08-05-2015

Reebok All Terrain Thunder 2.0 Review – Best Sneakers For Mud Runs!

Disclaimer: ShoeBuy.com provided me with product in exchange for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

As you may recall, I ran the Rugged Maniac 5k last month, which was a mud run/obstacle course race (and really fun!). I never wrote a full recap of it but basically, my sister and I had a lot of fun doing it, although for next time I need to figure out a solution to muddy water getting into my eyes because of my contacts.

ShoeBuy was kind enough to send me a pair of trail running shoes by Reebok to test out during my race. The shoes are the Reebok All Terrain Thunder 2.0. I was really excited to try them out but also nervous because 1) I was wearing a brand new sneaker without breaking them in and 2) I wouldn’t be wearing my SuperFeet inserts so I didn’t know how my shins would fare.

Reebok All Terrain Shoes
The ShoeBuy website describes them as such:

Conquer obstacles with the shoe designed and engineered with enhanced support and cushioning to get you over the wall and through the elements with added stability and comfort.

The shoes are definitely sturdy and have good stability. No shin issues here. I mean, I suppose they would have to be stable to handle a rugged obstacle course!

They aren’t lightweight shoes, which is something to keep in mind. Since the shoes need to be sturdy and have bigger treads, it will make for a somewhat heavier shoe.

I talk about the things I loved about the shoe in my video below, but here are the highlights:

  • The water-resistant outer. Your socks will obviously still get wet, but the shoe quickly dries off afterwards and repels water throughout. The shoe has drain holes on the side so water is being squeezed out with every step.
  • The treads. These suckers got me through a lot of mud! I had no problem running through thick mud while everyone else was falling or having their shoes come off in the mud. It felt pretty cool to just be running through mud and passing people no problem ;)

Reebok All Terrain Shoes

  • The laces. I did not think about this at all beforehand but I imagine having to untie muddy, wet laces after the race would have been awful! Undoing the lace locks was super easy…now taking off my compression socks afterwards was a different story…
  • How easy it was to wash them. I didn’t talk about this in the video but you can clearly see that they look pretty much brand new in the video right?? How awesome is that. I soaked them in a bucket of water then scrubbed the mud off and voila. Imagine getting mud off a normal running shoe. Here are some “before” washing pics:

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If you regularly run mud runs or obstacle course races, these are the shoes for you. Or even if you just love trail running; these are perfect for rougher trails or rainy trail runs. Also, these shoes are true to size in my opinion. I’m a size 8.5 in normal running shoes and these shoes fit like my other shoes do.

For more information, check out my video review:

Like I said, ShoeBuy.com is more than just running shoes or shoes in general. You can find clothing, handbags, accessories, and much more. If you love online shopping, this is definitely a great website to check out. You can find everything you might need in one place, as opposed to having to go to different websites for different items.

Oh one last thing, they offer free shipping and free exchanges. So if you’re unsure about a size or whether something will fit right, you don’t have to worry about it.

I saw Rugged Maniac already posted their NJ dates for next summer (July 9 and 10th) so I guess I should pencil that into my calendar! I don’t know if I could ever do a Tough Mudder or Spartan…that might be too intense for me. Maybe one day ;)

Do you trail run or do mud runs and have special shoes for those specific runs?

Do you prefer online shopping or shopping in person?

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01-23-2014

Trying A Tri

Okay-I’m going to put this out there.

This summer, I kind of want to try a mini triathlon. Like mini-mini.

I found this one-which seems like a possibility:

I remember last summer looking into triathlons, and I saw one in NJ that was something along the lines of swimming 250 yards, biking 5-6 miles, and running 1 mile-now that’s what I’m talking about! :) Of course now I can’t find the information on this race, and I don’t remember the name of it. This would have been perfect because I am really nervous about swimming and biking, considering I haven’t ridden a bike in years, and have never swam more than a couple of laps.

A few other possibilities are:

I want 2014 to be the year I try a bunch of different things, such as:

  • Doing a tri (possibly)
  • NYC Urbanathlon?
  • Another mud run

I don’t own a bike, but I could probably find one somewhere. Swimming is what makes me the most nervous. I’m not the best swimmer, and I have only really swam in a pool, not open water. Biking is hard but I’ve biked more than 15 miles in spin class before, so it should be doable. I realize that it’s probably harder biking outside than indoors on a spin bike.

Have you done a mini/sprint triathlon before?

What advice would you give to a complete newbie?

Anyone done an urbanathlon before?

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01-07-2014

Workouts You Need To Stop Doing

workouts you need to stop doing

I stumbled across this article form TODAY Health, entitled “Workouts You Need To Stop Doing In 2014.”

On the list of “fitness fads” are these exercises:

  • Pole dancing
  • Yoga mash-ups (such as hot yoga, stand up paddleboard yoga, and aerial yoga)
  • Gas mask training (gas masks in order to train for high altitude runs/climbs or restrict their oxygen intake for a much tougher workout. While proponents rave about the results, they also readily admit to “seeing stars”)
  • Backwards running
  • Stiletto workouts (Fans of this “fitness” fad say working out in sky-high heels can strengthen your core, improve your balance and give you toned, taut legs.)
  • Mud, obstacle and beer races
  • Stability ball stands

Well…interesting…

Let’s talk about both sides of this story.

Don’t Discourage Others

On the one hand, should we really be discouraging people from doing a workout they love? When I worked at a personal training studio, my boss hated running. He would always lecture clients (and me) about how bad long distance running is, how it increases your cortisol and makes you fatter, etc. It would annoy me so much because at the time I was training for the New York City Marathon! We know running has its benefits, who is he to say that ONLY lifting is the way to go?

He had the same view about yoga, Zumba, spinning, and more. He thought they were pointless and you would only see real results from training with him (and only his way).

As a personal trainer, I want to encourage everyone to do what they feel comfortable doing and love. If lifting with a trainer isn’t your thing, then find something else. While I agree with my old boss that perhaps Zumba won’t lead to a toned physique, that’s not the goal for many people. It is still exercise, still getting your heart rate up, and that’s what matters.

Is That Safe?

Now, on the other hand, some of the above mentioned workouts sound straight up dangerous. Workout out in high heels? Wearing gas masks? The doctor quoted in the article states,

“When you wear high heels, you’re shortening your Achilles tendon, throwing off your center of gravity and putting stress on your lower back. And then there’s what happens in your feet.” ER doc Stanton is more blunt: “Anything in stilettos is an ankle injury waiting to happen,” he says.

Throwing off your center of gravity is a big reason why many trainers do not advise lifting while on BOSU balls or an unstable surface as well. But I’ll discuss that in another post ;)

The gas mask thing I just do not understand. It can not be good to be struggling for air while working out…while your heart is pumping and asking for air.

BUT, some things on this list surprised me. Yoga? Obstacle races?

I actually did a 5K mud run in 2012, and it was awesome. I have read about many injuries, and sadly, deaths, due to these races. They are dangerous, which is why you need to train for them. It’s not just a fun little race where you jump over things.

If obstacle runs are what gets you out there, then go for it! Make sure you do the right training, and include cardio and strength workouts. I think mud runs are a fun way to encourage people to be active, especially those who aren’t that into running.

I’m all about people getting out there and being active, especially when we are supposed to get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week.

But use caution when trying something new, such as some of the workouts listed above, and do research as well. Will the exercise of your choice help you in reaching your goals? What are the benefits? Contraindications?

Does advising someone not to do a certain workout make you a fitness snob?

What do you think of these workouts? Which have you done?

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