Be sure to add your blog to my blog list -- Click HERE or blog list above to add your blog!

Apr 24, 2016

GU Energy Labs nutrition review

Lots of GU choices!
A month or so ago I received some GU for review courtesy of GU Energy Labs.  As I've continued to run long distances, I've tried numerous things to help give me the energy to finish long distances in both training and races.

To be fair, while I've run 7 marathons and a 50k, I still don't feel I've dialed down my nutrition needs for training for races.  I've tried gels, chews, energy drink tabs, candy, regular foods, etc.  I will also say that I'm not a huge fan of gels in general, however, I know they serve their purpose and they have helped me finish races feeling much better than any other option.  They give you the energy you need to keep moving.

Some people cannot stomach gels and must have other choices.  I've done pretty well with gels and chews overall.  My experience with gels has been to take 3 of these during a marathon and I also switch to chews when my stomach might not be feeling well.  This has nothing to do with GU in general but just that after I get past running 20 miles, my stomach does not accept much more.  The chews taste more like candy to me so I can stomach them better while running.  I also tend to use one gel during a half marathon race, although when training for that distance, I don't typically use much nutrition during training (a mistake on my part)

Out of all the gels I've ever tried, GU has the most choices I've ever seen in the market.  I can't believe the number of flavors they come up with and it's fun trying new flavors.  Personally, I'm not a huge fan of really fruity flavors.  For me they don't sit as well in my stomach.  I tend to go for flavors like Peanut Butter, Peanut Butter and Chocolate, and Expresso.  I also really like their Salted Caramel flavor and I like using this one especially when it's really cold out.  It tastes more like Caramel when it's harder like real Caramel.

On my last run, I tried Maple Bacon.  One thing I will say is that while GU does a great job trying to match the flavor to the real thing, you need to be realistic in your expectations.  Maple Bacon GU is not the same as eating real bacon dripped in maple syrup.  Haha, if only!  It does, however, give you the taste of it and it really helps if it's a flavor you like.

GU also have many different types of energy gel such as their Roctane that gives you more electrolytes in the gel.  GU Energy's drink tabs are also great for hydration and have a great flavor to them.  I like these for after a long training run or race to help me recover too.

Overall, whatever you choose to use while running, nutrition needs to be a big part of your training especially as you train for a marathon distance or longer.  Give some flavors a try and don't give up if you try something you don't like initially.  With all the flavors available, you are sure to find a couple that you like and will help you as you run long distance.

Interested in learning more?

Go to the GU Energy Labs website.

Follow GU Energy Labs on Facebook.

Follow GU Energy Labs on Twitter.

Follow GU Energy Labs on Instagram.

I want to thank GU Energy Labs for sending me the samples to test out for this review.

Have a great day and....Keep Running!!!!

Disclosure:  I received the GU samples in the picture above for review.  All opinions are my own and I was not required to give a particular opinion other than an honest one.

Apr 12, 2016

Buff and Half Buff review

Buff and Half Buff
Buff recently sent me a few of their products to review.  I was really excited about this review since I've used a Buff and love the product!

While there are many kinds of running accessories on the market today, there are few that I can think of that I truly need and use on a daily basis.  If I were to keep one product in my running arsenal outside of my running shoes, this would be it!  I've been using a Buff product for the last several years and it's one of my most used products ever.  I use them on almost every run!
My Buff collection
I was especially excited to try out their UV Half Buff as its the first time I've ever run in this.

For those of you that don't know about Buff, it's a versatile headwear product.  Check out the number of ways you can wear the buff:
Borrowed from Buff website
Personally, I use mine mostly as a Neckerchief (all year), a Face Mask and a Balaclava (Winter), a Cap and a Do Rag (all year).  The Buff is great for really hot weather in helping keep the sweat off your neck.  It's also one of the best products to use during cold, Winter months.  I couldn't imagine surviving the Michigan Winters without one of these.  Using this as a face mask/balaclava is a life saver.  Here are just a few of the pictures of me using my Buff.
Good use of my Buff - apparently I like the Neckerchief best
While the material is generally thin (at least on the original buff), when wearing the Buff, the heat from your breath keeps you nice and warm.  It becomes especially useful when temperatures go below 10 degrees where you really need face protection.  Also, I've talked to many people that don't like having something over their mouth when they run like a thick Balaclava.  I don't like that either, however, the thinness of the product makes it easy to run while still protecting you.  It's actually the only product I've found to cover your mouth/nose and yet still allow you to breath well when running.

Now, the half buff is really new to me but I can already see the advantages to this after using it a few times.  For one, it's nice not to have so much material when its really hot out.  Anything over 40 degrees seems to work great for this.  Using half the amount of material is perfect in that it still wicks sweat away from you without feeling like you have too much material.  I've never felt the full buff was too much in the summer, however, I can see people enjoying the half Buff option more in summer ---- including myself!

Of course, because there is less material, there are less choices of how to wear it.  The Buff website only shows two options including a hairband and a headband.  I actually don't use it that way for either and use it as a neckerchief and also as a cap.

Overall, the Buff is really comfortable to wear and I love all the color options.  They have an incredible amount of types and you are sure to find one to fit your style.

Interested in learning more or getting one for yourself?

Check out the Buff website

Follow Buff on Facebook

Follow Buff on Twitter

Follow Buff on Instagram

Once you use one, you'll want to run with it all the time.

Have a great day and....Keep Running!!!!

Disclosure:  I received a Buff and Buff half in exchange for this review.  All opinions are my own and I was not required to give a particular opinion except an honest one.

Apr 9, 2016

Injinji toesocks review

About a month ago I received several pairs of Injinji toesocks for review courtesy of Injinji.  For a little background, I've run in Injinji socks since 2012 when I first did a review on these unusual looking socks.
Injinji socks
Recently, Injinji has come out with numerous options for their socks.  They offer various lengths of socks such as no-show, micro, mini-crew, etc.  They also offer various weights such as lightweight, original weight and mid-weight.  They offer so many options currently that it's hard to list them all so here is a chart that is helpful.
No show length in lightweight 

Mini-crew length in midweight
My personal preference is the lightweight socks and mini-crew length.  I have a pair of their trail socks too (not shown) that has a double cuff to help keep dirt out that are really nice!  I also wear these from about 20 degrees and up.  For me personally, my feel get cold easily and having these on in colder weather, feels like wearing gloves versus mittens so I have a difficult time keeping my toes warm.  I do see that they now offer specific types of socks for colder weather though which could be a good option.

If you are into colors, Injinji sure has you covered now!  When I first started wearing them, they only offered a few choices but you can see above from what they sent that they offer plenty now - and that is only a few of their options!  It's hard to mix up socks anymore since they all are unique colors.

The sock itself is made quite well.  I don't know how they do it but these also have no seams which is incredible considering they keep your toes separated.  Obviously, separating your toes is the biggest advantage to wearing these.  With no skin to rub together, the risk of blisters is minimal.  In fact, I've never developed a blister on my toes while wearing their socks over the years and I've run as long as a marathon in them.

The socks do take a little getting used to wearing.  When you first try them on, it feels strange having your toes separated and walking around without shoes you can notice it.  However, once you put on your running shoes is where these really shine.  First of all, when you run in them, they feel like any other sock in that you can't feel the separation of your toes.  To me that is important because when I wear socks, I don't want to be thinking about how they feel.  They are quite comfortable.  Also, for distance runners, they can take the abuse to the constant friction to help protect your feet.  I've even worn them to work on occasion too.

Also, contrary to popular believe, you don't need to run in Vibram fivefingers shoes either.  In fact, I've never run in those shoes and just use my normal running shoes - trail or road.

I'm a big believer that the right pair of socks can make all the difference in a good run or a bad run.  Injinji is a great choice and something to consider next time you are looking for a new option for running socks.

Their socks typically retail from $12 to $17.  Very reasonably priced and they last for many miles.

Interested in learning more or want to purchase a pair?  I'm sure you'll find an option you like.

Go to the Injinji website

Follow Injinji on Facebook

Follow Injinji on Twitter

Follow Injinji on Instagram

Have a great day and....Keep Running!!!!

Disclosure:  I received the above Injinji socks in exchange for this review.  All opinions are my own and I was not required to give a particular opinion other than an honest one.

Apr 2, 2016

Moji Foot Pro Massager review

A few weeks ago Spencer over at OutsidePR sent me a Moji Foot Pro Massager.  I also tested the Moji 360 Mini Massager back in 2014 as well (Click HERE for that review)

I have always said that some of the simplest products are the best products.  The Moji Foot Pro Massager falls into this category.  This is awesome and can be addictive sitting under your desk since your feet feel so good using it.
Moji Foot Pro Massager
The Moji Foot Pro is exactly what it says it is.  It massages your feet.  Well, you massage your feet but it does most of the work.  It's six mid size ball bearing that move around as you push your foot over it.  You can move your foot any which way and really makes your feet feel great especially after a long run.

I happen to keep mine under my desk at home so it gets frequent use - not just after a run.  I'm a big believer in using massage tools to help you with recovery.  The Moji Foot Pro can help with Plantar Fasciitis Pain, relieves sore & tired feet and increase circulation in your feet.  You can even put this version in the freezer for an ice massage!
A fixture under my desk
This is one of those running products that should be a staple in your running gear.  You could take it to work or use it at home.  It's fairly small too so you could also travel with it if you wanted.  It has some weight to it (1.25 lbs) but it's made that way so when you glide your foot over it, it remains in place.
Feels great!
I personally don't have any feet problems but it's not limited to that.  It just a nice tool to use on a daily basis to help keep your feet feeling fresh.  I've been testing it the past 3 weeks and it's a great tool and one that really can help you with recovery and make your feet feel better on a daily basis.  I highly recommend picking one up.

It retails for $39.99.  They also offer a standard version for $29.99.  Interested in learning more?

Check out Moji's website to order one.

Follow them on Facebook.

Follow them on Twitter.

Follow them on Instagram.

Have a great day and....Keep Running!!!!

Disclosure:  I received a complimentary Moji Foot Pro in exchange for this review.  All opinions are my own.