30 April 2011

Guess My Time, Win A Prize!

Race day is tomorrow!  Still haven't freaked out, but hopefully it won't go down like it did in October.  As my sister-in-law would say, "WOOSA."  

So, I thought it would be fun to see if any one can guess my finish time.  The only goal I have is to beat my previous time of 5:07:18.  Click here to see the race report from my first marathon. 

Things to consider:
  • This is my second marathon (I know what to expect).
  • I know the route really well.
  • I've trained about the same as last time (3-4 runs/week).
  • Weather should be good.
  • My best half marathon time is 2:11:38, but it was last June.
I honestly don't know what I'll give away, but I work at a sporting goods store so you can guess where it'll come from!

The person closest to my CHIP TIME will win!  Entries will be accepted until race start, 7:30am PST Sunday.  Winner will be announced whenever I can muster up the energy to turn on the computer and figure it all out!

** You do not have to be a follower of this blog to enter!  So, real life friends who came over from facebook, you could win too... **

29 April 2011

It's Still Funny

I posted this video way back at the start of August last year.  It has been my most popular post and I swear that someone looks at it at least once a day.  If you haven't seen the whole episode where Barney runs a marathon on How I Met Your Mother you should look it up.  It's funny and very identifiable if you've run a full!

Good luck to those of you who are running this weekend!  I look forward to reading about your experiences in Vancouver, Eugene and where ever else you may be.

28 April 2011

Three Things Thursday

1.  I'm still holding out hope for good weather on Sunday.  They're saying it will be sunny and 14C/57F.  I'm a little anxious about the rain forecast for Monday and that it might decide to show up a day early.  Fingers crossed!


Chance of showers
  • 10°C
  • 60%


Chance of showers
  • 12°C
  • 4°C
  • 30%


A mix of sun and cloud
  • 13°C
  • 5°C


  • 14°C
  • 5°C


  • 13°C
  • 9°C


A mix of sun and cloud
  • 15°C
  • 6°C


A mix of sun and cloud
  • 14°C
  • 7°C

2.  As much as I love a good wedding I, on Colin's wise recommendation, will not be staying up to see "Wills and Kate" get married.  Something about getting a good night's rest before the marathon and all that.  But I really should.  I stayed up with my mum to see Charles marry Diana in 1981.  Granted, I was 16 months old and don't remember it, but it's kind of a tradition... 

I'll watch the ceremony on replay.  I can do with out the "insightful" commentary from the likes of  TLC, etc.  Thankfully we have access to the BBC - it seems more official in a British accent anyways.  Like what matters in all weddings all I want to see is her dress and maybe the flowers (phbpht, love and commitment).  Can't say that I'll be buying the official coin releases from the Canadian Mint (remember we're still a Commonwealth country), especially since the 2 together would cost $130!

3.  The Canucks squeaked into the second round on Tuesday with a 2-1 OT win against the Chicago Blackhawks!    

Our last clinic session was supposed to be held tonight (no run) so it's been moved from the store to the nearest pub to watch game 1 against Nashville and maybe chat a little about what to do after the race is over...

27 April 2011

Almost Wordless Wednesday

Here's the bear we saw on the way home last weekend:

Colin figures that we weren't much more than 20ft away...  Now you know why I was telling him to drive!

25 April 2011

Monday Musings: Holiday Weekend Edition

1. Remember how I said I had a 16km race pace run to do on Friday?  Well, I did the run.  That's about as good as it got.  There was no race pace.  There was barely a steady pace going on.  Here is the not so fun recap of it:
  • When deciding to do a race pace run of any distance make sure that you:
    • Do not stay in the car for 5 hours prior to your run.  That was the time it took us to get from our house to my in-laws place.  We did stretch our legs quite a few times - we have a potty-training preschooler after all - but there was a fair amount of sitting.
    • Do not forget that you are gaining altitude.  We gained about 1300ft and didn't give ourselves time to acclimate.  We remembered our run last summer as being so much more enjoyable.  Probably because we ran a couple days after arriving.  Friday we were both sucking wind within the first 10 minutes.
    • Do not run on a fairly full stomach.  We ran about 3 hours after lunch, but it didn't help.  I can't regret the two open faced tuna melts (they were fabulous!).  I can only regret the feelings of nausea they caused for much of my run.
    • Do not run in the afternoon.  My head said, "Oh, 15C, that's not too hot.  It's nice and sunny, too."  My body said, "You just ran away from all the wind and shade.  You're over-dressed with those tights, but thanks for the t-shirt.  At least you brought water.  And, yeah, 15C is hot when you've made me run in RAIN for the last 4 months!"
  • Other tips when out on a run:
    • Do not pick up out of place produce.  Sure we were visiting the fruit stand capital of Canada.  However, nothing is in season and oranges don't grow there.  So we left the suspiciously shiny navel orange on the side of the road.
    • Do not let dogs that are following you see your fear.  Colin was certain that the hound dog that followed us (he sauntered along so I can't exactly call it chasing) was just lonely.  I'm sure that I saw teeth when I turned back to look at him.  Between feeling queasy and not wanting to run away even if I could that dog took the opportunity to stay with us for about a kilometre.  Fun times.  Eventually I told him to go away, that we weren't "his" and that we weren't coming back that way.  
    • Do not follow your husband when he wants to back track a few feet to see what's on the side of the road.  I still don't think we determined what it was.  It was a carcass of sorts, but if it was roadkill or a dump site we're not sure.
    • Do know where you are going.  We had a vague idea (it's very hard to get lost there), but knowing which streets led out to the highway would have been reassuring.
    • Do know where accessible bathrooms are.  Hotter than expected weather meant more fluids consumed.  Not good for this girl with an admittedly tiny bladder.  The problem with out of season fruit is that there is no tree cover (and I'd feel bad about relieving myself on someone's apple tree).  We passed by some outhouses, but it was the port-o-potty rental place so they weren't available to use.  Thankfully the corner store we ran by was actually open on the stat holiday.  I think it was actually his house attached to the store, but he was nice enough to let me use it.
    • Do not accidentally shut off your watch/gps and then have your running partner pace you.  When you run different paces it sucks to have to ask how fast you're going and if you can please slow down...
    • Do force yourself to rehydrate at the end.  I didn't really want that G2 (kind of thought it wouldn't stay down), but felt so much better for it afterwards.  
2.  The Easter Bunny spoiled Spud rotten this year hitting both his grandparents' house as well as his own.  No almost 4 year old needs to collect over 40 eggs.  Spud has turned into a pretty hard-core egg finder.  He's still convinced that there are more at our house.

3.  We saw a black bear on the way home in Manning Park.  It went kind of like this:

Me: You might want to slow down.  It looks like there's traffic up ahead.

Colin: Okay.  Oh, the cars are stopped to look at that bear.

Me: Are you going to pull over?  Your camera's in the back seat. (Note: Nikon D200 with 70-200mm zoom lens... or, rather, a big ass camera that looks like a gun to a bear).

We wake Spud up from his nap so he can see a real bear.

Colin: Yeah.  Can you open your window?  I can't get out of the car.

Me: I guess.  (Note: leary tone of voice used.  Borrowed my dad's new, but basic, Toyota Corolla for drive so only had crank windows).  

Colin starts shooting pictures.  Noise starts to attract bear, who starts to walk towards our car!

Me: Um, can you put the camera away now?  I'm not too comfortable with how close it's getting.


Me: Can you please put it away?


Me:  PUT IT AWAY!!!  I'm rolling up the window now...

We drive away.

Me: Do you really think that was very bear aware of you?

Colin: Well, I didn't feed the bear or get out of the car, so, yeah...

After that Spud kept asking if we could go into the woods to find a family of bears to say hi to.  I'll post a picture of it on Wednesday so you can see how big it was.  It might have only just come out of hibernation, but it was still pretty darn big.

4.  The Canucks lost game 6 yesterday.  I listened to it on the radio on the way home and then stood in front of the tv having minor heart palpitations during overtime.  Thankfully I was doing laundry when the Hawks scored.  After being up 3 games to 0 it's going to game 7 tomorrow.  I hold out hope as a fan, but not too highly.  *Sigh*.

5. Only a few more days until marathon #2!  The long range forecast is for sun/clouds and a high of 15C.  That would be great, but I'll believe it when I see it.  Be prepared for daily updates.

21 April 2011

Three Things Thursday

1.  Colin and I have a 16km/10mi race pace run to do this Friday or Saturday.  We am going out of town to visit his parents for Easter.  They live in a town that could be termed "Podunkville, British Columbia".  So, my options are:
  • to run 8km out and back on the highway - boring and there's the chance of being hit by a car, truck, or big horned sheep (and my mum might kill me not be too fond of that option).
  • to run a big loop around town like we did last summer.  Pretty, but there are lots of hills.  Not conducive to keeping at pace and the only real hill in the race is going over a bridge.  Might be counter-productive.
  • to run around town as it is almost exactly 4km to run a square loop.  Repeat 4 times.  While this will be the most boring route EVER I think I'll have to take it.  Did I mention that Colin and I don't run the same pace?  Yeah, we're not even close - my race pace is his steady...  So it would probably be best to be at least somewhat close together.    
2.  I need to start thinking about what to wear on race day.  While I'd love to have new pretty clothes that's just not going to happen.  I'll be wearing what I've been training in even though I am (and I'm sure all my friends are) sick of seeing the same shirts.  The long range forecast is so far calling for rain.  However, I'm not counting on anything until the day before or even the morning of.  I'm leaning toward shorts with my Zensah compression sleeves and a tee shirt.  I can always wear my throw away top for as long as necessary.  Mostly I want to be able to wear the sleeves because they are neon yellow and I might have a chance of having more photos taken of me. J 

3.  An Easter-ish conversation with Spud:

Me: Do you want to see the cake Bramma brought us?
Spud: I already did.
Me: No, you didn't.  Come over and look.  It's a chocolate bundt cake.
Spud: Oohh, I thought you said she brought a bunny cake (disappointed whine).

He really was quite upset...    

20 April 2011

Marathon Thoughts

A friend posted this on Facebook and, as I only have 11 days until marathon #2, I thought it was both appropriate and pretty darn funny.

19 April 2011


Totally forgot to mention in my last post that Colin and I both found stuff on our last long run.

One of our runners found an unopened Cran-Razz Clif Shot Bloks (Colin's fuel of choice).  I said I'd carry it until I could ask if it belonged to anyone running with our group, but there were no takers.  Since I had it in my pack for about 22 of the 24km I ran I figured it was mine to keep. 

When we got to the car Colin remembered to tell me that he found a Nathan fuel bottle (from a belt) on the trail.  It had a few rocks in it, but nothing that couldn't be washed out.  He's excited because it's an 8oz. bottle and fits perfectly in his bag's pocket.

Hopefully these didn't belong to the same runner!  I'd be choked if I lost either of them.  What's the best thing you've found on a run?

18 April 2011

Monday Musings

→  Congratulations to all my friends (in real life and online) who completed the Boston Marathon today!  I hope all of you had an amazing experience whether it was the race of your dreams or not.  I can't wait to hear all about it!

→  I ran my last long-ish run on Sunday (23km/14mi).  Thankfully the weather was great - sun, cloud, and a little bit of wind.  I didn't have any fueling issues so I'm pretty confident for race day.  I felt a little sluggish, but I'm thinking that it was due to running on pea gravel for quite a bit of the run and my legs weren't used to it.

→  It's TAPER TIME!!!  Less than 2 weeks to go to race day.  I'm thankful that I've been through this before and understand that Taper Madness is a real affliction.  I've already started to have crazy dreams.  The one last night had me running the first half of my marathon on a treadmill (I've never run on one at all...).  Then the next day I had to run the remainder of the race, but there was something to do with trains, a shopping centre downtown, and multiple running friends.  I kind of wish I could remember it accurately.  I'm sure that the paranoia of becoming sick will kick in soon as well.

→  I missed my blogging anniversary (blogiversary?) a couple of days ago.  As of 15 April it's been a year since I started rambling on here.  Thanks to everyone who stops by (more than once!) and takes the time to read and comment on things that I'm not sure have much value.  I know how much other people's blogs have helped me out and inspired me and if I've done that for even one of you that's awesome!  I'd love to promise some sort of giveaway to celebrate, but you shouldn't hold your breath...  Eventually I'll save enough pennies to do something HUGE.  You'll just have to stop by once in a while to see if it ever happens. ☺

15 April 2011

It's Game Day!

Go Canucks!*
* If you're a Chicago Blackhawks fan, I'm sorry.

11 April 2011

Zombie Feet

Or How To Be Able To Refer To A 32km/20mi Long Run As Awesome Even Though It Was Pouring Rain The Whole Time...

This past Sunday was the final extra long run before the beginning of taper.  I've done 32km before so I knew that I was capable of the distance.  What I was unsure of this time around was the weather.  Here is my facebook status from Saturday night:

Colin had gone to a friend's birthday party on Friday night and came home late-ish.  You know you're old/an athlete when 11:30 is late.  Of course we chatted for a bit and watched some tv and then we figured we should go to bed when it was 12:30.  Nothing like getting about 6 and a half hours sleep before a long run.  Since my mind never wants to shut down once I'm in bed I decided to visualize my run route.  Kind of like counting sheep for runners, I guess.  It was actually quite beneficial.  I got to about 21km before I fell asleep.  At 2am Spud got up and moved to the couch.  I started up the visualization where I left off and finished the run before dozing off again.

We woke up 10 minutes after our first alarm (yes, we set multiples) to the sound of rain on the windows.  Turns out Environment Canada was pretty spot on.  Great.  That made me want to get out of bed...  I decided to go with "better warm and soaked" then "be dry for the first 25 minutes and then have the rain jacket be useless because the water-proofing is no match for this rain."  It was definitely the better choice.  I ran out of time before I'd had time to make oatmeal for breakfast (my usual) and ended up having a bowl of Kellog's Vector (Colin's usual).  It worked out really well and my stomach wasn't angry at me for switching it up.

Colin laughed at me when we got to the store because I ran from the car to the door.  I figured there was no use getting even more wet than necessary.  I didn't want to be cold before I'd even begun.  I made sure that I had printed out the route (and covered it in lots of box tape) prior to the run.  

My pacing was pretty good for this run.  I tuned my iPod to my local rock station and happily listened to the "90s Brunch" for 3-1/2 hours.  I made sure that I didn't try to keep up with people I knew were faster than me.  For the most part I was running between groups, but that was okay.  My final overall pace was 7:05/km and that included my 1 minute walk breaks every 20 minutes.

This was a great run for me because:
  • I dressed perfectly for the weather.  People driving by probably wondered a) why I was out in the rain and b) why I was out in the rain without a jacket, but I was warm.
  • My stomach didn't give me any heck.  I actually fueled really well.  Fish and rice for dinner on Saturday, Vector for breakfast and GUs on the hour during my run.  After the first GU I had dates and raisins every 1/2 hour, however, I think I still might use meds on race day just so I have no TMI surprises...
  • I visualized the run.  I know I only did it to keep from worrying about nothing, but it totally worked out for me.  Definitely going to do this for race day!
  • I wasn't trying to keep up with anyone.  I chatted when I was with people, but knew when to slow down and let them leave me behind.  
  • My music rocked (reliving my youth and all that).  I've found that having the DJ and commercials actually allows me to zone out.  Not knowing what songs are coming up helps me out too.  I'm not waiting for a certain song to come on to get me motivated.
  • No blisters.  Score!
Things to note when running in the rain:
  • Don't worry about getting wet.  Seems obvious, but give in to the inevitable.  The earlier you embrace the fact that you will have extra cushioning in your shoes from all the water the better. 
  • Use some sort of body lubricant.  I have used Body Glide in the past, but haven't been using it lately.  I won some Chamois Butt'r from Kevin at Half Tri-ing a while back and it's been great.  I don't ride a bike and technically it's for the inside of your shorts, but it works really well for feet!  Chafing was the number one complaint from group members, Colin and I included.  It's also good to remember where you've chafed in the past and prepare... I totally forgot that I chafe on my torso directly under my hrm strap (due to my backpack's chest strap).  
  • Injinji socks keep your toes warm.  Each of my toes was in a little cocoon and it was wonderful.
  • Do not take your gloves off if at all possible.  Unfortunately I had to otherwise the toilet paper would have just stuck to my hand.  My hands were freezing from the time I struggled to put them back on at 16km until I was finished.
  • Your shoes will not be nice and white when you return.  Why I was dodging puddles and mud is beyond me.  My feet were soaked, but I really didn't want brown shoes.  Besides, the rain washed most of the mud away anyways.
  • Be prepared for idiot drivers to splash you.  Luckily I was able to only get one small splash from the knee down.  Others weren't so fortunate.  If you are a driver please be considerate and at least try to avoid the puddles.  If you don't please be prepared to be cursed out and have rude gestures made in your general direction.
  • Bring a towel if you've run from your car or a store.  It might be as wet as you are after you've attempted to dry off, but it can be used as an inferior blanket as well.
  • Don't expect to look good at the end.  Drowned rat immediately came to mind.  Colin called me Salacious Crumb when I took my hair out of it's ponytail...
Yup, we're nerdy like that...
The Ugly of the run:
  • My feet.  I get this odd type of eczema on my hands and feet if I get too hot that makes little blisters under my skin and then the skin eventually falls off.  Gross, I know.  This happened last summer and then again a few weeks back.  Things looked to be getting better recently - like all the peeling was finished.  Then I added in a 3-1/2 hour foot soak.  Be thankful that even I don't want to see pictures of it again...  The only thing I thought to describe the way they looked was zombie feet, hence the title of this post.  Aren't you glad you read the whole thing just to find that out?  

08 April 2011

A Joke For Your Weekend

As I've mentioned before Spud is almost 4.  His favourite new thing is to come up with jokes.  Here's today's offering, which I think is pretty good (and makes much more sense than most of them).*  

Spud: Knock, knock.

Me: Who's there?

Spud: Door closed.  That's why I knocked!  Ahahahahahah!  That's a JOKE!

* I'm his mother so I'm quite biased.  Also, I can't remember how to tell a joke to save my life so any joke is a good one.

07 April 2011

Three Things Thursday

1.  I'm finally getting a run in tonight.  It'll be my first since Sunday (shh, don't tell my running friends...).  It's not that I don't want to run.  I'm a stay at home mum so I have the time.  I just have ZERO motivation to run when I have to do it on my own.  My running partner cancelled on Monday since her little guy was sick.  Totally understand that!  But I just couldn't drag myself and Spud out in the pouring rain.  Tuesday... rain again.  Wednesday... no rain, but when I have a speed workout on the schedule I know it won't get done if I'm pushing +60lbs.  Lots of self-defeating thoughts this week.  In case you're wondering why I don't just go out on my own in the evenings Colin was working late all those nights (I'll spare you my thoughts on that).

2.  My final 32km/20mi run is on Sunday!  Hip hip hooray!  And Eek!  That means taper is just around the corner... oh, and a little 42.2km run too.

3.  Spud made me this sculpture this morning:

He keeps making me "presents" for my birthday that I have to leave on my bedside table.  Unfortunately we have a bit of a timeline/3 -1/2 year old logic issue.  My birthday was on 17 March.  However, he keeps thinking that it's coming up because my mum didn't make me my usual birthday cake.  Yes, I have had the same 3 layer chocolate cake made for me every year since I was about 5...  I tried explaining that I won't be getting presents again when we finally do have the cake, but he doesn't really get it.  So, until we have cake, I have a feeling Spud will be giving me lots of hand-made gifts and yelling, "Happy Birthday Mummy!  Here's your present!"

02 April 2011

Now That's One Big *** Gummy Bear

Now, I'm not usually one to do posts about contests.  I'll do the bare minimum and link it on my sidebar.  However, EMZ over at If I can't convince you -- I'll at least confuse you is hosting a contest in honour of her 24 hour, yes a FULL DAY, charity treadmill run.  It is in support of Sojourner Center in Phoenix, AZ, which is the largest domestic violence shelter in the United States.  You can click on the links to find out more as well as to enter her awesome giveaway.  

Here's the prize:

I. want. to. freaking. win. this.

Yeah, that's a 5lb gummy bear.  It shouldn't really be part of anybody's runners' diet, but there's just something about it.  I think I'd give my 3-1/2 year old a heart attack (from excitement) if I ever brought one home.

All kidding aside, please check out EMZ's blog to find out more about both the gummy bear and the IMPORTANT reason for her crazy (in my mind not in her's, I don't think) run!

01 April 2011

March By The Numbers

Total Kilometres/Miles: 183.59/114.08

Long Runs: 3/4 (every Sunday; lengths ranging from 23.5km to 32km).  Missed one (29km) when I was sick.  Didn't have anything to prove by running when things were falling apart.

Runs Missed: Lots.  Mainly Tuesdays and Fridays.  Same as always - the 4th run of the week.  Missed a couple others when I was sick, too.

Core/Strength/Stretch Planned/Completed: Lots/Few.  'Nuff said.  Not even an April Fool's joke.

Push Ups: I refuse to tell since that would be admitting how little I did the above.

Time Spent Running: 19.48 hours.

Holy crapoly.  In a month I'll be running my 2nd marathon!  That makes me excited and nauseous all at the same time.

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