Fun in the sun with the new XX2i Bermuda1!

Disclaimer: I received a pair of xx2i Optics Bermuda1 sunglasses to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

If you follow any of my social media feeds you know I love my XX2i sunglasses. I wear those things all the time when I run. I have blue eyes and they are very sensitive to the bright sunlight. Because of this I’m a bit of a sunglass junky. I have a pair in each car, in drawers of the house, a back-up pair, a back-up to the back-up pair, etc., etc. I was excited to hear that XX2i is adding lifestyle, casual frames to their already amazing line-up of sport sunglasses.

Introducing the brand new Bermuda1 sunglasses!!

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The Bermuda1 comes in a very classic, everyday casual frame style. My pair came with the matte tortoiseshell finish and I couldn’t be happier. Because, tortoiseshell goes with EVERYTHING! They will also be available in matte black, black and white, and crystal black finishes.

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The Bermuda1 comes standard with polarized lenses that employ 4K optical technology, ensuring frame durability and lens clarity. Once you put them on you can immediately tell they are polarized. The lens clarity is exceptional and very soothing on the eyes. Mirrored lenses are really big right now so I was pleased to see the blue flash lenses that came in these.

Some other great things about any sunglasses you purchase from xx2i Optics:

  • Sunglasses come with a LIFETIME replacement warranty on the lenses and frames!
  • They have a 365 hassle free return policy. That’s right, you have a FULL YEAR to try them out and return them if you don’t like them for any reason.
  • Shipping is always free to the U.S.

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Each pair of  Bermuda1 sunglasses comes with a very nice zipper hard case and a second soft case that can also be used as a soft cloth to clean and polish the lenses.

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The frames are a little larger than I generally pick for myself because I have a very narrow face. But,they quickly grew on me. The larger eyepieces and frames mean more sun protection for my eyes and face. I recently wore them for a beach trip and loved how they performed. They were very comfortable, and didn’t slip off my face or fog up when I started to sweat. I even wore them on a run to test them out and they were very comparable to my normal running glasses! They didn’t budge!

If you’re interested in trying out a pair of the NEW Bermuda1 style or any other XX2i sunglasses you can get them for 50% right now with the Bibrave code XX2iRocks! To find out more about the Bermuda1 casual sunglasses or any of their other sport sunglasses, go to xx2i.com.

Also join us for #bibchat tonight at 8 p.m. CST on twitter for a chance to win a pair of the new Bermuda1 sunglasses!

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Stay Hydrated with the Orange Mud Hydraquiver

Disclaimer: I received a sample Orange Mud HydraQuiver to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

I have several runner friends who have an Orange Mud Hydration Pack and they rave about them constantly. I had already been eyeballing them online. So I jumped at the chance to use and review The HydraQuiver when BibRave presented the opportunity!

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I already have a bladder hydration vest that I’m pretty fond of. I love all the pockets it has for all my stuff. So, I was a little skeptical before receiving the HydraQuiver that it wouldn’t be able to hold my stuff. Boy, was I wrong! One of the first things I noticed was all the pockets designed into vest. There’s a large zipper pocket in the back, behind the water bottle storage. It has a key clasp which is a big plus for me. I’m paranoid about losing my keys after losing one at a race.

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There are two expandable, spandex pockets up front that secure with velcro. They expand quite a bit. One pocket will hold my huge phone easily. I put a couple of gels in the other pocket without any issue. I like that my phone is easily accessible on my shoulder. I can get to it quickly with the velcro release if I need it. But, the velcro secured it snugly in the pocket. I never had an issue with it falling out.

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The water bottle is BPA free and holds 25 oz. of liquid. I chose to use a NUUN tab in mine each time since I could easily clean the bottle. I loved having my NUUN on the run! It was also wonderfully simple to pull out the bottle and re-fill it when I found a nearby fountain. No pulling out the bladder and hassling with the cords. It was super, SUPER easy to reach while running and even easier to put back into the holster. Someone asked me if I heard the water sloshing around. Honestly I didn’t! I hear the water in my bladder vest all the time but I don’t remember ever being distracted by any sloshing with the Hydra Quiver.

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I was also concerned that the vest wouldn’t fit my frame or that it would bounce around. Neither of these were an issue. You simply put on the vest, and cinch it up until it’s snug and fits comfortably. I never had a problem with bounce or the vest shifting around on the run. Chafing was also not an issue for me. I’m assuming because it was secured well, and didn’t move around. I used it on several 10, 12, and 13 milers with zero issue.

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One of the other things I really liked about the vest was how lightweight it is! It’s 10 oz with the bottle. Also, the footprint of the vest is much smaller on my back than my bladder vest. That means less back sweat and more body cooling air flow.

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I used it during the Destin Half Marathon. I loved having it with me during the race!

My only complaint about The HydraQuiver is that I have used it so much this last month that it’s now a little stinky from running! Ha! But Orange Mud even has you covered there! They have a handy page on their website discussing the proper way to wash your hydration pack.

This is probably my favorite running item I’ve reviewed so far. Believe all the hype behind the Orange Mud Hydration Packs. They’re designed well, with runners in mind. Since getting my HyrdaQuiver my poor bladder vest has been sitting in the corner collecting dust. Sorry dude.

You don’t need no stinkin’ wires with Aftershokz

Disclaimer: I received a sample of Aftershokz Trekz Titanium wireless headphones review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

If I’m out on a training run by myself, I often carry music with me as a motivator and to offset the boredom if I’m running in a place with no scenery. I usually run with an iPod Shuffle and a pair of in-ear earbuds. The first 15 minutes before the run I am constantly untangling the wires for the headphones, no matter how much care I take to coil them up nicely. Then, I’m tucking the excess wire into my bra because I cannot stand wires flopping around as I run. Such is the life of a wired runner.

So, when I got the chance to try out a pair of Aftershokz bluetooth wireless headphones I jumped on it. I’ve been curious about trying out a pair, but was hesitant to switch to wireless for fear of losing sound quality.

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The interesting thing about the Trekz Titanium headphones is that they are completely open. They do not go IN your ears, but rather slightly above your ears. They use bone conduction technology which delivers the music through your cheekbones. This allows your ear to be open to ambient sounds around you, providing a much safer listening experience. wkyjmimjuk7pgwhzric3.jpg

The first time putting them on, it took a little adjustment until I got them where they needed to be and where they sat comfortably  above my ear. They immediately connected with my phone’s bluetooth (I have a Samsung Galaxy S5). And I started playing music from  one of my Pandora stations. I was shocked. The music quality was GREAT!! AND I could hear everything going on around me! As I ran around our old downtown area, I could easily hear people talking on their front porches. I heard cars approaching, dogs barking, birds chirping, without losing music sound quality from the headphones. It was amazing!

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They are extremely lightweight and flexible. There is a micro usb charging port right next to the volume buttons behind the earpiece. It didn’t take long to charge them fully and they’ve held a charge for weeks! Aftershokz says they’ll stay charged for up to 6 hours of continuous music play.

One of the other features I really liked was the connect and fast forward button. This button sits on the outside of your left earpiece. You hold it to connect and Audrey Says™ “Connected” in her lovely voice. If you’re not feeling a song while running, just hit that same button twice and it will fast forward you to the next song. This worked great with my playlists and Pandora. I couldn’t ever get it to work with Spotify.

Now they are IP55 certified to repel sweat and moisture but I, again, was reluctant to believe that. I sweat like crazy in our humidity and I’ve waterlogged a few headphones and electronic devices. These things performed great! Several sweaty, sweaty, SWEATY runs plus a rainshower run and they are no worse for the wear.

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I only had two issues with these headphones.

  1. The wraparound headband in the back sticks out quite a bit on my head. I have very thick hair and when I would wear it in a braid, the braid would knock the headband around and knock them off my ears. Aftershokz immediately replied (SUPER responsive people!) to my comment on this stating that they will be coming out with a smaller version for ladies like myself with smaller heads and big ole ponytails. The headband on the smaller one will be shorter.
  2. With these fitting over the ear, I would quickly run out of ear real-estate once I got my sunglasses and hat on (a necessity in our sun and heat). While I didn’t mind all this gear on my ears for a shorter run, it would start to get uncomfortable for the much longer runs and I would have to adjust everything periodically.

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All in all I was really impressed by these headphones. As a safety professional I applaud the open design. I feel so much better going on open roads with these things than I do with my earbuds (I usually have one in and one out – but lose a lot of sound quality that way!)  They’re lightweight, easy to use, great sound quality, and sweat/water resistant. You can definitely see where Aftershokz designed these with athletes in mind.

Join us for #Bibchat tonight on Twitter at 8:00 p.m. CST to discuss running aware and you could win a free pair of these Trekz Titanium wireless headphones!!