My last two blog posts (which you can read here and here) were the first two installments in my mini-series of my favorite websites. The first one was about DailyMile which helps you track your miles that you run, bike, walk, or other exercises you do throughout the year. The second one was about Bloglovin' which can help you keep track of all your favorite blogs that you like to read on a regular basis. For my third and final installment of My Favorite Websites series, I'm going to introduce you to fairly new one that I stumbled upon when I was on Twitter one day. Well, actually BibRave found me, but whatever, you get the idea.

Disclaimer - I have no relationship with BibRave and was not compensated in anyway for this post. All opinions and typos are my own.

What is BibRave?
BR is a website that collects race reviews written by runners. I've contributed 3 reviews so far since I signed up in December. (Dye Hard Fan Dash, Nike Women's Half Marathon, and the Route 66 Half Marathon
BR is still pretty new so they don't have a ton of reviews from all over the country, but if you have recently completed a race you can write a review and help out future runners who want to know more about that event. The website is pretty user friendly. All you have to do is set up an account or you can log in with your Facebook profile and search for the race you want to read up on or review. 

This site is kind of like Yelp but focused on publishing reviews for runners to help them find their next race or find out need-to-know details about an upcoming race. I know as a runner, my first question is always about the course. Is it hilly? I'm a total weenie when it comes to hilly races. I know, I know, I need to add more hills to my training. Thanks Coach! 
I know people's opinions of races will vary based on their experience which is why this site is nice because once they get a good inventory of race reviews you will be able to read multiple race reviews on the same race from different people and find them all in one spot. By the way, I think all races are hilly because I'm a weenie. 

But anyway, this new website made my top 3 favorite website list because I think a couple groups of people will like it and I'd like to see more races on there as well. As much as I'd like to try, I can't run all the races and do reviews on them...

1. Run Bloggers. We like to write, we probably have a few race reviews we can publish right away, and we like seeing our "work" "published" online in other places than just our own blog. Makes us feel famous! ;)

2. Traveling Runners. If you are going to travel to an out-of-town race you probably need some details about it before you decide to drop the cash. I know I do. Being as no one is compensated for these race reviews you can probably find some pretty candid and honest feedback on the website. I know I like to share the good, the bad, and the ugly on my race reviews.

How to Follow BibRave?
Instagram: BibRave

Leave A Comment!
Do you like look up race reviews before you sign up for an event?

In my last blog post I announced that I was going to do a mini-series of my favorite websites.  So far I have three planned out for you all and this is the second installment. Part 1 talked about Dailymile.com and how useful it is to track the miles you run, walk, bike or other exercises you do. This post isn't really running related, unless you count that it can help you keep track of all your favorite running blogs. You're welcome! 

Disclaimer - I have no relationship with Bloglovin'. All opinions are my own.

Right now I'm super addicted to blogs. Reading them, writing them, sharing them, you name it and I'm all over it! If you are like me, you follow a lot of different blogs about everything from running and fitness, to eating healthy or not so healthy, to celebrities. That is a lot of different websites to keep track of and remember to check regularly. That all became a little too much for me so I recently I joined Bloglovin' to help me keep it all under control.  

Bloglovin' is a blog reader that helps you keep track of all the blogs you love to read. It lets you know when your favorite blog has a new post versus you having to track them down or hope that you see the author's post on Facebook or Twitter. 

When you sign up for an account you can set your preferences on how often Bloglovin' emails you about a new post from one of the blogs you follow. At first I had mine set up to email me every time a new post was published. I found that to be a little too many emails. So now I get an email once a day with a list of all the blogs that were published. Much better! 

Once you have an account set up, all you have to do is search for the name of your favorite blog (aka RunGingerRunBlog) (<---shameless plug) and click Follow and you're all set! 

I find this helpful for several reasons:
  • I've been relying on social media to "notify" me when a new post is up. I'm terrible about just going directly to the blog website and sometimes I miss a post because of that. 
  • With the ever-changing Facebook algorithms they have been deciding what posts I get to see from pages I follow. Not cool Facebox, not cool! So I feel like I'm missing posts because of that. 
  • Twitter moves so fast! Unless you just sit and watch your feed all day everyday you miss out on a lot of tweets. I'm pretty sure no one has time for that! 
  • There's an app for my iPad and iPhone so I can look for new posts if I'm stuck in line somewhere and have a few minutes to kill.

For my blogger buddies - BL even lets you see how many people follow your blog through this platform as well. They don't give out metrics or anything like Google Analytics, but it give you the number of followers on a line graph so you can track your progress over time. 
Also - You can put a link to your Bloglovin' Page on your blog. Mine is the button on the right under my picture so people can click on that and follow your blog easily. 

                                      Leave a comment! 

If you are a fellow blogger, leave a comment with your blog name and I'd love to start following you! 

If you are not a blogger, leave a comment with your favorite blog so I can check it out and see if I want to add it to my list! I'm always looking for a new fun blog! 
I've decided to do something a little different on the blog today. I'm planning on doing a two-part (or maybe more) blog post series where I will share a couple favorite/helpful websites I use all the time. No. These companies has not asked me to do a post on them, I just think you all will love them too. 

The first website I want to share with you is great tool for runners called, Dailymile. Every once in a while I'll do a monthly mileage check-in on my Blog Facebook page where I ask how many miles you ran last month. Sometimes people comment about how many they ran, or wish they ran, or state that they didn't run enough. I can totally relate on all those. In fact, in June I only ran 2 miles! 2! Who just runs 2 miles in a month? I shouldn't even call myself a runner after month like that! 

A few people have asked me how I keep track of my miles or what type of log I use? I use a free website called DailyMile.  DM is a log for tracking miles that you run, swim, bike, walk, or even other workouts. It also works like a social media platform and you can friend others and you have a news feed that shows you the activities they post. 

You can set up a profile with a picture, list your upcoming races and goals, and even join challenges to keep you motivated. I recently joined a 100 mile winter warrior running challenge that my running club is putting on. I think I'm losing but eh...#redhairdontcare. 

Speaking of motivation...It will send you an email saying that your friends miss your training if you have a gap in posting your workouts. Total Guilt Trip and it totally works on me too! 

A running buddy of mine uses DM to keep track of how many miles she has on her shoes so she'll know when it's time to buy a new pair. That's pretty smart if you ask me! 

Screen Shot from my Daily Mile account.
You have to manually enter in all of your workouts (or if there is some other way to do it please tell me!) but if you do, it will give you stats such as how far you have ran in a week or month. How many lbs you've burned off, how many donuts you've burned off, how many TVs you've powered and how many times you've ran around the world. 

Here's how I did in 2013:
  • Trips Around the World:  .02
  • Pounds Burned:  19
  • TVs Powered:  20
  • Gallons of Gas Saved:  32
  • Donuts Burned:  364
  • Total Miles Ran: 544

Here's a screen shot of my profile if you were wondering what it looks like. Sorry it's kinda small. You can find me on Daily Mile here.

Also, let's ignore the fact that my profile says I've logged Zero miles at the time I took this screen shot. And we'll be friends if you can just ignore the fact that I'm too lazy to redo it now that I've actually logged 10 miles this week. Deal? 

Daily Mile does have an App for the iPhone. It is called Electric Miles when you are looking for it in the App Store on iTunes.

I only use this to enter my miles and nothing else. The app isn't the most robust and sometimes it has some issues. So I only use it when I want to remember to put my miles in quickly and I'm not at a computer. 

Disclaimer: I have no relationship with Dailymile. I'm just sharing a website that I find helpful to track my workouts. 

                                    Leave A Comment!
Do you use a mileage log? Is it a website or some other form of digital log or do you use a paper journal?

Lately I've been trying to think of what to blog about next and I didn't really have one solid idea so I've put together a few things that have been "running" through my brain and mashed them up into one blog post.

Running Update
Last week was a pretty good run week for me. I had one bad run but not too shabby!
  • Sunday - 0 Miles. Recovery Day. 
  • Monday - 0 Miles. Busy with work. 
  • Tuesday - Boot Camp and 4 Miles. Speedy.
  • Wednesday - Boot Camp and 5 Miles at recovery pace. 
  • Thursday - Boot Camp and 3 Miles. This run was tough. I had originally planned to do 4 but my body said no thanks! 
  • Friday - Rest Day - Thank goodness! 
  • Saturday - Long Run Day - 7 Mile progression run. I felt amazing! I wanted to run 10 but had to get to the farmers market and on with our busy day. 

Here is how my week is shaping up so far this week.
  • Sunday - 0 Miles. Recovery Day.
  • Monday - Boot Camp and 4 Awesome Miles!
  • Tuesday - 4 Miles of Hills. Ugh!
  • Wednesday - Rest Day and TV Night! Survivor starts tonight!
  • Thursday - 3-5 (Not sure yet) and probably Boot Camp
  • Friday - Rest Day
  • Saturday - Race Day! The Quarter Marathon and The Corndog Classic 5K

Race Update!
On Saturday I'll be running my 3rd 15k right here in Tulsa! This is my first race since my last marathon in March 2013 and I'm feeling pretty good about it! I haven't been working on my speed work like I should, so I'm not expecting a PR, but I'm expecting to have a lot of fun doing a new race. I'm doing The Quarter Marathon hosted by Fleet Feet Tulsa and decided to add on the 5K so I'm doing the "Doubler" which is barely more than a 15k. If you are wondering exactly how far is a Quarter Marathon, it's 6.55 miles. Don't worry, I had no idea how far it was exactly until I looked it up.

Also- as of last night, the Hubbo and I just registered for a fun 5k on Saturday Night! So we'll be doing the Doubler at the Quarter Marathon in the morning and the Corndog Classic 5K Saturday night! I've never had two races in one day but it should be interesting! We are doing the Corn Dog Challenge in this 5K. So that means each participant must eat a corn dog, drink a beer or lemonade, and eat an entire thing of cotton candy along the race before finishing. I don't even like cotton candy! I may be sick by the end of it or walk more than I run, but we've never entered this race and want to have fun with it! 

What races do you have coming up that you are excited about?

Weight Loss Thoughts

Weight loss is a funny thing. Not everyone loses weight at the same speed, in the same place, or in the same way.

I feel like my body has a Top-Down approach to weight loss. Meaning I start to see the results first in my face and then slowly see results trickle their way down to my midsection/hips/thighs last.  Right now, I feel like I have the skinniest forehead and neck I've had in years but could use a little more work in the hips/thighs area. Hurry up body and catch up!

I'm still at my 18lbs down from my juice fast and am slowly transitioning back to food. So far so good. I'd still like to fully transition back to an all food diet and continue to slowly drop 12 more lbs. We'll see! In the mean time, running is becoming so much better and easier for me. Which makes it much more enjoyable than it was the last year.

Ladies - where do you notice results first?

Photo Credit: Photo Cred: http://wholelifestylenutrition.com/one-on-one-monthly-counseling/

Well that was what I was thinking last night as I was really struggling at mile 2 of my 5 mile run. I didn't make it to 5 miles. My attitude got in the way and I'm kicking myself for it now.

On my Meet the Ginger page on my blog I said I would share my running adventures with you. I've decided I should share the good and the bad. Last night is one that I would characterize as bad. Really bad.

The Hubbo and I started out running at our favorite park. It has a 3 mile loop that makes it easy to get our weekday miles in. Between mile 1 and 2 I started coughing pretty bad. A couple of weeks ago I think I coughed my way into a bruised rib or bruised diaphragm because it hurt for several days and was tender to the touch. So I was afraid of that happening again last night.

By mile two I was so frustrated that I wasn't having a good run that I stopped and walked a mile back to the car.
That last mile took forever. A lot of thoughts were running through my head and stumbling their way out of my mouth as my Hubbo walked by my side supporting me every step of the way.

Here they are for your reading pleasure. 

  • Running is stupid.
  • I don't want to run a 50K next week.
  • How am I going to run a 50K when I can't run 5 miles without wanting to die?
  • Running would be easier if I hadn't gained weight.
  • How did I gain 15lbs while training for a marathon? Who does that??
  • Because I've gained weight running has been more expensive and caused some injuries and pain.
  • Because I have PCOS my body will always fight me on my weight. It doesn't like carbs, but runners need carbs. How can I eat a low carb diet and fuel myself to run a marathon?
  • I don't like the fact that I had to move back a group in my marathon training.
  • I don't like the fact that I can't run a 10 minute mile to save my life at the moment.
  • I feel so guilty when running with the Hubbo because I know he can run a sub 10 minute mile and he's holding back for me.

The last 6 months of running have been difficult. I lost a toenail. Gross, I know. I had IT Band issues. I've spent a ton of money on Chiropractor visits, new inserts, new shoes, and new equipment to relieve pain and injuries. And I've gained weight. I can honestly say that in the last 6 months I feel like I've had 2 good runs where I didn't feel like absolutely passing out and dying in the middle.  That is a lot of miles to push yourself and be miserable. 

But I keep doing it. It has to get better right? I have all these goals I want to achieve and races I'm signed up for. 
I've decided that I need to change my attitude. I saw a graphic on Facebook today that helped me do that and kind of laugh at the same time. It said something like this "Running is 90% mental and the other half is physical." If you have read my blog post called Running Makes You Dumb, this graphic kind of makes sense. 

Attitude Changed.

I will run the 50K. I will finish the 50K. I will join Marathon Maniacs.
I will run Little Rock. I will finish Little Rock. I will figure out what to do with that huge medal. All I have to do is Keep Going.

Okay, Pity Party Over. Thanks for reading.

P.S. Tonight's run was tough, but wayyyy better than last night. 

People say running gives them time to think. They say it gives them time to clear their head. Well running does give you time to think. It just doesn’t give you a lot of time to think clearly. That is because running makes you dumb. When I’m running a long distance, the last thing I can do is put a complex and cohesive thought together. You could ask me my own name and there will be a long awkard pause before I spit out my own name and if I'm lucky, I'll give you my real name, not my fake name that I use when I meet a creepy guy at a bar. The picture to left is exactly how my thought process goes on a long run. 

 Here are some of my random thoughts from my 18 mile run this Saturday...

Oh what a cute dog! I mean Cat. Crap, that’s a squirrel. Well my dog is probably sleeping on the couch right now. Jealous!

That red straw on the ground looks like candy. I want Twizzlers. And cookies. And beer. Ugh, if I eat cookies right now, I’ll puke. Puke and Rally!

That group of runners heading towards us looks like a pack of zombies. What if they are zombies? Can zombies run? Can I run faster than a zombie? (I blame that last one on my husband and his obsession with zombies.)

That house is cute. I wonder if they can hear us? I wonder if a running group has ever ran by my house and I had no idea? That’s creepy.

What are some of your random thoughts you have while running?

Photo from www.rwdaly.runnersworld.com.