≡ Menu

The Runs

The Runs header image

Mileage Monday

Well, last week’s Mileage Monday post came out a little more heartless than I meant it to. My intention in that post and on this blog and in life in general is to be encouraging, but I worry that some people may have felt more defeated than encouraged by my rah rah mentality. So, I humbly give you a disclaimer:

While it IS nearly impossible for me to fit in all my miles into my crazy life, I make it a priority because running is the one thing I can control while everything else skids out. And when I say “skids out,” I’m talking like major life crisis, not just a traffic jam or a malfunctioning bulb in the Christmas lights. The more difficult it becomes for me to fit in a run, the more necessary it is that I do.

My running mileage is not done in an effort to be healthy and balanced or to grow old to see my great grandchildren get married or for any other sort of honorable reason, no. I run because I have an insatiable hunger for the way it fills me up with clarity and pushes out the angst. When the day comes when I will be unable to run, I will no doubt find another vent between here and there but until then, while I can, I will run.

70 miles for the week looked like this:

Monday– I got 9 miles in on the treadmill while Jesse napped!

Tuesday– Well, I did a 2 mile warm-up and then 8x800m repeats but I kept the recovery pace at an 8:30 min/mile clip (400m) so I didn’t run the 800s as fast (I did them each in 3:09). It was a really, really great workout. Not too tough, but just enough to make my face purple. 8 miles total.

Wednesday– Just a slow 10 mile recovery run on the treadmill.

Thursday– A treadmill run while Jesse napped and Callum was at preschool. I managed 9 miles with 10 pickups just to get my legs turning over.

Friday– An 8 mile treadmill run at 8 min pace.

Saturday– Well, my first 20 miler in a really long time! I had to divide it up so that I could feed Jesse. I did the first half at an 8:30 min/mile pace and the second half at a 7:25 min/mile pace.

Sunday– A slow 6 miles pushing Jesse in the stroller in the rain!

Why do you/do you not run? What drives you? What holds you back?


Mileage Monday

Well, this week had a few surprises. Some sick kids, sick adults, you know, that kind of stuff.

I squeaked out a solid 70 miles. I had to skip my weekend long run, but I made sure to do some speed work on Sunday. Let’s pretend that this week was all about building up my mental strength and endurance, because the mind makes the body move.

Here’s how it went down:

Monday– Treadmill miles. The first 5 were done at 8 min/mile pace, the next 3 at 7:30 min/mile pace, the last 2 at 8:30 for 10 total treadmill miles.

Tuesday– I went for 8 miles, and Jesse kept waking up early from his nap so it took me THREE TRIES to get this run done. I did 9, just to stick it to myself (TWSS).

Wednesday– A bit of a gong show. Callum went to daycare and Andrew worked from home so I went for a run while Jesse napped but he woke up crying HARD. He has a cold. So I put him in the stroller and finished up my 8 mile run while he got some fresh air.

Thursday– A bit of a run during Jesse’s first short nap and a bit of a run during Jesse’s second short nap making 9 miles total and zero time in the shower. Gross.

Friday– I had the opportunity to run a longer treadmill run today so I took it (see Saturday’s note). I ran 15 miles at an 8:30 min/mile pace.

Saturday– My plan called for a 21 miler this weekend but life took a bit of a hairpin turn and the weekend ended up skidding out over the edge of a cliff. So, I did what I could. I ran 7 miles on the treadmill in the morning and then my mom came over to play with Callum and I took Jesse on a 5 mile stroller run for 12 total miles.

Sunday– 2×3 miles with 1 mile recovery between sets. First 3 miles: 6:40, 6:40, 6:40. Second 3 miles: 6:31, 6:27, 6:22. 7 total miles.

Can I just say something? We’re all busy but very few people are actually too busy to work out, or to do whatever it is that they “wish they had more time to do.” If a person really and truly wants to do something, then (in most cases) they’ll do it. If they don’t, then they don’t really want to do it. Maybe they want to want to do it. But they don’t really want to do it. Anyway. La la la la.



Mileage Monday

This was supposed to be an easy recovery week but I felt so good by Saturday that I went for a marathon race pace tempo run and blew the whole “recovery” part of recovery week. Whoops!

Monday– Super chill 10 mile treadmill run at 8 min/miles while Callum was at daycare and Jesse napped. I got a lot done today and it feels AMAZING.

Tuesday– Slow treadmill run while Callum was at preschool and Jesse was napping. I’m dealing with some sort of stomach virus. I feel like crap.

Wednesday– A 10 mile run with intervals thrown in just to make it go by faster. I alternated between 7 min/mile pace and 8 min/mile pace.

Thursday– I did 8 miles with Jesse in the stroller and then 6 miles outside later on by myself because Andrew came home early!

Friday– A nice little 7 mile treadmill run at 8:30 min/mile pace. Taking recovery week seriously!

Saturday– Well, I blew recovery week. 14 miles with 12 at marathon race pace (average 6:48 min/miles).

Sunday– 7 recovery miles, super slow, neighborhood run.


Mileage Monday and Week in Review

Writing up a Week in Review feels like falling into a pool when I only wanted to dip my toe in. Like, there’s so much to write and so little time and how on earth will I ever choose what to note and what to leave out? Gah. Okay I hear Jesse stirring so I need to get this done pretty quick here.

Callum started daycare! Well, I should use that term loosely. We call it “play group” and he only goes once a week from 9-2. The first day was on Wednesday and he LOVED IT. I’m not just saying that. This place is like a frigging Disneyland for 3 year olds. Here’s his photo that his teacher put on his cubby:

I’ve never put any of my kids in daycare before but I felt like Callum needed a little extra time to be a three-year-old. He gets dragged around on so many errands with me, teacher meetings for the older kids, doctor appointments, all those things, that I finally decided that having him at daycare one day a week would free me up to get all those things done on that day rather than dragging him around with me.

Jake graduates this year and he got his photo proofs back. This is my favourite one:

Jesse is still as cute and as sweet as ever. My breastfeeding game is strong, and his chubby bum is proof:

Freddy had a soccer game on Saturday but Katie and Jesse and I ended up spending most of it camped out in the van. Katie helps me out so much with Callum and Jesse, but she’s definitely most adamant about holding little J. She will often say to me in a deep demanding voice, “GIVE ME THE BABY.” Ha ha ha. She’s awesome.

We went to our first Christmas party last night but I spent the majority of in the bathroom. Not because of too much tequila, no. But because Jesse decided that it would be the perfect time to blow out three diapers in a row.

Okay, so before this gets too long, here are my mileage stats for the week. I hit 70 total miles, and broken down looked like this:

Monday– A 3 mile treadmill warm-up while Jesse slept and then an 8 mile tempo run in the rain once Andrew came home (7:10 min/miles).

Tuesday– Super slow 8 mile recovery run!

Wednesday– What a gong show of a day. It was Callum’s first day at daycare (he only goes one day/week) and the teacher got sick and had us come get our kids early! So I didn’t get this run done until much later in the day. I did 3 miles before I had to get Callum and then 6 miles later.

Thursday– No school for the kids on Thursday or Friday (parent teacher interviews and profession development or something) so I squeezed in an 8.35 mile treadmill run when Jesse had his first nap. Thankfully Callum still had preschool, so it worked out.

Friday– 8.7 miles on the treadmill! Super boring, but gearing up (down?) for another 18 miler this weekend.

Saturday– I went out for an 18 miler with the front 9 at 8:20 pace and the back 9 with a 7:40 pace but I ended up running too fast at the start (I couldn’t hold back; I was listening to a podcast and then music that moved me and I got caught up in it) and then bonking at the end, slogging out the last few miles at a 9 min/mile pace. Oh well. 18 miles done, so that’s a win in itself.

Sunday– 7 slow treadmill miles to hit 70 for the week.

That’s it! I’m a lot more sore than I should be. It’s weird. You’d think I would have been way more sore after last week’s 18 mile run because 11 of them were tempo miles! I think it’s accumulated fatigue. My left hip is a little sore so I’m taking it easier than normal this week. Also, my front tooth is killing me. Apparently I clench my teeth or something and it sets off the nerve up there. HORRIFIC.

Any of you guys ever get nerve pain in your teeth from clenching them? What helps?

Have you guys gone to any Christmas parties yet?



Mileage Monday/Week in Review

Hey guys! The grandparents took Callum for the day today so I have a bit more time to write, so I thought I’d add in a few details to this post and make it a combined Week in Review (hosted by my home girl Meghan from Clean Eats Fast Feets) post as well as a Mileage Monday post.

First of all, I hit 70 miles for the week which isn’t an all-time high or anything (I hit an 80 mile week when I was 20-something weeks pregnant!) but I did do the toughest, longest run I’ve done in a very long time. It’s been at least a year. So, I am really happy about that. Here’s how my running went:

Monday– Went out for 8, came back with 10. It was windy, but not enough to kill me. Rainy, but just in sprinkles. I figured that this type of weather is about as good as it’s going to get for the next few months, so I had better make the best of it. I would have gone longer but my legs are still tired from the 16 miler on the weekend.

Tuesday– 7 miles in the morning pushing Jesse in the stroller while Callum was at preschool and then 4 therapy miles at night after the kids were in bed! I haven’t run in the dark in forever and tbh it was a little spooky after all the recent events around here.

Wednesday– I managed to squeak in this 8 mile treadmill run this morning, 7:30 pace at 0.5% incline). SUCH A BUSY DAY.

Thursday– Just a slowish 9 mile run on the treadmill while Callum was at preschool and Jesse was napping.

Friday– 7 easy slow treadmill miles

Saturday– This was the toughest workout I’ve done in I don’t know how long. A couple of years? Something like that. I’m about a week ahead in my marathon training plan (I like being a week ahead just in case something happens) and it called for an 18 mile long run with 10 miles at goal marathon race pace (6:50) so I did 18 miles with 11 miles at an average 6:46 min/mile pace! I finished feeling strong and empowered, and a little bit sore and creaky but nothing like I thought I would be!

Sunday– Just an easy 7 miles listening to the Rich Roll podcast where he interviews Lance Armstrong. I highly recommend.

And here are a few pictures from the week.

My mom came over to play trains with Callum and to snuggle Jesse.

I bought matching pajamas for the boys (and now Katie is convincing me to get us all matching jammies…)

Jesse is fighting for Callum’s spot in Katie’s arms.

We did a lot of painting this week.

Melody lives in Indonesia so sometimes she and Tracey and I have drinks and group chat and one of them sent me this old photo of us, and I have dreads!

I decided to show you guys what my hair looks like now when I brush it out.

I finally hung this piece of art on my wall. I am OBSESSED with it. If you guys want one for yourself, head on over to my friend Joel’s instagram account @joelsmiths13 and check out his photography! That guy is talented. And, Canadian. Yay.

Also, my anxiety has been way better and I’ve been sleeping great but this post from the Scary Mommy account is still so true and made me laugh!

Okay, all done. I hope you guys had a good week!

Do you brush your hair?

I don’t. Contrary to what you might think, my hair doesn’t get tangled.

Matching pajamas? Yay or nay?



We Canadians already had our Thanksgiving and now that Halloween is over, we’re ready to dive into the Christmas season. Well, not yet, but close. It’s definitely time to start thinking about planning family gatherings, what to buy the kids, you know, things THAT TOTALLY STRESS ME OUT.

I’m not an easy-going person. I may come across that way in person but I am most certainly compensating for the TOTAL AND COMPLETE NEUROTIC FREAK THAT I AM ON THE INSIDE.

When my oldest three kids were about say, ten, eight and five, we had the Nintendo Wii video game system. We’d play it together in the basement and that’s when my boys taught me the term rage-quit. It’s when you flip shit and quit mid-game. When I was little, I’d straight-arm the Monopoly board and, with my Julia Roberts forehead vein flashing, yell, “THERE. NOBODY WINS. NOBODY.” And then I’d streak out of the room, hands covering my face, tears streaming down onto the plush peach carpeting. That? Is a rage-quit.

I’d like to rage-quit Christmas, and it’s only the middle of November.



Side Order of Flies

I was doing my long run on Saturday and my usual route takes me along the farm road that runs parallel to the freeway. For the most part, it’s flat and straight with blankets of farmland, rows upon rows of soil funneling life from the snow-capped mountains jutting out from behind. On this particular day, a truck from behind me, traveling in the same direction, he in the right lane and I on the left shoulder, gently swerved over onto my side. I couldn’t believe it!

Most of the time people give me a wide berth which is so nice, but a lot of the time they don’t even move over an inch. But never has it happened where someone actually drives over toward me like that. I assumed the driver was doing it to get a rise out of me and I immediately felt angry. And then? I noticed he took a wide right hand turn down his private farm road around a giant mess of dead raccoon.

It wasn’t about me at all.

When it feels like people are out to get us, most often, they’re simply avoiding their own giant mess of dead racoon.


Mileage Monday

Hey guys! I’m so happy. <—the wine talking. I hit 76 miles for the week which is my highest mileage week since I was in my second trimester aaaaaand, I hit my highest mileage run in forever (16 miles).

There are so many women I follow on Instagram that inspire me like WHOA. But one woman, her name is Laura, she posted something this week about how she got emotional during a treadmill run at the gym. She started thinking about her goals, her upcoming running endeavors and then just felt that rush, you know? And I felt it too, during my run on Saturday! I don’t always feel that rush and to be honest, it’s quite rare. But when it happens, I feel like the queen of the frigging WORLD.

Anyway, here’s how it all went down.

Oh, and I also have a couple of posts I’ve been working on, so it’s not all Mileage Monday up in here.

Monday– I wanted to do a bit of a workout but not too much so that I’d get injured after the tempo on Saturday and not so I’d get tired for my next tempo. 10 total miles with the first 2 at 8 min pace, 2 at 7:40 pace, 2 at 7:30 pace, 1 at 7:13 pace, 1 at 6:58 pace, and then a 2 mile cool-down at 8:30 pace!

Tuesday– 10 miles in the morning on the treadmill at 1% incline at an 8:15 pace, and then 4 miles with Andrew in the afternoon!

Wednesday– Just an easy treadmill run at 8:30 pace for 10 miles.

Thursday– Well, this workout was supposed to be a 9 mile run incorporating a 4 mile tempo at goal half marathon race pace (which I did 2 weeks ago in the middle of my long run with Lora). But, I couldn’t quite do it. Callum went to preschool, and I took Jesse on a 3 mile stroller run as a warm-up and then I put him down for a nap and hit the treadmill. I got to 2.17 miles (out of 4) and pressed the stop button. I let myself regroup for 90 seconds and then hopped back on. I got to 3 miles (out of 4) and hopped back off to regroup for 90 seconds. Hopped back on, and took another 90 second break at 3.5 miles. Once I hit 4, I decided that I’d keep running half mile repeats until I hit 5 miles at tempo pace because if I couldn’t do 4 consecutive miles at that pace, I could certainly “punish” myself with a couple more intervals. So, 10 total miles for the day with 5 done at 6:30 min/mile pace.

Friday– My sister and her husband came over last night for drinks, so we stayed up too late and messed up the kids’ sleep patterns, and then paid for it dearly today. I got 3 slow miles on the treadmill before Jesse woke up and then when Andrew came home, I headed out for a slow 5 miler to make 8 for the day.

Saturday– This is the longest run I’ve done in probably a year! The goal was 16 miles with half of them at 8:20 pace and the latter half at 7:40, and I nailed it! 8:20 right on the nose and then 7:30. YEAH!

Sunday– I met Lora for 8 torrential rainy miles!

Do you guys deal with road kill on the regular, or is it a rare occurrence?

Do you have any leftover Halloween candy? What do you eat first? Last?

Favourite sex position?


Mileage Monday

I think it’s a combination of being on the west coast and being in Canada, but we didn’t get the New York City marathon coverage up here! I watched Shalane Flanagan’s finish on YouTube, several times, and it had me in happy tears. She wasn’t expected to win, so I loved watching her pull away from the lead women and break the tape. I may have loved her, “Fuck YES!” exclamation the very most, as she ate up the last few steps of victory.

My “Fuck yes” comes in the form of surviving the course of this last week. We had Halloween, which is always a giant pain in the ass (I am NOT a fan), and then we had a young man end his life in a very wide open and public form so that all the high and middle schoolers walking to school the morning after Halloween could see, and be traumatized from, two of which were my own kids, which made for a very heavy day, night, and week. We had flu shots, which was good, and then just he regular busyness of life, which is fine, which I do enjoy.

When I was a kid, when people would ask me what I wanted to be when I grow up, I’d tell them that I wanted to be an air traffic controller. I chose it because I had heard that it was/is the most stressful job out there. Now, obviously I didn’t go that route but this week, as my mind, body and heart ached from the exhaustion of fielding so many things from so many people all day and all night long, I thought to myself, well, well, well. Isn’t this interesting. Suzy the air traffic controller. Fitting, hey? Yeah. I thought so.

I’ll stop whining like a ninny. I ran a 70 mile week last week, and here’s how it went down:

Monday– I thought today’s run would feel terrible after yesterday’s tempo run but it actually felt not only good, but great! My legs felt a little bit sore but not dead, if that makes sense. Last Monday they felt like tanker trucks. I squeaked out a 10 mile run with a combination of running along and running with the stroller once Andrew left for his kids’ soccer practices.

Tuesday– A straight up 9 mile stroller run with Jesse while Callum was in preschool.

Wednesday– A crazy day. I got 6 miles done on the treadmill in the morning and then Freddy babysat Callum while I ran 4 miles outside with Jesse.

Thursday– 9 miles with the stroller (and Jesse) while Callum was at preschool.

Friday– 4 miles on the treadmill while Jesse slept and then 5 miles outside when Andrew came home early from work! Woo hoo!

Saturday– I did 16 miles with 10 miles at 6:49 pace… in the blowing snow and wind. Rawr. The first 6 mile “warm”-up was pushing Jesse in the stroller (I bundled him up and put the plastic cover over the BOB) and then I fed him, then did my 10 miler outside by myself.

Sunday– Just 7 easy miles to make it a 70 mile week!

What is your latest, “Fuck yes!” about? What would you like to say, “Fuck yes!” about soon, or one day down the road?

What did you want to be when you grew up? Is it similar to what you are doing now?




Mileage Monday

Well, if I round up, I made it to 69 miles for the week which is quite scandalous. In all honesty though, I capped out at 68.65 miles which isn’t quite as exciting, but at 9 weeks postpartum, I’ll take what I can get.

This was my first official week of marathon training! I’m (loosely) using a plan out of my Advanced Marathoning book. The 2 main workouts this week were a 9 mile run with 4 miles at half marathon race pace (6:30) and a 15 mile long run. I (stupidly) combined the 2 on Sunday’s run and nearly crapped my pants. It was touch and go for about 2 miles and then it was just go.

Here’s how it went down.

Monday– Day after the long marathon race pace run. Sore. Heavy legs. Slow. Andrew was home with a sore back so I waited until Jesse was fast asleep and Callum was happily watching a show and then I headed out for 9 miles, except Jesse woke up so I turned around and came home early. But then he went back to sleep so I took Callum out on a stroller run to finish up my nine miler.

Tuesday– I ran 8 miles while pushing Jesse in the stroller while Callum was at preschool. It was SUCH a gorgeous day. We’re having amazing Fall weather!

Wednesday– Jesse had a crappy night’s sleep last night so he made up for it by having a really long nap this morning. I made use of it and ran 11 miles on the treadmill.

Thursday– A combination of treadmill running and pushing Jesse in the stroller to make 8 miles while Callum was at preschool.

Friday– Just a couple of treadmill runs fit in during the day at separate times while Jesse napped and Callum played beside me. I even dragged the swing into the garage for Jesse to nap in!

Saturday– I pushed Jesse in the stroller for 9 miles! He slept for the last 6. He loves the stroller. He is SO CUTE. This kid is a dream. He stares up at me and smiles away, looks around, and pretty much just loves life while we run along. Yay.

Sunday– I’d love to round this up, or even round it down, but I can’t do it. Because my life is so busy, I had to combine my 2 tough runs this week into one: I put the half marathon race pace tempo run inside my long run of 15 miles. I also wanted to run with Lora as we haven’t seen each other in forever, and it’s her 40th birthday tomorrow, and today was my only chance. So, I headed out for the tempo run first and did 1 mile warmup and 4 at 6:32 min/miles. The goal was 6:30, but it was CRAZY windy out. I don’t like to make excuses, but this was the type of wind that blew up gravel onto our shins so that every time a gust came, we had to stop and turn around for a few seconds. So, a 6:32 average is just fine with me! I worked harder than I would have on a non-windy day for a 6:30 average, if that makes sense. So hard, in fact, that I nearly crapped my pants and had to cut out to have a poop on the side of the road. I lost just over a mile there, (I let Lora go ahead and then went out to meet her, and came back with her), so I didn’t get the full 15 miles in (I capped out at 13.65) but that’s okay. The point of the long run is to teach the body to run on tired legs, and that is exactly what I did today. Goal accomplished.

So, it’s working out that once a week Andrew takes Jesse and Callum for me so that I can get my big workout run done. I usually keep the boys with me while he does the whole soccer thing with his older kids on the weekends, and then when he gets home, I take off. Thankfully, Jesse takes a bottle of pumped breastmilk so there’s not much worry there in regards to him missing a feeding, however, today was the longest I’ve been away from him (2.5 hours) and I think he maybe just panicked a little? Who knows what goes on in their little minds, right? So I got home, peeled off my sweaty clothes and gave him the boobie. He was SO happy. After he ate he just stared up at me and gave me the hugest smiles and talked away with all sorts of eyebrow raises and shoulder movements. I love this kid.

I’m typing this out while he sleeps on my chest. I’ve also got a (Canadian) beer beside me, and I’m about to nail down a bag of cheesies. Life is good.

Have you ever had Canadian beer? Do you like it? What kind? 

Do you know what cheesies are? Cheetos are a brand of cheesies. I think cheesies are a Canadian term. 

How old are you? 

I’m turning 40 in January!