Monday, July 25, 2011

Holy Crap

The title of this blog works for 2 posts...1 about a fave cereal of mine and 2 how I am feeling about my 'Plan X' race this weekend...

Let's start with HOLY CRAP the cereal...

I first saw this cool local product on the Dragons Den CBC show- where a couple living on the Sunshine Coast struck it bigtime on the show and blew their little farmers market business into the bigtime food industry.

I wanted to support the locals so I picked up a bag at Quality Foods in Comox this spring. I LOVE it! It is not really a cereal but more of a 'topping/supplement' for your regular morning bowl. It contains 2 important foods: Chia seeds and Hemp Hearts. These are organic and hold benefits that you don't find in your usual granola mix. Chia and Hemp hearts are both high in vegetarian protein AND Essential Fatty Acids- specifically Omega 3s. Chia also soaks up liquid and makes a gelatenous coating which seems to keep you feeling full longer.

I add 1-2 tbs to my morning bowl of yogurt and/or granola every day.

Now onto the other use of HOLY CRAP as in:

HOLY CRAP What have I gotten myself into?

I spent last week pouring over ultra sites and blogs searching for a replacement event to burn off my pent up energy after the Fat Dog 100 was cancelled. On a whim I contacted the RD of the Canadian Death Race to beg and plead and see if I could wiggle my way into this sold out event.

Be careful what you wish for.

The Fat Dog and CDR race directors worked out a tranfer of registration for FD soloists and voila...I am signed up for a 125km foot race in Grande Cache Alberta next weekend. 80k...125k...meh!

Oh Merde.

I hope my mum doesn't read this blogpost.

My flights are booked, my campsite is reserved and my (insane) girlfriend Jen & I will be heading from Kamloops to GC this Friday on a ridiculous road trip to the Death Race. I am over the top lucky to have a friend as nutz as me to jump on board and support me on my Death March:)

Check it out online and you should be able to track us as we move (slowly) through the mountains of Alberta...race starts 8am Saturday and we have 24 hours to complete 125kms...

Getting excited!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Now what?


In late winter I picked a new goal for 2011...set my sights on a 'big run' this summer and got to work training.

In the spring I strained my calf badly and spent weeks recovering and rehabing from a series of irritating injuries (and spent hundreds of dollars on physio, massage and acupuncture in the process:). I got better and got back to work better late than never.

I ran in the rain. I ran in the snow. I ran after biking. I ran before running. I forced myself to run alone in the woods and overcame some solo fears out of necessity (not everyone is keen to run for 8 hours on a Saturday morning).

I skipped Friday night bevies and Saturday morning sleep ins. I even spent half a day running during a stagette weekend- how dedicated is that?!

I bought a fancy new nightlight. I filled the freezer with homemade energy balls and bars and loaded up on race food for the big event this weekend.

Yesterday I found out that my race, the Fat Dog 100, was cancelled due to snow conditions and I will not be heading to Manning Park to run my first 80k in the alpine afterall. Funny thing is this mega dump of snow that made so many people smile from ear to ear this winter is not bringing on a smile for racers this summer LOL!

It has been a great spring/summer running journey for sure.'s kinda anti-climactic dontchathink?

So, now what? I have energy to burn so we will have to see where my feet will take me...perhaps into reality to catch up on life, home, love, work...

Or perhaps...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Week in pics

Happy Monday!

Another fun filled week has flown right by and once again I find myself back at my computer on a lovely, grey, Monday morning. Here is my week in pics!

Last Sunday, I had the pleasure of teaching my summer Orienteering 101 & 201 courses down at Nymph Falls Park, Courtenay. Another keen crew of students soaked up the ins and outs of map reading, navigation and race orienteering. All of my students in this class are MOMAR Cumberland bound and I know that they will have a huge advantage in the orienteering sections after fine tuning their nav skills! Good times!

And if you want to have a go at the fun sport of Orienteering check out this event::
Victoria Orienteering Event:: Comox, BC:: Saturday, July 23rd...more info...

I managed to squeeze in a mega strawberry picking session down at Ashberry farms last week- haven't had much time to do my annual pick this year! The berries are so good, so juicy and completely drug free:) I like to support this small, family run, local farm - this year especially, our berry farmers are suffering so get down and pick a pail before they are closed for the season!

These berries need to be processed the same day- so it was a double batch of home made strawberry jam that night!

Adventure Running 2::3 kicked off last week and we have been exploring the awesome trails of Cumberland once again. We are sooooo lucky to have such passionate and dedicated trail builders in this town who spend countless hours, days and years building and maintaining our huge trail network. THANK YOU to the builders!

Above the waterfall on lower Thirsty Beaver...

I wonder why they named this trail Thirsty Beaver? There are WAY more pics on the ELM Facebook page so head on over there to check out the awesome trails, bridges and running shots!

Womens Hiking Clinic also kicked off last week and we have been enjoying cool summer weather for our evening hikes. The wild flowers are unbelievable right now and this is an upside to the rain for sure:)

Up Up Up above the Comox Lake Dam for a great view of the Lake and the cabins across the way in Cumberland

Our Sunrise Bootcamp crew is working hard AND having fun this summer as usual! Sure you get push ups for cheating, whining and being late...but you get to play with your recruits and always have time for a laugh too:) Here they are last week, playing 'circle tag' to get fired up for their workout.

This past weekend we went to the Okanagan for a whirlwind trip...Friday to Kelowna for a family visit...Saturday in Kamloops for a fantastic back yard wedding...back to Kelowna that night...then back to the island on Sunday! 3 days and 23 hours of travel time... I have never done that trip over a regular weekend! But it was well worth it as I got to join my good friends Jen & Corey for a very special 'back yard garden party' wedding along with all of our close friends from Rapattack. So fun!

I am in taper mode for a big event this weekend...which might now be cancelled due to crazy snow! Stand by...


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Smoked Salmon Quinoa Quiche

OK I can't resist posting another weekday recipe for ya! I have been googling smoked salmon recipes for new ideas and came across this one that I had to try...very different quiche indeed!

Another Fun Squamish Weekend

Hola Amigos!
This month is flying by as I have so many fun things planned and so little time to do them all! By the end of July I will have been out of town 4 weekends in a row from Victoria to Squamish to Kamloops and beyond...

This past weekend I was back in my second home, Squamish, for a guest ride in the BCBike Race. My buddy Michelle won a guest pass with her racing partner Shawn at the Burnaby MOMAR- but unfortunately for him, he was not able to I got to go along in his place!

It was a great chance to check out this popular 7-day, staged mountain bike race and I had a super fun weekend visiting with friends and playing with Michelle in the trails. Here is my weekend in pics...

Guest Riders with race numbers ready to rock! BIG THANK YOU to the organizers for allowing 50 odd 'guest riders' on the course in Squamish...and a huge thank you to all the friendly volunteers!

The travelling BCBR caravan was insane- huge blow up arches, multiple trailers, bike mechanics, first aiders, chiropractors, campground, staff, and between 400-500 racers...travelling from Cumberland, through 7 communities and finishing in Whistler.

Pre -ride bike tune ups...

BCBR camp...

Hmmmm...I can't say I have ever seen coffee made this way...

At the start line on Day 6 Squamish! Rain let up after a monsoon night and the sun came out for the day. We were on the 'Challenge' course which is where are the guest riders were placed for the day. This meant we were completing about 30k rather than the regular course of 50ishk.

It was a beautiful course that hit up all my favorite trails in Squamish!! Half Nelson, Farside, Tsuga Tsuga (sp?) and of course my all time favourite The Powerhouse Plunge (LOL!).

The day went off without a hitch and the team was well oiled by Day 6- as were the racers! I saw some seriously bruised legs and scabbing over wounds on those dirty birds!

The only thing I didn't love was the way they merged the 2 courses together multiple times- so the Epic riders had to pass us Challenge riders during (what should have been) fun technical sections. No Bueno. We ended up spending half of our race looking over our shoulders and the other half jumping off the trail to yield to epic riders. That would have beyond frustrating for me after 7 days...cause you couldn't have a good ride with all the stopping and starting. Some of the Challenge riders were frustrated but others didn't seem to mind- they were there for the journey, not to try and race/ride the course their own pace- they were happy to pull over and cheer on the fasties.

After the ride, I went up the Chief (can't get enough of that view!)...then ran back down and met Michelle for a second trip up to the top. After that it was off to the BCBR beer gardens for a great finish to the day!

The next morning I woke up and headed back to the Chief for one more round... This time it was much quieter on the way up (recommend a morning trip if you ever go- and avoid the weekends!) I got to enjoy the trek much more. I went back up to the first peak for that great view...then continued hiking up to the second peak which called to me in the distance... another great hike!

Peak 1...again!

View from Peak 2 down to Peak 1! Even better view!

After the final Chief trip I met up with my buddies down at the Squamish Saturday market- YUM! Loads of great local products, foods, and crafts. I grabbed a coffee and my lunch then hit the road to take the boat home!

Great weekend, great friends, good times!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Ocean Sky

Ocean Sky from Alex Cherney on Vimeo.

Wow. This reminds me of where we really are...

Play this on the biggest screen you can, turn off the lights and get ready to be wowed...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Holy Lole

Happy Wednesday!
I have another gear review for you...

If you have seen me at all since late winter, then you have seen me wearing my teal Lole zippy...cause I have been living in it. I recently discovered this awesome Canadian clothing line at Lotuswear (ELM Sponsor) in Courtenay. They started carrying this womens active-wear line recently and now the store is filled with vibrant colours and funky styles. Learn more about this inspiring Montreal based company here...

Recently, I was invited to join the 'Lole & Friends' program as a Canadian fitness pro/lifestyle athlete and I am stoked to be affiliated with this fresh, fun company!

On to the review...

I wear this 'Essential' long sleeve zippy as a light layer on spring days, summer mornings... It is a light weight, nylon-elastane blend that feels super soft on the skin and helps to regulate temps via layering. I wear it while training clients, before/after my workouts and after work hours I have been living in it too. Nice long sleeves and long body so it doesn't ride up and feels cozy on a cool day. Not too hot, not too cold... Love it- what can I say?

I also picked up a pair of Lole 'Circuit' bottoms and have been living in these too. Same blend but a slightly heavier material, these are the perfect long short for cool-warm days when you are moving and shaking (frisbee or spontaneous yoga anyone?). They come just above the knee, have nice deep pockets and feel so soft on the skin. The wide, flat waist band keeps them secure on my hips without digging in. Flat seams and printed tags make these a super comfy fit. I have been living in these too! At work, after work AND in spring I was wearing these over my bike shorts on my mountain bike. They were excellent for biking on cooler days because they gave my legs some extra coverage but also were breathable. Another bonus: the nice close fit at the rear meant my shorts didn't get caught on my seat on the ride. I hate that about most of my baggy biking shorts! So, yes, another rave recommendation for these shorts!

Check out or go down to Lotuswear, Ryan Road, to see this awesome Canadian owned line. You might just find your new fave outfit...

Cheers and Happy Trails,

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Juan de Fuca Solo 'Run'

Good times on the Juan de Fuca trail yesterday!
I have been itching to fit in a day on the JDF trail since my first fast pack in 2009. That time I enjoyed a fun day with a couple of buddies, Shawn and Michelle, exploring, making memories, taking photos and taking in the scenery. This year I couldn't seem to convince any buddies to join me on the trek so I faced my fears and went solo. It turned out to be a fabulous day- I had a great long run on one of the most beautiful west coast trails imaginable. 47kms (and 2000m elevation gain then loss) of single track, mud, roots, ladders, bridges, beaches, rivers, mud...did I mention mud?

Tacos de Pescado

The first time I had a fish taco I fell hard.