STRAVA Summary

Friday, February 28, 2014

No Snowshoe Marathon

Well this year is off to a good start race wise, a DNF at Croom Zoom 50k in Florida and a DNS at the Snowshoe Marathon in Vermont. It looks like the Snowshoe event just wasn’t meant to be. Although I really didn’t have my heart in it, as we got closer I was definitely starting to look forward to it. As luck would have it though, a number of things mounted up to scuttle the whole thing. Number one was our Daughter in Law Johanna was admitted to hospital with complications to her pregnancy yesterday. We were not sure what was going on at first and we still planned on going, but then it sounded more serious and likely that she might have to deliver early… Trip off! This was the same day we were going to leave, so rather than leave and have to return we thought it best to stay. It wouldn’t have been a good trip if she had given birth while we were away or have us worrying the whole time either. The other problem was the weather, the cold and very windy conditions along with what turned out to be hours of snow squalls made travel from Barrie near impossible late yesterday. So we stayed home and watched the wind howl and snow blow around outside while we snuggled in and watched a movie.
As for Johanna? Turns out all was ok, at least according to the hospital and she is being released today. She had a fall last week which they believe caused her to have some bleeding and the contractions she was feeling was merely false labour. A night in hospital and lots of rest seem to have done the trick. Fingers crossed that the hospital is correct and all IS ok.
So after a week of tapering it’s time to get back on the horse and run. Although next week is taper week too as we have the Green Jewel again. My 4th year in a row at this event. This also has been up in the air due to concerns about racing in the freezing cold, but it looks like the weather is becoming a bit more favourable in Cleveland with a daytime high of nearly 8C. So at the moment with the forecast the way it is, we are going. Joan is concerned about completing a 50k at this time in her training, but I’ve told her she is very capable of getting it done and if the conditons are good it will be worth it.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Taper Time Again etc....

Its taper week, and where some people dread the lack of running during a taper, I look forward to it. With 3 of the past 4 weeks with mileage over 100k I feel like I could use a break anyway. I peaked out last week at 111k. So now all we have to do is look forward to this weekend and running with snowshoes on for a marathon, or in Joan’s case a half marathon. No mean feat regardless of the distance, especially since the weather is to continue with the polar vortex type weather in and through the weekend. Other than that the training has been going well, as can be noted by the mileage. What has helped a lot though was the new treadmill. I will say Joan broke the old one, but only because she was on it when it stopped working. It could have been ready to go due to all the indoor activity lately.
We did some research and after shopping around picked up an AFG 5.1T treadmill from the Treadmill Factory. They impressed with their knowledge and the lack of a hard sell. What we weren’t expecting was how heavy the new one would be. Me and Billy had a real struggle getting the new one into the basement after removing the old one with ease.
So on Thursday we will off to Montreal after work to stop at Kate and Gary’s before heading to Vermont with them on Friday. Saturday is race day and hopefully we should be finished in time to head back to work on Monday! The course is a 6.5 mile loop that is basically one big hill…. up and down the other side. 4 times! From what I’ve read it’s the going down that will be the challenge. Trying to make it down in one piece.

After the snowshoe race we are supposed to be going to Cleveland the following weekend to do the Green Jewel 50k, my 4th year in a row for this well run race. The only unfortunate part is that it is all on pavement. At the moment we are approaching this race with the thought that if the weather is still freezing cold, we may not go at all. The Green Jewel tends to be a cold race when it is above 0 C, so if it is a lot colder it will feel miserable. We still hope to go and do it.

Another race that has just recently popped up on my radar is the Wall Ultra which takes place in northern England and follows the path of Hadrian’s Wall from Carlisle to Newcastle/Gateshead. So it would be a return home for me in some respects having been born and grown up for a few teenage years near the finish in South Shields. The Wall Ultra is 69 miles and looking at the website looks great and well organized. For those unfamiliar with Hadrian’s Wall, it was a wall built 2000 years ago by Romans to keep the Picts (Scots) out of England. My old friend Paul’s son Chris is planning on doing it this year, so I look forward to his report on what it is like. Since posting on FB about the possibility of doing this race to other expat friends have piped in about going too, Gary in Montreal and Dave in Cleveland. So right now it looks like 2016 may have to be the year for this race as Joan has plans for next year, also over the pond. Hopefully I can stay healthy and will still be running for another couple of years.

Saturday, February 1, 2014


I'm going to try and see if I can start making at least weekly updates. Haven't had that much success in the past, but lets see where this goes.

Last night got in a nice and COLD 30k run, most of it at a nice a slow pace as I ran most of 25k of it with Rhonda and Joan. See Rhonda is legally blind and Joan has been acting as her guide and training together as Rhonda prepares for her run along the entire Bruce Trail in August. An amazing feat for anyone let alone a blind runner. So Joan has been spending a to of time training with and learning how to guide. Last night I took advantage of them going out on a night run, ran down to Rhonda's and then ran 25k with them. Rhonda finds it much easier to run in the dark. Her vision is better with no lights and we went to the 1st line of Oro where it gets "really" dark.
It seas supposed to be about -10C, which is not bad compared to what it has been, but it felt bitterly cold at times. I think I under dressed. Overall it was a good run and was definitely glad to get that run in with a significant snowfall due today. So I may get a Dreadmill run in this afternoon and then another long run tomorrow. I'll play it by ear for the distance tomorrow, it might depend on the road conditions.
I've been dealing with a couple of minor injuries lately and the ankle/lower right leg issue is still a bit of a pain. Rhonda is also my RMT and has been doing wonders to get it better, but it still can be a nagging pain.

With the snowshoe marathon coming up in 4 weeks, I've only been on snowshoes twice this year so thesis going to be interesting. It looks like I may just wing it and see what happens. Its not an important race for me, just something a little different and also something to gauge my fitness level.
After our Florida trip, my fitness level (i.e. weight) was at an level that it hasn't seen in many years. Also coming back injured didn't help and then there has been the weather!!!
Did a 9 day cleanse which got me backdown to a decent weight, still hove "normal", but at least more manageable. Now I just have to get my mileage up, which it looks like I'm getting there this week. I hate the treadmill, but it has been a bit of a godsend this past few weeks and I will rely on it on those days where I just can't get outside, whether its my softness as I get older or just my give shit meter is at an all time low!!