Saturday, 31 May 2008

A New Slimmer Version?

Carrying extraneous weight does impact your ability to optimize your speed. (Nitmos,)

So, I'm back, older, wiser, heavier, oh, yes a Marathoner!

I have to say, I always have a great time with my Dad. He totally exhausts me, but you know what? We always have fun! Time flies when he is here and we laugh, exchange memories, challenge one another and yes, we do exchange words but none the less, we have a great time.

The morning when he is getting ready to leave, we always say that we can't believe how fast the visit has been. This visit we had a blast and for this I am grateful. We made more memories and had a rare moment in time to be friends, not parent nor child. Why is it always easier to tell your friends and acquaintances that you love them, but between my Dad and I, it is always difficult, to the point of non-existent to tell each other we love one another. I suppose it is just one of those "too close for comfort" experiences, yet we know that we do. He is a World War II Hero, a retired Police officer and my dad.....

So, I'm back;

How do you gain weight when you train for a marathon? You run, you sweat, you take gels, you take vitamins, you sweat some more....and still you gain weight! I love my friends who say, "BUT, I thought you'd lost weight" or geez, you look better than you did!

Nope, after attending the Sports Nutrition seminar a few months ago, the professional said I was twenty pounds over weight. Well, okay, I use to weight that, but I was also twenty years younger.

When I was a flight attendant, we had to weigh in and we had grooming 5'10" I could not weigh more than 140 lbs., without fear of suspension

Well, I can no longer put this off, after seeing the photo's from the marathon, YIKES!!! I'm taking up the challenge even though I have to purchase bathroom scales!!!

Even after all the training, I do feel that I need to tone up a bit and hopefully with cross-training for the next bout of self inflicted torture, I'll achieve that.

My next run is on July 1st, a 10K run on Canada Day to support our Canadian athlete's in Beijing.

I had toyed with the idea of teaching the next half marathon clinic at our local Running Room, however, with my stay-cation and my dad being here it just wasn't the right time. With that being said, I am going to be a 2:15 - 2:30 pace person for the clinic. This will be fun meeting a whole new group of runners wanting to up their own fitness and running challenges, targeting for their first half marathon.

Tomorrow I'm off to purchase scales and start the Weight Loss Challenge!! Check it out with Viv, no joke I'm in on this......

Can you believe we are starting a new month? This year is flying by and so for everyone out there competing this weekend, be strong, be safe and have a great time!!

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Thursday, 29 May 2008

On "Stay-cation"

Thank you everyone for the wonderful congratulatory wishes for the Marathon, as well as the Birthday wishes. I really appreciate all of your kindness.

My 88 year old father is here this week while I am on Stay-cation, which is staying at home while on vacation!

He keeps me very busy so I won't have much time to be visiting with you. Dad has won many awards for his gardens in Toronto, so I'm going to put his expertise to great use while he is here. I tell you, he can run rings around me, just hope I'm still as active when I reach 88!!

Have a great week, stay safe, train hard and for everyone competing this coming weekend, have a great time!

Life's fun if you don't weaken,

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Monday, 26 May 2008

Sun burn, blood blister & Port-a-potties ~ oh my!

Well, I’m a Marathoner! WOOOO HOOOO!

You couldn’t have asked for a nicer race to lose your Marathon virginity to!

Let’s start at the beginning of the weekend. Friday afternoon my Woo Hooo running girlfriends and I went to the Sports Expo, which is just getting better every year. Though I must admit, I was disappointed with the Marathon Jacket, I do love the funky new race kit bags they gave out when you picked up your bib number and timing chip . . . tre chic.

We of course tried on everything imaginable, I ate my way through the various booths and of course learned and saw a ton of ‘new’ racing inventions . . . yes Bob, the Tiger Tail was there although I didn't get one! Yet.

After spending a wad of dough and many hours there, we headed off to carb load at a wonderful Italian Restaurant called Capone’s. We laughed and chatted and laughed some more as we ate our dinner and swilled down a glass or two of red wine . . . We always have such a blast when we get together.

Saturday for me was busier than I had anticipated but that was okay, however, I didn’t get the chance to go back downtown to watch my Woo Hooo girlfriends and families run the 10K race Saturday evening. The weather was warm and very windy, but they all had a great run.

Saturday evening I set my alarm clock for 4:15 a.m. and headed off to snooze-ville. Luckily, I woke up at 4:15 automatically because I had forgotten to re-set the volume on the alarm . . . that could have been a disaster! Woo Hooo Anne and Dean were at my place at 5:30 sharp, we loaded up the car and headed downtown.

The downtown area was already teeming with runners and well wishers by the time we parked the car and off we went to meet up with my five hour running friends, Jen and Shirley, Rick and Teena, by the time we were done with the port-a-potties, they had already played the National Anthem and the elites were off and running, which meant we had to haul ass to get to our respective corrals.

We had a chance for a quick high five and hugged all round and the gun went off and away we went.

No, I didn’t take my camera folks, there were just too many other things hanging off my belt as it was, but I do have pictures!

Anne and I headed off at a very comfortable pace, the day was bright, cool and very sunny. We could not have asked for a better race day. Truly the running gods were looking down upon us, in more ways than one!

The course took us past the Parliament Buildings, along Wellington to our War Museum then over the bridge to Quebec. This is the same route I described to you earlier so I won’t take too much time explaining it again. Heading back to Ontario over the bridge was exhilarating because we knew that we would be heading back to the throngs of spectators.

Once back to Ontario we were at the 10K plus mark and we were heading down into Rockcliffe.

As I headed up the hill, I saw my Phoenix Phenom’s standing there with a HUGE run LILY run sign!

How awesome is that?! Thanks so much my friends, you truly made my day!

As we were heading down toward the Prime Minister’s house, the elite runners were on their way back and past the 21K mark, they were flying....and so were their paparazzi, it was incredible to see the leading female fly by as I was trundling along, it was a magical moment for me.

On we went meeting up with runners that we knew along the way. With a quick pit stop, we were heading back toward downtown and the 21K mark.

When we got back to downtown Ottawa we turned left and headed down the canal, amongst a huge throng of spectators, so many so, they were choking up the race route plus the really fast half marathon runners were gaining on us. I headed over to the right-hand side of the road so the flying half’s could zip on by . . . even with doing that we were being jostled a lot by the speedy speedsters . . . one guy commented that why do they let "these old slow runners on the course," to which I replied, I’m doing the marathon chum, "leave a lung on the pavement if you wish, have a great race", aren’t I Ms. Sportsman of the Year?

I was trying to stay out of their way as well has hydrate and take my gels, I opened my pouch to get out a gel and got bumped causing all of my carb-booms to spill out onto the pavement. There were so many runners coming it would have been dangerous to try to retrieve them. Another live and learn while on the run, so to speak. Luckily I had tucked a couple of Vector Bars into my other pouch (told you I looked like a pack horse), so that was my saving grace to keep up my energy.

We finally got down along the canal to where the Half Marathon runners split off to continue along their route and we head down toward Hogs Back Falls. Off to my left I spotted a port-a-pottie tucked underneath one of the over passes, so I crossed over the roadways to, well, the obvious. Much to my surprise Anne was coming out of the pot, just as I reached for the door . . .

Once ensconced I couldn’t get out!

The door latch was stuck, oh crap, pardon the pun, I’m wasting time in the crapper!

Finally I got the freeking thing to open and I’m now looking out to the rest of the Half Marathon group and I can’t get back across the road to my route . . . well, after standing there for what seemed to be an eternity I dodged my way across through the Half runner’s and continued on my merry way. I could see Anne way a head of me at this point, I waved and kept on truck’n. The good thing about running with friends is that we start together but run our own race.

Anne was really settling into her zone and I was so happy for her. We were now heading into no man’s land, there were few to no spectator’s, lots of inclines and a few less water stations. We had to do some strange loop under an overpass and then up a huge hill, I could see quite a few of the runner’s slowing down to a walk. For me, it was perfect time to reflect upon all the training we had done, all the crappy weather we had run in, all the great friends we had made along the way and all the knowledge that was being put to the test. I was enjoying every moment! Sometimes it is just great to have to dig deep and reflect upon how lucky we are.

We were now heading toward the Experimental Farm and the Arboretum. Again we did a little loop through the Arboretum and then back out onto the road past Dow’s Lake and back along the other side of the canal.

You have to understand Ottawa is built around several water systems and is a lovely area with grand old homes with a lot of history, it is a spectacular location for a race with beautiful sights to take in as a runner and a spectator. You should run Ottawa sometime, you won’t be disappointed!

There were only about 6K to go when I, along with everyone else start to make their plan for the finish. Mine was to conserve a little energy so I could run in looking strong, upright and smiling. I met two very nice gentlemen who had the same plan, so we walked and ran together up to and over the Finish Line. Thank you so much for the wonderful company!

Upon crossing the finish line and having my chip removed, I headed into the recovery area, where I came upon several of the Running Room runners that I know quite well, we had our pictures taken and exchanged stories. Then I headed off to get some oranges and a recovery drink. Once I left the food tent I headed off to find my Woo Hooo friends, but found one of the gentlemen I ran the last 6K with.

We sat on the park bench and had a really nice conversation, he was headed off to get his medal engraved and I went on to meet my friends. Thanks Henk, hope we can run together again some time soon!!

When I came out of the recovery area, there they were, patiently waiting for me, all of my Woo Hooo friends with my tiara, a lovely bouquet of flowers and several congratulatory hugs, kisses and cards. What an outstanding day!

(Anne, me and Nancy (who ran the 1/2 marathon), just a few of the Woo Hoo Friends

The afternoon concluded with a big brunch at D’Arcy McGee’s with several BEvERages and of course a ton of laughs . . . tall tales, great renditions of the races and just being happy with a great group of friends.

I walked away with wonderful memories, great friends, old and new, a fantastic sunburn, a blood blister on one of my toes and a really funny port-a-pottie story. Does it get any better than this?

ING Marathon 2008 Memories!!!

Life’s fun if you don’t weaken,


Saturday, 24 May 2008

Sunday May 25, 2008

Bib # 3382

(just in case you've got a lot of spare time on your hands)

Life's fun if you don't weaken,

Results are in, I'm upright and really smiling!!! And REALLY Happy with my time : check it out at


# 3382

Start 7:02:53

10K split 1:14:37

21K split 2:37:35

30K split 3:46:43

Gun Time 5:35:12

Chip Time 5:32:19

1071 (F)

81 (F50-54) age group....

NEW AGE Group on Wednesday......yup, 55!!!!

Report to follow in a day or so.....thanks everyone! Talk with you later.....

Life's fun if you don't weaken!


Not Long to Wait Now...

Normally I try not to start a sentence with the word or letter " I ".

Today though is going to be a little different because tomorrow I'm going to be a little different,

I'm going to be a Marathoner!

So, with that said....

I would like to thank
all of you
my face to face friends and my virtual friends for all of your

most importantly

This has been a very important road for me to have shared with you.

There is so much negativity in the non running community, what a blessing it has been to find so much positive energy that is so freely shared.....

Truly amazing!
For that I thank YOU!

For everyone racing, running, cycling, competing in a Tri this weekend ~ Best Wishes & Good safe, be strong, and have fun!!

Life's fun if you don't weaken

Thursday, 22 May 2008

Getting too serious??

For some reason, my competitive side is starting to raise her ugly head. Maybe it is not competitiveness, but maybe more along the lines of knowing what is entailed to get through this run on Sunday. Truly I can't call it a race when you travel along at my speed.

However, I am trying to suppress this feeling because, well, as my Wooo Hoooo girlfriends know, I can whip up a competitive challenge in just about anything.

So, here I am, making up pace bands, deciding where I should be in the race and at what particular time, deciding when I should be scarfing back carb-booms, PowerAde, Vector bars, yikes, and marking that in yellow hi-light on my pace band.

I look more like a pack horse than a marathon runner. You can always tell the back of packer's, just like me, they have multiple bottles of liquids, gels, toilet paper, cell phones, dragging a picnic table behind us, hey I should get one of those hats with an umbrella on the certainly won't blow off the speed I travel at.

Now, here is my question! Do I take my camera on this run??

When I went to Phoenix in January I added an extra twenty minutes to my race time by stopping and taking pictures. Well, I had to, it may be the only Phoenix run I ever do in my life. How many times do you get to hug the Sun Devil's Mascot I might ask???

I've been doing a picumentary on most of my longs runs this winter and spring, do you really want to see more of our Parliament Buildings, the back of runner's legs, the belly-dancers that line the race route....I mean really!

A poll was going to be dropped into this post, but I'm at work so you know that every time I'm trying to set up the post, someone cruises by my desk, so, sorry no poll, just leave your answers.

Just like Triguyjt's wife, The Bride, who asks his opinion and then proceeds on her merry way, I may or may not take your suggestion!!! LMAO!!!

Life's fun if you don't weaken,

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

GEMINI ( May 21 - June 20)

Gemini, the intellectual Air sign, quite capable of thinking more than one thought simultaneously.

Communication and speech are extremely important to you.

You have a highly developed learning capacity. Your reactions to situations are prescribed by the mood of the moment, creating the duality in your personality.

To you, variety is the spice of life, however, due to your continuous desire to spread yourself too thin, a high strung nature is usually present. People are attracted to your charming personality and the knowledge that you possess. You are always game to experience something new.

You are prone to fickleness and demand a great deal of freedom to come and go as you please. You are known for talking with your hands, making expressive movements to add to your already descriptive way with words.

Easily bored, you must be on the move constantly. You love to collect gadgets and trinkets and will usually have your pockets stuffed will things of this nature.

mmmmm, how many of us are Gemini's?

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Monday, 19 May 2008

Reality Check

Despite being told we were to have rain all weekend, we squeaked by with just a few showers on Saturday and Sunday was absolutely beautiful. Having said that, I'm sitting here early Monday morning looking out to rain and a strong breeze (wind is for winter).

My back yard is a gorgeous emerald green and all of my gardens seems to have sprung up overnight. (hopefully my neighbour behind me will spring up with their house siding this summer)

For some reason this year, we have a new group of migratory birds and even some new species that have taken up residence in my garden. The Baltimore Orioles arrived almost a month early this spring along with the Yellow-bellied Sap Suckers.

To date, I haven't seen the Hummingbirds yet....they will be arriving shortly.

Oddly enough there were no Honey Bees in the apple blossoms this spring, this I find alarming...mother nature is definitely out of sorts.

Today is our Victoria Day Holiday, not too sure what stores will be open, if any, but I'm going to see what some of garden centres have to offer. I can hardly wait to get into my gardens.

Saturday morning I peeled off a fast 6K run in 39:29, which isn't fast compared to some of the other speedy speedsters, but it was good for me. Afterwards I helped unload a truckload of compost into my neighbours gardens as well as mine own. Somewhere along the line, I tweaked my right knee hopping up in and out of the truck bed. It was an obvious tweak, so I rested it on Saturday night.

Sunday morning was our final 16K run at race pace before next Sunday, this is where the reality check comes in.

Although I'm fitter and a little faster than last year at this time. (the picture to the right is me coming across the bridge from Quebec to Ontario in the Half Marathon). In all honesty, I can't see me completing the marathon in my hopeful 5 hours. Yesterday's run was great! I felt strong and we pretty much stayed on time. 16K at 1:54:15.

I also acknowledge the fact that I'm going to need to purchase a couple more fluid bottles for my belt. I run with PowerAde and they only have Gatoraid at the water stations. I'll also be carrying a couple of Vector Bars and a larger stash of Chocolate-cherry Carb-booms for extra energy.

But to keep that pace up for another 26.2K, well let's just say it may not happen. No, I'm not being Ms. Negative Nelly, I'm being honest. Being my first marathon at my age (no, I'm not blaming my age..) I will be VERY happy to finish with whatever time I have, as long as I'm upright and smiling!!

So, with that being said, I'm going to try to stick with or around the 5 hour pace bunny, but if I need to slow it up a little I will not be disappointed. I'll be sticking with my 10:1's and I know that I can rip off some time with my walk....I'm not as fast walking as my friend Glenda, but she has taught me well.

This week of running consists of less than 20K to run before Sunday.

On another note, yesterday, after getting home from our run, I checked into blog land and found a brand new Canadian Blogger had landed on Lily on the Road.

Marci with an I (eye) is brand new to blogging but not brand new to running, in fact she'll fit in quite nicely to our eclectic, eccentric group, both Marci and her husband are running 5 (yes 5) Marathons in 5 weeks!!!

Please stop by and give her a warm runner's welcome!!

I'm headed off to the garden centres.....have a great Victoria Day!

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Saturday, 17 May 2008

Long Weekend, Running, Pollen and Rain...

The sun has just risen and it looks like a glorious day will be upon us today. I have to get my run in and then I'll be fighting off the black flies and mosquito's as I dig in and get my hands dirty in the garden for the first time this year. I love my garden's and have been really looking forward to getting back into the dirt....

This is our long May weekend, Victoria Day is on Monday. Usually this is on or close to May 24, but for some reason this year everything seems to be early.

The pollen from the tree's is so bad this year that my car has been covered with thick yellow pollen every morning when I head off to the office.

I've had to wash my car about three times this week, one car wash actually blew my wiper blades off!! Won't go back to that place again, I just need to get inside the car and clean out all of the winter salt stains and gorp that accumulates from your snow boots.

With the all trees and shrubs blooming, I actually had to take an allergy pill last night so I could stop sneezing and get some sleep. Hopefully all this floating yellow dust will be gone by next weekend.

Tomorrow is our last long run before my very first ever MARATHON, we are running 16K, which is 9.94 miles Marcy!!!!

I just checked the weather for Kanata-Ottawa, and yes it is in imperial units for my south of the border friends....they now say it is suppose to rain all weekend.

With that said, I'm going to finish up my breakfast and get out for my run while the sun is shining....

Have a great SAFE, happy, long weekend everyone!

Happy Victoria Day!!

The long 24 weekend (yes, as in a case of beer).....

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Thursday, 15 May 2008

Red Wine & Chocolate Covered Cherries

Race nerves or hormone release, not sure what is going on.

I NEVER eat chocolates, yet yesterday was a serious cravings day and no, I'm not pregger's.....too old for that sport's fans....

After a particularly stressful day at work, I headed off to my chiropractor's appointment. My doctor has been working on an old ankle injury that has just flared up again unexpectedly. It is not really my ankle but in-between the ankle bone and foot on both sides. Originally caused a million years ago from an equestrian fall, it has been pretty "stable", sorry for the pun, the last twenty years or so.

I know you're thinking that all this pounding from running all these miles must have something to do with it, I'm not ruling that out by any stretch of the imagination, but I truly don't think that has been the reason.

After all the manipulation and magic a chiropractor does, I headed home to make a really healthy dinner and do laundry (the excitement of my life is overwhelming these days). That's when it hit!!! I NEED chocolate!!

I hardly ever have junk food in my house, but I rummaged around and found a box of chocolate covered cherries that had been given to me by a client at Christmas. They were still sealed and stuffed in a cupboard.....yummy.....and no, I didn't eat them all....but I did have three and a couple of glasses of red decadent is that???

Trust me, after my crazy misspent youth, I know I've hit middle age when I think I'm a wild thing when I've eaten three chocolates and had a couple of glasses of wine....I don't think that I'll be needing the Betty Ford Clinic anytime soon, but I do know that the pre-race jitters are starting to set in!!!

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Monday, 12 May 2008

Ebb & Flow of a Sunday Run

Not quite sure where the time went early Sunday morning, the alarm went off at its usual time of 5:30 a.m. and Ms. Meow was at the ready for her breakfast, who needs an alarm clock when the cat’s stomach clock is way better at time control.

Dawdling around having my coffee with breakfast and packing up my cooler with extra PowerAde, Vector energy bars, carb-booms, orange slices and an apple, I kept checking the clock thinking I’ve got loads of time to get downtown and meet the run group.

Our final 23K, we were to run the front end of the Marathon route, how exciting is that. I even did a map quest search for the easiest way to get to the downtown location . . . YIKES, got to go . . . it’s close to an hour drive to get there, park and walk over to the meeting location . . . where did the time go?

Throwing everything into the car, off I went into the early morning, Luckily I had checked that I had what I thought was everything, but sans (oh that’s French for without) my garmin . . . well that’s okay, we co-pace the run anyway.

I’ve turned into a country mouse since I’ve been on my own, I don’t go downtown very often now, to be exact I haven’t been downtown since last August.

I drove to where I thought we were meeting, saw a ton of runner’s and parked the car, leaped out with time to spare. I introduced myself to someone and asked if they were running the front end the marathon too . . . I was greeted with blank stares . . . gah, where was I?

Being female, yes, I did ask for directions and was promptly sent into the OPPOSITE direction of where I wanted to be.

I drove around and around and around and finally after turning right (yet again) there were some familiar (albeit questioning faces).

I’d found them . . . with quick directions (yes these were correct), I parked the car and jogged (do people say jog any more?) to meet up with them and causing a huge delay in our take off time.

SORRY your guys!! Ever gracious, they are use to running with the old chick, so nothing much surprises them after running together for almost 18 weeks . . .

Off we headed past our Parliament Buildings on the street side this week, heading down to the Canadian War Museum, where we turned right and headed over the bridge to the Province of Quebec.

Bonjour mes amis courants. Les Français satisfont seulement. French only, please, it’s the law . . .

The race route is similar to the half marathon route that I ran last year (my very first one) . . . until we get back over the bridge where we turn left to take us along Sussex Drive, past the home of our Prime Minister and along past Rideau Hall, the home of our Governor General of Canada (currently Her Excellency the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean).

Running along through Rockcliffe Park, one of the wealthiest neighbourhoods in Ottawa . . . WOW!!! We continued along past the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Stables.

I was really enjoying this run as I had never been out to this end of Ottawa ever before. Nothing is better than being a tourist in your own town. You should try it sometime!!

(Jen crossing over the bridge to the Ontario side.)

Several kilometer’s later we were heading back towards the ever bustling downtown. Being Mother’s Day, along with hosting the Tulip Festival and just so many other sights to see in our amazing City, the downtown area was teeming with young and old, visitors and the likes of me, people just getting out to see the sights.....of our beautiful, historic Ottawa.

A wondrous City even in the winter . . . (did I just say that?)

We ran the 23K at an approximate pace of 7:57 or 8 minute pace. As mentioned I'd left may garmin at home and you know what? It really didn't bother me at all, other than I was relying upon Jen (again) to keep me up to date. Thanks Jen!

This coming long weekend (our Victoria Day holiday), we have 16K to run and hopefully our little rogue 5hour group will get together to run some of the back half of the marathon course....I'll let you know!!

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Saturday, 10 May 2008

10K on the 10th

Another beautifully organised run, what a day!!

The weather was just perfect, a little overcast and pleasant temperature.

I had trouble rounding up my Pace Bunny, he was off way ahead of me before I knew it....I think he was chasing a Pony that just left little Dino and me to suit up and get ready to hit the trail.

Luckily for us the Cave Lion Lily was happy in her den and we weren't bothered by her at all.

I think she'd been out hunting all night and was resting on a full tummy, well truthfully she'd just finished her breakfast.

Just the sight of her eyes watching Dino and me, well let's just say we were safer with her being in her den.

Dino was causing trouble, he kept trying to hide in my just can't find a good dinosaur anymore, always causing trouble these youngster's.

Once we got the Dino out of the shoes off we went.
It was beautiful out, the trees are starting to bud, tulips and daffodils are up and people were out raking and cutting their lawns. A lot of renovations were going on, chainsaws and skills saws were going full bore, reminded me of living at Possum Lodge with Red Green.

Knowing that I have my final **23K run on Sunday, Dino and I just loped along doing our 10:1 (run 10 minutes and walk one) run....enjoying the sights and sounds.

We finally got back to the cave without seeing any of these....

All in all it was one of the nicest runs I've had in awhile, no pressure, no time, no never ending route......


it was done in 1:14:29!!!!

Thanks so much Nancy for Uniting the Cave people....yet are the BEST!!!!

**You'll get a run report for tomorrow's 23K, we are running the front portion of the Marathon in downtown Ottawa will take us across the river over into Quebec and then back to Ontario, following the river up through a very prestigious's of course will be included.....

talk with you tomorrow....

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Thursday, 8 May 2008

After the Marathon, a Triathlon...of course...

Written by Phil Barnes, for the TriRudy newsletter.

It's almost that time of year again.

The Early Bird triathlon is almost upon us. Is this your first triathlon?The following is advice intended for first-timers interested in a non-competitive finish time. I'm not a coach, and not affiliated with Somersault. I'm just a middle of the pack guy who thought I'd pass on some tips for newbies based on my own experience of this race a couple of years ago.

As with all triathlons I Strongly suggest you read, re-read, and triple read all the information about the particular race, venue and the rules and regulations. ( you arrive at the site, there will be a large area set up for the bikes.

This is the Transition Zone. It is located outside, in a fenced area, some distance away from the pool building. The transition area is fairly busy, and it's a good idea to only bring what you need.

(So make yourself a little checklist).

There will be rows of racks where you leave your stuff. Most people back their bikes in, and hook the nose of the seat onto the bar of one of the racks. You can set your bike shoes and running shoes beside your bike. I usually leave my helmet on my handle bars, with my sunglasses inside so they're easy to put on.

There are probably going to be 3 openings to the transition area:

  1. Swim in - this is where you will run in after your swim.

  2. Bike Out/Bike In - this is where you will leave on your bike (You will have to walk/run with your bike from your rack to this opening before you mount your bike and begin your ride. You'll also have to dismount your bike here when you return.

  3. Run out - this is where the run portion starts. You will run from here after you re-rack your bike and put your running shoes on.It's always a good idea to familiarize yourself with these openings, and practice going from the swim-in to your bike, from your bike to the bike-out, from the bike-in back to your position on the rack, and then out to the run-out.
There will be probably over 500 bikes in there, and because of the staggered start times, it will be buzzing with racers doing different things throughout your race, so try hard to remember exactly which row your bike is in!

Sometimes they designate rows of racks for particular events (e.g. the Try-a-Tri might have a designated area, and the sprint might have another). You will have to share the rack with probably 7 other people so don't take up more than your share, and don't be intimidated to ask someone to tighten up their gear.

You can also chat with people here - I think you'll find that a good 25% are first-timers, and perhaps 50% have only a few years under their belts, the regulars will be very friendly too.

Make sure you get your timing ! chip and body marked early enough too. (The timing chip attaches around your ankle not your wrist).

Regardless of when your particular event starts, they will make an announcement stating that the transition zone is closing, usually about 15 minutes before the official start of the first event.

So make sure you get set up on time. Then, get prepared for the longest wait of your life (unless you're a particularly fast swimmer).

Head up to the swimming pool, (I will be in open water) and find a spot in the long line. There will be different lines for different events. And the lines will be self-seeded from fastest to slowest. You'll need to know how fast you can swim your distance.

Swimmers will start every 10 seconds. (No diving allowed).

Remember that this pool is 50 meters long, and your time may be a tad slower than that of a 25 meter pool. You'll swim up and down one lane, then up and down the next until you get your distance. Don't worry about doing flip turns under the lane ropes. (flips??!!, I'll be lucky to get to the buoy).

You can just duck under if you want. If you need to pass someone, I recommend waiting until the end of the pool (so that you are not going head-on into an oncoming swimmer); if someone is tickling your feet trying to pass you, I suggest keeping your speed, but try to get close to the rope in case they insist on passing you mid-length; but definitely give them the opportunity at the end of the lane to pass you off the wall.

For new triathletes, I can only suggest to take it easy on the swim. The excitement and nervousness and adrenaline can cause many people to go out far too fast, and be totally drained after the second lap. (there are two laps???)

Most people do not change out of their bathing suits (or tri shorts) after the swim.

You'll dry off pretty quick during the short run to the transition zone plus the first hundred meters of the bike.

There are changing rooms close to the exit of the swim, if you feel you will be more comfortable changing - you will lose time for sure changing, but this is fine, if you feel it's worth it for comforts sake. I've seen a few people with big beach towels drying themselves off completely after the swim - I don't think you'll need this - usually a small towel is sufficient to clean off your feet. Cycling damp is part of the sport.

There are some rules about attire and race numbers which are posted on Somersault's website. You should review these. I do not believe that bare torsos are permitted, so this means that you will have to bike and run with a long enough shirt (choose something tight for optimal aerodynamics on the bike, practice putting it on when you are damp so you'll know what to expect).

Also, you will need to have your race number visible on the back of you during the bike, and on the front of you during the run. Some people pin their number on the front, and bike with their shirt on backwards and then turn it around afterwards - you can do better than this with a "race belt". Usually they're for sale on the site for about $15.

This is a little strap that goes around your waist. You can either pin or attach your number to it. Put this on after your helmet, and turn it so that your number is facing the back. When you go out for your run, simply turn it around.

You may be able to fashion something for yourself with a nylon belt. The bike portion of this race, can get congested.

There will be people of all abilities. Some will be riding bikes worth more than a car, some riding old mountain bikes (that will be me) or cruisers. I'm going to suggest four things:

  1. Stay to the RIGHT at much as possible.
  2. If you need to pass someone, do a quick shoulder check, pull out and pass them on the LEFT. You may choose to shout out, "On your left" if you think that the person you are passing will benefit from this.
  3. Re-read and understand the rules on drafting.
  4. Know how many loops you need to do - not everyone does the same number of loops.The run is easy enough if you're properly trained.
(OMG, there are way too many things to remember)

Running after biking can be a different experience. Your legs may feel like bricks. You may get pop-corn sensation in your calf muscles.

This is normal. It will go away.

Enjoy it. You're almost a triathlete.

All I can suggest for the run, is that you tough it out.

You'll feel awesome when you cross the finish line.

After your finish, congratulate yourself (I will), and then write up a race-report to post to My Blog so that others can learn from your experiences!!

Stay tuned, you real triathletes will be in store for a real laugh!!!! (sometime later this summer)

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Monday, 5 May 2008

32K Sunday Run (not race) Report

This was a gathering of all the Running Room marathon clinic participants in Ottawa. We assembled at the Kanata store at 08:30 on Sunday morning, our destination was 32K away at the Ottawa Bank Street store. The school bus arrived at 08:15 and excited runners emerged out into the cloudy, overcast, drizzle, but the weather didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits. All in all there were more than 200 excited runners.

We assembled into groups representing our pace times. The pace runners were holding up the signs denoting the finish time for the marathon run.

Our 5-hour group was there and ready, since we have all collectively paced the group, we continued with that format and even had a few runners such as Catherine and Rita, join us from other Running Room locations.

Before the run, the organisers gave out * prizes and wished us we went.
* Donation: $10.00 (All proceeds going to the Ottawa Hospital Foundation).

At this point I would just like to say how well organised this run was! There were water / gator aid stations manned by volunteers. We also had spotter cyclists keeping track of the various pace groups.

They supplied water, moral support, Advil and even called in the van that was circling around when a runner could not complete the run. Right down to the motivational signage, I have nothing but great things to say about the whole day! Well, other than THANK YOU!!!

We headed off from the store to the Cattail trail, along one of the main roads to an underpass that took us to a trail running adjacent to Highway 417 and followed that trail over to our first 10K water station.

As we were topping up our water bottles, we were able to watch the tail end of the Tour Nortel which is an 80K bike race. They also have shorter distances for the less competitive and for families.

This is where we split off and headed towards downtown along the trail behind the National Capital Equestrian Centre.

Ottawa is the capital of Canada and we have a Nation Capital Commission that keeps quite a bit of our area as "natural" parklands with running / biking trails from west to east. The majority of our Sunday run was done on these trails.

We did have a pit stop that was a little too long. We got to the port-a-potties that already had a bit of a "female" lineup....not sure what was going on, don’t want to get too graphic, but I know that when I’m running, you either hit a port-a-pottie or head behind a bush.....and as quickly as possible.

Nope, we waited more than 15 minutes while these women reapplied their freeking was cold and windy and we all really cooled down way too much while these glamour queens were freshening up....Girls, get over it....if you run with makeup on, carry your own mirror, don’t take up precious time in the loo!!!

We continued on until we reached the trail that runs along the side of the Ottawa River, called, yes the Ottawa River Parkway. The trails are beautifully maintained, and the flower beds were teeming with daffodils and tulips, wondrous colours and sights.

The river was brimming almost to overflowing its banks due to our unnaturally high snowfall this winter, geese, ducks and other waterfowl were bobbing along in the swift current as if following us to see what these crazy humans were doing.

Once we got onto this pathway it was smooth sailing and straight ahead to downtown Ottawa and Parliament Hill.

As a group, from the very beginning, we always said if one person needs to stop, we all stop, just keeps us all together for moral support, but once race day hits, we may start together (if we can find one another) but you run your own race.

Rick, Shirley and Jen are just going to Rock the Marathon...woooo hoooo! You guys are going to fly!!

We finally made it to Parliament Hill and ran up the huge hill to then head down the Rideau Canal built by Colonel By in 1826. Underneath Wellington Street bridge. I turned to view Chateau Laurier Hotel, a truly stunning landmark.

This is a man made waterway connecting the Ottawa River to the Rideau River which then eventually connects to Lake Ontario.

A major water system, which Ottawa was built upon. (History Lesson some other time!!!).

Jen and Shirley kept pretty much to the pace time, I was a little slower due to taking pictures, talking with other runners who were having a little bit of difficulty and truthfully, the last two K I had no idea where we were and I was starting to get a little anxious that we’d miss a turn to the Running Room.

Luckily the others know downtown way better than I do, so they lead the way! Rick our gentleman and gentle soul, ran with a fellow who was starting to lag, he stayed with him almost to the end of the run....that’s what running is all about, spirit, thoughtfulness and looking out for one another.

Once we got to the store we were greeted by one of the run organiser's with having to hit the "Easy" button and then we were lead to a table laden with fresh fruit, bagels and beverage (juice). Wow, I had a great time!!

Thanks Jen, Shirley, Rick and a special thanks to one of my running Woooo Hoooo girlfriends Anne who ran with us too!!! Anne's husband Dean supported us along the way while riding his bike and meeting us at different locations so we could toss off coats, refuel or just get a "you're doing great everyone". All of you are the VERY BEST!!!

There is of course so much more to describe, but then your eyes would glaze over and you’d fall asleep at your computer....can’t have can we???

Oh, one finally thing, check out the huge honking stone I picked up and couldn't dislodge from the heel of my shoe for the last Princess and the Pea here!!! LMAO!!!

Thanks for reading all the way through, yes there will be questions later!!! Oh, we ended up running 32K in 4:29....oh, yes, 32K = 19.88'll have to figure out the rest of the math!!!

Life’s fun if you don’t weaken,


Sunday, 4 May 2008

32K Sunday

Our final 32K run before the Marathon!
Run Report on Monday!!!

Thursday, 1 May 2008

10K on the 10th of May!

When I first started off in blog land, somehow I thought I was going to be unique and start a blog about running, well, specifically all about my running...hahahaha, like you're the only runner in the world with that idea Lily....LMAO....After running the P.F. Chang Phoenix Half Marathon, with Rebel foremost in my mind, this is when I thought I'd start a blog.

How wonderfully surprised I was when I landed (don't quite know how, or maybe I just don't remember), on Notes of a Non Runner Nancy's blog.

I was then quickly introduced to Tom and Amy at the Runners' Lounge. The rest, as they say, is history...I've had the golden opportunity to meet all of you (yes, even my Canadian readers who don't post a comment, I include you too). You are all diamonds in MY day!!

So when I found Nancy she was organising a virtual run called

(I included the results page, just because I'm in it! LMAO!!!!)

I thought what a total riot and signed up!!!
And it was a total riot!!!

Nancy is so organised, that she just makes it that much more fun!!!

So guess what???


Nancy is holding another virtual race;
Can you guess when???

~~10K on the 10th of May ~~

I am totally committed to this race



I have my pace bunny!!!!

I just love to have motivation when I run!!!

*giggle like a school girl*

So, if you're up for some fun, strap on your kicks, run your 10K race, and post it on your blog...let Nancy know that you're racing....and wait for the fun results.....

Thanks in advance to the great race organiser.....Nancy!!!!

I can hardly wait!!!

Life's fun if you don't weaken!!