Monday, December 29, 2008

2009 Is The New 2008

I have been reading a lot of great posts these past days that summarize the accomplishments of 2008 and the goals for 2009.  I had hoped to do something similar but then I realized the difficulty I might have in doing that?  First, I really just returned to running earlier in the year and have yet to accomplish a formal race accomplishment beyond a few 5k and 10k's.    I guess I could summarize as follows:

  • Decide in early 2008 that we could not just wait around for our daughters condition to get worse.  Rather than be idle, I informed my hubby that I was going to run a 1/2 marathon with the Joints in Motion Care team in Toronto.  The 1/2 marathon was many, many months away so I was not overly worried.  Hubby was somewhat concerned about my tendency to overextend myself but I assured him that all was well. 
  • In February 2009, I met with the Arthritis Society.  After learning of my previous running experience, they convinced me that the 1/2 marathon in Disney is a far more exciting thing to do and that I could try to raise a lot more money.  I was very skeptical but decided to give it a shot (see: hubby has more anxiety...).  
  • In March 2009, I began running again with more regularity.  Somedays I felt like an Olympic Athlete and super Mom...other days I was little more than pathetic and bloated former athlete trying to relive the glory days after two kids and one too many plates of nachos.  I digress....
  • In April 2008, I began to fundraise and Glory be to God, it was an enormous success!  In less than a week I had raised over $4000 and within a month I had exceed $6000.  At last check, my total funds raised was approached $7000 with one week left.   We have wonderful friends, families, colleagues and employers! 
  • In May 2008, the training coach convinced me I could do the full marathon.  This was a matter of significant debate in the RunMommy household as the time, energy and physical capacity was soon to exceed critical mass.  However...the full had eluded me twice previously (darn pregnancies) so a little part of me couldn't let it go and hubby relented.
  • May 2008 to present - training really begins..hurray!
  • September 2008 - foot injury and relentless pain threaten to sideline the event and there is much discussion on whether we can proceed with so much on the line.  Several mental breakdowns later, it is decided to push forward and hope for the best!  After rest, lots of massage, physio and excellent advice - we were back on track with only the time goal to sacrifice. 
  • November 2008 - first run to exceed 30k and the first time we actually thought this might happen.  Thanks again to M&M! 
  • December 2008 - tickets are paid for, travel plans are booked, children are over the moon with excitement and there is no turning back now
So here we are!  We leave one week from today and I am ready to roll.  At this point, I would be happy even if I finish is 6 hours (put sub 5 would make me happier - who am I kidding??).

As for 2009 plans:
  • Complete first marathon
  • Sit on butt for at least 1 full week (post Disney tour)
  • Play competitive soccer again after 5 year hiatus.  
  • Conitnue to encourage children to participate in athletic endeavors to their fullest effort!
  • Repair SuperMom cape for future use
  • Cook dinner every night - not just on days I want to have vegetarian fare
  • Participate in at least one trail race
  • Complete at least on other marathon (maybe 2 - maybe 3 - Wow, the addiction really is catching!)
  • At least one marathon must be in another country - perhaps without children this time??
  • Become friends with my bikini (seriously??? no)
  • Enjoy 10 years of joyful marriage (hopefully in a cafe in Paris)
  • Introduce one new children's active living event in the community (LOVE my job)
  • Continue to read up on the activities of all the bloggers who run for health, run for love, run for joy, run for torture or run for all the above.
Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Running the Holidays

Again, I have been very neglectful of the blog and my blogger friends these past weeks but it seems wrapping up work, final weeks of training, planning a family vacation all over the busiest days of the year is a little more time consuming than I thought!  

With that thought, I need to start planning what to bring.  Packing for my family is one thing but I don't want to forget any essentials for the marathon either.  I have been pouring over websites with tips and ideas and tried to search through the Disney site as well but I welcome any tidbits of advice!  I have this horrible image where I arrive in Florida with only one shoe (of the pair that I have PERFECTLY broken in) or without my all important hat.  

I have mostly done my speech and practiced it a few times - 4.5 minutes give or take. Now my biggest stress on that is what to seems the marathon training diet is the WORST one ever!  I had hoped that two weeks before marathon, my butt would be the size of Jennifer Anistons but it seems that eating non-stop (especially on Sunday's) is not offset by miles of running...who knew???  Lesson learned oh wise running gods. 

So I will spend the next week getting vacation organized because taking a loving but useless husband and two small children on an airplane to Orlando should be no problem. (*cough, gasp*).  

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and looking forward to a joyous 2009!  

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Three Weeks and Counting

I must apologize for my absence this week, it has been crazy busy.  I am just starting to get caught up on the blogs so I hope I didn't lose anyone!  Anyway, I am not feeling to great today and I am praying that it is not a drive down bug because this could possibly be the WORST timing for that!  Christmas is a few days away, I have to finish up a few more things for work before holidays and I am in the final three weeks of my training for Disney.  Let's hope it all works out. 

Today I met with my training gods, Marci and Moe and managed to get in about 17km in the dome (round and round and round...).  This morning when I woke up I felt a bit funny and nauseous but when we got going, I felt better.  I was banking on 30k+ today and felt pretty good about it early in the run.  At about 10k I started to feel a bit off and by 15km it was awful and I was sure I was going to be sick.  I had some water, a gel, and kept going.  At 17k I had to pack it in because I was sure I was going to lose my lunch on poor Marci (sorry for the graphic details but there really is no dainty way to say it is there??).  This has me a bit stressed as that was to be my third and final 30k + run before the marathon.  Not to mention, this crazy winter weather is making outdoor runs nearly impossible so the bulk of my final weeks will be indoor.  Both Moe and Marci were very certain that I will be ready but I am very nervous...much more than I ever thought I would be.  

Well, I think I will soon head to bed as the toast I had when I got back from the run is also disagreeing with me.  Here's hoping this is nothing more than a 24 bug as I think my children will be devastated to have a wiped out Mommy for Christmas!  

Saturday, December 13, 2008

I Need Ideas!

Thanks everyone for the comments on the last post. I feel a lot more confident about what I am going to say and actually, I am kind of excited about it now. Thanks!

This is totally off the running topic but I really need some finish up my Christmas shopping. My own kids are done as is my husband and both set of parents. We don't buy for aunts, uncles, cousins etc.. We do a draw among the 25 or so extended family members and then make a game out of it on Christmas. It is really fun and a lot more economical! However, I still have three more to buy and I am TOTALLY stumped.

First, my 14 year old nephew. He is my sister-in-law's son and he is a great kid. He likes what all boys his ages likes - HELP! Who knows what he likes - he is 14??? From what his mom tells me, he mixes between little boy and grown up man every hour so his interests change by the minute. In one sentence he is excited about heading out to snowboard and in another sentence he is talking about all his cool friends (of which some are possibly female??). He wears his pants too low and his hair too long but he is a really good natured kid - even for a quasi adolescent. :) I am at a loss on this one.

Second is his sister. This is a real stumper because she is 18, wears various assortments of black and her hair is all different lengths and about 4 different colours including pink, blue, purple - really just depends on her mood (which by the way is equally as unpredictable). She is a very beautiful girl who wears WAY too much make-up and paints bizarre things on her face and hands. I couldn't not even begin to guess what her interests are. When I was 18, I wore boot cut jeans, button up polo shirts and had white blond hair halfway down my back. I am confident she would have found me appalling! She doesn't play any sports and abhors any kind of sweating. She struggles in school despite being genius level of intelligence and rallies against her parents and their rules at every opportunity. Depite all this, she adores my children and gets down and dirty whenever she plays with them! They really love her which is a wonderful statement on the fact that children don't judge in appearance. Underneath all that junk on her, she is a nice kid just looking for her path. She is also an excellent artist but my attemps to buy her art supplies in the past have been somewhat poor as I apparently know nothing about it (that is true).

Finally, my babysitter. She is a wonderful woman who watches my children three days a week. She is also my son's Cub Scout leader and she is the assistant coach on his hockey team. She takes my daughter to swimming lessons and remembers when it is "needle day" so to make sure she gets an extra surprise on those days. Usually a new package of hair pony's or a toy hockey stick (yes, my daughter would rather play with hockey sticks than babies). She and her husband both give up a lot of their time to their own kids activities as well. She is the president of the Parent and Teacher Association and quite often does little extra's for me like picking up my son from school even on days that are not hers. I know the obvious chloice is a bonus ($$) and she would probably like that best but I would like to get her something personal and more thoughtful. She really cares for my kids a lot and want them to give her something!

So there it is...I am stumped on these three things. I hope no one minds that I have hijacked my blog for this purpose but I am desperate! On the other hand, this week's long run is another 30k+ run as I countdown to Disney!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Inspiration Mile

I have talked about this in the past but I thought this was worth posting.  As everyone know, I am running in Disney with the Joints in Motion training team.  I am running for my 3 year old daughter who was diagnosed last year with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis.   I am in the final stretch for fundraising so I put this out there for anyone still interested in sponsoring me at  Run for Reese !  

That aside, I have also been asked to speak at the reception and tell our story.  While I am not a fearful public speaker, I have really struggled on what to say??  I don't want it to be a quiet sad story and I also want to be sure to talk about running a marathon - not just arthritis. I have been asking around for ideas and have several people send me little quotes, jokes etc...about running and I thought I would post but a few of my favourites for all my blog friends!  

If you want to win something, run 100 metres.  If you want to experience something, run a marathon. - Emil Zapotek

Most people run a race to see who is the fastest.  I run a race to see who has the most guts.  - Steve Prefontaine

You have to forget your last marathon before you try another.  Your mind can't know what's coming.  -Frank Shorter

We can't all be hero's.  Someone has to sit on the curb and clap as we go by. 
- Will Rogers

The advantage to exercising everyday is that you die healthier 
- Anonymous

Michael Johnson, the Olympic gold medal runner, was on his way to a club with some friends. At the door, the bouncer turned to him and said: "Sorry, mate, you can't come in here - no denim". Michael was quite annoyed at this and retorted: "Don't you know who I am? I'm Michael Johnson".  The bouncer replied "Then it won't take you long to run home and change, will it?" 

Last year I entered the "New York City marathon". I finished last. It was embarrassing. And the guy who was in front of me, second to last, was making fun of me. He said, "Hey buddy, how does it feel to be last?". I replied: "Do you want to know?" and I dropped out.

The difference between a mile and a marathon is that a mile is like burning your finger and a marathon is like being slow roasted over coals.

Most men take the straight and narrow. A few take the road less traveled. I chose to cut through the woods."

Runners just do it - they run for the finish line even if someone else has reached it first. 
  - Unknown

Some individuals dream of great accomplishments, while others stay awake and do them. 
  - Beth Lukens, Florida State runner

Everyone is an athlete. The only difference is that some of us are in training, and some are not. 
 - Dr. George Sheehan

If I am still standing at the end of the race, hit me with a board and knock me down, because that means I didn’t run hard enough. 
  - Steve Jones

Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever. 
  -Lance Armstrong

Marathoning is like cutting yourself unexpectedly.  You dip into the pain so gradually that the damage is done before you are aware of it. Unfortunately, when the awareness comes, it is excruciating.          - John Farrington, Australian marathoner

I welcome any other thoughts, jokes, top 10 lists..anything I can put into my speech so I don't sound like a total cornball.  It will be hard enough to be a room full of people running for something that is so important to us and I think I would rather have an uplifting and positive story to tell the night before running the longest thing I have ever done in my life. Don't you agree?  :)


Monday, December 8, 2008

Work, Kids, Holidays, Training, Trip..... I'm Tired

I am really getting tired. I work full time and although I have a great job, I am pretty busy and have full days. My children, while I adore them - are EXHAUSTING. They have started to fight with each other CONSTANTLY which is driving me insane. They will fight about who gets to drink from the blue cup and who gets to stand beside the cart in the grocery store, who's snowball is the biggest and so on...I really thought a boy and a girl wouldn't fight so much. I stand corrected.

I am getting very nervous about the race so I stress about each training run a bit more than I should. The weather is stressing me because I really hoped December was going to be a more mellow weather month. This makes training more challanging because of the added thoughts about how and where to run. Not to mention, running 25 or 30k + takes a really long time! With little spare time as it is, giving up so many hours is wearing me down.

I think I have Christmas presents for all and have thought of everything but I know I am forgetting someone and with little time to get out, I hope that doesn't happen.

Finally, I am trying to plan for our trip which up to the this point has been sort of secondary to all this. Now I am starting to realize that in less then a month, my family (including my 3 and 6 year old) are heading on an airplane to a far away destination. This can not be done on a lark!

Umm...maybe I should head out to play tennis or something physical. Oh that's right, I can't do that because my husband is at his one night a week hockey game and sadly a 6 year old is not a suitable babysitter. :)

If you can believe it, reading all these posts including Marci's that I just read has me thinking about what race I will want to do next! I think I am insane. Aren't we all?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Sunday Run a Bust

Hello all,  

Today is a bummer.  I set out this morning on my 23k run (only four more long runs to go!).  I was a little worried because it was quite a winter stirring last night.  However, I bundled up and got myself prepared for the cold.  My friend was meeting me on the second loop and she bailed out this morning because of the wind!  So off I went down the road.  At 1km I realized it was much colder than I thought.  At around 2km, the wind was blowing and when it got strong (which was a lot) it would blow wind and snow on my felt like little tiny daggers on my cheeks!  At 3km, I turned around and ran home.  

So there you go.  What started as 23km ended up being 6km which I may have run in record time. Winter really blows.  

Tomorrow I am going to a local indoor track to run 6 million laps around and get my 23km for my long run.  It is not ideal but better than a treadmill for 2.5 hours. Next week it is back up over 30k again so let's start hoping for some sun!

Instead, my husband, kids and I are heading out to pick up our tree from a local farm.  The children are extremely excited and I am also anxious to get out the decorations and lights.  Some family for dinner tonight and back to work again tomorrow!  

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Friends and Enemies

Not to worry, my subject is not nearly as ominous as the title sounds. I was thinking yesterday that there are so many things that make me happy in running and then other things that are driving me crazy.
Friend: Disney! Can't wait, we are very excited and not just for the marathon but for all the super fun things that we are going to do. My children talk about it every day...if we don't see Lightening McQueen or Nemo..there will be trouble :)
Enemy: INJURIES! Most know of my nagging foot injury that put up roadblocks for several weeks during my training. I will not say that there is no pain but lots of massage, physio, orthotics and proper coaching really made a great difference. Sunday I did 35k and the pain was no more than the rest of my body! There is nothing more frustrating than having an injury after you are doing something so great for your body, mind and overall health.
Friend: My new Asics running shoes!
With all my research on how to alleviate my foot pain, it was suggested that I give the Cumulus or Nimbus models a try. LOVE THEM. For the first time, I am really having no foot or heel pain while I run. From a dedicated Nike girl - I am converted.
Enemy: Darkness. This time of year, it is dark - a lot. If I run in the early am it is dark. If I want to run in the evening, I have to go by 4:00 if I still want to be in daylight. Sometimes I don't mind the darkness but I can sometimes get talked into slowing down or walking for safety reasons or because it just seems so late and I am tired (even though it might only be 5:00). Here's to the planet speeding up the rotation process.
Friend: I have discovered a great benefit to running that some people talk about more than others (I am thinking men vrs women). Great Jeans. And no, not the genetic kind.
It is fair to say that I am not walking down any catwalks anytime soon but I enjoy that some of the more jiggly bits are little tighter and firmer. No woman out there can honestly say great jeans don't matter - just admit it. Let's not get crazy though, lots of parts are still a little too big and a lot more jiggly...perhaps I should do another marathon after this to keep working on it?
Enemy: Icy Roads.

For many of you this is not a problem. Here in Canada we have winter so ice can be a nightmare. As long as people clear their walkways and driveways, ice on running routes are not always a problem. However, quite often there are patches and sometimes they sneak up on you. I do hate treadmills but sometimes they are a necessary evil so I don't break my neck.

Friend: Support. This blog and my blogging friends, family members and non running friends who pep me up when I am tired, offer to babysit when Daddy is away. Friends that run really far distances with me when they don't have a race they are training for (thanks Moe/Marci). A great husband who makes sure I get the time I need and gives the green light on YET ANOTHER pair of shoes and kids who drive by with Daddy to cheer me on. Support is vital to success and I could not ask for more.

So there it is. My thoughts for today!

Monday, December 1, 2008


I was giving this post a lot of thought as I considered several options for topics or some kind of clever title..but I have nothing.  Nothing more than to say that I had my longest run to date yesterday - again!  Last week I did 26k and I felt over the moon about it. This week I was planning 30k but instead of was 35k!!  

Many, many thanks to Marci's husband who was generous enough to accompany me on this mega run when Marci was sidelined with illness.  I felt terrible that he was up so early and on his feet for so long just to drag me along but I was extremely happy to finish!  The best part was that I thought we had only done 30k so to find out it was 35k was very, very thrilling.  In addition, I felt a lot better about the fact that I totally wanted to throw up at the end and it was comforting to know that it was because it was such a long run.  Thanks again Moe and I hope you are feeling much better Marci!

I must admit that making the jump from 26k to 35k in a week was tiring and I was pretty sore yesterday but I still feel great and without anything more profound to say - that is my boring post for today! :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Time to Run

What time of the day do you run? I vary it but I think I prefer the mornings because then it is done for the day and I feel great all day. I have a little more spring in my step in the am and there is less interference with kid schedules or evening events. I like to shower and dress for the day AFTER I have already gotten messy and sweaty and then I can also check it off the list. The down side is that I tend to eat a little more than I probably should over the day as I think it is "OK".

There have been lots of times where I have run in the evening due to various conflicts or absent husband etc... During the warmer months it is not too bad but now it is cold, dark and very miserable by 6:00pm. I usually can't get out in the evening until after 8:00 (post kid bed time) so it is not so pleasant. However, some of my fastest runs have been in the evening...

What do you do?

Also, I have posted this video because I thought it was a great "mini" inspiration. Enjoy!  Happy Thanksgiving to my American bloggers!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Mental Game

First let me say congratulations for all those in Philly this past weekend! I look forward to reading race reports and seeing how everyone is feeling today. I hope it wasn't too cold or wintery. Only crazy people would attempt to run 42km in late November in the freezing cold, snow, slush - mess. You have to be a little off your rocker?? :)

That brings me to today's thought on running - the mental game. As many know, I have had some set backs in my training in the recent months with Plantar Faciitis and some shin pains. After weeks of no running, many massages, orthotics and countless hours stretching - I am back at it. I had two weeks of "building back up" but this week I am back on schedule and while my finishing goal is slighly altered, I am still in the game.

However, yesterday I attempted my first really long run in quite a while. I had decided that it was going to be final test to decide if I was going to make it in the full at Disney. One of the other runners going to Disney was going to come to my house so we could attempt 29km together but on Saturday she advised that a pulled muscle had her sidelined for a week or so. Suddenly, I was attempting to run nearly 30km all by myself and I was totally, 100% terrified. I don't know what was the matter with me but in the hour leading up to the run I was convinced this was a mistake and I was full of dread and doubt. I hated the idea of getting out in the cold to run a distance I had never done in my life, by myself. This is when I really wish I had a running group that I participate with. I know, I know - there are lots and I will hook up. I just find scheduling a real challange with a full time job, two little people and their schedules. Not to mention finding some time in the week to actually converse with my hubby.

Back to my stress... so I was getting suited up and having a near mental collapse. My husband was telling me all the right things and promised to drive by me a few times. I had my cell phone on me to call him (he was taking our son to a birthday party and then grocery shopping with the little one). I finally got out there and within 5 minutes I realized my iPod was dead. Could there be any more signs of failure???? I ran back to my house to put back the quiet iPod and was even more petrified of 3 hours of nothing but my own spinning thoughts. I went.

The first 7 or 8km were horrible. I was sore and it seemed colder than I thought. I thought up all the explanations I could give to the Arthritis Society, our family, our friends - my kids as to why I couldn't do the marathon. I had lost so much training time already and there was no way I could get it back. At about 10km, I stopped at a gas station to use the facilities and while I was there I called my husband to come and get me. If you can believe it, he didn't answer - after he had promised to have the phone practially in his hand! I called twice and got no answer so I had no choice but to carry on.

All of the sudden, I felt better. I had myself a tasty energy burst with a chocolate GU (my favourite) and I was running along. I decided at this point to take off my watch and put it in my pocket. So now I am running with no iPod, no watch and cell phone which proved to be a useless security line because my husband was deep in the grocery megastore and had no service. It occured to me at one point that I had probably passed 20km but I still felt OK!

About 30 or so minutes past this point, I started to go downhill (figuratively speaking). My head was dizzy and my heart was racing. What was crazy is that my husband happened to drive by at that exact moment that I felt like I was going to fall down. I took that as a sign and I jumped in the car and went home. At first I was really upset that I hadn't finished 29km. Then after I got home and had my stardard post long run snack of toasted english muffin and peanut butter, I checked MapMyRun. I had gone 26km. This is the longest distance I have ever run in my life. I have no idea how long it took me and I don't care. I was overwhelmed that I had done it and the lunacy of my head games along the way seemed so insignificant now. If there was ever a moment that I would classify as "pivotal" , that was it.

This morning I feel a little sore but the pains in my feet are not nearly as bad as they have been or as I expected them to be. I feel a level of confidence that I never had before and although we have only 5 more weeks of training before tapering - I know I can do it. Putting aside the possibilites of a dumptruck mowing me down or tripping over a set of Star Wars figures on my staircase - I am going to do it. I don't think I ever fully respected the mental strength and capacity required to run those distances but I see it much better now and I can't wait to go to Disney now and see it through.

So, I have my eyes open for dumptrucks and all the Star Wars figures are in a box on a shelf - just in case.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Olympic Torch Relay 2010

Today I am a proud Canadian runner!  It was announced today that the Olympic Torch Relay for the Vancouver Olympic Games in 2010 will be the longest in history.  At 45,000 km, it will take 106 days and will reach the most northern population as well as both coasts

I would LOVE to participate in this event!  I can't think of a better way to be part of the Olympics (at 35 years old, I stand little chance of being a contender for the Olympic pairs skating.. :) )  I know there are likely thousands of others contending for a spot but I plan to jump through all necessary hoops and then hope for the best.   I have no idea when and how these decisions get made but I plan a full effort to be part of it! 

Can you imagine saying you were part of an Olympic relay??? 

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Day After....

Many have indicated that I might be crazy to attempt a trip through Disney with my hubby and little ones after the marathon but I really have no choice. Basically, there was no chance hubby and I were going without the children - especially when I am participating in this event for my daughter. Plus they are VERY excited and I couldn't bring myself to tell a parental fib about where Mommy and Daddy were going. (For those readers that are parents - you know the parental fib). I am excited to see them get excited so we are off all together!

However, we have only a short time down there so every day counts. Therefore, the concern for Mommy's legs (or in my case - my feet) will be VERY minimal. My husband is already warning me that within an hour of my finish the kids are banking on a second marathon through the parks. I guess this is when I have to draw on that super human "Mom" strength that you read about!

On that note, I came across a great video. Make sure you watch to the end. I plan to show the family this video and hope they have a little least for an hour or so. :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

My Joints are in Motion

As most know, I am participating in with the Joints in Motion training team with the Arthritis Society. It is a wonderful way to participate in an international event and raise money for something that affects all ages (as we have discovered). This week, I received a call from the organization asking me to be the speaker at the reception and to tell our story. This is a great honour but also very intimidating! I am not a fearful public speaker but I am not normally speaking about things so close to home. Now I will train for my race and practice my speech!
I know a lot of people run for a wide variety of reasons but I recommend that everyone do something like this at least once. There are lots of other organizations that offer a similar opportunity such as the Diabetes Association among others. My husband, kids and parents are all coming so it may be costing us a truckload of $$ but we haven't even given that as much thought as we might have for other trips. It is a great experience and I am getting more and more nervous!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Straight Out of a Movie

So you are running along, you got a good groove and perhaps you are thinking about what to make for dinner or what errands you will complete later.  Maybe you are focused on the pace or what you might name some future unborn child - who knows but I'll bet EVERYONE has daydreamed some big scene, like a movie where you are finishing first in the Olympics or running through jungles from drug lords or maybe your "movie scene" is a romantic connection with the  love of your life who follows you across country.....whatever it is, you KNOW you all do it!  What else are you going to think about running those long distances??  One can only complete mental checklists for so long.

These leads me to consider what the soundtrack would be for my movie scene.  When I make up these crazy images in my head during my runs, it usually depends on the song that is on my iPod or what topics are on my mind in that moment.  Sometimes I have just seen a movie that I liked or maybe my husband is away (as is often is) and I have some ridiculous scene where he shows up at my office with plane tickets to Hawaii and a grandma to watch the kids.   But if I had to pick one song for my soundtrack what would it be?? 

The obvious choice is something by U2 or Coldplay as they are my favourites but they aren't quite as "energetic" as I need in my movie scenes (obviously the romantic daydreams are less frequent :) )  So after careful consideration I have come up a totally insane song that I have determined will be the soundtrack to the video I am making about my experience in Disney with the Joints in Motion.   Some of you might be surprised as it is not very mainstream and not very girly but the mind wants what it wants!

The song is Shipping up to Boston by the Dropkick Murphys.  I know, I had never heard of them either but my husbands friend is a huge fan and he introduced me to best "power song" music ever! 

First, admit that you do this and then I would love to know what your songs are...I am very interested plus it will help me build up my iPod before getting into the super long distances :)

Monday, November 10, 2008

2 Months To Go

Tomorrow is it officially two months until my marathon in Disney.  While I have not fully recovered from my PF injury - I am sucking it up and moving on.  I have a great coach with the Joints in Motion team and he has been really thorough on helping me get back to it.  

I don't normally summarize my training plan for the week (usually out of shame) but here it is:

Monday - 5km
Tuesday - running rest but doing Body Attack class at work (learning to instruct)
Wednesday - 8km (this is also tennis night but I think I may cancel for this week because hubby is away and getting a sitter is impossible)
Thursday - rest
Friday - 4-5 km
Saturday - 6km
Sunday 12km (followed by my traditional Sunday spree at the bulk barn where I endulge on very healthy and nutritious items - that happened to be dipped in chocolate.  Come know you do it to). 

I know I should be much higher on Sunday but as this is my first full week back to running post injury, we thought keeping it lower would be best.  Next week I make a bigger jump and the week after that (provided all is well) we are back on schedule.  I was originally planning for 4:30 but now I just want to finish.  Besides, the trip is already hit our VISA and the kids told Nana they wanted "Mickey Money" for Christmas.  NO turning back now!

On the upside, I have raised $6,300 for the Arthritis Society so far.  It is a little lower than the $10,000 we had dreamed of but higher than my original goal of $4,000.  Do you think if I don't finish, people will want a matching percentage of their money back?? :)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

10 Things About Me

Here we go...10 things about me...

1. I am obsessed with French culture and history. I read cookbooks, study maps, read novels set in France and so on. I took French history classes in University as my electives - not because I had to.  If anyone is equally obsessed with the history of France, I recommend one of my favourite series of books - The Many Lives and Secret Sorrows of Josephine B by Sandra Gulland.  It is actually the title of the first book in a series of three (I read them so fast that I considered them all one book).  I can't recommend it enough.  Even for none French history buffs. 

2. I love photography.  Not just photography but photographs in particular.  I would rather have pictures than art on the walls and I have no bias toward any kinds of pictures.  Some of my favourites are food photography, the outdoors, children but really - I like it all. If I had oodles of free time and financial resources, I would study photography myself because in realty I don't actually have very good skills but I like to think I do!

3. I met my husband when we were 12.  We went to high school together but went to separate universities. Flash forward 15 years and we got married!  Next year we celebrate 10 wonderful years.

4. Despite being married for almost four years and being close to 30 years old, our first child was a "surprise"!  Without stepping into TMI territory, I had been training for 1/2 marathons and was in the middle of training for my first full which I was told can sometimes mess with mother nature.   VOILA!  Turns out to be accurate!  Although shocked is putting it mildly, we were very blessed to have a baby boy and couldn't imagine life without him or his sister. 

5. I can say the alphabet backwards - really fast.  Its a gift.

6. I love to play most sports - especially soccer, tennis and volleyball. But I am terrified to play only one - baseball.  That's right, the super dangerous, anxiety filled, extreme sport called BASEBALL.  Here is my logic: someone whips a very hard ball at you, you hit it, then someone tries to throw that same hard ball at the same place you are running to.  Does ANYONE see the danger there?? 

7. I have a great job.  I promote Corporate Wellness for Goodlife Fitness so I meet with companies who want to partner with us to improve the wellness culture in their workplace.  I spend all day talking about healthy living, I am encouraged to work out and get involved in the community.  It doesn't get much better than that!

8. I have freakishly small ears.  So small that I have to by children's headphones because normal ear buds don't fit.  For races, I try to wear the full headband earbuds.  Sounds charming doesn't it?? I also only hear in one ear as a result of a girls night in university that went slightly awry..that's another story that is less than flattering. :)

9. I am a little addicted to cookbooks.  That is not to say that I cook often but there it is.  I especially like cookbooks with really great pictures (no surprise).  Some of my favourites are Supernatural Cooking by Heidi Swanson.  She also has a fabulous website called 101 Cookbooks. I believe she is also a professional food photographer.  My other favourite is Country Cooking of France by Anne Willen which has fantastic pictures. Anyone else seeing the trend? Umm.. 

10. I am fantasy Olympian.  Somewhere is my head, I was supposed to be some sort of professional athlete but sadly, I never caught on until it was too late!  Yet another reason to love running - it is a chance to be a "professional athlete"  at least in my family!

I hope to see a few more of these but I am not up on the "tagging" etiquette!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Run Away Mommy

First of all - Well done Obama!

On the advice of my trainer, I have begun to start of up training slowly but surely. I am anxious to just gun it out of the blocks but I am trying to heed the good advice. How unlike me! However, I am travelling for work this week so it makes it easier to stick to a more moderate training plan. Today I got out to run in the neighbourhood of my hotel but this is hilly territory so I am sure my backside is going to pay for this. Probably just as well as I think my butt was getting a little too comfortable sitting on couches and chairs.

This brings me to today's topic, fitting in the run while travelling. That is the beauty of running isn't it? It is totally portable and can be done pretty much anywhere! Unfortunately I forgot my ipod which changes the whole dynamic of my run. I have a terrible time running without it! Apparently, my own thoughts are poor company.

When you think about it, there are very few other activities that travel as well. Team sports are obvious, while things like skiing, climbing - even hiking require at least some preplanning. All you really need to run is a pair of decent shoes. Today I actually went out without an iPod, phone, Nike+ or even even water and I felt strangly naked.
My other problem with my naked run was that my head was just a little too clear. As much as I enjoy the break from my beautiful but exausting family, I do miss the little monsters. I am sure Daddy has it covered and they sounded perfectly well cared for when I talked to them. It is weird how we do that as Mom's isn't it? My husband is a grown man who is perfectly capable but I am still worried that my son is wearing the same pair of pants for three days and my daughter is eating Froot Loops for dinner (I LOATHE the Loops). My hubby is a great husband and fantastic father but despite running a department of people all over North America - he probably couldn't tell you the last name of our babysitter. I like this picture because my efforts to have perfectly tidy and beautiful children at my sisters wedding were thwarted by Daddy oddly giving them a crumbling, sugar covered biscuit.
I guess my message today is that it is possible to run while you travel, it is also possible to run without all our running gadgets but it is NOT possible to run away from your family (even for work) and not miss them because they creep into your brain all day - especially when you run unaccessorized in a strange place!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day

I am a Canadian and therefore cannot vote in today's election.  However, most Canadian's would agree that we have a strong interest in who leads our southern neighbour.  After all this coverage of the past year, I would say running in an election is far more exhausting than running a marathon.
 I have watched a fair amount of coverage and have changed my opinion several times.  There are positives and negatives about both parties and men and it is difficult to say what is best for the country.  As a woman, I admire Sarah P. not only for stepping up but for taking a significant beating by the public and media and still holding strong. However, I am not sure she is ready to take over the country if need be.  I think Obama has some excellent ideas and may be just what is needed but he always seems like there are other motives. However, I don't get a say so I hope the voting public gets what they want!

Good luck to all my American blog friends with today's election and may the best man (whose initials might be B.O.) win!  

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Return of Run Mommy

Well, it is official - I have been given the green light to get back on the training train! I have my brand new orthotics and despite the fact that I still have that sneaky pull in my foot, I am going to give it a go. I plan on being smart about it but I am anxious to get rolling. Thanks for all the great messsages of support...I knew this blog would be a fantastic way to talk to other runners!

With that said, I could use some ideas on races I could do between now and January. I realize many of you are well outside the borders of the Greater Toronto Area but I still welcome some input. I know I need to be aware of my injury but I really want to get a few more races under my belt before the big day.

Here is my training approach until Disney on January 11th, 2009:
  • break in my new orthotics
  • invest in a few new ice packs
  • follow my training plan to the letter
  • schedule 10-12 stretch breaks into my day
  • exhaust all my health benefits by booking a massage every week
  • learn to live with discomfort until January 12th!
  • accept that my goal may now be "to finish" instead of 4:30.
  • Happily rest on my laurels from January 12th until Feb 12th if necessary!

Thanks again to all for the great messages!