Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Calgary Marathon 2017

Oh, hi there! I know it's been awhile months since I've last posted. Let's catch up!

I was busy covering our local hockey team's playoff run, for basically 40 days straight, and then started coaching more at Orangetheory Fitness. I also went on a vacation to Napa and San Francisco with some friends which was amazing! My roommate Allie (who's sadly moving out soon) has a place there so we spent time at the property and then a day in San Fran. It's so beautiful and I'm already dreaming about when I can make another trip.

It's hard to believe it's almost JUNE and I still haven't run a race yet this year. I've had to DNS THREE races because of my busy schedule. Thankfully, I have Ladiesfest coming up in two weeks and I will be running that with some friends! I'm also training for one of my favourite half marathons, SeaWheeze, and starting to think about my fall "goal" race for this year. I'm seriously considering another marathon BUT not sure if it's going to happen this year. I know my mom is probably doing a little dance reading that. I've been eyeing up RnR Brooklyn in October. If you've done that race I would love to hear any feedback! I've also heard amazing things about the BMO Okanagan!

This past weekend, I ran the Calgary Marathon kids race with London. We were signed up to do the 10K stroller race but I had something come up at work and ended up having to miss it. Still, we had a blast running the kids race together.

It's a 1.2KM course at the Calgary Stampede grounds. It was London's third time doing this race and definitely his favourite. If your children are under five adults can run with them so this was our last time doing it together. I cherished it! Last year, he completed it in 8:20 and this year he shaved off almost two minutes finishing in 6:32.  He's speedy! He basically ran the whole thing and then finished and asked when he could race again. 

The Calgary Marathon is an event I've taken part in the past four years. I'm a little disappointed they chose to push the 10K back from 7:30am to 11am. I think it was way too warm to be racing at that time. They also pushed the Kids Race from 10am to 9am meaning a lot of the half marathon runners weren't finished in time to run with their kids. I'd like to see those changes reversed for next year. Either way, we'll hopefully be back in 2017!

So, other than planning my upcoming races, I've been busy working on training plans for running clients. I'm also taking on some new responsibilities at work and helping coach London's t-ball. He starts Kindergarden, and Timbits hockey, in the fall so I'm sure my life is only going to be crazier. I also got asked to be a bridesmaid in my friend Danielle's wedding and am so excited and honoured! 

I also have a few upcoming trips on the schedule and other exciting things in the works! 

I can't promise I'll be posting on a regular schedule, again, anytime soon but I'll be back with a recap of my upcoming race in a couple weeks. As always, thanks for stopping by!

Monday, March 13, 2017

My Experience At Barre Body Studio

I recently had the chance to try the Barre Body Studio with the Alberta Blog Squad. While this wasn't my first Barre class it was my first time taking a class at a strictly Barre studio. 
We arrived at the studio and my first thought was "wow, this is beautiful." The entrance is well lit, trendy and clean. The ladies at the front desk had big smiles on our face and took the time to introduce themselves which I really appreciate. After grabbing our signed waivers we were directed to the changing rooms. The rooms are also gorgeous with lockers, bathrooms, showers and big mirrors with complimentary hair dryers and products.

We made our way into the studio (I believe there are two but we didn't get a tour so I'm not positive.) and grabbed the equipment we would need for the class. Today, it was three and five pound weights, a band, a disc and a small ball. Spoiler: Who knew some little equipment would cause so much sweat and pain, ha ha!
We started by warming up off the barre before picking up the weights. Despite only using three and five pound weights my arms were screaming by the end of it. The reps are intense and there's little or no breaks.
Then, it was on to the barre for some lower body work. Chair sits, especially while balancing on a disc, are tough. I love that this photo captured just how difficult it was. My legs were shaking so much!

Someone told me I likely wouldn't sweat much in the class. Um, yeah, that was not the case. I was dripping sweat and even had to stop to pin the bangs back at one point. 

Overall, I loved my experience at Barre. I don't think this would be something I would want to do all the time but rather something to supplement my current activities. I think it's all personal preference though as I know a lot of my friends love the low-impact workout and can't get enough. I know my legs were sore for days.

Thanks for hosting the Alberta Blog Squad BBS! 

Friday, March 10, 2017

What Does A Runner Look Like?

I spent the four-and-a-half hours of drive time to Calgary this weekend listening to Kelly's podcast. If you haven't already listened to it, go to Itunes/Google Play now and download it. Kelly is one of my favourite humans. She's hilarious, down-to-earth, motivating, inspiring and beautiful inside-and-out.

  She's working towards her goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. In order to run the Boston Marathon (besides charity options) you have to run a certain time, based on your age and gender, and then even sometimes that's not good enough because of registration numbers. For Kelly, that means setting a 3:30 minute marathon goal. A year and a half ago, Kelly broke the four hour marathon for the first time. She's coming along way and that's all because of her hard work, commitment and dedication.


What I love about Kelly is her honesty. She's raw. She makes running more real than ever before. She is breaking down barriers and encouraging others to do the same. She started the #SportsBraSquad; a social media movement to encourage women to shed their shirts and feel comfortable in their own skin while working out. One of her podcasts really struck a cord with me. She was talking about how a lot of running brands don't have realistic models promoting their gear and how some people's expectations of how they should look is skewed because of it. 
Then, she said something I love "Strong Doesn't Look A Certain Way It Feels A Certain Way."

It got me thinking.
Why do brands have models that don't look like everyone buying their clothes?

What message are they sending?

Kelly isn't the only one empowering women. Last year, my beautiful, talented and strong mama friend Dorothy also started a movement called #IHaveARunnersBody. She wants people to know that runners aren't supposed to look a certain way. It's simple, if you run, you have a runners body. 
Dorothy also, recently, shared comparison photos of herself during a race to show we are worth more than just a photo.
I love that message.

I've had my share of struggles with my body image. Last year, I wrote about (more like 30) pound weight gain and the time I was mocked (specifically my thighs) during a race. It was tough. YES, I cried, a lot, I called my mom for support and I turned to friends, and counselling, for help. At times, I didn't feel like I could run anymore because of the weight gain. Everything felt harder.
Then, one day I woke up and realized it didn't matter that I was slower or that I wasn't running 25-30 miles a week I was still a runner. I built off that and started going back to the gym. I started lifting weights and focused on getting stronger. I started running again but stopped focusing on distance and speed.

I put away the scale.
I started setting goals that weren't focused on just health and fitness.

Today, I'm thankful for women like Kelly and Dorothy for encouraging women to embrace who they are and the way they look. For teaching us to love ourselves. For calling out brands that aren't setting good examples and for being a part of this amazing running community that sees right through the bullshit.

So, here's to the runners. You beautiful runners.

If you're a runner go look in a mirror. That's what a runner looks like.