Sunday, January 30, 2011

A winter family run

It was a lovely weekend around these parts. Raf was (for a change!) up a lot on Friday night so Rich took him downstairs when I;d normally get up and I slept in until almost 7am. Mind you, I was still so tired when I got up but Rich talked me into getting on the bike early. I did a 1:23 spin (my show on Netflix finished) and then Rad promptly fell asleep on me, even though we were supposed to go grocery shopping! Instead we had lunch when he woke up and then I did our taxes. This is worth mentioning because we'll get enough of a return that I can buy a TT bike! I'm thinking of the Cervelo P2. But we shall see...

We did get to Whole Foods, and then came home for a belated Pizza Friday (thus Pizza Saturday) as Rich had been working late on Friday. This morning neither Rich nor I felt like doing much of anything (hello sleepless nights) but we buoyed each other enough to decide to just get out there... (okay, there was some teasing and jovial digs about the other not being 'hard enough' to run in such frigid condition. So we bundled up Raf in his pajamas, wearable blanket, coat, hat, glove - draped a big blanket over him and we went on our merry way. It turned out to be a beautiful 8 plus mile run.

When we do these runs we take it in turns pushing Raf. I have to admit that usually I quietly conspire to push Raf DOWN the hills and leave the uphill portions for Rich. Sadly Rich has gotten wise to my plan and didn't let me get away with anything... this meant that I landed most of the uphill segments. But a good strength workout :)

Our run in pics and a few words...

Getting ready for a long winter run with Mummy and Daddy.

Enough layers, Daddy?

A quick mile warm-up and we stop for a stretch and check on Raf.

One mile in...

and... asleep already!

One mile to go...

Almost home!

We finished our run at the local grocery store, where I saw one of my students. and after feeling somewhat embarrassed about being seen with my bright red face with my bright yellow fluorescent hat and top, we walked the almost mile home and enjoyed a well deserved brunch of mixed veggies, tofu pups, and potatoes.

Friday, January 28, 2011


The project to balance work, family, and training is certainly a challenge this week. Between the weather and extra meetings at work every workout has had to be snuck in, and, at times, when I wouldn't ordinarily want to be moving. On Monday, after a what felt like a grueling day at work, I managed to force myself onto the bike, and on Tuesday, instead of eating lunch, I headed down to the college pool and got in some laps. On Wednesday morning I dragged myself onto the rower and then bike for a quick row/bike brick, but only because I knew I'd be at work until 9pm... By Thursday I was really dragging. Rich has a class on Thursday evenings so a missed session in the morning sent me into a spin wondering how I'd get my workout in! I have a cold so running and swimming are not the most attractive options to me, so I hopped on the bike again before Rich left the house. Not the session I wanted or hoped for but it was something...

This morning, though, sleep deprived, head cold, no running all week, behind in almost every area of my life, combined with a busy morning ahead of me - and I was feeling cross and sad and a bit desperate. The truth is I am always about one workout away from having some sort of breakdown that might be put me in the loony bin. And so, when I returned home this afternoon, realizing that Rich would be home late again, I wondered how the next few hours would go, and as my mood deteriorated I realized that what I needed to do was to change the direction of things. It was warm out so I wrapped Rafi up and popped him into the Chariot.

The Chariot has been our saviour, our life saver, our way to spend time with Raf, with each other, as a family, doing the things we really love.

Here's a few clips of us using the Chariot over the summer.

This is a picture of the first time we used the Chariot... we ran round the block and the wheel fell off! We actually caught it on film, which i'm sure I'll get around to posting one day. It was quite funny.

Rich pulling Raf on the bike.

Raf loves the Chariot... he often sleeps in there. And indeed today he fell asleep...

This afternoon's jaunt was a glorious run. I was reminded how much I love being out with my boy, and even though it is winter, there is a lot of slush on the roads to push through, we had a grand old time. I thought I'd be lucky to run 9 mins miles, but I managed to run just over 5 miles at 8:33 pace, which was pretty good considering everything. We finished up at the supermarket and, with Raf still asleep, I picked up a few things for dinner and then walked the almost mile home.

Unfortunately there are no sidewalks where we live so the trip home was quite eventful as I pushed Raf up the hill...

So grateful for this Chariot! I was cheered up mightily by the time I returned home... Raf and I did some stretching together and then we did some dancing to the Wiggles. Oh, did I mention that during the entire run I had a Wiggles tune running through my head....! It's hard to get those tunes out of your mind.

Friday, January 21, 2011


Here's an old picture I just discovered on Facebook. My guess is that most people have not heard of 'netball'. it's a game a 'bit' like basketball, except it's actually very different...! It's played by women/girls in England and countries like Australia, I think. Anyway, I LOVED netball growing up. I was really into sports and in this picture we're seemingly netball champions of all the local primary schools :) I think I am the youngest here as all these girls were in the year ahead of me.

Can you guess which one I am :)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Misery enjoys company

I am not my best self, right now. I am sad, cross, overwhelmed, and mostly sad. I truly have a wonderful life, and I rarely lose sight of that, but the day in day out of my days at the moment is utterly overwhelming. I am chronically sleep-deprived, over-scheduled, and over needed.

Poor little Raf is cutting another molar, I think, so nights are even longer than usual. But it means that I am not getting up as early as usual so I'm missing the time when I'd usually get some training in. This morning, as I walked downstairs just after 6am, I knew I'd missed my chance, I knew that Rich had to leave for work early and looking ahead to the day I can see my day swallowed up by work, references to write, Raf (time I absolutely cherish), and chores. Rich is in college this evening and I honestly could just cry. Well, I actually did just cry.

This week has been pretty bloomin' shocking. We lost heat and hot water on Tuesday, spent a lot of money getting it fixed, I dropped my cell in the slush yesterday and it's no longer working, I have yet to do one single day of training as planned, I can;t remember a night when I had more than 2 hours of consecutive sleep, and on top of it all I am so homesick that every reference to England brings me to the verge of tears.

I just need a reset day. A good night's sleep, a leisurely run followed by snuggles with Raf, followed by a leisurely bike ride outside in warm weather (don't get me started on the weather), followed by more fun wit Raf, and so on. Instead I am up most of the night, stumble downstairs feeling somewhat resentful (not toward Raf) that I have missed my training times, cry, and then begin my work day.

You know, I'd actually just settle for a good workout, a run or a row or a bike ride or even a swim when I didn't feel thoroughly exhausted before even beginning.

But with breakfasts and lunches made, 2 loads of laundry complete, work emails already responded to while nursing Raf for the trillionth time this morning, I'm about to head off to work.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Goals for the week

This week marks a return to work - well, teaching begins. I'm not sure how I'm already hopelessly behind, but I am. To be quite honest I am not excited to return. I love being at home with raf with my biggest concern related to how I'm going to get my workout in. But, return to work I must, and I have to get myself into gear tomorrow - even though it's officially a holiday. I am already counting down the days until May 5th - the last days of classes....

And I have a busy week of workouts planned - with lots of running. My hip is very sore tonight so I am hoping it's not going to get in way of the running on my schedule. All being well i am hoping for 4 runs (including one transition run), at least 3-4 bikes, a couple of rows, and at least 2 swims. And... well, some core work and weights. I know! We'll see how it goes.

My other intentions for the week are to eat very well. We eat very healthily but I could stand to lose a few pounds to help with speed and weight to strength ratio on the bike. But it's very hard when you're constantly eating your toddler's leftovers. MUST. STOP. THAT.

I also intend to write a half interesting blog! I promise :)

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Highlights - and nutrition

It IS easier to train than blog (though I also have a Rafi blog, which I am better about updating..at least sometimes). And it was a pretty good week of training, in spite of the snow storms. I managed to get in quite a bit of cycling (indoors, of course), some rowing, some core work, a swim, and only one run (but another one planned for tomorrow). This evening I'm super tired, though, and I'm feeling as though the weeks of not really sleeping because Raf's been teething, my parents' visit, and more have caught up with me. I basically sat on the couch this afternoon and I'm getting ready to hit the hay.

One thing that I'm thinking about doing, though, is shifting up my nutrition. We're vegan so we eat a plant based diet but I am not very careful about post-workout nutrition and it's really affecting my ability to recover from workouts - especially longer and more intense sessions.

I'd love to hear what others do in regard to nutrition and diet

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Busy week

I had a really good week of training. I got almost all my planned sessions in, except one swim (though I had a swim lesson instead) and my weights session. I did, though, get some core work in - so not a complete disaster. I find that having absolute intention really helps to get me out there, almost imagining myself running, biking, swimming the night before - which somehow makes me more motivated and focused. I didn't, though, get a rowing session in... maybe tomorrow.

Week highlights - since i didn't blog all week.

1) A double session on Monday, which got me off to a super week.
2) A swim lesson with Rob, which went pretty well. He has more confidence in my swimming than I do! I have to work on hand-placement and I also need to learn to suffer in the pool.
3) A very cold run which involved the back of my legs almost freezing off.
4) A really great brick session; I watched an episode of "Wire In the Blood", and then headed out for a run with Rich and Raf. Rich very kindly pushed Raf all of the way. After almost 3.5 miles Rich dropped me and Raf off at the store while he carried on for 2 more miles, and then we all walked home with some groceries. These runs are such wonderful opportunities to spend time with my family.
5) A long-ish run with just Rich! A very rare event, indeed, but my parents are still with us.

A very good sporting week. I wish I had time to write more but I can hear Raf upstairs crying with Rich (who might also be crying by the sound of things), so I ought to go an rescue them.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2011 goals!

Mileage Goals for the New Year:

Running miles: 1000 - hopefully doable if I can avoid too many niggles and injuries
Cycling miles (outside: 2500 - maybe a bit optimistic!
Swimming miles - 100 - okay, this is quite optimistic but I am going to attempt it.

Races... Still working on this but I'm planning on doing - at a minimum:
1) a half marathon in the early Spring
2) Pirate Triathlon at Point Sebago - June 12th.
3) 70.3 Pumpkinman - September 11th.


1) To follow my training schedule as closely as is possible. A very seasoned and 11 time ironman, Rob Smith, is helping me put a schedule together. I have no clue what I'm doing so having some guidance is really helpful
2) To row on the water at least once a week whilst avoiding injuring my ribs (2 stress fractured ribs in a year kept me off the water for a long while. and then raf appeared).
3) To enjoy my training and if it gets to feel like a burden to stop, reflect, and readjust.
4) To be consistent with core training
5) To get moving in the weight-room

Now, all of this is quite dependent on another, very different goal, which is to have another baby.. so we'll see how this all goes :)

2010 with our sweet boy.