Thursday, 23 July 2009

Getting ready to go!

The wheels, they will be turning, we are getting ready to head off to Lake Placid tomorrow for the Ford Ironman Lake Placid being held on Sunday.

This has been a year long adventure for our friend Anne. One full of ups, downs, tears, fears and accomplishments.

It was Anne who got me through my first 10K race, my first marathon, my first triathlon and has helped me an awful lot with my mood swings this past summer while I've been recovering from an injury that yes, I did to myself by trying in my own feeble way to train with her while she started this wonderful adventure. I'm no Iron, but Anne is.

She slogged it out in the freezing, cold winter weather, along with all the hours at the pool, all the hours on the bike trainer and then out on the roads starting in March, cycling and running, there was still snow out there...

Luckily her journey to iron was not totally by herself, her husband Dean spent many an hour in the saddle cycling along with her for all those 180K rides. Karen would meet up with her and either run the last half of the 40K runs or the last half of 100K rides...

Although I wasn't much help running or cycling due to my injury, I was there as the telephone / email support system. I had promised to do what I could to help last year when the decision was made to go Iron. So, I booked my holidays, threw my name down to volunteer as a body marker and the rest as they say will be history.

You've done all the hard work Anne, all the laps in the pool, all the miles and miles on the bike and all the bizillion km's running in all kinds of weather, you are SO READY! Remember all of your why's, remember all of the hard work, remember all of us who love and believe in you and who are cheering you on!!!

No matter what Anne,



Karen and I will be on the road Friday morning, until I'm able to catch up again on the blog remember, no matter how big or how small your dreams and goals are go for them...because you only get one kick at life, no gets out of this alive.

Life's fun if you don't weaken


Just a quick shout out to Jen Ajersch, Ralph Richardson and Kona Shelley McKee...
GOOD LUCK in Placid, see you there!!

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Paying Back

If I recall properly, there was a day in May that it didn't rain or was that April? Well maybe that is a bit of an exaggeration, but this has been one wet summer and would someone please turn up the heat!! One thing is for sure my gardens are loving it! I'd like to say I've spent a lot of time in the gardens this summer but compared to other years, well no.

It has been an interesting time for me and I'm going to be honest. I think that since I injured my self way back in March it has been a slippery slope for motivation and upbeat moods. Within the past three weeks three people that I have known have passed away due to cancer. It is an ugly, ugly disease and with all the money being raised at various events, please tell me that they are breaking ground on a cure. Because in all honesty, you can tell me I'm wrong, but cancer is such a huge money making industry are they holding back on a cure to generate more money?

Sorry, I'm off track here.

Let's go back to my garden.....

So, enough deep, dark thoughts, no more woeisme, no more sitting on the couch drinking way too much wine.

Nope, I over it and guess what? I'm taking this opportunity to pay back.

How many times have you been at a race and sweated and panted your way past a volunteer and they've shouted out some encouraging words or given you that cup of water or gatoraid? How many times have you really thanked that guy at the sweatcheck or the guy who handed you your special needs bag? Or how about the guys and gals that organise and set up that race event, you know the ones that have been there all night making sure your ever precious timing mat and electronic board are working, the balloon arch is set up, the music is on and pulsating a boom boom beat, how about those guys setting up portapotties and hand sanitizers?

How many times have to blasted across the last timing mat with your arms over your head (or looking down at your garmin) shouting WOOO HOOO and there has been that happy smiling face giving you words of praise and glory while putting your medal around your sweaty, salt stained neck? Have you ever really looked them in the eye and said hey THANK YOU for being out here in the sun; heat; rain; cold; snow? I know I try to with what little breath I have left in my body, but think about it, without the volunteers, we might as well run around the block and home and shout wooo hoooo. Yes, you pay your entry fee for that special feeling of accomplishment but without the guy standing at the roadblock telling you which way to go, you'd be running to no where.

So, it is my turn to pay back!! For purely selfish reason's (getting my motivation back), I'm volunteering with the ever famous Nat and her "Man" and "Boy" this Sunday at the Hintonburg 5K race. I'm pretty excited, I'll be working the "turn around" water station!!

I'm also paying back by volunteering the following weekend in Lake Placid for the Ford Ironman Lake Placid. Several of my running / tri friends are participating in this prestigious event and with any luck I'll get to meet Kona Shelley! You go guys and good luck!!!

I'll be body marking starting at 4:45 am!! Oh and did I mention I'm camping? OMG, me camping, to me camping is a suite at the Hilton, but NO, I'm actually going to be in a TENT at a KOA, bwawaahhhaaaaa!!!! I'll keep you posted as to how all that works out!

Well there is more exciting news to share, but I have to get ready for work, so I'll catch up with you all later....

Life's fun if you don't weaken,


Friday, 10 July 2009

The City that fun forgot!

I've lived in the Ottawa region for almost twenty years, this is the longest I've ever lived in one spot in my entire life. It is a gorgeous area full of history, landmarks, waterways, trails, wetlands and green space.

There is an never ending array of events, summer, winter, spring and fall, there is not one week or weekend that there isn't something going on in our fair city.

During the winter there is Winderlude, the Gatineau Loppet or skating on the world's longest waterway, the Rideau Canal. Springtime gives you the opportunity to shake off the snow and cold and enjoy the Tulip Festival among other events. The fall gives you many, many activities as well, but we are now in summer here (doesn't feel like it most days, but summer is here). With summer there is sailing on the Ottawa River, runner's along the trails and parkways, many running events and triathlons, the Byward Market and enjoying volleyball tournaments and so many other activities I just don't have the time to mention.

So, why do I say that Ottawa is the city that fun forgot? Ottawa is the capital of Canada and therefore riddled with politics, politicians and protocol.

Currently Cisco Bluesfest is taking place at LeBreton Flats, at this particular location during Bluesfest there are noise bylaws, beer (or lack thereof) bylaws, parking bylaws and the list goes on. This year the list of entertainer's is phenomenal, Jeff Beck, Jackson Browne, Lynyrd Skynyrd and the list goes on and on. Not so blues-y but fun none the less is KISS. Yes, Gene Simmons and his entourage will be here next Wednesday. If you've ever watched "Family Jewels" you'll know that Shannon Tweed is a Canadian Girl who made her way in the world, featured in Playboy, movies (some not so great), and of course to become the better half of the KISS front man.

Our acting mayor, Doug Thompson, yes "acting mayor", our real Mayor is on trial (go figure) had proclaimed next Wednesday as "Shannon Tweed" day in Ottawa. No big deal right? Wrong!!! Councillor Jan Harder totally nixed the idea and squashed any "fun" events that may have taken place. Shannon although originally from Dildo, Newfoundland, lived in Ottawa back in the '70's and '80's and was crowned Miss Ottawa Valley in 1977!!

The local Classic Rock radio station Chez 106 is going ahead with Shannon Tweed day, who knows what craziness will take place!! Stay tuned.
Why you ask am I writing all this drivel? Well, because I haven't been running nor cycling the past couple of weeks. There have been some other things going on that have taken up some of my "me" time .

However, as I close this post, I'm sharing with you our new signage that was put up at the entrance way to my humble hamlet....

Look closely and you will see that obviously someone has a sense of humour!!

Life's fun if you don't weaken,