Category Archives: Running

Water Running

I can’t believe I am writing this post but I am a running water convert. I injured my foot 3 weeks ago …. running. I’m still not sure what contributed to it. I started a new training program to get ready for the Canadian Age Group Triathlon Nationals, the way I run or the fact that my right toe is so arthritic I am unable to get full mobility. It’s probably all the above.

Either way I was starting a set of intervals on the treadmill and started instantly feeling a lot of pain in my midfoot around my third toe or third metatarsal. By the next day I couldn’t walk on my foot and found myself in urgent care with the Doctor telling me it looks like a stress fracture, sounds like a stress fracture, feels like a stress fracture but I would have to wait several days for a bone scan for it to show. Until then, off my foot!

Introducing water running. It takes a bit to get the technique down but by the end of the second week I could do away with the float belt and run steady or intervals. Man, it is a hard and effective workout and I strongly suggest everyone should try it – especially if you are recovering from an injury or have joint issues.

I’ve been able to keep my endurance and strength up. Actually, I think I’ve improved my strength. I just heard back from the doctor and I have bruised the bone in my foot and have some soft tissue damage. It means I am back on my bike but my foot is still too sore to run on so I am going to keep up the water running. The true test will be when I start running again which will hopefully will be soon.

I have used this training guide to have structure to my workouts in the pool. Other than the steady run which can be mind numbingly boring in the pool, the workouts are fun and challenging. I will definitely be keeping water running as part of training program when my foot is healed. It will allow me to increase my running volume without risking injury and it builds leg strength. It’s fantastic cross training. Give it a try!

CMCC Backs In Motion 2013 5k Race Review

Celebrating my third place finish with Dr. Jean Moss, President of CMCC ... and also my Aunt.

Celebrating my third place finish with Dr. Jean Moss, President of CMCC … and also my Aunt.

I start each season by racing the CMCC Backs in Motion 5/10k race. It’s always been a successful race for me and it’s a great litmus test on how well my training is going. Unlike most city races this is a challenging hilly course. The race begins outside the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College on Leslie Street in Toronto. You head south on Leslie which is a steady 1km climb. Be careful not to underestimate the hill. It is actually 3 steps up Leslie and it’s easy to go to hard off the gun and be zapped by the time you crest the hill.

You then head west for about 500m with a gentle slope down, getting a chance to recover and pick up some much needed speed. You then head north along a paved trail providing a scenic and gentle rolling course. There is an aide station at the 3km marker and then there is only 2km to go.

The last 2 kms are deceiving as you are starting to climb up out of the valley and back onto Leslie. The last 200m is uphill as you push for the finish line!

Although I didn’t break my PB from last year, I had a good race and came 3rd in my age group. If you haven’t tried the Back’s In Motion 5 or 10k race I suggest you try it. majority of the course is off the road, providing a focused, challenging race.

Down and Out

I have to start off by apologizing for not writing lately. I’ve been in a slump and I’ve been doing a crappy job of remembering my lessons learned. I was hit with a nasty sinus cold 3 weeks ago. Nasty because it is never-ending! And worse, I am well enough to go about my day but am not strong enough to train. On a good day I can carry out a light aerobic workout and on a bad day I’m at the top of the stairs wheezing for air. My last swim session was one of those wheezing episodes.

I know I have to go back to the doctors and try a second treatment that is hopefully effective but I can’t help feeling bummed out at the moment. Not because I feel like I’m losing time and speed (well maybe partly) but it’s mostly because being active everyday has become such an integral part of my day and a part of who I am.

I love the feeling of a great sweaty workout. The sense of accomplishment, of being alive, of being strong. It is completely addictive and it is my drug. There is nothing better than hitting a point in your workout and thinking I can’t do this. It’s not going to happen today and to then just do it. (Yes, I’m quoting Nike.) It’s awesome and I’m missing it big time.

My favorite workouts are my plyometric sessions and intervals. Running intervals specifically. I love getting out of my comfort zone when running. I haven’t figured out why I can’t seem to transfer that same love to cycling and swimming yet but I’m working on it. Maybe it’s because I’m a runner first or I already have a moderate amount of success in running so I see the gains sooner. But either way, the high I get from running intervals and the absolute satisfaction is second to none.

I have my first 5k race the CMCC Backs in Motion at the end of April so this is when I start to switch from hill repeats to track (if the track is clear) or treadmill intervals. I know logically that 3 weeks of easy to moderate exercise 2-3 times a week isn’t going to slow me down but the irrational part of me is saying … COME ON already. Do you see that calendar? The days are ticking by. Or REALLY, that’s the best you’ve got today? Go home and crawl back into bed, that sucked!! My inner voice isn’t the most supportive at times. It needs an attitude adjustment.

So the past few weeks have been less than stellar and I’ve been sulking like a preschooler. Sorry. I promise to give my head a shake and have a little chat with my inner voice. My next post will be more upbeat, like my usual self. I did manage to go for a unique bike fitting and I have some exciting news about my next fundraiser to share with all of you.

Stay tuned!

My Secret Christmas Eve Tradition

Ok … so it’s not so secret now. Every Christmas Eve after we have settled the kids to bed I strap on my running shoes, slip my toque on and go for a run. It’s the most beautiful night of the year to run. The streets are so quiet, everything feels still and at peace. I regain my balance while I run taking in the lights and glimpses of families celebrating. I feel like Ebenezer with the ghost of Christmas past but not at what I have lost. For what I have.
The meaning of Christmas seems to get lost as we rush to buy all our gifts, get our children’s lists to Santa Claus, drive here, drive there – never stopping. So my run has become a gift to myself. To find a moment of stillness in all the chaos we have come to know as Christmas. To say my silent thank you’s. There is so much to be thankful for in all our lives. Every day is a new blessing full of endless possibility and this holiday is a celebration of those possibilities and of the ones we have already received.
I was going to skip my run this year because I have been sick with a nasty head cold for several days but my husband reminded me why I run. So with kleenex in hand I ran tonight. The air was crisp and clean, the lights did not disappoint and I found my stillness. I never have a plan on where I am going to run or how far or how long. This year I found myself running past my friend’s old house who moved away this summer. I miss her but am grateful that we still celebrated Christmas together this year with an impromptu Christmas party at my house. And although she is no longer down the road she is just a click of the mouse or a phone call away.
I realized the greatest gift I have received this year is friendship. I have never made friends easily. Acquaintances, yes but good friends has always been hard. Partly because I found it hard to trust people. At this particular moment in my life I find myself surrounded by some of the most amazing people who each have their own strength that energizes me. I love them for who they are and I know they feel the same way. They accept me for who I am, not who I can be or should be but for who I am.
So tonight I said thank you for the doors that have been opened and for the possibility to open more.
Merry Christmas Everyone!