Volunteering 2012

Sunday, September 4, 2011

I Want To Run!

I have been out for a while. Not that I wanted to take any time off, but my performance and enthusiasm was clearly lacking, and after a pretty poor performance at the Fargo Half Marathon, I knew something was up, when I could only hobble from mile 2 to the finish. I wanted to complete it in 3 hours, and I came in in 2:59. Far from my previous race times, however,  I knew that after the Vancouver Half, my mind and body just wasn't in love with running anymore. I was forced time off, after finding out that I had pulled my piriformis muscle and my tendon in my right leg which wasn't in love with the whole running thing without training/stretching. So far I have been off running for about 3 and a half months, gained about 10 pounds, and now have 4 months to lose all the weight that I have gained, since being in Canada, so that I can look my very best when I go home for Christmas, a majority of my family hasn't seen me for 3 years.

It's not like I have been inactive all that much since I have taken a running hiatus, I have been swimming and I have been bike riding long distances, as I have been mentoring the ladies doing the Nike Women's Marathon for Team in Training, and I have been on Roger my trusty bike to cheer them on every few km's. I logged around 40kms on the bike today, which has left me pretty exhausted, but now that I am actually missing running, and I can't wait to get back into it.  I hope to get the all clear next weekend after my next appointment. I will promise to stretch and train properly for my next event, which I won't schedule until next year. I can't wait to get back out there!!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

BMO Vancouver Half Marathon

I ran the race with all my heart, and kept going when my joints felt like they were on fire, I have never felt such pain, and every ounce of energy and hope in my body that I would get a PB in this race. I didn't get the PB I was after, in fact I got the slowest time in this race in particular since I first started racing it 3 years ago. Am I disappointed in my result? No I am not. I tried so hard, and my I lost my goal of 2:30 somewhere around the top of Prospect Hill, I was determined to defeat the hill today, but got half way up, and will as I might, couldn't urge my achy legs up the peak. Dehydration, and stomach cramps were bringing me down the last half of the race, I have never felt so ill during a race, no cups at 2 of the water stations that I passed didn't help, as I didn't have the time to give my water bottles for refilling,I was willing my legs to keep going so that I didn't have to stop running, with a fear that I may not start running again! I have never been so happy to see the volunteers cheering on the final few km's especially seeing one of my friends Tony, giving me a hi-5 and telling me to keep going. I let out a huge sigh of relief seeing the finish line banner, I have never been so happy to see the elusive finish line. I couldn't will my body to sprint, as I do at the end of all my races, I was completely spent, and one foot slowly in front of the other was all that I could manage.

After the race I had time to contemplate what I need to do to improve my time. The Scotia Bank half marathon in June will be my last race for a while. I need to work on getting my body healthy and happy again, I have made appointments with specialists to get my digestive distress in order, the sooner that I get personal issues figured out the better I will feel and then the more determined I will be to make a comeback into running. I think that now is a good as time as ever to focus on spending time with the BF after he has been my rock through everything over the past year putting his things on hold, so that he can come cheer me on in races and driving me around when I need to get places and races, and graciously meets me after races and takes me to brunch at Cafe Crepes. And funny now, I am at peace with my decision not to race for a while, and will continue to run, to keep active, but just not on a racing level.

On a side note, a huge congratulations to my running buddy Winnie, who did an amazing PB in the full marathon today. You did it girl, I am so proud of you, Boston qualifying is just around the corner for you! (p.S. - when you make it in, i will totally fly there to cheer you on!)

Saturday, April 30, 2011

About time for a Good Race!

I have run two races in the past month. I ran the Sunshine Coast April Fools half Marathon, and the Vancouver 10km Sun Run. I was so upset with my performance from the Sunshine Coast Race, that I decided not to blog about it, I got my slowest time ever for a half marathon, and have never been so negative in a race! I ran the Sun Run two weeks after my half, and was happy with my results, hopefully a sign of improvement, and reinforced positivity for my next half. Tomorrow I tackle another race, the BMO Vancouver Half Marathon, and I am hoping for redemption in this race. I will give it my all in the race, and I hope to get a personal best, even if I beat my PB by a minute, I will be incredibly happy. I know that I have done enough training for this, I just hope that it all pays off!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Harry's 8km Spring Run Off - Race Recap

On Sunday I participated in the Spring Run Off - supporting research into Prostate Cancer.

 This was my first competitive run in an 8km, so no matter what time I did, it would be a personal best. That being said, I wanted to maintain my pace throughout, with limited walk breaks. It was a perfect start to spring, the sun was shining and there was a nice breeze in the air. It was the first time, that I haven't needed to use the potties excessively before the race, I don't know if it has been the change in diet, or that I have been training regularly for the marathon, I had found peace with myself. (No upset tummy!! Yay!!!)

The race started at 10:00, and after a warm up walk around the seawall, and the Steve Nash fitness instructor led us in a quick stretching exercises. Then we were off, I crossed the start line two minutes after the start. The first 2 kms were hard, and I felt really heavy and took a while for me to find my groove. I found that I wore too many layers, and was incredibly hot, I didn't bring my bottle, due to the short distance, however after 3kms I was feeling very dehydrated and was wishing that the water station was closer.

I found a lady who was running around my speed and used her to pace me for the last 5 kms.  At the half way mark, I quickly grabbed some water, and took my first walk break through the water station. Then I quickly caught up with my pacing buddy and tried to maintain an even speed. When I hit the 6 km mark, I was at 42 minutes. My hopes for finishing under an hour seemed a little out of reach! I put on my Ipod and kept plugging away with the music motivating me, and my pacer running a bit faster, I gave it my all in the next 2 kms. I ran across the line in 56:35:48 which I was very happy with.

I will definitely do this race again next year, it was very well organized and all the volunteers seemed happy to be there, and the course was peaceful and scenic. (Made me realize how much I love living in Vancouver)

I stretched a lot after the race, something that I neglect to do after many of my races, and walked back around the Seawall for a cool down. I got home and stretched some more, and ran a tennis ball along my IT band, as I couldn't face the foam roller. I went for a recovery run yesterday, with my friend Winnie, and my legs felt good. I'm excited about the half marathon in a few weeks time on the Sunshine Coast, I am happy with the way my training is going for my ultimate goal of the Fargo Marathon come May 21!!!

(On a side note, I also participated in Shake Your Shamrock Virtual Run, however I was too late to submit my times. I added the the 8kms to the 5km's that I ran on Friday night, and walked on Sunday (around the sea wall) for a total of 13kms, in approximately 1:30. )

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Harry Sping Run Off 8km

I had a really good run today, and can pretty much confirm that Marathon training is going well. I managed to run almost the whole way without stopping (except through the water station), and maintain my speed well. I beat my goal time, which I am really happy about. Naturally it wasn't the fastest time, but I am happy and will take it :). Tomorrow I will do a race recap, and also and update on the St.Pattys virtual run.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Three Things Thursday

It has been a while since I have done this, so here are some Three Things Thursday - Confession Edition:

1. I have an unhealthy obsession with chocolate

We brought 2 bags of Ghirardelli Chocolate when we were in San Francisco, and after the marathon, I think the bag was demolished within 2 weeks of getting back. My obsession is getting so bad that there are chocolate wrappers in the bedroom, and distributed around the house, I often forget that I have brought chocolate, and will get excited when I find it. I am slowly trying to wean myself off it, and will be giving it up for Lent, along with Coffee, oh Lordy, it will be an interesting 40 days!

2: I'm Super Excited and Freaked Out About the Fargo Marathon

It will be my 3rd Marathon, and will be super disappointed if I don't get a PB in it. I am aiming for a sub 5 hour marathon, and to date, I have trained more for this then my first two marathons. I don't want to be too far behind the BF once he finishes, because I think that he will be able to do a quicker time then me. I don't want to embarrass myself in front of the BF's family, it will be my first time meeting this lot, and I want to make a good impression!

3: My Seeds are Starting to Grow

I have been becoming so domesticated (even though I haven't finished unpacking completely yet) that I am excited about the smallest things. I am so excited about having fresh veggies this Summer, and the fact that they are growing, makes me a very happy person. Yay for fresh food!

That concludes my 3 things Thursday!

Tell me a secret!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


I thought that I would follow what everyone else is doing before I write my February Re-Cap, because I enjoyed reading everyone else's so much, so here it is my ABC's:

Age: Late 20's
Bed size: Queen
Chore you hate: Washing dishes, and cleaning the bathroom
Dogs: I claimed partnership with my Brother when he brought a pure bred Labrador. I really want a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever:

 (Photo from http://dog-breeds.findthebest.com/compare/111-158/Nova-Scotia-Duck-Tolling-Retriever-vs-Welsh-Springer-Spaniel)

Essential start of your day: I'd like to say breakfast, but that would be a lie, I think it is hitting that snooze button at least 3 times!
Fav colour: Pink
Gold or silver: White Gold
Height: 172 cm's I think. That is what I claimed on my Drivers License, it is probably more like 168cms
Instruments I play: Piano. I got up to Grade 8, before I begged my parents to let me quit. (They would probably say that I had been begging to quit the first day I started). I have also dabbled in Guitar, Violin, and the Spoons.
Job title:  Administrator
Kids: Nope - not for a few years
Live: Vancouver, BC
Mom’s name: Mum
Nicknames: Neeks, Moni-q, Possum and one which only my dad can call me, and I won't reveal
Overnight hospital stays: None, although I have spent a few hours on several occasions, in the Emergency Ward with some of my University Friends.
Pet peeve: People invading my personal space, especially on Public Transport
Quote from a movie:"Nobody puts baby in the corner" Dirty Dancing

(Photo from http://sar7an.wordpress.com)
P.S I totally envision my garden to produce products like this!

Right or left handed: I'm a lefty, we are rare
Siblings: 3 Brothers and 1 sister - all older
Time you wake up: 7:00, but I snooze for 10-15 mins (a habit that I desperately need to get out of!)
Underwear: Of course
Veggie you dislike: I tend to like all veggies, although Brussels Sprouts, even when they were wrapped in Bacon, I couldn't convince myself to eat them!
 (Photo from http://ivfcproduce.blogspot.com/2010/12/brussels-sprouts-brusselsprouts-brouts.html)
Who knew that this is how Brussels Spouts are grown. I learnt something tonight!

What makes you run late: I like to be a few minutes early, so I rarely run too late. If I am late, it is usually because of traffic, or a problem with the public transport.
X-rays you have had done: Teeth and foot
Yummy food you make: I hope that it tastes yummy, I like making Spaghetti Bolognese, Beef Stroganoff  or Risotto, the last two have yet to made since being here in Canada.
Zoo, favorite animal: Orangutans (how could you not love them)

(Photo from http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/04/neworangutans-1/)

So there you have it, my ABC's. 

Friday, February 25, 2011

5 For Friday (Weekend Goals)

This weekend, I have five goals that I would like to achieve:


Run 8 miler Saturday. Last weekend the BF & I did a run/walk 8 miler and it felt good, I was so excited about doing it, and can't wait to tackle the same course again, before we bump it up a little to 12 miles the following weekend! I was really sore after wards and now know that I need to stretch more before and after the run. I'm super excited to be running the Sunshine Coast April Fools Half Marathon with him, his first longer distance event, he promised to run my speed, but I will be OK if he runs off without me :P This is how I imagine the run together to be:

(Picture courtesy of http://fanart.lionking.org/Artists/Tailbrush/)

Although, I know that it isn't going to be all prancing and happiness, there will be a lot of pain and complaining, from him me.

Goal 2:

Completely move out of my old place and move into the new, happier abode. I did enjoy my time spent with my old roomies, but I am super excited about the move in with the BF. I have practically been living there for the past few months anyway! Big leap of faith on his part I'm sure that he loves hates all my accessories, so I have to be extra diligent about what I keep, and what I throw. I have always had a problem with keeping things I didn't need, not hoarders like, but on the brink of becoming one! The worst part about moving is the cleaning that has to be done, only one room to clean but urgh. And then the unpacking after wards. I seem to lose motivation on that part, and now that we have got cable, my mind wanders!

Goal 3:

Have a great night out tomorrow night with the BF, our friend Dee and a few of her friends, doing this:
Jungle Swing. Dancer I am not, so it should be interesting to see how the night goes, I am all for hanging out with good friends and having fun :) (Makes me more motivated to unpack and clean after the move, so I can put my sore feet up after wards!) 

Goal 4:

Pot some seeds. I am wishing the warmer weather would come quicker, so I thought that I will encourage the warmth/sun gods by beginning the planting of some seeds so that we are ready to transfer them into the ground, come spring! I can't wait and hope that we have an abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables (btw, if anyone knows a place to buy a strawberry pot, fairly cheap, give us the heads up, please and thank you!) I am hoping that our garden looks a little like this (and yes I will be dancing around like below):

(Picture courtesy of http://www.herdaily.com/health/1795/how-to-grow-vegetables-in-your-own.html)

Goal 5

Bake some gluten free goodies, because I am not sick of experimenting just yet.  I will see how the Gluten free muffins turn out. The Kisses Cookies made for Valentines day, tasting pretty awesome. Also brought some Quinoa, which I am going to attempt to cook with as well. Nothing like changing diet!

Have a good weekend everyone :)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Weekend Wrap Up

Happy Monday, I was planning to write this on Sunday, but today is better then never!!!!! I had a great weekend, with a little training and a lot of relaxing. I am so excited to be back training after a pretty bad start to the year training wise. On Friday headed out on a run with Winnie. We ran I think about 2 - 3 miles, but wasn't really counting the mileage, as I was so happy to be able to catch up with her, it had been way too long! I am excited for the plans to meet up every other Monday & Friday for a small training session, and to let steam off at the beginning and end of the week!!

Saturday was a nice rest day. Started packing up bags for the move, didn't get too far, I have been known to leave packing right until the last possible minute, but it is still the first week of February so I still have a little time before I permanently make the BF's house "ours" and clear out of my current place!!! (so super excited about this).

On Sunday it was raining and pretty much miserable weather, after out late brunch (of Gluten Free Pancakes - yum) we rested a bit before heading out in the afternoon for our regular 6 km run to Trout Lake and back. I am happy to say that I found my groove with this run, and managed to run almost the whole way. I think I embarrassed the BF by cheering him on around the lake and along the streets, but I wanted to motivate him, it was raining and I was having a great run. I think that I finally have made a mental break through, as I have never been able to run for that long without taking a break! So I am super excited for the next run!!

I also found a recipe that I am super excited to try out for Valentines day. Kiss Me Cookies, the recipe was tweeted by Gluten Free Dude, I can't wait to cook them on the weekend!!!

Monday, January 31, 2011

January Recap

After a great start into the New Year, and following the training schedule to a T, a week and a half into it life went a bit pear shaped, so now I have to reassess goals, and also training plans. Here is what went down in January:

Week 1 - After a great New Years with the BF Friends, we were enjoying runs and training in general, we predicted 2011 to be a successful and productive year for the both of us! At the end of the week, we went to Victoria to celebrate my BF's birthday. It was there that I purchased my new running shoes (which I haven't really had the chance to use since coming back).

Week 2 - After getting back from Victoria, I look up how things are going back home in the website News.com.au. I am horrified to find out that Brisbane, is about to go under in a flood. Message my parents who say that they are going to the airport to go on Vacation to see my sister, and that it should be ok. Message my brother the next day he confirms that the house is about to go under, and my parents will loose almost everything. My parents house went under on 12th January (11th In Vancouver). I can't get much information on what has happened, as my brother is without power for 2 days, and everything has run out of batteries. Manage to call my Sister in Law who is near my parents house, and discuss with her what is going on, in between bouts of hysteria and sadness. Needless to say, I didn't get any training in, as I was more concerned with my parents and what I could do to help them. The Saturday of that week, we went to a Masquerade Ball Surprise Party, which was a blast, and had a great time.

Week 3 - Again, suffering still from what is happening back home, only managed one training run, I was trying to get plenty of sleep to make up for what I had been missing out on. Sad to say but the Bachelor and Millionaire Matchmaker, started lifting my spirits.

Week 4 - Didn't do much again, purchased a couch with the BF (moving in with him soon!!! YAY!!!) then went to the dentist only to find out that I need a few thousands dollars worth of work done on my teeth! :( So the hopes of doing plenty of races this year a dashed! Time to start budgeting so that I can make the most of the situation!

Here's hoping that February offers more happiness and productivity then what January did!!  I can't wait to dust off my runners and make the most of the rest of the year!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Three Things Thursday the Late Edition

Wowee what a exhausting few weeks this has turned out to be. Back into it here are three things that will help me achieve my running/sporting goals over the next few months:


 Finally purchase a foam roller. I've used it once so far, and it was really painful, but it was a good type of pain. I look forward to researching different exercises that can be done on it, and I can't wait to see the improvement in my recovery time from my long runs after "rolling".

YOGA Meltdown:

I purchased this because I don't seem to have enough time to actually join a class, with changes in schedules etc. My aim it to do it 4 times a week. I would love increased flexibility, it has been a few years since I have done Yoga, and I hate to admit it, but some days I struggle to bend down to tie my laces, due to decrease in my flexibility (or just weight increase). I can't wait for Jillian to whip my into some great Yoga Poses!

Running Room Online Coaching:

I felt a bit uncomfortable going to an in store clinic because they were already 4 weeks into the program. I can tailor the online program to mine needs, and have specific training for my goal race which is the Fargo Full Marathon. I have been lacking in the exercise area of late, so I cant wait to begin training again to achieve my goal race!

If anyone has any tips on the foam rolling, such as websites to look at etc, please let me know!!!

Take care xo

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Playing Catchup!

So I finally have found a photo cable and now can upload the photos, so here are some photo's from the past month:

My bloggy Secret Santa got me this:

(which by the way is totally awesome, thanks Secret Santa!)

After Christmas and New Years we headed off to Victoria where I found this:

For a Masquerade Ball Surprise party that was last weekend

And these:

Brought new running shoes from Running Room in Victoria, the sales person was incredibly helpful. I have never tried New Balance shoes before, but they felt pretty much perfect when I tried them on...

Then we did this:

Went for a short run in Victoria, which was icy and slippery, but fun anyway!

Then last weekend we did this:

One of the most enjoyable parties I have been to, a Surprise Masquerade party (18th Century), where we danced the night away, they had historical dancers, who then taught us the basic steps!

Then on Sunday I did this:

Took my old runners out for their last run. They will go to charity in May, at the BMO Vancouver Half Marathon....

Then after the run we change our gym to Spartacus Athletic Club , which I am super excited about, because they have classes that I can join in with in comparison to our old gym, which didn't have much to offer.

One the weekend I also finished my first book:

Second Wind by Cami Ostman wasn't a bad read, and by the end of the book I was inspired by her, and hope to achieve my goals, like she achieved hers.

Today we did a short run, approximately 4kms. It was a speed work session for me, and I felt like I was really powering up the hills :) Then I attempted to foam roll on my IT band, ouch, but I know that the more "rolling" out and stretching out I do, the more beneficial it will be for me!

And tonight I plan to catch up on the latest edition of Runners World, can't wait for some inspiring stories!

I'm super excited that my friend Winnie and I (decided tonight) that we will be joining the Running Room run clinic together! Time for some hard training! Woohoo :)

Have a great evening!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Dear Running Shoes

Dear Running Shoes,

I am so sorry that I have neglected you over the past week, I received bad news from home, and have been struggling to find motivation. I hope that you enjoyed your short run in Victoria last weekend, over the icy paths, you were able to keep me from slipping over, and for that I am forever grateful. I hope that you are not too jealous about the new joggers that I have brought. I promise that I will continue to take you on runs, whilst I am breaking the "others" in. I want to thank you for the journey that you have taken me on. The two full marathons, half marathon, 2 10km road races and countless hours of training. You have held up strong and have carried me to many personal victories. I will put you on tomorrow and take you for a nice run around the lake, so you get to see it for perhaps the last time in your career. Chin up though, I will make sure that I donate you to charity at the BMO Vancouver Marathon, so that you will go to someone in need, so that you can give them the joy that you gave me. There will never be another pair like you.

Love me xo

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Yesterdays Run

After a nice relaxing Sunday, and after running a few errands on Monday, the BF & I decided to run on Monday instead of taking our scheduled rest day, which we will take today. On our second training session for the year, (we are really off to a great start) we did a nice and gentle 6km run from the BF's place down to Trout Lake (which is lovely and frozen at the moment).

 It took us a little over and hour. It was meant to be 6.6km's but we ended up playing around with the Camera and walking a little bit so we didn't actually "run" the whole way. The photo's that were taken to document our training, didn't really turn out as we hope, so unfortunately no pictures this time, but we will make sure that clearer ones are taken tomorrow. Tomorrow will be the same route although we are only scheduled to run 3 Miles (4.82803 km) we will see how we are both feeling, to how much distance we run. It knocks a few more km's off my 2011km goal for this year, and is day 2 of exercising for the month, trying to reach the 5 days a week challenge!

Hope that everyone is have an easy time, transitioning back into the work week! Happy training :)


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year

After a fantastic New Years Eve, I started the New Year off with a short run, one of the first runs that I have had since the October Marathon. One of my goals to start with was to run 2011 km's in 2011, and I have already knocked 4.5km's off it - not much but a start! I have also put the Training Plan and my monthly goals on separate pages so that you can see what I have planned over the next few months! I have also entered another Challenge, Run for the Bling of It, to complete 12 races this year, and blog about it. So far I only have 6 races on my schedule, so I have to find the next 6 around my area, to complete my challenge. I am excited for what 2011 has in store for me, and hope that everyone had a great new years and are ready to tackle 2011 head on!