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Bandwagon Diner (Toms River)

Bandwagon Diner (Toms River)

Recently the owner of New Jersey isn’t boring, Cyd, and myself met at another diner in Toms River. We’e been to a few Toms River diners, a few months ago; we met at the Fast Break Diner as well as the Four Seasons.  We’ve been to over 20 diners together!

band wagon diner toms river

Atmosphere: B
The atmosphere of the Bandwagon Diner is stereotypical of many diners down the shore. It looks rustic and beachy. The inside is a bit outdated but still decent. There are several booths, tables, and a full-length bar. Plus, it has pink curtains.  It could use an update, but it was clean which is what matters.

Coffee: B
There was nothing unusual or unique, but it was hot. The waitress refilled it a few times too.

band wagon diner toms river

Food: B
The Bandwagon Diner has everything from big breakfasts to lunch and dinner specials. I was going to order off the specials menu with a wrap that contained  “chopped meat,” but since I had enough mystery meat in high school, I ordered the Mediterranean wrap.  It contained grilled chicken, mozzarella cheese, tomato, and spinach. In all the wrap was good but the tomato cooked spinach made it soggy.

band wagon diner toms river

I ordered a side salad which was nothing unique.  In all the meal was good, but it wasn’t my favorite.

Service: B
The waitress was friendly, and our food came out quickly. In fact, the food was one of the fastest to come in out in any diner I’ve been too.  We were in and out of the diner within 30 minutes!

Cost: $$
For my wrap, salad, coffee, the cost was about 12.

Overall Thoughts/Summary:
I liked the Bandwagon Diner, and it is one of my more favorite diners of the area. I would go back.  The service was quick.

Summary:
Atmosphere: B
Coffee: B
Food: B
Service: B
Cost: $8-15
Overall: B

Nearby Diners I’ve been: Four Seasons, Crystal, Fast Break

See all 172 Diners here.

Questions for you:

What is your favorite wrap?

Do you like cooked vegetables or raw?

 

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60 Days with Collagen

60 Days with Collagen

Last month, I asked twitter what people preferred to see on LOLZ blog.  This is a blog about my life, journey, running, training, fitness, diners, military life and run on sentences and poor grammar.  While hard to classify what is LOLZ blog, it’s mainly about my life and journey.  If readers are interested in something in particular than I always try to include it.

benefits of collagen

One thing that popped up was more about food and diet.  Please keep in mind, I’m not an expert.  I’m not a dietician, and I’m not a nutritionist.  I do have a public health degree and took several college classes in health.  I still have a hand in the general public health environment (and no, it not because I blog LOL), although not as much in the food realm.

Moving forward, I’ve decided to share a new supplement I’ve been taking over the last 60 days.  With any review and supplement, I think it’s important to give it time.  Like running shoes, you can’t say you “love” something after 1-2 runs and you certainly can’t know a supplement is life changing after a week.

That being said, I started taking Collagen with Vital Proteins 2 months ago, and I’ve found myself recovering faster from workouts and runs.  Vital proteins sent me the original sample, but because I’ve found myself to be successful with it, so I’ve continued to purchase!  

What is Collagen?

When Vital Proteins contacted me, I wasn’t familiar with every benefit of Collagen.  I knew what Collagen was, but that was about it.

Collagen is a protein in the body found in muscles, bones, skin, nails, joints, the digestive system, and tendons.

Why Supplement and Why Vital Proteins?

While yes collagen exists in food, it’s hard to find. Due to the nature of collagen, it comes from the broth of animals.  That is why you see more and more athletes drinking bone broth!  Here is a few source of natural collagen:

  • Bone Broth
  • Eggs are one of the other few foods to contain collagen
  • Salmon

Thinking out loud, as delicious as both eggs and salmon are, it’s nearly impossible to eat them every day.  That is why finding a supplement like Vital Proteins is worth it.

vital proteins collagen benefits

My favorites as of now are:

Like protein powder, Vital Proteins dissolves well in water.  Each scoop contains 35-40 calories and about 10 grams of protein.  It also includes your daily dose of collagen.  I feel healthy just thinking about it!

Why is Collagen Great for Runners? 

Joint Health

Runners are constantly pounding their joints.  This decreases the cartilage in the knees and other areas.  In the running world, it’s not uncommon to hear athletes talk about “bone on bone” and needing surgery to repair it.

How does Collagen Help your Knees?

  • Increases lubrication around joints to make more mobile
  • Helps to increase bone density (A BIG ONE FOR RUNNERS!)
  • Reduces inflammation around joints and improves healing of connective tissues
  • Every seving contains 10 grams of protein in 35-45 calories.

Lastly, Skin Health!

One huge benefit outside of running is Collagen helps to replace dead skin cells.  If you know me, you know I’ve never had perfect, flawless skin.  I suffered from acne in high school as well as adult acne a few years ago.  No amount of makeup or Instagram filter made it better.  I do see a dermatologist, which has been great but I’ll never have perfect skin.  Collagen doesn’t treat acne or medical conditions but it will help to replace dead skin cells and make your skin look smoother.  I can personally say I’ve had success with that.

While Vital Proteins, sent me an initial sample, I’ve now been using and purchasing it for myself.  I feel better, and my skin looks better, and it’s something I’ve found helpful for me!

Questions for you:

Do you take any supplements?

Have you ever tried a collagen supplement?

Cupids Chase 5k (18:38)

Cupids Chase 5k (18:38)

Last weekend I ran the Cupids Chase 5k in Moorestown, NJ.  After my 3 mile race the weekend before, I was hoping for an accurate course this week.  I knew it would be a competitive race and I was looking to get a good baseline of where I was.

The race started later than I would have liked at 10:00.  It was forecasted to rain, but luckily it held off until my cool down when it poured rain.  I got to the race at 9, warmed up, and by the time I knew it, we were off.  I was excited to see a few of my local friends at the start.  As you can see by the photos, I guess I went through a lot of emotions during the race.

First, I was deep in thought and possibly angry…

cupids chase 5k moorestown me

The first mile was uneventful, and I ran with a pack of males, including most that recognized.  It weaved around Strawbridge Lake.  I hit the first mile in 5:59 and was pleasantly surprised.  I didn’t feel bad, and I had gotten a decent amount of sleep but was still surprised.  My legs just felt meh.  It was my first mile below 6 minutes in a while.

But then I was full of regret

cupids chase 5k moorestown me

The next mile, I ran by myself.  There was one male in front of me, but no one around.  I stayed in that position the entire time.  The course was an out and back but had 2 180 degree turns.  We hit the first 180 at about the halfway point.  The ground was slick, and I nearly fell but was able to maintain good speed around the turn.  I hit the second mile in 5:52 which is my fastest mile in a long time.

The final mile was just about getting back to the end.  To add the extra .1, we went around another park that included another 180 turn.  Because, in general, the course was an out and back, I was able to see my friends as they went the opposite direction.  It gave me motivation.  I thrive on seeing friends or racing with other people.  I hit the third mile in 6:02 which in a 5k I can’t complain because it was still plenty of energy in the tank.  With the turnaround and running alone, I was definitely happy with that.

Then I was desperate for the finish line to be close 

cupids chase 5k moorestown me

The final .1, I just ran as fast as I could and crossed the finish line in 18:38.  It’s my fastest 5k in nearly a year, and I could not be more excited.  I know I have a long way to go, but it was great motivation.

Questions for you:

Do you like themed races?

Do you prefer out and back courses or loops?

Training: Fast 5k and Sleep

Training: Fast 5k and Sleep

Last week was both mentally exhausting and physically.  Luckily, when it mattered the most, I was able to run fast.  That being said, running is never my life priority.  Yes, I have a running blog, but my life and overall wellness mean more to me.

Monday: Easy 60 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday:  6X800s at 6 min pace
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Easy 45 minutes
Saturday: Cupids Chase 5k (18:38)
Sunday:  14 miles with fast finish 

Thoughts:

My legs were tired for most of the week.  My husband was supposed to get home on Wednesday but a last minute change caused him not too.  Which began an added stress.  I didn’t handle it well.  Was I crying all of the time?  No, but was it an added stress?  Yes.  With life responsibilities, sleep took a hit.  Luckily on Friday night, I fell asleep early and I got a lot of extra rest which ended up helping with the 5k.

6X800s at 6 min pace with 1/4 mile jog recovery

As I mentioned on Instagram, it poured rain during the workout.  For some reason, I was drawn outside.  My legs were tired, and I could feel that. I got the workout done.  Was it my favorite? No, but I finished and moved on.

Cupids Chase 5k (18:38):

I’ll have a full recap this week, but I felt better than I anticipated.  My splits were 5:59, 5:52, 6:02.  It’s my fastest 5k since my burnout, and I was definitely not expecting to run that fast with everything I’ve been dealt with. I can’t complain.  I am excited to be that far into the 18s again, and I know on a good day, I’m capable of more.

Today I ran my fastest 5k since my burnout. 18:38 with splits of 5:59, 5:52, and 6:02.

A post shared by Hollie (@fueledbylolz) on

Posts of the week:

20 Podcasts to Keep You Entertained

Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Mercy 3 Miler (18:20)

Questions for you:

Did anyone do any Valentines Day races?

How was your week of training?

Westampton Family Diner

Westampton Family Diner

I was back in Burlington County and was able to cross another diner off my checklist.  Longer time readers might know, but I used to live in Burlington.  Then we decided to move east towards Philadelphia.  The Westampton Family Diner was one of the last diners to cross off my Burlington Diner “list”…for now.

Atmosphere:  A
I wasn’t the diner to be so big.  It was a big restaurant building with plenty of booths, a full-length bar, and a dessert case.  For some reason, I had pictured it to be much smaller.westampton family diner mount holly nj

Coffee: B
The waitress brewed hot coffee, and it was good.  There was nothing unusual or unique about it, but it tasted good.

Westampton Family diner nj

Food: A
The Westampton Diner has a lot of choices, and the menu is massive.  To be honest, I wasn’t expecting it to have that many choices, and I had no idea what I wanted.  I’ve been back a couple of times since and my favorite was the steak and eggs.  My brother had ordered it the first time we went, and it looked good, so I decided to give it a shot the second time, and I’m happy I did.

Westampton Family diner nj

The portion size is huge.  The steak itself is roughly a pound, and with the over-easy eggs, it’s definitely a lot.  It also came with hashbrown and toast. I had run about 10 miles in the morning and was still full.

Service: A
Both times I’ve been, the service at the Westampton Diner was fast.  The waitress refilled our drinks quickly, and the food came out quickly.  On top of that, the waitress was extremely friendly always had a story to tell us when she returned to our table.

Cost: $
For the steak and eggs, and coffee, the cost was $15.  The portion size was massive.

Overall Summary/Would I Come Back?
I liked the Westampton Diner, and I’ll be back again.  It’s a fast, inexpensive diner.  It’s one of my favorite in that area!

Atmosphere: B
Coffee: B
Food: A
Service: A
Cost: $7-13
Overall: B

Nearby Diners I’ve been: Vincentown, Route 38, and Pandora

You can see all 168 diners here.

Questions for you:
Have you moved recently?
How do you like your eggs cooked?

20 Running Podcasts to Keep You Entertained

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post about Podcasts I liked and listened too.  Many people chimed in and added more.  As I mentioned previously, I hate to sit in silence so I love listening to podcasts or background noise.

20 Running Podcasts to Keep You Entertained

Podcasts are popping up, and I’m by no means an expert (and you will not see a LOLZ Podcasts anytime soon) but here is a bigger and better list.  Thank you, everyone, for your suggestions.  I’ve listened to an episode of each podcast, but not every single episode of everyone.  If there is an episode you love, comment below!

Here is a bigger list of more Running Podcasts:

1609 Podcast (focuses on all things running)
Ali on the Run (funny, runners of all skills)
BibRave (race related and everything running related)
C Tolle Run (informative, Carrie was an Olympian herself)
Endurance Planet (performance and health-based running advice)
I’ll Have Another (funny, informative, runners of all levels)
Keeping up with Kelsey Cansler (informative and fitness related)
Man Bun Run (informative, interviewing many ultra runners)
Marathon Training Academy (everything marathon-related)
Marathon Talk (Based out of the UK, everything running related)
No Meat Athlete Radio (200+ episodes of plant-based information and interviews
Not Real Runners (One of my new favorites about Running, racing, and snark)
Ordinary Marathon (Running based and interviews a bit of everything)
Rambling Runner (everything running related)
Rich Roll (plant-based podcast about running)
Running for Real by Tina Muir (informative and about everything for runners including nutrition and well being)
Running Rogue(training tips and information on the current running world)
Trail Runner Nation(All things trail running)
The Extra Mile Podcast (Follows runners training for anything from a 5k-full marathon).
Ultra Runner Pod (all things ultra running!)

Questions for you:

What kind of podcasts are you listening too?

What is your favorite podcast? (running or not)

Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Mercy 3 Miler (18:20)

I thought I had written a race recap, but it turns out…it disappeared into space. Usually, I post race recaps on Tuesdays, but since it opened up my blog yesterday with none, it gets delayed a day.  I know, you’re devastated.

So anyway, on Saturday I raced my first shorter distance race since December.  It was a nice low key rust buster.

The morning itself was a disaster.  I went to get cash from my ATM card, and it was denied.  I’m actually not sure why as I do have money in my account, and my pin number was accurate, and the card was not expired, but that is here nor there.  Then the race wasn’t accepting cards for payment.  Luckily, I had a checkbook but it left me with not much time to warm up.

Other reasons to complain were I hadn’t slept well, it was cold and windy, and my legs were sore.  But I was at the race, and I was going to run.  I warmed up a couple of miles, felt meh and made my way to the start line.  At the start, I saw a lot of friends and local runners I hadn’t seen in a few months.  It was motivating, and by the time I knew it, we were off.

As you can see below, I am always talking…you never have to worry about interrupting my “prerace” 

Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Mercy

During the first mile, I found myself in fourth place, and I stayed there the entire race.  There was a pack of males whom I knew that led the way.  I never felt as though I was “racing” and more as if I was running a workout alone.  There wasn’t really anyone to run with, and it was just a sprint towards the finish.  I hit the first mile in 6:05, but it was deep underneath a couple of jackets, so I only knew my splits after I finished.

The second mile went to an out and back.  I could see the leaders as they turned around and it motivated me.   As I was coming back, I saw my friends, and it was motivating and kept me engaged in the race.  For a lot of the race, I never felt as though I was “racing.”  I hit the second mile in 6:08 and felt fine.  My legs just felt tired and couldn’t turn over any faster.

I just wanted the last mile to be over.  It felt as though I was running a marathon, not a 5k.  We went over train tracks and near a significant amount of ice.  I just took the turn wider and I felt fine.  As approached the finish line, I heard my watch beep.  Oh, exactly 3 miles.  I crossed in 18:20 and with a 6:07 last mile.

Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Mercy

The race was supposed to be a 5k, however, apparently, it was not. It was nice it was at least exactly 3 miles and I can say I ran 3 miles in 18:20 versus 3.06 in whatever.  If I had continued the pace it would have been about an 18:57 5k, which I’m confident I could have done.

Other than that, not much else to say.  I’m happy with my effort, and I felt good despite everything.  I’m just as glad to be back out there and seeing friends too.

Questions for you:

Have you run a short course?

What is the coldest you’ve raced in?

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