Staying hydrated with Ultima Replenisher™

Disclaimer: I received a sample of Ultima Replenisher ™ 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!”

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Summers in south Louisiana are brutal. The humidity regularly stays above 80% and the heat index is at least 10 degrees higher than the actual temperature. So, that 96° temp actually feels like 106°. Running and training in the summer is tough. It’s hot. Your pace slows a lot. You routinely sweat 2 to 3 lbs. of water weight off during a run. I am a sopping wet mess after a simple 3 miler. With the heat and added loss of fluids through sweat, hydration and electrolyte replenishing become extra important.

This is precisely why I was really excited to try out the Ultima Replenisher™ Electrolyte Powders.

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Ultima Replenisher™ was founded by a nutritionist and long distance runner and was created for the USTF athletes for the 1996 Olympic Games. The combination of electrolytes, vitamins, and minerals was essential in keeping the runners hydrated and aiding performance.

Ultima Replenisher™ Electrolyte Powders are:

  • vegan,
  • gluten-free,
  • contain no processed sugar,
  • carb-free,
  • zero calorie,
  • contain no artifical flavors or sweeteners,
  • caffiene-free, and
  • made with plant-based colors and real fruit flavors.

The powders are sweetened with stevia leaf. Compared to other sugar laden sport drinks, Ultima Replenisher™ has 3x more potassium, zero sugar, and five other electrolytes and support minerals that are key to performance and hydration: magnesium, chloride, calcium, selenium, phosphorus, and zinc. Replenisher™ also has 167% of your % daily value of Vitamin C in each serving. It’s almost like drinking a multi-vitamin!

What I noticed immediately about the powders is the flavor. These drinks TASTE GREAT. Really. I didn’t notice any of the strange aftertaste you experience in some sugar-free drinks. I tried several different flavors out and really enjoyed every one of them. My only issue is the full scoop was a little sweet for me. I like my water flavored subtly. Cutting the scoop in half was perfect for me. But my husband and kids liked the full scoop flavor better.

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The powders come in two sizes of bulk tubs: a 90 serving and smaller 30 serving canister. You can also get the stick packs (shown above) which are great for on-the-go and travel. I keep a couple of the sticks in my purse for work and in my hydration vest to put back in my water as I drain it repeatedly on my longer runs. The individual serving size package makes them really convenient.

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My whole family loves these powders. I even bought the toddler formula for my kids to get them away from the sugary sport drinks. They love it! They love making their “berry drink” themselves. I’ve actually been drinking a lot more water because of it. The great taste makes it so much easier to get in my water consumption for the day. Before I know it, I’ve downed 80 oz!

I highly recommend trying out the Ultima Replenisher™ Electrolyte Powders. Ultima Replenisher™ and BibRave have partnered to offer a great discount code.

You can receive 35% off your order plus FREE shipping with the code BIBRAVE2016!!

I’ve already used that code twice to re-order. Ha! Guess I’m kinda obsessed with the stuff.

 

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.

Gallon a Day Challenge – week 2

wpid-20150205_103809.jpgSo, it’s time for another fun installment of “Scary Jen With No Makeup On”! Ha! So, it’s been two weeks of drinking lots, and lots, and LOTS of water now. I pretty much grab a glass of water and drink it every couple of hours without even thinking about it. It’s almost habit. Again, here are some of the things I’ve noticed since beginning this challenge:

  • My sweet cravings are still much, much less than they were before the challenge. I’m not reaching for the chocolate bowl much at all.
  • I do feel full a lot. All that water in my stomach keeps that full “satisfied” feeling more stable throughout the day. I think now when I feel hungry, I’m really and actually hungry and not possibly just thirsty, stressed, bored, etc.
  • I’m averaging about 6 hours of sleep a night with the baby and I’m surprisingly not overly tired. Now, don’t get me wrong, after a long, hard day I’m still exhausted come 9:00 p.m. But, most days I wake up easily and have a good, decent amount of energy throughout the day.
  • I’m down one pound. Not sure if that’s water consumption or just natural weight fluctuation.
  • The most significant thing I’ve noticed is I get less sore after a hard workout. I ran 6 miles this weekend with a friend, the longest I’ve run since having the baby. I truly expected to be sore the next two days. I was a little tight but very little to no soreness. I was shocked! My joints didn’t ache.

Several of my friends are doing the challenge too and here’s what they’ve noticed.

From Addie (@Baseballwife1):

Definite changes include tons of energy and a huge decrease in snack cravings. My fingers don’t swell as much when I run. Skin isn’t as dry and my complexion has cleared up. I actually wake up in the morning wanting a huge glass of water instead of coffee, which is a miracle in itself.
From Sarah (@iSarahtheQueen):
For me, the #1 thing I’ve noticed – no headaches and no need for ibuprofen. I used to get a headache almost everyday and would go to bed with my knees all achy. Now on day 16 of a gallon of water and I think I’ve had a headache once (and it was PMS related.) So I think I’d had it maybe once? Like Addie, my fingers are a lot less swollen. I’m sleeping better at night. Oh, no heartburn either!
I haven’t noticed any huge change in my appearance. Mostly my skin feels less dry. Time to go run to the bathroom (again) and drink another glass of water (again). Until next week, stay hydrated!
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Week 1 Gallon a Day Challenge

Has it been a week already? I have been drinking a gallon of water a day now for 7 days straight as part of the Gallon a Day Challenge. I plan to continue this for 4 weeks to see if I notice any changes in my health and/or appearance from the beginning to the end. It’s time for a weekly update.

I’m finding it’s easier now to consume the 128 ounces. It’s becoming more of a habit. I drink one 16 oz. glass of water right when I wake up and one right before I go to bed. I also drink one right before every meal. There’s 5 of my 8 glasses right there. The first few days I was counting all fluid consumption (including my 2 cups of coffee) toward the gallon. I figured it would be a struggle to get all of that fluid down. Now I’m not counting the coffee at all. I’m hitting my gallon pretty easily.

Here’s a break down of some of the things I noticed over the week:

  • My body held onto the water for the first two days. I was bloated, bloated, bloated! Then, all of a sudden it stabilized and released the water.
  • I’m having some crazy night sweats. A lot of that is postpartum fluctuating hormones, but they seemed particularly bad this week. I don’t know if there’s an increased water consumption correlation or if it’s just unstable mom hormones.
  • Ehrm …things are moving a lot better. Yes, I’m talking about poop. I’d read that proper hydration results in healthy bowel movements and MAN were they right. It’s a moving! I actually feel really “clean” for lack of a better word and have less lower stomach pooch, which I’m told is sometimes due to backed up bowel.
  • My cravings are less frequent and less intense. This one has been really noticeable for me. I usually have terrible sugar cravings, especially late afternoon and at night. I’ve noticed that I’m wanting to reach for the chocolate less. I’ve been pretty “meh, whatev” about the Valentine’s chocolate we have in the house. Usually I’m grabbing for several pieces a day.
  • I haven’t really noticed any weight loss, but I haven’t been eating particularly great either. So maybe I should say the fact that I haven’t gained any weight is a win?
  • I have had not one, but TWO people tell me how great my skin looks!! Wow! I don’t particularly see it but we’re our own worst critics, right?

I’m hesitant to put these pics up because I look like absolute hell in both (ack!) but this is for science right?? Ha. Both pictures were taken about the same time in the morning and I have no makeup on (Ok, maybe a little mascara but a girl’s gotta wear mascara!). I also only put on my morning sunscreen, no extra moisturizer.

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I don’t notice any huge differences yet in these two pictures. My eyes seem a little brighter and maybe the bags under my eyes look a little less sunken and bluish. Overall I think I look less tired in the second picture. But, I’m getting the exact same amount of sleep (which is not a whole lot with a 4 month old!).

I wrote a post on tips for drinking more water during the day if anyone is interested in joining me. I will continue to chug, chug, chug with this water challenge and see what week 2 holds for me. In the meantime, if you need me I will likely be in the bathroom.