Product Review: BUFF Pack Run Cap

Disclaimer: I received a BUFF Pack Run Cap 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!

I’m not the biggest fan of wearing hats while running and typically prefer BUFF’s other headwear options. The reason why: it never fails that while wearing a hat, like a trucker hat, sweat manages to drip down into my eyes and down my face. Not a fan of that at all, so I avoid wearing hats. I’m starting with this point because the Pack Run Cap NEVER allowed any sweat into my face on the days I wore it running and there were some incredibly humid and nasty hot days I that I chose to wear it. How does it do this? It has a reliable and low profile sweatband wrapped around the inner part that does its job and then some.

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Now, you might think if the cap is absorbing all that sweat then it must be getting damp, heavy and not pleasant to wear anymore. Not so! I’ve never had a hat breathe as well as the Pack Run Cap when I know I’ve been sweating in sweltering heat and it remains light as can be. Again, how? Fastwick fabric side panels wick the moisture away and your head can breathe.

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These two features have impressed me the most with the BUFF Pack Run Cap but they’re obviously not the only features of this cap. The upper panel provides up to 98% protection from UV rays. There is an elastic cord at the back for a surprisingly secure fit that never loosened while running outdoors. It also has a reflective tab on the back and reflective logo on the front that adds low-light visibility.

My experience using the BUFF Pack Run Cap was a positive one. I have to say that since I am anti-hat for the most part. For me, it was just so lightweight and it was as if I didn’t even have something on my head. That’s how light it really is! I loved that it was easy to fold up and simply slide into my pocket if necessary. I liked that the material was soft and had 4-way stretch ability so it didn’t tighten too much on one side over another.

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Now, if you don’t like the color of mine, BUFF has other options for you to peruse through. Also, if a full cap is not your cup of tea, they had the same material in a visor too. You can’t lose with the Pack Run Cap. Whether you like it hats or not, this is a nice option! Bonus, if you want 15% off your BUFF purchase, simply go to https://buffusa.com/bibrave and sign up for the BUFF newsletter and, boom, a discount for you! I highly recommend this product!

Any questions or comments, please feel free to drop a note below!

And, as always, happy running!

Product Review: Extreme Fit Compression Socks

Disclaimer: I received a selection of Extreme Fit compression socks 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!

I’m going to come right out and say from the start that I liked these socks. They performed for me the way I expected them to perform. I know that may seem like something that should be obvious with a product like this, but it isn’t a guarantee, ever. Let me begin my saying I thought the level of compression in their running-orientated socks was on the mark. The sock never felt too tight and hugged against my legs and feet the way I wanted it to do. They are also a very soft sock in the feel and it’s as if you don’t even have anything on your feet. Now, Extreme Fit does offer two levels of compression in their socks. They have socks with 15-20 mmHg compression and socks with 20-30 mmHg. Now, what those numbers represent is how much compression the sock will provide for your legs and feet; a tightness level, if you will. So, for runners you would go higher and if you were wearing the sock for traveling or standing at your job all day, the lower number would work for you.

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As someone who runs both long and short distances, I found their runner socks to be topnotch and on par, if not better than some other brands out there. Another great option in the runner’s line of socks were ones that had extra amounts of reflective marks on them. Perfect if you are the early riser runner or the dusk runner where it may not be as easy to spot you. And I’m talking some seriously good reflective material.

I’m also a big fan of how many styles Extreme Fit offers on their website. And how they package some of their socks into solo options, 3-packs and even 6-packs! So many options with colors and designs; they even offer some socks with copper-infused fibers inside of them. You would be hard pressed to NOT find a style or color of sock on their site.

And who says that their socks are only for running or walking? Do you work in a hospital? Hair salon? Travel frequently on airplanes or train for work? Do you need compression socks for grocery shopping? Daily chores? Extreme Fit can benefit you with their product. I’ve used them myself when riding my bike, and I’m just relearning how to do that after over 30 years of not riding one.

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And don’t think you’re limited to just socks with Extreme Fit. No way, no chance. They have calf sleeves. Arm sleeves. Ankle sleeves. Knee sleeves. Even specialized sleeves if you suffer from plantar fasciitis. They truly are in the business of helping their clientele feel better and perform better.

(Photo credit to https://www.extremefitusa.com/)

Extreme Fit is out to help you with their graduated compression options. Wouldn’t you like to reduce swelling and pain while energizing your feet and legs? All that and you’ll be supporting muscle recovery later. It’s worth it for your body and these socks are definitely a good option to try. And if you decide to TRY NOW, please use code BRP20 to receive 20% off your order of $50 or more. And they currently have a ton of options on sale so you will be making off like a bandit if you order now! Don’t hesitate, these are a great option if you require compression socks on your athletic journey. I’ve loved the pairs I’ve tested and have felt very comfortable in them as well as comfortable AFTER my runs or bike rides.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to send them to me. I’ll be happy to answer them for you!

As always, Happy Running!

Sponsor Review: Raley’s Supermarkets, SPONSOR of the Napa Valley Marathon

Disclaimer: I received a $25 gift card to review Raley’s Supermarkets 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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Now, that the Napa Valley Marathon is over it is NOT the time to neglect your body and all you did to prepare for that race. It’s been a week since you ran, so you need to make sure you not only rest but keep putting fuel into your body. Specifically, recovery fuel. And, yes, Raley’s can help you in that department as well. Visit their website to see how simple it is to find exactly what you’re looking for and how to spot it in the store. They have every category for you from Clean Label to Gut Health to Organic to Keto-Friendly. And everything in between too!

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Post marathon is an important time for the body. There’s a lot of recovery going on so be sure to take advantage of Raley’s nutrition strategist who provides the necessary tips and information to make your marathon experience not only enjoyable on race day but afterwards as well. I mean, you need to prep for that next marathon!

I hope you take the time to visit Raley’s website and utilize all the free information, tips and advice they offer as well as visit the store and stock your pantry with some great products that fit whatever need you may have in your dietary lifestyle.

Happy running!

Product Review: WIN Sports Detergent

Disclaimer: I received a bottle of WIN Sports 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!

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Ok, we all have the same problem when it comes to workout clothes. How to get rid of the smell? A specific stain? And some of us would like to do it with a detergent that is a little more environmentally friendly than the common grocery store shelf staple. Here comes WIN Sports Detergent! My workout clothes, used for both lifting and running, other cardio, have needed some serious love from a sports specific detergent and I am glad I had the opportunity to test this out. Let me tell you how it works and what it helped with in my house. The key element to WIN is that it attacks the oils in the clothing; all that nastiness that oozes off your body during exercise and just sits and absorbs into the fabric. WIN removes those oils and the bacteria making your clothes cleaner and smell better hence you are more likely to keep those workout clothes a little bit longer than you might have in the past.

Now how much WIN Sports Detergent should you be using in a load of wash? Well, just take a look at your bottle and make that decision with their help.

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So, if it’s real bad, toss in three capfuls and eliminate that vicious exercise stink and bacteria from those clothes. The key is to use the detergent in hot water with a hot water rinse as well. This was a new thing for me to do because I prefer to wash items in colder water and not bring the heat. But it certainly does help getting rid of the smell.

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Three big reasons that I like this detergent (and that should make you like it as well) are this here: WIN Sports Detergent is color safe. Obviously, hugely important with the variety of athletic clothes we all have. Next, it’s a biodegradable product. So you’re being kind to the environment (not to mention it also does not contain phosphates.) Finally, and this is big to me, there is no animal testing involved with the making of this product.

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Now, and this might seem obvious but maybe not, what else can you and should you use WIN Sports Detergent on? You can use it with success on gear for hockey, football, volleyball, soccer, cheer, gymnastics, dance, lacrosse, and the list goes on. And it works great on grass-stained baseball pants too!

 

 

WIN Sports Detergent, something you should look into and give a try if you’re fed up with smelly and dirty exercise clothes. And if this isn’t convincing enough for you, take a look at some fellow friends of mine who also had the chance to test out the product as well!

Scootadoot

Mindy

Thanh

Organic Girl

Becky

Ken

Corey

I hope that these reviews convince you that WIN Sports Detergent is worthy of a tryout and you won’t be disappointed when using it to eliminate odors and bacteria from all of your workout clothes.

As always, happy running!

Product Review: Let’s Go Zwifting!

Disclaimer: I received a Zwift RunPod 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!

So, you’re probably wondering what the heck I’m talking about when I say, “let’s go zwifting!” Well, I don’t blame you. The word sounds bizarre but, then again, so is the concept until you use it and then everything changes! How much does a run on a treadmill suck? Let’s be honest, running by yourself or even in a gym on a treadmill is boring. There’s nothing to really drive you other than maybe a goal you have if you’re really training for something. How often do you find yourself competing with a fellow runner at the gym? Ah, I got you on that one, didn’t I? The Zwift RunPod and its corresponding apps provide an amazing experience that totally changes the “boring” treadmill run.

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First, the basics: what you will need. You will need a RunPod (attached to my shoe above) and you will need to attach it to your running shoe in approximately the same place as mine. You will need access to a treadmill. And you will need a device to use Zwift, the program, such as a iPhone, tablet, PC, etc. Once you have all that established and the Zwift app and Zwift companion app downloaded,  you will be able to join other runners around the world running together. Yes, around the world. Screen Shot 2018-12-30 at 11.01.57 PM

Put the battery in your Zwift RunPod, attach it to your shoe and start running on a treadmill. This will enable you to pair your pod with whatever device you have downloaded the app on and will also calibrate the pod to match your strides. Then you are all set to join a group run or just run on your own. Some of the group runs take place in London (which is really cool) and others take place in a fictional land called Watopia. Ok, that may sound odd but where else can you run past and through an active volcano?

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This was one of several screenshots that I took during the course of my run on this particular day. Now, I’ve done a few solo runs and enjoyed them but I was curious as to what a group run might like. So, using the Zwift companion app where there are listings for the group runs (various distances, locations) I found one and entered its queue. Then, you wait. Or, as in my case, I jumped into a solo run just to pass the time until the start. They even provide you with a countdown so everyone can join in. Like I said, runners from around the world compete with you on the same course.

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After the group run is finished and you’ve completed the distance, you are able to see how well you performed among all the other runners who joined the group. This is actually one of the best things I like about Zwift. It really did turn my treadmill run (or as we all call it, the “dreadmill”) into something more engaging and exciting. I was into my run and that’s not always the case on the treadmill.

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Now, with the pics I’ve posted here you probably noticed that my avatar is wearing the same thing in all of them. That’s because I wasn’t able to really venture into too many different styles because I hadn’t run enough with the pod yet. The more you run, the more you unlock for your personal avatar. More clothes, colors, haircuts, styles and more. Just another really cool way Zwift keeps you involved and entertained is what it normally a stagnant treadmill run.

Also, there are so many other great features of the Zwift RunPod. You can create a running meetup with a Zwift companion (just like any social media app, you find friends.) You can import custom running workouts should you be training for a specific distance. You can create a custom workout for yourself and then you can add it into a custom training program. All within the app and with the pod. You can chat with runners if you like and, who knows, maybe you’ll make some new running friends who join you every morning or evening on a virtual run together. That’s the power and awesomeness of the Zwift Runpod and app. Screen Shot 2018-12-27 at 10.26.49 PM

Definitely check out the Zwift website and if you like what you see, then use code BibRave15″ good for 15% off the cost of the Zwift RunPod at Zwift.com. It is good for 1000 Pods only though.

If  you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out or if you just have some comments. I’d love to hear from you!

As always, happy running!

Shady Rays Product Review

Disclaimer: I received a pair of Shady Rays Signature Series sunglasses 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!

I am a runner with light blue eyes that suffers incredibly from any bright light. It can be sunshine. It can be bright clouds on an overcast day. Or the worst: bright sunshine blaring down on fresh white snow. Wow and ow, does it ever hurt my eyes. So sunglasses are a need on almost all of my runs outdoors. Of course, rarely can I find glasses that don’t slip. And if they don’t slip, typically they are not the best at protecting my eyes. Because let’s be honest, that is the real point of wearing sunglasses, especially when be active outdoors. Let me introduce you to Shady Rays, the answer to both of those issues.

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No slipping off the nose on runs. They look pretty good, in a fashion sense. And they protect the eyes exceptionally well with their polarized lenses that provide 100% UV ray protection. These shades are also salt water proof, so no worrying about your sweat leaving nasty permanent marks anywhere on the frames. And they are also shatter-resistant.

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Another reason to love this independent sunglass company? They stand behind their product with a Lifetime Craftsmanship Warranty and Free Replacements if Lost or Broken. All you do is pay the shipping fee and they will send you a new pair! Awesome!  Want one more reason why your purchase of a pair of Shady Rays sunglasses is a good idea? Each order placed with them provides 11 meals to fight hunger through Feeding America. One million meals provided so far and counting. What’s not to love here?

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This company provides a quality product that performs well when out and being active. They back up their product with a great replacement policy. They give back to the community through Feeding America with each purchase you make. All reasons for you to make Shady Rays your next choice in sunglasses. But how about one more reason. RIGHT NOW, if you use the code “BIBRAVE” when you order 2 or more pairs of shades, you can save 50% off your purchase. How about that! I used it myself already.

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Three pairs of sunglasses for less than $70. Don’t wait. Get yours today! And if you would like to check out more reviews of the Shady Rays shades, you can with my fellow BibRavePros.

Vanessa

Ben

Lisa

Lissa

Logan

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And you can look cool in them too, hahaha! Any questions or thoughts, feel free to share or ask!

Happy Running!

BibRave Product Review: Under Armour HOVR Sonic

Disclaimer: I received the opportunity to test the UARunning HOVR Sonic 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!

I was so excited to have the opportunity to try out these new shoes for one huge reason: the amazing technology that these shoes possess. But my excitement was tempered at first because, well, look at how sweet they look in the featured pic! Clean and crisp, just pretty to look at. It’s winter here in Wisconsin and I just couldn’t bear to get them all filthy right off the bat. And we kept having bad weather on the days I was going to wear them. Finally, we had good weather but I suffered a glute injury which shelved me for three weeks. Frustrating to say the least. So, the first few runs with these shoes I performed on the “dread”mill and, just before the testing window closed, I managed to get a run in outdoors. Now…back to those awesome features and their performance.

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As I said, the first few runs were in the gym but I was able to get a good feel for them and how they perform in short bursts; 1-3 mile runs when I had time after lifting workouts. They always felt good. Very lightweight thanks to the microthread upper that dries fast and provides a breathable, compression-like fit for the foot. There is also ventilation point in the midfoot which allows your foot to breathe. Another positive feeling point for the shoe is its heel where you receive additional support.

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Another major point of interest for my foot (and yours, of course) was the special UA HOVR tech where the foam molds to match you and to give back the energy you put into it. With this energy return that helps eliminate impact as your run goes on, you end up with a “zero gravity feel” meaning it is as if you are not even wearing shoes. That’s how light they feel and how much cushion that exists.

And now for the fun technology that the UA HOVR provides!! This is a digitally connected shoe! What does that mean? Using UA Record Sensor tech, these kicks track, analyze and stores almost every running statistic so you can improve upon each of your runs. Using the MapMyRun app on your phone/watch, you can see everything you want in detail.

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Cadence? Check. Stride Length? Check. Pace? Check. Calories burned? Check. Map of where you ran? Check. And there are graphs to show how you compare to what the average is and where you should be aiming your effort for next time.

I finally got the one chance to take these outdoors and I was happy and impressed with their performance. First, even in the chilly weather, my feet were warm enough to not freeze. Wisconsin winter is not a pleasant thing to be around, lol. They did get dirty which saddens me but, with this color, it was inevitable.

And with the outdoor workout, I was introduced to a brand new category of information that the syncing of the shoes provides: elevation results.

The UA HOVR Sonic’s are an incredible shoe and I highly would definitely recommend this shoe to almost everyone. Why almost everyone?  If you noticed, I said earlier that my treadmill runs were 1-3 miles and my single outdoor run within the testing period was just over five miles. That is because I have to wear orthotics and when placing them inside the HOVR, it severely limited my space inside of them and added a bit of discomfort for my toes. Now, I have somewhat large orthotics so that’s why this problem exists. If  you have a smaller or flatter orthotic you will not have any problem placing them inside and experiencing the magic that is these shoes. I guarantee there is no way you could be disappointed with how awesome these shoes are and can be for you!

If  you have any questions or comments, please feel free to send me a note or a like!

Happy running!!