Friday, July 26, 2013

Five for Friday {July 26th}

1.  I've signed up for my first Sprint Triathlon!  I wanted to do one that was nearby and smaller so I decided on the Naperville Sprint Triathlon.  I am really excited (and a little nervous) about the race.   I've done a couple of brick workouts which have gone pretty well so I feel much better about the race than I did before.  Cycling is definitely my weakest sport, and the one I've worked on the least, so I know that part will be a challenge for me.  Otherwise I think I'm ready - the race is next weekend!
2. My work schedule includes some late nights and sometimes early mornings to follow and I have been looking for a natural caffeine boost for those mornings I feel especially tired.  I don't drink soda anymore and do not like coffee so I've been on the search for some kind of boost.  Jillian Michaels mentioned EBOOST on her podcast and I finally got to try it about a month ago when I went home for a short visit since my mom had some I could try.  EBOOST is full of vitamins, minerals, and super nutrients that gives you a natural energy boost.  They come in energy shots or powders you can mix into your water.  There are three flavors, but the Pink Lemonade powder is my favorite, followed by the Orange  (I didn't like the Pomegranate one at all.)   I have been drinking it before my early long runs on the weekend and sometimes in the afternoon for a pick me up.  I notice a definite boost in my energy levels.  I love that it is only 10 calories and all natural with no funky chemical junk in it.  

3.  Since it's summer and regular TV is on hiatus I usually spend end up binge watching shows I missed or some old favorites.  This summer has been no exception.  I'm sure I've mentioned that I'm a huge Buffy the Vampire Slayer fan and had the urge to watch the series again so I pulled out my DVDs and did just that.  I've only ever seen a few episodes of the Buffy spin off Angel and when I discovered it was on Amazon Prime I decided to watch that too.  I'm currently in the middle of that now.  Next is the second half of the past season of Mad Men and then probably season three of Downton Abbey.  I fully admit to being a TV junkie. 

4.  Disclosure: About a month ago I was contacted by Mark Bar asking if I wanted to sample and review their product.  I was given one of each of the four bars they make to try.  As always, all opinions are my own.
Mark Bars are a pre-workout, post-workout, or just everyday snack made with 100% natural ingredients   They are made with real food like quinoa, gluten-free oats, blueberries, peanut butter, almonds, dates, and honey.   They are a Chicago based company and were created by Mark Beier an account turned personal trainer.  Before the email I had seen them at the Goddess and the Grocer (a local deli) and was very excited to try them out.  The simple ingredients and yummy flavors caught my attention.  The four flavors are Blueberry Almond, Chocolate Cherry Almond, Peanut Butter Chocolate, and Honey Almond.  I truly liked all the bars, but my favorite was the Chocolate Cherry Almond.  The bars are flavorful and had the perfect chewy bar texture.  They reminded me of homemade granola bars.  I had them as my prerun fuel and thought they were great!  They are in a few stores in the Midwest, but you can also order them online if you want to try them.  This month you can get 10% off the Blueberry Bar with the code BBMONTH.  

5.  Two Sundays ago the #runChi Fleet Feet team got together to man the Hydration Stations along the Lakefront Path in Chicago.  Besides having 20 beautiful miles of path along Lake Michigan we also have the wonderful people at Fleet Feet Chicago to provide Gatorade and Water at three different parts of the trail during the summer months for everyone out there walking, running, roller blading, or biking.  The stations open up around 6am so it was an early start to my Sunday.  It was still dark when I rode my bike over to North Avenue Beach at 5:30am.  I did get to see the sunrise over the lake which was pretty (and lots of drunk people heading home from their night out).  
via fellow #runChi teammate Joanna
We had about four or five people manning each station.  Fleet Feet supplies everything we just had to set things up with help from one of their team.  We were out there until about 9:30am.  I loved volunteering and chatting with runners about what they were training for and wishing them luck on upcoming races.  It was also fun to talk with some of my fellow #runChi teammates.  I know I take advantage of those aid stations on my long runs, so it was nice to volunteer some of my time for others doing the same thing.

If you are local and interested in volunteering at one of the Hydration Stations shoot an email over to Fleet Feet at ffinfo @ fleetfeetchicago (dot) com.  The stations are every Saturday and Sunday through October 6th so there is still time to volunteer!

Any tips for my first sprint triathlon?  Do you have a favorite TV show you could watch over and over?  Do you prefer to binge watch a series or wait for episodes week by week?  What is one of your favorite pre workout snacks or drinks?