I’ve been very fortunate to combine travel with racing over the past couple of years. Last year, I ran the Ottawa Half Marathon (which also runs through Quebec), and combined the trip with a visit with my Dad. Way back in April of this year – very likely in order to take advantage of the earlybird discount – I signed up for my second ever race in Ontario. I was able to meet up not only with Dad, but also with extended family and some friends I hadn’t seen in many years! And that race was the Hamilton Road2Hope Half Marathon!
Posts Tagged ‘ontario’
Tags: family, friends, half marathon, hamilton road2hope, hamilton road2hope half marathon, ontario, race, travel run
Tags: half marathon, november, ontario, racing, running, trails, travel, writing
Bradley on the Run has definitely been running more than writing so far this month! While I’ve got some blogs / race reports in the works, I thought I’d provide an update on what’s been happening in November!
Tags: ambleside mile, half marathon, mile, montly update, ontario, ottawa half marathon, running, Scotiabank Charity Challenge, Scotiabank Half Marathon, travel, travelrun, vancouver, weekend update
I got this idea from my fellow Vancouverite & Bib Rave Pro, Brie (find her, follow her, and love everything about her at Brie ‘Like the Cheese’!). I enjoyed her April/May post so much, I asked if I could copy her for this month. The idea of the monthly update is to reflect back on the month that has just ended, but at the same time look forward to the month that’s on its way.
Also, in order to ensure giving credit where credit is due – this idea originally came from Jessica Lawlor – so make sure you visit her site, too! I’ll match her style of highlighting 3 things from May, and 3 for June.
Without further ado, let’s wrap up the last month, and excitedly anticipate the next!
In May, I…
1. Achieved my half marathon PB! I actually ran two half marathons in May – started out with the BMO Vancouver Half Marathon, and three weeks later travelled to Ontario and ran the Ottawa Half Marathon. Both runs were great experiences, but it was Vancouver that took the cake. A perfect storm of weather, course, and luck – I was able to complete the race in under 1:45 – which was a true hurdle overcome!
2. Ran my third ever blog contest! This time, it was a giveaway for the Ambleside Mile – coming up very soon in June! I was thrilled with the response I got from interested runners, and excited that my running buddy, Emily G., won the giveaway…and will be joining me at the race! Looking forward to seeing some of my other Twitter & social media friends there, too!
3. Participated in Link-Ups! If you’re a blogger and you’ve never participated in a link-up, you should totally start. It’s a great way to meet new folks with common interests, and get some new ideas and motivation!
- Weekend Update: Such an inspirational bunch of people sharing their achievements over the weekend (and previous week). Tara at Reading ‘n’ Running hosts this link-up – and today’s post is part of that! Drop by her page, visit other folks, and link up!!
- Wednesday Giveaway Roundup: Every week, Erica at Erica Finds hosts a Wednesday Giveaway Roundup. I think this is fantastic – though for us poor schlubs in Canada it can be a bit frustrating, since a lot of the giveaways are limited to US entrants. Nevertheless, my blog contest gained a lot more exposure through this link-up, and Erica has something going on all the time – definitely worth a visit!
- Thursday Triumph: This NEW link-up is hosted by Smitha (Running with SD Mom), Carlee (Carlee McDott) and Linzie (Sharp Endurance). It’s a great chance to share a success and learn about what other runners are up to!
In June, I will…
1. Run three races! At least, that’s how many I’ve signed up for so far…
- Ambleside Mile: Next Saturday is the aforementioned one-mile race in West Vancouver. It’s a new route this year – looking forward to giving it a go again. Last year, my Dad was in town for the race, which was really special.
- Longest Day 10k: Held at UBC, the Blueshore Financial Longest Day Race includes both 5km and 10km distances. I race the 5km back in 2010 and it look me nearly 29 minutes to finish. We’ll see if we can’t improve on that pace this year!
- Scotiabank Half Marathon: Once again, I’m fundraising on behalf of the BC Cancer Foundation – and the total so far is nearly $2,000! I appreciate all the support and I’m so happy the money will be going to this great cause. I’m also excited to run my 5th half marathon of 2015, continuing with my #yearofthehalf theme.
2. Get back to the gym! I completed three training session with Lisa at the YMCA a couple of months ago. They had another deal in May for a discount on a 3-pack of sessions, so I signed up again. Because I’m out of town this week – headed to Edmonton for work – I’ll probably get started in the 2nd week of June.
3. Sing! I belong to a local community choir called Simple Gifts. Next Sunday is our final concert before the summer. We sing a variety of music – classical, jazz, musical, African folk – and have a lot of fun doing it. We also sing at two seniors’ homes as part of our ‘outreach’, which I think is one of the most fulfilling things about it. For the summer, I join SummerChor, which each year rehearses and performs a single major classical work. This year, we are working on
Faure’s Durufle’s Requiem, which we will perform at the end of August.
Tell me about what you achieved in May in the comments! What do you have planned for June?
May posts you might have missed:
- Ottawa Half Marathon – Race Report
- Weekend Update – Barrie
- Thursday Triumph – The Half
- Weekend Update – Mother’s Day
- BMO Vancouver Half Marathon – Race Report
Tags: gatineau, half marathon, hull, ontario, ottawa, quebec, race report, tamarack ottawa race weekend, travel, travelrun
It feels like I’ve been gone for ages! Just got back from my trip to Ontario, including great times with family and friends. The original purpose of this trip, of course, was to continue with my theme – my #yearofthehalf. On Sunday, I ran my 4th half for 2015 – and my 13th half ever – the Ottawa Half Marathon. It was not, however, lucky number 13 for me.
I walked to the start line and arrived well before the 9am half marathon start. The marathon was already under way, having a 7am gun time. I hung about and enjoyed the buzz of the crowd, and then decided to pop to the toilet just once more. I was in line for 30 minutes. (Why don’t more large races have men’s urinal stations? Seriously, it should be a given if a race has more than a few thousand runners.) Finally, as I made my way to the corral, I actually saw about half a dozen guys peeing behind bushes at the side of the road…
Average pace: 5:14 min/km
Place overall: 2552/14356
Age category place: 336/1104
Although this race wasn’t a ‘triumph’ in the strictest sense, I still feel really good for having accomplished it. As such, I’m pleased to link up with Smitha, Carlee & Linzie for another Thursday Triumph! Please drop by to visit them, too!
Tags: barrie, gym, kettlebell, memories, ontario, running, training, travel, travelrun
It’s Victoria Day here in Canada – celebrating the birthday of Queen Victoria, who was reigning when Canada became a country in 1867. It’s the ‘official’ start of summer in most of the country. And summer has definitely arrived in Ontario!
Yep, I’m back in Ontario for another visit – taking a bit more time than our 4 days back in April when I did two very short TravelRuns.
But before I get to the weekend – retracing steps and bringing back memories in Barrie – let’s recap the past week!
The weather was cool and a teeny bit rainy when Lana and I went out for our lunchtime run – the usual route including Stanley Park, Second Beach Pool and Lost Lagoon. Lana snapped a pic for me:
Jill and I conquered the gym – another kettlebell workout, baby! Here’s proof of the kettlebell in action (sort of)! Plus, I’m wearing my Sun Run t-shirt!
Interval training! Lana wasn’t available, so I went out on my own. After a 2km warmup, I set my Garmin to do 10x 45 seconds, with 30 second rest breaks. The goose family was watching me running back and forth:
We did it again – Jill and I motivated each other back to the gym, and included a few deadlifts in the routine. Last workout before my holiday!
I had intended to go to Pilates, per my usual routine. However, being a long weekend, I had too much to do before leaving the office. Then we had to pack, and take the cat to our friends’ place.
On top of that, the scratchy feeling I had in my throat yesterday had blossomed into a nagging cough. And I honestly don’t find Pilates all that effective if I’m coughing through it.
Had a terrible sleep. Got up early and flew from Vancouver to Toronto, where my dad met us at the airport. The only exercise today was walking back and forth to the buffet that my dad treated us to. Plus, I was still not feeling 100%.
One week to Ottawa! And although I’m tapering a bit (does it count as tapering when I did a race 2 weeks ago?), I wanted to get a run in. Also, I thought it would be good to acclimatize to this weather – and take my brand new BibRave t-shirt on its inaugural run!
It’s a lonely stretch of road, out past the small local airport. Fields on either side. The last time I ran this route is firmly fixed in my mind.
It was just over 2 years ago. I was running to escape from my own thoughts and the reality of losing my mom. She had passed away 3 days before. I remember running this empty road, nothing but the fields and the sky and the sun and the occasional car, and bawling my eyes out. Just running and crying. Trying to come to terms with the reality of our lives at that point in time. It was an important moment – I hesitate to call it a pivotal one – but I think it was then that I realized then how essential running was to me. That it brought me some peace in the midst of anguish.
A lot of water under the bridge. I’m happy to be running here again. A bit nostalgic, to be sure, but not filled with sadness like I was that day 2 years ago.
Thanks to Tara at Running ‘n’ Reading, I’ve been inspired to do this weekend update – and join her weekly linkup! Join in, or drop by and see what other bloggers have been up to!
What route did you run this weekend? Do any of your running routes bring back memories? Have you ever experienced a moment when you realized what running meant to you?
Tags: barrie, hamilton, ontario, seawall, training, trans canada trail, travel, travelrun, vancouver
Much as I enjoy travelling, it often means I fall behind on other stuff, like updating my blog. With the preparation for going away, plus a couple of evening commitments, along with that full-time job…I’m way behind!
So I’ll get right to it!
Thursday night, we took the red-eye from Vancouver to Toronto. The flight only took about 4 hours, but because of the screaming toddler on board, it felt like a lot longer. Arrived in Ontario with actual red eyes, having not had a wink of sleep, and drove home to Barrie (about an hour due north of Toronto). Greeted my Dad warmly, and promptly took a 3-hour nap.
On Saturday, we drove 2+ hours to Hamilton, at the western end of Lake Ontario, where we attended my cousin’s wedding. It was a wonderful time, getting together with most of the extended family (including a couple of cousins I’d never met before!), dancing, and enjoying the open bar.
Yes, you read that right. Open bar.
Despite the open bar, I had mentally committed to running in Hamilton. I lived in the area during college – but as many of you know, I was not a runner then. As such, I was determined to make this a TravelRun. After breakfast and a few cups of coffee (but unfortunately not enough water), I headed out.
I had packed for Ontario with the assumption that it would be cold. It was not. I was dressed for cooler temperatures in a thermal long-sleeved top with a t-shirt over it, running tights & shorts, and my Icebreaker toque. I headed out from the hotel past Dundurn Castle and along Harvey Park, which overlooks Burlington Bay in Lake Ontario.
About a kilometre in, I was already sweating.
I pulled up my sleeves.
My destination was Waterfront Trail, requiring me to clamber down a fairly imposing and twisty metal staircase.
I then headed back the way I had come, only now I was right on the lakeshore. The sun was beaming down, the geese were honking, and the fact that I hadn’t rehydrated properly to compensate for
a couple of quite a few gin & tonics had set in.
I passed a dead racoon.
It then dawned on me that I was at the base of a small cliff, and that there were railway tracks in between me and said cliff. In order to get back to my destination, I had to do a full loop – which included a hill and a bridge. I briefly took off my toque to wipe my brow, but with the sun growing in intensity on my pale scalp I feared sunburn, and slapped that hat back on.
Now don’t get me wrong – the Waterfront Trail is beautiful.
But I was very happy when the hotel came back in sight. I freshened up, and we headed off for some waterfall sightseeing at the Spencer Gorge.
Followed by a lovely lunch with the family and the newlyweds. Then we headed back to Barrie.
In order to ensure that the Ontario TravelRun was done right, I ventured out on Monday morning from my Dad’s place. I’ve run this route quite a few times. Most of it is pretty straightforward residential, all around the neighbourhood where I grew up: Letitia Street, Leacock Drive, Cundles Road, Livingstone Street, Lillian Crescent.
But then I get to run through Sunnidale Park. When I was a child, it seemed vast. Back in the 50s or 60s, it was a golf course. At one point, they wanted to pave it over, and my Mom fought tooth and nail to keep it as a park – and she succeeded. There’s a huge hill where I used to toboggan in the winter. But now I’m seeing it with fresh eyes (although it’s still a bit brown and bare).
One of the coolest things – the path through the park is part of the Trans Canada Trail – a network of trails stretching 17,000km across Canada.
As it turns out – the Waterfront Trail in Hamilton that I ran? It’s also part of the Trans Canada Trail!
Back to Vancouver on Monday night. This was a whirlwind trip, but totally worth it to spend the time with my family, who I don’t get to see as often as I’d like.
On Tuesday, I ran the Seawall in Coal Harbour with three of my coworkers. The Seawall is part of the Trans Canada Trail, too. This fact makes me very happy.
Have you ever run the Trans Canada Trail? Any good TravelRuns in your future?
Have you ever over (or under) dressed for a run?
Tags: 42for42, barrie, false creek, Forerunners, half marathon, honolulu, honolulu marathon, injury, ontario, running, seawall, snow, Stanley Park, training, vancouver, winter
Have you ever had one of those times when it’s the perfect storm of work, school, family all culminating in so much stuff going on that suddenly almost a month has gone by and you haven’t written a blog post?
Ya, that’s what happened.
2 weeks from today, I will run (or, by this time of day, have completed – I hope!) the Honolulu Marathon. And just to make sure I hadn’t forgotten, this arrived in the mail last week:
But what’s been happening in the meantime?
The Long Run
I probably should have peaked last week, but I got my longest run in about 3 weeks ago. It also happened to be the longest solo run I’ve ever done. It started with an early jaunt to Forerunners, where I joined up with the clinic for the first part of their run. I then continued my loop around False Creek and on to Stanley Park, where I captured a bit of the local scenery.
I’ll admit I also stopped along the way to vote in the municipal election!
After circumnavigating Stanley Park, I finally reached Coal Harbour at 33km, where I stopped for a coffee. The barista said: “Lovely morning for a little jog.” I just smiled and nodded.
I went back to Ontario for a week to help my dad out following a minor surgery. And for the first time, I took the opportunity to run the beautiful Barrie Waterfront – an out and back around Kempenfelt Bay.
And had intended to get in a long run, but with some housework to manage, plus juggling working from home – I waited too long and woke up to this:
Winter in Vancouver
I arrived back in BC just in time for…well, no snow yet, but a bit of below zero. Another False Creek/Stanley Park loop, and managed to reach a little more than a half marathon distance. I should have run further, but I ended up at Starbucks instead.
But then yesterday, winter had truly arrived!
I ended up taking a bit of a tumble en route, but thanks to the cold my glove took the brunt of my fall! I’ve got a bit of a sore hip, too, but no war wound to show off!
So here’s what it looked like yesterday in all my key locales – including my upcoming vacation destinations!
My #42for42 goal is fast approaching – the birthday (on Friday) arriving just over a week before the distance. We’ll then be off to Japan for 2 weeks, where (after some recovery) I hope to run some more!