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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Whats new with Dairy Pure Milk

Ever since I was a kid, I have had a thing for milk. (Especially, chocolate milk.) Especially as runners, we all know how important it is to refuel with protein after a workout, and milk is an excellent choice.  The folks at Dairy Pure have taken steps to even make milk more user friendly! How, you ask???  

Introducing the newest thing in milk since the dairy cow: Dairy Pure’s new Worry-Free Flip Cap! It’s easier to use and protects everything you love about Dairy Pure milk. I for one am always smelling my milk to make sure it is fresh. I don't know how many times the cap wasn't put on tightly and the odors from the refrigerator made the milk taste funny. Well with the ease of the flip top cap, no more weird tasting milk! Yay! Even the younger kids can close one of these, much easier than the screw on type of caps. The Worry-Free Flip Cap also helps keep your milk cap where it belongs; on the bottle. Plus, Dairy Pure’s Purity Seal makes sure your milk stays fresh from farm to fridge. We all know, Freshness Counts!!

Garelick Farms have been around for quite a while now, and are known for their fresh milk. In the area where I live, it's just about everyone's favorite. I think one of the best points about their farm fresh milk is that they have a 5-Point Purity Checklist.  

Our farmers pledge not to use artificial growth hormones
We test all milk for antibiotics
Continuously quality tested to ensure purity
Only from cows fed a nutritious diet
Cold shipped fresh from your trusted dairy within hours

One thing that is really cool about this company is their website.. it has RECIPES!! Here are a couple of the ones I will be trying out in a couple of weeks.. 

And here's one for the kids! 

When you get a minute, stop by their Facebook page to say hello and look at all the fun new ways that their loyal customers have come up with, to close the cap on the bottle. Here's my all-time favorite! ;)

You can also visit Dairy Pure’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/dairypure) for more info and there is a store locator tool at the top of their homepage (http://www.dairypuremilk.com) so that you can find the Dairy Pure retailer closest to you. 


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received compensation for this post, though I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

A letter to mom

Note: This post was written on March 22nd 2014 while I was in Atlanta, Georgia.

Dear Mom,

It's been seven years since you left us here on earth, and today is your birthday so I wanted to let you know what I am going to do to honor your memory.

Let's first go back to my childhood in Bingham. So many fun times growing up. You gave me all your attention as a stay at home mom, and I felt very loved. We did a many fun things together with dad, year after year. Once in a while, I think back to your struggles with your weight. You were always following the Weight Watchers program and trying to keep your weight down. I remember our discussions about gaining weight and how hard it is to lose once you have put it on. I remember going to "meetings" in Skowhegan, and how some nights I didn't want to be there, but I knew it was important to you. Sometimes I miss those strawberry smoothies we used to make together from the WW recipe book, but I don't miss drinking TAB with you... ugh!

A year before dad passed I took up running again. I decided that I had had enough of being obese, and was going to do something about it before heart disease took my life, like it took yours. Dad was acutely aware of my weight and how big I had gotten. When I saw our Christmas pictures taken at Paulines, I knew then and there something needed to change drastically. I was tired of being too fat to fit into a chair or an airplane seat. I was sick of the stares I would get from people. Walking through the halls at work I would avoid the window reflection, all because I knew what I was going to see, and I didn't want to acknowledge it. Denial is a very strong emotion. When I finally had enough, I went to the only thing I knew had worked for you, Weight Watchers. Little by little the pounds started to slip away, and I tried to run again. I had a rough start, and got injured which set me back a year. I wasn't about to give up my dream of running again though. When the time was right, I started, a few steps at a time to run, and little by little the distance grew.

 All the while this was happening, Dad was watching me and telling me how he could see how determined I was,and every now and then he would ask how my dieting was going, and how much I had lost. Once I actually started running and doing races again, he would call to find out how my races went, and would boast to his friends how I was losing weight and getting back out there running on the roads again. When dad passed away, I felt like my biggest cheerleader was gone. I wasn't sure if my running would have much meaning anymore. But as the weeks went by, I found that running was my sanctuary. It gave my heart a place to rest in the quiet and gave me a chance to grieve on my own. When I ran, I thought so much of how I wished you and dad were here to see me. I feel like my life has just started again, and you are missing out on the best part.

Mom, today is your birthday, and you would have been 93 today. I probably would have been in Bingham spending it with you and dad, and cherishing the time we had together. Instead, I am down south, in Atlanta Georgia, preparing to run a race in your memory tomorrow. 13.1 miles of reflection while I am running the hills of Atlanta. I hope that while I am out there on the road trotting along, I will feel your presence with me.

I miss you so much, and some nights I lay in bed wondering what you and dad are doing in heaven together. Dad pined away for you from the day you left this earth.. he never was the same without you. So many nights I heard him tell you goodnight and that he would be with you soon. Once he got the cancer, those words hit my heart, really, really hard, as I knew the inevitable was coming. The moment he passed as I was holding his hand, I felt a warm presence and knew that he was with you and that you both were happy and back together again. I am grateful for the years that you and dad had together, and with me. 

Love you Mom (and Dad),


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Flat Top 5K Race Recap and SKECHERS

This past Saturday I took part in a community race in the town of Lamoine Maine. The Flat Top 5K is a favorite among the locals and the turnout was fantastic. I was there representing Skechers with drawstring backpacks for the participants, and they were a big hit! Many compliments and thank you's. A fair amount of people asked me about my running for Skechers, and the shoes.. wanted to know all about the shoes!

I wore my GoRun3's for the race. The day was finally a decent one, and the roads were clear. I decided on my Team Wicked Bonkproof Long sleeve jersey and capri/skirt. All in black, with my beautiful black and red GR3's.   Here's the only pic of me from the race.. 

Since the pic doesnt show my feet.. here are my beautiful shoes... lol  
( you would think they were glass slippers! But to a runner... good shoes are!!)

So what's the big deal about these shoes? They are super light, and make you feel fast on your feet. Now God knows I am far from fast.. but I FEEL that way when running in these. They are comfortable, and you dont even know you have them on. Just enough cushion, but not so much that you can't feel the ground under your feet. I try really hard to pay attention to my form when running, especially when I get tired. Being able to feel the ground helps keep me focused, and I feel it keeps me from getting injured too. 

So back to the race..  I decided I wasnt going to go all out on this race, so I made up my mind to run and walk, but to do the run segments at a fast pace and walk my usual pace. I kept up with this one woman who ran the whole time. I would pass her, then when I was walking, she would pass me. Then the cycle would start again.. over and over. I kept encouraging her, as she was trying really hard not to walk, and I think me stopping in front of her all the time was making it harder for her. In the end, I ended up running the last half mile and finishing before her. I wasn't last, but I finished.. and that's what I set out to do! 

What's up next?  This coming weekend is a 10 Mile run around the Island of Verona
 in the Bridge the Gap Race. 

The race starts at historic site Fort Knox, which is haunted by the way.. and then we cross the Penobscot Narrows Bridge, and go around the Island. My plan is to wear either my GoRun3's or my new GoMeb Speed 2's which are due to arrive tomorrow. Hoping the weather will be as nice as it was today.. that will make for a great race! 

Historic Fort Knox


Penobscot Narrows Bridge  

(You can see the observatory in the left tower. The older bridge has been torn down.)


Keep posted for the next recap! 


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Running in Atlanta Race Recap

This past weekend I went to Atlanta to run a half marathon. Why would a Mainer go to ATL? Well for a couple of reasons... 1) My running team, TEAM WICKED BONKPROOF was running as a group, and 2) One of my closest and dearest friends from my hometown lives outside of ATL.  Combine the two, and you have a winning trip!

I had been looking forward to this trip for a while now. The Maine winter has been so hard that I just needed to get away from all the piles of snow we had, and continue to have. :(  Seeing brown/green grass was just the thing I needed to pick up my spirits a bit. 

I flew down on Thursday and rented a car at the airport, and drove out to my friend's house. 

This was my first time driving in Atlanta traffic. It was c r a z y !!! I have never seen so many cars zipping around me so fast.. but thanks to the Garmin, and to Deb's directions, I never got lost and made it to her house just fine!   One thing I was so glad to see was the temperature! Finally higher than 35* for a change!

Had a great time passing the hours away with Deb and got to see her mom too! Took in her son's little league game, did some shopping and even did some visiting. On friday we drove out to Norcross to the Mizuno headquarters so I could visit with some peeps I met last year when I was there doing the Mezamashii video for Mizuno.  Got to spend some time chatting with Rod Foley, the Director of the Running Division. Talk about the nicest, sweetest person! Also got to see LoriAnn, who is the one who discovered my blog and got me into the Mizuno realm. Could have spent all day talking with her, but yes, she had work to do. ;) Got a tour of the office, and Rod's wall of shoes.. haha  Was dying to take a picture but didn't know if it was appropriate or not to ask.  Deb did take our picture, and yes, I look like I am half asleep, while Rod looks great. 

Saturday came and it was time to head to the OMNI hotel in Atlanta to check in and go to the race expo. ( the hotel was at the start/finish lines) I walked around and took in the sights, and all the vendors and bought a few things to bring home. Yes, I came home with more shoes than I left here with. No surprise on that one! Actually had to have a big box of stuff Fedex'd home because it didnt fit in my 2 suitcases... 

I also got a chance to meet up with my coach, Caleb Masland and his family and friends, the Braxtons for a few minutes, and also met a bonkproof teammate, Alan, who was running his first marathon!

Race morning came, and I was up at 4:30am to get ready. Was nice not to have to put on all the winter gear for a change! I settled on a race singlet, and capri/skirt. I debated whether or not to wear a long sleeved race jersey, and when the temperature dropped and it started to drizzle a bit, I wished I had. I was C O L D. 

The race went well.. A whole lot of hills, just like we have in Maine, but one right after the other. I remembered that Caleb had told me to not take it too fast in the beginning so that I would have some energy left for the end hills. I found the marathon 5 hour 30min pace group and ran with them until we split off into the half vs full marathon groups. At that point I was on my own. I struggled a bit around mile 8, and decided to eat as many jellybeans as I could all at once. Right about then, a passing runner decided to chat and I of course had a mouthful and couldn't. oh well! I did do a fair amount of walking just because I didnt know the course and wanted to make sure that I had enough in me to finish. I knew I wasnt going to set a PR, but I did want to finish in a reasonable time, which I did. It was great to see Caleb and Mark, another team mate, at the corner as I ran to the finish line. They met me at the end to check in and see if I was ok. At that point I was freezing, but felt great that I had finished the race! 

After the race, I went back to the hotel to warm up in a nice hot shower and then get ready to go out to lunch with the team mates. We had a great time getting together and swapping stories about our races. Got to make new friends, and see old ones. There's nothing better than that! 

Post Lunch Team Photo

Front Lt to Rt: Lindsay (Mrs Coach), Cori, Weez
Back: Caleb, Abby, Damon, Mark, Alan

( Despite the looks on the kids faces, they actually had a good time! )

Ok now for stats:

Here's mine first. Not my fastest by any means, but no where near last either. 

Just because I want to brag about Team Wicked Bonkproof, 
here are Coach Caleb's 2nd place stats for the race. Obviously, he is a runner extraordinaire, and if you are looking for a coach that will help you achieve your biggest running goals, Caleb is your guy. 

Basically that's the scoop. Can't wait to see how my teamies that are running the Boston Marathon will do! You can bet on Caleb having a great race, as always! If I'm not in Boston cheering them on, I will be glued to the TV watching! 

Monday, March 17, 2014

First race of 2014 ATLANTA GA

Hi friends! I have been so busy with my work at the hospital that it hasn't left me with much time to work on here, but now I am back and ready to roll. First off, I have a big race next weekend.. this will be the biggest race ever that I have taken part in. 

We have had the winter from hell up here in Maine... snow, snow and more snow. I am so tired of having to do my mileage on the treadmill on our unheated porch. I am ready for sun and warmth. I've been trying to figure out in my mind what I will wear for this race... not wanting to be unprepared, I will likely overpack my suitcase like I always do. It's just harder when you're flying, now that you have to pay for your checked bags with most airlines. 

Why Atlanta?  I run with a team of people that are coached by Caleb Masland. The team is known as   Team Wicked Bonkproof. I have to say, from what I have seen from my team mates, they are amazing athletes, and I am inspired by all of them. There are close to 100 of us in call, from all over the world. Some of us will be meeting in Atlanta to do this race. Some doing the half, some the full. Others are prepping for Boston.  

What are my goals for this race? I don't really have any other than to finish, since it's my first race of the season. I will be running in a warmer climate than I have been in since October, and I'm still fighting the tail end of a cold that I've had for over a week. I also put on 10 lbs, but when running, it feels like 25. In my mind, it slows me down a lot, and I don't perform as I want to. So, long story short, as long as I finish, I will be happy. I have plenty of races this summer where I will concentrate more on my timing and pace. This one is just for fun! Of course, once I am sporting this baby, it'll be even more sweet!   

If anyone is interested in looking at the course map, it is below:
One word summary,  HILLY !

The best part of this trip will be spending time with an old childhood friend. She moved to Georgia soon after we graduated, and has lived there ever since. I can't wait to see her and hang out. We have lots to catch up on! I also have a trip to the Mizuno warehouse for a visit. Will be nice to see some of the folks I met last year when we did the Mezamashii video. 

I will post a re-cap with photos afterwards. Anyone else racing next weekend? If you are, good luck! Run like the wind

Monday, February 17, 2014

Visit the Running Folks Forum and meet Coach Caleb Masland

Don't have a running coach, but always wanted to ask questions? Now is your chance. Coach Caleb Masland of Team Wicked Bonkproof is available on the running folks forum to answer your questions! 

Want the chance to ask questions to a professional running coach? 
Here's your chance! Visit the runners forum! 
(Caleb's my personal coach and is coaching me for my first marathon this Oct) 

This topic will be open for questions (aka replies) on Tuesday 18th February from noon GMT for 48 hours as per AMA (ask me anything) series details. ]

Join the Running Folks forum to be able to ask coach Caleb anything, it's free!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Mizuno giveaway Wave Hitogami

The awesome people at Mizuno have given me the opportunity to do a giveaway for a pair of their brand new Wave Hitogami's. If you havent seen or heard about these.. take a second to check these baby's out!

The shoe is built to be brilliant. This shoe makes you want to run fast. It's light, low and lean enough for racing, but has such an efficient, stable ride thanks to the Smoothride design of the U4ic midsole and Parallel Wave plate in the heel. It's also a great choice for fast training days. The mesh keeps your feet cool and looks great! You get fit, and function, without sacrificing comfort.

The thing that is cool about this particular shoe is the name, and the "look". The name Hitogami means "Human Gods" (which we all strive for when running at our best...) and the shoes, when put together make the image of a Japanese Kabuki Mask.  This follows the Kabuki theater tradition, where actors wore face paint to portray Hitogami.  Samurai hero have allowed themselves to be possessed by powerful spirits, which are portrayed via bold, red make-up. Thus they transform into 'Hitogami' - human god.  This would be similar to getting into your mezamashii zone and transforming yourself into a brilliant runner with bold weaponry, your shoes. 


Performance neutral shoe that is replacing the Wave Ronin and Wave Musha. 
U4ic midsole: Delivers lightweight, resilient cushioning
Traditional Japanese racing flat construction: Allows for a fast, low-slung ride
Kabuki-inspired midfoot wrap: Provides lockdown support
Flat-bottomed last combined with low toe-spring: Gives inherent stability
Smooth G3 forefoot rubber: Allows optimal smoothness at touchdown in the forefoot
8.0 oz for a Men’s size 9 and 6.6 oz for a Women’s size 8. 
9mm offset with 23mm/14mm heel/forefoot stack heights

Men’s Colors
White/Black/Cyber Yellow Mizuno Wave Hitogami
Black/Cyber Yellow/Electric Mizuno Wave Hitogami
Women’s Colors
White/Blue Depths/Aurora Mizuno Wave Hitogami
Electric/Olympian Blue/Cyber Yellow Mizuno Wave Hitogami

My impressions:

I am love with this shoe. I have struggled at times to find a shoe that was lightweight yet had enough cushion in the forefoot area without being "clunky". I have finally found what I was looking for. I normally wear a 0-4mm offset shoe and find that works the best for me. Surprisingly enough, when I have these on, they don't feel any different than any of my other favorites that are much flatter. (These are a 9mm offset) These racing shoes make me feel fast, and even though I know I'm not a fast runner by any means, they make me feel good. They are sharp looking, and I love the Kabuki mask built into the design. 

Would you like to have a pair of your own so you can experience Mezamashii running? 
Here's your chance! Follow the directions of the Rafflecopter below. This will be a quick running giveaway, so don't hesitate! Winner will be announced on Sunday Feb 2nd. Make sure I have a way to contact you if you win!

Disclaimer:  All opinions expressed in the post are 100% my own. 
I was given these shoes for review purposes, and am not compensated by Mizuno Running in any way for a positive opinion.