Sunday, December 22, 2013

These are a few of my favourite thing

We are in full swing of the Holiday season in our house. The kids are running wild, I got a bad case of pink eye and my husband is rushing around trying to get his Christmas shopping done.
What better way to celebrate this time of year then with my annual "These are a few of my fav things".
Last year I had a few goodies that actually ended up under the tree for me. One of them being the SOAS Tri suit which I love oh so much!!!! To see last years list you can go HERE.
So what has made the list this year? Well read on and get some good ideas for yourself or the beloved triathlete in your life.

First up is the Lazer Tardiz Helmut.

This beauty has been on my wish list for a few months now. What's stopping me? Well this seems rather silly but I feel like I'm not worthy of a fancy aero helmut. So the question this year is does my husband think I am worthy of this fab helmut?

Next up is these adorable Giro cycling gloves. I don't really need new gloves but they match my fabulous SOAS Polkadot tri suit.

Speaking of SOAS I could use another trisuit. I have discovered one is definitely not enough and SOAS hands down makes the best tri suits for women. I've had my eye on the Vintage kit because I love the colours. It even matches my fancy custom Berg bike.

Isn't it adorable? Every race I have competed in wearing the SOAS tri suit I get so many compliments.

Next up are these fabulous tri shoes.

 I have a basic pair of general cycling shoes that have served me very well but they are getting worn out. These SIDI women's shoe are exactly what I need.

Lastly, this would make a great stocking stuffer. 

I have wanted one of these Stick's since I bought one for my coach as a good luck gift on his way to the ITU World Championships. He tells me everyday that it's the best gift ever!!!

So there you have it. These are some pretty amazing items that I wouldn't mind finding under my tree this Christmas (or for any gift giving time).

I hope you enjoyed a few of my favourite things and I wish for you and your family the happiest of times this Holiday Season. Be with your loved ones and be kind to all around you.
Take some time to rest, relax and feast on some delicious food.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Just a little break from it all.

Wow I'm back! I know I've been neglecting the blog lately but it's more because training is slow going right now. Today, because I'm not training as hard I thought I would be off topic.
I keep getting told that I am the queen of time management. I really don't know why. I'm no different that the person next to me but I do have a busy life and time management helps me get things done... on time. I recently went back to dental assisting. I still do massage but it hasn't kept me busy enough so we as a family decided I needed to go back to dental assisting to make things work. So between massage therapy, dental assisting, volunteering, triathlon training and the most important thing family things get pretty busy around here. I get up extra early to get my bike ride in. I run on lunch breaks. I swim late at night after the kids go to bed. People ask me how I do it. Honestly? I think being in a work field where people rely on me to stay on time it is just ingrained to always plan ahead. I know a month out what my schedule is and what I need to do each and every day. This even includes grocery shopping. Is it hard? Yes. Do I need a break sometimes? Absolutely. So last week my husband took me to Vancouver for an extra special getaway without kids.
We haven't been away from the kids since we had them. My parents were kind enough to come stay with them while we went out for a big night out on the town. I am still ecstatic that I got to see Pearl Jam for the first time. You see, I have been a huge fan of Pearl Jam since they first came out. I believe it was 1990 when I first heard their hit Jeremy. I'm not gonna lie, Eddie Vedder makes my heart sing with his voice and his looks. Seriously though this may have been the best concert I have ever been to.

We started our day with a gorgeous ferry ride over to Vancouver. Then we went for the most delicious dinner at Vij's. 
We made a quick stop at our hotel to check in and change and then straight to the arena.

Patiently waiting. I was so excited I couldn't contain myself.
After the opening act of Mudhoney I was bursting with excitement.
When Eddie Vedder came on the stage I got goosebumps. 

He sang all of my favourites including Daughter, a song my long time best friend and I have always loved. Pearl Jam kept on rocking for over 3 hours. I was loving every minute of it.

Eddie serenades us with some slow classics. 

The band would leave the stage for a minute and the lights would come on for a bit and then they were right back on stage singing more songs. I can't even describe how amazing this night was. I felt like a new woman after this luxurious treat away from home.
I did miss my girls terribly but it was great to get giant hugs when we walked through that door. I highly recommend a nice little break every now and then. Especially all you moms out there. I think we tend to do everything for others and not very much for ourselves and this was a great reminder to take time for myself.

Now that I am settled back into routine we are definitely back into the swing of things. We spent our weekend baking and decorating Christmas cookies, ballet recitals, Christmas shopping and of course a little triathlon training.

As much as I thoroughly loved getting away to see the most amazing band ever, I am happy to be home and busy as ever.

Stay tuned for next week I am going to do a post on my Christmas wish list!!!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Break Time

When push comes to shove I definitely take my breaks. For those of you who follow me on facebook, you know it's been a bit of a rough week. I finally got my knee surgery.
I was torn on whether to go through with it. In the spring I hurt my knee. Knee injuries are nothing new to me. I've had a few. In fact this is now my 3rd knee surgery. Luckily my surgeon is a pretty awesome guy. He knows me well enough that despite being injured I keep pushing. So he thought surgery was the best option on figuring what the heck was going on in there. Our speculations were a torn meniscus but as my triathlon season progressed so did the pain in my knee. It started out very specific and by last Friday I was getting deep anterior knee pain and locking and popping was going on too. So last Thursday right before I was leaving for a course in Vancouver I got the call...
Your knee surgery will be Monday morning. Not a  lot of notice but I knew that was going to happen. Otherwise I was looking at a January surgery date and we all know I definitely couldn't wait that long.

The hospital was a zoo! Apparently one of the busiest surgery days they've ever had. I had to wait 2 hours before they took me in. My surgeon came in for a quick visit and to confirm I was still up for this and in I went. I'm now a pro at this. I even had the same surgical nurse as last time and he even remembered me! What does that say???

So once I woke up I had immediate pain so they gave me some drugs and of course I felt better. The husband and kids took good care of me but the one person who was exceptionally great was this gorgeous girl.
She has been by my side since I got home.

So all in all things have been pretty good. Unfortunately I have had some significant swelling so I've had to really stay off my leg and keep it elevated and take Advill which I'm trying really hard to stay off the drugs but sometimes you really have to pick your battles.
I should have taken a picture when the swelling was grotesque but I'll spare you that. Instead there is this one with just a bit.
I had a worse cankle then when I was pregnant ; )

So having all of this time off you would think I would love lounging around, watching tv, catching up on blogs. You would think I would be having the time of my life with this fabulous break time. Unfortunately, I hate it. I'm reading like mad, thinking about how I'm going to work on my running. Planning out all my races for 2014. To get me all geared up I could not think of a better way to spend my day tomorrow then to watch this:
I'm going to crank the heat up in my house and get me a tropical drink and pretend I am there cheering all those fantastic athletes.  I'm also going to try and forget what my house looks like...
Lets just say my husband is not a good homemaker. 

Some other things that have lifted my spirits is yummy treats.
Menchies has a non-dairy soft serve! This week it is strawberry and when you add some crushed almonds and other vegan treats it definitely makes my day.

So there you have it. I will be off running for 5-6 weeks and very light cycling in the meantime. No races for the rest of the 2013 year. I will continue to post here and there and soon I will let you know what my big race will be for next year.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Playing catch up

Wow! It has been over a month since my last post. When I said I was taking a break from training I didn't mean the blog as well. Where do I begin?
Well I guess I'll start where I last left off... mid- August!
No more races, for the next few months it's all about fun. No more brick workouts, no more fartleks, no more time checking. My first "long" ride post race was a lovely meander out to Lake Cowichan. From my place it's about 90km round trip. My fab riding buddy "D" and I headed out nice and early. Once we got to our turn around we spotted this lovely lady.

Can you tell what it is? It was a wild turkey with her two babies. We got pretty close to her but didn't want to frighten her. I love seeing wildlife out on our rides. On our way home we also stopped for a lovely coffee. It's just not a leisurely ride without doing so.

Next up was my friends the Mr. and Mrs. headed to Penticton for the 1st Penticton Challenge. The Mr. has been training hard all year and this was his big day. Well they had quite the surprise when they went out for dinner while in Penticton...
They got to meet the fabulous Chris "Macca" McCormack! Apparently he's pretty hot in person ; )
and the Mrs. got to watch him race.

Meanwhile back on the Island I was celebrating my birthday. This is what an athlete does on their birthday...
They race with their family!
We did the Easter Seals Colour Fun Run. I had some friends join us as well and it was a blast!!! I highly recommend doing this race with kids. It was a 5km run and there were 5 colour stations. Each station you go through they throw a colour at you. 
Afterwards they took me out for lunch and then we went home so I could watch "Mr." cross the finish line in Penticton. Thank goodness for live tracking and cameras and the "Mrs." texted updates as well. 

As for other things, well I've been doing a ton of hikes. There's a good group of my friends that have been meeting up once a week to do some great hiking. The first day was sketchy. We kind of got lost.
This is us trying to find our way back to the trail.
Once we reached the top it was all worth it!

We went from a cool evening hike one day and the following week it was ridiculously hot. These hikes were done at the same time of day.

My latest adventure was my riding groups 100km ride. Since we are all done racing for the season we thought it would be fun to get in a nice big ride. We rode up to Ladysmith for brunch. 

If you live on the Island go to Ladysmith! They have a ton of great cafe's and restaurants. I was pleasantly surprised. We will definitely be doing this again.
I have a lovely GF cinnamon bun with my soy latte. I also had some other goodies!!!

Now you are probably all wondering how my health is since I seem to always be injured. Well my friends, the verdict is out. I am officially the biggest klutz out there. I will be getting knee surgery this year after determining the time off did not help. Not only that, I am pretty sure I also broke my nose... while riding my bike. Seriously people I do not know how I do it. I know many that get scrapes, bumps and bruises but not me. I do damage.  
Terrible picture I know but you can see my nose is bruised, crooked and swollen right into my eye.

This is taken the same day. I wish I had taken one the next day because that was when it looked the  worst. I really do not know how I do this. I am now 1 1/2 weeks out and I still can't blow my nose. My doc says it's probably broken but really what are we going to do about it? So I now have a broken nose to add to my ongoing list of injuries.

So there you have it. We are all updated and you now know just how much of a klutz I really am.

Monday, August 12, 2013

That's a wrap!

That's it, that's all. I just wrapped up my last scheduled race of this year. I can't believe I'm done. I can't even begin to tell you what a crazy journey it has been.
I started the new year by signing up for my very first Ironman 70.3. I had no idea what was in store for me. Then I continued to add all sorts of firsts to my list. I competed in all sorts of race distances for both running and triathlon. On top of it all I got my first awesome PR in a 10km race. I'm still surprised over that one. 
So what were all of my firsts? I completed my first Olympic distance triathlon.
It was cold but fun.

I completed my first half marathon with a surprising time of 2 hours and 3 minutes. I went in hoping for  2 hours and 15 minutes. Another check off the bucket list, and I got to do it with my super great and very talented friend. 

I then went on to do another Olympic distance triathlon and another half marathon. These all seem like a walk in the park though now that I've done a half Ironman.
Were all of these races perfect? Nope! Was I ready for all of these races? Definitely not but I've come to learn from every good race come a lot more bad races and I have learnt more from those bad races then I will ever learn from those good races. 
You definitely experience some surprises, some disappointments, but I have to say I enjoyed every single race good and bad. Even though the results didn't show 100% speed I knew I was always giving 100% heart and 100% effort. 

So how did I finish off my season? With a bang of course! After doing my "A" race the Calgary Ironman, I did a sprint triathlon 1 week later. Was this the smartest idea ever? Probably not. After doing a half iron distance you need to take about 2 weeks to recover. However the sprint triathlon I competed in is one of my favourite races out there and I had my two very good buddies racing as well. So I went in knowing my body was not going to do much for me so it was all fun and nothing but fun.
The swim was lovely except my legs were so tired that I could barely kick. I definitely found a nice person to draft off of.

The bike was a little better. I had one guy run into me as we were mounting our bikes and then he yelled at me for passing on the right. Um, I don't think the rule applies when we are still at the mount line. Anyways, I knew to get ahead of that guy before he tried to run me over again.

After I parked my bike I headed out on the run. After a few minutes I started to question if I took the wrong path. I only saw a handful of people. I kept going. My legs were seriously screaming at me. I felt like I was running hard but not going anywhere. After I found the turnaround and started heading back that's when I saw everyone was catching me. I had nothing. I got passed and it was okay. 

I came in 3rd in my age group and 22nd overall. Even with an exhausted body, I really enjoyed the race and best of all, I had a blast.
That night after the race I was so tired that I went to bed at 9:30pm. I woke up the next day at 9am. I'm almost embarrassed to even admit that but it's true. I really was tired.

So what next? The Sea Wheeze half marathon!!!
I had the pleasure to join my sister, her good friend, and my super fabulous friend to hit the roads of Vancouver and experience the craziest half marathon I have ever done.
Lucky or unlucky I'm still not sure but Thursday night I did not have a good sleep so when the rest of the crew stir at 6am I was more then happy to hop into the shower and get my day going. Since everyone else was feeling a little less motivated I offered to head down to the Sea Wheeze expo and get in line for our package pickup. Good thing I did because by the time the rest of my crew showed up the line was so long that I believe I heard it was a 3 hour wait to get in once the doors opened. We got in within 20 minutes (after I stood in line for an hour and a half).
So what do you do when you wait in line?
You get entertained by crazy magicians.

After our fun wait we walked through the doors and it was like the gates of heaven opened for us. (Start the choir)
This went quick.

After we received our race pack then we could head into the expo and let me tell you, it was mayhem!
There were people everywhere. They are running around pulling anything and everything off of the racks and then they run to a corner of the room for little privacy and start trying on all of this fab Lululemon clothing.  
Exhibit A- She looks a lot like me doesn't she?   ; )   I'm telling you these ladies are crazy!!!
Then if you don't like something you offer it to your equally crazy friends and then to your equally crazy neighbours and everyone ends up happy... and broke.

So after our shopping needs are met we move outside to the rest of the expo.
There was airbrush tattoos.

Fruit popsicles

There was popcorn, organic cotton candy, Vega protein smoothies. You could get your hair done, your nails done, and if you were willing to wait in the enormous line up you could even get a massage. I wasn't willing to wait that long. There was so much going on that I probably even missed some things.

Race morning we got up bright and early. Luckily our hotel was only two blocks from the start/finish. I was feeling pretty sluggish but the mantra today was all about having fun.
Unfortunately we didn't bring our phones with us to take pictures because we didn't have pockets to carry them and I didn't want to hold mine the entire way. Needless too say, I missed out on a lot of great photos : (
We did document my exhaustion though...
I have never been so tired. I will be the first to admit, 3 races in less then 3 weeks is not a good idea! Moving on...

We got showered up post race, did I mention the goodies? Our neat wooden medals that also served as a photo holder, water, coconut water, aromatherapy for our sore muscles, and Skull Candy headphones! We were spoiled. There was also a breakfast after but I was so cold I walked back to the hotel to warm up in a shower.
After getting cleaned up we headed to the fabulous Raw Restaurant Gorilla Food. OMG! So good!!!
After refuelling we had a little siesta and then did some more touring. Then we got taken to the Sea Wheeze after party. 

We had yoga which was amazing

and we got to listen to some pretty great music and eat some food and just hang out with some pretty great people...
I seriously love this girl!!!!

So that's it. I'm done. Now what? REST!!!!! I was hoping to have a little holiday down to California to participate in the fabulous See Jane Run Women's Triathlon but I just can't get the time off to do so.

I highly recommend this race. My favourite races are the women's only races because as we compete together we build a great bond. My closest friend are the ones I train and compete with. We have a magical friendship that we can push each other while we train and also support them even if we have a bad race. For some reason this doesn't appear as much when we are on the course with men. If you have the opportunity to try this race do it.

Don't worry about me not racing for a while. I will still entertain you with my wit and charm because I will still be training. I will also be having knee surgery in the fall. So I can guarantee that I will have plenty of great stories to tell.