Tuesday, November 5, 2013


I've fallen off the face of the earth, hiding in my house and avoiding all the stuff. It's been nearly 2 months and there is nothing new.

I'm still unemployed. There's nothing out there in my field :/

Kids are settled into their sports and activities with lots of fall soccer games, cross country meets, 4H shows, hockey practices and games, drama practices, and social times.

I coached the high school XC team again, it was a good season. :)

Im making lots of Christmas bows. Hopefully that will see us through christmas and into the rest of winter:/

I am still running of course but did not do the marathon; those things aren't free and I needed new sneakers instead.

I'm sitting in an airport In Toronto, waiting to go home. The trip to the Royal Winter Fair for 4H is over. Mind blowing that we wait so long and now we are heading home. I've loved Toronto to visit; not to live. But we have done so much while we have been here; Annika and I were not involved in the 4H show so we had flexibility; not to mention she turned 11 while we were here so her wish was our command.  We saw the fair, CN  Tower, rode the subway and city bus, swam in the pool, ran. Yup I ran in Toronto downtown at 6 am. It was awesome.

I'll plan to add detail to Interesting parts of this post.   Still in a bit of a crappy place.  

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Ch Ch Changes

Since last post the wheels have kinda come off a bit; reflecting on it isnt much fun so I have not really felt at all like writing anything :( I will keep it simple...after 6 years of teaching and doing everything asked and going above and beyond reasonable I did not get a new contract at the college and therefore at the ripe old age of 40 I am again job-hunting. I can't sleep and dont feel much like doing anything so I am completely going through the motions of what needs to be done. End.

The bike ride on the Shubie course was good. It was hilly and it was hard. But good. I did it twice in preparation for my race ahead.  The wind was a killer; it was gusty just how I Like It; I felt like I was going to be shoved without warning in front of a car, and it always seemed to be in front of me no matter that it was an out and back course.
We found that one bike fits super slick in the back of the Jetta if we don't have any of the kids with us ;) Its a great way to travel.

We were almost home when the "call" came so that kinda ruined Friday night.

Saturday morning we got up bright and early and took Holly to Oxford to show her Jersey calf. 
Both Holly and the calf did super well. It was an open show and May won her class in Conformation, then was chosen Grand Champion of the show which made Holly's day. Holly showed in the showmanship class and won her class although not overall; she did beat her father which was awesome. Important show since Holly's calf was shown against some of her competition for Pro Show, so a good preview.
Fast forward a little and School started this week; the kids are in grades 5, 7, and 10.
Cross Country has started and I am coaching the highschool team again. We had practice Thursday and Friday and there was lots of running. I had a run in the Park on Thursday and one on the road on Friday, so lots of km for me :)
 With the lack of sleep and resulting lack of training coupled with the fact that I strained my hamstring and cant seem to bear swimming in the lake, I kinda lost my mind and pulled out of the Tri I was supposed to do on Sunday. Not in health or mental spot to do something like that :( Instead I travelled with Scott and Holly to Cape Breton for the U14 Soccer Provincials :) Holly's team did good to get there; their playoff game was a nail biter. We got up at 430 am to get to the first game on time; we made it with time to spare but were really sleepy.

they lost their first game 1-0 as they did not come out playing but very slow and tentative :( They could have won....
Their second game they played better but tied the team 2-2 which again they could have beat them...and just did not.
We checked into the hotel and other than a trip to the hot tub and a short dip in the pool, we didnt move again and were all sleeping by like 9 pm.
The next morning was the third game, which again they could have won to put them in the Bronze medal game, but they tied 0-0 and the other team went to the Bronze Medal game. There was a goal called back, a post, a missed net....they really came out to play and just did not get the goals they needed, even tho they also didnt give up any. It was too little too late.
So a good trip to CB nonetheless and off home we went.

Monday morning I did a long run and wouldnt you know it, it was a great run. I had 19 km on schedule and did 23 easily and finished hopping. I could have gone way more. Typical. Im not sure I am able to do the marathon next month; money is super tight and these things are not free. Scott has started a new job and its hard to say how that will go. 
So today I am sitting here looking at ads for jobs I am not the least bit interested in :( Go me. weather is crappy, not planning to run and its windy so I dont feel like biking. This is not a happy place to be :(

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Bullet Points

Because my day and even my week as been like that. So here it is, in point form ;)
-right after I signed up for the triathlon in September, my kid's soccer team won their regional playoffs and are going to Provincials. On the same weekend, at the other end of the province. Complicating factors keep it real right?

-in attempt to reduce monthly bills I'm test driving a new car.  A car that is even more like what I want than the one I currently have. It's pretty and shiny and new and can save us hundreds a month. A no brainer right?
-trying to fit a little bit of summer into the end of the summer; the week of exhibition where the kids all showed their calves, we too the youngest to Magic Mountain in Moncton while the oldest stayed here and worked :( 

-runs are still going. Last long run was a little late in the morning again; I ran to town and met a friend for 7 km then ran to home; I started feeling a little "dark" about a km short so called for a pick up. Rather be a km short than pass out on the road. I had water, a snack, it wasn't "that" hot. Not sure what that was. 
-I tried an open water swim at the dyke the other night and couldn't swim out over the mud dark bottom.  Panic set in and I totally froze and turned back. I swam back and forth by the shore for 25 minutes, turning every time the water got a little dark. Chicken. This is not a good sign for my upcoming open lake swim I like a week. I swam at the pool last night and at least I didn't freak ;) it's not the water. I can swim. It's the dark. My mind sees sharks and dead bodies. 
-I dropped in to work today even tho I've no job yet. Every summer I'm off and have to reapply to work again :( classes start in a week and that includes a long weekend, and I've not even been hired yet :( 
-this work thing has left me a little crazy. And maybe a little cranky. 
-yesterday when I ran I felt very tight and tired in my hamstrings, so today I've rested.  I might yet run tonight but I ate and I'm sluggish so who knows. I barely slept last night.
- tomorrow I am taking my bike to Shubie Beach and biking the bike route. 

All I can put in my head right now :( 

Friday, August 23, 2013

August Post

Ugh this was NOT autosaving when my computer gave up on my so I lost my post :( Time is in short supply so now instead of finishing this post, I am looking at restarting :( Its going to take much longer :(

I was saying something about Summertime seeming like it should have so much time but really it does not, and I thought I would write more, but I am so busy out there doing more activities, playing with the kids, and training more, I am not in fact writing more. SIGH.

August training has been a little hit and miss. Since the triathlon I have only swam once, and have biked little :( I am not sure why. Its not a matter of want. I want to. 
I have had a lot of other activities going on that are not specific to training, like Ball Hockey, a tournament on a weekend in which we played 3 games in one day :( I consider that speedwork lol 3 sessions in one day is a lot. Ball Hockey is rough therefore I did not long run the next day like I had planned to. In fact I arranged a bit of a party and then did not stay at it because one of my kids was sick.  Sunday ended up being a rest day but Monday the long run happened.  Always something in the way :)

My Aug 4 long run was an experience as I had planned to take an 11.2 km loop twice, staying close to home and giving me an out.  However I was a little put off stride when near the start a fellow in a car pulled over asking where I was going (which is kinda creepy) but he actually wanted to warn me of a BEAR and her Cubs that were spotted ahead in case I wanted to turn back (which is kinda nice of him!).  I did not turn back, but instead took off headphones and went ahead, running in the middle of the (extremely quiet) road as if that would keep me safer lol and I saw no bears but I was so stressed and nervous about it, I continued on into town instead of going the same loop twice, getting my miles in. 

Long runs are going really well, up to the last one. I think I was getting a little cocky because they were going so well; I got up a little later than planned and did not leave until after 9 am (it's August hello?) and it was hot and sunny, fog had all burned off :(  I felt fine mostly, choosing a route that gave me 2 options to turn for home, but since I felt great I kept going and those last 4 km were a total slog home.  I started with Energenix in my bottle but refilled at BIL/SIL house with plain water; I had a cliff Bar at 18 km but I ran through lunch time and was very very hungry.  Last little bit I was tired and a bit spacey; when I got back to within sight of my house, a neighbor with a dead battery needed a boost so while I was talking to them I felt the black closing in on me; I walked home to get car and felt very close to passing out entire time.  Got back to house, tried to eat; too nauseated so I had water and a cool shower; eventually I ate and continued drinking but I felt dizzy most of the day, and stayed still in the cool living room (doing needle point haha) until about supper time when I felt a little more normal.  It was a reminder that although this summer seems better than last, I still have not perfected this long run thing. Weird since my first summer (ages ago) were so much easier compared to this; there was a few runs I felt awful but nothing like last year.

I have some events upcoming, Triathlon Olympic Distance at Shubie Park being the first, in a short 2 weeks.  Im not ready. Ive really let my training down this last few weeks, and I am going to suffer for it. My swim this week was good, 54 laps quite easily which makes me feel I might survive the 1,5 km I am going to be swimming in a lake (weedy, scary lake) and the bike should be ok but the run is going to kick my ass after the bike since I am not really conditioned well enough for that length of bike ride :( The same weekend my oldest DD is going to Provincials with her soccer team, 5 hours away from the race venue. Its going to take some juggling.

6 Days later I will be doing the Maritime Race Weekend which is a 5 km Sunset race on Friday night followed by a 10 km Sunrise run the next morning.  Looking forward to it but expecting it to be tough so close to the Tri.

2 weeks later, a leg on a Relay race, same weekend as the 4H Provincial Show which 2 of my daughters, 3 of their animals, and 4 of their Lifeskills projects are going to be attending.  At least those 2 venues are much closer together.

2 weeks after that is my next Marathon.  Valley Harvest Marathon has been on my radar for a couple of years, I am training for it currently (which is why my Tri training is so sketchy :()

And then there is the Lucky 7 Relay in November with the same team I competed with last year. We are dressing up as farm animals this year and are team Barn to Run.  (giggle )

That will be the end of my season I believe. There are a few others I wish for, like the Cobequid Trail Race this weekend, and maybe a December run. But Ive not committed to anything else.

More on what we've been doing to come!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Am I a Triathlete now?

Its been most of a month since I updated.  I don't particularly think anyone is interested in reading the same old, every day stuff. I am actually crazy busy and training a TONNE :)
red is bike, blue is run, grey is mostly ball hockey

although according to the Triathlon club training schedule Im likely doing half what I should be. Trying to coordinate a tri schedule and a marathon schedule means neither one is getting done very well. 
SO I did my first Triathlon yesterday.
It was a Sprint, not a full Olympic distance. I actually think it was enough. LOL

Ive been doing swimming, but not very consistently, because I have to go somewhere else to do it and cannot do it from my house. I even did a salt water swim but it was super calm and did nothing to prepare me for what I had to do yesterday :(
The biking is a little better, at least 2 times a week or so I am doing some distance although I do need to increase that somewhat.
Running is running. I've been missing my long runs past 2 weeks due to Tri training. 

I figured if I didn't sign up for something I never would so I picked the Guysborough Triathlon because it was also TriNovaScotia's club championship.  We managed to get 4 ladies and 5 men from our Truro Triathlon Club to come out as a team and compete. 2 of us had never done a tri before!  :)

So we got up at 430 am and drove 2 hours to Guysborough, arriving after the sun came up ;) but before packet pick up started. Yay me on time! :)
I arranged and rearranged gear and walked around start and transition lines, picked up race kit, moved bike to rack, without warming up or testing it, by the way, got body ink:)
 I took some pictures before it was time to get too nervous; nerves were kicking in watching the wind blow so hard in Chetabucto Harbour blowing the buoys towards the right. :( wind and waves were strong.

The transition area was congested and a little nuts. The turnout for this race was more than 4 times what it was the year before and they were caught a little offguard. There were not enough racks for the Sprint and Try-a-Try bikes and therefore they were crowding them in very tight. I protected my space til it calmed down.

My warmup wasn't so great; I did go for a little run, did some stretching exercises, although I did not touch the bike. I just hoped it worked ok after it's bouncy ride to the race. I didn't swim before the start, which really was a good thing since it was FREEZING cold and very rough and wavey; I didn't need to be thinking about that. 

The swimmers were watched over by a full crew and I always felt they were nearby while I was swimming. Those fellows in the kayaks were tossed around a lot :P The prerace meeting was pretty much a waste of time because we could not hear what the race directors were saying and the people around us obviously didn't need the information, as they were chatting loudly about everything else except the race. I don't know if we missed information or what :)
Waiting for the Olympic Distance triathletes to finish their swim was unnerving.  We talked and discussed strategy and just waited for them to be finished.
Once most of the Olympic distance racers were finished, we got ready for our shot at the race. The guys went first, then they finally let the ladies go. I guess they didn't want the ladies holding up the men; or they didn't want the men swimming over the ladies? It was a big crowd.

We waded into the water over a bunch of big rocks; the entrance and exit was a narrow ramp between rocks. Therefore we had an "in the water" start. We had to wade in and get wet. I thought we might have a few seconds for a few strokes in the water to acclimate but unlike the 2 starts before us, they started right away and I was barely wet and still couldn't catch my breath from the cold.
And it was cold.  I had a brain freeze up to at least the first buoy! 

The crowded swim wasn't bad. I hung to the back, and swam over a few people, and got kicked by a few, but it wasn't as bad as it could have been. The waves were bad enough.  I swallowed a lot of salt water, did a bit of breast stroke for it's calming qualities. It took ages to get used to the cold, and ages longer to fight the waves. The tide was going out, and it was dragging the same direction as the wind was blowing. I thought the long distance from the first to second buoy was the worst distance, but the swim back to the ramp was the worst because we had to swim sideways to avoid being swept out to sea!  I must not be a strong swimmer at all ;) It was even hard to avoid the docks, the wind was so strong.

So we swam back up the ramp we entered, over the rocks, and ran between the big rocks onto the matt and up a hill to the transition area. about 24 minutes swimming. ick. I worried a little about all that salt water.

I did have some trouble getting out of the wet suit which I knew I would; I don't know how people do it in suits tighter than mine!  I mean really tight wet suits?  Mine isn't very tight and I still struggle to get out! 
Transition 1 was fast, I was out of the suit and pulled on shirt and shoes, helmet and glasses, and was off. 

I went bare feet on the bike for the first time. It was kinda gross LOL. I think I prefer socks. At the end of the bike there was a long way to run, and I didn't want to do that in my bike shoes; running over the pavement ruins the cleats on the bottom. But I didn't want to ruin my socks either; so bare feet; And then I couldn't get out of my shoes easily on the bike, so I ended up running in my shoes anyway. A long way!
 The bike ride was good. On the way out to the turnaround, the wind was strong in front, which made it hard. And it seemed like there was a lot of uphill, which was awesome on the ride back. I worked hard to drink lots of Energenix on the bike, since that was the only chance for taking in energy.  It took some work lol I spilled a lot but got at least half a bottle. I meant to eat a Cliffs bar on the bike but didn't feel like it so skipped it; error. Rethink! Maybe something lighter than a bar needs to be considered.
 It took almost 30 minutes to get to the turnaround which was disappointing to me, but only 20 minutes to get back to the dismount. Scott was directing bikers by this time so photos were scarce.
Back in Transition 2 I found someone (a very young man) had parked his bike sideways on the rack in my spot with his front tire on my towels with all my gear underneath. I was NOT happy to have to move his bike just to rack mine and get at my gear. I didn't expect it to be tidy but to actually park a bike on top of someone else's gear?  REALLY????

 I put on socks and runners, switched out my helmet for hat, had a drink, and then figured I would grab a bite of Cliffs Bar.....without another drink to wash it down. I swear I couldn't swallow it for like 5 minutes. I considered spitting it out but didn't.  Ugh another error.
The run was mostly trail with some grass and gravel road. It was a little rough and fairly hilly. It was nice but I didn't feel like I had a lot of speed, like running in mud. At the turnaround on the run there was shade which felt nice. at a water stop there was a girl shooting water guns at people and that was nice.

The end was nice. I always feel so much better to stop. It doesn't take long to forget how awful the run felt lol.
So my first Triathlon is finished. It was a Sprint distance but I cannot imagine having done 2 times everything. That sounds like torture LOL.  I need more endurance training for that. Need to up my miles again!  And the swim ! UGH.  need to stay in the open water!
Swim 750 m, Bike 20 km, and Run 5 km.
10/12 F40-49 for age group. Im in a new age group. It didn't seem to help my results anyway ;)
I was 94th out of the water, in 24:13.
I was 86th on the bike, in 51:08.
76th on the run, in 30:33.
Im glad I wasn't last. I may still be a little disappointed in my placing, but after seeing how slow my times are and how I cannot keep up with anyone, Im not exactly surprised. I need speedwork?  SIGH.

Monday, June 24, 2013

June Catch Up Post - Johnny Miles, GoTruro Twilight Mile, long bike rides.

It's been a long month since the Cabot Trail Relay :)

Ive done a lot of running since then. 16 runs, actually :) the first actual long run of my new training plan was last Sunday morning and it was 9 miles of doing it wrong. I dressed in a shirt that was too heavy. It was black and hot. And the temp was like 15 at 630 which is really hot. It was "only" 9 miles so I decided I didn't need to carry water and I was really, really wrong. I only had 90 minutes to do the 9 miles which means I had to push it. I was meeting some new people to run with, and wasn't sure how that run was going to go. They are faster than I am and it wasn't a slow run but instead averaged 6:08 mins / km.  One of the others shared her water with me, thank goodness. I was really happy to see the park and the end of that hot run. I need to rethink this long run thing :) Im obviously not mentally ready for the long hot runs yet.

Ive played 3 ball hockey games.

I did a 400 m swim time trial. I finished it in 9:12 which I think is faster than the first time but not super better.

Ive ridden the bike 2 times. oops. Both of them were the longest rides yet. the latest one was almost 49 km and they were pretty hilly ones.

I did the Johnny Miles with all three of my girls :)

The day was bright and sunny, not terribly hot, very nice running weather. We drove over just before the race started, and parked at my aunts house, then walked down to the race start after using her bathroom :) We all had to go again but didn't do the port-a-potty thing and ran with the need :) Holly was miserable! lol We met friends there at the start.

I ran with Annika for her first ever race :) And she was awesome.  Holly ran with her friend Mason, and Taylor ran somewhere behind us.  I did see her at the turnarounds, she looked comfortable. Annika set our pace, and she did not walk for about 2 km :) she had a few breaks after that, didn't love the hills, but kept her walks very short :)  

Little runner :) I told Annika about finding someone in front of you to reel in, and she started picking out people to pass. She liked that.

Just as we were headed for the home stretch, she was getting tired and I told her to pass the lady in front of us, with a black and white shirt on. Annika surprised me with a sprint I had trouble keeping up with, and she passed the woman, sprinted around the corner, and right straight through the finish line! 
I was really proud of her! 

She was really proud of herself as well! Finish time was 32:46. Mine was 32:47 ;)

Holly and Mason finished ahead of us :)

We picked up our lunch and spent the rest of the day visiting family.

Johnny Miles success again this year :)

Since Johnny Miles went so well I dragged the 2 younger kids out Friday night for the first Gotruro Twilight Mile at the local track.  Just a warm up and a mile run on the track :) classic race! 

The littles went first. Youngest kids, then mid kids, then the oldest kids there including my girls :)

Holly claims she didn't race it; Annika might have.

After the kids broke 10 minutes each, Holly with 8:25, the three ladies took to the line, and raced our mile.  I did a steady 2 minute lap, not wanting to push especially hard because I have been feeling like crap lately.  I did my mile in 8:09.  I might have been able to go faster but at this point, not much :( still having some struggles feeling good.

Which catches up to today. When I did a tonne of house work and some tasks around here before heading to a hockey game. A really good one :)

This has just been a super busy month! The kids are finished school today, their soccer has kept us hopping 6 days a week. Training for a triathlon and marathon will be taking up the rest. Having a social life would be fun, good thing I am currently unemployed :)

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Cabot Trail Relay 2013

Fast becoming one of my favorite weekends of the year, I looked forward to the CTRR and the weekend did not disappoint.
I think this year I knew more of my teammates than usual :) and they seemed enthusiastic about spending the weekend running and/or supporting the race(rs).   So it was bound to be a great weekend.  I lucked out to get on the team since they had someone drop out and I took that leg.  I believe most of these people know each other through work and/or family and/or the gym, although Im not sure how a couple of them fit in.  But I got a leg.  And IT WAS A MOUNTAIN.  If I intend to run all 17 legs of the relay, then I have to run the 4 mountains at some point.  this year I had Leg 10. 

We spent more time there this year I think than any of the 4 previous years.  I had ball hockey the night before so we did not go up Friday but we got up Saturday and prepared and were on our way pretty early. It was pouring rain here. That didn't bode well for night time runs! 
But the closer we got to Cape Breton the better the weather was, and by the time we got to the causeway, it was sunny at times!
not all the time sunny lol just at times.
we caught up with the race by the end of the 5th Leg, and joined in with the cheering and visiting then.  Our team had shirts made that were amazing :) The leg descriptions right on the shirt!  I want to use something permanent to mark off the 4 legs I have completed :) Its nice to be able to point and say THIS one. :) and THIS one :)

Some of the view as we drove; This year I decided not to drive my leg before I ran it.  I usually do, to get an idea what Im getting into; but when running a mountain maybe it's better to not know. 

We were really well looked after this year ;) Our group had super supporters and a great lot of food and places to sleep lol out where we were, midway on the trail, there was a supper set up with awesome sandwiches and snacks.  I ate almost 2 hours before my run, and had a banana for later.
Then I attempted some rest, as it was evening and I was going to be up late.
I had had an upset stomach for 3 days before going to Cape Breton so was a little worried about what I ate and where the bathrooms were.  But what can ya do?
When it was finally time for my leg, I put on my reflective vest (ugh I hate these things but WOW did I glow or what?)


The sun was setting so it was time to be warming up (short run, a little dynamic stretching)

the first 3.2 km were just nice rolling hills and it was nice and fast.  I reached the foot of the mountain in less that 17 minutes. It was quiet and I could hear the waves on the cliffs at a number of spots.

Then the mountain started. It switchbacks up the mountain and then gets less steep but climbs for the rest of the run, to a fairly steep spot near the end.  I bet its nice during the day ;) we run in the dark. It was not pitch dark as the moon was full and the clouds parted often for some light despite rainy forecasts.
The climb lasted a long time. I walked at 3 places, thanks to some cramping in my calf which is something I have never had happen before; of course I never climbed a steep mountain either ;)  I was way ahead of the person behind me and could see the person in front but it was pretty "alone". IN fact I was sure there was something in the bushes beside me, most of the way HAHA. 
The run was ok. I felt like I was going faster than I was; must have been the slow times on the steep part because on flatter and less steep hills I am sure I was doing ok pace wise. I knew I would not likely make the 6 minutes/km deadline but I thought I would be closer.
And I had some TERRIBLE belly pains near the end of the leg.  I think that didn't help. Cramping calf, stomach pain. All new :(

I was very grateful to the support vehicle which made many stops to cheer and encourage (night legs they are not allowed to give drinks or snacks); it made me feel less alone and less likely to get caught walking LOL.

I finished the 14.6 ish km in 1:42 which is awful and quite past the deadline.  But 1 mountain is done, only 3 left to tackle! And they say this is one of the worst (although the one that has 20 km to complete sounds pretty bad to me). 

We went back to the car and I felt ok, but after changing clothes I felt really nauseous and climbed in the back of the car to lie down while we drove to the cottage.  I barely made it there and ran to the bathroom to throw up.  Who knows if it was the run or the previous upset stomach but after I showered and ate some toast I felt better.  Wasn't sore from the run, and I actually didn't even feel any lasting effects from the cramping calf.
We got about 3 hours of sleep before getting up and packing, travelling to catch up with the race, finding the start line with the pancakes, barely getting my pancake before taking our last runner to her start spot (weirdly different from before). and then we headed to the finish line.
We met up with the team and waited for our runner to finish the race. 

 We created a tunnel for our runner to run through; she is there, you can see her feet!
And team Got The Runs was finished. Once times were all sorted out we placed 42nd out of 70 teams. 
It was a sad moment at the end when a team who lost a runner last year on the last leg all ran in together to honour their runner.

 Then we were off to lunch and the last celebration before everyone headed home. 
This was an awesome weekend, as usual. Looking forward to next year!  :)

2012 km Goal