Bedgear Galaxy 3.0 Pillow

Disclaimer: I received a free Bedgear Galaxy 3.0 pillow to review 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!

I am a horrible sleeper!  Maybe it’s the career I’ve chosen since I rarely get a good night’s sleep.  Often, I roll around and throw the sheets off of me since I feel like I’m boiling every night.  Flipping the pillow over to the cooler side only lasts so long.  That’s why I’m really looking forward to trying out this pillow!  After opening the box, I could see just how much care was given into the design and feel.  I’ll be giving this pillow some serious testing over the next few weeks!

Directly from the website:

The Galaxy 3.0 Performance Pillow is designed for side sleepers or large body types. The unique dual chamber construction of the Galaxy Series features a Boost® foam crown and Boost foam blend which ensures weightless pressure relief that won’t bottom out, creating the perfect pillow for soft support with no rebound. The Ver-Tex® fabric provides a cool to touch feeling and continuous heat deflection, regulating your body temperature for greater comfort while you rest. The Air-X® ventilated panels increase air flow and feature a filter fabric which prevents allergens and dander from entering the pillow core.

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Shady Rays Sunglasses Review

Disclaimer: I received a free pair of Shady Rays Signature Series sunglasses to review 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!

I was excited to try a new pair of sunglasses with this opportunity from BibRave and Shady Rays.  I go through sunglasses quite a bit with my active lifestyle of running, hiking, climbing, fishing, and travelling.  When I’m in the market for new ones, there are a few features that are a must for me.  First, they have to be functional and do what they advertise.  Too many times I’ve seen companies say that they are the best polarized sunglasses out there and I test them on the water to find that isn’t quite true.  Next, they have to fit my head just right and not slip when I’m being active.  Lastly, they have to be pretty cool looking.  I’m really not that vain but I want my sunglasses to look like they are stylish.  Well, Shady Rays has fit that whole package.

I’ve been testing the Signature Series in Infrared Ice Polarized and here are some of the features that make them stand out:

– Free Shipping, Returns, and Exchanges
– Durable gloss clear frame with metal hinges
– Premium Polarized red-sunset mirror lenses: 100% UV protection / shatter-resistant / salt water proof
– Includes Microfiber Cleansing Pouch + vinyl brand decal
– Lifetime Craftsmanship Warranty & Free Replacements if Lost or Broken – just pay S+H fee for lost/broken replacements.
– Every order provides 11 meals to fight hunger in the U.S. through Feeding America
– Free lost or broken replacements which can be used up to two times and all you have to do is pay shipping and handling

I appreciate a reputable company that has a mission statement that I can get behind.  Here is theirs:

We are an Independent Sunglasses Company that is focused on one thing – Making the best shades for 24/7 action.  Our shades feature shatter-resistant, high-visibility Polarized lenses with durable construction that we stand behind with a Lifetime Craftsmanship Warranty and Free Replacements if Lost or Broken*. We also secure 11 meals to fight hunger through Feeding America with every order placed.  Shady Rays are not for those who want to buy from a massive, faceless company that has been operating the same way for decades. We are for action-seekers who appreciate next-generation, innovative gear meant for everything life throws at you.  Live Hard. We Got You.®  Our mission to fight hunger in America has led to over 2.6 million meals provided to date. Thank you to our fans for fighting hunger with us.

I’m very happy with the Shady Rays sunglasses and have tested them very thoroughly during a very active lifestyle.  They’ve been put through the ringer and have held up well.  They never slipped on my face even while being pretty aggressive.  There are a few other colors that I will be looking to get and seeing the customer service that Shady Rays prides itself on, I know that I’ll amass quite the collection.

You can get a pair for your self with this great deal:  Use the code “BR” which is good for 50% off two or more pairs!  Join us for #bibchat at 8pm CST on Twitter for your chance to win one of two pair!

2018 Fort 2 Base 10 Nautical Miler

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Fort 2 Base 10 Nautical Miler race 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!

I have fun this race many times and can easily say that it’s my favorite race to run. Not only because of amazing race management but support of our military. This years race proceeds went to the USO and the Navy Ball and I couldn’t be happier! Though the course has changed a bit from the past, the race director had great communication and still made the course enjoyable and scenic.

Registration – Easy as always and very clear on the price increases.

Race swag – Every year, the tech shirts get better and better. This years is by far my favorite and I’ll wear it proudly.

The Course – This race still started in Fort Sheridan and a little more east than the last few years. There was a turnaround to make up for the mileage and changed course and it brought us through the military housing. The course still ran us through the amazing old parade grounds and tower and it is just absolutely breathtaking around the Leonard Wood loop! The remainder of the course was the same as years past along the bike trails. We passed by the entrance to the Great Lakes Naval Base where we used to enter in years past. The 10 nautical miler ends up at Foss Park just north of the base to great crowds and military representatives cheering us on and handing out medals.

The Post Race – There was tons of energy at the finish line area with plenty of foods and drinks as well as music entertainment.

The Medal – This is why you run this race!! I’ve always loved the Fort 2 Base medals but the new 3 year series that began this year is even better! There is no doubt that I will complete this series!!

Race Management – Top notch with clear communication and such amazing gratefulness to the runners.

I loved being part of this race and want to thank the race management, military, and volunteers for their continued support and encouragement throughout the race. The aid stations were short handed but they still managed to keep up and do it with a smile!

I was able to jump on Athlinks.com and claim my race results right after the race!  Jump on and make an account for yourself.  Don’t forget to add me as a friend so we can go head-to-head in future races!

Shady Rays Sunglasses

Disclaimer: I received a free pair of Shady Rays Signature Series sunglasses to review 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!

I have amassed quite the collection of sunglasses over the years and I was pretty excited to give the Shady Rays a shot.  Most of mine are polarized and I use them for just about everything from running to biking to fishing.  First, I look for the perfect fit since my head is a tad smaller than most.  Then, I look for features like UV protection, polarized, and scratch resistance.  The final feature is about style and how it looks.  The Shady Rays fits all of the above for me!

The Signature Series is the one I am currently testing in Infrared Ice Polarized.   Here are some of the super features:

  • Free Shipping
  • Free Returns
  • Free Exchanges
  • Durable gloss clear frame with metal hinges
  • Premium Polarized red-sunset mirror lenses: 100% UV protection / shatter-resistant / salt water proof
  • Includes Microfiber Cleansing Pouch + vinyl brand decal
  • Lifetime Craftsmanship Warranty & Free Replacements if Lost or Broken – just pay S+H fee for lost/broken replacements.
  • Every order provides 11 meals to fight hunger in the U.S. through Feeding America
  • Free lost or broken replacements which can be used up to two times and all you have to do is pay shipping and handling

2018 Fort 2 Base 10 Nautical Miler

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Fort 2 Base 10 Nautical Miler race 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!

There’s only a week left for one of my favorite races!  You still have time to join me and be part of this special medal series race.  The next three years medals will combine to form one amazing medal!  While I’ve run this race many times, this year will be the best yet!  There are two different distances that you can choose from and it’s not your normal race distances. These are nautical miles which puts a great spin on a distance that you may not have ever run. There is the 10 nautical mile or the 3 nautical miler and it will be a point to point race.  Register today using the code BRP10 which is good for 30% off! Code is only valid online and not valid on completed registrations.

Register HERE!

Pricing Structure
7-1-18 to 8-22-18 10 NM $80 3 NM $40
Race Weekend 10 NM $90 3 NM $45

Sunday August 19
Packet Pick up and late registration
10:00am – 2:00pm
Road Runner Sports Kildeer
20291 N Rand Rd #105, Kildeer, IL 60074

Thursday, August 23, 2018
Packet Pick up and late registration
12:00pm – 5:00pm NEW TIMES
USO Naval Station Great Lakes
**Must have a valid military I.D. to access the base

Friday, August 24, 2018
Packet Pickup and late registration
1:00pm – 7:00pm
Road Runner Sports Chicago
1435 N Kingsbury St, Chicago, IL 60642

Saturday, August 25, 2018
Packet Pickup and late registration
10:00am – 6:00pm
Road Runner Sports Wilmette
3232 Lake Ave, Wilmette, IL 60091

Race Day Parking
All 10 Nautical Mile and 3 Nautical Mile participants, spectators and volunteers will need to park at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine & Science (RFUMS), located at 3333 Greenbay Road, North Chicago, IL 60064. Shuttle buses will begin running to Fort Sheridan at 5:15am and the last bus will leave at 6:15am. Shuttle buses will run continuously between Foss Park and the RFUMS beginning at 5:15am through the end of the event.

2018 Hot Chocolate 15K Chicago

Disclaimer: I received free entry to 2018 Hot Chocolate 15K race 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!

I’m looking forward to running the Hot Chocolate 15K again this year!  There is so much energy in these races even during the cold temps.  Aside from having a fun course through the city and along the lakefront, the post race party is utterly amazing with so many goodies and entertainment.  Join me in this epic series and you can get free goodies if you use the code below!

Expo Times
Location TBA (Check back here later)
Friday, November 2, 2018: TBA
Saturday, November 3, 2018: TBA

Start Times
Wave 1 (15k & 5K): 7:00am
Wave 2 (15k & 5k): 7:45am
2 mile walk – Walk start time: 8:30am (Note: Start time is tentative, the walk will start after the last wave 2 corral has cleared the start line)

Course Map

Map.png

Elevation Map

Elevation.jpg

The Goodies!

Chocolate.jpg

Register here and use the code BRHCChicago to get this cool arm band!

As of July 24, 2018:
15K race is $64
5K race is $44
Walk for Special Olympics Adult $39
Walk for Special Olympics Child $34

2.JPG

2018 North Shore Classic

Disclaimer: I’m promoting the North Shore Classic Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

The North Shore Half Marathon is in less than two weeks and I’ve taken part just about every year since it’s my hometown and the course is challenging. The community support for this race just can’t be beat. There is so much to see on this slightly hilly course especially when you hit the old Fort Sheridan Army Base and the historic buildings. If you’re looking to challenge your legs in one of the northern Chicago suburbs, then join me and run the half or the 5K!

Date: June 3, 2018

Where: Highland Park, Illinois at the intersection of Central Avenue and St. John’s Avenue.

Register here: https://ramraces.enmotive.com/events/register/2018-north-shore-half-marathon

Use the code BRNorthShore to get a free pair of sunglasses1

Price: $84 for the half and $49 for the 5K until race day

Packet Pickups:
Fleet Feet Sports Old Town 1706 North Wells Street, Chicago, Thursday, May 31, 2018 – 4:00pm to 8:00pm
Fleet Feet Deerfield 800 Waukegan Road, Deerfield, Illinois 60015, Saturday, June 2, 2018 – 10:00am to 6:00pm

 

Medal

Shirt.png

 

2018 Under Armour Mountain Series Copper Mountain

“Disclaimer: I’m promoting the Under Armour Mountain Series Copper Mountain 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!”

Do you love running in the mountains with a beautiful backdrop? Does 12,313 feet of elevation sound appealing to you? Has a trip to the Rocky Mountains been on your list? How about a challenging race that will test out your legs?

Then the Under Armour Mountain Series of races is for you! Especially Copper Mountain and all of the beauty that surrounds it. There are distances for everyone from the 5K, 10K, 25K, to the 50K!

Friday, July 13, 2018
Location: Copper Mountain (Burning Stones Plaza)
2:00PM – Packet Pickup Starts
8:00PM – Packet Pickup Finishes

Saturday, July 14, 2018
5:30AM – Packet Pickup Starts
7:00AM – 50K Race Start
7:30AM – 25K Race Start
8:00AM – 10K Race Start
8:30AM – 5K Race Start
2:30PM – Award Ceremony**

Prices as of today:
50k – $119
25k – $99
10k – $79
5k – $50

Your registration will also get you a commemorative runner package that includes: Bib Number, Timing Chip, Finisher Medal, Under Armour Long Sleeve Technical Running Tee, and 3-Month MVP MapMyRun Access to Training Plans, Nutrition, and Insider Product Content.

Here are the impressive elevation charts!

Copper Mountain 5K.jpg

Copper Mountain 10K

Copper Mountain 25K.jpg

Copper Mountain 50K.jpg

Cut Offs.jpg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0RSeT2lKUY&feature=youtu.be

Follow along on social media at the links below for more information and photos of this exciting event!
https://twitter.com/UAMtnRunning
https://www.instagram.com/uamtnrunning/
https://www.facebook.com/MtnRunning/
#uamtnrunning, #coppermountain

2018 North Shore Classic

Disclaimer: I’m promoting the North Shore Classic Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

I’ve run the North Shore Half Marathon just about every year since it’s my hometown and the course is just beautiful.  The community support for this race just cannot be beat.  There is so much to see on this slightly hilly course especially when you hit the old Fort Sheridan Army Base and the historic buildings.  If you’re looking to challenge your legs in one of the Chicagoland lakefront courses, the join me and run the half!

Date: June 3, 2018

Where: Highland Park, Illinois at the intersection of Central Avenue and St. John’s Avenue.

Register herehttps://ramraces.enmotive.com/events/register/2018-north-shore-half-marathon

Use the code BRNorthShore to get a free pair of sunglasses1

Price: $74 for the half and $44 for the 5K

Packet Pickup: Fleet Feet Sports Old Town 1706 North Wells Street, Chicago, Thursday, May 31, 2018 – 4:00pm to 8:00pm

Elevation.jpg

 

 

My week in training 4/9 – 4/15

4/9   Cross training 30 minutes

4/10   6 miles at 10:00 to 10:30 pace

Treadmill running at 9:13 pace.  HR Z1 1:11, Z2 4:59, Z3 18:49, Z4 30:19

4/11   1 mile WU, 3 miles at 9:00, 1 mile CD

Ran WU mile at 10:11 pace, 3 miles at 9:00 pace, CD mile at 10:09 pace.  HR Z1 0:48, Z2 1:18, Z3 3:18, Z4 9:59, Z5 11:56.

4/12   5 miles at 10:00 to 10:30 pace

4/13   Rest Day

Ran some extra miles and ended up doing 3.61 miles ta 9:39 pace.  HR Z1 2:52, Z2 11:54, Z3 14:09, Z4 5:44.

4/14   10 miles, first 9 at 10:00 to 10:30, last mile at 9:00 pace

4/15   30 minutes Cross training

I ran some mileage on my last day in Boston just to see the sights.  Ended up running 3.32 miles at 11:51 pace.  HR Z1 1:50, Z2 9:36, Z3 16:10, Z4 10:11, Z5 1:34.

My week in training 4/2 – 4/8

It’s time to get my head back on straight and recover from a lapse in training while on vacation and way too much fast food.  I really need to step up my game and hit the pavement a little stronger and faster.  I probably gained a few pounds that I worked hard to get off.  Luckily, I’m back with my motivation and refreshed legs and will push it hard over the next few weeks.

4/2   30 minutes of cross training

Tonight at the gym was 30 minutes and 7.7 miles.  I fluctuated between 14.9 and 16.8 mph and it was set at level 5.  My HR didn’t get over 149.  It pretty much stayed in HR zones 2 and 3.  Then I decided to get some leg strengthening in with the leg press.  I ended up doing 5 sets of 10 at 270 lbs and then 3 sets of 10 at 360 lbs.

4/3   5 easy miles at 10:00-10:30 pace

Ran my first real run after vacation on the treadmill with the power going off twice during my run.  I ran these at a 9:45 pace.  HR Zones were Z1 0:32, Z2 1:57, Z3 6:04, Z4 17:36, Z5 22:36.  Obviously this wasn’t my best run and it was hard on the heart and lungs.

4/4   6.5 miles, 1 mile WU, 2 miles at 8:40, 4 min jog, 2 miles at 8:40, 1 mile CD

This run was after a long day in class and my first shift back at the firehouse after vacation.  I didn’t start my run until about 8pm.  The WU mile was at 8:53 with my HR in Z1 0:44, Z2 2:10, Z3 5:24, Z4 0:33.  The next 4.5 miles were a lot faster than my previous runs and I felt it in my chest.  I averaged a 8:53 pace for the tempo.  The CD mile was at 9:10 pace.

4/5   4 easy miles at 10:00-10:30 pace

Ran my 4 miles at the gym and ended up at an 9:41 pace.  My HR zones were as follows: Z1 1:54, Z2 10:22, Z3 26:28.  I really need to find answers on why my HR fluctuates so much since I stayed out of Z4 and Z5 on this run.

4/6   Rest Day!

I need this day not physically but mentally.  It’s been a stressful week with a promotional fire department class and upcoming Battalion Chief’s promotion testing.  My head is just all over the place.  I plan on doing nothing tonight but vegging.

4/7   7 easy miles at 10:00-10:30 pace

On duty for this run but will still have plenty of time to get acquainted with the treadmill.  I ran the miles at a 10:23 average pace with HR zones as follows: Z1 2:31, Z2 9:32, Z3 50:44, Z4 9:17, Z5 ZERO.  I foam rolled my calves before the run since they were tight and swollen.  I think it helped the run since I didn’t get much Achilles pain.

4/8   30 minutes of cross training

Why should you run the Cinco de Miler?

Disclaimer: I’m promoting the RAM Racing Cinco De Miler as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews!

With the weather turning into spring, most of us are getting ancy to get out and find that first nice weather race.  If you’re in the Chicago area, it comes a little later in the year if you’re not brave enough to run the early spring snowy races.  That’s where the Cinco de Miler race comes in.  It’s on May 5 and here’s a bunch of reasons to come run it!

  1. It runs along the scenic Montrose Harbor!
  2. The race shirt is festive and colorful!
  3. The race medal is not only cool looking but it’s also a bottle opener!!
  4. The charity is for Gilda’s Club which ensures that all people impacted by cancer are empowered by knowledge, strengthened by action and sustained by community and also is an essential complement to medical care, providing healthy lifestyle workshops, educational lectures, support and networking groups, social opportunities and resource referrals.
  5. FREE race photos!
  6. There is race packet mailing!
  7. The race starts at 8:30am so you can get a little more sleep in!
  8. Nuun sports drink at the aid stations!
  9. Finish line fiesta with Breakfast Tacos, Horchata, Mexican sweets and your first beer (Dos XX Lager, Amstel Light) is on the house!
  10. Post race party with Human Foosball, Luchadore ring, and mechanical bull riding!

How’s that for a great race?!  Use the code BRCinco when you register to get a great pair of sunglasses for free!

#bibchat #bibravepro, #CincoBR

Yiannis Christodoulou

GB Aquathlon team captain, 2018 National Gold Medalist (Age Group) 2017 National Silver Medalist (Age Group) 2016 National and European Bronze Medalist (Age Group) 2016 National and European Bronze Medalist Representing Great Britain in the 2017 European and World Aquathlon Championships (Age Group)

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