The girls and I had a lazy morning, woke up late and then lounged in our pajamas until it was time to head out for a late brunch. After eating the rest of the morning and afternoon was spent playing in the sunshine.
T had plans with her “Big” this evening and then was invited for a sleep over at Shawna’s place, which gave me the evening free.
I took advantage of the free time and went for a run out along the waterfront, made it just past Willows Beach before turning around and heading back. I went through town on the way back and added a short bit on the Breakwater before making it home. Crossed paths with Mike down by Clover Point, he looked like he was out for an evening cruise.
Made it five in a row out to the Breakwater at lunch and was entertaining some thoughts of a double until T called saying she wanted to skip the Youth Centre and instead have a friend sleepover tonight.
So the evening thus far has been filled with some games, dinner, a little dancing (don’t ask) and the girls just left to go grab us some snacks.
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Check out these pictures, taken around Kashgar during RacingThePlanet's scouting visit there, quite possibly taken along some of this years Gobi March course.
Big thanks out to Jules who booked and finalized our departure date. Our flights for Beijing leave the Vancouver International Airport on June 12th at 12:30pm. We’ll arrive in Beijing on June 13th at 2:50pm then will continue on the next day to Urumqi and finally onto Kashgar arriving sometime in the afternoon of the 14th. Check in day for the race is the 16th so we’ll have a day and a half to relax before the adventure begins.
Today made day four of running to the Breakwater, I think I’ve gotten past my little episode about being bored with the runs from work. I have been using a MP3 player during all my solo runs for the past week and a half and am sure that plays a big part in the change of attitude. Have it loaded up with some great tunes and the music seems to make the miles melt away.
Got in a great double today, ran the Breakwater at lunch and then after work met Scooter and Coach Mike at JB’s Café for a run through the hills while T was at the Youth Centre.
For some odd reason Scooter ate dinner right before the run, walking out of the Fish & Chips place with Jess while Mike and I were waiting in the parking lot. I was a bit worried that she might not feel too good once we got going but she did great and tonight’s run was a lot of fun. Coach Mike followed Scooter and me as we winded our way up and down the hills. Unfortunately Packman could not join the circus tonight, he is battling a cold, but I tried to keep Scooter entertained and Coach Mike had a couple of silly jokes to keep a smile on her face.
A semi sore run to the Breakwater this afternoon, the right thigh is still holding a little bruising but the rest of the body is feeling quite good. I went for my run a little later in the afternoon today in an attempt to shake off some anxiety over our slide show at Frontrunners Westshore this evening and it worked well, at least until the audience showed up .
Each show we’ve done has been a little easier, I am still a little nervous with the public speaking, but I think that is mainly due to the fact that I have no personal experience with the subject. My part has been to talk about the Gobi desert – geography, weather, that kind of stuff and my info has been taken from books and the web not from anything I have done or experienced. I am hoping that the talks will get that much easier once I can speak from the heart about something I have been through.
Not sure if I have mentioned it before but let’s get this out there and please spread the word - Mark and Nick out at Frontrunners Westshore are incredible! They have repeatedly gone out of their way to support Team Gobi with everything we are doing. Tonight is another great example, allowing us to have the slide show in their store, ensuring we had a screen and seats and providing snacks for everyone. Thanks guys!!
My whole right side was still sore this morning so I was somewhat apprehensive while tying up the shoes for my run this afternoon. Leaving the watch behind I ran to the Breakwater, I started out easy and by the time I reached the Causeway the body parts were slowly loosening up. Was able to pick it up some on the way back to work and finished feeling very good.
This evening, T and I dropped by Uncle Jimmy’s for a visit and then went and got some laundry done.
I've got some Gobi homework to do tonight, need to get my notes in order for the slide show at Frontrunners Westshore tomorrow night.
With nothing on the go T and I had a great lazy morning anxiously awaiting the brunch that Momma Scooter was preparing this afternoon for a small celebration with Brad Varty and Craig Smith of Varty Floors Ltd.
It was a great brunch (I stuffed myself), and an amazing meeting with Brad and Craig. I am in awe at the amount of support that Varty Floors is providing us – it is incredible! It almost feels like a dream…
After the wonderful feast T and I came home and each took a quick nap and then spent the evening with Packman and his girls.
My body is feeling a little beat up after yesterdays fall during the Royal Roads GutBuster, I’ve got a few small scrapes and some bruising on my right leg and my right shoulder and back are a bit sore. Will get out for an easy run at lunch tomorrow and see if I can loosen any of the soreness up.
It was a wicked run out to the Royal Roads GutBuster this morning with Packman and Scooter!
After dropping T off at the Fisher’s place I swung by Packman’s to pick him up and then after a quick stop at Starbucks we drove to Scooter’s place. We all geared up and then headed out on the road making our way to the Goose. We ran the 14km out to Royal Roads nice and steady holding the pace at around 6’40”/km and made it to the start of the GutBuster with about 15 minutes to spare.
Today was a pack run day and we each had some unusual contents in our packs. Packman had some Harvest Foodworks meals and a can of Anchovies, Scooter had a bag of oranges and mine contained a bag of potatoes and a couple cans of SPAM.
Bryan and the GutBuster crew once again had a great event set up and we were extremely excited to be a part of it. There were a ton of people out for the event and we did have the opportunity to get in some quick visits and hellos before the start. After a quick pre-race briefing we were all off and into the course, and what an incredible course it was, wet, muddy and hilly, definitely a true GutBuster! Our pace slowed some during the race with all the ups, downs and slimy trails but we were steady, Scooter had us moving relentlessly forward. Apparently Packman and I were keeping her entertained with our ‘Circus Show’ antics; songs, me falling on my ass once then nearly falling on a half dozen other occasions, and the occasional puddle splash that I was able to catch them with. If you ever get the chance you should ask Packman to do his “Winnie the Pooh - Tiger” impression
We finished the race together (in 1:39:44) and after a quick refuel Packman ran home while Scooter and I hung out for the awards - Bryan had set aside some time during the awards for both us and the Three Roads to London lads to talk about our projects.
Momma Scooter and Craig had come out to see us run today and graciously offered a ride back into town, and there was no way I was going to pass that up – I was done for the day!
Once back in town I went over to the Fisher’s to have some tea and a visit and then T and I came home to spend a raining afternoon indoors. The evening will be more of the same maybe with a movie and some popcorn.
I am running the risk of sounding like a broken record but it was another Breakwater run at lunch and once again nothing spectacular about it.
Thankfully tomorrows run will shake things up a bit, will be meeting Packman and Scooter in the morning and then run out to the Royal Roads GutBuster together on the Goose. I am quite pumped about the run!
Tonight Scooter and I drove out to Frontrunners Westshore to pick up the Teams race packages. Mark and Nick had their hands full as the store was busy; they even recruited Rumon for some help. We did get a chance for quick visits with everyone and had a short chat with Bryan about the race tomorrow.
It has been a long week and even though the mileage is down some over the past couple of weeks I am feeling beat and will be off to bed soon.
Got out for a Breakwater run at lunch, nothing too exciting about it just another run. One thing of note was that I didn't feel too bad after yesterdays stair workout.
This evening T spent some time with her Big and then we went over to Jules place. We all sat down and started mapping out what the trip to China is going to look like and what we need to get done before leaving.
Jules and T will have seven days in Kashgar to plan for and they have decided to both take a separate look at what they want to do and then get together and organize it. With options like a trip to the base camp of K2, camel rides, tours to some of the local ruins, treks through the Taklamakan desert, or a visit to the Id Kah Mosque there is no shortage of choices.
Yes it is another bad pun on a song title, although I do have to admit I am not much of a Led Zeppelin fan, my ears are tuned more towards the likes of Black Sabbath. A song like “War Pigs” would be more to my liking but that song title didn’t fit today’s blogging material.
I need to thank Hugh for today’s run. Following the advice he posted in the comment section of yesterdays entry I headed out on the Goose and across the Selkirk Trestle to the staircase that leads up to Cecelia Road (right beside where they are building the new Burnside Gorge Community Centre) and did a work out on the stairs.
The ‘Stair’ workout was done in four sets, each set being three climbs. On the first climb I hit every step on the way up, on the second climb skipped one step, and then on the third climb skipped two steps. Ran each descent easy and then did a little 10 metre out and back at the bottom to build up speed for the attack on the next ascent. Hugh was bang on, it was an incredibly HARD workout - I thoroughly enjoyed every second of it
This morning we had a Team meeting with Coach Mike; a check in to see how we are all doing, went over the next few weeks of training and made plans to start doing some Team hill runs with him. I think those will start next week. Of course no meeting is complete without a little Scooter teasing so when she showed up to the table 7 minutes and 37 seconds late we let her have it
Made another journey to the Breakwater at lunch, it was a very windy journey. I made it out just in time too as I heard that they closed it off later this afternoon.
I have lost my excitement about looking for any different lunch routes, was thinking about it last night and if I head off in any of the other directions I will be faced with lots of crossroads and traffic lights – not very appealing. Will just have to stick with the three main routes I have now, little or no traffic to cross on them.
I could still feel the remnants of the cramps this afternoon and it is still quite tight. I have given it a tennis ball massage for the last two nights and have done some stretching. Hopefully between that and the addition of some protein powder to the diet the calf will recover quickly.
Due to lack of motivation I did not spend any time this weekend looking for new lunch run routes to try out so today was a cruise through town and then out on the Breakwater.
Tonight after some grocery shopping T and I had a quiet night at home. Dinner, some games, a little Guitar Hero and she got in some TV just before bed. I spent part of the night getting some more chores done, namely organizing the massive stack of papers, and odds and ends that were on our dinner table.
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In some ‘kind of’ Team Gobi news that I just can’t hold in anymore…
I received some absolutely incredible news a few days ago; Tori will be joining me for the trip to China. She along with my dear friend Jules, who is coming along to be Tori’s chaperone, will stay in and explore around Kashgar while we are on the race course, it will be an amazing experience for Tori and now that much more amazing for me!
I really battled with not running this morning, the calf is feeling much better(still tight but no cramps today), but as I sat up and thought about putting on the shoes I reminded myself of the request from a concerned friend who very politely asked me not to run today - there are times when I dislike the word “Please”.
So instead of running I met up with James R at Mo:lé and was treated to another one of their wonderful meals! Ran into a couple of familiar faces at Mo:lé, Hugh T was there with a friend, as was Ludo. After breakfast I picked up T from Shawna’s and we got our chores done; laundry, cleaned the house, and did a small remodel of the bathroom.
After finishing the chores we spent a bit of time lounging and then treated ourselves to dinner at Barb’s Place before picking up Scooter and heading over to Packman’s place for a Team gathering. I call it a gathering as it was not so much a Team meeting but more like just some hang out time. It was a good evening, something we plan to do on a more regular basis.
The girls and I started our St. Patrick’s Day off with a breakfast at Mo:lé and then some wandering around through down town. After dropping Haley off midmorning T spent some time with her Big and I helped James R with his move for a couple of hours. T came and joined us after her outing and we went for a drink and some treats at the Union Pacific down on Herald Street.
T had another outing this afternoon, she met some friends for a movie matinee, and then we spent the late afternoon at home before dropping T off at Shawna’s for a sleepover this evening.
I spent the evening with some friends at Miss S’s parent’s place celebrating St. Pat’s Day and watching the hockey game.
Some bad news with the right calf situation from yesterday. It has decided to let me know that it is really not very happy with me by cramping up on a few occasions today.
I am not exactly sure of the cause but have a few ideas;
a) Not hydrating enough (electrolytes?)
b) Not enough protein in the diet
c) Sodium intake not high enough
d) Not stretching an adequate amount (or at all )
e) All of the above
With the calf problems I did not run today but I did climb a ton of stairs helping James R move and that did not help the calf relax or recover much and right now it feels like it has been scrapped down with a razor blade and left raw.
Will have to wait and see what tomorrow brings…
I am going to need to find a couple of more routes to use for my lunch run. As amazing as running out to the Breakwater is, today it felt like a chore or maybe I was just in a foul mood. Either way I decided today that next week I will explore some new roads and find a couple of alternate running paths to take.
I seem to have developed a small niggly in my right calf, it is crazy tight (possible cause of the foul mood), so decided to not run while T was at the Youth Centre tonight and instead wasted some time in Mayfair.
T’s friend Haley has joined us for a sleepover this evening and on the way home from the Youth Centre we stopped at Il Greco to pick up some pizza and got in a quick visit with Pan-Pan’s mom (Thanks again Joyce!!!).
A solo out and back on the Breakwater during lunch.
A great run this afternoon with the lunch gang. There were five of us today, Ased, Andrew G, Andrew H, Steve B and me. We took it nice and easy along the Songhees to Westbay Marina and then a small out and back on the Goose to get a little more mileage.
My evening plan had been to get in run number two while T was at the Youth Centre but that plan was dumped quickly during her after school check in call. She pulled the “Hi Dad, guess what? I have a concert tonight, I think I forgot to tell you…”
So the evening was a quick dinner at home and then some ‘Spring’ music.
I woke up this morning still not feeling quite right so took another day off - from both work and training. Spent the day between the couch and bed, in a state of pajamaness, getting lots of rest and am feeling very good right now.
Will see how I am feeling tomorrow but am hoping to jump right back into training full steam with a double. Hook up with the lunch gang for an easy run at noon and then get in another one after work while T is at the Youth Centre.
The day came and went with out much fan fare, on Saturday Team Gobi hit the double digits and as of today we are down to 97 days and counting - it is incredible how time seems to speed up as the big day draws near, scary too…
Today came and went with out much fan fare as well. I left work mid morning not feeling very good at all and think I have come down with a touch of the flu After mucho rest this afternoon things are feeling much better this evening and hopefully will be all good tomorrow.
I hit some new digits today, turned another year older
It was an early morning, up and out the door by 5:45 on my way to Sydney via the Goose and Lochside Trail. I had prepared all my gear last night so all I had to do this morning was roll out of bed, slide in to my running clothes, tie up the shoes, throw on the pack and walk out the door.
Not sure what was different today but my pacing was very good, I held my pace at a very steady 6’/km, on previous pack runs my pace has been all over the place. I had some company for a short while on the run out when Rumon, one of the Three Roads to London lads who was also running out to the start, caught up to me and slowed down to visit for a few km’s (Those few km’s were the faster ones and probably what got me to the start on time. Thanks Rumon!!).
With a couple of pit stops it took just under 3 hours of running for me to get out to the start line of the Bazan Bay 5km with about 5’ to spare before the start. It was just enough time to squeeze a gel in my mouth, get my race number on and swig back some Zym, didn’t cool down at all and then we were off. I had a good time on the 5km, there were so many people out this morning, over 1100! Tossed the earphones back in, zoned out, and got dragged along in a human wave to the finish.
Hung out for the awards after the run and got to visit with many of the IRR gang that I haven’t seen in awhile and got in some good teasing on Mar-Mar. Scooter was not out for the race, she has come down with a nasty flu, but I did get the opportunity to chat briefly with G-Girl and Super Lexx. After the awards Mar-Mar graciously gave me a ride back in to town and then along with Maestro and Dawn joined me for some brunch at Mo:lé.
Mar-Mar dropped me off at Thrifty’s after brunch and I picked up some Epsom salts then came home and jumped in a bath. The rest of my evening will revolve around the couch.
I picked up Pan-Pan at Commonwealth this morning and we made our way to Thetis for a couple of hours of running on the beautiful trails there. We followed the Stewart Mountain course on the way out but when we got to the big climb we hung a right, jumped the fence and ran along the hydro corridor toward Munn Road. About halfway along we hit the broom and blackberry bushes which slowed us right down, Pan-Pan lead the way through and only suffered a few minor scrapes and scratches. Once clear of the broom it was a short section of trail and then Munn Road to Francis King Park where we stopped to refill our water bottles and for a short loop of the Park before heading back towards Thetis. I had worn the CW-X shorts for today’s run and of course as soon as Pan-Pan saw them the razzing started, but hey at least I wasn’t wearing any chastity shorts over top
After the run I dropped Pan-Pan off near Wal-Mart where he was meeting his Mom for a ride home and then made my way to Frontrunners Victoria to register for the Bazan Bay 5km. Came home after registering, got cleaned up and then wandered downtown to get a few errands done and I looked all over for a copy of the latest issue of Impact Magazine but couldn’t find one
Will spend the rest of the night at home, rented a movie and will get some dinner going shortly.
Short = Run – out and back to the Breakwater at lunch
Sweet = Rest of day – tired and hungry
And now I will be going to bed.
Today is day ten in a row of training with three more runs on the schedule before a day off next Monday; I’m feeling like a slow ‘Energizer Bunny’. I was still feeling quite sluggish today so went for another easy run, out to the Breakwater, hoping to clean out the legs some.
The next three days of training look something like this;
- Friday – Lunch run, approx 10km, either a loop around Macaulay or an out and back to the Breakwater.
- Saturday – Timed run, 2 hours, with Pan-Pan, meeting at Commonwealth around 8:30am and either running Elk/Beaver or heading out to Thetis – will decide Saturday morning.
- Sunday – Run from home out to Sidney, approx 30km, and then run (not race!!!) the Bazan Bay 5km. Not too sure how the Sunday plan is going to go with Bazan being an early start, 9am, and daylight savings starting that morning we’ll just have to wait and see how I do at following it
This week T and I have been very car conscious; we used it twice, both times to get to the Youth Centre. The rest of our commuting has been by bike or bus; I’ve been biking to and from work each day, T catches the bus to and from school and tonight we both rode our bikes to the course. A good week for us, hopefully we can keep it up.
The lunch gang today was Andrew H, Ased and I. I was feeling very sluggish this afternoon and voiced it to the other two, after a few chuckles they both were okay with an easy run on the Goose. We went out at a very easy pace and I just relaxed and enjoyed the company and conversation.
This evening was a Youth Centre night for T and she had Ems and Denny join her for the evening. The girls were pumped up on the ride over and had the tunes cranked it was a wild ride with singing and back seat dancing.
Deby met me at the Youth Centre and we went for a run down the Goose, onto the Songhees Walkway and around Macaulay. It was another easier run and once again I really enjoyed the company and conversation, got kinda spoiled today with all the running partners.
After last nights near disaster I took it easy on the run today, went for an relaxed cruise through town and out on the Breakwater. I also ate all day, including a few plate loads at Sabri’s while T and I were doing our laundry tonight.
Will hopefully hook up with the lunch gang tomorrow and then attempt another run while T is at the Youth Centre tomorrow night. I will make sure to load up on the calories throughout the day.
I got in a run at lunch out on Breakwater and then I attempted run two this evening while T was at the Youth Centre. Tonight things did not go so well, I was about 25’ into the run and started to feel odd, legs got very heavy really quickly, and the head started getting fuzzy, I felt a bit dizzy and the stomach had that empty feeling, I didn’t enjoy it at all
I pulled up and walked for a bit, then decided to turn around and head back towards the Youth Centre. Other than the empty feeling in the stomach things cleared up after a few minutes and I started running again really easy and was able to make it back to the Centre. Tonight’s debacle has shown me that my running has outpaced my eating, obviously I am going to need to adjust the diet some – I need to eat more!
Last night I had decided to make today an official sleep in day but I was awoken by the sunlight streaming in my window around 8:00 this morning and then had to remind myself that it was a sleep in day. I dozed off again until 9:00 and then lay in bed until 10:00 finishing off the book I’ve been reading.
This afternoon T had a birthday party to attend, her friend Haley has joined the ranks of the tweeners, and while T was partying it up I took advantage of the time to sneak in a quick run.
I enjoyed the warmer weather this afternoon and went for a great jaunt down along Dallas, up King George past Trafalgar Park and then down to Beach Drive and turning around near Transit. On the way back home I added on a few minutes with a trip to the end of the Breakwater.
It looks like T and I will make it a quiet night, some games and maybe a movie later.
The Girls and I were up early and headed out to Mo:lé for breakfast. If you haven’t yet figured it out, I really enjoy Mo:lé, actually can’t rave enough about the place. T and I have been going there regularly for some time now and they treat us very well and it doesn’t hurt that the food is wonderful!
After breakfast we had to drive Denny home, then a quick stop back at our place and then T spent some time with her “Big”. I made a trip out to Frontrunners Westshore and picked up the latest pieces of Gobi gear that Mark and Nick brought in for us.
This afternoon, T received an invite for a play date and sleepover with her friend Shawna and soon after that call I received a call from Packman seeing if I was up for a run this afternoon. The timing couldn’t have gotten much better .
After dropping T off at Shawna’s I met Packman out at the lakes and with our new gear on we went for loop of the lakes at a decent clip, averaging a 4’33” per km. The gear we tested out were some CW-X Conditioning Wear Pro Shorts. They are tights that come down just above the knee but these are not just any normal tights - these tights are anatomically engineered, featuring the patented Conditioning Web™, which provides Tuned Support to the key muscle groups and joints of the lower limbs. Now while we only ran 10km in them I was genuinely impressed, and think they will make an immense difference over longer distances. I had never worn tights before and was not sure what to expect but other than some self conscious issues they felt great.
After the workday and another relaxed run to the Breakwater at lunch, T has had Denny join her for a sleep over tonight and we’ve made it a movie, beer and pizza night - that’s A&W Root beer for the Girls and some Stella for me
On the schedule for tomorrow is an early visit to Mo:lé for breaky with the Girls, then T has plans with her “Big” for mid morning and I need to make a run out to Frontrunners Westshore to pick up some more Gobi gear from Mark and Nick. After that I am not sure what the day has in store for us, possibly a visit with Uncle Jimmy for some UFC action?
While I did battle some non running guilt last night, I woke up this morning with my body thanking me for not running the double. Things felt good, the calves were not as tight, the legs felt fresh - or at least semi-fresh and overall I felt well rested. My lunch run today was great, after a slow start to warm up I pushed hard in the middle section of an out and back to the end of the Breakwater, it felt very loose and quick – an amazing feeling!
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Looking beyond what you ask?
For the past few months I have been concentrating singly on the task at hand, The Gobi March, and have not put any thought into what my plans and goals are for after. I received an email from Pan-Pan last night with the subject “Interested?” that changed all that. In it was a link to ‘The Squamish Test of Running Metal, Yeah’ (STORMY) website. The organizers have made some changes to the event, last year the race was a 64km course with solo’s and a team relay. This year they have lengthened their main solo race to 50 miles (just over 80 km), the team relay event also lengthens to 50-miles and as an additional bonus they have added a solo 100-mile event - EPIC! The 50-mile distance adds to the already legendary STORMY challenge and makes the event an official qualifier for longer races.
Initially I was thinking it might be too soon after Gobi but after a flurry of emails back and forth with Packman today I have decided to register for the 50-mile solo trail ultramarathon with the intent of running it in a qualifying time (sub 10 hours) for an attempt at the Western States 100 in 2008.
Am I looking too far beyond?