Snow Storms, Running and a Sick Kid

Well, it’s sure been an interesting few days around here! We’ve had three major snow storms in the last 7 days with the last storm last Saturday/Sunday (yesterday).

SNOW in the Spring!

winter march 22

I’ve managed some great treadmill runs in the last week: 5k, 6k, 5k, 8k – all pain free! I got some new shoes and skied last week with Sai and Lilly – a little cross training can’t hurt! However, my spring running plans have changed and I’ll write about that soon. They haven’t changed because it’s still going to be winter for a few more months or so it seems in Nova Scotia. They’ve changed because of my hamstring.

TM running new shoes

The flu has hit us again – well, so far the littlest one 😦  I’m ready for a new week and SPRING like weather…no pressure Mother Nature…no pressure!

How was your weekend? 

Spring like weather or hanging back in Winter like us?

Anyone race this weekend? (Saw a few posts on FB and IG today)

Goal Setting v.s. Goal Getting

Last week, I attended and graphically captured the words of presenters at a Girls Conference. One of the presenters – Karen Furneaux (Canadian Olympian – Canoe/Kayak) talked about Goal Setting vs Goal Getting.


As I quickly penciled down her wise words and it got me thinking about my own running goals. Those goals almost don’t see legit to me anymore. They were set during a time when I thought I was healthy and a little time off to rest would help my hamstring.

My little moves :)

My little moves 🙂

I’m not giving up on my goals – no way. However, it’s super hard to see other people moving forward with their goals…specifically running goals. Sometimes, I have a little pity party for myself and then throughout the day find my big girl panties and move on. Sometimes, you just have to have those moments to move forward. PS – this isn’t a pity party post.

So….those goals I set to recap are:

  • Heal my hamstring injury *PRIORITY* and working on this currently
  • Sub 25 minute 5k (current PR 27:06)
  • Sub 52 – 10k (current PR 55:59)
  • Sub 2 hour Half Marathon (current PR 2:05:10)
  • Run a FULL Marathon! 

Still attainable. Still plenty of time. Still on my mind. Still on track with last year’s running which is kinda odd since I wasn’t injured last winter. Meh! *shrugs shoulders*

I’ve set my goals without knowing the extent of my hamstring injury and that’s not a bad thing. I now just have to readjust them. I know I will get there at some point this year.

“The more you think about your goals….the more likely they are to happen” ~Karen Furneaux

Every day my main goal is to get my hamstring stronger and I’m on my way. I’m not 100% but feel confident to say I am 80-85% there. Now, one would think…you’re good, you may never reach 100%. Those people don’t know me well.

I still have pain in my hamstring when I sit a lot and sometimes after I run (hours later/next day) but I am getting stronger, smarter and s-l-o-w-l-y back into shape.

SO……..I’m GOAL GETTING right now. I’m working on getting to my goals. I’ve yet to sign up for my spring half marathon, not because I don’t think I can do it but because I’m just hesitant. Hesitant to make the commitment since I’m only feeling 80-85% better.

I JUST ran my first 8k last night since the fall!!!! I’m not going to say it was easy or pretty but I managed to get through it on my treadmill with only one quick trip to the bathroom. Fingers crossed I don’t have any pain today!

First 8k in a L O N G time!

First 8k in a L O N G time!

All these runs, all these days I am pain-free, all these little strategies to get my through my day are allowing me to move forward to my goals.

I’m injured but I’m still GOAL GETTING!

One day at a time because recovery is not a race – my new motto!

What are some of your goals this year?

What do you do when you are sent in another direction from your goals?

Are you Goal Setting or Goal Getting?

Graphic Facilitation: It’s Not The Girls, It’s The Culture!

First off, yesterday was a run day for me but I did run. I spent 7 hours on my feet minus the few minutes I took to sit and eat my lunch. I’m not complaining at all…it was a GREAT day! Normally, I would run even after an exhausting day at work but with my hamstring injury, I’m taking things easy when I can. It’s party of my recovery plan so I can get back to half marathon training and THEN…train for my first FULL. (It’s still on my list).

I was asked by my counterpart, Nora to graphically capture what was presented at her Girls Soar – It’s Not The Girls, It’s The Culture Conference yesterday. I agreed only if my office co-worker, Melissa could join me. She’s my partner in crime not to be mistaken with Krystol who’s my running partner in crime 😉

We prepped a lot for this conference with it being our first “live” graphic facilitation session since we took Level 1 & 2 course last year. We had 70% of the presentations in advance which helped tremendously. I was really nervous about doing this live because I’m really not an artist or drawer by any means. Apparently, I’m okay at it 😉

I started off the day with a 1.5 hour drive that should have been 35-40 minutes tops because we had a little dump of snow and that made everything come to a halt in Halifax. Little did I know, getting to and from the workshop would be my most stressful part of the day – not the graphic facilitation.

I received a text from my husband wishing me good luck and to have fun drawing etc. You know, sometimes it’s those little things that make you feel really good. That was one of them and it help start my day off just right.

Melissa and I started cutting the paper and prepping our work area right away as we had very little time due to arrive later than expected.

We captures the key-note from Christine with Hard Girls Health Women:

Examining the Soil  - Where are we Planting the Girls ?

Examining the Soil – Where are we Planting the Girls ?

Then a Youth Panel:

PR Youth Panel

Youth Panel

Over lunch we tried to start the resource graphic but failed to finished it until the end of the day when everyone had left. We couldn’t leave it unfinished.


So happy to be done at the end of the day.

So happy to be done at the end of the day. She has a cute baby bump 🙂

In the afternoon, we were solo! We both did two session and it was basically free hand for me as I didn’t have the presenters’ presentations prior to the workshop. This is what I did:

Positive Psychology Skills – where I spelled “Psychology” wrong THREE times! Can you say nervous?!? In the end, I got it right.

PR Positive Psychology Skills Session

Then, I went upstairs to a smaller room and did “Our Contradictions and the Cost of Change”. There were three presenters.

Becky – she talked about body image etc (left side)

Sherry – she talked about Ride like a Girl (middle)

Tamar – she talked about drumming program (left)



Overall, it was an amazing day! We had so many complements and some people though we were actual artists! We corrected them right away to say that we are not artists but took a course. We even had a few people ask if we could come do the same thing for their work! Lots of complements and a big confidence booster.

We met, Stacy Chestnut, race director for Sole Sisters that support a program called Girls Gone Gazelle. She was lots of fun and gave us her business card….don’t worry, I’ll follow-up Stacy.

We met many recreation programmers that work with girls only groups. I really I wish I had more time to speak with them as they were all so interesting and I wanted to connect with them on the work they were doing and see what I could bring back to my region.

As I wrote this (last night), my hands are dirty and still covered in marker and pastels (chalk) but it’s a good kind of dirty. Yesterday’s conference/graphic facilitation gave me so much that I wasn’t expecting:

  • Confidence to draw live in front of others (and miss spell words)
  • Empowerment to challenge myself
  • Connections with community members / program opportunities
  • Reaffirmed that I want to be a positive role model for my daughters through running/being active and yes drawing too 😉
  • Taking a complement and really feeling good about it (it’s been a while since I’ve felt that way)
  • Thankful for friends who support you and encourage you along the way
  • Was really proud of the women I work with and that are all over Nova Scotia doing great things for girls and women to be active.

I think I could go on and on about yesterday’s experience. I wish I could have taped all the presentations so I could run their words through my head again.

So….I leave you with this…

When was the last time you stepped out of your comfort zone? How did you feel?

What do you do in your community to empower young girls and women to be active?

I dare you to step outside your comfort zone this month and tell me about it.

Don’t forget about the Manitoba Hemp Hearts Giveaway!!!

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.

anna gym combo

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.


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 🙂

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!


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.


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.


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.


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?




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.