Favs

This is just a list of my favorite things for running, cooking, blogging, and inspiration.  Because many of the links are affiliate links, I’ve chosen to list only the products I personally use and recommend.

Running Stuff

vibram fivefingers kso

Vibram FiveFingers

Weird-looking, but one of the most popular ways to simulate barefoot running while maintaining some minimal level of protection for your feet. Mine are the KSO’s (short for “Keep Stuff Out”).

nathan hydration system1

Nathan hydration system

A higher-capacity, more comfortable alternative to Fuel Belts. Holds up to 80 ounces of fluid, with lots of room to store food for long runs.

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Princeton Tec Fuel Headlamp

Lightweight and bright, with three LED’s to light up even the darkest trails. Can’t beat it for the price.

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Recovery Socks

I wear these for a few hours after every hard long run or race. The difference that night and the next day is remarkable.

compression sleeves

Recovery Sock armwarmers

Not sure about the compression effect, but I like these for keeping warm at the beginning of a run on a cold day. Once I warm up, they’re small enough that I can tuck them away somewhere after I take them off.

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GoFit Foam Roller

Traditional training creates rigid, brittle muscles. Foam rolling softens them to help you avoid injury and perform better. It hurts a lot at first, but starts to feel like a massage after only a few sessions.

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GoFit Pro Gym-in-a-Bag

Most of the exercises in Core Performance Endurance can be done with this “gym,” whose cables attach to a door frame. I’d recommend it as part of that program or for exercising while you travel.

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Brooks Defyance road shoes

I’m currently on my fourth pair of Brooks Defyance shoes, having worn them in my last three marathons. They’re neutral shoes, and interestingly, I stopped having shin problems when I switched from stability shoes to these. Everyone’s feet are different, of course.

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Nuun electrolyte tablets

I’ve been trying recently to get away from consuming sugar on long runs, but sports drinks contain important electrolytes in addition to the sugar. Nuun tablets dissolve in water to provide electrolytes without adding any sugar.

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Vega Sport

For track workouts and tempo runs where I believe sugar is beneficial, I drink Vega Sport. It’s made from natural, healthy ingredients, is vegan, and contains yerba mate for a caffeine boost.

Books and Inspiration

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Thrive

by Brendan Brazier. Written by a vegan professional Ironman triathlete, Thrive describes a diet for athletes based on efficient, high energy, often raw, whole foods. That it’s vegan is merely a consequence of choosing the healthiest foods, not a constraint.

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Run Less, Run Faster

by Bill Pierce, Scott Murr, and Ray Moss. The program I followed while training (successfully) to qualify for the Boston Marathon. It contains specific training programs for all the Boston qualifying times.

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Core Performance Endurance

by Mark Verstegen and Pete Williams. This program changed the way I look at training, with a focus on strengthening core and stabilizer muscles to prevent injuries.

daniels running formula

Daniels’ Running Formula

by Jack Daniels. This one was the first serious training program I did; I liked it when I was a fairly new runner because it’s very scientific and specifies exact paces and durations for workouts. Also a good read for its wealth of information about running physiology.

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Born to Run

by Christopher McDougall. The most inspiring running book I’ve ever read. I credit Born to Run with turning me into a real runner. Ultramarathons and barefoot running don’t sound like riveting reading, but somehow they are.

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Chris Carmichael’s Food for Fitness

Lance Armstrong’s trainer’s book about nutrition for endurance athletes. Includes a nice introduction to the concept of periodization.

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1,000 Vegan Recipes

by Robin Robertson. My first vegan cookbook. Full of fast, substantial recipes that don’t depend on soy. Lots of beans, grains, nuts, pasta, soups, and salads.

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Vegetarian Suppers

by Deborah Madison. Lots of fancy, delicious vegetarian food. Many of the meals are time-consuming to prepare, but they’re always worth it.

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In Defense of Food

by Michael Pollan. Simplest diet advice ever: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” Not about vegetarianism, but about whole, real food. Has some great rules of thumb, like the five-ingredient rule, the eat-only-what-you-can-pronounce rule, and the don’t-eat-anything-your-grandmother-wouldn’t-recognize-as-food rule.

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Talent is Overrated

by Geoff Colvin. A book about what it takes to be truly great at something. The answer? Not giftedness or luck; simply lots of quality practice time. Once you accept this as true, you realize there’s not much you can’t achieve if you work hard enough.

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Awaken the Giant Within

by Anthony Robbins. His second book, and his best, in my opinion. This is my go-to when I’m in need of inspiration or a “mental diet.” Read it and do every exercise and you’ll be in the best mental shape of your life.

awaken the giant within audio

Awaken the Giant Within (Audio)

by Anthony Robbins. As inspiring as Tony Robbins’ books are, his real power is as a speaker. This is a much-abridged audio program, but it’s a perfect introduction to his teachings, complete with a goal-setting workshop. If you like it, get the book to go into much deeper detail.

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Personal Power II

Tony Robbins’ signature audio program. Thirty days of audio sessions and exercises. A life-changer, in my opinion and that of countless others.

rpm planning kit

RPM Planner

A planning system focused not on individual to-do items, but on the bigger picture. To-do’s are grouped into categories you define and describe (“supporting my family, nourishing my body, etc.”), which are connected to your longer-term goals. The focus is on the reasons you have for your individual actions, not the actions themselves, so that you are pulled in the direction of your goals.

Cooking Stuff

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Breville Juice Fountain

I don’t know much about juicers, but we’ve been happy with this one. Leaves behind only very dry pulp (which we compost), and it’s easy to clean. A terrific way to add more raw fruits, veggies and greens to an already healthy diet.

cuisinart food processor

Cuisinart Food Processor

You don’t know how much you need a food processor until you get one. We use ours for pestos, sauces, chopping vegetables for soups, grating cheese and nuts, raw veggie burgers, making “dough” from chickpeas and lentils, and so many recipes from Thrive, like raw energy gel. This processor isn’t cheap, but it’s very powerful and has a large capacity.

Blogging Stuff

wp seo secrets

WordPress SEO Secrets

by Michael Martine. I credit search engine visibility with much of the success this blog has had in its first 10 months. And this e-book is the reason for that visibility, which now results in over 500 Google search visits each day. Get this book, implement what it teaches you, and start getting effortless, automatic traffic to your blog. No coding required!

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31 Days to Build a Better Blog

by Darren Rowse. A month-long blog-improvement workshop in an e-book. A lesson and an assigment each day, some of which have resulted in my most successful posts on this blog. Great to revisit for ideas when I’m stuck for a post idea.

bluehost logo

Bluehost Hosting

The site where I host this blog and my other, ever since leaving my old host due to frequent downtime. Support has been terrific in the few instances I’ve needed it, and downtime is a nonissue. The best part: one-click WordPress installs and upgrades, so no fiddling with FTP. Plus lots of signup bonuses.

Headway

Headway Theme

A drag-and-drop visual editor makes this theme the most flexible and easy-to-use WordPress theme I’ve tried. Perfect for HTML-illiterates like myself. Built-in search engine optimization, connectivity with social networking, and a million features I have yet to explore.