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Posts tagged ‘lululemon’

iPhone saves a night run

When I decided to finally get rid of my amazing BlackBerry Curve a couple years ago, I switched to an Android X phone. I loved it, specifically because it shot high definition video. I loved that phone until a software upgrade basically rendered me unable to make phone calls.

Then it became slow. I took it in for a look at the Verizon store. An associate reversed the software update.

Two months later, the stupid phone stopped taking a charge. Everything I did to make it charge wouldn’t work. I was bummed for several reasons. The first was that I spent a ridiculousĀ amountĀ of money on the phone. The second was that it didn’t last as long as I needed it to.

So I went to the “dark side.” I bought an iPhone 4S earlier this year.

I kind of had a tough transition to the phone. I wasn’t sure what to think of it. I wasn’t sure how to make it work.(Doesn’t that always happen when you get a new phone?) I basically was a fish out of water. It helped that I had an iPad 2 as well.

But I adjusted and eventually started to love it.You can see one of my screens to the right. Ignore the fact I haven’t updated any of my apps for awhile. And ignore my AP mobile alert. I’ve been trying to avoid news as much as possible lately.

In any case, if you’ve read this blog long enough, you also know that I run with a Garmin 405CX and I have an awesome headlamp.

On a recent run, I didn’t have both.

My Garmin is somewhere between my home in Tracy and Kansas. For the second time in two years, the battery life went wonky. It was out of warranty, but Garmin offered to fix it because it was the same problem as last time. (Model problem, maybe?) Fixing it for Garmin basically means replacing it. That’s lame. And it takes forever.

I’m talking about two to three weeks to send it and then get one back.

So I’ve been doing my outdoor runs without it. A couple weeks ago, when the battery died in the middle of a 15-mile run, I finished off my run with my Nike+ app on my iPhone.

I’ve been using that since.

It’s surprisingly accurate and doesn’t drain my battery life like I thought it would.

Yes, I’m slow sometimes when I run at night. Blame fatigue.

In any case, I was thankful my iPhone saved that run. I was more thankful when a couple weeks ago, I realized as I made my way to Mountain House to run that my headlamp had dead batteries.

It was dark. Really, incredibly dark.

So I pulled out my iPhone and started doing some searching. I remember that I had a flashlight app on the phone. Since I already run with it in my hand to see the Nike+ app, I kept alternating between turning on the flashlight and checking how far we were in our run.

The light was really nice when we hit parts of the sidewalk that are considerably more dark than others.

So, overall, my iPhone essentially has two running tools in it that I didn’t really appreciate until that run. Had we not have had the Nike+ app, we probably wouldn’t have finished that epic 15-miler.

Had we not had a flashlight, we wouldn’t be able to see the sidewalk. I was very grateful for both.

The Flashlight app was free. A nice price. It uses the flash light on the iPhone 4S, which does eat some battery life, but for a shorter run, isn’t too bad. Plus, I charge my phone in my car when I drive usually, so I don’t really have a problem with battery life.

The Nike+ app is also free now (I remember paying for it, but maybe I’m mistaken). It uses the phone’s GPS to track the run with distance and pace.

It seems to come up incrementally short of my Garmin, but we usually overrun our six-mile run anyway.

I’m not converting to the Nike+ app. And I’m not considering running with my iPhone flashlight on every run either.

But these apps give me options when I in a pinch. And both saved our run the other night, which, when it’s dark outside, is really important.

Lulu letdown

I’ve been MIA for much of the past week. School started. A major work project ramped up. And I’ve had a really bad cold on top of all of that. This was one of those weeks where I really wanted to call in sick. I wanted to sleep and take NyQuil and veg out.

But I couldn’t.

So I kept going. And going. For six days.

I logged 11 miles for the whole week. Pathetic.

And I really feel it. I feel like I haven’t had a solid workout in some time. I feel tired because of it. (That’s possible.)

I only had one running outfit in my laundry today because of it too. Unfortunately that outfit revealed a bit of a letdown.

Behold, the photo above of my Caspian Blue Run: Swiftly Racerback. Except it now has a nice yellow discoloration around the back of the collar. None of my other Run:Swiftly shirts have this. None of them have ever discolored.

I have noticed a lot of comments on the Lululemon website about discoloration and issues, especially with some of the products they’ve shipped lately. It’s concerning, but because it hasn’t happened before I’m going to try and wash it one or two more times, maybe with some OxyClean, and see what happens.

I’m hoping to be back to regularly scheduled blogging soon. Or as least as regular as I can. But this week has been really crazy. The cold didn’t help any either.

Cropped confessions

This is a confession, but one I don’t feel bad about and one that people might think I’m crazy for admitting: I wear cropped or capri pants for my summer runs. I vary between longer and shorter versions. I rarely, if ever, wear shorts. I own one running skirt that I also rarely wear.

I love crops. I have about 10 pairs. This summer I’m particularly favoring longer ones, the ones that hit around the ankle. I don’t live in a particularly cool place during the summer either. It’s been hitting the 100-plus temperatures here lately. That makes for some miserable running at certain points of the day.

Surprisingly, though, I don’t get too hot in my crops. If I’m not wearing a tank top, though, I feel like I’m burning up. (That’s for another post, though.)

There’s another really important reason, though, that I wear crops.

Despite more than two years of running, calorie counting and eating (mostly) well, my thighs touch.

You can kind of see my conundrum here. My thighs are in the same area code all the time. To be fair, when I weighed 135 pounds in high school I still had pretty significant chafing. My legs are much more toned now too.

So when I wear shorts, I chafe. No matter how much Glide I apply, I still chafe.

That means I’ve come to love capris to the point that I’ve tried multiple different pairs.

As I mentioned before, I’m favoring longer ones this summer. The pair I’m wearing today (above) are Nike Relay running capris. I purchased them from earlier this year. At the time, my running pants were getting too warm to wear, but it still wasn’t nice enough for my short capris.

At $58, they weren’t as pricey as some of my other ones, but they fit the purpose. They are just black, tight pants basically. No frills outside of the Swoosh symbol. They are lightweight too.

The Nike capris were also my first pair of long capris since actually moving to running clothes at the beginning of 2011. I’m not even kidding. I used to run in cotton tights, basically, all the time. Then I finally moved into better clothes when I started doing half marathons (just the right time).

That led to more capris, I’m kind of embarrassed to confess.

I found the Lululemon Run: In the Sun Crop soon after. A photo of the side mesh areas is at the top of this blog.

These crops, at a whopping $88, are basically ten steps above the Nike ones. They are made of Lululemon’s Power Luxtreme. They have Circle Mesh in places were a lady is prone to sweating too. And they are smooth to the touch. I kind of fell in love in a way that I didn’t with the Nike capris.

I loved these so much, I purchased a second pair after getting some cash for my birthday.

In this photo, the crops appear more black than gray. But they are gray, with a wide waistband. The inner is more of a black color. The color here is called “deep coal.”

There’s a closeup of the waistband detail. These pants, as I mentioned before, are smooth and comfortable. I especially like the mesh sides that really breathe when I run. In fact, on the hottest days of the year, I prefer these crops. I wore them for the marathon in San Diego and the endurance run.

When I run, I literally feel as if the wind is coming through the mesh.

There’s another close-up of the mesh sides. The best part of these pants is that the mesh crunching doesn’t spread out where it’s straight. It actually looks pretty cute when worn.

I also recently purchased another pair of Lululemon crops which I’m kind of on the fence about still.

The Run: Inspire Crop II are beautiful in design. They are more basic than the Run in the Sun crops, not nearly as fancy on the sides. And they are a little bit longer as well.

The Inspire Crop II’s are basic at the top. You can see at this point that I have a bit of a love for basic black. I’m not big on branching out to new colors. The only area I am is in my shirt selections, which explains why I am big on buying bright colors lately, especially for running. Case in point are more Lululemon shirts.

Love the “ray” color from Lululemon.

The Inspire Crop II’s are also detailed near the bottom of the crop. They aren’t cheap, though, at $86.

The biggest difference between the Lululemon crops and the Nike capris come in the stitching. Lululemon pays close attention to detail when it comes to the stitching. The Nike ones seem to rise a little more than the Lululemon ones. It’s not a huge difference, but it’s enough that I notice more when I’m running in the Nike capris.

Plus, the Lululemon ones seem to “whish” in the thigh area a little bit better. (That’s really important. I may have fat little thighs, but I really don’t want sweat accumulation down there. I know, too much information.)

For me, crops are the only ways to go. Even if it’s warm outside, one of these pairs has become a go-to all seasons.


I took a step back from blogging this week for some personal reasons which I’ll probably (maybe) write about some other time. I was exhausted by Wednesday of last week and then I ended up taking Friday off of work because my body decided to rebel against a new medication I’m taking. My husband had to call in sick for me. That’s pretty lame.

Still, I had some good runs this past week totaling 21 miles, including an eight-mile treadmill run on Saturday. I’m thankful for that run because I didn’t think I was going to be able to run on Saturday morning. After my Thursday to Friday night was filled with nausea on every level I figured it would take me days to recover.

I was planning on another run today, but decided, while my body is adjusting to the new medications, I’ve take it easy for a couple days.

But this week has been eventful on the buying front, for which I feel a little bad. (Seriously? How much gear do I need?)

I invested in the fine piece of jewelry above with Roman numerals for 26.2. I wanted to buy it after my first marathon, but didn’t feel all that legit doing so. I figured since San Diego was such a suffer fest, I’d reward myself with it now. It costs $52 from Endure Jewelry Co. out of Clovis, Calif., which is a couple hours from me.

I have another necklace from Endure. It says “run.” I wear it all the time.

I opted only for the charm this time and am buying another necklace elsewhere because my last Endure necklace was way short. I even opted for the larger size and it was too short. Live and learn. I’m sure that once I get the necklace for the charm, this will quickly become one of my favorite items to wear.

Also new are two Lululemon Run: Swifty Tank Racerback shirts. I have one in the pale pink color on the model in the link. I also went for a wild color to be noticed when I’m running.

It’s Lululemon’s “ray” color. You can see if kind of matches with my new kicks (which I’m loving, by the way, thank you for larger toe boxes Nike).

I now own three tanks for running. I’m kind of not a big fan of tanks because I found that most the time they don’t work for me. These ones do. I ordered the “ray” color first and then followed up and ordered the pink one. I kind of wished Lululemon had other colors for it.

By the way, I’ve been following the Lululemon craziness over at the website/Facebook page about the Barbie doll in the company’s clothes. I understand the marketing behind it. As a Barbie collector, I even want a doll. I think people take these things too seriously. It’s a doll. In yoga clothes. So what?

Also new?

I started back on Weight Watchers on Monday of last week.

I think I psychologically felt the need to bury it in a post with pretty things (Look necklace! Look bright top! Look fancy shoes!) because I don’t want to point out my weight.

I weighed in last week with a starting weight of 168.

This morning, I was at 164.5. My official weigh in day isn’t until Tuesday. I’m not sure if that’s water weight lost, but I feel much better. And I’m working on portions. (I weighed myself after lunch today and I was 166.)

I’m hoping if I admit it in the blog I’ll be more accountable for it. I’m liking PointsPlus better than the previous points system by far. I can nibble on fruits and vegetables and both are (mostly) 0 points. That’s a nice win.

I’ve eaten a lot more raspberries and blackberries in the past week. Tomorrow I have bananas and apples. Good stuff.

I’m hoping to run six to eight tomorrow too. And then do some speed work on Tuesday. I’m trying to ramp up a training plan that works for me as I track some running planning into the future. My next event is a six-hour endurance run. Then the San Francisco 1st Half Marathon on July 29.

My biggest hope is that the Weight Watchers will lead to some good weight loss by the endurance run, which will make me a happier run.

Lots of “new” happening right now.

I really love my Run From Work Backpack

I’ve developed something of a Lululemon addiction in the past six or eight months. I’m a little bit crazy about my Lulu products, if only because they are incredibly high quality. Yes they are expensive, but I’ve never had an issue with anything I’ve purchased from Lululemon. So I’m in love. I don’t order too often from the website (the closest store is about 40 miles from me), but when I do I usually pick up a couple new items.

I did so as a birthday gift to myself recently. I grabbed up another pair of Run: In the Sun Crops and a new little backpack. I’ve only ever bought one bag from Lululemon and I use it all the time as an overnight accessory carrier. I love it to.

My husband, though, has been complaining in recent months that he hates carrying my gym bag. It’s pink. All pink. And it’s from last year’s Nike Women’s Marathon, where I ran the half. He hates it so much he often “forgets” it in the car when he comes to the finish line.

I have another backpack that’s also pink. I’m not in love with the color, but the bags worked for me, so I bought them.

When I saw the Run From Work Backpack, I knew I had to buy it.

It’s silver with girl accents, including the use of the Flash Lululemon color on the zippers, but also practical enough that my husband doesn’t have too much of a problem carrying it.

The workmanship in this backpack is amazing. It’s not a full-size, take it to high school type backpack. Not at all. I was tempted, though to use it when I had to go to school and do grades the other day.

The exterior is water repellent. I purchased the gray version, which has a beautiful pattern to it, but doesn’t look too frilly far away. (Hence the reason my husband will actually carry it.)

The material is soft, yet durable. There are two pockets on either side of the backpack, which a bottle of water will fit in nicely. I tested it out this weekend after Bay to Breakers. Thomas brought it to the finish line and I carried out of the park and up the highway after the race.

Then I hiked to our eclipse watching position at Upper Bidwell Park in Chico. I packed up quite a few things in the little bag, including several water bottles. It was incredibly hot. I had pockets upon pockets of space to keep things, including some credit cards and my identification.

There’s even a pocket where I can put a water bladder at some point should I choose to.

I may actually purchase something to put in there, if only so I can use it more while hiking or doing other recreational things. The pockets are durable too.

The biggest thing, though, is that the straps are incredibly comfortable. They have a mesh upper and there are also straps to put across the neck area and the abdomen to keep it secure.

The back also arches a little as to keep the pack away from a sweaty back. It keeps my back well ventilated too.

I wore it for about four hours off and on Sunday. It worked really, really well. Again, at $88 it wasn’t cheap, but I’ll be using it for after my runs and for other adventures. And I’m in love with it. It’s the perfect size and color. I’ll be finding more chances to wear it.


I have a lot to blog about, but no time to do it.

This week: Garmin came back, but not Gertrude. My students put out issue six of their newspaper. I have a front-page story in the newspaper (rare, since I’m often at my desk coding or behind a video camera). I got a new pair of lululemon shorts. Received my beautiful new “I was born to do this” necklace.

Started taper for Big Sur Half Marathon.

Packing up for that one tomorrow. Heading down with my mom on Saturday morning/afternoon-ish.

Long week. Exciting weekend ahead.

My goal? Not to break a leg or hurt myself. The marathon is less than three weeks away.