Night Runner Pro Kickstarter

The Girl's Got Sole - Night Runner Pro shoe lights

Disclaimer: I am a supporter of Night Runner shoe lights. Since the Night Runner 270 lights were created, I was a supporter of the product. That said, I have received Night Runner 270 shoe lights in exchange for previously blogging and promoting the product. No other compensation has been received.

I love Night Runner shoes lights. When I was given the opportunity to try the lights and review them back in 2015, I really loved the product. Ever since, I never run in the dark without my Night Runner 270 lights.

Now, the fine creators of Night Runner 270 have created Night Runner Pro shoe lights. These are a newer version of the shoes lights. The new Night Runner Pro version boosts double the battery life (10 hours of lighted runs) and lumens as the original 270. In addition, the Pro lights will be the first to provide Bluetooth/smart phone integration. Talk about more awesomeness!

The Girl's Got Sole - Night Runner shoe lights

As with the original Night Runner 270, there is a Kickstarter campaign in full swing to fund the new lights. The campaign must raise the full 25,000 in order to green-light the Night Runner Pro shoe lights. Presently, as I write this blog post, they are 58% funded. Getting in on the ground floor now and backing the new Pro shoe lights, $55 will get you a pair of the new lights if the project reaches goal.

If you don’t know about Night Runner shoes lights, please do read my previous product review and check out the Kickstarter campaign information. If you are an early morning runner, night runner, or anyone who ventures out in the dark to get your endorphins on, these shoe lights are a must.

The Night Runner Pro project must be fully funded by Friday, April 21st.

—–>Back the Night Runner Pro project <-----

Ultimate Coffee Date – April 2017

The Girl's Got Sole - Ultimate Coffee Date

It’s that time again, time for another Ultimate Coffee Date! This awesome virtual event is brought to you by Deborah and Coco. Please make sure you check out both of their blogs and join in the coffee date fun!

If we were having coffee, I would tell you… that it’s been a tough week. On Sunday morning, I found my sweet lovebird, Indy had passed away while I was at church. It was an unexpected and sudden thing, so I was very shocked and upset. After letting Angel go to cross the Rainbow Bridge in February, I never thought I would lose my other baby so soon. That said, I have a new baby in the family. My parents helped me adopt a baby parakeet this week. I had been considering getting another parakeet eventually after Angel’s passing, but since I still had Indy, I just kept that as a thought. I didn’t think it would be so soon after Indy, but truth be told, I need a feathered baby in my life. While I will never, ever forget Angel or Indy (they are forever my babies), I think this new little guy will be good for me. And, I hope I’m good for him and can make his life a good one. He has already brought a smile to my face, one that went missing on Sunday.

The Girl's Got Sole - Toby Mac bird

Say hi to my new baby, Toby Mac

If we were having coffee, I would tell you… that I’m excited about the month of April. Not only is it my birthday month, but I’ve got a half marathon on April 23rd. I am running Star Wars: The Dark Side Half Marathon at Walt Disney World. It’s going to be my second runDisney race this year, and it looks like my next race that I will be pacing as well. Looking forward to the race and pacing it, as Princess Half Marathon was a great time. I’ve been a Star Wars fan for awhile, so I am excited about all the costumes and such that I’m sure to see along the way! April also marks the last month before I kick off TCS NYC Marathon training. May is officially the start of it, and I’m definitely ready to get my miles on!

The Girl's Got Sole - Thyroid energy...tired

It’s kind of like that.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you… I have been struggling with my Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis pretty regularly these days. Specifically, the exhaustion portion of things. My energy stores end up being so low by mid-week that I find myself wanting to do nothing but take a long nap. This isn’t acceptable when you’re supposed to be working. So, I’ve started the FMLA process at my job so that I can not risk what pays my bills if I need to leave early from work because I am so fatigued. I have an appointment with my doctor this coming week to get the paperwork filled out and all, so we shall see what she says. I hate having to leave work early, but the exhaustion can be extremely bad. In that I can’t stay awake at my desk. Not fun and no amount of coffee does the trick unfortunately.

Confessions of a Mother Runner

What would you tell me if we were having coffee or your favorite beverage together?

Product Review: SmellWell

Disclaimer: I received SmellWell to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!

The Girl's Got Sole - SmellWell review

Let’s be honest, when you run or workout, you sweat and smell. And, I don’t mean smell good, either. As a runner who trains most of the time in the Florida heat, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve discovered that a not-so-pleasant odor is unfortunately me. More accurately, my running clothes and shoes.

SmellWell solves the problem for us. It goes directly to the source and does more than just hide bad odors. SmellWell absorbs moisture, thereby removing odors. What is left is a fresh, clean scent.

The Girl's Got Sole - SmellWell

When I first heard about SmellWell, I was definitely interested. Anything that can help my running gear smell better, I’m willing to give it a try! I have mostly used them in my running and workout shoes, but my running closest and gym bag have greatly benefited from SmellWell. Everything smells so good! Yes, I have smelled my running shoes after they have had SmellWell bags in them overnight. No bad odors were detected!

What’s great about SmellWell is that the bags are environmentally friendly and free of hazardous chemicals. Because of the non-allergenic properties the product is made from, they are completely safe to use if you are sensitive or have allergies. Also, the inks used to print the outer bag are approved via an extensive REACH test.

The SmellWell bags come in numerous color and patterned designs, so you can choose your favorite style. The bags will last between three and four months, depending upon how they are used. It seems that they will last a bit longer if used primarily in running shoes or other sneakers. And, while the bags absorb moisture and odor, they do not remove any bacteria.

The Girl's Got Sole - SmellWell

Bottom line is, I really like the SmellWell bags, and can see myself using them in my running shoes going forward. It’s a product that can help so many runners and active folks keep their sneakers and gear smelling fresh after putting them through their sweaty paces.

Join the April 4th #bibchat at 9pm Eastern with sponsor, SmellWell. You could win SmellWell product!

Indy Bird, My Hut Boy

My sweet lovebird, Indy crossed the Rainbow Bridge on Sunday. It was a sudden, unexpected passing and it shook me very much. After losing my parakeet, Angel last month, I didn’t think I would have to say good-bye to Indy so soon after.

I went to church on Sunday morning with my friend and room-mate, Pat. Everything seemed usual, but when we arrived back home, my baby Indy was gone.

The GIrl's Got Sole - Indy bird in his hut

After re-gaining our closeness over the last couple of weeks, Indy had even become excited to come out of his cage and have his ‘freedom’ to play atop his cage in my bedroom. On Saturday night, my sweet boy had flown directly to me and landed on my shoulder. He stayed there for about 10 minutes, even giving me kisses. It was one of the best moments together in quite some time.

I found myself stunned on Sunday after finding him, asking God “why,” my baby had to leave me. Through my strong faith in my Lord, I couldn’t understand why. Why Indy had to cross that Rainbow Bridge.

The tears flowed, and flowed. The shock, being so unexpected was the worst part I think. That coupled with having to say good-bye to Angel a little over a month ago made it harder. While I was saddened to let Angel cross the Rainbow Bridge, I knew that not only was she not well, but that I still had Indy back home to love and be with.

Suppose that I will never truly know why Indy was called home to Heaven. But, I know that at least now, he is back with his sister, Angel as well as Mocha and Peachy.

The Girl's Got Sole - Indy bird

I’m trying to remember all the great times I had with my sweet boy in the more than 10 years I had with him. He was a blessing in my life and I will always remember how amazing he was. He was and always will be my “Hut Boy,” and I will miss him so very much.

The Weekly Pursuit #36

My weekend started off great, but didn’t end that way. I came home from church yesterday and found my lovebird, Indy had crossed the rainbow bridge. It was a complete shock as he was acting fine and we had just played the night before and he was happy. It was just so unexpected and I still can’t understand it. Sadly, I know that we can’t understand everything that happens, but that doesn’t mean I’m not asking God why I had to lose my other baby bird so soon after losing Angel last month.

The Girl's Got Sole - Indy

Indy last week on my laptop.

Sunday didn’t go as planned after that, as I was a ball of emotions. I’m so thankful for my best friend who is like my big sister who was there for me, as was my mom. I’m also thankful for all of the kind words and love from my friends online and the texts I’ve been getting. They mean a lot to me, and make things easier to deal with. I will be writing up a post about Indy this week once I can gather my thoughts.

On the upside, my Saturday went great. I had the Winter Park Road Race 10k and while I didn’t get a new 10k PR, I did very well. I finished in less than a minute slower than my 10k PR that I had set at that race back in 2012. I gave the race all that I had and I am happy with how I did.

The Girl's Got Sole - Annikki & Shannon

Annikki and I post-race.

I rode into the race with my weekday running buddy, Annikki and it was great hanging with her at a race. I ended up running near her and another friend for over half of the race, as we ended up playing ‘leap-frog,’ so that was fun. The race itself, I ran mostly with Colleen and Melissa, the former was who I ran with at Swamp House Half Marathon. She has gotten quite fast too, and kept me moving!

The Girl's Got Sole - The Weekly Pursuit

Looking back at last week’s goals…

1. Logging my food intake each day. Check, doing well on this one.
2. Hydration, keep drinking water. Did good on my hydration last week.
3. Get taxes done. Yup, got them done!
4. Eye exam and buy new glasses. Tried to get them on Saturday, but didn’t happen.
5. Rest, listening to my body when I need to rest. Did okay on this, I took one rest day last week.

This week’s goals…

1. Logging my food intake every day.
2. Hydration, especially since I have a long run on Saturday morning.
3. Listen to my body, rest when I need to.
4. Write Winter Park Road Race race recap & BibRave review

The Girl's Got Sole - You Don't Realize

What are your goals for the week?

6 Years Running & Winter Park Road Race

On Saturday, I will run the 2017 Winter Park Road Race 10k. The race has special meaning for me, as it was my first-ever 10k back in 2011.

In 2011, I was a new runner. Well okay, to be accurate, I was a run/walker. I got into doing the C25k program in 2010, ended up injuring my back, then becoming a walker for a time. I consider it the year that I learned what I am capable of fitness-wise. It was at the Winter Park Road Race 10k that March that I did my first-ever 10k race.

The Girl's Got Sole - WPRR 2011

2011 Winter Park Road Race, pre-race.

This was all before I did my first half marathon (which would be later that year at Space Coast Half), and it was a big day for me. I recall being excited and nervous. Before that day, I had only done 5k race events. It was quite a step in my running/walking life.

My dad came with me to the race, as I asked him to come to support me and take pictures. The day itself I can recall only in pieces now, like the waiting for the race start and of course the start itself. Then, I remember how excited I was to cross that finish line, it was an amazing day for me.

The Girl's Got Sole - WPRR 2011

Crossing the finish line of the 2011 WPRR 10k.

With the 2017 Winter Park Road Race 10k just a day away, I have found myself thinking back to that first 10k. It’s neat to remember the race or races that really got you into running. I’ve come so far over these last few years, it’s almost hard to believe that I’ll be training for marathon #6 in a couple of months. Isn’t it amazing how much we are truly capable of doing?

What was your first race(s)? Was there one race that motivated you to keep running?

Things I’m Loving (March 2017)

It’s been awhile since I’ve done a post about things I’m loving lately. So, I’ve decided to remedy that and post some of the things I’m loving right now. šŸ™‚

1. Skirt Sports Skirt Breaker jacket. This has become my go-to light jacket these days with the slightly cooler temps here in Central Florida. It’s a thin pink jacket that’s kind of see through. Perfect when I’m running and just need a bit of warmth. Sadly, this isn’t currently available for sale (unless you find one on ebay or the like), but there are always some great jackets available on the Skirt Sports website!

The Girl's Got Sole - Skirt Sports jacket

Not the best pic, but that’s the pink Skirt Breaker jacket.

2. SmellWell pouches. I’m reviewing these for BibRave (review coming soon!) and I love them. SmellWell makes everything like my running shoes, gym bag and such smell great! They are like little bean bag sized pouches that you can put wherever you need something freshened up. My running shoes have been the most popular location for them, but my running wardrobe closet has benefited too. No more sweaty smelling workout wear!

The Girl's Got Sole - Smell Well

Smell Well makes my running shoes smell fresh!

3. Anything for a T-Shirt. This is the book I’m currently engrossed in about Fred LeBow and the NYC Marathon. As you probably know if you’ve been following my blog for awhile, I’m in love with New York and the marathon, so the book is perfect. I’m learning so much about Fred and the history of the marathon. I will definitely post a review about the book once I’m finished.

The Girl's Got Sole - Fred LeBow book

4. Orgain Organic Protein Bars. I am in love with these bars! Found them at my local Vitamin Shoppe and have been picking up a few every week. The bars are only 140 to 150 calories and have 10 grams of protein. Talk about a good snack loaded with protein goodness. With four different flavors, I can’t pick a favorite (though Cookie Dough & S’mores rank high).

The Girl's Got Sole - Orgain Protein Bars

What are your favorite things right now? Let me know in the comments. šŸ™‚

The Weekly Pursuit #35

Where oh where did my weekend go? Do I really have to go back to work today? LOL! šŸ™‚

I’m actually looking forward to what the week ahead has in store. I am feeling motivated, inspired and rearing to go. My goal of losing weight and being more fit before marathon training kicks off has me filled will passion. I’ve learned that I need something to really be passionate about and then I’m good to go on achieving anything I put my mind to.

The Girl's Got Sole - Bike workout

This past week was good, I got in a lot of bike workouts and one run day. That’s not a normal workout week (as I usually run 3 times a week), but I’m content with how things went. I have been getting my bike workout mileage up, and I’m hitting 9 to 10 miles each workout more easily now. I’ll always prefer to run, but cycling is my next favorite go-to for a cardio workout. Now, I just need to get on regular strength training and I’m good!

On Saturday, I got in 6 miles with a couple of my runner friends in Winter Park. The temps were a bit cooler than anticipated, but less for my hands feeling colder than I’d like, I enjoyed the run. I felt pretty energized and lighter on my feet. Might have had something to do with not running on Tuesday or Thursday, I don’t know. Either way, I was feeling good and could have easily gone for another couple of miles.

This weekend, I’ve got a race, the Winter Park Road Race 10k. I love doing this race every year. It’s through a lot of the area we run on regularly in training, so I’m used to the roads and bricks. My first goal is to get a new 10k PR, that would be awesome. My best 10k time right now is 1:18:27, but that was back in 2012 according to my records. Been awhile since I’ve gotten a better time at the 10k, so going to see what I can do. Otherwise, I just want to run it as best as I can, finish feeling good. That would be my B goal.

The Girl's Got Sole - Saturday run

Need to get new glasses this weekend, so that’s on the agenda for Saturday after the race. I’m way overdue for an eye exam and new pair. I also want to get a new pair of sunglasses, so hopefully, I can get that taken care of on Saturday afternoon. Not a fan of new eyeglass shopping, but I’m going to bring a friend, so maybe that will be helpful in getting it done less painfully. LOL!

The Girl's Got Sole - The Weekly Pursuit

Looking back at last week’s goals…

1. Logging my food daily. Getting all of my logging done like I should!
2. Hydration, drink up! Doing pretty good, but could do slightly better on this.
3. Write Swamp House Half race recap and BibRave review. Got this done yesterday.
4. Listen to my body when it needs rest. I did good on this, I took off two rest days last week and I need them.
5. Get my taxes done. Not yet, will have to be this week.

This week’s goals…

1. Logging my food intake each day.
2. Hydration, keep drinking water.
3. Get taxes done.
4. Eye exam and buy new glasses.
5. Rest, listening to my body when I need to rest.

What are your goals for the week?

Race Recap: 2017 Swamp House Half Marathon

The Girl's Got Sole - Swamp House Half Marathon

On March 5, 2017, I ran the 2017 Swamp House Half Marathon in DeBary, FL. This was my second time running this half marathon, as I ran it in 2016. It’s actually still my half marathon PR race a year later. Since I did so well last year, I was looking forward to running the race again.

After driving up to DeBary the day before the race to pickup my bib and packet, I was ready to go when I woke up Sunday morning. Since I’m temporarily living in Kissimmee with a friend, it took a bit longer to drive to the race, but I got there with enough time to hit the port-o-let and meet up with some fellow Orlando Galloway running friends.

The Girl's Got Sole - Swamp House Half Marathon

Some of the Orlando Galloway group at the race.

We chatted for a bit before the race began. I headed out with some of my Galloway friends doing 30:30 intervals. Right out of the gate, I admit I wasn’t feeling overly great. I just felt okay and not as energized as I wanted to be. I was happy to be with friends because I was feeding off of their chatter and excitement which got me feeling better and more upbeat.

By about mile five or six, the group was separating from one another. I ended up running with Colleen from that moment onward. We still had some Orlando Galloway folks right in front of us as well as behind, so we were in good company. Love being around my training group runner friends.

Colleen and I chatted about this and that and the miles began to fly by a bit more quickly. The course hit a portion of paved gravel type road and we both joked at how crummy that was. We debated on whether that surface was worse on our feet, or if our usual bricks back in Winter Park got that award. I believe we ended on agreeing that the gravel was worse. LOL!

The Girl's Got Sole - Swamp House Half Marathon

Swamp House rooster šŸ™‚

The final miles, a lot with that gravel road didn’t help when Colleen had an ankle cramping she told me she tends to get on longer runs or races. I wondered if it had to do with her salt and sodium levels, so I gave her a salt stick hoping it might help. Didn’t seem to do much, but she was a real trooper and kept pushing forward.

Seeing a rooster on the course was a fun distraction. He was just strutting along on the side of the road like nothing exciting was happening. He became a photo-op for us crazy runners. We sure love our animals and friendly wildlife seen on the run!

The Girl's Got Sole - Swamp House Half Marathon

Colleen and I after the race.

By the time we were at the last 5k of the race, the sense of relief was felt between both of us. I always try to joke that, “hey, it’s a usual weekday run” at that point, but we all know it’s a mental trick after running 10 miles before then. I’m all about whatever helps you get through a race, so I use it a lot. I’m always feeling the run, but it’s all a mental game during so many of the miles.

Then, there it was, the glorious finish line. I held myself back a bit so I didn’t sprint too soon and run out of steam. But, when I did hit that sprint, I gave it all I had left in the tank. I pushed my legs, my body until I crossed that finish line at 2:57:23. It wasn’t a PR time, but I was proud of that finish. After running the Princess Half the weekend prior, it felt good to get that finish time.

The Girl's Got Sole - Swamp House Half Marathon

I enjoy this race, even through the gravel road stuff. It’s supported well with plenty of water stops along the route. I would do this race again next year, and likely will. It’s a fairly flat course and I can see myself getting a new PR there in the future.

Fit Journey Update

It’s been quite a journey so far, and getting into the 2017 TCS NYC Marathon has really pushed me to get myself in better shape by summer. I was about 8lbs lighter when I ran the 2015 NYC Marathon than I was when I started my Fit Journey this year. My goal is to get back to that point again.

When I got on the scale this morning before my run, I was pleased to see a 1 pound loss! That one pound took a lot of work to get rid of! I have been working a lot harder on losing the weight since March 2nd. So, that focus and drive that getting into the marathon gave me is the best motivation I could have asked for! Amazing what we can do when we have the right mindset and passion.

The Girl's Got Sole - One pound of fat

It may have been a small loss (but hey, one pound is one pound, it’s good!), but I’m feeling a lot better in my clothes and just overall. I feel my body changing and I know that I’m on the right path. I’ve got 7 more pounds to go to hit my goal weight. I know I’m going to get there in the coming weeks!

This is a journey I’m on to get more fit again and to stay that way. While I would love to lose the rest of the weight quickly, it’s just not the best way. It’s not healthy to do that. Through hard work and time, it becomes again ingrained in my brain how I want to live. I remind myself all the time how long it took me to lose my 75+ pounds in 2008/2009, it was a lifestyle change that required months of work. Despite not having that much weight to lose right now, it still takes time. In fact, sometimes 10lbs or less can take quite a bit of time to get off.

The Girl's Got Sole - I will fight for it

If you are on a weight loss and/or health journey right now like me, keep your head up! You WILL get there, just stay positive and remember WHY you are doing this. You are doing this for you, it has to be for you and to better yourself and your overall health.