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Posts Tagged ‘Instead Softcup’

Play along with me and let me believe that you actually were wondering about the answers to the following questions and that you appreciate this Friday Follow-up.

1. Hey Angela, how did you do on those Before the End of the Year Resolutions? Did you clean out the linen cabinets like you said you would? Why yes I did, thank you for asking!

Dear IRS, This photo constitutes evidence of my sizable charitable donation. Too bad I didn't get it in before the end of the 2012 tax year.

Dear IRS: This photo constitutes evidence of my sizable charitable donation.

Mike and I took a few hours to conquer the cabinets together. We did do it before the end of the year, however we were not quite organized enough to then get the bags donated to charity before the end of the year. I think my 2012 tax return wept a little at that mistake.

Tip: When you organize your linens (once every billion years like I do), organize the bed linen sets by putting the folded top sheet and fitted sheet inside the matching pillowcase. That way it’s super easy to grab a new set of sheets when it’s time to change the bed linens (once every quarter-billion years like I do).

2. How are the posterior shin splints on the left leg and the strained adductor magnus on the right upper back thigh butt crease thingamabob? Much better, thanks! The shin splints are history and the adductor magnus has gone from screaming at me to whimpering occasionally. I credit the improvement to stretching the calf muscles, running in moderation, and massaging the sore spots.

3. So if you’re not injured anymore, are you training for the Mountains to Beach Marathon yet? I got an email from the M2B people the other day that said “19 days until marathon training begins” and my heart leapt into my throat! I knew it was coming of course, but my training plan does not officially start until February 3. It’s a 16-week plan from Run Less, Run Faster and right now it’s week 19. It’s been hard to know what to do in this down time. I’ve focused on healing from the injuries and easing back into speed work and long runs and I will be ready to start the plan when the time comes.

4. So here’s what I really want to know but am too embarrassed to ask…. Do you actually like the Instead Softcup feminine protection product or did you just say that because the company sponsored your first marathon? After several cycles I can say I still like it! I love it! I simply love the ability to, um, “fix it and forget it” (as the crockpot recipe people would say) — I love that the product can be worn for 12 hours at a time. I’m not going back to any other method.

5. Speaking of products, how do you like that Costco women’s running jacket you bought the other day? Another winner! The “mittens” are the best. I’ve worn the jacket for two cold weather runs and it’s great to be able to tuck my hands inside the covers until they start to roast, and then let them out when I want them to cool off. The thumb-holes are a good compromise too. The only thing that confused me on the jacket for a minute is that it has two zippers, one that zips the jacket up, and one that lets you leave the top of the jacket zipped up while you unzip the bottom of the jacket. I am assuming this feature is there to allow you to put your fuel belt on underneath the jacket and still access it. Or maybe people get hot on their bellies? Not me! Take a look at these photos of my cold rash from recent runs. Perhaps I need to add yet another layer to my top and bottom?

That's mah belleh! Still working on that six pack....

That’s mah belleh! Still working on that six pack….

Is it wrong to post this next one?

Do not adjust your screen. That is not a ham hock. That is a cold rash on what my kids and I call my buttoxes.

Do not adjust your screen. That is not a ham hock. That is a cold rash on what my kids and I call my hip and “buttoxes.”

The cold rash went away in about 15 minutes. In the meantime we enjoyed playing that game where you try to decide what the shape looks like. I think it looks like a bat spread its wings and flew into me at full speed.

Do you ever get a cold rash? Have I answered all your burning questions? Ask away in the comments.

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Listen up ladies, this one is for you! After three years of blogging about breastfeeding, I can now talk about any body part and bodily function with ease. My three girls know the proper names for all their body parts, and the older two watched their baby sister be born. We’re not shy about our bodies, is what I’m saying. It’s that kind of openness that allows me to review the Instead Softcup. It’s a menstrual period protection product (say that three times fast!) that you use instead of a tampon, pad or other kind of protection. It’s a natural fit (no pun intended) for endurance athletes like runners and triathletes as it offers 12-hour protection. As part of the Instead Softcup Challenge, I received 14 disposable softcups to try out.

Instead Softcup

Why yes, I photograph all my feminine protection products in my backyard.

Let’s just say that little box arrived in the nick of time, and I got down to business reading the instructions and watching the video tutorial on how to insert and remove the softcup.

I have to say, when I first tore open the individual wrapper and saw the size of the flexible pink ring, I was a little . . . intimidated. I should not have feared, it was super easy to pinch the sides of the ring together into a long, thin shape that’s not at all uncomfortable to use. First try for the win! Immediately I was happy that I could not even tell I was wearing the softcup. I went for several training runs during my period and had no problems with the softcup.

Cons?

– Takes a bit of practice for some people to get the hang of it.
– It’s not biodegradable or reusable (although the reviews on Amazon tell another story — I will leave it at that). There is also a “reusable” Instead Softcup that can be reused for one menstrual cycle. In the past I’ve used a different type of silicone menstrual cup which can be reused for more than one cycle. I also liked that one but I can tell you that since I’ve had three kids, the Instead Softcup fits better and works better for me.
– The logistics can be a little tricky when you’re using a public restroom. You might choose to take a water bottle or hand wipe into the stall with you to clean your hands again before coming out of the stall. However, that likely will not be an issue for many women given that you can put in the softcup at home in the morning and forget about it until you get home at night!

One thing I cannot comment on is how well the softcup works for heavy flow. I used to have horribly heavy periods, to the point that I needed iron supplements due to the blood loss. My guess is that I would have loved to use the softcup, especially at night when I used to have to get up once or twice to change tampons.

Pros?

– Very easy and quick to use once you’ve mastered the technique, and I found that that did not take long at all.
– Individually wrapped and easy to store in your purse or bag.
– The price per use is comparable to tampons, given that you can wear these for up to 12 hours.
– Love that you can safely wear it overnight without risk of Toxic Shock Syndrome.
– It can be worn during physical activity (perfect for my swimming, biking and running) and even during sex (Fit Fun Mom tested, husband approved. The lengths I will go to for this blog!)
– Comfortable to the point that you forget it’s there. If it’s not comfortable, try again until you get it right.
– Best of all — it can be worn for several hours at a time, making it ideal for endurance events. Nice not to have to worry about it for a long race!

So, would I recommend the Instead Softcup? Absolutely! Will I use it again? Yes! I found that I very quickly got used to the benefit of putting in the softcup in the morning and forgetting about it for the rest of the day.

As part of the Instead Softcup Challenge, I received one free box of Instead Softcups and sponsorship of my race entry fee for the Santa Barbara International Marathon. This review is 100% my own opinion and believe me, I would tell you if I didn’t like the product (or more likely, I wouldn’t review it if I really didn’t believe in it).

What do you think ladies? Have you ever tried a softcup?

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