40 minutes later

In a nutshell, the Army Run was awesome. The two ladies I ran with are awesome. The day was gorgeous, sunny and not to warm. There were tonnes of people along the route. There was a soldier running alongside us in full gear – boots, helmet, rucksack. It was inspiring, joyful, and in retrospect, not nearly as hard or terrifying as I thought it might be.

So, I’m signed up for another, at the end of October, following the Run for the Cure. It’s a somewhat expensive new addiction, but seeing as how I have a job for the moment, why should I treat myself a little?

As an added bit of motivation, I’ve added a page with my results. High falutin’, I know, but hopefully it’ll keep me on track and inspired by my own progress.

Tonight, tomorrow

So, as it turns out, I will be doing the Army Run. Thanks to one of my beloved’s co-workers, I will be running a 5k in the morning. It’s all very last minute, so the terror perhaps hasn’t had time to set in. Thankfully, I am going with a pair of incredible women, otherwise I would’ve talked myself out of this enterprise hours ago.

More tomorrow, a post-race post-mortem, if you will.


The Ides of September

The beginning of September is rough around here. The 4th was my mom’s birthday. The 10th, the five-year anniversary of her passing. Tomorrow afternoon, my colleagues and I find out which side of the “we have twice as many of you as we need” line we will come down on. I figure as long as I avoid the Senate, I should be fine.

But, on the upside, last week I biked to work twice and made it to the gym once. Tonight was running night and I breezed through it and felt as though I could’ve done a whole other set. The Run for the Cure is getting close enough to taste, and I find that I am getting excited contemplating what I’ll do next. Plan another 5k run? Register for the 10k clinic? Both? Something else entirely?

I’m accepting the fact all this running and biking will not transform my body into the human equivalent of a whippet. The next step will be sorting out my diet – not helped by the daily tea time at work featuring various cookies and goodies! – but there’s time for that. In the meantime, I’m cruising Ben Does Life, and dreaming about totalling my bike in a injury-free fashion thereby justifying the purchase of a new, lighter, sleeker model.


The author, not at her best So, we are back from France. The trip was both wonderful and awful, as these things go. Wonderful to see family and friends, to be in Paris, eating amazing delicious food. Awful as the last 5 days were spent in an increasing haze of sickness. Awful too, to leave not knowing when we will be back. Post-toddlerhood is my guess.

Freyja was an amazing little viking on the way there and back. She coped with the Air France shuttle from Ottawa to Montreal with grace and excitement – banging on the glass and enjoying the sites. She took the airport in stride, and slept most of the way to France. I would like to think that the foundation we laid with attachment parenting helped, even just a little. Marc and I took turns walking her around the airport, where she flirted with all with smiles and dimples and the odd giggle. For the flight, she was asleep as the wheels of the plane left Canadian soil, and didn’t wake until we were entering French airspace. Thank you, breastfeeding and sleepy-booby hormones.

The time in France was less eventful than usual, as we were snowed in for most of the first week. It worked out as we were run off our feet chasing after Freyja. She decided the time was right for walking, and off she went. By the second week, I began to head downhill at an increasingly congested, feverish, achy pace. Thankfully France is the motherland of medication, and medicated I quickly was.

The trip home was less enjoyable, being sick, dealing with a wide-awake toddler who wanted to walk-Walk-WALK (now, Now, NOW!), and being accompanied by a large group of Russian tweens and their parents. It was charming until we got on the Air France shuttle from Montreal to Ottawa. First, to have our normally deserted bus packed. Second, to have our normally deserted bus packed with wound-up, shouting, laughing ten-year-old boys, shouting and laughing while we tried to get an hour of sleep. Thankfully Freyja slept through it all and didn’t have to witness the murderous intent in her parents’ eyes.

And now home. Thankfully. The next morning, I got up and humped down to the walk-in clinic, where Freyja once again proved what a trooper she is, charming to boot. The prognosis: a flu, with secondary infections in eyes, ears, sinus and throat. As my doctor put it, with a twinkle in his eyes, my warrantee has apparently expired. As my mom would’ve put it, with a twinkle in her eyes, off to the glue factory for me.

And so now, heavily medicated with a variety of antibiotics – and heavily self-medicating with as much yogurt as I can stomach – things are returning to normal. I can breath, no longer have a “man-voice” as my beloved called it, and hopefully will no longer frighten small children with my 28 Days Later-inspired eyes.

And so now, we can begin to get on with the business of 2011. All in good health, hearty and hale, I hope!

Mika had it right

Yesterday, I read this  rant on Adorkable Thespian, regarding this questionable editorial by Marie Claire’s Maura Kelly. She apparently likes the taste of feet, as she proceeds to stuff hers way into her mouth. She has certainly sparked a heated discussion in the blogosphere, and rightfully so. Good on all those writers, readers, commenters and bloggers to call Ms. Kelly on the hateful, prejudiced garbage she wrote.

Perhaps my naivety is breathtaking, but I am perpetually baffled by such hatefulness. A lack of compassion, a lack of empathy is truly toxic. I can admit to being particularly sensitive to sizeist diatribes, struggling as I am to lose weight. Regardless, I have to wonder where this comes from. Ms. Kelly no doubt has issues of her own but this doesn’t giver her license to lash out at others.  As a shining example of humanity put it:

There is no denying that consideration of others is worthwhile and that our happiness is inextricably bound up with the happiness of others. There is no denying that if society suffers, we ourselves suffer, and the more our hearts and minds are afflicted with ill-will, the more miserable we become. We can reject religion, ideology, received wisdom, but we cannot escape the need for love and compassion.

This morning, driving back home after dropping Marc at work, I passed a very obese woman walking to work. My heart went out to her, but I also wanted to crow, “You are fabulous!” Every little step helps, to lose weight, to get healthy, or just to get centred and enjoy some fresh air. And, selfishly, I hope that there is someone beaming positivism and love at me the next time I drag the junk in my trunk out for a jog.

So, Ms. Kelly, I do wish you all the best, but hope that you have taken this lesson to heart. Compassion will always take you further in this life than hateful bigotry. Compassion, yes. Bigotry, no. Good? Good.


Couch to …

A few weeks ago, we participated in the Run for the Cure supporting the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. It was a chilly morning, so we opted to walk the 1k, with much amusement that the trail amounted to a circuit past the Portapotties and the Museum of War’s parking lot. By the time we’d completed our 20-ish minute stroll, the serious runners were already crossing the 5k finish line. Inspiring, to say the least.

So, I set myself a goal – another “Mat leave goal”. Next year, I want to be able to run the 5k route.

We’ll see how it goes, as Mat leave goals seem to have a way of evolving, shrinking, adapting, or being abandoned.

At the very least, I will give it a try. I have been following the Couch-to-5k plan, and today dragged Maisy and Freyja off on another run. I’ve been doing interval training at Strollercise when we can make it down in time, otherwise I resort to bringing Miss Maisy along as company, coach and running partner. She has taken to nipping at my heels and knees when I slow down, which is a most effective training strategy regardless of the fact I am not a sheep. I have explained this fact to her before but she just rolls her bi-coloured eyes at me and lolls out her tongue as if to say, “Whatever, get a move on, biped!”.

And so I will. Just watch me.