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Friday, December 31, 2010

Santa Cruz Demolition


It may not seem like it now, but we are turning this mess into a pretty bathroom. Demolition is fun, but hard work!
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Published with Blogger-droid v1.6.5

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Running Shoe Retirement

It's official.  My Nike Lunarswifts+ have taken their last run and I am a bit sad about retiring them.
 These shoes were the ones I bought to carry me to my half marathon goal back in September. I bought them on clearance and I love how awesomely obnoxious the color was. I was in love and ready to tackle my goal of 13.1 miles in them.
These shoes were with me through some real highs and some real lows. I ran ten miles in these shoes (The longest I had run thus far) the day I got laid off from my job. These shoes with their bright colors were with me when I decided not to let go of my goal and fun my first 1/2 marathon in October (recap here) .  I will never forget the feeling and excitement I felt when I crossed the finish line in 1:47. 22.  These shoes powered with me through my self doubts on my runs and they were with me when I finally broke through my dark cloud.
I will always love these shoes and have enjoyed the journey I have taken with them.
Anyone else out there ever feel this way about a pair of shoes?
C'est la vie! Thanks for the good times and the good 1/2 marathon time.

To end this post on a high note! I would like to introduce you to the new Bandida running shoes.
Nike Pegasus 27+

Let's see where we go together!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Feliz Navidad, Boas Festas, Joyeux Noel, God Jul, メリークリスマス, Ya'at'eeh Keshmish and Nollaig shona duit

Merry Christmas to my good friends around the world!
This is a blurry photo I took last year of a Luminaria (Farolito) tour that happens in our neighborhood. We Traveled south to El Paso, TX this Christmas and had to miss it. However, nothing beats hanging out with family.

Cheers and happy times to you all!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Starry Night

 The folks at Torchbox in the U.K. delivered this amazing IPAD Christmas message.
I hope all of you are doing well out there and have all of your holiday shopping done.
Don't forget to take care of yourself!

A Starry Night from Torchbox on Vimeo.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Weather Records and Free Downloads

So this week has been amazing in regards to weather!
My city set back-to-back records in heat and precipitation! For example on Wednesday I went for a run around my neighborhood and it was a beautiful 65 degrees and I was in a T-shirt. New Mexico set a record high for this day and had ski/snowboard bums crying everywhere.  Well, it looks like the weather gods felt their tears because it's rained/snowed all day long on Thursday and Friday morning. So, This crazy NM weather lead to my first ever run in the flurries and it felt awesome! However, this NM chile loving girl needed some motivation to get out in the 33 degree weather.
 So, thanks to my hilarious facebook friends who gave me this advice and motivation:

Greg: the Navajo Way is to roll around in the first snow and holler out loud:) (There was not enough snow to do this awesome suggestion by Greg. But I will definitely do it next time) 

Haroon: Imagine yourself as Rocky training against Ivan Drago in Krasnoyarsk, Soviet Union. (Rocky IV) (I'm not going to lie, this actually helped get me out there. Visualization is key!) 

What is your motivation to run in the cold? I'm looking at your northerners!

On the topic of motivation I was able to jam out to some new music today! I discovered free music downloads on the Nike Women Facebook page.  They have some great artist from Japan and Sweden that motivated me to keep my pace up and on occasion sing along. (Sorry for all the dog walkers I scared out there with my singing.)
So, get your free downloads and add some new motivation and mix to your daily workout routine! 
Click Here. 

Here are a couple of my faves!
First Aid Kit: Sailor Song

The Suzan: Home

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Roadrunner, Roadrunner

For the folks who follow me on Twitter you may remember my roadrunner excitement that I had last week. There was one that was sunbathing out in the backyard of my house for about an hour and another one in the front yard. I got a few good photos of them and wanted to share.

Just another reason why I love NM.
Now it's time for me to be a road runner and get some miles in!
Have a great Wednesday everyone!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


My final for my A&P class went well and I am happy to report that I got an A in the class! Woo HOo!
On a fitness note, I've also started running again. It was a bit of a rough run today. But what do I expect after taking a 5 day hiatus? I needed all of my energy for my brain!!
Anyways, I hope everyone out there is doing well!
Have you finished your holiday shopping yet?

Music Tuesday--Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Music Tuesday: Macklemore

The Vs. is the first album of innovative hip-hop from Seattle's Macklemore and DJ/producer Ryan Lewis. Macklemore embraces a wide range of personal themes (including his recent struggle with drug addiction) in the powerful "Otherside." Lewis samples from Arcade Fire, Caribou, Beirut and Antony and the Johnsons, turning them all into cinematic bangers. Call it postmodern indie alterna-hip-hop crossover if you must, but it works. From

Monday, December 6, 2010

Nike Free+ Review

I have officially jumped on the Nike Free+ minimalist shoe band wagon. I have been researching this shoe for months. I've stuffed my head with reviews, blogged opinions and video, trying them on at local running shops, and even asking random strangers what they thought of the shoe. So, after extensive research I was ready to try the shoe! However, I was not ready to pay the $85 price tag. So, I started searching the internet for some deals. I came across a seller on ebay who was selling her pair because she wasn't a fan after trying them on a treadmill three times. After winning a bidding war, I was able to have these lovely pair of Nike Free's in my possession for half the price!! Pretty huh?

Nike Free+ side

Okay, here are the specs!
The Nike Free Run+ Women’s Running Shoe was created for those who love the feel of barefoot running, yet need the cushioning, traction and protection of a shoe. This update to the Nike Free series offers improved fit, cushioning and support. from

Inner-sleeve for a snug, barefoot-like fit
One-piece, patterned overlay for support and flexibility
Flex grooves for flexibility and stability

Nike + Ready
Weight: 6.4 ounces (women’s size 8)

Okay, so the first time I ran with this shoe I was a bit worried that I might turn into a hater of the Nike Free +. I was only able to run three miles in the shoe and during my run I  started to feel pain in my plantar fascia (refer to diagram below). Needless to say, I was a bit frustrated.  However, I will admit I started off with a high! This shoe was so light and I felt like I could run super fast in this shoe. This excitement I think is what lead me to cut my run short.During all of my excitement of trying out the shoe I forgot about one piece of important information that I had read about during all of my extensive research. That piece of important information was to allow myself to ease into this new style of shoe and running.  There is a sort of an adjustment period when It comes to the Nike Free+ and it shouldn't be taken lightly. I think that if I tried to force more miles out of my three mile run that day I could have really injured myself.
So, if you're not use to this type of shoe or running. I would recommend to start off easy and allow yourself to adjust to your new high tech minimalist shoe!  Don't try and fly like I did, okay?

Even though I was frustrated with my first round in these shoes. I didn't want to give up on them yet. So, I went to a park close to my house to try them out again. This time it was amazing! I could almost feel my form improve and was noticing the benefits of the mid-foot strike almost instantly. I could feel  the flexibility of the shoe and what a unique feeling it was. It was almost like my feet had a whole new range of motion! It was almost like they were telling me, hey! thanks for not strangling us today.
This time I was able to clock five miles and it really felt great. I enjoyed the light weight benefits of the shoe and I enjoyed how my running almost felt almost effortless. I felt fast, light and I finally understood the reviews of the many people saying that felt like they could run forever!! However, in my case, I got hungry and had to run home for dinner.  Nevertheless, I was a fan of the Nike Free+.

This shoe’s inner-sleeve, or bootie, conforms to your foot for a snug and comfortable, barefoot-like fit—with or without socks. Extensive, breathable mesh on the upper enhances the barefoot-like fit and feel.

The fit truly is interesting, it sort of fits like a sock. Some people in the reviews did express frustration with the bootie like form (no tounge) of the shoe and difficulty with putting it on.  My experience with this lead me to think. Well, if these people stopped bitching about the small things and just put the damn shoe on they would enjoy it's seamless benefits!  Just like I did! I find the design to be smart and effective and it does feel like the shoe is hugging your foot.

As for the size of the shoe it felt pretty true to size for me. I am a pretty solid size 7 in Nike's so I just decided to stick to my size and not order up.  However, most reviews stated that the shoe did run a bit small. So if you find that you tend to fluctuate between whole and half sizes  it may be safe to order a size up.

Deep Nike Free flex grooves along the length and width of the midsole (which doubles as an outsole) allow your foot to move naturally while adding stability. The Nike Free Run+ is even more flexible and “Free-like” than the Nike Free 5.0.

 The Nike Free+ definitely has a lot of flexibility and I feel this is why these shoes are so damn comfortable. It allows you to have your natural range of motion with some stability.  Which in turn allows you to run with better form leading to less injuries.

So, what is the Bandida Blog final verdict?
I really felt the Nike Free + was a nice alternative to the folks interested in going into the barefoot movement but were not quite ready to commit to throwing away their running shoes and going au natural. 
I do feel that this shoe is great for city or park running but I don't feel that it offers enough support to run on uneven terrain.  I did have some issues with small rocks and twigs getting stuck in my shoe while running in the park. But this has only happened twice and wasn't too much of a set back for me. However, it did lead me to think that these shoes would perform terribly on the trails.  In the photo below you can sort of see the rocks and small twigs I picked up with my shoe after running at the park.
Nike Free+ Back

As for running long distances in these shoes i.e. half marathon and marathon distances. I don't know if I would recommend them just yet. The furthest distance I have run in this shoe is six miles. The shoe expert at a local running store here did mention that she felt it was not a good shoe for the longer distances. She mentioned that she had really messed up her plantar fascia during a half marathon race and didn't feel it was the right kind of shoe for the longer distances. However, she did mention that some people are able to run long distances in these shoes and love it.

So to round up this final verdict I will say the Nike Free+ is a great training shoe. It is a great tool to use during my short training runs or on my recovery days. The Nike Free + also comes Nike+ sensor ready which allows you to track your distance at

I hope this review was helpful!
Please feel free to leave comments with your experiences with the Nike Free+.

Happy Free Running.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Runner Chica's Gift Guide

Thanks to I was able to create a gift guide for all you runner chica's out there!
I went through and gathered a few of my favorite things out there in the cyber shopping world.
Happy Holiday's to all my runner chica's and fitnessistas!!!

Here is a preview of the Runner's Chica's Gift Guide:

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