Training Recap September 12-18 and Eastside 10km Race Report

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What a week! This week felt like it lasted freaking forever, not too sure why! My week included a lot of running, a race during a monsoon, and a trip to Vancouver Island. Here is what my training consisted of:

Monday: OFF, I definitely needed this after Sunday’s hilly trail run. I did do my strength training circuit and some core work though.

Tuesday: 45 minutes “easy”, I also did core work.

Wednesday: double run day! I did 30 minutes “easy” in the morning and then 60 minutes “easy” in the evening with The Sport Chek Training Club. The total for the day was 17km.

Thursday: My workout was 30 mins easy, followed by 5 x 1 mile @ 10km pace, and then 20 mins easy. I was dreading this speed workout because I don’t normally do mile long intervals and they seemed pretty intimidating, but once it was done I felt great, as always seems to be the case after completing a challenging workout.

Friday: OFF.

Saturday: I had the Eastside 10km race, and it was pouring rain. I ran from my place to the start line as part of my 20 minute warm-up. Fortunately, the other members of The Sport Chek Robson Training Club also racing and I were able to warm-up inside an empty parking garage to stay dry a bit longer! Going into this race I was not sure what to expect, I had a big workout on Thursday and had planned to just run the race at a hard effort as my Saturday workout. I didn’t expect anything from myself due to being in the middle of marathon training. I was pleasantly surprised at how good I felt when the race started. I made the rookie mistake of starting too fast, I was ahead of the 40 min pace bunny for a bit and then realized and corrected my pace. My first km was 4:23 because of that speedy start. My goal was to aim for a 4:30-35 pace throughout the race. There are quite a few hills on this course, but for whatever reason they were not a problem and I felt strong going up every single one. My second km was 4:36, which was more reasonable. The following km’s were as follows: 4:31 4:29 4:35 4:25 4:27 4:30 4:21 4:14. It didn’t even feel like I had to be looking at my watch constantly to make sure I was hitting my pace, it was almost natural. I was super happy with how I felt during the course of this race. I finished at 44:28, which is a new PB for me, previous to that my time was 45:12 from West Van Run. After the race, I went back through the last few hundred metres of the course to see the ladies from The Sport Chek Training Club cross the finish line. Everyone surpassed their time goals and it was awesome to see 2 of the members complete their very first 10km race! I finished off with 30 min easy along False Creek in the rain for a grand total of 19km.

Sunday: Off. This was supposed to be my last long run of 2.5 hrs, but I took the ferry to Victoria right after my race and went to Rifflandia music festival, staying up far past my grandma bed-time. It’s good to have some fun once in a while 😉 So, I pushed my long run till tomorrow and will be doing part of the Victoria Marathon course.

Total Weekly Mileage: 61 km

Training Recap August 29-Sept 4


So this last week was a lot less mileage than the previous weeks due to an unfortunate incident that happened last Monday. It was my friend Jess’ last day visiting and we decided to go to The Sea to Sky Gondola for the day. We took the bus there and ride the gondola to the top, which I had never done previously. It is definitely worth doing because the views are spectacular! There is a wooden balcony where you have a panoramic view of the mountains and water, and also a suspension bridge that offers amazing views too. Once you cross the suspension bridge there is a short trail you can follow to get different mountain views, we did that and took 1,000 photos and then stopped for a picnic lunch with a view. We knew there were a few other places to walk around and decided to one that boasts a view of The Chief, which I hiked a few weeks ago. This was definitely not a hike, it was more or less a gravel path, but it did not disappoint with the views and scenery. I don’t think there could ever be a “bad” view in Squamish. 


There was still time left after we completed this path, so we decided to try another one. It was rated as easy and we were interested to see what alternate views it had to offer so off we went. About 1 minute into this trail, I was going over some roots, ahead of Jess, and all of the sudden I was on the ground. I was covered in dirt and my left ankle HURT. Jess started laughing because she has a knee injury and we were joking that I would have to drag her out of the trail…not the case! I hobbled my way out and fortunately had an ice pack from our picnic I used to soothe my ankle. By the time we got home it was the size of an apple, so needless to say I was out of commission for a few days.

Monday: OFF

Tuesday: OFF, NTC Jeanette Jenkins, Hollywood Ab Blast, it was hard!

Wednesday: OFF, NTC Serena Williama, Core Power and a strength training circuit with no lower body weight bearing exercises. I biked alongside The Sport Chek Robson Training Club. 

Thursday: I did the 30 second hop test to see if my ankle was okay for an easy run, no pain, so I set out for 40 mins easy. I also did a yoga for runners 20 minute practice at night.

Friday: 75 mins easy, mostly with The Sport Chek Robson Training Club. 

Saturday: I did the workout originally schedule for Wednesday which was: 20 mins easy warm-up, 4 x 15 mins @ marathon pace, 20 mins easy to cool-down.

Sunday: My long run was 2 hrs which was a bit shorter than it has been these past few weeks, I went a few minutes shorter for a total of 20km and it felt hard! 

Total Weekly Mileage: 59 km

Training August 22-28 and VanRace Recap

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You know those weeks where everything goes well? You hit all your paces with no problem, your runs all feel great, and you still feel energized! That was how last week felt for me and I am still riding that runner’s high -hopefully right into this marathon! This was another high mileage week and I made more of an effort to do core and strength training exercises which I have somewhat neglected lately.

Monday: OFF. Rode my bike alongside the Sport Chek Robson St Training Club in lieu of running because TAKE YOUR REST DAY. I also did the NTC Gracie Gold Core Strength workout.

Tuesday: I completed my BIG workout I mentioned last week Training Recap: August 15-21 which I delayed a few days. It consisted of a 20 min warm-up, followed by 5km @ marathon pace, 4km @ marathon pace, 3km faster than marathon pace, 2km @ 10km pace, and 1km as fast as possible before a 20 min cool-down. Smashing this workout renewed my confidence and started the week of on a very positive note. I did core as well with the NTC Gracie Gold Core Strength workout.

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Wednesday: I did my regular strength training circuit in the morning before work.In the evening, I did 1 km intervals with the Sport Chek Robson St Training Club alternating between 10km pace and half-marathon pace. These guys really pushed the pace and it was great to see them give it their all!

Thursday: 95 mins/ 17km easy which was done around the Seawall from BC place to False Creek. Thanks to Jess, my final summer visitor for joining me on this run and providing endless entertainment as she navigated the Seawall on a bike for the first time (and with no crashes)!

Friday: 70 mins/ 12 km easy, I took the Sport Chek Robson St Training Club on a run through the trails in Stanley Park ending up at Prospect Point. It was hotty hot, so the trail was a great place to run Friday night to escape the heat a bit. I had never done this route previously and the view was a nice reward at the turn around point! I also did the NTC Core Control workout.

Saturday: The workout today was 60 mins “easy” followed by 45 mins @ marathon pace. It was also a workout where I practice taking gels. I tried two different ones: a Huma Apple Cinnamon gel and an Endurance Tap Salted Maple gel. Let me just say, these are both VERY palatable and easy to get down. I prefer the Endurance Tap Salted Maple because it is more liquid-y than most gels, easier to swallow, and only has 3 ingredients all of which are natural! The Huma one was really good too though. I digested these without any problem and will definitely use them again.

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Sunday: Long run day! I made a last minute decision to do VanRace 30km for my long training run this week. I figured it would be much more fun than running solo, plus the water and aid stations take care of my fueling needs and I’m always up for more practice in the race environment so on the big day, there are few mishaps! I had a great time, the weather was overcast and cool, not the case at all lately, but definitely a welcome change. I was supposed to use this as a training run, rather than compete in it, so I went in with 2 intentions: 1) to feel strong and happy after finishing and 2) to keep my average pace at about 5:30/km.

I did feel strong and happy after completing the VanRace 30km yesterday, in fact, I felt like I could have kept going. I’ll take this as a good sign. When I started running, I was really trying to keep my pace slow and under control, it can be difficult to do this during a “race”. My first few km’s were: 5:38, 5:15, 5:20, 5:24, 5:25. A little faster than planned for the most part, but I was feeling SO good this morning. The next few km’s were: 5:25, 5:27, 5:23, 5:18, 5:27. The middle 10km were: 5:38, 5:30, 5:47( I think this was when I stopped to pee), 5:17, 5:28, 5:40, 5:14, 5:18, 5:07, 5:13. The last 10km were: 5:19, 5:18, 5:21, 5:32, 5:22, 5:03, 5:00, 4:55, 5:04, 4:45.

Time: 2:40:03 Average Pace: 5:19

During roughly km 13-25, I was running with 2 other women along the Seawall, everyone was very consistent. As the km’s started to tick by and the finish line grew nearer, one of the other ladies picked up the pace a bit, and the other started to fall back. Since I was SUPPOSED to run the whole 30km pretty slow, this kind of threw me off because it reminded me that this was indeed a race and I no longer felt like moving quite so slowly. I know a good number of people use this 30km to practice for longer races in the fall, but during the last 5km I wanted to pick it up a bit, so I went for it. I didn’t really feel like I was “working” during this race, so overall, it was a fairly easy perceived effort.

This was another run where I practiced fuel intake. I fueled every 30 minutes and had 1 pack of Honey Stinger chews, 1 lemon Huma Gel, and 3 Gu gels: 2 salted caramel, and 1 chocolate. I believe part of the reason I felt so energetic was from all the fueling I did. Never underestimate the impact fueling during a run! I was very happy to have been able to ingest all of this with no GI issues.

I am looking forward to more weeks like this, but if there are some less than ideal weeks that is okay too because it is all part of the process!

Total Weekly Mileage: 110km

Training Recap: August 15-21

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This month is absolutely FLYING by which means my marathon is quickly approaching in only 7 weeks now! I am right in the thick of training with lots of longer runs and higher mileage weeks and let me tell you, my legs are definitely feeling it. The first half of my training week was completed in Tofino. I really enjoy switching up the running scenery for a few days and have been lucky enough to do that quite a few times already this summer! I love finding new routes and really learning a new place by running all over it. On this trip to Tofino, I found a new route that is partially trail, then beach and ends up downtown. I will definitely do this route again the next time I am there. So here is how my last week of training went:

Monday: 2 hrs “easy”, my dad was nice enough to join me on this long run and we chose to go on the sand of Long Beach in Tofino. We made it all the way to the end of the beach and back to Incinerator rock for a total of 21.4km. Running on sand is hard work!

Tuesday: 1 hr “easy”, my dad also joined me for this run in Tofino. We went along the bike path on Pacific Rim highway and then turned onto the path to Long Beach, the very beginning of it, which we did not run on Monday.

Wednesday: This was a speed work day, but I also wanted to try out this trail that starts on Industrial Rd. in Tofino, near Tofino Brewing. We did the warm-up through the trail which takes you to Tonquin Beach, one of the smaller perhaps less popular beaches near downtown. I knew the trail would end downtown and then the speedwork could be completed on pavement which is more favourable for hitting paces. This workout was 3 sets of 3-2-1. It felt good to get my legs moving fast again the weekends’ 30km on Saturday and the 2 easy runs at the beginning of the week.

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Thursday: This was 75 mins easy, I went out on the Seawall solo. I left much later than usual as I wanted to say by to my family before they left. This was promising to be a HOT day, fortunately my 10:40AM departure was still early enough and there was a nice breeze. I also did The NTC Gracie Gold Core Strength Workout today.

Friday: The one day last week I was in town to lead The Sport Chek Robson Training Club group! We ran to the Burrard Bridge for some hill sprints, we haven’t done our hill sprints there in a while and a few of the members remarked on how much EASIER they felt than when we started. It’s awesome to see people feeling fitter, stronger and more confident after only a couple months of running. I did The NTC Gracie Gold Core Strength Workout again today.

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Saturday: This was scheduled to be a marathon pace interval day of 5km, 4km, 3km, 2km, 1km starting at marathon pace and completing the last km as fast as possible. I was a bit nervous about this because my legs were feeling heavy and tired, maybe my mental strength wasn’t there that day or maybe my legs were really freaking tired, but I started this workout and could not hold marathon pace. I opted to switch it for my Sunday long run, 2 hrs 15 min “easy”. I will do my Saturday workout tomorrow (Tuesday) and plan to nail those paces!

Sunday: Months ago, I found out about this race at The PNE called the Donut Dash 5km, it sounded kind of fun to run around the fairgrounds before opening. I also like to throw in a 5km race every so often to work on speed. Since I ended up being in the middle of marathon training for this race, I did not go in with the intention of running super fast or PB’ing. My goal was essentially to practice running on tired legs and stay faster than marathon pace and I did just that. For a race that looked like a “fun run” there were some surprisingly fast runners! This race is unique because they hand out fair treats on the course, like Oreo Churros and mini donuts, I decided to forgo those though.

Total Weekly Mileage: 96km

This summer has been quite full of visitors with my parents here last week and then my boyfriends’ mom arrived the day my family left! Fortunately, I have been able to get all my running in, enjoy their company and show them the West Coast. This week will be another high mileage week and yet another visitor is coming -my friend, Jess from Toronto, who I have known since we worked at summer camp together, many summers ago! She has never been to Van so I am excited for her to experience this city!

Training Recap: August 8-14, 2016

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When your week of training includes running The Seawheeze Half-Marathon, you know it’s going to be a GREAT week. Other highlights include my first 30km run. So here is what my week of training looked like:

Monday: 55 mins easy with The Sport Chek Robson Training Club. We went along The Seawall and it was just what we needed.

Tuesday: 10 min warm-up, 8 min @ half-marathon pace,  4 min @ 10km pace, 5 min @ half-marathon pace, 2 min @ 10km pace, 15 min cool-down. I did this solo on The Seawall before work. I also did The NTC Gracie Gold Core Strength Workout.

Wednesday: 55 mins easy, ran with The Sport Chek Robson Training Club and we got to test out some Polar watches. I am a Garmin user so it was interesting to try another brand. We went out to Lost Lagoon for some timed intervals so those who don’t run with a watch could see the benefit.

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Thursday: OFF, though I did bike some 28km around The Seawall and downtown since my family is here visiting. I also did The NTC Core Crunch 2.0 it did the trick!

Friday: 40 mins easy/ pre-race shake-out run with The Sport Chek Robson Training Club, we went along The Seawall and man was it hot, but at least it was short and sweet…

Saturday: 20 mins easy pre-race, Seawheeze Half-Marathon, 30 mins easy post-race. I am not going to do a full race review because I was pacing a team-mate through her first half and it was HER race, but I will provide a few details. I felt great when I woke up at 5am, felt amazing during my warm-up, and in spite of the heat and humidity, I felt pretty awesome throughout the entire race! Like I said in my Friday Five: August 12, 2016 post, this is my absolute favourite race. Lululemon organizes a FLAWLESS event and it is impossible to have anything but a spectacular time. I think I had beyond runners’ high, I felt ecstatic during the entire event and for everyone around me. I will definitely be running for a fourth time next year. Oh yeah and my total mileage was 30.4 km, my longest run ever.

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Sunday: OFF.

Total Weekly Mileage: 66.7km

I am off to Tofino until Thursday and can’t wait to do my runs in such a beautiful location. Prepare to be Insta-spammed!

Training Recap August 1-7

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Now there are 9 weeks until my marathon! But first, next weekend is The Seawheeze Half Marathon, which is basically Christmas for runners. This will be my third consecutive year running it. This year I will be running with a co-worker who has never run a half-marathon before. She is super fit and plays varsity rugby, so I have a feeling she might kick my butt! After a few solid days of running and training in Squamish last week, I was feeling ready for more. Unfortunately, I got some sort of food borne illness while in Squamish that lasted until Saturday! I still ran though, it just wasn’t the most comfortable.

Monday: OFF. NTC Gracie Gold’s Core Strength Workout.

Tuesday:  40 minutes “easy”completed early morning on the seawall. I also did my regular strength training circuit which is made of up various body weight exercises.

Wednesday: Intervals with the Sport Chek Robson Training Club. We typically do speed work on Wednesday’s so we did a fartlek workout that went like this: 1-2-3-4-5-4-3-2-1. You take 1 minute easy jog break between each interval and we were targeting 10km pace for each interval. Our training club gear arrived (finally) as seen in above photo! I also did Joselynne Boschen’s Alpha Abs Workout from The NTC app.

Thursday: 80 minutes “easy” completed early morning on the seawall. I was entertaining friends from Toronto in the afternoon and we ended up cycling 28km all over the seawall and false creek so they could get a feel for the city.

Friday: The workout with the Sport Chek Robson Training Club was hill repeats, so we ran across the Cambie St bridge to do hill repeats on what I refer to as “those tree streets”. We did 6 repeats total, 2 each on Willow, Heather and Ash St up to Broadway. I also did the NTC Yoga Ready Workout, I missed the word “workout” when I started this, thinking it would be a relaxing yoga practice. Not the case! Lots of planks! It ended up being a good arm and core workout though.

Saturday: I finally had a run where I didn’t feel nauseous the entire time, it felt great to feel great again! My workout was: 20 minutes easy, 12 mins @ half-marathon pace, 2 x 3 mins @ 10km pace, 8 mins @ half-marathon pace, 5 mins @ 10km pace, and 20 mins easy. I was super happy to hit my paces after a week of feeling sick. I also did my regular strength training circuit.

Sunday: 80 mins “easy” on the seawall as (almost) always.

Total Weekly Mileage: 66.1 km

Next Saturday is The Seawheeze Half and then I am off to Tofino with my parents, who are visiting from Toronto!

Training Recap July 18-24

I have 11 more weeks of training until my 1st ever marathon! Yes, that is almost 3 months, but I have a feeling it will fly by and soon I will be toeing that start line anxiously! So, what did my training consist of last week?

Monday: 16km “easy”, part 1 with Sport Chek Robson Training Club, part 2 at The Adidas Runners Vancouver Launch x East Van Run Crew (my regular run crew), part 3 my solo run home. I also did Gracie Gold’s Core Strength Workout from The Nike Training Club app.

Tuesday: OFF. I did a strength training circuit, lots of body weight exercises like planks, squats, lunges etc.

Wednesday: Interval workout with the Sport Chek Robson Training Club at Beaver Lake. This was a 1-2-3-2-1-2-3-2-1 fartlek workout. They said it was hard, which was the idea. The total was: 10.82km. I also did Joselynne Boschen’s Alpha Abs Workout from The Nike Training Club app- my abs were sore for 2 days after, but it was great.

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Thursday: 40 mins “easy”, this ended up being 7.33km, while I tested out my new shoes. You can about them here: Shoe Review: Under Armour Gemini 2

Friday: Run and circuit workout with Sport Chek Robson Training Club. We ran to China Creek Park and did laps around the park as well as body weight exercises using the exercise equipment there, we included hill sprints in our circuit too! The total was 10.07km.

Saturday: I did a 20 minute warm-up, 3 x 10 mins @ marathon pace, 20 min cool-down for a total of: 13.73 km. I also did the same strength training circuit from Tuesday.

Sunday:  I did a 45 min yoga class with the Sport Chek Robson Training Club, followed by 45 min “easy” run, 8km.

Total Weekly Mileage: 65.95km

I will be in Squamish for half of the week participating in a running camp led by my coach! I am super excited.