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

Day 30: 5 x 500m of hills… with stroller (OUCH!)

YAHOO! Finished hills today – thank goodness. Wasn’t sure if I would be able to make it through hills today as I went to bed last night not feeling fantastic and of course, woke up this morning with a scratchy throat and stuffed up nose. And let’s face it 5 x 500 m UPHILL and 5 x 500 m DOWNHILL is exhausting at the best of times, let alone when you’re under the weather! But we got up, had our usual pre-run breakfast + coffee and jumped in the truck to find the perfect 500 m hill within the city (a more challenging task than it may seem). So after about 20 minutes of driving me and Felix found the perfect spot.

The first three times I ran the hill felt pretty good, but I’ll admit the last two near killed me. My lungs were burning, nose was stuffed, face was as red as a tomato and I was ready to quit. There was one point I was pushing the stroller as far ahead of me up the hill as I could and cursing it simultaneously. It was tough going with a stroller, but we did it! However, silly me forgot to put in the correct number of intervals so I have two sets of results.

Here are the stats from hills:

Day 25: 4 mile run by South Glenmore Park

Today we had a great 4 mile run through Glenmore Park. The sun was shining and the temperature was perfect for a good mid-morning run. I have never run further than the turnaround point by the waters side, so it was neat to run by Heritage Park (Felix really loved it.) I think I may need to investigate some other trails to start running on though, I am starting to grow tired of the Reservoir (or maybe my playlist?)

There were a few people out running today, it looked like the Running Room must have had a clinic going on (had the km markers out.) Saw a few bikers and also a few walkers.

I continued with “Project Morning” – it all went very well, even with people whose first language was clearly not English – they smiled & waved. However, when we were nearing the end, there were two ladies ahead and as I passed I said, “Morning!” One ignored us altogether; the other shrugged and gave us a muffled “Hi….” It took all my willpower not to turn around and say: “Ya know, it wouldn’t kill ya to smile!” But the overwhelming elation that I was almost done made me consider otherwise.

It was a pretty great 4 mile run; I know my time could definitely be better but I’ll just keep working on it.

Here are todays stats:

  • Distance: 4 miles (6.44km)
  • Time: 41:23
  • Pace/km: 6:25
  • Best Pace: 5:35


Day 24: 4 x 250m Hills – Ouch. Oh yeah, with a stroller!

Today was hill training. With the worlds best running buddy – my 19 month old son. So pushing a stroller uphill is as painful as it sounds. Very few hills intimidate me, but I have to admit, it is the small, steep ones I hate the most. They never look too bad and don’t feel terrible until you’re about half-way done. We started out at Weaselhead Flats and ran counter-clockwise so went downhill first. It was really windy and cold but after about two minutes, I was sweating. Felix didn’t mind the hill training – he just took everything in while eating cheerios. We saw a lovely couple out for a walk – the man was teasing me when I came down the hill for the third time “AGAIN!” he would say. It was cute. Once we finished the 4 intervals, we did a 0.5km jog to cool down. The whole thing took less than 20 minutes but I feel more tired that I do after longer runs.

I think running hills is completely a mental game. So rather than stare at the top of the hill, I watch the ground. I shorten my stride. Make a conscious effort to breath steady and give’r! When coming down, I also make a conscious effort to continue strong, steady breathing and also, ensuring I don’t get going too fast so that (a) I don’t get a stitch and (b) I don’t fall.

For my first crack at hill training it went pretty well, though it’s not easy and my lungs burned. Hope as the weeks go on it gets easier. Would love to hear what other people do to train on hills.

Here are the stats: 

  • o.25 km downhill
  • 0.25 km uphill
  • o.25 km downhill
  • 0.25 km uphill
  • o.25 km downhill
  • 0.25 km uphill
  • o.25 km downhill
  • 0.25 km uphill
  • 0.50 km cool down jog

My ankle was feeling pretty good today. Definitely believe giving my legs a second rest day was helpful. Hoping to do some yoga tonight to get a good stretch in. Hope everyone is having a terrific Tuesday!

Day 18: 3 mile run through Glenmore Reservoir with stroller – YEAH BUDDY!

Today was a perfect morning for training. The temperature was around 12 degrees, the sun was shining and Felix and I had an awesome run through Glenmore Reservoir. We went the hilly way and survived (surprisingly.) I didn’t wake up thinking I wanted to do hills today (or any hill), but when we hit the trail I just felt like I could handle it (even with the stroller.)  I do believe that it was all due to my amazing mathematical skills. I worked out how far I needed to go so that when we turned around I would only have to do one really steep hill and get to finish at the top. It worked out perfectly.

That hill was a real bitch though (excuse the language.) I didn’t even want to look up because I was scared I’d lose steam so I just looked at the ground, pushed with one arm and prayed to God that if I passed out they’d find me before the bear did. Oh yes. There’s been a bear out on the reservoir. I truly hope I never see him (I do have bear spray, though I have no idea how to use it.) We made it to the top and I really wanted to do the Rocky move but thought the old fella I met up there would think I was a total nutcase, so I did it in my head. Todays run wasn’t fast but I really enjoyed it.

I continued “Project Morning” and said “Good morning” to everyone we met (some we met twice); I have to say, 99% of the folks we met today

were smiling and cheery. I talked to a few people along the way. One older man asked me if I planned to do the whole trail; I asked him if he was crazy. But did say “maybe some day!” There were lots of dogs and bikers; Felix loves seeing both. We snapped this picture of the pond as we were nearing the turnaround point. Yes, for my Nova Scotia friends, this is exciting for us here in Alberta. Water. It actually looked really nice; despite a little voice in my head telling to keep checking to make sure there are no moose, cougars or bears around it. I don’t even know what I would do if I saw any of the three. Surprisingly, I am most scared of moose.

I have to say that the runs and recovery are getting easier, but I do know that in the coming weeks my mileage will go up quite a bit. I’m also dreading the hilly runs that are also coming up in training e.g.: 5 x 200 yards uphill. Ouch.

Here are todays stats:

  • Distance: 4.81 km
  • Time: 32:07
  • Pace/km: 6:41
  • Best pace: 6:05

Anyway, as you can see the time wasn’t the best, but I’m not a bit sore and had a great run – it’s all about the journey, right? Here’s a picture of me and Felix after we finished. YAHOO! Big Smiles all around.:)