Archives for June 2015
The first saturday in June brings our favorite organized bike ride, Little Red Riding Hood, in the beautiful Cache Valley in northern Utah. It’s become a tradition for Kalina and I to ride together. Three years ago, Kalina was diagnosed with ovarian cancer just 48 hours before our ride. As a worried mom, I though we should skip the ride so she could prepare to have two large tumors removed. Instead, she put on a brave face and helped me put on one too. We worked toward the finish line in our last hurrah before the reality of major surgery and months of chemotherapy set in.
Since then, we have only missed one ride. Now we ride to celebrate another year together. This year was no exception. We love getting out our road bikes and hitting the pavement.
Besides the fact that I get to ride with my daughter, I love Little Red for so many other reasons. It’s an all women’s ride. That means we don’t have fast guys zipping by making us feel intimidated. Also, it’s a non-competitive, fully supported ride which means no timing It also means lots of stops with food along the way and a ride shirt. We had the option of purchasing matching bike jerseys and we couldn’t resist the dark pink. Cute huh?
The terrain is awesome. The roads go through farmland and the small towns in Cache Valley Though there are some rolling hills and a steep climb after the lunch stop, much of the ride is flat. Good thing since I wasn’t as in good shape this year as I have been in the past.
As always, five different distance options from 27-100 miles make Little Red a ride even young riders or beginners can participate. We chose the 70 mile option. This gives us a challenge but still allows us to have fun without worrying we won’t make the time cut off for the more difficult 100 miler.
It’s always amusing to see the spread of food at the support stops. I think it’s the only ride I know where you could easily take in more calories than you burn out. I’ve learned to be conservative at the stops and concentrate on keeping hydrated and going for the fruit table instead of the cookies and licorice.
An amazing lunch catered by Subway® and supplemented with frozen treats from Creamies® helps riders fuel up for the most difficult hill climb of the day.
After the downhill, it’s a nice ride into Lewiston, Utah to finish the ride and celebrate with… what else? More food of course and entertainment while eating.
Best of all, Little Red is a fundraising ride for one of our favorite charities, the Huntsman Cancer Institute. All of the proceeds raised through fund raising efforts of the Huntsman Hometown Heroes goes toward cancer research for women’s cancers which includes breast and ovarian. I’m hoping someday for a cure.
Do you have a favorite ride?
Leave us a comment telling us which one and why it’s your favorite.
**This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Mizuno. The opinions and text are all mine.**
I like biking and hiking more than I do running but I’ll be the first to admit that nothing beats running for a quick, inexpensive, and thorough workout. No expensive bike parts or gym membership required and for the time it takes me to drive to the gym and back, I could have run two or three miles and that doesn’t even count the extra mileage I could add during the gym workout.
All I need is a good pair of running shoes. I’ve been running long enough to know that good shoes are worth every penny spent. It’s never worth trying to save money on shoes that aren’t quite right.
My favorite all time pair of running shoes was a from Mizuno. I don’t even remember the style but I loved them. After working on my running form, I was ready to try a neutral shoe and was thrilled to try the new Mizuno Wave Enigma 5.
I wanted to love these shoes even half as much as my old ones but they fell a little short for me.
While I like them now, I don’t love them. I had problems in the first few weeks with my feet going numb. Confusing since the sizing is perfect. The cushioning is good for a neutral shoe. After putting about 25 miles on the shoes and making sure I landed mid foot and rolled to the heel, the numbness finally went away. I’ve taken some time off running and have gained a little weight since doing so. Now that I’m back to running, I think the Mizuno Wave Enigma 5 works for a little heavier runner. However, for a lightweight runner looking for a lightweight shoe, I would not recommend this shoe.
What I do like about the Wave Enigma 5 is the fit. My little toe turns out so I have never been able to wear a shoe with a narrow toe are. This shoe fits good around the toe and snug enough at the heel to keep my foot from moving around inside the shoe. Even on a rocky, flat trail, the shoes kept my feet stable. I run about 20-25 miles a week and the shoes are good for this mileage but I think I would like to find another shoe when I start upping my mileage.
Overall the Mizuno Wave Enigma 5 is a solid shoe that would make a better gym shoe than a running shoe. I’ve used it at the gym on the elliptical machines and the spin bikes and have had no problems there and it’s nice to have an extra pair of running shoes for rotation purposes.
|FTC Disclosure: Product received at no charge in exchange for an honest review.|
I’m always looking for accessories that make running easier. It’s hard to get out the door on running days when I’d rather be on my bike. At least once I get out, I usually enjoy it. I’ve been looking for a running belt that’s comfortable but has all of the features I want.
|Kalina modeling the Goforit Led Waist Belt|
The belt is also easy to adjust. It has a zippered compartment that easily fits a phone or other music device. A clever addition of a small hole for a set of earphones on the inside means I can keep the zipper all of the way closed during my workout.
If I were rating this belt strictly on comfort and ease of use, it would definitely deserve five stars. However, I had a few problems with the quality of the belt and ended up disappointed as those things were the most important to me.
First, I love the shape of the bottles. However, at 150 ml., they are too small for hydrating for more than about 30 to 60 minutes on a warm day. I’m hoping to find some bigger bottles to replace the smaller ones. Also, one the elastic straps that goes around the top of the water bottle came undone before I had even tried it the first time.
The biggest disappointment was with the LED lights. This is what sets this belt apart from other belts. The LED lights are rechargeable and does come with the charging cord. However, only two out of the six lights worked on my belt. I tried to jiggle the wires to see if that would solve the problem but it didn’t. The lights have three settings, one steady, one slow flashing, and one fast flashing. It’s an awesome feature for running at dawn, dusk, or the dark but only if it works right. I wish I could figure out how to make mine work.
I love the product in theory but the quality needs to be improved. Hopefully, mine was just defective and they’re not all like that. In the meantime, I’ll still be looking for the perfect belt.
I love going on crazy adventures. Most of my adventures take me pretty remote places. I’m always trying to get a picture of myself and my adventure buddy in the beautiful places we explore. But unfailingly it ends up looking just like any other old selfie…our huge faces at an awkward angle and virtually none of the pretty scenery. I have gotten decent at self timer mode, propping my camera up against a rock or a tree branch, but it takes a lot of time and effort.
Finally, I had the opportunity to try out a “selfie stick.” I hear it’s all the new fad. I knew about selfie sticks for GoPros, but I didn’t really know they made them for phones. VivaSelfie Selfie Stick with Bluetooth comes with a telescoping selfie stick and two phone holders-one for iPhones and one for Androids. The instructions are simple too which is a huge plus! No flipping through 18 pages of microscopic print trying to find the one paragraph that tells you what to do. This is a simple spread with bullet points clearly stating how to work the device. The selfie stick works via bluetooth, so first you have to charge it. The first use you must pair it with your phone. Once you’ve done this, you don’t have to do it again. As soon as that is done (takes about 3 minutes), you are ready to go! My Galaxy S5 phone fit perfectly and securely in the Android holder. The stick has a tilting stand that locks in place so you can adjust to the angle you need.
I took a few pictures with the selfie stick and then suddenly it stopped working. I was really confused and frustrated for a while. After doing some research I found that the rubber handle can rotate a little bit and moves off the camera button. So even though I was pressing where the handle said the button was, nothing was happening. As soon as I rotated the rubber back into place, and made sure the stick was extended, it worked just fine again.
So the rubber moving around is a little bit of a downside because it slides quite easily. Now that I know its a problem, it will be easy to fix in the future, but it would be nice not to have to worry about it. I do like how simple it was to set up and my phone feels pretty secure. I’m not sure I would use it hanging above the trees in a zip-line or out of an airplane window, but its definitely good enough for mountain peaks, beaches, my own backyard, etc. It is a little bit heavy with a phone on the end, but I think that’s the nature of a selfie stick, not something inherent to Viva’s design. If you are looking for a portable and simple selfie stick for your phone, I would recommend VivaSelfie.