The Run for the Toad is happening this weekend and I love that race. Too bad I’m not entered. Or, possibly it’s a good thing since this may be the last week of fresh-from-the-vine tomatoes and I’m gorging on bruschetta. There aren’t many taste experiences I enjoy more than this fall feast. Bruschetta involves slicing and toasting my favorite bread, soaking the top in a layer of extra virgin olive oil laden with garlic, adding chopped fresh tomato and cheese.

Did you know that the phytochemical, lycopene, in tomatoes is better absorbed by the body after the tomatoes have been cooked? So, the good news about bruschetta is that it is high in absorbable lycopene – a proven antioxidant that hoovers up destructive free radicals in our body. Apparently lycopene is also fat soluble. Bonus! All that olive oil has a higher purpose! It actually improves the bioavailability of the lycopene. That oil covering the bread facilitates the absorption of the lycopene in the cooked tomato into our body.

In any case, what I really wanted to say to all you Toad walkers out there is this: this is one of the best races I have ever walked. The course is beautiful, the organizers are outstanding in their efforts to provide all participants with a superior race experience, and there is excellent food at the finish! Still, it’s a tough race, so be sure to eat well and rest this week in anticipation of the difficult terrain, long distance, and steep hills.