Body Glide Review – Protect Your Skin this Summer

Disclosure: I received a sample of Body Glide Original Anti-Chafing Balm 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! All opinions are my own.

Let’s be real here: not only are most people slightly embarrassed by chafing, but it is also physically uncomfortable. Luckily, I’ve never seen a community to talk so openly about chafing as the running community. Through the openness of other runners, I found out about Body Glide Original Anti-Chafing Balm, and it’s one of the products I’ve been using almost as long as I’ve been running, especially because I live in a climate that is so warm year-round.

I first realized how much I needed an anti-chafing product when I was in the thick of training for my first marathon. I came home from a long run and jumped in the shower, and that’s when I realized that unbeknownst to me, I had succumbed to chafing (ow!). So that’s when I purchased my first tube of Body Glide.

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So what is Body Glide exactly?

Well, it is an anti-chafing and anti-blister balm, and it’s really as simple as that. Rather than gels, Vasoline, or powders that can be messy and stain your clothes, it creates a dry, transparent barrier to protect your skin from the constant rubbing that can be so painful. Since using Body Glide, I believe I have been saved from not just many instances of chafing, but also blisters as well.

Body Glide is easy to apply – their unique formula goes on just like deodorant (picture that scene in Juno where Paulie Bleeker looks like he is putting deodorant on his legs).

I find it’s easiest to apply Body Glide before you put on your running clothes, hence the bathroom photos.

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See? It’s all over my leg and you can’t see it.

Even though it’s easy to apply, the balm is also long-lasting. As it took almost 6 hours for me to finish my first marathon, it’s safe to say that I am by no means a fast runner. However, even though it took a long time for me to finish, Body Glide lasted the entire time and my skin was left unscathed.

In addition to how well it works, how it’s made is also an aspect that sets Body Glide apart from the rest of anti-chafe products. Body Glide is free of a lot of ingredients that can clog your pores and irritate your skin.

And it has a pretty clean label… see for yourself:

  • Made with plant-derived ingredients
  • Petroleum-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Lanolin-free
  • Mineral oil-free
  • Allergen-free
  • Vegan-friendly
  • Never tested on animals
  • Child-safe

Really, in addition to Body Glide being a great product, the thoughtfulness that has gone into how its made is something I value as well. I appreciate that they have thought of active people with diverse needs with their manufacturing processes. I also like that the formula is non-drying (my skin tends to dry out easily), while still remaining breathable.

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If there is anything I would change about Body Glide, it’s that I have a hard time making sure I have covered an area thoroughly. Of course, this a small price to pay for something that is so easy to apply, transparent and does not stain your clothes. To make sure I am covered, I try to be generous during application. I run over the area with the palm of my hand to ensure I did not miss a spot.

To purchase Body Glide for yourself, visit BodyGlide.com. Different sizes are available ranging from reasonable prices of $5.49 – $14.99. If you have sensitive skin/want to test it before purchasing a larger tube, I’d recommend buying one of the smaller sizes to make sure it works best for you.

To wrap this up, I’ll ask a silly question for today. What’s your funniest chafing story? Let me know in the comments. 😉

Cheers to being chafe-free!

A Belated Blogiversary (and a Special Announcement)

Welp, it’s July, you guys! And you know what? Time has flown by and I just realized I never posted about my blogiversary.

It is hard to believe it’s been two years since I started training for races, running distances longer than 2 miles, etc. and of course, blogging! Reflecting on the past couple of years, I feel incredibly blessed to have come so far in such a short period of time, both in my blogging and running. I ran my first half marathon, then went on to run my first full marathon. Mostly, I have learned so much about myself (go figure).Me after I picked up my first race packet for the Houston Half Marathon!

Oh, and here is my super excited pace when I smashed my goal at the Hot Chocolate 15K earlier this year.

Through running, I have learned the value of hard work, commitment and perseverance. Pre-running, I was never able to stay committed to an exercise routine; not only have I gotten better at that, but I am also leaps and bounds better at understanding problems, and setting reasonable goals in order to solve them. Just this weekend, my husband and I proudly made the last payment on my student loans… We are now debt free! Of course, it has taken a lot of personal commitment from both of us to stay diligent together; I believe running has challenged me to be a better wife during tougher times, which has made times and accomplishments like these even sweeter. I could go on, but I will save the novel of words I could easily write for another time, because I have other exciting news to share this evening!

One of the highlights of this past year was running my first race in my new hometown of Austin, the Austin Half Marathon.

In light of my two year blogiversary, I have been aching to set a date for another race. While I don’t race THAT often, I do find that setting races gives me a solid goal to work towards. AND I really wanted to see what a difference nearly two years would make in my marathon time. I am excited to say that I’ve had the opportunity to sign up for not one, but two races on my list through BibRave.

The Nutrabolt Oktoberfest Half Marathon on October 16, 2016

AND

The BCS Marathon on December 11, 2016!

I am both excited and nervous at the same time, because I want to train hard and continue to set better records for myself. But I am mostly excited, because Aggieland holds such a special place in my heart (and the post-race party for the Oktoberfest Half will have special steins with 10 craft beers to choose from, so what’s not to like).

Right after I became a marathoner in Irving… Looking forward to doing that again!

Both of these races will take place in Bryan/College Station, Texas, which I am also super pumped about (’cause I’m an Aggie, duh)! Seriously though, Chris and I have been trying to find an excuse to take a weekend to go back, reminisce on our college days, and take part in all of the wonderful (and fairly inexpensive) things that there are to do in C-Stat. I plan to post info on things to do in BCS in a separate post from my normal reviews, so you can get a better idea of not only why the race is great, but why you should make a trip to College Station to run it.

Oh and then there are discount codes. If you already were planning a fall or winter half or full marathon, and this seems like it might be for you, you can use the code RAVE2016 (for the Nutrabolt Half Marathon it expires on 9/16 and for BCS Marathon, it expires 11/11). That makes the BCS Marathon $85 if you register before August 31, which is totally reasonable if you have been wanting to give it a go. If you think you might want to run either of these with me, feel free to ask any questions, or check out the race websites: nutrabolthalf.com and bcsmarathon.com.

What races are you looking forward to this fall?

Cheers to personal growth through physical fitness!

A Thief Named Comparison

Reflecting on the my recent half marathon has brought out my competitive spirit.

As I mentioned, I didn’t meet my time goal. I was initially bummed when I finished, and I quickly got over it. However, even though they’ve been surrounded by positive thoughts, I’ve had moments of doubt over the course of the last couple weeks, and moments where I’ve been frustratedly wishing I was at the fitness level that other people are at. Thankfully, I’ve been reminded by my dear husband that there has been so much to be positive about. I finished, first of all, and I finished without injury. My asthma barely flared up this training cycle. The same thing could not be said for the first half marathon I trained for last year, which is a sign of improvement. Combined with the fact that I genuinely didn’t have time to train like I wanted to, I’ve resolved that it’s okay for life to get in the way sometimes – I’m only human. Plus, there are lots of other races coming up.

Again, for the most part, I’ve felt pretty good about how everything shook out. I am writing this because I find it fascinating how, even when we aren’t competing with anyone else, we find ways to compete with ourselves. This isn’t intrinsically negative, but when we let this rule our lives, it can be destructive. We are our own worst enemies.

FTR Theo Roosevelt Quote Smaller

Since I needed to be reminded of these truths, I wanted to share them with you, in case you need the encouragement as well.

First, comparison will steal your joy, if you let it (so don’t!). There is always going to be someone faster in running that you can compare yourself to. With the endless parallels running brings to life, there is always going to be someone smarter, cooler, or whatever than you, so comparison is futile and will only cause you to focus on the negative. Comparison is not healthy! Regardless, if you’re giving your best effort (and even on the off days when you aren’t), your life matters, and there is always something to be thankful for.

Second, accountability can remind you of the truth when you aren’t able to see it. We all fall prey to negativity, which is why accountability is a healthy alternative to comparison. My husband and friends who don’t run remind me that everything in life is relative, and they build me up when I struggle to remember how far I have come. Most of my friends don’t run, and when I tell them my running struggles, I’m also reminded how trivial they can be. The lessons I’ve learned from running are greater and far more important than a time on a piece of paper.

Finally, whatever fitness struggle you are encountering, I implore you to remember that you are more than just a number on a scale, clock, etc. Comparing your success now to any success in different circumstances (someone else’s success, past progress, or something else), is fruitless. Yes, great things happen when you push yourself, but today is new, which means the present challenges are also different, and comparing other experiences under different circumstances is like comparing apples and oranges. Revel in the successes each day brings and cling to those.

So, onward we go. Cheers to seeing the beauty in each day!

Another 13.1 in the Books

Yesterday I got out on the trail and put 13.1 miles away.

A year ago yesterday I ran my first half marathon, and yesterday, I ran my second. No crowds, medals, cameras, starting lines, or finish lines. Just me, my music and nature.With the Houston Half Marathon cancelled, I still wanted to test myself. No reason to wait for the next opportunity since I’m off of work.

It was unofficial, but I believe that the act of getting out there was what counted. I didn’t meet my time goal, which was slightly disappointing, but I did get out there when I didn’t have to, and I did finish.

With the storms that had come through, several parts of the route were actually flooded and I got some interesting photos. The weather was wonderfully cool and crisp, just cloudy enough to stay cool with the sun out. It was a great reminder of one of the things I love most about running – the opportunity to be out in nature.

Once again I felt free, and have a renewed joy for running. I love that running can be so difficult at times but it is so satisfying in the end.Oh, and I can now wear my race shirt feeling like I at least earned it.

Have you ever had a race get cancelled? How did you handle it?

Cheers to more chances to run and race!

Meet Daisy, My Future Running Buddy!

Say “hello” to my big little furry friend! Chris and I recently adopted a dog, who we named Daisy Flores! If you have known me in real life for any length of time, you probably know how much I love dogs and how much I’ve wanted a pup of my own for basically forever, so this is a big freaking deal.


Long story short, Chris and I talked for a long time one random Thursday (about 2 weeks after the marathon) and finally decided we could get a dog. We searched for a week or so, which was both stressful, exciting and emotional, and found Daisy at the local Humane Society. She is perfect for our family in every way. She’ll be treated for heartworms over the course of the next 3 months and we are praying everything goes well/she is cured after treatment, so she can finally be my running buddy.

Daisy on her freedom ride:

A few fun facts about Daisy:
– She is an Aussie mix (we think).
– She has a lot of hair!
– She loves to snuggle with both furniture and humans and would let me rub her belly for hours if she could.
– She likes to give hugs – she’s not a jumper except when I come home from work, when she basically lightly jumps up on me and stays there as if giving me a hug.
– She is already crate and potty trained (thank God).
– She loves to chase squirrels.
– She doesn’t whine or bark; she just grunts, kind of like a pig, only cuter.
– She HATES baths and wet surfaces.
– She is the cutest dog ever to us because she is ours.

“What are you looking at?” Daisy after getting fixed.

My 55 lb. child dog being her snuggly self:

Searching for and adjusting to having a dog has been killer on my exercise and blog regimen, but I am finally getting back on track this week, now that we are in a new routine. Since the marathon, I’ve only run 4.5 miles total and worked out 3 times. I actually ran 2 of those miles last night (and boy, were they tough). These pictures basically sum up my life.

Pre-Daisy Rug:

 

Post-Daisy Rug (after vacuuming two days prior!):

I’m excited that we’ve adjusted to the new normal and am looking forward to sharing the other running/active-related posts I’ve been working on soon.

Cheers to puppies and the fun that comes with them!

Pre-Marathon Goals (and Some Jitters)

  

It is officially April 3. I’ve made it to the night before my marathon. I’ve believed many times it’s possible, even highly probable, I’ll finish the race tomorrow, but I’ve probably doubted myself many more.

“I can’t believe the time is nearly here “is an understatement. This goal has been nearly 10 months in the making; it’s gone slowly but quickly at the same time, and so much has happened. I have been in shock that it’s here all week, with all the normal emotions that come with it – fear, happiness, excitement, nervousness, panic and sheer anticipation.

I don’t really know what to expect; from everything I’ve read about, this will be a bit different from a half marathon, but it also seems like it will be similar, just way longer. The things I’m most nervous about – my knee, my cough that’s been bugging me, “the wall,” and something crazy happening to my body – are things that I can’t control too much. I will do my best to prevent them, but the unexpected is lingering out there, taunting me. The whether is supposed to be between 50-63 degrees and partly cloudy, so that’s definitely in my favor. I’m a strong-willed person, so that’s also in my favor.

And then of course, there’s God, and while I don’t think that God will intervene and make it a painless run just so I can have the satisfaction of finishing, I do think he is looking out for me and I hope whatever tomorrow turns out to be, that He will use it for his Glory.

So one thing I can do to make myself less nervous? Set reasonable goals/positive things to focus on.

1. Finish the race.

2. Take less walk breaks the second half of the race.

3. Finish with a smile on my face.

I’m not setting a formal time goal. I was bummed that I finished my half 1 minute over my desired time, so I’ve learned my lesson. I want the day to go well and just be super happy afterward. I’ve toyed with what time I’ll finish in inside my head, so I’ll just leave it there and let you all know if it happens.

Cheers to finally doing this thing!

🙂

Monday Motivation – March 30

Maya Angelou Quote

It’s race week and I’m counting on courage (and a whole lotta the grace of God) to get me through. Getting nervous… but we all have to conquer our fears at some point and for that part of it, I am excited.

Have  a great week, y’all!

On Fighting Burnout…

Those moments where you want to give up? Yes, they do happen (and sometimes very often).

This past month, I ran over 100 miles – more miles than I’ve ever run before. I’ve been trying not to let it get to me, but, to be honest, it has. Not only has this been taking a bit of a physical toll on me, but it has been mentally tiresome. Though I love to run and I look forward to accomplishing my goal, I feel like running has consumed my life as of late.

Given that the task of running a marathon still seems like a large feat at this point, I thought it would be helpful to share with you some of the things I’ve been doing when I feel like quitting.

Fighting Burnout

Set Aside Time for Rest
There is an appropriate time for everything. Set aside a clear time to work and then rest. For example, I want to rest now, but I can’t because it’s not the right time yet. I told myself I would do this and now I have to keep going until I finish. It’s okay to sit on the couch for a weekend and watch House of Cards, but get the hard work done first so you can savor it. Side note: see the beach up there? Well, I found it all-too-fitting for this post, since it’s my idea of rest. I’ll at the beach soon, actually, and it’s the carrot in front of me for the next two weeks of intense training.

Focus on Small Landmarks
Set little goals for yourself and celebrate a small victory when you achieve them. It keeps you mentally engaged.

Mix Things Up
I’ve been running a different variation of the same route almost every time I visit the park, which has surprisingly made the miles fly by a little quicker. It keeps things fresh and I stay alert in order to track my mileage.

Find Your Person
Remember accountability? It’s vital. Find a friend, coworker, redditor, spouse, whatever works for you. Just find someone who knows you well enough to discern when you need a break, but isn’t afraid to call you on the carpet if you truly are not working to your full potential (like Meredith and Cristina from Grey’s).

Think Positive
I saved the most important for last! Personally, I am struggling with thinking negatively about running, and worry that I’m constantly injuring myself, which gives me an excuse to procrastinate and put off runs. I have been voicing these negative thoughts with an unfortunate frequency, so much that my husband has noticed and had to call me out on it in an encouraging, supportive way. While expressing your honest emotions isn’t a bad thing, it’s all too easy to cross the line between expressing honesty and bathing in negativity. The practical way to handle it? Yoga teachers are always preaching it – acknowledge the thoughts, then let go of them, reframing them in a positive light. This mental practice serves us well in so many aspects of life. Prayer helps, too.

My point is that we all have doubts. We all have moments where we are our own worst enemy. I want to encourage you all and remind myself – don’t ever give up!

These times teach us perseverance, and perhaps that is why they are so important in the training process.

How do you fight burnout? I’m genuinely curious.

Cheers to persevering another week!

(Photo Credit: Kimberly Richards)

The Rundown: January – Back in the Saddle

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Oh, January. How fast you have come and gone.

This photo is basically my month in a nutshell:

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So. Many. Treadmill. Runs.

Week 6: 3 mi. | 5 mi. | 3 mi. | 11 mi.
I still did not feel fully up to continuing this week, which really stressed me out! I ran one 3 mile run early in the week because my cough was almost gone and I was feeling better. Still, the next day I felt worse, so I played it safe and waited a few more days until my congestion and cough were gone. Talk about being stir crazy.

Week 7: 3 mi. | 6 mi. | 3 mi. | 13 mi. 3 mi. | 5 mi. | 3 mi. | 10 mi.
Because I was out for almost 3 weeks, I switched up my training schedule, taking my original plan for Week 4. It seemed like a natural progression. I felt like doing a 10 mile long run and adding additional distance during the week for the next week made the most sense and would keep me from getting worn down again. It went well, thought I did need a bit of ice after for knee soreness. By the way, this ice holder thing is the single greatest running-related investment I’ve made to date, and I bought it with our money left in the FSA. It keeps you from getting water everywhere, which happens with plastic sandwich baggies. Pull up Netflix and ice away with no worries!IMG_1621

Week 8: 3 mi. | 7 mi. | 4 mi. | 10 mi.
My 10 mile run in Week 7 ended up being hard and slow, but this week I improved my time for the most part. I did have to take a couple of walk breaks in the end because I felt like my legs were about to give out.

Week 9: 3 mi. | 7 mi. | 4 mi. | 14 mi.
This week was raining, meaning I did most of this (actually, I think I did all of this) indoors. I was also super busy and had to go early in the morning a couple of days. Even my 14 mile run was indoors. Actually, this made it go by a little faster. My gym has a .1 mi. track and treadmills, so when I run longer than 3-4 miles indoors, I alternate between the two. I ran 4 miles on the treadmill, then 3 on the track, then repeated that sequence for a total of 14 miles. I felt like my time was good, but according to my iPod, which kept skipping and stopping, my time was over 12’00”.

Side note: The sunrise was the one thing that I’ll admit made mornings bearable. This photo doesn’t quite capture it fully, but it’s cool to see the sun rising over the skyline of your city.

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I celebrated my last run of Week 9 with a big ‘ole glass of chocolate milk and watching the Super Bowl. Glad that’s over.

As far as personal updates go, January has been a pretty busy month between work and running. Nothing too exciting has happened, but sometimes that’s a good thing.

Overall, I’m glad to be feeling better and thankful that my runs have been going okay. April 4 seems like months away, but in reality, it’s only like 7 weeks away from today. Time flies.

As for making time fly on the treadmill, I still tend to dread those workouts. I’ve found that watching the TV helps sometimes, and a good playlist helps sometimes. What seems to work for you?

Cheers to another month!

The Rundown: December – In Sickness and In Health…

I’m reformatting the way I post my training updates a bit. I felt that doing these weekly became a bit much for me, and I wasn’t having time to talk about anything else! There’s other content I am looking forward to posting on a regular basis.

For my marathon training, unless something crazy exciting happens and I need to blog about it, I’m going to post monthly highlights, including my scheduled runs for each week.

Of course, this month was marked by Christmas, which is my favorite holiday. This is the first year that I’ve been running during the holidays, and it helped me keep some much-needed sanity! Here’s a recap:

Week 1ish: 3 mi. | 3 mi.
I was just getting back into the swing of things, so I just ran a couple of 3 mile runs. I was definitely feeling a bit sluggish.

Week 2: 3 mi. | 4 mi. | 3 mi. | 5 mi.
I still felt a bit sluggish this week. Running 5 miles and feeling sluggish made me feel really nervous, especially since I would be running much, much more than this to complete a marathon.

Week 3: 3 mi. | 4 mi. | 3 mi. | 8 mi.
Woo hoo! I finally felt like I got my groove back. I was pleasantly surprised by my 8 mi. pace – 11’36”! For my longest run since the half, it felt wonderful and went by really fast.

Week 4: 3 2 mi. | 5 mi. | 3 mi. | 10 mi.
Sadly, this week was Christmas and I procrastinated on my last 2 runs. This was a bad decision because I ended up sick when I rescheduled them. However, the first couple of runs were great! I did cut one run short, due to time, but I even ran on Christmas eve, which was surprisingly nice (and made me feel less bad about the calories I consumed later).

Week 5: 3 mi. | 5 mi. | 3 mi. | 7 mi.
I couldn’t do any of my runs this week because my cough kept hanging in there. It was awful. I didn’t want to relapse again, but I was frustrated that I was sidelined again. I rested and hope I will not get sick again. If I do, I don’t know if I’ll be able to run the marathon! I will be so far behind again.

Anyway, I hope you all had a great holiday season also. In other life-related news, here’s a gem of my husband and I on Christmas Eve.

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We also attended a candlelight service at my parents’ church, which I look forward to each year. In the midst of all the busyness of the season, I get a boost and renewed sense of purpose from these intimate celebrations. This Christmas, especially, I found constant reminders that I need to focus on what’s most important – the powerful message of the Gospel. Among other things, running has helped me focus on and contemplate this, and I’m better for it.

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All in all, it was a good first Christmas for us. We had a great time traveling between our parents’ houses, and the forced break from being sick actually ended up being a great time for Chris and I to enjoy each others’ company and rest. It’s not often that we have time off from work when we’re not already traveling!

Have you ever battled off sickness in the middle of training? Have you ever trained during an otherwise busy season of your life? How did you handle it?

Cheers,
Sarah