It’s time for Tennis Fixation Favorites! Each month, I list all kinds of things that I got obsessed with or fixated on during the month. In July, I kicked off my Tennis Quick Tips podcast (!), I made blueberry mojitos, and I worried about the collapse of bee colonies. Below is my list of links that preoccupied me this month. If you see something you’re interested in, just click on the title to be whisked over to the website, video, post, etc. So get fixated with me with my Fixation Friday list for July 2013!
The Tennis Quick Tips Podcast – I know you're probably saying, “Enough already with the podcast!” but I am still SO EXCITED that I started up the Tennis Quick Tips podcast this month. I have been an avid podcast-listener for I don't even know how long and, if you're not listening to podcasts already, well, you should be. Tennis Quick Tips episodes are short and sweet, giving you helpful tennis tips that you can IMMEDIATELY put to work on the court to help your game. You can find the podcast in iTunes by clicking here: Tennis Quick Tips iTunes page. Or you can find it in Stitcher by clicking here: Tennis Quick Tips Stitcher page.
The Best Tennis of Your Life: 50 Mental Strategies for Fearless Performance – I've been working my way through this little book this summer and continually find useful info. It is a great collection of short, insightful pieces on building up your mental toughness for tennis. Got a specific problem? Just flip through the index to find topics like these: “Get Out of Your Head on Break Points,” “Establish Your Presence Before Serving” and “Stop Mind Reading” (not a current problem but hopefully it will be in the future).
Open: An Autobiography by Andre Agassi – Okay, Andre. I'm finally doing it. Finally getting around to reading your autobiography. I hope to finish in time for the U.S. Open as I know he'll be involved in that somehow.
Essential Tennis app for iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch – It's no secret that I've long been a fan of Ian Westermann and Essential Tennis. So I am absolutely loving Ian's Essential Tennis app that collects all of his audio podcasts and his free instruction videos into one easy-to-access place. And this app is free (although I personally would pay for it, Ian). I suggest you get this app and start going through all of Ian's fabulous materials ASAP, certainly before league starts in the fall.
Blueberry Mojitos – July is National Blueberry Month and, consequently, what I am drinking and loving right now is Blueberry Mojitos! After a recent two week family vacation in Spain where they are crazy about mojitos, I have been looking to make some good ones here at home. The fact that I have peppermint and spearmint taking over two beds in my backyard garden contributes to my desire to master this drink that is mint-focused. After trying many versions of regular mojitos and then many versions of blueberry mojitos (which sounded healthy?), I came up with an easy and tasty recipe. So here's my artsy Instagram picture and the recipe:
Blueberry Mojitos (makes 2 servings)
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen, fresh is best of course) + 8-10 extra for garnish
4 oz. light rum
8 oz. club soda
1. Make blueberry simple syrup – Combine water and sugar in small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and let cool for about 10 minutes. Put simple syrup in blender and add blueberries. Process until smooth but still slightly chunky. Put blueberry simple syrup into glass jar and place in refrigerator to chill. When syrup is completely chilled, skim and remove blueberry skins floating on top.
2. To make drinks – Place 2 sprigs of mint in each glass. Squeeze the juice of one lime into each glass. Muddle mint and lime with muddler or end of wooden spoon. Add 2 oz. blueberry simple syrup and 2 oz. rum to each glass. Top off with ice, about 4 oz. club soda and 4 to 5 fresh blueberries.
3. Drink up!
Where Have All The Bees Gone? (And What Does It Mean For Our Food?) – Maybe you've heard of “colony collapse disorder.” Maybe you haven't. But if you care about the health of our environment and maintaining a diverse supply of fruits and vegetables, then you should care about the health of honey bees. Because if honey bees continue to die off through colony collapse disorder, we're all going to have a tough time finding our favorite produce. Read this interesting article to find out just what CCD is and how you might actually be able to help the honey bees.
The Demise of Google Reader – A number of you have used Google Reader to visit and read Tennis Fixation through the RSS feed which allowed you to subscribe to the site using a “feed reader” (and if that sentence is too tech-y to make sense to you, don't feel bad and just skip this paragraph). As you probably know, Google Reader went away as of July 1. But there are a number of other great feed reader options that you can use in its place. I myself am now using Feedly which I like because I can follow my favorite blogs on my computer, my iPhone, and my Kindle and my reading progress syncs across all of these devices. Plus I was able to sign up for it through my Gmail account so it basically just transferred my Google Reader feed over to Feedly without much work required by me. Other options I've heard good things about include Newsfire and Blog Lovin’, but I haven't tried these out.
Another possibility is to have Tennis Fixation posts e-mailed to you, which you can do by filling out the subscribe form at the bottom of this post or in the sidebar. This lets you subscribe to Tennis Fixation's weekly updates so you'll get just one e-mail a week with all of the latest TF posts. And, bonus!, you'll also get a free copy of my e-book, 10 “Quick Fixes” To Improve Your Serve: No Lessons Required, which is packed with my favorite and most helpful tennis serve tips.
Anyway, I just wanted to make sure you were aware and give you a few choices for staying up with Tennis Fixation and your other favorite blogs.