Five things Friday

1) Week one of the “2014 Challenge” challenge was a success! Four workouts which included two cycling classes, one giant ball/abs/etc. class and one run. “Run” should probably be in little quotations but technically I was running even if it was only 3km of icy hell. Which brings me to…

2) I got new kicks! Ooooh, ahhhh. Nothing is as motivating as new running shoes, yes?

Especially GRAPE coloured ones.

Especially GRAPE coloured ones.

These hot little numbers, the Salomon XR Mission CS, are great for winter running because they are grippy and also keep out the wintery crud that sneaks into your sneaks. (<– not from the catalogue. I wrote that myself. Seriously.)

“This lightweight and flexible shoe was designed for short- to middle-distance runs on both road and trail; the XR Mission CS also features a Climashield water-resistant breathable insert in the forefoot that extends its versatility to cover any kind of weather, wet or dry.” (From Backcountry.com, but I bought mine at MEC)

Plus they are pretty.

So stay tuned for (fingers crossed) glowing reviews as I break them in a little more, but so far so good!

3) I’m back to teaching cycling! And I love it and missed it and am wildly out of shape but am so happy to be back. Come and sweat with me at Trent, Mondays at noon! (Not you, stalkers.)

4) Speaking of Trent, I’m trying out all kinds of new classes as part of the new Athletic Centre team. And guess what my muscles really hate? Trying new things! For example, I innocently went to a lunch time “Sculpt and Burn” class this week, and since, have written a strongly worded letter to management suggesting that the class name be changed immediately. Some suggestions that spring to mind (may or may not be directly related my experience):

  • “Burn and Die”
  • “Sculpt and try to re-attach your hamstrings”
  • “Sculpt and burn but never walk normally again”
  • “F*ck you, and your little mountain climbers too”

5) Local races are coming up! What are you training for? YMCA half-marathon or 5K, St. Paddy’s Day 5k, Kms for Care?

Challenge accepted!

As someone who is one part goal-oriented and one part non-committal, new year resolutions are a bit of a tricky beast for me. I love the idea of challenging myself, but realistically, a year is a REALLY long time. For example, those people that do the “photo a day” thing all year – troopers. I’m the bum that would wake up some random June morning and EFFFFFFFF remembered that I forgot to take a picture the day before. Ruined. A year is too long to commit/remember/not screw up.

So because I’m clever and awesome and modest I decided that my resolution will be to create and complete one challenge for every month of the year! Not bad, huh?

...one month at a time.

…one month at a time.

I have a few ideas up my sleeve, but this little ninja of a resolution will allow me to change up my goals based on my mood current interests. So instead of mapping out twelve months of challenges, I’ll think of them as I go along. (Insert suggestions here)

So what’s up for January? Working out. Just like everyone else in the world. (I never thought I’d become one of those people but here I am huffing and puffing while doing up my jeans because I took an ENTIRE MONTH off of exercise. And replaced it with wine and cheeseballs.)

CHALLENGE: Four weeks = four workouts per week.

I don’t care what kind of workout or how hard or long it is (Ew.), but I just need to get back into a routine. And I love being forced into routine…doesn’t everyone?

Who’s with me? It just staaaaarted…   Week one is from January 6-12.  I’ll irritatingly nag you if you irritatingly nag me?

Sure. *snort*

Sure.  *snort*

Getting it together

It’s funny how perspective can totally change a person.

Just the other day I thought to myself, “when was the last time I ate a vegetable?”. Then I looked around at the tumbleweeds of dog fur rolling by, the stack of clean, but messy laundry piled up, and realized that I had been wearing the same pair of black stretch pants for longer than I can publicly admit. Man, I have really got to get my shit together.

Then I remembered my devastatingly handsome husband, my daughter who smiles and squeals way more than she has ever cried, and my hairy, hairy, (hairy) happy dog and decided that my definition of having everything just perfect has definitely changed. And I’m a-ok with that.

Here’s to a new year and being thankful for many good things.

December 2013

A new gig

Remember that fantastic (Walking Dead-like even?) cliffhanger from last week? Sure. Ok.

Welp, I think I’ve dotted and crossed off all of the appropriate letters and I can let you in on my little news.

Folks, I’m leaving corporate and turning granola. Translation: goodbye Goodlife Fitness, hello Trent Athletics Centre!

Granola and bikes

Even the gym smells like patchouli…and I like it.

After, oh, eight or so years with my lovely Goodlife Fitness, I started to realize that my new schedule just wasn’t jiving with their schedule anymore. Which really means, when I only get to hang with mini-Muffin for about 2 hours a night, I’m really not keen to spend at least an hour of that at the gym. Go figure.  And my beloved 6am time slot is also a no-go now that I’m 1) living in the wilderboonies and 2) have a hardworking husband who leaves the house before 5am every morning. (Stalkers and murderers, disregard!)  So 6am = baby duty now.

As I mentioned before, in an effort to maximize my time away from home, I’ve been running at lunch or late afternoon which seems to be working pretty well. But I wasn’t quite ready to give up the gym scene just yet (mostly because my love-affair with running can be described as sporadic at best). Enter Trent Athletics Centre! Hooray! The kind folks there have hired me as a substitute instructor for now and hopefully, someday in the not too super-distant future, I’ll get on the schedule for a lunch or afternoon class. And in the meantime, I’m still able to attend their classes to miraculously try to get my soggy legs back into cycling shape. Yeesh. I mean…I’m super fit and sporty and hiring me was an excellent decision!

Sure.

I think patios count as outdoors, no?

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all win-win. Win because I’m really excited to start something new, I’m already liking the classes at the AC, and yes, I’m pumped to join their team. But don’t be fooled, I’ll miss that Goodlife family crazy amounts too. To all those fantastic 6am faces, have no fear, you’ll see me on a free day buying a day pass just to get a little RPM or Body Pump fix.

But I’ll be the one in Birks and wool socks.

Whaaaa??!!

It’s the 5th of December, homies.

Who's running today?

 

Who’s running today?

Five things

In true FunnerRunner style, I’m supposed to be running right now but my change of clothes is all the way in my car…in the parking lot…versus within reaching distance. So here I am…dreaming* of running instead of actually doing it. (*dreaming is definitely not an accurate verb in this scenario. In case you’re new.)

So five quick things to update you on:

1) The (non)long run

I had big plans to run a 7k last Saturday but instead my merry little family hit up the dog park and stood around while pretending to be outdoorsy.

dog park

But somehow (enter blog-related guilt), at around 2:30pm, I scraped myself off my own ass and headed out for a 5km. Better than nothing, no? It was a balmy 12C and I knew I would be kicking myself for not at least trying to enjoy it. It’s hard to justify complaining about crap weather when you are clinging to the couch on mild days too.

2) Wednesday’s SURPRISE run!

Because we have had the pleasure of having an AHMAHZINGLY lovely and helpful house guest stay with us for the past few weeks, I was able to actually run in the morning – ON A WEEKDAY! – just like old times.

And my-oh-my, it was wonderful. (<– surprisingly, not sarcasm) Brisky, crispy air with fresh morning legs has got everything on afternoon laziness and lunch-time gurgles. I didn’t realize how much I miss starting my day off with a workout, so if anyone has got a hankering to drive out to the boonies at 6am and babysit for an hour, that would be swell.

New stompin' grounds.

New stompin’ grounds.

A special thanks to Shannaners for disrupting her morning routine so that I could check 7km off my training calendar. AlphaVag for life! (Just our attempt to live out a sorority house fantasy. Wait, that sounds way different than it is…we just wear matching sweatshirts and drink a lot wine throughout the week.)

Remember that time we drank six bottles of Apothic Red and wore matching shirts?

Remember that time we drank six bottles of Apothic Red and wore matching shirts..like for a month?

3) Water drinking challenge

Speaking of Shannaners, have I mentioned that we have embarked on a wine water-imbibing journey together? For the month of November, we are committed to drinking two liters of water EVERYDAY or else! (The ‘else’ is that we don’t get to treat ourselves to new boots at the end of the month…) So “everyday” really means everyday. Even days that you are sitting in Toronto traffic for hours – in the morning and afternoon – you still need to down copious amounts of water. So far I’ve met my goal each day, albeit at the expense of some parking garage floors and couch cushions. I’m not proud, just honest. And my skin is no silkier or smoother so we’ll see if I bother to keep this up through December or not.

4) Songza

Seriously, tell me you are running, walking, dinner-cooking, whatever-ing to this. I was introduced to this super app by Ms. Laporte and am in love. My current faves are “Drop-a-beat workout” (for sweating), “The World of The Lumineers” (for porch sitting and dart swinging), “Vodka escapades: Ladies be pre-gaming” (kitchen dance parties, obs), as well as a few others because I’m well-rounded and a super mom. Fellow Songza lovahs, what’s on your list?

Songza

5) Something new in the works

And I’ll leave it at that and update you when I sort it aaaallll out. Cliffhanger, no?

nailed-it-cross-stitch1

Thankfully, it’s not a race

Having ran a whopping six times over the past three weeks, with a “long run” of 6k, I’m not exactly ready to toot my horn as a “runner” again just yet. BUT I feel like I’m getting there…or at least trying to.

Workouts Nov 15

It’s shocking how quickly your body can turn on you. YEARS!, I spent running, stretching (ish, whatever, I know, shut up), training, and just generally loving up on, LEGS, you have betrayed me. Fickle little monsters.

So I’ve been learning the hard way that it’s going to take some time to get over the lumps, er, hump. Not surprisingly, months of Winners wandering, 90210 watching and “Are you a cow?” reading will leave you unequipped to run like the wind. It’s much more likely to have you wondering, “AM I cow?! Why do I feel like a cow?! This must be what cows feel like when they run…”

You can't tell, but I am wearing sneakers in this photo.

You can’t tell, but I am wearing sneakers in this photo.

So that’s where I am…plodding along, painfully and awkwardly, in a race to get back to mediocre. But I’m fairly convinced that if a gun was pointed at me, I could run 5km to escape. And after Saturday, hopefully 7km.

PS – On a somewhat related note, did you notice that I went to the gym on Monday? Shannaners and I tackled a 30 min cycle class followed by BodyPump. And, I shit you not, yesterday was the first day that I could stand upright without feeling like my back/triceps/chest/eyelashes weren’t going to explode. Oh, soggy lumps of deteriorated muscles, why do you hate me?

I have a confession to make.

I got comfortable, folks.

Which could easily be translated to “lazy”, however I think there’s a lot more to it than just that.

I got to like not being inconvenienced. Not having to run a certain distance or be at the gym at a certain time. Or shower. Or put on non-elastic waist pants. It was easy and lovely and, well, a bit lazy. If I wanted to spend an entire afternoon canoodling a certain little bundle of joy – I did it. I had nowhere to be and nothing to prove. Bliss.

But, if you know me at all, that fancy-free kind of schedule just doesn’t do it for me in the long run. I’m a planner. A list-maker. A goal-setter (not goal-achiever per se, but sweet peas, I’ll make a spreadsheet to map it out). So I’m back. WITH A PLAN!

I can’t even begin to go over all of the things that I should have blogged about during my year at home with Mini-Muffin (for example, her chubby little cheeks and the way she looks when she’s just dozing off and…gahhhh, so much cuteness), so I’ll just stick to a few running related highlights:

  • I did actually run. Not well or far, but on January 7, 2013 I headed out and braved my first run since being 30 weeks preggo in August.
  • I did actually sign-up for a half-marathon and gave a pseudo-training plan a go. Until early May when the race was around the corner and I was still red-faced wheezing through my one and only 15km run. That’s when I decided I was done.
  • Mini-Muffin and I got used to using the jogging stroller and it was good. But I typically maxed out between 5-7km. And I was ok with that. (See above re: lazy)
  • We moved…to the boonies. And I haven’t quite wrapped my head around running there…by my lonesome. (Ahem, Shannaners.)

So that brings you up to speed. (Heh.)

Now that I’m back at work and FORCED to be wearing pants and on a schedule, I’m trying to work in a few midday runs a week while at the office. (Because no one cared to remind me how crazy short your days are when you’re confined to a desk for 8ish hours. Barf.) So, to avoid cutting into precious evening family snuggle time, I’m maximizing my “work” day. Look at me! Super inconvenienced! And kind of smelly at work!

Next post, where I’m at in my fitness. (Is there a succinct/non-humiliating way to say, “I can weeble-wobble along for about 16 minutes before realizing that my lungs and legs are on fire and I’m 99% sure that I am going to have a stroke/seizure/heart attack in the parking lot because, oh right, after 16 minutes of “running” I’m still in a parking lot”?)

Welcome back, readers!

It’s a Christmas miracle!

Yep, I’m back.

And registered for a race.

Oh yes, and I haven’t actually ran in the past 5 months.

This should be interesting.

half marathon confirmt

Ah shoot.

I really didn’t mean to take a TWO MONTH hiatus from blogging…it’s just kind of happened…without me even realizing it.

Let me explain.

You know that friend you have…the one you really like but you just haven’t called in a really long time?  And the more time that passes the more awkward it will be when you finally get off your lazy ace and call them?  So you don’t.  And then it becomes even more horrible in your mind and and you really start to miss them but can’t figure out how to re-connect without it being achingly awful and embarrassing?

For you literary geniuses, no need to explain that this metaphor (I think.  Clearly not a genius here.) is about me and my blog and our fading relationship.  Again, it wasn’t intentional…just awkward.  So let’s hug it out and move on, shall we?

But before we do, it wouldn’t be an apology without some lame excuses to go along with it!

Totally appropriate excuse numero uno: This is a running blog.  And sweet potato fries, it’s hard to write about running when you are barely trucking along with zero training or race goals in mind.  Not a lot of blog fodder in the same 7k  route when subjects like achy pelvic bones, peeing in the woods and bouncy fetuses are frowned upon.  That said, I am happy that I managed to run until 30 weeks (about 7.5 months) preggo.  And truthfully, the actual running didn’t feel too bad and I probably could have kept going a little longer, but feeling like you have to pee for 45 minutes and then waddling around the office all day because your crotch is sore was just getting a little annoying.

Last run done! (AKA – I can’t feel my legs!)

So no more running for this gal for a few months at least.  I’m still cycling and doing Body Pump a few times a week and have switched to “power walks” with Piper instead of running.   (Tip: power walks are really just walks but with a pully dog)

Ruining walks since 2008

Totally appropriate excuse #2: I broke my camera.  And we all know people just want to look at adorable pictures of dogs (see exhibit A above), food and self-portraits on blogs.  It’s ok to admit it.  So if anyone knows how to get river water out of a camera – AFTER trying the rice trick – lemme know.  Or, even better, if anyone would like to buy a clumsy cheapskate a water-free / water-proof camera, lemme know.

Totally appropriate excuse #3: I’m lazy and it’s summer so get off my back.  Pretty self-explanatory that one.
But seriously, I do have some updates for you, such as “2012 goals: yeah, how’s that going?” and “Recipe round-up…the good, the bad and the tragically ugly”.  But until then, one more gratuitous shot of my lovely little family.

You’re welcome!

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