I thought about filing this mishmash of a list under a “motivation Monday” post. But this isn’t necessarily stuff that motivates me; just stuff I’m digging like a ditch at this moment in time. They’re mostly runner/swimmer/athlete-themed—some more loosely than others (endurance athletes need carbs, and therefore need bread recipes, right? And … everyone likes flowers?).
Farmers market flowers. These cost me all of eight bucks. The bright colors and the whimsical fake-pumpkin-fruits make me grin like an idiot every time I look at them. SwimSpray. When high-school swimming was through, I remember feeling totally elated that I would no longer smell like a bottle of bleach all the time. And when I started swimming again a couple years ago, I greeted that smell—which hangs on the skin for days, no matter what you do in the shower—with dismay. So when I got a bottle of SwimSpray for free at the Great Chesapeake Bay Swim, I was eager to try it, though admittedly skeptical. Here’s the deal: It totally works. You just spray it on your skin, and then shower, and then you don’t smell like chlorine. Amazing! It’s just water and ascorbic acid (vitamin C), and was created by a local guy. What’s not to love?
Smitten Kitchen’s “Wheat Bread Without a Timetable.“ I accidentally tested the “without a timetable” part of this when the electricity went out in my apartment just before I was going to bake this, leading to a loooong second rise. As promised, it didn’t matter, and the bread turned out fantastic. This is now on my constant rotation of favorite recipes, and would be a great first yeast-bread recipe for yeast-o-phobes. The Hot Chocolate 15K. I just signed up for this awesome-sounding race in December, despite a steep entry fee. Why? Because I want the free chocolate and the cool jacket (read: Because I’m a sucker). My plan is to train to finish, since a 15K seems like a looong way right now. That means this would essentially be a catered long run with a really tasty reward at the end. Sweet, right?
Crunchy Joe. A friend training for the Marine Corps Marathon suggested an album by GOLDFISH for its great running vibes. I listened to this particular song no fewer than six times on a hilly run last weekend. Go download it right now. Seriously. Now.
In other news: Tom McCann of the Nature Conservancy tells me the organization has extended its partnership with Pacers beyond the Earth Day 5K. Runners who raise money for the nonprofit through races over the next several months will earn a bib for the GW Parkway Classic 10 miler on April 22. Seems like a nice opportunity, if you’re looking for a charity to dedicate your runs to.