Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Don't Wake Me Up Before You Go Go

Raise your hand if you honestly think you get enough sleep? I hear crickets chirping and needles dropping.

I for one need a lot of sleep, ask my boyfriend or any of my close friends. A 5-6 hour night of sleep does NOT make me a happy camper. I personally get an average of 7-8 hours of sleep. But I am a tosser and a turner (tossin and turnin all night). Some nights I sleep pretty well and can live my life normally. But on days I don't get enough sleep...the following things begin to happen...

1) I am HUNGRY, ALLLLLLLLL DAY. Like ravenous. Like put anything in front of me and I will eat it.
2) Stress levels rise, I start to think about all those things that COULD happen, that NEED to happen, that I WANT to happen and my anxiety goes through the roof.

And guess what? This isn't just me. Study after study prove that sleep is imperative to living a healthy life.

So how do we solve this issue?

You can Google all day long about how to get better sleep, from lavender pillow spray to prescription sleep meds. If you are at the end of your rope and just need more sleep but nothing is working, I strongly suggest seeing a doctor. Sleeping is so detrimental to our health, so why play around with it?

So how do I get my sleep? First off, I get into bed at 9ish pm every night. Yes, 9. Granted I do not have children, so my evenings are not as filled as others, but I am in my bed by 9 or 9:30 each night. I turn off the lights, turn on my fan, and read on my Kindle. Typically I will fall asleep with my Kindle in my hand. Some nights I have to physically put it down and make myself go to sleep. It doesn't take me much to fall asleep, but staying asleep is my enemy. I wake up a lot, so when I wake up, I do not look at my phone, or my Kindle, or anything. I roll over, take some deep breaths, and lul myself back to sleep.

What's your trick to sleep?

Thursday, June 19, 2014

I Don't Care What Your Husband Doesn't Need To See

This is my response to this piece of blogging I read today - http://applesandbandaidsblog.com/2014/06/11/my-husband-doesnt-need-to-see-your-boobs/

In the post, a good looking, married teacher informs other women that  posting photos of ourselves in bikinis or low cut tops where our boobs are showing is causing a "stumbling block in our marriage." And that "our men are much less emotional and are much more visual. And as quickly as I can forget your picture, it is filed away in his mind, ready to be pulled back out whenever he so chooses."

FFS really?

I'll be the first to admit, I have some severe jealousy issues and a horribly low self-esteem. When my boyfriend and I first started dating 5 years ago, I struggled all the time with believing that he loved me and found me attractive, we had arguments about strip clubs & porn regularly (and I'll note that these two things weren't even relevant issues in our lives). As time went on, I relaxed a bit, started to really believe him when he said he loved me, when he told me I was hot. The issues I had at the beginning of our relationship had not one thing to do with how he treated me. It was an internal issue that I needed to deal with.

This women who wrote this blog post CLEARLY has some self-esteem and or trust issues. But I'll tell that lady one thing, ME showing my boobs off, will NOT make or break your marriage. ME taking a photo of myself in a bathing suit or a low-cut dress will not be your stumbling block. And if it is...than there are a lot more issues than just my tatas and I suggest you get them figured out. If you cannot trust your husband to look at a picture of someone's boobs and not bring it back up in their mind while you two are being intimate than I suggest you get some therapy or you two go together, because some issues need to be worked out.

But for me, I'll show my bizumees, whenever I so please. And I'll let my boyfriend check out other ladies tigobitties if he wants, because I trust him. I trust than when we lay down at night, he is thinking of me and only me, I trust that he loves me but appreciates other ladies dirty pillows.

So please, lady with a blog, don't tell me to stop showing my boobs.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Dr. Oz and Research

Basically everything that is on the Dr. Oz show is bullshit. And it looks like Senators around the country are catching on. Can I get a hallelujah?

Yesterday, senators around the country grilled Dr. Oz about the claims he puts out on his show. It's OBVIOUS that these ladies and gentleman understand that the majority of what Dr. Oz claims to be true is not factual.


You know who else knows it's not factual?

Dr. Oz himself - “I actually do personally believe in the items I talk about on the show,” he added. “I recognize that oftentimes they don’t have the scientific muster to pass as fact. I have given my family these products.”

It's SO important to research product claims before believing in them. Let's look at a few popular products Dr. Oz promises work and see what the website examine.com says about them (examine.com is a website that provides research on vitamins and supplements, un-biased)

Green Coffee Bean - Dr. Oz and other Green Coffee Bean supporters believe that this product will help people lose weight.
But let's see what Examine says - http://examine.com/supplements/Green+Coffee+Extract/
1) There is little research on this yet, so studies and research are limited.
2) For weight loss specifically, looking at three studies, Examine says "There may be a weight reducing effect, but currently the literature is too influenced by industrial producers of GCE and the magnitude of effect seems too large. Independent replication is needed."

Pretty straight forward huh? We really know NOTHING about this yet, so why spend all that money until there is some solid evidence that it could work?

Garcinia Cambogia - Dr. Oz called this "The Newest, Fastest Fat-Buster"
What's Examine say? - http://examine.com/supplements/Garcinia+cambogia/
1) For weight loss - "Although there is some counter evidence, it tends to be less robust and for the most part there is no significant weight reducing effect of garcinia cambogia supplementation" - Remember, this is based on actual SCIENCE and research. SCIENCE AND RESEARCH are saying that this product probably doesn't help you lose weight.
2) If you look at all of the other studies and factors they mention on the site, you'll see that nearly all of the results start with "No significant influence"

It's important to be informed and it's easy. Do a little research before wasting money on products that obviously don't work.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Race Recap - Run 2 Save Our Youth 2014

Race: Run 2 Save Our Youth 2014
Size: Probably under 350
Race Distance: 10k
Time: 1:35:40

I've been doing this particular race for 7 years now. It's a race put on by the Livonia Save Our Youth Task Force, which was started by a friend of mine who lost their son to a heroin overdose. We do it in memory of him. This was the first year I did the 10k.

On-site packet pick up was organized and quick and although I didn't use the on-site registration, there were two people manning the table and seemed to be well organized. The course was great, there were signs for each mile, people to let you know when the turn arounds were and three water station for the 10kers and two for the 5kers. Everyone manning the water stations were very supportive and helped keep you motivated. The course was shut down to cars but due to the location, did allow for bikers to be on the course along with us. It wasn't an issue for me, as I always fun on the edge of the road anyway because I am slow and hate to get in the way. The race coordinators were great about keeping all of the water stations open and available until every racer has crossed the finish line and the volunteers stayed until the very end (and I'll tell you how I know this below).

Pre and post race food consisted of bagels, hot dogs, chips, soda, water, bananas, pears, and other goodies. I partook in a hot dog and banana, and both were top notch ;)

New this year were 10k finisher medals and although they were not as high of quality as other races I have done, for the cost of the race, the medals were really nice. All racers also got a t-shirt and this year I thought the shirts were nicer than previous years. They also offer tech shirts for $5 extra but I did not take advantage of that.

Now for the personal assessment - This was my 3rd 10k I've done, the previous ones being in November and May. I started off really strong on this race, with my first mile at about a 13:30 pace (which is basically Kenyan for me). Unfortunately, because I started off so strong, I quickly slowed down. As I was running, I started to notice that more and more people were passing me, and by mile 3, one of my worst fears happened, I looked back, and saw not ONE person behind me. I kept doing my intervals realizing that I was dead.last. All these bad thoughts started going through my head, "what if the water stations close", "what is there is no more water" "what is they start taking down the finish line before I get there" "what if they run out of finisher's medals" "what if I fall down and no one is out here to notice". But I just kept going, plugging along. At the turn around, there was plenty of water and lots of volunteers still at the table, cheering me along, telling me to keep going, letting me know what a great job I was doing. At around mile 4, one of the race coordinators pulled up near me on a bike, and let me know that I was, in fact, the last 10ker on the course. It was disheartening but he said "you are doing great, I'm going to keep coming around checking on you, making sure your doing okay". He was always near me, picking up the signs from the course, letting the volunteers know they could leave, but NEVER, EVER before I passed them. I hit mile 5 and the water station and there was still plenty of water and volunteers there to help me stay motivated. Another race coordinator came by on a bike and let me know I was getting near the end and to keep going, I was doing great. Never did I feel like they were annoyed I was still on the course, never did I feel pressured to hurry up and get done (by anyone but myself) and I always felt supported. Finally, I saw the finish line, it was still up, there were still volunteers standing there with water and medals, and the race timers were still there. They hadn't torn down before I got there, they were waiting for me, the final 10ker, the final person who had the guts to do a 10k. But most importantly, my three best friends were waiting for me, Jen, Janell, and my boyfriend Jason. They cheered me in, told me how great I was doing, and helped me cross that finish line. I crossed the finish line, got a medal put around my neck, a water bottle put in my hand, and basically fell into my boyfriends arms. And than...the tears came. Tears of pride for finishing, of embarrassment for finishing last, of a little pain from my left knee, of gratefulness to the race for not closing down without me. It was a whirlwind of emotions. I even got my besties crying, and one of them NEVER cries.

Overall it was a great race, I'm getting over the fact I came in last place overall and embracing that I pr'ed my time (my last 10k was 1:36:12). Later in the evening, when official times were put online, I found out through two friends, that due to the size of the race, I had actually gotten 3rd place in my age group for Females. Sure, there were only three of us total, but it kind of felt like a "it's okay you came in last, you still finished the race." My medal will be mailed to me, since I never even thought to check the board of age groups.

Here I am post race and post hot dog :) My boyfriend told me no more tears so instead, I smiled huge, and showed my medal proud. Because a year ago, I would never have even thought of doing a 10k. Here's to progress, being humbled, and being proud!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Review Time - FlipBelt

preface - This is a product I purchased myself months ago. I haven't been contacted by the company, nor have they asked me to do a review. These thoughts are all completely my own.

Product: FlipBelt - XL in Carbon
Price (what I paid): $28.99 + tax & shipping
Would I recommend it - Yes, with certain disclaimers

When I first started running, it seemed like there was an endless supply of products you could purchase for to enhance running experience; water bottles, shoes, compression sleeves, the list really goes on and on.

One thing I knew I had to have was a vessel to put my phone in, because if I couldn't listen to music, I wasn't running and I didn't want to risk holding my phone and dropping it. I started off with an arm band, but it wasn't really comfortable, so I started to look for other options.

That's when I found the FlipBelt.

What is a FlipBelt? According to their website, it's a "singular tubular waistband" that is "Every bit as flattering and contoured as the rest of today’s athletic wear, FlipBelt is designed to carry your on-the-go essentials without tying up your hands. Made of a moisture-wicking, spandex-lycra blend, FlipBelt slides right on and sits snug on your hip. No bulk. No bounce. FlipBelt is also machine washable and machine dryable." So what makes it different than other belts or arm bands? From their website - "You flip the belt inside out and everything gets locked in place. Because there are no clasps or buttons, you simply pull the belt on like a pair of pants and wear it wherever it feels most comfortable. It doesn't move, jiggle, bounce or chafe and you could easily forget it’s even there."

I figured I'd test it out but wasn't sure about if it would move, if it would fit, and if it would be comfortable. Although I am always on the look out for a bright colored piece of running wear, I went with the XL Carbon, though they come in lots of bright and fun colors. The color is a deep grey and it's a nice neutral color.  I've had my FlipBelt for about 8 months now, I've worn it through several 5ks, 2 10ks and lots of training runs and I have to say, it really does stay put pretty well. Once in awhile, it'll move up, but once I readjust, it stays where it needs to be. I can fit my Samsung Galaxy S3 in it (with a case) plus some GUs, my ID, chapstick, and a key. Additionally, I don't even flip it inwards, as stated above, to lock it in. Even without the flipping, my items stay in and don't jiggle or move around.

Would I recommend it to someone - Yes, but I would let them know that yes, it does move a little and the sizing isn't as generous as I would hope. I am a 16/18 and the XL just fits. If I was much larger, I probably wouldn't have one.

Here are a few photos of me with it on... 
I'm wearing it over my clothes at this race

You can see it slightly under my top

I purchased mine from the FlipBelt website, however, I have now seen them in running stores and on Amazon. I purchased mine for $28.99 and they will send you a free water resistant bag for your phone if you wish. I got one but have never used it. 

If you have any questions, feel free to ask, but I do suggest visit their website for more details.

Have you tried the FlipBelt? What do you think?