Put a Bird on It: Albion Fit Giveaway

**Contest closed: Congratulations to Brandi Dawn for winning the hoodie and being a badass little skydiver!!!**

It started out as a dream (as all the best things do). A regular ol’ young professional with a growing fondness for craft beers and a newly discovered passion for fitness and actually taking care of my body. And, two years later, Food, Sweat, and Beers is not only a part of my day-to-day living, it’s become part of who I am. I meet people IRL who I’ve only followed on Twitter and we’re fast friends. I’ve rekindled relationships with long lost buddies through blogging. I’ve had people that I see and talk to on a regular basis reach out to me to tell me that, in some small way or another, I’ve touched them or my words meant something to it.

Happy Second Birthday to my blog, my internet persona, and ALL that is Food, Sweat, and Beers.

And since birthdays are all about presents and celebrating why you came into this world in the first place, why not combine the two?

Aw, look, their logo donned a party hat!!

Aw, look, their logo donned a party hat!!

Albion Fit gave me a chance to do JUST THAT on this most sacred birthday. Albion Fit is a new-to-me company that revolves around providing gorgeous performance active- and swimwear for ladies like me who are gunning to live an adventurous lifestyle without having to sacrifice looking beautiful while doing it.

Having worked for Athleta earlier in the past year and being a frequent purchaser of Lululemon gear, I’m no stranger to this realm of workout clothing (just ask the two shelves I have dedicated solely to fitness attire). And so, when given the chance to try out some new women’s fitness and swimwear, I jumped at the opportunity. I was offered a choice of several products to try out, and honestly wished I could’ve snagged them all!

A few of the options that were in the running:

Go Long Crew with Thumbholes in Grape

Go Long Crew with Thumbholes in Grape

Or really any of the colors. This top is beautiful, and I don’t think it’s just because so is the model wearing it as she calmly does yoga on the rocks whilst getting misted on by the ocean.

U-Line top in white and coral

U-Line top in white and coral

This reminds me of some of my favorite workout tops, mostly because of the sleek appearance with a super-secure cross-back.

But then I saw the item that caught my eye:

Albion's Signature 26.2 Zip Jacket in Black!

Albion’s Signature 26.2 Zip Jacket in Black!

I had to have it. And, within no time at all (seriously, snaps on the quick shipping turnaround), I had the package in my grubby paws. I would’ve taken a picture, except I was too excited to not rip into it right away.

I donned it, pranced around in front of the mirror, and then gave it a whirl (you know, on one of the days in recent past where it hasn’t been PAINFULLY hot and I actually needed a jacket on my walk home from the gym). My thoughts?

Fashion show

Fashion show

First and foremost, I gotta drop credit where credit is due: this sweatshirt is (IMHO) cute. Come on, they ACTUALLY managed to “put a bird on it” without making it look tacky and ridiculous. I was a little hesitant of the detailing, but I love it. It is definitely a slim fit, and I don’t think I’d be comfortable wearing this shirt with a t-shirt under it. Luckily, most of the time when I hit the gym, I’m wearing form-fitting tank tops, so it works.

She-Ra.

She-Ra (also I hope everyone’s as entertained by what’s in the background of this shot as I am…. Yes, that’s a pirate hat on the lamp)

The slim fit, while certainly not forgiving in the stomach and chest area (not a problem since I’ve proudly renounced my larger chest of yore), makes me feel like a certified tough chick, especially as it clings to my massive almost-visible biceps.

The material is a little less soft than most of the Lululemon pieces that I have, but the structured feel really makes me believe that this is true performance wear that will hold up over time.

My only complaint?

Oh, long arms. How you plague me...

Oh, long arms. How you plague me…

Being part-chimpanzee, the length of my arms proved too much for this jacket and my delicate wrist bones are laid out for the world to see. Not a BIG problem, and certainly not an issue for those of y’all with normal-human length appendages… but notable from my end.

Plus, when the winds start whipping, I can whip up my hood and….

VOILA!

VOILA!

BAM! Super cute hood detail. Big thanks to Albion Fit for sharing. And, since we’re all in a giving mood, birthdays and such, let’s share this item with one of YOU!

GIVEAWAY SCOOP BELOW

Albion Fit’s offering up one of these sleek, chic hoodies (valued at $98) for a lucky reader (in either black, white, or teal). I wish I could offer up the easiest entry in the world like “just THINK about this post and you’re entered” but there’s a little more to it than that. To be eligible to win the giveaway you must:

  • “Like” Albion Fit on Facebook
  • Pin your favorite item from albionfit.com onto one of your Pinterest boards (and then leave a comment on my post with the link to your pin)

Not TOO tough, right?

Entries will be accepted until Friday, June 7th at 12:00pm EST. And I’ll throw in an extra entry if you ALSO tell me the best thing about your most recent birthday (OR your second birthday, if you can remember).

If you hate the luck of the draw but still wanna try some Albion Fit goods, use the code: fsb15 to get $15 off any purchase of $50 or more!!

IMPORTANT NOTE: You are not eligible to win this giveaway if you’ve already won another Albion Fit giveaway within the last 6 months.

Thanks for hanging out with me over these past 2 years. Cheers to many more years (and quite a few more beers).

Philly: The School of Hard Knocks and Soft Pretzels

I’ve officially survived the first week and some change of grad school, and came out without a scratch! Maybe a corneal scratch or two, I’ve been doing a lot of reading (actually, I highly doubt that corneal scratches come from reading, and I’m pretty sure that my best friend, the optometrist, would smack me for saying such a thing). But, beyond the classroom walls, the outlining, the biostatistics, I’ve learned a few other bits and pieces on the mean smelly streets of Philadelphia. And, since I’ve been doing enough writing for school on things that might not fit into this blog (The effects of tar balls on public health! The Theory of Reasoned Action and how it influences condom use! The history of voluntary abortion in India!), I figured I’d share a few tidbits on the blog so that each of you can get a little tutelage from little old me.

1. Have your cake and eat it, too.

Or, in my case, find a place to work and workout, too.

Second home?

You’re reading the words of one of Athleta’s newest employees. And, even though I’ll soon be better dressed in the gym than I usually am outside of the gym, I promise not to forget the little people that brought me to this point (if you’re reading this, I’m probably talking about you.)

One of the major perks of working somewhere filled with like-minded athletes and fitness Barbies like myself? Workout classes IN THE STORE!!

Athleta just was identified by Be Well Philly as the best place for free workout classes and, after finally trying one on Thursday morning, I can see why. In 40 minutes, I broke a sweat, burned over 500 calories AND was surrounded by adorable clothing that just screamed out “buy me, buy me!” I held off (waiting until I actually get my first paycheck, before I blow it on clothes) BUT it was definitely worth the trip over.

2. You can ALWAYS find X cheaper if you look hard enough. 

Deal on grapes at Whole Foods?

Go to Trader Joe’s.  Too expensive there?

Try Superfresh.  That not doing it for you?

Farmer’s Market.

Shopping around, when you have the time, can save you a buttload. You just have to make the effort. Luckily, I’ve got the time AND am a notorious cheapskate. A dynamic combination….

3. Be Aggressive. B-E AGGRESSIVE!

Ok, maybe this isn’t going to work for everyone. And, honestly, I don’t even know if it’s working for me. BUT I’m taking a fairly aggressive approach to befriending people. If I find out their last name, I’m friending them. If I can get their number, I’ll text em. AND, if there’s a chance to interact with my peers outside of class… I’m doing it.

Silly happy hour photos at the Mutter Museum? I’m there.

We’ll see how this goes in the long run….

4. Find Joy in the Little Things

Got a three hour class on the more complicated theories that form the basis for public health policy and interventions?

At least there’s a view…

Penn’s coat-of-arms is gorgeous. 

Also a little joy?

This solar-powered dancing sunflower, which is only happy when it’s sunny out.

Sound like anyone else you know?

5. Free? I’ll take it.

Yes, I know I said I’m a cheapskate. And you know what’s even cheaper than cheap?

Free.

Today, I stopped at the RnR Philly expo to see what all you crazy runners were fussing about…. Then I stopped by the Reading Terminal Market for some goodies. The sum of my experience?

Score.

The cost?

Zilch.

Be resourceful, check twitter, and who knows? You might take that old phrase “No such thing as a free lunch” and flip it right on its head.

6. YOLO

Last minute bus trip to NYC for the weekend, leaving in 30 hours?

Pretend that’s me in there.

Jeez, living in the Northeast is easy.

Agenda today? Quick trip to Rittenhouse Square for some art walking then DATE NIGHT with the beau!!

Learning is so fun.

 

Here’s the Mail, It Never Fails. It Makes Me Wanna Wag My Tail….

Hey there friends and neighbors…

Before you do anything else with your day, pop over to NC Brewing to read my guest post Recap: NC Girls’ Pint Out detects good beer from the bad. By writing an article for them, I’ve basically become a superstar in the beer world and if you wanna catch me on the way up, make sure you keep tabs on me now.

Anyway, shameless self-plugs aside…

If you were drawn to this post by the title, you might be expecting this little friend:

MAILBOX! (click for Source)

Well, sorry to disappoint.  Looks like you’re stuck with me.

Yup. Stuck with me.

I’m home for lunch and SO excited because this time tomorrow, I’ll be headed to the airport for yet ANOTHER wonderful weekend in the North. I had a blast this weekend at my cousin’s wedding shower but barely got to see my better half, Ryan. Luckily, this weekend I’ll have a chance to split the difference and spend some time in his stomping grounds of Philly!! It’ll be nice to return after enjoying myself so much during the Healthy Living Summit… maybe I’ll even revisit Reading Terminal Market !

Today’s lunch is brought to you by: every single thing that could possibly go bad in over the weekend!

SCRAMBLED AND SEXY!

It was random as all get-out and included about 1/5 of a sausage cooked with spinach, egg, and some cheese as well as steamed veggies on the side. Yummy and filling!

The reason I’m stoked to write especially for today’s properly labeled post is that, in the past few days, I got some SERIOUS mail swag!!

Today, I picked up a massive set of boxes from my apartment complex office. Well, after digging into those bad boys, check out the goodies!

More and More MUIR!

I won the Muir Glen Organic giveaway from the effervescent Kaitlin over at For Love of Carrots, and now have a pantry chock FULL of amazing tomato products (and soup to boot!) This couldn’t come at a better time considering the squash love of my life, spaghetti squash, AND pizza dough are on sale at my local Harris Teeter this week!  I know what I’ll be making when I get back from PA!

Also in the mail?  Something I’ve been waiting for with bated breath since I signed up for Foodie Pen Pals through Lindsay’s blog.

The best things in life are VERMONT!

Allie from Healthy Balance, Healthy Life sent me a package so chock-full of maple syrup goodness, I almost choked. But honestly, I think I choked more on the granola that I spent the past two days virtually gargling (only then, I swallowed).

Seriously, I’ve knocked granola in the past but this…. this is ethereal.  Luckily, there wasn’t too much, so now that it’s gone, I’m just working my way through the cookies. Speaking of which, I think there’s just enough time to have a Puppy Love peanut butter chocolate chip cookie before going back to work.

EDIT: I ended up eating a banana and saving the cookies for when I visit Ryan tomorrow. You’re welcome, boyfriend.