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Three things Thursday – run streak timing, pants shopping and fruits & veggies

1. I’m loving the timing of this run streak

As much as November is a crazy month and it may have been easier to fit in runs in a different month, the timing is kind of perfect. The fact that I’m busy means that the streak is forcing me to do lots of runs I normally would have (somewhat fairly) chosen to skip. Also – all of this running has done wonders for some of the extra pounds of me I’ve been carrying around for the last few months when I wasn’t running nearly as much. I’m feeling trim and toned and confident right before this trip to Vegas, and before the busy dressing-up-for-holiday-parties season. Even my arms are looking pretty good! (I don’t work out my arms, ever.)

2. I hate it when…

…you work your butt off getting fit and then the “reward” for your hard work is that NONE OF YOUR PANTS FIT! I mean, it’s awesome that first time you’re like, “Wow, these pants are looser than they used to be!” But then reality sets in and your clothes look frumpy and you have to go on the horrific errand that is shopping for dress pants. Or (*shudder*) bathing suits. Luckily I think I can continue to tie the back of my bathing suit tighter for a little while longer.

3. I need to eat more fruits and vegetables

Without meaning to, I seem to do a pretty good job of eating fruits and veggies that are in season. In the summer I seem to exist only on fresh veggies some weeks. And then fall comes around and my favourite veggies disappear, or triple in price, or just start to look gross and all of a sudden I find myself not eating as many vegetables as I should. I think I need some new ideas for root vegetables. (Any recipe suggestions??) The only fruit I’m eating regularly are the berries on my oatmeal every morning.

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Three things Thursday: pre-Sparks camp edition

This weekend is our annual Spark and Mom Camp, which is one of my absolute favourite things we do during the year, but every year it just about kills us all in the week before while we’re trying to get everything ready to go. This year is no exception. (This will be the make-or-break weekend for my running streak and blogging streak this month. It’s not going to be easy to find 18 minutes to myself for a 3k run on Saturday, but I swear I’m going to make it happen.)

Here are three things I’m thinking about on this pre-camp Thursday.

  1. I really, really, really, really wish I had in-suite laundry. Some weeks not being able to do laundry after 10 pm makes doing laundry extremely difficult. I desperately need to do a load or two of key things before camp, and it somehow has to dry before I pack it. I’m trying really hard not to think about the fact that the laundry situation will be WORSE after the weekend. (To any of you who do laundry for a whole household: I’m impressed. And terrified for the day when that will become my reality. How old do kids have to be to do laundry??)
  2. I’m already looking forward to going to bed on Sunday night. Pre-camp I’m always busy with last-minute details, and no matter how much sleep you get at camp, it’s never quite enough. (Thank goodness at camps with moms we’re not the first ones woken up when the first kid inevitably wakes up at 6.)
  3. Did I mention that I really love being a Sparks Guider? I might complain sometimes about the time and energy that goes into it, but I love it so much. I love introducing girls to new experiences, taking them to camp, teaching them things, and getting to be a 5-year-old for at least an hour a week. We have an insane amount of fun, and it’s worth every bit of effort we put in.

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Three things Thursday – streaking, birthdays and a frustration

1: One week of streaking

Today marks the end of week 1 of Solana’s November 3k-a-day #beaststreak. I technically missed day 4, but I was home sick from work that day, so I’m calling that a legitimate excuse. And I made up for it by running the extra 3 the following day. Good enough for me. So far it’s been really enjoyable. I’m already at three runs I would not have attempted if not for the streak, which I think is totally the point! I’m really glad the distance is 3k though. I think I might be having a harder time if I were trying to run 5 every day.

The next week should actually be a little bit easier than this past week as far as getting the runs in. It’s the third week I’m really worried about. (But no sense worrying about it now!)

2: Birthday fun!

My birthday is coming up on Tuesday, so I’m looking forward to celebrating this (long!) weekend. Friday night I am getting together with a whole bunch of friends, which should be fun. Saturday my sister and her housemates are throwing a party in the evening (not for me, just a good old fashioned house party). Sunday morning I plan to be at the Running Room for Run Club and then I have no plans until my soccer game in the evening. Monday is Remembrance Day, and my family always goes to the Legion. (The other part of the tradition is dropping someone brave off at the nearby Starbucks, which is always PACKED, to get our first Christmas drinks of the season.) Afterwards is birthday brunch with my dad, sisters, Tommy and Pippa. The afternoon will be spent FRANTICALLY getting things together for Spark and Mom Camp next weekend. Should be a fantastic weekend.

3: Running clinic frustration

After having such a great experience in my running clinic last winter/spring, I knew I wanted to sign up for another one when I would actually be able to run the race at the end. The clinic group for the BMO half was pretty large, which makes sense, because the goal race is a huge one, it starts right after Christmas (when everyone is thinking about resolutions and starting new things) and the weather is pretty good through most of it. Our clinic group this time is way smaller. Which is fine, and pretty cool in some respects, because it makes for a tighter-knit group. But in our third week, I still haven’t figured out who my peeps will be.

In the BMO clinic, I didn’t make any friends for life or anything, but there was a group of us with similar goal times who ran together pretty consistently. We chatted and challenged each other (and sometimes slowed each other down when we tried to go too fast) and it was great. I’m not sensing that it’ll happen for me this time. I haven’t actually made it out to a Sunday long run yet, so I’m hoping I just have yet to meet the awesome people whose pace is close to mine. But for now I will say that I have been frustrated so far on Wednesdays and Thursdays. (There is one guy who has been keeping up with me, but I’m not sure he should be. I think he’s pushing himself too hard for a “steady” run, and I think he’ll realize that in a few weeks when the runs start to get longer. Also he’s really irritating, so I’m hoping he drops back soon!!)

November 7:

Run: 3.2k with my running clinic
Blog post: yup!
Movember ‘stache: patiently awaiting my mo’ Schwings!

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Three Things Thursday

1.   I have no green thumb.

Like, at all. Our Sparks parents gave us plants on Monday night as a thank you gift. Pippa left Tuesday, and now the plants are… dead, I fear. I have tried to revive them, but it’s not looking good. I’d love to be a plant person, but I’m clearly just not.
I don’t know much, but I know that’s not good…

2.   Today’s run kind of sucked.

And I’m trying to be okay with it. Obviously not every run is going to be a highlight, and I know from experience that the bad ones make the good ones seem that much better. But it’s frustrating when you leave the house in a great mood ready for a great run and it just doesn’t work out. 

3.   I’m already really looking forward to Sunday’s run.

My schedule’s been all over the place recently, so I haven’t been for a run with a group since my clinic ended at the end of April. This weekend I’m finally going to make it to the Running Room for a Sunday morning run. Hurray for company on a 20k!
This post is admittedly quite lame, but I’m trying to get back in the habit of writing at all, so bear with me. =)

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Three Things Thursday: Things Are Awesome Edition!

I had an awesome day today and these are some of the reasons why.

1. My Dad makes me smile!

I got a text today from my dad, who is in New Orleans, saying that he was in an athletic store and they had Under Armor in lime green and asking if he needed to pick me up any. (My soccer team’s colour is lime green, so this isn’t quite as random as it sounds.) He wandered around the store looking at styles and colours, sending me photos, for 20 minutes. Not bad for a man who doesn’t shop. Thanks for the new shirt, Dad! It’s going to be perfect for the St Patrick’s Day 5k!
Lime makes me smile!

2. I love free stuff!

Tonight’s talk at my Run Clinic was from a Brooks rep. She talked for about half an hour about shoes and clothing, and basically I sat in front of the shoes and drooled the entire time. At the end she “quizzed” us about the talk and the last question was “Name a Brooks product.” I yelled “Glycerin!” as fast as I could and scored myself a free water bottle! And then we all got stickers (and a granola bar after the run). Free stuff!!

3. I’m really glad I bought ridiculously bright blue pants!

It takes me a few minutes wearing them before I don’t feel totally goofy, but they’re so fun! People smile when they run past me the other way. And they reduce the percentage of my winter running clothes that are black.
This angle makes my legs look weeeeird.

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Three Things Thursday

I’m really excited for the Olympics to start
I love sports. I love sports fans. I love reasons to get excited. I love Canada. I love Canadians being excited about Canada. And I love sports montages. Ergo, I’m absurdly excited for the Olympics.
I even bought my first piece of Olympic gear today. =)
Why hello, denim jacket
Specifically I’m excited for:
  • Women’s Soccer. I can’t wait to watch Christine Sinclair and the rest of the women’s national team play! They’re such an inspirational squad and they should do well!
  • Simon Whitfield carrying the flag for the opening ceremonies. He deserves it!
  • The opening ceremonies.
  • Usain Bolt breaking records again. (You know he will.)
  • Swimming
  • Diving
  • Synchronized Diving
  • Synchronized Swimming
  • Field Hockey
  • Rowing
  • Canoeing/Kayaking
  • Okay, I’m excited about all of the sports.

I’m so sick of the renovations in my office
My floor has been under minor renovations since the beginning of May. Dust, sneezing, noise, paint, more dust, itchy eyes, more sneezing, fans on all day, headache, more pain, headache, dust. Yuck. I can’t wait until this whole thing is over!
The magic of blogs!
The more I get into running, the more I get into running blogs. There are a few that I’ve been following for a few months now, and I’m always looking around for more. (Leave me a comment if you have a blog that has anything to do with running!)
I love reading about other runners’ training, races and cool gear. I love picking up tips and tricks for things related to running. I even love the sweaty self pics after a run (I still haven’t been brave enough to share many of those). And it’s really cool hearing about the non-running aspects of people’s lives that they choose to share with the world. (Babies, weddings, travel, oh my!)
The magic of blogs also includes contests and giveaways. I love free stuff, especially if it has to do with running, so entering contests on running blogs is always fun. And I’ve already won something! A few weeks ago, Cori at Read.Write.Run.Mom. was giving away Glitzbandz. I hate a love/hate relationship with headbands (as in I love the idea of them, but hate that the shape of my head means they fall off in seconds) but I entered anyway. (See above mentioned love of free stuff.)
Winner winner chicken dinner.
And then I won! I couldn’t believe it! I got to choose any pattern I liked from the huge assortment. Since it was free and I wasn’t sure if I’d ever be able to wear it for running, I went for ridiculous instead of practical. I chose a lime green sparkly headband. Then it arrived in the mail and to my huge surprise, it actually stays on my head! It’s some kind of miracle. At first I was kind of upset with myself for choosing such a silly one, but then I remembered how silly I already look when I’m out for a run and decided there’s nothing wrong with adding some sparkle. Thanks again Cori, and of course Glitzbandz! (I really hope that’s the last time I have to type anything with extraneous Zs on this blog.)

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Three Things Thursday

Apparently “Three Things Thursday” is a thing in the blogosphere, because several of the blogs I read do it every Thursday. (Fun fact: my spell check knows “blogosphere.” It doesn’t know my name, or a huge number the technical terms I use at work all the time, but it knows blogosphere. Oh dear.) So I think I will jump on this Three Things Thursday bandwagon, as I like lists and seem to be pretty terrible at posting on Thursdays. 

Thing 1: Grouse Grind & Sushi Date

Last night T and I went on one of our favourite dates. (Well, one of my favourites, I guess I can’t speak for him.) It goes like this:
  • At 5ish we both get off work. We both head to North Vancouver – he drives, I get to take the SeaBus. He picks me up at Lonsdale Quay and we head for Grouse.
  • We do the Grouse Grind!  We usually stick together for the first quarter or half and then T takes off because he’s a boy and boys are stupid and are way fitter than me even if they don’t do any cardio regularly.
  • Sometimes we pause for quite a while at the top and enjoy the view and take photos like tourists. Sometimes we even stop in at Altitudes for a well-deserved beer.
  • But usually we head straight for the gondola, head down the mountain, jump in the car and drive to Sushi Mori on Capilano Road (you have to drive right by it on your way out!). Sushi Mori has been a post-Grind tradition for T and I since we first started dating. The sushi is good, the tempura is greatand Sapporo is an awesome post-Grind beer.
Yesterday I was really looking forward to a Grind, since it’s been about a year since I did it. (I usually manage to get up there 4 or 5 times every summer.) I was a little bit disappointed with my time of 58:30, since I’d hoped that all my running would help me shave even more time off my previous best (59:30ish I think). But as T pointed out (after his third best time of 56-something), we’re usually slower the first time we go up every season and then improve after that. So the plan is to do it lots more this summer and get down a few more minutes!
This is last summer. Didn’t stick around for photos yesterday.
I do have to say that I felt way better after finishing than I usually do. I was huffing and puffing and sweaty as all get-out, but after I caught my breath I actually felt like I was ready for more! Maybe not more Grind, but to go for a run or something. I guess the running’s doing some good after all. 

Thing 2: Strawberries

It’s finally strawberry season! I bought my first basket of local strawberries this morning on my way to work! I guarantee they will be gone by tomorrow. If I can make them last that long. I’d better, because I really want to eat them on my oatmeal tomorrow morning. 
So delicious…

Thing 3: Wedding, Wedding, Wedding

I’m not sure if I’ve actually told you all outright about my good friend Caiti’s wedding this summer. I’ve known Caiti since elementary school – we met in Girl Guides. We’ve had some awesome adventures together: West Coast Trail, Bowron Lakes, Europe trip.
In August she and her man are getting hitched! They live in Kelowna (where they both moved to go to UBC Okanagan), but are getting married in Ottawa, where his family is from. I’m super excited for an adventure to Ottawa for the first time.
I’m one of five (FIVE!) bridesmaids and we’re just over a month away, so there’s been a lot of wedding-related business going on lately. Last weekend we had a bit of a bachelorette weekend in Kelowna: wine tasting, Magic Mike and a night out! This Sunday is her bridal shower, which will be a garden party at her aunt’s. I’m so glad the sunshine has finally found us in Vancouver!
Still on the to-do list: actually pull off this bridal shower; get my dress altered; get to Blaine to pick up my shoes (which were ordered from an American website that didn’t deliver to Canada); help Caiti finalize details like flowers that are hard to do when you’re provinces away.

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