weather on this thing! Your workouts all sync immediately to your phone so no waiting to see your pace splits or average/max heart rate info after you finish, super fast compared to other gps watches out there.

When I received this watch I was expecting to get in more pool time and start swimming and aqua jogging but so far only got in one short swim while wearing it. I will say I was a little paranoid about putting it under water but then got over it quickly and it works great. I need to learn more swimming moves, maybe Phoebe will teach me since she’s in swimming class now when she advances more and maybe my parent’s pool will be fixed before summer is over to get in more swim time with this watch. But that is not the feature that I was really looking forward to.

I wanted to try this watch mainly because of its wrist based optical heart rate monitor, I have been reading a lot about low heart rate running lately and wanted to see where I was with that. Surprisingly I have found while using this watch that my heart rate is pretty low while even going at moderate pace and even during a 5k where I was pushing the stroller I did not go over 185. The only thing that kind of annoyed me was that during the final half mile of the 5k my heart rate monitor showed extremely low heart rate, which was not possible for my fast pace at the moment. It was due to the huge amount of sweat on my wrist at the moment during the race, after I dried it off a little bit it started to work properly again but it was a bit annoying in the middle of the race to get low readings. So I will say in sweaty swampy conditions the heart rate monitor sensor may be too saturated with sweat to give a proper reading. Although it does seem harder for me to say within the aerobic threshold zone while pushing the stroller for longer distances, especially on humid days (which is pretty much all the time here!). It is super cool to know these stats and work on staying within a certain heart rate zone and there is an option to put an alert so that I know where I am within the zone every few minutes while on the run. I took off the alert for my treadmill runs recently but still have it alerting me while I run on the roads.

Also very cool feature is basically alerting me to everything that my phone sends alerts for: texts, facebook messages, weather alerts, slack messages, whatsapp messages. And the range between where my phone is and my watch goes pretty far so I can use the bathroom at work and get alerts when I don’t even have my phone with me! I can even ignore a call that is coming in to my phone from a click of a button on the watch.

Recently at a party all my friends were checking their heart rates by strapping on my watch and we were trying to figure out why certain people had such heart rates. So not only for fitness, this watch is a party conversation piece/game, seems the males in the group had higher heart rates than the ladies. Sometimes I just randomly check my heart rate while at work by using this watch.

The data screens can be customized to show heart rate on top with overall moving time on bottom, or pace/time. or distance/pace and you can switch through the screens while on the run too! A neat thing that I have noticed is that when I pause my run, this happens when I run to the park with my daughter to play in the playground I can still monitor my heart rate and see my distance, time moving/time paused info on the watch. I kinda like watching my heart rate slowly return to low after stopping while she plays. Each time you hit your exercise goal for the day it awards you an Exercise Time Goal Achieved badge on the watch and on the phone app you will earn badges for distances achieved for each of the sports (running, swimming, cycling) which is pretty cool. Will be earning all those running badges soon enough as I have a fall marathon to start training for soon!

I haven’t gotten the chance to try the cycling feature on the watch yet, currently debating if I really need a bike or not. Miami is not a safe place to ride bike so I am pretty fearful of riding around here, maybe if I go on vacation I will try out the cycling feature.

This watch is made by a well known cycling helmet company and is well made and comparable to other well known gps watch brands currently on the market. They are still releasing a few firmware updates for the watch so every few weeks there is new features being added to the watch, can’t wait to see what new updates are in store for June. But as of right now, I am in love with this watch and will not be using any other GPS watch to track my running/swimming/cycling progress. I would never wear my other gps watch while not running but this one I almost never take it off. Plus the battery life is amazing so I hardly have to charge it. I have had this watch for about a month and have only charged it 2x since and have used it to run pretty much everyday and sometimes twice a day and I have still never ran the battery lower than 27%. According to the official site the watch battery lasts for 30 days in standard mode or 25 hrs in gps mode so sounds likes it would be perfect for even up to 100 mile runs! Not that I am ready for that just yet but maybe a 50 miler next year?

You can find out more about this watch here. 

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pjuractive 2skin – anti chafe gel review

Disclaimer: I received some samples of pjuractive 2skin 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 used to be shocked about chafing issues before I had a baby and then after I learned really quickly how horrible chafing really was. I also used to wear capris for running before I was pregnant so that probably deterred some possible chafing. I learned postpartum what kind of chafing could happen when running in the hot, humid nearly year round Miami weather. Not sure what changed post baby besides my body but possibly the fact that I was exposing more skin than before. Either way I discovered it a few months after having my daughter on a particularly toasting late summer/early fall morning run. I always wear Oiselle bras and decided to wear the team bra for this 13.1 training run to see if I could wear it under my singlet for an upcoming half marathon. I had not had any issues prior with my Oiselle bras and chafing but when I took off my tank top I could see raw red skin and when I jumped in the shower, ouch! It was then that I discovered I had to do something about this chafing thing that I never had experience with before.

 

Of course I tried all the typical stuff that I could find at Target or the pharmacies but everything would rub off or sweaty away after more than 5 miles. I was really beginning to think that perhaps I was stuck just incurring under bra chafe scars forever, and in Miami there is rarely a cool weather run where you don’t sweat. I don’t have chafing issues when its cold out but this fall/winter there was only one week of 50 degree weather here and even then I was sweating. I do a lot of treadmill early morning runs so I can keep an eye on my daughter while she is still sleeping and the treadmill is outside on a patio. So I get all the warmth of humid mornings and sweat more than running on the streets so I was starting to get some crazy chafing from my armband where I keep my phone to track my miles.

Then this January I got the opportunity to review this anti chafing product so I jumped, or really ran at the chance in hopes that I could finally be pain free in the shower after a training run/race. At first I was very skeptical about how it would work and if it would work but I am happy to report that it does work, better than anything I have used in the past.

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First trial run – a short 3 miler in the late afternoon – figured I should try it a few times before I used it for Miami Marathon a few weeks later. Worked well for the warm day.

Second trial – humid morning treadmill run – 7 miles – longer run than usual wearing a singlet/tank that usually can get pretty chafe friendly when it is warm, finished with no arm chafing and no thigh chafing.

Third trial –  Miami Marathon, basically 26.2 miles of warm and windy running conditions. I failed to realize that I needed to put the 2skin under the bottom of where my phone armband lies and missed a spot under my opposite arm and boy did I realize it on that post race shower! Oooouch! Everywhere else that it was applied had no issues and no chafe burns but those spots that I missed did. I also let my boyfriend use some of my small trial pack on his chest, men get the bloody nipples issue during marathons often and especially in the humid weather. He usually uses medical tape because the other anti chafe stuff does not work well for him either, anyways he did not have any bloody nipples at the end of the race and he was out there on the course even longer than I was. So men, it works for preventing the bloody nipple thing too!

 

Fourth trial – A1A half marathon this past weekend. I hadn’t really been running too much in the past few weeks so for the short runs sometimes I would skip using it but for this race I knew I had to apply it liberally. The weather report was showing 71 at the start and quickly getting warmer as the hours passed so I applied the 2skin to my arm where I failed to for the marathon a few weeks earlier and under my arm where I had gotten chafed also. This half marathon was even warmer than Miami Marathon and super humid at the start with some drizzly weather in the first couple miles and I got no chafing whatsoever! Hooray! Finally found the winner for anti chafe gel that I have been looking for now for almost 3 years! I brought the small pump bottle along with me in my race bag for this race and I will keep that bottle in my race bag until it runs out and I have to buy more! Luckily you do not need to use a lot to get the job done 🙂

I haven’t ever done a triathlon but from what I have read on the pjuractive website and other reviews about this product is that it is great to use for this multi sport event. Maybe one day I will do one and would definitely be using this product for that kind of race.

This is how it works! It’s long lasting and does not block your pores and all that is required to remove it from your skin is soap and water and most likely you will be using that after a run/sweat session/race anyhow! Want more technical info, check this link for more info about 2skin.