I'm always on the lookout for healthy snacks - whether it's to fuel for a workout or just to fight off the 3:00 munchies. I like granola bars, but I am a little picky about texture.
Enter Huppy Bars! I had not heard of them until one the Run Eat Tweet AZ group brought it to me as a review opportunity.
Huppy Bars were invented by a river guide who was looking for a healthy, wholesome snack to enjoy out in the wild. They have several flavors, but I chose the apple cinnamon raisin and the chocolate java.
I chose to try the apple cinnamon one after our Halloween group run where I was in costume...
I was immediately struck that I could see pretty much every ingredient. There it was, in its natural state! I am a big fan of nuts and seeds. I don't like overly sweet bars, so I thought it was a great balance. It had just the right amount of spice, and was really moist.
Look at this beauty!
And the ingredient list is just as pure as you would expect!
Marathon #10 is finally complete! What had been left unfinished for 8 years, my mission to reach 10 marathons is now realized. Did it go as planned? Um, not exactly.
I got into Detroit and spent a leisurely morning relaxing with my cousins. There was some rain in the forecast, so I decided to get my standard day-before-race 2 miler out of the way before it rained. It was chilly, but so nice to see the fall colors!
After the run, I made plans to meet up with my Twitter friend Jenn Voss. She's the one who originally talked me into doing this race in the first place! At the expo, we also ran into another Twitter friend, Adam (@boringrunner) who happens to live in the same town I do in AZ.
I'm a total cold weather wimp (which is why I moved to Arizona). I had been watching the forecast for the last 10 days, and it was projected to be clear and cold. Well, at least it wasn't going to rain! I had trained diligently all summer in AZ, but at temperatures that were double what I was actually going to be racing in. I was worried. I got a surprisingly good night sleep, but woke up to this:
I met my friend at the start line and although my goal was to beat my best marathon time of 4:24 (from 2002), I just wasn't sure what to expect since it had been 8 years since I had challenged myself to marathon distance.
At the start line, with the help of a toasty throwaway sweatshirt, a trash bag, and some adrenalin, the cold didn't seem that bad.
Right off the bat, we started with some technical difficulties. My friend forgot his garmin. I said no problem, I have mine. Well I had just bought mine and although I had taken it out on some test runs, I didn't have it set the way he wanted it. So we were fumbling around in the dark as the race was starting trying to reset it, and well - it just never happened. We switched to using the runkeeper app on my phone instead.
We had a decent pace for the first few miles in the dark, even though we had to dodge a lot of people. My feet felt numb and tingly for the first few miles. My friend was constantly looking at our pace and started driving me crazy. I always tend to start a race fast, but as we were climbing the Ambassador Bridge into Canada, it was wearing me out a bit.
We were treated to a great sunrise over the bridge, which tempted me to stop and take pictures, but I didn't. We were running roughly an 8:30 pace for the first 5 miles.
Running through Canada was nice. We were along the water, and the fall colors were in full swing. I started taking short periodic walking breaks. Around mile 8 it was time to head back through the tunnel to the US, the famous "Underwater Mile". I felt ok up until the climb out of there.
CAUTION: NERVOUS BREAKDOWN APPROACHING!
Around mile 10, we were back on US soil and my mind started to get away from me. I started to have what felt like a semi panic attack. I was overwhelmed with thoughts of "what did I get myself into?" and "I'm not sure I can do this". I felt like I was going to hyperventilate. I wasn't even at the halfway point yet, and was freaked out at the idea of still having another 13 miles after that. I told my friend how I was feeling and he gave me a pep talk. I told him he needed to entertain me and to stop looking at the time, that wasn't helping. We decided to turn off the phone and just run.
I felt better after the halfway point, and at the split I was thinking "This is what separates the men from the boys". All those times that I was the one running the half, watching the full marathoners make the turn and go another 13. Now it was payback time.
I was taking more and more walking breaks. My pace was slipping, but I sort of didn't care. All that mattered was making it to the finish line. I watched various pacers run past me. The 3:55 pacers, the 4:10, 4:20. oh no!
We ran onto Belle Isle, which was a really quaint island off of Detroit. That was a pleasant distraction. Still walking too much. Seeing single digits ahead of me felt awesome. Some people hit the wall at 20, but I was excited. Bring it on!
I ended up finishing in 4:36, which is a little off from what I wanted. Still way better than my last one 8 years ago, (4:59) but in my
top 5 in terms of finish time. I never did completely warm up, and at the finish line, my lips were blue. It probably didn't get warmer than 43 degrees that morning. Great running weather for most people, but not for this Arizona girl!
Now that I've had some time to reflect on it, I think that I probably will do another one (at least). I know that I can can do better. There are things I would change about my training. I'm not sure I would do another cold weather marathon. I hated training in the AZ summer, and the actual race conditions were a bit harsh for me.
That being said, the Detroit Marathon is a great race to do if you can. It's the only International marathon that starts in the US. It is flat and fast, and does provide a lot of good scenery. It's extremely well organized. Detroit gets a really bad rap. I hope more people can come out and give this race a chance - if you can stand the cold!
Going through marathon training in the heat of the Arizona summer has put hydration and recovery at the top of my priority list. I used to be someone who took hydrating for granted. I could barely be troubled with carrying water on my runs. Not anymore!
I have been trying various hydration/recovery products lately, so when I was given the opportunity to try Cocogo, I jumped at the chance!
Cocogo is a combination of coconut water and REAL fruit. The real fruit is what sets it apart from the rest of the competition. It is all-natural and gluten free!
It comes in 3 flavors -
-Coconut water + lemon/lime
-Coconut water + Grape
-Coconut water + Raspberry Passion Fruit
Personally, I don't like just plain coconut water, so the natural fruit flavors help mask that taste for me.
I tried the lemon lime first, I knew it would be my favorite. I'm always drawn to that flavor combination, especially when it comes to sports/recovery drinks.
It was more tart than I was expecting, since I'm so used to drinking Gatorade. Reminded me of drinking unsweetened lemonade. It's a good thing that I like things more tart than sweet.
As you can see, Cocogo has an assortment of vitamins, plus Calcium, Magnesium and Potassium - all important things that athletes need! The electrolytes are so important to help fight fatigue and cramping, and help us replenish what we lost during our workouts.
The grape flavor was a huge hit with my son. He gave it 2 thumbs up. It reminded me of a fruit punch a little bit. It would be a much better option for him than Gatorade, so I'll definitely be giving him this again!
Lastly, I tried the raspberry passion fruit. Now that was really a fruity combo! I could even see throwing some fresh raspberries in the glass and serving it over ice. It was quite tasty.
I'm not sure that I can totally give up my sweet sports drinks after a hot run, but this would certainly be a good replacement if you are looking for a natural electrolyte product. It has made me rethink my hydration options for sure. Plus now that I know my son likes it, I'll definitely keep some on hand for him too!
If you'd like to try Cocogo for yourself, be sure to use RUNEATTWEETAZ at checkout for 10% off!
I'm finding myself a little restless these days, now that it's just a week before my marathon. No longer do I have to get up at the crack of dawn to get my runs in. I don't need to get out before sunrise to beat the heat!
I'm really enjoying the shorter mileage. I did participate in a 5k last week, the Esprit de She in Mesa, AZ. It was fun to get out there and push myself, since my long runs have been a bit on the slower side.
It was weird to only do a 5k, not the 10k like I did last year. Nevertheless, I finished in 25:14, which wasn't too shabby.
With only 1 more week until the Detroit Marathon, I plan on laying low. My "long" run for this weekend is "only" 8 miles! Happy dance! The bonus? I could wait until 8am to go out and run if I wanted to! What freedom! Tapering isn't so bad after all...
I was beyond excited to sample NuttZo. I am a peanut butter freak. To me, peanut butter is its own food group, full of wonderful nutrients and the ability to make people smile!
They sent me a jar of smooth Power Fuel and to-go packets of Original, Power Fuel and Chocolate - perfect for taking on a run or a hike.
If you are not familiar with NuttZo, it is an all-certified organic product. The samples I received included smooth varieties of the following flavors:
1) Power fuel
3) Dark chocolate
First up was the Power Fuel. It has cashews, almonds, brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, hazelnuts, chia seeds and sea salt. YUM! It has ZERO sugar - and it doesn't need it! Compared to regular smooth peanut butter that has 7 grams of sugar per serving, that is impressive!
Although I love natural peanut butter, I feel like there are always consistency issues. It's either too oily or too dry. The Power Fuel blend had a great consistency and I felt like i could taste most of the different types of nuts and seeds. I'm normally a crunchy peanut butter girl, but the variety of nuts/seeds in this product really satisfied my palate.
My favorite pre-race or pre- long run fuel is peanut butter on a bagel or toast, so either one of these two would rock my world and have me full of energy for the duration.
Lastly, I went in for the chocolate one. I've never had chocolate peanut butter. Where has this been all my life? I was intrigued because it was Peruvian Dark Chocolate. This variety had a really mellow chocolate flavor for being 70% dark chocolate. Normally that can be bitter. Instead, it was heavenly!
(DISCLAIMER: I was given the NuttZo products by NuttZo to try. I was not compensated for this review. All opinions in this post are entirely mine.)
If you are a nut butter fan, you know that it is not cheap. NuttZo is comparable to it's competitors in terms of price. That being said, you can feel better about the fact that NuttZo donates 1% of its gross sales to the non profit organization Project Left Behind, a program that funds orphanages.
Here's your chance to get your hands on your own NuttZo and try it for yourself! RunEatTweetAZ is doing a NuttZo giveaway*! Head over to the RunEatTweetAZ FB page. They are giving away a jar of Power Fuel crunchy and 20 to-go packets! The giveaway starts today! A simple "like" on the giveaway post, and a comment enters you to win! Deadline to enter is October 6, so don't delay!
*This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed, or administered by, or associated with Facebook.
Hi, I'm Emily! I'm an avid runner in Arizona with a passion for travel and racing around the country!