Major Announcement…

This symbol means business.

In 33 days I will be attending the RKC Workshop in Atlanta (Cartersville)… My trainer, Beth Andrews RKC is hosting it- and it will be taught by Master RKC Keira Newton (I am loving the fact that this one is being hosted and taught by some badass crazy strong women).  I am so incredibly grateful for the opportunity to attend this workshop and learn from the best of the best…

Blood. Sweat. Respect.

But if I were being totally honest with y’all- I would admit that I am also full of anxiety about this as well.  This 3 day workshop will be the hardest thing that I have ever done in my life. There is about a 30% failure rate of all of those that attend this course. The amount of mental and physical strength necessary to even think about signing up for this workshop is incredible (check out the requirements here). It’s intense- all day for 3 days- receiving instruction, completing workouts, and then being tested on strength, endurance, and the material presented. It all counts- and any failure means you don’t receive your certification- it’s game over.  Physically I have a mountain of strength, endurance, and technique that needs to be cleaned up and tightened up.  Mentally, I need to pull my collective shit together and focus down on the work that is ahead of me.  Becoming a RKC Instructor is a major goal, would be an epic accomplishment, and a ginormous step towards building my dreams… but it  also demands that you commit yourself 110% to earn the respect that this certification commands.

So that’s it, that’s where I am at guys. I am heading into the cave… it’s time to tear it all down to the foundation and rebuild- both physically and mentally.

RACE REVIEW: SAVAGE RACE GEORGIA

Remember that right arm... it'll be relevant later.

My final race for this season was the Fall Savage Race at Moonlight Stables in Dallas Georgia.  This event was billed as “The Race Built to Kick Your Ass”, it promised 6 miles worth of gnarly trails and intense obstacles that have a reputation for getting in your head-  with freezing ice baths and high jumps into watery graves.  I was originally set to run this event with a team- but between spinal surgeries (my racing partner), and a general chickening out by hardened MMA fighters… I was running this bad boy solo.

THE OBSTACLES:  As I was driving on to the property there were really only 3 things on my mind- Shriveled Richard, Davy Jones Locker, and Colossus. These are 3 are just a couple of Savage’s Signature Obstacles- a quick description of each:

Just go to your warm happy place.

Just go to your warm happy place.

Shriveled Richard: A storage container filled with ice and a bit of water… but mostly ice.  To navigate- you jumped in at one end, completely immerse yourself under a submerged baffle, then swim to the end and hoist yourself out.  I was in the second heat of the day, directly behind the elite heat (I always register early to avoid truly slopped up obstacles and trails) so the ice was really, uh, “fresh”.  This obstacle was just horrid… and there was little relief once I got out.  I really needed to run to get blood circulating and moving again- but this is where faith in muscle memory comes in… because you just can’t feel a damn thing below your belly button.  I was shocked to shit to look down and see that my feet were trotting along down there.

 

As close to terminal velocity as I ever want to be.

As close to terminal velocity as I ever want to be.

Davy Jones Locker: It’s a high jump into water, simple and straight forward.  I have never done a high jump at a race- and simply free falling into not-a-swimming-pool really worked on me.  As I ran up to it- I felt pretty good- ballsy and ready to go.  And I did jump with very little time spent thinking about it.  But about .04 seconds after I jumped, I started questioning some of my capabilities as a responsible adult decision maker.

 

Just a little up and over, and you are done! /sarcasm

Just a little up and over, and you are done! /sarcasm

Colossus: Colossus is approximately a 20ft quarter pipe with a dangling rope.  You run like hell, grab the rope, climb, and pray that someone will help you navigate the transition from the rope to plank.  This is always the hard part for me.  I have no problem getting to the top of any wall… but when a rope is involved, I totally don’t know what to do once I get there. I usually end up just flailing my legs over and free-styling it.  However, on this behemoth- you are damn near vertical at the top of this wall- which would mean some type of muscle up to get on the plank… but with my injury (more on that later)… well nobody had time for that.  Thankfully, a fellow racer grabbed my wrist and put it on the lip- because I just couldn’t trust I would catch it on my own. From there I got the rest of myself up, and then climbed up and over to the slip-n-slide.

I am thrilled that I conquered the 3 obstacles that were totally un-nerving me pre-race.  The obstacles at Savage ran the gamut from pure fun, to miserable, to unique, to vomitous (colon-blow, anybody?).  I was not disappointed in any way- they were all constructed solidly, and I felt the volunteers did a great job encouraging folks, but also avoiding bottlenecks.

THE TERRAIN:  I feel that the terrain was average in difficulty… but STELLAR in beauty.  The run, in and of itself, was such a gorgeous and beautiful run.  The property at Moonlight Stables is just breathtaking- we ran through thick woods, winding trails, and open pasture.  We had some fog, mist, and rain… and I managed to be out by myself for a large percentage of the running and it was just stunning.

THE FESTIVAL:  This race was well-organized and the festival area ran like a well oiled machine.  I was parked in less than 5 minutes from entering the property, and the walk from the car was not bad at all.  Once inside the gates, there were tons of super knowledgeable and helpful volunteers…smooth check-in, plenty of porta-potties, a clean showering area, and ample room in the changing tents.  I don’t normally complain about the standard $5 bag check that most races charge these days… I accept it.  But all of the other major races are also giving race images for FREE these days,too.  Not so at this race… this is a huge deal for a solo runner (I didn’t have any spectators to grab pictures for me)… and I am simply unwilling to pay the Marathon Photo fees. Savage needs to join the big boys and ditch the paid photos.

Tis a flesh wound.

‘Tis but a flesh wound.

Battlewounds...

Battlewounds…

OVERALL: The only major issue I had on this course was totally self-inflicted! Gah! I managed a pretty long and deep laceration at the “Me So Thorny” obstacle (the 17 year old boy that lives in my brain loved all of obstacle names SO MUCH, lol)… which ultimately ended up requiring 4 stitches later that day. But again, the staff at Savage Race (in this case the EMT on the course, and the paramedics in the First Aid Tent) were thorough and diligent in not only quickly treating my wound- but also getting me back on the course- which I truly appreciate.  I had a good streak- 16 races without a major incident. I am kinda okay with Savage taking that honor, and being the first race to leave permanent battle wounds.  That said, I lost approximately 20-30 minutes being treated- and subsequently I didn’t run as hard or fast, and stopped several times to help others up obstacles.  I was having a great run up till that point though… which I saw in my results that were published the next day.  Had I kept the pace and not got injured- I would have likely been in the top 5 women for my age group (I love that Savage does age/gender awards)… With the setbacks I still finished 21st out of 150.  I am pretty stoked about that… but that just means I am ready game for a re-match in Spring!

Girls gotta stick together ;)

Girls gotta stick together 😉

Giving a hand... see bandaged arm. lol

Giving a hand… with bandaged arm. lol

This racing season has been such an amazing season… I hate to see it end. From taking my buddy Stephen on his first Spartan Sprint, to running the inaugural BattleFrog, to my very first Savage Race… I simply couldn’t ask for any better.  As I sit here typing I am so grateful for so many many things… To have a body that has not only survived years of neglect and shitty food- but that has grown and served me in endurance and strength… For my trainer, Beth Andrews RKC, that has worked with me, modified countless workouts, helped me train through injuries, and answered eleventy-seven times “Should I run?”.  I am grateful for all of my running partners… namely Jennifer, David, Don and Stephen… for listening to me bitch about being hungry or needing to pee, being hot, hating elevation, or cursing speedwork… or just totally jumping into a race completely blind- just to do it.  Finally- I am most grateful for my husband- Duane, and my 2 kids… for being so supportive of my hobby… They listen to me dawdle on about which races I want to do, what my goals are, watch you-tubes of races, and put on Academy Winning performances when I re-tell my own race stories.  It has also meant ignoring me bumping around at 5am to beat the heat in Summer to get my miles in, or meeting me at the gym when the schedule called for a “two a day”. It meant metric tons of Epsom Salt, Arnica Gel, band-aids, and motrin.  I am so so grateful… there is just no way to say thank you enough.

That brings me to 2015! (I know, I know!) Here is how my race schedule is shaping up so far. I will have a team at each race- please let me know if you would like to join our wolfpack! I would love to have anyone that would like to attend! If the group wants to- we can possibly even get together to train some before each race:

2015 OCR Schedule:
Feb.  28: BattleFrog Miami (15k)
March 7: Atlanta Spartan Sprint (5k)
April 18: Savage Race Georgia Spring (10k)
April 25: BattleFrog Carolinas (15k)
May 16: BattleFrog Atlanta (15k)
More to be announced as the dates become available! Additionally, I have a big HUGE announcement forthcoming about what I will be doing with all of my time between now and then!

RACE REVIEW: RUGGED MANIAC ATLANTA

Obligatory Solo Race Pose

So in between the badassery of BattleFrog Atlanta and South Carolina… and before what is promising to be an ass kicking at Savage Race– I signed up for a lighter race- the Rugged Maniac.

I highly recommend this race for any first timer that wants to do something similar to a Spartan Sprint… but is not quite ready for a BattleFrog or a Savage Race yet. The distance is like the Sprint- around 3 miles or so, and the obstacles are challenging but totally do-able and approachable for those just getting into Obstacle Course Racing.  The Festival area was a little small- but had everything you need- from merch, to showers and changing tents, to music and games.

This guy... thought he had photo bombing game... great shot of the festival area behind him though! ;)

This guy… thought he had photo bombing game… great shot of the festival area behind him though! 😉

The Terrain: There were a few small hills along the course, and some wooded trail running. But for the most part the course designers stuck to the well-used wide trails that are already established on campus- keeping the hard/rooted/rocky/technical running to a minimum.

The obstacles:  I really enjoyed the obstacles on this course. They were all very approachable and just plain FUN… not too much of a mental block for most of them. The Walls were either ladder style (the taller ones), or the shorter ones had a lip on them that you could wedge your toe on to help yourself up and over with.  The barbed wire crawls were situated between muddy humps and mud ditches- but were plenty wide enough that there wasn’t any bottle neck to contend with.  Their gauntlet consisted of a wide balance beam with swinging bags to knock you off- but the catch is that those MASSIVE bags don’t weigh more than 3 pounds- so you can easily over-anticiapte (like I did) and send yourself off into the water…

The Gauntlet's got Tricks

The Gauntlet’s got Tricks

They also had a slippery slope (inclined wall with rope), and a particle accelerator (waterslide) as their big finish- which again… just total nonsense. But nonsense is fun!!!

Particle Acclerator: AKA Adult Slip and Slide

Particle Acclerator: AKA Adult Slip and Slide

They also had free race images- just like BattleFrog and Spartan. But- one BIG drawback: no bling. When I inquired about Rugged Maniac Medals, I was informed that they will be rolling out finisher medals beginning in September. I do hope they hold to their word as that would really be the only major complaint I have about this race.  So if you are looking for a race to get your feet muddy in- go for this one- it was a ton of fun, and I think a great way to get introduced to OCR’s!

RACE REVIEW: BATTLEFROG CAROLINA’S

RACE REVIEW: BATTLEFROG CAROLINA'S

I don’t even know where to begin with reviewing this race… Because HOLY COW… my brain and body are still fried.

Lets get a few things mentioned up front. This is Battlefrog’s second race, I raced their inaugural race in Atlanta- which was amazeballs and I reviewed it here. My running partner and I were honored to be invited by Battlefrog to come race again in South Carolina (read: way beyond giddy and flattered). I have raced at both the Atlanta and South Carolina venues before with Spartan– twice for a Spartan Sprint and once for a Spartan Beast, respectively. Finally, the weather was an obstacle all on its own yesterday… the temperature peaked at 95 degrees, and with the humidity hovering around 60-70%… it felt like we were running in a hair dryer.

 

Don't let the smile fool ya- I could hear my skin frying.

Don’t let the smile fool ya- I could hear my skin frying.

So lets get on with the review… In summary- this race made me question myself many, many times. I would rank it in the top 5 hardest things that I have ever done in my LIFE. And to put that in perspective- I will list my top 5:
1. Labor and Delivery of 2 sproglings.
2. Reconstructive Jaw Surgery (mouth wired shut for 6wks which was super easy since I am so quiet and all)

  1. The Wintergreen Spartan Super… which I am still pretty angry about (I did finish in just <6hrs). Simply put- they flung the racers at all the ski slopes available, including a couple of double diamonds… with a smattering of obstacles. Around half DNF’d the race. It was bullshit.
  2. Battlefrog South Carolina… reasons forthcoming…
  3. Battlefrog Atlanta… Battlefrog stole my Spartan heart in Atlanta- for reasons aforementioned here.

 

I walked into this race knowing that Carolina Adventure World is full of steep and gnarly quad trails. I ran my Spartan Super at this venue last year to earn my Spartan Trifecta medal. That said, ladies and gentlemen, I am here to tell you that Battlefrog packed in a way more challenging and intense course in their 9 miles than Spartan could have ever wished for last year within 12. Yes… I said it… The new kids kicked some Spartan Ass.

 

As I mentioned in my Atlanta BattleFrog review, I loved the intensity and rugged-ness of not only the obstacles but also the terrain. The intention of putting the racers through as many elements as possible was obvious on the course. So I knew that the staff would go ape with all of the diverse landscape, natural water features, clay, sand, mud, and vegetation that Carolina Adventure World has to offer.   And yet again- Battlefrog didn’t disappoint… this course was INSANE… easily 3 times harder than the Atlanta course- which was a feat all on its own.

 

So happy to be DONE.

So happy to be DONE.

THE 15K TERRAIN:   Battlefrog’s use of the natural terrain, water features, and vegetation in South Carolina was impressive. We were sent thru some super thick quicksand-like-mud within the first mile. It slowed us down for the next 2 miles because it added some major weight- and simply wouldn’t shake loose. The sand, clay, and silt became a major factor to contend with as well- as we were in and out of ankle deep loose sand for a good stretch of the race. I am not one to usually look forward to water obstacles- but I was then- just to rinse the pounds of clay and sand that I kept collecting. Carolina Adventure World is an ATV/Dirtbike playland- full of mudbogs, enduro courses, rolling dirtbike trails, etc. This means that as a runner you simply have to attack those hills at a full sprint and then just claw your way to the top… I will summarize the terrain this way: If we weren’t climbing up or down a hill, then we were in heavy mud or water. The terrain was an obstacle the entire way.

 

THE OBSTACLES: I love the original obstacles that Battlefrog uses… and the way they were arranged them on the course in South Carolina was a major challenge. The intensity and difficulty of the obstacles were again multiplied in SC (in comparison to Atlanta). There were 7 different types of walls that we crossed- from rope-style traverse walls, straight muscle-up and overs, to 12 foot rope and ladders. Then after all of those walls, crawling, humping over, and “PT” (8 count body builders), they tossed us in rivers and ponds where swimming was really your only option. The inverted walls were actually placed IN the water- so not only were they incredibly slick, but you are heavier with all of that fresh muddy water all over you. The rope traverse on this course was easily 2-3 times longer than the traverse in Atlanta… I did not see one person make it across while I was there. I failed the Rope Traverse and The Tsunami… And I will say that both of those obstacles seemed damn near impossible. The length of that traverse just seemed extreme… And for the Tsunami- I really wish that BattleFrog would look into a different substrate for the wall on that. I imagine it is a challenge but doable for the first maybe 100 or so racers.   After that- It appears to be more of a challenge for the volunteers at the top- hoisting the racers that are dangling at the end of the rope up onto the platform. There is just no way to get your feet in on the game- the wall is too slicked up with mud and water. I haven’t been sore after a race in a long long time… but 48 hours later my upper body is still shuddering, and I am pretty sure I left a hip flexor out there on the course somewhere.

IMG_8583

Serious about the Monkey Bars

IMG_8579

Obstacles like carrying Jerry Can’s up and down the hill were a welcome break to running through the heat of hell.

 

THE INTEGRITY:   Obviously, I believe that BattleFrog puts together a challenging, high quality race that is designed to push you beyond your limits. There was something in the air in Atlanta that felt more genuine about this race than any other I have done. The people that this event seems to attract (from staff, to volunteers, to racers) and their tenacity and passion for racing where the magic is.

For instance, I met Don Mann (CEO of BattleFrog, decorated veteran, 17 year SEAL, 6 year SEAL TEAM SIX, and the Most Interesting Man in the WORLD) at a water stop after the Jerry Can Carry. He was passing out water, asking what we thought of the course, and was genuinely invested in our answers. He lit up when I told him that this course was so much harder than the Atlanta course. He said “Oh just wait! There is so much more fun ahead!”. His description of “fun” may need some tweaking… but so incredibly cool to literally run up on him hanging out with the volunteers doing recon.

I also had the opportunity to meet a Wounded Warrior Spouse while out on the course. I had actually connected with her on the BattleFroggers FB Group Page before the race, and learned that she and Battlefrog were working together to give him his honorary “Final Flight” (Helocopter) that he never got while in service. Which is super cool all on its own. We found her out on the course, badly injured, but pushing through the pain to make a 1pm deadline to see her husband take off. She made it, limping, with sheer minutes to spare to see her husband off. We watched her baby congratulate her, and got a picture with her too… She was nothing short of AMAZING.

Looking a little ragged here... but considering what all we had been through... lol

Looking a little ragged here… but considering what all we had been through… lol

I have to say that my experience at Battlefrog Carolina’s blew Atlanta out of the water… And Atlanta received rave reviews not only from me, but from big names like Hobie Call, Obstacle Racing Media, and many many others! Next up for Battlefrog is DC, then Tri-State, and Pittsburgh after that. If you haven’t signed up yet- what are you waiting for!? This is a bucket-list race for sure!

 

Toughest Race to date... proud as hell to have finished it.

Toughest Race to date… proud as hell to have finished it.

 

RACE REVIEW: BATTLEFROG ATLANTA

I ran the Atlanta BattleFrog 15k OCR this past weekend… and I have to be honest with y’all… my Spartan heart has been won over. Spartan Races are fantastic, challenging, exciting races- no doubt. But the BattleFrog…oh this race was PHENOMENAL.

The Atlanta race was the inaugural event for BattleFrog, so I expected there to be some kinks that would need to be worked out along the way. I experienced NONE… which is so huge for their very first event. I will also add that this is the first OCR that I have ran with a partner. If you can find someone of similar fitness level, and running pace to train with- you MUST run with a partner. While I have never had a problem with making buddies while on any course- there would always be lulls of misery and boredom along the way. If you have a partner, you can look at them and say “What the f*** are we doing!?” and then laugh maniacally when you are reminded that you trained for 6 weeks for this shit.

The festival area was pretty standard… check in was seamless- less than 60 seconds and we had our bibs in hand. We hit the merchandise tent, aptly named “The Exchange”, to pick up some shirts while we were still clean enough to handle them. I loved all of their Merch. They actually had women’s cut t-shirts! Even the finisher shirts were in men’s and women’s cut!! (I know, I know! CRAZY!)

We joined the 10am wave, and got to see a SEAL Demo while we waited in the chute.   The best way to describe their demonstration is “Drive-by via Helicopter”. It was amazing to watch the helicopter and the SEALS, with their easy skill… just too damn cool, and what better way to get pumped up right before your race!?   Then HOOYA! HOOYA! HOOYA! And we were off!
I am not going to go obstacle by obstacle thru the entire course- there is youtube for that. But I do have to make a few points about this amazing course design. It was obvious from beginning to end that the designers (veteran Navy SEALS) were very VERY intentional about providing a demanding, thoughtful, and intense course. There was no just sending the racers through muck and mud just to do it. We were in the water, up high in the air, over all types of terrain, down low through culverts, rivers, and crawling through obstacles. The obstacles themselves ran a wide range- from brute physical force, to mental strategy, to sheer patience and endurance to plot through.

I have to add that the volunteers at this race were unbelievable! They were enthusiastic, super helpful, and just freaking pumped up! I cannot emphasize enough just how solid this race was- from beginning to end. Oh- and of course the BLING… They had different size and color medals for the different levels of races… The larger medal with the blue ribbon was for the 15k, and the smaller medal with the green ribbon was for the 5k. Here is mine… it’s kinda my favorite:

Big Honkin Bling

Big Honkin Bling

I do earnestly hope that this racing series makes it for the long haul, and sticks around for a long long time. The quality of the event and course is definitely right up there with the big dogs- like Spartan Race… and it would be wonderful to have some healthy competition. If this race comes close to you- Sign up and Show up! You won’t be disappointed!

The numbers don’t lie… ‘cept when they do.

I have been fighting an INFURIATING fight with *the numbers* over the last 6-8 months. The scale just WILL. NOT. MOVE. And no, I have not forgotten that I recently preached all about “focus on performance, not the scale“. I do totally believe that on the day to day- the excitement of performing new feats is what will keep you getting up early and showing up more than any scale ever will. But all those platitudes aside, we all love to see measurable change- whether it is on the scale, in the tape measure, or even in the fitting room (you know I am right).

I want to stop right here and encourage you if you are in the same boat… Doing all the right things and seemingly not seeing any progress is a really REALLY crappy place to be. Many times a change in diet or work-out regimen is enough jiggle you out of that place. But listen to me on this: stay the course and ignore the little bastard voice that is telling you to jump ship, listen to your trainer- or continue on your training plan- but most importantly- finish what you started.

So my trainer- Beth Andrews, Sr. RKC– took my measurements a few days ago. And frankly- I was disappointed. I wasn’t destroyed. I didn’t go to Dunkin Donuts or anything. But damnit… the changes just weren’t as much as I thought they should be… a quarter inch here, a half inch there. It’s progress, sure… but so so so small. Why don’t I have more to show for all of my efforts? Here are the numbers… It starts with May 2013, when I started working out at MBT after a weight gain from a fractured ankle:
Tape Measurements

Sonofabitch.

Yes- from May 2013 to now is a decent amount of change… But the recent numbers are just barely moving. And the scale was even moredepressing- maybe 5-8lbs since JULY. Beth was firm that I looked different, and wanted to see where my body fat was at with the calipers. So we went thru the pinching, and the adding… and there it was… measurable change. Freaking finally:

19%!!!

19%!!!

Woohoo! Woohoo! Whoohoo!

YESSSS!!! I have been aiming for a body fat percentage under 20% since the very beginning… So I will be honest when I tell you that I may have done the Carlton when I saw that.

Yes, yes, yes… Numbers do not define you. But if you are measuring your change and progress- please let me be an example… take lots of different measurements. By *just* looking at my tape measures and the scale it would appear that I have not made much change at all in the last 6 months. However, my total body fat measures show a completely different story. Those pinches show that I have changed my body *composition*. My area and mass have not changed much- but the amount of toned muscle has increased by grannies, fat has actually been burned away and I do in fact look completely different.

Take pictures. Take tape measures. Record your weight, your fuel, and how you feel. Have your body fat measured. Record your jeans size. All of these things matter… you may not see progress on the scale or in the tape measure- but you may see it in how your jeans fit. And any progress is important and should be measured and celebrated!

Not only am I thrilled with my Body Fat progress- but I don’t feel like shit anymore. I have learned so much about how important food is, about what a balanced training plan looks like, and most importantly how to really listen to my body and decipher the signals it sends me. That said- I don’t have it all figured out- in the least! haha! I have recently started the Metabolic Effect eating plan- and made some realizations on errors in my eating up till now (mostly just not eating enough for all the new muscle, and I wasn’t paying enough attention to fiber). I have learned that as my body changes- I have to make adjustments too… In other words, the diet and exercise that worked for the obese me won’t be the same formula for the overweight me, or the leaner version of me.

On Sunday I will be running the Georgia Spartan Sprint with a good friend, and freshman to the OCR scene. It’s his day to celebrate! He has been rehabbing injury and knee surgeries and working hard for 2 years… AND TOMORROW I WILL WELCOME HIM TO SPARTA! I am so ridiculously giddy! I plan on taking some pictures to post up here for comparison of where I was last year at my own first Spartan race and now… I will blog about it all as soon as the bruises fade- AROO! AROO! AROO!

Sports Bras for the “Blessed”!

Gotta wear em... support your girls.

I am almost a nazi about bras. The right bra can literally make you look dozens of pounds lighter. Please skip the mall lingerie stores and go ahead and go to a boutique like “Intimacy” or “Livi Rae Lingerie” (for the ATL market) for your everyday and special occasion bras… Especially if you think you are a D or larger. Trust me on this- just go and get fitted- and then thank me later. You gotta take care of the girls.

(Quick Ethics Disclaimer: I am a small time girl that is just rambling at the sky here on my blog- and as such- I am not a big enough deal to get free stuff to “review” on my blog. My bras were all bought and paid for by me- I do not receive any compensation for writing this- other than your comments  And just in case you were wondering- I wear a 32G… Returning to your regular programming…)

 

Champion Double Dry

Champion Double Dry

The double-dry from Champion. Old reliable.

That said- I have yet to find a sports bra at either of my favorite boutiques that worked for me. I like the girls to be lifted, supported, and most of all *separate*.  For years now I have been a huge supporter (all puns intended) of the Champion Double Dry Distance bra.  This bra has everything- it is a 3-hook-eye closure in the back, full coverage in the front, a decent amount of compression, and it has under-wire- which cures the uni-boob affect that most sports bras create for us “blessed” gals.  I have ran all of my Spartan Races, Warrior Dashes, hand-stand push ups, planks, burpees, road races, tire jumps, snatches… you name it- and this bra has kept the girls inline no matter what direction my body goes in.  No side boob vs. arm swing chaffing action. There are no “surprises” when you are upside down- like in a handstand or doing a burpee. The girls just. stay. put.  That said- the ONLY draw back is that I have a ton of tank tops (hello Spring?! Maybe? Yes?) that are in the racer-back style.  And while I will wear them- I hate the big-ole-grandma-straps showing. I have searched many many bra boutiques, online stores, and department shops trying to find the perfect racerback. Most commonly the problem I find with all others is that they create more back-fat than I already have, or they lack underwire- and my twins become a single. No Bueno. And that shit is uncomfortable.

UNTIL NOW. I have finally found a Racerback Style that actually works!!!

The No Show- by Champion

The No Show- by Champion

No “show-off” if you know what I mean. But tons of bragging points.

It passed the initial ” jump up and down in front of the mirror” test this morning…  So, I wore it to work out with a *super-cute-tank-because-no-straps were showing*- and it was a flying success! Champion was my wing-woman once again with “The Show-off Sports Bra“. I don’t know why they call it “the show-off”… there are plenty of padded petals to make sure the girls “high beams” aren’t obvious … and no cleavage is really possible?? I dunno. But I do know that I was able to wear a super cute tank- do my handstands, burpees, swings, runs, tire-jumps and all today. I did re-arrange a little bit here and there- I am figuring that is because I haven’t worn a racerback in so long- and I think that will likely get better as I break it in.

There are sooooo many pro’s to this bra… The first is the closure in the back. There is a double hook & eye closure- so you don’t have to dislocate your shoulder to get out of it once it is soaked in sweat. The next (depending on your preference) is that there is no underwire with this bra. For me- I usually stay away from any non-steel-reinforced-bra, as I have *never* got a decent amount of support from a soft cup. But again, I was happily surprised! I stayed lifted, supported, and *separated* during the entire workout! Finally, are the adjustable straps. The straps are wide enough to not cut into your Traps, but thin enough to have an length adjustment on them. This is such a big deal!  If I was forced to deal with the bra “as is”… I would have returned it- the cups were too loose for me. But by adjusting the straps by an inch or so- I got the “locked and loaded” feeling that I like from my sports bras.

So there you have it. Clearly Champion has someone in R&D that is female and has a blessed chest… and thank God for her. Otherwise, we would all be relegated to floppy uni-boobs.  If your are a smaller-endowed woman- Champion still has a TON for you too! Check out their site! My local Khols used to carry a bunch of Champion bras (they suddenly disappeared recently)- so check there too. Much love and support to you and your two best friends…