The Summer of Rum Festival

I received two VIP tickets to The Tampa Bay Rum Festival through a partnership with Tampa Bay Bloggers in exchange for writing a review. As always, my opinions are all mine.

I seem to have lost any ability to write in a semi-consistent matter, a lot of things have been happening lately concerning work and my personal life that have kept me a bit off centered.  Not all bad but not all good either.  At least I think my u.c. is in remission, they say there is always a bright side.

Anyways, that was my lead in (excuse) to why it took me two weeks to  let you know how the Tampa Summer of Rum Festival went. It was amazing.  I’ve been to other events put on by Big City Events but this was by far my favorite.  And I really liked the others. Follow them on Facebook to see what all they have coming up!

RumFest2The festival was held at the The Cuban Club, which I’d never been to before.  The building was amazing in and of itself.  Because of the location there were the (really, really good) bands outside, lots of food buses and rum shacks, and also a whole big air conditioned inside to be in.  Inside there was a DJ, dance floor, and additional live entertainment.  I was in heaven; there were different types of music, food and rum everywhere.

On top of that as an add on to the VP ticket the rum tasting was included.  More music and a huge variety of rums to try.  Some where given in shots and others as mixed drinks.  My favorite was the Amber ‘Ti Punch with Clement Select Barrel rum.  The recipe is at the bottom of their page.  I would not have guessed the recipe, but that’s what the lady said I was drinking.  Who am I to argue? I haven’t tried making it myself yet but I without a doubt will.

RumFest1Did you make it out to the Summer of Rum festival?  If you aren’t in Tampa are there festivals like this in your area?

Check out Spartan Race – From Home (and a giveaway!)

Have you run a Spartan Race yet?  If not are you trying to decide whether you’d like to?  Well, here’s your chance to see exactly what the races are like – from your own living room.  Kind of feels like cheating, but in this case it’ll work.

They’re televising races about once a month, leading up to the Spartan World Championship airing November 16th, which is being run is being run in Killington, VT. September 20th. That sounds like an excuse to have some friends over to get psyched up for running your own Spartan! (I don’t know if televising is really a word, but if turducken is in the dictionary then in my opinion anything goes)

Here’s the schedule of televised events:

Reebok Spartan Race Television Schedule: (All times ET)
DATE                            RACE LOCATION     NETWORK     TIME

Tues., August 19           Palmerton, Pa.            NBCSN         9 p.m.
Sat., September 13       Washougal, Wash.     NBCSN         2 p.m.
Tues., September 23     Amesbury, Mass.       NBCSN        10 p.m.
Sat., October 25            Wintergreen, Va.        NBCSN         12:30 p.m.
Sun., November 16        Killington, Vt.              NBC              3 p.m.

I’m not much of a TV person, I don’t even have cable, but I’d love to watch these races!

I have to say, there is a whole lot going on in the Spartan world right about now.  On top of televising races and the Spartan World Championship in Vermont they are putting together a Spartan Race Cruise in March.  Yes, I said cruise.  You go out and race on Saturday, and then Sunday they provide you with entertainment, food, drink and celebration. Talk about an after race party!

They’ve put together a giveaway for 2 for the Spartan Cruise including airfare and the cruise out of Miami (US residents only). Enter for a chance to win here, I did!

Has all of that got you ready to run a race yourself?  Well as luck has it I was given an entry to give to a reader for any open heat (non-confirmed start time) in any 2014 Spartan Race in the continental US., all you have to do to win is enter here: a Rafflecopter giveawayThe contest goes through Thursday morning, I’ll email the winner the code Friday, the 29th.

If you don’t win or if you need a ticket for a friend, use the code SPARTANBLOGGER for 10% off any race.

Disclosure: I have received a free race entry in exchange for posting a giveaway.

So here’s an interesting question for any experienced OCR fans out there. How do you prepare for things like climbing a rope or scaling a wall if you don’t have a rope hanging around anywhere or a wall to practice climbing? Somehow I don’t think burpees will prepare a person for such things…



Trying Tae Kwon Do

Almost a month ago my older son talked me into trying a Tae Kwon Do class with him. I was reluctant because I hadn’t yet done much of anything besides laying around feeling sick for a couple of months and  because in spite of the evidence to the contrary I am not all that fond of making a fool out of myself in public. He called around anyways and found a place close to the house, and as an added benefit the first two weeks were free. So I figured what the heck, I could go to one class.  How bad could it be?

Well.  First of all I find group classes to be way too intimidating. Second of all three quarters of the class was kids.  So everyone was sitting around waiting for class to begin, then all of the kids (and me) headed to the mat.  I felt like I should give the other parents some sort of explanation, but I’ve learned over the years that me talking only makes things worst so I didn’t bother.

Did I mention that most of the kids have at least a blue belt and I was wearing yoga pants and a running shirt?  Ya.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the end of the week’s classes.  I realized that there actually were a couple of other adults there.   I realized that even if there weren’t tae kwon do is hella fun. I also realized that any excuse to hang out with my 21 year old when he isn’t trying to talk his way out of it is probably a good thing.

After the second week I got a uniform which kind of makes me feel official and kind of makes me feel like a little kid playing dress up.  I just finished my third week, and I am absolutely hooked.

Have you ever tried a martial arts class?   Would you consider taking a class were you were one of the few adults among kids?




Summer of Rum is on it’s Way!

Did you know there is a national Rum Day?  Well there is and it’s this coming Saturday, August the 16th.  Guess where I’m celebrating it?  At the Summer of Rum Festival!  If you’re anywhere near Tampa you should too.  Why you ask?  Because there’s going to be Rum Zones, Rum Shacks (small run zones) food trucks and also rum.  Good enough reasons for you??  Check the festival out here.

Even better is the fact that it’s going to be held at the Cuban Club which means it’s partly outside and partly inside (inside = air conditioning!). Also, the bands sound pretty awesome, there will be both ska and reggae!   Sounds pretty much perfect to me.

Check these guys out.




So, if you want to go you can get general admission tickets for $25, VIP for $95, or win a pair of GA tickets from me.  I have 2 pairs to give away, I’ll contact the winners on Friday morning. You do have to be 21 or older to get in, no kids and no pets allowed.

Enter to win here!  a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received two VIP tickets to The Tampa Bay Rum Festival in exchange for writing a review and this giveaway. As always, my opinions are all mine.

Don’t forget to follow them on Facebook for updates on the festival.


Easing Back In

I’ve finally started feeling better (yay!) and ready to get back to running.  Only a mile at a time, but tonight will make it three times a week so I’m pretty happy with that.  I switched back to running outside which is HOT but also fun. I’m really surprised that after running on the treadmill for a couple of months and then not running at all for over a month running barefoot is just as comfortable as it was before.  I don’t know why but I thought my feet would get un-used to it.

Before I started running again I started doing yoga again.  It’s amazing how hard everything is the first time after doing very little but sitting or laying around for too long. But I found two yoga practices that are perfect for when you don’t have the energy to go all out but you want to do SOMETHING.  And the cool thing is after you do something you naturally want to do something else.  A body in motion and all.

This yoga practice is from Yoga Journal.  It’s nice and mellow but still leaves you feeling great when you’re done.

Here’s one for digestion.  It’s also gentle and relaxing.

My colitis isn’t completely back in remission but it’s close enough that I feel confident that if I keep up the meds and the aloe juice and keep down the stress and the bad attitude it’ll be gone in no time.   All in all it’s been a great week.

What do you do to keep your energy up when you aren’t feeling it or to ease back into working out when you’ve been off the wagon for a while?  If you know of any other great, mellow yoga practices I’d love to hear about them!