Tuesday, November 30, 2010

2 great Giveaway

Nice Giveaway over at Running through life blog
Jessica's Gifts Jewelry!!

And also over at Running Diva Mom
Pair of Somnio Running Shoes !!!!!!!!!

I dont have a good title but I need to type one so there it is! and People at the Gym (part 4)

Today's run: 4 miles on treadmill at the gym.  First 2 miles went by so slow I thought I had done 5..but no just 2....crap must stay on longer....I was not tired or anything just bored.   Luckily I found some free entertainment from the people at the gym.  I got 2 good ones today.  Sometimes I think someone should do a sitcom called people at the gym ..I bet most gym in southern California offer good entertainment...

The treadmills are all upstairs and when I run I look at all the people downstairs using the equipments.  This morning in come a gal who probably goes to the same surgeon as Pam Anderson... OK you have an image in your head.  She also probably shop at the same stores.  Clearer image.  So she walked in and of course all the dudes turned their heads...all age groups represented for this task :).  One of my friend told me about this gal but that was the first time I saw her...anyway one guy made an extra effort in the attention giving and he walked into a machine...for real...his poor nose took most of the impact... bleeding and all.   I thought it was hilarious (I know I am a bad person)...the girl saw it and just kept walking by...he did not even get a bit of sympathy!

In the morning there's a lot of older people at the gym.  I became friends with some and I love listening to their stories.  Today there was a woman dressed all in pink, I was told she is in her mid 80s, she was in the middle of the floor where all the machines are and she had headphones on and she was dancing..looked like samba to me but I am no dance expert.  She looked like she was having the time of her life, not a care in the world.  I thought she was great!  I could never do that, I'd be way too concerned with what people would think.  Maybe when I am 80 I'll have the guts to do something like that! :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Week 5

A new week already
On to week 5 of training plan!

This is what I have to do this week

Mon: Stretch and Strength:
Tue: 4 miles
Wed: 2 miles or cross
Thu: 4 miles + strength
Fri: Rest
Sat: 40 min cross
Sun: 6 miles
total: 16

Sunday I got my next race and it is a hilly 5k at Universal Studios backlot so wont be running 6 miles that day.  I will have to adjust a bit I guess.

Today I did 20 min bike and Strength training.  Back to running tomorrow, 4 miles on the treadmill...would much rather do that outside...but my youngest will be with me so...the gym it is!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Post #50...already?

This my 50th post...already.. not even one month since I started this blog! I never thought I would have people following my blog and I am happy to report I got 15 followers!!!                Thank you all!
So I saw on a few blogs people marking milestones and since all the cool kids are doing it here we go!!!

50 Things about me:

1. I am a proud Quebecer.
2. I am left handed.
3. I have 2 sons aged 4 1/2 and 6.
4. I have been married for 10 yrs.
5. I moved to California in May 2000.
6. French is my first language.
7. My father is Hungarian.
8. I have a bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering and one in  Food Sciences.
9. I met my husband at a work seminar in 1999.
10. I learned English watching the soap General Hospital.
11. I coached basketball for 13 yrs back home: all levels of H.S. and College.
12. In College I was on the swim team and basketball team.
13. I am 5"11" and I am this tall since the 6th grade.
14. I have met Keith Urban 3 times.
15. I have been to the Ellen show 7 times.
16. I love cold weather.
17. Both my sons are left handed.
18. I started running in March 2010.
19. In 2009 I had 2 surgeries within 6 months.
20 I lost 70 lbs in about 9 months.
21. My favorite Holiday is Christmas.
22. I hate shopping.
23. I love coffee.
24. My favorite TV shows are: The Amazing Race and Parenthood.
25. My favorite song is Thunder Road by Bruce Springsteen.
26. I have a Golden Retriever and her name is Maggie.
27. As a kid I was never allowed to go Trick or Treat.
28. I have one brother who is 16 mos younger then me.
29. I don't like Roller coaster.
30. My idol is Dara Torres.
31. I am a terrible cook.
32. I love hockey.
33. I am always on time.
34. I cannot stand liars.
35. I cannot go to a bookstore and not buy a book.
36. I love taking pictures.
37. I almost never wear make-up.
38. I always wanted to have 2 sons.
39. My favorite color is Blue.
40. My favorite sport team is DUKE.
41. I always thought I would be a working outside the house mom and I am not.
42. My favorite movies are Schindler's List, Four Wedding and a Funeral, The Hours and The Sound of Music.
43. My favorite books are Quelques Adieux, Sarah's Key, Me talk Pretty one Day, Atonement and The Corrections.
44. Favorite place I have visited: Budapest and Paris.
45. I love Maths.
46. I have zero artistic bone in my body.
47. Being a mom is best and hardest thing I have ever done.
48. I would love to visit Ireland.
49. My mother is one of 16 children.
50. When I was young I broke 7 bones and kept all the stinky casts for years!!

Technology issues - weekend long run - week recap and Ho! Ho! Ho!

5 miles is what was on the plan today.  Was ready to get out at 8:45, weather was PERFECT, kids were fed but then my Itouch decided to act up! Grrrr...Actually it was the Nike + app that was having a tamper tantrum...it was "frozen".  Everytime Itunes sends a message that there is an update for Itouch and I install it something happens to Nike +.  I tried everything to get it to work...nothing! I was getting a little frustrated (like yelling at the computer frustrated). At 9:30 I decided to delete the app and re-install it.  Well that made it work again but it also erased all my data and calibration! :(  Good thing the data are all at Nike+.com but still it sucks.  So ok that was fixed.  I had new headphones to try for my run and I hate them! They are Nike ones that go around the ears...well my ears are too small and they fell off the whole 5 miles...very annoying!  Must find another pair fast!
The run itself though was perfect! I felt pretty good, no side pain this time I did not stop once.  I could have gone longer so I feel good about that. :)
This was my week for training , in red is what I really did.

Week 4 :
Mon: Stretch and Strength: did that plus ran 2 miles
Tue: 3.5 miles: 4 miles speed work + strength (Thu Strength in case gym is closed)
Wed: 2 miles or cross: 2 miles and 20 min bike
Thu: 3.5 miles + strength: 3.5 miles
Fri: Rest: REST well Christmas shopping..is that really rest?
Sat: 40 min cross: 30 min Elliptical and ran 2 miles
Sun: 5 miles: 5 miles
total: 14: 18.5 miles

So overall a pretty good week for me!
After my run and a quick shower we took the kids to see Santa!!!

And tomorrow is back to school after an 11 days of Thanksgiving break....Yeah I am not really sad about that!!!!!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cross Training and People at the Gym (part 3)

Today is cross training day on the plan.  I do not really enjoy cross training.  I almost always cheat and add a bit of running in the mix.  Today no different..did 30 minutes on elliptical machine and ran 2 miles that were not scheduled on treadmill.   Lost another pound....Took the kids to get a smoothie!

Weekend morning at the gym, always interesting to me.  I see people I don't see during the week so it is very entertaining!!  So in the people at the gym segment today we have:

- A woman walking on treadmill with sunglasses on...maybe it is me...I don't get it.

- This one I wish I had taken a picture but I don't have the guts to do that: a woman in the free weight room wearing FLIP FLOPS!!!!!!! No kidding! That should not be allowed right?!

- The loveliest thing: an older couple, probably in mid 70s, walking on treadmill and HOLDING HANDS!!!  Made me smile. 

Friday, November 26, 2010

The day after....and Special thank you

The day after Thanksgiving...on the plan is rest so I rested or so I thought...I lost my mind somewhere and went shopping...not in the middle of the night! But I still went...on THE DAY AFTER...why do I do that to myself?  This is NOT rest! I am exhausted and honestly I did not get a lot of gifts shopping done...but I did save some money so that is good!

So since I don't really have anything running related to report today...I wanted to write about something I am grateful for running related...

I talked in my very first post that I started running because one of my friend fought breast cancer and I wanted to do something to help.  My first race was the Susan G Komen race for the Cure in March 2010.  A few days after that,  Dara Torres one of the person I admire most ,  sent a message on twitter about a new book called Run Like a Mother.  She said it was great and that was enough for me.  That evening I went to the book store and was lucky to get the only copy they had (shame on them for that!!).  I started reading that book and it made me believe that little old me could actually become a runner...and I decided to sign up for my 2nd race: The Carlsbad 5k.  I read the whole book and then I found their website and their facebook page.  I found everything I needed there: advices and support.  I think it was after I had ran for 6th 5k that I asked my husband if he thought I could actually run a half marathon...his responses was not "Yes of course you can!"....I turned to the RLAM family and they could not have been MORE supportive!  I can honestly say that without all the great comments I got when I asked on the Facebook page about how one can know they are ready for a Half, I am not sure I would have signed up for the Carlsbad Half Marathon.  I don't know these people but they gave me the little push I needed and I am so grateful for that.  Now that I am in training for the big race and I don't really know what I am doing,  I have questions and that group has been so generous to me and plenty others in giving advices and sharing about their experiences as runners.  I am so very thankful to ALL of them.  If you know a mother  who runs;  this book is the perfect Christmas gift, I promise she will love it!  It is for all runners...beginners like me or BQ Marathoners!  It has great advices and lots of funny sections.  I highly recommend it!

So to Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea: Thank you for writing this book!!
 To everyone over the RALM Facebook group who answer my questions and give me advices and share their experience: Thank you I appreciate it so very much!
And then of course to Dara Torres because without her tweet I would have never found that book and who knows if I would still be hitting the pavement!

If the running mommy in your life already has this fantastic book I recommend this other fantastic book:

Who does not want abs like those right?

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Great Giveaway here for a Nathan fuel belt!

here at Running through life

Happy Thanksgiving

Went for a 3.5 miles just like planned, was nice and perfect weather here!
Went to the grocery store, that was more of a workout then my run! Wow people are loosing their minds today...2 grown up men fighting over a veggie platter the one and only left in the store! They both had their hands on it...really ridiculous...buy some celery and carrots and cut them already!!! Bird is in the over, thanks to my dear husband who is cooking dinner!
I did all the cleaning now we wait for the guests!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!
If you see me in a store at 4 am remind me last year I said these words "NEVER AGAIN!"

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Easy Wednesday - Thanksgiving-

Still doing good this week and following the plan.  2 easy miles and 20 minutes on the bike.  Gym was empty, people are gone for Thanksgiving and I love it!!!  Turns out they are open tomorrow! No kids gym though.  I get to run outside because dear husband will be home cooking the turkey!!!  Thanksgiving does not mean much to me as far as tradition goes since I spent 30 yrs of my life in Canada where we don't celebrate Thanksgiving.  Of course I understand the meaning of it and I want my kids to grow up with all the American traditions since we live here and well they are Americans!  So we are doing the turkey and all the good stuff that I cannot eat!  My father in law is coming and one of my dear friend who is Scottish, is also coming with her 2 sons! So we will have a American-Canadian-Scottish Thanksgiving !

So Happy Thanksgiving to all of you reading this!

I am thankful for

-My family: my husband and my fantastic boys.
-My parents and my brother and his family.
-All my friends back home, I miss them so much, every day.
-All my friends that I have here in the US
-my husband for working hard so I can stay home to take care of our kids.
-my husband who comes to all my races and wait for me to crosss the line with the kids.
-my doctors who are trying to "fix" me, still a work in progress.
- all my friends who joined my Race for the Cure team!
-For coffee...I should not drink you but I cannot give you up! My only vice!!!
-The Run like a Mother gang for all the support and advices and for telling me yes you can run a 1/2 marathon!
-The cooler weather! I feel better now that you are here!! Please stay for a while!
-My kid's teachers: they are so lucky to have wonderful teachers this year.
-That my parents are coming to visit us for Christmas.
-My home
-That the tumor I have on my kidney did not grow in the last year
-My sweet dog Maggie I love her so much
-My camera!
-Our babysitter who is the nicest gal
-Keith Urban for bringing joy into my kids life every day and for giving them the love of music.
-My ipod...could not run without it
-That I am here and I am able to take care of my sons
-Running..the great escape.


Great giveaway over at hotlegs runner!!!
A pair of "magical" headphones!!!

Go here to enter!!


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The International Association of Women Runners Women’s Running Telesummit

Here's an interesting event for women runners, featuring experts in training, nutrition, life balance and other topics of particular interest to the women’s running community.

Everything is done over the phone!
Instead of traveling to a conference location, you can listen to each presentation from the comfort of your home, office or car.

Best part is that it is FREE!!!

Speakers include the great Jeff Galloway and my favorites Sarah Bowen Shea & Dimity McDowell Co-authors of the book “Run like a Mother”.

 You can get more info and  sign up for this event here: womens running telesummit


I just realized today is the 23rd..means 2 months to go before my first half marathon!!!
So many things to think about...like fueling.  I don't have a belt.  I have never carried water on any race or on any runs.  I have not gone long enough so far.  On the race website the info says:

Water stations will be positioned along the course (approximately every mile beginning at mile 2) with plenty of water and portable toilets. Lemonade flavor Ultima Replenisher will be served at even numbered water stations. GU energy replacement gel (Chocolate Outrage and Vanilla Bean flavors) will be available at miles 4 and 9.

This is a big race 1500 for the full and 8500 for the half and it is sold out.
I don't know if I should trust that the stations will be enough and that they won't run out of supply by the time I pass them....or should I ask Santa for a belt and carry my own stuff....I am not sure I would like running over 2 hours with a belt on...but I also don't want to have fuel problems...decisions decisions.....

Hood to Coast contest

Link for the contest is working now
Go here for more info!


Speed (it is all relative) training and people at the gym part 2

Today on the plan I had 3.5 miles run and I did 4 miles speed (more on that) training with some weights.  I have weights on Thursday and not sure the gym will be open on Turkey day so I did it today (patting myself on the back right now).

So speed training.  It is not on my plan to do speed training or hills but I know it is better to do some so I do at least I try.  Speed is all relative.  Speed for me is slower then slow for Kara Goucher!  So I did intervals of 0.25 miles going 20 to 30 sec faster then race pace.  Speed work is no fun when you have sinusitis like I do now...boy it was hard to breath on the last one!  Am I going to run faster because of those? I don't know but it helps to change things up a bit when running on the treadmill so for that it is a plus!!!

People at the gym...(I think this will become a regular topic..if you go to the gym almost every day like I do you know there is good entertainment there and for FREE!!)

So today I got 2 stories..

First is this young gal I have never seen before coming up to me and asking "Did you ran the Riverside 10k?" (I had the race shirt on) so I said yes and then she asked how I did and I told her the truth.  She responded "HA! HA! I beat you by 10 minutes!"  HA! HA! Really? and so I could not resist and I was a very bad girl and I said " Well good for you.. Do you have any kids?" and of course she said no and then I said "How old are you dear?" 23...and to that I said "Well I got 18 yrs on you AND 2 kids" The look on her face was worth being 10 minutes slower!! ha ha!!!

Second one:  It is one thing to have people on treadmill or elliptical SINGING really loud and not really well but this morning I had a guy next to me who was Whistling !!! He was walking quite slow and whistling really loud.  A fist for me....cannot say I enjoyed it.

Monday, November 22, 2010

6 Strength Training Moves

Here's  some great tips from Dimity McDowell from  Run Like a Mother one of my FAVORITE book ever;  if you don't have a copy ask Santa for one!!!

All the exercises are 2 sets of 10-20 reps and require minimal equipmentNot sure I can do the side plank just yet but I will give it a try!!! 

Great tips and hilarious comments you will see!!!

Cool contest on Runner's World/Hood to Coast

From Runner's World Website:

"Best Race EVER" Video Competition
Have you run a race that not many people know about? Or have you run a popular race – even a major marathon – but had a one-of-a-kind experience along the way?

. And if you tell it well enough, you just might get the chance to win a trip for two to Portland, where you and a friend can see the world premiere of Hood To Coast: The Movie in VIP style.
Hood To Coast: The Movie, a feature-length documentary about the world's largest relay race, will be celebrating adventure racing everywhere with a special, one-night only screening in movie theaters across the country on 01-11-11. Now we want to hear about your biggest running adventure!

In the "Best Race EVER" contest, we want you to make a 60-second video clip telling us about your favorite race experience. Ten entrants will be selected to receive complimentary tickets to the showing of
Hood To Coast: The Movie in the city nearest them. And one grand-prize winner and guest will be flown to Portland, OR for the premiere of Hood to Coast: The Movie on January 11, 2011. The VIP package will also include a 2-night hotel stay, meet-and-greet with the film's producers and cast and tickets to the premiere's after-party.

Ready to enter? Head to
Runner's World TV for the official rules and Contest dates. Then, upload your 60-second video describing your favorite event. RW editors will announce the winners on December 13, so start selecting your classic race story now!

Here is the link to enter: the contest.

The plan

Today was the start of week 4 of my training for the half marathon.
I am following Hal Higdon's Novice plan.  Higdon because he goes with miles instead of time and Novice well because I am a half marathon NOVICE!  I do use the Galloway method for the long runs (5 miles and up) ratio 5:1.

I am doing this blog to keep track of my journey to this race so I need to include what I do and how good I follow the plan for the next one (if I cross the finish line alive I am pretty sure I will want to do it again!).

All right so last week (week 3) this was on the plan and I did what is in red.

Mon: Stretch and Strength: I rested because this was the day post 1st 10k race and Dr appt.
Tue: 3.5 miles: I did nothing because my Dr appt was rescheduled during gym time :(
Wed: 2 miles or cross: Ran 3 miles
Thu: 3.5 miles + strength: 4 miles +strength
Fri: Rest: Rest
Sat: 40 min cross: Nothing : Sick
Sun: 5 miles: 5 miles
total: 14: my total 12

Overall not the best week...things out of my control got in the way: Dr visits and a nasty cold at least I finished strong with a 5 miler.
Week 4 :
Mon: Stretch and Strength: did that plus ran 2 miles
Tue: 3.5 miles: 4 miles speed work + strength (Thu Stregth in case gym is closed)
Wed: 2 miles or cross: 2 miles and 20 min bike
Thu: 3.5 miles + strength: 3.5 miles
Fri: Rest: REST well Christmas shopping..is that really rest?
Sat: 40 min cross: 30 min Eleptical and ran 2 miles
Sun: 5 miles
total: 14

People at the Gym

Workout had to be at the gym today both boys are off from school ALL WEEK!
 There was no running on the plan today but ran 2 miles and worked on my 6 packs humm I mean my 2 packs...and upper body plus some stretching.  The guy next to me on the treadmill was in serious need of deodorant I am telling you this was not just the usual stinky smell from working out..! As if this was not bad enough he started passing these awful gas..the worst! I could not stay there I was about to pass out...so I changed treadmill.  I did not even think if this would offend him or not I just moved a few TM over.  After he was done he came and asked if the treadmill I was on was broken and says I should tell the manager so they can put a sign on it!!!! Ahhh!
Of course I did not tell him the real reason I moved but I could not believe he did not figure it out on his own!

On the treadmill I like to look at the people working out...what can I say; I need a distraction! Some are really interesting and funny.  There's this one personal trainer, I guess he is ok looking and all his clients are cougars!!!! They come in, with full make up on, super tight clothes (most should not be wearing those kind of outfits), hair perfectly done, super long fake nails, and they bring him coffee, smoothies and food!! They come one after the other and they all do the same! This morning one said "Now please Dan (that's the trainer) nothing to make me sweat today!!!" Ha ha!!!!!! I thought that was hilarious!!! 

I found a hat for the cooler days!  On clearance for $6.97 instead of $20! A good bargain! I look like a dork with it but it is ok, it even has an opening for my ponytail!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Things people say to me about running

My favorite group of runners are the gals over at Run like a Mother.  The book is one of my favorite book and I love their Facebook page.   So I took this topic from their Facebook page today and decided to put it here!
The question was "What's the most memorable thing a family member has said to you about your running?"

I got a few of my own so here goes!

- This one I get a lot : "Are you crazy?"

-After I asked my husband if he thought I should sign up for a half marathon he said "You think YOU can do that?" lovely right!? Well that is great motivation I can tell you that!  I'll show HIM!!!

"Why do you do that to yourself" from my dad

- My mom after seeing pics from a race "You look awful and very tired"

- Also from dear old dad "You do know you are not going to the Olympics right?"

- and still from dad last week " You are not 20 anymore " to that I said "yes and you are not 70 anymore!!" (He's 77!)

- From my 4 yrs old son : " Mom I think you need a shower, you smell like Maggie (our dog)"

- From my friend who is a doctor "You need to watch out for your knees!"

- From my dad (again): "Why do you start running so much, you are over 40!"

- From my mom: "I think 10km is enough for you!"

-From my husband: " People who looks older then you  crossed the line before you!" and  one of my favorite : "People pushing a stroller finished before you!" As if  I want to know this when I finish a race!

- Still from the husband : "The guy who finished first ran the 5k in half your time..but you did GREAT sweetie!"

- From my kids after I got a Top finisher medal: "Mommy you are the best of the 40s!"

- From my 6 yrs after a race :" Mom you look like you are about to puke!"

- From my 4 yrs old after a race "Mom you won!!! I said hmm no I didn't and he said well why did you put your arms in the air like you won then?"

And my favorites.....

From my husband last week after my first 10k: "You did really great!"
From my 6 yrs old son  :"Mommy you are the best running mommy!"
From my 4 yrs old son: "Good job mommy you did not even fall at the end!"
From my non-running mom friends " You are nuts but you are a rock star!"

Crsip Sunday...I need a running hat!!!

Today on the menu was a 5 milers...It had been raining here for a couple of days and it is pretty cool for Southern California...and this Canadian loves the crisp weather! Waited for a break in the rain, put my tights on, long sleeve shirt and gloves and headed out.  First half was fine...second half the wind picked up quite a bit and I was running against it...arrgh! Felt like last Sunday during my 10k race!  My poor ears were just about to fall they were so cold!  So I must get a better hat for the colder days, my usual running hat not good enough for this weather!!!

Now off to a rare date with my husband! Going to the movies!!!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Do you struggle with the endless excuses to NOT go out and run?

Take 2 minutes to see this clip!!
I love it!!!

Mind Games - directed by Casey Neistat from Nike Sportswear on Vimeo.

Want to know what I will do on my next birthday?


Your Movie: ........... Hood to Coast Event (NR)
Showtime: ............. 8:30pm, the evening of Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Theater: .............. AMC Ontario Mills 30
4549 Mills Circle
Ontario, CA 91764
Tickets Purchased: .... 2
I am so happy that the movie HOOT TO COAST will be playing so close to where I live! I already got the babysitter reserved and I bought my tickets!  My husband agreed to come with me.. it is MY birthday..what was he going to say other then yes right?

This will be the best motivation in preparation for my first HALF MARATHON that I will run 12 days later!  If this movie does not give me the extra mental push I don't know what will!!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

My boys and Keith Urban: A Story of how dreams can come true...

Friday is my rest day and I use it to go volunteer at my son's school.  So nothing to say about running today so thought would share a family story. 

I have 2 sons and they are 4 1/2 and 6.  They are both OBSESSED with Keith Urban.  Not Batman, not Buzz Lightyear, not Ben 10 or any other super hero most boys their age are obsessed with.  For us it is all about KEITH.   This love affair started back when my older son was about 19 mos old.  I left him in the playroom while I was changing his baby brother's diaper, the TV was on and somehow he figured out how to change the channel.  He put the TV on CMT and park himself in front of the big TV, mouth wide open like he had seen Santa Claus!!!  I kept checking on him to make sure he was fine then he started to cry and scream pointing at the TV.  I came to see what was wrong, he was just pointing at the TV.  Well thank God for TIVO!  I hit rewind and the tears stopped!!! Like magic!  Did not pay much attention at what was on, some guy playing guitar, never seen him before.  The song ends, the crying came back.. and it went on and on and on....you get it right...So after 43 times I learned the name of the dude causing all this commotion: Keith Urban.  So I kept the recording of this one video of course...the song was BETTER LIFE (now the official anthem of our family!!)  Of course I thought this would pass....Oh no....the next day same thing...pointing at the TV waiting for the song to start.  At the end the host says "And this was Keith Urban and Better Life" and guess what was the first word out of my son's mouth? No it was not MOMMY!!!! Yes it was Keith! I kid you not.  He would get up in the morning and stand in his crib and say KEITH!  After a week I got really tired of the same song all day long...so I went to the store and found a DVD of one of his concert and that saved my sanity or what was left of it!!!!

Since then we have purchased all of Keith's CDs and DVDs.  I thought this would pass and my son would move on to another obsession and also that my younger son would not follow in the under 2 yrs old Keith fan club....I could not have been more WRONG

Future Stars??

My youngest took this to a whole new level.  He also said Keith before mommy...one day I might forgive them for this I am not sure...and when he was old enough to tell people his name he would say - you guessed it- KEITH! and not it is not Keith of course!   Last year we were at the grocery store and a lady asked him what is your name and he said :"I'm Keith and this is (pointing to me) Nicole-the-wife!"  This is not a joke! All true!  He knows all of Keith's songs he know all the words that he says on the DVDs even when he just talks between songs!
For his 4th birthday he asked for a Keith cake!  When he got his piece with Keith on it he refused to "break Keith" and he had no cake!!!

I have video of the kids singing and I put them on Youtube so that my family could see them.  Well last year I got an email from a guy in Nashville asking if he could use one of my clip to include it in a video montage that they were making for Keith Urban's tour!  Of course I said yes! They used 7 people for this and my son was the only child in it.  He is right after the girl.  This montage was used for the whole tour in the US, Canada and Australia!  I got to go to one show here in LA and saw it in person, it was very strange to hear 20 000 people clapping for my kid!!!

From one of the concert

Almost one year ago my family got to meet Keith Urban.  It was like Christmas for my kids!
He could not have been nicer!  I was so happy to be able to see my kids meet their idol and that he was just as great as they imagined him to be.  This was a great day for them.  They saw him play after we met him and at the end of his set he came up to my son and put his guitar pick in his hand and left the stage!  On the way home my older son said : "Wow dreams CAN come true!!!"

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Hill run

Today on the plan was 3.5 miles, decided to run 4 to make up a little bit for Tuesday.  On the Higdon plan that I follow for the half marathon, there's no specific instructions for the runs...just the distance.  I know I have to do some speed work and hills so I mix that plan with the one in the Runners World book I have where they brake down the runs for speed and hills.  So today decided to do hills and on the treadmill.  Makes it less boring to have that kind of run on the treadmill!  Next 5k is at Universal Studio back lot and that is very hilly so I need to get the old knees ready!!!  I did increments of 0.25 miles, started elevation at 1 then 1.5 go back to 1 then 2 back to 1 then 2.5, etc...
Good thing I will have this blog to remember what I did since I am mixing 2 plans together and also use Galloway method for long runs!  If this works out good for me I will know what to do for the next half!!! :)

Tips for my Susan G Komen team!

All right ladies here are some tips for you !

First of all remember you have PLENTY OF TIME to get ready to walk or run this thing
If you are going to try to run the 5k and you are not a runner right now this is for you.
I am no expert on running so these great tips come from a real expert: Jeff Galloway.

  • Start by Walking.
    Everyone needs to feel comfortable and successful right from the start. Begin by walking for 30 minutes. Keep doing this until it feels easy.
  • Walk Briskly.
    When normal walking becomes easy, walk briskly for 30 minutes and monitor your heart rate every 5-8 minutes. If it seems below the target zone, pick up the pace. Many people will never want or need to go beyond a brisk walk, provided they can maintain their target pulse rate.
  • Insert a Few "Jogs."
    When you are comfortable walking briskly and want to step up the pace, simply insert 3-4 "jogs" of 100 yards or so (about the length of one football field or a city block) into your 30-minute walk. Warm up by walking slowly, build into a brisk walk and then do the short jogs when you feel ready.
  • Increase the Running as Desired.
    Increase the running segments as you feel stronger, always avoiding discomfort. You may eventually fill in the 30 minutes with slow running - or you may keep your walking breaks. You're using the running to push the heart rate above the threshold and the walking to keep from getting uncomfortable.

Right now it is still too early to start a training plan but it is a good time to start moving a couple times a week!  The Holiday season is almost here so perfect timing to burn a few calories right?  So all you need is wakling/running shoes and off you go!!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Back on track!

Well after a "forced" 2 days break today I had my first run post 10k race and it went a lot better then I thought!  Legs were not too bad.  Followed what was on the menu from my plan for the 1/2 marathon and did 3 miles.  I have 2 mores races before the half marathon: A 5k that will be VERY hilly and a 10k the week after.  I got to figure out how to train for these...I think I will stick with the Half training plan and have those races be my runs for the day and not go all out...espacially for the 10k.  Weighed myself at the gym..one more pound gone..I got to be careful with this.

Awesome Giveaway!!!!

Here is an awesome giveaway from one of the blogs I follow!!!
DC Rainmaker is giving away a Garmin!!!!!


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Could you eat the same thing every day?

So 2 days off from running...not 100% by choice...yesterday had Dr appointment scheduled during gym time, was ok with it because it was post 10k race day so I figured ok to rest.  I had arranged for childcare for my younger son at his school, went to my appointment only to be told that the Dr was not in and we had to reschedule! Really? They said they called my house to let me know...what happened to calling cell phone #?!!! Had to reschedule for today and this time I had to bring my son with me; not fun.  I had plan to go to the gym right after but I did not plan on waiting in the exam room for over an hour! When I got done, the kids gym was closed!  I was not happy but I have a nasty cold maybe it is better to rest and this was a sign from above to slow down...I choose to believe that!

Ok so back to the main subject of this post...Could you eat the same thing every day?
I do. 
I lost 70 lbs in about 8 months.  In 2009 I had two surgeries.  I had an hysterectomy in April of 2009.  In the fall of that year I started having burning in the chest, I thought I was having a heart attack...turned out it was heartburn.  I also had pain on my right side.  The Dr I had at the time told me to go to the ER thinking I had gallstones..CT showed nothing so they told me it was a muscle spasm and my all time favorite : STRESS! They said to take Advil and YOGA class!  So I went home and started taking Advil, well everything got worst real fast.  It got to a point where I could hardly eat anything, I was in so much pain.  I was loosing weight very quickly.  I changed Dr and my new one ordered a HIDA scan to see if my Gallbladder was working and turned out it was not so I had to have surgery to have it removed.  Taking the Advil had caused a lot of damage to my poor stomach and I developed acid reflux.  A lot of people are cured after the surgery but not me.  I have been on a very strict diet for the last year.  This means no fat, nothing acidic, no alcohol, supposed to be no caffeine but I cannot give that up 100% so I cheat.  I am a prisoner of my diet.  If I cheat, I get sick.  So far no food I tried was worth getting sick! And so I eat the same thing every day.  I eat cereals in the morning, non fat ACTIVA vanilla yogurt and a little cheese with dry toast fir lunch, a salad for dinner.  I can have a little bit of salmon in it or grilled chicken.  It is hard to accept that I cannot eat anything I want like I used to before.  No more pizza! No more lasagna! No cheeseburgers!

Yes it is nice to have dropped some weight, of course.  Obviously if I could loose 70 lbs it means that I was not at an ideal weight.  Now I am under weight for my height (5'11") and that is not all good.  I have to take supplements to make sure I am not anemic.  I went from a size 16 to a size 4.  I used to by size XL now I get S.  This is all very strange to me, I still go for the bigger sizes when I go shopping...old habit I guess.

I got really frustrated with this whole eating situation and running was the only thing to help really.  I feel that with running I can control something with my body.  The first 40 lbs went away because of me getting sick and the last 30 lbs because of the over the top healthy diet I am on combined with running. 
My friends always ask me how I lost so much weight..looking for a magic secret...well I don't have one...I would take some of the pounds back if it meant that I could have a slice of pizza with my kids once in a while!  I have now accepted that this is the way it is for now, I take meds every day to control the heartburn and acid reflux (GERD) but it does not make it ok to eat a larger variety of food. 

Being thinner does help with running and I am in much better shape now then I was in the last 15 years.  I don't eat junk food and I don't drink sodas or alcohol, that is good for my health.  Those are good things, the not so good thing is that I don't have to choice to decide to be "bad" for a day!!!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

10k RACE!

Today I ran my first 10k race!  I already had a couple things not going my way: back pain and a cold and then last night my neighbors decided to have a really loud party from 5 pm to 2 am.  The kind of loud that makes you call the cops....not once but 3 times....so thank you rude neighbors.  We got to the race early, me and my supporting crew aka husband and 2 sons!  Parking was insane so they just dropped me close to the starting line and off I went.  First goal: finding the porta potty...well no porta potty at the start! Really? This race had a half marathon, a 10k and a 5k...more then 5000 runners....porta potty at the start should be a must I think...Anyway...saw a Starbucks and decided to go there to take care of business...I figure I get coffee from them enough they kind of owe me that much!  Thank you Starbucks!  Ok so that is done now back to the starting line!
At the start the usual funny stuff...people with strollers trying to get in the front in the already packed crowd..I don't get that.  The sun was out already and it was warmer then I would have liked but oh well could be worst.   And finally the start! I had decided to try the Galloway method for this race with ratio 5:1.  First 5 minutes went by real fast and  I hesitated to stop but I stayed with my plan.  First mile went by quick and easy, I skipped the first water station and continue...Mile 2 first hill...a nasty one...Mile 3 came following a pretty hard hill and that was the best part of my race because my crew was there with signs to cheer me on!!! I checked the time: 26:00! WAY too fast for me.....must slow down.

Best Supporting Crew ever!

Getting to half way point, I saw my kids there

Waiving to my family, best part of the race!
"See you at the end!"

After that things got pretty hard.  The nasty GUSTY winds! NOOOOOO! For 2 miles that included hard hills we raced against really strong winds.  That was really hard.  I had to take an extra walk break, made me upset but it is what it is.  After mile 5 I thought ok you got this, hang in there, the worst has to be over...and it was.  The winds were not as bad but we had one more big hill...ok I can do this...turning the corner for the last stretch a guy yelled at me: "Come on finish strong!" thank you stranger I needed that!!!

Turning the last corner.  I can see the finish line!

I finished a little over an hour, don't know the official time yet, forgot to stop my watch but I think 1:06 something like that...so second half much slower but that is ok.  I did it!  I was very tired at the end and I had a few tears but I was happy!  Now my back is not happy with me...so tomorrow must take it easy I think!!!

Smiling at end that is a plus!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Who do you admire?

Who inspires you to be better and to push yourself?

Like most people I do admire some people for their accomplishments and how great they are at what they do, for how intelligent they are and what they were able to discover.

Since I became a mother of 2 little boys, my list of heroes has changed a little and the person who is now at the top of my list is my grand mother Mathilda.  She had 16 children! No that is not a typo she really did, and no twins.  My mother is #15.  If my grand mother was not the saint that she was, I would not be here today.  When I think that my days are hard I think of her and how her days must have been...and she did not have all the things we have now to entertain our kids and money was tight and they had to do the best they could with a lot less.  She raised 16 kids and they all turned out to be fantastic people who gave her over 60 grand children, some I don't even know and I am # 53.

Here she is with her 2 youngest children.

When I was 11 years old growing up in beautiful Canada, Terry Fox was a young man with cancer.  The cancer took one of his leg and he started running the MARATHON OF HOPE, a cross-country run to raise money for cancer research.  His goal was to run across Canada and sadly his cancer spread and forced him to end his quest after 143 days and 3,339 miles.  He was the bravest person I had ever seen.  I was in awe of him, I still am to this day.  In my country he is a national hero.  I think of him when I run and the pain comes to pay me a visit or when I feel lazy...how much pain was he in? Laziness was not part of his world.  I admire Terry Fox.

And then there is Dara Torres, my personal idol.  She is in my age group, she is a mom, she is a super athlete.  I always admired Olympians.  I was on a swim team when I was younger.  Back then running was not on my list of things I enjoyed doing, in fact I hated it!!!
Dara Torres has competed in 5 Olympics so far...and she is not done!!!  In 1984 I remember watching the Games and seeing this American girl and thinking she is the same age as I am.  I have followed her career with great interest because I can relate to her.  When she competed in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing she was the same age I am now, 41 years old.  One of her book is called "Age is just a number" and it is so true.  To me she is a true inspiration.  She is a single mother and she can compete with girls half her age and have you seen her body? All muscles!!!  Whenever I don't feel like going to the gym or cutting the mileage I am supposed to do short, I always tell myself: "DT would not stop!"

Friday, November 12, 2010



This movie is coming out on my birthday: 1-11-11

 A one night special event!

If you live in my area please request it for our town as a birthday gift to me!!!!! Click on the link below to request the movie in our area!

From the website:


HOOD TO COAST follows four unlikely teams on their epic journey to conquer the world's largest relay race. The film captures the love, dedication, and insanity of the every day runner as well as the excitement, pain, and humor of the unprepared first timer. Their stories are reminders that no matter who you are, you can push yourself beyond where you thought your limits were.
Each year 1,000 teams (12,000 runners) in 2,000 vans cover 197 grueling miles as a relay, putting themselves through an arduous physical journey that as an individual would be impossible.
Some run to test their personal limits, some to overcome personal obstacles, and others leap in blindly looking for a way to shake up a complacent life. As we follow four teams from their preparations through the big day, we realize that winning isn't everything in a film that takes a celebratory look at personal motivation and attempting the extraordinary.


The last effort before the next big test!

Today was my last run before my first 10k.  I followed what was on the 10k plan so just 2 miles.  Tomorrow is rest day and Sunday my first 10k!  Back is feeling a little better so I am happy about that.  It is not 100% but better then 2 days ago for sure!...Now got some nasty sore throat that came to this party uninvited but it will take more then that to take me down at this point!!! Tomorrow going to the fitness expo after my son's soccer game to pick my race packet and take a drive on the course.  I just saw online that it is one big loop and that is great, they have a 5k at that race and I was afraid I would run the 5k loop twice but no so I am happy! Also looks like they will have 5-6 water station so plenty for me.  Now all I need is a better back, not to get a cold that is worst then the one I have now and COOL WEATHER!!!! Heat stay away you are not invited to this party either!!!!



Here is another awesome giveaway!
visit this blog for a chance to win a shiny new pair of White Mettalic Ryders Eyewear VTX Sunglasses:


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Great Giveaway!

Click for a chance to win a Bondi Band!
Great giveaway!!!


Countdown to the first 10k

So today on the 10k plan was 2 miles and on the half marathon was 3 miles so I ran 2 miles and super slow ran 1 miles. Back is still very soar but somehow doest not hurt more while running...so there is hope!
Big 10k coming up, I wish I was 100% for it, does not look like I will be, I accept it, I just want to finish and run an intelligent race! It is my first 10k and I am using it as a test for using the walk breaks during a race.  I know I will have to do it for the half and so I will test it on Sunday.  I need to find a good combo run/walk for me...and not be ashamed of actually walking during the race...forget about everybody looking and just do MY race!
My plan is to follow J. Galloway's advices and take breaks BEFORE I get tired.  Based on his method for 9 min pace I should run 4 min/walk 1 min.  I have trained with 5 min/ 1 min so we will see how that feels with the bad back!
One more easy workout tomorrow and rest Saturday and then 10k race! Hoping for cool temperatures!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

When things get in the way of training....

I am not a professional athlete, I am a professional mother and so sometimes, my profession gets in the way of my running.  Sometimes it is for reasons that are not welcomed like illness or tamper tantrums or the car refusing to start or a leak in the house...Sometimes it is for reasons that bring me great joy and pride like today.  It is the end of the first trimester and my son who is in the 1st grade received an award for Accelerated Reading achievement.  He was the only 1st grader to receive that award and no training plan was going to make me miss this, sorry mister Higdon!  So I ditch the gym and left my running shoes at home and went to the award ceremony.  This was also probably better for my poor back who is not happy these days, maybe it will pay off on Sunday to have taken a rest today.  After the ceremony I had to go see the good Dr thinking I would get all my results....but no.  I had to do a rather painful nerve test where I received a bunch of electric chocs, no fun at all.  Then she told me to come back Monday to discuss all the results.  WHAT? More waiting? 4 more days of not knowing.  She still could not say what I want her to say to me: "you DON'T have MS for sure 100%".  I will try to put this in a little box until Monday but I am not going to lie I am disappointed, I was prepared for results not more waiting!  At least today I got to be a proud mom and that makes today a good day.

My superstar!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Today's workout

I ran 3.25 miles this morning, on the treadmill.  That was on the plan for the 10k and the half so perfect.  I had horrible back pain and I am getting worried for Sunday. I tried to stretch as much as I can...I was ok running but after not so good.
I cannot take any Ibuprofen to help with this because then I would end up with heartburn and I don't need that right now! I was fine before yesterday's MRI so I am pretty sure laying still for so long on that hard surface caused this back pain. I tought running would loosen me up but it did not :(


As I was watching the NYC marathon on TV this weekend I kept wondering how this top elite runners can run without music? What do they think about all this time? They don't talk to each other obviously...that would be weird to say "hey you are you doing?" at mile 12.  They have the crowd to cheer them on but that is not consistent.  What is in their head I wonder? That is what I would ask them. I cannot run without my Itouch, well clearly I can but I don't want to.   It helps to have music in my ears and also to hear Lance Armstrong's voice from my Nike+ app telling me how far I have gone and how fast.  It is crazy but I feel less alone and also supported!  The mental aspect of running is often the hardest part for me...I don't want to think of how many more miles I have to go for the whole run or about how much this part of my body hurts right now.  I'd rather listen to Pink telling me to run as fast as I can to the middle of nowhere!
Even though I run with music even on race day...I sometimes don't even remember hearing the tunes that played during my runs...I know that is crazy.  Anyway here is some of my favorites that are on my running playlist, I must add to it to cover  the half marathon !

- Bad Angel (D. Bentley)
- This Afternoon (Nickelback)
- Put you in a son (Keith Urban)
- Raise your glass (Pink)
- I gotta feeling (Black Eyed Peas)
- Just like a pill (Pink)
-The Way you make me feel (M. Jackson)
- So What ( Pink)
- Born to Run (B. Springsteen)
- Hit the Ground Running (Keith Urban)
- Bonyeu (Les Colocs)
- The Rising  (B. Springsteen)
- Express yourself (Madonna)
- One Week (Barenaked Ladies)
- The Emperor's New Clothes (Sinead O"Connor)
- Bille Jean (M. Jackson)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Back pain

Back pain today...pretty bad.  I had another MRI, the third and last in 4 days.  Laying still on that darn machine is not helping lower back pain...They were behind at the hospital and I ended up waiting 1:30 before it was my turn.  I was looking at the clock thinking my time at the gym was going down the toilet and sure enough by the time I got out of the hospital it was time to go pick up my son at preschool.  Today was supposed to be a cross training day including weights and stretching...I hate missing workouts...this is week 2 of my training plan for the half but it is also supposed to be taper for my 10k....so with back pain maybe better to use today as rest day instead of Friday...
I have another day of waiting before getting the results of my MRIs...brain, c-spine and l-spine.  Wednesday finally I will have some answers...well I hope!  I want the good Dr to say: "You do NOT have MS"..yep that is the reason for the brain MRI...a little scary to see these letters in the Dx section of the order.  Also whatever the reason for my health issues..numbness being the one that sent me to the neurologist I hope it will not affect my running...