under armour hovr sonic shoe review
Under Armour HOVR Sonic Shoe Review

My shoe rotation has almost entirely changed in the last 2 months.  Many of my favorites have been updated, and many of my shoes have gotten enough miles that it is time to be donated.  The next couple of months will be filled with several reviews.

Until recently, I had never run in an Under Armour shoe.  Most people know how great the Under Armour apparel is, but the running specialty shoes weren’t up there.  Well now they are, and I’ve found myself pleasantly surprised with both the Under Armour HOVR Sonic and Horizon BPF (a trail shoe that I ran Copper Mountain 25k in).

under armour hovr sonic shoe review

Under Armour HOVR Sonic Fit:

The Under Armour HOVR Sonic has a different fit than many other brands.  The knit of the Under Armour HOVR Sonic surrounds the entire foot including the heel counter at the back.  Plus it makes for a nice wide toe box. It’s all one piece with the tongue attached too. The heal is not as “plush” like many other brands, but honestly, it doesn’t make a difference for me.  Typical I wear a women’s size 10-11 wide, and a 10.5 fits fine and with no sliding.

One thing I will include is that if using a custom insert, it might be more challenging to fit into the Under Armour HOVR
Sonic without feeling like you’re sliding out. The external heel counter of the Under Armour HOVR Sonic doesn’t make it the easiest to slide an insert into.

What is the Under Armour HOVR Sonic?

UA HOVR cushioning is the technology Under Armour uses that makes up the midsole of the shoe.  Every brand has their own technology and the blown rubber of the Under Armour HOVR foam makes for a springy ride with energy return.

Adidas uses Boost, Nike: Air, Mizuno uses the Wave Plate, Saucony now uses Evverrun…every brand uses something different.

under armour hovr sonic shoe review

Under Armour HOVR Sonic Ride:

The weight of the Under Armour HOVR Sonic is about 9.6 ounces and the heel to toe drop is 8 mm.  The Under Armour HOVR Sonic is a soft but well-cushioned shoe.  I feel as though I’m well-cushioned in the beginning and throughout the entire run.  I’ve done a few workouts as well as a 15-mile run and haven’t had any issues.  The grip of the Under Armour HOVR Sonic is also good, and I don’t feel as though I’m sliding in rainy or wet conditions.  In all, it’s one of the softer and lighter shoes I’ve tried.

The traction of the Under Armour HOVR Sonic is great. The high abrasion rubber in the Under Armour HOVR Sonic allows you to have traction on the rainest days. This makes the Under Armour HOVR Sonic a good shoe for long runs or fast runs.

Under Armour HOVR Sonic Conclusion:

The Under Armour Hovr Sonic is an excellent shoe for multiple purposes from everyday training to a “faster” paced shoe.  For me, the Under Armour HOVR Sonic fits into a tempo shoe because I appreciate the lightweight but extra cushion it provides over a flat.  It’s responsive but fast enough that I feel as though I get a good turnover in.

I’m pleasantly surprised with the Under Armour HOVR Sonic.  If you had asked me a year ago if the Under Armour HOVR Sonic would be one of my current favorites, I’m not sure if I would believe you.

Shoe Rotation:

Easy/Daily Runs: Brooks Glycerin 16, Hoka Clifton 5, Brooks Levitate 2, Diadora Fly, Saucony Ride ISO, New Balance 1080

Workouts: Nike Fly, Under Armour HOVR Sonic

Racing: Nike LT Racer, New Balance 1400

Trails: Brooks Cascadia 12 and Under Armour Horizon

Questions for you:

What is one brand you want to try?

Have you tried Under Armour shoes before? 

rabbit running me
Training: Catching Up and Unexpected Rest Days

Another week of summer training in the books.  It was my first week back after vacation and I felt as though I dove right.  Looking back, there wasn’t much life downtime which seemed to catch up to me on Saturday (which added an extra rest day).  So where to start?

Monday: Easy 45 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: 6X800s averaging 6:20 pace
Thursday: Rest
Friday: Easy 60 minutes
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: 15-mile run

My easy runs were just that, easy.  I say that every week but for the most part, there isn’t anything thrilling about them.  I try and run on different routes or places, along with where I need to be so I can switch it up and don’t get too bored.  I am lucky I have a shower I can use, so I’m able to do that.

On Saturday, I woke up late and had to work, so I chose to go to a diner instead of going for a run.  I wanted it, and I could have just as easily run for an hour, but honestly, the relaxation was exactly what I needed.

Wednesday: 6X800s with 800 jog (average 6:20 pace)

This workout wasn’t the fastest I’ve done, in fact, it might have been one of the slowest but it was hot, humid, and I’m just not in the same shape as when I set PRs.  Honest, that is fine!  For more than half of the years I’ve run, I haven’t run through the summer.

I’ve either been injured, burned out, or too busy (and yes when you’re out of the house for more than 12 hours, priorities change, and you are too busy to include running).

Anyway, I was proud to log a workout.  It might not have been my fastest but it was healthy, and that is all I can ask of myself!

Sunday:

I had a much better long run than last week.  I just felt all around, much better.  I ran 15 miles and picked it up the last 7 with an average of 7:10 pace.  I prefer to my longer runs this way.  It gives me some time to warm up and then work on a fast finish.  Plus it somewhat breaks up the monotony of a longer run.

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bl0cU1Zhjbk

Other then that, not a lot going on.  The next two weeks will be busy in life as well as work.  I’ll still log summer miles and hopefully workouts.  I’m looking at a few fall races as well.

Posts from the Week:

200 Diner Review Recap

What to Do When You’re Just Not Motivated

Vital Proteins Berry Blast Recovery Smoothie

Questions for you:

Do you take a planned rest day off each week?

What is your favorite fall half marathon?

River Star Diner
200 Diner Reviews

It’s now been over four years since I started reviewing diners.  You can see the full map here.

NJ Diner Map

Since starting my NJ Diner quest, I’ve been to just over 200 diners in New Jersey and about 50 diners in other parts of the world.  There are about 600 diners in NJ, but that changes from month to month.  I’ve been to at least 4 that have since closed!  :O

You can see reviews here or use the link at the top of the blog.

How did it start?  I get this question a lot.  Why do I go to diners?

My husband and I moved to New Jersey in October 2013.  I can’t believe it’s nearly been five years.  Before moving to NJ, we didn’t know much about the state.  I had driven the turnpike many times to college in upstate NY but other than that I didn’t know anything.  Like most people, I assumed it was just a densely populated state with a lot of traffic.

That is definitely isn’t the case.  New Jersey has hundreds of small towns, each having their own personality.  New Jersey is known as “the garden state,” and there are miles of fields and gardens.  We started going to different diners to see different parts of the state.  A diner along the shore of NJ is going to be far different than one on the outskirts of New York City.  It’s been a fun way to explore the state and see all different areas.

Do I only eat at diners?  No, of course not.  Have there been many weeks where I haven’t made it to a new diner?  Of course but it’s been a fun hobby to do, and I’ve seen so much of New Jersey!

I started reviewing diners in March of 2014.  Keep in mind, this just a personal experience.  An experience at any restaurant is different depending on the day, time, or who you go with.  I’m not a diner professional, food critic, or anyone other than a blogger who likes diners.

Here are a few of the highlights and lowlights:

All-Time Favorite Diner: Mastoris

Mastoris isn’t a typical diner.  It’s more of a modern and upscale restaurant, but I like their food and cake.  This was one of the first diners I went too, and I still continue to go back.  I think the food is excellent at Mastoris. However, I think the service is lackluster.  I’ve been about 20 times in the last 4 years.

Mastoris Cake
But which cake to get?

Least Favorite Diner: The Ridge Diner or Garden State Diner,

Each diner was a definite letdown.  Garden State was just all around bad.

Unforatrenly diner review number 200, the Ridge Diner, was as well.  Burnt crusty steak, poor service, and sitting on top of people.

The Ridge Diner park ridge nj

Diner went to the most times: Vincentown

I used to live closer to Vincentown.  Sadly, the quality of the food and service has gone downhill, so I haven’t been much at all.  I went from going three times a month to maybe once every few months.  Once the wait staff essentially assumed I was too young to afford.  The woman said to me, do you realize how much this will cost? Yes, that is a true story, and yes the meal was less than $20.

Another time, we overheard another waitress talking about her stripping job.  Personally, I don’t care, but when you hear a waitress talking about that to co-workers, it’s definitely a unique experience.   In four years, I’ve been 30+ times, but I haven’t been back recently.

Here are a Few Diners that Stand Out to Me:

I guess many of my favorite diners are due to their cake.

North:

Stateline Diner: Great Cake and Service

Jefferson Diner: Great food and service

Northeast (NYC area):

Brownstone: Best pancakes in the state

Chit Chat Diner: Fun and unique diner

Shore:

Mustache Bills: You can’t argue with mustache shaped pancakes

Mustache pancake

Central:

Tropicana: Most unique and Carribean themed!

Mastoris: Best all around

 

South:

Larrys 2: Great food, fast service

Larrys 2 vineland

Healthiest Diner: Silver Diner

The Silver Diner is a small chain, and there are a few across the east coast.  How many diners have Quinoa pancakes or a roasted vegetable salad?

Best Coffee: Any diner that serves the local Lacas coffee and has homemade whipped cream.
Worst Coffee: Princetonian: they charge for refills!
Biggest portions: Tropicana: For $24, I received all of this food.  I had run 15 miles and still made a full meal out of leftovers. 
Best Pancakes: Four Seasons in Toms River.  Any pancakes with red velvet in them are always good to me!Four Seasons Diner Toms River
Best Egg Breakfast: Amys Omelet House (Over 200 omelet choices!)
My nova lox and rye toast

Best Dinner Option: The Pork Chops with NJ fresh Blueberries from Larrys 2

Larrys 2 vineland

Cheapest Diner: Angelos (around $5 for a meal)
Most Expensive: Vincentown (typically $20+ for a meal)

So cheers to 200 diners. Hopefully, I’ll make it another 100 but who knows what will happen.

Questions for you:

Have you been to a diner before? 

Where is your favorite place to eat? 

 

 

The Ridge Diner park ridge nj
Ridge Diner (Park Ridge)

Ridge Diner (Park Ridge, NJ)

Diner Number 200…

I’ve been waiting to reach this point for a couple of months now.  Once I reached about 175, I became increasingly excited to go with my 200th.  Why like anything it’s just a number.  For 100, I ended up at the Silver Coin Diner in Hammonton.

We were traveling back from Connecticut and the Ridge Diner in Park Ridge, NJ, was right on the way.  A few people had mentioned it was a good diner, so I decided to stop.  Maybe it was just an off day, but nothing about my experience there was pleasant.

Ridge Diner Atmosphere: F
I arrived at the Ridge Diner during the lunch hour, and almost every table, booth, and seat was taken.  Being busy is fine, and I have no issues waiting.  There was one table in the far back, and I was immediately sat there.  The problem was, the tables were far too close to each other, and upon sitting down, a waiter said I would need to “scoot in” for the meal because he couldn’t pass.  I don’t sit exceptionally far from tables; in fact, I sit rather close to things.  In order to be close enough, my body was sitting against the table.  During the entire meal, I felt as though as I was sharing a conversation, a meal, and time, with three other parties.

Ridge Diner Coffee: B

The coffee at the Ridge Diner was decent.  It wasn’t good or bad, but the waitress didn’t bring until the meal when I asked.

The Ridge Diner park ridge nj

Ridge Diner Food: F
The Ridge Diner menu is impressive.  They have everything from breakfast to lunch and dinner.  They have plenty of healthy options, including salads and sandwiches.  I was between the roast beef and breakfast but decided to order the steak and eggs.  I had a good experience at the previous diner, so I had high hopes.

The Ridge Diner park ridge nj

The steak at the Ridge Diner was one of the most rubbery pieces I’ve had.  The meal was small, and it when it came out, it didn’t even look appetizing.  When I went to eat the steak, it tasted as if it had burned residue from other meals and was cooked dirty grill.  It didn’t taste good.  I tried to find the positive, but it just wasn’t a good meal.  The food took so long to come out; I didn’t have a lot of extra time to wait for a new meal.

The Ridge Diner park ridge nj

Ridge Diner Service: D
The waitress was friendly, which saved the entire service.  She was so busy, and the food took far too long to come out.

Ridge Diner Cost: $
For my steak and eggs as well as coffee, it was $18, which was not worth it at all.  The steak at the Ridge Diner was the worst restaurant steak I’ve had, and the portion didn’t merit the price either.

Overall thoughts/Would I Come back to the Ridge Diner:
No.  It stinks to have a bad experience, but that is all about the journey.

Atmosphere: F
Coffee: B
Food: F
Service: D
Cost: $10-20
Overall: F

You can see all 200 Diner reviews here.

Questions for you:

Tell me about one of your worst dining experiences!

How do you like your steak cooked?

Vital Proteins Berry Blast Recovery Smoothie
Vital Proteins Berry Blast Recovery Smoothie

I have been trying to post a couple of posts including Vital Proteins each month. As an ambassador, I get to try products and authentically post about them.  I’m not being paid, but if Vital Proteins and Collagen has helped me, it will more than likely help someone else too.  So each month I try and post a recipe I’ve been personally using.  Some I hesitate to call “recipes” because they are: add these things and put into a blender.

With the heat, I’ve been enjoying smoothies lately.  I’m not a smoothie person in the winter, but hot weather is another story.  This month I’ve been enjoying the Vital Proteins Strawberry Lemon.

Vital Proteins Berry Blast Recovery Smoothie

I have had a serving after each run or workout to recover faster and honestly, I have been!  After my 25k this smoothie was the first thing I’ve had.  I also have found including collagen into my routine has made my hair grow faster.

A Few Benefits of the Beauty Collagen are:

  • Help Improve Hair and Nails: Collagen helps hair and nails grow faster and stronger (I have seen this first hand with my own hair).
  • Skin Health: Helps to improve the moisture and glow into your skin.  This has also helped me personally, and my skin is the best it’s been in months.
  • Post Workout Energy: If I don’t eat after a run, I find myself sluggish, so this provides energy that I need. With Vital Proteins, there are no added sugar or preservatives.

Last month I posted about using the Vital Proteins Strawberry Lemon for a recovery smoothie, and I’ve made some minor tweaks to include more carbohydrates and calories. I’ve found the extra calories help me recover faster.  As I posted on Instagram yesterday, one of my primary goals is to stay healthy.

  • 1 Chopped frozen banana
  • 1 cup frozen berries (I use either strawberries or raspberries)
  • 1 cup oatmeal (to add carbohydrates)
  • 1 cup Greek Yogurt
  • 1 Scoop Beauty Collagen

Mix and Go.  

I’ve found the consistency to be much thicker and I’m able to recover faster.  I have a smoothie after each run or workout (whether it’s 3 miles or 15).  Plus it’s refreshing in the humidity.

Here are more Vital Protein Collagen posts:
Skin Benefits from Collagen
Recovering with Collagen Protein
Hair and Nail Benefits of Collagen

Thank you to Vital Proteins for your support! 

Questions for you:
Do you eat after a workout or run?
Are there any recipes or things you would like to see about Vital Proteins or Collagen?

 

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