Thursday, August 25, 2016

Commando, Cheating & Crows - It's RUNFESSION TIME!

It's my most favorite time of the month! 
On the last Friday of the month, I link-up with Marcia to share
my months runfessions!
It just so happens that my runfessions all happened this week!  An otherwise non-eventful running month had a few unexpected turns. 

First, I RUNFESS.... I've cheated.  I've cheated bad.  You know, when you feel so guilty for doing something wrong even though you haven't really done anything wrong?  

I love my Mizuno Wave Inspires.  I love them so hard.  I am a loyal servant to these amazing running shoes.  Well, at least I thought I was.

In comes these beauties.  Who wouldn't love these? They're pink for goodness sake!  They are amazing!  All the soft cushiony goodness.  They glide on like butter on bread.  Let me explain. 

I visited my parents in Wisconsin this past weekend.  Of course, with the chaos of life and getting my boys ready to go, I forgot my running shoes.  Normally, this would be no big deal.  I could take a couple days off.  But, I knew my week ahead wasn't going to include much running as I was "single-parenting" it.  My sister came to the rescue with her running shoes and OH - EM - GEE!  They rocked my socks off.  I even had negative splits for the first time in a WHILE.  I flew through those miles.

Check out those splits!  WAHOO!!

Maybe it was a placebo effect from the high that I was on for cheating on my beloved Mizunos.  I'm just not sure, but for five years I've only loved one.  My Mizunos.  I cheated.  Yes,  I CHEATED and it felt oh so good.  Needless to say, these Brooks are coming to my doorstep next week.  Whoops.  #runnerproblems

Along the same lines with my forgetfulness, I RUNFESS:  I "may" have run commando this weekend.  OK FINE - so I DID run commando this weekend.  Oh - how freeing it was!   Maybe THAT'S why I ran so fast??? 

Again, with the chaos of getting everyone out the door and in the car for our road trip, I forgot to pack underwear.  Of course, I could have gone to the store when I got there to get more underwear, but in my world of mommy-hood that can sometimes be just too difficult.  And, I also RUNFESS...  sometimes that extra trip to the store to get underwear I don't really "need" is just TOO much work. 

I must also RUNFESS..... I actually got scared on my run in the broad daylight on Sunday.  We're talking.... heebie-geebie, creeped-out, someone lurking in the bushes waiting to murder me scared.  That doesn't happen to me often.   The hair on my arms stuck up and I quickly decided to turn around and run home.

I was running a half mile loop around the seminary.  It's a huge catholic church, priests home and school all wrapped up in one.  It's a beautiful area with a winding loop road.   I approached the area in this picture and in that huge tree were three crows.   Nasty, huge, ugly,  good-for-nothing crows.  They were screaming so loud at me I heard them over my headphones! 

I stopped to take a picture and yell back at them, when one flew over the building.  If you look close you can see a black speck on the building in the center of the photo.  It was as if they were warning me of danger.  I had such a bizarre feeling.  They just looked at me and screeched, continuously.

I quickly turned down the street and decided three loops was all I needed.  I best be getting home.  On the way back to my parents,  I pictured Alfred Hitchcock and Edgar Allen Poe and all the creepy crows and ravens in the horror films.

Have you every been scared on the run?  What do you think about running commando?  Do you have any any must-have gear obsessions?

Thanks for reading!  Don't forget to head on over to Marcia's blog for other great runfessions from my fellow bloggers!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

8 Reasons to Run The Bellin Women's Half Marathon

Fun, Excitement, Epic Swag, Finisher Medal:  
All Great Reasons to Run the Bellin Women's Half Marathon!  
But, there's SO much more! 

Here are my TOP 8 reasons to run this very exciting race!    

1.  Women's ONLY race.  How cool is that?!?  There's something neat about the camaraderie of women in running.  Lots of laughs.  New friendships and so much FUN!   Plus,  women who run half-marathons for fun are known to be a little bit "bad-ass." 

2.  Amazing finisher medal for ALL participants.  The design is still top-secret, but I'm sure it will be amazing!

3.  Great Swag.  Who wouldn't want this awesome hoodie.  It's so adorable!

4.  All finishers get to ride the Sea Dragon at Bay Beach Amusement Park!  The park is opening the ride exclusively for the women who run this race!  Seriously awesome!  This is also the starting line of the race!

5.  Race participants get a FREE ticket to the Friday night Women's Inspirational Dinner.  This is a great place to mingle with your friends and maybe even meet new ones!

6.  All finishers receive a Bellin Women's Headband FREE as well!  It's so cute!

7.   Opportunity to buy more great gear!  I really love this long sleeve shirt!

8.  Bellin Women's Half Marathon is the FIRST race to partner with 261Fearless!    

"261 is named after the famous bib number Kathrine Switzer wore when she was the first  women to officially run  the Boston Marathon. The number now stands for 'Fearless', and 261 Fearless, Inc is about the community of women who are transformed by running and their global movement to empower other women everywhere.  For more information, go to"  

Disclaimer:  I took the above information DIRECTLY from the race website.  

How amazing is this?  If that doesn't empower you.... I don't know what will!  

If you're looking for a great October race, make the drive to Green Bay, WI and join hundreds of other like-minded women and take home the satisfaction of finishing a great race!  I'm sure you won't regret it!  

The race is Saturday, October 8th.  Go to the race website, here for more details!   Read on for a few racer testimonials! 

           Amy says:  "I can't say enough about this amazing event -- from the fantastic course to the well run operation."

Julie says: "AMAZING event all around!!! From the Friday night speaker and dinner to all the details of the course and race-day...can't say enough about the attention to detail, energy, everything! Glad to be a part of the inaugural. Will be on my calendar every year!

Amanda says: "One of the best organized races I've done. Great energy. Great message. Great day."

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Review of the XX2i Australia1 8K polarized sport lenses

Disclaimer:  I received the XX2i Australia1 sunglasses to review as part of being a BibRave Pro.  Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave to review, find and write race reviews.

I'm starting to feel a bit spoiled in the sunglasses department;  not that I'm complaining.  I do love my sunglasses and have used each pair uniquely.   My latest pair of sunglasses that I've been able to test are the Australia1 Polarized Sport Sunglass.  I elected to try out the Matte Tortoise color because I felt that they were very feminine looking.  They are even prettier in person and I've received many compliments on them! 

I have been wearing sunglasses for as long as I can remember so my eyes really require a great sunglass for protection!  These are a fantastic option for polarization because they offer 8K polarization!  I never squint and have clear lense clarity.  This particular model has blue lenses in them. 

I have worn these lenses running, biking, swimming, boating, hiking, paddle-boarding and gardening.  I have sweat, jumped, bent-over;  just about any activity and I've never felt that I would lose these glasses.  This may sound silly, but I place my sunglasses on the top of my head A LOT!  If they are not on my eyes, they are on my head.  Never once did these babies slip out of place and they never fell on the floor.  They fit my head snugly but yet the feel very comfortable.  

What makes these sunglasses unique are two features.  First, is the removable padded insert that fits onto the lenses.  These are the first sunglasses by XX2i with this great addition.  This pad protects against additional elements when outdoors!  I would imagine they would be a mountain bikers dream for the extra dust that is kicked up on the trails!   These glasses also include an interchangeable temple arm / strap system so there are no worries about slipping during intense activities!  See my photos below where I demonstrate the padded insert and the interchangeable strap! 

These are the first pair of sunglasses by XX2i that are available with prescription.  How cool is that?  Also, did I mention that ANY sunglasses purchase with XX2i has a lifetime guarantee?  The shipping and service is top-notch.  If you are an adventurous person with an active lifestyle these are the perfect pair for you!

And.... to make the deal even sweeter, use CODE: XX2iROCKS for 50% OFF your pair!

DON'T FORGET. Join @BibRave and @XX2i for #bibchat on Tues. Aug. 16th, 8PM CST. WIN a pair of #Australia1 sunglasses

Friday, August 5, 2016

Running Treasure Hunt: The Weird, Creepy & Beautiful Sights of Summer Running

Every wonder what us runners think about or see on our runs?  Well, my friend Wendy was curious to see what her fellows runners found on their summer runs, so she's hosting the very first 
Running Treasure Hunt link-up.  
Make sure that you go give her blog a shout and follow because she's hysterical, inspirational and authentic!  

Read on for some funny, creepy, weird and beautiful sights I see on my morning runs! 

Summer running in Minnesota can be quite the adventure.  Usually, my runs are pretty status-quo.  I get up at 4:45 before the sun.  I head out for my 5-6 mile run.  I come home.  I jump in the shower and I'm off for the day.   And, basically... that's all she wrote.

But like I said, summer can bring adventure.   Let's talk about bats for example.  You know... the tiny, cute-faced, rabies-carrying blood suckers???  Awe, aren't they cute looking?

WRONG!  Summer brings humidity and summer brings bugs!  Thankfully, I believe these bats really could care less about me, but I've been dive-bombed too many times this summer!  The first 1/4 mile of my route is swarming with bats!  We live near a wetland so they have a great feeding ground with the pond.

I focus on the end of the block, keep my head down and try not to think about the little beast flying so low over my head I can feel their breeze.  I'll have to admit, the first time I encountered these guys this summer - I may have screamed and flailed my arms a bit.   Much like what a ninja would look like walking into a spider web.

Let's also talk about WHO I see while I'm out running at zero-dark-thirty.  A few days ago, I wanted to get 10 miles in before my husband went to work.  That meant a 4:30 am alarm and a solo 4 miles before I picked up a girlfriend who was running with me.   I texted my girlfriends joking about getting abducted so early in the morning all by myself.  "We haven't seen anything suspicious in a while" was one response.  "Criminals don't get up that early!" was another.  Supportive friends.   Just kidding, of course they were supportive, but maybe I was just overreacting.  Nonetheless, it doesn't hurt to be cautious.

However, for those 4 very dark and lonely miles, all I could think about was someone lurking in the bushes or jumping out at me; much like Jack Nicholson in 'The Shining.'  That movie gave me nightmares for weeks!  

But seriously, all joking aside.   We do, in my small, pretty darn safe town, have some shady activity going down at wee hours in the morning.  I know for a fact that the small park I run through almost daily has some drug activity.  I've seen it happen.  It must be a meeting point for exchanges, or drops.  I don't know.  I'm not a drug-dealer.  BUT, what I do know is that a teenager doesn't drive to the park at 5 am, sit in his/her car for 10 minutes and then drive out and NOT be doing something wrong.  This happens on the regular.  I know that the same person that I see often HAS to see me too?!!?

Anywhoo - on to sights #3 and #4.   Let's talk about clothing as being optional in this next segment.   Minnesota is HOT.  Smoking hot and humid in the summer.  So hot and humid that sometimes I feel like I'm trying to run with a wet wash cloth on my face.  My legs fatigue easier, I sweat in ALL.THE.PLACES and all I want to do is run in as little clothes as possible.  Yesterday, I commented "I wish I could run naked!"  Which, got a lot of laughs and sparked some pretty hilarious running convo.

BUT, then I realize ain't nobody wants to see me running naked!  Can you imagine?  I picture all of me just hanging out, much like that dog!  Ha!  I am also extremely envious of the hot-body, sports-bra wearing runner with the tight abs I see some mornings running.   And, then quickly my thoughts change to, 'I bet she doesn't eat pizza on the daily.'   I wonder what she thinks as she runs by me?  Maybe I should ask her someday!

Sight #4 ties in nicely with the no clothes talk.  I promised myself last winter when my nose hairs were freezing and I had icicles on my face I wouldn't ever complain about summer running.  EVER.  I broke that promise.  I want the humidity to end.  It's miserable.  In a tank and shorts, I have TOO many clothes on.  I sweat everywhere and my terms of SWOOB, SWASS and well.......SWUSSY are just used too much.  Sorry for the crass words, but you can pretty much figure out that's all the places we sweat.  It's horrible.  Makes for some funny talk, but

I'm dead.  Stick a fork in me. 
I've saved the best for last.  Running really does bring great joy into my life.  Every once in awhile, I get to see the amazing beauty around me.   If I didn't get up in the wee hours of the morning, when the birds are first chirping, and most people are still snug in their beds,  there would be no THIS ----

A take-your-breath-away moment that only summer skies bring.  The sky was a fiery-red that early morning last week.   The horses along the white picket fences were still.  No traffic.  Just beauty.  It's these moments that drag me out of bed.   It's these moments that make all the other crazy, weird and creepy moments worth it.

Go out.  Get yourself out of bed.  Embrace the beauty around you!  But first, make sure to visit  my friend Wendy over at   

Hope you enjoyed the post!  What do you see on your runs?  I'd love to hear from you!