Tuesday, June 30, 2015


So if you follow me on Instagram (https://instagram.com/carleemcdot/), you probably noticed a few of my posts from last week had the hashtag #MyLockLaces. I have to be honest, I didn't want to bring too much attention to it before because I am selfish and didn't want more people entering the contest ;) #KeepinItReal

Anyway, LOCK LACES was having a photo contest (actually it is still going on - they are picking a new winner every week this month). You were supposed to photograph your LOCK LACES being used in everyday life and then use the hashtag #MyLockLaces. Easy peasy, right?! That's what I thought too! And the prize for last week? A GoPro HERO4!

So OBVIOUSLY I had to throw my name in the ring as many times as possible (without being too obnoxious of course!). It just so happens that I currently have LOCK LACES on 5 pairs of running shoes (and hubby has them on two pairs of his), so most of my running pictures I could tag ;) Below are the pictures I used as entries.

Ryan even entered himself with this photo from one of our many hikes during our camping adventure last weekend at Kern River.

Source: @Ruggedwoodsman's Instagram Feed

I was hoping that I could win, but knew it was a random winner (not who had the coolest picture or the most likes), so figured I would try to enter as many times as I could to better my chances, but really had no idea how many entries there were going to be.

The weekly contest runs from Monday through Sunday, so I knew the winner was going to be selected soon and was crossing my fingers and toes (and maybe my eyes) that it was going to be ME. Of course I was stalking LOCK LACES' social media, so when I got on their Facebook page this morning, LOOK WHAT I SAW...

Yup, I WON! I am sooooooooooooooooo stoked! Hubby and I have been talking about getting a GoPro for a while now and just haven't gotten around to it. THIS IS PERFECT! I think I literally let out a "Yipeeeeeee" when I saw it and physically ran to my phone to call Ryan to tell him the great news!

Oh yeah, and like I mentioned at the beginning of the post, the contest is still going on. If you would like to enter, check out their Facebook page! This week's winner will win a free pair of running shoes (I mean, one can never have enough running shoes, right?!). 

Source: LockLaces' Facebook Page

And although I am THRILLED to have won the contest, I don't rock LOCK LACES because of things I can win (even though that is a nice perk), I really like the product (or else the hubby and I wouldn't have them on 7 pairs of shoes around the house!)! You should totally check LOCK LACES out if you haven't before. THEY ARE DA BOMB DOT COM! And I'm not just saying that! 

Do you enter contests?

Monday, June 29, 2015

We Get An Extra Second

Did you know?

Tomorrow there will be a "leap second"! Meaning there will be a minute (at 8pm EST) that will actually have 61 SECONDS! Apparently this is due to the slowing of the Earth's rotation and keeping our calendars correct (or some scientific stuff like that). I had no idea until I came across an article about it for my job. (And I hear it actually occurs every couple years... EX-SQUEEZE ME?! How have I never heard of this before?!)

Sure, sure, one extra second may not be a big deal (which is probably why I hadn't heard about it in my daily life), but it got my wheels turning.

What if, instead of an extra second, we got an extra hour? How would you use an extra hour?

Would you hug your kids for those 60 minutes? Maybe you'd go for an extra long run. Would you sleep (I mean, honestly, who can say they get "enough" sleep these days?!)? How about taking that photography class you have been wanting to do? Or maybe you'd get all of those tasks that have been on your to-do list but you have been 'too busy' to accomplish crossed off. Would you lay on the beach? Maybe you'd take your pup for a hike in the woods. How about a relaxing massage or facial?

Then I got to thinking... WHY DO WE HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL THEN TO DO THESE THINGS?! I know, sometimes there are financial constraints, time restraints, etc, but if we really think about it, if something is important to us WE WILL MAKE IT HAPPEN, otherwise, we will make excuses.


Shoot, if you were to "bank" 10 minutes a day, by the end of the week you'd have that extra hour. Maybe you could go to sleep 10 minutes earlier or check social media 10 minutes less (obviously this blog is not a waste of time, so keep checking it ;)) or multi-task a little more or watch a little less of TV/ Netflix.


I was chatting with a friend before the hubby and I went on vacation last week (mostly about cleaning and chores I "had" to do) and said something along the lines of, "I have a ton to get done before we leave. But honestly, if it doesn't get done, either it didn't need to be done or it can wait until we get back."


Let me be honest, this is normally NOT the attitude I have. Like I have said MANY times, I am a list maker and I NEED to cross things off said list. But I am coming to a point in my life where I am realizing I need to put things on my list that I WANT to do too! And maybe a little re-prioritizing is needed.

Make time for things that REALLY matter to you. I don't want to hear (or use) the excuse "I'm too busy", okay?! Let's make it happen!

What could you do to save 10 minutes a day? And what would you do with that extra hour every week?

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Workout Recap - Week 26

Sunday, June 21st – 10 mile run, Foam Rolled & Stretched

Monday, June 22nd 13.1 mile run, Foam Rolled & Stretched

Tuesday, June 23rd –  Strength Training (abs, back, arms and legs), 3 mile run with the hubby, Foam Rolled & Stretched

Wednesday, June 24th –  7 mile progression run, Foam Rolled & Stretched

Thursday, June 25th – 5 mile run

Friday, June 26th – 3 miles worth of hiking with the hubby and puppy

Saturday, June 27th – 4 miles worth of hiking with the hubby and puppy

Even though we were out of town this past weekend and I might have had to switch up my runs to get them in, I would say it was a VERY successful week! I got in 38.1 miles of running, 7+ miles of hiking (in triple digit temperatures) and a strength training session. Sometimes you just have to be okay with mixing it up :)

How were your workouts this past week? 

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Sharing Saturday - Halo Headband

It has been a couple weeks since my last Sharing Saturday post and for that I am sorry! I guess I just get caught up on the daily happenings and forget that people want free stuff ;) {Don't worry, I am in that SAME CATEGORY, so don't feel bad if that is why you pop by my blog occasionally :)}

Although living in Southern California means most of the year feels like summertime, we are now OFFICIALLY in the summer season! Summer brings with it lots of amazing things - sunshine, bonfires, laying at the beach, stargazing, s'mores, fireworks, more sunshine, etc. (I am not ashamed to say that summer is my favorite season of the year!) Along with the awesomeness, some not so stellar things also tend to accompany summer... The main one that comes to mind is SWEAT!

I know there are some "girly" sayings out there, like "I don't sweat, I sparkle" and the like, but let me tell you - I SWEAT... LIKE A LOT! (I guess you can say I sparkle WHILE I sweat, but I am definitely letting out a lot of liquid awesome when I am getting my workouts in :))

I have blogged about Halo Headbands in the past (I actually even worked for them for a short period of time trying to be a sales rep, but I quickly found out sales is NOT my forte). The main thing that sets Halo apart from other brands is the sweat block patented seal! This little piece of wonderfulness helps to channel the sweat away from your eyes and face!


I have two, brand new Halo Headbands sitting in my room right now and I figured now was the PERFECT time to give them away to two lucky readers!

The first one is the USA Halo Headband - Tie Version. Just in time for the 4th of July, right?! (PS If you don't win this or if you want one BEFORE your 4th of July race, you can use code "HALOUSA" to save 20% on your order of a USA Flag Headband.) {I did want to mention, I see more guys wearing the tie version and more girls wearing the pullover version, but obviously you can wear whatever floats your boat!}


The second one is the Paisley Red Headband - Pullover Version. This one reminds me of an old school bandanna print.


I figured I would put the two headbands in two separate Rafflecopters, that way you are sure to get the print you want. There will be a winner selected for each of the headbands. You CAN enter both giveaways (and if the same person wins them both, then they are just a lucky duck and I can save on shipping :))!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Enter early and often (some of the entries are available DAILY). I did want to mention, this giveaway is NOT sponsored or affiliated with Halo Headband in any way... I am just sharing some of my gear {brand new, of course} with YOU! It will run through Friday, July 3rd at 11:59pm PST. I will contact the winners via email (using the email address listed through Rafflecopter) who will have 24 hours to respond and claim their prize. Also, the entries ARE verified, so please make sure you complete the task or I'll have to pick a new random winner.

Friday, June 26, 2015

GUEST POST: "Running While On Vacation" By LetsRun4Ever

Summer is here, and unless you are someone who lives in a warmer climate year-round, you can’t imagine the excitement we here in the Midwest look forward to our summertime. It may not last all that long, but when the leaves start to turn in a few months we will have all squeezed every ounce out of summer that we could.

With warm weather – and time off from work and school – summer is a perfect time for travel and vacations. Well, I think anytime is a perfect time for travel and vacations, but I digress. One challenge for runners is finding the time, resources and even sometimes the motivation, to keep running on vacation.

I’ve been fortunate that already this year I have traveled to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, as well as Dubai, and had some great runs at both places. Later on this fall, I’m going to Rome and have discovered that they appear to have a great running community there.

Not to mention, sightseeing while on a run is a wonderful way to see a new place. So what’s the best way to make the most of your runs while on vacation? Here are a few things I’ve discovered that might help.

*Do your research ahead of time. You will probably start looking into other aspects of the trip before you travel, and figuring out the running portion of your vacation shouldn’t be an exception. Look into routes near your hotel or places that are a short ride away, or pick a place that you might like to see on foot.

When I was in Milan, Italy a couple of years ago I spent an afternoon at the Formula 1 race track in Monza. I found out when I arrived that the circuit actually sits in the middle of a beautiful park with lots of great places to run, including certain days where they let you actually walk or run on the track! Milan is part of our trip this fall and I’m definitely going back there to take advantage of a gorgeous place to run.

*Reach out to the local running club. Find local clubs and check out their websites and social media. Most clubs have fun runs or even some more serious runs once or twice a week if you are looking for people to run with or really want to get in a good workout. Most club website lists places to run and tips on how to run safely, which come in really handy.

It’s a great chance to meet new people and have a new experience. The views in Dubai are stunning, but it’s not the most runner-friendly place in the world with its very urban landscape. But I contacted the local club ahead of time and they directed me to a park that was a literal oasis in the desert, complete with grass, flowers and a huge pond in the middle. That and the park offered a marked, 1500-meter running path that was made up of a nice rubberized surface. I also joined a couple of club members for a run one evening and had a blast.

One thing a local club can also help you with is the local customs. For instance, Dubai has a dress code that, while it still allows people freedoms to wear what they want, stresses and expects modesty in most situations. So you can wear a singlet or a sleeveless shirt, you just can’t go shirtless or in a sports bra, for example.

Be a polite guest and find a way to blend in with the culture where you are, the locals will greatly appreciate it.

*Make your runs true “fun” runs. You’re on vacation for crying out loud! Run slower, look around more, take pictures. Don’t be afraid to stop and look around, or explore something interesting. When I was running in Puerto Vallarta I stopped and walked through a park and sports complex that was really interesting.

Even though there weren’t a lot of people there, taking a really close look at the details of the park helped me learn a lot about the area and their culture, and I think it helped me understand the people who live there even more.

I can get intense when I run and miss a lot of my surroundings, so it was a little hard to dial it down a notch, but it was well worth it. Treat your runs like any other excursion you take, as a chance for a new experience.

I think the last point is the most important…have fun! Whether you are going somewhere for some rest and relaxation, or traveling to a race, it’s all about doing something new, fun and exciting. You’ve got the rest of the year to be serious, when you go somewhere and lace the shoes up, make every run a once in a lifetime experience.

Mike Knapp is a dad, husband and runner who lives in Bartlett, IL and is the owner and head writer for the blog Let’s Run Forever. Mike has been running for 16 years and has run eight marathons, and will soon begin training for the St. Jude Marathon in December. You can find him running at the Hawk Hollow forest preserve, and online in all sorts of social media places.

     Blog: letsrun4ever.blogspot.com
     Twitter: @letsrun4ever
     Facebook: www.facebook.com/letsrunforever
     YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCt4CtnYFlRAvIlqhsA602Vw/feed
     Instagram: @letsrun4ever
     Periscope: letsrun4ever

Thursday, June 25, 2015

GUEST POST: "Get Running" By RunMeganRun

5 Tips for Incorporating Running into Your Life

… especially after you start a new job and your whole (previous) life’s schedule is turned upside down.

Hi guys! I’m Megan, from Run Megan Run. I started a new job about 3 months ago that is 8 am – 5 pm demanding and asks a current 40-minute commute home from me. My previous temporary gig was substitute teaching, where I was home by 3:30 every afternoon and could run when I pleased. Needless to say, going back to an 8-to-5 was pretty tough and even 3 months in, I’m still struggling a little with finding the balance, and sometimes the desire, to make sure I get out the door.

Here’s a few tips, partially by science and partially straight from yours truly, on ways to take advantage of the time you have and the energy you’re given on how to make sure you’re still lacing up to your satisfaction.

1. Schedule!

I fortunately/unfortunately live by a planner and a to-do list. My summer is swallowed whole by work, so it’s tough for my time to get quickly commandeered by other ‘life’ things. Just like you would write a to-do list of the things you need to get done at work, consider adding your run to your to-do list, too – it’s just one more check-mark to add to your notes! Maybe it also means putting it into your Outlook with a reminder so that you have a regularly scheduled workout time built into your day for you.

2. Runch

If you haven’t heard of the runch, you’re missing out. I mean, check out all these people that do it! Runching asks more of you, especially if you value your lunch hour more than anything, but it’s a great way to combine two loves: getting out of the office and getting your run in! This is hard logistically sometimes, especially if you’re super-sweaty and don’t have access to a shower at your work (lucky for me, I work on a college campus with a gym). I took advantage of this often in Georgia in the winter and spring, and would get a solid 2-3 miles in and time to chow down! Total time maximization.

3. Incorporate it Into What You Do

Because I work on a college campus, and students are typically super cautious or interested in building a fitness-based lifestyle, it’s often been easy to incorporate running and exercise into what I already do day-to-day. At my last school, I was given the opportunity to coordinate a student trip to a local 5K – many of these students ran/walked their first 5K ever that day! How lucky am I that one of my passions, running, can be easily interwoven into my work life too?

4. Set a Goal

Every time I’ve felt a lull in my motivation to get up and going, I’ve found a new goal or challenge to work for. My downtime in motivation has often come after a big move or job change, and I often found it hard to just run with no goal in sight (I have a different appreciation now of just running for the sake of running). Whether that means you’re tackling the #RWRunStreak this summer or have a PR in sight, create a finish line for yourself that will inspire you on the toughest days to keep going. My spring had a good schedule of races on weekends, but the weekdays were tough for me and many thanks to the run streak challenge this summer, I’ve re-found the motivation to make sure I’m giving myself time to get out each day!

5. Cut Yourself Some Slack

This is one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned… cut yourself some slack! It doesn’t have to happen every day, nor does it always have to be as long as you want. Keep in mind what you’re working for but listen to your body and what it’s willing to give. A friend of mine posted this article last week and it resonated with me: sometimes it’s okay to sleep in and choose a later alarm over getting in another 2-mile run. Not only are both necessary, but it’s difficult to get healthy doses of one without the other. So know that hitting snooze an extra day or two won’t make or break you… and it’s OKAY!

Orrrr you can just use motivational alarms like this one!

What other tips do you have to keep up on your running when work and life requires so much? Any great things you’ve learned?

Thanks for reading along, and many thanks to the super fabulous Carlee for letting me take over for a day! You can follow me on Insta, Facebook, or Twitter!

- Megan