Monday, November 25, 2013

Tiger Balm Ultra Review and Giveaway

I'm going to talk about something we all love....pain.  Wait, did he just say we all love pain!?  Well we don't all love pain, we actually love pain relief.  And something that has been helping me with my pain relief has been Tiger Balm.  I have not used a topical product for pain relief before.  So, when I got the opportunity to try it out I was excited.

I have had normal aches and pains from running, but as I've increased my mileage I noticed that they don't go away as easily and they are harder to "ignore."  It's these times that I find that it helps me the most.  The spots that are bothering me the most, I take out my handy jar from my backpack (yes I carry a backpack still at my age) and I put some on the area and the pain disappears quickly. It's almost like I didn't have the pain at all.  I am able to continue on with no pain, just a nice "cool feel" instead. As long as I don't wait all day to put some more on the pain stays gone. And you really don't use much at a time either.  The pain relief is so nice. It helps also because I am able to take less ibuprofen.  And I don't know about the rest of you, but I don't really like taking a lot of pills if I don't have to.

I really like the relief that this has provided me with and will keep using it.  This has helped me through my training over the past couple of months.  This has been a life saver through events like Tough Mudder Kansas as recapped here, the Nebraska Spartan Sprint by Spartan Race (recap coming soon), and the G.O.A.T.z trail runs where I ran a distance PR of 21 miles (recap coming soon).  It will continue to help as I train for The Ugly Sweater Run Omaha. (Do I really need to train for a 5k anymore?  Contact me if you want to join my team.)  And as I look to complete my 1st marathon in 2014, Tiger Balm will be in my bag!

You can find Tiger Balm products including Tiger Balm Ultra and Tiger Balm Neck & Shoulder Rub at major retailers across the country, including CVS, GNC and Walgreens.  I've found it at both CVS and Walgreens myself.  And if you are in the U.S. (or come to the U.S. to buy some) you can download a $1.00 coupon for your next in-store purchase of any Tiger Balm product:  And who doesn't like to save money?  I know we do in my household.  Each week Tiger Balm gives away a $100 Tiger Balm gift pack to their Top Facebook Fan.  You can check that out at

Join Tiger Balm U.S. on the Web:

Now, the part that everyone REALLY wants, the giveaway!  The awesome folks over at Tiger Balm have allotted 3 jars for me to give out. How awesome is that!  Now, since my readers are awesome you get one entry just for being such.  Hey, I'm a nice guy....what can I say!?

NOTE: Giveaway for US residents only!!  Sorry to any readers outside of the US.  I'll see about future giveaways being open to other areas.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Until next time, keep those beats coming!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

PR Nutrition Bars Review

About a month back I was contacted by PR Nutrition via BlogDash (link to pitch to me in the top right) to see if I would like to try their bars and share my thoughts on them.  I graciously accepted the opportunity.  They asked me what my flavor preference was, but I like to be surprised so I let them choose the flavor(s) for me.  They sent me Yogurt Berry and Iced Brownie.  I was pleasantly surprised as Yogurt Berry was one of the flavors that I was kind of hoping for.

So, a little bit about PR Nutrition.  I'm sure those that run know what the PR naturally stands for, but for those that don't it stands for "personal record."  PR Bar is the Official Performance Nutrition Bar Licensee of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Team. PR Bars are an all-natural, gluten-free product formulated to sustain energy. Each bar has the perfect ratio of carbohydrates, protein and fat which optimizes performance by controlling blood sugars and using body fat for fuel. Whether you are training for your first Olympic Games or training for your first 5k, let PR Bar help fuel your dreams!

They have 9 different flavors available: Apple Pie, Iced Brownie, Chocolate Mint, Yogurt Berry, Chocolate Peanut, Double Chocolate, Oatmeal Raisin Granola, Peanut Butter Granola, and Peanut Butter Berry Granola.  If you read through the list you understand why it would be hard to choose flavor preference as they all sound awesome.  They are all gluten-free, Kosher, and geared to help athletes of all levels.  I've used them in 3 different capacities: I have used them pre-run to stave off hunger during my run, I have used them during a long run for fuel, and I've used them for post-run hunger.  They work well in all 3 situations.  They have a great taste and they can even help with your sweet tooth.

The awesome folks at PR Nutrition have provided me with a code to save you all 15% off your order!  So, if you use the code DREADMILLDRUMMER by November 30th, 2013 you will save some money.  Now, who doesn't like to save money!?  I know I do.  So, be sure to get out there and order your bars.  And don't forget to follow PR Nutrition across their channels.  I have even conveniently listed them for you below.

Follow PR Nutrition on:

The PR Nutrition bars were provided to me free of charge for review purposes.  The opinions I expressed herein are my own and I was not compensated for this posting.

Don't forget to check out "Orange Pain....A Tough Mudder Kansas Recap" to read about my awesome experience earning my orange headband.

Until next time, keep those beats coming!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Orange Pain....A Tough Mudder Kansas Recap

Before the race
Now, I can't believe how long it's been since I've posted.  I am WAY behind.  I have this post to finish and I have Spartan Race Nebraska that I have already run 2 recap, and I have a Tiger Balm review and giveaway to post, but for now let's get down to the meat of Tough Mudder Kansas.

So, picture this if you will.  You are at a friends birthday dinner and you know that afterwards you are all going to go out somewhere.  Now picture everyone else around you having a drink or 3 while you are drinking water in order to make sure you are hydrated for your run the next day.  Well this was me the day before Tough Mudder.  Now picture looking at your alarm clock after you set it for 4:15 A.M. so that you can get ready and drive for 3 hours to meet up with the rest of the group that is doing the run with you.  And then reading it say 12:13 A.M.  Yes, again this was me.  Now, after you do get to sleep imagine waking up and looking at the clock at 2:00 A.M. and thinking you overslept only to realize that you've barely slept.  I did that until my alarm finally went off about every 20-30 minutes.  Even know I was only running on a few hours of sleep I was still pretty energetic.  I think I was really excited about the run.  So, as my wife lay there sleeping I finished getting myself ready.  I had a 3 hour drive ahead of me to Topeka and I was ready.  The drive down was quiet to say the least with nobody else with me.  It was a pretty cool sunrise, and I think I got myself a little worked up as I was going down.  I got to see the stars, then I got the sun come up, and I even got some really cool pictures of the sunrise.

Once I got to Topeka I was able to find my friends pretty easily once they gave me the address.  We all met up at one location to get our gear on and headed out.  With my friend's inaccurate GPS they plugged in the address to the raceway and it lead us one way, and as we were going it told us to do a u-turn.  Then a few moments later it told her to do another u-turn.  So, my buddies wife used her GPS and it told us to go another way entirely.  So, instead of relying on the GPS we stopped at a gas station to ask for directions. Most of us wanted to get some water for hydration anyway and we asked the gas station attendant and he told us that the GPS would lead us wrong and told us how to get to the raceway.  Once we got there I realized that as usual I forgot my waiver form at home. So, I had to go see find in new one while everybody else got their bibs.  We met up with the more people that were running with us and we were watching some of the competitions.  There was one where people were doing tire flipping and pull up for the fastest time and all of our team said that they were not going to wear themselves out before doing a 10 and a half mile obstacle course race. We got some pre-race pictures done, got our bags checked, and decided to go line up

In order to get to the starting position they make you do a wall climb.  I don't know if anybody has watched the Tough Mudder videos or heard the speech that is given, but the MC that they have on those videos is actual one to get you pumped up and going.  I think that it is so awesome that they recognize all of the military members before you even start.  Past and present.

As the race starts the very first thing we got to run through was the shower.  And that's only because right after that you get out of it you get to jump over fire.  Who doesn't like jumping over fire.  One obstacle of this race that was very present, but well used was the concrete barriers.  It's a race track and they are everywhere,  And they use them, and use them, and use them, and use them again.  I lost count at how many concrete barriers we actually went over.  The cool part is is that you actually get to run on the race track.  So a race on a race track; not quite the purpose they intended for it but still pretty cool.  I will tell you for anyone that's looking at the videos that the ice water is really, REALLY COLD!!!  It really does take away your breath. Your best bet is to jump in, get under the barrier, and get out quick.

I will admit that all of the obstacles were challenging, but I am proud of myself of how well I did on some of them.  I completely expected to fall on "Funky Monkey" and I made it all the way across!  Now I'm getting ahead of myself because "Funky Monkey" was towards the end, but it's one of the ones I totally expected to fall.  I know my daughter Bella is loving the fact that her dad can do the same thing that she likes to do.  She loves to go across the monkey bars at school.  I will also let anybody know that the "Mud Mile" is a mess to go through.  It takes forever and there were shoes everywhere.  I can and can't believe how many shoes I saw off to the side from people digging out shoes that they thought where there's.  They were throwing them out so they can finish the obstacle to come back to only to find out that it wasn't their shoe(s) that they dug up.  "Walk the Plank" was a-maz-ing!  It was such a rush to jump off and land in that water.  There were several people who were sitting there saying, "I don't think I can do this! I don't think I can do this!"  I told them its just 2 feet and I jumped.  Technically I wasn't do jump in with just two feet.

To kind of skip around I knew "Everest" was still coming up.  It is one of the last obstacles  and I know that at other events that I have always done fairly well at.  I generally have been able to get up them in my first 1 or 2 tries, but I knew "Everest" was going to be a challenge.  Especially since I've already rubbed out several leg cramps to this point in the run.  So, as I started to run and made it all the way to the top I grabbed a hand.  I grabbed another hand  and started to make my way up.  As I was walking up the wall with assistance my grip failed and down I went.  Now I was determined to get up this wall so I went back to the gate for another try.  I ran and made it up the wall to my waist and was at the top, but I wasn't able to quite get over and my buddy Aaron and the volunteer hesitated as I reached out for their arms.  So, I went down again.  Now I am on my third try and they always say 3rd time is the charm.  So, my 3rd time I ran up to the top got my grip and got 1 leg up to the top.  My right leg was up and what would happen as I'm pulling up.  My right calf cramps really bad!  I lost all mobility in my right leg so it went limp.  I lost my grip and I tumbled down.  Only this time I knew I wasn't going to be able to make another attempt.  I limped off to the side of "Everest" and sat down.  I looked at my calf and the cramp was so bad that I could see what looked like a finger in my calf so I knew I needed a minute to rub it out and let it get better.  The medic came over to check me out to see if I was okay and offer me some water.  I politely thanked him for his help and waved him off and let him know that I would be okay.  I just needed a minute to let the cramps subside.  He asked me if I was sure and I said I was fine.  I just needed the time to let the cramp go away and that even if it didn't the finish line was right there.  I was less than a quarter mile from finishing my first ever Tough Mudder and I was going to finish and earn my head band.  Just like I thought within a minute or 2 the cramps subsided enough that I was able to get up and finish.

All that stood between me and the finish line was "Electroshock Therapy" and I wasn't stopping.  With my buddy Aaron and his wife Spring with me we kept going.  We didn't stop even as we were looking at the dangling electric wires.  We made it through and none of us got shocked!  Naturally we were "shocked!"  So as I limped to get a Clif bar and some water someone placed my orange headband on my head and I knew that I've completed an amazing feat.  I had finally joined the ranks of those that had finished earlier.  I finished it with some of my closest friends and I thought I couldn't have a better group of friends to complete this with.

Until next time, keep those beats coming!