Puffin Picks 9.21

My picks run the gamut this week.

On one end is an utterly practical way to prevent sunburn. On the other, an abstract, self-help concept.

Oh yeah, and cake.

Read prior Puffin Picks posts.

Note: Some of these links are Amazon affiliate links where I may be compensated if you purchase items or click on the links. Read my full affiliate policy. I only link to items I have, use, or want and would recommend regardless of potential reward.

My personal affiliate link guideline: Would I recommend this to my mom?

Puffin Picks

Neck Protection

My poor neck takes a lot of abuse on the run.

No matter how often I re-apply sunscreen (and that is a lot), it’s the back of my neck that burns.

I knew the Drag-n-Fly half marathon last weekend would require neck protection. Even though it was cooler this year, it’s still mostly fully exposed to the sun. The cooler temps wouldn’t save me from sunburn.

I have a neck covering that attaches to any hat. It’s super lightweight and easily stuffed in my pack. I got it at Duluth Trading Company a few years ago and I love it, but as far as I can tell, they no longer make it (or at least it’s no longer available on their website).

Columbia Sportswear has a hat with a neck flap for sun protection made of a similar material, but where the neck flap is attached to the hat. My mom has this hat to protect her neck on her walks.

Asking For Help

OK, this is where I’m going to get a little touchy-feely for a second.

The other day, I was fighting a technical issue on the new website I am creating for my coaching business. It just wasn’t working the way it’s supposed to.

I was pretty sure I knew the cause of the problem, so I thought I should be able to fix it too. But I am not technically minded. I looked up every guide, every how-to, tried every solution, and nothing worked. Error messages just kept popping up.

I spent hours on it, totally derailing my to-do list for the day.

Even though I knew I should be able to fix it myself, eventually, I caved in and called (or more specifically used the text chat) for my hosting company, SiteGround .

I explained the issue and he came back 18 seconds later and said it was fixed. And it was – it worked.

After all of my frustration and time wasted, it took a professional, who actually knew what he was doing, 18 seconds to fix the problem (the text chat is time stamped so I know it’s not an exaggeration – 18 seconds).

It’s a good reminder – just ask for help.

Whatever task I have that I don’t want to do, that I dread, that I’m not good at or don’t know much about, there is someone who loves it or at least knows more about it than I do.

They are willing to help, but you have to ask.

Lesson learned (again).

And if you are looking to start a website, use SiteGround. They have the best support people (seriously, 18 seconds).

Web Hosting

3-2-1 Cake

It’s no secret. I love cake and cupcakes. But I also know having cake in the house can be dangerous. No matter how much I tell myself I’ll only have a slice a day, I’ll end up eating the whole thing.

I’ve come across a few single serve mug cakes in cookbooks and on Pinterest, but so many of them seem complicated or use a lot of ingredients. I don’t want to break out 15 ingredients for a single serving of cake.

I read about 3-2-1 Cake and thought it can’t possibly work, it’s too simple. But it works, and it’s great. Here’s what you do:

Preparation:

  • 1 box angel food cake mix
  • 1 box cake mix, any flavor

Mix together and store in a bag or Tupperware container.

For cake:

Mix in a microwave-safe mug:

  • 3T of the cake mixture
  • 2T of water

Microwave

  • 1 minute

(3,2,1 – get it?)

Instant cake! Top with frozen berries, whipped cream or a splash of Kahlua (or all 3, I won’t judge) or anything else you have around.

And I can’t eat too much at once since only a few of my mugs are microwave friendly and large enough for the cake (it puffs up a little when cooking). At a certain point, I can’t have more cake until I do the dishes. It’s a convenient way to keep my cravings in check.

Foam Rolling

I know I’ve covered foam rolling a lot, but I was reminded again last weekend how good it can feel.

Last Saturday and Sunday, I had back to back half marathons, with a long volunteering stint (on my feet) in the middle with an animal rescue agency I work with.

Saturday night, I spent some quality time with the foam roller, really focusing on my butt and quads.

It felt soooooo good.

Also spent time with my little MobiPoint, rolling out my feet.

I often just keep this little guy under my desk and roll out my feet as I sit and write.

Sara is a runner, running coach, writer, blogger, and a lover of all things written.

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