Monday madness and a workout for your brain

Well, it’s been kind of a whirlwind weekend! First, a couple of announcements:

First, I was super hyped to get my monthly Audible credit on Saturday, so my current soundtrack for any non-zombie-infested workout is now Turn Coat by Jim Butcher (book #11 of the Dresden Files).

If you want to hop on the Audible bandwagon, go ahead and click the link over thataway in the sidebar (at the top, under the search box) to get half off a regular subscription for 3 months. That’s a great deal, especially since the audiobooks are around $30 each, normal price. That’s three audiobooks for less than the price of one! And even when your subscription goes up to the normal rate of $14.95/month, you’re still saving money on each book!

And now for the madness part…I’m still trying to figure out what type of thing to do with this, so for now, let’s go for some mental fitness. If getting the body in shape is good, getting the brain in shape is even better. So here’s my new favorite way to whip that gray matter into shape:

A Google A Day: You get a puzzle every day and have to use Google to help you figure out the answer. You’d think it would be easy, especially with a search engine to help, but half of the challenge is figuring out which questions to ask!


Friday Roundup: Eating cheese and lighting water – for science!

Well, good morning, campers! It’s Friday, so here’s some things I found lying around the web. They’re all at least tangentially related to health or fitness!

Working Out:

3 Moves to Make You a Better Runner – A lot of workouts/stretches for runners focus on the muscles being worked when you run, but this one gives you some workout tips for overall alignment and balance. Plus? Toe yoga!

The Angry Birds Workout Plan – I’m sorry, do I even need an explanation for this? Angry. Birds. Workout. Plan.

Anywhere Workout – Get rid of the excuses about not being able to go to the gym or not being able to afford workout equipment. This is a great circuit you can do at home with no equipment at all.

Eating Right:

20 Superfoods for Weight Loss – Deprivation diets don’t work; I can tell you that from experience. Here’s a list of foods compiled by Self magazine that you can eat shamelessly, including some oldies but goodies (apples, blueberries) and some surprising picks (parmesan cheese)!

Donutmania! – Hungry Girl’s low-fat solutions and recipes if you really want some donuty goodness.

How to Cook: Salmon and Asparagus – The nerds over at Nerd Fitness put this easy-to-follow recipe together for honey-soy salmon and asparagus. Yum!

Random Roundup:

Pi cake pan – Yes, technically this is a cake pan. But you can make all kinds of healthy desserts in a cake pan! Plus? Anything round with pi on it gets my vote. What can I say? When you have a math teacher for a father, these are the kinds of things that find you.

Water bottle ice cube tray – Make ice cubes perfectly sized for your water bottle! Is there anything ThinkGeek can’t do? Don’t answer that.

Solar-powered water bottle cap – Turn your water bottle into a solar-powered lantern! Recycling and geekily cool!

Listen? To a book? (Wednesday Wackiness)

So it’s Wednesday! Time for something a little different to switch it up in the middle of the week.

One of my passions is reading. I learned to read when I was about 2 and have been devouring the printed word ever since. Growing up, I read what my parents had on the shelves, which was mostly classic science fiction (Asimov, Heinlein, some Harry Harrison). And now, I have books on shelves and piled in corners and stacked in boxes under the kitchen table…still mostly science fiction and fantasy, but I try to branch out every once in a while.

For the longest time, I was a book purist. I turned up my nose at audio books and ebooks because they weren’t “real books”. And then, a few years ago, I discovered the joy of going on vacation with about 30 books downloaded to my (at the time, very fancy) Palm cellphone. Now, I have a Kindle and absolutely love it.

But the biggest change for me was discovering the Audible app for my phone. Now, I can download an audiobook and have it read to me when I do my walks. I can read while walking and not be afraid of bumping into things! Plus, I get to hear things like Wil Wheaton reading John Scalzi’s latest book, Redshirts: A Novel With Three Codas. Sidenote: the book is fabulous, and there’s even a theme song by Jonathan Coulton:


One of my favorite ongoing series is Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files. (Quick summary: Harry Dresden lives in Chicago as an openly practicing professional wizard. And private investigator. Hijinks ensue.) And then I found out that James Marsters (Spike! From Buffy!) narrates the audiobooks.


True story.

Long story short (too late!), I am now an enthusiastic ebook/audiobook convert. And if you haven’t tried either, go ahead! Give it a whirl! There’s a Kindle app for iPhones/Android phones as well as the Audible app.