Tag Archives: time

Check.

Run a smart race: debatable, but overall successful.
Don’t get hurt: assuming no new injuries counts as successful.
Get a sub 25 minute 5km: check.

This past Saturday was another planned 5km race on a fairly flat, paved route through Sunnybrook Park. The weather was ideal, my knees were feeling good, and I was rolling into the park on a good night’s sleep. It was a perfect storm of racing conditions by my standards. My friend S and I only had to hit the porta potties about 6 times before we could consider ourselves officially ready to go. I just don’t know where women find the time to squeeze in a pre-race warm- up.

My chase pack was down to one, but in a race of over 400 people, it is hard to feel like you only have one person to stay ahead of. Our missing friend (who joined us in an earlier race) opted out after a crazy work schedule and a lack of training convinced her that she shouldn’t spend the money to run a subpar performance. I know how that goes, and up until this current streak I am on, getting to the starting line was a huge challenge in itself.

I had some tightness in my left calf and as of today it is shooting down my heel, and it feels like the rumblings of a little plantar fasciitis. I’m really looking forward to taking on this extra challenge…

Either way, I’m still the reigning leader of the pack.

A race really breaks up a training program and helps re-frame your perspective and gives you a fresh start without ever having to break. I’m excited to get back to work and improve on my time again. I would love to take another 13 seconds off my time but three weeks isn’t really that long. And 13 seconds is pretty long.

I actually only have two weeks to train because the week prior to racing isn’t meant to be much more than rest and maintenance. It is a week meant for staying safe and avoiding people who may push shopping carts into you or may wander into your path without warning and force you to dive around them on sidewalks. The week before is for wearing a crossing guard vest and screaming when people come too close to your bubble. … Oh, that’s just me?

It has been a long time coming to get me to where I am now. It was a year and a half off running followed by a triumphant return to running which was quickly dismissed by a dislocated kneecap and accompanying torn ligament. That was eventually followed by a painfully gradual and much less triumphant return to running (again) which turned into this streak I’m on now.

Just because the process isn’t glamorous, doesn’t mean the result can’t be glorious.

Strategize for next race: check.
Celebrate the little victories: check.
Appreciate every step: check.

TOWR

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No Pain, Let’s Gain

I can successfully add another pain- free run into my workout log this week. I ran 20 minutes of intervals alternating 1 minute hard with 1 minute easy. Tomorrow is leg day so I don’t plan to run again until Sunday, which will give my hips and knees two days to migrate back to their anatomical homes. My workouts include more time on my rehab exercises than anything else which ironically seems to invite insults about me “slowing down”. This is actually a scientifically proven way to help me run faster, but that’s cool too.

My next planned/ anticipated/ oh-my-gosh-please-don’t-get-hurt race is one month away. Yesterday I was telling myself not to stress because if I’m not ready or if any (enter assorted body parts here) aren’t up to it then there is no pressure to race and I will continue to build to the next goal. Right on cue, I wake up to a message from a friend that I used to race against saying, “Did my first 5k in while – 30:32, will see if I can bring my time down to run with you”.

Rather than start a discussion about her previous insult to my 25:44 time, I welcomed her friendly competition and encouraged our old running rivalry back to the roads.

It didn’t take long for another old friend and fellow runner from my cross country days to chime in and say she could run it in just over 25 minutes. It is starting to look like we might have a little race here. Nothing more motivating than risking your title of being “the fastest”; a title which has been untouched for a decade until I asked people to challenge it.

Time to channel my inner child and run like I’ll get my name on the announcements tomorrow.

 

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Top Thirteen of ’13

As we reach the beginning of the end of 2013, I have been reflecting on the year past. I have been through a lot of changes and I have learned more than I can summarize. This was actually a huge year for me in terms of growing into my big girl pants. Or maybe I should say pant suit. Regardless of what my figurative self is wearing, I would like to share the biggest lessons that 2013 handed me.

1. Work smarter, not harder.
Time is valuable. Don’t put yourself out to accommodate others who do not do the same for you. Spending 14 hours at work, but only working for 8 is not smart. It is hard.

2. Have faith.
In anything. Just believe in the universe/ the world/ yourself.

4. Hard work is hard. But worth it.
Particularly because I work in the fitness industry, I can vouch that change demands hard work and hard work elicits change. And this applies to everything.

5. Making time is hard. But worth it.
It is too easy to get caught in front of the TV, or creeping your acquaintances on Facebook for hours and be convinced you have no free time. If you want it, then do it. You won’t miss your computer.

6. Accept help.
Don’t assume that friends and family will judge you or think you are weak if you ask for help. Most people will be happy you asked them. Help arrives in many forms, so be open to the opportunities you are given.

7. Find your release.
Pressure builds up and if you don’t give it an exit, it will make one. Find a way to let out your stress, frustration, and aggression. Try exercise! Or try blogging!

8. Money and sleep aren’t your biggest stresses.
Too many times have I worried about lack of money and lack of sleep, and I have missed out on things because I prioritize money and sleep. Sure, I don’t get enough of either but life isn’t waiting.

9. Stay in the game.
You are the only one who can take yourself off the bench. If you are disappointed, then be disappointed. But get back in the game because no one does anything from the bench… except yell.

10. Patience is a virtue.
Be patient and listen and do not brush people off no matter how stupid or impractical their concerns may be to you.

11. Go with your gut.
Trust yourself. This year I made many big decisions, and I changed my mind at the last minute regarding two really big situations. Both decisions were right, without a doubt.

12. Stop comparing yourself to others.
Be who you want to be, and don’t be bothered by others who do things differently. If you can be happy with yourself, then, in my opinion, you have everything you will ever need.

13. Don’t stop learning.
Learn from your past, learn from others, seek education, and take it all in with an open mind.

As a last note: this is my 40th blog post and I want to thank you for reading along! I thought this might go off into the internet to die after a few entries but I am happy to keep writing 🙂

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“I Think We’re Winning!”

I had my first experience going to Supperworks this week. K and I went and we (I) could barely carry everything we left with. After ditching some ice cube trays and defrosting some food unexpectedly, I fit everything in my freezer. Now I will be eating like a Queen for the next 30-36 meals.

It was a lot of fun and much easier than I thought, especially after all the intricate instructions I was given ahead of time. We were referred by a friend who didn’t want us to embarrass him. Who us?!

We arrived (late) to a place that looked like a really big kitchen with about ten big workstations. The space was filled with nicely dressed women in pearls, sipping wine, and packing up their meals to most likely tell their families later, “I have been slaving over this meal for hours!!!”. K and I ran in wearing our work clothes and he had a 3L jug of water in tow. I took the wine I was offered, but this did not help me blend in any better. Fact: Running shoes and wine don’t blend in any situation.

Between K’s frequent bathroom breaks, our uproars of obnoxious laughter, and our blatant lack of knowledge on where to find things in a kitchen, it was pretty clear we both have a long way to go until graduating Supperworks. On the plus side, we did both learn a lot about food preparation.

We are both competitive people, and it became established that we were on a team racing everyone else, logically. Somehow we forgot we were there to learn, and our focus became being the fastest food preparers in the history of Supperworks. When K yelled across the kitchen “I think we’re winning!” the other cooking- challenged people seemed to start drifting out.

It was a lot of fun for us, and we left with some amazing dishes. Whoever created this place is a genius and I would highly recommend it to anyone who needs some help with cooking or is low on time. I am looking forward to dusting off my crockpot, greasing some pans, and warming up the oven. I will have to read my notes to see what happens after that though.

chefvictory

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The Friday Sessions

There is no workout harder than the Friday afternoon workout. Not necessarily for the reasons you may think. It has nothing to do with the amount of workouts that come before it in the week, or the program I have planned.

During my weekly workout sessions in the gym, I am usually filling a long break between clients. I can take my time between exercises, make awkward conversation with strangers, watch sports highlights, and make sure I don’t miss any of the good songs on my iPod. I enjoy doing all of these things and I take advantage of the time. Whoever set up the seated leg press in front of the TV showing TSN highlights may as well have added my nameplate to the machine. It is an invitation I always accept- to sit and catch up what I missed because I went to bed before the good stuff happens in everything, until someone wants to use it and I have to “work in” with them. My workouts are so long that I have gone with friends to Hero Burger partway through, and I really wish that was a lie. My sessions get spread into various gaps throughout the day which is absolutely less effective, and makes for an unsettling half-sweaty feeling that leaves me unsure where I stand in terms of hygiene standards appropriate for working in a gym.

Friday afternoon workouts are like Eye of the Tiger is being played on a loop, sped up, and volume loud like an airplane. They are like drill sergeants are screaming at you to do more, keep pushing harder, and keep doing it faster. I will sacrifice my reputation to pretend I didn’t hear someone start a conversation and I will let go of my pride as I make loud, whining sounds as I run to the next exercise. Hydration is a dump over the head, a swig with a spit. I can chug water bottles on the way home.

For real. It’s Friday.

Resistance training somehow ends up as cardio as I navigate the floor in a haphazard yet diehard sort of way. I will cut people off to get to the smallest weights, and I will not be embarrassed to be visibly strained before I run to the next exercise avoiding eye contact (I assume would be dirty looks).

I will apologize on Monday. But it is Friday.

I am not getting my “pump” on to go out. Likely, I am going home to an involuntary nap and then episodes of New Girl after I wake up too late to go out. I am not a girl who preps for the weekend like it is the day before a bikini- demanding vacation. My brain has processed how close I am to going home for the weekend and I physically cannot reduce my heart rate until I see the outside world.

Friday workouts require a big effort, a slightly crazy mentality, and a relationship status of single (due to moderate unpredictability of weekend napping to follow).

My plan is to get a run in this weekend and since my back survived my Friday session, it should be good to go. Wave if you see me, I’ll be running with Rub A535 in one hand and a rum and coke in the other.

152934

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Rest is Best

When the calendar says it is a rest day, do you actually rest? It seems to be very common that if your body is feeling good then you keep going, right?

Not me. I am going to relax (maybe not relax, but not workout) and then I will happily make a big fat checkmark on my schedule right over the words ‘rest day’.

Sometimes the hardest part of training is taking days off (ridiculous, right)! After training five days straight and coming back from a frustrating week of my body not reacting exactly how I envisioned it (like slow motion on the Olympic track), I hit rest day. I felt like my body wanted to keep pushing and taking a day off would be like dragging my feet while trying to build momentum.

Like any other trainer, my apartment is stocked with all sorts of fun things like my TRX, sandbag, kettlebells and weights. On training days they look like equipment and on rest days they look like a playground. What we need to remember is that rest days are actually when our bodies make progress. Exercising creates microscopic tears in our muscles and (with rest) they heal and repair themselves to be stronger. So we need these days off to allow for regeneration otherwise our bodies just get worn down… Like many dragging limbs to building momentum.

Despite lack of need for another goal, I am setting another goal. On my last day off from the gym I visited a friend I haven’t seen in a long time. I didn’t think about what food I should be eating or what I would be doing if I was working out.

As my busy days fly by, I realize I don’t make enough time to visit with friends or reach out to people I haven’t talked to enough. So I will replace the time I would have spent in the gym doing this. It’s the new and improved rest day.

I suggest we all make our rest days more productive by not exercising and spending some face to face time with a friend. Good for the body and soul 🙂

20130715-222052

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