Saturday, June 12, 2010

A Huge Thank You!

Thank you so much to everyone who has contributed to my fundraising marathon effort in honour of my niece Alivia!

A total of $3,345 was raised for the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation ($1,300 from the raffle and $2,045 from online donations)!

My heartfelt thank you to all the generous people who have supported the CCFF by providing online donations:
Beryl - Saskatoon
Bill and Carol - Saskatoon
Colleen - Saskatoon
Denise - Saskatoon
Doreen - Saskatoon
Janet - Saskatoon
Joyce - Saskatoon
Juan - Saskatoon
Laura - Saskatoon
Kate - Saskatoon
Peta - Saskatoon
Scot - Saskatoon
Alycia - Windsor
Carol - Windsor
Chris - Windsor
David - Windsor
Elaine - Windsor
Evelyn and John - Windsor
Rebecca - Calgary
Amelia - Garden Bay
Jen and Lou - Hamilton
Lynda - LaSalle
Natalie - Ottawa
Damian - Waterford
Brian - England
Corinna - England
Charlotte - England
Matthew - England
Simon - England
Vivien - England

Monday, May 31, 2010

CF Raffle Winners

As part of my fundraising effort for the CCFF, a raffle was organized with great prizes donated from a number of very generous individuals and organizations. A total of $1300 was raised from this raffle! Thank you for all of your support!

Below is a list of the prizes and winners of the raffle:
  • $180 gift certificate from Brainsport for the purchase of any Brainsport or Pedestrian shoes - Winner: T. Summers, raffle ticket #130
  • Wide Open family pass (two adults, two children) to see all four puppet shows during their 2010-2011 season ($128 value) - Winner: Carrie Ogden, raffle ticket #250
  • Bike tune-up from the Bike Doctor ($50 value) - Winner: Stan and Sheryl Harper, raffle ticket #50
  • Bike tune-up from Bike Universe ($40 value) - Winner: C. E. Fischer, raffle ticket #326
  • SIGG water bottled donated by Brainsport ($25 value) - Winner: Wynne Nicholson, raffle ticket #60
  • Pass for a week of unlimited yoga classes at Hot Yoga on 20th ($20 value) - Winner: Eldon Thorson, raffle ticket #482
  • Pass for a week of unlimited yoga classes at Hot Yoga on 20th ($20 value) - Winner: Lisa Bissonnette, raffle ticket #202
  • Ride for the Breath of Life; t-shirt donated by the local CCFF Chapter - Winner: Darlene Scott, raffle ticket #331

Saskatchewan Marathon! 5:11:26

Five hours, eleven minutes and 26 seconds and I completed the 32nd Saskatchewan Marathon on Sunday May 30th in honour of my niece Alivia and for the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation!

Chris and I ready at 6 am to head over to the race course.

The first 10 km or so took us down by our house and around the boathouse and then north along the river. Tim and the kids came to cheer us on as we jogged by about 8 am.

It may be hard to notice but attached to my hat are sparkles and "For Alivia" pinned to it.

Our friend Crystal (ironwoman extraordinaire) was running the half marathon and spotted Finnegan and Keira before we came by shortly afterwards.

Finnegan and Keira "surprised" us at River Landing.

Margie cheered us on over by the Vimy Memorial. The weather was cool but the rain held off for the race, so the race conditions were actually really good, considering the downpour we had the day before. I think this is a beautiful shot of us jogging along the river, framed by the trees, with the University bridge in the background.

I think it was around the 24 km mark (all the kms seems like a blur now!) that the mobile cheering section caught up with us and followed us along the course for the rest of the race.

What troupers and great support!

If we got too cold they would provide jackets or mittens, then when we got too warm we would give them our stuff to carry!

Most movements after the halfway point just plain hurt but we kept on plodding. I would have waves of going for a couple km when it would feel as though I was getting into a groove of sorts and then other times each step was painful...that was usually when Chris would say "you're not smiling" and I'd make a grimace and just keep going.

Off we go across the Circle Drive bridge to head to the east side. The course over by the University was pretty chilly but we kept on plodding.....

Finally heading into the last few this time is was just a matter of trying to keep the legs moving, one foot in front of the next! I found whenever we stopped for water and shot blok breaks and walked, it was very hard to start up again. My knees in particular would just scream, "what were you thinking!" So we tried to keep jogging as much as possible.

Unfortunately, with all the water breaks (along with all the hydration from the day before!) it meant a lot of "pit stops" for me as well. Fortunately there were plenty of port-a-potties along the route. We figured if I hadn't needed to stop so often we probably could have shaved about half an hour off our time! But when you gotta go....

Earlier Chris had said that people tend to run marathons in three stages, first with their head, then with their body and finally with their hearts.

At the 32 km mark (which had been the longest run I had done to date), Chris motivated me in saying that those first 32 km had been for me and now the last 10 km to the finish were going to be for Alivia.

I gave it everything I had heading into the homestretch and to the finish line!

Janet came out too to cheer us on with Margie. She was out on street near the finish and when I saw her cheering I just about lost it with tears and so had to run by without even looking at her or I would have been a blubbery mess before even crossing the finish line!

Huffing and puffing and feeling like my lungs would explode at the top!

Fiver hours later here I am blasting across the finish line! Well...maybe not blasting but running as fast as I possibly could (and most of that was up a little hill) using up every little bit of energy that might still be left in me! As you can see the mobile cheering section followed me all the way!

Here's Chris coming across the finish line just shortly after me. His motivation, positive attitude and good humor kept me plodding for most of the race with a smile on my face.

They wrapped us in plastic sheets after the race, which I have say did the trick at keeping the heat in until I was able to change into some warmer, dry clothes.

Chocolate chip cookies and chocolate milk are always great after a race!

Great support from both family and friends is the only way I managed to stick with the training and accomplish the marathon. It was a tremendous experience and it has certainly gotten me into the habit of running and wanting to improve, but I don't have any ambitions to improve upon my 5:11:26! Next year, I will participate in the Great Strides Walk to help with fundraising for CF and hope to do the Spin Off Spadina Triathlon for fun!

I would like to express my heartfelt thank you to everyone who as helped me out over the last six months in training and fundraising for this event! I would especially like to thank the sposors for the raffle, those who purchased or help to sell tickets for the raffle, and well as those who donated online to the CCFF - your generosity is greatly appreciated!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Week 26 - 10 hours to go!

Tomorrow is the bid day!!! A couple easy runs this week (albeit I ran my fastest 5 km ever at 31 minutes!) and a yoga class on Friday and I'm ready to go...or as ready as I can be given 26 weeks of training. It has been raining all day and I wonder how the clouds can possibly hold any more liquid... so am hoping that it may stop by the morning.

Our friend Chris is going to run with me tomorrow, rain or shine, for the 42 km. Here we are in our fancy new running shirts and numbers.

While many spectators will have gone home after the first couple of hours, we are expecting the mobile cheering section to come out and find us somewhere along the way and greet us at the finish line!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Week 25 - One week to go!!!

This Sunday morning was cool and rainy as I headed out with Ollie for a 10 km run. Seems hard to believe 25 weeks of jogging have gone by and now I'm just a week away from participating in the Saskatchewan Marathon.

The rain started up again shortly after we had ventured out but we kept on going anyway - must be what it is like jogging in Vancouver! I was pleased with myself as I ran my fastest 10 km to date at 1 hour and 5 minutes. Slow of course by some standards but pretty good for me as I'm usually around the 1 hour 15 minute mark. There is no way I can keep that sort of pace for the actual marathon but it was good to know I could do at least that and I hope to eventually progress to a 10 km under 1 hour.

Needless to say, by the time we got back, we were both pretty drenched. "Wet rats return" (as Tim called us).

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Week 24 - Running in Ottawa

This past week I flew to Ottawa for a conference and had to leave at 5:30 am on Keira's 4th birthday.

We had a little party for her the day before and enjoyed a pooh bear cake with ice cream from the farmer's market.

While in Ottawa, I ran 8 km on Tuesday with Annie.

I took the "clown bike" (a great cruiser bike that I also used last year when I came to visit) to and from Natalie and Dean's house to the conference downtown, and one afternoon took a little tour along the bike paths over to the Quebec side around by the Museum of Civilization.

The weather was great and tulips were everywhere!

On Friday, Nat (who will be running a half marathon on May 30th in Ottawa) and I ran 6 km together and then on Sunday we ran for 12+ km along the Ottawa River.

In the afternoon we all headed over to Gatineau Park and hiked around Pink Lake, before I had to head to the airport.

Week 23

Not much to report from this week...and I'm certainly late with this posting! I ran during the week and also did the scheduled 16 km on Sunday with Ollie in the morning before taking the kids to swim class. Not much else to report!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Karma Wednesdays in Support of Cystic Fibrosis Month

Hot Yoga on 20th is continuing to provide support in May by donating the proceeds from its Karma Wednesday classes to the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
This generous support is in addition to the two passes for a week of unlimited yoga classes that Hot Yoga on 20th has already provided towards the CF raffle to be held on May 30th at the Great Strides Walk.
As in April, in addition to supporting the CCFF with their donation, each person attending a Karma Wednesday class will have their name entered in the CF raffle!

Week 22

My new shoes were well tested on the weekend with my longest run to date at 32 km! Ollie journeyed with me for the first 17 km or so and then I brought him home and went out for the second loop of the river.

The mobile cheering section came and found me for the last few kms and followed me home. Four hours and 15 minutes for the run without too many aches and pains - so I am feeling pretty hopeful that I have a chance of finishing the marathon in the allotted 6 hours!

Frosty Dreams of a Marathon in May

The grand prize for the CF raffle, a painting by local artist, Tim Brown, entitled "Frosty Dreams of a Marathon in May" can now be viewed at Brainsport until the end of May. I just hope for the actual marathon there will be sunshine and NO SNOW!!!

Raffle tickets ($5 each or 3 for $10) are available at Brainsport, or please contact me directly. There are a number of great prizes to be won, and all the proceeds go towards the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

New Shoes!

With some birthday money in hand, I headed over to Brainsport last Wednesday to get some new running shoes. After trying on over 10+ pairs, I was pretty much set on a particular pair of Mizuno's, but left them to decide over night and went back to get them the next evening. My current pair are just about worn through on the inside at the heels so I figured it was time to invest in a new pair for the marathon and still have some time to get used to them before the big race!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Week 21

I slacked off for much of the week but did jog 16 km with Ollie on Sunday. Last weekend I was out in shorts and a t-shirt and wearing sunscreen to avoid a sunburn and this weekend it was snowing and I was back to a toque and mittens!

After a quick shower and lunch, I got the legs moving again and took the kids on the 'bike train' to the YMCA for their swim class (which unfortunately was cancelled due to poop in the pool).

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Week 20

I think there is something to be said for the 'rest day' before a long run. I skipped the runs on Thursday and Friday this past week but did a long walk on Saturday (probably over 10 km)- it was nice to see the pelicans back on the river - spring must really be here! I ran with Ollie for 16 km today, brought him back home and then went out for another 13 km. He probably would have faired much better than me, but since it was so warm and I wasn't about to carry water for him as well, I thought it best to bring him home. It took 4 hours, 7 minutes, including all the bathroom breaks! At my current rate, I'm definitely going to be pushing the 6 hour limit for the actual marathon. I'm just so dang tired...I hope I can make it into work tomorrow!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Week 19

This Sunday I went out for a 16 km run after having missed it the weekend before. While slow as always, I did it within 2 hours and without too many aches and pains afterwards, which is all I could hope for! Of course, it didn't even seem to phase Ollie - what a dog! Next weekend I am planning to do ~29 km in the early morning before taking the kids to swim class - should be interesting!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Artist Donates Painting to CF Raffle

Local artist, Tim Brown, has created a fantastic painting for the CF raffle.

"Frosty Dreams of a Marathon in May", 13.5x18", acrylic on board

Other recent works (critters on bikes) by Tim can be viewed in our living room or on his bike blog.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Week 18

Unfortunately I have nothing to report from last wasn't supposed to be a 'rest week' but that's how it turned out. My left foot was causing me grief and I also came down with a cold so running just wasn't an option. Hopefully I'll get back on track soon!

Just a reminder that during the month of April, Hot Yoga on 20th will be donating the Wednesday Karma Class proceeds to the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and each person attending the class will have their name entered in the CF raffle!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Week 17 - A Surprise Visit from the Mobile Support Crew and Cheering Section

Sunday was a long run (25 km) and about the 20 km mark the 'mobile support crew and cheering section' aka my family rode out on the bike train to see how I was doing and cheer me on.

Finnegan was interested to know why I was listening to bird calls on the headphones as I jogged along with Ollie. I'm trying to learn various songs in an effort to volunteer for the Bird Studies of Canada Prairie and Parkland Marsh Monitoring Program this spring. I think we will easily have two aspiring birders besides mom pretty soon!

They stuck with me the rest of the way home along the Meewasin Trail. It was good fun to have them following along with me!

I was, however, very glad to be home.