Stick Me in a Fridge, I’ll Run Faster

Mettez Moi au Frigo, Je Courrais Plus Vite.

Iceberg on Mendenhall Lake, Juneau, AK.

My lack of presence on this blog is due to the fact that my husband and I went on a family cruise with his parents, sister, step-sister and their other-half. We left the lower 48 as they call it  to go to Alaska. It was cloudy all week and I can say that we had rain everyday exception made for Vancouver and Anchorage. You know what? I’m okay with that. After the hot summer we’ve had I was more than happy to see that the high for the day would be 58 degrees and to pull out my fleece from my suitcase.

What amazed me however was how much faster can run in the cool Alaskan summer. We stopped in the town of Hoonah. Not much to see there except for the excursions organized by the cruise line, so we went for a run. We talked to a local guy who said if we run till the road ends it’s about 3 miles. By the road   he meant where it turns to dirt. So I ran with my husband.

Sure I felt like I was sustaining a good pace, but I wasn’t trying too, I was truly following my legs and how I felt. Well we made it home and I put in the run on map my run. It turns out that I ran 6.48 miles at a 7:45 pace. I mean 7:45!!! I just started at the computer for a while thinking I had my data wrong. But I guess not. Let me run in the 50’s by the sea and show me some bald eagles and I’ll pull a pace PR.

When do you run at your best?


Running With Diamond Brand

I run on my own a lot. My schedule can vary and it;s often just easier for me that way, plus not everyone follows the same training program so it’s hard to find people with the same running goals. That’s when a running group becomes interesting because there are a lot of people with different running levels.
Last night I got to try to follow one of the fast runners, it was fun to challenge my legs to keep up at a pace I wouldn’t have attempted on my own.

I’ve been meeting with Diamond Brand’s running since the early spring. The group meets every Wednesday at 6pm in various locations.  I love that there is  a mix of trail and road runs. It works good with the distance of my tempo run and I get to meet with other runners.

An other plus, our running group is organised by a local outdoor gear store and they have a reward program. For 10 runs with the group you get a free running hat, for 20 runs a free running shirt, for 30 runs a free pair of shoes!

Do you run with a group? What’s your favorite thing about it?

Half Marathon Training, Week 7

Buck Spring Gap Overview on the Blue Ridge Parkway

Monday Speedwork
Goal: 10-20 minute warm-up, 1K @8:32 pace), 2K, 1K, 1K (400m RI), 10 minute cool-down

I was thankful to finish work a little later than usual as it provided me with more shade at the park. I am so looking forward to the fall temperatures. This non stop 90’s nonsense is not something my body enjoys. I had a good time with the speed work. I have to say I was apprehensive of speed work before I gave it a shot but it ends up being less intimidating that I thought.

1.29 miles @ 9:43pace in 12’33”
1K intervals @7:43, 7:20 & 7:32 pace in 4’48”, 4’34” & 4’41”
2K interval @7:45 pace 9’38”
1.01m @10:00 pace 10’06”

Wednesday Group Run.
Goal: 5 mile run @ 9:34 pace

We ran in my neighborhood, which is always nice because it means I get to ride the bike to our meeting point. An other day in the 90’s. I’m ready for fall.
However it was fun because we ran in a section I was not familiar with, so it was nice to check out a new area of my part of the woods.

5.07 miles 9:06 pace

Week-End Long Run
Goal: 14 miles @10:09 pace

I went back to doing my crazy uphill long run. I just love Hickory Top Loop, the challenge of the uphill is fun for me. Since that loop is 9.3 miles I added to it a section on Pine and Explorer Trail. The treat was that my husband joined me to run the last 4 miles with me.
I did pretty good, good enough to pass bikers on the uphill. Good enough to have a guy take his time to pass me on the downhill (to his credit it was trickier on the bike than on foot with all the roots and turns). Hubby also said that I was going faster than he had expected considering how much I had done already.
I only had one cliff block, I think I could have done with two.
My left leg felt sore afterward, I think it’s the effect of the lactic acid.

14 miles @ 9:54 pace

I am looking forward to an a shorter long run this week.

Vitesse du Lundi
Objectif: 10-20mn d’échauffement, 1km @allure de 8:32, 2Km, 1km, 1km (repos de 400m entre), 10mn facile.

J’étais contente de finir le travail un peu plus tard que d’habitude car du coup j’avais plus d’ombre dans le parc. Il me tarde les températures automne. Toutes ces semaines avec 30 degrees tous les jours ce n’est pas quelque chose que mon corps aime. Mais bon l’exercice de vistesse c’est bien passé. J’étais un peu appréhensive avant de commencer mais finalement les distances étaitent moins intimidantes que ce que je pensais.

1.29 miles @ allure de 9:43 en 12’33”
Series de 1km @ allure de 7:43, 7:20 & 7:32 en 4’48”, 4’34” & 4’41”
2K2km @ allure de 7:45 en 9’38”
1.01m @ allure de 10:00 en 10’06”

Tempo en Groupe
Objectif: 5 miles à allure de 9:34.

On a couru dans mpn quariter, ce qui m’arrange car je peux me rendre au point de rdv à vélo. Encore une journée de 30°C. Vivement l’automne.
Par contre c’était sympa car on a couru dans un secteur que je ne connais pas vraiment, donc j’ai apprécier découvrir un nouveau parcours et admirer les maisons.

5.07 miles à une allure de 9:34

Course longue du week-end
Objectif: 14 miles à une allure de 10:09

Je n’ai pas pu m’empecher de faire des gros dénivelés de nouveau. J’aime vraiment beaucoup Hickory Top Loop, j’aime ce genre de défi. Puisque la boucle ne fait que 9.3 miles j’ai rajouté à ça une boucle le long des sentiers de Pine et Explorer. Le plus c’est que mon mari m’a rejoint pour courir les 4 derniers miles ensemble.
Une bonne course, assez bonne pour dépasser des vététistes à la montée. Assez bonne pour qu’un gars ait du mal à me dépasser à la descente (bon il faut dire qu’il y avait beaucoup de racines et c’est plus facile à pied qu’a vélo).
Hubby m’a aussi dit que j’allais plus vite que ce à quoi il s’attendais vu ce que j’avais déja couru.
Je n’ai pris qu’un block CLiff mais deux n’aurait pas été de trop.
Mes jambes était courbaturée le reste de la journée, l’effet de l’acide lactique je pense.

14 miles à une allure de 9:54

Ca va quand même faire du bien d’avoir une longue course plus courte cette semaine.

Detox Week-End

Cucumber Basil Water

One of the last time I saw my chiropractor, she recommended that I do a detox. There are a million ways to do a detox, from ready-made powders to liquid only. I went for the basic rules of avoiding: processed foods, processed sugars, gluten (wheat mainly), alcohol, dairy (meat too but that’s not hard since we eat vegetarian).

My biggest concern was fitting the detox in the middle of the half marathon training. Because let’s be honest, I need carbs and proteins to run and my metabolism runs pretty. Thankfully that week-end I was not running so I could give it a shot.

Day 1
Breakfast: 3/4 apple cut into slices with some almond butter spread on each slice.
Several cubes of watermelon.
Basil-cucumber infused water with a teaspoon of lemon.

Lunch: Arugula salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumber, blueberries, pecan and a walnut oil/balsamic vinaigrette.
1/2 cup of quinoa with a little lemon, walnut oil and paprika.

Snacks: Nuts and dried fruits, remaining apple and half of a banana with almond butter, watermelon slushie (frozen watermelon and a few leaves of basil).

Dinner: lightly sautéed vegetables. I sautéed some chopped torpedo onion, added a finely chopped clove of garlic and some fresh ginger. I added some purple green beans (they turn green when cooked),  some green pepper and some cherry tomatoes, a few drops of toasted sesame oil and I had a yummy bowl of goodies. I also had a few hazelnuts as a snack.

Thoughts on Day 1: It was a little harder than I thought. I was fine with breakfast and lunch at work, the staff cafeteria options weren’t exactly temptation. However I wanted something crunchy and “wheaty” when I got home. I had a good fruit snack that filled me up and helped. But the hard part was when my husband decided to have a grilled cheese tomato sandwich for dinner.

Day 2

Breakfast: Blueberries, a banana and almond butter, cucumber-basil infused water.

Lunch: Veggie sauté left over from the previous night, watermelon for dessert.

Snacks: carrots with a little lemon juice, 1/2 apple with almond butter.

Dinner: I couldn’t keep it up. My husband had a staff get together and while i ate a lot of veggies I did dip some in the ranch sauce and had some chips. Looking back I wish I had simply not eaten anything there. We ended up having dinner at home anyway because they didn’t have veggie sausage.

I made a tofu, cole slaw soft taco at home even if I wasn’t all that hungry but I felt I needed to eat. So I didn’t do perfectly but I tried.

What do I take from those two days?
Well it’s harder than I thought because of the psychological aspect of knowing you can’t have something even though it’s available on your shelves.
Do I feel any different. Well not really. I felt like I needed to eat more fruits and veggies to cover hunger but it was doable.
I do feel though that I can add more vegetable or fruits in my diet and would do just as well that way.

As a side note my chiropractor also told me that root vegetables are great for athletes. So I can add potatoes and more to my next attempt. I think it will make it a lot easier. I’m thinking of attempting more light detox like that.

Have you ever done a detox? What were your thoughts on it?

Have You Heard of Lululemon?

So when my sister-in-law was in town she told me about this great yoga and running apparel company called Lululemon.  She was wearing some of them and I was totally impressed. The cut was cute which is a nice plus when you’re a girl, but what really got me was the shirt. Here shirt was of this nice soft, ultra light fabric, it didn’t look out-of-place when we went out to town and yet it’s a running shirt. It also has this fabric that makes it reflective. If you run in dark conditions, a car’s light will completely light it up and yet it doesn’t look like it’s made out reflective fabric.

She told me the clothes are a little pricy, around $50 for either a pair of short or a shirt. But she also said she’s had this shirt for 3 years, using once a week and it’s still doing great. One of her favorite thing is that even when she gets sweaty in that shirt she says she doesn’t even feel it (the girl lives in Florida and does boot camp every morning so I believe her).
I like my new tank top, but when I’m sweaty, so his the fabric and I  feel my sweat.

I found out that we have a showroom in town so I went and checked it out. My one disappointment is that they didn’t have many size 4 (and forget it if you’re smaller than that). I’ve been looking for a running skirt so I decided to try one. I was very comfortable. It took me a little bit to get used to the grip-band on the shorts but it grew on me. It’s long enough to prevent chaffing and hide what shouldn’t be seen. I took it home with me and will review it once I run in it.

The other thing that impressed me was the Silver Bullet shirt line. The fabric has silver in it so it not only has the property to wick away moisture but also to be pretty much antibacterial. The plus? You can still throw it in the washing machine and drier. When I see how sweaty and stinky my running clothes can get I think this is something I need to invest in.

Have you heard of this brand? Ever tried it?


Quand ma belle-soeur est venue, elle m’a parlé d’une marque de vêtements de yoga et de course à pied qui s’appelle Lululemon. Elle en a porté et j’étais vraiment impressionée.  La coupe était mignonne ce qui est toujours un plus pour une fille, mais ce qui m’a vraiment attiré c’est le T-shirt. C’est fait d’un tissu super léger et doux, on aurait pas dit qu’elle était en tenue de sport quand on est sortis en ville. Le tissu est aussi reflectif. Si vous courrez le soir, la lumière des phares va completement illuminer le T-shirt et pourtant on ne dirait pas que c’est fait de matière reflective.

Elle m’a dit par contre que c’est un peu cher, du genre $50 pour une jupe ou un short. Mais elle m’a aussi dit qu’elle a son t-shirt depuis 3 ans, l’utilise une fois par semaine et il est toujours en bonne condition. Ce qu’elle apprécie c’est qu’ils séche trés vite et évacue la sueur comme il faut (elle vit en Floride et fait du boot camp tous les matins donc elle sait de quoi elle parle).  J’aime l’un de mes nouveaux débardeurs de course, mais quand je sue je peux le sentir.

J’ai découvert qu’il y a une boutique de la marque en ville donc je suis allée voir. Ma seule deception c’est qu’ils n’ont pas beaucoup de modèles en taille 4 (ne parlons pas en dessous de ça). Je cherchais une jupe pour courir et donc j’ai essayé leur modele. Tres comfortable. Il m’a fallu quelques temps pour m’habituer à la bande “adhésive par contre. Le short est assez long pour éviter les frotement et cacher ce qu’il faut. Je l’ai donc achetée et j’en reparelerais une fois testée.

L’autre produit qui m’a impressionnée c’est la ligne Silver Bullet. Le tissu contient de l’argent et à du coup non seulement la propriété d’évacuer l’humidité mais aussi d’être anti-bactérien. En plus la vendeuse m’a dit que ca passe trés bien en machine. Quand je vois la sueur et les odeurs quand je cours je pense que je vais investir.

Vous connaissez la marque? Vous avez testé?

Half Martahon Training Week 8

A Cairn at Skinny Dip Falls

Week 8? Already? Less than two months until the race and already half-way through training.
It was a great week for me, good interval, good tempo and cherry on the top my first time running 13 miles. Sure I could have done some biking in there but I’m happy with a little at home workout and some lovely hiking and swimming in a waterfall with my husband.

Monday Speedwork at the Park
Goal: 10-20 minute warm-up, 3 x (2 x 1200m) @ 8:34 pace, 10 minute cool-down

This was a rainy  speed work. I was very thankful that I had just gotten a Brooks running hat. It was perfect to protect me against the rain in my face while still enjoying the cooler air. There was a little lightning but nothing near so I just braved it out and I’m glad I did. Rain=lower temperature=happier me.

1.14 miles in 10’35” @9:17pace
1200m repeats 8:02, 7:38, 7:44, 7:34, 7:33, 7:40 (5’38”-6’00”)
.99 mile 10’17″@ 10:23 pace.

Wednesday Group Tempo
Goal: 6 miles @9:34 pace

It was another hot day, however we were running in Bent Creek which meant lovely forest and its shade so the temperature was really not so bad. Probably just in the high 80’s.
The three options with the group were 4.5, 5.5 and 7 miles. Knowing that I was attempting a 13 mile run that we I didn’t want to overdo it and picked the 5.
The first part was hard. We went up on the Shut in Trail. We were on it only for maybe 2 miles but there was some serious enough uphill that I had to walk in spots. The downhill went on one of my least favorite section, a steep knee killer one that made me feel I should have done the 7 miles one.
I was first to get back to the car and I really had a good run.

5.5 miles @ 9:41 pace

Forest Long Run
Goal 13 miles @10:09 pace

Detailed recap here: I can run a Half marathon.
It was a good run and I was really happy with my time. For some reason I often end up running my long runs faster than my tempo runs. Maybe because with the groups there is always a bit of shuffling at the beginning and also it’s in the hotter afternoons?

13.35 miles @9:30pace

Total miles:  25.45.
Super happy with my week and that’s all I have to say about it.

Semaine 8? Déjà? Moins de deux mois avant la course et déjà une moitié de l’entrainement derrière moi.
Ce fut une bonne semaine, bonne série de vitesse, bonne course tempo et pour couronner le tout 21km courus pour la première fois. Bon ça aurait été bien d’y ajouter un peu de vélo mais je suis satisfaire de quelques exercices à la maison et d’une jolie ballade ainsi qu’un plouf dans une cascade avec mon mari.

Series de Vitesse au Parc
Objectif: échauffementL 10-20mn, 3x(2x1200m) @ allure de 8:34, 10 minutes facile.

C’était une série sous la pluie. Heureusement je venais d’obtenir une casquette de course Brooks. Parfait pour me proteger de la pluie dans les yeux tout en profitant quand même de l’air frais. Il y avait quelques éclairs mais rien de proche, du coup j’ai bravé le temps et j’ai bien fait. Pluie=températures plus basses= je suis bien plus heureuse.

1.14 miles en 10’35, allure 9:17
série de 1200m, allure de : 8:02, 7:38, 7:34, 7:33, 7:40 (entre 5’38” et 6 minutes)
.99 miles en 10’17” allure de 10:23.

Course Tempo en Groupe
Objectif: 6 miles à une allure de 9:34

Encore une journée bien chaude. Heureusement nous sommes allés courir à Bent Creek ce qui veux dire à l’ombre de la forêt, du coup les temperatures étaient plus supportables, en dessous de 30°C.
Les trois options du groupe était 4,5; 5,5 et 7 miles. Sachant que j’allais tenter 13 miles cette semaine là je ne voulais pas en faire trop et j’ai choisi l’option 5 miles.
La première partie était la plus dure. Nous avons suivi le Shut in Trail. Nous y étions desus que pour deux miles, mais il y avait des montées suffisantes pour que je marche par endroit. La descente par contre était sur une section que je n’aime pas. Un descente casse-genoux qui m’a fait regretter le parcours de 7 miles.
J’étais la première à la voiture, une bonne course quoi.

5,5 miles à une allure de 9:41

Longue Course en Foret
Objectif: 13 miles à une allure de 10:09

Détails ici: Je peu courir un semi-marathon.
Une bonne course et j’étais trés contente de mon temps. Je ne sais pas pourquoi mais il semble que je vais plus vite pour mes courses longues que ltes temps. Peut-etre parce qu’avec le groupe il y a toujours un peu de pietinement au depart et qu’il fait plus chaud l’apres midi?

13.35 miles à une allure de 9:30

Miles total: 25,45.
Trés contente de ma semaine, rien de plus à dire.

Half Marathon Training, Week 9, Compromises

Entrainement du Semi-Marathon, Semaine 9, Compromis

Cúrate's Pan Con Tomato

There are weeks when things don’t go as planned. This was one of those. It wasn’t all that bad really, my monday speed work felt good and even with the heat I had a good group run on Wednesday. However with Hubby’s sister in town I had to skip the long run. On the good side did get to go eat twice at one of my new favorite downtown restaurants: Cúrate. A fantastic spanish tapas place that opened in March. My sister and brother-in-law liked it so much that they decided we should eat there twice in a row.

Monday Speed work
Goal: 10-20 minute warm-up
1 mile (400 RI), 2 miles (800 RI), 2 x 800m (400m RI)
10 mn cool off

First of all the training plan doesn’t really specify the pace for miles. Well 1 mile=1600 meters so that would be a 8:39 pace. But the 2 miles? I aimed for a somewhere around that.
I had some good intervals, if was warm but cloudy which helped.
So where did it go wrong? Well I ran out of space on my watch and most of the run did not save. Simply put it was stupid.

1.48 miles @10:29 pace in 15’32”
1 mile @7:59 pace in 7’59”
2 miles: that was somewhere around 16 minutes.
800m: I remember it to be around my usual time of 3’30-3’37”
1.07 easy, about 10mn.

Wednesday Tempo with the Running Group
Goal: 5 mile run @9:34 pace.

The race itself was good. We had a 4, a 5 and a 6 miles option. It was hot, 92°F, so I played it safe and went for 5 miles. It was actually not that bad, while it was hot in the sun we also had a good breeze. Also most of the course was in the shade in the pretty Montford area. I ended up going at a good pace. I was just feeling it. A fellow runner had a hard time keeping up with me, walked some and short-cut at the end.
So the run was great, the not fun stuff was an other runner getting dehydrated at the end of the run.
5.26 miles @9:17 pace

Long Run
Goal: 13 miles

Was to be replaced by two long hikes of 10-12 miles each.
However we underestimated that even though his family has been training for Mt Rainier, they live in Florida and they are not used to the elevation we have.
We ended up only doing an 8 miles hike that week-end… Oh well at least we got some good time with them.

Il y a des semaines qui ne se passent pas comme prévu. S’en était une.
Ce n’était pas si terrible que ça, les exercices de vitesses du lundi était bien, et malgré la chaleur j’ai eu une bonne course avec le groupe mercredi. Par contre la soeur d’Hubby nous rendait visite et j’ai du zapper ma longue course. Pour le bon coté de la chose on a quand même mangé deux fois à l’un des mes nouveaux restaurants préférés: Cúrate. Un super restaurant de tapas espagnols qui a ouvert en Mars. Ma belle-soeur et son mari ont tellement aimé qu’on y a mangé deux nuits d’affilé.

Vitesse du Lundi
Objectif: 10-20mn d’echauffement.
1 mile, 2 mile, 2x800m.
10mn facile.

Pour commencer le programme ne me donnait pas d’allure spécifique. Enfin 1 mile=1600m donc là le but était une allure de 8:39. Mais 2 miles? Tout ce que je pouvais faire c’est tabler dans cette zone là.
J’ai fait de bonnes séries, il faisait chaud mais les nuages ont aidé.
Donc où est le problème? J’étais a cour d’espace sur ma montre et du coup les données ne se sont pas enregistrée. Le truc vraiment bête.

1.48 mile @allure de 10:29 en 15mn32
1 mile @ allure de 7:59 en 7’59
2 miles: environ 16 mn.
800m: entre 3’30 et 3’37
1.07 facile, environ 10mn.

Tempo du Mercredi en Groupe
Objectif: 5 miles @allure de 9:34

La course même c’est bien passée. On avait le choix entre 4, 5 et 6 miles.
Il faisait chaud, 33°C, donc je l’ai joué raisonnable et j’ai choisi celle de 5 miles. En fait ce n’était pas si ma;, il faisait chaud au soleil mais il y avait une bonne petite brise. De plus une partie du parcours était à l’ombre, dans le quartier de Montford. Du coup j’ai couru à une bonne allure. Une autre coureuse a d’ailleurs eu un peu de mal à tenir le rythme avec moi, du coup elle a marché et raccourci la course sur la fin.
Donc courir ca allait. Ce qui etait moins bien c’est qu’une des coureuses c’est retrouvee deshydratée à la fin et qu’il a fallut appeller l’ambulance.

5.26 miles à une allure de 9:17

Longue course
Objectif: 13 miles.

Devait etre remplacee par deux randonnees de 10-12 miles chacune.
Sauf qu’on a sous-estime le fait que meme si ils s’entrainentn pour Mt. Rainier, sa famille n’a pas l’habitude de nos pentes.
Du coup nous n’avons fait qu’une rando de 8 miles seulement… Bon, au moins nous avons passé de bon moments avec eux.

Food Worthy of a Marathon Runner (Which I’m Not)

De la Nourriture Digne d’un Coureur de Marathon (que Je ne Suis Pas)

When I ran a little over 13 miles, I had made plans to have hash brown and fried green tomatoes with goat cheese for brunch, with maybe an egg.

When I got home my husband had breakfast patties, a toast, a huge portion of hash browns ready. He was making an omelet for two with 6 eggs! (albeit small ones) and I still had the fried green tomatoes to make.

I looked at my plate and laughed. I couldn’t even eat the toast by the time I was done. Sure I run, sure I do long runs, but I don’t run that much! He must think I already run marathons…
I do love that he is my support crew with a great brunch pretty much ready for me after a long run though.

Quand j’ai couru 21km, j’avais prevu de faire des hash browns (patates râpées et sautées a la poêle), des tomates vertes frites avec du fromage de chèvre et peut être un œuf.

Quand je suis arrivée a la maison mon mari avait des breakfast patties (sorte de saucisse végétarienne), une tartine de pain grille, une énorme portion de hash browns déjà prêt. Il était en train de préparer un omelette pour nous deux a partir de 6 œufs (ok ils étaient petits les œufs). Il me restait encore a préparer les tomates.

J’ai regarde mon assiette et j’ai rigole. Je n’ai même pas pu manger la tartine. Bien sur je cours et je fais de longue course, mais quand même! Il doit s’imaginer que je cours déjà un marathon…
J’adore le fait qu’il soit mon équipe-support et qu’il ait un super brunch prêt pour moi après une longue course tout de même.