Monday, April 30, 2012

April Recap and May Goals

My April
(as per DM)
THIS (April) was the month I finally started to see some progress.   And it can all be attributed to trying harder and taking a different look at things.

By enlisting my coworker in the Kick Ass April challenge - I stayed on track with my strength training...and actually enjoyed it as we laughed through our covert attempts to sneak in a 6 minute workout every morning.  Nothing - and I mean nothing - could have prepared me for the results that started as soon as we took up a Canada Food Guide challenge, though.  The first week and a half - I lost 6lbs.  My weight had gone down shortly after the start of the month but had buoyed back up to the boring old 171 it had been when April began.  Today, I stand 164.5!   And all I have been doing is following the Canada Food Guide.   I've also noticed such benefits as my tastebuds changing rather quickly and not being able to handle anything too sweet or salty anymore.  I like it.

Total losses in April: 6.5lbs, 3% body fat, 3.5 inches
KMs run:  100

here's my April calendar:

So, April - despite it being an "off" month for my running - as I was sidelined with my injury - is ending on a real high note.   My running is coming back strong - especially after pulling off two great races last weekend.   I am one week from Vancouver and feeling confident that I will finish strong and, likely, with a new PB under my belt.

A recap on Aprils Goals
  • Follow Kick Ass April - Totally rocked this (and I credit it for my pants starting to fall off of me a couple of weeks ago)
  • Follow a month long menu plan - nope.  Only lasted a couple of weeks before this started to choke our family. Definitely see the value in making a weekly one, though.  Especially since my MIL is moving back in with us this weekend.
  • No buying books - bought a cookbook or two but no fiction.  
  • Run spring trio 15k - rocked it!
  • Yoga - did it a couple of times but nothing I could stick with.  I really need to work on this one
  • Writing - ummmmm. I would rather not talk about it.  BUT I did start writing a new book. I can see this one becoming more prominent in June.
  • Reach low 160's - I am going to say I win on this one.  164.5 may be closer to mid 160's but because it is under 165 - I am going to count it as low!

May Goals

After the success with last month's Kick Ass April, my coworker and I decided we want to do arms in May.  Of course, the sisterhood is doing something different so we decided to create our own.  Feel free to follow along on our All About Arms workout :)

We will be doing the pushups on a counter between our cubes and using resistance bands for the other two.  I'm going to get hubby to take some progress pics tonight so I can compare at the end of the month.

Other goals for the month:
  • Rock the Van Marathon half
  • Stick to the Canada Food Guide Challenge
  • Low 150s by the start of June
  • Mothers Day 5k - aim to be sub 30min
  • Calgary Marathon 10k - aim to come in under 60mins
  • Try to fit some yoga in at least once a week
  • Weekly meal planning.
  • Find more time to read 
  • Joggermom Marathon!!!! Run 42.2k in one month.  Since I have a half, a 5k and a 10K on the plan for the month - I think I'll have no problem doing this! :) 
  • Find a moment to transcribe my first year of running over to Daily Mile.  I'd love to see what my ACTUAL running career has been in kms....
My no-book-buying challenge ends this month because I have several books I've been dying to read that are released May 1!  I may reinstate it on May 2 :P

Vancouver Race Day Weather Watch - Monday

So far so good...

I can live with that...though it appears I'll be needing an umbrella when we land...

Run Van Training Recap - Week 14

Sometimes I wonder why I even set weekly workout goals if I am only doomed to fail at them. (more on this later).

This week was fairly uneventful after my race-packed weekend last week.  Monday, I took a much needed rest day - though it was pretty hard.   On Tuesday, I met up with one of the ladies from my K-100 team to get in 6k.  Wednesday - I actually made the effort to get on the bike, but Thursday and Friday I let the weather give me permission to slack off.

Saturday, I met up with JS to get in 6k and some shopping.  Then took Sunday off (unless you count chasing toddlers through walmart to be a workout).

Taper was in full swing.   I ate well, though, dropping 6lbs in a week on the Canada Food Guide challenge!  Holy Hannah!

Now, it is only 4 more sleeps until I fly into Vancouver!  Yay!!!  I'm almost all packed and ready to go!

This was my week:

Monday: Off, KAA
Tuesday: 6k, KAA
Wednesday:45mins bike, KAA
Thursday: KAA
Friday: KAA
Saturday: 6K LSD
Sunday: KAA

and how I did on last week's Ready for Summer Challenge goals:

  • Stick to the Canada Food guide - YES! (though I did get snacky on Sunday and gave myself over to it)
  • min 2 runs + long run -NOPE - only 2 runs total
  • min 2 bike sessions - Nope - just one
  • yoga at least once - Nope, but I did stretch really well after all workouts.
  • Really push myself on all workouts - time to exit the comfort zone - NOPE :( Took it pretty easy - I was super tired after the two races.
  • STOP EATING AFTER 7PM - Surprisingly YES!  I think this was the biggest contributor to my weight loss.
I am, just going to keep going with these goals this week and try to do better.  I won't be pushing myself too hard, though - just aiming to get my body moving because I want to be rested and ready for Vancouver next weekend!

For past weeks on my Run Van journey, check out the links below:
Other Things to Check Out

If you haven't had a chance yet, why don't you head on over to Facebook and check out the Read.Write.Run.Mom. page over there.  Just one more way to follow the blog and join in the discussion! 

Voting is still underway for the top 25 Outdoorsy Mom Blogs of 2012.  If you would like to support me, you can vote here:
(you can vote once per day and do not need to be a Circle of Moms member).  I am currently in 20th place and would love to stay in the top 25!!!

I had a couple of mentions in this month's iRun Magazine.  If you haven't had a chance to check them out yet - they can be found here and here!

Things are still being finalized, but Vancouver Marathon is trying to put together a Q&A Panel with the Official Run Van bloggers for the Expo on Saturday.   I'll post more info once they are available.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Last Long Run before Van

Today was the last long run before Vancouver.   6k feels more like a Tuesday than a long run so this one seemed purely for fun.

JS and I met up at Mount Royal University where the Tech Shop was having their huge annual sale.  Both of us had hopes of finding rain jackets and spare shoes but neither of us had luck on either front.  Ah well.  We made out like and its on the sock front.  Such good deals on running socks.  I even scored some Injinjis (the toe socks) for $1 a pair.  They are too big for me but I only wear them in my fivefingers for strength and biking so they should work great.   I also managed to find Peanut Butter Gu - which I have been hunting halfheartedly for forever.   I will admit that I ate one as a snack earlier out of curiosity and I think it may be the best Gu flavour.  Just don't look at it as you eat it, because it looks like caramel and tastes just like peanut butter...and that's weird.

After the sale, we ditched our stuff in my car and took off to the west of the college and ran up 37th street.  We almost NEVER do a straight residential run so it was odd to stop for stop lights and to have to battle shrubs and uneven cement.  But the change in route was nice and 6k went by really quick as JS told me all about her recent holiday to NYC (that I am very envious of).  

Less than a km from the university, we stopped at Starbucks.   My tastebuds have changed so much on my Canada Food Guide challenge that I decided to not order flavoured syrup in my latte and found it plenty sweet on it's own.  SCORE!  Less sugar for me!  

Now, I can take it pretty easy for the rest of the week.   Just pack and plan and figure out how to get around Vancouver to everything we need/want to see and do.  We are both so excited!

One last thing...

I am still in the running for top 25 Outdoorsy Mom blogs of 2012.   If you have a moment, I'd really love it if you could pop over there and vote for me!   Voting wraps up in 9 days and you can vote once per day (no need to register or anything).

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1) Another iRun mention

I found out this morning on Twitter than not only did my Relay interview make it into the current issue of iRun Magazine.  They also included something I submitted about my medal rack.  Colour me surprised! They had never even acknowledged that I had submitted anything!  My mention is at the bottom of the article.  

2) Weight is falling off now

After hitting a really tough plateau post-marathon, my Canada Food Guide Challenge has reinvigorated my weight loss.   I don't expect it to continue at this rate but I have dropped close to 5lbs in just over a week and really don't ever feel truly hungry.   Imagine if everyone followed the Canada Food Guide and ate real food like this!   I don't think we'd have an obesity epidemic and I think real food may dominate the grocery stores again as the demand for crap calories diminished.   Ya - I know I'm dreaming here.

Another interesting phenomenon of this challenge has been my tastebuds rapidly changing.  Just yesterday, we had a little office celebration and I treated myself to a small Crave cupcake...only to find it took me forever to eat it because it was FAR too sweet.   I had a similar reaction to some grape tomatoes in my dinner as well...flavours are really starting to come out that I wouldn't have noticed before.

3) BIG Running Gear Sale this weekend in Calgary

The Tech Shop is setting up their big annual sale at Mount Royal University this Friday and Saturday.  It will be at the package pickup for the Calgary Police Half. I could be wrong, but I believe they are doing the sale now instead of during the Mothers Day expo....

The sale is open to the public. I am totally planning to see if I can score some deals :)   So don't y'all go buying up the size 11 neutrals on me!!!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Workout Wednesday: 10 Days

10 days.  That's it.  In 10 days time BMO Vancouver Marathon will be here and all of these months of preparation will have (hopefully) paid off.  At the very least, I'll have an adventure to write about and share with you all.

10 days.  It's not too early to start packing, is it?  Of course not.  We're practically in single digits.   The suitcase comes out tonight. Checking the weather forecast and watching the extended forecast change from rain to sun to rain to sun.  I have a feeling I'll be packing a wide variety of running gear.  If it rains - I'm apologizing in advance (I tend to have that effect on race day weather).

10 days.  I am so excited to be running a half in a city I love.  Vancouver is one of my favourite places on Earth and I still feel so lucky to have had this opportunity.  I don't get out there nearly often enough and it always feels like I am coming home when I do. 

10 days. I've really loved meeting and connecting with so many great people through my blog and Twitter throughout this whole Official Run Van Blogger gig!   I am so excited about the prospect of meeting many of you in person in just over a week!

10 days. I've been eating well, hydrating like a fish, getting my runs in.  I'm feeling good (which I can't say was true for this entire training cycle).  The antsy-ness of Taper is upon me and I just want to go, go, go already!  But instead I am focusing on healing and cross training and biding my time. 

10 days. I shouldn't be in such a hurry for it to get here. Before I know it - it will have come and gone.

pssst - if you have a second - can you please pop over to Circle of Moms and cast a vote my way for the Top 25 Outdoorsy Mom blogs of 2012?   I'm currently at #17 and would love to stay in the top 25!  Thanks so much to everyone who has voted so far!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

New Running Buddy

Tonight, I ran just over 5.5k - most of it with S, one of the ladies on my K-100 team.  It's really amazing how the time flies when you're with a friend - even a new one.   I've run that route a zillion times at a zillion different paces and tonight it seemed to take no time at all as we chatted away the kilometers.  I'm looking forward to getting in more runs with her :)

It looked like we might be running it in a downpour, but by the time we headed out the rain had tapered off to a light spit and we could just enjoy the refreshing cool of the evening.  It was actually really pleasant for my first rainy run of the season!

I also got a Runner Info email from BMO Vancouver Marathon tonight and was able to go look up my bib number for race day!   So, if you're out there cheering - make sure you cheer extra loud for #17113!

Monday, April 23, 2012

MOMday: The Daddy Sitter's Escape

he's totally pretending to be enjoying the
30lb bouncing toddler on his neck
It's no secret that every Saturday, I run away from my kids.  It's a part of my Mommy Sanity Strategy that works really well for me.  It has allowed me to train for 8 half marathons and a full plus run countless other races in the past 2 years.  One morning a weekend.  It's all mine and a chance to stay connected to my friends and my footsteps. 

But while I am out there running my tookus off, my babies are home with Daddy. I couldn't do this without him. I realize that I titled this post "Daddy Sitter", but that really isn't how I think of him.  We are parents and it is a 50/50 thing.  He isn't my babysitter - he is merely giving me the space to have some me time so I can be a better mom.

But, lately, I can see this wearing on him.   Let's face it - my running commitments have ramped way up this year.  I feel really good about it, but I can see that he isn't sharing my enthusiasm.  Since my year of adventures isn't going to start slowing down, I sense that I may need an intervention to keep him on my side in all of this.

I've had a few other momma runners talk to me lately about how they don't feel they can train for a longer distance race because they didn't think it would make their hubbies very happy to have to stay with the kiddo(s) for that long.   To this, I say "bah".   Your hubby is just as much a part of the parenting team as you are and they are not your babysitter.  If you asked any one of them if they think you don't deserve that morning off once a week - I think you'd have a hard time finding a single one who would say you didn't.

That being said - it's also important to recognize that it can be really easy to take advantage of the situation.   I often tell my hubby that he should book some time off for himself.  To get out of the house and go.  The main trouble for us, though, is that hubby likes to have his downtime AT home.  With two energetic toddlers running around - it makes it hard for him to actually have kiddo-free time.

As a mommy and wife - I've kind of been failing at this lately and I need to get back on track.  And I feel terrible about it.  Time for me to shape up and be a better wife in this respect!

There are tons of ways you can give daddy his own downtime and they can be as simple or elaborate as you please.  Here are a few suggestions, just off the top of my head:
  • Buy him a gift card to the movies and send him out to see something you wouldn't want to see.  Encourage him to invite a friend.
  • Sign him up for a course in his secret hobby (photography, guitar lessons, whatever) so he will have a weekly outlet away from the family to renew himself
  • Pack up the kids and leave the house for a while.  Take them on an adventure first thing Sunday morning and let Daddy sleep in. 
  • Help set up a a "daddy only" space in your house so if your guy likes to chill at home, he has a place to vanish to.
  • Ask him to book some off time for himself on your family calendar so you can respect his need to recharge alone or away
  • Send him away for a weekend - encourage time away with "the boys" if he likes that kind of thing or on his own if that is more his speed
I often tell mommas to take the time they need for themselves.  I also believe daddies need to do the same.  Especially daddies of twins.  Sometimes they need to run away too and we need to let them!

iRun Article on Relays

That writer, who interviewed me a few months back for an article on Relay races, was in contact yesterday.  The article is now online so I figured I'd share :)  Click here to check it out

Run Van Training Recap - Week 13

Less than 2 weeks until Vancouver Marathon!!! Wheee!  I am so excited!

I felt like a real slacker this past week.  Monday was a rest day and then Tuesday, I went on such a speedy little tempo run (for me).  Actually it was like a tempo run at race pace which may have been a bit too fast in hindsight because stairs hated my knees for the rest of the week and I ended up skipping my runs to rest and ice.  Of course - no pain at all when I ran my either the rest was good or the knee was just being finicky and would have been fine to run anyway...

I did keep up with my Kick Ass April, though and both me and my co-worker started to comment on how much stronger we are now for just doing a 5 min workout every morning.  A 15 second wall sit used to kill us, but now we are holding almost a minute and a half with ease (kinda)

I also started a Canada Food Guide Challenge with my coworker that has us eating to the Canada Food Guide to see if it will help with our energy and weight loss efforts.

Friday night, the Color Me Rad 5k giveaway ended and I was lucky enough to have 3 of the winners be local ladies!  That meant loads of photo ops before my weekend races (here and here)

and then there was the crazy weekend of races.  On Saturday, I ran the MEC Bow River Run 10k with my buddy Heather and then on Sunday, I hooked up with my k100 relay team to do the Spring Trio 15K and ran that with Sue.

This was my week:

Monday: KAA
Tuesday: 6k tempo, KAA
Wednesday: KAA
Thursday: KAA
Friday: KAA
Saturday: Bow River Run 10K
Sunday: Spring Trio 15k

Now, I am quite exhausted.   I could sleep for a week. But a new week means starting all over again.   And it means setting some new goals for the Ready for Summer Challenge.   Last week I didn't really do so hot at all. Well, I actually did half...but my workouts were not where they should be.
  • Get in at least 2 bike workouts in addition to my runs - NOPE
  • Eat more vegetables - YES
  • Do yoga 3 times - NOPE
  • Run 2 races - YES

This week's goals for the challenge?
  • Stick to the Canada Food guide
  • min 2 runs + long run (I'll be running on Tuesday with one of the ladies from my K100 team)
  • min 2 bike sessions
  • yoga at least once
  • Really push myself on all workouts - time to exit the comfort zone
  • STOP EATING AFTER 7PM (this one will probably be the most challenging)
For past weeks on my Run Van journey, check out the links below:
Other Things to Check Out

If you haven't had a chance yet, why don't you head on over to Facebook and check out the Read.Write.Run.Mom. page over there.  Just one more way to follow the blog and join in the discussion!  You can also RSVP for the Pre-Van Carb Load...just look int he events for the tweetup info! I'll be RSVPing soon and need the final numbers for who all is joining us!

I was nominated for the top 25 Outdoorsy Mom Blogs of 2012.  If you would like to support me, you can vote here:
(you can vote once per day and do not need to be a Circle of Moms member).  I am currently in 15th place and would love to stay in the top 25!!!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Race Report: Spring Trio 15K

Today was Hostelling International's Spring Trio 15K race.  It was also the day I got to meet most of my K-100 Relay team for the first time!  Exciting day all around.

I carpooled in with two of the ladies from my team and we were bright an early so I had lots of time to see about exchanging my wrong shirt.  Of course, when I got there it turned out that they were out of shirts for the 15k.  I Gave them the 5k shirt and told them that I would rather have no shirt than one for a race I didn't do.  It all worked out in the end, though, since another lady in our group had ended up with a 15k shirt instead of the 5k shirt she should have had (I instantly regretted handing in the 5k shirt because she could have easily had it instead).  So I did end up with a 15k shirt in the end. 

Before the race, I caught up with Sophia, one of the Color Me Rad 5k entry winners from my giveaway.  It was super great to meet her in person at long last.  I am looking forward to getting together with her for a run and coffee so we can chat some more.  It was a bit busy today with meeting my team and getting ready to race.

Anyway - back to the race report.  I dressed up in my Sparkle Skirt

and since I had skirts for the rest of the team - several of the ladies wore theirs as well.  We made quite a cute team.  These are going to be such a cute team uniform on June 23rd!!!

Sue wasn't feeling great about her training so I told her I would stick with her and keep her from crawling.  

The "gun" went off at 10 sharp and we were off.  The pace was nice and easy.  Quite comfortable for my very tired legs.   I had no time goal - this was just my long run for the week and I was looking forward to just finding fun along the way.

Within the first km, we came across the new Peace Bridge.  It is so nice to not have to detour around construction anymore.

Soon the 5k runners were turning back.  Then the 10k-ers.   The 15k didn't have alot of runners so the field got pretty thin after that.

We made a quick pitstop at Edworthy.  There was the rudest lady in the bathrooms.  We were done and she pushed her way in and informed the people in line "I'm in a race and being timed so I'm just going to go ahead of you guys"   Both Sue and I were both flabbergasted at her.  People like that give runners a bad name.

I was so glad I didn't get a good look at her face - it might have ended up spawning dirty looks for the next 20 years if I ever saw her again.

Photo op at Edworthy:  
A km past Edworthy was finally our turnaround.  Sue had refilled her water bottles at the water station and then started to run right past the turnaround sign.   I made sure to rib her for the next 5 mins for it :)

After that - the countdown was on.  We were in the homestretch and ready to call it a race.  Once we saw how many people were behind us, our only goal was to keep them behind us.  We really wanted to make sure we beat the two girls who wore their long sleeve cotton race shirts (it was ridiculously hot out for a tank, let alone a cotton l/s).

I am sure I kept Sue quite entertained with my witty remarks as we passed each kilometer marker.  She didn't smack me once so I guess she didn't mind my corny jokes.  

Every walk break, we looked over our shoulders to make sure they were all still behind us.  Finally we were at the Peace Bridge again and stopped for another photo op where I dropped my blackberry on the cement and nearly freaked.

And 1k to the finish.  As soon as we turned, we just booted it.  Crossing when my Garmin said 1:50 and change.

It wasn't an easy race - between the heat, my tired legs and Sue's asthma - we had a rough go of it...but the good company makes up for a lot of things and I still enjoyed the run immensely.

Case in point about the heat - when I took of my belt - I had a swath of sweat about 8 inches wide across my belly...

And in my lack of preparation in packing - I hadn't brought a change of clothes for brunch after...DOH!

Sad story for the day?  When I was exchanging my t-shirt (or not exchanging as it were) I saw a table full of medals...Like, overflowing with them.  It got my hopes up for a medal.  So, after crossing, I asked the volunteer where our medals were and she informed me that there were no medals...just for the age group winners.  Boo.  Seriously, was a ridiculous number of medals.  I feel like we were the only people who didn't place in our age group at this small, small race.

Garmin Geekery:

Official time: 1:52:48

Not sure how there was a 2min discrepancy between my Garmin and the chip time.  I hit start and stop right as I crossed the timing mat...though maybe my Garmin paused in the washroom...that would make sense.

Overall it was a nice race.   I think it wasn't as well organized as it could have been and the volunteers weren't as helpful or informed as they maybe needed to be.  Just the mix-ups with my shirt could have been easily avoided.   It was also the same old ho-hum route out of Eau Claire that I have run a zillion times.  With the lack of swag, this was almost just an expensive routine long run.  But I needed a long run and this one gave me an excuse to wear a race bib, dress up and enjoy the company of a friend I don't see often enough.  

That alone makes it a win.  But I'm not convinced I'd do it again.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Race Report: MEC Bow River Run 10k

What a gorgeous day for a race!  Spring was definitely in the air here.

I met up with some of my friends beforehand and was able to deliver the Color Me Rad prizes to two of the winners right there:
Anna and Amy - 2 of the winners of the Color Me Rad 5k entries
(Yes, Amy is pregnant and is going to have one heckuva time finding a huge white t-shirt to wear over her bump by the time Color Me Rad hits Calgary...if anyone has tips on where she might buy one - post them in the comments...)

Then, I colossally failed at the pre-race self portraits of me, Anna and V.

Well, I got a good one of me and Amy....

and of me...

For this race, I decided to give my new iFitness hydration belt a whirl.  Overall, I liked it - but it did cause me a great deal of grief until I let it just rest higher.   When I pulled it down on my hips - it would move around ALOT.  Guess I just need to come to terms with my high-waistedness and it's relationship with fuel belts.

The race itself was great.   I started out running just ahead of Anna and April and then my friend, Heather, found me on the bridge as we headed out. We ended up staying together for the rest of the run.  Since we were both out for fun and had no time goals so we just chatted it up the entire race and had a great run.

The race course for this one was nice because it didn't start at Eau actually started at South Edworthy Park and ran east along the river to Crowchild then across the river and west for a km before turning around and returning the way we came.  So many races run the exact same route out of Eau Claire that you never quite realize how boring it gets until you change it up a bit.  I really liked this one.  It made me think I should maybe be starting more training runs out of Edworthy.

Heather is going to be running Vancouver half with me and JS in 2 weeks.  We'd never run together before and it was nice to see that our paces meshed well for this.  Makes me really excited for Vancouver! (well - everything makes me pretty excited for Vancouver these days - I just want to GOOOOOO already!)

Me and Heather - post race. Note how my long sleeve is trying to be an extra bra for me.  (Note to self - tie the shirt UNDER the belt in the future so you don't look like a moron.)

The race was timed "old school" (ie. no chip) so my Garmin tells me this is what my time will be when they announce it tomorrow...hmmm, not quite 10k....


The Garmin geekery:

I went in search of post-race goodies, but they were completely out :(  Guess the 5kers were super hungry when they crossed the finish.

Knowing Anna and April were not far behind me, I went back to the finish (sorry to the lady I nearly knocked over as I tried to get in to take a pic)

Big Finish!   in around 1:08.  Take that cancer!!!

I even "won" a door prize after (actually - it got to the point where they were just looking around and calling out numbers to clear the prize table so "winning" might be an overstatement... )

But, I did win SOMETHING today...I won the Punkeelove headband giveaway over at Yo Momma Runs. (Follow her - she's awesome!)  So exciting since I don't usually win things and was pretty sure had it in for me...  But this headband looks too cool and I am excited to give it a try!  Maybe I'll have to see if I can work the awkward piggies into twin buns like Yo Momma does...hmmm

My over all impressions of my first MEC race?   I really liked it.   It was a super small field (only 300 people) but it was super relaxed and alot of fun.   And if they keep the entry fees at $10, these are going to become really hard races to get into once word gets out.

After the race...I went to pick up my race package at Gords for tomorrows race - the Spring Trio 15k.  I was so excited to see that the race shirts were long sleeve.  Then, as I wandered through the store - I noticed they had given me a small instead of a medium.  Oy.  So I went over to exchange and she handed me a short sleeve.  I was so sad and I passed the comment that it was odd that the mediums were short sleeved.   The volunteer just shrugged and me, assuming the shirts were the same print for all distances, went on my merry way.

Then, after I got home to Langdon, I shook out the shirt to show hubby and instantly noticed the 5k printed on the front. :(   Luckily, I contacted the race organizer and she said I can exchange it tomorrow, no problem.  Yay!   I am much more likely to actually WEAR a long sleeve cotton shirt.  A short sleeve one would just go into the pile to eventually not be made into a race shirt quilt...

And the winners are....

Thank you so much to everyone who entered the draw for the free entries to Color Me Rad!   I was so excited to see all the tweets everyday!!!

and without further ado...the winners are...

Jillian (@crzbeautifulife on Twitter)
Sophia @ The Mama Runs
Amy (@leftygirl014 on Twitter)

I have emailed all of the winners.  For those local winners - those I know who are at Bow River Run today - I will bring your prizes with me today!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Reads: Sugar Crash by Elena Aitken

Sugar Crash is by local author, Elena Aitken.  You may recall I reviewed her first book, Nothing Stays in Vegas, several months ago.  

Darci is a widow and mother to almost teenaged Taylor. When Taylor suddenly becomes a much different kid than usual, alarm bells go off for Darci and she rushes her to hospital where she is diagnosed with diabetes.  Sugar Crash is a tale of coping and acceptance.  Of dealing with the misconceptions and intolerance of others and, above all, in coming to terms with doing what you can and learning to ask for help.  I should probably also mention that there is a man in there...a lovely, sweet man who might be just the thing Darci needs after so many years alone...

I really loved this story of a mother's love.  It is a light read on a heavy topic and only took me a couple of hours to finish.  The story is an important one, though, and showcases the trials and tribulations that can come from a diagnosis like this coming down on an unsuspecting family.  This book was a special labour of love for Aiken, as she wrote based on the inspiration of a real-life friend who is living with the disease and it is immediately apparent in the care that was taken in telling Darci's story. 

Another thing it brings light to is a program that is probably not on the radar of most people outside of the running community - Team Diabetes.  In the story, Darci rallies a small town around a common cause and encourages people to sign up for a Team Diabetes race.  Having been a participant with Team in Training, I think Aitken captured the emotion that comes from a race of this calibre and significance.  More than once, as she wrote about the race, I felt tears welling behind my eyes.

Sugar Crash is available for Kindle and a portion of the sale of each book will go to support Diabetes research.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Three Things Thursday

In the spirit of Thursday - here are my three things...

1. Fast regrets
Well, that speedy little run I did on Tuesday has left me hating stairs.  I feel fine most of the time but when I first start to go down stairs, my knee screams a couple of times before feeling fine again.  I skipped my 11k speed run last night in favour of ice and rest. I decided to skip my run tonight as well to give it a chance to bounce back.  Boo.   But it's all good.  I don't want to push my luck with two "races" on the roster for this weekend.

2. Speaking of races...
Today was packet pickup for the Bow River Run 10k on Saturday.  I was so excited to head to Mountain Equipment Co-op after work.  I used to work 2 blocks from it and didn't realize how much I missed having access to the place!

Race package:

Nothing much - just a bib, flyers, and a reusable bag...about what I expected from a race with a $10 entry fee

Other schtuff that happened to jump into my shopping basket while I was there:

Gels - You can't beat MECs prices on gels...I stock up whenever I'm in the neighbourhood. Gu is half the price of any of the running stores in town!Plus I've been wanting to try those Agave ones but have never seen them anywhere locally!

I came so close to buying a running rain jacket.  The Skirt Sports one is so cute and I have been smitten with it for a couple of years...BUT while most of it is transparent grey - the zipper is lined in hot pink and has a zipper hood to match...All I do is stare at that and it drives me bonkers...  Still deciding.   

3. Challenge Update
The Canada Food Guide challenge I am doing with my coworker for the next 2 weeks is going really well.  The printable chart on the website was driving me batshit crazy, I came up with a solution for keeping track of my food groups.

I have an old Richard Simmons FoodMover (you can also pick these up SUPER cheap on eBay if it's something you want to try).  I don't like the diet plan that comes with the thing but have always thought it would be a really useful little tool so have hung onto it.  Finally - I figured out what to do with it! Today, I went through the card with the most icons on it and just blocked out everything that is over what I can have each day.  A little bit of white paper and some invisible tape and I was set:

Now I just need to close the windows as I eat the food group and it is portable enough to toss into my bag for long term use.

and just a couple of reminders:

The Color Me Rad 5k giveaway closes at midnight tomorrow night.  Get your entries in so you won't miss out!!!

AND...I am so excited to have been nominated for the Top Outdoorsy Mom blogs of 2012 over at Circle of Moms.  Please pop over and cast a vote for my little blog - I am currently in the top 10!   Thanks so much to everyone who has already voted!