Rounding off 2016 – A Year in Review

With the last few days of 2016, I thought I would take a look back at the year. There were a lot of great things, sad things, nagging injuries, goals accomplished and still to be accomplished.


Over the last few years I started a new tradition with my daughters where I run my first kilometre of the year with them. We don’t go fast, we run in any weather and we do it together – one kilometre. Though my hamstring was still “unhappy”;  Lilly, Hilary and I went out to run together one kilometre together.

1st run of 2015 with girls

I eventually set my goals for 2016  a week or so into January, which seems to be a tradition as well. I decided that since I wasn’t training for a race, I wanted to build my base for a spring race and get my fussy hamstring in order. This would be my focus for the next ten weeks.

snow shoe Jan 30th

I joined Team Nuun and became a Nuun Ambassador which has been one of my favourite go-to’s for my runs. Fingers crossed I’m involved again this year. We got in lots of skiing, snowshoeing and I got to review Meals on the Run (which I’m still loving).


I kept building my base and signed up for a few races; Bluenose 10k and Johnny Miles. Johnny Miles was my goal race, it was my race away from home, my come back race from dealing with my injury. If you’ve been reading this blog since last June, you’ll know the outcome of that race!

I got back to doing yoga once a week and still love it. We did a little skating, more skiing AND my husband started working close to home – NO MORE TRAVELING AND BEING AWAY! Life changing event in our house folks….no more part time single parenting and no more 5 hours of driving one way/being away from us for him. Life changing!!!!

skating feb 14th


March was the month of wrapping up “building my base” and I started my training for Johnny Miles Half Marathon, I became a 261 Fearless Ambassador and we went away on March break to ski as a family. Lilly learned to ski on her own and Hilary did awesome skiing with us.

March Break ski trip PR


Though I started training for Johnny Miles in March, April was the month that it really kicked in. I added in IronStrength workouts which killed me every week and weekly yoga. Saï and I started working out at nights once the girls went to bed. He started running and cycling more since he was home often and that motivated meI was in the thick of half marathon training and loving it.


In May, I ran the Bluenose Marathon 10k and it was horrible! Not the event but my run was horrible. I struggled a lot on that run but tried to enjoy the people and bands playing…and running with my brother at the beginning. The girls ran their 2k race as well, despite the intense heat wave we had that morning.

Kids Bluenose Run 2016


June is a birthday month in our house, which saw Lilly turn six! It’s unreal how fast they grow up. June was supposed to be my goal race at Johnny Miles Half, a run I’ve wanted to do for years. Unfortunately, our dog Maclean passed away two days before my race and we were all just devastated..

Maclean 2002 2016

I ran Johnny Miles half anyway but it was horrible. It was my goal race, my best training to date, yet I was just completely broken inside. I loved the course and the race environment but it was just mentally and physically hard. I ended up taking two weeks off running as I just couldn’t bring myself to run. I lost a lot of motivation/joy this month – in all aspects of my life.


We celebrated Canada Day by picking strawberries and hanging out with friends at a local event. Shortly after that it was my birthday but I still had felt broken…all of us did and would for a few months to be honest. Telling your little kids that their dog dies wasn’t easy so we had many conversations about this and lots of tears.


I started playing soccer again and became a Sport Chek Ambassador for the summer. I also started training for my 5th half marathon – or what would have been! Yup, keep reading 🙂  Even though my heart wasn’t in it, I started training for the Maritime Race Weekend half marathon and had some awesome long runs and stomach problems too.

We went on vacation to PEI  again; enjoyed the beach, ran by the ocean, saw friends and family. It was a vacation that we all needed.


Both Saï and I got in some early morning runs along the oceanside before the heat of the day would start.



I signed up last minute for the Heart of the Valley 5k and was loving playing soccer again, until…I injured my ankle during a game. Essentially, I jammed my ankle and was in severe pain for 4-5 days. I couldn’t run. Since training went out the door, I managed to do more yoga, go swimming with the girls and a cycle. I’m a wannabe cyclist who might someday get brave enough to ride her bike next to cars!

Valley Yoga Fest 2


September hit and I got really impatient for my PT appointment so I taped my ankle and ran on it a few times. It felt pretty secure and good. Lilly started back to school and was so happy about it! I got into my PT (which I’m almost done with, thankfully) and he gave me a plan to get stronger.

I didn’t get to run my half marathon but I sure did enjoy running the Tartan Twosome: 5k Sunset and 5k Sunrise at Maritime Race Weekend. I had a great weekend and my husband ran his 2nd half marathon and did awesome!


We also picked apples (a fall tradition) and the girls and I ran the Terry Fox run!



I was in the thick of Physiotherapy and was allowed to run the Valley Harvest 10k which wasn’t near a personal best for me but was such a big win for the year in running. Struggling with injury after injury, I was just happy to be running. The girls both ran in the kids races at the VHM too. They had a great time.


We celebrated Thanksgiving with family, the girls started swimming and gymnastics and I started going to Barre classes. I even started back at soccer too!! Why you ask? Well, I was given approval to do so and I love the sport. I realize I can get injured again but it’s a risk I’m taking.


My husband and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary. We managed to sneak away for a night in the city and go out for dinner…and not get interrupted or witness any tantrums. It was kinda nice 😉

The blog was a little quiet this month as I was lacking motivation. We went to a Santa Parade and I forgot my sports bra far too many times which resulted in many failed runches. C’est la vie! 


Another big birthday month in our house: Hilary turned four and Saï had a birthday too.


We slowly got ready for Christmas and I shared a few of my favourite running items. I managed to get in a few runs outside in the snow and decorated my treadmill (#merrymill) for the season!


Our Christmas was different this year as Saï had to work all weekend so we celebrated when we could. Christmas dinner four days early, traditions of new pj’s and seeing the lights on houses Christmas eve without Saï. However, Christmas morning when Saï should have been sleeping we spent an hour and a half opening presents and having breakfast together. It was short and sweet before he needed more sleep followed by another shift but it was great.

That’s been my year in review! If you want to read last year’s you can find it here.  And if you are still reading at this point – thank you 🙂 I’ve enjoyed blogging this past year, reading your comments, connecting with other bloggers and learning so much. I’ll be back in the new year with some 2017 goals, my mileage wrap up for 2016 (so close to last year’s #’s) and review of my 2016 goals!

Happy New Year!

How was your 2016 year?

Did you have a favourite month or “thing” you did?

What are you looking forward to the most in 2017?

T’was The Friday Before Christmas

And all through the house, not a kid was whining not even…

Just kidding. I don’t have any rhymes for this.

I’m so happy Christmas is finally here as it seems like we’ve been gearing up for it for a while now. Christmas will be different this year but we are trying to make the most of it.

Tree Decorating

We decorated our tree Monday night – kinda late but a lot of fun looking and talking about all the ornaments we put on the tree.


Winter Solstice

Wednesday night my running buddy, Krystol and I got in a slippery 6k and enjoyed some of the decorated houses. We were scoping them out for evening trips for our kids. I was actually participating in the RunAtCan Winter Solstices run. We were running for Mental Health awareness as were 75 others across Canada (and a few US peeps).


Early Christmas Dinner

I spent most of yesterday cooking and baking treats for my family as it’s the only day we have together until Boxing day! My husband, who is a Paramedic works all weekend (crappy, we know) but that’s just life and how his scheduled fell. We’ll have 2-3 hours at the most tomorrow and Sunday so Christmas dinner was enjoyed early. AND, leftovers today!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Since my husband is working this weekend, I snuck out for a quick yet slow 5k this morning. It was slow going as there were some slippery spots under the snow, so I wore my old yaktraxs which always twist on my right foot. Meh, it was better then falling on my ass. I did my PT exercises for my ankle – yes, that’s still an issue but I’m working on it.


The best part now is to just sit back and relax with our girls. I’ve watched a few Christmas movies this week but looking forward to watching a few more bundled up beside our fireplace. The girls are excited for a Christmas Eve gathering at their friends house, seeing the lights on houses in their new pj’s and leaving cookies out for Santa. And of course Santa’s arrival.

It’s going to be a very different Christmas for us at a time when everything is so magical for the girls. Again, it’s life and we’re making the best of it.

Merry Christmas! 

When are you having Christmas dinner? 

Anyone else sneaking in runs before you travel?

What’s your favourite Christmas ornament?

I’m joining for the first time this link up with Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five 2.0 linkup.

Friday Five Linkup 2.0

Happy Holidays!

How to Run During Winter in Canada

Winter running has lots of challenges. What do you wear? How do you layer? What should you wear on your feet? How long should you run in the cold? Why do your lungs BURN?!?!

Yes, all those thoughts go through my mind when winter temperatures start gracing us in Nova Scotia. It usually only takes one run to (rudely) remind me of what piece of gear I was missing in order to make it a good run. I was recently asked what I wear on my runs to stay warm/safe. These are only my opinions, please share your tips in the comments.

Running in Winter in Eastern Canada


Keep Your Feet Happy

We can have lots of snow in the winter but our conditions are always changing. If the roads are clear (sidewalks included), I usually just wear my normal running sneakers. However, don’t expect them to last after the winter months as the salt from the roads can take a toll on them.

I also have a pair of “gator” liners that you wear like socks. They keep your feet extremely warm and dry if you have to run through slush. I feel like I’m putting on a wet suit for my feet.


Last year (or the year before), I invested in a really good pair of Yak Tracks for running on the snow and ice. Yes, sometimes we run on ice folks! You need some kind of traction under your sneakers for snow and ice, otherwise you’ll end up on your butt and/or injured. I’ve yet to try spikes in my sneakers but I plan to get a set to try out soon.

Warm Legs

It’s never fun running with cold legs. I wear anything from running tights to thermal running tights. If it is extremely cold, I wear a wicking base layer  (merino wool long underwear) under my thermal tights. My thighs get really cold in the winter and stay cold for hours after a run so I’ve got to layer up.

Keep Your Core Warm

I also have two options for my core. Right now (0c to -15c) I usually wear three layers. A thank top, a long sleeve base layer and then, a jacket. Any colder (think adding on windchill to those temps), I wear a long sleeved base layer, VEST for my core, then a jacket. I want to keep my core warm when I run.


Neck Up

I wear anything from a Buff to ski/neck warmer that covers up to my nose. Honestly, if I have to cover my face that badly during a run, I’m really pushing it and I should just get on my treadmill. I also wear my sunglasses as I find the when the sun hits the snow it can be blinding.

I wear a running hat and reflective gear. I have a pair of running gloves that I wear however, on really cold days I double up and wear a pair of mittens over top.


Some Tips & Tricks to a Good Winter Run

  • Pee before you run. Your body tries to keep your urine warm, therefore heat is being taking away from your extremities (hands, feet). An empty bladder means warmer extremities. This is a winter camping trick that I use all the time.
  • The first few km/miles of your run are going to be cold while you warm up. Keep running, it will get better. If it doesn’t, call it a day.
  • Dress in enough layers but not too many – this can be tricky.
  • Test out your run. Take your first kilometre close to home or where you park your car. That way, if you are still cold after 5-6 minutes, you can add on another layer.
  • Cut your run short if you have to. No shame.
  • Don’t worry about your pace, focus on just running.

So, here’s to lots of great winter runs, warm hands and feet and good km/miles in your running shoes!

What’s your best winter tip you have?

What’s your favourite piece of WINTER running gear?

What’s the coldest temps you’ll run in?

Quick conversions: +5C = 41F  /   0C = 32 F  /  -5C = 23F   / -10C =  32F   /   -15C =  5F


Chilly Temps & Lots of Excitement!

December sure is winding down here! With all the shopping, decorating and trying to stay active, we’ve come down with yet another head cold. I sure hope 2017 brings our family good health 🙂

Late last week we had some bitterly cold temps. I’m talking -15c with a windchill of -31c (5F to -24F). I’m pretty sure all of Nova Scotia stayed inside Friday. The drive to work was insane and they had to close down the highways because of blowing snow.

The cold temps rolled into Saturday when I had a soccer game. However, we all got to play a little soccer. Saï and the girls watched my game (when I scored a goal!) and then there was open play for families. Of course, the girls played a little one on one soccer, we ran around, played with ribbons and a parachute!


By Sunday the temps were up to +12c and RAIN – kinda nuts,eh! It was my only day to finish Christmas shopping and I got soaked.

Treadmill Running

I ran last night and did a little reflecting on all the races I did this year. All those medals were earned but all came with lessons learned as well.



Our girls are beyond excited for Christmas and I think the fact that we FINALLY decorated our tree last night made it even more exiting. We only got our three Saturday afternoon and it was snow covered and frozen! It took a little time to thaw and made for quite the mess.

We tired to get a family picture last night and this was the best we could get. PJ’s, Santa hats and bright eyes!


I planning to run the #BLTRxmas42 between December 24th & 30th. You are to run the distance of a marathon over the Christmas holidays. I ran it last year and it was a fun challenge to keep running when all you want to do is eat bad food and relax. Anyone can join in… use the hashtag #BLTRxmas42

What’s the one last thing you need to do before Christmas?

Are you having warm weather or extremely cold weather?

What’s one thing you want to see under the Christmas tree?