Category Archives: Reviews

The 2017 Lunar Landing: BOB Revolution Flex Lunar Review

MY BOB HISTORY
After I found out I was growing a small human, the very first thing I put on our baby registry was a run stroller — what I was most familiar with, what I saw most often on the road, what I still consider the “original gangster,” standard setter of all run strollers: a BOB stroller.

As my husband and I definitely have a height difference of a few inches, and as where we live is anything but flat (make your own “uphill both ways” joke here,) I opted for a 2015 BOB Revolution PRO. The PRO is essentially BOB’s base Revolution model with an added adjustable handlebar (like the Revolution Flex) and an added handbrake.

What can I say? My coworkers came through big time on this one. It’s an unwritten rule of sorts at work that runners receive a run stroller as their shower gift. Britax I knew was going to be my jam based on reviews, so we had a B-Safe 35 car seat already. Honestly, if I could do it all over again, I’d skip buying the used B-Agile (which has since found a new home with my sister and niece) and just get the adaptor for the car seat for the BOB; I love it that much!

ENTER #BOBTEAMSF
We’ve tackled a lot together, me and the BOB with mini riding along. Glorious first postpartum miles. Training for races where the outcome was uncertain. “Run commutes” to pick up mini after school. Ever reliable, I can always count on my BOB. However, I added a lot of reflective, as well as lights and a Road ID to it because I know that not everyone is alert. No runner can count on drivers seeing them, or even fellow sidewalk goers! If you know me, I never say no to more reflective and am sometimes the butt of jokes about shiny things. I wanted our BOB to scream “Hey! Can’t miss us! You’re going to remember us for sure!”

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Recently, I was given the opportunity to be a part of BOB Team SF, an organized group of stroller runners who virtually trained together for the San Francisco Marathon 5K, which allows strollers in the back of the first corral. The training was lead by “that pregnant runner,” the Flying Flower herself Olympian Alysia Montaño. As if this couldn’t get any better, it did: BOB generously gave each of us one of their brand new Revolution Flex Lunar strollers to train and race with!

THE LUNAR HAS LANDED.
I wanted to be thorough in my review and give some stroller runners some insight as to why the Revolution Flex Lunar very well be my new go-to over our Pro. Thus, I didn’t want to post a review until after we had done all our training and raced with it.

The new Lunar edition takes their adjustable handlebar and swivel-wheel clad Revolution Flex and gives it a 360 reflective overhaul. Hit it with flash and it looks like this:

At first glance, she’s GORGEOUS. If a run stroller can be sexy, she’s it, and after a cat mishap (ahem) forced me to remove the lowboy basket for cleaning I saw she can also very well be one hell of a toddler hot rod (see below.) However, the 360 reflective canopy and basket are the most obvious differences. There’s more to it.

Here’s how it throws down versus a 2016 Revolution PRO.

Model Weight Capacity Handlebar Height Overall Width Full Dimensions and Specs
Flex Lunar 28.5lb; 12.9kg 75lb; 34kg 34.5 – 48 in; 87.6 – 122 cm 25.4 in; 64.5 cm link
Revolution PRO 30.5lb; 13.8kg 75lb; 34kg 34.5 – 48 in; 87.6 – 122 cm 25.4 in; 64.5 cm link

As you can see, the main difference on paper is the weight. However, there’s more than meets the eye for me! Versus the 2015 Pro, here are some differences that make me lean towards the Flex Lunar:

  • Larger, more accessible lowboy basket. That “15% more storage space” is really felt when I’m picking little up on a Friday with park snacks and still need room for her lunchbox, jacket and more.
  • Singlehanded recline adjustment. When little was teeny, I’d have to stop, rest the recline against my leg and ever so slowly and carefully let out the straps as I never developed a smooth release technique. As demonstrated by my BOB Team SF here, it’s now very fast and easy. Parents and caregivers on the run know those precious seconds count!
  • The interior pockets seem like they’re larger, so they better accommodate a wee HydroFlask, Camelbak etc. and a packet of almond butter each.
  • It simply handles lighter. I can’t quite explain this perception, but I swear I noticed it even before I went hotrod status. I thought I’d miss the handbrake on all the downhills but I feel I have better overall control, can turn sharper with three wheels down and locked and can maneuver easily. Navigating race day I did not feel like I was driving a land boat.

One added perk of having two strollers in rotation is that one is always handy, and it’s given me the opportunity to let BOBcurious friends and family take one for a solid test drive (steer? push?) before committing. The end result thus far? One friend who upgraded to a BOB Flex Lunar, one coworker who bought a dualie for his twin girls and I’ll be seeing my sister soon to see what her verdict is. She’s been happy with the handling on the hand-me-down B-Agile, so I’m pretty sure the BOB is going to blow her mind!

Both the Pro and the Flex Lunar have a wrist strap so they can’t ‘run away’ without you, an adjustable handlebar and a foot brake (see again ‘run away.’) To be frank I actually use the handbrake walking downhill more than I have ever used it while running. Additionally, both can be carseat-convertible friendly with an added adaptor bar, so it starts coming down to preferences and needs.

If you’re in the market for a do-it-all stroller, one that can handle the 6am to-school commute in low light just as well as it handles all day at Disneyland, the Flex Lunar is a fantastic option. It will absolutely be my race day choice moving forward for any stroller races, and a natural go-to for early and late runs. Our good ol’ Revolution Pro is still near and dear to my heart but what can I say? Mama likes the new whip.

Full disclosure: while BOB generously provided me with a 2017 BOB Revolution Flex Lunar stroller, all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own.

Dam Good Gear: Review and Giveaway

C66Fz2lVsAADE5d Hats and I have been friends for some time now. Maybe I like sun coverage. Maybe I like keeping that tomboy swagger with me at all times.

…or maybe I don’t always like brushing my hair. Okay fine, maybe I can’t always find a brush, nor do I necessarily care to. Call it a time saving trick.

Whatever the reason may be at any given moment in time, I can never get enough hats. Baseball style, snapback preferred, foam-front truckers… seriously just GIVE ME ALL THE HATS.

Enter Alpine Dam.

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The Brightest Low: Brilliant Reflective Review

The long standing joke that I get easily distracted by shiny things has been exacerbated by my love of running. What’s shinier than blinking lights? Reflective, of course!

Sadly, not every fitness apparel company believes in 360 degree reflective. As a road runner and a stroller runner, I have zero faith in a tiny reflective logo making me visible to texting drivers. Thankfully, I don’t have to plunk down hundreds for new, reflective specific gear: Brilliant Reflective is making it easy for everyone, everywhere, to be seen.

Of course they’re beautiful, of course they’re fascinating, but come on. Let’s be real: not everyone can plunk down triple digits for a reflective jacket when there’s still-good jackets in the closet. Prints are also very personal, and for some, it can feel a bit much. Thankfully, with Brilliant Reflective, everyone wins. The be-seen crowd can make it their own. The be-safe crowd can be economical and safe all at once.

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Can you see me now?

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From the Inside Out: Beachbody Performance Review

There are a lot of things I’m picky about and how I fuel is one of them. While I am indeed a Beachbody coach, I will fully admit that it took this opportunity through BibRave to actually try them. A vegan, I knew I wouldn’t be into anything with whey. Thankfully, I had a couple of coworkers who were game to try the Recover and Recharge formulas.

Nicquie is a go-getter who never stops. She boxes, runs, surfs, hikes and all with incredible vigor. Her review below of the Recover formula says it all.

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Hittin’ That Cush: OOFOS OOlala Sandal Review

The nitty gritty disclaimer: I received a pair of OOFOS Project Pink sandals of my choosing 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.

Before anyone gets too disappointed, this post is about sandals, not anything Snoop Dogg or Tommy Chong might be discussing. What can I say? Writing a solid headline can be a little too fun sometimes. So yes, full disclosure, the cush here is really shorthand for ‘cushion‘ and yes, it’s still worth a gander.

A typical day at T9HQ.

As someone who has previously proclaimed her love for being practically barefoot, this was a very interesting experience. When the opportunity came up to try OOFOS footwear, I knew I didn’t want to pass it up. A copywriter and brand voice by day, I spend a lot of time with products, specifically products made by the outdoor industry. What’s that mean? If it’s for going outside, for women, for athletes, or some combination thereof, I’m in. It is indeed a bit of living the dream to be able to show up to meetings sweaty, or to have my running clothes count as work clothes.

However, the business isn’t all about what I like or want, otherwise the spectrum of offerings would be very different! There are times when I have to write copy about products I have no personal experience with yet, and that’s when I draw on personal testimonials from others.

Case in point: the J.R. Sandal.
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Ekiden Coaching: Week 2

After eeking out a surprise 10K personal best to cap off my highest mileage week in too long, I wasn’t sure how week 2 would go. However, my coach definitely seemed to have paid attention to what I had done during the base week and it felt like my workouts for the week had been dictated accordingly.

Null Monday’s workout.

While I still in many ways find myself a relatively new runner, I do feel like I’m educated and established enough to understand what the goal of any given workout is, and how to be smart about both workouts and rest days. We shall see as time goes on, but I can already see how Ekiden’s coaching format can be very beneficial for runners like me. (If you missed it, you can read about my first week with Ekiden here.)

WEEK TWO: HOW’D IT GO?
Coach Jenny gave me my first workout that would test my half marathon goal pace. My current personal best is from 2014 – 2:07:04 – and I would love to see my next half marathon time start with a 1. This would mean that I would need to run at a 9:00 pace to hit a 1:58, so I was thinking that 8:30-9:00min/mi pace seemed an attainable goal.

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Let’s Talk About Socks, Baby

When it comes to work apparel I’m a very lucky gal: what I wear to run or workout in passes as “work attire” when you work for a women’s athletic and sportswear retail company. This means that wicking jackets, sweaty ponytails and muddy “dirt anklets” from the morning’s trail adventure are all perfectly acceptable in a manager’s meeting.

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Yes, I dress like this on most workdays. It’s not always a mesh tank top and spandex shorties, but my sock game is strong. It’s strong to the point where my coworkers are disappointed if I’m caught wearing boring low white cotton socks (which still happens on occasion. Laundry, am I right?) When I was pregnant, I was able to rock compression socks every single day. Not just plain ol’ boring medical-in-appearances compression socks, oh no. Ever since Pro Compression came into my life, I’ve been a diehard fan.

1208317_1690387327872827_221050573_nWhile I am still a fairly new runner–a runner  who didn’t feel comfortable even calling herself a runner till after running Ragnar Napa 2011, two years after her first race — I know quite a bit about athletic apparel of all kinds. Roughly six or so years of running, a lifetime of athletics, and a career built in part upon being an product educator has taught me loads about performance apparel and other outdoor industry goods from start to finish.

Read: I love nerding out on it.

See, the hardly subtle socks I like most aren’t just a fashion statement. While I had seen them at races, I used to think that I wasn’t a “serious” runner, so why would I need those socks? I didn’t even run that far, I was “just” training for my first half. Cramping and fatigue paired with bonking in races where I thought I was going to PR peaked my curiosity. I decided to try a pair. Continue reading