I Signed Up for my First Race of 2015!

Yeah, I did it!

It’s going to be a COLD one.

I’ve trained for it.

I’ve carb loaded for it.

Hydrated well.

I even got the “day before” shake out run in of 3k on the treadmill. Plus 6k bike ride, upper body weights, 60 second plank and some good stretching/foam rolling in.

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Getting my gym workout on

I’m wearing my ProCompression socks to bed.

There is snow covered trails, maybe even some ice! Oh my!

It’s a half marathon in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

More specific, it’s the Hypothermic Half Marathon.

Now, I know what you are thinking….aren’t you injured? Why yes, yes I still am still injured but that doesn’t mean I can’t sign up for a race.

….to volunteer :)

Today I am volunteering at the Hypo Half. Back in December I thought about signing up for this race (pre injury) but decided the day before the prices increased not to register. Why? Because I knew the course would be snow & ice-covered trail and I wasn’t sure if I was ready for that. A week later I pulled my hamstring. a.k.a. not ready.

I don’t get to volunteer that often so I’m excited about being there today. I’m at the furthest water station (away from the start) and am volunteering with people I’ve never met before. My running buddy Krystol is running it and some other friends. I’m sure looking forward to high fiving her, passing along a warm GU, non-frozen water and hopefully a little motivation.

Though I won’t be running, I’m happy to be able to volunteer and give back to the sport I love so much. If one can’t run, one can still volunteer.

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Flat Volunteer Piper – Ready to Roll!

Fingers crossed that I don’t freeze my butt off as it’s going to be -12 C (feels like -17 C)….I’m really hoping all those winters (5) of working outdoors will pay off and I can manage to stay warm.

Good luck to all those running the Hypo Half today in Halifax…you crazy Haligonians (and others).

Follow me on Instagram for updates

Cheers, Piper :)

Ready To Go Gym Bag

As someone who likes to work out regularly, I always try to have my running gear (clothing, sneakers, Garmin) or winter gear (skis, snowshoes, jacket, pants, toques etc) ready to go. It makes getting to the actual activity just a little easier. I would even go as far as saying that I use that as a motivator.

I’ve been known to take out my running clothing after I get dressed in the morning so that I can work out at night. I’ve also been known to put on my running clothing while the girls are getting on the pj’s because then I have no excuses but the dishes once they go to bed ;)

More recently, I’ve had my gym bag packed and ready to go. Not that I get to the gym very often but I just leave it packed. When I visit my family, I try to hit up GoodLife Fitness while I’m in Halifax. I like the atmosphere there and enjoy the occasional gym workout – especially this winter.

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Some key pieces for my gym bag are:

  • Running Sneakers
  • Workout Clothing (shorts or capris, tank top or t-shirt, sports bra, socks)
  • Lock
  • Head Phones (IPod, Tablet or to use the gym’s TV service while doing cardio)
  • After Workout Clothing (underwear, socks, shirt, pants)
  • Shower stuff (don’t forget a towel)
  • Empty water bottle

I’ve been known to forget a few key essentials: underwear…yes, I’ve gone commando at work once. I forgot a towel before. I’ve even forgot my sports bra and decided not to run on my lunch break because of it.

Starting in the spring and through to the fall (the snow will melt, the snow will melt), I will start leaving my running gear in my car. Don’t worry, it will be clean gear as no one wants to sit in a car with stinky running clothing ;) It will be great to have my running gear in case I want to go for a last minute run at lunch or for a work meeting. Yes, I’ve gone for a “running meeting” before – they are the best!

My little gym bag sits in my bedroom just waiting for me to grab it and go. Since I do a lot of treadmill running at home these days due to injury and crazy snow/icy road conditions, I don’t get to use my gym bag all that often.

Don’t worry gym bag ….your coming out to play this weekend :)

Do you have a gym bag packed and ready to go?

What are some of your MUST haves in your gym bag?

Do you keep all your “active” gear together?

Moving Forward with my Hamstring Injury

I wanted to title this “A Quicky for Ya” but I’m pretty sure that would 1 – turn heads and 2 – brings some people to my blog looking for something else ;)

It’s been a pretty good week here – only 2 small storms I believe. Oh, sorry, this is not a weather blog…I forgot. They were minor storms – nothing to write about….other then the snow was finally “snow-man worthy”.

Do you want to build a Snow Man?

Do you want to build a Snow Man?

As for my hamstring recovery, its moving in the right direction :) I’ve had some really good runs and some days that just my leg just needs to rest.

Wed 18th: Massage day :) This is becoming key to my recovery!

Thurs 19th: Planned on skiing with Lilly and Sai after our Dentist appointment but my body had other plans. As I put Hilary in the car that morning, I pulled my back on the left side. All I did was pick her up and put her in her car seat and WHAM-O instant pain. SO disappointed we did get on the hill.

Fri 20th – I don’t know what I did but I’m pretty sure it was nothing because my back was still pretty painful. Not even sure I did my PT exercises this day – whoops!

Sat 21st: Ran 5k on the treadmill – it was GREAT!

Sun 22nd: Rest day / PT exercises

Mon 23rd: Ran 5k – Had a really GREAT run with my RUNDER thighs!

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Tues 24th: Rest day/PT exercises

Wed 25th: Had another fantastic 5k run on the treadmill and was finally able to increase my speed during the last kilometer.

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I like to wear lots of colours :)

 

Where am I? Well, I’m definitely making progress which is great. I’ve learned a lot during this injury and the biggest thing is that patience is not my strength…oh wait, I knew that a long time ago.

Seriously though, the biggest thing is that recovery is not a race and it takes time to heal. All my goals I have for this year are 100% on the back burner but they are never not in sight.

I am getting there.

Happy Hump Day!

What’s the biggest thing you’ve learned from an injury?

Does patience come easy to you?

Thunder Thighs v.s. Runder Thighs

Yesterday, I wasn’t having the best day. It was my first day back to work after being off for a week’s stay-cation. Those first days back are usually flooded with emails, phone messages and trying to keep up at meetings. By 4 pm yesterday, I was mentally done – checked out. So my plan was to run last night……

It’s been a few days since my last confession….oh I mean, since my last run. I ran Saturday and it was a terrible 4k on the treadmill. My hamstring just wasn’t digging it until I foam rolled afterwards. Sunday, I did my PT exercises and that was it as my hamstring was sore . By Monday, my thunder thighs just wanted to run as did my head.

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My lovely lady leg (Before)

YOU know, that GOOD, long distance run I’ve been craving for months now. I didn’t get that one in but I got another 5 k in the books. My legs felt fantastic. Tired. Exhausted. Perfect.

Mission accomplished!

Okay, let’s get down to it. Thunder Thighs vs. Runder Thighs.

I always hated my thighs. To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever like them.

I’ve taken them for granted. All those soccer games, skiing, hiking, the weight of two pregnancies and all those kilometers run. And I still didn’t like them. No, wait….I didn’t like the look of them.

They have been small, BIG and slimmer over the years, yet I’ve really taken them for granted all because of the way I think they look: not good.

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Straight up – RUNder thighs (After)

Well, today, after 6-7 weeks in physiotherapy I had a fantastic run. I needed that run and I ran in my short – shorts.  I took a before photo {1st photo above} and then a second one after – happy, strong thighs. Well really, these are my RUNDER thighs. They get me through my kilometers, through my day and I am stronger because of them.

I no longer hate my thighs….

PS – Sometimes I can’t believe I share this stuff on my blog only because some friends, family and coworkers read it. This isn’t a conversation I would have with just anyone face to face…….so consider yourself lucky ;)

Did you ever dislike a part of your body that has been so good to you?

Short shorts or long shorts?

What do you do after a mentally draining day?

Exercise…

“Exercise…….

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Not only changes your body. It also changes your mind, your attitude, & your mood”.

I could use a little of that…could you?

How was your weekend?

Anyone need a little exercise in their life today?

Photo from GoodLife Fitness Instagram.

Hamstring Update & Good Running

I’m getting there :) Another week of recovery done, another week getting stronger. It went like this:

Wednesday Feb 11th: Yoga @ Lunch. It was nice but my mind was wandering and I felt bored at times :( Then my hamstring started to feel sore, double :( :( but I went to Physio that afternoon and the treatment they did made it feel a lot better. Physio for the win!

Thursday Feb 12th: Nothing; drove to Halifax as we were planning a trip to PEI.

Friday Feb 13th: Decided not to go to PEI and was super bummed out, so I did nothing.

Saturday Feb 14th: Drove back home sans kiddies. Ran 4k outside – SUPER slow for me 27:31 (4k). Usually, I can run 5k in that time but with snow-covered sidewalks and icy roads I was happy to take it slow.

Recovery isn’t a race!

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Sunday Feb 15th: PT exercises. BIGGEST WINTER BLIZZARD !!!!

Monday Feb 16th: Ran 5k :) It was FANTASTIC! 

The BEAST!

The BEAST!

Tuesday Feb 17th: PT exercises.

I finally feel like I am starting to see some good improvements. Five weeks of recovery and I am just starting to feel better…about 80-85% better :)

Here’s to another week!!!

Oh – and if you want to see some AH-MAY-ZING photo’s from the storm we had – check out this link –> If You’re Complaining About Winter…..

Anyone sick of winter? I am :)

Anyone racing soon? Do share….

If you’ve been in Physiotherapy before, what’s the longest you’ve been in it for? Me, three months for back injured over 10 years ago!

Finally Had a Fantastic Run

It seems like it’s been months since I’ve had really great run! To be honest, probably sometime back in November, maybe even October :(

With this nasty hamstring injury, I’ve been taking it one day at a time. Frustrating with running 2k for a whole week, then 3k, 4k etc. They have been slow runs; the kind of slow run you do when you are warming up for a soccer game – at least that’s what I was told I could only do.

Each week, I’ve increased my distance by 1 kilometer and shoveled a lot of snow – too much for my liking. Some of my “running days” I would take the day off as my whole leg, not just my hamstring was feeling terrible. The thought of running was just a thought….

HOWEVER……. I finally had an amazing run! It was my first 5k in over a month!

No pain.

Running at my normal slow speed, not my warm up soccer speed.

On THE BEAST.

The BEAST!

The BEAST!

In some of my favourite running gear…..

Some of my favourites

Some of my favourites

It felt so great, I may have been on cloud 9 for a while after :)

I did A LOT of stretching and foam rolling which I am learning are KEY for my recovery not to mention my physio and massage treatments.

running skirt fav

Look Ma, no taped hammy!

 

Slowly…I am getting there :)

Marathon training was put on the back burner until the fall but I’m ready to start looking at Half Marathon Training again. Don’t worry, I won’t rush into it. My plan for my next half marathon is to JUST get through training easy, with no pain and finish the distance. No focus on a PB but just successfully train and be healthy the whole time.

When was the last time you had a FANTASTIC run (or workout) ?

Ever have a FANTASTIC treadmill run?

What are some of your favourite running gear these days?

Winter storm update – we are getting another 10-15 cm on Thursday – I’ve already started crying.