Friday Five 2.0 – The Socks Post

It’s Friday so I’m linking up with Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup! Join in! Don’t forget to link back to your hostesses and visit some other bloggers.

My Topic for today is:  My Favorite Socks

First, Five Reasons I Wear Legend Compression Wear

1. I’m an Ambassador.

I applied because this brand came highly recommended so I wanted to promote their socks. Happily they accepted me.

To get $15 off, click here

2. My ankle enjoys compression wear.

When I had ankle surgery a few years back, they put a plate and screws in.  I want to run for a long time so I am careful and don’t run over 4 miles without compression socks or sleeves.

So far, so good.  Zero problems with my ankle.

3. They are easier to get on and off.

I have tried other compression socks and sleeves and I’m sure you know what I mean.  They are HARD to get on!!!! Legend Compression Wear are supportive enough but you don’t have to watch a video on how to put them on or break a nail doing so.

They are just as easy to get off even if you are sweaty.

4. Their socks offer graduated compression.

“Graduated Compression has been widely proven to improve symptoms of discomfort, swelling, fatigue and aching of the feet and legs. Graduated compression puts revitalizing pressure on the veins to improve blood flow and circulation. Medical professionals have long recommended compression hosiery to patients to improve blood circulation and overall health of their legs.”

This means that your legs will perform better and recover faster.

As a runner and tennis player, this is  important to me.

5. Legend sells a variety of products (and in pretty colors).

There are socks for sports compression (as pictured above) as well as everyday compression. They even make a hiking specific sock called Tuff made of Merino wool

I look forward to wearing my Legend Compression Wear more often once the temps warm up and I can wear a running skirt again!!

Because I usually wear compression sleeves instead of compression socks, I can also wear My Soxy Feet socks.

Secondly, Five Reasons Why I Wear My Soxy Feet Socks

1, I am an Ambassador.

This year, I am lucky to represent another super sock company.

Use code SOXYCARDILLO to get 10% off your purchase

My Soxy Feet is a small, family owned and operated business. They developed this product in hopes of bringing “smiles to athletes of all shapes, sizes and ages and encourage a positive attitude towards health, fitness and a joyful life style.”

Since the founders/owners are avid runners, they understand the challenge of running and how difficult it is some days to stay motivated.

2. They have the cutest and most colorful (mismatched) socks.

My Soxy Feet Sock Rainbow! www.mysoxyfeet.com

3.  They have styles for all sports.

I wear these to play tennis.

4. The are so comfortable.

The moisture wicking coolmax fibers keep your feet dry. They are made from nylon and lycra which secure the socks in place. The ventilation mesh enhances breathability. The socks contain targeted cushioning in high impact zones. The toe is seamless and hand-linked to prevent irritation.

5. They motivate and make you smile!

Run With It (Pink/Green)
I need to buy both of these!

Happy Running! What are favorite brand of socks? Do you wear compression? Do you like your socks to look cute?

YakTrax Run Review

Fortunately for me, we have had no snow this winter.

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Many of you haven’t been so lucky.  During and after snowstorms in previous winters, I was able to go outside and run because of my YakTrax.

This is what the website says about Yak Trax Run:

The Yaktrax Run is an ice traction device anatomically designed for use with running shoes. Run naturally on packed snow and ice with the Yaktrax Run’s combination of removable stainless steel spikes and coils, providing 360 degrees of unbeatable traction. Continue your training during the winter with the same stability you are accustomed to on dry surfaces. 

Features:

  • MADE OF HIGH STRENGTH NATURAL RUBBER
  • 1.4 MM STEEL COILS
  • CARBIDE STEEL SPIKES
  • REFLECTIVE HEEL TAB AND PERFORMANCE STRAP OFFERS SAFETY
  • ANATOMIC RIGHT/LEFT DESIGN

In winters past, I have been able to run many times when wearing my YakTrax Pros. (pictured above).

You may have expected them to feel clunky but they didn’t at all.  I quickly ran just as normally as without them. The best part was that I was able to run through the snow, slush and ice and I didn’t slip and fall!!!

The big difference between the YakTrax Pro and the YakTrax Run is that on the YakTrax Run, the coils under the forefoot are replaced by two studded rubber and plastic plates. The studs are made of carbide steel and the plates they are attached to are removable. The heel of the YakTrax Run has the same coils as the YakTrax Pro.

Yaktrax Run Snowshoe (Courtesy Photo)

I have heard complaints about the coils breaking.  I have never had a problem.  But then again, I have only run in them on the snow and never on bare asphalt or concrete.  I would think that when you land on your forefoot, you will not be landing directly on the coils and the YakTrax Run will last even longer than the YakTrax Pro.

So in the winter, if you hate the treadmill (like me) but are afraid to run on the slippery roads (like me), Yak Trax are for you!!!

Spring should be here soon!! But I will be using my Yak Trax Run next winter when it snows.

Note: I was sent these  free of charge to review. However, the opinion is solely mine.

Happy Running! Have you tried YakTrax? If so, what did you think of them?

Manitoba Harvest Hemp Heat Bars Review

I admit I have a sweet tooth. I also eat frequently especially when I am at work.  And sometimes I don’t get home until late to eat dinner.  So I usually bring snacks to work – a bagel, a few bars, fruit, etc.

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So, when I was offered the opportunity to try out the Manitoba Hemp Heart Bars, I signed right up. A while back, I tried hemp hearts and I was excited to see how they incorporated them into a bar.

The bars did not let me down. Not only did I like the taste, but they have 10 grams of protein, 10 grams of omegas and fewer than 10 grams of sugar.  The apple cinnamon flavor was good and I’d eat it again, but the chocolate was even better. Not just because it tasted good, but because it fulfilled a craving for something sweet but it didn’t contain a lot of sugar.

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Thursday I was very tired but planned to go for a run so I chose the Chocolate Manitoba Harvest Hemp Heart bars.  It gave me the energy I needed to get through the run.

And yesterday, I tried the Apple Cinnamon bar at work.  I ate it earlier and used it as an afternoon snack.  Yup, it worked.  It kept me satisfied until dinner.

Want to try some?

Sweat Pink and Manitoba Harvest are offering a discount on the Hemp Heart bars.  Just visit Manitobaharvest.com and use the discount code hhbarlaunch1015 for 15% off. Code expires 3/31/2016.

Are you feeling lucky and want to win some Manitoba Harvest Hemp Heart bars?

Manitoba Harvest is also running a photo contest. (Details here). Open to US and Canada residents. Tag @manitobaharvest #fuelledbyhemp  for a chance to win a box of your favorite flavor of Hemp Heart Bars! A winner will be chosen each month!

Happy Running! Have you tried Manitoba Hemp Harvest Bars? If so, what do you think of them?

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Disclaimer: I was compensated for this post by Fit Approach and Manitoba Harvest. All opinions are my own.

Are You an Overeater or a Dessert Craver? The Cure: MealEnders (Review & Giveaway)

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I am one of those people who needs (or thinks she needs) to eat something sweet at the end of every meal.

I don’t usually buy cakes and cookies to have at home (because my hubby would eat them all & I would have none) but in a restaurant, it’s a different story. I have to order dessert (& I am grateful when someone offers to share one.)

So I was excited when I was offered samples of MealEnders.

How do they work?

The goal of MealEnders is to help curb the cravings keeping in mind that the desire to eat is part physical and part mental. It is based on the idea that it takes 20 minutes for your brain to tell your stomach that you are full. MealEnders were designed to last in order for your stomach to catch up to your brain.

The image below explains it..

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What’s in them?

MealEnders contain only 2 grams of sugar, 0g fat, and 15 calories per piece. The outer Reward Layer is made from premium dessert ingredients.  The inner Active-Taste layer relies upon a proprietary blend of natural and artificial food flavors called Actissert™ Blend.

Do they work?

I would say “Yes.”

I know that my dessert cravings are mind over matter. I’m not really hungry and I don’t really NEED to eat something sweet.  I just want to.

So if I pop a MealEnder instead of ordering dessert, the simple the act of sucking on this little candy does help. I was able to refuse dessert!!

What do they taste like?

Some taste better than others. I like the Mocha and the Chocolate mint the best. Each hard candy is covered with a soft coating which is the best part. The more you suck, the more the flavor comes out.

Tingling?

Yes but not in a bad way.  MealEnders calls this tingling the “active taste layer.”

Where can I get them? 

You can only buy them through the MealEnders website.  A 25-count package costs $14.95.  Sounds pricey but then again, you don’t eat them like candy. You would only eat them when you need to.

The bottom line…

If you are an overeater or someone who HAS to have dessert, why not give MealEnders a try!

And if you are lucky, you may win (4) 25-piece packs so you can try all flavors, including Cinnamon, Mocha, Chocolate Mint and Citrus ($50 value).

Click the link below to enter this giveaway:

Rafflecopter Giveaway 

And if you don’t win, use the code FitHolidays20 for a 20% discount from MealEnders.com.

Happy Running?  Have you tried MealEnders or any other similar product?

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Giveaway is for U.S. only. One prize per person. If you win this giveaway, and have already won another prize from MealEnders through another blog, please disclose that you have already won so we can choose another winner.

*Disclaimer: I received samples of MealEnders as part of me being a Sweat Pink ambassador through their FitApproach campaign in exchange for an honest review. As always, all opinions are my very own.

 

Lily Trotters Compression Socks Review

I saw a pair on someone’s blog and contacted Lily Trotters and they were nice enough to send me a pair to try.

As you know, I am a big fan of compression socks.

Lily Trotters are the world’s first  high performance designer compression sock. Built with a revolutionary micro-nylon weave strong enough for a marathon, thin enough to rock your favorite shoes, and sassy enough to go beautifully anywhere life takes you. Made right here in the USA.

I am been anxiously waiting for it to get warm enough to wear these socks with a skirt.  The winter here has been so LONG.

Well, I finally got to wear them on Monday during my group training run.  It was still too cold for a skirt so I wore them with capris.

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how cool that they matched my shoes

It was perfect timing since I had run 11 miles the day before and really needed them.

I think they may have gotten me through the run. Thank you Lily Trotters!!

Lily Trotters are much easier to get on than ProCompression (which I usually wear) but they still give that support that you want when wearing a compression sock.

These socks are also thin enough that you can wear them under pants when you’re not even running (which I have done in the past after a half marathon.)

They are perfect for the fashionista runner who likes to match her running outfits. You will see these on me at a race soon.

Lily Trotters are currently in development so you should sign up for their email newsletter at http://lilytrotters.com so you can get in on the lowest early-bird prices!

Happy Running! Do you wear compression socks?  If so, what is your favorite brand?

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*Disclaimer: I was provided a free pair of Lily Trotters to review, but all opinions expressed are entirely my own.

Manitoba Hemp Hearts Review

As a Sweat Pink Ambassador, I was given the opportunity to try this product*:

I had never heard of eating “hemp” (I thought it was another name for “maijuana”) so I looked it up their website – http://manitobaharvest.com

Food, clothing, rope, paper, building materials, animal bedding/herd, plastic, paint, fuel – the list of hemp applications goes go on and on. We like to call hemp the “green buffalo” as every part of the plant can be used. Hemp that is grown in Western Canada is primarily used for hemp foods. At the top part of the hemp plant you will find the hard hemp seed. This small seed “seeds” nutritiously delicious products like Hemp Hearts, hemp protein powder, and hemp oil.

What should you eat Hemp Hearts?

  • Great tasting – Hemp Hearts have a slightly nutty taste, similar to a sunflower seed or pine nut.

  • Easy to use – Simply sprinkle Hemp Hearts on salad, cereal & yogurt, add to smoothies and recipes, or eat them straight from the package!

  • Nutritious – per 30 gram serving, Hemp Hearts contain 10 grams of plant-based protein and 10 grams of Omegas.

  • Hemp Hearts have more protein and omegas and less carbs than the same serving of chia or flax.

I would be the first to admit that I am not the most healthy eater.   I don’t go out of my way to make recovery shakes or add chia, flax or kale into my meals.

I buy an occasional protein bar and hot cereal with flax.

I do realize that eating foods that contain protein and omegas are beneficial for athletes so I decided to give Hemp Hearts a try.

I added them to my hot cereal for breakfast.

I have also added them to my yogurt for lunch.

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I even snacked on them out of the bag.

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I really enjoyed the nutty taste, and I feel that hemp hearts make a good alternative to nuts. I liked the unique velvet texture of the hemp hearts.

So if you’re looking for a healthy snack and add more good stuff to your diet, I highly recommend these Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts.

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Until November 30, 2014, you can get 20% off your order from ManitobaHarvest.com with the code HHSweatPink14.

Happy Running!  Have your tried Hemp Hearts?

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*I was sent this product free of charge. I have not been compensated for my review, my opinions are my own.

“Swirl On”

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Swirlgear’s mission is:

to become the women’s running apparel brand of choice while also celebrating the strength, style and spirit of real women runners! We are a brand new company and do not advertise, so we rely on our Brand Ambassadors to help spread the word about our brand by proudly wearing our gear. Team Swirlgear is comprised of everyday women that are simply positive, passionate about health and love to run. They also benefit from some pretty great incentives!

Since our Brand Ambassadors are typically busy professionals, full-time mothers, or mix of both, we do not require that they do anything more than have fun while wearing our gear with pride! They also stay connected with our community of over 500 women across the country and Canada on our private Swirlgear Brand Ambassador Facebook page. Not only do they keep each other motivated and share inspiring stories of how running has impacted their lives, but they also love to meet and share photos of them “getting their Swirl on” at running events everywhere!

I applied to be an Ambassador and then ordered this top. (I actually ordered a while ago but it took forever to get it. Like SIX Months.)

I hesitated on whether to order a small or a medium. I usually wear a small but I don’t like tight tops so I ordered a medium.

Well, it was worth the wait.  I like the material.  I also like the longer length (so it doesn’t ride up) and the zip pocket (for a key or a GU). BUT IS IT IS TOOOOO BIG!!! I could have sent it back but it took 6 mos to get here and everyone who ordered seems to have the same issue.  The time for wearing tanks in the NE is almost over. So I washed it and put in the dryer and I took in the seams on top.  It isn’t perfect but it is wearable (especially if you wear a sports bra underneath.)

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after my 5K race on Saturday

If I order more Swirlgear, I will order a long sleeve or short sleeve top in size SMALL!

The downside to Swirlgear is that they don’t have a lot of styles, colors and prints–yet.  They are a new company, and they are working on expanding. They have definitely added a lot more tops to their fall line.  I am hoping they will add more bottoms – capris, shorts and SKIRTS!

Also the tanks run very wide on top and extra long.  They should have mentioned that on their site.  I feel sorry for them having to deal with all the exchanges.

The other issue for me is cost.  While they are not higher priced than many other quality brands, their items cost more than I normally spend on my running clothes.  I often buy my clothes at Target or Walmart. The quality is definitely there, though, so if that’s the most important thing to you, it would justify the expense.

As a Brand Ambassador, I can offer you free shipping on any Swirlgear purchase using the discount code swirlon at checkout.

And if you are interested in becoming a SwirlGear Brand Ambassador, you can go here to find an application and check things out.

Happy Running! What makes an item the perfect piece of running clothing for you?  

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Disclaimer: I was provided a 50% discount on these items as part of the Swirlgear Brand Ambassador program.  They were purchased with my own money, and all opinions expressed are my own.

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