The Book Gift Guide (from a non-reader runner)

Let me preface this post with the fact that I’m not a big reader. I enjoy reading but it’s not something I usually make time for. I value reading and appreciated it but I don’t always love it. Unbeknownst to me, this past year I’ve read more books then ever.

I thought I would share with you some of the books I read as they all are great books (and great gift ideas for the holidays). This is not a sponsored post, nor was I asked to promote these books. I either bought the book or went to my local library and loaned it out. Most of these books I saw through social media shares from people I follow as recommendations. You know what they say about like minded people? Well, you tend to like the same things.

Fitness Junkie: I’ve seen this book time and time again on social media and figured I’d give it a go. My local library didn’t have it in stock so they ordered it and I was the first one to read it. Nothing like cracking open a book from the library for the first time. It’s a funny read about the fitness world and all the crazy (yeah, crazy) trends out there and the length people will go to obtain “the look”. It’s a fun and easy read that I think anyone would enjoy. 

Strong – Kara Goucher. This is one book I will use and reuse year after year. I’m only half way through it but I can see how it can be used over and over again. It’s a very goal-oriented, motivational tool you can have in your back pocket as a runner. But also, not just as a runner. I think any sport / athlete could use this book to help you set goals and reach them. 

I highly recommend reading it and taking the time to sit down to write out your goals. When I read it on my car ride to the city last weekend, my mind was popping out goals and ideas for next year with excitement. Since 2019 is approaching fast, now’s a great time to set you goals for next year! I’ve started to set mine because of reading this book. Some are lofty goals but ones I want to reach as a runner.

North – Scott Jurek. I was able to snag the audio book this summer from my local library. Over a period of three weeks, I listened to the book while driving around to meetings. Sometimes, I’d be in my car for 1-2 hours one way, so it was easy to listen to the book and get through the chapters. 

This book is an amazing story to read (listen) to. It’s about Scott finding his way while running along the Appalachian Trail, along with his wife being his support crew. He tells it like it is, honest, funny and engaging. I loved that his wife…Jenny was part of the storytelling. It brought a whole other perspective when hearing a female voice telling her part of their story. To be honest, it was “their” story that was told.  I’d love to buy the actual book and read but really enjoyed listening to the audio book. I’d really recommend the audio book as a nice change and a bonus to hear their actual voices tell their story. 

Redefining Realistic – Heather Moyse. Nothing better then reading a motivational book from a “local” Olympian. By local, I mean from the Maritimes, not Nova Scotia.

Heather is an extremely inspiring Olympian (bobsled) but successful in other sports: rugby and track cycling. Her book dives into redefining your realistic perspective, your potential and how to own your story. It’s the kind of book you feel like your just having a conversation with her and learning about her life experiences and how they brought her to where she is now – in a realistic kinda of way. I liked hearing about the impact people made on her life – whether is was good or bad. It’s not just for the athlete, her knowledge can apply to anyone.

Sweet Ride by Ann Barry. Now this is local! It’s a really cute book about these four women who ride their bikes from the South Shore in Nova Scotia to Prince Edward Island and back again through the Annapolis Valley back in the 1943 (World War II). Not an easy trek by any means. 

It shares their story along with some adventures and challenges they faced. I enjoyed reading about their adventures but also knowing the routes they took and the communities they road through and places they stopped. If you are from Nova Scotia, are a cyclist or just enjoy local authors, this is a great little book to read. 

If you are like me and don’t always love to read but kinda enjoy it and want to read more, give one of these books a try. I’m hoping my new interest in reading this past year will continue to grow and I may actually love it one day. I’m always looking for book suggestions so feel free to leave me one of your favourite books in the comments. 

What are you reading right now?

What’s the number one book you’d recommend right now?

Any favourite local books you want to share?

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March & April Goals

I tried really hard to reach my goals in March, leaving some to the very last few days which I don’t recommend. Sometimes when I set goals, I try to make them attainable yet slightly lofty at the same time.

My March goals were: 

PR March Goals

  1. Cycled 105 km (but just got it in during the last two days)
  2. Ran 63 km – nailed that one!
  3. March Break activities with the girls – non stop skiing, skating, library going. Nailed it.
  4. Read a book – nope! I started one a few times but it didn’t amount to anything substantial. I just don’t make time for reading but I want to!

What am I planning for April? Well, that’s a great question. I’ll be training for my May half marathon so that will be part of my goals.

April Goals:

April Goals Pipers Run

So my goals really don’t differ from March but I made a few additions.

Running: I’m hoping I can pull off about 80 km of running this month. Technically, if I follow my training plan I’ll be well over 80 km and maybe more towards 100 km but I don’t think my body can handle that many. Also, my training plan has me running 5 days a week and I only ever plan to run 3 days a week with adding in cross training on two expected run days. I’m trying hard not to push it too much with my hip.

Cycling: This is actually going to be a hard one to meet this month. It’s really easy for me to get on my indoor trainer (bike) and peddle out for 45-60 minutes in the comfort of my home. I usually can ride 18-26 km during those time frames but with the weather getting better outside, we’ll be wanting to get out bikes out very soon. If I take my bike off the trainer, it won’t be going back on since it’s a challenge for me to switch out the tire. So we’ll see how this goes!

Play Outside with My Kids: We all love be outside so this one might be an easy one for us. If they want to ride their bikes or scooters, I’ll likely run beside them so I can leave my bike on the trainer as long as I can. However, I want to do some hiking with them and Spring is a classic “road chalk” time, so we’ll likely be out doing that as well!

Start/Finish Book: I’m not a big reader but I have a pile of books to read! I’m currently reading Heather Moyse’s (Canadian Olympic Bobsledder) new book called “Redefining Realistic”. So far so good but I really just need to make time for it. Maybe I should start reading books while I’m on my bike rather then TV!

Strength Training – Upper Body 2x week: My back is starting to hurt again from my car accident last year – whiplash. It’s like someone is standing on the left side of my back constantly putting pressure on me AND like I have the wind knocked out of me. So, back to PT exercises they gave me a year ago plus focused strength training for my upper back.

Physio Exercises: I’ll be going back to my old upper body PT exercises but I need to continue to do my hip/back and oblique PT exercises in order to keep my hip happy. I usually do these after I run or cycle but also on rest days.

That’s it! Those are my April goals – some easy to do, some a challenge ahead of me.

What do you have planned for April?

Cyclists – Indoor or outdoor riding in April?

What’s your favourite upper body workout? 

 

Yoga Before Bed Routine

Over the last few years I’ve really come to love yoga, specifically going to yoga class once a week. However, sometimes life gets in the way and I can’t always get there.

Now, I have a few yoga DVD’s at home and have used them but there is something about going to a class. Maybe it’s the fact that I can’t just give up, pack it in and call it a day if I get bored or lose focus like I can at home.

I’m also a fan of finding workouts on Pinterest however, I haven’t been so great at actually using the pins that I save. I *always* have great intentions when I pin something but you have to find the time to go back and actually download the workout or recipe if you want to accomplish it.

Recently, I’ve started doing yoga before bed to help me fall asleep. Sometimes I want to spend 20 minutes doing yoga before bed and other times it’s just a quick and easy / feel good going to bed kind of yoga that I want.

5- Minute Yoga Routine for a Good Night’s Sleep

(who doesn’t want a good nights sleep?)

5-minute-yoga-routine-before-bed

Source

Again, it’s Pinterest for the win! Check out my “Yoga & Stretching” page. PS – I’ve tried very few of them but have great intentions when I pin them 🙂

Have you ever tried a bed time yoga routine?

Yoga in the morning or before bed or BOTH?

What’s your favourite yoga pose? Mine is pigeon pose.