Thursday, April 29, 2010

Hello Flying Pig Half Marathon

Well in two days I will be off to Cincinnati to race in the Flying Pig Half Marathon!!!

So far this week I have done two runs. 6km on Tuesday night and 5km last night. Both went well...they were relaxed and basically just trying to get me back in the grove. My number one goal this weekend is to have fun. The weather is looking like a High of 24 degrees and a low of 12 degrees...70% chance of Thunderstorms and HUMID....sooo it should be matter what I have a feeling like it will be great....

This will be the biggest race that I have ever been apart of! I am looking forward to having some girl time and going to the expo...we are going to eat at the pasta dinner...Be sure to tune in for a race recap...I will be taking LOTS of photos!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Back to the Grind

I am back! Okay to work....took the dog for a nice long walk tonight so I am feeling good for tomorrow's 6km easy run! I will post after the run...hoping a week of pox/no running hasn't left me too far behind.

Happy Faces in the Morning!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Third Day of Isolation


So I am on day three of the isolation....I am tired...and the fever/aches/chills are slowing getting mum has been amazing and has been bringing food etc...friends have been calling during the day which is great...daytime TV is also good...who knew Sammy on days is sort of nice now? Mostly this has left me pretty tired...I sleep quite a bit...I can't watch movies as I fall TV it is...and I can always time shift if I miss parts!

I miss running...I have been re-reading some old runner's world magazines...hoping Tuesday I'll get out for 5km...

Some new pox so I am not in the clear yet but they are def' not like the first ones so it is a good thing...

Thanks everyone for the messages on Facebook and the phone calls...everyone has been so kind...I look forward to getting out of the house sometime in the coming days...

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Pox...of the Chicken Variety

That's right folks...I am 28 years old and have the Chicken Pox for the second time in my sucks...after seeing the doctor and talking to a nurse at Occupational Health and Infection Control...I have good thing-->they don't think I have spread it to anyone at this point...I have a mild infection and getting them for the second time is rare so hopefully no one is sick....the bad news is no running/yoga/biking until at least Monday :(

Luckily last week was a great fitness week and this week might be good to not run at week if I am feeling up to it I am hoping to do a couple 5km runs then Flying Pig on Sunday...I am hoping that I will be okay for that trip...all fingers and toes are crossed at this point...

The fever/aches/chills are not as bad as last night and the day before...only a couple new pox...I did not explode last night which is a good sign that it will stay mild...

I am confident in my training that even though I am tapering hard core I will be able to do Pig...

Will keep updating re: Pox Count

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Hard, Tough 13km Run

Today was a tough run...I believe that I really needed to challenge myself. After the 21.1km Half I was really excited...also I was not sore, I wasn't exhausted...I felt great..This week was a great week for Fitness with 2 runs, 1 long bike ride and a Yoga Class. I needed a long tempo run. So far my tempo runs have been around the 6km I just had some energy to burn...maybe it was the Swiss Chalet I had for dinner...I had a great deal of energy.

I was excited that today we only had "13km" so funny to say that now...I guess I am becoming a runner...

The route today was a city route...there and back 6.5km...It was a little colder, I wore Capris, short sleeved T-shirt with Arm Warmers, Vest, hat and headband...I was perfect!

The first 3km were great...I was going at a 6:20 pace...I felt comfortable...then I started to speed up...I have always wanted to have an under one hour 10km. Today I thought I might be able to do that...I pushed it hard for the next 7km and was able to do 10km in 1:00:44 Sooooo close...I am almost there...I honestly think that I could do it...I slowed down a bit but not too much for the last 3km...instead of 10min Run/ 1min walk I did a 30 second walk break....I am thinking about doing this for upcoming races...I don't know if I am ready to give up my 1min walk breaks...I really do like them and feel that I need them...We will see...Something I will be looking at over the next few months...

I felt tired and achy today but I had a great nap, hot tub and I am actually feeling much better...Tomorrow I will do a good stretch and get the IT band roller out...

Tomorrow is the Boston Marathon...I am excited for it...I have a few friends running it and I can't wait to track them. Good luck everyone!

Happy faces in the Morning!

Total Distance this week: 24.9km (not too shabby for post race).

Happy Faces in the Morning :)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

My Favourite Things: Part 4...Getting the Stink Out....

So I have a confession. I sweat...A LOT. I was finding that I would wash all my workout/running clothes and they would STILL smell....I over heard a friend (J) talking about Super Washing Soda:

You use your normal laundry detergent PLUS washing Soda. We have a newer front loading system so there are spots for liquid soap (our regular stuff) and powder...we mix both together and voila! Super Clean, No STINK running clothes! As Martha Stewart would say: It's a good thing!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thursday Bike


Just got back from a Makeup Party...very fun, lots of yummy food, great friends...I got to cuddle a very special baby...and someone did my makeup...good night...before all of that I went on a 20km bike ride....a few things...

1. I need to bike more if I plan on doing the MS ride
2. My butt hurts...might need a new seat
3. It felt good to cross train
4. I like biking but runner is more my thing...

Happy Faces in the Morning!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Wednesday Run :)

6.4km tonight at a steady pace...I am tired but happy...It was such a beautiful day that I could not pass up being outside...The plan is to REST Thursday and Friday....I think my body needs a bit of a break..although the weather is supposed to be gorgeous tomorrow...maybe I'll get a tiny bike ride in :)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Feeling Fine...

Hi All,

Well I have to say that I am actually surprised at how well I am feeling. I thought that I would be really sore and want to take a few days off from running. I can say that tonight I went for a 5.5km run at a nice steady pace and it was comfortable. I am now off to stretch and roll my IT band then tonight is the Big Half Marathon Clinic finale...I am really sad that this clinic is over. Everyone has been amazing and I have made some great running friends...I am hoping that some of them will even continue on to the Marathon Clinic that will start in the next few weeks...

Flying Pig Count Down: 19 days. I am getting really excited for this race...My goal for it is just to have fun! I am not going to try and PR here as it is a hilly course and really this was voted one of the "Funnest" Half Marathons so I really want to enjoy it...

The schedule for the rest of the week will be: Tomorrow 5km run will some hills, hoping for another 6km on Thursday followed by Hot Yoga and bike ride on Sat. and most likely 12-14km on Sunday. The weather is looking pretty good so far.

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Run For Retina Resarch Race Report

Hi All,

What a day....I think that I am still on cloud 9...I might have even surprised myself today...Warning: This Post is very Picture Heavy.

The morning started out at 5am when my hubby came home early from work to surprise me...I was so happy that he was going to be able to watch my meant a lot to have him there!

We got dressed and headed out the door with my running buddy Lindsay and her hubby Jamie picking us up at 8:20am. We headed down to the starting lines where we met our race clinic...It was amazing...they had set up a VIP tent and it was are a few pictures...of the tent, the running group and my friends Lindsay and Catherine.

It was then time to start the race...I had previously run in 2003 my PB 2:35:00 and I had done a training run and finished in 2:21:37 so I was really hoping for around 2:19:00 I had felt that during my training run I had pushed it quite hard and was pretty exhausted...I was pretty pumped about taking 14mins off my I did not want to push it too hard so I printed off a pace band with a time of 2:17:00.

We started out and I was feeling great and running with a great pack of runners! It was really nice to have support like that today. I was on target with my pace...I found that the first 5km flew by....It was nice that after the first 3km the Hubbies were waiting for us and I was able to give them my arm warmers...They also took a few photos!

This was our little pack for the first 13 or so Km's.

The next few km I was surprised at how comfortable I anxieties seemed to melt away...when we got to Greenway Park my Mum was there cheering us all on! It was so nice to have some family support today.

Once we hit the Springbank loop I began to feel quite tired...I rounded the bend and the Hubby's parents (Tom and Betty) were there cheering everyone on....It was amazing...It gave me great strength to keep going...I was still at this point about a minute thirty ahead of my pace I was feeling great knowing that I tend to slow down the last 5km...

I took 2 chews before race, some water and gatorade and used some water from the aid was good but I am always worried about my the 14km mark I took 3/4 of a GU and had no gave me a good boost to keep going...I ended up running by myself for probably the last 5km...It was a good challenge...I was tired and sore but I kept going in order to keep myself ahead of that pace band...

Coming into Greenway Park another surprise..The Hubby's parents were back and with a Camera! All I remember is hearing Betty yell 3km left! I couldn't believe that I only had less than 20mins of running...I was sore, starting to get tired but I wanted to finish strong...

One last hill and I had a walk break but the girl running next to me convinced me to keep going! I was really happy that she did...I felt strong enough so why not for the last few meters...

So here is me crossing the finish line with a Personal Best of 2:15:25

This picture is me in Shock that I did 2:15:25 SO HAPPY!!!

The Hubby got my medal engraved with the date, my name and was really nice..

Congrats to all who finished! My good friend Catherine ran her first of many today. She finished and I am so proud of her. Lindsay also had a personal best and
I cannot wait to head to the Flying Pig with them in a few weeks...It will be a great girls weekend!

Thanks for time for some Hot Tub Therapy!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

'Twas the Night before Retina and All Through the House...

Well....Tomorrow is my first race of 2010! Woot Woot! Also it means that it is exactly 6 months away from Chicago Marathon...and 21 days until the Flying Pig!

Today: Lots of Rest and Relaxation and Hydration...Yummy Pasta supplied by my mum (thanks moo-ma :) always tastes better when mum makes it).

SIDE NOTE:Now for the Fun Part: What am I going to wear tomorrow??? Still contemplating but here is most likely the outfit! I got this idea from an old university (don) friend B. She is super amazing at running and has run quite a few marathons and will be running the Boston Marathon on April 19, 2010. I often stalk her facebook page when she puts up run photos...she is an inspiration, hardcore and all around great person(She has given me great advice recently about my IT band and after looking at her Chicago Marathon photos I was hooked)

I recently got this Shirt at the Nike Store in Chicago when I was there at the beginning of March to go see a taping of the Oprah show. The shirt says "My Training is Delicious" Many of you know that the Hubby and his family have called me this since day one....they were having trouble with pronouncing my name correctly so he said Alicia like Delicious...sooo I loved this shirt...the hubby can't be here with my tomorrow so I thought it was fitting...

The running skirt is an Adidas, lululemon headband and arm warmers...can't live without them....I might wear a tank top but I will have to see once the morning weather hits...

I am off to bed...Water/Gatorade is the the fridge...garmin/ipod charging, shoes are out...all is good...

I will post tomorrow with a race report...

happy faces in the morning...

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Dreaded IT Band Post

I think I was having some wishful thinking about running chicago without any IT band issues...In 2007 when I ran my first marathon I had some discomfort with my IT Band...It lead to new orthotics, physiotherapy,lots of icing and an altered training schedule...So far I have not had any pain...until this past week when I noticed a little outter knee pain...that is usually what starts it with me...

Here is a Definition from Wikipedia

ITBS is one of the leading causes of lateral knee pain in runners. The iliotibial band is a superficial thickening of tissue on the outside of the thigh, extending from the outside of the pelvis, over the hip and knee, and inserting just below the knee. The band is crucial to stabilizing the knee during running, moving from behind the femur to the front while walking. The continual rubbing of the band over the lateral femoral epicondyle, combined with the repeated flexion and extension of the knee during running may cause the area to become inflamed.

ITBS symptoms range from a stinging sensation just above the knee joint (on the outside of the knee or along the entire length of the iliotibial band) to swelling or thickening of the tissue at the point where the band moves over the femur. The pain may not occur immediately during activity, but may intensify over time, especially as the foot strikes the ground. Pain might persist after activity. Pain may also be present below the knee, where the ITB actually attaches to the tibia.

Sooo for 2010 I thought that I would be proactive...I have started to go to Hot Yoga once per week to help with stretching...also after long runs I have been icing specifically at the knees and last night I started to use a Runner's World Online IT band work out routine...

I also bit the bullet and got a IT Band Roller($15.00 from RR)...A few friends of mine from Running Room have it and have raved about it...I remember using it in physio and hating it but also feeling some good relief from 2010 is all about being is the set up at home...

I am not going to go crazy just yet with the roller and stretches...I don't want to hurt myself before here is hoping to a happy and healthy IT band!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Easy 5km....taper taper taper

Hi All,

Tonight was an easy was rainy and wet but that didn't stop me from running my last Wednesday run with the Half Marathon Clinic! I have done several clinics at the Running Room and they have each been so amazing...but this group really supports one another and we've all developed into good running friends...I look forward to finishing the Half Marathon with every one on Sunday and celebrating!

Tonight I had a good run although my legs are still feeling 'tight' I hope that 3 days off and hopefully some good sleep with help...

Currently I am trying to figure out what Pace I am going to Run for the retina...I am going to print off a pace band for this race...since I haven't officially done one since 2007 I really do not know what my 'race pace' is...I did a 21.1km training run a few weeks back so I plan on aiming for just under that time. I will make sure that I give a good race recap...

I am off to Costco to get some sports drinks....I am having a great week food/water wise but I would like to get some sports drinks for after and maybe one on the Sat.

The Weather for Sunday is supposed to be:

Cloudy with a high of 16 and a low of 8 so far so good! Let's hope for zero wind and no humidity!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Tuesday Run and Yummy Dinner

Hi All,

Tonight was an easy tempo just relaxed...there were quite a few of us who ran the entire route together so it was nice to chat today and not be so serious...only 5 more sleeps until RETINA!! So exciting!

Tonight when I got home from work I decided that I would make dinner before hand so that when I came home from running all I had to do was re-heat dinner...I enjoy having a hot meal after running...lately I have been getting Subway on Tuesday nights which is great...but a home cooked meal is even better..

I got this recipe from

It is super easy and really tasty...You make it in one pot (dutch oven) so there is hardly any clean up...a good source of protein, carbs and veggies...

Creamy Rice, Chicken and Spinach Dinner

1/4 cup Kraft Signature Roasted Red Pepper with Parmesan Dressing
1 lb. (450 g) boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
1 can (10 fl oz/284 mL) 25%-less-sodium chicken broth
1-1/2 cups instant brown rice, uncooked
125 g (1/2 of 250-g pkg.) Philadelphia Light Brick Cream Cheese Spread, cubed
6 oz. (170 g) baby spinach leaves (8 cups packed leaves)
1 large tomato, chopped
2 Tbsp. Kraft 100% Parmesan Light Grated Cheese
Make It!

HEAT dressing in large deep skillet or Dutch oven on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 5 min. Add broth; bring to boil. Stir in rice; return to boil. Cover; simmer on medium heat 5 min.

ADD cream cheese; cook, uncovered, until completely melted, stirring occasionally. Add spinach (skillet will be full); cover. Cook 2 min. or until spinach is wilted; stir gently.

REMOVE from heat. Let stand, covered, 5 min. Stir in tomatoes; sprinkle with Parmesan.

I love stuff like this because chances are I already have the ingredients to make does not involve a lot of work and it is REALLY tasty!

Some of the ingredients!

I promise you it tastes great! The picture does not do it justice!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Sat and Sunday Long Run Recaps

Hi Folks,

Saturday was gorgeous! I woke up and went to a Hot Yoga was sweaty...instead of biking I decided to take the dog for a long walk....5km to be was such a gorgeous day...Really nice family time in the evening...this weekend has be great! I love having 4 days off.

Today I did 10km....It was such a beautiful day...I didn't start my run until just after 11am so it was HOT out there! I started off wearing a tank top, running skirt and arm warmers...clearly I was wrong about the arm warmers...those came off after 5mins...

I think that today was a good "practice" for running in the heat again. I ran into the Wortley Village and continued north along the park system.

The first 3km felt great...I had a good steady pace...I think that the next two kilometers I was so focused on when I was going to be turning around that I was a little distracted...I took a gel at the 5km turn around...Success! No stomach irritation today...I probably did not need to the gel so to speak but I am trying to build up a stomach of steel so that on those long runs I can actually take some gels or chews so that I can get some today was a success..

The last 5km were pace probably slowed a bit but it is a Sunday long run so I wasn't too concerned...I had success on the hills with picking up the pace...

I know that I often complained when we did hill training and speed work but this time around I really believe that it makes all the difference in training...I feel prepared for hills and I have noticed that compared to the last time I have picked up my overall pace...

I have to watch my water intake on the really hot runs...I have a tendency to not take any and then at the end be pretty today was a good warm weather reminder run...Take water (not too much so it is sloshing around in the belly), also Sunglasses and a Hat)...I forgot my hat :( so it was hot. Next time.

What a beautiful Easter...I just hope that the weather will be like this next Sunday for the Run for Retina! Happy Easter everyone!!!!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Lovin the Weather!

What a beautiful Good Friday!!! I really wanted to take it easy but the weather was just so nice! The hubby and I decided to go for a bike ride with my dad, his husband David (We call him our Bike Coach...he knows a lot about biking and is really helpful and is the one who helps us to train for the MS bike ride), also our good friend Bente came along (she also does MS bike ride). We stuck to the path/trail and biked from the North end all the way to the Little Red Roaster in the Village for a this time I decided that it would be best if I went home...I am trying to take it easy this week with the taper and all....

I got home and did some Front Yard work followed by a long walk with the puppy. I believe that I even got a bit of sun on my shoulders and face...We had Dad, David and Grandma over for dinner (We had BBQ burgers!!), followed by the movie Sherlock Holmes (we all enjoyed it...especially my Grandma who is 95 years old!!) then finished the day off with a hot tub.

I often don't get days like was perfect...I felt really active and enjoyed the sun but also was productive with some of the things I did around the house...dinner, movie and hot tub were just what we all needed...I am so lucky and blessed.

I am really looking forward to getting out on the bike more and training for the MS ride. Here are some pictures of all of us.

The Hubby, Bente, me and Dad

David, Bente and me all in our Canada bike shirts! We looked GOOD!