Brooks Cascadia 12 Shoe Review

Brooks Cascadia 12 Shoe Review

The Brooks Cascadia has been updated to the latest Cascadia 13.

When going out west on vacation, I knew I needed a trail shoe.  My husband and I have hiked several times on the east coast, but many people indicated how rocky and rigorous trails could be out west.  There have probably been times I could have used a trail shoe while hiking out east too.

brooks cascadia 12 shoe review

The Brooks Cascadia 12 seemed like a good option.  I’ve had success with many Brooks Running shoes, including both the Ghost 10 and Glycerin 15.  Instead of getting a hiking boot, I opted for the gortex (weatherproof) Brooks Cascadia.

Brooks Cascadia 12 Fit:

The Gortex version of the Brooks Cascadia 12 makes the shoe stiffer and less breathable, but that is precisely what I was looking for.  I wanted a shoe that would protect me from harsher elements.  That being said, the Brooks Cascadia 12 still fits appropriately.

In my running shoes, I’ve worn between 10-11 wide.  I purchased a pair of 10.5 Brooks Cascadia 12 shoes and have been fine. The toe box is wide enough which was a fear for me.  The upper is constructed from a double mesh material that I found highly flexible, breathable, and provided a durable layer of protection.

brooks cascadia 12 shoe review

Brooks Cascadia 12 Ride:

Personally, I’ve used the Brooks Cascadia 12 more for climbing and hiking versus running on trails.  I’ve used them a couple of times to run, but for the most part, the Brooks Cascadia 12 have been great hiking shoes.

There is a lot of cushion for a trail shoe.  My biggest fear was getting a trail shoe that was firm or rigid.  Since we have done 10+ miles of hiking before, my feet would not be happy with that.  The Biomogo DNA cushion of the Brooks Cascadia 12 is soft like the Ghost but hard enough to grip the ground appropriately.

The Brooks Cascadia 12 doesn’t have the grooves of a rigorous hiking boot, but did have enough for the hikes I was doing.

The Gortex version of the  Brooks Cascadia 12 allowed me to cross several streams without too much of an issue with my feet getting wet.  The Brooks Cascadia 12 has many needed features for the trail including a rock shield and mud guard to keep trail debris out.

Brooks Cascadia 12 Final Thoughts:

I like the Brooks Cascadia 12, and I’m so glad I decided to purchase it.  Since purchasing, I’ve done a variety of trails including Zion National Park, Colorado Springs, and even hiking in New Jersey.  It definitely makes a difference when hiking.  I’m glad I finally took the plunge and purchased a pair.

Questions for you:

Do you have a separate pair of trail shoes?

Have you ever used a Gortex or weatherproof product?

4 Surprises I Had While Using the FitBit

Last month, I bought a Fitbit charge.  I never intended to buy one for myself but after researching the different models for a gift, I thought the FitBit sounded interesting.

I have always wondered how much running burned as well as random gym equipment, etc. I decided to purchase one for myself and see how I liked it.  I didn’t know what to expect!

Click to Tweet: Four Surprises I Learned While Using the FitBit 

Fitbit Charge with Heart Rate

First surprise: Overestimating Calorie Burn

Keep in mind; I think knowing how many calories you burn is important, but I don’t believe any athlete should focus on calorie burn. 

Occasionally I’ll supplement the AMT into my running routine.  The AMT always told me I burned between 500-600 calories per hour.  I was shocked to find my Fitbit stating I burned a whopping 131 calories.    I knew cardio machines were inaccurate, but that is a huge difference.  Do I think FitBit is perfect?  No, but I do believe it’s more accurate than machines at the gym… 

Interestingly enough I found this article about how Sara Hall only burned 1500 calories during her marathon.  I know smaller framed runners burn less, and I don’t burn 100 calories per mile.  I’m 130 pounds and 5’7.  I normally “guestimated”, I burned about 75 calories per mile and so I ate between 2500-3000 calories daily.  I don’t track it because it’s honestly too much work and I was running fine and not losing/gaining weight.

I decided to take a deeper look into my Broad Street 10 mile data.  I ran Broad Street in 1:01.59, however, since my heart rate was high, FitBit concluded my run was an additional 30 seconds longer.  For 10 miles, you would think I burned 1000 calories or in my “guestimating” 750.  In reality, I burned around 583. 

broad street calories

Second surprise: Distance I walked at work

Sometimes at work I end up walking 10,000 steps. I wouldn’t have thought I walked that far. We have two floors at several locations, and I find myself climbing steps more than I expected.

Third Surprise: My Steps/Mileage isn’t always accurate

I wore my Fitbit during the Broad Street 10 miler.  After the race, FitBit said I ran about 9 miles for the entire day.

Broad Street is a certified 10-mile course, and I had probably walked another mile beforehand.   For me, I have a shorter stride, and FitBit doesn’t always pick up on it.

I don’t think FitBit is 100% accurate in picking up steps and distances traveled.

Fourth surprise: I’m way more invested in Sleep and Heart Rate

Fitbit Charge with Heart Rate

I run with my Fitbit on and to be honest; I don’t care about steps.  I know I’ll hit 10,000 most days I run but even if I don’t…I don’t get upset or try too.  I don’t ever feel more or less motivated to get up and walk.  I didn’t purchase Fitbit to motivate me to move, I purchased it to track data and learn more about my habits.  Since buying my FitBit about a month ago, there hasn’t been a day I’ve paced around the house or walked around at night to get more steps.

I’m also far more invested in my heart rate.  I’ve always wondered what my heart rate is like while running or resting.  It’s been great data to track.

Do I like FitBit?

FitBit Charge

I do. However, it’s not data I get overly concerned or lose sleep over.  I like to know my sleep habits as well as my heart rate the most.  It’s interesting but like any technology, it’s not 100% perfect.  It’s a better picture of your overall fitness.

Disclosure: I purchased my own Fitbit and am not getting paid to review it. 

Funny Articles Related to FitBit:
19 Real and Emotional Struggles to Having a Fitbit
What it’s Actually Like to Own a FitBit 

Click to Tweet: 4 Surprises I had While Using FitBit

Questions for you:
Are you part of the Fitbit World?
Do you monitor your sleep or heart rate?

Favorite Summer Products Pt 2

It’s hard to believe summer is almost over.  I say that about every month or season but the summer is truly flying by.  Pretty soon we will be into fall and marathon season! Or pumpkin season or cross country season…whatever your jive is!

About a month ago, I posted my favorite summer gear.  Throughout the summer I have found more gear I really like using.

This post isn’t sponsored but it’s products I have enjoyed using and would recommend! 


The Saucony Dash top:

It’s seamless and long.  I’ve worn this top to run in as well as to work in.  I love how soft it is.  While Saucony is currently sold out of many sizes, a little birdie told me they are getting a bunch of new colors this fall.  I will probably buy every color.  I will sit at my computer and press refresh until it’s available.

Close up. I race, train and also wear it to work (with proper washing of course)
Close up. I race, train and also wear it to work (with proper washing of course)

The Lululemon Long Line Bra

Personally I prefer to run in longer sports bras.  I feel like racing crop tops don’t exist unless you are an elite but that is probably for good reason.  The Lululemon Long long bra is the next closest thing.  It’s a little longer than a sports bra but not a full top.  It’s comfortable and it wicks away sweat really well.  I linked to Lulu’s sport bra section because they make some of my favorites!  The last I checked they were out of this exact top but they have very similar ones.

me run lululemon sports bra

Running Shoes:

My rotation:

70% Saucony Triumph

Friends forever
Friends forever

10% Nike Vomero

Nike vomero

10% Saucony Zealot (Review to come after I have run 100+ miles in it.  So far, so good!)

10% Saucony A6 Racing Flat

Right now the track is still out of my comfort zone
Right now the track is still out of my comfort zone

Can you tell I’m on the Saucony train right now?

Running Gear:

I still love my R8 foam roller. I’m carrying it over from the first summer post because it has been such a helpful device for recovery. I have found I can foam roll better than anything else. While it is $120, I do think the price tag is worth it.

Garmin 10:

I’ve been using my Garmin 10 more and more lately. I’m still not using it for pace but for mileage.  For my track workouts I just use a stop watch and paper.  I know I should probably upgrade eventually…I have thought about buying the 220 or 225.  They look cool and I want to be in the cool kids club.


Crop and cut out dresses

Why do I like these?  I don’t know.  I’ve bought two and I loved them both.  Taylor Swift would be proud.

This one I got at Ruelala a few weeks ago.

cut out dress abs ruelala

Question for you: What products are you enjoying this summer? 

Summer Products

The summer has finally heated up and set in.  Not only has the calander summer came but it feels like summer.  On Tuesday it was 94 degrees here (although the thunder storms made it a little more bearable…until the power went out).

Last month I did an extremely late post about the items I loved for Spring.

Now I’m doing an early post thinking about items I am enjoying this summer. Maybe I’ll do a second post for items I like in the late summer too.  [None of these products are sponsored]


Saucony Triumph:

I’ve mentioned I’ve been enjoying the Saucony Triumphs a lot more than initially anticipated.  I’ve gone through 2 pairs already and am on my third pair.  I think I should do an updated review because my thoughts have changed drastically on the shoe itself (in a good way).

A photo of the Saucony triumph on some flowers...
A photo of the Saucony triumph on some flowers…

The R8 Roller

This 120 foam roller is the best thing I’ve purchased for my running.  The roller blade wheels physically clamp onto your muscles (don’t do your Shins, that will result in pain!).

We first started carrying these at work a few months ago and since then I’ve been obsessed.  I realized early that I needed to buy myself one.  I’ve had everything from the stick to an actual foam roller, honestly these get the deepest of anything.  The only real drawback is that they do have a $120 price tag.  It’s well worth it in my opinion. 


Sanuk Sandels

I like them because they are an open toed sandal but do provide a little bit of arch support.  I always tell people that working at a running store has made me a diva about what goes on my feet. If it’s not comfortable…I’m not wearing it.

ha I even wore them on my wedding day.
ha I even wore them on my wedding day.

Saucony Kineta Relay Shoe

I think Saucony has done great updates to all their shoes lately.   I was excited to see what they were doing with a “casual” nonrunning shoe.  I walked around NYC in the Sacuony Kineta relay and it was extremely comfortable.

Taken from their website because I didn't take a photo when they were clean.
Taken from their website because I didn’t take a photo when they were clean.


It has memory foam at the bottom so it molds to your feet.  Plus they are a little cuter than running shoes (with more support than flats). I can worry about fashion versus comfort for non running shoes right? 

Saucony's in NY action.
Saucony’s in NY action. You can see how bright their shoe laces are)

So right now those are a few things I’m enjoying this early summer.

Questions for you:

What products are you enjoying this summer?

Do you wear or are you a shoe diva like me?

Best Price Nutrition Product Reviews

It’s not often times I get products to review on my blog.  It might because I’m blunt, I use vulgar or if I don’t really feel like something helped me I won’t make up stories just because I got it for free.  It’s a companies choice to send me a product and if I feel like it didn’t help me I’m not going to lie and say it did.  But I digress so to get this out of the way: yes I got all the products for free but I was not payed to review them.

I know protein powders are not everyone’s thing.  For me, I have been looking for a protein powder that I can add to my daily diet.  When asked what sort of samples I would like to try, I immediately said protein powder and then whatever you felt like sending me.  The protein powder they send me is called Garden of Life “Raw Protein”.  It’s a whey that is vegan.  I’ve never tried a vegan powder before but honestly it was pretty good.  I just added it with a cup of milk, ice and some coffee (yes coffee) and mixed it in my magic bullet.


Half way through drinking, I decided I should take a photo for proof.  Anyways-I really like this protein powder.  Though I’m going to try a few more before making a decision (commitment is hard…), this is certainly in the realm of possibilities.

They also sent me some multi-vitamins.  I take a multi-vitamin every single day.  I don’t have much to say about these.  I took them, they only have 2% calcium (what I most look for in my multi-vitamin) and I didn’t get sick or feel bad afterwords.  They have almost everything else though so combined with a calcium supplement or more milk, I’d be fine with them.

Finally the last product I received was this: ProSupps Hyde Preworkout Amplifier.  I won’t lie and say I had ever tried one of these or been remotely interested in them.  Yes, I’ve heard of preworkout stuff but never really felt the need to try it.  I tried it before a run that I did a week or so ago.  I must say (and it could be due to the caffeine) that I did have a pretty kick butt run that morning.  Normally I hold around 8:30 pace but that morning it was more towards 8:00 mins.  Who knows if that was the sole reason but I did feel good.

The products they sent me were all great. I don’t think I’d buy the Preworkout Amplifier because I’m personally on the fence about that sort of the thing.  I’m not sure about the multi-vitamin just because I like the calcium component but it wasn’t bad by any means.  The protein powder, however, I do really like.   I think Best Price Nutrition’s Claim (Should link to the main website I guess…lots of links for you) to fame is in their  title though as they do have some of the best prices on the internet (and that much I cannot complain about).

Questions for you:

Do you review a lot of products?

Do you use any of these products (whether it’s this brand or not)? 

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