Category Archives: Products

JD Sports: Perfect Timing!

I received a complimentary pair of sneakers in exchange for a blog post about my experience. All opinions are my own. This is not a sponsored post.

I recently mentioned that I’ve learned during half marathon training that sneakers really DO matter. What people have been saying for months and months is NOT a joke! I thought I could get by on training for and running the Zooma Cape Cod Half Marathon with my eclectic collection of sneakers I’ve received from various blog-related opportunities. But not so much. I was shopping around for a pair to purchase, but then JD Sports contacted me asking if I wanted to try out one of the pairs they offer on their site. Um, yes please!

I was offered either Nike Frees or Asics, but I knew at least with my basic knowledge that Asics were a better choice for running. But which pair to choose? With help from friends like Sarah and Alex, both of whom have worked in running stores, I selected the Asics Gel GT 2000. My contact placed the on order for me and the sneakers arrived in a very timely manner, just as depicted on the site.

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I have taken the sneakers out so far for several short distance (2-4 mile) runs. The only thing I learned after the first run was that I needed to cut my toenails, because one of my nails cut into an adjacent toe, and got blood on my new sneakers. Soooo even if they weren’t going to work for me, I certainly wasn’t going to be able to return them. Luckily (and after a toenail trimming session) the next couple of runs went much better. I plan to take the Asics out again this afternoon on their first longer run, and I hope that after a week or two more of running in them (plus adding foam rolling and more stretching, and perhaps calf sleeves, to my training), my left shin splint issues will begin to alleviate.

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I know that the quickest way to finding my perfect running shoe is to go to a running store, get professionally fitted, and buy what they recommend. But I’ve heard a lot of great things about Asics and to be honest, I enjoy saving money and was not going to turn down the chance to at least give this complimentary pair a shot. Buying running shoes online blindly after never having tried them on before is not necessarily something I’d advocate, but for someone who already knows what shoe works for him or her, ordering running sneakers from a site like JD Sports could be way more convenient/affordable than going to a running store.

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Not my favorite time of day to be caught wearing running sneakers.

So we’ll see how I (and my left shin) do as I continue to run in my new Asics. But if I don’t end up sticking with them, it certainly won’t be the fault of the sneakers or JD Sports. It’ll be because this particular pair wasn’t for me!

Have you ever ordered running shoes from an online retailer?

How did you find your “perfect” running shoes? Or are you still searching?

Trade Em Up Tuesday: Because It’s Not Monday

I tend to recap my weekends in the form of Marvelous In My Monday, but I didn’t feel like blogging Sunday night and yesterday was too busy. So since it’s Tuesday, this weekend recap is coming to you in the form of Trade ‘Em Up Tuesday, which I haven’t done in awhile (holy – since before I had my new job!) anyway.

I would not trade…the Friday night that I really needed. As I mentioned in Friday’s post, I felt like a big whale all day thanks to a looooong wine tasting and dinner for work the previous night. What kept me going all day was the knowledge that I’d be able to spend my evening with great people! First I met Jen at Eastern Standard for her first visit there (!!!) and we enjoyed some relaxing girl time over drinks and yummy food. Thankfully Jen agreed that the restaurant lived up to my hype and it was another nice visit of great service and spot-on cocktail recs!

My first drink – the Red Hook – a Manhattan-like cocktail. I took a sip and said “ahhh”.

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What I DRANK Wednesday: Brugal Rum!

Okay, so I know it’s supposed to be What I Ate Wednesday. But I am overdue for a recap of a “drank-based” event I attended a little over a week ago, and who says I have to follow WIAW rules? Nahhh. Cocktails are about no rules! Especially on Tuesday nights…

I was invited by Emily of NYC-based M Booth to attend one of many Brugal Rum tasting and immersion opportunities happening last week at Boston’s Cyclorama. The event, titled #RumRedefined, involved first a lesson/tasting about three of Brugal’s products – Anejo Rum, Extra Dry Rum, and Brugal 1888.

Our cute “tasting tray” – started with the Anejo!

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WIAW: Taste of Nature Bar Giveaway!

I received complimentary samples of Taste of Nature bars to review. This is not a sponsored post and my opinions are my own.

This post is not about the type of bar folks usually associate me with. No cocktails here, just what cocktails usually lead to – snacks! Taste of Nature reached out to me to ask if I’d be interested in doing a blog post about their bars, and once I checked out the flavor variety and the nutrition facts, I was 100% on board. Plus they’re up for doing a giveaway with five winners, which is rare to find in the blog world and something I didn’t want you guys to miss out on!

The perfect giveaway for a WIAW link-up!

Regular readers probably already know this: I’m not that into bars as a daytime snack. But night time? Let me at ‘em! I love crumbling all manner of goodies into my sugar-free chemical-laden vice (Jello Chocolate Pudding) and enjoying my snack after dinner, in bed, with a book. The Taste of Nature bars made for a nice evening snack because they’re full of a nice balance of healthy fats, fiber, and protein – plus not too much sugar. That’s the number one thing I look for in a bar, even before I look at its calorie count (not that I want to be focused on that…)

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Reebok Skyscape: Always Thinking Pink

The following post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of Reebok.

After some change-of-address-caused hoopla I finally received my Reebok Skyscape sneakers last weekend! You probably have seen other Fitfluential Ambassadors posting about their experiences with the new shoe line, but I’m late to the game on this campaign. At least I can hope that sets my post apart from the others, right? Anyway, I opened the package and found another pair of SUPER bright pink shoes to add to my collection! I think the sneaker gods know my favorite color is pink.

They begged to be paired with cuffed jeans!

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Pink and Purple PUMA: Fitness Fashion

The following post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of PUMA.

Fitfluential has given me the opportunity to receive another set of PUMA fitness apparel (you can see my first PUMA campaign post here) as part of a campaign. Unfortunately the timing of shipments didn’t work out in my favor. I signed up for the campaign back when I was still living in CT, and by the time the Bubble XT Tribal sneakers arrived, I’d already moved out! I haven’t had a chance to try them yet, but wanted to get my post up, so I’ll just fill you guys in on the basic info that was sent to me: stylish design, light-weight cushion technology. And my info: PURPLE. That’s freaking awesome. Once I do get my hands on them (I’ll be home to grab them this weekend) I’ll be able to actually tell you all what I think. You can read another Fitfluential Ambassador’s review here – thanks Clare!

Pink and purple are my top two favorite colors, so I was psyched when I opened the clothing package (which arrived before I moved – phew!) and saw only those two colors. I love the mesh on the sides of the sports bra (which is called Gym-licious and that makes me cringe a bit) and wearing it with the Gym Loose Top was perfect because of the top’s open back. With a bra like that, I want to show it off! The top definitely felt a little cumbersome at times because of how flowing it is, but I enjoyed wearing it to spin classes.

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The Better Chip Crusted Chicken & Buffalo Brussels

The Better Chip provided me with product and/or compensation for this post, however the opinions I shared are my own.


I recently joined The Better Chip Blogger Program and received a kit with samples of many different chip flavors, plus some fun “accessories”.

How awesome is that headband? I already promised Becki the gluten-free button!

How awesome is that headband? I already promised Becki the gluten-free button!

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Trade Em Up Tuesday: An Excuse to Ramble

Totally digging this Trade Em Up Tuesday thing, so thanks very much to Miss Alex for cluing me into that. Much like Thinking Out Loud Thursdays, it’s just a great way to blog on a day when I don’t feel like sticking to one topic.

I would trade…ALL THE SNOW. Snow snow go away, you ruin my plans so many days. Last night’s Group Power class was cancelled due to weather so I had to say goodbye to my Monday lifting party and am hoping I can make it to Thursday or Saturday’s class.

I would not trade…getting out of work early due to snow. OK so that’s a positive! I was able to leave work, hit the gym for a workout, and get home to shower and get cozy by the fire. I had extra time to clear out the mindless-TV hanging around on my DVR (#RichKids, Toned Up) and draft tomorrow’s blog post. At the gym I did my go-to cardio machine the StepMill (30 minutes of speed intervals) followed by two rounds of this arm routine by Rebecca.

I did two rounds instead of three because I started to get hangry!

I would trade…the waiting game. I’m still playing it and I don’t know if I’m going to see a win or a loss. I’ll know by the end of the day tomorrow whether or not I’ve landed a big opportunity. Sorry that I have to continue being cryptic…wish I knew for sure what was going on so that I didn’t have to be!

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Cookin’ and Killin’ It

Don’t worry vegetarian readers, I’m not talking about killin’ an animal for cooking (see title). I’m talking about killin’ my goal to cook more meals at home. Yesterday I mentioned I was planning to get a Whole Foods salad after the gym. Well I got to thinking throughout the day as I was researching which recipes I wanted to use for food prep this weekend. I’ve eaten at home, without takeout, every night this week since Sunday. Why not make it a full week of weeknight meals at home, with no takeout? Why not go all the way and just kill it?

That’s just what I did! After the gym (where I got in a killer personal training session by the way, more on that later!) I went to Stop N Shop and picked up ingredients for the meals I plan to prep that weekend, plus some frozen veggies so I could make Tina‘s Creamy Laughing Cow Cheese Veggies. I already had the Creamy Swiss flavor at home though, so I just used that instead of Chipotle. I still kept the frozen broccoli, but I used frozen baby cabbages instead of edamame/spinach because I have never cooked with frozen baby cabbages and wanted to see how they’d turn out (obviously they wouldn’t turn out as good as the roasted kind). I also cooked up a pot of Goya chickpeas and black beans (with added garlic salt and cumin) on the stovetop. I combined the beans, creamy veggies, and some leftover meatloaf into a bowl for a delicious veggie and protein packed meal. Perfect for post-strength training.

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WIAW: Cheddar Chicken-Veggie-Potato Chowder

A very special happy birthday to my darling blend Kaitlin of For Love of Carrots! I will be visiting her this weekend so we can celebrate in person and I just can’t wait!

I’m glad I’m not the only one who finds it helpful to focus on goals that don’t have to do with food/fitness! Though I have to admit I was a bit of a fail with some of my goals the day I set them – blah.

  • Appreciate More: I certainly kept my head up despite snow changing my gym plans and being a general nuisance. After all I got to go home to hang with my dad, who’d just returned from our FL condo (bad timing Dad!), and my boss was nice enough to let me leave work a bit early to try to beat snowy rush hour (I didn’t, but it was a nice thought!). I had plenty to appreciate, and I certainly did so.
  • Cook At Home More: More on that later in this post!
  • Separate From My Phone More: I was definitely on my phone less yesterday than usual, most likely due to writing my blog post, but I still didn’t want to leave it downstairs at all during dinner. I was watching SNL on the DVR with my dad and kept finding so many tweet worthy things to comment on – not things Drake said, but #shitmydadsays!
  • Go Outside More: Another fail. I knew that a polar vortex and a storm was coming so I just did not go outside during the work day, not even to take one breath of fresh air. However I was feeling a lot more upbeat yesterday and didn’t really find a need to go outside to “center myself”. I had lots of paperwork to do and that is always nice for me, to just plug away at my desk with my music going.

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