Getting Outside with LÄRABAR (plus a Giveaway)

Today’s post is sponsored by LÄRABAR but my love of their bars is all my own.

Get Outside

I love to exercise outdoors. I am a runner first and foremost, and as I have, ahem, gotten a little older, I appreciate more and more the joy of trail running. Some days, though, it’s great to slow things down, lace up my hiking boots (or retired running shoes in my case), and hit the trails for a hike.

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I am so fortunate that I live less than a half mile away from some of the best hiking trails in the world. While not your typical woodsy trails with lovely streams running through them, the desert has its own subtle beauty, and your hike or run can be as easy or challenging as you want to make it.

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Do you want to put some effort into it, find hidden desert treasures, and spend several hours exploring the trails? Try the Bear Creek Oasis Trail. Would you rather have a more moderate, flat, sightseeing hike? Try the Bear Creek Canyon Trail or simply circle the Oasis. There is even a trail that will lead you about 14 miles up the Santa Rosa Mountains, ending up at 4,000 feet elevation! There truly is something for everybody.

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I kept it simple on my hike this week. I was alone for one thing, so I felt more comfortable with the Oasis loop, plus I just got over my cold, so I really didn’t need any challenges. That makes the packing simple too. I just loaded up my backpack with water, a handful of LÄRABARs, and a couple packs of RENOLA. Easy breezy!

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Eat Clean

I have been a huge fan of LÄRABAR for years. I’m always looking for plant based snacks, and most LÄRABARs are not only vegan and soy-free, they are all gluten free, non-GMO, and made with simple whole ingredients. For example, my favorite, Pecan Pie, has only dates, pecans, and almonds. You can’t get more real than that.

Larabar8I was first introduced to RENOLA at IDEAWorld Expo, where I picked up a couple packages at the LÄRABAR booth. RENOLA is a blend of fruit, nuts, and seeds, like a combination of trail mix and granola. It is gluten and grain free, and super easy to stash in your purse or bag for a quick snack on the go.

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I received a LÄRAbag full of goodies from LÄRABAR so that I could fuel my hike and let you know about the pure clean goodness of their products and also to make sure that you knew about National Take a Hike Day, which is on November 17. It’s a great day, and a great way, to #GetOutside and #EatClean.

larabar12The story behind LÄRABAR is very simple too. Founder Lara Merriken was hiking in the Colorado Rockies one day, and began to wonder why there wasn’t a convenient, wholesome alternative to trail mix that was easy to carry and eat. In that instant, in May 2000, LÄRABAR was born.

Win a LÄRABAR Prize Pack of your own!

Here is your chance to win a LÄRABAR prize pack with 16 assorted LÄRABARs and packs of RENOLA! All you have to do is visit the LÄRABAR site and tell me in the comments what flavor of LÄRABAR and what flavor of RENOLA that you are excited to try. There are over 20 flavors including some seasonal ones that will make your mouth water. The contest ends at midnight on November 7.

Save with this Coupon on your next LÄRABAR purchase!

Can’t wait? Live from La Quinta readers can get this coupon for .50 off any LÄRABAR! Click here for your coupon.

National Take a Hike Day

Don’t forget that National Take a Hike Day is on November 17! You can join LÄRABAR and me, and get outside to enjoy a hike on trails near you. You can share your stories and photos, and read about others’ adventures by using the hashtag #getoutside and #eatclean. I can’t wait to hear your stories!

Contest Rules: Must be 18 years old and a resident of the US to enter. To enter visit the LÄRABAR website and tell me in the comments the flavors of  LÄRABAR and RENOLA you would like to try. The winner will be randomly chosen from all entrants who answered the question in the comments. The contest ends at midnight November 7 and a winner will be selected and notified within 24 hours. The winner must respond within 48 hours or another winner will be selected.

What flavors of LÄRABAR and RENOLA would you like to try? Do you have a #getoutside story to tell?

Bondi Band Review and Giveaway

Bondi BandI was given an opportunity to try a Bondi Band and to host a giveaway through Fit Approach. All opinions are my own. I received one Bondi Band for myself, and three to give away.

 

I thought there was something wrong with me.

Everywhere I ran, I saw women wearing headbands. Flowery ones, sparkly ones, headbands with cute statements on them. They served a double purpose, they kept one’s hair off one’s face and they looked cute while doing so.

I jumped on the headband bandwagon.

Maybe I should have tried one on before I invested bought a variety of pretty headbands.

Try as I might, I simply couldn’t keep a headband on my head. I’d put it on, adjust it so that it felt secure, but as soon as I moved, it would slip right off the back of my head. I finally just assumed that my head was shaped wrong and that I just wasn’t meant to be a headband wearer.

When I was offered the opportunity to try out a Bondi Band headband, I thought I’d give it one more try. I remembered Carrie wearing her Bondi Band during our Ragnar Relay, and how comfortable and snug it looked on her head, and I was hopeful.

Because of the Ragnar connection, I was happy when I received this in the mail:

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I wore it for my run the very next day. First off, let me tell you, it stayed in place. It did NOT slip off my head! I kept touching it to make sure that it was there because while it doesn’t slip at all, it is also really light. The weather is really warming up here in the desert, even though I run early in the morning. I was afraid that it would make my head feel too hot. In fact, the opposite was true. The Bondi Band kept me dry and cool!

Because I just ran a few recovery miles, I had time to practice a little yoga before I needed to get ready for work. I chose a 30 minute flow class, and kept the Bondi Band on. It kept my hair off my face, and again, it felt so weightless I’d forget I was wearing a headband.

Bondi Band 5I always get a little help with my at-home yoga practice.

As I mentioned, I have three Bondi Bands to give away! Not only that, if you use the coupon code SWEATPINK when your order you will save 10% on all items (except Bargain Basement, Design Your Own, and Custom Items) through June 28!

Bondi Band

Use the Rafflecopter below to enter to win one of the three Bondi Bands above.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Bondi Band 3

Flipping Out: FlipBelt Review

The giveaway is over and the winner is…Sheena!

Wow! It’s December 16! Remember when you were a kid and the last few weeks before Christmas c-r-a-w-l-e-d by? Not anymore! The past few weeks have flown by.

I spent the weekend getting most of my shopping done. We’re doing our celebration next Saturday at my son’s house in San Diego. Lovely, but that takes four days from my shopping time.

There is still time to shop online (if you get going, like, right now). I actually did a little myself last night, for my sister and brother-in-law, who won’t be able to make it out this Christmas. If you need a few ideas, check out my Gift Guide for Runners.

Flipbelt review

One of the suggestions on my Gift Guide is the FlipBelt. I first discovered the FlipBelt when Alan and I were in Malibu when he announced the Malibu Marathon. I bought one at the expo, used it the next day, and fell in love. Since that time I have used my FlipBelt for every run.  In fact, I loved it so much that I contacted FitBelt to see if they would sponsor a giveaway. They said yes! I also received a second FlipBelt free of charge in exchange for my honest review.

The FlipBelt is a tubular pocket that fits snugly around your hips. It’s made of moisture-wicking lycra spandex and it will hold your phone, gels, keys, and other necessities, all without pinching, squeezing, or best of all, bouncing. You just slide in your stuff through one of several holes in the FlipBelt, then flip it so that the pockets face inward and your stuff won’t fall out. Actually, the first time I wore the FlipBelt, I didn’t flip it (instructions weren’t included in my expo-purchased FlipBelt), but everything still stayed snugly in place.

Flipbelt reviewI was a little concerned about my phone getting sweaty while running. The FlipBelt is not waterproof, though it does wick away moisture. I’m not a really heavy sweater, but with my first FlipBelt I noticed a little moisture on the screen after the run. FlipBelt recommends that you put electronics in a plastic bag, and even includes a ziplock bag with your online order (make sure to click that option). The bag is big enough to fit most phones. A bag is also recommended if you’ll be carrying small items like keys, coins, or lip balm.

Speaking of phones, when I first got my FlipBelt I was using an iPhone. I have since upgraded to the Note 3, which is huge. I was a little worried that it wouldn’t fit. I have a rubber case on it and I will admit it was a tight fit the first time I tried. After I received my second FlipBelt with the plastic bag, I now slip off the rubber case, put the phone in the plastic bag, and it fits just fine.

Flipbelt ReviewWhen I bought my first FlipBelt, I chose Jet Black since that would pretty much match everything. With my second one I picked Violet (after wavering over Hot Pink, Royal Blue, or Nuclear Yellow). As you can see, FlipBelt comes in a variety of colors.

 

Flipbelt review

The FlipBelt costs $29 and shipping is free in the US. Enter the giveaway for your chance to win a FlipBelt of your own! If you can’t wait, you can save 10% on your purchase by using the coupon code LFL.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The FlipBelt is not just for running. It works great for the gym, hiking, cycling, or just about any other activity. It would be really great for racing because it is so comfortable and would hold everything you would need for distances up to a marathon.

As I mentioned above, I received a FlipBelt in exchange for this review, but all opinions are my own. And my opinion is: I love it!

Kind Bars Review and Giveaway

The contest is over (and the winner listed below). I hope you’ll stick around to read the review!

I was so excited when Kind Snacks recently offered me an opportunity to try some of their Kind Bars and to sample two different Kind Healthy Grains! I have been a fan for a long time. What’s not to love?

Kind Bars - vegan

After all (from their website):

We believe if you can’t pronounce an ingredient, it shouldn’t go into your body. Actually, it shouldn’t even go into your pantry. That’s why all KIND Healthy Snacks are made from all-natural whole nuts, fruits and whole grains. No secret ingredients and absolutely nothing artificial here. Just a delicious way of getting your body essential nutrients like fiber, protein and antioxidants (to name a few).

My delicious care package included a bag of Oats and Honey Clusters with Coconut (I try to avoid honey so Alan got to enjoy it), and a bag of Dark Chocolate (chocolate!!!) and Cranberry Clusters. All of the Kind Healthy Grains are made with unique 100% whole grains like amaranth, quinoa, and millet, and contain superfoods like blueberries and chia seeds. As with all their products, they use only whole foods, and they are all gluten free and always non-GMO What an inspired idea to put antioxident rich dark chocolate in a cereal/snack!

Kind Bar Review

I also received a supply of Kind Bars, including a few newer ones that I hadn’t heard of before!

Kind Bar Review - vegan

These Kind Nuts and Spices Bars offer a variety of nuts with spices such as ginger and cinnamon. Oh, and dark chocolate too! Plus they all have only 5 grams of sugar or less. These bars were definitely my favorites, though I’d have a hard time choosing between Maple Glazed Pecan and Sea Salt and Dark Chocolate Nuts and Sea Salt. Oh, don’t forget Cashew and Ginger Spice. Or perhaps my all time favorite Dark Chocolate Chili Almond.

Kind Bar Review - Vegan

I also received a few Kind Plus bars, all of which come with an extra boost of protein, antioxidents, fiber, or omega 3 fatty acids. I love to throw one in my purse, just in case I need that boost.

The best thing of all? The kind folks at Kind Snacks want you to have a chance to try out their bars! Enter the giveaway below and you can win a dozen Kind Bars!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Kind Bar review

Bottom line, I love Kind Bars and Clusters! Great tasting, whole food that will fuel your body naturally.

Disclosure: I was sent the Kind Healthy Grains and Bars at no cost to me in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Feel Confident with Poise (and win a $100 Visa Gift Card!)

As a personal trainer and coach, it is something that I hear frequently. A client will pull me aside, and tell me, usually in a whisper, that she “has a little problem.” Even though I can guess, I always stop to listen. She may have a hard time telling me, but finally, she’ll say that she has “little accidents” when she exercises. She will feel embarrassed by this, and maybe even think that there is something wrong.

What my client has is Light Bladder Leakage or LBL, and she, along with about a third of all women, may leak a little urine when she laughs or coughs suddenly. Physical activity such as running can also cause LBL. It is embarrassing and inconvenient, and may cause some women to limit their exercise or even their social activity.

Although LBL is associated with getting older, that is not always the case. Many women are affected with light bladder leakage in their 20s and 30s. While age can be a factor in LBL, so can childbirth, pregnancy, weight gain, bladder irritation or infection, and even stress.

Poise, with their line of light bladder leakage products, is bringing the conversation out in the open by encouraging women to share their LBL stories and offering support to women who suffer from LBL.

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I am happy when my clients open this discussion with me. It gives me an opportunity, first to let them know they are not alone, and then to guide them in the right direction to find solutions so that LBL won’t inhibit their lifestyle. What should you do if you notice that you have leakage when you laugh, sneeze, or exercise? Here is the advice that I give my clients.

  1. Don’t be embarrassed. There is nothing wrong with you, you are not abnormal, you are part of a large group of women who share the same issue.
  2. Make an appointment with your doctor. While LBL is not a disease or a condition, it can be a symptom of something more serious.
  3. Do your Kegels. At some point in their lives, most women learn about Kegel exercises, but few practice them on a regular basis. Well, we should. Strengthening your pelvic floor muscles can help relieve LBL. The Kegel exercise is very simple and can be done anywhere at any time. Simply contract the muscles that stop your urine flow and hold for several seconds. Release. Repeat 10 times. Aim to complete three sets a day.
  4. Use an effective panty liner or pad. Poise makes a complete line of panty liners and pads designed specifically for light bladder leakage. They absorb effectively and neutralize odors better than period pads, which usually aim simply to cover up odors with scent. Poise liners and pads don’t have to be thicker because they are made for LBL and instantly absorb wetness and neutralize odors so they are less likely to leak. Click here to learn more about Poise LBL liners and pads.

I had an opportunity to try out the Poise liners. I wore them during normal activities, and tried them out on the run too. I was concerned that they wouldn’t fit properly or feel comfortable in my running shorts. I discovered that I wasn’t even aware of the liners while I was running. They stayed in place, and didn’t come loose or bunch up during my six mile run. 

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Here is your chance to make the Clean & Fresh switch! Click here to get a free sample or coupon for Poise pads and liners!

And now for the Sweepstakes! Just answer the question “What do you do to feel clean and fresh?” Each comment will be entered to win a $100 Visa gift card!  

 

Sweepstakes Rules:
No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winner  will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 8/13/13 – 9/12/13.

I Want to Share: Discounts, New Products, Events, & Giveaways

I want to take a moment to introduce you to a few amazing companies, share some specials and discounts, plus let you know about some upcoming events. Oh and remind you of a couple giveaways that I have going on here myself. Most of these are companies with which I am affiliated, either as an ambassador or an advertiser, but, since I only  associate with products and services that I love and believe in, I feel comfortable in sharing them with you.

Swirlgear

Share - Swirlgear

Swirlgear is an all-women owned and operated company founded by Lacie Whyte a few years ago because she wanted to make functional yet pretty athletic wear. The result is a line of beautiful active wear that can function on the run, but can also be worn to stop for a cup of coffee or to pick the kids up from school. Use the code 1014 for free shipping on your order!

Follow Swirlgear on Twitter and Facebook.

 

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The Running Buddy

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The Running Buddy will replace your fuel belt and your armband with one, small yet roomy and lightweight running pouch with a water resistant inner pocket. It is large enough to fit your phone, keys, and gels, attaches securely to your shorts (and won’t pull them down!), and is made with a soft, dri-fit material.

Follow Running Buddy on Twitter or Facebook.

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Hybrid Athlete

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The Hybrid Athlete offers something totally unique. You can pick the price you want to pay for their Hybrid Fitness System, which contains more than 52 weeks of workouts. They also offer the Trainer Toolbox, courses for trainers and coaches in Kettlebell Instruction, Fitness Business, and Obstacle Course Training. I took the Kettlebell Instructor course, and it was very thorough, discussing technique, safety, and used both a written and video format.

Follow the Hybrid Athlete on Twitter and Facebook.

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Bestowed

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Bestowed is a subscription service that each month delivers 5+ amazing nutrition and lifestyle products directly to your door. Each item is handpicked by Bestowed’s founder, nutritionist and author Heather Bauer. I reviewed Bestowed back in April. I was also the lucky winner of a Bestowed Box in a giveaway! I was recently asked to be an Ambassador and I happily accepted.  If you order between now and August 7, your first box will be only $10 (regular price $19). Just use the code HELLOYUM.

Follow Bestowed on Twitter and Facebook.

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 Kindrunner

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I have written frequently about Kindrunner.com. I have been an Ambassador since before their opening, and I proudly donated back my old shoes after my recent purchase, thereby becoming a #KindRunner myself. Promising to be the first full-service running shoe store on the internet, Kindrunner also offer a free custom fit service, free three-way shipping, confident runner pricing, expert shoe reviews, and you earn Kindness Cash Rewards when you donate back your old shoes.

Kindrunner.com and I, as their Ambassador, are asking you to join Soles4Souls and thousands of people across the globe in the Barefoot4Them Awareness Event. On October 10 we will elect to go 24 hours without footwear to show our awareness and support for underprivileged people worldwide. Barefoot-goers are encouraged to submit a photo of their unshod feet to social media with the hashtag #barefoot4them. In addition to that, Kindrunner.com will donate $1 for every picture submitted with that hashtag. Read more about the initiative here and join us on October 10.

Follow Kindrunner on Twitter and Facebook.

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Color Me Rad

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 When I run Color Me Rad in Orange County on November 2, I will be celebrating my birthday in style and color! This will be my first such run and I am excited about it. Color Me Rad 5ks are happening all over the US and Canada, so check out their location map and sign up!

Follow Color Me Rad on Twitter and Facebook.

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 Blog School

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I recently became an affiliate for the upcoming Blog School offered by Blog Genie. I did that because, as a student in the amazing Rita Barry’s current class I know exactly how helpful Blog School is for a blogger. Crucial even. Registration opens on August 13 and the class starts on September …  Each month will bring a new topic, lessons, and yes, homework. You will have 24/7 access to your course so that you can study at your own pace.

The free mini-course, Build a Remarkable Blog, is still going on (last class is August 6). You can still sign up and will have access to the lessons through August 12. You can check out my original post for a little more detail about Blog School and the free mini-course.

Follow Blog Genie on Twitter and Facebook.

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Giveaways!

I also want to remind you of the two giveaways that are still going on here on the blog.

Share - NaysoyaYou can win two jars of Nasoya vegan Nayonaise, plus you’ll find a review of the product and two recipes here.

 

 

Share - Health-Ox Pulse OximeterIf you suffer from Exercise Induced Asthma, you will find some information and tips, plus a review and giveaway for the Health-Ox Pulse Oximeter here.

 

 

Good luck! You still have a few more days to enter (and can earn additional entries for both giveaways too!).

Enjoy your weekend! I have to work on Saturday, but plan a long run and yoga on Sunday and Monday. Do you have any plans?

 

Disclosure: I am an Ambassador and affiliate for Swirlgear, and will earn a commission if you purchase using the code I provided.  I am an Ambassador for the Running Buddy, and receive discounts on my purchases.  I am an affiliate for Hybrid Athlete. I received the Kettlebell course at no cost, and receive a commission if you purchase using the link above. I am an Ambassador and affiliate for Bestowed, and will earn a commission if you purchase using the link above.  I am an Ambassador for Kindrunner.com and will from time to time receive products to review at to cost to me. I received a free entry into the Color Me Rad 5k in exchange for writing about it on my blog. I am an affiliate for Blog Genie’s Blog School, and will receive a commission if you purchase using the link I provided. I am proud to represent all of the above companies, and every opinion offered here is my own.