NOT sandbagging – effective!

Yoooo

I meant to post this a little while ago. Member I was talking about (after Lauren Fleshman was talking about) sandbagging, and how I wasn’t gonna do that shit before the Tenacious Ten on Easter weekend?

Well, it worked out well! I made the conscious decision to not talk about or think about all the reasons that I might have a less-than-awesome race. There are ALWAYS things that can go wrong – I can make contingency plans for legit things, and the rest just depends on me winning the arguments between myself and the voice inside my head.

There were two specific times during that 10k in Seattle where it felt REALLY hard. If I had planted seeds in my mind about stuff like being drained from school, sucking at sleeping or even little mindfucks like “it’s just a 10k, the marathon is my true love” then giving up would have been so much more likely. I don’t want to gather excuses to lean on anymore.

I remember thinking, “No. No excuses today.” I almost stopped at a water station, but realized I WASN’T EVEN REALLY THIRSTY I just wanted a rest. Don’t even think about it, I said to myself. A little later I thought, “whoa, I forgot about this hill up to the Fremont bridge. I’m dying. Maybe I’ll walk a few power-strides and let my heart rate calm the f*$k down.” But I shut that down and choose to keep going forward at the best pace I could manage, whatever that was.

The non-sandbagging payed off. I ended up with a very small PR – just 4 seconds. I love that because if I’d have leaned on any of those excuses for even a second or two, the baby-PR wouldn’t be so. Can’t wait to try it again soon!! Down with sandbagging!

Have a good week! Stoked to write about my first Pace Bunny experience when I have the time. Congrats to all who just ran in the BMO Vancouver Marathon weekend!

 

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Third Annual Tenacious Ten next weekend!

Weeooo!!! Hi! I’m so excited to go to Seattle for the long weekend with a crew of my #rupertrunners friends!!!!!

The Tenacious Ten is one of my most favourite races. It’s so girl-powery and I am obsessed with Gas Works park, plus running over bridges and cowbell. This year, and for the first time, I’m going to be running the 10k distance instead of the 10 mile.

After a super decent 10k a couple weekends ago in a race that I hadn’t prioritized at all (and wasn’t gunning for a PR) I ran within eleven seconds of my personal best! This makes me really happy…I am going for it in Seattle!

Did you ever read the piece by Lauren Fleshman about sandbagging? I shared it a bit ago on Facebook and it’s here, if you haven’t seen it. I highly recommend reading this, it’s so inspiring! But back to sandbagging…

sandbagging is a technique of downplaying your strengths and bringing attention to a few reasons you may not be successful. This is a way of diffusing pressure. It’s a way of feeling in control when you feel like others’ expectations (or your own) may not match your reality. It’s a behavior that is useful when you are scared of letting people down, or letting yourself down – Lauren Fleshman

I am way too familiar with this and I know a billion others are, too. Lauren Fleshman is a Oiselle athlete and I think I’ll honor her beautiful blog entry by not sandbagging! I want a 10k PR at the Tenacious Ten and I know I’m ready to make it happen. I’m going for it. Of course shit can always go wrong!!!!! But, I plan to run like it cannot.

Seattle, here we come. I’m so stoked to eat Mexican food at El Camino, gelato at the Fainting Goat, go to the Brooks store and get weird with my friends from home and other Volee friends in Gas Works Park!

Hope you have a really good long weekend, whatever you’re up to.

HEAD UP, WINGS OUT!

 

The 2018 Tenacious Ten!

Wooo!!! You probably know that I love being part of the Oiselle Volée. If you don’t know what that is…

“The Volée is a global community made up of women with diverse running backgrounds and competitive goals. We work hard to raise the bar in terms of how women support other women, fostering strength and leadership – not just through healthy competition, but in daily actions big and small. Our mission is to continue to build our sisterhood: one that is strong, supportive, passionate, and all in on a woman-up world.”

The Tenacious Ten is the like the biggest sisterhood gathering ever, and that’s one of the reasons I love this race! Of course you don’t have to be a member of the Volée to run the race, but a TON of the birds show up for this plus many other amazing women and men. Other reasons I love it are the beautiful and fast course, including the start and finish in the breathtaking Gas Works Park, and that it’s in Seattle. I friggin LOVE Seattle! I felt so ready for this race, thanks to Lifelong Endurance, and I was ready to run well and restore the faith after that gut bomb of a half marathon two weeks ago.

Packet pick-up was both Thursday and Friday from 11am-7pm. Bailey, Crystal and I hit the Watertown Hotel on the way into Seattle before going to our AirBnB. It was easy, fast and not busy. This year they had a Momentum Jewelry table, too. The race shirts are a red version of the Flyte tank, which is a top I already own and love. The hat for this year’s race is also sweet; it’s the same as my Oiselle baseball cap and I like it far more than the trucker version from last year. We got Picky Bars (yum, first time trying them) and the girls bought some Momentum stuff, and then we got going! Thursday night: Mexican food and chill. Friday morning: November Project. We spent the rest of Friday going to Pike Place and eating lots of food, before more food at a little Volee Canada dinner!

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On Saturday morning Bailey and I were drinking our coffee (black for me, no risks) by just after five. The others started to wake up and everyone started getting pumped, eating our preferred race-day breakfasts and suiting up. My final decision was black Volée crop, big blue new Portman shorts, Gibbler PROs, New Balance FuelCore Rush runners and Goodr sunglasses. This time around, I stuck to my quick oats with raisins and NOTHING else for breakfast.

I wore a warm jacket on top of my throw away shirt, plus some $1 gloves and planned to check them in my gear bag once it was time to warm up. It was surprisingly cold. Cold wind was blowing plus it was only 6:30 am when we left the apartment.

The event site opened at 6:30am and we were there by 6:45 for the eight o’clock start of both the 10k and 10 mile races. It was sweet because the porto-potties (or HONEY BUCKETS, as they call them there…gross!) had been locked overnight with zap straps and they were just clipping them off when we arrived so we got fresh toilets ahahah. Win!

The music started up and our lady crew met up with the rest of the Canada Volee, some of whom we’d also met up with the previous evening at JOEY University Village for dinner.

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wild Friday night!

Gas Works Park is so cool! So happy we all found one another easily in the morning! This race isn’t tiny like our local races at home, but it’s definitely not big. I think there were less than two thousand runners and it wasn’t difficult to find familiar faces.

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Just like last year, it was quick to check a gear bag early, but later on the line-up was long, so ditch your bag early! I checked my bag with my jacket and toque. My mitts I kept, and I’m glad because it was cold warming up and I ended up wearing them for three-quarters of the race.

I did five minutes of easy jogging and came back to the main area where we all joined in the warm-up led by Kinetic Sports Rehab. Then we had a short dance party to stay warm. Sally, the CEO of Oiselle, wanted in on the action with the Canadians.

I went for another five-minute jog (AND SAW KARA GOUCHER AND GOT A HUG) and then hit the grassy area between the start and finish chutes to do strides and stretches. By start time, I was warm and ready to run. Really, really glad I took the time to get my strides in! I ditched the long-sleeve up on some random old piece of gas plant equipment and was pretty sure it would still be there after the race (it was), but didn’t care as I brought it for a throw away.

This race doesn’t have corrals, but it does have a few pacers with signs based on pace/mile, not finish time. After the national anthem, Erin and I shuffled up towards the 8min/mile sign and it was almost time to go! I found my GPS signal with the new Garmin Forerunner 35 that I’m using as a back-up (no problems, great watch), and it was time to race!

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Lifelong Endurance gave me a fairly specific race plan as I requested and I was determined to stick with it. Here is the course we were working with; basically flat with a couple minor hills, mostly at the beginning.

The plan, as I mentioned in my training recap of last week, was:

  • First 5k: controlled (~5:04/km)
  • Second 5k: apply a little pressure (~4:58-5:00/km)
  • kms 11, 12, 13: tighten the screws (stay under 5:00/km)
  • the rest: progress to slay-mode (werk)

Never in my life have a stuck to a plan the way I stuck to this one! I am so fking proud of myself for being patient and mature from start to finish. I ran the first few hills super easy and made up for it during the rest of whatever kilometer I was in. I held back and stayed present. So good. Here’s how the splits went:

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I felt good the entire race. When it started to get more difficult to hold pace after about 10k, I stayed present and even said a few funny inside jokes from our girls’ weekend under my breath and it made me smile and remember how much I love this shit. Every once in a while I felt a bit hot so I unflapped the gloves I was wearing to let my hands get some air, but other than that my crop, shorts and compression socks turned out to be the perfect gear for the temperature and weather. Sunglasses were smart and helped me keep my face relaxed. I took water at all stations (I think I remember three or four?) and took a mocha HumaGel around 11km for a caffeine boost and it sat well. There is an out-and-back portion of the 10 mile course. Many people, including me, aren’t fans of out-and-backs, but just like in the BMO 1/2, this one is pretty short and it’s flat. I enjoyed seeing the leaders, including Kara Goucher, fly by in the opposite direction, and I also got to see most of my friends on course at one point or another! High fives and energy boosts.

right around the 9 mile marker! One mile left!

Once I’d run 13k it was time to turn it up, and then when I was on the Fremont Bridge with just one mile to go I really stepped on the gas. My patience was paying off. There were so many volunteers from November Project on course, and one lady who we met on Friday morning was at the final turn back into the park and she was just screaming and it was SO awesome ahah!! I passed a ton of people and literally flew across the finish line. Fuck yeah!

As soon as I finished I got to see Whitney! She crushed her first sub-1hr 10k! Nola also destroyed her 10k and was already done. Then in came the rest of the crew! Everyone met or surpassed their goals for the day! We all got our COWBELL medals (so sick), took pics and hugged the shit out of everyone!

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YEAHHH!!! My watch showed me a time of 01:19:01, which I was overjoyed about, but I was also hoping that the official chip time might be just under, and it was ahahah!

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So happy with this!!!!! And can’t believe I ran kilometer sixteen in 4:25 yahooo! Back in the area where we warmed up with Kinetic, there were donuts, apples, water and tunes. I met up with more friends from home who were down for the race, plus various Instagram buddies, including Jess (@forminfocus) who I’m hosting the We Run Social meetup with at BMO Vancouver in two weeks!

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Once I got my gear bag (the line wasn’t too long, I waited about five minutes in line) and got my warm clothes on (plus my throwaway shirt that I retrieved), I had lost my crew. My phone died too, so I just took my time walking back to our AirBnB in the sun with the cowbell jingling around my neck and feeling happy with my new 10 mile PR. LOL.

The Tenacious Ten is fantastic and I highly recommend this event. Oiselle creates a very energetic, fun and inclusive vibe. The location is unreal, with a scenic course and perfect start/finish location. The swag was great, with a new colour of a tank top I already liked enough to buy in the past, and a hat that I will definitely wear. The logistics were easy, the value was worth it, and Seattle is such a great city. I will be back next year, already planning to drive down from Kelowna where I’ll be for school at that time!

Relating back to Operation: Pump up the JAMmie, this race is good news. My goal marathon pace, come Jack & Jill, will be 5:00/km, so I’m working on holding paces around or faster than that for longer and longer. Ten miler: in the bag; next up is another shot at the half marathon. Then the workouts are going to get longer, faster, and two-a-days are coming my way as well. Lifelong Endurance and I are doing this. Stay tuned.

Talk soon from Week 3!

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PUMP up the JAMmie – Week 2/16

Week two!! There was a time in my life where I wasn’t active, then there was a time where I was, but going out of town would de-rail any routine I’d been keeping with. NOW I look forward to taking my running addiction to new places. It was hard waiting for Thursday because I was so pumped to go to Seattle! Having Lifelong Endurance to keep me accountable is invaluable and I love it. Also, running around is a good way to explore.

Monday, April 16theasy day

Marathon Monday!! I was at my parents by 6:15am since we don’t have cable and I was just in my glory, having my coffee, stretching and watching this fantastic dream day on TV. When Chesir overtook Daska I started to really get excited, and then I basically had a heart attack when Desi passed Chesir for the lead, once and for all! GAHHHHHHHHHH! And cherry on top, Krista DuChene hammering in on third place! Go Canada! What a seriously amazing day for North American women’s distance running!

After Desi’s win and post-race mini-interview, I went for a celebratory 7km. Very relaxed but felt super strong from all that inspiration.

Then I had a session with Kristen at the gym. As I’ve mentioned, I normally wouldn’t include a workout like this on “easy day” but I take what I can get since we’re pretty limited as to when we can coordinate. Holy shit. She kicked my ass, as usual! Today was all body weight stuff, lots of plyometrics and core! This may have been the most spent I’ve been from working with her, so far. Such a valuable addition to Pump up the JAMmie!

Later, two more chill kilometers to check the mail (nothing :|)

Tuesday, April 17thhard day

HILLS!

  • 5k easy
  • 10 x 45 sec hills, 1:15 jogs down
  • 3k easy

The new Garmin arrived that afternoon!!! Good to go for the Tenacious Ten! I wanted to test it out but I was so sore from the gym on Monday and those hills were hard enough, so I called it a day. How responsible of me.

Wednesday, April 18threcovery day

1800m swim (warm-up, 3x500m, cool-down)

60:00 nice and easy on the recumbent bike watching Gun Runners (thanks for the recommendation, Jess)

Thursday, April 19thhard day

7k as: 3 easy, 4 tempo

I was on the treadmill for this because it was too dark, early and monsoony to go running alone on the highway. I was SO tired and the voice in my head tried many times to convince me to quit in the warm-up and do it later. I told myself this is the kind of thing I need to be able to get through. Kept at it and by the time the warm up ended I was ready for the 4k and I finished feeling strong and fired up!

AND THEN IT WAS TIME FOR SEATTLE WEEKEND! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!

picked up Crystal & Bailey at 7:30 for our first mini-roadie to Terrace to catch our flight. Once in Vancouver, we collected our rental car and headed out to Seattle!

Friday, April 20theasy day

NOVEMBER PROJECT!!!!!! MY FAVOURITE THING AFTER RUNNING! And this counts as a functional strength workout for the week! yessssss

The Seattle NP tribe meets in Gasworks Park (the same place at the start/finish of the Tenacious Ten) on Wednesdays, but on Fridays they switch up their location around the city. Today the location was on the north side of the Montlake Bridge. This is pretty much right where I started the Rock’n’Roll Seattle Marathon last June.

We jogged the less than 4km to the location from our AirBnB in Fremont and had the best workout on the most beautiful morning.

 

Saturday, April 21sthard day

Race day! My race plan was to run four chunks progressively; these were the actual instructions from Lifelong Endurance 😂😂😂

  • First 5k: controlled
  • Second 5k: apply some pressure
  • kms 11, 12, 13: tighten the screws
  • the rest: progress to slay-mode

My only real time goal was to push the overall pace under 5min/km as I work towards that as goal marathon pace, and if that was happening work for sub 1:20. Woohoooooo! I’ll recap the race tomorrow.

I executed the plan better than any race plan ever before and I can’t wait to tell you about it! (And the whole weekend!)

Sunday, April 22ndrecovery day

7k recovery run with Bailey ❤

 

SUMMARY

WEEKLY MILEAGE: 56km

INJURIES/PRE-HAB? None 😊

SLEEP? Mediocre..

NUTRITION BRAGS? Epic fail over girls weekend away…

CURRENTLY READING: The Resilient Runner (re-reading)

CONFIDENCE BOOSTER(S)

  • Pushing through my body and mind’s hard resistance to that early morning up-tempo run on Thursday before vaca weekend
  • Tenacious Ten execution (recap coming tomorrow)
  • final kilometer of the Tenacious Ten!!! 4:25!!!

NEXT RACE? BMO Vancouver Half Marathon! May 6th!
Talk to you tomorrow! Week three!!!!

Upcoming events & GOALS!

Yahoo! Can’t believe it’s already halfway through February! Life goes by fast. Don’t get me wrong, I’m okay with Winter…but it’s not my favourite season and I’m sure many runners would agree. I love cold weather running, but snow, ice and darkness can be very inconvenient!

I’m starting the Spring transition early this year. First, heading down south to Arizona to run my seventh full marathon. Then, March (which I consider Spring) has presented the opportunity for a local 5k! We say local here when it’s within say, a four hour drive, LOL. In April I have two races lined up, both which I have run before and love, so that’s exciting and fun for goal setting!

Here’s what I wanna aim for at this point in time, always keeping in mind that Coach might have other plans that come into play closer to the dates 🙂 Thank you to Lifelong Endurance for the readiness I’m feeling this early in the year!

Saturday, February 24th – The Sprouts Mesa-PHX Marathon!

I’ve mentioned it a lot in training recaps, I don’t have a specific goal for this race. My goal marathon is in July, so I really like the way this has me feeling relaxed about Phoenix.

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The course is fast, but from the dozens of reviews I’ve read, it’s (obviously) not just a nice jaunt down a mountain! For one, 42.2k is 42.2k! Apparently, the profile can be quite deceiving too, since the majority of the elevation drop is in the first half and then the second half of the race basically flattens out. There’s also the temptation to fly out of the gate on that initial downhill and be left with regrets later, so it will be a test of patience! The temperature could be a factor later in the race as well, especially for this Canadian. We’ll see what happens!

I’ve thought about covering my watch, but I doubt that will happen. The goal is to run happy, and push it in the second half if things are feeling good. Other goals are to stay relaxed, have fun and enjoy the cacti! IF the stars seem to be perfectly alignging, I will shoot for a 5:20/km overall pace. No matter what happens it’s going to be awesome to check out a new marathon event, and meet up with the PRO Compression crew!

Saturday, March 17th – St. Patrick’s Day 5k!

This run is in Terrace and hosted by the recently resurrected Skeena Valley Runners! OMG. The 5k. Also known as, in my brain at least, the scariest race distance. Pain train.

I’ve never raced a 5k! There was the Disneyworld 5k in 2017, but that wasn’t even timed. I just cruised along, saving myself for the rest of the Dopey Challenge. Last May I ran the 5k in the local race that I co-direct, but I don’t count that.

For this St. Patty’s race I’d like to run an overall pace under 4:40/km. Back in October I ran a twenty minute fit-test for Coach Andrew (in the dark, on the boring-ass track) – 20 minutes, 4.28 km, 4:40/km. This seems like a fair goal to aim for for the 5km.

Sunday, April 8th – The Rupert Half + 8k Road Race

Woohoo, favourite home race! Last year I had a great day, running my current half marathon personal best, and finishing third overall female. Yeah, it’s a small race, but I am very proud of that day. It’s an interesting course, and on a section of road that us locals run almost every single weekend, which can be good or bad, depending on how you look at it!

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The goal for this year is to improve my time on this half course, which would also lead to a new half PR! Currently sitting at 01:50:48. On the hunt for a sub-1:50! I’d like to be in the top 3 again, too!

*if you live around here and haven’t run in this event before, check out THIS post**

Saturday, April 21st – The Tenacious Ten in Seattle, presented by Oiselle

I. Love. Seattle! And this race! And we are going down with a #badassladygang of five of us! The race goes around Lake Union and the start/finish is in Gasworks park! AND it’s hosted by Oiselle! Last year I had a great day running the 10 mile distance, but I went out too fast and it haunted me a little in the last 5k. I’d say it was overall a pretty solid run, BUT, I know I can do better this year!

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Tenacious Ten 2017! Whitney & Justin are both running again this year!

The goal as of right now: 1:18:xx. Last year my “official” time was 1:21:36, but that was faster than what my Garmin said…and everyone else said their chip times were fast, too. My watch actually read 1:22:40. Regardless, I think with a more conservative start and the fitness I’ve gained over the last year, sub 1:20 will be mine, but I want to push for an average pace in the low 4:5x/km.

Running is not about being better than someone else, it’s about being better than you used to be.

So, that’s what’s coming up in the next eight-ish weeks! Are you planning to run in any of these events? If so, let me know!

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Why Oiselle is Awesome (+training Recap Mar. 27-Apr.2)

So, see this racing singlet? I’m pumped to race in it going forward and to rep this company because they are wicked! Oiselle is a Seattle-based running apparel company established in 2007. The apparel is made by and for women athletes. and they’re brand is about success not just in athletics, but in life! Oiselle’s mission is to build a family, or sisterhood of support, at all levels from beginner to pro. It’s always growing, and part of that sisterhood is the Oiselle Volée, which is the team of amateur runners I’m now part of and what the singlet above represents. “We are only as strong as the bonds we build. We work hard to raise the bar in terms of how women support other women, fostering strength and leadership – not just through healthy competition but in daily actions, big and small.” Oiselle encourages savouring wins, owning losses, speaking up for what we believe in, supporting each other and setting big goals and going for them, hard. “Go fast, take chances.” They also have a professional team made up of incredible women who are are making a difference in the world of athletics (girl crush, Kara Goucher), AND a team of emerging elite female athletes who make up the Haute Volée team. These ladies are working hard to compete at the highest level of their sports and have the support of Oiselle and the Volée along their journeys.

The reason I chose to join the Volée is because some of the things I believe in most (goal setting, growth, pushing our limits, running as a way of life, women building each other up, equality, etc) line up exactly with the messages that Oiselle conveys. I can’t even wait to head to Seattle in three weeks for the Tenacious Ten, which is presented by Oiselle, and to run in this girl-power event with my friend Whitney and a bazillion other people who care about all the stuff Oiselle represents! And to wear the freakin racing shirt!!!!

I should probably mention that their gear is the best. Just don’t order lots at once or you will get unpleasantly suprised with duty charges from Canadian customs..

Favourites: mini stride shorts, new satellite tank, flyte tank and flyte long sleeve. I find the bottoms fit big, so I order a size down than usual.

 

Weekly Training Recap

MONDAY March 27th

Planned: 4k EZ, 3k hill climb @5% with max heart-rate goal, 4k EZ

Actual: 4k EZ, 3k hill climb w/ a couple breaks and trying not to die, 3k struggle shuffle

this day was the final evidence of some burnout happening, I let Coach Andrew know and we planned the following three days SUPER easy and a Skype for the following morning

TUESDAY March 28th

Skype with Coach! Aside from talking about resting, we are planning some fun stuff for the Fall marathon training cycle in preparation for the California International Marathon in December; things like REALLY “scary” goals and lots of coverage of the process, training plans if you want to join in and run this race (excellent choice for a first marathon, they even have their own first-timers program) and tons of training tips to follow along with and get to know Coach Andrew and the rest of the crew at Lifelong Endurance!

Hard nap.

11.84km easy – average heart-rate 150
5.5km on my own, a little >6km with the Learn to Run Clinic (10min run/1 min walk)

stretching

WEDNESDAY March 29th

60 minutes in the pool + stretching + many naps

I don’t trust the swim data – I was indoors!

THURSDAY March 30th

more naps

11.7km easy total – some hard hills, HR wasn’t as low, but kept it easy effort

8km on my own + just under 4km with the Learn to Run Clinic

FRIDAY March 31st

back in the game! Timed intervals, sooooo sweaty!

“I was just going really fast” face

3k super easy warm-up, [4x 5 min @ 7:35/mi, 3 min recovery jogs], 3k cool down – amazing. Felt strong af.

 

SATURDAY April 1st

Long run as workout: 16km (10 miles)
3mi easy, 2mi fast, 2mi easy, 2mi faster, 1mi closing hard

Pit stop at the end of the 3 mile warmup, looks like I stopped completely when I turned around at halfway, and then quick calf stretch and had to grab my headband off a post at around 8 miles because I was overheating from the start and ditched it earlier because it’s SPRING NOW WOO! No gloves today, either! I’d love to run this workout on 10 miles of flat, but we must work with what we have.

SUNDAY April 2nd

Easy 8km along the 8k road race route next weekend! 

Great week!!! Local race coming up next weekend for me! The Prince Rupert 1/2 Marathon (& 8k), which follows a 14 mile (22.5km) training run on the Saturday, so we will see what happens!
 

Three weeks out from the Tenacious Ten in Seattle!

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Eight weeks out from the Calgary Marathon!

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