Welcome!

Welcome to the life of a 6 foot tall runner living in Saskatchewan, Canada. This is where I document my adventures in food, fitness, and my life in general. My sarcasm hand is always raised and 90% of my iPhone photos are of my dog.

Feel free to email me runningtallblog@gmail.com. It makes my day when I hear from readers!

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*DISCLAIMER*

Although I am a Certified Personal Trainer, please consult your medical professional before making any fitness or nutrition changes. ALWAYS honour your body.

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Monday
Sep082014

Race Recap: Queen City Half Marathon (QCM) 2014

Yesterday was a hot summer day and today I’m wearing boots and a rain coat. Oh September weather, you so cray.

HEY, let’s talk about the half marathon I ran yesterday, shall we?!

Courtesy of my mom’s iphone. I’m sure the official race photos will be beautiful as always....

Let’s go in chronological order from the expo:

-Mike and I went and picked up our race packets (and some expo goodies) Friday after work.

Mike measuring his calf for compression socks. He got himself his first pair of compression socks at the expo, wore them during the half, and LOVED them. He said it helped immensely with his shin splints. Power of compression!

-drank a truck load of water and ate a bunch of carbs Saturday

Garlic bread, chicken alfredo pasta, and a strawberry spinach salad.

-got up Sunday morning, did a 20 minute “yoga for runners” sequence

This sequence has REALLY helped us before and after runs. It’s the 20 minute beginner stretch for runners on the Yoga Studio App.

-got our race gear on

My oufit: lulu Run Stuff Your Bra, a U of R Women's Basketball t-shirt, lulu Run Times Short, Pro Compression marathon socks, BiaSport watch, Mizuno Wave Inspire 10s.

-took selfies (duh)

That was a solo activity for me

-and headed to the race! We got there LITERALLY just in time for the wheelchair racers to start. Parking was insanity! We ran through to find our starting group (no corrals, just big banners with estimated finishing times) and then we were off!

We planned on staying with the 2:15 pacer but since we got to the start line so late, we had to stop at the first aid station and use the bathrooms. We were a bit ahead of the 2:15 pacer when we went into the bathrooms (they do 10 mins run 1 min walk) but had no clue if they were behind us or had passed us when we got out. So we did our own thing!

We were maintaining a 9:45-9:50 pace for the first 6 miles and then I started to waver. I told Mike he could take off since he was feeling better than I was and he slowly started speeding up. Then I was all by myself...without music.

Yes, we had thought we would run together so we didn’t bring any music with us. It actually wasn’t bad! I liked talking to other people, listening to the cheers and music of the spectators, and basically just enjoyed being outside. In fact, we had done about 95% of our half training without music so it wasn’t too rough.

Best specator sign: "I trained for months to hold this sign"

Best spectators: the old couple sitting at the end of their driveway in the residential part of the course blasting Chariots of Fire from their car on repeat.

I walked through the aid station that was after mile 7 and realized I hadn’t taken my energy chews. WHOOPS! I took 3-4 from my package of Honey Stingers, plus two cups of water to wash it down. Instant energy! I felt so much better and kept running at a 9:55 pace.

Then it started to get HOT. I didn’t really feel it until mile 10 but oh MAN was I praying for a water station at every turn. I sucked back 2 cups of water and 1 cup of Gatorade at each water station I encountered and I still felt like it wasn’t enough. I hindsight, I should have worn our CamelBak. Oh well.

I took the remainder of my energy chews at mile 9 and 11 to help push me through the second half of the race, but my pace had fallen to 10-10:05. By mile 11 I was doing 10:15 and I felt like that was the best I could do. I was hot, the bottoms of my feet were hurting, and my hips were so sore. After a few minutes of complaining in my head and seriously debating if I would ever run another half again after this, I started to force myself to think positive thoughts.

“You can walk when it’s done”

“Just a little bit more, you can do it!”

“Don’t give up now, you’re so close!”

I hit mile 12, knew I wasn’t going to PR but knew I could still get in the 2:20s if I went for it, so I did! That last 1.1 mile was tough but it was the most satisfying. I started to talk to myself out loud like a crazy person to keep my motivation, rounded the corner to “Heartbreak Hump” (a hill you have to go up right before the finish line), and saw my parents, sister and Sadie! That gave me a little extra energy to try and “sprint” to the finish line. And by sprint, I mean trying to make my legs go faster without tripping over myself. If you’ve ever run a long distance and tried to sprint at the end, you know what feeling I’m talking about!

I heard the race announcer say my name, crossed the finish line with a big smile on my face, got my medal, and immediately saw Mike waiting right behind the medal giver. He had finished a few minutes before me and had hoped that I would catch up to him near the end but not such luck ;)

Cute tidbit from the race: I checked my phone when we got back to our car and saw a bunch of snapchat videos from Mike! He had his phone on him during the race and sent me some videos from when we separated :D

We loaded up on food, water, and Gatorade, found my family and Sadie for a post-race chat, then headed back to my parents’ place for a big breakfast.

Bacon, blueberies, and french toast...with PSLs from Starbucks, of course!

The rest of the day was spent resting, stretching, soaking in a hot tub, and eating. Best day ever.

Official race time:

2hr24min

73/161 for female 25-29 category

577/1117 for female category

Not the PR I was hoping for but it’s my second fastest time to date!

Mike’s official race time:

2hr22min

58/90 for male 25-29 category

504/694 for male category

Freaking awesome for his first half! Also, where are all the male runners at?!

 

I’m disappointed I didn’t PR but I’m not surprised. My training basically took a vacation the past month or so and I didn’t get all of the training runs in that I wanted. You get what you put into it and I clearly didn’t put in enough for a PR. I’m still proud of myself and I’m always amazed when I finish a half – I just ran for 2+ hours and survived. It still blows my mind.

Another important note: this is the least sore I’ve ever been after a half. I’ve also been doing more yoga than I ever have before....coincidence?

 

Who else raced this weekend? How did you do?

 

I’ll see you guys later this week with another post!

PS: Now that the half is over, this week is dedicated to yoga and Zumba prep! I start teaching next Monday and need song suggestions! What’s your go to pump up jam right now?

Friday
Sep052014

Cardio Blast {At Home Cardio Workout}

Happy Friday everyone! How are we feeling about the weekend? Personally, I’m pumped – the QCM half marathon is on Sunday! Mike and I did a little 2 mile shake out run yesterday and now we’re resting and drinking water by the gallon until race day. The shake out run completely re-instilled our confidence in our running after Monday’s super bad run. Thank god – we needed it!

Guess what else happened earlier this week?

If we’re friends on Instagram, you’ll already know this ;)

Birthday fro-yo. I pilled that cup high with Nutella, cake batter, and caramel chocolate fro yo, plus a bunch of candies and cookie dough. I think I did birthday treat day some justice….

Mike and I also headed out to the lake on Tuesday after work to check out some spots for our engagement pictures.

A little downdog for the #balancebasics instagram challenge

We won’t get them taken until spring or fall next year but we wanted to see what the areas we’d want so we can chat with photographers about our session. This wedding is getting REAL y’all.

At Home Cardio Circuit

Remember on Tuesday when I said I’d have a workout for you? Well check this out – I’m actually delivering on my promise!

This is an easy cardio circuit to complete in your living room, hotel room, dorm room, or whatever small space you’re in. Sometimes you can’t get outside (what’s up winter in Saskatchewan) and the treadmill at the gym seems really far away but it’s cardio day. And let’s face it, sometimes it’s way easier to workout in front of the DVR….#guilty

Remember to warm up first before starting this and any other workout. I like to dance around to songs like a crazy person as a warm up when I workout at home. Only Sadie can judge me then…

Instructions:

Complete the first circuit (first set of 4 exercises) without stopping. Take a minute rest and move on to complete the second circuit. Repeat 3-5 times.

Exercise demos:

High knees

Jumping jacks

Mountain climbers

Squat jumps

Plank jacks

Jump lunges

Tuck jumps

Butt kicks

 

Remember to cool down and stretch after each workout! Try my full body stretching routine if you’re unsure what to do as a cool down.

 

Let me know if you try this workout! Tag me in your post-workout pics:

@running_tall on twitter

@runningtall on Instagram

 

I’ll see you guys later! Send me all your good vibes for Sunday!

Tuesday
Sep022014

Birthday Coffee Talk

Good morning! How’s everyone after the long weekend? Personally I’m feeling nice and refreshed. We had a lovely weekend filled with family, friends, and the lake!

Birthday dinner at Flip Eatery.

Relaxing at the lake

Let’s catch up coffee style, shall we? I’ve seen this quite a few times across the blogosphere and always loved reading them. So everyone get comfy, grab a cup of coffee, tea, water, whatever, and let’s catch up!

If we were having coffee this morning, you’d see that my beverage of choice is a big black coffee which will probably be followed by a special triple latte later this morning since I’m a) tired as hell and didn’t get a great sleep last night and; b) it’s my birthday! I like to save things like full sugar triple lattes, big red velvet cake treats, and other terrible-for-you creations for special occasions and turning 26 is one of them, right?

I’d tell you that I got spoiled this year in terms of gifts from my family and Mike. In Erin’s World, 26 is the year of jewellery apparently, because my parents got me this lovely feather necklace:

I pointed this out to them at the Folk Fest street festival and they went back and bought it! Thanks Mom and Dad

And Mike let me pick out anything I wanted from Hillberg & Berk (within reason...we’re trying to pay for a wedding here!)

Can’t go wrong with the classic from Hillberg & Berk...sparkle balls!

I’d ask you if you had a good summer and then tell you that mine was work and school filled, but had enough weekend getaways to make it feel like summer. I’d also tell you that I had a few too many bevy-heavy nights and am looking forward to working off the summer bloat this fall. I’d also be insanely excited to tell you about my anatomy class this fall and how I’m so happy to be finally working towards an education and career I’m excited and passionate about. I’d want to tell you about a few ideas I have for the blog but would refrain from saying any details because nothing is finalized yet ;) Buuuut I’d want you to get ready and get EXCITED!

You’d then tell me to stop saying “excited” so much, but I’d tell you I CAN’T! I’m so looking forward to these next few years with the wedding, school, blog, and putting big things into motion.

I would tell you that I’m feeling both nervous and (you guessed it) excited about the QCM half marathon this Sunday. I would tell you how Mike and I had a disastrous long run yesterday which kind of shot our confidence a bit.

Nevertheless, I’m still pumped to run my first half with Mike and am looking forward to trying to PR!

I would probably then show you these pictures because they’re adorable and I can’t even

Those kids love their Uncle Mike.

I would ask if you’ve gotten yourself a pumpkin spice latte yet because I certainly have! I used my free Starbucks birthday drink a day early yesterday and got a half sweet PSL.

And then did my IG yoga pic with it in the park...as one does.

Then I’d listen to all of your things you’d want to talk to me about because we’re good friends, not one sided conversation friends ;) Tell me in the comments what’s going on in your life!

I’ll talk to you later this week (I promise this time...I have a workout for you!).

Monday
Aug252014

A Cold and Grey Summer Vacation

We are back from our little summer getaway! Our week (and a few days) vacation started with attending our friends’ wedding

Working 50/50 at the Rider game

And then heading off to Mike’s family cabin for 5 days

We only had one half day of summer weather where I could tan and jump in the water comfortably.

The rest of the week was spent in sweats with coffee

Avoiding the rain with indoor activities

And watching Mike swim in the cold weather

Even though it was cold and rainy, Sadie still swam for hours every day

And now she’s been tired and in recovery mode for the past two days. She is one tired puppy.

We had one minor incident on our vacation – Mike broke his toe :( So now I’m destined for solo training runs and hoping he recovers enough to be able to run the QCM Half in September. Fingers crossed!

Weekly Workout Schedule

I haven’t done one of these in a while so let’s bring it back! It’s two weeks until the QCM (GULP) so we’re in the home stretch for my workout schedule being dominated by running. I have to be honest, I miss weights and random fitness classes. I have a new project in the works for after my half training, but we’ll talk about that when the time comes.

Monday – rest day/light yoga

Tuesday – 5 mile run

Wednesday – Sprints (10X400m)

Thursday – 3 mile run and strength (probably one of my at home workoutsdeck of cards maybe?)

Friday - rest

Saturday – 3 mile run

Sunday – 12 mile run (lord, this is going to be a looooong solo run)

 

What does your week of workouts look like?

 

I’ll see you guys later this week!

 

Monday
Aug112014

Countdown Is On

Good morning friends! How’s your week starting for you?

Forever rocking my Feyonce mug.

My morning was full of coffee, yoga, walks with Sadie, and starting a mini countdown to my summer vacation....5 days until I’m in relaxation mode for a whole week! Plus we have our good friends’ wedding this Friday to look forward to. Here’s hoping this work week goes by fast!

We’ll be heading out to Mike’s family’s cabin to enjoy some sun, swimming, and trail runs! At least, that’s what we did out there August long weekend.

Who knew the Trans Canada Trail ran through Saskatchewan lake country?!

I have one road block to my whole week off - a take home final for my kinesiology class :( It gets released this coming Sunday night and shouldn’t be too bad. The class is called Sociology of Sport and Physical Activity and I’ve actually been having some great conversations with my classmates regarding gender, race, politics, and class differences when it comes to sport and exercise. With my love for poli sci, women studies, and exercise, this is my kind of class!

Although, I did run into a bit of an airhead moment on Sunday afternoon with the class. For some reason, I thought a one page summary assignment was due today when it was actually my 7 page research paper. WHOOPS. Luckily I had most of it done already and just had to add 2-3 pages of content Sunday afternoon. At least I had my golf boys kept me company while I finished up #PGAChampionship.

Yeah, I just used a hashtag in a sentence like it was NBD. Deal with it.

Other things that happened this weekend:

We took in the Friday night acts at the Regina Folk Fest, namely JOEL PLASKETT EMERGENCY! I was really into Joel Plaskett a few years ago when I discovered Come On Teacher on MuchMusic (remember music videos on TV?!). So happy I got to see him live! Sam Roberts was suppose to close the night but unfortunately a massive storm was threatening to roll through about 20 minutes after Joel Plaskett left the stage :( It wasn’t storming yet so a few of us headed to a nearby bar for some beers to keep the night going. When we paid up and headed to the door to leave, we quickly discovered it was basically raining like a monsoon outside and blowing wind like CRAZY. And our car was parked 4 blocks away.

Yup, we ran all 4 blocks in torrential downpour to our car. It was raining so hard and the wind was so strong that at one point I thought it was hailing! Our clothes were completely drenched and didn’t dry out until the next night. But it was actually kind of fun :) That’s the most rain I’ve ever seen fall in such a short period of time in my life!

No natural transition sentence for this glory. My sister brought us some chobani home from her visit to the states. SO GOOD.

She also brought us home a big jug of Starbucks iced coffee. Mix it with a bit of honey and unsweetened vanilla almond milk and you’re good to go!

Zumba Reboot

I’ve been fortunate enough to connect with a few local zumba instructors through a facebook group and have gotten myself on the sub list at Ladies California Fitness!

I subbed a class there a few weeks ago and had a blast! I’m subbing again tonight and next Monday so if you’re local, come on down! I’m not quite sure what their drop in rate is but I imagine it’s in the ball park of $10-15.

My playlist for tonight’s class:

 

I’ll see you guys later this week!