Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Cheribundi Review & Giveaway + Sandy Fundraiser

I am SO excited to announce my first giveaway and fundraiser! Read on for a review of cheribundi's delicious tart cherry juices and a chance to win a 12-pack -- and to help victims of Hurricane Sandy!
After my half-marathon, my quads were very sore. Two loops of the Central Park road and its many, many hills left them destroyed. I tweeted at cheribundi, asking where I could find their cherry juice, and they were very helpful, telling me exactly where in my local Whole Foods I could find their products. I snagged one, loved it, and thanked them for their help.

The reason I was looking for tart cherry juice was that, according to health studies, tart cherry juice is "an excellent and natural way to help minimize muscle soreness." (source) For particularly strenuous exercise, it should be taken both before and after the event that is likely to cause soreness.

A few days later, cheribundi reached out and asked if I'd like a case of all their flavors to review. Um, free delicious cherry juice? Yes, please! About a week later, it arrived at my apartment. Unfortunately, I was still stuck in Washington State due to Hurricane Sandy, so I couldn't get my hands on the juice until I got back on November 1.

I immediately started trying out the different kinds of juices. I've mentioned before that I don't like to review things that I don't like. If I am offended by a shop's service or find a workout to be dangerous in some way, I would likely mention it, but I'm not going to dedicate a post to putting down a product, gym, or store simply because I didn't like it.

With that said, I was so happy that I honestly liked all of the juices and could happily write a review of cheribundi's products.

Here's what cheribundi has to say about its products:
Our proprietary juicing process, which was developed with Cornell University, bottles all of the good nutrients of tart cherries rather than boil them away. The phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals in cheribundi will keep you feeling great and living life to the fullest. After our cherries are harvested, they're processed gently so that when you drink cheribundi it's like eating the cherries straight off the tree. Our juice is never from concentrate, cheribundi is all-natural and orchard-fresh tasting.

Our Tru Cherry juice packs fifty cherries into a short 8oz bottle. (We know because we counted them.) From there we add just enough water and apple juice to make it palate-perfect. Of course, to create the benefits of Skinny Cherry we decrease the cherries slightly and sweeten with natural Stevia. To get the benefits of Whey Cherry into a bottle, we add whey protein.

Our tart cherries are harvested at the peak of ripeness to capture as much of the bright cherry color as possible. They taste better and have more powerful phytonutrients than other superfruits. That includes the trendy pomegranate, the acai berry, grapes or blueberries. Rich with nutrients, tart cherries can help you recover from exercise, sleep better, and in general, live life to the fullest because you feel better. The Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity rating for cheribundi is higher than other juices - that means our juice has a better ability to absorb and neutralize free radicals.

The Review

This is my favorite of the cheribundi flavors. It's 130 calories of deliciously sweet and sour tart cherry juice. There's a bit of apple juice to cut the sourness of the cherries, but it's purely cherry and apple juice.

I also really liked the Skinny Cherry, although its taste is not quite as intense; it's 65% juice because it uses stevia to naturally sweeten and water to cut the calories to 90.


I love a good ginger kick in my juice, so I also am a big fan of the ginger cherry juice. Again, it's 100% juice -- cherry, apple, and ginger juice. I love the spicy edge that the ginger adds to the normal tang of the cherry juice.

This protein-enhanced juice is a great post-workout drink since it adds protein for muscle building to the muscle recovery benefits of tart cherry juice. The drink is slightly grainy tasting because of the whey protein, but the tastiness of the cherry juice compensates for it.

Confession: I don't love chocolate. Don't get me wrong, I can get down with a great flourless chocolate cake, and I'm never going to turn down a fudgy brownie (I will, in fact, inhale it), but chocolate isn't my favorite flavor ever. So I just didn't love this drink. The cacao adds a nice depth to the juice, but it still has that slightly grainy taste that the whey cherry has without the benefit of 8 grams of protein. If you're a chocolate lover I'd try this one out, but for me it just wasn't my favorite.

I have definitely noticed less muscle soreness since I started drinking these. Call it the placebo effect, but it seems to be working! Plus, they're a great natural dessert because I love the sweet and sour taste as a close to my meal.

The Fundraiser
The recovery from Hurricane Sandy is ongoing. The destruction was horrific and very, very real. I know we tend to think the news media overplays things in order to gain viewership, but having seen candid photos from friends and fellow bloggers, the devastation in many areas was absolutely terrible. If you've read posts from bloggers like Megan or Ashley, natives of Staten Island and New Jersey, respectively, then you know how bad it is. Our fellow citizens need our help.

I've donated to a local organization and the Red Cross, but I would like to give more to support Hurricane Sandy victims. I feel so incredibly lucky that my little New York family escaped Sandy unscathed.

After speaking with Megan and Ashley, I settled on two local organizations to which I'll donate the proceeds of this giveaway. I am going to donate half of the total amount raised to the Stephen Siller Foundation, a local Staten Island organization, and half to the New Jersey Relief Fund.

The Giveaway
Cheribundi has generously offered to give another pack full of their delicious juices to the winner of my giveaway, so you can taste the different types and decide on your favorite as well. Here's how the giveaway will work:

  • (1) You get one entry simply by commenting on this post and answering the question, "do you have a favorite pre- or post-workout snack or drink?"
  • (2) You can get one additional entry if you tweet about this giveaway and comment with your tweet and Twitter handle here.
    • Please tweet: "I just entered a #giveaway to win a 12-pack of @cheribundi from @jensbestlife and helped donate to #SandyRelief"
  • (3) You can help, too!! You'll get extra entries for donating to my fundraising page!
    • 1 additional entry for donating $5
    • 2 entries for donating $10
    • 3 entries for donating $15
    • 4 entries for donating $20
    • 5 entries for donating $25

Here's how you're helping just by leaving a comment and entering the giveaway!

  • I'll match each entry dollar for dollar, up to $50 for the first 50 individual entries. 
  • My parents have been kind enough to agree to match this amount, for a maximum donation of $100 from us. 
  • REMEMBER: you can still enter if there are more than 50 individual entries. I simply won't match your entry with $1.

Please note -- the beneficiary is "me" because I cannot split the funds between two organizations otherwise. Rest assured that I will donate half the funds to both organizations and will post a screen cap of the donation receipt once I make the donations so you know nothing shady is happening.

The winner will be randomly chosen after the giveaway closes on November 14, 2012, giving you a week to enter!

Question: do you have a favorite pre- or post-workout drink or snack?

I was not compensated for this post by Cheribundi. I received only a free pack of their juices to review. All opinions are my own.


  1. Love a big glass of H2O after my workout and to snack on something high in protein like a good protein bar or nut mix/granola! Thanks for this awesome giveaway!!!

  2. Love chocolate milk after a workout and I'm not a milk drinker regularly.

  3. Love to have a big glass of water & a banana after working out.

  4. I just entered a #giveaway to win a 12-pack of @cheribundi from @jensbestlife and helped donate to #SandyRelief

  5. I usually have a granola bar after a workout - and make sure it's one with protein

  6. Tweeted: I just entered a #giveaway to win a 12-pack of @cheribundi from @jensbestlife and helped donate to #SandyRelief - hana_nyc

  7. When they are in season, I eat a ton of cherries after my big workouts. But in general I drink lowfat chocolate milk

  8. I love Harmless harvest coconut water. So delish!

  9. Tweeted: "I just entered a #giveaway to win a 12-pack of @cheribundi from @jensbestlife and helped donate to #SandyRelief"

  10. My favorite post-workout drink is Endurox R4.

  11. I like VitaCoco for post workout

  12. Orange Juice with a scoop of vanilla protein powder for a muscle fuel boost is my go-to drink! Would enjoy trying the Whey Cherry -thanks!

    1. Ray, you've been selected as the winner!! Please send me your contact info so I can put you in touch with Cheribundi!

  13. I enjoy blending up some wholesome fruit smoothies using frozen berries, almond milk and a scoop of protein powder! Would love to try some Cheribundi in one too!

  14. Apples and/or celery sticks with peanut butter is a healthy post-workout snack fuel I enjoy!

  15. I love chocolate milk post long runs and also Cheribundi skinny cherry or original :)

  16. just drink lots of water and maybe a protein bar