Disclaimer: I was invited to The Running Event (TRE) Influencer Day in Austin, TX as part of being a BibRave Pro. I was provided with a travel stipend and running related gear for attending. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
BibRave has once again proven why it’s one of the best running communities around!! Here is what I am thinking must have been going through Tim and Jessica’s mind, the co-founders of BibRave, while they were planning out this weekend:
Lets get 20 of the BibRave Pros from around the country together and send them to Austin Texas to attend the premier trade show for running speciality retailers and brands, The Running Event. While we are there, lets have them attend an amazing welcome/reception party put on by Zwift, attend a VIP running party put on by Brooks, set up the biggest BibRave group run to date, and get each of them the Ultimate Swag bag filled with running gear. But instead of just giving them the gear, lets allow them to talk to the brands they got the gear from so they can learn all about their products and all the new things they are coming out with!!
Ok, it might not have gone exactly like that, but that IS how the weekend unfolded!!
Before I go into my experience, I want to mention why BibRave was able to attend this event. The Running Event is a trade show/expo for running speciality retailers and brands to see what products are out there and to showcase their products to other retailers. This is the first year they have allowed non-retailers/brands to enter this expo, and BibRave was the chosen group to start this change, now being called the TRE Influencer Day. We were allowed to enter the expo, discuss products with the Brands there, and document our trip through social media to the runner community which allowed people not attending the opportunity to see what these brands have to offer.
So lets get into it. Here is my recap of this amazing weekend:
The Ultimate Swag Bag
While attending The Running Event (TRE), we were provided with the Ultimate Swag Bag which included products from brands that were in attendance at TRE. Let me start by sharing what I got in this Ultimate Swag Bag:
- Brooks – Ghost 11 Shoes ($120)
- Brooks – Canopy Jacket Nightlife ($160)
- Altra – Escalante 1.5 Shoes ($130)
- CEP – Merino Socks for Recovery ($60), Trail Merino Socks ($60)
- Incrediwear – Active Socks ($13.55), Performance Pants ($69.95)
- Addaday – Type C Massage Roller ($42)
- Nuun Hydration – Water Bottle & 10 Tubes of Nuun Electrolytes, Vitamins, Immunity ($7 per tube)
- Zwift – RunPod ($29.99)
- Arcanum – The Quill ($50), Sarco Breeze ($40), Sarco Freeze ($35)
- Vuori – Kore Short ($68)
- Vooray – Ace Backpack ($39.99)
- Handful Bra and Tights (for the lady Pros, so not present in my picture)
I will be writing a review on all the products I received in this swag bag in future blogs posts later this month!
Welcome Reception/Party, Zwift Run
The welcome reception/party is where the TRE weekend officially began. This was held on Thursday night and was the first time that all 20 BibRave Pros and staff were able to meet up. I had only met a few of these people before in real life, so it was nice to finally make the in person connection with a lot of them.
In addition to this being the location of where we received the Ultimate Swag Bags mentioned above, it was also the place where four of the Pros ran a virtual BibRave group run put on by Zwift. We were able to hear all about Zwift from their representatives that were in attendance, and of course we were there to cheer on the people running the 3 miles on the treadmills! I will be writing a Zwift review in a future blog post about my own experience using the Zwift virtual running environment (a great alternative to outdoor running).
After all the excitement at the welcome reception, we were then invited to attend the Brooks party at Cedar Street Courtyard where Des Linden was in attendance (winner of the 2018 Boston Marathon)!!
This party was great! There was a live cover band playing music, free drinks, and good company (especially all the Pros in orange)!! This place became packed as the night continued, and before I knew it, it was already midnight. Thats when I decided to call it quits and head to bed. I probably would have stayed longer, but we had a group BibRave run planned for 6:30 AM the following morning.
BibRave Group Run
Sleep was short, and 6:30 AM came quick, but by the time I got down to the hotel lobby to meet up with everyone else, I was ready to start our group run around downtown Austin!
We took off on an approximate 3 mile run around downtown Austin. We left from the Hilton Austin by the convention center and made our way down to trails by the Colorado River, then over to the Texas State Capitol building. We lucked out that BibRave was able to get a photographer to follow us around on a scooter to take pictures of our group while we were out running (photographer: Larry Castillo Photography)
The Running Event Expo
After the BibRave group run we quickly got cleaned up and made our way over to the convention center for The Running Event expo. Here is where we split up into two smaller groups and got to meet with all the brands that provided us with products in our swag bags. Representatives from these brands were able to tell us about their brand, the products we received, and other new gear they were coming out with over the next year!
This took us to mid-day on Friday where we finally had to call it quits on the TRE Influencer Day (mainly because the expo was closing, but also because this was the last planned BibRave event of our trip). I wish this experience, and meet up, never ended. It was so much fun getting to meet so many ‘social media friends’ in real life, along with having the opportunity to meet with different brands and hearing their enthusiasm about their products.
Other note worthy places that I saw while in Austin
Some of the BibRave Pros traveled back home later on that Friday, or at some point during the weekend. I ended up making a weekend out of this trip and my wife and I did a few other noteworthy things while in Texas:
- Voodoo Doughnut (who doesn’t like a good donut)
- Austin Signs (so many cool artistic drawings/signs on the sides of building all around downtown)
- South Congress Ave (all the shops)
- Lade Bird Lake Trail and Congress Avenue Bridge (great scenery and running trails)
- Salt Lick Cellars and BBQ (wine and BBQ, can’t beat that)
I am so so thankful for this opportunity, and hope that BibRave is invited back to The Running Event to build upon year one of the TRE Influencer Day!!