Sunday, July 31, 2011

Getting pretty

My sister Krissy did my make up for me, I felt like my daughters playing with make up it was so fun :)

I'm starting this blog post from the car on the way to TO to celebrate my sister's bachlerette tonight.  Ryan and I have a hotel room, without KIDS, and a night of fun and debauchery ahead.  The plan is for the boys go out on their own and the girls on their own and then meet up at the end of the night.  My sisters and I are planning on getting ready together in my hotel room, drinking wine, doing our hair and make up, and gabbing like only sisters can.  I am so excited.  I don't get a lot of time with my sisters, and certainly child free adult time is a rare commodity (Thank-you Marmie for watching the kids).  I am also excited to get dressed up in my new outfit and put on my high heels and feel pretty.  I hope I don't come across as vain, LOL, but it has been a very very long time since I have felt pretty.  I have spent almost 10 years avoiding my reflection in the mirror.  On the rare occasions that I did get a look at 'myself' I didn't even recognize the bloated tired face staring back at me.  It always felt strange to see pictures of myself so very overweight.  I didn't 'feel' like an overweight person most of the time.  I was so much more confident and happier at a size 18-22 than I was when I was much much smaller.  I hated that my outside didn't match the way I felt inside.  I hated that my heart felt light and free and full of Kataroo style laughter but my face looked like someone that was drowning her sorrows in muffins.  Now when I see a picture of myself, I think..."Hey there she is....I have missed you".
My $12 dress find at the GAP....can't go wrong with that LOL

Hanging with my sisters getting silly

My sister Krissy and I

My sister Jamie and I
My fancy head gear :)  All the rage you know!


Thursday, July 28, 2011


I feel like its the night before a race.  I have the butterflies and am totally nervous about going for my run tomorrow morning.  I want to attempt 16 km, my longest distance yet.  In reality its only one km longer than my previous longest run and I will be running it in the flats of Barhaven and not the HILLY ARSE hills of Norland.  But still I am nervous.  Can I do it?  And how do I do it.  What route do I take. My fuel belt only holds 4 little water bottles not enough for that length of time.  I don't want to carry a water bottle.  Do I loop by my house half way and fill up?  ughhh....part of me is tempted to just go to the gym and run it on the treadmill as boring as that would be.  I think I am just going to wake up and do what I feels right at the time.  Wish me luck.

PS.  I enjoyed a big ass bowl of pasta tonight and had seconds, not sure if the old tales of carb loading are worth a damn but I thought I would give it a try. WINK.

Morning Debates

This might come us a surprise to some given how excited and positive I usually am about going to the gym and exercising, but most mornings upon waking I think 'FARK the GYM TODAY!"  I wake up not by choice because of the kids or the dog, I drag my tired body downstairs and I think..."ahhh I feel stiff, oh I am tired...this or that is sore."  I feel like an old lady most mornings for the first 15-20 min and then once the body limbers up I am usually back to my exercise loving self.  But let me tell you that for those first 15min I am engaged in a serious debate with myself about whether or not I should go to the gym that morning.  I'm glad to say that the gym usually wins that one.  

Today I am wrestling with what kind of workout to have.  I follow a schedule of sorts that is pretty flexible.

Monday: I usually run at the gym on the treadmill (most runs other than on the weekend are done here) its a shorter run, at a faster pace (5-8km), sometimes its speed intervals.  I run with a 1-1.5% incline on the treadmill.  I have been really good at stretching after my runs of late too (kind of proud of that as its something I uses to struggle with.) 

Tuesday is weight training, and right now that involves working the full body for about an hour.  I use free weights, some machines, some body weight exercises, and end on the mat for a good core workout. I have been lifting fairly heavy weights with less reps, and a bigger rest between sets.   I find I am very hungry and tired after these workouts.  I yawn a lot on Tuesdays.  

Wednesday is another run day.  I usually do some form of hills on Wednesday.  I run anywhere from 8-10km again on the treadmill.  I really like using the classic hills program and running hill intervals (level 4-7) or just adding in random hills for a song or 1 min interval periods.  I am likely crazy and really enjoy running the hills, I like the way they make me feel (strong and powerful).  

Thursday is another strength training day.  For the past month I have been back at PUMP, doing a endurance, burn, toning type of workout.  

Friday I usually do a yoga class at the gym.  I have really come to enjoy the way yoga makes my body feel.  Its a much different workout than the others.  I love challenging myself to get deeper in a pose or to hold it longer.  I love how I can feel my body becoming more flexible and balanced.  I believe yoga and the bits of it that I have carried over to my stretching after running have really helped in keeping me injury free so far.  

Saturday is my long slow run day.  I either run in Barhaven, or out at my parents in HILLY ASS NORLAND, or on the treadmill (which stops once you hit 60 min and you have to start the bugger up again.)  Right now I am running 13-15km.  This week I am hoping for 16.  I like this run a lot, its at a very comfortable pace, and when I run it outside the time goes by much faster and I dare say it enjoyable as long as it not hot out.  

Sunday is either a rest day or I go back to the gym and do a strength workout on just my upper body.  

So there you have it, that's what most weeks look like.  I change it up a bit of course depending on what we are doing on the weekends.  This week I added a spin class in Monday night, and last week I added a Hot Yoga class Sunday.  I like to keep it fun and interesting.  (is anyone rolling there eyes yet? LOL)

But back to the question at hand what to do today? Our activities this weekend are throwing a wrench into the plans. So I am going to do my LSD (long slow distance) run on Friday.  Which means I don't want to do anything too taxing today.  But I also want to get my strength training in, which is further complicated by a shoulder injury.  I got the go ahead to do weights last night by my Dr. as long as I don't do shoulder work and stop if I feel any pain.  So I think I will do an upper body workout and leave my lower alone as that will take the brunt of the work attempting 16km tomorrow morning.  But I am also thinking that staying home and scrapbooking sounds awfully good too.  Its a waffling kind of morning (if just for a moment).  

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Ottawa City Chase

Just before the race starts, butterflies turning, and excitement building 
Yesterday, Ryan and I and our friends Rob and Laura participated in the Ottawa City Chase!  It was an amazing adventure of a day.  The race started off with a long ass speech (when your excited, and nervous and raring to go the last thing you need is a long ass speech LOL)   that ended with the instructions to pick up our clue sheets at a field (I don't even remember the name).  BOOM 550 teams of two start to RUN!.....So we followed thinking they know where they are going.  We got our sheet sat down and started to figure out what to do.  I have to tell you my heart was racing, my mind was a jumble...and I didn't even think to turn the sheet over to the other side (full of mandatory chase points) until after we had run to our first chase point.  OOPS.  We took pics of the clues posted them to our friends on Facebook that were helping us (huge thank-you girls) figure out the clues, and I called my friend Mell who ended up on the phone with us through the whole thing as our INTEL WOMAN :)   With all the excitement and craziness of the race it was really easy to forget details.  Details like that the first chase point we chose to run to wasn't open till 11:00am.  OOPS.  Bit of a disappointment but we moved on.  We soon found one in Ottawa U and did an orienteering challenge that took about 25 min or so.  It was hard, but we lucked out and teamed up with a great team that made it much easier.  We shared 'intel' with the our new friends and parted ways.   Next we ran up to Main St and did a cool challenge where Ryan pulled a car, I pushed from behind with another person, and someone steered.  We had to get the car two do two 3-point turns and park it.  Just prior to the start of this challenge I lost our clue sheet (insert panic) but right after the challenge I spotted it across the street and dashed for it before it blew away.  I ran back to Ryan and a new team came up and asked us if we would do the car challenge with them.  You need two teams to do the challenge, I thought about saying no as we just did it and wanted to move on, but I had just lucked out big time finding our lost sheet and thought time to return the favour.  So we pulled and pushed once more.  I have to tell you that helping them out was one of my top moments in the race, it felt really good.  Our good deed was rewarded though and they pointed out a chase point  2 min away that we didn't know about, it was super easy and we got a VIP PASSING LANE CARD that came in handy later on. From there with more help from our INTEL WOMAN MELL we ran to Brewer Park.  We checked the bus route and the run route and running had us saving 20 min so we went for it.  The run there was hard, the heat was really starting to settle in, and so was all the excitement.  But we did it and got there in really good time.  At this point my phone rings and its our friends Rob and Laura!  They had done 7 chase points!  Ummmm we had 3? SHIT! LOL.  So on we went.   First we played some frisbee, which upon seeing Ryan shook his head knowing how bad I am at stuff like that.  But I surprised us both by doing pretty good (thankfully Ryan can catch like a Golden Retriever!).  Then we found the mandatory chasepoint which was a roller derby obstacle course. There was a 45 min wait in line, so we whipped out our VIP pass and headed in.  That was SWEET.  We donned very sweaty gross padding, helmets, and skates and headed out onto the rink.  My heart was pounding.  I hate roller skates!  But I sucked it up and went for it, unsteady and slow I made my way through the course.  Ryan whipped around it like a pro and was asked to come out and REF!  Me I wobbled back to my running shoes.  There was a bathroom in the rink so we took advantage.  This was my one and only pee during the 5 hour race and we drank A LOT of WATER.  Goes to show you just how much we sweated out! From there we headed to Preston St for some boxing and again, checked the bus and run routes and opted to run.  On this route we got to run by the canal by dow's lake and it was glorious (another top moment).  At the boxing place Ryan did 300 punches on the bag, while I did 100 kicks, then we split up the knee kicks.  It was an easy challenge, they didn't care much about a well executed kick so we just flubbered our way though quickly.  At the end of this challenge we were getting tired...lots of running, no food, the heat, I was starting to feel wobbly.  We headed to a close by chase point where we had to look at the 'china town' sign and identify and count stuff.  I had no energy and I was sweating sunscreen into my eyes.  So we basically guessed our way through the answers.  48? no...49?..higher....60?  Yep!  That was kind of how it went.  I know lame, but they were really nice and punched our bib.  From there we started to head to the pump house, and on the way there clued into the fact that 3:00 was approaching and at that point mandatory chase points were no longer needed.  So we decided to change tactics and head back downtown and complete our last 2 points close to the finish line and cross at 3:00 with our 10 points.  We started walking and running our way back, Ryan's knee was getting sore.  He had just finished up 3 weeks of physio for a knee injury, so when a bus came by we happily hopped on.  We were on for less than 5 min and downtown and ready for our next challenge.  We headed to the Rideau Club only to find a dark empty floor....OOPS.  So we moved on, and headed to the Queen St. Goodlife where we rode a bike for 7 min.  Easy peasy.  From there they pointed us to the Rideau Centre Goodlife where we had to burn 200 cals.  Then it was a sweet short distance to the finish line, where we literally crossed with our buddies from the first challenge!  We made it in the top 100 and in just over 5 hours!  Our friends Rob and Laura made the top 80!    Sweaty, Thirsty, and Happy we headed to the Hard Rock Cafe for the after party and BEERS!

19.8km traveled mostly by foot (running and walking) to complete an urban adventure!  AMAZING!  I went to bed last night, feeling so damn proud of what our bodies accomplished today.  I feel strong and healthy and ready to take on this wonderful life!   
Zumba warm up
Ryan doing Zumba :) 
This should have been our Team Shirt LOL
Ryan getting ready to pull the car!

Thursday, July 21, 2011


I have really wrestled with writing this blog post and in the end decided to do it anyway because when I started this blog I wanted it to be a place of therapy for me (a place to write and share), a place of truth (a real story, of a real girl struggling to find her way), and a place of inspiration.

I had a bad day today.  I did something stupid.  I stopped listening to my body.  I woke up not feeling well and while driving the kids to camp felt light headed and wobbly.  My legs actually felt like Jelly.  Instead of deciding to take the day off, I went to the gym anyway and did a pump class.  I even thought about taking it easy.  I thought about using lighter weights, but I didn't.  At the end of the class I was tired mentally and muscles fatigued, and during a side plank slipped and popped my shoulder.  I have been beating myself up about it all day (while icing and heating the injury).

But its about more than that.  I haven't been myself of late.  5 days ago I joined a fitness site where you track your calories and what you eat and what you burn.  Its a great site and tool for someone that doesn't have my mindset.  When I started this journey I told myself I would never count calories again.  That it was too much like the restrictive disordered habits of my past and yet here I have been logging every bite I eat into this site and thinking about whether or not I should eat that 'fishy'.  Its preoccupied my time and thoughts and made me feel awful.  I can't blame it on the site, I have been feeling this way for about a month or so.  As more weight comes off, the 'lure' get's real shiny.  It becomes easy to get 'obessessive' in my thoughts and behaviour.

I have enjoyed this past year of getting fit and HEALTHY.  I have loved almost every moment of it.  I have found my passion and have even gone and started working on my personal training certification so I can help other women.  I want to inspire other women to move and achieve things they never thought they could.  I want to PUMP them up with self-esteem and confidence.  I want to emulate that in myself. I do not want other women consumed by what it is they ate that day or what they are allowed to eat.  I don't want them feeling grouchy and irritable and ignoring their bodies.  I don't want to teach other women to do what I have the past week.  I know this is an extreme and that for many people 'watching what they eat  works for them'.  But it obviously doesn't for me.  Its quite frankly 'dangerous' territory.

I don't ever want to be this girl again...
nor do I want to be this girl...
I want to be me.
The best me I can be.
Strong and Healthy.
I want to be present and engaged with my loved ones.
I want to honor myself and the gifts I have been given.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Running skirt

My new skirt, avert the eyes from the squishy middle :) LOL

I have been dreaming about a running skirt for a year now, every since I saw the fabulous Cathy Z sporting one on her blog.  Cathy has played a huge role in inspiring me and continuing to inspire me to keep my feet moving.  She looked so damn cute in the skirt!  Cute, fit and athletic… oh how I wanted to be her in that skirt.  Well almost a year later and my own butt finally fits in one of those little skirts.  This is going to be my lucky skirt, the skirt that I cross the finish line in on Sept 18th
Thank-you Cathy for all of your Daily Mile posts and MMEL blog posts that keep me moving to the beat of my feet. 

PS.  ran my fastest 8km today, at a pace of 10:37...just wait till I try running with this skirt on....ZOOOOOM :)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Smoking Hot

My sister Jamie wakeboarding
My sister Krissy surfing next to the boats wake
I have this board on Pinterest full of images of strong muscular woman that inspire me to push harder.   Well yesterday was the ultimate inspiration for me.  I went out on my sister's wake boat just after dinner, the water was 80 degrees, the music was blasting (I swear we blasted the whole lake with the speakers on that boat!), and I watched my sisters take flight on the water.   Donning their bikini tops, and board shorts they looked like california bitches!  I loved watching them fly over the water, their leg muscles looking powerful, as they tried out tricks.  I swear I was in AWE.  Don't even get me started on my 8 year old niece who can get more air than anyone and can do the AIR GUITAR while wakeboarding!  I want to be her when I grow up, I really do.  She's going to be a professional that one.
I've never tried it, I've only ever sat and watched from the boat.  Until yesterday, when I got up the nerve after some prodding to try it.  Now don't get excited!  I was a total failure.  My heart was pounding so hard, I was terrified and kept letting go of the rope, never even got up out of the water.  But it did feel very cool for that brief moment that I had the board strapped on and my butt sitting on the platform of the boat.  Maybe I could just hangout there for the afternoon.  Regardless, I had the best time and I am pinning these pics to my board!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Grumpy Girl

Ok so remember that post a few posts back about food and how all this healthy food is making me feel happy and great?  I likely looked like this while writing that post.
Happy Me, pumped up on my berry, greek yogurt smoothie and fish oil for Kayleigh's Birthday.  MMMM
Well this is a more accurate picture of me currently.

Ryan took this picture of me while out for dinner last night, I think that's my "For the love of God take the dessert away" face.

So here is where I am today.  Its 15 to 10 at night.  I am not hungry.  I have not snacked tonight.  I ate healthy all day long, I worked out hard, I fueled up with high power food, and I turned down fries and ice cream at the water park (ok I ate 3 fries and few licks of ice cream LOL).  But I feel grumpy.  In fact I have felt grumpy since Sunday.  Maybe it because we are on vacation and I haven't indulged in the usual ways that I would.  Maybe its because we are on vacation and I have deviated a little from the 'plan' eating more than usual, drinking beer and wine, and having some treats.  What happened to the girl who started this get fit program eating what she pleased, enjoying ice cream and wings if she felt so inclined?  What happened to the girl who went on a cruise and exercised and ate healthy but also indulged without guilt and didn't gain any weight? Where is the happy, feel good, I am working my butt off literally at the gym and don't need to stress the food bit girl?  Said girl is occupied by finding a way to fit protein into her meal and making a mess all over the counter blending another farking smoothie.

I was at a family function last week, and telling my sister in law about my latest adventures in protein (pretty exciting stuff) and she said something that kind of stuck with me, she said I can be a bit 'obsessive'.  Who me?  Its not like I only talk about scrapbooking, kids and working out? Oh wait I do!   So that being said, I think I have made some great discovereis on the nutrition side that are going to help me get to where I ultimately want to be, BUT I also need to RELAX and eat a flipping piece of cake and down it with a cold beer and just let it be.

I workout hard, really hard.  I love it.  I love the sweat, the burn, the accomplishment, the high.  The exercise piece comes really easily for me.  I have been successful in loosing weight because of this.  But I think if I tackle the food part of this venture with the same attitude I am going to end up in the crazy place.  I have learned some really good things about what I should be choosing to eat.  But I also need to relax and not be 'obsessive' about it.  I really don't like how grumpy I have felt this week, and stressed.  The craziest part is that 'stress' can actually make you gain weight.  So you see I think I am farther ahead if I eat that cupcake :) wink.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


This is ‘me’ at my parents house, in beautiful Norland, showered, rehydrated and no longer cursing the HILLS of Norland.  Today was a tough run.  I went out and did 15km in the heat, with lots of hills and one really tough one in particular.  I got up at 7 this morning and ate breakfast so I would have enough energy for the run, and packed a lot of water in.  I also got in the car and went and marked out the 7.5km turn around point on the highway, as I can't use my nike+ anymore.  I even contemplated writing YOU CAN DO IT on the road with my chalk but settled for scribbles in case a car came by while I was writing.  I went out with my fuel belt that holds four little water bottles and I had a water bottle in hand too.  5km in I was struggling, the heat was really getting to me, as I am not used to running in it.  I was jugging back the water and tackling the hills as best I could.  This was the first run, where my mind really struggled with ‘am I going to be able to do this?’.  If I didn’t complete it, it wouldn’t be because of a sore knee or injury it would be because of my mind hitting the brick wall (and maybe a little bit my body slamming into it too).  I was nearing the turn about point and anxiously looking for my chalk marker, when I didn’t see it I worried that it had rubbed away or I had worse yet passed it.  When I finally came upon it, I was practically in tears.  That turn around point is such a mental relief, the rest of the run all though hard was mentally much easier from there.  As my mind quieted and I settled into the run and the hills, I got the goosebumps thinking of this body of mine and what it was doing.  After all the years of abuse, disordered eating, binge eating, and hating it, my body had not given up on me.  I have learned to love my body again. To treat it well and with respect and in return it is giving me so much back!  Then I realized that it was even more than that that my body is truly a gift from God and that in honoring my body I am honoring his gift and being blessed in so many ways.  I know this part sounds all ‘GODy’ and well it is Sunday :)  But those of you that know me, know that I have a deep spiritual connection to God and I can feel him at work in my life.  Out there on the road this morning when I was finally able to let go of all the fear and worry I was able to open myself up to his love and I truly felt it in my steps.  About 2.5 km from my parent’s house I ran out of water and took the liberty of calling my mom on my cell for help.  She was so sweet and drove out some water and a sugary koolaid for me.  It was so cool to have her come in and hand me some refreshment.  I jugged down that sweet liquid like it was heaven, while it dripped all over me.  I even threw a bottle of water over my back.  A wave good bye and I was off for the last 2.5 km.  I surprised by how much more energy I had in the last bit and pounded it back home.  I can’t tell you how much of an accomplishment today was for me.  I over came a big mental block that almost had me quitting, and I learned that I love this body of mine, strong, and capable.  

Friday, July 8, 2011

Food: Feeling so good

Dinner last night, Ryan grilled and smoked a chicken pizza
Its been about 3 weeks now since I have made some major changes to my daily eating habits and I wanted to report in on how that's been going.

My Happy Food Changes:

1. The biggest change I have made is making my own (and Ryan's LOL) smoothie in the morning.  I  use greek yogurt (18 grams of protein), unsweetened almond milk, and a fruit (like banana or strawberries).  Sometimes I change it up and use natural peanut butter, a bit of honey, banana, and almond milk.  Some days I have another shake for lunch when pressed for time and in need of refueling after a hard workout.  Next week, I want to try making these with some greens like spinach or kale.
2.  I am watching my portion sizes (except for Canada Day Ribs and last nights smoked pizza...its safe to say if its been smoked on the BBQ I have no control!)
3.  I am making sure I get enough protein in during the day.  I make sure each meal has protein and almost every snack too.  This weeks big protein discovery has been eggs!  I am eating a hard boiled egg as a snack.  Did you know that its a complete protein with every amino acid needed to build muscle?  I think the only other complete protein like that is breast milk.
4.  I am trying to HYDRATE, by drinking lots of water.
5.  I am getting whole grain carbs in to fuel my workout and help me recover.
6.  I am still having treats like a half slice of cake, or a small serving of dark chocolate, or 1/2 cup of ice cream.
7. I have also been listening to podcasts on nutrition and learning as much as I can about a fueling your body for health.
8. I almost forgot I am taking an OMEGA 3, Fish Oil in the morning.

So how have these changes translated in my day to day life? I feel energized!  My workouts in the morning have been excellent (I am lifting more weight, I am getting the running high, I am running faster on my tempo runs).  I am not RAVENOUS when I get home from the gym.  I am less hungry throughout the day and have snacked less.  The snacks I am eating are protein rich snacks, not sugary snacks.  I am not craving the sweets the way I used to at 3:00pm.  Most evenings have been snack free and again when my tummy is genuinely rumbling I have reached for a healthy, proper portioned snack.  I think the biggest benefit though has been in my mindset.  I am truly thinking of food as a fuel right now, and not as my best friend and confident.  This past year or so, as I have undergone this 'journey,' I have usually had 2-3 days a week where I eat as I want.  I would call them high calorie days.  They weren't binge days like in the old days.  I don't think of them as binge days because I wasn't eating mindlessly, and in a numbed state.  Most importantly, I didn't suffer the self sabotaging guilt afterwards. But I was eating passed the fullness feeling, and with a free pass feeling.  I was also eating things that were quite frankly not good for me.  I don't think one should deny or forbid themselves a food they enjoy but to eat it without abandon as I did wasn't really all that good.   The next big challenge will be this weekend and early next week as we travel away from home and are somewhat at the mercy of other's kitchens.  I plan on bringing food with me to make sure I get my smoothie in, I figure at least then I can start my day off right!

Like minds

I've mentioned this awesome blog called Losing it in Ottawa before, they have been a big part of my morning coffee and blog time over the last year.  Well they recently started a group on Facebook (that anyone can join) and I have finally found a place where I can yabber non stop about getting enough protein, discussing runs, and my love/hate relationship with the scale.  I love that a group of like minded people, that are fighting the battle not to stop at Dairy Queen on the way home, and finding their way to healthier self can share and encourage one another.  I think sometimes I might drive my friends a bit nuts talking about working out, for all I know they have 'hidden' my daily mile posts on Facebook.  That's not true, they are actually very supportive, but I do feel 'guilty' if I talk to much about running and working out.  I feel like I hold back for fear of boring them or sounding boastful. But the truth is I am so excited and in love with being active and getting fit and long to talk about it.
So if your in Ottawa, or even if your not and want a place to talk about loosing weight and getting fit, a place with loads of support and tips please come check out Losing it in Ottawa on Facebook.