Category: Running

I run more than just Idée.

DailyMile or social running

Making an effort to record my running mileage on DailyMile. I have enjoyed using DailyMile but haven’t been able to find a routine that allows me to log my miles. I am also not a very good mileage keeper. And not a big fan of social running (or social training). DailyMile has a great UI that allows me to visualize my weekly mileage in big colourful charts. And when my weekly mileage is low, well … DailyMile gives me a visual smack! And I really like that. Nothing like data to get you moving.

This morning’s wimpy 5 km run in the park was awesome because I spent a bit of time staring at a beaver, he must have been young as he just hang around staring back at me. We had a great time. I am looking forward to a long run this weekend and better mileage keeping.

Next races on the calendar:

August 21, 2010: Iroquoia Trail Test: 32 km of rugged hell. This is my most hated race and I don’t really know why I keep returning. Rugged terrain, gravel, double river crossing which means that I will be running with wet feet the entire race. I guess I must really like the pain and suffering. Whatever does not kill you…

Haliburton Forest: 50 KM – September 11, 2010

Vulture Bait: 25 KM – October 16, 2010

and I would like another 50 km fix in November, probably a California race.

Limberlost Challenge: the next trail race

My next race is the Limberlost Challenge. This is a new trail race that will have us hit Ontario’s North since it is held close to Huntsville. That’s far for a city girl! But apparently the race directors Neil Jefferson and Dave Gibson are promising an awesome race. I am sure there will be bugs! Look at where we will be headed:

Lakes, lakes and more lakes. That’s pretty much a guaranteed bug weekend! The Limberlost Forest and Wildlife Reserve is 10,000 acres of lakes! I like the fact that it is a loop so for my 28 km run I will do the 14 km look twice. I like that because once I am done the first loop, I will know exactly what to expect and will just need to repeat it. This time around I am actually going to prepare my race bag and clothing and not leave preparation to the last minute like my previous race.

How not to prepare for a trail race! Creemore Vertical Challenge

Oh howdy there. Long time no see! The Creemore Vertical Challenge trail race(25 km for me) is over and I completed the trail race. Hurray. This year there will be no DNFs (Did Not Finish) on any of my races (crosses fingers).

And now looking back at the race, I know exactly what not to do for the next one. I mean seriously who the eve of a race:

  • organizes a dinner evening with friends where copious bottles of Proseco and wine are drank
  • fails to prepare a race bag
  • realizes at the last second that this is Ontario’s North and therefor there will be bugs, otherwise you will be eaten alive and therefor bug spray would be useful – and there is no bug spray in the house
  • changes trail running shoes and socks (this is called optimizing for blisters!) the evening of the race. God forbid one should go running with their trusted running shoes and double layer socks. No, come on, let’s try something else and make sure we get blisters that will take a week to heal
  • forgets to arrange babysitting for the dog, and therefor has to frantically call kind friends and beg for a kind soul to spend time with Zazie
  • sets up the alarm for the day of the race with barely enough time to wake up, pack a race bag, hunt around the entire house for clean running gear (and socks), and gets in the car with other runners for the 2 hours drive to the race location without as much as toast in the belly
  • forgets power bars or food of any kind. Food is over rated when you run long distance. Really. Yeah, really, for suuuuure.

oh but I survived.

What you need to know about the Creemore Vertical in case you want to try this race (which I totally recommend!): it was hot, it was bloody hot. There was no shade. And the hills? Yeah I should have guessed with a name like “Creemore Vertical” it wasn’t going to be a picnic. And I don’t know about you but running in hot weather, with the sun beating the crap out of you in addition to your lack of preparation is what I call a great weekend! Enjoy the Creemore Vertical shots I took as I was trying to stay alive. Looking for next year’s run – this time with more training and preparation.

The only shade!
The trails

Jeet Kune Do and Running

Bruce Lee: “Jeet Kune Do is just a name used, a boat to get one across, and once across it is to be discarded and not to be carried on one’s back.”

I am looking forward to my 50 km race this weekend. Running is going to be awesome. Wishing for the heat to subside a bit, ’cause running in 30C is really not ideal!


I love Runner’s World: runner’s porn really. And this evening catching up on my reading I found this little nugget:

It appears that merely looking at people who look sick does help your immune system prevent you from getting sick yourself.

Really? Turns out the writers at Runner’s World have not gone mad. Runner’s World is quoting a British Columbia study published in Psychology Today:

The researchers asked young adults to watch a 10-minute slide show containing a series of unpleasant photographs. Some of these participants looked at pictures of people who looked obviously sick in some way (people with pox and rashes, people coughing and sneezing and blowing mucus out of their noses).

The participants gave blood samples both before and after each slideshow. Next the researchers exposed these blood samples to a bacterial infection, and measured the extent to which white blood cells produced interleukin-6 (IL-6). IL-6 is a proinflammatory cytokine that white blood cells make when they detect microbial intruders. More IL-6 indicates a more aggressive immune response to infection. So, by measuring IL-6 before and after the slide show, the researchers were able to determine whether seeing pictures of disease-y people actually stimulated the immune system to fight infection more aggressively. And it did.

The study is fascinating.

(Photo Copyright Placbo)

Time burglars eat excuses for lunch (Merlin Mann)

Making Time to Make: […] I think it’s critical to set reasonable expectations about how, when, and where people can expect to have authentic, honest-to-God contact with us, and here’s why: if you leave every channel open to everybody and anybody, all the time and without limit, you necessarily prevent yourself from ever stepping away from the fray for long enough to focus. You’ll never make the time that it takes to produce the sort of good work that theoretically made you so appealing in the first place. Making Time to Make.

You can count on Merlin Mann to hit the nail on the head.

I am having a real hard time focusing on my running. I love running when I do, but it sometimes takes a back seat to everything else. My life is better for running. Yet, I have a hard time heading out for a run *regularly*. The moment I wake up, I start racing to get to work, to cross of items from my to do list and relegate running to the end of the day – which of course never rarely happens.

Something has changed two weeks ago: I started running in the morning with the boys, before heading to work. And it was an eye opener. Yes, I am slow. I should have guessed that getting the run out of the way in the morning would be a winner! On that note, here is my race schedule for the next few months:

Seaton Trail: 26 KM – April 17, 2010

Sulphur Springs: 50 KM – May 29, 2010

– Creemore Vertical Challenge: 25 KM – July 3, 2010

– The Limberlost Challenge: 28 km – July 17, 2010

Iroquoia Trail Test: 32 Km – August 21, 2010

Haliburton Forest: 50 KM – September 11, 2010

Vulture Bait: 25 km – October 16, 2010

I would love it for the stars to align so that I can do the Pacifica Trail Run this year and perhaps run into my friend Mark Dowds who has an insane running schedule this year.

Running: Race Season

It has started. It is race season already! Well if I was in California it would be race  season all year long but for us poor Canadian folks trail racing season starts in Spring. My first 2010 race was the Chilly Half Marathon in Burlington which really was a road race – rather than a trail race – but I still enjoyed it. I am actually very fond of road races. I know I know: why run on roads when you can run on trails… During the race on Sunday, mother nature cooperated, there was sunshine and a cool breeze, optimal conditions for great running.

My friend Mark is kicking ass in his running with a fully loaded race schedule for 2010 including the insane Tahoe Rim Trail Endurance Run. And his is not planning on doing the 50K or 50M, he is going for the 100 mile. Way to go Mark! Check out his awesome race schedule.

Here are my next two races:

Trail race schedule


Nothing gets me running like a race schedule. This summer has been quite pathetic on the running front so I am going to remedy that by scheduling a few fall and winter races. Yes, winter races. I can already hear you all: running in the snow, and freezing cold? Well yes… and looking forward to it too. Now the 3 running musketeers are going to try and get back together for an awesome running time – every day running is on the schedule apparently. The two musketeers have been doing really well without me; I am the slacker!

So our first race is going to be Vulture Bait in October.

Seaton Trail: trail running! Finally!

Just managed to get one of the last spots for the Seaton Trail race this weekend. These trail races are organized by the Mudpuppies. The course is a 13 km out and back along Duffins Creek featuring single track trail, water crossings, tuff long hills, lots of ups and downs, twists and turns and roots and rocks.   Apparently it is a true ultrarunner’s dream. I remember the first time I ran this trail I cursed all the way to the finish line. This bloody trail has tons of ups and downs and a billion roots to try and avoid. Photos from previous years don’t do it justice. I don’t even know why I am returning to do this race but hey, I love a challenge. I will avoid the water crossing as much as possible – perhaps there will be a bridge: doing a water crossing right at the start of a race is a pain, your shoes get wet, your socks get wet and all you get at the end of the day is giant blisters!

I am doing the 26km race, but there is a 52 and 78 KM race as well! Fun times.