Is it summer yet?

With the 70+ degree weather finally making its way to Northeastern Ohio, all I want to do is be outside. One of the best/worst things about having a new classroom with windows is having windows. Summer, you beckoning siren, you! But as I count down the days to my summer break, I’m also gearing up for a fun race season. I have several races lined up, including s couple of “destination” events that I am very much looking forward to. Here’s the lineup thus far:

I’m looking to add another sprint triathlon and 5K in July, and possibly (BIG maybe) a half marathon in October. Needless to say, this is “the Race Season of Fun,” so I’m not going to stretch myself too thin. I may just spend July playing around in the lake, working on my swimming. I also plan on doing more kayaking, and I would love to try SUP (stand up paddle boarding).

photo 1-28

Fun in the sun!

Speaking of swimming, I’m going to make an attempt at an OWS later this afternoon with my swim sisters Karen and Carolyn. I can’t wait to bust out my new long-sleeved wetsuit, but I am now regretting not buying the neoprene cap. As of 9:00 this morning, Lake Erie was coming in at a balmy 62 degrees. Eek! Still, we want to take advantage of this lovely, long holiday weekend, which is shaping up to be fantastic for training. Yesterday I was able to get in four road miles with a sprinkling of trails at Sandy Ridge. (I also managed to score a little bit of color on my winter translucent arms). Tomorrow I plan on hitting the bridle trails in Rocky River and hopefully bricking that workout with a short bike ride through the Metroparks. Yes, summer is truly almost here!

[Insert clever segue here. Lame, I know.]

As I mentioned in the last blog, I’m obsessed with my new-ish (it’s a refurb) Vitamix. I’ve been throwing all kinds of ingredients into it and I would say I’m at a 90% success rate. Here are my top three smoothie recipes in heavy rotation right now. Those ghostly images on the glasses below are Ralph Waldo Emerson and Nathaniel Hawthorne, respectively. #RomanticLiteratureAwesomeness

photo 1-25PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME!
Quarter cup milk (I use almond)
1 healthy tbsp peanut butter
1/2 banana
1/4 cup strawberries
1/4 cup blueberries
1 tbsp chia seeds
5 ice cubes

photo 3-16BLUEBERRY OATMEAL SMOOTHIE
1/2 cup quick oats
3/4 banana
Handful of blue berries
3/4 cup almond milk
1 healthy tbsp peanut butter
Sprinkle of cinnamon
5 ice cubes

TROPICAL THUNDER (sadly, no pic of this one)
3/4 cup pineapple juice (one mini can)
1 banana
1 cup frozen mango
3/4 cup frozen pineapple
3-4 ice cubes
sprinkle in chia or flax

I know the Vitamix can make more than just smoothies, and I plan on using some of my summer down time to explore oodles of recipes. The tastiest thing we’ve made so far, however, has to be the peanut butter. All you need to do is take a can of honey roasted peanuts, dump them in, and blend to perfection. It may not be the healthiest peanut butter in the world, but it sure is the tastiest. My favorite thing to do is to eat it right out of the container while it’s still warm. Yum!

If you have a favorite Vitamix/blender recipe that you’d like to share, please send it to me via comment. Stay happy and healthy!

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