Wednesday, March 31, 2010

An Irish Blessing

Happy Wednesday!! The only thing keeping me from my long weekend is the accounting test that I have this afternoon and a full day of classes tomorrow, but I bet I'll get out of my Office Procedures class early (it's the one that goes until 3:30pm).

I wanted to share this quote with you. I have read it many times, and it sits on my desk so I can read it when I'm doing school work. 

My 8:30am class was cancelled this morning, YAY!! I got to sleep in a little bit and with the time I was given I ran an amazing and blissful 5 miles rather than the 3 miles I normally run on Wednesday mornings because I'm short on time. When I look at the difference between the distance I normally run and the distance I ran this morning it isn't too much, BUT to me being able to add those miles to my day makes me feel more alive. Maybe I'm crazy, but I just love running!

I also wanted to let you guys know what I thought of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. Well I have to say that I loved it, I just love love loved it!! My boyfriend and I woke up on Saturday morning made yummy banana and peanut butter oats and sat down ready to watch Food Revolution. Well I must say we were inspired by everything that Jamie has been doing, but at the same time we couldn't help but look at each other with these shocked faces when Jamie made those "chicken nuggets" and the kids still wanted to eat them. I must say we are already looking forward to Friday night's show.

Question: Have you been watching Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution? What do you guys think of it? Are you looking forward to Friday's episode?

I hope that you all have a great day and that you are having beautiful sunny weather so you can go outside and soak up the sun! 

Go to Healthy Ashley's blog to enter a contest to win a Bondi Band! They come in wicked colours, cool patterns and awesome sayings! They are so cute! I always need to wear a headband of sorts to keep my hair off my face, I am always finicky about making sure my hair is not in my face while I'm running. These look like the perfect product!

Happy Running!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

What Have I Been Reading?

Here are some links to blog posts and a video that I have been loving this week! From this I think you can figure out that I want to do some more core exercises and stretching after running.

- A different hamstring stretch from FitSugar, I know I need to do this more than I do often so I am not unintentionally shortening my stride due to tight hamstrings

-Jill wrote a great post last week, Get Stronger Run Better, about the importance of strength training in addition to running, she uses body weight exercises: push-ups, squats, lunges, alternating Ts, and planks (repeat 2-3 times). I love push-ups and planks, but reading this post reminded me that I need to do a little more

-Caitlin addressed the idea of how trying to be perfect is an addiction and the guilt we feel when we cannot achieve said perfection in this post. I know I took a lot away from this post, I think it really sank in when a teacher asked me if I am a perfectionist and I immediately answered "Yes!"...I think I need to re-read the post

-Crunchless Ab Exercises count me in! I love the FitSugar and have been reading their stuff for many years now

- I love these post run stretches! Thanks Flexible Warrior!

Happy Running!

Friday, March 26, 2010

(Food) Revolution

Happy Friday to all!! 

Tonight is the night I have been waiting for because Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution is on! (I know it was on on Sunday but 10pm was too late for me, haha!) We will be watching the repeat of the premier and the new episode, I am very interested in this show and am excited to see it!


I remember when this cookbook came into the bookstore, and I have to say that Jamie Oliver has to be one of the most popular chefs and has great cookbooks (I read cookbooks for fun!).

Running and thinking...

So this past week I have been thinking a lot during my runs. You know how it goes, sometimes on a run you zone out and sometimes all you can do is think about things. I had a very busy week at school: a presentation, tests, lots of homework...and so on.

Of course I made it out alive, but sometimes I have to remind myself that I am the one who wanted to go back to school and that I am doing so so that I can better my skills and build a kick ass life for myself!

The funny thing is is that I always used to think that the best runs I had were the ones where I completely zoned out and was listening to my body and everything around me. Thursday's run showed me something different. I went out for a quick 3 mile run at 6am before my 8:30am class. All I could think about was the presentation I had to give later that day, I kept repeating what I going to say, sounds boring...and I must say it kind of was. On the other hand it powered me through my run and I felt amazing! When time came to turn around and go home I was surprised how fast everything was going. I finished happy, strong, and ready to present.

In the end the presentation went very well and I felt very confident in what I was saying because I had spent my run going over my content. Oh the interesting things that happen when you run!

I am happy it's the weekend and I am looking forward to next week's runs when I will be going over accounting in my head. I'll be thinking about adjusting entries and closing accounts, ok that doesn't sound anywhere near as cool as my presentation. 

I hope that you all have a great Friday night!!

Happy Running!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Sharing the Love!

I found this card in my Dad's study:

He got it from my Mum for Valentine's Day this year. I think it is just the cutest card I have ever seen, and it totally sounds like my family. My parents are one of the reasons I am so healthy. My Dad started doing Triathlons and Half Marathons in his mid 40s and my Mum jumped on the healthy bandwagon at that point too. 

When I got a little too lazy after my first year of university my Mum asked me, in a nice way that made it sound cool, if I wanted to go see her personal trainer with her. At that point a love for cardio and weights was born. I remember coming home after my second year of university and asking my Dad to go for a run with me, he was so happy that I was taking up something he loved. 

After I completed my first half marathon I remember my Dad being convinced his half time was faster than mine....turns out I was faster. The thing is he couldn't have been more proud of me.

My parents have always been so positive and have dared me to try new things like lifting lifting weights, running further than I thought I could, trying new foods and being positive when I thought I couldn't. 

Question: What are you doing to challenge yourself? 

I am trying to get all my school work done ahead of time, set up a placement for May-July (only on Fridays), run and be happy while doing so 5 days a week, eat balanced meals on a daily basis, try new things (new foods, new mantras while running), and add in some kind of strength training 2-3 times a week.

Happy Running!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Finally Slowing Down

This week has been crazy! There was so much school work to do, two tests and on top of that, and there was outside stress. I am happy to say that in four days I managed to get everything done and in on time, study for my tests (I have one more today at 12:30pm) and get a good chunk of work done that is due next week. Phew!

I feel so relieved to have everything (almost) done this week, and I only have a couple things left to do for next week. I got an e-mail from my boyfriend this morning saying that he wanted to take most of the weekend off from studying and working, this was music to my ears! We both need this weekend off to just relax, go for a run, and enjoy the weather.

I cannot wait to finish my test today because I am going to relax and read a book I bought last week, Fear the Worst by Linwood Barclay. I think that my reading is going to have to happen in the chair that looks out onto the backyard, it has just be so beautiful out. 


I found that when I worked as a manager in a bookstore I didn't read as much as I would have liked to. SO I am catching up on books that I bought while I was working. I must say there are a lot of them, I wanted to own all the good books that I knew I wanted to read, but was never able to get through all of them.

After an afternoon of walking to and from school, writing a test, coming home and eating some lunch and reading, I am thinking that I will head out for a run before dinner. It is just too beautiful to pass up a run down by the lake!

I hope that all of you are having an amazing week and enjoying the beautiful weather! 

Happy Running!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Flashback: Running Around Vancouver

Back in the fall of 2007 my Dad and I took my brother, Chris, to school in Nanaimo BC. While we were out there I took every opportunity I had to run, I found it much more pleasant running in BC than in Ontario in September. I took a lot of pictures and I wanted to share a few with you!

This is what I saw when I was just getting onto the Loins Gate Bridge. It was a very busy place to run but at the same time it was so beautiful that I barely noticed the cars. Just in case you were wondering...yes I did stay on my side, but at the same time I don't remember any bikers so I was good!

On the bridge they have little look out points and that is where I took this picture from. It was unbelievably breathtaking and I know I want to go back out west some day soon!

Of course I tried to take some pictures of myself, but of course any picture I take when I'm out running is never all that flattering, but at least there are beautiful backgrounds.

The one thing I loved about my runs out west was that wherever I ran it was always green and rarely felt like I was running in a big city.

I just wanted to share some pictures of other places I have run! Once it starts looking remotely nice here (which it is starting to do) I will go for a run with my camera and show you guys what it is like where I live.

I have (re)discovered that I am not a fan of Day Light Savings time, I would have to say the springing ahead is the one I do not like (I'm all for falling back!). I had a hard time falling asleep, I think that it was stress mixed with trying to get to bed so I could get up early today. Regardless of the restless sleep I feel rested and had an awesome, short, run this morning. I've got the 5k running group at Lululemon this evening so I wasn't going to do anything crazy, I just ended up splitting today's normal distance up.

I have found a way to not stress about school, just schedule homework in every open moment you have: 

I love how you can't see any/all of my scheduled running and yoga because it has to be so early in the morning (5:30-6:30am) so I can have time to do homework after school.

Do you love iCal or Google calender as much as I do? Clearly I love iCal the most, I have been using it the longest so I just stick with it. I feel like if I plan my homework then I have to do it in that time. Of course I foresee a lot of that homework spilling into the night I just thought that if I only scheduled it until 6:30pm then I could have a break for dinner, haha!! 

Happy Running! 

Sunday, March 14, 2010

That Was One Crazy Week!

I'm glad the week is almost over! There was a lot of good, but then there was also some bad that in the moment out weighed the good because, to me at the time, it seemed really bad.

Of course I always have to remind myself that nothing is really all that bad and that everything will work out in the end.

It was the first week back from reading week so that is always hard, but nothing I couldn't handle. For some reason I felt very overwhelmed all week and could not shake the feeling. There were times when it went away, like during the 5k running group on Monday night, during a crazy fitness class on Wednesday night (both at lululemon Kingston). 

The bad feelings finally went away after school on Thursday after a lecture on stress management in my Office Procedures class. It was funny to think that all I needed was someone to mention that nothing is as bad as you think and that you should always use positive affirmations to snap yourself out of a funk, and then I took a walk! Everything was looking up!

I spent my week having delicious Green Monster with some Maca added to it for a little extra kick....mmmmm!!

Maca is described as the following: Maca root has been used in indigenous Andean societies as a source of nourishment and healing for thousands of years, and continues to be one of the most appreciated superfoods today. Used to increase stamina...and combat fatigue, maca root has long been regarded as a highly adaptogenic food. Navitas Naturals Raw Maca Powder is the raw and natural form of this special root – gently dried and ground to preserve it’s vitality and nutritional structure. With an earthy taste that is slightly nutty with a hint of butterscotch, maca is easily blended into superfood smoothies, various milks, chocolates, or mixed into flour for dessert recipes. [Source]

So what do I think of Maca? Well it gave my smoothie a different taste, but it wasn't a bad different, just different. Either way I liked it and it did make me feel like I had a lot more energy, which I felt like I needed this week!

Come the weekend I was ready for a break from working and thinking, but then on Saturday morning I went to get some files off of my USB key and it wasn't reading on any computer (or any computer in the house). I was trying really hard not to freak out but it wasn’t working. I had settled on the fact that I had lost all my files from the last two weeks (at least everything from before the last two weeks was backed up, but I still had done a lot this week). Here is what I posted on Twitter yesterday:

Then I posted this once I realized what I was trying wasn't working:

Then this morning I looked at the key and thought “I bet if I plug it in everything will be fine”, but then at the same time I didn’t want to plug it in for fear that it wouldn’t work. Guess who got lucky? ME! I plugged it in and it worked, I must be one lucky girl because I wasn’t really expecting that to happen.  

So what’s moral of the story? Don’t freak out too soon, and don’t feel as though all is lost or that you cannot overcome small set backs, AND always back up everything you keep on a USB key!

As of now I am feeling much more calm and ready to face this week with a better attitude and ready to rock all my school work, my 5k running group on Monday evening, fitness class on Wednesday night, and all my runs and cross training plans in between! 

For now I am going to finish watching Post Grad for some mindless entertainment while I work on making Power Point presentations, then I am going to go and visit a baby with my Mum (her friend recently became a Grandma) because babies always make me happy, and then I will have some homemade pizza with the boyfriend for dinner. Mmmm, this is a happy day!!

Calm Down and Happy Running!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


I got this for my birthday from a dear friend who makes wonderful unique things (quilts in many sizes, bags, skirts, Lavender pillows...there are so many cute things!!). 

I posted this in my living room right by the door so I can see it every day, if I'm in too much of a rush to read the whole message I can always see the happiness message and it makes me smile!

Visit her webpageblog, and Facebook page

Do you have little things that you have posed around your home that make you smile? This quotation from Chasing Lightning Bugs Studio was a new addition, but I also have the lululemon manifesto on my bedroom door to remind me to:

Drink fresh water, as much water as you can

Do one thing a day that scares you 

Breathe deeply 

Dance sing floss and travel 

Sweat once a day 

Listen listen listen and then ask strategic questions

Happy Running!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Yoga Meltdown

Jillian Michaels is wicked! I have said it before and I will probably spend my whole life saying that her workout videos kick my butt every time! I love her 30 Day Shred but sometimes that is just not what I need at the end of a busy day. Enter Yoga Meltdown....

Here are some shots that I found on Amazon.

Locust pose, eventually Jillian wants you to fold in half...."not really", she says, but when she says something I think she kind of means it. [Source]

Side T-Planks, you start in Plank and move from side to side doing a T-Plank, and then you hold it. I remember doing a variation of these when I did Angela's Whittle My Middle II challenge. [Source]

So what did I think? I loved this yoga workout! I did the workout at 8pm on Sunday night, I had half an hour to kill before the Oscars started and this seemed more exciting than doing homework or eating when I wasn't hungry. I didn't really know what to expect because 30 Day Shred is intense, and so is Jillian Michaels. 

I was so happy with what was in the workout. There is a warm up of mountain pose and moving your arms, and some light chair poses while moving your arms. (I'm sorry if I don't remember everything, because I know I won't). Then you have about 25-30 minutes of kick butt yoga. It's like 30 Day Shred in that she has about 3 sets with different moves within that so you do one chuck of poses and then you move on. There are a few things she always comes back to: a speedy sun salutation (it increases in speed over the course of the workout) and mountain pose.

This video was great because sometimes I want to have my butt kicked and at the same time I wouldn't mind getting in some Downward Dog to stretch out my hamstrings. Of course I could just do another video and then do some Downward Dog after, but I liked how everything was mixed together!

Moving on to today...I'm looking forward to this evening!! Why?? Because I'm going to Lululemon at 5pm for their Run Lulu Run group! I love running alone, but sometimes I just want to run with others and have some fun while doing so! 

Other than that it is all school work and studying. The teachers said that after reading week they start to pile on the work. Well we will see how this week goes, I know I have to write up my informational interview for my writing class, there is always computer class (Work and Excel) chapter work, I have an office procedures test next week (oh and I still have one little internet search assignment to do, yes you read that right, heehee!), and I should probably get reading accounting, doing the exercises would probably help too. Ok so that looks like a lot but I have it covered!

Happy Running!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Greek Yogurt I Have Found You!

Let me tell you that Kingston is not a place where you can find Greek yogurt easily. I have found the Liberte brand that is decadent and wonderful for dessert. But I have been searching far and wide for one that was 0% or low in fat, I knew it existed. 

Turns out it was at my local natural foods store the whole time. I present to you the yummiest yogurt ever! It is so creamy!

Before I went to Yogalates on Thursday night I used this yummy yogurt and some Kashi Toasted Berry Crisp to fuel my Thursday night adventure.

Throw some strawberries and blueberries on top and what do you have? The most delicious quick dinner/snack before a run and 90 minute Yogalates session!

Yummy!! I used 3/4c of yogurt, 3/4c Kashi Toasted Berry Crisp and a few strawberries and blueberries. After eating, doing some accounting homework and reading some blogs I decided that I wanted to run down to Lululemon, the weather has been so beautiful lately, even though it was after 6pm and the sun had gone down it was still wonderful out! It was a quick 2 mile run that took me about 17 minutes and 30 seconds, while running I listened to David Usher's new CD Wake Up and Say Goodbye (by new I mean fall 2008) 

So what did I think of Yogalates? I was so pumped for my run that I was ready for a stretch and core work, and that is exactly what I got. It was great, we did yoga and then some pilates and then some yoga mixed with planks. It was a wonderful 90 minutes! I think the last 20 minutes (at least) was all gentle stretching, and I was so happy to just stretch and get out all the tension.

So what's on tap for this evening? I am actually singing in a choir concert. I was in this choir all through high school and then left it to go to university and finally joined again after being home for over two years after graduating from university. Of course now I am in the Women's Choir, and it is a lot of fun! The week leading up to a concert is full of extra practices so I am really looking forward to yoga at Lululemon tomorrow morning!

Before I head off for a night of singing I want to let you know that I am eating something else that is so very yummy!

These Gardein "Chicken" Filets are so good. I just made two of them, they are a nice small size, and have put them in a whole wheat wrap and I am in fake chicken heaven! I found these at Loblaws, there wasn't much looking involved so that was nice!

I am in food heaven right now! And I cannot wait to sing tonight, and run to and from yoga in the morning.

Happy Running!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

My Perfect Morning

"I get up early to run and when I get home I do some yoga stretches for runners. Then I will sit down and read blogs and drink some Awake tea."

This is a quote from a Goal Worksheet that I filled out for a job application to Lululemon. This morning was one of those perfect mornings. What added to the perfect morning was that it is actually sunny out and it is starting to look a little bit like spring, well except for the fact that every lawn on the block doesn't have snow and my lawn still does. 

I came home to Awake tea, an Adore Glo Bar (these bars from Glo Bakery, made by Angela, are SO yummy!), and lots of blog reading. 

Do you see the jar filled with Awake tea in the background, I am just a little bit obsessed.

Here's how Angela describes the Adore Bar "Do you dream of mouth-watering S'mores roasted over the campfire? Well, now you can enjoy one in a delicious Glo Bar- and it's vegan to boot! Roasted vegan marshmallows, handmade chunky vegan graham crackers, dark chocolate, and cacao nibs come together to create a Glo Bar filled with love and adoration." [Source] These bars are just yummy! 

On another note, look what I bought the other day....

I haven't had the opportunity to try it yet, but I am very excited! I love Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred so I knew when I saw this video that it was something I would love! Instead of doing this video this evening I am going to the local Lululemon store to do a 90 minute Yogalates class. I am very excited!! Every time I hear "Yogalates" I think of The OC episode when Seth, Sandy and Ryan keep saying the word (yes I watched the show in high school). The video kind of exaggerates it, but I still find it really funny!! I will report back on how the class went!

Happy Running!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Music vs. Podcasts

What do you listen to when you run? I normally listen to music, the kind of music all depends of what kind of run it is, either way it keeps me motivated to continue moving forward. On the other hand, sometimes I love listening to podcasts, hearing what other people have to say about running, nutrition and life in general is always interesting to me.

Here are some of the podcasts I listen to:

Dirt Dawg's Rambling Diatribe - he loves running, he does marathons and ultras and I love the episodes when he runs with his wife, "Dirty Girl".
- Phedippidations - I have been listening to Steve Runner since 2006, I always save his podcasts for long runs. I can remember running along a long stretch of nothing listening to Steve talk about George Sheehan with such passion and respect, it is something I will always remember.
- Run Vegan Run - I just started listening to Megan a few weeks ago and I love her approach to being a vegan and all the information she gives. 
- Running to Disney - Gordon is hilarious! I am guaranteed a good laugh when I listen to him. The first podcast of his I listened to was "Tips for First Time Marathoners" and it was great to hear all the best friends you need to make: sleep, core training, stretching/yoga...and so on!

I was listening to a podcast this morning and I felt as thought I needed a kick in the butt, I felt like I was lagging during my run. While podcasts are great for long distance running I find that for a shorter run I need some music to kick it into high gear!

Here are some of the songs that helped kick it into high gear this morning:

Some of those tunes have been rotated on and off my playlists forever, Machine Head by Bush has been a favourite of mine...since the mid 1990s. 

So now I am back listening to music consistently, but every now and then I love to hear what the above podcasters are talking about, by doing so I feel like I have someone running with me. It's a nice feeling sometimes.


What are some of your favourite podcasts? What songs have proven time and time again to get you motivated to run, or pick you up during a slump while running.

Around the Blog World:

Zesty Cook is doing a makeover give away for one lucky blogger to get a blog makeover.  There are so many things you can do to enter this contest: post on your blog, post on twitter, make a comment in the comments section, and posting on Facebook. I love all the chances you get to enter!

Happy Running!