Monday, December 15, 2014

Top 11 Runs of 2014

Here were my top 11 @Marathoner runs of 2014:

1. 100th Race. Finishing the Brooklyn Half at the ocean was a nice opportunity to look at the big picture, breathe deep and smile really big. Then it was straight to No. 101.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Celebrating 8-Year Runnerversary

If there's one thing you should never forget to do as a runner, it's celebrate. Apparently I can't put my hands down when I run. I just passed the 8-year mark since I traded a box of KOOLS for a box of ASICS and I celebrate it every day. If it makes you happy . . .

Friday, December 5, 2014

ASICS Electro Jacket For Today's Space Age

I completed the #Orion 4:24 Flight Test Challenge in 17 miles, and in case you missed this original blog post you can see all the whys and whats below. I followed NASA's Orion mission in a few ways. One, there was a splashdown: It rained the entire 4 hours and 24 minutes, and alas I finally started landing in splash puddles around the NYC Financial District's uneven pavement at the 1:30 mark. Two, I did a first transit of Central Park after parking at 105th and Central Park West Drive, and then proceeded across 42nd Street to the West Side and then completed a large elliptical orbit of the Manhattan island. But most of all, I wore the latest in today's Space Age Gear.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Shower Pill Body Wipes Giveway and Gear Review

a Rafflecopter giveaway
We have a gear review from Rachel and a nice holiday giveaway here today. Our friends at Shower Pill were kind enough to send samples of their extra-thick athletic body wipes, so we're going to give away a box of 10 individually wrapped wipes here.

The wipes are awesome for me because I am always so busy and sometimes don't have time to take a shower. Sounds pretty gross but it's true. I tried the athletic wipes after a run when I had to get right to class and I got right into my jeans and felt great. The wipes dry really quickly and make it easy to get out of workout clothes and into regular clothes. It's obviously not a replacement for a shower but it is definitely perfect when I squeeze a workout in during the day and don't have time to shower!! I would absolutely recommend these for anyone who exercises in the middle of the day or for someone who doesn't have time/access to a shower right after exercising. - Rachel

In addition to entering our giveaway above, please note that from now through December 31, 2014, you can save 10 percent on a $9.99 box of 10 at or on Amazon by using the code: runner10

Giveaway Rules:
- The giveaway ends at 11:59 pm ET on Thursday, December 11. Winner will be announced on @Marathoner on Friday, December 12.
- Winner has one week to claim prize (I will contact you as best I can via email or social media) before a follow-up winner is selected.
- All entries will be verified
- Winner will be chosen at random via Rafflecopter and are based on the number of entries received. Remember to use the extra chances on the Rafflecopter entry to improve your odds!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Holiday Fitness Tips from Michelle Lovitt

ASICS Fitness Expert
Michelle Lovitt
From Thanksgiving through New Year's Eve, holiday traditions will bring us cherished memories of a lifetime . . . and some real challenges on the training front. ASICS & Pear Sports Fitness Expert (and NYC Marathon finisher) Michelle Lovitt is kind enough to share these important tips entering into this holiday season so you can make the most of a wonderful time of year and stay within your fit lifestyle.

Ready? Here goes:

1) Drink plenty of water before and after a meal. Water will not only help you feel more satiated it will help increase your metabolism and help your body burn calories more efficiently. Keep in mind that the increase in calories burned is modest, however the water keeps your body hydrated and functioning properly.

2) Don't drink your calories. If you partake in holiday festivities limit your alcohol (and eggnog) consumption to no more than two glasses. Drinking caloric beverages daily not only dehydrates you but also packs on unwanted pounds with extra calories.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

ASICS Holiday Wishlist

I dropped in on my friends at the ASICS New York City Meatpacking District Store this afternoon and bought the new PR Thermal 2-N-1 Beanie reversable knit cap. I'll get plenty of use out of it as I start training through another tough NYC winter, this time for the Walt Disney World Marathon scheduled for Jan. 11. It's just $18 and a huge addition:

While I was in the ASICS store, I also took a barrage of photos of ASICS STUFF I WISH I HAD. Let's call it the ASICS @Marathoner Holiday Wishlist. If Santa wanted to drop any of this stuff under my Christmas tree or in a stocking next month, hey you're the jolly mon. Here are a dozen items that especially caught my eye on the "guy side" of the store, with links on

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

110th World Series 10K

Hello from Kansas City! I am working my 20th World Series, and this morning I put on my new ASICS GEL-Kayano 21s that ASICS sent me to review, and got in a glorious run before all the wildness begins between the San Francisco Giants and Kansas City Royals, which you can watch on FOX with Game 1 at 8 p.m. ET. The Harry S. Truman Sports Complex in Jackson County is shared by the Royals and the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs and it is massive. Which makes it also ideal for training runs for an @marathoner like me.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

We Go Big. No REALLY Big.

I was walking 44 blocks to our MLB HQ from Grand Central when this happened.

"We Are Marathoners. We Go Big." And if you want to see just HOW big, then watch the video I just took with my iPhone. You can see for yourself what happens when you combine ASICS with the TCS New York City Marathon and iconic scenery for the world's biggest race.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 Giveaway!


Congrats to Garrick Black, aka @DJ_GBlack! You were randomly chosen by Rafflecopter out of the qualified entries in this contest. ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 code is on the way to your email so you can order a free pair at!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

ASICS Foot ID: How to Buy the Right Running Shoe

"What running shoe is right for me?" Biomechanical analysis finally gives us the answer.

The comprehensive ASICS Foot ID is the best way to know exactly what shoe type you need and therefore run healthy for years to come -- the most important part of running. Today we had the opportunity to experience the full effect of the ASICS Foot ID system inside the ASICS NYC Meatpacking District Store. Rachel, our 19-year-old NY Road Runners member who ran her first Half last weekend, needed a new pair of shoes for the Staten Island Half next week. This was the perfect opportunity to explore the process from start to purchase, and I want to thank Boris and the awesome team at ASICS (and Rachel!) for obliging my documentation for you.

Those are the six easy and informative steps, and we'll go through each of them here with photos and videos.

Step 1. Registration. Rachel fills out the quick form with some basic info to help the staff assess her current situation as a runner. Rate yourself from 1 to 7, with 1 being a brand-new runner and 7 being a high-mileage competitor. She put down 4. Notice how comfortable the setting is in the middle of the store, with room for your belongings.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Hamptons Marathon: This Is Living

The Hamptons Marathon on Sept. 27 was my 15th marathon, my 107th race overall, and my third marathon of 2014 after the ASICS LA Marathon in March and the Boston Marathon World Run in April. After this I have the Staten Island Half on October 12 and then the Walt Disney World Marathon on January 11. Here is a recap from paradise:

Stained Glass Medal. It's the most elegant medal I own now. When you hold it up to a light, it is almost like a stained glass window, with a beautiful blue ocean hue, which you can compare to the shot below. The engraving is a lifeguard stand with surfboards on its sides. Nice style.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Half Marathon Training Plan

Runner's World provided this Half Marathon 12-Week Training Plan from my favorite running coach, Andrew Kastor of ASICS Mammoth Track Club. If it's from Coach Kastor, it's money. Accompanying details about the plan and larger version are here.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

ASICS GEL-Kayano 21

The new #ASICS GEL-Kayano 21 shoes are in and I would choose the black beauties!

I took the picture immediately above at the ASICS New York City Meatpacking District Store this morning. They're waiting for you like a big buffet breakfast.

I ran the ASICS LA Marathon this past March in the GEL-Kayano 20th anniversary edition. Go to to see the newest generation of Kayanos!

Which color Kayano would you choose?

Monday, August 18, 2014

What makes someone a Marathon Maniac?

I answered "yes" to all 15 of these questions below on Guess that explains why I am Marathon Maniacs #6697 on their membership roll. How about you?
  • Do your thoughts switch to the next scheduled race immediately after finishing a marathon?
  • Are you signed up for more than one race right now?
  • Do you know specifics about many of the marathons? Dates, courses, years run, etc.?
  • Do you know the story of how the marathon got started? Also why the course is 26.2 miles?
  • Do you read books on marathons like Marathon and Beyond?
  • Is bookmarked on your computer?
  • Do you look at the race schedule more than once a week?
  • Do you start to feel down when you haven't run a marathon in a while?
  • Are your closets and dressers filled with marathon t-shirts?
  • Do you have so many marathon medals that you've run out of room on the hook they hang from?
  • When asked about your racing from non-running people, do you find yourself talking with great passion to the point that the person that asked the question regrets ever asking?
  • Have you run marathons on back to back weekends? Or better yet back to back days?
  • Have you run a marathon as a training run? Or just to pace a friend?
  • When asked by loved ones what your plans are for the weekend, you feel guilty telling them your running another marathon so you tell them "it's only a half this weekend"?
  • Do you plan all your vacations around a marathon race?

    There are actual qualification steps to be a Marathon Maniac, of course. I got there by running an ultra within two weeks of a marathon. But I think those 15 questions pretty well cover the criteria best. All of them hit close to home here, probably why I go by @marathoner on Twitter!

    Next up: Hamptons Marathon on Sept. 27, Walt Disney World Marathon on Jan. 11.

Friday, August 15, 2014


ASICS sent me a free pair of GEL-ELECTRO33s to test out a few months ago. Initially I felt a bit of rubbing on my back heel and worried about blistering, so I put them in the closet. Then I gradually would pull them out and wear them casually. Then I started moving around in them, and now I'm rotating them in with my Hamptons Marathon trainers. Has anything like that ever happened to you? They are super-light and make me feel fast. Let's see where they go now. After my 10th PT session today, hopefully my hamstring will be up for marathon No. 15 as well on 9/27.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Meet the Perfect Marathon Runner

Say hello to the perfect marathon runner:

Why, you ask, would a headless mannequin in the ASICS NYC Meatpacking District Store be the perfect marathon runner? Because if you look closely, you can see he has no head.

Our marathon mannequin is sculpted into an ideal running body, a wiry frame with good arm swing and forward-leaning gait. Yes, he has great ASICS gear, from neck to toe, rockin the new Urban Run tee, but more important than anything is his complete absence of a head.

This is important not in a 1790s-France sort of way, not in a Sleepy Hollow-horseback sort of way, but in a metaphorical way that every runner must understand. Let's start with this premise:

That is a list I just created that I hope will be helpful to aspiring marathoners and especially those who plan to do this for as long as they live. Seriously, I know it is vital to use your noggin for positive thought, for awareness of your surroundings, all that good stuff. I'm one of those people who always has said this is 10 percent physical and 90 percent mental.

It's just that part of that 90 percent is knowing how NOT to use your head. I'm just saying that by not using your head, by basically having no head, you can get lasting benefits. Consider:

- If you have no head, you can easily put your last marathon behind you. And you have to put it behind you if you want to run your next one. You can leave it on your wall in the form of a medal, but put the trials and tribulations away and freshly focus on your next scary goal ahead.

- Andy Potts and Ryan Hall each shared a great tip pertaining to this while addressing our ASICS Blogger Challenge Team during brunch after our group run the day before the ASICS LA Marathon in March. Potts pointed with both hands at his own head and said, "You've got to keep it right up here." Don't let panicky thoughts take over. And Hall, well aware that it was going to be in the 80s the next day, told us he never lets himself think that he's hot, or else he will repeatedly think that the rest of his race. In both cases, they are marathon mannequins to a point.

- I have been running basically since the day I quit smoking on Dec. 1, 2006, with some breaks here and there. In the first few years of marathoning, I went through a bout or two of post-partum blues, following up a particularly purposeful race (fundraising and dedications, for example) with a melancholy stretch of wondering how I keep that edge for beastmode training. I got through this by realizing that it doesn't matter. Just don't think about it. Don't worry. The day soon came when I was inspired to run by proposing to my wife at a finish line. Or by being asked by ASICS to run. There is always something that will move you. Just let it flow.

To this last point, just consider this tweet that I saw today on the @BeachBody account. They have a large following and I don't mean to be critical, but these are the kinds of seemingly innocuous tweets that drive me crazy as a runner:

I object to everyone -- usually more corporate fitness accounts -- asking their followers what motivates them. All it does is force the individual to stop and think about how they are motivating himself or herself. Some will suddenly realize there is no real motivation at the moment, that they are just training without a heroic cause or inspirational fellow human. And that is actually doing a disservice to runners. Stop asking runners what motivates them! Please! You're actually doing more bad than good by asking, because you're suggesting they need to go find something.

Know when to be a marathon mannequin like the guy above and just run, run, run, run.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Latest Looks: Inside the ASICS NYC Meatpacking District

Thought I'd give you a virtual look at some of the coolest new stuff at the ASICS Meatpacking District Store in NYC. It's located on 14th Street between 9th and 10th Avenues, across from the Apple Store in what is now one of the hottest parts of town. You can find all of this stuff on

Here's my friend Justin, a store staffer who's also an endurance cyclist and marathoner, holding up one of the new Favorite Half-Zips in the color he's planning to buy himself . . .

There are a lot of new touches to this including the light and breathable fabric around the thumb holes, as you can see pictured here from the ASICS product page. I'll be running in this.

Like this Urban Run tee below?

I do. So do others I see. And they have stacks of them, or it's $34 at . .

Happiness is a wall of running shoes. Here are four categories I was looking at . . .





There's a whole wall full of those for women as well, obviously. I just did a Follow Friday (#FF) on my ASICS @Marathoner account on Twitter, listing every ASICS retail account around the world, and if you follow those, then you will see some really cool ways they show off their own hot items that are just-in. If I could walk out of the ASICS NYC Meatpacking District Store with one box of shoes right now, I believe it probably would be . . .

. . . and maybe this . . .

There is still room in my sock drawer for a new pair of these . . .

In a matter of hours, I will be looping Central Park in the New York City Marathon Long Training Run #1. We are being blessed with some unbelievably fantastic summer weather lately in the Big Apple, and I figured we earned it after that last winter that tested one's soul. So on these #SummerRunnin days, my thoughts are still of running in tops like these . . .

Make sure the ASICS Meatpacking District Store is a stop on your next trip to New York, or head on down if you're in the area. It's like a playland if you love ASICS, as I do. They have the best shoe testing treadmill area in NYC, so be sure to let the pros there test you and get in the right type of shoe for you so you always get to the start line healthy. Tell 'em ASICS @Marathoner sent you.

Friday, June 27, 2014

10 Rules of Physical Therapy

Thanks to my friends at Professional P.T. in NYC / Chelsea for posting this in the men's locker room!

What do you think of PT? Got any more to add?

Monday, June 23, 2014

Queens 10K Race Recap

I stopped to smell the flowers after the Brooklyn Half marked my milestone 100th race. Literally. We made several trips to the New York Botanical Garden, where we are proud members, and rebuilt our garden out back with a wide array of perennials, annuals and organic vegetables and berries. Assorted work around the house including the annual opening of our pool, always an adventure. There was less focus on running over the past month, just occasional maintenance runs.

Then, on the first full day of summer yesterday, it was time to refocus and start on the next 100 races, beginning with the Queens 10K held entirely within Flushing Meadows Corona Park next to Citi Field, and I did so with a PR. In fact, 1:07 (10:54 pace) marked my fastest 10K in two years!

That's me in the final stretch, going for it. My 5K split was 31:59. Considering where I am in my fitness right now, I am very happy. Have been a gym stranger and my core has been mostly ignored. It's OK. I have learned over the last 7+ years of running that it is important to really stop and smell the flowers. Don't listen to those who say it has to be year-round focus or you will fade. Take your breaks. The biggest obstacle to sustained running is Loss of Purpose. Stay fresh. Have fun. Then run again!

The best thing about that race picture above is my pair of shoes. In honor of ASICS' #SummerRunnin campaign, I broke out the ASICS LA Marathon GEL-Lyte 33 shoes that ASICS gave me as part of being on the first ASICS LA Marathon Blogger Challenge in March. They had sat in a closet since then and I was thinking of just keeping them away as a memento of that experience. But instead I wore them to Queens and it was such a great experience. I still need more cushion for longer runs, but for the Queens 10K, my legs felt so light! I could feel my quads actually lifting easier in stretches. They felt sensational and I will use them more going forward. They helped me to a respectable finish, and now am on the brink of 2015 guaranteed entry for the TCS New York City Marathon and the NYC Half:

I thought it would have been cool to run this race in a full black suit and maybe a giant cockroach on a leash. Maybe next year. This is where I got that thought . . .

Just imagine, when they created the World's Fair on this site, there was a thought that perhaps those could be platforms for air transportation such as the Jetsons' space ride. Maybe one day . . .

What's ahead: My next scheduled race is The Color Run MLB All-Star Game 5K on July 13 in Minneapolis, where I will be working All-Star Week, staying that Wednesday to Wednesday. Then I am registered for both NYC Marathon Long Training Runs, although I am still TBA for my fall marathon. I am registered for the Walt Disney World Marathon in January as well. Will gradually fill out the schedule.

This morning I was diagnosed with a mild case of ITB Syndrome on my right side (two years ago I was treated for left side), so I'll be looking at PT sessions in coming weeks and that will take care of it to strength my right hip. No worries. I'm ready to go! Here's to great #SummerRunning and all these friends...

Thursday, June 5, 2014

My 'Favorite' Shirt From 100 Races

If you are like me, you always have go-to running tops even as you amass piles of race tech gear and new purchases from your favorite running shop. I have several go-tos that have survived the test of time since I started my road to 100 races back in late 2006, and the aptly named ASICS Favorite Short Sleeve is currently at the top of my own list. It is what I wore for the recent Brooklyn Half, my 100th race, and what I wore on National Running Day on Wednesday, and I'll start this Gear Review with this top.

The Favorite returned to ASICS shelves this year, lighter than ever. Highlights:
  • ASICS exclusive lightweight, quick-dry, anti-odor, permanent 50+UPF soft knit
  • Strategically-designed mesh construction for breathability
  • Flatlock stitch construction enhances comfort
  • Reflective elements for increased visibility including reflective dot "A" swirl

That's me in the Favorite at Art Cafe in Nyack, NY, after the National Running Day four-miler with Rachel. Even just sitting there postrace I felt swathed in silky-soft bliss, just like when I run. It's just so comfortable, and it's bone dry after I run my last step. The racing stripe on the back rocks. For Brooklyn, I put a tiger-stripe singlet over it because I wanted to make a little bit of a statement in that milestone race, harkening back to my "Monster Cat" nickname in my original Big Cat Runners group. I'll be breaking this Favorite out as a standard in my go-to drawer for a long time to come -- I love it.

ASICS PR Lyte Short Sleeve

This item is right at the top of the page when you search Men's and Running at I am so appreciative of Melinda at ASICS for sending me this in a big box of gear to help make sure I trained for, finished and celebrated my 100th in style. I still have the tag on this one and am just going to stare at it for a little bit before clipping off the ASICS tags and actually taking it out for a run.

Before running in it, I thought I would show you more detail of the fabric. Consider the nanotech that goes into these garments. It is routinely taken for granted by us as we circle parks and run roads, but look closely and you can see why breathability is so key here for elite and everyday runners alike.

ASICS Core Short Sleeve

This is the LA Marathon version of the Core Short Sleeve, one of a few short-sleeve shirts I was given during my training for that race in March as part of the first ASICS LA Marathon Blogger Challenge Team. I was going to run with it at the marathon but wound up buying another version that I wore from Stadium To The Sea that day. So now I am breaking this baby out and enjoying the heat. Hydrology mesh fabric cools the body and reduces moisture even as flatlock seams and self fabric binding reduce chafing. It is texturized mesh with inherent wicking technology. Self-fabric binding enhances comfort. Overlock seam detailing reduces chafing.

Below are a pair of ASICS Kayano Low-Cut Socks, part of a three-pack I was sent by ASICS during LA Marathon training. I was also sent a three-pack of an orange-and-black thicker version. These are wearing really well, and reliable every run with them. What I look for is lasting power in running socks, usually a hallmark of my vast Balega collection. I am pleasantly surprised by how new these stay, as I continue to only wash in cold and on delicate and then lay out my socks flat to dry. If you throw your running socks in the dryer, the seams can raise, and that caused a 10-mile blister for me during the 2010 Miami Marathon with a Nike pair that seamraised. These are bone-dry when I finish my run, great moisture management, cushiony and just the right feel for me. I highly recommend them whatever shoes you wear.

The FlipBelt - Great Concept With Promising Future
We all need to carry stuff while we run, and since I started running races in 2006, I have seen an interesting evolution of wearable organizers. In 2007 I tried using a Nathan's clip-on gadget that would hold some personal items and clip onto the top of my shorts. It was really uncomfortable, a major fail. then at the 2009 New Jersey Marathon Expo, I bought my first Spi-Belt. That has served me well for years, as I have bought various models including one this spring. There also have been the biceps bands for carrying music, ranging from my iPod in the old days to my iPhone recently. But the wearable-organizer sector is never a done deal. New things come along, and the newest is the FlipBelt. The maker was kind enough to send me a code to review it for myself, so I went to and picked out the Nuclear Yellow version in XL.

I was probably more wary of this gear-review item than any I had looked at recently. The main reason is because the FlipBelt website uses people who do not look like the running community. It is 100% hardbodies, like they did a casting call for fitness models. If you go to a typical New York Road Runners race at Central Park, 8,000 or so runners, you will see people in all shapes and sizes. The field does not stop at the front of the pack with the elites. It goes way back to corrals that are populated by a lot of people who look more like me. I crush cities and eat marathons for breakfast, I have run 100 races, I think I inspire others to run, and it is not because I have a six-pack. It is because I am strong mentally, and any real runner will tell you that mental is by far the majority of the game, far over mileage and core work. So I went into this with that preconceived notion, that I'm not their target audience, because I have some midsection issues as I like to be a normal dude. I honestly was mostly worried that I would have roll-over, and I definitely could not wear this outside my shirt, which is how they show all their fitness models wearing it. That is definitely not going to happen. It's an inner for me.

I lifted my shirt up enough for you to see how I am wearing it. Compare this picture with what you see on with the models. How many of them run for ASICS? The FlipBelt has several slits, no zippers. You can insert your mobile phone, your personal effects such as money and cards (I kept those in my shorts pocket as I don't want to experiment with valuables, especially cash and credit card.) Then you "flip" the belt over, so that it stays stationary against your body. That worked well enough, as I used it for two runs, a 10K and today's four-miler. The best thing I can say about the FlipBelt is that it is super-soft and snug, a satiny wraparound that just feels good to have around your body -- especially if it's against your skin, as I used it, and not OVER your shirt. One major issue I had with the actual product (besides the marketing problem) was the use of an iPhone with a cord for your earbuds. Every time I needed to reach down and pull out my iPhone during my run, I found that the cord was tangled. I was pulling it out of a slot that was on the other end of where I inserted it, so the cord was coming out the other slot, and it became increasingly frustrating for me. I never got the hang of that. On today's run, I brought my phone but ran with Rachel so I did not bring my earphones. I would need to experiment with different slots and really get the hang of that element; Spi-Belt was definitely easier for me in terms of music usage. But its main advantage over the Spi-Belt is that you don't have the buckle. You just slip the FlipBelt over your body. I haven't figured out whether to put it over my head and pull it down or step into it, so I have been doing it both ways. In summary, the FlipBelt is a great idea in a very evolving sector of running gear, but it needs to address some key points before it is a prime-time player at the average race. I appreciate FlipBelt sending me the item to review and will continue to test it out.

PowerICE: Great before you walk out the door

I have had two boxes of PowerICE in my freezer this entire year. Thanks to the crew at PowerICE in Boulder, Colo., for your patience with my review. Here's the deal. I was not even going to think about packing more ice near my body in all those months of the most brutal and endless winter that we can remember in New York. So I was not going to even think about PowerICE until it got hot out. I know it's great for snowboarders in Colorado, but for a runner like me, I'm only interested in it for fighting the sun.

I grew up with freeze-pops and that's what I think of when I look at PowerICE packs. They are roughly the same size with similar colorful flair and the promise of cold and tasty goodness. I was given a box of orange and a box of lemon-lime to review. I had to keep a nephew out of the freezer because it turned out that this was his favorite go-to item in our fridge, as he has some dietary issues and PowerICE made him happy and gave him a good infusion of healthy electrolytes. So let me begin by saying I already know that kids looooooooove PowerICE, and parents should have it whether they run or not. Based on the Health testimonials on the PowerICE site, I can say with certainty that our nephew would fit in perfectly. I have a feeling that the greatest thing about PowerICE is in the medical field moreso than the fitness community.

My wife Lisa took that photo of me chunking down a PowerICE before my 10K last Saturday on a hot day north of NYC. In the time that I pulled the PowerICE out of our fridge and walked out my front door to the side of our house, it already had changed from solid frozen consistency to mostly watery slush. It was still cold, and I eagerly poured it into my mouth (I got most of it!). I loved starting my run that way. I used to always drink a glass of Accelerade before my runs, mixing water with a scoop of that powder, and for some reason I got away with that and lately just drink water beforehand, or coffee. This felt like I was doing something right before hitting the trail. Indeed, I started the first mile or two strong, and while I do not have enough data for any real quantitative analysis here, let me just say that I would be happy recommending that you pop a PowerICE before you head out for your run. Too clunky, warm and tangy during the run, too cold for the cold, but I want to recommend this as a prerace blast to get you on your way now.

CoCoGo: Solid for the long haul

I still have a sample box of CoCoGo that I've used off and on over the past year, and I have good feelings about this every time I use it. For starters, we love coconut water in our house and always have the fridge stocked with it. I tear off the top of a CoCoGo packet and dump the powder into my handheld water bottle, and it gives me a supplement on straightforward water as I train. It tastes good, and from what I can see there are some fueling values along the way for a guy like me.

That's where I'll stop, though, as I tried to get Rachel to run with it this morning and she said it's too sugary for her to even consider. The CoCoGo site says it is "Real fruit, real flavor" and "Nothing but natural" and gluten-free. That isn't winning over her, unfortunately. She's a more health-conscious person than I am, so that's probably a little bit of a warning flag for CoCoGo -- better win over the 19-year-old runner-in-bloom as they sell you over social media and are the future for your product. It is not happening with her. Me, I really enjoy it and I'd keep buying CoCoGo. It's not a clean sweep for us but I'll keep using it.