Scoring sweet swag, reviewing awesome products and living the rad mom life.

Joggin’ for Frogmen

Last weekend I participated in the Joggin’ for Frogmen 5k here in San Diego.  It’s a great event because it’s available in multiple cities around the country and it benefits the Navy SEAL Foundation!  They also offer a Tadpole Trot where the little ones can earn their very own tshirt and mini medal!

Price: The registration price runs between $25-40 depending on when you register, but there was a Groupon available for this run for $25.  I actually won a race registration, but I’ll elaborate more on that later.  The Tadpole Trot runs $10-$15 also depending on your registration date.

Expo: Packet pick-up was the day before at Road Runner Sports or you could pick-up the morning of the race.  I attended the packet pick-up at Road Runner and it was a pretty simple process.  I picked up my bib, tshirt, and coupon without waiting in a line and off I went!  And I got to stand in Meb’s footsteps!😉

Parking: Like many other 5k’s in San Diego, this one was also held at NTC Park in Point Loma.  The course isn’t the greatest (more on that later), but there is plenty of free parking…which is amazeballs because seeing the words “plenty” and “free parking” associated with anything in San Diego is like seeing a unicorn playing a violin.

Course: The race started at 9am which is bit late in the day, but luckily it didn’t get too brutally hot until a little later.  I ran with my single BOB so I started towards the back.  The course scenery is nice as it’s situated near the bay, downtown and the airport; however, the course is a bit narrow with some uneven terrain which can be difficult when pushing a stroller through busy crowds.  If you want to attempt to get a decent time, I recommend starting at the very front. It’s also mostly flat with only a slight hill going over a bridge.  There were also plenty of friendly volunteers, signs and water stations throughout the race.

And since the course is near a Naval Training Center, there are lots of flags, statues and a patriotic vibe throughout the whole park.

We were met at the finish line with medals – they even gave one to my mini in the stroller! – water, and hand towels.

Post Race: There was a big table of bagels, granola bars and other snacks near the finish line.  There was also a beer garden where the participants were offered a complimentary adult beverage.  And there were a ton of sponsors and vendors giving out swag!  There was also a raffle opportunity and a DJ playing some pretty energetic tunes.

Tadpole Trot: I didn’t get a chance to collect as much swag as I wanted because I had to get my little one ready for the tadpole trot.  This was my only peeve about the whole event.  The tadpole trot didn’t start until 10:30 which I thought was quite late.  Also the distance was a bit shorter than I had imagined.  It was probably only about a 50 yard dash whereas many races do a 1 mile or 1k run for the kids.  But the little ones still had fun and my daughter even placed in the top three of her age group!

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Another cool element of the race were the skydivers!  3 jumpers dove out of an airplane while “Proud to be an American” played over the speakers.  Vice Admiral Robert Harward held the American Flag while flying through the sky which was a touching effect.  Then he posed for pics with all of the little tadpoles!  Andy Stumpf (retired Navy Seal/Kill Cliff ambassador) was also another awesome jumper!

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Now, how did I run this race for free?!  I answered a question on Instagram from an awesome patriotic organization called The Freedom Rev.  Check out their page and social media channels!  Social media is a great way to win free race entries, so follow your favorite race ambassadors and search for event hashtags!  You may win a free entry of your own!

Shortly after the race I got an email with my official race results and a link to preview and purchase my race photos.  Overall, this was a very organized and well run event that benefits a great organization!  Checkout Jogginforfrogmen.com to find an event near you.  It’s a great event for the whole family and I enjoyed running with not just my mini, but also some fellow Stroller Warriors! My only suggestion would be start the race an hour earlier and organize the tadpole trot a little better.


So what was the SWAG?!

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~A super dope medal! It’s a lanyard, magnet, bottle opener and medal all-in-one!

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~Again, I missed out on some swag opportunities since several of the vendors were tearing down by the time the tadpole trot ended, but I did manage to snag a few items!  And the technical tshirts are super soft and comfortable!

This really is a great event!  If you are unable to run in the race, consider volunteering your time so you can still snag some swag!😉

See you at the next event!

P.S. Please vote for me over at Top Mommy Blogs by clicking the badge on the side! Thanks!😉

~SM

Legoland California

“Everything is awesome…everything is cool when you’re part of the team!”  If you love hearing this song on repeat, then you will LOVE Legoland! ;)  So I had the pleasure of visiting Legoland California (there is another one in Florida for those who don’t know) and I wanted to share a few of my experiences in this “awesome” themepark!😉 See what I did there?

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Tickets: We purchased our tickets at the ticket office on the military base, which gave us about a $30 discount per ticket.  I also had a coupon for a buy one adult ticket, get one child ticket free…so we purchased that ticket at full price – which was about $117.  This was a hopper ticket where you can choose between the water park and the aquarium.  We chose the water park since it was a hot day and my tiny humans love splashing in the water.  The tickets we purchased on base also included a free second day to be used before the end of the year.

Parking: Parking is $15 for regular parking and $25 for preferred (upfront) parking.  The preferred parking was sold out this day so we parked in the general parking.  It wasn’t a long walk so it wasn’t too bad, although I was surprised there wasn’t a golf cart or shuttle service for those who may have a harder time walking long distances.

Season/Hours: We went on a Thursday and got there around 1pm.  P.S. it’s July…in California soooo I was melting by the time we got to the gate.  The park hours are 10am-8pm so keep that in mind when planning your trip.  They stay open until 9pm on weekends, but it’s still an early closure time compared to other theme parks.  Even though it’s prime tourist season, the parking and park itself wasn’t too crowded.  We got in pretty quick and moved easily around the park.  Also, unlike many theme parks, they don’t do fireworks here unless it’s during Fourth of July.

First Impressions: Everyone was very friendly and cheery and eager to help.  I would almost venture to say they were friendlier than the Disney staff (maybe everything really IS awesome in Legoland).  We headed to the information booth to get maps and our “First Time Visit” pins so we could plan out our day.  The attendants were super helpful and explained which rides the kids could ride as well as how to decipher the map.  You can also download the app to help navigate the park and view the wait times at each attraction.

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Food: We got some food at the Pizza buffet and again, the staff was super friendly with helping us find the right spot.  We also discovered that several of the restaurants offered free meals for kids (with the purchase of an adult meal) after 5pm.  We were a little early to take advantage of this deal, but I was surprised that many of the eateries offered so many healthy options and salad bars.  It was great to have choices other than fried foods and greasy pizza.  I ended up purchasing one of the collector cups for $9.95.  Sometimes I think these are a scam, but since it was an excruciating hot day I knew we would be drinking lots of fluids.  The cup included $1 refills at any restaurant, but next time I will know to bring lots of water and drinks for the kids.  And if you download the app, you may receive 10% off your refillable collector cup purchase.

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Water Park: The water park is much smaller than typical water theme parks, but it’s great for smaller kids.  There are also a couple of splash pads placed throughout the main park which is a great way for everyone to cool off when it’s super hot.  The tiny kids loved the water park and the bigger kids (my husband and bro-in-law) liked the water “thrill” ride.  They also have a lazy river type ride but the line was too long so we didn’t check it out.  They have plenty of beach chairs and benches for you to rest as well as lockers/showers, concessions and towels for purchase.  They also offers cabanas for $250 a day.  They include a private area with chairs and a mini fridge.  This is a great option if you plan to spend the whole day at the water park with family or if you wanted to split the cost with friends.

Legos, Legos, Legos: So the park is literally made of Legos.  Like everything!  I really enjoyed seeing all of the Lego sculptures.  There is a work of art everywhere you look!  My favorite exhibit was Miniland – tiny cities made up of…you guessed it – Legos!  Take special note of the One World Trade Center Lego building in the New York City sculpture – it’s the tallest Lego tower in the country (26 feet)!

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And this is where the magic happens!

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I can’t even imagine the time and effort it takes to strategically place each one of these Lego pieces!

Rides/Shows/Play areas: There were several rides for smaller kids and a couple of thrill type rides.  I will say most rides are geared for ages 12 and under so don’t expect any crazy adrenaline-pumping rides when planning your visit.  There is also a 4d Lego show, but we didn’t get a chance to attend this day.  They have a few outdoor play areas for smaller kids as well as indoor play spaces filled with Legos.  You can literally bathe in Legos if that’s your jam.  I took the opportunity to make my own creation….a Lego apple martini!

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Ninjago:  This is the new area for 2016 so it’s pretty hyped up (it’s mentioned in every Legoland commercial here).  It’s actually a fairly small area, but there is a rock climbing wall, some sculptures and the Ninjago ride.  The ride is an indoor virtual reality experience where you are given 3d glasses and then you use your hands to fight ninjas that pop up on the screen throughout ride.  You score points for each ninja you take down and the goal is to get the highest score in your four-person car.  This really was an arm workout more than anything, but I’m sure that a ninja aficionado or a six-year-old would find this to be a more exciting experience.

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Souvenir Shops/Extras: I will say that there are lots of things to see at this theme park!  So much that we didn’t have a chance to see everything!  There are plenty of souvenir shops so that you can remember your day at the park and you will see Lego characters periodically walking around although we didn’t have time to get photos with them.  There is also a face painting station and lots of gaming areas.  We stopped by the ticket table on the way out where we received a free extra day!  It can only be used between September-November, but it’s still a nice incentive!

Hotel: I will also note that there is a hotel on site – within feet from the entrance of the park.  This is something that we may invest in on the next visit so that we can get the full experience.

SWAG:  There wasn’t really any obvious swag besides the 1st Visit pin…but we did get an extra free day as well as the souvenir cup.  My brother-in-law also played one of the basketball games.  It was $20 for 9 balls and he’s a pretty amazeballs basketball player.  He ended up making two goals so he received two stuffed animals…and like a good uncle, he generously gave them to each of my kiddos.  I was surprised at the awesome quality of these toys!  They were huge, full-sized stuffed animals made of a soft, plush material – not like the cheap, carnival stuffed animals you typically win at a county fair.  This was a nice surprise and again, the young man running the game was super friendly!

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And we received a coupon from Shutterfly for a free photo book! Can’t wait to cash this in!


Overall, it was a great day!  I can’t wait to go back and see all of the exhibits and rides that we missed on the first day.   Stay tuned for part two the Legoland California experience!  I’d also love to hear about your Legoland adventures!  Please comment below!

“…Everything is awesome when you’re living out a dream!”

~SM

 

Recently I became a blogger for Moms Meet! This means I receive products for free to try and share as well as review on my blog. The first sample I received to review was from Light Life Smart Dogs


These are similar to hot dogs except they are completely plant-based, which means not one stitch of meat. Great for vegan hot dog lovers as well as those who are looking for a healthier alternative to a summertime favorite. One great thing I like about Lightlife is that they are easy to find in your local grocery store by searching the online Store Locator. You just enter your zip and a list of stores carrying the product will pop up! Keep in mind, vegan items are usually stocked in the produce section so don’t be surprised if you don’t see them sitting next to their meat-filled companions. They also run about $4-$5 (Southern California pricing) depending on the location.

I decided to prepare my hot dogs on a hot dog roller machine (think food court/gas station)…I also cooked them along with some regular beef hot dog. Can you spot the Lightlife hot dogs?


As you can see, there is a bit of a difference in appearance compared to beef dogs, but I cooked them both for the same amount of time with no issue. They also rolled just fine. ;) 

So then it was the moment of truth!


Once you add some toppings, you could barely tell you were eating a veggie hot dog. They were less plump than regular hot dogs and also had more of a smoky taste to them. I would say they weren’t as juicy as regular hot dogs as well, but the taste overall was not much different. Interestingly enough, the kids had opposite opinions. My 3-year-old daughter was not a huge fan and only took one bite. My 18-month-old son finished the whole thing no problem. So I’ll have to work on the 3-year-old a bit more as she is quite picky. 

I did ask a few vegetarian/vegan friends how they felt about veggie hot dogs and their overall opinion was that they did not like the taste of hot dogs in general, therefore, they had no interest in trying plant-based hot dogs. I have tried other brands of vegan hot dogs and I will honestly say that Lightlife is the best brand so far! Check them out and let me know what you think!

They also pair well with Mac-and-cheese!


*I received this product for free in exchange for an honest review.

~SM

I recently ran The Color Run a.k.a the happiest 5k on the planet and it was a blast!  I will start off by saying that I ran this race for free (more on that later) and it was held in a much more scenic location than last year – at the Waterfront Downtown!  It was also held a little bit earlier this year so that it could be in conjunction with the MLB All Star Weekend events.  The only downfall to all of this was parking.  Parking downtown is usually a drag and this day was no different.  It took me almost 20 minutes to find a spot, but I found a free one fairly close. And I even parallel-parked…like.a.boss. Holla!

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So on to the race.  Since I spent a little extra time looking for parking, I ended up running in the 8:00 am wave, which wasn’t so bad cause everyone seemed fun and I also ran with a fellow Stroller Warrior as well as my mini.  There was a DJ close to the start line getting everyone pumped and throwing out t-shirts and whatnot.  He couldn’t throw very well so I suggest he obtains one of those tshirt canister gun things for next year.  It would also make him look a whole lot cooler.  The race pretty much started on time and we were off!

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The course was a big loop through the Embarcadero and downtown.  It started off a little crowded as we were navigating through narrow pathways along Seaport Village, but it eventually widened up and I was able to pass others pretty easily.  The first stop was blue, then green with a water station and very enthusiastic volunteers.  The water stations also played heart-pumping music which really made the race feel like a party.

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I didn’t get too blasted at these stations although one of the blue volunteers did pelt me in the face and ear pretty good.  They also were very cautious not to throw any in my daughter’s face and she loved going through all of the color stations.  The next stop was orange and then we finished with pink before crossing the finish line.

We were greeted at the finish line with medals and extra color packets to throw around and directed towards a water/Gatorade station.  Then it was party time!  There was a large stage with a DJ (one that I actually liked) keeping the energy flowing with dance music and extra swag opportunities. There were also lots of photo ops with various props and signs as well as food trucks and even a cell phone charging station!  It was definitely a nice touch!  The Runicorn made an appearance along with the Anthony Sullivan – The OxiClean guy!

The event wrapped up around 11am and then it was time for the party to end.😦 Overall, I really enjoyed this race much better than last year’s.  The location was much more scenic compared to last year’s race in the Qualcomm stadium parking lot.  There also seemed to be a lot more photo props and food choices.   I snagged a gourmet chocolate popsicle for $3 from Steel City Pops and it was delightful!

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Also, the race course was actually 3.1 miles which is great because last year it was less than 2.5.  The only bummers were the parking issues and there were more color stations at least year’s event.  I’m not much for gimmick runs, but I have fallen in love with the Color Run and will definitely do it again in the future!  It’s a great event for the whole family and a good excuse to get messy and go to a party at 8am!

*So, how did I run the race for free?  I volunteered at packet pick-up the day before the race!  It actually was a lot of fun as it felt more like a pre-party since everyone picking up their packets was super excited about the event and I really just felt positive vibes all around.  Packet pick-up was at The Headquarters in Seaport Village and I took a 4 hour afternoon shift.  Things got pretty hectic as it seemed like everyone came at once, but it was a well organized event and the craziness made the time go by super fast.  We were rewarded with water, snack bars, and a free race entry!  You can even volunteer with your kids so I recommend it if you are trying to save some money on race fees!  It’s also a great way to help out with an awesome event or obtain some volunteer hours even if you don’t plan to run in the race.

Now, what was the SWAG?!

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I will say, last year’s swag was a bit more exciting…but I still prefer this year’s event.

~A clear bag to protect your valuables from the color during the race

~A sweet headband

~A soft, stretchy tshirt (they are one of the few shirts I actually like to wear)

~Color Packets

~Tattoos

~Water cups – okay this isn’t really swag, but I thought these were the most adorable water cups!

~Sunglasses – Note: I paid $5 for these but I decided to splurge a little since I wasn’t paying for the race.

~A beautiful medal

~Amazing weather and awesome scenery!

And running with friends makes the Color Run that much sweeter!  Especially running with another Stroller Warrior!

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“Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof…” (Pharrell Williams)  Now that song can be stuck in your head, too. ;)  You’re welcome.

See you at the next event!

~SM

 

Imperial Beach 5k

Last month I participated in the inaugural Imperial Beach 5k Beach Run.  I was little hesitant to register since it’s the organization’s first race and I prefer all of the kinks to be worked out before I participate in a race.  But they offered a promo code and a military discount so I only paid about $25 after the fees (darn you Active.com!)…and I always enjoy a nice run on the beach.  So I decided to go ahead and run this one along with a couple of friends.

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If you’re wondering how close Imperial Beach is to Mexico, it’s this close:

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I found free street parking fairly easy (the race started at 8:00 am) and I only had to wait a few minutes in the line to pick-up my packet.  The race was held on the actual packed sand of the beach and there were probably about 250-300 participants.  There was also a 1 mile fun run option for those not quite ready to tackle a 5k which meant there were two separate race courses.  The 5k race route was a bit odd to me – it was an out-and-back followed by another out-and-back.  We will get to the details on that later.  The terrain was sand (obviously) but there was an added hurdle that I did not take into account for this run – rocks.  There were rocks buried all throughout the sand, which made for an obstacle course that I was unprepared for.  It wasn’t too crazy, but since the beach was also kind of slanted, I had to pay attention a little more to my footing so that I wouldn’t trip or roll an ankle.  My friend pushed a stroller during this race, so it wasn’t an impossible feat – just a challenging one.  There was also a water station about halfway in and some volunteers directing the runners along the course.

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Note the rocks in the last pic and in case you’re wondering…no, I did not fall.  After the run there was a big expo with lots of activities for kids, including a bounce house and face painting.  There were also fitness demos, a band and free pancakes!  I would say the free pancake breakfast – which included, pancakes, syrup, sausage and juice – was one of the best parts of the event.  I have no pictures of this delicious ensemble because I consumed the whole meal in about six and a half minutes.  You’ll just have to use your imagination on this one.  I also thought the band was pretty great.  Since this event was held to benefit the Calvary Training Center in Mexico, the band played worship music but with a Mexican flare…and I totally dug it.  I didn’t bring my kiddos to this event so I can’t say I participated in any of the activities – but they looked fun and the bounce house seemed pretty rad.  There was also a raffle, but they weren’t doing the giveaways until two hours later.  In the words of the great Sweet Brown – “Ain’t nobody got time for that”.

Participation medals were not given out at this race, but they were given to those who placed in the top three of each age group.  I ran with a fellow Stroller Warrior and placed first in her age group so I did hang around for the medal ceremony.

Now, back to the course.  There was a big issue that I had with the race course and that was the fact that it was NOT A TRUE 5K, which drives me crazy when races are not the length that they are advertised.  This one ended up being around 2.38 miles so there was obviously some miscommunication or miscalculation when the course was originally created.  I will give them a little bit of a slide since this was the inaugural race and like I said, I expected some things to not go as smoothly as they would in other established races.  However, since I did pay $25 for a 5k, I expect a true 5k.  Other than that, the views were beautiful and everyone was friendly; although I feel like all those people who placed 4th or 5th in their age group kind of got screwed since they would have had at least half a mile to pass the people in front of them.  Anywho, besides that hiccup I enjoyed the event and although I didn’t bring my kids this time I like that it was a fun event for the whole family to enjoy in beautiful Imperial Beach.

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So what was the SWAG?!

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Aloe Gloe is a refreshing drink that comes in a few tasty flavors!

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~ A cotton tshirt – I love the design, but it runs fairly large so I’m not sure I will be wearing this one very often.

~Clif bar trail mix bar

~Kashi Go Lean granola bar

~Larabar

~Homemade cookie

~Beachside FroYo keychain

~D’ames Day Spa tube of something (not sure what this is as there were no instructions, perhaps a face scrub?  But it smells divine!)

~Suicide prevention pin

~Various coupons and pamphlets

~And Scenery, of course!

See you at the next event!

~SM

 

Last month, I had the opportunity to attend Ashley Horner’s Camp Valor Boot Camp here in Coronado.  If you have not heard of  Ashley Horner, she is a fitness guru, bodybuilder, competitor, triathlete, ultrarunner…you get the picture.  But best of all, she’s a mother of three and a military supporter.  In addition to all of her awesome trainers (that you can learn more about on her website at Ashleyhorner.co), she owns two training facilities, a clothing line and runs various programs…but again, you can read all about how awesome she is on her website.  Another cool thing she does is host Camp Valor Boot Camps around the country.  Luckily, since one of her American Sled Dogs training facilities is located in Coronado, she comes her pretty often to facilitate the Camp Valor Boot Camp.

So, what is Camp Valor?  Basically, it’s an opportunity to workout with Ashley and her staff!  It’s only $10 and the event runs for about 2 hours.  No, you are not working out for the entire 2 hours (yes, she is hardcore – but not that crazy since all fitness abilities are welcome.)  She also stresses that it is a family friendly event, so you can bring the kiddos if needed. I left mine at home since the event was held at the beach and I didn’t want to worry about them running into the water.  You workout for about 45 minutes and the rest of the time is left for you to meet with Ashley, take pics and purchase merchandise.  The fact that this event was on the beach was a catch 22 – it was great weather and beautiful scenery, but working out and sprinting in the sand was quite the challenge!

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We were also asked to each bring an unwrapped toy to donate to Toys for Tots.  A few Marines were on hand to accept and sort the toys as well as monitor us during the workout to make sure we weren’t slacking and kept good form.

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I didn’t take pics during the workout because I was just trying to survive (also, the margaritas the night before did NOT help).  It was basically circuit training – using your own weight for resistance and sprinting around in the sand.  There was also some partner work (i.e. squat walls, sit-ups, wheelbarrows – or is it wheel barrels? hmmm) and it ended with a plank challenge.  The plank challenge was fun and reminded me that I really need to work on planks.  Ashley said that the plank record for her boot camps is around 11 minutes and no male has ever won the challenge.  On this day, a woman also won (sorry guys) and she held it for about five or six minutes.  Prizes were awarded to the last three standing “plankers”.

Ashley and her team were really motivating and inspiring throughout the day.  They were constantly pushing us and giving us lots of encouragement.  After the event, I waited in line and spoke briefly with Ashley and got a picture with her.  She really is incredibly nice and amazing in person.  This was an awesome event and  I would recommend it to anyone looking to get a great workout and be inspired, regardless of fitness levels (there were a couple of pregnant women participating along with some elite crossfitters – so anyone could attend). Checkout out future Camp Valor events here.

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*This last photo is courtesy of one Ashley’s awesome team members.

So what was the SWAG?!

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~A very sturdy and thick drawstring bag from BodyBuilding.com

~A sweet shaker cup from BodyBuilding

~A nice towel from Bodybuilding

~A drawstring bag from ReebokOne

~A full sample of Rock Tape

~A sample packet of muscle pain relief cream

~The amazing views of Coronado

~Free photo op and advice from Ashley Horner herself!

Again, big thanks to all of the sponsors!  I think this event was well worth the $10 and I would most definitely do it again!  If you are planning to attend one of her boot camps, be prepared to get sandy and sweaty!  Also eat something before you go and bring lots of water and a towel!  There will also be some merchandise for sale that runs about $20-$25 per item so bring some cash and/or credit card.  Hope to see you at the next event!

Also, I had to represent Stroller Warriors on this beautiful day since it was held right next to a military base!🙂

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And to make the day even radder, it was also Armed Forces day!  This meant that the streets of Coronado were lined with beautiful American Flags!

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~SM

Earlier this month I participated in the 8th annual Chula Vista Community 5k.  The first thing that drew me to this run was that it’s held at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista.  How cool is that?!  You get to run around a venue where actual Olympic athletes have spent several hours training for the grandest athletic event in the world!  Now, you can come at certain times during the week for a free audio-guided tour; however, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to actually run around the training grounds and pretend to be an Olympian myself!  The second thing that attracted me to this event was that it was only $10!  I like cheap – so a 10 buck run is right up my alley.  I did have to pay a two dollar online fee (those pesky fees), but the price included a custom bib with my name printed on it and a t-shirt.  Also, children 3 and under were free although they don’t receive a bib or t-shirt.

You could choose to pick-up your packet either the day before or the morning of – I had someone grab mine the day before and from what I heard it went pretty smoothly.  The parking situation was interesting.  I arrived to the venue about 10 minutes early (it was a fun run, not a timed race – so I wasn’t worried about being exactly on time.) But much to my dismay, I was met with a long line of cars waiting to get in and find parking.  There were a couple of parking attendees, but they didn’t seem really prepared for the amount of cars that morning.  By the time I got close to the parking lot, I was informed that it was full and I needed to turn around and drive back to a church I had passed earlier and park in a dirt lot behind the church parking lot.  This was a little frustrating because it did make me a later than I wanted to be for the start of the race.  I wish that there had been better communication between the parking lot attendants so that I didn’t waste time waiting in line and driving around in a circle.  But, eh whatever, 10 dollar race – you live and learn.

 

 

It was kind of a bummer that I started the run 10 minutes late, but I caught up pretty quick to everyone and it was a cool and misty morning (thanks, marine layer).  It was really amazing just running through all of the different event areas and imagining all of the athletes that have been there displaying their talents. There were plenty of volunteers at the start and end of the run and a couple of water stations.  Here are some course pics!

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My favorite part of the race was getting to run on an actual Olympic training track!  It was not only inspiring, but insanely soft and springy – it felt like running on a cloud!

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There was also a bounce house about 3/4 of the way into the course which was a nice touch for the kids!  The finish line included water and fruit and there was an optional $5 pancake breakfast.  Afterwards, we headed up to visit the sponsor tents and see the torch!  A few athletes were signing posters and Sea World had a big table with activities where they brought a few small animals for everyone to meet.

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The DJ looked lonely as usual until the raffle started and then he was surrounded.  I didn’t enter the raffle this time, but I did hear him announce a few restaurant gift cards.

Besides visiting the vendors and checking out the torch, there was also a gift shop and BMX bike museum to checkout and a podium to pose on.

olympic_bikesIMG_5807IMG_5804IMG_5806IMG_5552P.S. I don’t know those people ^^^     So what was the SWAG?!

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  • I already mentioned the t-shirt, although I will add that it’s a tech tee, so bonus!
  • A signed poster by a few athletes (although I had no idea who they were)
  • The Hubert’s strawberry lemonade was pretty good, I would probably drink it again
  • A custom bib as previously mentioned
  • Bottle of water
  • Tote bag
  • Magnetic clip
  • Flash light keychain
  • Free trial coupons from 24-Hour Fitness
  • Toothbrushes
  • Lots of toothpaste!

I will also say that I didn’t get a chance to hit up every vendor as I brought my squirmy baby-toddler with me this time and he doesn’t have a lot patience for swag shenanigans. So the haul could have been greater, but I really was just taking in the scenery and enjoying roaming around the facility.  Also, race photos were available for purchase a few days after the event.

I really enjoyed this event and since it is super family-friendly I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a fun run.  I will warn you that dogs were warmly welcomed to this event, which is great because I love dogs; however, I had to swerve and dodge a lot of them so you really have to pay attention to your path.  I also liked that the proceeds went to help afterschool health programs in the area.   My only recommendations:

  • Better preparation/communication for the whole parking situation.
  • Offer medals/awards so we could at least pretend to be winners of the day!  I would have paid a little extra in registration fees so that I could add an “Olympic medal” to my collection.😉

Overall, it’s a great event especially for the price – so check it out!  Go Team USA!!

 

 

~SM 

 

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