It’s in the bag. {The Friday Five}

Funny thing about my Wednesday post…it got A LOT of hits. I’m wondering if it’s because people thought the “facelift” I was talking about wasn’t about my blog, but more along the lines of  “I look like this now”:

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Just a blog facelift. Sorry to disappoint.

I did want to thank everyone for the kind comments on the new layout and even more than that for sending so much love and support to my little B-Hive. She’s just fine now and all the hives are pretty much cleared up. She was such a trooper throughout the whole ordeal. I’m so thankful she’s mine. ❤

Anyway, with all the action over here this week FLEW by and before I knew it it was time for the Friday Five again!

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This week Mar, Cynthia, and Courtney would like to know what we all have in our gym bags. They are about to be real sorry that they asked. (Kidding.)

What’s in My Gym Bag

With explanations because I feel like at least some of these things are going to require some kind of explanation.

First let me introduce my gym bag:

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I super love it. It was part of my reward for making it through the Charm City Run B3 Challenge last year. At first when they gave it to me I was like “WTF am I going to do with this enormous, 35-pocket backpack?”. I foolishly doubted its awesomeness. As it turns out it is the perfect gym bag and the only downfall is that it has so many pockets that I’m kind of a hoarder when I use it.

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It was very hard to narrow it down to just 5 items for the purpose of todays post.

1. Shoes. 

There will always be a pair shoes in my bag. The question is…which pair will it be?

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Well today it was my New Balance 890s. I like these shoes. They are lightweight, but still cushiony. I wear them for easy runs and sometimes mid-distance races. Today at the gym was 3 on the treadmill followed up by Body Pump class and the 890s seemed like a good choice for that combination of things.

2. Yurbuds. 

These will also always be in my bag and if they aren’t it either means it’s speed day or I’m really pissed off at myself because I have no way to listen to music.

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When I first started running I always wore those white earbuds that came with my iPhone. I only had one iPhone, but somehow I ended up with like 15 sets of those earbuds. They were terrible and I have no idea why I collected so many. Then the ever-awesome Mr. Salt got me a pair of Yurbuds for Christmas last year and I loved them, but kept feeling like I was installing them into my ears incorrectly. As it turned out, I just have really small ear holes and the Yurbuds were awkward because they were never going to fit. So I got these pink girly ones at the recommendation of Maybe Marathoner. I assumed I would hate the kind that went over my ear, but you all know what happens when you ass.u.me. These things are awe.s.ome. I don’t have to mess with them at all when I run. The only time they are ever a pain is when I’m also wearing my sunglasses which I will never, ever be doing while running on a treadmill.

I already lip sync on the treadmill so there’s no need to call any more attention to myself.

3. A Nonsensical Swimsuit. 

Remember when I said that I was going to make like Hasselhoff and get friendly with the pool this year? I guess I should get more functional swimwear for lap swimming because this ain’t it.

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It’s freaking adorable, but it’s not athletic wear. I keep it in my bag for when I want to use the hot tub or the steam room or I take Betty to the gym for family swim on Friday nights.

4. A Crapload of GU.  

Believe me when I say that I was not planning on eating these in one sitting.

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I happened by my neighborhood REI the other day and picked up this GU because I have longer long  runs coming up. I guess I forgot to take them out of my bag. I actually forgot that I had even purchased them at all until right before I took the photo for this blog post.

Yay I have GU now!

5. One Lonely Hello Kitty Sock.

Because Betty.

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I think no further explanation is necessary. 🙂

What is the weirdest thing you have in your gym bag?

Make sure to link up with the DC Trifecta! Those ladies rock!

Happy weekend everyone!!

xo,

Salt

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I’m FREE!! And I have winners!

Wow yesterday sure was disgusting. But today I’m back and feeling at least a little bit better. Perhaps even good enough to try a short run on my lunch break because…

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I’m sorry, but no amount of dry heaving is going to make me let that go to waste.

Just kidding. No dry heaves over here. Just a mild headache and maybe a little sunshine and endorphins will take care of it.

Today is full of not just good weather news, but also good chiropractor news!

I’M FREE!!!!!!

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That’s what I’m talking about, Ray.
He’s my favorite football player of all time, you know.

Yes I have been officially released by Dr. D who does not want to see my face again for a very long time. As much as I love that guy, I don’t particularly want to see him again either. Obviously I can’t throw myself right back into running the way that I was before all this happened, but as long as I start slow I should be okay. Today I feel no negative effects of the 3.1 miles I ran Saturday morning, so I’ll take that as a good sign. Kelly St. Shamrock 5K, I’m coming for you this weekend! (Though maybe a little slower than I might like.)

Oh and I also have winners!

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Thanks to everyone who played along with my Hydrapak SoftFlask and GU giveaway and thank you so much to Hydrapak for providing me with such a great prize! I should mention that these are available at REI stores everywhere in case anyone wants to go find one and doesn’t feel like ordering it online because they are impatient like me.

There are TWO winners today. The first one will receive this lovely 500ml SoftFlask:

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And that person is:

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TESSA BRIDGER!

Thanks for tweeting about this giveaway, Tessa! You win! I hope this will solve all of your dehydration problems.

And then also I have a winner for the grab bag o’ GU products:

GU

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LORI BENETEAU!

You’ve been GU’d!! I hope you enjoy them and thanks for liking me on Facebook. 🙂

I will be contacting you both shortly to coordinate your prizes!

Is anyone else running in a St. Paddy’s Day race? How is your running weather today? Tell me about it!

~ A slightly-less-sick Salt

Great things come to those who hydrate! {SoftFlask review & giveaway!}

One of the most important things to keep in mind while you’re running, cycling, yoga-ing, or taking part any other type of physical activity is how you’re hydrating. Thank you, Captain Obvious. But seriously not hydrating properly can seriously affect your performance and cause all sorts of terrible things to happen.

I am a little embarrassed to admit that up to this point I was not running with water. During races, I utilize the stations as I need them, but on my solo runs all I’ve been carrying is GU and the occasional sports bean and nothing else. I knew as soon as my marathon training kicked into higher gear – like right around NOW if my leg would please cooperate – I was going to need to invest in a hydration belt or find some other way to carry water on me. Then as luck would have it, I was conveniently contacted with some information on a  cool product that I had never heard of before…probably because it was just released in January! It’s called the SoftFlask by Hydrapak.

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Check this out. It’s a water bottle…

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…that collapses down to super compact smallness once the liquid is removed.

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I used to have this awesome plastic camping cup as a kid that you could flatten and pack away. This kind of reminded me of the sporty adult version of that idea, so color me intrigued.

These RF welded polyurethane SoftFlasks are made of the same kind of material that Hydrapak uses in their hydration packs which means they are very durable. They are also very flexible which allows them to be compressed as you drink your water and conveniently stowed in the smallest of spaces; even in your pocket! The SoftFlask is BPA-Free – which was the first thing I looked for on the label because when I became a mom I also became psychotic about BPA content – and they come in 3 different sizes: 12 oz, 17 oz and 25 oz. My 1980’s plastic camping cup only came in one size and I bet it was bursting with BPAs.

I was sent a 12 and 17 oz version to try out and I was all set to take one out for a test run. Then about 5 seconds later, I landed myself on the disabled list. Great.

So instead for the past couple weeks this bottle has become my best friend at hot yoga class. It has also joined me at the gym to log many, many, many bike miles. Everymove told me I biked more than 100 miles last week, which I think is pretty beast mode. I must have been really well hydrated.

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Here is my SoftFlask full of water, ready to hydrate me as I spend 90 minutes on the mat.

And here’s what happens as I drink! Neat!

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One thing I really like about this bottle is that you can twist the cap to shut off the flow of water, even if the bottle is squeezed. Which means I can throw it in my bag and not have to worry about it leaking all over my stuff, which has happened quite a few times with traditional water bottles. My MOST FAVORITE THING OF ALL, however, is the bite valve.

The bite valve is amazing because all you need to do to drink your water is bite and squeeze. Not that I recommend anyone drink water while in an inversion, but I tried it standing on my head and it was pretty awesome.* It’s also great for a quick drink right in the middle of a bike ride. I imagine it’s even more awesome right in the middle of a run. Not that I’d know for sure right now.

Do you hear that? It’s the sound of a tiny violin playing the world’s saddest song.

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Anyway, as if the fact that I’m really hydrated now wasn’t good enough news, here’s some more: I’m giving one of these away!

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I present to you this lovely mid-sized SoftFlask that will be coming to hydrate one of you to your heart’s content. And for the first time ever, my giveaway has a second prize! The second person drawn is going to win a little grab bag of my fuel of choice…GU!

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GU Brew, and Roctane, and Chomps. Oh my.

Gosh I love giveaways! It makes me feel a little like Santa except not nearly as large or beardy. (As of Saturday we will be nearly the same age though.)

Here’s what you need to do:

Mandatory Entry: Leave me a comment telling me what you would put in your SoftFlask. I’m strongly considering drinking wine out of mine at some point. Because hello? Bite valve.

Additional Entries:

And of course here’s a Rafflecopter because that’s how I roll over here:

Great things come to those who hydrate! SoftFlasks rock!

This giveaway will run until midnight EST next Tuesday and the winners will be announced on that day! Good luck, everyone!

~ Salt

* I will gladly have someone snap a photo of me standing on my head drinking out of my SoftFlask upon request.

All opinions about the Hydrapak SoftFlask expressed in this blog post are my own. I was provided with products for review, but this in no way influenced the outcome. My experience was stellar and I hope yours is too!