family golf

10 Things You Can Do To Make Life About Living (If You Aren’t Already)

July 15, 2017 • By

A friend of mine is going through terminal illness with her dad. She’s an amazing runner, athlete and mother and is normally very involved in the local race circuit. Some of her recent social media posts about life and relationships have really touched me and motivated me to write this list today. Life is truly about relationships and as we head into this weekend, I hope you will cherish yours and aim to be the happiest you possible!READ MORE

Move of the Week

Strengthen Your Plank

July 13, 2017 • By

You’ve seen it before. Those annoying fitness people who post that they can do 5 minute plank holds. Like really??? Well, let me share a secret with you. It’s not as hard as you think. (Insert roll of your eyes at me, sure). But seriously. I used to do 5 minute plank holds all the time. Then I got lazy with abs, and in January a 2 minute plank hold was tough. No lie. My core was not in the same kind of shape and I was like eek, how do I get it back. Let me teach you a little trick that got me back in plank shape in no time (it’s not rocket science)….READ MORE

hoka challenger atr 3

Hoka One One Challenger ATR 3 Review and Coupon!

July 6, 2017 • By
*** Disclaimer: I received these shoes free of charge as part of my partnership with JackRabbit. My opinions and review are all mine and are not influenced by JackRabbit or HokaOneOne in any manner. ***
 My first pair of trail shoes were ready to retire after a year of use. So when it came time to get a new pair I knew I wanted to try Hokas. I had heard many good things about them from my run club friends and with 4 other pairs of Hokas, I figured they would likely work as well on the dirt as my other Hokas have performed for me on the road. So I was excited that my fifth pair of Hoka One One shoes were the all terrain Hoka Challenger ATR 3s! I say all terrain because they aren’t JUST for trails. They are multiuse – road, trails, track … you name it. I’ve run just shy of 50 miles in them and I am so grateful to my Jack Rabbit peeps for hooking me up with them so I could test them out and share my opinion of them with you all!
hoka in boxFor those of you familiar with Hoka One One, if you like the Clifton 3 (on sale now), keep reading because these shoes have many similarities (see my reviews on those here: Hoka Clifton 3 released and Hoka Clifton 3 fit)!
Weight: women’s 7.9 oz (size 7) men’s 9.5 oz (size 9)
Stack height: women heel 28 mm, forefoot 23 mm
Stack height: men heel 29 mm, forefoot 24 mm
Heel drop 5 mm
Widths available: regular
Sizes women’s 6-11, men’s 8-14

Various colors to choose from (Mine are Persian Jewel/Green Glow)


This is a “neutral” running shoe best for ALL terrain, meaning it works well on any surface!!! This means it is kind of a hybrid of sorts. Definitely great bang for your buck if it works for your foot. As an overpronator, this type of shoe only works for me with my custom orthotics that help control my excessive pronation. It is not meant as a stability shoe or motion control shoe. It runs true to size. I’m an 8.5 in all other running shoes and other Hokas and an 8.5 in this pair, too.

This version of the Challenger features a thick but not heavy mesh overlay with nice ventilation thanks to the 3D Puff Print Overlays. I have been running in them in 90+ degrees and high humidity and they do not retain odor or sweat! These seem to have a slightly wider toe box than the Clifton 3s but not as wide as the Arahi.

The Challenger ATR 3 features the signature Hoka EVA midsole for maximum cushioning throughout the shoe. I’m only 50 miles in but as with my other Hokas, I don’t doubt that this EVA midsole will help still give that cushion-y feel when I’m 500 miles in, as well!
The outsoles feature 4 mm lugs (those used to Hoka will be accustomed to the feeling) that deliver better than average traction. On the trail, they provide a great sense of security similar to a hiking boot but without the bulk or stiffness. The Challenger ATR 3 heel has nice wide outsole with great heel grip.
hoka sole
Those familiar to Hoka know about the metastage rocker technology. This cushion-y feel is one you either love or hate. I personally love it because I’m injury prone and need the extra relief on my joints. Know that in this shoe, it’s there, as well, but like other Hokas it provides a super soft cushioned feeling but not heavy feel. The shoe is still very lightweight and when wearing it you want to run fast (even on the trail)!
hoka runner

This shoe is awesome in that it is good on many surfaces. It’s great that you can take it to and from the trail via the road (I often have to run a mile to my trails on roads) and also an awesome shoe for travel. You can do a road race one day and take them to the trails the next! But it isn’t for everyone. If you overpronate (and don’t have orthotics), have wide mid and/or forefeet or large bunions or bunionettes, these may not be the right shoes for you. I do have bunions but they haven’t been irritated in a while and to me, the toebox is wide enough. I also only ran in these on sandy, rocky and dirt trails; I didn’t run in mud so can’t say for sure how they perform on slippery surfaces. But a twofer shoe for $130 with free shipping (if your foot fits in the neutral, cushion loving, lightweight, smooth ride category)??? How can you beat that? Oh wait, you can! Because I have a coupon for you! Click here for your $20 off $120 coupon at JackRabbit! That would make the Challenger ATR 3s even cheaper, and that my friends, is hard to beat!

hoka challenger 3

I hope you’ll check them out! Let me know what you think! Happy running and happy shopping!!!



Jess Runs Blessed Logo



Move of the Week

Oblique Ab Workout

June 26, 2017 • By

(Video sped up for ease of watching)

Ready for a great set of oblique exercises to help give you that “v” definition in your stomach?

All you need is a medicine ball and a mat.

1) Grab the medicine ball (I use a 6 lb ball) and do 12-15 russian twists (left to right is one rep).

2) Without resting, place the medicine ball between your knees and lay flat on the mat with arms outstretched to sides. Lower knees side to side rotating at the hips only keeping upper body as still as possible. Perform 10-15 reps (left to right is one rep).

3) Without resting, place medicine ball in hands and lift shoulders off of the floor (do not let them drop!), do 12-15 oblique half circles over your knees. (left to right is one rep). By keeping shoulders lifted off ground, you keep abs engaged.

4) Rest 30 seconds – 1 minute between sets. Repeat entire round of exercises 2 more times to complete 3 sets in total!!!

Enjoy the burn!


Jess Runs Blessed Logo

gluten free chocolate chip protein cookies

46kcal Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Protein Cookie Recipe

June 16, 2017 • By

Sounds yummy, right? Haha, they are, I swear! Okay, so let me share something with you. When I am looking for healthy protein dense recipes, I don’t look to Pinterest anymore. Why? Because I don’t trust it. (I’ve had too many fails).

I go to my good friend (for real, we are friends … she’ll probably even comment on this blog post), Rebekah Kathleen Clementson’s website and check her recipe section for ideas. She is a former bikini competitor, fitness model and Fitness RX magazine contribitor, not to mention AMAZING runner and baker! She follows IIFYM, rather than intuitive eating like me, but whether you count macros or not, you can still follow her recipes! Earlier this week, I was craving cookies and I went to her website for a recipe. I saw her Reese’s Pieces Gluten Free Cookies and wanted to make them so bad but checked my pantry and didn’t have Reese’s or Devotion Angel Food Cake Protein, so I improvised. I made these Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Protein Cookies instead. The recipe is nearly identical except the swap for protein (I use Cytosport 100% Whey Vanilla) and semi sweet chocolate chips in place of Reese’s Pieces. Check it out below!READ MORE