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Monday, February 28, 2011

Dear Mother Nature

We need to talk. Now, I have long been a big fan of your work. The colours, the seasons, the different really have it down. Even in winter. Anyone could freeze water and call it snow, but you make each flake unique onto itself and gently toss them to the earth in a cascade of beauty...or at least you used to.

Now...well, I have to say I have issue with the force that you're hurtling said flakes in our direction lately. Sideways is not a good look for snow. And having them cleverly gather together to hide those pesky patches of ice like that?? Well, my ankle is not a fan of the very ungraceful duck dance I did (in public, I may add) just to stay on my feet...which I need to enjoy YOUR backyard, BTW. Just sayin'.

Enough already...yes, you've proven you can dump snow. You've proven you can blow wind. You've even taken us to temperatures we'd rather not think about. Kudo's to you and all your power. Now could you lay off for a day or twenty!? I did not enjoy the "needles in the face" sensation of the -36C windchill this morning, nor will I be ever so chipper about trying to remove said snow later from the walkways (so others don't fall, as I nearly did).

Now, don't get me wrong...I'm not mad. Let's just say that the entire city of Calgary would like a change. Please. We're all just a little tense!!! Has this got something to do with the whole oil thing?? We're trying, really we are. We recycle...we walk to work, we're harnessing wind power (yes, your wind). I did see people on bicycles today, and I wasn't walking alone. Seriously, we're trying. Maybe you could look deep into your heart and throw us a freaking bone.

A "teetering on the edge" fan.

Sunday, February 27, 2011


The big debate today was whether we were running 16 or 19km. Turns out to be 16, which is right on schedule for Calgary. Same run as last week, but the temps were a little kinder this week. In fact, I worried that I overdressed and was going to be too toasty. But I survived, and we have a great LSD run, averaging (with walk breaks) 8:04/km. The sun was shining, the paths were packed and the birds were singing. All in all, a perfect day for a run.

Stopped for coffee and an egg sandwich afterwards, and visited with everyone for about an hour or'd think none of us had anything to do on a Sunday, or was it that we were all playing work avoidance?! I finally came home, changed and managed to throw my very stinky running gear in the wash. If I didn't do it, I think they would have walked themselves downstairs...getting a little rank, truth be told! I also had a wee dish-washing marathon, as I've sadly let things pile up of late. And then I wonder why I don't cook dinner...oh, yeah, that's right. Can't find the sink or the stove!! Problem solved. Dinner did turn into a bake, last minute, as I hadn't cleaned the pots I needed for pasta and sauce, so I did a one-pot dish of sauerkraut, sausage and whole wheat perogies. The pots are ready to be washed now, so it'll most definitely be pasta for supper tomorrow night.

Watching the Oscars...seriously, what is all the hype about James Franco?? Open your eyes, man!!! Maybe I'm just too old, but he's just...m-eh. Squinty and m-eh. In fact, other than Billy Crystal, who I love and who should host FOREVER, the whole show has been rather m-eh. Glad it's on earlier, so I don't lose any sleep going to be too late. Of course, they have 12 minutes to wrap this bad boy up, and what two awards left? Could actually be a record this year!

Well, that's it for me. Nothing too exciting today, or even this week, really. Same old, same old.


Saturday, February 26, 2011

A good day

Slept in a bit (always a treat when the alarm goes off at 5:30) and then up, dressed, eat and out the door for Zumba. It's an odd day weather wise, as it's "warm" (-4C) but the wind still has a real bite to it, and it piled up drifts all night, as evidenced on the drive to Zumba. The Boss was there, but just to unlock the church, help the instructor set up and then to take the class, not run it. Good...she and I basically took opposite corners, and kept it that way. Wore the Vibrams today, which were still a little sticky on the floor, but not as bad as the runners were last week. And I could get up on my toes better and really shake these old hips. A lot of the moves are coming back to me after a few years of Latin Aerobics, but I am still Irish. I may be able to clog (okay, only when really, really, really drunk) but some hips actions were just not meant to be done by my people!

After class, I came home, showered and changed and went to get Wissaminated. That is what I call getting a cut & colour from my awesome stylist, Wissam. I am now even more gorgeous than I was before, and I can see because the blessed hair has been removed from my eyes! And grays begone (for another 5-6 weeks, at least). Home from that, after stopping in London Drugs to pick up a couple of things. I went in for Emergen-C, as I'm getting low and only have a flavour I'm not particularly fond of. I'll drink it, but I'll alternate with one I like. I add a teaspoon of L-Glutamine to it, to help build a strong immunity (wicked bad cold going around that tends to turn into bronchitis for most people I know) and because it's supposed to help with the energy for running. The nutritionist that spoke a few weeks back recommended it, and really, how bad can fizzy vitamin C be?! I walked out with a few treats though, and what was to be supper, cheese gnocchi and a mushroom tomato sauce. The treats were lime tortilla chips (for whatever reason I craving them) and TimTams, although I've already hidden them on myself! They will be a treat for a very special I still have to come up with!

Was sitting around when H-woman called and we ended up going for sushi (she had sushi, I had a bowl sashimi (just raw fish) and rice) and then to see The King's Speech. Brilliant...absolutely brilliant. Colin Firth should win, Geoffrey Rush should win, they should all win. Funny, real, poignant...brilliant.

Home again, where I am getting ready for bed and tomorrow's long run. Not sure if it'll be 16 or 19km...guess we'll find out when we get there.


Mixed boot camp

Got to boot camp at the church, where Trainer Josh was was his "boss". I don't like his boss...she subbed for him once for a class and she was rather...rude is a little strong, but I didn't get the warm fuzzies from her. Oh, she knows what she's doing, but Josh makes it fun. She makes it work. I don't pay to work...I pay to have fun. Granted, some of you are probably thinking "you call running while weight training and pushing till you puke FUN?!?!" and I have to honestly answer yes. Not necessarily the work itself, but I do love to sweat, and I can say with Josh, you almost always have a smile on your face, as he counts down in silly voices, sings everything from the Lion King to Rush and generally motivates to do your very best. I think the biggest issue with his boss is that she reminds of every jock-girl I went to school with, who made me miserable for being too fat, too slow, too ugly (apparently that is a key factor in sports...who knew??), too wheezy (yes, the asthma was being's still being fake specialist gives me fake meds just so I can continue to fake with it!), too tall, too short...the list goes on.

Anyway, after getting over the shock that she was not leaving (gag) and that most of the class actually was her group (only 2 others from Josh's bothered to showed up) we started with step ups or skipping rope. Then we moved on to running the room, but not ordinary running (and no, we did side shuffle, high knees, twisty-turny things...she was running the group, by the way. Josh was very fact, he's not himself in front of her. At least not that I noticed. Then, after the warm-up, we split up into two groups. One (mine) went up to the little gym in the church with Josh (who finally "showed" up) and the rest stayed down with her. With Josh, we did a lot of upper body, repeating a lot of what we did on Thursday. I'm lucky I can type today! After about 25 minutes, the groups switched and we were back down with her. Sigh... We did a lot of sprints, side shuffles, skiers (bounce backwards - because we all know that's the direction skiers go in when they go side to side like that!), skaters, jumping jacks (again backwards...not so easy!) before we started weights. She seemed disappointed that Josh had us doing push-ups upstairs, so we did burpees (FRICKIN' HATE THESE THINGS!), and walk-outs (squat, hands to floor, walk out till body straight, walk back in, stand up), alternating 10/9/8 etc of each - start with walk outs, sprint, burpees, sprint, etc. We then did several other moves, alternating each time, with the teacher's pet demonstrating each move (this girl appeared to be using 20 pound weights...she kind of scared me!!!) but the boss is preggers, so she's not doing a lot of demonstrating these days.

Ended the class late (that's after starting early) with some core work (supermans and swimmers) and then hobbled home. I will pray for good weather, so that our Friday class will be outside where it belongs...I just did not enjoy the boss section of the workout, and it was all purely emotional, not physical. Too many flashbacks! Once I got home, I ate supper of turkey meatloaf on chiabatta with cheese, carrots and tomatoes. Simple and fast.

Okay, must change and get ready for Zumba. Apparently the boss is supposed to be there again today, but it had only better be to take the class. If she starts to run it, I'm leaving.


Friday, February 25, 2011

Dirty Dozen

Remembered about the Footstock weekend in Cochrane in June, and booked race #12 today! That's a total of 2 10's, 8 Halfs and 2 Marathons, all scheduled between now (okay, 1 has been run) and the end of September, and on average one a month. There are a couple of months where I double up, but nothing too serious, like back to back weekends. Okay, so March is a little busy, but I start with the two 10 k's and finish it with the Half. Easy-peasy.


Why am I doing this? Is there a slight mental deficiency on my part? Perhaps, but then I read the quote from my clinic instructor this week (which he took from Runners World) and it says:
"Relax, it's just running. Of course it can be the most intoxicating, captivating, meaningful part of your life.
But it still is just running.
Nobody's making you do it, and you are not going to save the world doing it.
So find what you enjoy about running, and then follow your bliss."
Some of you may recall that I had listed qualifying for Boston as my BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal) back after completing Calgary. At that time, to qualify before I turn 50, I had to run a 4 hour marathon. Now, thanks to the 7-hour sell out last year for April's run, the wise folks in Bean Town decided to tighten things up a tad.

"Boston Marathon organizers today announced adjustments to the qualifying times and registration policies for the 2012 and 2013 Boston Marathons. The marathon will institute a two-week, rolling registration process for 2012, and will lower standards by five minutes across all age and gender categories for 2013.
The rolling admission process will reward runners with faster qualifying times. The BAA plans to open registration for the 2012 race on September 12, when only runners who have met the standard by more than 20 minutes (for 28-year-old man, this would mean a time of 2:50 in 2012, and 2:45 in 2013), will be able to sign up. The BAA will gradually allow runners with slower times to enter the registration pool until the field size of around 25,000 is met. For example, runners who have met the standard by 10 minutes can register midway through week one.
After a week, if the field size is not met, any runner who has met the standard for their age and gender will be able to register, although priority will be still be granted to faster runners."
Will I let this detour me? I hope not...I think that's why I'm being a crazy lady and registering for every race I can. I just want to continue to improve, step by step and kilometer by kilometer. I WILL qualify...I have just under 2 years to do so, and really, only (hehe, "only") have to run 5 minutes faster than before the big announcement. FIVE minutes...this can be done.
Waiting on the Coinamatic guy to come and see if he can fix the buildings only washing machine. Of course, when I have a pile of rather stinky running gear to clean, the machine goes on the fritz. And then boot camp at 6, indoors again at the church. Actually don't mind that site, as the stairs help mix things up a bit. Still haven't quite decided what to do for supper, since it's "warmed" up to a balmy -10C out there, so I'm not craving the comfort foods quite so much. Not craving salad either, so I'll have to make up my mind by the time I get home from BC.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


I have to echo H-woman's title here. It is just gosh-darn COLD out there!! In fact it's colder in Calgary than it is in Inuvik...which is AT.THE.FREAKING.NORTH.POLE!!!!! But what do you do?? I live in Canada, where it snows and it gets cold. Life goes on. I will say that my face was a tad numb by the time I got to work this morning. It's the only exposed part (I can't tolerate things covering my mouth, so I rarely wear scarves) and it has full feeling now, and no tell-tale white bits, so survived another day.

Boot camp tonight was HARD...Josh was feeling extra specially tough tonight, so we did 25 minutes of legs, 20 minutes of arms and then abs to finish. This is after running laps to warm up. It was so hot though, I begged for one of the doors of the hall to be opened. I think that lasted about 10 minutes before someone else went over and closed it. Seriously, I looked like I had heat stroke! I was willing to trade spots to be closer to the blessed fresh air, but I was outvoted. Sad for me. Hot/cold...I know, make up my mind!

Since it was so cold, all I wanted for supper was tomato soup and grilled cheese (thanks Jaime...) so I swung into Safeway on the way home (also bought salad and more baby carrots, chiabatta bread and marble cheese for the sammich) and picked up the Safeway Organics Creamy Garden Tomato Soup. It was a little high in fat, and works out to 14pts for the container but it was warm and all I wanted. Besides, between walking, boot camp and shovelling the walks (just as my back was getting better, darn it!), I earned it!! Hit the spot, as did the grilled cheese and ham on chiabatta. Yum, yum, yum... Also had a side of green olives, which is a must with grilled cheese. Growing up, we always sliced the olives and cooked them right in the sandwiches, but tonight just on the side. My faves...
It's amazing, despite the cold, how many people are at Thursday's WW meeting. You can barely find a seat, and I was there a good 15 minutes early. Crazy... Anyway, lost what I found last week, but I'm just going to ride the momentum and keep it up into next week. I never did sit down and plan a menu, so that is a goal for this weekend, so I can be sure that I have everything on Sunday. Nothing major planned for the weekend, other than Zumba, hair cut/colour (must get hair out of eyes!) and either a 16 or 19km run on Sunday. We are at odds as to which distance we are actually scheduled for. Guess we'll find out on Sunday.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Melissa's 22km is booked and added to the list of 2011 races for me. And the process went much easier this year. I got in, I registered, I booked my hotel, I got out, all in 15 minutes. The 22 sold out before 10:30 and the 10km was full by noon. This is an extremely popular race and I love doing it, despite the hills, wind, having to pass the finish line with 7-8km left, hills and wind! It's just so beautiful, I forget about all the rest.

I decided to run tonight, and after seeing no one from the 5-hr group (I think 6 of the 40 registered for clinic showed up tonight), prepared to head out alone. I ended up with company though, as a girl from the 5km clinic wanted to see "if she could run 10km" just because. Please bear in mind, she hasn't run anything further than 5km, it's -18C with a -29C windchill and the paths were icy and slick with fresh snow. And I really was trying to hit tempo pace...which I didn't do so bad. All in all, my overall average was 7:39 (fastest to date) and I did hit a good 7:07 pace for a couple of the klicks. I wasn't consistent though, which I need to work on, but dang it was COLD!!

Came back soaked to the skin, so changed into dry gear and headed for a pint. Just one tonight, and now I am home and so ready to crawl into bed. I am beat...hoping the beer and 10km hard run will do their magic and I'll drop off immediately after hitting the pillow.

Side note: after all the talk about heart rate, I decided to see what my resting rate really is, so I strapped on the monitor, started the Garmin (set it for a 6-hr "run") and went to sleep. Woke up with the average number at 61 (yay, but not quite at peak yet - should be closer to 50) but somehow managed to clock 2.25km in my sleep!!! Maybe I dream like a dog...I'm going to strap on again tonight, just to see if I go running in my sleep! Intriguing.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Walking at Running Clinic

Thanks to the "slight" twisting of my back yesterday, putting up the blinds, I walked at Running Clinic tonight. Hoping it settles down for tomorrow race is in just under 3 weeks. Yesterday's Chinook was just that...a single day affair, and we're back into a deep freeze. That made tonight's walk darn cold! And slick, as icing sugar snow has been falling off and on all day. It made for some very slippery parts, but I remained upright and finished 3km in just over 33 minutes.

Tonight's speaker was a Physio dude that I actually met socially when he first came to Canada, almost 20 years ago now! It was great to see him, and he gave an awesome talk about the affects of stretching and orthotics and such on running (ZILCH!) and the real component of running injury free (heart rate). It was quite enlightening, and now I am anxious to go get my heart rate tested for real. The math formula just doesn't cut it anymore (220- your age)...since this is the third or fourth person I've heard this from, there must be some truth to it. I'm also going to try and track my resting heart rate for the next week, but I am a bit out of it in the mornings and tend not to remember to check it until I've already got up, walked around and generally done anything but "rest". It all interests me, and if it can keep me injury free and running faster, it's all good.

Came home, after having a coffee with the gang, and finally ate supper at 9pm. I had quinoa (it's buried under everything!), salmon and roasted fennel with red pepper and olives. This was a recipe from the Self magazine, which again was simple to throw together and quick to cook. I think it came out to 11 points for everything (including evoo), which is decent for dinner.
I am ready to hit the hay. Just need to take something for the back and do some soft stretching to try and work the twist out...side note: someone called tonight to say that their blinds were broken and that they needed a new set. I almost burst into tears! Anyway, that's it for me.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Birthday supper

I went and exchanged the blinds at Rona and after 90 minutes of dropped screws, many, many, many F-bombs and a slightly twisted lower back (low roof, long me and a ladder don't mix!), all of the blinds have been successfully installed. I hear one complaint (one set is slightly off center!) and I may just lose it though!

After I got the blinds up, I walked over to Safeway to pick up some healthy eats, as well as something for my birthday dinner. In the past, we've always ordered Chinese, and while that is an option at Safeway, I thought I'd steer clear this time around. Instead, their turkey meatloaf (6 pts for half) caught my eye. I did pick a "decadent" side of their Mac & Cheese (Gourmet, don't you know) for another 8 pts, and rounded out the meal with some very fresh, and very sweet grape tomatoes.

Dessert was a mini pecan pie. Just missing the candles.
That's it for me. Going to pack up the rest of the mac and turkey loaf for lunch tomorrow, and add some carrots and snap peas for veggies. Must make a pot of oatmeal, as the steel-cut oats are the most filling for breakfast, but do take some time to make.
Thanks for all the birthday's been a grand one.


Today is my birthday...and I am proud to say I am forty-eight years young.'s how "old" your parents were when you were growing up. That's how "old" the teachers, who never understood you and weren't nearly as smart as they should be, were. It was OLD...
Well, all I have to say to that is I ran 16km yesterday morning, did Zumba on Saturday, kept up with the "youngens" at boot camp in Thursday and Friday and generally do not feel forty-eight. Oh, I feel forty-seven, but not forty-eight! How is it supposed to feel, anyway? Granted, things do make more noise now, including myself as I bend over to pick something up, and there is an evil conspiracy to make the print on menus smaller and smaller, while the lighting in any restaurant gets darker and darker. It's all a plot to drive us crazy and make eye wear specialists richer!
Even the wrinkles aren't so bad...I've earned every single one them, thank you very much! Yet I don't think I look "forty-eight".

I do follow a bit of a routine though, mainly to keep the skin healthy, not necessarily "young" looking. I know how old I am, and how old I'll look if I try to look 20. Sad, and most certainly not 20!

So, before I go to bed, I wash off the eye makeup with the gentle remover (I am a Neutregena fan) before going over the whole face with the cloth. I do wet a regular face-cloth after that and just scrub once more (kind of exfoliating, I suppose) but it's more to get the smell of the cleansing cloth off...kind of stinky. Once that is done, I go over the whole face with toner (forgot to take picture) to make sure everything is really clean and refreshed.

Then I apply the eye cream around the eyes (probably not as gently as they describe) and then either the 'Tone Correcting Serum' (which I really didn't notice making a difference but I want to use it up) or the nighttime cream. Finish it off with the Skinlogics lip balm, for soft and kissable (do you hear that, single men?!) lips.
In the morning, I wash the face again with just a wet cloth and then apply the daytime cream with SPF 15, under my makeup.
So that's my "secret"...of course, the furbabies don't seem to mind how old I look, so why should I?!
Spent last night with my nephew, his fiancee, brother, SIL and Mom, at the nephew's place. This was their first time "entertaining" the family, and I think they did just fine. We had cheese and crackers to nosh on, spaghetti with meat sauce, Caesar salad and cheesy garlic toast for dinner, and a small cheesecake for dessert. We were celebrating mine, my Mom's (tomorrow) and my nephew's (the 27th) birthdays. Wonder what is so special about June????
Be sure to head over to Amy's blog and wish her Happy Birthday help her out, I pointed out that the day she was born, I was getting drunk in the bar!
Off to have a fun-filled birthday day...changing litter, hauling garbage, finishing the blinds (have to go yell at the nice people at Rona...64" means just that...not 42". Grrr....), maybe vacuum, get some groceries and decide what to have for supper.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


O.M.G but I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Zumba! It helps that our instructor is considered one of the best in Calgary and she`s just a little ball of Latin enthusiasm and energy!! This, with the running and boot camp, is really going to take things up a notch, because here, I got my sweat on.

Class was held at the same church as last night, and reminded me very much of the Latin Aerobic classes I took years ago at the Latin Dance Corner. The biggest difference between Veronica and Nino (LDC) is timing...Veronica keeps the party going, starting the next song and dance move right away, while Nino loved to chat and fuss and hang out. So my heart rate stayed at a very steady 143 average for the whole hour. I didn`t take weights but will for sure next week. Found my little baby 2-pounders which will be perfect. And next week, I will wear the Vibrams. Found that the carpet and runners and Latin dance moves just don`t get along that well. The Vibrams should allow me to move a little smoother. The hour flew by, and despite not knowing anyone in the class (Trainer Josh refused to pick up my challenge of him trying the class!), we were all laughing and having a great time together. This is going to be a fun 6 weeks.

Not sure what`s going to happen the rest of the day...noshing on some hummus (Summer Fresh - trying to be Sabas, and isn`t too bad, actually) with carrots and snap peas before jumping in the shower. I do have some blinds to put up in one most hated, despised, `why do people need blinds`, jobs of care-taking, so I`m working myself up to it. And, inspired by Jamie, I need to sit down and write out a meal plan for the week.


Friday, February 18, 2011

Barefoot boot camp

Everything I have read and heard about the barefoot running and Vibrams say to start slow. So I figured what better place to start than boot camp. After all, we don't do a lot of running, and I could easily switch back to my runners if need be. Besides, it's currently -23C out there...even with the Injinji toesocks (which are so not like the toesocks of the '80's, my friends!), my feet would have been COLD! Another plus of using the Vibrams at boot camp is Trainer Josh also uses them, just not in the winter. So he kept a very careful eye on me, to make I don't do my usual "go big or go home" style of training.

Last night was a Tabata-thon, where we moved from station to station, and did 2.5 minute circuits of 20 seconds on, 10 seconds off at each. Unless you were at a cardio station, then it was work straight through. We did warm up with our usual laps of the hall (so boring...round and round and round we go) but we do need to get the blood pumping. I focused on planting mid-foot, not heel and seemed to do okay, although I was making myself giggle with the gentle thwap, thwap sound my feet were making, slapping on the floor! Then we started with dips, then moved through to squat press, push-ups, jump rope (VERY interesting in Vibrams). Funny...when you jump rope, you land and push-off your toes...yet, in Vibrams, which make you focus on your toes, I couldn't get my feet to do what I wanted them to! Even got the rope stuck BETWEEN my toes at one point!!! Anyway, after rope, we moved on to full body bike, drop-leg flies, wall sits with curl/shoulder press, burpees and sprints, curls, horse-raises (wrap band around waist, and while your partner holds you back, you partner almost killed me as I couldn't get a grip on the floor to hold him back!!) and finally bent-over lats. That took up almost the whole class, so we finished with some good old core work.

Tonight was also indoors (because of said -23 temps), but at a different location. It's in the basement of a church, actually, which adds a little something to the workout. Namely, stairs! We started with through the room, down the hall, up the stairs, back down, down the other hall and back into the room. Beats round and round all to heck!! We did that for about 5 minutes, then really got into it. Side note...I knew one other person in tonight's boot camp. Funny how many regulars don't show up for Friday nights, but we did have a big group. I wore the Vibrams again, but left the socks at home. Last night, my big toe on my left foot always felt like the nail was catching, and I was worried I bought a size too small. But tonight it felt just no socks it is. Anyway, tonight was arms and lower body combined. On the mats for narrow-grip push-ups (10) and then run up the stairs for squats (10). Back down, repeat and add kick-backs. Up the stairs, repeat and add lunges. Back down, repeat and add overhead extensions. Back up and add sumo squats. Repeat everything times 15, then repeat everything times 20. Choke back some water and then move on to the next set, different moves, this time carrying our weights back and forth. Happy, good times: v-sit shoulder press, bent-over rows, bridge to press, curls, skull-crushers, and lat raises. Finally, and because we still had time to kill, we did sprints while half the group did abs (drop-leg overheads, toe-touches and twists) and swapped out, then did another set of push-ups to burpees to swing squats and repeat, over and over and over again. I so do not heart burpees! Finally ended the night with some core work (plank to parachuter (sometimes called superman's) to banana (on your back, head/arms and legs off the floor...what do you look like?!)) and then good old sit ups with negatives. Some stretching and the hour was done just like that! Overall, my feet felt great tonight. And my legs are not bothering me from last night (yet) but I can so feel the upper body work! I will continue to use the Vibrams during boot camp (but not in tomorrow's Zumba class) until the snow melts and I can try some actual runs in them.

Picked up dinner on the way home (hate 6pm boot camp for the very reason that it's not over till 7 and now I am HUNGRY) but at least swung by Sunterra and not a fast food place. Came home with a ready toss salad and spaghetti and meatballs, of which the salad is gone and I have enough pasta and 'balls to last for dinner tomorrow night and possibly into Sunday!

My plan this weekend is to sit down and write out a menu for the week, then get the groceries and be prepared. I am tired of the WW game I am playing right now, and I have determined the plan works when you PLAN. So plan I will. I want to lose enough weight so that when I run Calgary, it's not spent lugging around a bunch of excess baggage. I am currently 12 pounds heavier then when I ran Toronto, and trust me, I feel every ounce of it! Enough already.

Okay, I'm going to hydrate and lay like a slightly rotten banana on the couch! Hope everyone enjoys their weekend.

Details of Zumba tomorrow...I'm excited!!


Thursday, February 17, 2011

A real quickie

If you ever have the opportunity to listen to John Stanton of the Running Room speak, do it. Take the time...he is engaging, funny, personable, intelligent, real and oh, so very motivating. And a really, really nice guy who remembered meeting me at the Toronto Goodlife package pick-up, where I was with about a million (okay, so maybe not THAT many) other people. His first words when he came in the room were "we've met before, haven't we?". His talk tonight was to a very large group, about starting up a fitness program, in conjunction with Calgary Coop and the Get Fit weekend in Kananaskis. It's too bad it's the weekend before I fly to Montreal, because I would love to do this. Maybe next year.

Anyway, left home at 4:30 to head to boot camp, walked in the door at 10pm. Time for bed!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Weather woes

Last night's run: +4C, nice evening.
Tonight's run: -18C, snow and ice.
The difference 24 hours make. Running on the paths with all the ice/slush patches was bad enough last night, but now everything was covered with a light layer of snow, making slick downright dangerous. And COLD! I dressed for it, even felt a little hot at times, but the lady running with me did not. We ended up coming in early (7.76km vs. the 10km on schedule) but we also didn't really run...right is the word I'm looking for. It's interesting...I'm a pacer and she's a pacer, and as far as I can tell, we're both at the same pace. So we pace each other, basically. However, we're out to do a Tempo (2km warm-up, 6km at tempo (described as the pace where you almost want to vomit) and then 2km cool-down) and I thought since the paths were bad, we'll do a steady instead. However, her first question was "are we doing 10:1's?" Is it Sunday??? But to keep someone company, we ran 10:1's and bailed early. Hmmm...not sure how I feel about this, actually. I do hope the snow/ice clears up soon, as I want to get back to my 5-hour pacing again. I need to start picking it up and getting back into form. Next race is 23 days away, and I want to be in good form again, although the Hypo felt good on the weekend.

Didn't go for a walk in the Vibrams at lunch, as it was just cold and miserable and I was dressed a bit like a girly-girl today.
Proved that at 47 (okay, 48 is just 5 days away!) I am still pretty hip and happenin'. At least in my mind! This is the dress/top I picked up yesterday, and which I wore with girly, peek-a-boo shoes and leggings. Ummm...there's more damage to my feet today after a few hours of girly shoes than I had after running for almost 3 hours on Saturday!! How do women wear those torture devices day in and day out?! I even switched shoes (TWICE!) before settling into my totally inappropriate for this outfit but comfy loafers for the afternoon.
Anyway, because of the tights, I stayed in the office and continued to work on my tax project. About 500 forms down, 900 to go...
All right, I'm tired and going to bed.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Foray into barefootedness...

Things to note when trying Vibrams:
- toes do not know how to go into a glove like fingers do. Toes like to stick together...
- one should be certain that one's toenails are clipped, pre-Vibrams. The feeling of a nail being pulled at is not a pleasant one.
- feet stay warm in Vibrams, at least when wearing the technical toe socks inside (the white on the right). At least my feet did.
I am starting slowly, of course. Went for a short walk at lunch, and will do the same tomorrow. And then I'm going to take them to boot camp on Thursday, along with my runners, in case my feet/legs get fatigued.
Good day today...while walking at lunch I found the cutest dress/long top and then while shopping for tights for it, I got two pairs for shoes at Payless. It was BOGO and an AMA discount, so what was a good deal became a wicked deal.
Tonight's clinic talk was nutrition...this nutritionist is very good: she just ran the Goofy, so really understands food from a runner's perspective and not just because that's what she learned in school. Although she's also the one that ruined chocolate milk for me...7 tsp of sugar in one cup...I am still sad about that! Then we went out for a 6km tempo. The paths were still pretty nasty, and given the melt/freeze over the last few days, even worse in some spots. But we took it nice and steady, walked through the really rough spots and finished at a perfectly decent 7:45 pace overall.
Must go to bed early, right after Glee. The 10pm rule didn't go very well last week, so I will simply refocus and start again. Each journey begins with just one step, after all.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Ooooo, lazy me

Woke up, without the alarm, at 9, after finally crashing around 11 last night. Legs felt great, ankle feels'd almost not know I ran 21.1km yesterday morning. However...that being said, I literally spent the day on the couch! Okay, so I got up and walked the 15' to my kitchen to refill my coffee or poke my head in the fridge, looking for something magical to eat, but other than that...nada, zippo, zilch. Even ended up having a nap at one point! Oh does a body good to rest every now and then.

After wasting the day, I did get all gussied up for the Youth Singers of Calgary Hearts 4 Arts Gala. L., that I work with, got tickets through one the VP's of our company who is closely involved with the Youth Singers (I think he sits on the Board, or something). Anyway, it was sold as a Valentine's party, but her husband doesn't like these sort of things, so I went as her date instead. The evening involved schmoozing with a whole bunch of fellow employees (there were quite a lot of us there!), drinks, bidding on some awesome silent auction items (wrought-iron wine rack filled with wine and crystal stemware, for example...or hockey tickets, flat-screen TV, gift baskets galore, original pieces of art...amazing, very top-of-the-line type stuff), a 5-course meal (spring salad, minestrone soup, two types of cannelloni, filet mignon (O.M.G!), spring vegetables and gelato) wine at the tables and entertainment all night long. There are some extremely talented people living in this town. And some really generous ones too! Just on the live auction items alone almost $40,000 was donated. One lady I work with bid $4,000 for two tickets to go see U2 in Miami...includes airfare and hotel, but holy!! I don't have enough money to go see them play in Edmonton, for crying out loud! One of the cool items was a chance to fly in a fighter jet, just like Top Gun. Too bad I would immediately vomit and completely ruin the experience! Oh, that and I didn't have $5,000 floating around to bid with! There was one piece of art that I was willing to go out on a limb for, but was quickly outbid by one of the other VP's that really, really wanted it. He hovered...I did not!

So home now, and thinking about heading for bed. I've had a couple of glasses of wine, and am feeling mellow (I had a ride, BTW) so hopefully will drop right off to sleep and not toss and turn because of my earlier nap(s). Okay...there "may" have been more than one nap. Just sayin'


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Hypothermic Half and good eats

The race went well. We really lucked out with the weather, as it was nice, clear and barely any wind. Trouble with Chinooks is while they raise the temps and melt the snow, they also blow. Wind gusts of 60km+/hour are common, and we were running straight west (the direction the wind normally blows out of) for 11km. But nary a breeze, which made for a good run. I dressed light for the day...long-sleeved tech, Running Room jacket, capri pants, Asic Gel Nimbus hat, no gloves, no trail shoes.

I also decided to run how I felt today, rather than 10:1's, or what have you. There would only be 1 water station, which supplied at about the 7/14 km mark, so walking only at water stations (how I ran Toronto) was out. I started out aiming for 5km runs/1 minute walks, but as the day wore on, I started walking at about the 2km mark and then when I hit a landmark (run to Crowchild, walk for a minute, run to 14th St, walk up the bridge, etc). At about the 6km mark, the vent zippers on the jacket were opened (armpits) and by km 11, the jacket was off! So happy I left all the rest of it at home. The paths were relatively clear of ice and snow, although yesterday's melts and resulting freeze overnight, left some icy areas to avoid. There was one rather nasty section, where the City doesn't do a bang-up job cleaning the path and then it turns into an access road for the local sports arenas. About 2km of ice, loose snow, more ice (almost bit it HARD once) and then hard-packed snow where the cars had driven. Given the temperatures, this was now loose and very sand-like. Got through that, crossed the Shouldice bridge, turned around and headed for home. I started passing people that went out strong, including one lady who insisted on running with me, but then hated it when I kept running. I warned her...anyway, she ended up walking most of the way back, from what I could tell. Hope she didn't injure herself. Crossed the finish line strong - my marathon clinic instructor was there, and he commented on both my form (excellent) and the fact that I looked strong and ready to go out again at the finish line. I am a very good actress!! LOL!! My time wasn't far off from last year's (2:48:34) and since I haven't run this far since October 17th, I'll take it and be damn proud.

The medal is now resting with my other Half medals on my display rack, purchased from Allied Steel. I may have to order another, as it's already getting full. Five Half medals on one side, and the 3 Fulls on the other. It is a cool medal though...very February appropriate.

After an awesome brunch at Fort Calgary (homemade buttermilk biscuits (must stop McDonald's song from entering head), homemade jam, real scrambled eggs, roasted, chunky hash browns, the BEST.BACON.EVER and some mixed, fresh fruit, loads of coffee and juice), I met up with friend E. at her house (the Fort is a quick 5 minute drive from Eau Claire, and then E.'s is another 2 minute drive from the Fort) and had some more coffee and a good visit with her and her husband, who I had gone to hear to sing and play earlier in the week, with his son Ben. Small, freaking world.

On the way home from E's, I was thinking about supper (it was almost 5, after all) and what to eat, when I came upon Sunterra. Since my little jog earned me 40 activity points (yeah, baby!), I picked up one of the Friday Night Dinners still in the "fast food" section. Which, by this time Saturday is also on sale.

It consisted of:
Spinach Salad, with egg, mushrooms, tomatoes, bacon, cheese and a raspberry vinaigrette.

Followed by dinner of Shrimp Fettuccine Alfredo (which wasn't overly saucy, so I don't feel so bad about the choice...okay, it was the only choice!) and garlic focaccia bread.

Dessert was a lovely fruit tart. At first I was expecting some custard or cheesecake filling, but it was all fruit. I think there were strawberries (besides the honking one on top), blueberries and maybe raspberries?

I am now full, and continuing to rehydrate...I had roughly 3 litres of water yesterday in preparation for today (and no, I still don't stop on races) and have replenished about two of those so far today. Watching The Bourne Identity for the 1,000th time (mmmmm....Matt Damon) and then I think an evening of chilling is in order. The best part of running a race today?? No run club tomorrow morning for me!!! Yeehaw...sleep-in day!


Race morning

I do love races that start at a "reasonable" hour. I can sleep, roll out of bed, sip a coffee, nosh on a bagel with nut butter and 'nana and just slowly come into myself. Races that start at the crack of stupid just have me in a rush, because I just cannot wrap my head around a 4am wake up (used to be that was when I was just going to bed...oh right...I'm old(er) now!) and trying to eat at the time...blech!
I have another 15-20 minutes to sip the coffee and chill, and then I'll change (currently -1C, so figuring out what to wear so I don't overheat will be paramount), pack some gear to change into after the race, and head out. Since it starts/finishes in the same spot as run club, I'm not worried about getting there on time. And it's a chipped event, so even if I start late, my time won't start till I cross the line.
Because the Bow River has a nasty habit of attempting to eat the city it meanders through, and because of the dump of snow earlier this week, the route has had to change last minute. We were to start out of Fort Calgary (East Village, close to the zoo) but now it's Eau Claire, west to Shouldice, turn around and return. Same old boring route I've run a hundred times. Will have to play some interesting mind games to stay in the moment. I do not wear tunes when I race (or run for that matter) as I am a safety-first girl, so I just let the voices in my head have their, I'm joking here! Besides, if you were to actually read the rules and regulations that we all indicate that we read and agree with, almost all say "the use of headphones is strongly discouraged or strictly prohibited". Why train with tunes when you can't race with them?
Weigh-in on Thursday was...weird. Okay, I like to weigh on my scale in the morning, just so I am mentally prepared for meeting. I wear the same thing, I eat (okay, drink) the same thing, I even have the same supper the night before. I am a creature of habit. Last week, my scale said down .8, theirs had me up .6. Boo... This week, my scale was not kind (Chinese food) and said I was up 3 (yikes!)...WW's????? Down .2!! Are you freaking kidding me??? A 3.6 pound difference when last week was .4???'s down, I overcame Chinese food and I've moved on.
Boot camp was hard both Thursday and yesterday, although yesterday in the snow was a tad more difficult. Mainly because we couldn't find a dry spot anywhere in the park. I forget, being a downtown dweller how much snow the 'burbs actually get. Wow! But we focused on upper body (thank you, Trainer Josh...he knew I had a race today) and got our sweat on. Thursday was all about agility and speed work.
Tried something a little new for dinner last night, the Halibut stew out of Self. It was good, but I may had more to it next time. I didn't add quite so much chicken broth (too soupy then) and I ate it with a deliciously heavy Swiss Rye, schmeared with sundried tomato spread. We'll see how that holds up today.
Okay, must go change, mix my OJ racing fuel and pack up.
Race details later,

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Stuff and things

Realized that I totally forgot to say why I was out so late last night. I went to listen to this man. He is super talented, and if I could find the link for the video he did with his son learning to walk, covering the Be Happy song, I'll post it as well. Anyway, it was a CD launch, and I got to see him, his Dad (who I know through friend E.) and his wife, who used to live across the hall from me, and who I know through the acting community in Calgary. Two extremely talented people who got together and made a pair of the cutest babies ever. That's a lot coming from me! Anyway, check out his videos. His cover of At Last made me want to find a man and get married last night, just so I could dance to it.

Conquered a fear last night too...I am hugely uncomfortable entering a "bar" alone. Even if I am meeting people, it's just a thing I have. Raised that "good girls" don't hang at bars on their own, I guess. Not sure what it is, but I took a deep breath, pulled up the big-girl panties and in I went. This place was an old movie theatre back in the day (like the '20's and 30's days) and has gone through many transformations before becoming the Ironwood Stage and Grill. It's nice to see a place dedicated to promoting live music, and local musicians at that. There's a lot of talent in this town, and I'm glad they've got a place to go.

Ended up eating most of the Lentil Stew from Self magazine for lunch today, although I was still hungry afterwards. Will need to throw in some brown rice next time to help up the protein ante, since lentils need the combo to truly work as a protein. But it was quick and easy and all right, taste wise. I did pick up some halibut this week, so I'll try that stew next. It did look good. Sorry for the bad picture, but I just could not get it, the magazine and my camera to get along. This, sadly, was the best of the bunch.

Tonight was another tempo run, but again, the pathways were treacherous, so I didn't push the pace. Felt a bit like I was holding people up tonight...when will they understand that I am also a pacer...I'm just pacing myself! What ever...I run for me and me alone. If they don't like it, too darn bad. I was so tired though. Getting to bed after midnight combined with a chill setting in resulted in me getting about 3 hours of zzz's last night. But I soldiered on and finished the 10km, albeit slightly slower than my paces of last season. Again, with all the snow and ice, I don't mind going slower, if it means I'm injury-free. 10km in 1 hour and 18 minutes, average pace of 7:50/km and heart rate of 163. A tad high, but that could be a result of being tired.

Had one pint after running, and then home. Just finishing up my post, updating my training in my Running Room logs, shutting everything down and going to bed. BTW, despite last night's lateness, I still did the full night-time routine of cleaning my face, flossing, moisturizing, etc. It's a habit now.

One last note: opened the MasterCard bill this month, and all down the transactions were multiple payments to the Running Room and Events On far I've dropped just over $500 for races this year, and there's still a few left to register for. Someone was trying to talk me into a 14km trail run for my June race...tempting...never done one before. We'll see...

Okay, that's it for the night.


Tempo run and tunes

Last night was a late one...I didn't get home until well after 11pm, totally blowing my "in bed by 10pm" challenge this week. But it was for a good reason.

First the day: It was COLD in Calgary again yesterday, but at least the snow has stopped. It's an extra workout walking in, as you have to Sherpa up and over all the snow piles at the intersections and through the loose snow on the ice-covered roads. I am seriously feeling it in my butt today. Booty-burn, indeed. Food was off, as I was lazy (McDonald's on Monday did not have leftovers!) and tired, so breakfast was a veggie egg burrito (no more Chorizo (for a while, anyway)) which is just scrambled eggs, green pepper, onion, tomato and cheese in a tortilla wrap. Served with salsa, it's a yummy way to start my day. Lunch at the deli didn't appeal, so I wandered off to see if Marcello's were open again. They were not. Boo...and they have yet to reply to my query as to when they are going to reopen for business. Double boo...may have to enforce an all out Marcello's boycott! I ended up getting the spinach pie dinner at Jimmy the Greeks, which was way less points than I figured. Turns out they have nutritional information posted online, and the lunch works out to 11 points. I had it well over 16-17 when I broke it down. Yay!

Came home, noshed on some pita chips and dip and then fell asleep on the couch! Oops!!! Woke in a panic (still had time before clinic) so got up and made a fast supper from the Jump Start menu in Self. I tried the Lentil Stew. Basically it's eggplant, mushrooms, lentils, spinach, cilantro and lime juice. Sounds bland, but I added some S&P. Although I'm thinking some cumin next time would take it to the next level, but a quick look at the recipes have them all pretty "spice" free...Jillian got something against flavour?!

We were to attempt Time Trials last night, but with the recent snow and cold, it's postponed yet again as it's just too dangerous. So after the class gathered with the Half group, they did yoga instead. I am not into yoga, so I and another pacer wandered off to chat and wait for the group so we could run. Yoga in a small room with 60+ people all dressed to run outside in negative temps did not appeal at all! Once the group finished, we went out for a 5-6km tempo. Judging the pathways though, I slowed my group (okay, myself and one other runner) to steady pace, so that we didn't end up hurting ourselves. Finished a nice 5.5km run in 42 minutes, and it felt good for us both (E. has been having knee issues). Tonight is supposed to be a 10km tempo, but there were patches of ice the NHL would be happy to skate on across the whole path, so again, I'll hold us (if there's an us...could just be a me) to a steady pace, to build the mileage, not the speed.

My first (of ten) races is on Saturday (the Hypothermic Half) and I'm excited because it appears I may be running in positive temps for the first time in forever. I won't know how to dress!!! However, the race officials have had to change to course, rather drastically, and there's still many hazards out there. Asked who was going to go out ahead with a bucket of sand, but no one has volunteered. Oh well, I'm not running it for the time, just to get my head and body back into race mode. And for the brunch!! Wicked, wicked, wicked (the buttermilk biscuits worth running for ALONE!) good brunch is included afterwards.

I ate some more Lentil Stew, but am kind of hungry (I've sat here and waited since 12:18, and had some water, just to make sure I'm really hungry and not bored) so I'm going to wander downstairs and see what they've got to nosh on. I do have a whack of points left for the day (low point breakfast and lunch) so I'm not worried about going over.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Late night...missed curfew...but had fun!

Details tomorrow.


Monday, February 7, 2011

Medical update??

Of course, if you've got an appointment booked that involves you driving over 10km one way to pick someone up, return said 10+km for the appointment and then drop said person off back off 10km, only to return back to where you started, then by all means make that a day that your city gets over 20cm (8") of snow! There is a reason why I walk to work every day! I HATE TRAFFIC!!

Left work at 1:30 (after getting in at 6:30 and working through lunch) to fight the snow and traffic to go get Mom for her appointment with the doctor. Trouble is, none of us really knew what this appointment was discuss a letter from the Seniors Centre (which by our last conversation sounded like they were washing their hands of Mom) or Mom's blood work test results...guess we'll find out when we get there. The drive to her place took almost 45 minutes, which did not bode well for getting back downtown (2 blocks from where I work, BTW) but we made it. We did meet the woman that will be Mom's doctor and she seemed genuinely concerned about what was going on with the Seniors Centre and the lack of response from them. She's going to do some more digging and get back to us. And the blood work all came back okay, except Mom needs Folic acid. Which you get from fruits and vegetables...not cookies, chocolates and jelly beans. Or little pills that we picked up tonight!

Stopped by the grocery store to stock Mom up, where she announced that she wanted McDonald's for supper. We shared some fries and I had a Big Mac. With the hour shoveling job I did tonight, and the flex points, I'm okay, but want to really focus on food tomorrow. Mom also wanted to buy some cheeseburgers to freeze, for future suppers. Ewwww...not sure how they'll work out, but okay. Funny thing is by the time we got home, and unpacked the groceries, Mom asked what I wanted for about the Big Mac we just ate?! Oh, right...I'm not sure if she was hungry (couldn't finish her sandwich) because she asked two more times what was for supper. At least I know there is food in her house, and if she's hungry, she'll find it.

Came home, 5 hours after I left work, and went out to tackle the walks. It's official...we have too much snow!! The main walkway runs between two buildings, so we both push the snow out and pile it on the little patch of grass in the middle. However, that pile is now over 6' tall, and I just couldn't heave the snow up and over any more tonight. And I had a very deep pile, about 45' long to push out. For now, it is pushed up against the building. I'm hoping when it warms this week that a) it just melts or b) I can start hauling it to the front yard bit by bit. Probably will be a combination of the two. Came in nice and sweaty from the workout, and while watching Village on a Diet, I did get step one of my bedtime routine done (face washed, eye makeup removed). I just have to cream up, floss and brush and hit the sack. Made it by 10:30 last night, and I'm thinking 10:15 tonight is a good goal.

To that end, good night!


Sunday, February 6, 2011


The snow has started...I can see it flying by the window and everything is all white...again.

Walked to the store, because I want to try the Lentil & Spinach recipe in the Self magazine. Also picked up some whole wheat perogies (6pts per serving), which I boiled up while baking off sauerkraut (anything pickled rocks my world...'cept maybe feet. Ug!) with some of the farm fresh Polish sausage (5pts) on top. Given the cold and the snow, it was a perfect Sunday dinner. I also tossed a carrot, chopped up, in with the perogies, topping it with a smidgen of butter when it was done. Still tender crisp...not the mushy waste of vegetable I'm sure most of us grew up with.

I did indulge in a Reese's Peanut Butter cup - sometimes you just have to say yes to a craving - and since I ran 13km and walked to and from the store, it was points I had earned and could use. And after letting it get nice and hard in the fridge as a party in mouth!! Watched another disc of Criminal Minds and am now getting ready to wind down for the night. I will have to drive to work, so I can go and get Mom (in the storm...oh, joy) tomorrow afternoon. Good thing I have winter tires on Baby Girl.



Got up with some trepidation this morning, as the weather, she has been changing! However, the snow didn't materialize (heavy snowfall warning for tonight though) and even the temps weren't so bad at -11C (+12F) with "acceptable" wind chills of -18C (0F). I dressed to be prepared (winter skin, long sleeved tech, wind breaking jacket, tights, winter weight pants, long double lined socks), pulled on my toque and gloves and off I went.

After some dipsy-doodling around (cross into Prince's Island, loop the park, back out to the path, west to 14th St, cross river, east to Long Zoo bridge (St. George's), west to Eau Claire), we run a good 13km (12.91 officially for me or just a hair over 8 miles) long, slow pace today. My friend K. (who ran Hawaii) came down to run today, but she and the other 5-hour pacer ended up running with the other "5-hour" pacer. I think this guy actually does the 4:40 pace, but he calls himself whatever and off they went. They most certainly were not running a 5-hour slow pace. He kept coming back for me (which I HATE) so I finally told him I knew what I was doing (I was a pacer as well, after all) and that I was going the pace I should be (8:17 - perfectly acceptable for the 3rd long run of the clinic and well within the pace of 7:52 - 8:49) and that I was just fine. He's a very nice man, but I just hate feeling like I'm holding people up or having to be "taken care" of (there's the Whyte family independent streak rearing it's ugly head!). The weather didn't feel as cold as the temps indicated, and there was hardly any wind at all, so I was sadly over-dressed and feeling the heat early on. But I pushed through that, tight calves (man, they did not want to play today), heavy legs (mmmm...Chinese stir fry not the best pre-run dinner, despite brown rice), and a pair of lungs that could not decide if they were going to work or not. I soldiered on, even adding a little loop at the end (km's were shy) to finish in 1:46.

Met up with the gang and we all went over to 1886 for brunch. We run out of an area called Eau Claire (clear water), which is attached to Prince's Island. The history of the area is that the island was built by Mr. Prince, the owner of the Eau Claire Lumber Company. He built the island so that they could catch the logs being sent down the Bow River from the mountains to the sawmill. The original chimney is still in the area, as is the 1886 Buffalo Cafe, which was his original office for the lumber company. Anyway, they converted to a restaurant a million years ago (or so) and have served up a decent breakfast (and breakfast only) ever since. After a brief wait (it's always lined up on the weekends) we sat down to enjoy a hearty breakfast of eggs and whole wheat toast. I had their version of a Benny, only instead of ham and hollendaise, mine had fresh tomato slices and melted cheese. And their hash browns are real fried up chunks of potato with just the right amount of seasoning. Add a waitress that never let any of our coffee cups get empty, and it all equals a fabulous brunch out. Hey, I burned off over a thousand calories on my run today...I can enjoy a little cheese on my recovery meal!

I really should go do some running around for Mom, but since I'm picking her up for a doctor's appointment anyway, I may leave it till tomorrow. I just really want a nap, despite being in bed (lights out) at 11:30 last night. Running on the ice took it's toll on me today.

I also have to plan what to do for dinner, although I think I'm going to have a closer read through Self and see if I can't kick-start something in myself this week. That'll determine what needs to be purchased at the grocery store.

If I end up having something exciting for supper, I'll be back with photos.


Saturday, February 5, 2011

Slow day

Didn't really end up doing much, mainly due to "foggy-latent-headacheness". I did manage to do a minor repair in one of the suites (I am a force to be reckoned with, when armed with a screwdriver and hammer!), 3 loads of laundry (damn downtown businesses that don't shovel and just put down pants all look like leopard prints) and a brief walk to the post office. While a lot cooler than yesterday, it still felt good to go outside. Just hope that wind dies down in the was howling pretty good there a few times.

After a small nap on the couch, I woke up feeling even more foggy. And when foggy, what does one do? Let's see, I had bread with light cream cheese and Saskatoon berries, multigrain cheerios (dry, straight out of the box) and hunted around for other things to nosh on. Luckily I don't keep things like chips or cookies in the house, so I turned to water. That helped. Then I poured my leftover Chinese into the pot, and added some raw shrimp. Thickened with a little cornstarch, heated up the brown rice in the microwave (those Uncle Ben single serving cups are awesome) and sat down to dinner.

Loads of veggies: broccoli from the beef, and then the mixed veggies (zucchini, snow peas, carrots, mushrooms, celery and onions), although I just realized there wasn't any baby corns. Ripped off!! And I'm now thinking I should have added a tin of water chestnuts, for added crunch. But I did really like the cashews that were tossed in. They turn so soft and meaty when warmed up in the sauce. full, and drinking water in preparation for tomorrow morning's run. Not sure what route we'll be doing yet, but it appears that we'll be running in light snow, wind and cold. Remind me again why I signed up for marathon training in January?!?! At least next week's Half looks like it'll have nice weather...that's if things don't change. It does come with an awesome brunch afterwards though, so it'll be worth it, regardless of the temperatures. Last year it was cold, and after running the first wave, I went back out and directed the runners in the second wave through the course. I was a popsicle by the time I made it back in for brunch. Still worth it!'s getting close to 10. I didn't do bad Thursday night (lights were out at 10:09) and last night was right around 11:30. So we'll aim for the same tonight, as the alarm will go off at 6:30 for run club. My goal is 7+ hours a night, every night, for the next week. I can do anything for one week.


Weather head

Went to bed with it last night and it's still hanging on this afternoon, despite painkillers. A good, old-fashioned "the weather is rapidly changing" headache. For me, it starts in my sinuses, sets in behind my eyes and then takes up roots at the base of my skull. To quote Arnie "it's not a toomaw" but I do wish that it would just go away. I am feeling incredibly lethargic today as a result, and am finding it hard to do anything other than wander from the couch to the kitchen to get more coffee.

I thought Thursday's boot camp was all about the legs, but was reminded of how much ab work we did when I sneezed! I swear I almost blacked out!! So last night, just for kicks, we did even more ab work, and leg work to boot. It was hard to find a dry space (class was outside - so nice that it's not getting dark until after 6 these days) but Trainer Josh put us through our paces. Only 4 showed up for a butt-kicking, but we all put in the effort of 10, I swear. We did a circuit where we started on our mats (after a 2km-ish warm up run) with push-ups, before jumping up and sprinting a quick lane up and back. Then push-ups, drop leg flies, sprint. Then repeat, adding v-sit shoulder press, sprint, repeat, adding curls...on and on it went. Then we started to drop stuff off at the front, while adding to the end - extensions, squats, sprinters (like mountain climbers, only head up, butt down, like you're at the start of a race), holding plank...the good times ensued. The best part of the evening was the side-walking squats while doing lat raises. Then the Zombie lunges (think Michael Jackson's Thriller walk with full lunges and weights!). I think it's actually amazing that I managed to get out of bed this morning.

I did finally succumb to my Chinese food cravings, and will just say it's my duty to celebrate Chinese New Year, as it is my year (water rabbit, here) and, well, I really like Chinese. Just don't eat it a lot these days. I did may wise choices (I think), going with mixed veg and cashews, beef & broccoli (with carrots and onions), Shanghai noodles with 3 kinds of seafood (shrimp, scallops and squid) and my personal favourite, Salt & Pepper Squid. I ate all of that last night, had the rest of the noodles for lunch this afternoon and will mix the veggies and beef together, along with some brown rice for supper tonight. Yum. Although the salt content was a little high (combined with more salmon and tuna sashimi for lunch yesterday), as I'm feeling a tad on the puffy side today. Will have to increase my water content, although I did have over 3 litres yesterday alone.

going to go for a little walk in the snow...yes, it has started to fall here in Calgary and they are calling for up to 20cm (another 8") by Monday. The temp has been steadily falling all day, although it appears to be holding at 0C (32F) right now. I am so looking forward (insert sarcastic tone here) to tomorrow morning's run in -17C (about 0F) and snow. Took 4 days for my quads to get over last Sunday's romp in the snow. But my goal is to hit and maintain a good Sunday pace between 8:00 and 8:30/km. It's a little slower than the 5-hr pace, but perfect for the conditions.

Off to medicate some more and then to the post office to pick up my season's 1-5 of Criminal Minds. It was an impulse buy, but I do love that show. Think I know what I'm doing tonight!


Thursday, February 3, 2011

Dueling Digital Devils

According to my scale this morning, I was down .8 from my weight (at home) last Thursday. Nothing changed as far as the morning goes (WW "uniform" of light dress pants, t-shirt, glass of milk and a latte), yet their devil had me up .6.'s only .6, but still...a little consistency, please! There are times that there is a 3 pound difference between my scale at home and theirs (and I use a WW digital scale) yet today, the difference was .4. No point's done, it's recorded, I've moved on.

Flash back to run club last night: The paths were still a tad slick in places, and we had a 10km Tempo to churn out. I actually had people running with me last night, although one admitted that she "stars slow" before finding her stride...she left us at about the halfway mark. We continued on, at a bit slower tempo pace than we should. I just haven't got my "sea" legs back, it seems, but I am working on it. However, just after the 7km mark, my body said it was done for the night. And as someone who has been running/booting for quite some time now, I have learned to listen closely to my body. So, giving the other two the option to join me (they continued on) I crossed over the river and finished just under 8km in an hour. I had eaten during the day, and even had dinner before I left (lemon egg pasta with chicken, this week - see...same Wednesday meal as last too...darn digital devils...moving on...I swear!) but I was just beat.

Because of the run (and lack of energy), I came to the decision that I have to start another 21-day habit-forming challenge...flossing - 2+ years and going strong...night-time make-up/facial routine - 50+ days and going why not this? Sleeping! What a concept!!! So, my 21 day challenge will be to be IN BED by 10 pm (oops...cutting it close tonight) and 11pm on Friday/Saturday, so that I can do my best to get 7+ hours of sleep a night. I sit up all night, putter around, go to bed after 11, fall asleep around midnight and then when the alarm goes off at 5:30, I do not want to get out of bed. It has to stop...after all, more sleep will mean more success with weight-loss (can't eat while sleeping! LOL!!) and running. Both of which I will succeed with this year!

After meeting (which, oddly enough, as about staying on program and getting over any humps or set-backs) I went to my usual deli, only to find out it was closed. AGAIN! They've been closed all week, without any explanations. Sucks! I was thinking Chinese (Gung Hay Fat Choy, to all my Asian readers) and the deli would have fixed that, as I would fill up on salad and maybe a piece of ginger beef to help with the craving. I ended up getting some really fresh salmon sashimi (yes, the raw stuff without all the rice to get in the way!), a dynamite roll, edamame and miso soup instead.

Came home, changed and got my sweat on at boot camp. It was another leg-a-licious leg-a-thon, with hundreds of squats and lunges on the menu! And just enough arms and core to make sure they didn't feel left out. Hobbled out after the hour, came home, threw a chicken breast that has been marinating in evoo and dry Epicure Herb & Garlic dip mix for the last day or so into my toaster oven, along side a pot of fingerling potatoes, acorn squash, Brussels sprouts and carrots, all tossed with evoo and Epicure Fines Herbs. Set to roast, changed and went off to fix the shower in one of the suites. I feel so like Schneider some days! Came back, and enjoyed my roasted goodness plate with a side of cherry tomatoes. The chicken was SO GOOD! Will definitely do that again...moist and tender. Yum.

Just finished a bowl of Multigrain cheerios with UVAB, as I was still feeling hungry (when hungry, and yes, ask yourself the question "Am I hungry?", then eat) but am now completely satisfied.

Okay, must shut down if I'm off to floss and primp and go to t-11 minutes and counting.


Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Someone stop me!! I registered for the Rocky Mountain Soap Company Women's Run on May 14th...another Half. So, between now and August 31st, I'm registered for 2 10k's, 5 halfs and 2 full marathons. With June and July wide open (read: nothing yet), that number is likely to change.
Oh well...I'd just end up spending the money on something else.

Last night time trials were postponed, due to the unsafe path conditions. It "warmed" up to -6C, so that part would have been fine, but the paths were still covered with snow and ice and you just don't want a bunch of people tearing around on it like idiots, all trying to a 3-hr marathon finish pace, regardless of their abilities. Instead we talked about winter running, and what to wear, then went out and did a 6km temp. Actually just over 7km by my Garmin, and it was more of a steady for me. Still getting my running legs back...never, ever take time off from running/workouts. I'm still paying for it. But I will get it back soon enough, and rock out those upcoming races. Yes, I will!!

Did some measuring last night, although on March 1st, I'll do this in the morning, not after supper and such. Haven't really lost any inches...and why must the Weight Watcher's site do everything in pounds but measurements in cm's?! I do not know any woman who would be proud to say "I have a 104cm waist". It just sounds wrong. And updating your measurements in the site is close to painful. Once you figure out exactly which screen to do it on. But crisis averted and measurements updated.

Finished lunch (ham sammie, leftover KD, very large carrots) and am now sitting here trying to stay awake. I really need to go to bed at 10. Just once...


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