Friday, 15 September 2017

Half Marathon Training: Week 10

Did this instead of training. I'm not even mad.

Ten weeks into training, and only 7 more weeks til the STWM Half Marathon! My hip problems caused me to have a very slow August, but I've made some great progress with my chiropractor and have started seeing a physiotherapist as well, so I'm hoping September will be good to me.
Here's what I got up to this week:

Monday: REST

Tuesday: Chiro

Wednesday: REST

Thursday: Chiro

Friday: REST

Saturday: Had an initial assessment with a physiotherapist at the same clinic I got to for chiropractic. We're going to work on deep core strength and deep glute strength, which will hopefully help be become a better runner while at the same time keeping any injuries at bay. After physio I went on a slow run to test the waters and then did some stretching with 9 Way to Stretch Your Hip Flexors. [6.2 km | 40:08 | 6:28/km]

Sunday: 18 Moves to Tone Your Butt, Thighs, and Legs. This went hand-in-hand with a lot of the work my chiropractor and physiotherapist are having me do, and man oh man was I ever aware of my glute medius afterwards.

xx,

C.

Monday, 4 September 2017

Half Marathon Training: Week 9

Credit: Tribe Fitness
Another slow week in terms of activity and mileage, but I'm making great progress with my hip through chiropractic, and I don't want to mess that up by getting back on the horse too soon. I'm also taking the time to enjoy what's left of summer, so if I want to have a drink on a patio or go get ice cream instead of doing a core workout, guess which one I'm going to pick!

Here's what I got up to:

Monday: REST

Tuesday: Chiro

Wednesday: Tribe Crew Run to the CNE. I had some minor discomfort in my hip at the beginning of this short run, which reminded me to pull back on my pace. We finished at the CNE and promptly negated any calories burned running by eating some of the weirdest food on offer. [5.8 km | 31:32 | 5:24/km] <- I'm sure Strava is lying to me with this, I can't even go that fast on a good day.

Thursday: Chiro

Friday: REST

Saturday: Abs, chest, & legs workout plus a variety of hip-opening stretches. The circuit was just challenging enough for what I needed, and boy did I feel the burn in my abs after.

Sunday: The last Tribe Yoga Jam of the summer! Two months has blown by, and I can't wait for winter Yoga Jam to get up and running.

xx,

C.

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Half Marathon Training: Week 8


On the advice of my chiropractor, I cut way back on running after my 10k in Mont Tremblant. And as it turns out - when my running routine goes out the window, so does my cross-training routine. Throw in a cottage weekend and a busy work week, and I only managed to be active for three days this week.

Here's what I got up to:

Monday: 45 minute Go With The Flow yoga at Elevate. Took the day off work so I wouldn't have to rush home from Tremblant post-race on Sunday morning. My flight back to Toronto wasn't until the evening, so I snuck in a yoga practice at my old studio in Ottawa.

Tuesday: REST. This was our office summer party, so I chose to spend time getting to know my colleagues outside the office context.

Wednesday: Chiro & A Dynamic Yoga Sequence to Help You Build a Stronger Body

Thursday: Chiro, which I really shouldn't have done two days in a row, but there was no way I could have squeezed in a second session on any other day.

Friday: REST

Saturday: 8.6k run near my friend's cottage on Lake Simcoe. I ran over to Sibbald Point Provincial Park and spent some time on the trails. I slowed way down so I wouldn't trip over any rogue roots and to let some mountain bikes pass, and took a few minutes to just enjoy hearing nothing but some birds and the wind through the trees. I'd hoped to get up to 10k, but was happy with the distance I managed and had very little hip pain afterward. [8.6 km | 57:56 | 6:43/km]

Sunday: REST

xx,

C.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Half Marathon Training: Week 7


This was another light week; my anxiety was still slowing me down, and with a race at the end of the week I didn't want to push my hip too much.

Monday: Decided against running and instead did a Full Body Circuit, plus some strengthening yoga with Yoga Poses That Burn Fat.

Tuesday: A very challenging ladder workout at the track with NTRC. I forgot my watch at home so I have no clue how long and how fast I was running, and my distance was guesstimated from adding up the drills we did. [9.6 km]

Wednesday: REST. My poor hip got a beating at the track, so I took the evening off.

Thursday: REST. A long and challenging day at work zapped my energy and motivation, but I did get in some light stretching and foam rolling.

Friday: REST. Finally saw a chiropractor about my hip, so we did a full assessment, including some exercises and a tiny targeted massage. Went straight from the clinic to the airport and then went to bed as soon as I got to my parents' place in Ottawa.

Saturday: Drove up to the cottage in the Laurentians where I was staying with a crew of OCRC friends and a few dogs for our racers in Mont Tremblant. We went swimming in the lake and I spent most of the time paddling around, but I definitely got my heart pumping by chasing balls with dogs and treading water for a while. I ended the evening with some hip opening stretches beside the roaring fire.

Sunday: Race Day at the Demi-Marathon de Mont-Tremblant 10k! It was a hot one, but I ran better than I thought I would. I'm planning on doing a post soon, so stay tuned! [10 km | 58:55 | 5.52/km]

xx,

C.

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Race Recap: Race Roster Spring Run Off 8km

My first race of the 2017 season was at the beginning of April, and boy was it a great one to start off with.

I first noticed the race on Instagram last year, and it looked like such such an amazing event that I knew I wanted to participate this year (which happened to be the 40th anniversary of the event).  The event offers a 5k and an 8k course, as well as an 800m kids run. With Ragnar on the horizon at that point, I chose to do the 8k - I really need to put in all the kilometres I can leading up to May.  I'd also never raced 8k before, so I was interested in the challenge.

Online registration through Race Roster was a breeze, as usual, as was kit pickup at The Runners Shop.

The morning of the race Clem and I got up and I had my standard breakfast (whole grain toast with peanut butter and banana) and we TTC'd over to High Park.  It was COLD so I was very glad Clem was there with a backpack so I he could hold my many layers that I peeled off right before the race started. But even though it was cold, the sun was shining, and once we got moving it was pretty perfect weather for racing. Right before the race started the race organizers held a minute of silence to honour Ed Whitlock, which was really touching.

Nabbed some Ragnar swag

The 8k route looped around itself within High Park, and finished at the top of a lo-o-o-o-ong hill on Spring Road before it meets Colbourne Lodge Drive just south of Bloor.  The course was hilly enough to be challenging, but not so intense that I felt uncomfortable during the race.  Joining Tribe for some of their Monday night hill workouts was also very helpful  for strengthening my legs and helping me become more conscious of my form as I tackle hills.  I also really enjoyed that the race created the Kill The Hill challenge out of that long hill towards the finish line: there is a timing mat at the bottom of the hill that tracks how long it takes runners to get from the bottom of the hill to the finish line at the top, with the fastest hill conquerers being awarded prizes.  I definitely did not come anywhere close to winning anything, but I did get fired up as I crossed the timing mat and pushed myself up that hill as fast as I could go.  It was very hard (trying-not-to-puke hard), but it was a cool way to end a race, and was different from my usual MO of suddenly finding the energy to sprint across a finish line.

Almost at the top of the hill!
Check out that pain face

Clem had his bike at the park so I got to see him a few times on the course, along with so many awesome people from the Toronto running community (Night Terrors, Tribe, and Run TO Beer, I'm looking at you guys!).  Hearing people cheering for you, even if they are complete strangers, makes all the difference in my mood during a race.

Once I crossed the finish line I picked up my medal and some PowerBar samples, and met Clem for a high five and a sweaty hug.  We picked up some food provided by CRS, juice samples from Oasis, and some Tim Hortons coupons, and then I made Clem take several post-race photos of me, like any good Instagram-husband should.


After a while we made our way back down the Spring Road hill, cheering 8k runners still on their way up, and around to Deer Pen Road, where we saw the speedy first pack of 5k racers blasting through the course.  The two of us then went to the High Park Zoo to see the famous capybaras and their new babies.  I can't recall ever having been to the High Park Zoo before, so I was pretty psyched to check it out on such a gorgeous day (and to walk off the lactic acid!).  We watched the capybaras for a while, fed some llamas (a $2 donation to the Zoo gets you a small bowl of food), pet some crazy soft bunnies, and had some small talk with the Mayor who had been there feeding the baby capybaras breakfast and stuck around to chat with constituents.


Eventually we headed back to the race area, where hordes of children had just finished their run and were excitedly chattering to parents and pals, and showing off their medals.  My ovaries had a moment (don't tell my in-laws).

Henderson Brewing Co. was hosting a post-race party and since the weather was so great Clem and I decided to walk over, which only took about half an hour.  Runners got a free pint of the Food Truck Ale, which was delicious. We didn't stay for long though, because we were both getting hangry, so we walked over to Roncesvalles and had brunch at The Ace before heading home again.

All in all, an excellent day.  The weather was great, I really liked the course, and registration was very reasonably priced.  My race photos are terrible (as usual), but I bought them anyway (as usual).  My official race time was 47:38, just under my goal of 48 minutes (based on my average pace for a 10k).  My iTab arrived in the mail soon after the race, so I've stuck it to the back of my medal - it's a cool add-on that is guaranteed to get $10 out of me every time I run a race that has them for purchase.

I had a great day, and definitely plan on racing Spring Run Off again!

xx,

C.