Saturday, November 11, 2017

SPI Belt Large Pocket Review

SPI Belt makes several different versions.  I went with their Large Pocket so it would fit my phone with the Life Proof Case on it.

They are pretty simple and that is what I was looking for.

Spi Belt Large Pocket with Pixel 2 and LifeProof Case

With nothing in it the pocket is the same thickness as the belt.  The belt is elastic and is very comfortable and adjustable.  The buckle is very secure, and is easy to connect and detach.

Spi Belt Large Pocket with Pixel 2 and LifeProof Case

The rear of the pocket folds up to help compress the pocket when it is empty.

Spi Belt Large Pocket with Pixel 2 and LifeProof Case

They have multiple colors, with different zipper and pocket combinations.  The zipper works very well, and the over all construction is very good.

Spi Belt Large Pocket with Pixel 2 and LifeProof Case

Even with my life proof case on, the pocket stretches to accommodate my phone.  The material stretches around the phone and holds it snugly.  

Spi Belt Large Pocket with Pixel 2 and LifeProof Case

When running with the belt it holds my phone in place and it doesn't bounce around.  For me it works best on my back while running.  It is also easy to spin it around to the front while running to get my phone out.

I also tried out one of their SPI H2O Companions.  It is made very well and has a clip that connects to the belt.  The only problem that I had is that it bounces too much for me.  When the water bottle is full it bounced a lot while running.

I love the belt, but I am not a huge fan of the H2O Companion.  It just bounced too much for me.  I plan on using the belt for all my shorter runs that I don't need water.  It would also work great while traveling to hold a passport or money.  It is easy to forget that you are wearing the belt, because it is so comfortable.

See More at: Fit N Fun.Life

Thursday, November 9, 2017

2017 EQT 10 Miler Race Review

The EQT 10 Miler started at Station Square Pittsburgh, PA.  On the drive down it was raining pretty hard, but as we got closer to Station Square the rain had stopped.

Parking for the race was $3 at Station Square.  Parking was not far from the start line, on the road beside Station Square.

After a few minutes the race started.

The race started down West Carson Street.

Then looped down through the edge of West End, then across the West End Bridge.

From the bridge, there was a great view of Pittsburgh, even with the rain and overcast skies.

Next we turned left on Beaver Ave, under 19 to Chateau Street, and then onto Western Ave.

We then hit the first water station,where they had water and Gatorade.  They had aid stations about every 2 miles.  They were well staffed with volunteers, so there was no need to slow down and wait.

We crossed over to Ridge Ave and turned right onto West Commons after St. Peter's Parish.

After going down past the Children's Museum, we saw the relay exchange point.  (Splitting the race in half with a relay partner was an option for this race.)  This was a good bit before the 5 mile mark, so I think the first half of the relay got the shorter distance.  

Next we went across the Rachel Carson Bridge, onto Fort Duquesne Blvd, made a U-turn, then back across the bridge.

After going under the Parkway North we headed over and across the David McCullough Bridge.

Next we headed down Penn Ave for around a mile and made a loop around the block.

We ended up on Liberty Ave for about 2 miles back to the finish.

The city could be seen off in the distance, and it slowly got closer.

After getting under I-579 we made our final turn into the city.

All that was left was a short run down through the city and you could see the finish line.

The finish line was in the middle of town.

After crossing the finish line it started to rain pretty hard, so it was nice that they were handing out blankets.  They also had Panera bagels, water, bananas, and chips.  The normal after race snacks.

After the race they had school buses to take us back to the parking at the start location.  This was great because at this point it was raining pretty hard.

The race was great, and well organized.  We received long sleeve tech shirts, a medal, and some other goodies.

See More at: Fit N Fun.Life

Saturday, November 4, 2017

2017 End of the Road Marathon Race Review

This was the first year for the End of the Road Marathon.  It was held in Waterfall, PA.  A good portion of the race was held on a portion of the PA turnpike that was abandoned in 1968.

Packet pickup was held at Forbes Road High school, the morning of the race.  That morning it was raining pretty hard so it was nice that the packet pickup and runner meeting was held inside the school.

After the packet pickup, there was about 10 minutes until the race start.  Due to the rain, everybody hung inside until about 5 minutes before the start time.  Then everyone made their way out to the start line outside of the school.  We lined up for the full first and the got us off on our way pretty quickly.  We were gone, and I believe the half started about 15 minutes later.

After leaving the school we headed out onto the highway for about half a mile.

Next we turned off onto some back country roads.

After around 2 miles we met up with the half marathon runners that came from a different direction.  Then after about 2 more miles we turned on to the abandoned stretch of the the PA turnpike.

Once on the abandoned turnpike, the roads are pretty broken up.  Also with all the rain there was a lot of puddling and lots of water running down the road.

After about another 1 mile we got to the first tunnel.

Once inside the tunnel the road was in great condition, and it was very dark.  Along the sides of the tunnel they had small batter powered tea lights (this had to take forever to setup), and some other LED lights.  Head lamps were still needed though.  It was nice to be out of the rain for a few minutes.

From the map on my GPS, it looks like the tunnel was a little less than a mile long.  When running through the tunnel it took a little while before you could see the light on the other side.

Once we left the tunnel and were back out into the rain it was around another mile until we saw the turn around point for the half marathon.

On the other side of the tunnel the road was the same as the other side.

Most sections of the road had a portion of the road that was decent to run on.

After the half split off there were a few sections of the road that were in much better condition.

October was a great time for this race with the trees changing colors.  I am sure they would look a lot better if it was not raining.

After about 3 to 4 miles the marathon runners entered the second tunnel.

This tunnel was a little shorter than the first, you could see the light from the other side shortly after entering the tunnel.  Headlamp was still a good idea, there were some rocks laying randomly through out the tunnel.  From GPS data it looks like the tunnel was about 3/4 of a mile.

After leaving the second tunnel it was only a little over 1 mile until the turn around point for the full marathon.

At the halfway point was another water stop.  

The water stops throughout the race were about every 2 miles, and they all had water and Gatorade.  On the way back they had some gu packets and different food for calories.

Now that we turned around, it was back the exact same path that we came.

Very quickly we came to the first tunnel.

The course was marked every mile with a sign.  Other than that course marking wasn't really needed, except for on the back roads which were marked and blocked perfectly.  

After a few miles were were back through the final tunnel (first tunnel).

Once through the final tunnel, it was a few back roads to get back to the finish line.

We finished at the school where we started.

After finishing and going back inside of the school they had lots of  pizza and snacks.


Two members of our group placed in our age group, and the awards were metal signs, one of the better awards I have seen.  It also fits the race perfectly.

The medals for finishing were the same for the half and full. Instead of a t-shirt, each participant received a sweatshirt, which was perfect for the weather.

Throughout the race I saw a couple photographers but they didn't post many photos.  I was able to find one of myself.

The race was great, even with the bad weather.  It was well organized, and a great change of pace.  The abandoned turnpike road and tunnels is what set it apart from other races.

See More at: Fit N Fun.Life