Knuckle Lights Review and Giveaway

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I am NOT a morning runner.  So I have to run after work.  That was fine until we turned our clocks ahead.  It is now dark out and most of my running routes have NO lights.

I know that I could buy and use a head lamp but to me, it looks dorky.

You know how I feel about dread I mean treadmills.

So I ordered Knuckle Lights so see if they would work for me.

I had three hesitations about them before I used them:

  • I hate carrying anything in my hands.  I don’t carry a water bottle even on hot summer days. Would these annoy me?
  • If I don’t swing my arms correctly, would they still light my path?
  • Would they be bright enough to run where there are no lights?

First some details about Knuckle Lights:

  • Each one is just shy of 4″ tall and the light part is 1″ wide.
  • Each one weighs less than 3g.
  • There is an adjustable strap on the back of each one to fit your hand (with or without gloves).
  • Each of the lights has a wide angle so it fills the space well.
  • They each use one AA battery.
  • There is a high beam (140 lumens each), low beam and blinking mode. You just press the button on top to change modes.
  • They are waterproof.

So did I like them?

YES!

I ran with them twice already.  I used them on the high beam setting and they gave me plenty of light so I could run in the dark.  They are very light-weight and didn’t bother me at all to carry them. In fact, I think they made me swing my arms correctly so that they would light the path ahead of me. (If you swing your arms across your body like you are not supposed to, they wouldn’t help you.)

The second time I used them, a man who was walking his dog exclaimed “Boy, you are illuminated!”  And I thought, “That is the point!”

I’m not sure how long the batteries will last but you can also buy Knuckle Lights that are rechargeable.

You can read more about them at https://knucklelights.com/

Knuckle Lights Color Handheld LED Weatherproof Running Safety Light Set

If you would like to win a pair of (pink) knuckle lights like pictured above, enter below:

KNUCKLE LIGHTS GIVE-AWAY

The Deadline to enter is Midnight December 8.

Since it is Friday, I’m linking up with Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup! Join in! Don’t forget to link back to your hostesses and visit some other bloggers.

Here are FIVE Reasons to Buy Knuckle Lights:

  1. Allows you to Run when it is Dark (lights up your path as you swing your arms)
  2. Easy to Use (one button and 3 light settings)
  3. Light-weight (you put them on your wrist and they are adjustable)
  4. Not too expensive ($40)
  5. Use batteries or you can buy Knuckle Lights that you can charge.

Happy Running! Do you run in the dark? If so, what do you use?

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TOTR: November Report Card

Image result for november is over welcome december
Fall continued with some warm days, some cool days and even some very cold days. A sign that winter is on the way.
Here’s how November worked out for me:

Weekday Runs:

I was able to run at least 3 times outdoors each week which is great because I do not have a treadmill at home. I prefer to run 4 times but sometimes it just doesn’t happen.

I ran at UAlbany (near work) or near home.  Unfortunately, my preferred routes don’t have lights and it is now too dark when I get out of work. I did run while in Liverpool for work but not while in Buffalo. (I hope to run while in NYC this week.) My weekday runs were usually around 3-4 miles.

I ran alone most of the time. But Alyssa was able to accompany me only a few times. It’s definitely more fun running with friends.

Since the Turkey Trot running group ran on Tuesdays this year, I could not run with them 😦  Even my work schedule interfered with volunteering to help the STEM runners train for their first 5k. 

Long Runs:

Long runs ended with my half marathon being on Nov. 12. Without a long race until March 2018, I still plan to run at least 6 miles on the weekend. I don’t predict double digits until February!

Total Mileage:

I have run 70 miles this month so far. A big decrease over last month (102) but I am feeling healthy so all is good.

Races:

I had several races on my schedule this month. In Las Vegas, I ran the RNR 5k and Half Marathon. The half was my slowest this year but these races were never about time but about the experience and racing in Las Vegas was an amazing experience. I also ran local on Thanksgiving, both the Troy Turkey Trot 10k and 5k. My legs felt strong for the 10k and although it was not a PR, my finish time was faster than last year.

Cross Training:

I actually played tennis 4 times indoors.  Woo Hoo!!!!

I did NOT go to work out at the gym at all!!!! Not once! Nunca! Jamais! No excuses because I live near a free gym and my tennis club membership this year includes free access to the gym.

I thought I might fit in a yoga class. I did NOT!!

I did walk-occasionally at lunch. Not everyday like I used to. I find it hard to tear myself away from my desk and I have been traveling a lot. 

Other News:

I got in additional sightseeing when I was in Las Vegas for the two races. 

thoroughly enjoyed my 6 hour tour of Red Rock Canyon

There were also quite a few friend-bonding activities.  Can’t have too many of those.

As you can tell, running is not my whole life. I think it is important to make time for other things that bring you pleasure….family, friends, food….

Feeling healthy so Life Is Good.

Looking Ahead:

No other half marathons planned until March.

I have just a few shorter races planned. My racing schedule does slow down during the winter.

This is my list so far for the next 2 months:

  • 12-03-17 – HMRRC Winter Series #1 (3 m or 15k)?
  • 12-09-17 – Albany Last Run 5K
  • 1-01-18 – HMRRC Winter Series #2 (3.5m)
  • 1-14-18 – HMRRC Winter Series #3 (3m or 10K)
  • 1-28-18 – HMRRC Winter Series #4 (3m or 15K)

I am linking to Deb at DebRuns for her December Race Linkup:

Deb RunsNo monthly goals.

This motto worked for 2016 so I’m sticking with it in 2017!


Since today is Tuesday, I’m also linking up with these wonderful ladies:

Erika @ MCM Mama Runs, Marcia @ Marcia’s Healthy Slice and Patty @ My no-guilt lifefor

Today’s Topic is: Give your running month a letter grade.

I’d say overall a B+.

You know, zero gym attendance, skipping lunch time walks and weekly runs.  Though I had a lackluster performance in Vegas, I redeemed myself at the Turkey Trot 10K.


This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup

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Happy Running! How did your November turn out?Anything exciting planned for December? 

What grade would you give your running month?

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Running Update: 11.20.17-11.26.17

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Last week – 

  • Monday –Not liking this COLD WINDY weather.  It was a struggle to get motivated to bundle up and run.

it wasn’t so bad and I ran at UAlbany which has lights and lots of fellow runners

  • Tuesday – It was a lot warmer (20 degrees warmer) but I was scheduled to play tennis. What did I do?  I ran a bit near where I play tennis and then rushed to tennis.

how could I NOT run to this?

  • Wednesday – Too much to do to run and besides I had two races to run the next day.
  • Thursday – Today I ran the Troy Turkey Trot 10k and then when I was done I ran the Troy Turkey Trot 5k (cuz that’s how I roll.) Neither was a PR but faster than last year so I am happy. You can read my recap here.

It was in the 20s at the start of the 10k but many dressed in costume and didn’t care.

  • Friday – Yes, I had to work on this Black Friday. I hosted mah jongg at my house in the evening which meant that I cleaned and bought snacks.
  • Saturday – It was long run Saturday with the Wineglass ladies. But since I ran 9.3 miles on Thursday, I opted to run short. The best part was gathering for breakfast afterward.  Glad my new running buddies like to eat.

I ran 4 with Chris & Alyssa. The others did a variety of distances.

Probably should have run more since in addition to breakfast out, I went out to dinner with friends.

  • Sunday – A leisurely (which is a rare one for me) day. Decluttered some closets and binge watched This is Us.

Next Week

  • Monday 4 mile run
  • Tuesday rest, tennis
  • Wednesday – train to NYC, 3 mile run?
  • Thursday – work in NYC, 3 mile run?
  • Friday – rest, work in NYC, train home
  • Saturday – 6 mile run or volunteer 5k with STEM
  • Sunday – or HMRRC Winter Series #1 (3M or 15k), Paint & Sip with mentee, Amanda (B-day present)

https://hohoruns.blogspot.com/p/weekly-wrap.htmlPlease link up for the Weekly Wrap hosted by these wonderful bloggers Holly @ HoHoRuns and Tricia @ MissSippiPiddlin.
And with Jess @ the Right Fits and @Jess Runs Atlanta

Linking up with the Jess’s

Happy Running! How is your running going? What’s new with you? Please share.

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Troy Turkey Trot 10K and 5K Race Recap

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This was my 4th time running this 10K race and my first time NOT being part of the Turkey Trot Challenge training group (They changed their meeting day from Mondays to Tuesdays.)

I really enjoyed this race my first time I ran it in 2014 (in spite of the snowstorm) so now I look forward to this race every year.

happy because it was and still is my 10K PR (check out all the snow!)

Then in 2015, I decided to run both races – the 10K and then the 5k.  Why not? I was already dressed and ready to run.

The weather was a lot better and I had a blast even though my finish times were not the greatest.

So last year again I ran BOTH Races. I did better in both, as well.

The course was the same again this year.

I picked up my bib on Wednesday after work so I didn’t have to rush on race morning.

But I did want to arrive early to get parking. I parked in the bowling alley parking as I did in previous years and walked a few blocks to the Atrium where I could wait indoors for the race to begin.

I checked my jacket and 5K bib since I wouldn’t need them until after the race.

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pic from last year

This year it was very cold – in the 20s when I arrived and only predicted to be in the 30s.  I was hoping the sun would come out but I was undecided on how many layers to wear. I get hot when I run and I HATE to be overdressed.

So at the last minute, I decided to shed my light jacket and just wear a long sleeved shirt with my race shirt over it. I also added my DIY arm warmers, a warmer hat and gloves.

This was taken before I realized that I was wearing the 5k bib (they weren’t marked but everyone else’s was yellow LOL)

I chatted with members of the training group and some other friends until it was time to brave the cold.

Participants gather in the Atrium for the 2016 Troy Turkey Trot in Troy, NY, on Thursday, Nov. 24, 2016. (Michael P. Farrell/Times Union)

inside the Atrium – photo from the TU

The 10K started at 8 am followed by the kid’s one mile race and a one mile walk and then at 10 am the most popular event, the 5K.

Laurie and I squeezed into the crowd at the 9 minute pace group although we knew that we would be left in the dust.

My plan for the race was to not to start out too fast and to run at an even pace and to save some for the last mile.

For some reason, this race seemed a lot more crowded than last year. For my pace, it never thinned out. I was running in a crowd the whole race.  At the beginning, I would barely move.

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a pic from a previous year

The course is pretty flat. You run over the Green Island bridge twice near the beginning and then run through Troy before you turn around and run back.

Though I had not done any speed work since May (Freihofer training group runs) and I “trained” for three half marathon this fall, my legs felt pretty strong…not PR strong but better than during my last half marathon.

The sun did come out and I felt perfectly dressed. I rolled down my arm warmers and even took off my gloves during the last few miles.

There was a some crowd support. (Much more for the 5k.) There were even guys handing out bottles of beer and a bakery was handing out donuts.

There were quite a few water stops. I skipped the first and third one but I was dying for a drink by the second one and walked for a bit to catch my breath (It seems so much harder to breathe when it is cold out.)

Timing clocks were placed at every mile. I didn’t have to look at my watch to know that I was too slow to PR. I wasn’t sure if I would even finish under one hour.

Finally I could see the finish in the distance. I wanted to at least sprint through the finish line. Holly was on the side line cheering me on but I had a hard mustering up any real speed.

I tried to cross under 58 minutes but did not but my chip time was 57:42.

Not a PR but really a decent time and faster than last year so I was happy.

I got my medal, drank some chocolate protein milk, had a bagel and then checked the results.

10K Splits:

mile 1 –  9:14
mile 2 –  9:10
mile 3 –  9:18
mile 4 –  9:24 (water stop)
mile 5 – 9:14
mile 6 – 9:14
.25 –  8:22

57:42

I was surprised about my splits.  They were more even than I’ve ever had before.  My last mile was as fast as my first. 🙂

There were some speedy older ladies in this race.  The winner of my age group ran it 48 minutes.  A 72 year old lady ran it in 55 minutes.

chip time = 57:42

This year, like the previous two years, I signed up to run a second race, the 5k about an hour later.

So I walked back to the Atrium. Boy, was it crowded… More than five thousand runners squeezed into a small building.

I just wanted to find my friends and rest my weary legs.

I had already picked up my bib but I needed to get it from my checked bag and ditched my arm warmers.

I did find my tennis friend and we hung out until it was time to line up.

I know it’s bad luck to wear the race shirt but this was a fun race so I didn’t care.

This was the third time that I had run the 5k race.  It was just an out and back course and you didn’t run over the bridge at all.

Finally it was time to get into the starting area. You were supposed to line up by color but we just squeezed in anywhere we fit.

pic from a previous year

Of course, my legs were tired from having already run 6.2 miles (at race pace) so all I wanted to do was finish.  My  stomach was also queasy from the milk and the bagel. I was hoping to come in under 30 minutes but I wasn’t sure that was possible.

The 5k is the fun race.  Many runners are dressed in costume.  Many families were running together.  There were walkers, etc. Everyone was there to have a good time.

Costumed runners make their way in the 2016 Troy Turkey Trot on Nov. 24, 2016. (Michael P. Farrell/Times Union)

photo from the TU

It was so crowded that I had no problem slowing down in the beginning. Like the previous race, it was crowded the whole race.

And my legs were not cooperating. They wanted to run slow. And so I did. And it seemed to be colder.  The wind had picked up and the sun went in and out.

Before I knew it, the race was over. (After a 10k, 5k seems so short.)

I crossed around 31 minutes which was 30:10 chip time. (Faster than the past two years so a course PR!)

I got my medal (the same as for the 10K), some more chocolate milk and then went back to the Atrium to get my bag and meet my tennis friend.  We had planned to go out for coffee after the race.

No chance of an award in this race either.

5K Splits:

mile 1 – 9:39
mile 2 – 9:50
mile 3 – 9:35
.14 –  8:28

30:10

Gee…look at that..my last mile was the fastest. That never happens.

But they were way slower than my 10k splits!!! (Just like a 15k race would have been. LOL)

chip time = 30:10

The Good:

  • The weather – the sun made the cold temps bearable. It was actually perfect running weather.
  • Race organization – considering the number of runners, it was very well organized.
  • Race location – place to stay warm indoors with indoor bathroom and bag check
  • Chocolate Milk at the finish
  • Medals for both the 10k and the 5k
  • 15K PR – each of my race times were disappointing but if you add them together, it was 1:27:52 which is a PR.
  • My spits were pretty even.
  • I got my long run for the week done and I don’t have to do it on the weekend.
  • Running 9.3 miles lets me eat more Thanksgiving food
  • Knowing lots of runners.  Racing is fun with friends.
  • NO PAIN…no blisters…lower back and feet felt great. Thumbs up to my Nikes! (and compression socks.)

The Bad:

  • my 10K time – Besides the crowd, it’s a flat enough course to PR on.  It is my 10k PR (from 2014).
  • post race refreshments – I would have liked pizza or soup or cookies but at least they had bagels this year
  • same medal for both the 5k and the 10k (if you run both, you have 2 of the same medals)
  • unisex tee shirts (in my case, 2 shirts that don’t fit)
  • my 5k time – my slowest of the year.

Overall, I enjoyed the races. I am glad that I ran them. I think I will do both next year too. I was 7th in my age group for both races and next year, I will be in the next age group.  (I would have won an award this year if I were 65.)

After the race(s), we went out for coffee and we debriefed about our races.

don’t you love the Starbucks cup?

Then later that evening, I ate back all the calories that I had burned off.


Today I am linking up with a Sunday Fitness and Food Linkup hosted by Ilka from Ilka’s Blog and Angela from Marathons & Motivation


Happy Running! Did you run off that turkey?

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Runfessions – November

It’s that time again (or at least yesterday was). Time to get things off my chest with Marcia’s Runfessions at Marcia’s Healthy Slice

I runfess…

Still no before work runs.  One morning I did see a women running by my house around 6 am. That’s as close as I have gotten.

So I guess I will have to continue to run after work … in the dark.

Any advice on cold morning running? Or do you run at night?

I runfess…

I have been traveling a lot for work and because I’m trying not to pack so much, I have been only bringing ONE race outfit.

And sometimes I have worn it THREE days in a row.

Anyone else re-wear their running clothes (without washing them)?

I runfess…

I am usually pretty motivated to run when I travel since it’s interesting to run in a different place.  Unfortunately last week when in Buffalo, I accepted a dinner invitation instead of going for a planned run.

Skipping one run is no big deal except that that gave me FOUR rest days in a row.

Does food trump running for you ever? How many rest days in a row do you usually take (when you are healthy)?

I runfess…

On Thanksgiving, for my Turkey Trot races, I wore the race shirt.  I know it’s bad luck and I never have before…but it matched my skirt and was convenient.

Have you ever worn the race shirt to run the race?

I runfess…

After my races, I look at the winners of the age group awards in the next age group. Jut curious since I am entering the next age group in May.

On Thanksgiving, I came in 7th in my age group in both races but would have won an award in the next age group…

Anyone else do this?

I runfess…

I am losing my blogging mojo.  It takes up so much time and I don’t have the time.  The only time I have to blog is on the weekends when I could be watching TV, talking to the hubby, cleaning, etc.

Any advice? Should I take a blogging break?  

I runfess…

I am not a fan of the cold weather.  I’m ok once I get out there but getting out there is tough.  It took me 30 minutes to leave work the other day.

So I ordered heavier tights.  New clothes is always an inspiration, right?

Toasty Tights

of course, I’ll wear a skirt over them

Does new clothes help you get out the door?

I runfess…

I don’t usually order race photos because they are too expensive but I am tempted here.  Not because I had a great race but because it was Vegas and I don’t plan to go back.

Anyone else order race photos?

Happy Running! Anything to runfess this month? Please share.

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Friday Five 2.0 – My Favorite Podcasts

It’s Friday so I’m linking up with Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup! Join in! Don’t forget to link back to your hostesses and visit some other bloggers.

Today, I’m going to talk about my 5 FAVORITE RUNNING-RELATED PODCASTS.

Yes, I am late to the party. When I run alone, I used to listen to music. But I got tired of the same old same old tunes and decided to try listening to podcasts – running ones, of course.

Now I am addicted.  In addition to running with them, I listen to them on LONG drives (and for work, I do a lot of them.)

So here’s my TOP FIVE:

1. Run This World– this one is done by Nicole DeBoom who is the founder of Skirt Sports. Her podcasts last as long as the average 5k run (that’s what she says but many are much longer) and her guests are so varied and yet motivating. Each one ends with the guest’s “nugget of advice.”

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2. I’ll Have Another– I love listening to Lindsay’s guests – she interviews mostly women – some are well known but many are not. And they all have a story to tell (about running.)

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3. Another Mother Runner – The Podcast The host is Sarah Bowen-Shea but Dimity is often on it as well. I’ve met these two women in person and they are so entertaining. It’s no surprise that their podcasts are as well. In addition, to stories about their own running and families, they share their love of reading.

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4. Ali on the Run Show – I’ve always loved her blog and I’ve enjoyed all the guests that she has interviewed so far (she even recently interviewed Kara Goucher!) The podcasts last over an hour so I’ve used them during my long runs. She also has added some shorter ones for weekday runs.

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5. The Human Race – put together by Runner’s World magazine.  There are 29 episodes and unfortunately, there will not be any new ones. In each one, Rachel Swaby has a runner tell their story.

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so I am adding one more that I just discovered to replace The Human Race after I’ve listened to them all.

6. Diz Runs Radio – He has recorded almost 500 podcasts.  I’ve only listed to a few but the ones I’ve  heard were so inspiring and his guests were just ordinary runners like you and me.

Happy Running! Do you listen to podcasts while you run? Do you have any others to recommend?

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The Thankful to Running Post

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I thought I did this every year but when I looked through my blog posts, it seemed that the last one was in 2012.

So I am overdue.

I am, of course, thankful to (in no particular order):

  • my hubby
  • my kitties
  • my former co-workers
  • my running partners in crime
  • my mah jongg friends
  • my tennis buddies
  • my health
  • all those folks who have passed through my life (high school and college friends)
  • my ex-in-laws

and more that I don’t have time to list (Since I am at work).

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So why am I thankful to running?

  • for how much healthier I am

I hardly even get sick. It’s very rare that I even get a cold. (knock on wood) If I ever feel rundown or tired, I just go for a run and that feeling disappears. Running is my Energy/Vitamin source.

  • for how much younger I feel.

This may sound corny but I sometimes forget that I am 64 years old when I am running.  I often run faster than runners half my age.  And often slower than runners older than me. So I guess Running is my fountain of youth.

running with my 30-something Russian friends.

  • for how many awesome people I have met since I started running.

I have met them by joining running groups, at races, through social networking and through other runners. In other words, Running has become part of my Social Life.

  • for how confident it has made me feel.

I am not athletic.  I never played a sport growing up.  In fact, I am very clumsy.  Imagine my surprise when I won my first age group.  I tell people that I am not fast but it depends who shows up at a race.  My speed is not bad “for my age.”  Running has filled my empty Trophy Case.

  • for the places running has taken me.

Yes, all my vacations involve races.  As a result, I have traveled to Philly, Palm Springs, Las Vegas and more!! Running is actually my Travel Agent.

  • for the strength it has given me.

I have done things that I never thought possible.  Run 13.1 miles? Who me?

I have been able to push through pain and not give up on things that seemed too hard. Yes to running through injuries, hills, running in the rain, heat and sub zero temps. Running is my Kryptonite.

VCM even though it was cancelled due to extreme temps

  • for getting me outdoors.

I am sure that if I weren’t a runner, I would read more, watch TV more maybe even cook or clean more often.

But it’s running that drives me out of my house early on the weekend mornings and out of my office at the end of a long work day.  Running is my Vitamin D.

So I’ll end with the following in addition to my wish to all those reading this post to have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving (and fun Turkey Trot so you are so inclined):

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This Wednesday, I am joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup.

Happy Running! How are you thankful for running?  Are you running a Turkey Trot?

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