Monday, January 2, 2017


Beautiful summer weather right now, highs in the mid-20s C.  Too bad we're in the northern hemisphere.

Anyway, I'm trying to hit 30+ miles/week for the time being.  Last week was 29.1.  Not bad!
I'm also deciding how to track this.  I have Strava, but I mildly dislike it, but I don't have time to do my traditional excel sheets...or maybe I do.  I love the excel sheets because, even though I keep forgetting the sum function for weekly mileage, I put pretty colours all over it PLUS I can plot future training/runs.  I did this for about 8 years and, heck, I need all the help I can get these days so I will try to go old school.

And I will try to write more, like once a week.  

Meanwhile, 3.75 miles this morning with the dog.  The most noteworthy run recently was 10.1 miles on Friday--yay, 2 digits, and in 2016!--in Fort Worth, which is considerably hillier than expected. We also ran by a scrap metal/recycling/junkyard, and apparently the complex bouquet of various burning toxins smelled like Iraq (minus the high note of poo).  There was also a fair chunk of construction on the route, and one part smelled like South Korea (minus the high note of red pepper paste).   I should also mention that Fort Worth kind of sort of looked like Calgary.  And there was another part that kind of almost looked like parts of OTTAWA, mainly Preston Street, same general scale and size/type/situation of buildings on and just off it, same sort of businesses, though not so much little Italy.  It was heartwarming though.  I miss home a LOT. So lots of reminiscing. There was also a bit of off-roading.  Again, more memories, of other off-road runs~

It wasn't the easiest run, but it was reasonably epic.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016


I have been running, and I have been writing, just not here.  Yesterday, I submitted a research essay and signed out of my other omnipresent Google account (the one linked to my umpteen Google docs), and read a BOOK.  During the next several days, I'm going to read other BOOKS, and run, of course, and do nothing even remotely academic.

Anyway, running highlights from the last six months:

2 family 5Ks with my husband, my kid-n-stroller (my husband pushed), and the dog (and my husband held the leash during the last mile of each, because I'm definitely the weakest link).  My results, just over 30 minutes and 29:17.

Yeah, slow.  I'm still about 20 pounds heavier than before, plus I'm still out of shape...I'm working on it, but my kid is still nursing, and so it seems I have to hang onto the extra fat for the time being.  He is eating solid food too, mind you, including meat (favourites being barbacoa tacos and hamburgers), and he's also drinking cow's milk, but I'm definitely still on the hook.  He is just over a year old now, and he's apparently a couple of inches shorter than the average two-year old, but otherwise he's about that size and weight.  His clothes and shoes are mostly 2 year old size.  So, he eats a lot, I guess, and so I just have to be patient.

But I also have to keep pushing, and not just the stroller!  Recently, I've done two almost 10-mile runs.  Each one was supposed to be ten miles, I've been having issues with Strava, and so I'll probably dig up my old Garmin.  My plan is to finally crack two digits on New Years' Day.  We'll see how that goes.

I'm hoping to attempt a 1/2 marathon early in the spring, before it gets hot again.  My kid likes riding in the stroller, and we have a Thule* which rolls really well.  I have time, and no excuses.

In addition, I've kept up with the Pilates series--have I mentioned this?  It's called The Perfect Bum, and maybe I now possess this under those adipose layers, but it turned out to be an excellent regimen for my pelvic floor and core, and now I'm at the point where I'm bored with the maintenance phase and trying to distill it.  Doing ten reps of whatever seems pointless: I can get a similar burn doing five with more intensity.  I don't have the willpower to really do ten, but I can focus for five.  

Anyway, today we ran just 4 miles.  I was originally going to try for 6 again, but it was 21 C and misty/humid, but not actually raining, just on the verge...of brutal.   It's supposed to be chilly now, right?  Right?  It was a hot fall.  ugh

*I highly recommend this brand: light, easy to push, not as expensive as the Bob strollers or whatever they're called, and it doesn't come with cup holders or a bunch of junk attached to it, but does have decent storage space under the seat.

Saturday, July 30, 2016


I ran yesterday thanks to a bit of a break in the weather and in the night.  I had the kid/stroller and the dog, it was warm (about 26 C, pretty much like every morning nowadays, but less humid), and there was no joy in it.

However, this is perhaps granting me a valuable perspective of some sort, I guess.

Meanwhile, we are halfway through the worst of summer!  Just chipping along, day by day.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016


So it's been kind of a trip?
There's this thing called sleep regression and this other thing called separation anxiety...
Plus it's summer here, which is not "oh, yay, summer, fun!" even for people who like summer.

But I actually ran again this morning.  Easy short jog with the dog.  And then I walked, carrying my 23 pound child, about 2.5 miles.  We got back in shortly after 10 am and 30 C.  We're not going back out until the dog asks to.

My goal this summer is to at least do more than I did last year when I was pregnant!  And to not whine about the weather again until August. The highs will be around 37-38 for the next several weeks at least, but this is the price to pay for 6-8 months of beautiful weather.

Saturday, April 30, 2016


.... sleep has been an issue.
But I think I'm almost out of the deepest part of the hole finally.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016


I jogged about a mile today.

It's been a bit rough these past couple of weeks.  Apparently, babies sometimes experience sleep regression--basically, the kid who has been sleeping 6-7 hours straight at night went back to 3-4.   This combined with insomnia left me with not much sleep at all.

Insomnia aside, the sleep regression usually happens during a major developmental leap, so it's actually pretty cool.  The kid is now rolling all over the floor.

In other news, I caught the end of the Boston Marathon yesterday, which was neat...but it seems that there isn't anyone in the region who can speak both English and Amharic (or Oromo?) fluently.  Or maybe the winners were really saying "Look, I'm kinda really tired and I just want to get back to the hotel and room service, so if you pretend to not speak English, they'll stop asking me questions and let me go."


Monday, April 4, 2016


8.8 miles yesterday, but walking.  Some streets were closed down for cycling.  They do this twice a year.

Big deal, right?  At home, they do it every Sunday for about half the year.

However, that's not a festival.  It's super and awesome, but it's not much more than a bunch of people going from A to B as quickly as possible--which is cool, especially weekly, don't get me wrong!

Here, was definitely a festival.  Everyone was out.  The guy with the super tall bike that defied mounting, check.  The family with custom-built heaping twisty chrome bikes, check. The steampunk people with their Victorian bigwheels, check. The guy (or girl) pedaling a doghouse with a real dog sitting in front, check.  The quasi-motorcycle gang with the black leather and raised handlebars--but on bikes and with spiked helmets--check.  The zillion dogs, check.  The fixie popping wheelies, check.  The couple on skateboards, check, check, check.  The guy on some sort of motorized unicycle--and not a hoverboard--check, and check. Tricycles, for all ages, check.  Walkers, runners, strollers, check.

It kind of looked like a large charity 5K or something, but with bikes and Mad Max, and so many dogs.

Oh, yeah, and music.   There were some stages set up along the way, but a lot of it was from phones and boomboxes.  Here, it's not unacceptable to carry, and blast somewhat, your own tunes while cycling or running.  At home it's more like, shhhh, nature/neighbours/cross looks, but this is a larger, noisier city and there's music out year-round, so bringing your own vibe along with you doesn't raise eyebrows (except mine, the first few times).  So, yes, instead of a bunch of headphones, it was more noise.  I wouldn't have appreciated it as much had it been one person stuck near me for miles, with pop-country, but most of it was either electronic or funk, either which I can happily live with.

Plus, THE FOOD.  I actually just had ice coffee, mango lemonade, raspberry lemonade, and strawberry lemonade, during this walk, but there were a bunch of stands, plus the route went past restaurants.  Even the dog got some snacks along the way.

It was a fun afternoon.  I've been grappling with the probability that I won't be returning to Ottawa anytime soon, and that has made me sad, especially since my last trip was in the fall, which is already laced with nostalgia, and so much of it...but there was a moment yesterday, when I was in the sun idling gazing at someone who had dressed to match their bike (both a pale aquamarine), and there was a bunch of other colours, and noise, and people, and I thought, wow, I could stay here.

Yes, there are fleeting moments like this in many expat experiences; however, sad to say, most of the places I've moved to in the States have been more like, fuck, no.  And then I start digging up the fun stuff to do, the fun places to go, and the good food...and by the end, usually, I've been sort of sad to leave (except for southern Virginia, that was like, fuck, yeah).  This place, though, had my number from the get go.  I might eventually not be so sad to leave, who knows, but it has set a deeper hook.

Anyway, today, I just ran 2.5 miles.  Time to start going longer.  I really miss the zone.