Do you need a buddy to keep you on track with your New Years goals?

If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.

Okay. So thank you Facebook for prompting this blog post (and sorry if it ends in some ranting). I’ve seen a few status’s from some people who are annoyed with the influx of new bodies at the gym because of New Years fitness and health goal/resolutions. Sadly, most of the comments are: “well, give it a few days/weeks and they’ll quit anyway.” Look, I ain’t naive. I know that it’s no secret that people make New Years resolutions that are next to impossible to keep (eg: six pack abs in four weeks). I know that sometimes we get so excited trying to make positive changes in our lives, that goals get out of hand. And don’t kid yourselves, we’ve all been there: too many changes too fast – trust me, I know. I also know first-hand that some people are just jerks. Period. They take more pleasure in seeing somebody else fail, than succeed (God only knows why).

Let me tell you a little story.

Last year I decided (after several attempts) that I was going to start going to the gym early in the morning. I had made grandiose new years resolutions that I would finally get back into shape; I would go to the gym every day; work out – yadda yadda yadda. It took a while, but I finally got the nerve to go. I arrived super EARLY that morning. I was so proud of myself. I signed up for the machine I preferred (you know the one I mean; the one that has absolutely NO ONE directly behind – no one needs to see that). I started doing my thing. Then, out of nowhere, I got accosted by a regular (who, I came to find out from the fitness center monitor, regularly humiliated people and also favoured the machine I was on). He accused me of not following protocol. (Seriously guy, it’s 6:30 a.m… protocol?)

I looked at the board and realized someone erased my name off of the sign ups – obviously an honest mistake. But this guy was just a dick (side-note: thank goodness none of my resolutions were to stop swearing; some year I will but this ain’t it). Anyway, I told him that I had signed up and it must have been erased. He rolled his eyes, hopped onto the machine beside me and turned to the woman there and started bitching about me within earshot. SERIOUSLY? I was already self-conscious as it was, the last thing I needed was some gym-freak making it more uncomfortable. And he did. It took me a few days and maybe even a week or so to comfortably get back at it. But I eventually I did. I even managed to say “Hi!” to him one morning (mostly just to get a rise out of him).

So here’s a thought for all you people out there who have no patience for the “newbies” at the gym: why don’t you just try to encourage them? It’s not easy to go, especially if you haven’t been active. It takes a while and some confidence to get into a new routine. And for some people, it literally is a struggle every day. And seriously, what the hell do you gain by taking pleasure in someone else’s failure especially when you can share in helping them succeed?

Mumbai Personal Training

You all know that yesterday I needed motivation to get out and run and within a few minutes of asking for help, one of my online pals gave me the encouragement I needed to get going. It’s that easy. It’s that support and encouragement that helps people achieve their goals – no matter how big or small. And I believe we’d all be better off if we just learned how to support each other more.

And with that, I’m asking that if anyone out there needs a running or workout buddy, whether in person or online – I’m your gal! Call on me! 

Truly. I need it as much as anyone else!

And for goodness sakes you old gym rats: OK. So you find it severely annoying when your routine is messed up because a “newbie” is using YOUR machine at the gym. Cut them some damn slack. Instead of being a jerk. Just talk to them. Give them a pat on the back. Or shut the hell up and carry-on with another piece of equipment. It’s that simple.

Okay. That’s it. Really. I hope that if you made a resolution, that you will stick to it. I’m only three days into not eating stuff that comes in a package and I’m thinking, “oh no, a whole year of this?!”

But I have faith. I know I can do it and so can you! 

 

 

 

Day 94: cross training… and TRX… @TricoCentre

Precor Elliptical at the Trico Centre - beauty! Today was technically a rest day, however, since I didn’t have a super successful training week last week, I decided that I should head over to the gym and give the new equipment a test run. All I that I really need to say is, AMAZING.

But you know me and my love for rambling. So here I go. I felt like I was transported to the future. EVERY piece of cardio equipment had it’s own TV! No more fighting with the old people for the remote. No more watching frickin’ soaps. No more watching the news, on repeat. There were so many treadmills and ellipticals – I felt like walking by each one with my arms out. Touching them to make sure they were real. And when I finally got to my machine I almost forgot I was exercising because I was staring at all the new stuff in awe.

I did make one suggestion and left it in the comment box. The cardio equipment is now facing a Studio and a gigantic wall (with a super weird paint job). My thoughts were that they should paint some inspirational quotes on the wall to compliment the new, fantastic equipment. Seriously. All you need are some good stencils and someone who isn’t afraid of heights, and without shaky hands. Heck, I’d even do it, if they went through with it.

Think about it: you’re having a particularly crappy day. The last thing you want to do is exercise. You do not want to be at the gym. But you sign up for your machine. Walk on over to it (without even looking around). Punch a few buttons. Start moving. But then you look up… and this is what you see:

Trico Centre Inspiration Wall

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

C’mon. Isn’t that brilliant? There is a ton of wall space. They could find motivational quotes from every which way. I know it would keep me motivated. They could even have a contest. Or do some research and get some local athletes up there. Maybe have some kids quotes? I was sort of thinking how the Markin MacPhail Centre has things laid out – I mean, they’ve got pictures of athletes but it would be much better (in my opinion) to have words. Or maybe a combination.

Anyway, okay, some times I over think things. Back to the workout. I did about 15 minutes on the elliptical and about 15 minutes or so of TRX. I don’t know how sore I’ll be tomorrow (I went pretty easy on myself). I did make a mental note to get together a really good TRX work out that I can do on my own. Have to do some research tonight!

Anyway, hope everyone is happy and healthy out there.

Again, HUGE kudos to the Trico Centre for getting 45 beautiful new pieces of equipment in there – we’re lucky to have such a superb facility almost literally on our doorstep 🙂 Thank you! 

 

YAHOO! Participating in @BaMCalgary – need your support!

The first wealth is health. – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Okay – so I’m super pumped to be participating in Bust A Move Calgary – it’s a six hour exercise session to raise much needed dough for the Tom Baker Cancer Center here in Calgary. I’ve been lucky to enjoy good health, but I know that the centre needs these funds in order to continue offering the programs and services it does. Events like Bust a Move ensure that dollars are invested into areas of highest need like diagnostic tools that catch cancer early, survivorship programs for women and educational programs.

Investments in the past have enabled progress such as:

  • Two state-of-the-art digital mammography screening units which were introduced in 2009 offering greater accessibility for more than 25,000 women in more than 100 rural Alberta communities each year
  • More than 50 breast-cancer research projects that are currently underway at the Cross Cancer Institute and beyond
  • Researchers such as Dr. Christine Friedenreich have discovered that physical activity can help reduce the risk of breast cancer. Studies continue to focus on type and amount of activity to further reduce risk
  • In 2012, Bust a Move Edmonton raised an incredible $400,000 in support of an innovative breast cancer virus discovery project and led by world renowned medical oncologist Dr. John Mackey.

No kidding that this will result in a considerably painful week afterward. No joke. I have full intentions of walking around like a cowboy who’s ridden a clydesdale. But I know that we need these centres to operate at top performance to help women: our grandmothers, mothers, sisters, aunts, daughters and friends.

Please support! Check out my personal fundraising page here.

Some day doesn’t exist and saying “I’ll start again next week” is rubbish.

I love this video.

Day 57: 8km. Snow. Bah.

It feels like forever since I’ve written a blog, but it’s only been a few days. We flew back to Alberta on Thursday. The flights were terrific and F was a little superstar. I don’t want to get into a lot of detail about the trip itself, because it’s not running related but I do want to share something from a fellow I met on the plane. I won’t share names but this fellow doesn’t fly much. In fact, the flight he was taking was the first leg in a trip west in order to find work to support a wife and six (6) kids! What struck me about him was his friendly demeanour and humble personality. He was so kind to both myself and my son – a typical Cape Bretoner. He didn’t mind that F kept leaning across him, playing with his TV buttons or screeching every now and then. He was unbelievably patient and for any of you with kids, I know you’ll understand just how much this was appreciated as I was travelling alone.

During the two and a half hour flight we shared many stories. In there, he told me about his daughter who had been a double kidney transplant recipient at the age of nine; how they didn’t know she was even sick until she went into renal failure; that the fact that she is 14 and healthy (5 years post transplant) is a miracle. And that he has another child with special needs who requires special care. Never once did he complain about the cards they were dealt. In fact, when we talked about the sacrifices of moving west he spoke about his resolve to work as much as he could so his family could stay in Cape Breton. Yet, despite his determination and working sixty hours (plus) a week they could barely make ends meet. And this is where I want everyone to pay close attention: He smiled lots and said:“That’s life. When you think that things are bad, thank God that you have healthy kids because there’s nothing worse than spending each day at your child’s bedside praying to God that she gets better.” Needless to say, I walked away from the flight totally inspired. And I know the chances of him ever seeing this blog are slim to none (as he claimed he wasn’t really much of a computer person) but I owe him a big thank you. He put life into perspective; and there are many people who could stand to spend a couple hours with someone of his integrity and resolve. I’m just glad that I got to.

Anyway, back to what I’m supposed to be writing about. Before I went to bed last night I thought I would be organized and lay out my running clothes for today. Of course, yesterday wasn’t a cool day at all so I just assumed (wrongly) that today wouldn’t be any different. DUH! This is Alberta, the weather changes from minute to minute. I woke up this morning, lazed around and watched a movie all without realizing it was snowing out! I have to admit, as soon as I saw the white stuff I thought there was no way I was going to push myself to the door. However, with some heckling from the peanut gallery (P) I went out at 5’ish (I had initially planned to run at 9 am).

The run itself was awful. I did not want to be running. My legs felt like cinder blocks. Every step took an incredible amount of effort. And to boot, due to the snow and leaves the sidewalks were nasty. My time was slower. Oh and as I approached the 3 km mark, a woman walking her socially inept dog just let him lunge at me. And said “Oh! Sorry!”  And truth be told, I wouldn’t have been annoyed except that I saw her coming from a kilometre back and it was very evident that the dog was walking her (it was a bigger dog, looked like a shepherd mix of some type.) There was nowhere for me to go, so I kept going. Then about 2 km further I met a guy running with his muzzled dog. The two of them took up the sidewalk and he refused to follow general etiquette of staying to the right, so I had to hop out into the street with cars at my back (what a gentleman, eh?)

And as I felt my skin go crimson with rage (hah) the words from my seat mate on my flight back west came back to me –  don’t complain. You have nothing to complain about. And so I started to feel like a jerk. So I believe I’m just grouchy because I miss Cape Breton and my family, I loved most of my runs there and it’s hard to get back into the swing of things here. BUT I have no reason to complain, so I’ll just zip it because tomorrow is another day and another run. YAHOO!

Here are todays stats:

  • Distance: 8.02 km
  • Time: 48:32
  • Pace: 6:03 min/km
  • Best Pace: 4:14