Back in action! I LOVE Brazil

Yep I’m back from my vacation in Brazil to watch the Olympics. Don’t have a ton of time (aka catching up on work…) yet to recap but in short- it was AMAZING. I love Brazil, the Brazilians were fabulous and the food, the food was sooooooo good. The Olympics were a sight to be reckoned with. I felt so sad leaving the cross-country area, I didn’t want it to be over.

I took so many photos too! Coming soon! Will split it into days.



We are what we pretend to be…

…so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.

Quote by Kurt Vonnegut, not an author I really enjoyed reading ever (so curmudgeonly sometimes, jeeeesh).

But this quote- it’s true! Although I think a positive connotation sometimes (do I pretend to be nicer, more generous than I actually am, and therefore somehow become those great traits?).

Anyways I’m thinking of this more in the terms of ‘fake it till you make it’ or some other bravado/encouraging type talk. I both like and dislike those sentiments. What if you’re always faking it?

Impostor Syndrome is actually a thing.

And to tie this into my horseback riding and run world- I often feel like I’m faking it, or trying to compensate for fear or fear of injury by blowing through and pushing myself to just ‘do it!’ and then it’ll all get better. Except the next time, I’m faced with the same fears. And the next time…And the next time…

So, this hamster wheel of pretending. Who stops the cycle? Am I willing to?  Not at this point I don’t think I am. This is very common in the workplace too, from what I hear. And my form of compensating is being braggy, a sharp, clever girl who showboats what she’s good at (and man, I am good at some important things at work, and I let them know it!!). This is another form of compensating, on my side, for previous times when my work wasn’t respected and it hurt me beyond what I knew.

Conversely- I’m an ok runner, on the mediocre side and I don’t really get to brag too hard about that, mostly because I’m kind of always living with the fear that my knee will sideline me bigtime. Every run is a lucky run, basically. I’m very careful about maintenance, but so paranoid about every twitch, stumble or ache. I know I’m lucky to get to do this much, and I often see photos of myself after a race and I am in awe- that’s me? I run? I do this?

Riding is a harder boat to float in. You can pretend to yourself, but can you pretend to an animal?

And I’m not sure what the lies ahead! I took yesterday off riding after the tougher dressage lesson- and my knees/legs have been KILLING me this week, so I spent the evening on the couch icing my knees and shins. Ouch…

Jump lesson with Oats tonight, and then I’m taking Friday off to rest my knee/legs again.

Race Recap: Oceanside Mother’s Day 10k! A big ego boost of a weekend.

Not a personal best, but a good day nonetheless!

Not a personal best, but a good day nonetheless!

Woah- let me just say that I really love smaller community-run races.

They are so much cheaper (entry fees are typically $20-25 in advance, maybe $35 day-of), the food is good – better than what we normally have at the TC10k – and the volunteers are awesome!

And at the finish, they gave you a carnation and a bottle of water! Lovely.

And at the finish, they gave you a carnation and a bottle of water! Lovely.

I had mentioned at my last race (Sooke 10k) that while I was lucky enough to finally place, I had also won a draw prize for another 10k race- the Oceanside Mother’s Day 10k. So, even though my last 10k was kind of a killer and I was swearing up and down I was going to take a break…I was now signed up for another one! Silly me.

My husband ran with me, and the course was really nice. Good variety of terrain and not too technical, we ran across a small bridge, down a hill to Rathtrevor Park, and out to the ocean, and we ran along the ocean for a bit on gravel, and then back through the park. I think this run had some of the loveliest scenery, and probably the most race-marshals marking the route haha. We really enjoyed the slight breeze off the ocean, and the hilarious stares of campers going ‘WTF’ are these people running like idiots through the campsites!!

On course in Parksville

On course in Parksville- Photo courtesy of Terry Riggs

It was cool in the trees, and overall not a warmer day, which worked to our advantage.

It would have been an excellent race to try for a personal best, but for some reason I just wasn’t 100%- I was struggling to rate my breaths, and I felt like I was gasping a lot more than I should have been. I have been trying to start out faster, and then work to try and hold my pace for longer (like 5k or so) but I started dropping faster and by 6k I was like ARGHH…I’m dying….

Way far back you can see us! Photo courtesy of Terry Riggs.

Way far back you can see us! Photo courtesy of Terry Riggs.

BUT everyone else was a bit slower- soooo I got the happy cheers of volunteers shouting to me that I was the second woman!! Yeah! That has NEVER happened to me, as I am still  fairly new at racing, having started just this year.

So, we kept pushing forward. I lagged bigtime at 6-7k, got a big ego boost from the volunteers and went through to 8- struggled up the very short hill, and then held fairly strong from 9 to the finish. No sprint at the finish, but I did feel like it was a good pace, and one we held well for the last kilometer.

We finished at 47:25, which was slower than my last 10k time (I know I can’t get PB’s every time I’m out…) but good enough to place me as the 2nd woman overall, and 1st in my age group! Yeehaw!!! I do have to note though that this race was far less competitive (a fun run) than the ones I have run overall this year- that is certainly why I placed where I did, NOT because I have somehow inexplicably become a super-runner.

Thanks, as always, to the lovely folks who take time to organize, volunteers and run in these races- I’m learning so much at each one, and enjoying the challenge.

End of an Era

That’s right, the venerable old gym at my undergrad university is going the way of the dinosaur…And we were invited, as alumni, to watch the final game!

Vikes B-Ball

Vikes B-Ball

I am not a big sports-watcher but the women’s basketball was actually pretty fun, and it was a nice activity to take part in on a Valentine’s day.

We were ‘VIP’ and that made it even more fun- drinks, pizza and snacks. Yes!!


And of course, the Vikes wiped the floor with their opponents- a cool 30-point spread, but the game was pretty back-and-forth until the last quarter. So that made it even more fun to watch!

Good bye old McKinnon- may you live on in the memories of former Vikes!

(Yes I am a Vikes alumni as well- I was involved in varsity rowing for a brief period time. Not so coincidentally, I quit rowing that year as well! haha).


Final word from Dave Freeze: High Performance

Final word from Dave Freeze: High Performance


In your pursuit of performance, how do you react to any mistakes? How does this affect your performance?

Use your lifelines:
1. Don’t react
2. Breathe
3. Chunking- break the course down in groups of 3’s. Memorize in groups of 3’s. Focus in groups of 3’s.
4. Made a mistake? Move on. Don’t dwell. It’s over! Next thing!

An ‘A’ athlete: likes themselves, is interested in the pursuit of excellence but doesn’t let perfectionism paralyze them.

Inner dialogue:
• Who do you listen to? The bad angel or the good angel? The more energy you give to bad thoughts, the more they will come up. Replace the bad habit with a good habit (positive thoughts).
• Tell yourself you’re going to be ok. ‘We’ll be fine’
• Tell yourself technical words: Need more leg at base
• Keep energy words: Keep it alive! Looking good! Keep it flowing
• Be confident.