5K SUP & RUN: Race Recap May 21, 2016

Everything about this race was awesome! Finally, after my last two races were a waste of money, I was so excited to have a race be everything that I have hoped for. I don’t know whats been going on with races lately but they have been going downhill and up in price…

This race was just a 30 dollar entry fee and it went to a good cause: Operation Second Chance. It is so inspirational to be racing alongside veterans who were wounded, injured or ill fighting for our country. It was incredible!

The race did start at 8 a.m. SHARP! which was actually a good thing. It was already 85 degrees Fahrenheit and 80 percent humidity. Gotta love Florida. And the race did start on time, how awesome is that!

So right away we started with the 5K RUN. This was tricky, wasn’t sure how hard to push it. Let me tell you though, it’s much easier to catch people during the run. It’s so much more difficult on a paddleboard. I had one woman in front of me going into the 5K SUP.

So right after the run, you go to your board, rip you shoes and socks off and put on your pfd then you jump on your board. It is so weird to go from running to stopping your legs to paddle. Your arms also feel really awkward moving in a different motion.

In about 2 hours, all the racers were done and awards were right away! RIGHT AWAY! Everything was done by 10:15. It was so nice to not have to wait around for hours and hours like most races. Also, the food spread that they had was so good: bagels, cookies, brownies, bananas, fruit snacks, pulled pork and FREE BEER for EVERYONE!! Spectators included.

SO MUCH FOOD AND AWESOME AWARDS FOR EVERYONE!

I really enjoyed everything about this race, everyone received a medal and an Operation Second Chance coin. If you were a top finisher you got a trophy, 200 dollars cash, and three months free to YouFit gyms. Not just a cupcake like another race did yesterday.

IMG_1152

Here I am with my friend Brad at the end of the race. He won the 5K RUN & SUP for the Men and I won for the Women! Always fun sharing the stage with your friends.

I worked so hard to catch the woman that was in front of me. I caught her around mile two in the SUP Race and then just kept a steady pace to keep the lead. It was so difficult making up for lost time in the run. Next year, I will definitely push myself more in the run to get a good start in the paddle.

More info on the race:

Facebook                          Results                      Operation Second Chance

More info on me:

Facebook                Instagram                 LinkedIn                   Paddleboarding Team

 

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Shoe Review: The New FIT by Skora

About a year and a half ago, I discovered a shoe that made me love running. I have been running for about 2 years now and have fallen in love with the feeling I get when it’s just me, my running shoes, and the outdoors. I have been fortunate enough to have started with 5k’s and quickly transition to 15k’s and then on to running my first half marathon.

I started with a shoe by Skora called the BASE. It’s a training shoe that is perfect for transitioning to natural running. It took me some time but after a few runs and sore calves, I felt a difference in my body. Everything just felt better. Who doesn’t want that?! This leads me to the next shoe, the Skora FIT. The name is perfect. It may sound cliche but seriously, if you want to get fit and see results while running efficiently, then I’d pay attention. Skora’s motto is to RunReal and my goal is to get all of you to try it.

Every shoe has positives and things that just get you hooked. So let’s start with that! These are what I love most about the FIT:

1. Seamless design: My first ever seamless shoe, and let me tell you that it’s great! I never thought that it would make a difference because I’ve never had a problem before but it seems so much more flexible and I don’t ever have to worry about rubbing. I bought my sister a pair and she has a bunion so I’m pretty sure she will love this feature!

Skora FIT2. Asymmetrical lacing: This means the laces are not directly down the middle of the foot. I like this feature because I have experienced rubbing from laces in the past. I have a bone that protrudes on my foot and it gets inflamed from many shoes. I have not experienced any discomfort from my FIT.

3. For a natural shoe, it still has cushion: It is a zero-drop but unlike most shoes, it still has cushioning and comfort. It’s a perfect shoe to begin running all natural in. I don’t always have access to trails and grass so I find myself on hard surfaces like concrete and pavement. Having the cushion makes a world of difference! I can still run naturally while having my body not take such a beating.

4. The color: I know, I know. PINK! I love pink! There’s also some blue! And other color combos on the Skora website, but this is Skorathe color combination that caught my eye. I do believe that if you like what you are wearing and feel pretty and confident, then your overall performance will increase. The color makes me feel so happy on my runs. It may sound weird, but looking down at the vibrant colors gives me an energy boost.

5. The durability: My first Skora shoes are still up and running! I’ve had them for about a year and a half and I still wear them. They have some dirt on them but the outsole is holding up! I’ve been keeping track of all my runs in the FIT so I now know how much mileage I have put on them. I’ve only done 35 miles in 2 weeks but once tennis season is over, I’m going to start running more. Lately, I’ve been just doing around 3 miles when I go out. You can see too that the outsole is thick and can withstand a lot.

Skora

6. Feels like a slipper: I said this right when I put the FIT on. And guess what, 2 of my friends tried the FIT on too and had the same reaction! I wish I would have recorded it! It’s amazing how well it fits your foot. The FIT only weighs in at 6.6 oz. It’s light and perfect for almost every activity. The zero-drop makes it my go-to shoe for the gym because while lifting you want to be as flat as possible on the ground. Skora Lift

7. Arch Support: My last comment being, I used to get cramps in my arches a lot. I’m thinking from lacking of support. The FIT has an internal archband midfoot support. I have experienced no discomfort in my arch while running and feel the support there. It’s noticeable to me in a good way. I love the feeling!

These shoes are great for hanging out around town and for in the gym!

These shoes are great for hanging out around town and for in the gym!

Alright, now it was really tough to think of some cons to the FIT. When it’s difficult to think of something that’s not a positive then you know, the shoe is a good one.

1. Some of the trails I run on are just rock/shells but… not just small pieces of rock or shell but large chunks that don’t really feel too good on the bottom of my feet while I run. I land on my midfoot and sometimes I can feel the rock right through my shoe. It’s not enough though to keep me running on these trails. It’s just a bit of an annoyance if I land just right on something sharp. Some other brands make shoes with a lot of cushion to avoid this but I would never surrender running natural for just a few bumps on my run.

2. Also, some people don’t like this but… I have had more people come up to me while wearing my FIT’s. People have stopped me to make comments about my shoes. I don’t mind answering questions about my shoes. But you just might get noticed more while wearing them. So expect that.

I just want to finish by saying I’m so happy I came across Skora a few years ago. I’m sure you can relate to when you find something that works, you just want to tell the world! And that’s exactly how I feel. I’m not making this up, these shoes changed my life through running. I encourage you to try them and Run Real.

Disclosure: Skora Running provided me with the new FIT in advance. I have had them for over 2 weeks and have been testing them in a variety of settings. All you have read are my own opinions. If you have any questions for me on the shoes, please contact me. Thank you!

If you want to learn more about SKORA, it’s easy! They have many social media outlets to check out!

Facebook         Instagram        Twitter        Web

Gasparilla 15K: Racing in the New INJINJI’s

The Gasparilla race’s in Tampa, FL are not meant for setting new PR’s. Why? Because there are SO MANY PEOPLE! It’s crazy how many people sign up for this race. The 15K had 4,921 participants. And I placed 619th out of everyone with a time of 1:16. The 5K is absolutely horrendous(I ran that last year) so I wouldn’t even bother with that one. The 5k had 11,635 participants! The 15K wasn’t as bad but still, make sure you are good at weaving if you enter this race.

The sea of people at the start of the race

The sea of people at the start of the race

Once you got to mile 2, the congestion was down and you could run freely so not too shabby. I hadn’t been doing as much running as I had liked because cycling is my new thing! Therefore, I came to the race with dead quads from cycling the day before. That was dumb of me.

The weather wasn’t the best but could have been a lot worse. It was windy, overcast, and extremely humid. At mile 3, my shirt was already drenched. So at mile 9, the sweat was just dripping off of me, I was melting! haha. As you can see in these pictures, it looks like I went swimming.

Just keep running

Just keep running

Race Ready

I wore the race t-shirt because I didn’t really love it, so I don’t know when I would wear it again. I wore my SKORA’s, which are still my favorite shoe I’ve ever run in so far. They still kill my calves, which is great. Working hard! And then my new thing are my INJINJI’s. My new favorite socks. I was a little skeptical at first about wearing toe socks but after my first run in them, my feet don’t like anything else. Being able to move each toe freely is a great feeling. They also come in many different thicknesses and ankle heights. Seriously though, I absolutely love them. It just took a day for my feet to feel the same.

Muscle shot at the end of the race = MUST DO!

Muscle shot at the end of the race = MUST DO!

Recently, I held a contest for all my followers to win a pair of Injinji’s and the winner sent me some reviews from his running experiences. Overall, we shared the same thoughts! So I’m going to post what he said! Thank you Jeff for participating in the contest and giving feedback!

TOE SOCKS!

TOE SOCKS!

Performance 2.0 and Run 2.0
These socks are designated as the running, gym, crossfit, etc socks.  Both performed very similar to each other.  Both are definitely much more robust than the first generation of Injinji’s.  The core difference I could sort out was that the Run sock is more breathable than the Performance.  However, you definitely feel that thickness.  And, since it’s thicker, I noticed they ran a little warmer than the Originals.  I really liked the think feel of the originals.  If you like a thicker sock, then these are winners.  Not only do they fit better than the version 1, but the addition of the Achilles protection is awesome.   However, I like a thin sock, so I’m saving these for colder weather or for my Luna Sandals.
Trail 2.0
All I can say about this is “Wow, I could wear these every day! ”  They are plush, comfy, warm.  Again, things are thicker with 2.0, but boy is this comfy.  The protective cuff fits well and would definitely protect against getting dirt/rocks into the sock for trail running.  I’d say this sock is my hands down favorite for casual wear.
Hike 2.0
This sock was the real surprise.  This sock is made of NuWool, but retains the thin feel of Version 1.0.  It’s also very comfortable.  I actually really enjoyed using these on several runs.  The durability may not be that of the Run or Performance, but it’s a really good sock.  In fact, I’d say these have become my long run favorites.  They really work well and would be great in almost any condition.  I wouldn’t use them for the gym since the NuWool causes a little more slipping inside the shoe for crossfit, but for running or hiking, these are fantastic.

The trail 2.0 was my favorite. So comfortable! That is the sock I ran my 15K in and personally, I felt like I just wanted to run in the sock by itself. They’re cushioned and durable. My feet felt great while running and after running. And to make that mean more, my feet blister because I sweat so much but I didn’t experience that this time. Woo! Here’s a picture of me stretching after running and check out those toe socks.

Stretching my calves after the race, wearing my Injinji toe socks!

Stretching my calves after the race, wearing my Injinji toe socks!

I recommend giving them a try! And they worked very well with my Skora running shoes. They couple each other very nicely. 🙂 Happy running everyone!

Shoe Review: First Day in the KARHU’s – 5K Road Run

Today I did my first run in my new KARHU’s! If you are like me, I am totally new to KARHU. I love trying new things so KARHU was sounding perfect from the beginning! I was sad to go out and get these beautiful new shoes dirty. But to start, I didn’t want to overdue it… I like to ease into new shoes in order to get my feet used to the new feeling so I started with a light 5K road run on a great day. The weather was partly cloudy and about 84 degrees Fahrenheit. Love it!

KARHU's Flow-Fulcrum Ride… All you can want in a running shoe.

My pair of KARHU’s are the Flow-Fulcrum Ride in Bright Violet/Scream. These shoes are said to be for the performance neutral runner seeking lightweight foot strike management with a highly responsive, durable forward ride. The sneakers are engineered with neutral performance fulcrum, the Flow-Fulcrum Ride is suited for faster, long distance running and racing with a clean, supportive minimalist design. But if this type of runner is not you, don’t fret! KARHU produces shoes for all levels and foot strikes. I already love many aspects about this running shoe. First thing I noticed when I put them on, was the extra comfort on the heel of my foot. There’s a lot more cushion along the bottom of my foot, which I like! Also, I have plenty of stability and ankle support. I laced up to the very top hole and it was perfect.  My run went very smooth. I had no problems. There was a little stiffness but every shoe I have ever owned has required a short break in period so other then that these shoes treated me very well.

First run in my new KARHU running shoes!

If KARHU’s aren’t known for their crazy, fun colors, they should be! The style nowadays for running shoes seems to be bright and vibrant colors. If you are like me, I love bright colors. I like shoes that stand out. While walking around my college campus wearing my new KARHU’s, I get so many compliments! I love the attention my running shoes give me.

The vibrant colors of KARHU made it love at first sight

I can’t wait to see where these shoes take me. I will be doing a lot more testing to see what they can handle! If you have any questions for me regarding the shoes, just ask in a comment! Or if you own a pair feel free to share your thoughts!

 

Thank you for reading!

Gasparilla Distance Classic 5K Run Results

Just yesterday, I ran in my 2nd 5K race (The Gasparilla Distance Classic) with one of my good friends and it was crazy! The last 5K I did only had about 200 people in it and then this one had 11,918! It was insane! In my 20-24 year old age bracket I got 11th place out of 475, which is a lot better then I thought I would have done. I’m really happy with my result. However, let me tell you about this hectic experience. Here’s a video though that I made from some footage I took. Make sure to watch it in HD… much better!

First of all, we (my friend running the race, my friend that’s just cheering, and me) arrive at the scene of the race and people are EVERYWHERE! It was just an entire street of people (you couldn’t even see the pavement for as far as you could see)! So we get there and we didn’t have any pins to pin our bib numbers on our shirts. We were panicking. In the panic for pins, we get lost in the crowd! I lose my friend that is running with me. It’s impossible to find anyone! There were so many people and we didn’t have our phones because we left them in the car due to that fact that we had nowhere to put them! Frantically, I’m searching for her. But the race is about to begin so I go to the start and thankfully, I found some pins. Finding the start was the next obstacle. I had no idea where to go. There were so many people everywhere that I couldn’t move. My other friend that’s just spectating soon gets pulled away from me by security saying,”SPECTATORS OVER HERE!” Then he pushes me forward. I was so thirsty and worried for my friends and about us meeting up after the race.

Next, the race begins. I’m stuck behind a crown of super slow joggers… I’m so frustrated because I can’t get around them. The cool thing though was that the bib had a self timer in it, so when you crossed the start line that is when your timer starts and then it stops once you cross the finish line… now that’s good technology! However, I was still walking behind super slow people when I crossed the start… I managed to make my way to the side of the crowd to run in the grass median of the road that was full of dibbits… I almost twisted an ankle. But finally, I was passing people. Sprinting to make up lost time though is a quick way to get worn out though. So after the turn around at the halfway point, I was able to run in the road again and have some space. But I was becoming fatigued… uhhh. But all in all my time was said to be 24:45, which is the slowest I have done since I can remember. But for all that I went through, I guess it was decent. And maybe a lot of people had to deal with it too because I placed high. I was just very displeased with the organization and set up. Maybe next year will be different! I hoping!

Overall, I had fun. I eventually found my friends and we took pictures to make some memories. Everyone in the race got a medal so we all felt like winners! I didn’t even know we were getting one, so that was awesome! Also, I looked great when I was running. I had new shoes on, new sunglasses and new shorts!  My new sunglasses are Under Armour Zone Performance sunglasses. They made me feel so intimidating as a runner. They are so slick looking and grip my head perfectly. I don’t usually wear sunglasses and these made me feel like I wasn’t even wearing any. They are so light! Also, it was a hot day so I was sweating like crazy(people were passing out left and right) and at no time did I feel like they were going to fall off. I felt like those glasses gave me an extra push. Also, it was so sunny outside so I was happy that I had them, I want to be able to see where I’m going! Also, I think I look good with them on. And that has a lot to do with everything!

Now, I look back and I had a lot of fun at this race even though it was kind of stressful. It was quite the experience. This race was my friends first 5K and she loved it! I can’t wait until my next one, which is on March 30th!

Be a Pretty Dirty Girl

Running, Mud and Fun… All in One!!

Sorry guys but this is for girls only. I discovered this run the other day and thought it looked like something I would want to do. I think this run sounds like a nice change up from the usual road or trail that I take. The Dirty Girl is a 5k run through mud just for women. Women of all ages are welcome. You can be a beginner runner or advanced. All athletic abilities are wanted as well. Also, this run isn’t timed, you can time yourself but the Dirty Girl isn’t like a traditional 5k. During the run, you are pushed out of your comfort zone with obstacle courses that get you down and dirty. Teams are allowed and recommended because you can help each other finish to become a Dirty Girl Champ! The Dirty Girl is fun, thrilling, exciting, different, and full of laughter. It is said to be a day that you will always remember. And maybe even make life long friends.

Furthermore, part of the proceeds for entering the race are donated to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. I love running knowing that I’m doing something good for me but that I’m also doing something good for someone else.

The Dirty Girl is only held 9 times in 2012 so start planning accordingly because I’m sure this is something you won’t want to pass up. Obviously, since it’s not held frequently, the chances don’t come around very often to run in this anything but ordinary run! And by the picture above it really seems like a good time. I want to start running more adventure races so this may be the run I start with!

 

What Are Friends For?

We all have heard the saying, “What are friends for?” Especially right after our friend/s have done or will do something nice for us. Am I right? Friends can be a great help when you are trying to accomplish anything. Having their support can get you through almost everything. When it comes to wanting to lose weight or getting stronger, friends are truly the best.

How to get your friends to be all that you need to succeed:

1. If you are trying to eat healthy, tell your friends because they can influence you tremendously. I have seen it happen where a group of girls are going out to get ice cream, McDonalds, or anything that is not good for you, especially when you are trying to lose weight. And they are able to talk you into coming and drag you with them. You tell yourself, “I will just go and not order anything.” (haha yeah right!). That’s not going to happen. When it comes time to order and it gets to you, “Oh, I’m not getting anything.” Everyone will flip out and demand you order something. The peer pressure is horrific. By simply explaining to your friends that you are trying to stay away from fast food, desserts, oversized portions, etc. they will try to avoid putting you in those situations. If they are true friends they will understand and help you stay on the right path.

2. Ask your friends to go to the gym with you. Having someone come with you to the gym, gives you that extra boost. However, going together doesn’t mean talk that whole time. If that’s all they want to do, I suggest telling them you are working out too hard to talk (Works every time). Going with friends to the gym is great because they help you get that first step out the door toward the gym, which is the toughest part for a lot of people. Also, set up times to meet to workout. What kind of a friend are you if you cancel or don’t show up. Setting up a time to exercise with someone will get you moving.

3. If they are around, and they know you are trying to eat right, give them permission to take away that bag of chips you are about to binge on.You must do this. The process of giving up some of your favorite foods is tough. We all have those days we want to break down and give in. At the beginning of your weight loss plan, give permission to anyone that you hangout with a lot, to snatch that bag of chips or pint of ice cream out of your hands. Now you can’t get mad at them because in the end, you will be so

All you need to succeed!

thankful they controlled your emotions on days you wanted to throw in the towel.

4. Get your friends to share the same goal. Finding someone who wants what you want is the best. You can work as a team to accomplish your goals. Sign up for a 5K, 10K, triathlon, half marathon, marathon, etc. I don’t know your level of fitness so depending on where you want to take yourself, pick an event right for you. Sign up at the very beginning of your decision that you are going to change! Also, pick and event a few months out to give you plenty of time to prepare, if anything over prepare! Signing up will give you motviation throughout your weight loss and get fit plan because you have something you are working towards and always keep that goal in mind.

5. Be supportive in return. Don’t lose a friendship because you and your friend are trying to lose weight and one of you is losing weight/seeing results quicker then the other one. Be supportive to each other. Compliments rock! Who doesn’t like hearing they look good in their jeans?! Keep each other focused and moving. Do it for yourself too. Don’t get jealous! It’s silly. Use them as motivation. By looking at them you see it’s possible and you want to be next. You have to be fully committed. Keep working hard and results will follow.

Now, it’s time to get off the computer and get moving! Feel free to comment if you have ideas on how to work together to succeed.