Day 101: #Hill training in the cold takes my breath away (that and almost choking on gum)!

Hill at Lake Bonavista Downs Tonight was hill training. It was brutal. (This is the hill before winter hit. Just picture grayscale; dark/gloomy with very little Christmas lights…) Instead of doing it for endurance, tonights training was developed so that the runner keeps “race” speed the entire time. We all know that I don’t really have “race” speed, so I tried as best I could to keep my intervals under my usual hill training pace. I haven’t had time to look back and review, but I do think it is a little bit faster.

At any rate, training was as follows: one minute up hill at race pace, and one minute back down. Repeat x 10.

I should have prefaced this by saying that today is cheat day and I have eaten three pieces of fudge, two cookies, chicken strips and fries and two jujubes. So as you can see, I wasn’t kind to my body in terms of fuelling up properly, but hey, we only live once and if the world should end this week, I didn’t want to waste a cheat day!

I pumped my arms as fast as I could but I don’t think it did me any good. I had a belly full of junk. Maybe I should try the whole fasting before a workout?

Anyway, here are tonights stats:Day 101 HILL Training Lake Bonavista

  • Distance: 3.49 km
  • Time: 22:04
  • Pace: 6:20
  • Best Pace: 4:57


Day 80: 4 mile #run in the cold & snow

Well, well, well – it’s just been one of those weeks (already) it feels draggy and hard to get through. It took every ounce (and I mean every ounce) of motivation and energy I could muster to get out this evening and run. I had a terrible sleep last night and had an extremely early morning. I did lots of running around with my son, errands and started organizing our house for Christmas – it was exhausting!

Anyway, at around 7 p.m. I decided that if I was going to run, I had to start by 8 p.m., or I had to stay in. And at 7:55, I jumped up, got ready and started out. To my surprise, the run wasn’t that bad at all. I knew it probably wouldn’t be because I had a rest day yesterday, but I had that nagging feeling of not really wanting to go that I couldn’t kick. It was a little slick out there because of the light snowfall and it was chilly (felt like -15). My time wasn’t amazing but I’m just glad I got out and finished it – and as they say, you never regret a workout you’ve completed.

I do have to make a small confession to make.

I was at a really busy intersection on my way back to our place and literally one-step from the crosswalk. This jerk sees me putting my foot out (we make eye contact; yes. I’m one of those people who confirms that you can see me before I step out) and he freaking hits the gas! But before I knew it, the third finger from my thumb was completely erect. Yes. I flipped him off. Truthfully, I am kind of ashamed. But not really, I was pretty choked.  There’s just no way I could have been more visible. A jacket with reflectors, a geeky running vest, white hat, sneakers with reflectors, running pants with reflectors. What a tool. Anyway, I feel better now that that’s off my chest. 🙂

Here is a picture post run. This is my first run of the season with a scarf and also the first time I’ve had to leave my mittens on for most of the run (except when flipping people off, of course). For anyone who is running in cold weather, do you know if there is any lip balm that will truly protect ones lips? Mine were frozen tonight even despite being covered by the scarf. P.S.: Look at out frickin’ bright that vest is – there’s no way to miss me!

Alright, enough ranting. It’s time to settle in and watch a movie. It’s snowing out and peaceful. But it would be tragic if it snowed too much tonight so that I wouldn’t be able to do hills. One can only hope…

Here are tonights stats:

  • Distance: 6.49km
  • Time: 39:01
  • Pace: 6:01
  • Best Pace: 4:50


Day 34: 4 mile run; no walk in the North Glenmore Park

Today was a 4 mile run through North Glenmore Park and despite being an absolutely beautiful day, I feel much worse than I did yesterday. I can’t tell if this cold is getting better or worse. I can feel a bit of a rattle in my chest (great…) The park was really busy late morning. There were dogs everywhere, loads of walkers, some runners and many, many folks on bikes. I ended up going out later than usual (around 10:30). I haven’t run this side of the park very much and of course, I had to pee like a racehorse as soon as I got there. I noticed on the sign for the park they advertised washroom facilities and started looking around. Well, the “facilities” were an OUTHOUSE!

I thought about it a minute and knew I wouldn’t be able to run when I had to pee so I gulped in some fresh air, held my breath and went in. It was just as horrible as I remembered any outhouse being (the last one I used was camping…almost four years ago.) It was dirty, smelly and there was no hand sanitizer (yes, Sue, your hand sani would have come in very handy today!) And naturally,  I knew my description would never do the encounter justice so I couldn’t leave without taking a picture of this gem. We are really spoiled on the South side of the park – there’s a full washroom (two stalls and a sink) so this was a rude awakening!

The run itself wasn’t terrible, even though it took every part of my ambition to haul my behind off the couch. I did some quick stretching and headed east on the trail. It was absolutely beautiful. There were lots of people out on the reservoir in canoes and kayaks. I tried to snap some quick pictures; the colours are pretty neat. Anyway, because I was so late starting today by the time I finished the temperature was quite warm. I had to stop three times to blow my nose (yeah I know, gross) but I couldn’t blow and run (not always the best multi-tasker). There was an older man running today, I would guess he was in his late seventies, anyway I couldn’t believe the pace he was clipping along at. I hope I’m still that active when I hit that age!

Anyway – it is time for a nap. I need to get ahead of this cold – big trip coming up and a million things to do before we go!

Here are todays stats:

  • Distance: 6.40 km
  • Time: 40:02
  • Pace/km: 6:15
  • Best pace: 5:50


Day 33: REST day! YAHOO! Cold advice?

Today is a rest day and thank goodness for that! This cold is hanging on and despite my best efforts to get rid of it, doesn’t seem to be moving on any time soon. I’ve tried cold medicine, the old honey + water + lemon concoction, soup, water, tea – everything and no luck! Any other old school remedies out there that I’m missing? Anyway, I am glad that we don’t have to run today because I don’t know if I would be able to do it from a mental standpoint!

I plan on watching terrible TV and hydrating with my “TGIF” glass. I also plan on pretty much being useless for the rest of the day (I already have a head start.)

Tomorrow is a 4 mile run – still trying to decide if I’ll be taking my running buddy or not (he’s under the weather too.)

So, with that, hope everyone has a terrific Friday!!



Day 31: 4 mile run through Fish Creek Park (with stroller & cold)

So naturally, woke up this morning feeling even worse than I did yesterday and I was worried about whether I should go running or not. However, I did some google fact-checking and came across an article in Runners World about running whilst being sick. “David Nieman, Ph.D., who heads the Human Performance Laboratory at Appalachian State University, and has run 58 marathons and ultras, uses the “neck rule.” Symptoms below the neck (chest cold, bronchial infection, body ache) require time off, while symptoms above the neck (runny nose, stuffiness, sneezing) don’t pose a risk to runners continuing workouts.” Alas, my cold is causing runny nose, stuffiness and sneezing so I sucked it up and went out.

It was beautiful at Fish Creek Park. We saw a few people out but not nearly as many as at Glenmore Park. I did notice a lot of dog turds though – what’s with those people who walk their dogs but don’t pick up after them?! The run was a bit tough as I was feeling like crap; we had to stop a few times so I could clear my nose and throat (yeah, I know, gross…) We hit one good hill and I thought for sure I would have to call for someone to come pick us up, but we survived.

When we finished the run and were heading back to the park we saw Sgt. McGougan from the Calgary Police Service Mounted Unit. It was neat as a few months ago I met him over the phone while putting together the last pieces of the Calgary Stampede Parade Souvenir Program. Felix was very excited to pet Sgt. McGougans partner. We didn’t have long to visit, but he was kind enough to let us snap some pictures! We’re lucky to have our own mounted unit in the city!

All in all (and despite this darn cold) we’re happy to have the run behind us and it wasn’t the worst! Tomorrow is another tempo run which I’m not looking forward to but I’ve been drinking lots of water with lemon and hoping that tomorrow I’ll be feeling better and kick this cold square in the ass.

Here are today’s stats:

  • Distance: 6.41 km
  • Time: 43:36
  • Pace/km: 6:48
  • Best pace: 4:55