Thursday, August 28, 2014

TTT: Giant Soap Bubble Recipe, Stuffed Squash, TNF Endurance Challenge Race Discount Code

Giant Soap Bubble Recipe

With the heat and storms upon us, it's been a perfect time to play with soap bubbles in between the rain. Since we love doing things for ourselves, we did some research and concocted a recipe from many others to create giant soap bubbles:
6 C water
1/2 C corn starch

1/2 C dish detergent
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 Tbsp Glycerine

Dissolve the cornstarch in the water, then stir in the rest of ingredients. Stir slowly in order to minimize extra aeration. Let it sit for a while, stirring occasionally to keep all of the cornstarch settling to the bottom.
Initially, the mixture didn't work out too well, but we stuck with it and, with time, got some decent bubbles to form. This is also a great project if you need softer skin - this mixture left ours feeling like velvet. (For the older folks: "You're soaking in it!) Simple to do, basic ingredients (except the Glycerine, though that's available in most pharmacies), and a lot of fun -- definitely worthwhile.

Stuffed Squash

Saturday mornings, when it works out, I love to head over to the Farmers' Market and see what's unusual and looks good. This past weekend, it was these cute round squash that caught my eye - I immediately thought of stuffing them. So that's what we did - grassfed ground beef, cheese, and breadcrumbs, roasted for nearly an hour. The filling turned out great, though the squash didn't have much flavor. Oh well, they still looked great.

The North Face Endurance Challenge Wisconsin is less than 3 weeks away. Campsite reserved, check. RV reserved, check (YES!). Kids registered for the 5K, almost (my bad). Remember, if you are planning on running the Wisconsin race and have not yet registered, use code D30KPWI (all caps) to get 15% off any of the race distances!

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

How Not to Run a Marathon [Infographic]

Even though I've decided not to run The North Face Endurance Challenge Wisconsin marathon in a few weeks, it's still good to keep marathon tips in mind, just in case I sign up for another one. Who knows? It could happen!

Spread the word on how to not run a marathon.

Proform - How not to run a marathon infographic

I'm not running the TNFECSWI marathon, but I am going to run the 5K with my kids - join me! Remember, if you are planning on running the Wisconsin race and have not yet registered, use code D30KPWI (all caps) to get 15% off any of the race distances!

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Reebok Nano 4.0 CrossFit Shoe

The following post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of Reebok.

Reebok Nano 4.0 CrossFit Shoe

The right gear for the right situation. One of the reasons so many people turn to Reebok for CrossFit gear is that the company has made a huge investment in the sport, both financial and in terms of moving the sport forward. An unscientific study would probably show that the majority of CrossFitters in any given box are wearing Nanos, one of the 3 earlier generations or now, the Nano 4.0. And, given the wide range of foot shapes and sizes, they'll all have an opinion on which model is the absolute must-have. So, what has Reebok done to move the design of this shoe forward?
  • More breathable: Reebok changed the mesh under the cage to allow for better air flow during workouts.
  • Lighter: Reebok re-engineered the DuraCage and changed the mesh this shoe lighter.
  • More flexible: Reebok re-engineered the DuraCage to allow more flexibility in the forefoot and toe.
Here's what I thought about the Nano 4.0:

Reebok has gone in a totally new direction with the Nano 4.0 was the new design, and these are really dynamite looking shoes. There is a wide range of colours with the option to customize a pair for yourself. I received the version with the Porcelain/Black/White/Excellent Red colorway and, while decent looking, does bring to mind nurses' shoes, so maybe not the most exciting version to go with.
The Nano 4.0s are roomy, but stick to the foot comfortably - I wore them with and without socks without problems. I've read some reports of people getting blisters with this version, but an equal amount of reviewers no such problems. One change from the 3.0s that is uniformly applauded (besides the cool design) are a change to flat shoe laces - I'm not a fan of round shoe laces, as they do not seem to work as well as the flat, so this is a plus in my book. The soles gave good grip, with no slips that I could ascertain on carpet, turf. cement, and mats. During all the WODs I used the 4.0s for, the laces, fit, and function performed admirably, no problems for me at all.
As I mentioned, I found the 4.0s quite roomy, though a lot of people report them being for narrower feet. When I initially put them on, I thought about sizing a half size down (from 13s to 12.5s), but apart from the fact that Reebok doesn't make a 12.5, I actually came to appreciate the wider toe box. As far as I can tell, these run true to size, with perhaps a bit of extra toe room. Not sure where the other folks are getting their narrow fit from, unless it's a direct comparison to the 3.0s.
Longer term testers also applauded the durability of the shoes, especially as relates to rope climbing. Reebok credits the DuraCage technology and RopePro protection, giving bite and support for rope climbs. i haven't climbed any ropes, though wearing the Nano 4.0s both inside and outside for training over the last several weeks has not resulted in any obvious wear as of yet.

Video: CrossFit Nano 4.0 with Rich Froning

The right gear for the right situation. The Nano 4.0 is perfectly suited for its design - CrossFit WODs. Wear these with confidence that they'll support you in your training.

These shoes were sent for review purposes - all opinions are my own.

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Spartan Cruise Sweepstakes

Spartan Cruise Sweepstakes

What could be better than participating in your local Spartan Race? How about one on a tropical island? Sand, surf and obstacles await you on this one of a kind Spartan adventure. Join fellow Spartans March 6-9, 2015 when you'll be taken on a cruise liner from the Port of Miami to Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas for a first of it's kind Spartan Sprint! Can you say, "Best. Vacation. EVER!?" For free? Maybe.

Enter the Reebok Spartan Race Spartan Cruise Sweepstakes! No purchase necessary. Open to US residents only. Winner will receive a trip for two including airfare, a 3 day Spartan Cruise, and an entry into the ultimate tropical island Spartan Race! Enter at

Spartan Race World Championship

Also don't forget to watch the Spartan Race World Championship from Killington, VT on NBC, Sunday, November 16th 3:00 PM ET.

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