Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Weekend Scoop

Hello and happy Monday! I am posting this blog at work through my lunch as internet troubles at home have left me a couple posts behind.  I have 2 sick kids so it's safe to say that not much free time will be had tonight.  I am very thankful my husband could stay home with the sickest one today.  Not the easiest having a sick kid no matter what age they are.  The "I don't need you, I'm independent" 15 year old has found out that maybe he does still need mom sometimes.  Glad I can be of service even if it's o'dark o'clock in the morning and he needs medicine.

The newest update in my training is both exciting and frustrating.  I ran my longest run ever to date!  19.5 miles!!  I think that I am mentally prepared for almost anything since it was a long run on the treadmill.  I listened to some CD's, watched junk on the tv until a movie came on ("League of Their Own") which kept me going till the end.  If you caught my last post of spring not coming, well nothing new to report yet.  Strong, cold winds with cool temperatures kept me indoors early Sunday morning.  I am glad though as I had some GI issues and stopped a few times for a bathroom break.  Stops would be not so fun to do on a gravel road when running outside. I don't think I have ever revealed what I am training for.  My main event (A) is scheduled for the end of May when I run my first full marathon at the Saskatchewan Marathon in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="235" caption="Saskatchewan Marathon (Photo credit: Wikipedia)"]Saskatchewan Marathon[/caption]

I have been following the First Program, novice marathon training plan.  My husband has also been following the First Program but chose the experienced plan as he has ran a few marathons and wants to improve his time.  The plan focuses on 3 main runs, basically 1 speed work, 1 tempo/interval and 1 long run.  So the emphasis is on quality runs.  I chose this because many plans have something scheduled each day and that seems soo overwhelming for me right now at this point in life.  I like knowing that I can do 3 runs and the other days are cross-training days (cycling, walking) or a rest day.  In my busy world (and I am sure many others) this plan seems to make me think I can handle the busyness of family, home, career and volunteer responsibilities and still have goals and time for myself. I get my 3 runs in and usually cycle on the bike trainer on a couple in between days.  I also did a weight routine but have started to pull back on that for the last 6 weeks prior to A race.  I have based my expectant marathon time on my fastest 5 km / 10 km/ half marathon pace.  I have enjoyed the First Program, but I have very little to compare to as I have not followed a 16-20 week plan before.  My half marathon plans have all been around 12 weeks.

On a lighter note, this was part of our day on Saturday. Donut making with gramma! 3 kids and I took our sprinkles and headed to gramma's house for some good fun and good eating.  No need to pack a lunch today with our colourful assortment.  My mom and oldest daughter manned the cooking department and the youngest daughter and oldest son were in charge of the decorating department.  I did the dough rolling and cutting and tried to take a few pictures here and there.

Big brother was making his sister squeal.  Gramma is planning to intervene (look at the next picture).

A donut full of icing right in his face.  He had it all over and I was laughing so hard, I couldn't get a picture.  You will have to use your imagination.

This was also part of our weekend.  My husband trying to get a magpie nest out of the tree behind our house.  He has already done this once and they came back to the other side of the tree and started rebuilding.  This time, he stuck a big bright pink stuffed rabbit in the tree and so far, no magpies.  Cross your fingers.

He then tried to push some snow in the backyard and needed some assistance.  Oldest son always likes to come to dad's rescue.  Gives him something to heckle his dad with for awhile.

On a final note, I was glued to the tv most of the evening Friday, watching the scene unfold in regards to the Boston Marathon bombers.  I am thinking of all those who lost their lives as well as the injured today during the time of silence and will try to sneak a short run of tribute in later today.  I have been awed by the way people have come together during such a horrible event.  No one can make sense of an event such as this, but what we can make sense of is reaching out to others.  Hats off to you all.
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Monday, April 15, 2013

Hello Spring, are you there?

Hello everyone!

If I could get on the phone and call spring, I would imagine the conversation would go something like this.

Me: Hello, is this spring?

Spring: Ya
Me: Where the heck are you, don't you realize you're like 3 weeks late?

Spring:  I made a stop in the Coachella Valley and am having such a good time here, I'm not sure when I will be leaving?

Me: You're WHAT?

Spring:  Well, it's just so comfortable here, the people are nice.  They aren't always complaining and whining to me about how I'm doing my job.  The job stress is incredible up there with you folk in Canada.  You are never happy, too much rain, too much wind, too much snow.  Can't every please you.

Me: But you need to come, we can't live without you.  Please!  I'm sure we can do some contract negotiations to relieve some of the job stress you are experiencing.   I am all out begging, you can ask for anything!



Well, we have found our routine again since returning home from our southern vacation.  Why is it that spending on 2 or 3 days home again with work, activities, phone calls and school lunches make you feel like the vacation was years ago? And certainly the worst thing in this equation is the fact that spring is NOWHERE to be found.  Someone needs to fill out a MIA report with mother nature.  We not only have loads of snow here but also cold temperatures and very cool winds.  We are breaking weather records that haven't been touched since the 1950's.  The only thing that has been nice is that when the sun is shining, it is warm.

Despite the dumpy attitude I have had because of the weather, I have managed to continue with my training plans very nicely.  Most of my running has been done on the treadmill with the exception of a couple runs.  I really enjoy the convenience of the treadmill but I am ready to feel the breeze and sun on my face and have something to actually look at that doesn't bore me out of my tree.  The planned long run for this Sat/Sun is 19 miles so I am hopeful it won't have to be indoors.  Anyone with good movies suggestions?

Last weekend, I had a wonderful opportunity to attend a Training Bible Triathlon Camp in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.  We had 2 packed days of swimming, biking and running skills presented by 2 great coaches.  I will provide a full overview in my next post.

The other new thing I did this past week was had a massage by a sports massage therapist who is trained to treat injuries with massage techniques.  I have not had a massage ever and was very pleasantly surprised to discover how much it helped my running in a bunch of small ways.

My right hip over-rotates inwardly which then causes a misalignment all the way down the leg.  This is something I knew but didn't know what to do about but to try and treat the "runner's knee" type symptoms in my knee.  The massage therapy will work on correcting this over-rotation to get to the root of the knee issues and hopefully eliminate them.

This is my kind of medicine.  I am not really a band-aide person.  I am the, "why is this happening and what can I do to prevent it" kind of person.  The actual reason I went for the massage was to try to eliminate some of the tightness in my calf muscles, especially my left calf.  While away on vacation, I got a nasty charlie horse ( or cramp) in my left calf that literally took my breath away.  I know that the sometimes sore right knee will cause my body to favour that side and put more weight on the left side, the result of the strain on the left side showed itself in the cramp and tightness.  Massage, has certainly been good so far with improving it.  I do foam roll at home but this just seemed to work differently. I have another appointment tomorrow so I will keep you all posted.

Today, I leave you with the following request/suggestions;

book a massage

keep running hard and

send some warm weather up to Canada!

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Monday, April 8, 2013

Vacation Bliss

What could be better for a small town Manitoba girl still in the vice-like grip of winter but beaches, sand, endless sun, warm evenings, birds singing and running with SHORTS!

Our spring break trip took us via Regina, Saskatchewan, Miles City, Montana, West Yellowstone, Montana, Salt Lake City, Utah, Las Vegas, Nevada, to sunny Santa Monica, California.  We filled 2 days with bike riding, football games at the beach, Lakers game, Kings game and of course shopping!

[caption id="attachment_169" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="lunch at West Yellowstone"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_170" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Bike riding at the Santa Monica Pier"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_171" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Playing on the beach"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_172" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="My rope climbing son"][/caption]


[caption id="attachment_173" align="aligncenter" width="224" caption="Made it to the top!"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_174" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Lakers Game and Kings Game"][/caption]

Off we went to spend 5 days in Palm Springs to visit my husband's brother and his aunt and uncle.  We have been to Palm Springs before a few times as my in-laws have been snowbirds down here for about 10 years.  We love the climate, hiking, swimming and small community feel with big city options.  Anything you want to do is only a short drive away.

[caption id="attachment_175" align="aligncenter" width="224" caption="Araby Trail in Palm Springs"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_176" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Araby Trail"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_177" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Araby Trail"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_178" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Pool at the Ocotillo Lodge"][/caption]

We hiked 2 great trails, did lots of running, some golfing and spent tons of time in the huge Olympic sized pool at the Ocotillo Lodge where we stayed.

[caption id="attachment_179" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Mackenzie and I"][/caption]

We also made a day trip to Algodones, Mexico to get some eye and dentist checkups.  Too soon, our time came to an end and we held onto to warm weather by vowing to wear our shorts until we arrived home.  Only my husband lasted to the end but by the last gas stop in sub 0 Celcius weather, once again in snow, we pretended we didn't know him.

I did my best to stick to my training plan with just a few minor switches.  My body needed a break by the end of the vacation as it is hard to scale it back and not go out everyday doing something.  Here is what my 10 days looked like.

[caption id="attachment_181" align="aligncenter" width="224" caption="Running the South Lychen Trail"][/caption]

We left Tuesday, March 19 and arrived home Sunday, March 31.

  • Tuesday-  4 miles speed work on treadmill

  • Thurs- 5.6 mile run on the Virgin River Trail in St. George, Utah

  • Friday- 4 mile walk to Santa Monica Pier

  •            -9.85 mile bike ride along ocean boardwalk

  • Sat- 15.8 mile long run along ocean boardwalk

  • Sun- 4.2 mile walk in Palm Springs

  •       - 2 hours swimming

  • Mon- 5.1 mile hike on the Araby Trail in the Palm Springs mountains

  •        -1.5 mile walk in Palm Springs

  •        -2 hours swimming

  • Tues- 1.7 mile walk in Palm Springs

  •         - 45 min of swimming

  • Wed- 8.1 mile tempo run in Palm Springs

  •         - 2 hours swimming

  • Thurs- 6.0 mile hike/run on South Lychen Trail in Palm Spring

  •           - 2 hours swimming

  • Fri- 5.1 mile run in Palm Springs

  •     - 1 hour swimming

13 days, 3 countries, 6 states, 2 provinces, 7500 kms, 60 hours of driving, 20 miles of beach boardwalk, 2 cavities fixed, 1 gum repair, 4 pairs of glasses, 1 bee sting, 1 less big toe nail