Monday, December 23, 2013

Gymless Fitness

Since I am stuck inside due to the storm that is impacting all of eastern Canada, I figured it would be time for a little blog post.

Since my last post, time has just flown by. Some highlights from this fall included, a visit from my friend Erin (and Halloween Haunt), cooking our first official Thanksgiving turkey, Mike's graduation from his Masters (and a fantastic visit from his parents), and Mike getting a job! (Huzzah!). It also included a free trip to Vegas that Mike won from a UFC event (yes I'm serious!).

The past couple of weeks have been busy with pre-Christmas stuff, end of term tutoring, and bracing for winter weather. I'm now on vacation, and enjoying my relaxing time off, but I thought I would do a little fitnessy post for the holidays. Obviously the holidays are not the typical time to be focusing on fitness, but consider this a warm up for January 1st!

After doing the triathlon at the end of Summer, and diving back into tutoring up to 10 hours a week, I was terrified that I was going to fall off the wagon completely and go from working out 5/6 times a week to 5 times in 6 months (yes that happened this past spring). I had some motivation in September from the 12.5 km trail run, and the 5 km run for the cure.

The 12.5 km run, was extremely challenging and even with walking it, it was a 2 hour adventure. It was fun though, almost like a mud run without the obstacles. Next came the Run for the Cure. Since I hadn't really been training for running I wasn't sure how I was going to do, but I managed to keep up with Mikes pace for most of it, and we finished right around the 30 min mark, and felt pretty good about it. Considering that 2 years ago I  couldn't run for the full 5 km, and last year it was a big deal to complete it, and this year it was a blip on the fitness radar, was pretty cool. Also my work team raised $1250 bucks!

After that my "race season" was complete. But I didn't want to stop. For the past few months I have tried to eat moderately healthy, and trying to fit in exercise when I can. I think I have averaged 3/4 times a week, so not at triathlon training level, but still something! Also, I am walking a lot more to all my tutoring clients, so even the days I can't go to the gym I'm still fitting in some exercise.

What I have realized this fall is flexibility is key. Sometimes a tutoring session will get cancelled, giving me an opportune moment to work out. Other times, I may have to work late and not go to a class. The other thing that has helped, is with Mike leaving for work early in the AM, he drops me off at the gym and I can get a workout in before work. It helps having a goodlife connected to my building.

Even with the goodlife though, some days it just doesn't make sense to schedule my life around the group fitness schedule, so some alternative workouts have been created. This made me realize that there really is no excuse to not fit in some exercise. Here are some of my suggestions for a non-gym workout:

1. Stairclimb- if you happen to live in a tall building do the stairs. Try to go up only, and elevator down to prevent knee damage.  It is a great cardio workout, and good for toning the legs! Note: Music is a must, I found this workout challenging and kind of boring since you are doing 45 mins of the same thing, so music is a good motivator to keep going!

2. Dance party- I love getting to Zumba/Body Jam, especially on a Friday after work. My old gym had the best schedule for that, but unfortunately the Goodlife closest to my work doesn't have this option. So I came home one Friday, and remembered enough Zumba moves to have a dance party workout of my own in the my apartment. Bonus I got to play my favourite songs. I also incorporated some abbs, squats, and arm moves to gain some extra toning. Another option, buy a zumba/dance exercise DVD and do it at home.

3. Nike Training Club App. There are many fitness Apps, but this one has some great reviews. It consists of multiple circuit based workouts that can focus on Cardio, Strength or Toning, and it includes 15 mins focus workouts for core, arms and legs. The workouts require a small amount of equipment (most are optional) and they are really tough!  I like the "trainer's" voice "30 seconds left, keep going". Highly recommend the free download if you can!
4. Get outside
The past few days I have been going for snowy walks with my family. Trudging through a few centimetres of snow is certainly a good leg and cardio workout. Getting outside is the easiest way to fit in some fitness over the holidays, whether it be a walk, skating, or a SNOWBALL FIGHT. Even building a snowman can burn some calories!

Especially a upside down one!

Moral of the story is that I can't use "no gym" as excuse not to workout, especially at the holiday times where there is a lot of extra treats (nom nom chocolate!).

Hope everyone has a healthy and happy holiday!!

What is your favourite gymless workout? Anyone else ever build an upside down snowman..seriously a lot harder than it should be!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Balcony Redo

As the days grow shorter, and the wind grows colder, it is the perfect time to blog about a patio makeover. Of course.

This is for all you folks out there who procrastinate like me. If you are in anyway inspired by this for your own patio renovation, you have a whole WINTER to get your act together.

And then you have the WHOLE SUMMER to finally blog about it...we will chat in approx a year, cool?

Ok back to the point.

I have an addiction pinning home décor on pinterest. I seriously will need 10 bathrooms, 11 home offices, and at least 5 kitchens to get in all my favourites.But as much as I pin, and as much as my blog info says I am a DIYer..the most I have done in the past 2 years has been to buy some tiles for an ikea table in the kitchen.

One day though, when I have space and time, I will spray paint ALL the THINGS! In the mean time though, living in a tiny 600ish sqft rented apartment, the décor options are only so flexible. I can’t paint an accent wall, or hang a purple chandelier, but I can accessorize..with teal, teal and more teal.

One area that got badly overlooked was the patio. When we first moved in we got the IKEA cheapy Jeff Chairs and table, we had a little herb garden and some plants. Last year we rigged a safety harness thing for Moseby (we NEVER let him out if we weren’t there with him), 

Not fall arrest!
And this year somehow the chair and table got moved out and that was it. It is high up and windy, and has a big gap between the glass and the concrete which makes me scurred.

After going on vacation in August and spending so many hours outside, I decided I wanted to make my patio somewhere I actually wanted to spend time. And since I can’t do anything about the height and the gap, I decided to trick myself with nice décor.

After pinning some inspiration like here and here, one Sunday afternoon I hit the mall with my friend Katie. My goal was to find some things to make the patio more cozy and colourful…less terrifying and concrete. I also wanted to breakaway slightly from the teals and blues, so I went with teal bases and crimson/orange cheaper accessories, so I didn’t have to commit too much. I also mixed textures and metals to create an eclectic vibe, which doesn’t match the rest of my apartment, but I love the look of it.

Being the end of season I found some pretty good deals, and ended up with this result:
Ooo plants and stuff
Lanterns and Baskets-Homesense
Plants- Home depot and Walmart
Seat Covers/random orange bits- Dollar Store
Candles- Target

The best find was the giant teal lantern/plant holder, that was at Homesense for an “Compare to” price of 200 dollars, for sale for 25.99. Plants were a little harder to find but I found the big basket (actually a hanging basket with the hanger broken off), and some indoor plants that spent the late summer outside. I think with gift certificates I was around 100 bucks for the whole makeover…which was a pretty good deal.

Now here is the keeping it real part, it is now October, and my vision of sitting out there with a book on a Sunday afternoon happened maybe 2 times. As from my last post, my weekends for the past couple months have been jam packed, so any free time was not spent relaxing on the patio. I still find it is too windy to actually have enjoyed it, and now that it is getting to be winter (NOOO!) I moved everything inside. Hopefully some of the plants will survive the winter!

I guess I enjoyed the process of decorating it more so than actually using it! One day I will have a lower patio, that faces south west, and can get all the light..and I will actually sit out there, and maybe even BBQ!

Even so, for the one day I did sit out there to review Mike’s thesis:

Totally worth it.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Late Summer Recap!

In addition to running a triathlon this summer (which I blogged to death) I also did some pretty fun things over the summer/into September that didn’t make the blog at the time…here is a quick recap:

Pride Week:
Some friends came up from Halifax and we went out to check out the parade. After missing the past two years, we figured it was about time we went to this event. People warned me that it would be really scandalous but only a few groups really pushed the envelope, the rest of the parade was just a lot of fun. The guys in front of us were most excited for Justin Trudeau, and I must admit, he was very photogenic!
Can't say the same about Kathleen Wynne though..Sorry, bad angle!
That weekend also included going out to eat in Kensington market for Blupper (Brunch at 3:00pm), trying to find a pizza place that is open at 4:00am on a Sunday night, and a very sleepy Canada Day haha!

Second City
For Mike’s birthday we got tickets to go see Slapshot at second city. It was hilarious. The actors all came out singing about Hockey then the Narrator character came out and stopped everyone and said “Lets get things straight this isn’t a musical, because why does everything have to be a musical!!” this was a running joke throughout the play. We enjoyed the whole thing, but the girl beside us had a scowl on her face the whole time, some people have no sense of humour!

Medieval Times
Mike and I found a groupon for Medieval Times, and went one Friday in July. It was really fun, the food was pretty tasty, but I found it was quite an American reminded me of going to Disney world or something (not in the good way, more in the over the top way)…What impressed me though was the skill of the guys who played the knights. Not only did they have to be fairly good actors, they had to have good horseback riding skills, and stage combat skills. Very impressive, but I think it was more of a one-time event than a regular thing.
And we got Crowns!!
Shakespeare in the Park
Like last year Mike and I hit up Shakespeare in the park. This time twice on the last weekend it was showing with Brittany. For some reason going to this always gets delayed until right at the end of Summer. This year they did Taming of the Shrew and Macbeth. Shrew was fun, and was good for some laughs, but the Macbeth blew me away (mostly the same actors, just Macbeth is just more dramatic). I still love that you can bring your own food in (Shrew was homemade spicy pasta) and Macbeth was post triathlon Pizza.

Ontario Science Centre
To celebrate our first day “off” all summer Mike and I went to the Ontario Science Centre on Labour day for another part of his Birthday Present (Yes his birthday is the end of June…we just had a busy summer.) There was an exhibit on 60 years of video games. The Science Centre is fun, but you could definitely tell it was the end of the exhibit. It is also a huge building/compound, so if you go be prepared for lots of walking. I think I like the ROM better, but I’m glad we checked out the OSC!

Mid September (as another part of Mikes Bday Present) we went on a Canoe ride along the Humber River. It was so peaceful, and I found it hard to believe that we were in the middle of the city. We had spent the morning running in High Park, so we certainly got our fair share of fresh air!
Ready to Paddle!
Do you believe this is downtown Toronto??

Mike has a glow about him!
Dragon Boat
I signed up with Brittany's division (we both work for the same company, different offices) to participate in a Dragon Boat race to raise money for the Toronto Regional Conservation Authority. We ended up coming in 2nd, and it was so much fun! Mike even got to join our team as we had empty seat. Our theme was Hawaiian! I could definitely feel it in my arms the next day.
Matching Flamingos!!
City Place Party
The developer of our neighbourhood threw a big party for residents of City Place. It was super intense! There was delicious food, a smores bar, live music and even a Vampire flash mob. Ok they weren't vampires, but they all showed up looking gorgeous, and I was convinced they were vampires..but they were actually a dance troop. 

So many people!

Also this picture happened:
No one puts baby in a corner. 
I am pretty sure it was empty but it was still really funny. 

And now I relax. Not really though, October is going to be just as busy and fun I think!!

What were your late summer highlights? Anyone know who's baby was in the corner???

Monday, September 2, 2013

Triathlon = Complete!

Around 15 weeks ago, I decided to run a triathlon.
This profound decision was based on the fact that I did one casual 20 km bike ride, I kind of like to swim, and had ran a five km...twice ever. 

I was not a marathoner, a biker or a swimmer who wanted to try out other sports. I did Zumba, and Body Pump with light weights. And in the Spring (Jan-May) I went to the gym maybe three times all season. My gym shoes got dusty. I consistently did Hot Yoga, but a "Athlete" I was not. 

After choosing a race (Ontario Women's Triathlon "With the Beginner at Heart"), I googled "10 week training plan sprint triathlon free" and the beginner plan came up. I started with the day of the event, and back tracked on google calender to schedule my workouts. 

My first workout was on June 18th. In the midst of crazy end of year tutoring, and switching offices, I managed to fit in working out. It started off slow, a 200 m swim here, a 15 min run there. My first outside run was horrible. Then the bikes started getting longer. And it was painful. And then the swims got longer, and I started to worry about the full distance. 

As I progressed with my training, I figured it would take me 30 mins for the swim, 1 hr for the bike, and 30 min for the run. 2 hours, I thought, would be a respectable time. Then I looked at the results from 2011...2 hours would put me near last. I freaked out. Suddenly I was worried about my time, and my pace, and how I wasn't going to be able to do it. 

Eventally I got over it, and decided if I was going to be last than so be it. I would keep training and working away. I was getting the physical results I wanted..I lost a ton of inches, I was able to jog most of city chase, and do Mud Hero 7 minutes faster than last year. 

On Sunday morning I got up at 5:00 am, and headed out to Milton. I was nervous, but excited. I got to the race nice and early (sorry to the organizers who weren't set up yet!). Since I had been to Mikes race, the commotion of race day didn't phase me. I claimed my transition spot, and set up all my stuff. 
Ooo So Organized

My borrowed road bike looked snazzy next to the mountain bikes. I dipped my toes in the water, which was 72 degrees (nice and warm) and glass smooth. 
See those small orange dots far far away..yah that is my swim.

The weather was perfect, 20ish deg and cloudy. I walked through and visualized the transitions. I ate my banana, did a warm up, and even with all this time, the last 2 minutes flew by. I put on my swim gear, posed quickly for a few pics and then next thing I know, I'm in the water with my age group (a bunch of other first timers as well). 

I am somewhere in this group..on the left

I don't remember the count down, just the whistle blowing, and we all taking off as a group. There was no getting run over, just a team of swimmers...which was nice. Until they all flew past me.

At that point I decided that all the training I had done doing freestyle (front crawl) was going to be wasted and I was going to do back crawl/breast stroke the rest of the way. I got passed by the second leg (3 mins after me), and then the 3rd, and spent most of my swim with the 4th group (the 50+ group, they left 9 minutes after my leg).
Notice the white cap in the distance!
But I survived. I survived swimming in deep murky water, and I still did it less than my expected time (26 min vs 30). I finished my swim last in my age group, but I was tempted to kiss the beach when I got there. 
These pictures are all the most flattering...not :P

I ran over to the transition zone and hopped on the bike.

At that point, knowing how far behind I was from EVERYONE in my age group, I decided just to enjoy it. And then next thing you know I started passing people.."On your left"..."On your left"!! I couldn't believe it! I started singing Avicii and Calvin Harris in my head to keep me going. The bike ride was hilly, but the uphills sections were where I passed most people. Wahoo!! When I checked my watch, I realized that I was making really good time. I got back to the transition and had to yell at Mike as I was coming in because he wasn't looking for me yet! 45 mins compared to a predicted hour!

Then it was the run!

Wobbly Legs!

The run was ALL HILLS. I thought from elevation tracker it was flat. It was a lie!! After doing all my run training on flat ground, this killed me. I did 3 min run, 1 min walk intervals, but I still did ok. It wasn't my breathing or my heart rate slowing me down, but my legs weren't having any more of it! I jogged the last stretch to the finish line, and looked at the time...1hr 47 min.

Not too bad for a first triathlon!! 

My results were as follows:
Place: 88/116
Total time: 1:47:03
Age group Place: 17/25
Swim 111/116 25:59
Bike 57/116 47:01
Run 92/116 34:04

But more importantly than the results were that I did it. I did something I committed to 15 weeks ago, not for anyone else, but for me. I didn't have to do it, I didn't want to do it at times, but I did it.

I stuck to my training plan and met my goal! I have now signed up for a 12.5 km hike/trail run in three weeks, and have a few more events lined up to keep me training. I don't want to give up all this hard work to go back to a point where I can't run a 5km. 

Will I do it again? For sure! Will I work on swimming more, and go to a few clinics next time?Absolutely!

And I will be back to the Ontario's Women's Triathlon. The event was fantastic, and all the volunteers were so nice! It was such a supportive event, and as much as it was a race, it felt like everyone was in it together! Amazing choice for my first Tri!!

Today I didn't feel too sore (still have that sore hip thing), and tomorrow I plan to go the gym. It may be painful, but I am going to fight through it...I've got to get training for that 12.5er!! 

Thanks for following along with my progress to this triathlon! I am planning a catch up post for all things non-tri related that I did this past month!

Anyone else get passed by a bunch of 50 year olds in a race...and love it?? Anyone else eat a ton of food this weekend to make up for doing a race...or just eat a ton of food in general???

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Twas the Night Before my Triathlon...

...and all through the house..Kaylee was freaking out!!!!!!
I can't believe that tomorrow I will be running the race I have been training for all summer!

Notice the Xs. I Didn't Miss Any!!
This week was a taper week, so on Monday I did glorious glorious hot yoga, Tuesday was a 30 min run and a 600 m swim. Wednesday I took a rest day, and Thursday was a 600 m swim, Friday was a 10 km easy Bike and today was a tri test with a 200 m swim, 5 km bike, and 1 km run.

On today's bike I got a flat. I left my bike with Mike and ran a little loop, when I got back to him there was a legit biker helping him fix it all up. This guy was super nice, got everything all fixed up, and after he finished (he gave us a new tube etc.), he just said "pass it on" and then biked away. When we got our stuff together, and hopped on our bikes, the guy was gone, no where to be seen on the trail...spooky. Either he was a ghostie, or more likely a really fast biker haha. So nice either way!

So now my bike is all ready to go for the race, and I guess so am I! I still think I am not physically prepared, the individual events are still challenging for me, let alone putting them all together, and I have a wierd muscle soreness in my hip/thigh/groin region that is very tender on the run. I am still beating myself up during training (I'm not fast enough, I can't do this, I should have done a try-a-tri). But on the other hand I feel like I've got this. are going down!!!

I have done my best to be mentally prepared. I have researched everything I can about the race. I have used google maps, and run tracker and went out to the site. I went to watch the Tri when Mike did his duathlon. I have googled what to eat, what to wear, what to bring etc. Mentally,  I got this. 

For the prep, today I ate some oatmeal for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch, and for supper tonight I made a delicious spicy pasta dish. (Some people recommended to stay away from spicy food, but I am throwing caution to the wind on that one.) I have also been drinking a lot today to get hydrated.

Tomorrow I plan to eat half a bagel with PB, and a banana, and then just drink lot before, during and after the race. I know from my early morning hot yoga classes that I would prefer to be hungry on the race than feeling gross, so I am going to keep it light tomorrow AM.

Tomorrow I also have to get up at 5:00 am to get out to the race. Gah. I am also going to Shakespeare in the Park tonight and I plan on coming home and going right to bed. Therefore my stuff is already packed:
Pack all the things!!
I have: 
Race Outfit (Trishorts, sportsbra and workout top pretending to be a tri shirt)
Sweater, Tank top and Leggings for the morning
Towel to dry of my feet and to be ridiculously orange so I can find my bike
Running Shoes
Vector bar for post race
Change of clothes for after the race

Not pictured:
Bike Pump
2 water bottles on the Bike
Watch (I splurged and bought a watch to use tomorrow, I need to time my intervals on my run!)

Lots of stuff for one race!

Now I must run to the show and try not to think about the race for a few hours...ahhhh!

I'll be back tomorrow or Monday with how I did, and I'll see if I was DFL (dead finish last haha)!!

Anyone else doing something crazy tomorrow?? Anyone else excited to see if I am not DFL??

Monday, August 26, 2013

Race Week, and Mud Hero, and Mike Does a Duathlon, and Early Morning Workouts....

Wow, It is already race week!! The past 10 weeks flew by, here is a how the last 2 weeks have gone.

Tuesday (Aug 13) I did indeed go for a swim after that post. I was pretty sore from Body Pump, so it wasn’t a very glamorous swim. But I did it!! Wednesday I biked 20km home from a meeting in Etobicoke (Mike dropped off my bike on his way home from school..yay planning!) Thursday I had a impromptu rest day. To make up for it, Friday was a 50 min run in the AM..blech, plus about 15 km of walking around Toronto with my parents. Saturday was another rest day with more walking. To get back into routine I did a Brick (15 km Bike, and a 30 min run/walk) on Sunday AM. Last week, I did a big Swim on Monday (800m). Tuesday I did a 760 m swim and a 45 min run pretty much back to back. 

On Tuesday night I also borrowed my friend's road bike, so on Wednesday I got to test it out by biking to Etobicoke. It was all uphill!! I was biking out to a dinner, so I packed up nice clothes, and planned to change/shower at a Goodlife out there. On my way there I realized that I forgot shoes, and I REFUSED to wear sneakers with my dress, so I quickly stopped at a Shoppers and bought some of those "Flats to go". I was so proud of myself for biking and saving gas/parking money, but then I spent $15 bucks on crappy "shoes" It also took me forever to get to the dinner. After the dinner, I biked to the TTC, took it back into town and then biked from Bathurst Station to home. On the way home, I dropped my cheap bike light, and these really nice guys ran to catch up with me (I was probably going 15 km/hr) and gave it back...amazing!!

After all that exercise, I took Thursday as a rest day (still some walking), and then Friday (I had a EDO) I finally got caught up on the schedule when I did a 20 km bike ride in the AM, then went out to Lake Kelso in Milton (the location of my Triathlon) to check out the lake, and do a open water swim. It is a beautiful area, and I am looking forward to the run and (surprising hilly) bike! The water was very warm, but cloudy. I was swimming in the swim area, not the actual spot of the Tri, but still good training. It was a pretty awful swim, but I did 750 m. I may be the last person out of the swim, but I am ok with that. I just need to not freak out, remember that I can float if I get tired, and just keep moving and breathing.
On Saturday I was up bright and early, to Albion Hills for Mud Hero! This is the 2nd time I did it, and this year we cut 8 minutes off of our time. It was a very hilly 6 km run, with obstacles, and of course MUD. The best part was I didn't even feel that tired after it and I had no muscle soreness! I am in much better shape than I was last year!! 

On Sunday morning I was up bright and early (again, zomg I need sleep) and headed over to Toronto Island because Mike did his first Duathlon! Back when I came up with the crazy idea of doing this, Mike agreed to do a duathlon. He was in the first leg at 8:00 am, and he finished in 1 hr and 35 min, not to bad for a 1st timer. 

While he was doing it (and I was running around taking pictures) I also got to go check out the swim of the Triathlon. It was pretty cool to see the swimmers all starting, and then the transition. It was definitely a good way for me to visualize everything! This event was a competitive event, so there were some world champions competing  they were pretty intense to listen to, and to check out the gear they had! We came home, watched an Ironman thing on TV (also pretty cool to watch..key word being WATCH) and then I went out for a 20 km bike. Every time I do a 20 km bike, I am cutting 3 mins from my time, so I am looking forward to see how I do on the race. 

This morning I woke up dark and early (zzzzzz) and went to Hot Yoga, and had an awesome class. It felt nice to stretch out my sore biking muscles. I only have two more big workouts, then I start to taper before the race on Sunday!!! I did every single workout on the training plan!
Yay! Actually Sticking to the plan!
I am excited but nervous. I know I am going to be at the back of the pack, but that is OK. It is my first race, and I have gotten the benefits from the training that I wanted. I have lost about 6% body fat in the past 10 weeks, which has put me from the high-normal range to the fitness-normal range!! Huzzah!! Not only that but I got to spend a lot of time outside in the beautiful early morning weather. When I get done training I will stop to take some pictures!

Anyone else prepping for a race? Anyone else needing some sleep??

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

City Chase Round 3!!

Happy Tuesday everyone!

What a week..whew! I feel like vacation was forever ago. In this post triathlon training and city chase!

After publishing last week’s post, I went out and did a 50 min run/walk (just under 10 km) and it felt great! I only took a few breaks, and I ran the last 16 minutes straight. Booyah. Pretty good from my first 30 min outside run where I couldn’t run for more than 2 minutes about 8 weeks ago!

So this week looked like:
Monday- 650 m swim, 50 min run
Tuesday- Run 30m, Body Pump (missed swim)
Wednesday- Swim 600 m, Bike 15 km
Thursday- Swim 400 m, (missed Brick)
Friday- Hot Yoga
Saturday- City Chase (instead of a 50 min run)
Sunday- Rest
Monday-15 km Bike in the AM, 500 m swim in the PM
Tuesday-30 min Run, body pump, 600 m swim

On Saturday Mike and I did City Chase for the 3rd year (it is an amazing race style 6-hr event in here to find out more). For some reason this year we finished our mandatory 10 chasepoints really fast, so we decided to go for the Enduro –chase, which is basically you just try to do as much as possible during the 6 hour race.
We ended up getting 19 done in the nick of time. Chase points included:

A. Nathan Phillips Square to Start
Still Early!


 B. Learning a dance and performing it to a judge

C. Jumping in a pool and finding a matching sunken puck and a floating duck-nice cool down for the day!
D. Holding a giant lizard, and answering animal trivia questions

Daww it's adorable!
E. A photo scavenger hunt of us/strangers doing funny things using the new Blackberry Q10
F. Performing a joke to a panel of comedians, or getting a pie in the face. (I didn’t get the pie, and they were tough!)
G. Shot for Shot-One team member tried to hit a target with a paintball, if they missed the other had to do a gross shot (juice and either hot sauce, soy sauce or vinegar). I did all three..thanks Mike.
H. Leading your blindfolded team member through a marked path, if you touched anything you had to eat something gross we didn’t have to!
I. A SLIP AND SLIDE/Puzzle Challenge
J. Portage Obstacle Course- Physically the hardest challenge
K. Sledge Hockey
L. Slack-Lining
M. Climbing over a bus/figuring out how to use the Z10.
N. Truck Pull-We were the only team there so we had to do it ourselves
Sooo intense!!
Mike was pumped for this one!

P. Frizbee Golf
Q. Australian football pass and kick (with super nice Aussie Guys!)
R. Kangaroo Shoes
S. “Scion” Says
T. Goodlife Fitness Challenge- We had to burn 200 calories as a team- in less than 10 minutes. Mike did well on this one!
19 Chasepoints!
We barely made it!

All over the city!!!

Whew that made me tired just thinking about that! In the end the team that won got 22 chase points, we were most likely 5th for the enduro-chase. If you ever have an opportunity to try City Chase I highly recommend it!!

Now off to swim!! 

Have you ever done an adventure race? Anyone else make friends with a lizard?

Monday, August 5, 2013

Vacation Part 2- Training in the Rain

Hey all, hope you are enjoying your long weekend and/or Monday!

I'm back from But this time I was smart and gave myself the holiday Monday to unpack (aka watch 4 episodes of True Blood) and relax before heading back to work tomorrow.

When we last left off I was in Dartmouth NS visiting with Mike's family. On Wednesday we had a big family dinner, then on Thursday we got to see some of our University friends! On Friday we got up and went to the gym, then headed to Cape Breton to visit Mike's extended family. Friday-Monday was spent in Sunny/Rainy/Cloudy Cape Breton, and then Monday we headed back up to Bathurst. In Bathurst we enjoyed a family party with my family, seeing one of my besties, and a surprise visit from Mike's parents (surprise to my parents, not to us!).

While we were on vacation we managed to stick so most of the training plan, out of the 16 days I missed 3 But I am going to make sure I get them in.

Thursday- 15+ km Bike (IN THE RAIN)
Friday- Body Pump+ Walk
Saturday- Missed Bike (Did Yard Work instead)
Sunday- Missed Run (Long walk instead)
Monday- Missed Swim (crappy weather for a swim)
Tuesday- 15 km bike (IN THE RAIN)
Wednesday- 40 min run
Thursday- Pitiful 600 m swim
Friday- Brick (IN THE RAIN)
Saturday- 60 min walk in the sand- that totally counts as a 30 min walk/run.
Sunday-16 hr drive and sleep 
Monday- Swim (800ish m) and I'm planning a long run tonight

I officially registered for the triathlon this week. No backing out now!! I am kind of scared though because I know I am ready for a try-a-tri now, but I don't know if I am going to be ready in 4 weeks for double that distance, even though I have stuck to the training plan pretty well. Specifically, I am seriously freaking out about the swim part of this triathlon. I was suppose to use my vacation for swim training, but it was only about 20 deg outside, and colder in the water, and there were jelly fish, so every time I would swim, I would freak myself out that I was going to get stung in the face. My plan is that for the next 4 weeks I swim 5x a week. That should work to get me ready in time.

I did a brick on Friday, and as per usual with any bike training it was in the rain, but that made it awesome. 
Soaking wet after the Brick..but feeling good!!
I did a 9km bike, and a 3km walk/run in 44 minutes, which is half of my goal time for the 20km bike and 5 km run (1:30), that made me feel a little better about registering for the sprint distance. 

I think I was freaking myself out because I made a goal of “not being last”. I have now revised my goal to finish the friggin thing. I don't care if I have to crawl across the finish line!!

As for sticking to a calorie restriction on vacation...umm..yah that didn't happen. I did track it, but it was pretty bad. I may have ate 1/3 of a coconut cream pie #sorrynotsorry. At least I got some sort of exercise every day so I'm pretty sure I didn't gain copious amounts of weight I just definitely didn't lose any! Back on track with the healthy noms this week!

Other than that I totally am using training to distract me from post vacation blues. Exercise is better than sitting around moping. Plus August is going to be awesome...featuring: family, friends, mud hero, city chase, and MORE!! Mike and I have 2 days with nothing planned for the whole month! Ready...GO!!! Plus I was pretty excited to come back to these cool cats. 
The are sooo excited that we are back..can't you tell. 
Anyone eat a 1/3 of a pie and have have 0 regrets? Anyone else have exciting plans for August?

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Training While on Vacation!

Hi from Rainy/Sunny/Rainy Dartmouth Nova Scotia!

It is time for update of my training!!

Friday-Hot Yoga
Saturday- Swim (350m), Bike 10 km
Sunday- Rest Day
Monday- 40 min Run
Tuesday- 20 min Run, Body Pump, 1.5 hr Rollerblade, 400 m swim
Wednesday- Hot Yoga
Thursday- 30 min Walk/Run
Friday- 10 km Bike, 15 min Run
Sat- 400 m Swim
Sun- BRICK (10 km bike, 4 km walk/run)
Mon-15 min Run/ 25 min walk
Tues-30 min walk/run, weights, Body Flow
Wednesday-450m+ Swim

Two weekends ago (last minute plans) I went up North for a friend’s stag/doe and we made a road trip of it stopping at Sauble Beach. 

It was totally worth the drive, gorgeous white beaches, and super warm water! Sauble itself is such a cute town, and for supper that night I had a delicious fish taco and some roasted corn on the cob from a hipster food truck. The Stag and Doe was a lot of fun too..stayed up way too late, but overall a good time!

Knowing that we were not going to able to fit in a workout Saturday or Sunday, Mike and I decided to get up super early on Saturday before we left to fit in our own Try-a-Tri. At 6:45 we got up and did the swim, then hopped on our bikes for a 10km loop. Mike has a road bike so he bikes faster than me, but I thought the understanding was we would just do it in our own time and then meet back near the apartment. At one point in our route the path splits in two and rejoins, and we both took different ones. I assumed Mike had just booked it home, meanwhile he had stopped to wait for me. So I arrived to the apartment, and no Mike. I waited for a while and then headed back down the trail to find him thinking something had happened to him and/or his bike..he also assumed that I was injured/stuck, and came looking for me…long story not so short after an extra 15-20 mins of biking we finally reconnected, but by that point we had no time to do the run, so the run was pushed until Monday night when we came back.

Monday’s 40 min run was the longest I have ever ran (Walk/ran) in my life! I did 10 mins of running, followed by 1 min walk/3 min run for the rest of the felt awful/awesome all at the same time. Tuesday I had planned to do the run/body pump/swim, but my friend Brittany asked me to join in on a rollerblade (yes it was 35 degrees in TO yesterday), so I did it ALL! The 400 m swim was painful, but awesome. Waking up Wednesday morning at 5:45 to go to Hot Yoga was slightly more painful..With all that extra working out, I treated myself to ALL YOU CAN EAT SUSHI on Wednesday night om nom nom. Thursday I did a 25 min run, and packed to go on vacation! 

I’m off for two weeks! Currently on a road trip back out east to see my family/Mike's family.Typically vacation for me means 0 exercise and lots of snacks, but not this year! I am taking full advantage of the opportunity for some open water swims, and we even brought our bikes with us. 
I went for a swim before the storm hit!
For the road we also packed a ton of healthy snacks for the road to avoid the temptation of McDonalds and Chippies. 
Mmmm snow peas!!
So far we have been sticking to the plan pretty well. Obviously on vacation there is a little more calorie intake (pie anyone?) but there is more free time to work out! Today I went for a swim at the local pool, and realized that my condo pool is definitely not 25 m, so I am way behind on my swimming training! Yikes!

One thing I am noticing though, is I am hitting a wall with the training. Running more than 30 min is hurting my soul, more than 10km bike is painful, and swimming without stopping is becoming an issue as the lengths go up. I don't know if this is normal and I just have to work through it, or maybe it is my sign to just do a try-a-tri this year. I am going to push myself for the next few days and see how it goes, and then make a decision what race to register for. 

Is hitting a wall normal?? Anyone else exercise for pie?

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Thursday Triathlon Training Tidbit

I’m on Week 4 of the training plan!!

Recap Time:
Saturday- See last Blog Post
Sunday- 10 km Bike IN THE RAIN
Monday- Rest day and Toronto Flooded (We are ok, my building was ok, my work was ok)
Tuesday-300m Swim AM, 20 min run+ Body Pump PM, 30 min walk after the gym
Wednesday- 10 km Bike IN THE WIND
Today- Attempted to Swim in the AM, pool was closed for maintenance. In the PM I went and got my Hair did, and then came back to the apartment and did a 25 min run and 30 mins of strength training. And I ruined my hair.

Before Hair Cut

After Hair Cut (Before Gym)
Two realizations

1. Back when I was trying to lose a little weight it was my goal to work out 5 days a week. I think I actually met that goal maybe far with this plan I have been working out 5/6 days a week and not even realizing it. Yay!!

2. I think I could do a try-a-tri right now (375 m swim, 10 km bike ride, 2.5 km run). I am going to test this theory on Sunday with my own try-a-tri (including biking/running in wet gear to get used to the idea).

Food stuff:
Since I am working my butt off, I have decided to also watch what I eat in order to maybe lose a few pounds..nothing major, I still want to fuel my body for training!

Both Mike and I (and apparently 90% of our friends) are using myfitness pal to track calories. My first week I was way over (it included Canada Day weekend), but the past two weeks I have been doing really well. The days I don’t exercise I have a really hard time keeping it in my limit, but the days I do exercise (Tuesday’s and Friday’s especially) I can pretty much eat what I want. Keep in mind when I say I eat what I want I mean healthy food with a treat or two, not a big mac and fries..nom nom.

My food for the day looks generally looks like this:
Bottom right  (Clockwise): Breakfast- Eggs and Swiss Chard, Lunch- Chickpeas, Brown Rice , Zucchini and Garlic Scapes, Snacks: Cucumbers, Almonds, Yogurt, Carrots and Hummus
Not pictured glass of Milk in the AM, Fruit and obviously supper which is normally some sort of protein and veggies. Drinking milk in the morning is a new thing, but I realized I was really low on Calcium and was getting sick of drinking water. Double win.

This all being said, on evenings where I do come home after working out (like Tuesday for example) I am so HANGRY (Angry because I am so hungry..grrr). And I still am craving junkfood a little...but this poster in my gym made me laugh..

Thanks gym for praying on me at my weakest moment..but no I didn't go get anything from the vending machine :P. 

Time to head to bed..Hot Yoga in the AM!

Anyone have any healthy snack ideas? Anyone else get a hair cut/style only to go ruin it :)?