Category Archives: product review

Is it summer yet & Thrive Forward Sport Edition

Today’s Workout: AM lifting/strength and PM yoga@ Om Factory

So it was 80 degrees today in NYC.. did we completely miss spring or something? Even though today was nice, I do like spring and a small part of me is happy it will be getting a little cooler this weekend. I plan on going hiking in my brand new hiking shoes that Karl and I bought on impulse. Now we have to make sure we use them because they aren’t cheap. That being said, I did enjoy sitting and eating lunch while looking at the flowers planted by the city of NY in 80 degrees today.

Flowers in Herald Square

Flowers in Herald Square

Unfortunately, this beautiful weather got me thinking about the summer, wearing bikinis, and also about starting training for my first marathon. So yeah, I sort of panicked because I can’t believe its already this warm out and I’m just not ready for it. Especially for the marathon training. I want to do it right and I want to do it healthy most importantly, from the inside out. Which means no beer…

beer

But no, even though it sounds delicious, I will not have beer. Not only does it add to the waistline which is the opposite of what I’m trying to do, but I also have upcoming races this year that I want to be tip-top for.

This is where the new Vega Thrive Forward Sport Edition program is coming in for me. You may have read my review in the past of the original Vega Thrive Forward Program created by Brendan Braizer and remember how much I love it. Now, they have introduced a brand new part of the program focused on sports nutrition to pair with their Vega Sport line.. um, can you say amazing?! How many runners (including me) have wondered how to eat more plant-based but still have energy they need? This will give you the answers… for free.

https://i2.wp.com/www.powercakes.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Screen-shot-2012-12-28-at-12_57_43-PM_thumb.png

I’ll be talking more about the program the more I, myself, go through it but it includes:

Clean Sport Nutrition: Protein, Recovery, Training
Endurance Training
Strength Training
Functional Strength

Just like the original, you get videos, recipes, tips, and a TON of information that’s going to help me meet my running goals while still eating clean and mostly plant-based.

Here’s one video about endurance training sources for athletes:


My pre-summer goal is to incorporate as much of this program as I can as often as I can. For the original Thrive Forward, I printed out and made a binder of recipes and important information that I learned. I plan on doing the same with the Sport Edition, but making it a priority since I am so active and have a marathon (whattt?!) coming up. I NEED to put better food in my body!

Brendan Braizer

Brendan Braizer

If you already signed up for Thrive Forward (again, its FREE), the Sport Edition information/resources should be in your account already at the bottom. If you haven’t signed up, you can do it now here. You also have the chance to win some awesome prizes from Vega (like whole tubs of their protein powder) by participating and sharing information. You just can’t lose, seriously!

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Has it been warm weather where you are?
Are you ready for the summer? How will you make sure you are?

19 Comments

Filed under product review, summer running, Thrive Forward, videos

Abs By April & Fit Four Gloves Review & Giveaway

For those of you participating in the Abs By April Challenge, you know that its almost over! I cannot believe how fast the time went and can’t believe its spring already. Next week will be the last chance workout and then I will be posting results for those who wish to share! I can’t wait :) Here was this week’s workout, all participants should have already received the email with this info.

Abs by April- Week10 PNG

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In the spirit of Abs By April and my goal of building muscle before the summertime, I have recently started seriously lifting. In the past I didn’t really push myself with strength training, but lately have been taking it up a notch. I LOVE the feeling after a good strength session, the moment where you can increase your weight, and lifting the same or more than the guys at the gym :) Girl power!

The only downside though is that I’ve been lifting to the point where I started developing calluses on my hands. Yuck! I won’t share the visuals with you because I doubt anyone wants to see that. That’s why I was SO excited when I was contacted recently by the wonderful people at Fit Four Gloves to try out a pair of their gloves, it was just perfect timing!

My Fit Four Gloves at the gym

My Fit Four Gloves at the gym

Fit Four Gloves are fitness gloves designed with a minimalist approach. Ever see the guys at the gym with the full-length gloves? Yeah, these aren’t like that and I think it works way better. The gloves have a four finger design that covers your hands where you actually need it without all the excess traditional gloves have. At first glance, they look pretty different but, trust me, when you try them on you’ll love them!

Some other things I like about these gloves: durable synthetic leather with “extra skin” for tough workouts, ventilated palms, and stretch lycra material on the back of the hand. Having my hands comfortable when I work out has helped in making me excited to go do strength training. Before when I lifted without these, I wasn’t thrilled because of all the damage weights were doing to my hands. But not anymore!

FitFour1

The back of the box.

I’ve been using these in the gym for a few weeks now so I’ve had the chance to really put them to good use for this review.

What I like about them:

  • Forms nicely to¬† the contours of your hand (i.e. good materials)
  • Only covers the part of your hands you need covered; no excess
  • Stretchable, but strong
  • Air holes for ventilation. As someone who gets sweaty palms when they are warm, this is perfect!
  • Stay put and don’t move during tough workout sessions or exercises
  • Cost: Priced well at $25.95. This seems to be a very competitive price for fitness gloves, so this is in the pro category.
  • Comes in four sizes (small->extra large)
  • Machine washable

Some cons:

  • Takes me a little adjusting at first to find my “sweet spot”. Ordering the right size is REALLY important!
What they look like on my hand

What they look like on my hand

The verdict: In my opinion these are worth it and, as a newbie at strength training, I have fallen in love with them fast. I have also fallen in love with not having calluses on my hands anymore! So in summary, go get yourself a pair :)

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Luckily, I am able to offer the chance for one of you to WIN YOUR OWN PAIR of Fit Four Gloves! Click on the Rafflecopter link below to enter, its super easy.

*** Fit Four Gloves Rafflecopter Link ***

The giveaway will end April 3 at 11:59PM EST and the winner will be announced the following day. Good luck!

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Disclosure: Fit Four Gloves sent me a free pair of gloves to review. As always, all opinions expressed are my own.

26 Comments

Filed under Abs by April, crosstraining, product review, shopping

Aqua Running & NEW Vega One Bars

So my foot has been acting up the past few days with Plantar Fascitis pain, so sadly there was no long run for me this weekend :( But I made the best of it anyway!

First off, I made my lifting session intense and tried out new minimalist Fit Four Gloves during the workout too. They were a lifesaver, especially since I started to get some small calluses on my hands. I love lifting for so many reasons: the looks on peoples faces when I pick up heavier weights than them (you know you love that too!), the feeling of my muscles working hard, and the post-lifting pump.

Trying out my Fit Four gloves while lifting.

Trying out my Fit Four gloves while lifting.

I also tried out aqua running this weekend since I can’t run normally on my foot yet. I haven’t done this in a while but it was actually really nice. I did some laps as a warm up/cool down with running in between. Since the pool is shallow I didn’t use a floaty belt and it worked out fine. I’ll be doing more of it this week so I’ll update you about my workouts!

Running in the pool!

The pool I run in!

Now for some food finds. Firstly, I found this deliciousness which is an awesome way to get chocolate milk taste without all the sweetener, especially since I don’t drink regular milk anymore. Its so good!

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Yum!

Second, this week I also have another super amazing food find to share with you.. NEW Vega One Bars! As you know, I’ve been singing the praises of the Vega Thrive Forward program all year and have learned so much about how to eat more plant-based. Yes, I now bake with beans , use nutritional yeast for everything, and am addicted to bok choy. Who am I?!

Since I have all this free time right now I also have been making many of the delicious Thrive Forward recipes. But pretty soon its back to work for me :( which means time will be more limited. Cue on-the-go Brendan Braizer-forumulated Vega One Bars to save the day…

My Vega goodies

My Vega goodies

Dum dum dum dummmmmm!! There they are in all their beauty. Vega has been hinting about them for some time and officially released them in three equally tasty flavors:

Double Chocolate
Chocolate Almond
Chocolate Cherry

Basically, this is a Vega One Nutritional Shake in a bar form with a ton of antioxidants and probiotics to keep your body from going crazy. I mentioned the other day about my annoying running stomach issues (ugh) but these bars have caused no problems in the stomach department. I had one before a medium-length run the other day and the tummy was happy as a clam (PS. How can you tell a clam is happy?)

The three tasty flavors.

As the self-proclaimed number one fan of anything chocolate, these three flavors are perfect for me. Just perfect. It was hard for me to pick my favorite, but the Double Chocolate may have a slight edge because I’m convinced its a little bar sent from heaven right to my door. Thanks Vega angel, fairy, whatever you want to call it! Seriously though, the chocolate is delicious and tastes natural (because it is!) unlike so many products these days.

Double Chocolate. Enough said.

Double Chocolate. Enough said.

When I first bit into it, the texture was different from what I expected. The ingredients include rice crisps and white chia seeds (you can see the seeds in the below photo) that I think give it the cool texture that is so hard to describe. Now, I really am anti-bland food so after the initial surprise I fell in love with the way it made each bite unique and exciting.

While the texture varies from the average bar, this really works and the flavors in general are perfect. This is not your average bar.. its wayyy better! They must have done a ton of work on them before sharing, and it really shows. Hard to believe its all plant-based too! Just so you can see the inside of the bar, I’m sharing with you my partially eaten, teeth mark showin’ bar.

Teeth marks and everything.

Teeth marks and everything.

For the nitty gritty details, each bar is slightly different but has about 250 calories, 10g of fat, 15g of protein, 6g of fiber, and tons of healthy vitamins, Omega-3s, probiotics (1 billion!!), and minerals that would take me forever to list. Oh yeah, and there is NO gluten and contains no artificial flavors, colors or sweeteners. Since I avoid artificial colors/sweeteners (yuck!) at all costs, this is a major SCORE!

Especially if you are a fan of the Thrive Forward program, clean eating, or just delicious food in general, I suggest you find and devour these bars. There are also going to be some more super exciting things offered by Vega pretty soon.. stay tuned for more!

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What workouts did you do this weekend?
Have you ever tried aqua running?
What flavor of these bars do you think you’d want to try?

17 Comments

Filed under aqua running, crosstraining, food, health, product review, Thrive Forward