And We’re Off! With An Espresso Boost, Of Course

The racing season is underway. One trail race, one asphalt race, and one swim meet are in the books. Coming up: another trail race and two asphalt races, and four swim meets in five months’ time. I am packing it in with doses of the athlete’s little helper: espresso and cappuccino.

The Husband and I hit 30 years of marriage this year. I have no idea how we got here without murder, mayhem, or madness as part of the equation. We don’t have kids, so that may have helped. We do have a lot of kindness and respect for one another. We say “please,” “thank you” and “I like your idea” a lot. We’ve worked hard and built a good life, and decided to splurge this year. Not on a fancy vacation, but an espresso machine. It makes some impressive hissing and grinding noises. And the liquid happiness from it is quite good.

I still seem to be one of those people for whom the caffeine-free lifestyle is not yet a necessity, thanks to being very active. And a moderate intake of coffee may be beneficial to your health. I know it is beneficial to my sanity since I am still working 40 hours a week. And it’s comforting to get up and wander into the next room to the coffee bar (an old sideboard that was my mother’s), outfitted with cups, water, fresh beans, and all the paraphernalia, including a framed coffee bean bag hanging above the machine. I can have a shot anytime, and leftovers go into chocolate protein shakes or poured over frozen yogurt.

At many races, I marveled at my fellow competitors chugging 16-ounce gas station coffee right before a race and wondered how they could do it without an immediate port-a-potty stop half-mile into the race, or risk pee-sodden shorts, socks, and shoes if they didn’t stop. An espresso shot makes sense: quick-starts the senses and the heart without overloading the bladder. I have not tried the shot-before-the-shotgun-start yet, but I will let you know.

In the meantime, the year is off and (literally) running. Oh, and six months and one week to retirement!

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