Sunday, February 26, 2012

Scotiabank Vancouver Half - Week 6 Recap

Wooooohoooooooooo!  Yeeeeehaaaaaa!   I feel sooooo good right now.  Hubs and I went out this morning to do our long run, and this week we switched it up and did it on Sunday rather than our usual Saturday run (Hubs is working Saturdays this month).  Now I don't know what it was...I've been doing lots of leg work with the NROLFW, and maybe my legs are just stronger?  Maybe it's the killer hill and speedwork that we've been doing in bootcamp with J?  Or...could it have been the five caramel Tim Tams I ate yesterday?   I know, I know...five Tim Tams, Wong?  What up with that?  Well, it was our free day yesterday and I was maybe a little too free with the goodies and couldn't stop myself after one of these delicious goodies.  Anyways, we headed out at around 7am for a 16K trot through the neighbourhood and the weather was absolutely perfect.  Dry, sunny, cold and crisp...I didn't feel tired at all and once I was completely warmed up by around 6K, I felt amazing.  Light on my feet, fresh and full of energy, I blasted through the run with a 5:54/km average split in 1:34:30.  I'm in such a great mood and totally feeling the runner's high today!

Sunday - 30 mins treadmill/weights

Monday - bootcamp

Tuesday - rest

Wednesday - bootcamp
Hills and sprints with J.  Still hard but I didn't feel myself wanting to curl up into the fetal position after this one.

Thursday - rest

Friday - 30 mins treadmill, weights
Yowwwza.  This was my last workout on Stage 1 of NROFLW so I upped my weights...and man, am I ever feeling it today!  My legs were super stiff all weekend so I did a fast and hard HIIT bike workout on Saturday to try and ease up some of the soreness.

Saturday - 30 mins HIIT stationery bike

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Scotiabank Vancouver Half - Week 5 Recap

There's something going around these here parts and it's not stopping anytime soon.  It's spreading like wildfire and it's getting to become incredibly contagious...and I love it! 

Lately a lot of people I know have been bitten by the exercise bug and I don't know why, but I just get so excited for them and love, love, love hearing all about it.  In some ways, I'm probably a lot more excited for them than they are because I truly enjoy seeing their progress, hearing how they're doing, or getting excited for them when they reach milestones.  My friend V just recently started working out with a personal trainer, and I tell ya, I practically did the happy dance (actually I think I did do a little chair dance!) when she first told me and we spent the whole time we were together chatting about what she was doing and what her goals were.  As I've said before, I feel very strongly about exercise and healthy eating...while it may not be a panacea for absolutely everything, it will definitely help a lot of things.  I think a piece of why I get so hopped up is because I love seeing people experience what a difference that eating better and exercising can make in their quality of life.  V has been doing this for a month now and already totally feels the difference in her energy levels, her quality of sleep has improved and she's enjoying seeing the scale move down 10 pounds.  In the end, ya gotta help yourself because no one else is gonna do it for you, so I'm so stoked and proud of V that she's making the change. 

Oh this was supposed to be a workout recap, right?  Ha!  I got a little swept away by V's here goes:

Sunday - 30 mins speedwork/weights
Yes!  I got my first bit of speedwork in...I did some fast intervals on the treadmill and then did some weights.  I'm almost done Phase 1 of the NROLFW...I know, taken me forever, right?  I haven't followed it fully since you're supposed to be doing it a minimum of twice a week and I've been doing it only once...but now that the run clinic is done I can fit in another weight session during the week.  I do love the program though and even with the sporadic sessions, I can see and feel a difference in my upper body.  Look out, Linda Hamilton.

Monday - bootcamp
Killer class with J.  See my last entry.  I almost died. 

Tuesday - rest

Wednesday - bootcamp
Another killer class with J.  He's teaching Monday and Wednesday again next week and I'm girding my loins to have the snot kicked out of me.

Thursday - run clinic
Last session of the clinic!  We did a bunch of work with the rubber bands and I gotta say...this whole form thing is really, really hard.  I thought I was getting it and I can see glimpses of what I'm supposed to feel and do, but this class I felt like I was back at the beginning again and my body wasn't cooperating with me.  It's a lot to learn in 6 weeks and I'm just going to keep on practicing and trying.  And of course, am for sure signing up for the next level as we were watching the intermediate group just before our class, and they looked great.  Here's hoping Marilyn can make a silk purse out of sow's ear.  Sigh.

Friday - rest day
Poor Hubs....he had a doozer of a cold, and I think I was totally fighting it off.  Thursday I wasn't feeling great so decided that I'd take a rest day on Friday.  Totally the right thing to do, as I felt way better on Saturday.

Saturday - 10K treadmill run
Yup.  I'm a weather was raining cats and dogs and the wind was kicking up so I decided to run on the treadmill.  I totally wasn't in the mood and the couch was beckoning to me, but I had to remind myself that exercise isn't negotiable...I wouldn't skip brushing my teeth or showering, and that's how I look at exercise...and in the end, I had an awesome run.  I never regret working out but always regret jamming!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Scotiabank Vancouver Half - Week 4 Recap

Zingzingzing!  That was me all day today - partially because I managed to catch some extra zzzz's last night (poor Hubs has a man cold so we headed to bed early), but mostly because I had a super kickass workout this morning at bootcamp that just got me all jazzy and energized for the whole day.  Now I'm not gonna lie...when I saw who was teaching bootcamp this morning I was filled with a bit of dread...not because I don't like the instructor (quite the opposite!) but because I knew I was gonna get my hiney kicked to kingdom come and I had me a case of the Mondays.  We started off with ten ten-second all out, gut-busting, barf-inducing, leave-it-all-out-there high intensity sprints up a hill that rocked the Mondays out of our legs...I think I may have even seen a white light at one point...ha!  Oh, and did I mention that our bootcamp instructor J is well known all over town as an amazing running clinic instructor?  A lot of his workouts include intense intervals which I'm thrilled about because it can only help my running.  After practically puking up a lung, we did sets of multiple exercises like burpees, pushups, mountain climbers, etc., mixed with more hills or stairs.  Today was one of those workouts where it was tough going, but I felt absolutely amazing when I was love love the exercise afterglow!

So workouts last week...

Sunday - 20 mins stationery bike
I know, I know.  No speed and no weights done.  I started to do a NROLFW workout but could feel my back not feeling quite right (I'd just been to the chiropractor on Friday) so I decided to be safe than sorry and not risk pulling something.  In my defense, I sucked a little less this week and did some speedwork on the treadmill and did a full lifting session...woohoo!

Monday - bootcamp

Tuesday - rest

Wednesday - bootcamp
J really likes them hills I tell ya.  At least I don't have to do any hillwork in my training plan since I seem to be getting a pretty hefty dose at bootcamp!

Thursday - running clinic
Second to last class...and I think I'm getting it.  Marilyn was a bit pickier on our form and really tweaked our body positioning.  Things are starting to click and were starting to really get a taste of the effortless running that Marilyn is trying to teach us. 

Friday - bootcamp

Saturday - 10K run
Oh le sigh.  Not sure what it was, but my legs felt super heavy and I had no endurance or energy...I could barely run a full kilometre without wanting to stop.  I decided to not fight how I was feeling and used this opportunity to practice what I was learning in my running clinic.  Marilyn had suggested that we run short intervals using proper form, and then stop and reset our posture when we could feel ourselves starting to get sloppy.  I'm sure I looked weird stopping and starting...but you know what?  When I did get into a really good groove with my form, when I checked my watch I was running at just below a 5:00 min/km pace.  What?!  I've never seen that kind of pace without feeling like I'm all out sprinting.  So I don't lose what we've learned, I think I might head out on Sunday for a short run to practice some more.  Year of Speed, I've got you in my sights now.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

10K for Sherry

Yesterday I ran for Sherry Arnold.  I thought a lot about Sherry on my run...mostly because I was running solo (Hubs had to work) and before Sherry, I would never have given it a second thought.  So I have to thank Sherry for shaking me out of my complacent ways, and making me more aware of running safety.  Because could have easily been any one of us, as horrible that is to think about.  I've changed my cavalier (or shall we say dumbass?) ways, and now carry a cell phone, outlined my route to Hubs (I ran around the neighbourhood, the only route that Hubs feels safe letting me run on my own) and the minute that I was home I had to text Hubs to let him know.  I pay way more attention to my surroundings and look at cars and people as they pass - not trying to be ultra paranoid and thinking everyone is about to do me harm, but just being more aware all around.  So...thank you Sherry.

I've been following the groundswell of support that has risen up through social media and it's been pretty amazing - I've seen tons of postings in bloggieland and on Facebook, and was tracking this through Twitter and I have to say, I've never been more proud to be a part of the running community.  Informal runs were formed and people were running all over the world, as far away as Thailand!  Donations have been coming in to support Sherry's family, and apparently there were over 20,000 printings of Sherry's race bib off Beth's link over at Shut Up and Run.  Just gives me hope that there's way more good in the world than evil.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The Best Pasta Dish

I love my physiotherapist.  Love love love her.  Love Her!  I went to see her this past week for a sore shoulder and I swear, whenever I'm  in there it's like two friends catching up but we only have half an hour to cram it all in.  Now don't get me wrong...she's an awesome physio.  She listens, she'll spend the extra time with me to help me perfect my exercises, and her enthusiasm for what she does is infectious...I feel like she really cares about how I'm doing.  We must sound crazy when we're together because all you can hear is chatting and laughing punctuated by groans and muffled cries as she goes nuts on me with the IMS needles!  Anyways, we have a ton in common...including the fact that we both have food sensitivities (hers is gluten, mine is dairy and eggs) and we both are avid followers of this great Canadian vegan blog called Oh She Glows.  As we chatted about recipes, I'd told her that I was actually trying this delish sounding recipe that night for this creamy avocado pasta that Angela from Oh She Glows had posted, and would let her know how it was.

Oh. My. God.

This stuff is to die for.  Crazy to die for.  Delicious.  Creamy.  Rich.  Simple to make, it took me maybe 10 minutes to whiz the sauce together, so dinner was on the table in about 20 minutes.  Creamy, garlicky with hints of lemon and basil...Hubs loved it and hoovered it down in seconds flat, so this recipe is definitely husband approved.  The recipe says that the basil is optional, but I think it actually makes the dish so I'd include it because it makes the dish taste fresh and summery.  We had a bit left over after dinner and I kept sneaking back to the pot for bites. 

Try this recipe if you love avocadoes...I predict a worldwide shortage soon once the word gets out. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Year of Speed Scotiabank Vancouver - Week 3 Recap

Plans are made to be broken, right?  Hubs and I always try to plan for a Spring and Fall race to keep us motivated with our training, and we'd decided that BMO Vancouver Half and Goodlife Victoria Half were our target races for this year.  Well...turns out that the BMO Vancouver is the day before we leave to go to Hawaii, and we're flying out at 6am in the morning.  Now normally this wouldn't be that big of a deal...but because we live on an island and early May could still see some storms...we didn't want to risk NOT being able to get back to Victoria on the ferry.  Sooooo...we've decided to add in the Times Colonist 10K race at the end of April, and will do the Scotiabank Vancouver Half at the end of June.  At first I was a bit sad as this is an anniversary year for BMO and they were doing some awesome point to point race this year that took you through Vancouver...but then I'd heard that Scotiabank was also pretty scenic and slightly downhill.  Woohoo!  Even better.  On my ever growing list of to dos is to revise our training plan - I picked up a running book by Hal Higdon the other day on racing 5K and 10Ks, so want to read that first before I put anything together.  In the meantime, we're going to still continue building on our half marathon distance as it'll only help our endurance for the 10K.

Sunday - strength training
*cough*  My bad...skipped speedwork this week too.  *ahem*

Monday - bootcamp

Tuesday - rest

Wednesday - 30 minutes treadmill

Thursday - run clinic
I think I'm starting to get what my instructor is talking about now.  This class was kinda the "aha!" moment...she had us running up and down hills using the revised form that she was teaching, and then had us run up and down the hills using our old crappy form...and I could really feel the difference in ease and effort.  Hey, I'll do anything it takes to run faster with less injury, and am already on the waitlist for the intermediate class.

Friday - bootcamp

Saturday - 14K run
OK, I dunno what it is but lately I feel like I'm always much to do but not enough time to get everything I want to get done in a day!  Every night there's something that needs to get done, and important stuff (such as blogging and reading blogs!) has fallen by the wayside.  Le sigh.  Anyways, I was looking forward to Saturday though, because it was just gonna be a me and Hubs kinda day with no chores or errands or any yucky stuff like that to kill our day.  We slept in a bit this week again...but unlike last week, I was kinda excited to get outside because it was supposed to have been a beautiful day, and I wasn't disappointed!  Sunny but cool, it was perfect running weather...just gorgeous.  I tried to keep a fairly quick pace at for the majority of the run, but slowed down at the end and just enjoyed being outside in the beautiful weather, breathing in the fresh air and hanging with Hubs. is good.