manitoba harvest’s hemp heart bar & discount code.

This weekend was a big one. I’m not talking about the big game or the fact that Payton Manning sold his soul to Budweiser. I’m talking about R’s and my fun trip to Clermont, which you might already know about.

What you don’t know is I was sent Manitoba Harvest bars through my ambassadorship with FitApproach and SweatPink right before we left–perfect timing! Free snacks. YAY.

I love snacks. Especially during travel when these are some of the options:

gas station drinks

Sugar. Sugar. More sugar. Caffeine. With a shot of sugar. R’s favorite! ;)

Fakeness. My body likes realness. Enter: Hemp Heart Bars.

hemp heart bar
I received Apple Cinnamon and Chocolate.

Each bar has 10 grams of plant-based protein and 10 grams of omegas so they’re meant to keep you full until you’re ready to dive into a real meal. Here’s the macro breakdown if you’re into that sorta thing.

hemp hearts bar nutrition facts

I tried both in one sitting because that’s how we do.

Review: Apple Cinnamon

hemp heart bar apple cinnamon

Honestly, I was not overly impressed. The texture was nice and not protein-y. But the apple cinnamon flavor didn’t come through as strong as I was hoping for. Wouldn’t pay for it on my own. BUT it’s good in a pinch.

Review: Chocolate

hemp heart bar chocolate

Another nope from me. The chocolate flavor also didn’t come through as strong as I thought it was going to. The good news is I love snacks enough to finish it. Again, wouldn’t buy it on my own.

The product I definitely recommend are the Hemp Hearts. They’re so great–and that’s a product I buy on my own. What I want to try next is the protein smoothie flavors. <– Go there. Don’t they sound so good?!

If you want to try out any products from MH right now is the perfect time. Simply enter HHBARLAUNCH1015 at checkout at manitobaharvest.com and you’ll get 15% off your order. 

ONE MORE THING: Manitoba Harvest is having a photo contest! Share a photo with the bar using #sweatpink and #hempheartbar for a chance to win a case of your favorite flavor. Contest ends 3/31/16.

Again: yay, snacks!! :)))

Ever tried Manitoba Harvest products? What’s your favorite “bar?”

bike race weekend in clermont & lots of snacks.

Instead of heading out of town with our bikes this weekend to escape pirates we drove about 1.5 hours to Clermont for R’s bike race.

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To be honest, I almost didn’t go. He planned on leaving our place at 6:30 a.m. and I wanted to get in a solid run. But then I remembered that awful time in his life when he woke up at 3 a.m.—willing and excited—to cheer me on at my first marathon last month.

Fine.

I set my alarm for 4:30 to maybe sneak in a short run before we left but when I gently woke up at 5:55 that morning I realized I had set my alarm to p.m. It was the universe saying: LOL we’ll take over here.

Thank goodness someone was lookin’ out because I would’ve been wiped the rest of the day.

I gathered my necessities—coffee, snacks and coloring books (LOL you think I’m kidding, don’t you?)—and we hit the road.

evolution juice
Verdict: Eh. It was super watery.

I listened to podcasts the whole way as we drove into the sunrise. It was so peaceful–I loved every second.

hemp heart bar 2I have a more in-depth post/review coming with these, but unfortunately I was not impressed at all. Boo.

trail mix and beef jerky
My go-to gas station snacks: trail mix and beef jerky. ALL DAY. But be careful with that Small Batch business–it’s straight salt.
 clermont
Lake Minneola Sports Complex

Clermont is a really cute town/city with lots of big hills, lakes, and orange groves. They also had a Super Target, which is probably the most frequented business in town.

clermont bike race 2016

Then at 10:30 a.m. they were off! There wasn’t any one great place to watch the race and, on top of that, it started raining halfway through.

From my snap (ARE YOU FOLLOWING? –> LPNEDWARDS)

clermont bike race 2016women's clermont bike race 2016snapchat lpnedwards
I may or may not have slept in these leggings the night before.

It turned out to be a blessing because my stomach wasn’t feeling great and I brought tons of magazines to read. So I sat in my car chugging Kevita drinks I got at Target and reading Outside, Cosmo, and Women’s Health.

kevita and magazine
Not related: light pink Essie nail polish is my life.

And now for a very anti-climactic finish, we went to my parents’ for food after then drove home.

Since I’m trying to include more of a story or “point” to each of my posts, here’s this one’s: Do things that are important to you BUT ALSO do things that are important for the important people in your life. 

I didn’t get to run yesterday and spent the majority of the day on my butt, either driving or on the couch, but I was super-great with all of that because my person was doing something really fun for him and I needed to be there for that.

I hope you all had a great weekend! Very important question: favorite road trip snacks? What do you get on the road if you didn’t bring anything?

11 awesome podcasts you need to listen to.

“The best things in life are free.”

Nature. Hugs. Sunrise runs. Costco samples. And PODCASTS. Podcasts are free knowledge. Free laughs. Free happy tears and empathetic ones. Free useless facts. Free life advice. Free background noise. Those are definitely some of life’s best things.

I’d listen to podcasts all day long if I had the time. With a good host it can feel like you’re sitting in the same room having a conversation. Sometimes I forget what I’m doing—not good when you’re driving. Ten and two, friends.

HNCK8495

Here are a few podcasts I’m totally into these days.

#1 Stuff You Should Know

The hosts, Josh and Chuck, discuss random topics about, well, things you should know. Their topics are on everything you could imagine: science, history, holidays, current and past events, food, sports. Everything. Some of my favorites are topics about government conspiracies and crime/unsolved mysteries. They do an excellent job of researching the topic and communicating the information in an easy-to-understand way.

#2 Runner’s Connect Run To The Top

I’ve gushed on Tina Muir, the Run To The Top host. She’s an elite/professional runner who interviews coaches, doctors, runners, Olympians, race directors and more. She covers tons of topics that all feel relevant and special. She’s British, too, so her accent is one of my favorite things about the show.

#3 Serial

Everyone knows Serial. And can we just talk about how these are now bi-weekly episodes? Not a fan. But still addicted. I’m totally enthralled in the current series on Bowe Bergdahl. Serial’s host, Sarah Koenig, is SUCH a great storyteller. She just gets it right–all of it. The fact that every episode is a freaking cliffhanger kills me, though.

#4 Freakanomics

Like SYSK the topics are all over the place, but that’s what I really love about it. Finances, sports, science, music, conspiracy, history–everything. They also have a lot of great interviews with random people like Aziz Ansari. Ha. Love him!

#5 Ted Radio Hour

Ted Talks is one of my favorite websites to watch presentations on various topics, so I’m totally into this as well. “The TED Radio Hour is a journey through fascinating ideas: astonishing inventions, fresh approaches to old problems, new ways to think and create.”

#6 RunBuzz

If you’re a runnaroundd reader then you know I’ve talked about this one, too. Lots of great interviews on tons of different running topics. All valuable. All super engaging.

#7 Pursuing Health with Julie Foucher

This might be weird but I’m in LOVE with Crossfit. I love the foundation of the sport and the people behind it. (Read about that in this post.) Julie Foucher is a Crossfit phenom who, just last year, stepped down from competition to pursue her medical career. She’s super inspiring and always has awesome interviews with Crossfit athletes, coaches, and doctors.

#8 Modern Love

Pure, magical storytelling that pulls and severs your heartstrings. I ran across this one a few weeks ago and enjoyed it. Sometimes it’s nice just to be read to. This one was amazing. Grab the tissue box.

#9 The Joe Rogan Experience

He’s a foul-mouthed comedian, actor and show host. His interviews/conversations are SO LONG, but they’re entertaining if you’re listening to people you’re interested in. The one I liked the most was Lance Armstrong’s interview. Fascinating to say the least. 

#10 Girl Boss

If you want to feel like a bomb-ass ladykiller that can rule Planet Earth then get your earphones on and listen to Sophia and her interviewees. I can’t wait to read her book. It’s pure inspiration and female domination in 45 minutes or less.

#11 Balanced Bites

I got into this one when I tried the Paleo diet like forever ago. I’m not sure any ONE WAY is right for everyone on the planet but I think a lot of her topics are super interesting and helpful for someone who is still figuring out their diet preferences and what makes them feel good.

Let me know your favorites. What are you listening to? I’m always down to learn new stuff. 

loving the run again.

“Is running not for me anymore?” The past two runs answered that question. Let me tell you about it.

From the day after the marathon until a few days ago I’ve had little desire to run or exercise or even use my morning hours to move a little. We talked about this.

That’s SO unlike me. Physically I was recovered from the marathon, but any exercise I did was about getting it done. I fought through the motions. Nothing sounded fun. I mean, I biked a little.

bike ride davis islands tampa florida

My mind and body have always been on the same page; when my legs were ready so was my heart. But not this time. Not these past few weeks.

I got worried. Why was I feeling so…indifferent? Why was I settling? Why did I sink into the couch at the end of every day to surf for new bed sheets instead of sweating? Was I slowly falling out of love with the sport?

I’ve heard stories of runners who took a break—years, in fact—before rediscovering the joy they used to feel for the run.

Could this be me?

Sunday evening I’d had enough. Time to shake this off. Could the cure be in the run—the one thing I dreaded since crossing Disney’s finish line?

Monday morning was a reset button. It would be the test—was I simply burned out or ready for a mini leave of absence?

I got 10 hours of sleep the night before and woke up ready to go. As I wrapped my hair in an embarrassing bun I promised myself I’d stop if I just wasn’t feeling it. You’re not going out to break records, Edwards. This is supposed to be fun, remember?

It took longer to get out the door. Lacing up my shoes felt foreign. I couldn’t find my keys, and I know I forgot to turn off the lights.

My baby deer legs and I stumbled through 5 miles. Others were out that morning. Hello, old friends. The sun started to rise to my left, then the sky brightened on my right as I hit the turnaround.

sunrise bayshore tampa

I’m out of shape, but it went OK. OK-er than OK, actually, because I went to bed hungry for another one this morning.

We’re getting somewhere.

I could stand the thought of a second run.

Again with the fumbling. Again with putting my shirt on backward the lights.

I ran a new route; one I’d gotten sick of during training. It started slow. I’m definitely out of shape, but I never wished it would end early. Screaming quads and all. Sweaty, stinging eyes and all.

I’m definitely still in love with this sport.

I think being burned out and letting myself dwell in the fumes for too long made me believe it wasn’t for me anymore. Like, after I’d crossed the marathon off my list that’s when running and I would make a clean break.

Sorry, pal, you’re not getting off that easy. We’re in it this thing for better or worse.

If you’re feeling these feelings like I did, I’m here to tell you it’s OK to not love the run for a little. Take time off. Take time to miss each other. Then try again. When you find your way back to each other the reunion will be that much sweeter. I promise. I promise. I promise.

52 miles: tampa to clearwater (and back) + video.

Happy February!

New months always sneak up on me, and because of that my rent is usually late. Whoops.

Last night I slept TEN HOURS. It turns out getting two hours the night before makes for a very…passed out, comatose kind of sleep. We’re feeling like a million bucks right now.

But right now I’m here to tell you about my 52-mile bike ride on Saturday.

There’s an insane pirate fest celebration on this weekend every year in Tampa and it gets…well, insane. I fully enjoyed the mayhem in college, but now I have close to zero tolerance for thousands of 20-year-olds stumbling all over South Tampa that haven’t learned how to control their alcohol consumption…or their loud mouths.

Instead of dealing with that, R and I walked to get coffee at Buddy Brew.

buddy brew coffee tampa

Then we jumped on our bikes and headed to Clearwater, making it a round trip of 52 miles.

biking courtney campbell causeway trail

I haven’t felt good enough to bike this long in awhile so I took advantage!

clearwater beach florida 2

DCIM100GOPRO

clearwater beach florida

The weather was awesome and having one of America’s best beaches as our turnaround point was epic.

clearwater beach biking

R has done this ride a billion times, but i’ve never made it all the way to the sand. I wished we had our suits :)

DCIM100GOPRO

Most of these shots were taken with my GoPro. Along the way we got a ton of awesome video clips so—just like our trip to Lettuce Lake—I made a video! Nothing professional. It took about 35 minutes.

Hope you all had a great weekend! What was your favorite part?

onlyatoms “a runner’s life” q&a series.

Hey. Hi. What’s up? How was your week? Mine has been pretty great. Last night I had a killer workout and yesterday Bart Yasso followed me on Twitter. Initiate freakout. I’ll be signing foreheads later.

tweet screenshot

For today’s post, let’s keep it light, yeah? It’s Friday and we’d all rather be anywhere but at work, right? Yeah 2x. Ha. I kid ;)

One of my new favorite running apparel brands, OnlyAtoms, curates a series called “A Runner’s Life” where they ask runners of all kinds the same seven questions. I love that the answers are so special to each person since we’ve fallen in love with with running in different ways. So, in case they wanted to ask me those seven questions some day I’ve already got my answers prepared.

(I’ve also got my answers prepared in case Tina Muir decides to have me on her podcast. HA. In my wildest, right?)

Now let’s get on with it.

1. Describe what RUNNING is to you, in 5 words or less.

The biggest and best challenge.

post long run tampa 2

2. How did you get started running and/or what inspired you to run?

I started running in high school: the 100 hurdles, 400 hurdles, and 4×4 relay if we were short a lady. Over the years I added miles and evolved into a long distance lover.

giphy
An accurate depiction of my hurdling abilities.

3. Your favorite running moment? (anything — achievement, event, people, race, place, etc)

I have a few but my most recent was completely the Walt Disney World Marathon on January 10, 2016. It’s a day I will never forget because you only get one first marathon, and everything about that day was epic.

wdw marathon weekend 2016 finish 7

4. Who/what do you think you’d be like today if you did NOT run?

<<20 minutes goes by>> I have no idea. I sat here thinking for awhile and I honestly have no idea. It’s hard (and scary) to imagine my life without running. Maybe I’d be into shorter HIIT-style workouts. Maybe I’d still be swimming? Maybe I’d be a professional breakfast place-tester. Maybe I’ll stick to running.

breakfast at denny's

5. Why do you keep on running? and running and running…

The endorphins. The way it clears my head and then fills it right back up with big dreams, courage, and confidence. I’m thankful for the community it has created around the world through running groups, chats, blogging networks, ambassador programs, and meet-up events. Also, I like eating.

running bayshore tampa

6. What is your favorite post run/race indulgence?

I don’t have one thing that I indulge in, but I like to have a little bit of everything. After the marathon I went HAM on chips and salsa, a turkey sandwich, a couple slices of pizza, some Dove dark chocolates (my weakness), and PB&J crackers.

6_double chocolate m&m cookies

7. Oddest, most unusual, weirdest running experience…

A bunch of years ago I was running in New Jersey (visiting my family’s lake house) and all of a sudden my neighbor’s dog came running full speed out of the house and ran right into my legs knocking me completely over. I was scared and amused all at once. I cry-laughed for awhile after that.

(No photo. Just try to imagine that happening in your own brain.)

Go ahead and answer any or all of these. I love reading what you all have to say. HAPPY FRIDAY! Tell me your running plans this weekend.

what i really need after a marathon.

THURSDAY.

Hi. Just me. Sitting here hoping and praying over a hot cup of coffee and the Runner’s World Twitter feed that I get a spot in the NYC marathon. PICK ME. PICK ME.

selfie tampa

And that’s surprising right now because after the Disney marathon in January, my motivation has plummeted to the deep, firey depths of Earth.

Every night I set out workout clothes on my dresser with the best intentions of sweating the next morning, but it rarely happens. We’re talking three to four times (maybe) in the past couple weeks? I’ve been sneaking in p.m. workouts here and there, but nothing I’m proud of.

tampa bay
Those rowers are working harder than I have all week. Wah.

When I threw myself into the NYC Marathon lottery I knew immediately what I needed: another race. Another GOAL.

Recovery after a marathon comes first, of course, but after that? Working toward something again.

My self-worth isn’t tied to this sport anymore, but a lot of my happiness is. No matter how hard the training sessions are, the gratification of hobbling up my apartment stairs and into a hot shower is the best feeling in the world.

Goals keep the fire burning, people!

So. That’s kinda where my head and heart and diminishing muscle tone is right now. ;)

————————————————

The second part of this post was going to be motivation tips to sweat when you don’t feel like it but, really, that’s up to you. I can’t make you do it and either can your mom.

Instead, this second half is filled with some great articles that I enjoyed and I hope you do, too.

British Fitness Model Pulls a Mini Cooper for an Entire Marathon

16 Minutes From Home

Do All Those Stats Matter?

Calories In Vs. Calories Out

PODCAST: How Personalized Medicine Works

Pay-It-Forward Pizza Movement Uses Post-it Notes To Feed The Hungry In NYC

The 10 Happiest States In America <– Do you live in any of these?

Happy pre-Friday.

11 dollars.

Eleven dollars can buy a lot of things: socks, a jar of almond butter (hah, maybe not), a lovely brunch omelet, a bag of coffee beans, three pairs of Old Navy flip flops. 

Eleven dollars can also buy you A LOTTERY TICKET TO THE NYRR TCS NYC MARATHON. AND LAST NIGHT I TOTALLY BOUGHT ONE.

Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 7.25.08 AM
The race is November 6, my sister’s birthday. That has to be lucky, right?

When/if you ask a runner what their biggest goal or bucket list races are (unless they’ve already told you ;)) they’ll probably list out a few of these: New York, Boston, Chicago, London, L.A., Marine Corps, and Walt Disney World.

I never really thought about this until after I ran Disney this year, and now I want to run all of these races, especially New York since I’ll never qualify for Boston (that’s fact, not a pity party).

Signing up for a race isn’t a big deal for most people, but with everything I’ve gone through the past four years—the most difficult being recognition and acceptance of my neurological disease—I know every step I take on a race course is something special and kind of against Mother Nature and physics and all that.

I’ll be disappointed if I don’t get in, but that’ll just give me time to get some more marathons under my FlipBelt.

Have you run NYC? What are your goal/bucket list races?

they don’t want you to score baskets & other relationship stuff.

The wind wanted us to stay inside yesterday but the sun was all, “GET YOUR ASSES OUT HERE.” So we did.

I started out on a solo mission to get espresso and a latte (because who can choose just one?) at Jet City Espresso. Cutest place in the whole world. I’m pretty sure it was the barista’s first day ever making coffee…and I think he had a crush on me. But he passed.

jet city espresso tampa florida

I stopped by the grocery store, blogged a little, enjoyed a little runnaroundd time, then R and I hit the courts.

basketball hyde park tampa

We got a basketball last weekend and never used it, so we thought breaking it in amidst 25mph winds was a good idea.

IMG_6682 (2)

I’m competitive in a long of things, but basketball is not one of them. It’s a sport that you don’t have to take seriously, and we didn’t because we are both absolutely awful. There was a stretch of about 15 minutes when neither of us sank anything.

basketball hyde park tampa soho

It ebbs and flows like relationships. I’m gonna talk for a sec and try not to get too deep.

Basketball + relationships <– they’re pretty similar, ya know? We don’t have to be good at either to enjoy them. We don’t start out being professionals; we only get out what we put in. I missed most of the time and still had a blast because I didn’t take things too seriously.

For the past two months I was taking relationship things too seriously. Marathon training, work, my stomach issues–these were all stressors in my life that made me feel like every missed shot was the end of the world. It wasn’t. I just forgot to have fun for awhile.

I think the key to a W is to figure out why you started in the first place. To have fun? To make yourself a better person? It’s up to you, and I think that’s the best part.

SIDE NOTE: It’s important to get some “you time.” Teams don’t spend every second with each other, either. Do you every now and then. 

Now here’s a ridiculous video of our shenans from snapchat. FOLLOW ME: LPNEDWARDS

Hope you all had a great weekend! What have you been up to?

new follower fun facts 1/23/16.

Over the past few months I’ve gained a few new followers, probably due to all the marathon training posts. Thank you, running, for making me feel just a leetle bit cooler.

For these new followers, I thought I’d put together a FUN FACTS post so you can confirm whether or not you’d like to continue following. Sometimes it gets weird over here.

This post could’ve gone up yesterday but I missed the Friday train because the boyf and I were too busy watching commercials with the movie Armageddon playing in between. Don’t we all wish Bruce Willis never aged? Amen.

Here we go.

FF #1: I do not love the term “fun fact.” How do I know if these facts are fun for you? That’s very judgmental of me.

FF #2: I’m a hugger and that’s all there is to it. Get ready to have your personal space violated.

FF #3: I’m more in love with my Garmin 920XT than some humans I’ve met in my life.

garmin 920xt watch

FF #4: I don’t have a favorite movie. Does anyone actually have a favorite movie? Is it possible to choose? Anything with action. There. That’s my favorite.

FF #5: I want to live between the pages of Outside Magazine. It’s a wanderlust’s road map, Christmas list, compass, Bible.

FF #6: Disney is a huge part of my life, but I really hate everything in big costumes. Pooh is my favorite…from a distance.

disney passholder magic band

FF #7: My family owns a lake house in New Jersey and I spent every summer there from birth to my early twenties. And now I’m just trying to survive adulthood and a full-time job. Meh.

230811_1008549777553_8580_n

FF #8: The places I want to visit most right now are: Seattle, Portland, Salt Lake City, D.C., Austin, Boulder, Denver, Charleston, Costa Rica, Iceland, Dublin. Who wants to sponsor me? I’ll give you hugs.

a69ffc70-6d10-0132-437d-0ebc4eccb42f

FF #9: There are six bikes living in my apartment right now. It’s chaos.

FF #10: Burpees are my favorite non-running exercise.

FF #11: Things I’ll probably never do: sky dive, go on a cruise, eat raw fish, buy clothes full-price, live in Miami.

FF #12: I went on an 8-day road trip with a dog last year for work. I’m not kidding. See for yourself (scroll down to July).

FF #13: I’m 100% fully in love with Lauren Fleshman’s Believe Training Journal. I documented my marathon in the red one and have big plans for my brand-new purple one. It really is more than a journal. Every page is a pep talk.

believe training journals

FF #14: I’m originally from Buffalo, NY and this is my old house. We visited last year while I was in town for a wedding. Those winters, though? Nope nope nope.

east aurora new york house

FF #15: I love dis.

phone screenshot

FF #16: I sourced my marathon training plan on Pinterest. It doesn’t have to be fancy, ya’ll. You just need a skeleton that you can follow and customize along the way based on how you’re feeling and how training is progressing. I loosely followed this one (from my Sweat board) and tweaked it to fit me.

marathon training plan

I think I’m out of fun facts. But for more, check out the links below!

52 Things
TBT: Working at Disney
TBT: Running in college
Q&A with my sis (from 3 years ago <– LOL)
I’m on Snapchat!

Now it’s your turn. Tell me something cool about you–anything! 

Have a lovely weekend! It’s insanely windy here, so I think another round of sitting on our butts watching movies sounds just PERFECT today :)