Road Tested: FBOMB Macadamia Nut Butters

Disclaimer: I received a 16 pack of FBOMB Macadamia Nut Butters 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!

This summer has been filled with hiking, running, swimming, and more! Over the past month I’ve had the opportunity to try FBOMB and while I was already a nut butter fan, I can categorically say that these are the BOMB.

I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) when I was a teenager. That comes with a slew of symptoms but a lot of it revolves around eating habits.

Without going into a ton of details on the hows and whys, my body is insulin resistant. I need to make good choices when it comes to fuel.

I try to be mindful with carbohydrates; protein and healthy fats help my body function better.

FBOMB’s motto is “Fat is Smart Fuel” and I’m all about it! With the 4 flavors of Chocolate Macadamia, Macadamia with Coconut, Macadamia with Sea Salt, and Macadamia Pecan with Sea Salt, there is something for everybody. And unsurprisingly, I love them ALL!

Whether it’s during hikes and runs or at home with prepared food, it’s portable and delicious. I love using FBOMB packets on my trail adventures and they’re the perfect amount to add to my smoothie bowls and snacks.

Get ready for a couple of tried and true recipes/ideas from yours truly!

FBOMB BANANA BOWL

  • FBOMB Macadamia Nut Butter (I used Salted Chocolate)
  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1 cup Almond Milk
  • granola
  • strawberry

Use a blender to blend the FBOMB Macadamia Nut Butter with the bananas and Almond Milk. Top with granola and strawberry slices!

I have been paying ridiculous amounts for smoothie bowls but this is such much better for my wallet. (I just have to remember to freeze the bananas ahead of time.)

My darling friend, Sonya, visits each Monday for podcast recordings for our non-profit, The Bullock Garden Project. One of my favorite snacks is Apple Nachos. (Isn’t she a fantastic model?)

There’s not even a recipe for this because it’s THAT easy – just slice an apple, drizzle with FBOMB Macadamia Nut Butter (we used the Sea Salt one) and sprinkle a little bit of granola on top. We snacked on these while podcast planning… and maybe definitely when we were recording too.

Something I especially love about FBOMB is the consistency is thin, which makes it easy to pour out of the package. I never feel like I’m missing any yummy goodness! FBOMB, I’m 100% a fan!

Ash also tried FBOMB during the BibRave campaign so be sure to look for her review coming next to Scoot a Doot!

*If you’re interested in trying these out, use code BRP10 to save 10% off the 16-count FBOMB Nut Butter Variety Pack on their website.*

April 2020 – Allstate Hot Chocolate 5k, Here I Come!

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Allstate Hot Chocolate 5k race 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!

It’s the end of August, and you know what that means?

People are pushing for it to be FALL. I mean, there are a few of us who are holding on to the last weeks of summer (we’ve still got a month to go, folks) but I’ve seen more and more Facebooks posts/memes calling for Halloween and pumpkin spice.

I get it, I really do. The heat/humidity have been beyond brutal and while I do love summer, I can appreciate slightly cooler temps and the love of fall.

And since we’re pushing things right along on the timeline, can we talk about April 2020? I just registered for my fourth Allstate Hot Chocolate race in Philadelphia!

2019 BibRave crew – Ken, Ryan, Joe, and me

I can’t wait to be there again and I know my BibRave buddies Ken, Becky, Ryan, and Dodie are looking forward to it too!

One of the reasons I love the Allstate Hot Chocolate races is because it’s always a good time. There are always a ton of friends there and it’s always a good time. This race always falls on my birthday weekend so I basically think of it as a huge party for ME!

My friend Ana has been my Hot Chocolate partner in crime for the past couple of years (2018 and 2019) and we can’t wait until 2020. So bring it on, fall. Winter, be kind. And spring? I’ll be waiting for YOU.

If you’re planning on registering for the Philly Allstate Hot Chocolate race, be sure to use code BRHCPHILLY19 and get your free Hot Chocolate running hat with registration. Remember prices go up as time goes along so save yourself moolah if you’re definitely going to be there!

Road Tested: Stunt Puppy Go Dog Glo™ Harness

Dog wearing Stunt Puppy Go Dog Glo Harness

Disclaimer: I received a Stunt Puppy Go Dog Glo™ Harness 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!

Gemma and I have been fortunate enough to try lots of Stunt Puppy gear through BibRave over the past couple of years. From the Stunt Runner leash to the Go Dog Glo collar to the Nano Bowl, we are HUGE fans!

Earlier in 2019, she had surgery on her back leg for a ligament tear so this year has mainly been about recovery and feeling good. We’ve been taking it easy and working our way back up in terms of miles and speed.

Our travels will bring us to Acadia National Park in a few weeks and in preparation for the hikes there, we’ve been attempting to go off the beaten path. Well, there’s definitely a path, but it’s not a paved road. We’ve added more trails to our repertoire.

Since Gemma was a young little pup, she has always worn a harness for walks rather than just the collar (we leave her collar on too because it has her tag). Getting her used to the Stunt Puppy harness was not a difficult transition and she was very comfortable from the get-go.

Gem’s a solid fifty pounds so we chose the medium size Go Dog Glo harness for her. Even at age 6, she’s got a lot of energy. With that extra spunk, the harness makes sense.

The harness is easy to get on, we slide the top loop over her head and then snap the buckles on both sides. The straps are adjustable so after they were set on her body, we don’t have to do too much else. They also don’t rub under her legs (you know, the puppy armpits) and that’s important.

I usually leave a leash directly attached to the D-ring which is on a Martingale style loop, that way I’m able to just slide the harness over her head and go! The Martingale loop tightens when she gets a little bit too far away and helps direct her back into being closer to me and reduces the pull.

The breastplate is soft and lightweight. Plus it’s reflective, which is a bonus when we are out there in the early morning hours.

We’ll have plenty of pictures to share from Acadia and you can bet she’ll be sporting her Stunt Puppy gear there! This is her first family vacation and I know we’re going to have a blast.

Where was your last vacation?

Check out what other BibRavePros/Pups think:

Jessica, Kimberly, Christine, Ken

Road Tested: Science in Sport Gels and GIVEAWAY (closed)!

I received Science in Sport (SiS) Gels 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!

It’s mid-July and while nutrition and hydration is important year-round, it’s particular so during the summer months. It’s hot, it’s humid, most of the time, it’s downright stifling.

I’m always looking for the right combination of products to carry me through a long run or grueling workout, which is why I jumped on-board for the Science in Sport (or SiS for short) Gel opt in through BibRave.

Originally I thought we’d only be getting a few packets to try so I was surprised, and happy, to see that we received oodles of gels and even more so when we were encouraged to share with our friends/run groups. I knew just who to bring them to…

Run 856 Turtles

Over the past month I’ve had the opportunity to try SiS gels, flavors Apple (Isotonic Energy), Lemon Mint (Isotonic Energy), Salted Strawberry (Go Energy and Electrolyte), and Espresso (Go Energy and Double Caffeine).

First let’s talk about consistency. SiS gels aren’t heavy, they go down easy and sit well in my stomach. That important when running, especially in the summer when the heat can sometimes hinder how you feel.

SiS packaging is a bit on the larger side. I’d usually consumed one before I’d workout or if I knew I’d be carrying it with me, I took a larger fuel belt.

Within the past few months I’ve tried them all and far and away, my favorite is Salted Strawberry! It has a smooth consistency and light flavor. The Salted Strawberry GO Energy + Electrolyte Gel is designed to take alongside of fluids.

The Apple and Lemon Mint Isotonic Gels are able to be taken without water and provide a quick boost of carbohydrates for exercise. I especially loved the Lemon Mint flavor.

If next level extra pep in the step is needed, Espresso is the gel of choice. GO Energy + Double Caffeine. The flavor of this one is STRONG and a little overwhelming if you’re not ready for it.

Fellow BibRave Pro, Andrea, suggested chilling these to make it more palatable and it made all of difference for me. I took this about an hour before the gym and I benefited from that caffeine boost. As someone who isn’t a regular coffee drinker, it was especially apparent!

Click to enter Rafflecopter Giveaway!

TWO OPPORTUNITIES TO WIN!

Now for a bit of fun for YOU! The folks over at SiS have offered to do not one, but TWO giveaways with every single BibRave Pro who tried their products for their followers. How awesome is that? As such, I’ve decided to spread the love and do one here one the blog and one over on Instagram.

If you’d like to enter here, click on the picture above and enter via Rafflecopter. Giveaway ends Wednesday, July 17, 2019 at 11:59pm EST. Winning entry will be verified. For another chance to win, stop by this post on Instagram! You may enter either one, the other, or both. US residents only.

If you don’t win the giveaway, use code TRYSIS25 for 25% off at Science in Sport. It works on all items on the site except clearance items.

CHECK OUT BIBRAVE PRO REVIEWS

ChristineJessicaAndreaBeckyJennStephanieKimAlastairLissaEricaBen KenLindaScott

 

Ain’t No Cure for the Summertime Blues

I have mixed feelings regarding summer. On one hand, I love the ease of it, not HAVING to be anywhere at any particular time.

Summer me: summer hair, no makeup, tank top because it’s hot outside.

Except wait, no. That’s not true at all. My kids weeks are scheduled to the brim. In fact, I think I might actually be more busy carting them from place to place in the summer than I am during the school year.

As a person who thrives on routine, this proves summer time living… not easy. I enjoy the routine of the school year. During these pesky summer months, things fall by the wayside.

Case in point, I’m just now writing this blog post at 10:30pm on Sunday night. For reference, I usually schedule my Monday blogs for early hours on the blog. (And honestly, I’m considering just putting the computer away and finishing it when I wake up.)

This is so not me.

I’m trying so, so hard to get myself into a summer routine and to find myself a way to make these next 8+ weeks productive, not-too-stressful, and hopefully (mostly) fun.

Ashley mentioned in her blog post last week that she spends most of her summer days alone. On the flip side over here, it’s hard for me to be alone in my house in the summer. My kids are here, my parents are here, and lately my husband’s travel schedule for work has been a little last minute.

Yet, I’m feeling surprisingly good for being a week into July. I’ve gotten a lot accomplished these past 7 days in my home life and volunteer life. While I have been going to the gym, I’m lacking balance in my running life (practically nonexistent the last 2 weeks; I’ve also been dealing with a reoccurring injury).

I’m attempting to train my brain to focus on what I’ve been able to accomplish rather than what I’m skimping on. Jenn shared her love of the Clever Fox planner and I got one too. It’s purple, of course. Colored pens, bullet lists, and introspection are my friends.

A few things I’ve been successful at lately:

  • Home ownership
  • Podcasting
  • My kids being more self-sufficient

Home ownership

Ah, the never-ending fun of home ownership. We moved into our current home 3 years ago and it will never be done. It’s a continual work in progress, filled with bathroom renovations, updating light fixtures, lawn care, pool maintenance, and more. There is never NOT a project. Some are bigger than others.

This week’s huge project? Replace the largest window in the house.

Before and After

New light fixture and window.

New light fixture and window.

To be clear, it wasn’t anything physical for me in terms of the replacement, but it was not a cheap venture. It’s crazy that replacing a window can be so exhilarating but here we are. We’ve been marveling at the window for the past week. Adulting.

On a smaller scale, we also finally found a ladder shelf for our bathroom at Home Goods!

There’s so much else to do including another bathroom renovation, painting, organizing, blah blah blah, until forever. But PROGRESS!

Podcasting

Podcasts are my jam. I love listening to them; it helps mundane chores go quicker and I’m always learning something new.

As the Director of Social Media & Communications for The Bullock Garden Project, Inc. non-profit, I’m always trying to think of good ways to share our story and get our message out to our target audience.

The more I spoke with my friend and CEO of BGP, Inc., Sonya Harris, the more the idea of creating a podcast grew. Sonya is so animated and we are both passionate about educating and bringing gardens to every school, the podcasting forum makes sense.

 

Not only have I been working on that but I also had the pleasure of being invited as a guest to my BibRave bro, Corey’s podcast!

Having the opportunity to chat with him about life and all the good things going on was so much fun. (Plus, we both have kids going into HIGH SCHOOL, which is sort of bananas.)

Click on the picture to listen!

Kids

I didn’t take this pictures of my son in Florida.

Nor did I take this one.

Because I sent my 14 year old alone. On a plane. By himself. (To my parents house.)

I suppose this is partially my success but more so, his. Last week it was Florida. This week he’s off at Boy Scout camp. Maybe one day I’ll see him again.

Part of growing up is becoming more independent and I’m glad that he has the confidence to do so. His younger brother is taking great strides too, not relying on me as much.

I’ve seen a meme floating around on Facebook recently about only having 18 summers with your kids. You guys, that’s not true. It’s not. Because hey, my parents are spending the summer with me and I’m 42 years old. #truthbomb #perspective

You grow, you mature, but unless something goes amiss or you choose to cut ties, you don’t stop having a relationship with your child after they become an adult. You just hope that you’re doing right by them and that they’ll want to spend summers with you forever and ever.

PS – Yep, I totally finished this on Monday morning.

Race Recap: 2019 Atlantic City Bungalow Beach 5 Miler

Boardwalk, sunshine, beach, ocean: it all has the makings of a good time. Atlantic City is my preferred place to run – it’s familiar, it’s flat, and it’s an easy drive to and from my house.

Last year was the inaugural Bungalow Beach 5 Miler and I knew then that even though I’m not summer race runner, I’d be adding this to my repertoire. There aren’t a lot of 5 mile races and I enjoy the distance (and can deal with the heat!).

The folks over at the AC races know what speaks to runners: competitive pricing, extra swag, and bling. I registered for this race last fall and it was under $35 with a coupon code. The experience includes the 5 mile race with multiple water stops, a race shirt (tank for the ladies), medal, beer, and photos. I’d say that’s a great value for the price!

The added incentive for 2019 is the Triple Threat medal. For those who run a race during the April Fools weekend, the Bungalow Beach 5 Miler, and a race during their fall weekend, you earn a triple threat medal. You can always find me at an Atlantic City race, so I’m pretty pumped to get this in October.

Atlantic City Marathon Series Triple Threat Medal

Packet pickup was Friday evening and also the morning of prior to the start. I particularly like this race because it’s a Saturday rather than the standard Sunday so it’s a great way to kick off the weekend.

Chrissy and I had decided that we would be sticking together for the race. We parked about a mile down the boardwalk at Resorts because we have frequent player cards there that entitle us to $5 parking. This is where we usually start our runs during training and figured it would be a nice way to warm up before/cool down after.

We arrived in plenty of time for the morning packet pickup, which was a good thing because the line was a bit on the long side. No biggie though, just gave us time to chatted, eat our gels (Science in Sport Apple – review coming in a few weeks!), and see friends.

When Chrissy asked for a bag (there was a pile on the table) the volunteer was a bit on the rude side and asked if she REALLY needed it because they were “running low”. As we weren’t planning on bringing our swag back to the car and didn’t see a bag check anywhere it was, indeed, something she really needed. Thankfully we both got bags and found our friends near the start area for the obligatory pre-race photo.

Run856 Turtles

Given the swell in popularity of this event after just 2 years (there was a social media post the evening before stating that it was 90% full) the race will probably take that into consideration for packet pickup and have more tables in the future. Thankfully, the race started a few minutes after 8 to accommodate those still in line for their bibs/shirts.

From there, it was smooth sailing, errrr, running. The course is basically an out and back with a little dip onto the street for a few blocks at mile 2. The boardwalk is open so you have to be aware of people out for a morning stroll and bicyclists.

It’s always great wearing a local running shirt because you hear a lot of “856” (our area code) and get high fives and encouragement from runners around you.

Chrissy and I kept our 1:1 intervals going the entire time and then soon enough, we were turning onto the beach for the last home stretch.

Last year I mentioned that the sand was wavy and it was difficult to run through the finish line. This year they had mats down. So much better!

We got our medals and delicious snacks – they always have a great spread.

Took pictures by the ocean and then handed our beer tickets off to a few Turtle friends. I was more interested in drinking water at 9:30 in the morning than the beer so we decided to take the trek back to the cars and call it a day.

2/3 races in Atlantic City complete for 2019! I’m looking forward to returning for the 10k in October and getting my Triple Threat medal!

Do Good, Feel Good: World Refugee Day 5k

Disclaimer: I’m taking part in the World Refugee Day 5k as part of being a BibRave Pro in conjunction with our good friends at Soul Focus. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!

June 20th is World Refugee Day and I’m joining with a bunch of pals for the virtual World Refugee Day 5k. The funds raised during this effort will support refugees through the American Refugees Committee.

For those who haven’t taken part in a virtual races before, the way it works is pretty simple.

Virtual Run How-To

ONE – Register! Registration for the World Refugee Day 5k has been open since May 20th and will remain open through this Thursday, June 20th. As a little something extra, code BR5 will get you $5 OFF registration.

TWO – Print out your commerative WRD5K race bib!World Refugee Day 5k race bib

THREE – Get social with it! Run the 5k distance. This can be with a group, solo, with your pup, with your cat, whomever wants to go the distance with you and raise awareness and funds for the World Refugee Day 5k.

After you run, share on your social accounts using the hashtags #WorldRefugeeDay5k #WRD5k and tagging @worldrefugeeday_5k on Instagram. I can tell you from experience that they are very interactive with their runners and love seeing what everyone’s experiences!

FOUR – Wear your swag with PRIDE! After Thursday, June 20th, World Refugee Day 5k BOCO Gears hats will be sent to all participants. BOCO Gear are my #1 hats to run in and I can’t wait to get mine!

BOCO Gear World Refugee Day 5k Hat

It’s an amazing way to take part in a global event and be a part of a movement, from home. While I would LOVE to travel to Uganda to be there in person, that’s just not in the cards for me (this year, at least).

However, I will be there in spirit and I’m very pumped to run virtually along side of everyone!

Want to join in the fun? It’s not too late, this virtual run is open for 4 more days. Hop on over to the registration page and get moving! Lots of the BibRave Pros and I will be out there and running our 5ks on June 20th but you don’t have to wait until Thursday – that’s the beauty of a virtual run!

Who else is running?

Becky
Ken
Brenda
Stephanie
Lissa
Kim
Juan

Safety in Numbers on Global Running Day and Beyond

Disclaimer: I received Sabre products 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!

Each year, the first Wednesday in June is Global Running Day. A day to celebrate running and inspire today’s youth to get out and get active. That’s a mission I can get behind, especially as a Healthy Kids Running Series coordinator.

My pup Gemma is my usual running buddy but we’ve been working our way back to running after she recently had CCL surgery. Running is always so much more fun with someone so naturally I reached out to one of my favorite buddies, Ana, and gently and not at all pushy talked her into running with me.

There’s safety in numbers when it comes to running. I never really thought much about carrying pepper gel while running because… well, who’d want to mess with me? However, there’s always the just in case factor. When I heard that BibRave was teaming up with Sabre to bring safety to Global Running Day, the just in case factor jumped to the forefront of my mind.

Sabre not only sent the products above for me but included Pepper Gel and a Personal Alarm with LED Light for a buddy as well. Score for Ana!

We had an hour and a half at dusk to map out our route through a park and nearby town before we needed to return to get our children from band practice.

Global Running Day - Ana and Mer with Sabre Safety products

We went through the empty wooded trail at the local park before hitting the town’s hills. It was mostly quiet, save for our constant talking, because that’s what we do when we’re together.

No need to employ any of the Sabre safety gear but before we hit the road, we checked out the good, noting how easy it was to unlock the Pepper Gel with a flick of the thumb.

While making our way through town, naturally we wondered… just HOW loud is the Personal Alarm? We didn’t want to push the button while on our journey and cause anyone unncessary panic/concern.

Instead we waited until the end of our run and found a spot at the end of a parking lot. Naturally I made a video on Instagram stories, which goes away after 24 hours but YouTube is forever.

Hopefully these are products that I’ll never, ever have to use. But… just in case, they’re good to have. If you’d like to get safety products for yourself or a running loved one, discount code SABRERUN saves 20% at Sabre’s website. 

Want to Know About Being a BibRave Pro? Then this VLOG post is for YOU!

 

I wear my BibRave orange proudly and have done so for the past 2.5 years. The only thing I regret about BibRave? Not getting involved sooner!

Think you might be a good BibRave Pro? Click here for the application.

Then check out a few of my fellow Pros videos as they share what they enjoy about being a BibRave Pro.

Road Tested Vlog: Win Detergent

Disclaimer: I received a bottle of Win 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!

Oh, laundry. My constant nemisis.

It’s neverending and as long as there is a day that ends with -y, I have laundry to do.

When BibRave said that we were teaming up with Win Detergent, I decided to jump in on the campaign.

My family is an active one and we generate a metric ton laundry.

My husband goes to the gym 3 times a week, my older son is a runner, and my younger son does karate. Oh yes, and I happen to contribute too.

We sweat a lot, and now that it’s warm out, the smell that comes along with that sweat is that much worse.

Regular detergents don’t work as well as Win does because of chemistry. Personally, I’m not as well versed in chemistry as I am in doing laundry so I’m going to let the folks at Win explain.

The fundamental difference between WIN and other detergents is that WIN contains ingredients that separate the oils from the synthetic fibers.  Just like pulling that static electricity balloon off the wall, WIN breaks the bond between the oil and the fibers.

Once the oils have been freed from the fibers, special detergent molecules called Surfactants go to work.  Surfactants are common – all soaps contain surfactants.  WIN has chosen its surfactants specifically to get the oils out of synthetics while leaving your gear functioning and feeling great.  Just like you wouldn’t wash your pots and pans with shampoo or wash your hair with dish soap, we’ve chosen the right surfactants to wash synthetic clothing fibers.

Surfactants are two-sided molecules.  One side is hydrophobic (repels water), so it grabs onto the oils.  The other side is hydrophilic, so it grabs onto the water in the wash.  When the water goes down the drain, so do the oils.  And with them, the bacteria.

Because WIN removes the oils from your apparel, the wicking properties of the fabric are restored to almost brand new.  Not only does your gear smell better, it works better.  And because it works better and smells better, WIN users keep their gear longer.

Join me in my laundry room! Don’t worry, I won’t put you to work.

So the obvious question is: Does it work? In this case it’s a good thing that we DON’T have smell-o-vision because you would NOT want to smell our laundry beforehand.

Thankfully, our duds are fresh-as-a-daisy after washing so the next time you see me, feel free to give a sniff.

Want to try it out yourself? Hop on over to Amazon and use code WIN4RAVE at checkout to get 20% off any WIN Products!

See what my fellow BRPs have to say:

BeckyKen (and his VLOG) – Corey Lisa Thanh – Jonathan