Registered Races

In my last post, I mentioned that I’m not very motivated to train properly when I don’t have a solid race in mind.

So, with that in mind, I signed up for a couple fall races with the Canadian Running Series!

Race Confirmation

Oasis Zoo Run Toronto 2017

I typically run the Oasis Zoo Run and really enjoy it even though it’s got a bunch of hills, but I didn’t go last year because I had to go to Baltimore for work at the same time.

This time, I’m running the 10K and I’m excited to go back to beat my race time of 01:05 (ish).

Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront (Half) Marathon 2017

I was training for a half marathon before I got into the car accident, so I know I was physically capable of getting up to long runs of 19K. Theoretically, I can do it again, and I really hope I’ll be able to do it according to my corral time – 02:15!

But, I’m thinking that I need to get myself out running more often, which I’m hoping won’t get in the way of my rock climbing training. I’ve run to the rock climbing gym before (about 5.5km) with a Gregory backpack, but then I’m limited to just bouldering since I don’t have the space to pack my harness and GriGri.

Any suggestions on how to balance running and rock climbing? There’s only so many hours in a day!

xoxo,

B.elle

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Weekly Fitness Update #13 – Results!

It’s been a bit quiet over in this little corner of the blogging world because I went away to Québec City for about 2 weeks with the Monsieur! Even though I speak very, very little French, they were so friendly and hospitable, but I definitely ended up indulging in more than a few delicious Québecois delicacies. (Tarte au sucre, anyone?)

But, I managed to get some running in before and once during my vacation!

Dec 15 – 5km @ 5’42” avg pace, 28:39*
Dec 22 – 7km @6’19” avg pace, 44:28*
Dec 28 – 5km @6’08” avg pace, 31:13

The stars mean than I was running indoors and I’m still not 100% sure how accurate the Nike+ watch is indoors, so it could be a little faster than I’m actually running.

On December 28, I ran through the countryside in -15C weather and it was a bit hillier than I expected! I was surprised at how much I loved it!

20151228_120612.jpg

Running in the Quèbecois farmland in winter

BUT! Did I actually achieve my running goals for Fall 2015 even though it’s already Winter 2016 while I’m writing this?!

Fall 2015 Running Goals (3X a week)

  • Weekly mileage of 20-25km with a 5-7-10 pattern
  • Dream pace goal of 6’00″/km for 5K distance
    1. Realistic pace goal of 6’15″/km for 5K distance
  • Dream pace goal of 6’20″/km for 7-10K distances

Fall 2015 Running Results (mostly 3X a week)

  • I tried my best to stick to the 5-7-10 pattern, but quickly learned that the general weekly run distances were more effective than forcing myself to do 5-7-10 throughout the week.I dropped down to about 10-12km per week in December, which was really not good but I did a pretty terrible job at balancing all my hobbies with the holidays!Otherwise, I think I came up just a bit short on consistently reaching that 20-25kpw goal.
  • I’ve been running at less than 6’00″/km on 5K runs for about 3 weeks now, so I’ll say that’s in the bag!
    SUCCESS!
  • I run as many 7K routes, but it seems to be at around 6’05″/km to 6’10″/km so I’m really happy about this speed!
    SUCCESS!
  • I don’t have enough data on 10K runs because I really haven’t run 10K since the adidas race, where I cinched a PR at 6’16″/km, so I would highly doubt that I can do 6’20” for 10K comfortably.
    FAIL!

Rock Climbing – Dec 20th

We were both feeling sick! My belay buddy lost her voice and I was beginning to feel the beginnings of a cold so I knew our game wouldn’t be as strong as normal.

Top Rope – Not gonna lie… I did really badly. The 5.9s that were relatively easy felt almost impossible that day and I even struggled on a couple of new 5.8s!

But, we both knew that we’d be doing pretty terribly!

Bouldering – I tried out a couple of V0s that were okay but the V1s were pretty much a giant NOPE.

Dec 26th

Bouldering – The Monsieur and I went to a smaller rock climbing gym in Lévis and I was surprised to see that this particular gym had a different grading system. Instead of the traditional V-scale, they simply used ascending numbers to gauge the difficulty of the route.

For example, 7 would be easier than 12, but harder than a 4. I even saw one that was graded with 18 and even the Monsieur didn’t go near that one!

I managed to get up to about 9 on a traverse route, but I couldn’t really go past half of a 12 traverse. It was super fun, though!

So, did I manage to achieve my Fall 2015 Rock Climbing Goals?

Rock Climbing (1X every other week)

  • Work on 5.8 and 5.9 belay routes
  • Work on V.1 bouldering routes
  • Increase grip strength and more confident footwork

Rock Climbing Results (1X every week)

  • I’m comfortable with tackling most 5.9s, so I’d say that this is…
    SUCCESS!
  • I did work on the V1 bouldering routes and I still can’t usually complete a route… But, I didn’t say I’d try to complete one so…
    HALF SUCCESS!
  • Since I saved myself in parkour several times recently, I’d say that…
    SUCCESS!

I’m pretty sure I did horribly for my Fall 2015 Parkour Goals.

Parkour (1X every other week)

  • Work on climb-ups with vertical wall (at least 1 good climb-up per session)
  • Regain balance on rails

Parkour (Very rarely)

  • Didn’t even try climb-ups yet.
    FAIL!
  • At least my foot is completely healed and I’m able to balance and walk along a rail like normal again!
    SUCCESS!

I’ll be making a post of my Winter 2016 Fitness Goals soon, so keep an eye out for it!

xoxo,

B.elle

Weekly Fitness Update #12

It’s the 22nd next week, which is the deadline for my running goals! This is going to be exciting!

But FIRST! Here’s my results from last week:

Dec 9/10 – 7km
Dec 12 – 7km
Dec 13 – 3.5km @ 5’50” avg pace, 20:31

YUP. I totally didn’t run on the days I was supposed to run because life caught up with me!

I mentioned it last week, but the Monsieur was back only for a couple of days, so I wanted to spend a bit more time with him before he left for San Francisco for another business trip.

Then, an art project with my mom went wayyyyyyyyy longer than I anticipated on Saturday, so that was it!

But, I did manage to squeeze in a quick 3.5km on Sunday December 13th after rock climbing, so at least that. I even ran pretty fast!

Rock Climbing – Dec 13th

The monthly issue started on the 13th so having a harness on was clearly not the best idea ever.

Top Rope – I managed to get past the huge challenge on that 5.9 that’s been really bugging me! But, I was already quite tired when I got to it and I’m not that great with inclines, so I stopped 3/4 of the way up.

That specific route most likely won’t be there the next time, but I’m happy knowing that I managed to get past the most challenging part!

I tried going up a 5.10a that looked relatively friendly, but it was a lot harder than it looked! I also made the mistake of tackling this one right before the 5.9, so that’s what really wiped me out.

Otherwise, I went up the other routes pretty well! I’m looking forward to seeing what new routes are gonna be there next week.

Bouldering – Just no. I was way too tired and crampy.

Parkour – Dec 14th

Yeah, you read that right! I WENT PARKOURING!

After a long, long time, I finally went back to the Monkey Vault because I just had an itch to do some jumps and fly a bit.

Luckily, there was an Adult Class scheduled on Monday nights at 7pm that I managed to get on time even though I didn’t know about it. The owner, Dan, and Will, one of the coaches, still remembered me and were more than willing to put me through those drills.

It felt really good to be back at the gym and swinging around, so I may plan on more weekday sessions in the new year!

I’m quite sore today, but I do intend on running later tonight. Am I a glutton for punishment? Probably, but I’m going out every night after work, so I gotta get some mileage in!

Dec 15 – 5km @ 6’00” avg pace, 30:00
Dec 19 – 10km @6’15” avg pace, 1:02:30
Dec 22 – 7km @6’10” avg pace, 43:10

I’m pretty sure it’s a bit faster than what I was intending on doing, but we’ll see if I actually achieve this before reviewing if I reached my Fall goals!

Dec 20 – Rock Climbing

It’s the last day for my belay buddy to be in Canada! 😦

Top Rope – I think I’m going to focus more on 5.9s just to get my confidence back up and then maybe tackle a couple of 5.10a’s just to get the feel of them.

Little to no inclines. My shoulders are screaming at me right now.

Bouldering – Since I’m avoiding inclines, I might go and attempt some routes, but I’m not going to promise anything. I’ll be surprised if I conquer more than one V1!

xoxo,

B.elle

Weekly Fitness Update – #8

It was the perfect week to rest! I could tell that I was getting a bit too burnt out since all the tendons and muscles around my knees were feeling really tense and not in the best shape. I realized mid-week that I didn’t rest much when I got sick a while ago, so that was probably a huge contributing factor!

Not to mention, the whole area was super windy and rainy last week, so it was probably the best time for me to take some rest.

Luckily, I’m feeling much better now and I’m totally ready to move around again!

Here’s my results from last week:

None! Didn’t run at all!

Rock Climbing – Nov 15

I was more than ready to get moving by Sunday but I had a pretty heavy brunch with some friends, so I wasn’t feeling as mobile as usual.

Top Rope – I was focusing more on the 5.9s this time around and, while I was comfortable tackling this grade more often, I quickly realized that I need more strength and endurance to get better!

I actually didn’t realize how quickly I got comfortable with 5.9s until I tried a 5.8 and felt how easy it was to scale.

Bouldering – I totally destroyed myself trying some ungraded top-rope routes, so I could barely do two V0s… Oops?

There were quite a few routes that weren’t graded yet, so I pretty much went all-out trying to figure out a couple of the routes that I was more or less sure what grade they were. More than likely, I tried a couple routes that were too hard for me because I got tired pretty damn quickly.

A good chunk of the bouldering walls was naked too, so I think the gym was doing a pretty big overhaul of its older routes. I’m pretty excited to see what sort of challenges will be there next week!

I’ve been itching to get back into my runners, so here’s what I’m aiming for this week:

Nov 16 – 5km @ 6’05” avg pace, 30:30
Nov 17 – 7km @ 6’05” avg pace, 42:35
Nov 19 – 10km @ 6’20” avg pace, 1:03:20

Nov 22 – Rock Climbing

This time, it might all depend on my belay buddy… I’m thinking that I’d like to do some more bouldering, so we’ll see.

Top Rope – I’m going to do my best to only tackle 5.9 routes! (Except for warm up or cool down climbing.)

Bouldering – I’m going to aim for 30% V0s and 70% V1s this time. I have no idea if I’ll be able to complete any of them, but I’ll try!

What did I do on my rest week? I started knitting a scarf for the Secret Santa on reddit and basically lounged around. It’s quite therapeutic!

xoxo,

B.elle

Weekly Fitness Update – #7

I only managed to run twice this week because a work project tied me up longer than expected on Friday and the physical labour part of it really drained me on Saturday.

Here’s my results from last week:

Nov 3 – 5km @ 5’53” avg pace, 29:26
Nov 5 – 7km @ 6’15” avg pace, 43:59
Nov 7 – 10km

Look at that, I actually managed to run 5km in under 30 minutes! Another PR run!!

I was sprinting for a couple of streetlamps at a time and then slowed down to almost a walk for about the same distance for some interval training at various points in the route. I don’t really keep track where and how long I did those, aside from “it had streetlamps.”

I didn’t quite sleep too well before the 7km run, so I wasn’t feeling in my top form that day. It was still a pretty decent time, though!

I was doing so much (relatively) heavy lifting and moving things around on November 6th that my back and thighs were aching the day afterwards. In retrospect, going out for drinks that Friday night wasn’t such a great idea…

Rock Climbing – Nov 8

By this time, I realized that my left wrist and hand has a strange, dull pain, so I wrapped up in some KT Tape and decided to gauge how I felt throughout the workout.

Top Rope – Since I knew that I’m squarely in the 5.8 grade, the second route I tried was a 5.9 with a slight overhang. I almost fell when I was close to the top, but I managed to complete it on my first try! I even managed to easily climb up a very interesting 5.8 that was overhanging and required a clip in the middle of the route.

But, I tried another 5.9 and just couldn’t figure out how to reach the second hold… By that time, I was getting pretty tired so I went to the bouldering section with my belay buddy.

Bouldering – I did manage to climb a V1, even though it was pretty difficult! I didn’t quite have enough energy to tackle another V1, especially since my wrist and arm were starting to feel kind of weak and stiff.

I’m starting to get pretty good at this climbing stuff, eh?

Even though it’s already getting close to mid-November, I’m starting to feel really burnt out and not in great condition. I don’t know if it’s because I’ve been over-stressing at work or if I’m just going out too much (a likely possibility), but my energy levels and enthusiasm about fitness are crashing pretty bad.

That’s why I’m taking a rest week! I think I’ll finish reading Bill Nye’s Undeniable

Nov 15 – Rock Climbing

I promised a couple of friends I’d go rock climbing with them, so I guess my

Top Rope – I’ll try tackling more 5.9s but I get the feeling half of the routes I’ll be doing will be 5.8s.

Bouldering – More V1’s! I’ll have to get better at gauging how tired I am before I go bouldering.

Ever take a rest week? I’m hoping I’m nice and refreshed after it!

xoxo,

B.elle

adidas Runmore 10K – Race Report

“The only race that ends with you going back in time. #runmore 10K”

Event: adidas Runmore 10K
Date: November 1st
Time: 1am
Fees: $35CAD
Personal Goal @ 6’30” avg pace or less, 1:05:00

The very first adidas #runmore 10K was at 1am on November 1st and zipped us along the Martin Goodman Trail westward from Ontario Place. Why not use that extra hour from Daylight Savings to run a 10K race? After all, the clocks go back at 2am anyway.

I ran this on my own because I still don’t have many runner friends and most of the people I know were busy since it was Halloween night! But, I really can’t think of a better way to spend the night!

Here’s my recap of the adidas RunMore 10K!

Training

If you’ve been following my weekly update reports like here, here and here, I’ve been running 10km once a week on flat ground, so I didn’t really need to do much additional training in terms of running.

However, I did need to plan my day since the race was starting at 1am! I’m usually asleep at 11pm, so this was going to be a challenge just being awake and planning out my meals properly since I didn’t want to burn out.

Race Day Prep

In case you didn’t see it, here’s the absolutely amazing race packet that they included.

adidas Runmore 10K Race Packet

Courtesy of adidas Canada

I was blown away by how much was in that race packet and the high quality of it all! Obviously, I didn’t take this picture, but it’s literally what what I got in my bag.

On the day of the race, I ended up having a big portion of Warm Chicken Quinoa Salad for dinner at around 7:30pm. I used some diced celery and cucumber to briefly pickle in a simple garlic vinaigrette that worked quite well with the slight bitterness and meatiness of the quinoa and chicken. I wanted this kind of dish because it was pretty light but very nutrient and energy dense.

I also took a nap from 9:00pm to 10:30pm because I knew it wouldn’t be able to stay awake. Gotta be in the best condition possible!

Since it was 1am, at the Waterfront, and it was Halloween night, I decided to dress up a bit!

In addition to the bright neon yellow Nike sweatshirt, adidas running light armband, and Nathan lightspur on my foot, the rainbow tutu lights up!

The Monsieur drove me there, but he was super worried about me because it was raining pretty hard at that time and I didn’t bring any rain gear. But, this really wouldn’t be the first time I raced in the rain! (Seriously, all the races I’ve run in 2015 have been in the rain!)

The village wasn’t as impressive as the Nike race since it simply wasn’t as massive in scale, but it was really great for a 600 runner race.

It was a shame that it was raining because there were live DJs and plenty of space to mingle, dance around and check out the food trucks, but they were forced to open the food tent so we wouldn’t get wet!

Luckily, the rain stopped enough just before we made our way to the start line.

Start line – I noticed that there weren’t a lot of people dressed up, which I found a bit strange since it was Halloween night. But I noticed that a lot of people were wearing really dark clothing!

Is it really that uncool to wear bright clothing at night so you don’t get hit?!

1km – I noted that there was a 1:05 pacer and knew that I needed to keep in pace with her or just ahead of her. Like hell I’m going to go any slower!

The rain was pretty minimal and it was against my back, so my glasses were thankfully spared from needing wipers.

Somewhere between 1-3kmWhy are there flashing lights coming right at me?! Who’s yelling?! What’s going on?!

Oh, it turns out that the paths were crossing each other in a very, VERY bad way. The runners leaving the start line were forced to veer left to continue the course. But, since it’s traditional here to run on the right side of the path (just like driving on the road), it was pretty much like turning left on a traffic light (again, just like driving) but without the traffic lights and nobody had brakes (not like driving, luckily)!

NOT GOOD. There were course marshals at that point, but it really stood out to me in a really bad way since, like I mentioned before, it was past 1am and not many people were wearing lights, reflectors or bright clothes.

3kmThere’s a zombie prom party or something like that at The Boulevard Club. Cool. Let’s hope they don’t act like jerks and jump out at us.

4-6km – I hadn’t seen the 1:05 pacer in a while, but I knew that she was behind me so I was starting to feel like I could slow down for a bit.

But, I noticed a bouncing light close by and it turned out to be her! Pick up the pace!

7-9km – At this point, I noticed that I had passed a lot of people who had dashed out at the first kilometer and were forced to slow down. I left behind my pacer so I geared back into a steady but slightly quicker than usual speed. Thank goodness I started out at a slower pace to make sure I could make my time!

A lot of the kids who were at The Boulevard Club had drifted out onto the trail and it was pretty obvious that quite a few of them were absolutely drunk. None of them caused me any trouble but I was really careful not to get too close to any of them in case they stumbled into me.

9km – I’m dying at this point. Where’s that finish line?!

A girl in front me noticed that I was coming up behind her and she started her kick. I totally didn’t mind and, if I wasn’t so tired, I would’ve given some chase but I just wanted to push across the finish line!

10km – I DID IT! A volunteer was waiting for me and graciously put this humongous medal around me neck!

adidas runmore 10k medal

This is the look of breaking a new PR!

And, where’s that 1:05 pacer? I couldn’t see her at all!

What’s my watch say? 1:03?! IT’S A PR RUN! WOOOOOOO!

Post-Race

As promised, there was free beer at the food tent and it was Beau’s Lug Tread! I swear, even though I was dripping wet, sore and hungry, beer had never tasted so delicious.

adidas runmore 10k beer Beau's Lug Tread

Unfortunately, because the food tent was opened before the race started, a lot of people had taken more than their fair share of the usual post-race food and there was literally nothing left for me to eat. Luckily, I packed away a light protein bar in the vest I left at bag check, so I was okay.

Plus, FREE BEER.

Here’s my official results:

city
toronto

overall place
347

division
sf25-29

division place
50

chip time
1:03:00

pace
6:42* (this pace seems to be calculated by gun time, not chip time. Basic time math would put my pace at around 6’16”!)

I was super happy with adidas and their first race!

I definitely thought that they could’ve handled some issues a bit better, like the race course crossing over on itself and running out of food after only an hour, but there’s bound to be some hiccups. I’m looking forward to seeing if they’ll do it again next year since I’ll definitely be signing up for it again!

Did you run the adidas Runmore 10K? How did you find it?

xoxo,

B.elle

Weekly Fitness Update – #6

I only managed to do 2 runs last week, but that’s because I didn’t want to burn out for that race!

Here’s my results from last week:

Oct 28 – 5km @ 6’01” avg pace, 30:13
Oct 30 – 7km
Oct 31/Nov 1 – 10km @ 6’16” avg pace, 1:03:07

Guess what? IT’S A PR WEEK! I managed to break my previous Personal Record during the adidas Runmore 10K but I’ll have more details about that later in my Race Report!

I’m also super pleased with my 5km speed because that was actually the day that Toronto was hit with a pretty nasty storm but the majority of the rain had stopped by the time I got home. It was still a bit windy, but totally bearable. The only thing I didn’t like was the tiny droplets of rain that really impaired my vision.

Luckily, it gave me plenty of chances to test out the bright neon yellow running shirt and adidas Running Light, which is now my Slappy Sparkle Light. (I’ll put up a proper review later!)

I didn’t do the 7km run because I could feel like it would probably exhaust me a bit too much to perform that well at my first night race. I can barely stay awake past 11pm these days!

Rock Climbing

I spent the majority of the time keeping an eye on my coworkers, who were taking the beginner lessons so I couldn’t tackle as many routes as I usually do. But, it was still super fun!

Top Rope – I’m feeling very comfortable at 5.8s now, but the only 5.9 route that I tried out was on the auto-belay system and I couldn’t see a hold about 3/4 the way up. I had to let go, so I drifted back down and saw that the hold was on the other side of a dome… Sigh.

Bouldering – I didn’t get a chance to really get into the bouldering section like usual, but I did an overhanging V0. Next time, more overhangs!

Now that it’s November, I’ve realized that I only have about 7 weeks to reach my goal!

This week’s running goals:

Nov 3 – 5km @ 6’05” avg pace, 30:30
Nov 5 – 7km @ 6’05” avg pace, 42:35
Nov 7 – 10km @ 6’20” avg pace, 1:03:20

I know it’s technically “race pace” according to last week’s results, but it’s not actually that much faster, so I want to incorporate it into my usual pace training.

Nov 8 – Rock Climbing

Top Rope – I’ll definitely be looking into more 5.9 routes if I can squeeze in! On Thursday, a lot of people were challenging those routes, so I think it’s a common difficulty where peoples’ skills plateau.

Bouldering – V1’s? V1’s.

I still haven’t figured out a decent Weekly Fitness Update picture yet, but at least I’m half finished the adidas race report! Here’s a sneak peek photo:

Princess Hi-Visibility adidas Runmore 10K

xoxo,

B.elle