Luvo Bundles

Disclaimer: I received Luvo Bundles 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!

As someone who is generally pretty busy and hates cooking I have tried my share of frozen meals. After trying the Luvo Gluten Free Essentials Bundle, here are a few things that stood out and would make me choose Luvo again:

  1. They provide a variety of different types of foods. With Thai style green curry, Hawaiian rice, Chorizo chili, or just plain mac & cheese, there’s something for everyone!

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    The Gluten Free Bundle

  2. Luvo does not provide only one gluten free meal, but an entire gluten free bundle! They also have Vegan and Vegitarian bundles as well. It was really nice to have so many different options available. I also later found out they have at least one more gluten free bowl that couldn’t fit in the bundle.
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    I found out they also had gf mac & cheese when I spotted Luvo in my local supermarket!
  3. Flavor. Luvo bowls are extremely flavorful and have that home-cooked feel. Many of the other frozen meals that offer gluten free options tend to be health or diet meals. This is fine, until the companies seem to forget that the gluten free and dieters out there still need the food to have taste. Luvo bowls are both healthy and tasty!

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    Shared this meal with my boyfriend who said he would have never guessed it was gluten free

  4. Correct Portions. Like I said, I have tried many frozen meals before and at this point I generally buy two frozen meals per meal I plan to eat since the portions are so tiny. I was very impressed with not only the amount of food in the Luvo bowls, but also the ratio of things. I hate buying a “chicken” meal to find it contains only two bites of chicken in a sea of rice. With Luvo, you don’t have to worry about this.

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    So good I ate half before I remembered to take a picture

Reebok 10k for Women 2018

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Reebok Boston 10k for Women 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!

The second half of my all-running-weekend extravaganza was the Reebok 10k for Women! I had already been super pumped about the event schedule, but after the beating I took at Ragnar Wawayanda I was even more excited for the pre-race activities. There was to be one meditation session, two yoga sessions, and two pump up cardio sessions! I was hoping the yoga plus just overall gentle ramp-up to racing would make it less stressful on my already exhausted body. (It did!)

Since the race was at the Boston Commons (and the parking lot would be closed) I stayed at my friends’ house in the area the night before and then took a Lyft to the race. This was my first time using Lyft but it went super smoothly and I got there nice and early. I had already gone to packet pickup the day before at the Reebok store so I walked around looking at what booths were there.

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Everything was 50% off at packet pick up so I did some shopping too!

Soon it was 9 and the meditation session got underway! Luckily for me they provided yoga mats because I don’t own one. I really dug the first instructor, who instructed both the meditation and first yoga session. She took things really slowly and explained everything for anyone who had no idea what they were doing like myself. Both were really relaxing and calming.

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The second yoga session was supposed to take it up a notch, which it did, but I don’t think I was super ready for that level of yoga. The second instructor was also great, she just expected you to know more to be able to increase the pace. I did like that it had a tiny bit of core in the middle!

The first cardio session was really nice too. It was a lot of running in place and jumping jack type moves. Not crazy hard, but a nice warm up.

I missed the second cardio session because I found some friends I hadn’t known were running the race! We dropped our bags at bag check and ran a 2 mile warm up around the city, which was really nice. Like I said before, I’m not a city person, but Boston is a different kind of city. It’s not quite as chaotic so you can still run around it without feeling like you are in literally everyone’s way. Also the architecture is too pretty!

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We got back just in time to line up for the start! It was nice they marked off where different pace groups should line up instead of just having a free for all. The race began and we literally took over the streets of Boston! It was really cool to see the streets completely closed off and FULL of women. It was also interesting because it was in the city so there were lots of other runners going on training runs on the sidewalks along the race. The bridge crossing and running along the water was really pretty and nice! I found it interesting there was so little cheering when so much of the course went by runners going the other way. Maybe it was just because it was a much sorter race than I’m used to and so every breath counts. I don’t remember really noticing any amount of elevation. What I did notice though were the CRAZY amount of photographers! There were definitely multiple per mile. I ended up with 20 race pictures!

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Peep my Reebok scrunchie!

I think you go around 3 sides of the commons at the end so it’s a bit deceiving that you can hear the final announcer for like a mile. (I’m not sure the actual distance because I forgot my Garmin. They did have clocks and signs at every mile to help me, but I’m really good at forgetting what the sign read 10 seconds after going by it.) I was really surprised with the amount of people running that they were still announcing everyone’s finish individually.

There was tons of different food at the end so even though it was around lunch time I didn’t feel the need to rush home to eat. They had instant results so I checked that out and then grabbed my bag and headed over for post-race yoga, which was really chill.

It started drizzling after that so I decided to head out. Since the race was around the commons some sides were really traffic-y, but it wasn’t crazy hard to work out getting picked up on a non-traffic filled side by my Lyft driver. I was glad that I didn’t have to walk into the actual city to avoid the traffic/road closings (because I’m so bad at navigating).

Overall it was a really fun time and I honestly wish more races did all the pre-race warm ups to get you ready!

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Also how much do you love the race shirt?!

You can check out my results for this race on AthlinksΒ and make sure if you ran it too you add me as a rival!!

Ragnar Trail Wawayanda Lake 2018

I finally participated in my first trail Ragnar and oh my gosh was it fun!! I still think both types are unique experiences and fun in their own chaotic ways so you should at least try both, but the trail Ragnars are just so much more chill.. Also TRAILS 😍

So just like most of our road Ragnars (because my team is awesome) we started out the night before camping! Mild disappointment at the fact that the sites were provided by Ragnar and therefore we had to listen to their rules of no fires, but I GUESS it was safer that a bunch of sleep deprived crazies didn’t have fire πŸ™„πŸ˜‚ I got there really late that Thursday night and went to sleep almost immediately.. after scarfing down some food since Captain Dad said I should eat something. That’s one of the best things about the trail version, you can bring a camping grill and tons of food and snacks since you don’t have to shove it all into a car. I ate like a freaking queen that weekend! You can definitely stop and get food during the road ones (when you have time), but I prefer eating foods I’m used to whenever I want. They also had food trucks at certain times!

Race morning we woke up way earlier than our start time, watched the safety video (it’s a different one for trails!), and picked up our Salomons! The trail Ragnar are sponsored by Salomon and you can rent a pair of their shoes to test! The area was still really wet from the recent rain and I only had one pair of trail sneakers so I decided to give them a try and have to wear wet shoes at least one less time. I would highly recommend renting some! It’s free and they just take your license until you give them back.

I ended up taking the spot of 8th and final runner so I had A TON of time to kill. We hung out, ate, and overall just kinda camped. It was really fun not being split up or having to worry about driving. They also have “the village” which hosts tons of contests and activities! At night they have movies, fire, and smores. One of our teammates won the scavenger hunt and got a free pair of Salomons! And at one point I ended up in an inflatable ball race!

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Team Rocket caught Pikachu!

We also won greenest campsite and got 50% off our next Ragnar registration!

Now back to the race.. It’s kind of weird how the bracelets and bibs are the opposite of the road relays. You have one bib per team that gets handed off at the transition, but you don’t hand off the snap bracelet since you get your own for each lap that is the color of your loop. You may think it seems silly but by Saturday you’ll be glad you have a bracelet to remind you exactly what you’re doing πŸ€ͺ The transition also has a screen that will display your team name when your runner only has 0.25 left so that’s really neat!

As last runner I had yellow, green, red for loop order, (green being the shortest and red the longest). I would be running yellow and green in the dark, but that also meant I got to run the longest in the daylight, which was what I wanted. You don’t need vests for the trail ones so I got ready to run with just my headlamp. Make sure you know how to use your headlamp and that it’s set properly! I had mine set to red light while in camp and didn’t know how to get it to white so I ended up swapping with a teammate AS I was running to enter the trails. I’m so glad she was there because there’s no way you could navigate out there without light. It was hard enough with light! The trails were very technical at points and at others they were really muddy. The yellow trail was labeled super well though so other than being worried about falling it was really chill running through the woods at night. I really enjoyed it!

I actually enjoyed it so much that when a teammate didn’t think she could do her yellow loop I took it. My second yellow loop was also at night and super nice! The only issue was I felt like I twisted my ankle a bit.

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What? Ghastly is evolving!

After another long wait I had my green loop. The green loop had a lot of road to start (like I think it was the entire first mile) and I don’t know if it was that combined with twisting my ankle or just my knee being bad to begin with but it started KILLING me. I did a decent amount of speed walking because running motion hurt too much. I’m not sure if they didn’t put out as many signs on the green loop or I was just moving so much slower but I kept thinking I had missed turns. The combo of road, pain, and worry made me HATE the green loop. I would have absolutely swapped it for another yellow. Once I finished it I tried my best to fill my next wait with stretches in hopes of not being in pain for my final loop.

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Team Rocket Recovery Area

Red loop rolled around in the morning and I got ready to end the race! My knee felt decent but in the end it went pretty quickly downhill. It hurt so I wasn’t picking my feet up enough causing me to keep tripping and making it hurt more. It was a pretty awful cycle. But at least it was through the woods during the day so I could see all the prettiness! I felt bad I must have slowed my team down insane amounts, but I tried my best to speedwalk, hop/skip, and jog to the finish!

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Team Rocket Blasting Off Again!

Spartan Beast Mount Killington 2018

After the Spartan Super and UA Killington I was actually starting to get kind of nervous for the Beast at Killington. During the super, some fellow sufferers were talking up the beast to me and my friend. Saying how it was impossible to run up the mountain, you couldn’t possibly do it without a hydration pack, how you needed to bring actual food since you’d be out there ALL DAY LONG, there’s a rule you need to bring a headlamp because you might end up still out there past dark, and that something along the lines of only 40% of the people who start the race actually finish it. At the time that really didn’t get to me much. I love the Spartan community, but most of them don’t do the races for the running bits so I figured a tougher running terrain like a mountain would affect them more than myself and that’s what most of the big deal was. Then the UA Killington 25k happened and most of my confidence was lost. Not only was it a BRUTAL race (that I wasn’t sure I could complete again with obstacles thrown in too) but someone also overheard me talking about the beast mid-race and said the UA course was a cake walk in comparison. Hearing that from someone participating in a full running race definitely made their comment hit a little harder.. Was I actually going to be able to complete this race?

Race day came and it was a strange feeling to be unsure if I was going to be physically capable of finishing a race. After reading about the large amount of water aid stations provided I had opted to just bring my FitKicks FitZip Waist Pack (with my 11oz FlipBelt Water Bottle, just in case) and Skratch Labs Energy Chews and Betty Lou’s Bars for fuel. This time (versus UA Killington) I was happy I was able to eat my whole pre-race breakfast of an English muffin and a Honey Stinger Gluten Free Waffle.

As we waited at the start I became slightly nervous at my hydration choice since everyone and their mother seemed to be wearing full out hydration packs, but I figured it was too late now and I’d just have to make the best of it. (In the end my bottle ended up working perfectly! There were plenty of water stations, but some were cup-less so it was handy to have something to store the water in.) I was also really happy with my fuel choices: to have light race fuel I could eat on the go, as well as something more substantial for “lunch”.

The start was pretty intimidating and straight up one of the largest/steepest inclines on the course. It was so immediate that you had to brace yourself at an angle in the starting corral (which I wasn’t a fan of. If I’m on a hill I want to be moving). Having run Killington for UA I wasn’t exactly surprised by the incline and was able to charge up it (not running, but speed hiking for sure). I’m not sure if it was just having seen the mountain before, taking it significantly slower, or that dude totally lied, but I felt like other than the start and the Death March, the Spartan course was actually significantly flatter. I felt really good the entire time and was my usual too-cheery-on-the-running-sections self. Compared to the other Spartan races there was absolutely no mud. The course was all field or wooded trails. The trails were really awesome (and actually may have been where all the elevation was that I was just having too much fun to notice)! They were definitely the choke points though so if you want to actually run the trails I’d recommend signing up for an age group heat, which is what I’ll probably be doing next year.

It was another good day for me and I was able to crush all the walls and obstacles I previously completed again. This time I made it fully through the Twister like it was nothing! I also feel I can count the multi-rig as completed since I was able to do the full thing except the final rope, which I was only unable because it was defective and half the length of all other ropes on the obstacle.

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Killington is unique and has a swim as well as an obstacle under the bridge across the water! You have to wear life jackets so the swim isn’t really a big deal except for getting all your gear soaked. The under-bridge obstacle was a rope ladder and then 4 hand ropes. I was really proud to be able to successfully complete that one as well!

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How pretty are those mountains though?!

Another highlight of my race was the Bender. It’s another favorite of mine, like the Twister. But this time I think the extra adrenaline of being able to actually run (the Super was too muddy to run) kicked in because not only was I able to complete it with no help, but I also climbed it using only my arms! Two guys actually came up to me after and were like, “THAT WAS INSANE!” 😁

Honestly I’m really glad Killington is my local Beast because the Death March there is ungodly but boy do you feel AMAZING for having accomplished it! It is straight from the bottom of the mountain up to Killington peak going the most direct route, right beside the gondolas. I know a lot of what killed me during the Under Armour race was thinking too hopefully that the incline was over, just to be proven wrong again and again; So I decided to pretend like it was NEVER going to end and then I’d be pleasantly surprised when it did. IT WORKED! I basically FLEW up the mountain. I only stopped about 5 times for a max of about 4 seconds. I passed an insane amount of people and didn’t get passed once. I felt like a true beast after the Death March!

Other than the Death March I think I felt much better during this race than both of the others. I think being able to actually run was extremely helpful. It was still an insanely intense challenge, I just think this type of climbing-a-mountain challenge is more what I’m used to versus wading through mud. I was REALLY excited at the end to see we got special medals that specified we did our beast up a mountain!

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Mountain Series!!

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TRIFECTA COMPLETE!!!!!

New Original BUFF

Disclaimer: I received the new original BUFF 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 already had both a polar and windproof BUFF that I love for winter, so I was thrilled when given the opportunity to test the new Original BUFF!

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The very first thing I noticed was how insanely soft it was! Like that so-soft-you-want-a-blanket-made-of-it soft. I then saw the tag saying it was made of 100% recycled material! Including two plastic bottles?! Not sure how BUFF managed to make plastic bottles so soft, but we should be using this technology everywhere! It’s also crazy stretchy compared to any other BUFF type thing I’ve ever owned. I could easily stretch it open to fit around my head and bun if I forgot to put it on before putting my hair up! It is also nice, thin, and wicks moisture so I was able to wear it on some warmer, sunnier runs without it making me overheat or even really being noticeable.

BUFFs are super versatile so they can be used for many tasks and you can always find a way to carry it on you. I personally love wearing it around my neck during races because you hardly know it’s there but it’s AMAZING to have a clean piece of gear to wipe your face and hands off with. Especially in mud races, being able to wipe your hands of mud so you can eat your fuel sans dirt has made the BUFF one of my favorite discoveries yet. It also is a savior during hot races! Just dunk it in some cold water. It’s amazing what cooling the back of your neck will do for you! Wearing it also provides UV protection and helped me not get my usual neck/chest burn during a sunny race.

Honestly I think I’m becoming a bit too attached to having my BUFF on me for runs.. so I went and bought another! πŸ˜‚ πŸ˜…

I also somehow never managed to put two and two together and realize BUFF is the maker of Survivor BUFFs! I’ve watched the show for forever and actually own a Survivor Marquesas BUFF (from 2002!) that I used to wear daily as a kid and still looks brand new!

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Literally had this since I was 9 years old!

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Being a nerd with a Survivor BUFF in my school picture πŸ˜‚

So clearly I had to hope the new Original BUFF is just as sturdy and bought one of the ones from the newest Survivor season!

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Go Team Nerd! πŸ€“

If you want your own new Original BUFF check them out on BUFF USA!! And if you’re getting a Survivor BUFF you have to let me know which team you’re on!

Vermont City Marathon 2019

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Vermont City Marathon 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 very excited to say I am going to be running the Vermont City Marathon May 26, 2019!! After running the Covered Bridges Half I fell in love with Vermont and was lucky enough to get to run two more races on Mount Killington in Vermont more recently this year. The Vermont City Marathon is much more North West than the other races I’ve done there though so I’m excited to see what this new region holds! From photos it looks like a diverse course of wooded roads, bridges (love me some bridges!), water front, and city/town with pretty brick architecture.

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These photos were found online with the results, so really nice, free race photos seem to be part of the swag!! (My favorite!)

The course overview even boasts its starting view overlooking Lake Champlain and the Adirondack Mountains!

Not only does the scenery looks amazing, but the course itself looks pretty optimal too. It goes by the start at multiple points for easy support without just being the same small loop repeated. Three of the four segments are even loops (not out and backs)! I’ve never seen a course quite like it, but I feel like I’m really going to enjoy it!

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One last fun fact is a friend of mine BQ’ed at this race, so clearly it has to be lucky! πŸ˜‰

Anyway, I’m super pumped for this race and if it sounds fun to you too you should use the code BibRave10 for $10 off registration and let me know that I’ll see you there!! πŸƒβ€β™€οΈπŸ’¨

Nuun Immunity Product Review

Disclaimer: I received Nuun Immunity 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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I’m sure you’ve heard of Nuun Hydration, but have you heard of Nuun Immunity? Now your favorite hydration drink contains anti-inflammatories and antioxidants to help boost your immune system, as well as the same old hydrating electrolytes.

I’m no doctor or anything, but I did find it interesting that while drinking Nuun Immunity I made it though the change in seasons without getting sick. Normally, as soon as the weather starts changing at all I immediately get a never ending head cold. So far I’ve been completely clear though the change from a very hot Summer to a rainy, cold Fall! Also I have avoided my boyfriend’s cold so far too 😜

I was fortunate enough to get to test both Nuun Immunity flavors: Blueberry Tangerine and Orange Citrus. Funnily, I am normally not a blueberry person and totally love anything orange, but I actually loved the Blueberry Tangerine in Nuun Immunity and thought the Orange Citrus was ok. I would definitely recommend not go judging the flavors by just the names and give them each a try. Also then you can try my absolute favorite, which is the delicious concoction created by combining both flavors!

If you want to try some Nuun Immunity for yourself use the code HYDRATEBIBPRO for 20% off on the US web store!

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