Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Training for a Tri: Step 1-3 (of many more)

Step 1:  Find an awesome group to train with, and even better a group that has a coach!  Sigh*** I love coaches, they just make me feel so warm and fuzzy on the inside, like everything is going to be ok!  I imagine my affinity to "coach" comes from a decade of competitive swimming.  I'm thrilled to share my group with all of you (it's not to late to join, all levels welcome) On facebook look up Mommy's in motion/Babe's in motion and the website is  I loved when they introduced themselves and then told us that we would be split up in two groups on the first day of training, groupA - been around before  groupB- S (squared) - aka.  scared shitless

Step 2: Find a bike (and make sure you have a helmet), and get on that bike... NO FEAR!!!!  Ok so realistically I can ride a bike, I know how to use the gears, I know most road signals for turning, and I'm not afraid to bike in the bike lanes on the road, I am however nervous as hell to ride around other people.  You know the Tour de France epic crashes, well I get antsy when I'm biking with my 6 year old because she could crash into me.  I am also irrationally afraid of "curbs", not the big ones, the ones that are only about 2" high, those are the ones that freak me out because I've fallen off my bike trying to get up on one while I was biking.  And now I've just learned about another "potential" hazard... Grates!!!  Apparently your road bike tires can get caught in it.  So right... No Fearrrr!!!suuurrre... 

Step 2.1 Buying a bike.  Oh lord, will someone just take my money and find me an appropriate bike, and by money I mean like 150$, which apparently you can only find a "ok" bike if you add another "0" to that number.  Sheesh.  So let me tell you what I've learned from two days of road bike research and shopping.  Bike stores want you to buy "their" bikes, new ones of course.  And the base model, or entry level model will be about 800-1000$ (but then you still need shoes and clips), these bikes have lower end parts and the bike is mostly made of aluminum (which is heavier than the carbon frame ones).  The better version would be about 400$ more and that will get you better components but still not a lighter frame.  When you get into the 2K range then you are looking at a carbon frame (which weighs all of 2-3 lbs less).  So for an extra thousand dollars you get a bike that is a few lbs lighter.  Wow! 

I am not buying a new bike, I've scoured kijiji and pinkbike to find something more in my price range (next to nothing) that will suffice for this summer (and possibly next).  Again the range for used is basically 100-750$ (that is for an entry level model).  I've managed to locate, a bike that is going for 75$, but I'm not sure the seller will sell to me... Hello Kyle!  please rsvp to me...sending out my intrawebnet-tellapathy vibes...  He has responded once to my reply to his add, but nothing since.  Ugghhh I am so impatient.  I have actually checked my email 3 times since starting to write this post.   I will let you know as soon as I get an actual road bike, it will be very exciting and interesting!

Step 3:  Get in the water, so simple and yet still ridiculous.  Today is supposed to be my rest day, but at about 8:50, while I was lying down beside Patrick trying to get him to fall asleep, I remembered someone from the training group mentioned that Tansley Woods Rec centre has lap swimming mon-thur from 8:30-9:30.  So what the hell, if I decided something on the spur of the moment, then I don't have time to physch myself out, I jumped out of bed, put on my old training suit, stuffed a towel, some underwear, shampoo and goggles in a bag and ran out of the house.  The rec centre is about 5 mins from my house, so I made it there by about 9:03, they didn't charge me but told me I could hop in and swim.   COOL!  free swimming, I need to remember that!  So I just walked on deck, stripped off my pants and sweater, grabbed my googles (my hair was in pig tails because I don't have a cap) as a side note, did you know swim caps melt with age.  Seriously gross!  I walked up to the 'medium speed' lane, but noticed that the slow lane only had one swimmer, so instead of joining a group of 5 swimmers I had my own lane. The thoughts that raced through my mind as I hopped in, dunked and started up a rhythm of strokes. 

1- wow I feel good, this isn't that hard, 2- don't forget to kick, don't just drag your legs and 3- WTF... why is my bathing suit nearly falling off!!!!  Like we are talking butt billows here, and I'm sure a few times the girls came out, and I tucked them back in during a flip turn.  I need a smaller bathing suit, oh great Mark is going to love the next expense to this venture.  A suit that fits is pretty important.  Even though I had no physical problems swimming 800m (the sprint tri distance is 750m) I was extremely distracted by my suit being too big.  It never really occurred to me when I was putting on my suit that I needs to be tight (really tight) When I've worn it before it was tight, which was 6 years ago.  I'm about 40lbs lighter now.

  So if nothing else, when you buy yourself a bathing suit make sure when you are trying it on, it feel like you are trying to get into something that is way to small, drag is good for training but not good when you want to "feel" the water. 

So these are the first few steps of my journey towards a triathlon. 

Monday, May 28, 2012

My new Goal: Complete a triathalon by 09.2012

I must be completely insane.  Well it's not enough that I do hot yoga a couple of times a week, or that I workout at Goodlife a few times also in a week... Now I'm running (ps, I hate running) and biking.  Guess all I need to do is hit the pool and I'm well on my way to completing a triathlon.  I was a competitive swimmer back in the day, so I do know "how" to swim.  Doesn't mean my muscles are going to be used to that type of punishment, because if I learned one thing in my 4 years of Kinesiology at Mac was that you can be in the best of shape in one sport, but it doesn't transfer.  You can still suck in another sport. (ie. elite swimmers can't necessarily run long and hard like they can swim)  Muscular efficiency is something that training is for (mental note! should I get a coach?). 

Now that said, I've made a goal. Complete a triathlon!  I've since done a tad of research and realized I can specify what type of triathlon.  So I've opted to compete a sprint triathlon.  This is 750m swim, 20K bike, 5K run.  Piece of cake!  (or so I will keep telling myself over an over again)

So in order to train for this, with the very limited funds that I have available.  Ahhhkkk did I mention I need to buy a road bike too!  Do you know how expensive those are, good heavens, a cheap one is still 500$.  Well technically I don't need a road bike, I have a hybrid but still...Ok so, back to the training.  Obviously, I've found some online training schedules, that basically tell you how many minutes to train for, in what even and on what day. I've also asked my brother to bug his varsity swim coach to write up a few swimming practises for me.  Since this is my first one, I'm not really too concerned about spending loads of cash on the gear, I'll probably train in an outdoor pool in the summer and when it's the actual race day, I'll put a pair of tight shorts over a bathing suit and Bob's your uncle.  No worries.  I'm sure my butt doesn't need fancy shmancy riding shorts or I won't need a wet suit to stay floating (I've been known to be pretty buoyant).

Do you think you would do something like this?  Would you train with me?  Bike around north Burlington and run laps around the block with me.  The sprint tri is at the end of August.  Who's in???

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Garden Herb Salmon with mango salsa.

So I love fish!  I haven't always loved fish, probably because when I was a kid my dad always caught it and we were served it for breakfast, lunch and diner!  (not everyday, but you know... on fishing trips and camping)  Eventually I moved out and realized that when I bought fish... Yikes it was expensive, so now it's a treat for me!  I love fish!  I've been eating less and less meat these days but then suddenly I need an oily addition to my diet.  Enter salmon!!!  super duper oily, good fats of course!  Yay for EFA's.  I was inspired by my garden herbs to season everything. 
Top right corner is my summer savory, which has a bit of a black licorice flavour.   I also used the parsley (bottom middle) in my salsa, mostly because my cilantro is from seed and is still considered a "baby" in my garden and won't get "picked on" for a few more weeks! (you can see a tiny bit of it in the very bottom right corner of the picture)

Here is my dill growing like weeds everywhere, even in the grass this year.  My fault!!! at the end of last year's season I just shook out the seeds and they must have gone everywhere!!! 

Terrible picture but I also have green onion growing and chives which I also used in the salsa.

Mango Salsa

Half a mango cubed
Couple inches of cucumber cubed
Parsley, green onion, chives all chopped up
Squeezed lemon juice (about 1/3 of a lemon) however just use it to the taste you like!

Grilled Salmon Directions

Chop savory and dill, rub on salmon.  Coat salmon and herbs with oil (I used a grain oil). Grill on very hot BBQ for a couple of minutes each side. Depending on the thickness, but I find that if you sear the outside the flesh will keep cooking but will be wonderfully moist not dried out!  I grilled my asparagus at the same time.  I did not coat them in anything when they were on the grill only after they came off did I drizzle them with olive oil mixed with garlic!

Ha ha, I did make two pieces of salmon but if you ask my brother, he will tell you that I made him give me part of his too!  I think I ate 6$ worth of salmon...  Again special treat for me, to be sure!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Raw Asparagus Salad!

So we all know what BBQ season means!  Tons of meat grilled with lots of extra grams of saturated fat (in the beef burgers). But I challenge you to try something different this year.  When everyone is grabbing stuff to throw on the grill why no go raw instead!  You will feel so good about it!!!  Have you ever eaten raw asparagus?  Well assuming it's the good stuff either from a farmer's market (local and organic) or from your own garden like mine, it is amazing raw! The tender white center is so sweet, sort of like the tender inside a broccoli stem!  (Please tell me you don't compost this part, it is sooo good, just peel away the tough outside and the inside is delicious)

 This salad has massaged kale and spinach (in olive oil), asparagus, red peppers, carrots (I got these at Organic Garage, the kids love how they are pre-cut), tempeh, humus and beanitos.

Mother's Day!

I realize this post is very late but HEY it's better now than never because... my friends I need to share with you the most wonderful,taste bud tantalizing, palate flirtation food I have  ever tasted.  Bacon dipped in dark chocolate!  (bottom left corner)

My mother's day brunch was a cornucopia of awesomeness.  Two types of pancakes (mine were gluten free oatmeal, extra protein powder added and the others were the buttermilk oatmeal pancakes), two types of turkey sausage, bacon, tons of fruit and the coup de resistance was the dark chocolate made "a-la-fondue" style.  We had visitors to share in our feast. Shout out to Christine, Shawn and their two lovies, Serenity and Gabriel! 

So to all my followers, yes I do realize this is not very clean! (well the bacon at least) but for one day of the year I allow my children to dip anything they want in dark chocolate!  Hopefully this tradition will stick for many many years to come. 

Each kid had a plate filled with food and their own individual chocolate to dip it in! Most popular was watermelon dipped in chocolate!

Live shot!  all dips and focus here!


Friday, May 4, 2012

Ahhh the two and half year old....

Tonight at bed time I realized that my two year old was not in fact trying to kill me, or more specifically he wasn't really standing over my early grave with a toy beach shovel in hand... grinning from ear to ear...That was my imagination.  My overactive mind pictured that tonight's bed time was him slowly digging my grave, shoving me in, piling the dirt on top and standing triumphantly on said mound of sand.  The kid is so over tired that he can't sleep.  We will have to find a solution to this problem.  But in the mean time I thought of Calvin and Hobbs and how much this kid reminds me of my two and half year old son.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

What YOGA taught me today!

I have to tell you that tonight was the first time I've cried at the end of class.  You know how in the Biggest Loser the contestants are always bawling at the end of their workouts.  I've honestly always wondered, why are they crying? Is it to get out of doing more work? Are they in pain? Sheesh what gives.

 Well let me tell you ladies and gentlemen... I know why they cry!  It's because they are "broken", inside and out.  Physically and mentally they are toast.  Today at hot yoga, a 90minute stupid hard class with a famous instructor Pino (check out his website ) a couple of things happened. \

 I went into the class feeling ready to "be free", I used my kids example at the park today as my intention.  They have no fear, they defy gravity, they swing until the seat bounces (do you know what I mean by that?), they run around uninhibited by fear.  I was going to let that guide my practise today.  NO FEAR!  Well first of all if you have ever done one of Pino's classes at PYC you already are kind of fearful, his classes are well known to be "nutty".  Anyway I shared my intention with Pino before the start of class, basically solidifying it out loud and making sure I would be accountable for it.  The next thing you need to know is that the room was exceptionally HOT, he even warned us before the start of class that "it was going to be a wet, hot and juicy class", no really he did say that.  Ok ok,... so no fear, no fear, no fear...  my mantra, my intention.  That meant flying side crow, head stands (even though I did fall out and did a little roll and crash), but after about 60 minutes of No fear, translation... really hard practise, I was getting dizzy and nausious.  Still I kept trying to keep it together, finally after fighting with my nausea, I caved and had to leave the class to puke in the washroom.  On my way back into class I was told "well at least you are detoxifying your body", yup I guess all that smart food decided to kick me in the ass! I finished the class, barely! 

In savasana (dead man's pose), I couldn't stop the tears.  All at once I was overwhelmed by emotions.  I was sooo happy the 90 minutes was over, I was disappointed I had to leave the room (unspoken yogi rule: is to stay not leave), I was proud that I had in fact pushed to my max (puking pretty much is an indication of that), I was sad that it was over (I know doesn't make sense), I was so so so greatful for Pino who was there to facilitate my practise and push me to the edge, who inspired me to have "no fear" and I was just so overwhelmingly OPEN!  My heart was more open than it has been in a long time and I head something that he said... "Let yourself SHINE" Let the transformation happen, allow yourself to transform into the best version of yourself and others will notice and follow.  I heard that!  No hang on, more specifically my heart HEARD it!  I got it.  I don't have to Force the changes, I have to open myself up to them! 

That my friends is what I learned, I can be healed IF I allow the transformation to happen. IF open my heart to the process, and be present I will shine!  Tears were my body's physical way of showing me that I was opening my heart to the transformation and healing.