Week 7 – RunLAB

With week 7 of RunLAB under my belt, I think it’s safe to say that training on #theroadtoGoodLife has me in all sorts of feels. Highs and lows and in between. Right now, I feel great! Two weeks ago, not so much. Sometimes our thoughts can be our own worst enemy, especially when we’re feeling tired or sore.

What I am learning as we go or I should say being reminded of is that training the mind is just as important as training our body; more so than we often realize. With RunLAB, I am seeing this come alive each week as we set out on our long runs. I’m feeling stronger physically as each week goes – thanks to a carefully designed program to strengthen our body to be better runners. However, running with a crew has proven to be the biggest support system I’ve known to carry me through the long distances week over week. Their energizing presence continually reinforces the mind to think ‘I can do this’ ‘this is actually awesome’ ‘I so got this-done’ into existence.

This week’s long run of 24KM brought many moments when I was ready to give up because I didn’t think I could get through it. (Even though we just ran this distance last week!) Now, I know not every run is going to be a good run, but when you are at kilometer 17 the last 7 can seem almost unimaginable. With that being said, having a solid crew to run alongside every Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday is pretty awesome! Just knowing they’re there has probably made 95% of our crew runs better than I ever anticipated. It’s the kind support that has you feeling unstoppable during those agonizing mid-run moments and feeling full post-run because we are in this together, we got here together. Their camaraderie and self-motivation has me pushing my limits every week and actually looking forward to the next. 🙂

Now I am not saying, we can depend on a crew for 100% of our training because come race day, I am sure there will be a lot of alone time and we need to know how to manage this. But I do think it can be that extra push we need to get us to that start line in top shape come race day; after that gun fires – the rest will magically fall into place.


Happy Vibes! xx

PS- I am super pumped to let you all know that I’ll be posting my progress on the Academy of Lions RunCrew blog as well to help inspire and encourage other runners in our community!


Spring is just around the corner which means Marathon season is also nearing. Making it time to lace up and hit the streets.

After the Nike’s Womens Run I lost a bit of my passion for running. Time seemed to be hard to come by and everything else took priority. Next thing I knew the winter months were amongst us and naturally I succumbed to hibernation mode. I do admit, a break was welcomed and I hadn’t sworn off running completely. I was still getting out one or twice a week but I had lost that love for running on the daily. I knew I had to spice things up before it began to feel like a fitness chore.

Now to ignite that spark!Nike RunningOne of my running goals last year was to be more social with running. Which unfortunately,  I hadn’t quite accomplished. I definitely was more social with sharing and I did do some runs with friendships, but on the day to day – not so much. So, as the year-end neared, I decided to join a run crew! I was unsettled with nerves, undecided on my level of commitment and uneducated on what each run group was really all about. I found it all a tad intimidating to be honest. However, I was super excited at the challenge and as with many of my running queries, I turned to my trusted friends and my biggest runspirations and that is where Academy of Lions RunCrew came into play. Academy of LionsMy good friend Natalie had always been encouraging me to come out to her crew, so finally I committed myself to doing just that. Once a week, half an hour, running with the community – perfection! I made it out a handful of times before the holidays and started to feel that happy flutter once again. Plus, I got to catch up with some pretty awesome people! I was excited to return in the New Year and with my luck – the launch of their first ever RunLAB. Timing couldn’t have been better!

A 16 week program designed to challenge yourself but not by yourself. Weekly runs led with the best support (3 energizing and experienced coaches) and the motivation of MANY, as we all train towards our own goals and distances (5K, 10K, 21.1K & 42.2K) on #TheRoadtoGoodLife (Toronto’s Good Life Marathon).

I should note, that what is truly incredible about this training program is that it is open to all and free! No matter what your goal is, whether you are new to running or looking to run your 20th marathon, this Run Crew is welcoming to all levels of athletes and it doesn’t go unnoticed. Academy of Lions is truly doing something remarkable to help bring the community together and inspire one another on their running journey. Insert High Five!

We just finished off week 2 and it’s going great so far. I’m already feeling stronger, more confident in my ability and super motivated! I’ve yet to decide whether it’ll be a half or a full marathon for me (I’m leaning towards the half, the full scares me), but I am training towards the Around the Bay 30K again (see last year’s recap here) and will gauge at that point on how I will finish these 16 weeks. I’m excited to see how much stronger I am this time around with a proper program to follow. 🙂 I’ll be sure to keep you all posted! Running Selfie

Find your Strong. xx



Race Recap – Nike Women’s 15K

What a whirlwind of a weekend! Job well done, Nike!

Looks like this will be the last race recap for awhile, as I have no major races planned in the summer months (yet lol). I hope I haven’t bored you with these, but it was a full couple months with some super amazing races that I had to share, so I hope you have enjoyed the recaps as much as I have. And what better way to end this race streak, than with a first of its kind in Toronto, the Nike Women’s 15K. This was the perfect kick off to summer, despite the less than favourable weather conditions.

Wow Wow Wow, Nike you sure did put on one hell of a race weekend. It seems to be all any one is talking about. From the excitement building up months in advance to race day weekend, to the final finish line and post race recaps. This was probably the most fun I have had running this year, not to mention in company with my favourite running gals.

Nike had ladies hopeful to participate in the first and only Canadian location in the global Nike Women’s race series, with a lottery registration earlier this year. This race was so highly anticipated, it had many men runners join in on the fun too, with close to 15,000 runners taking part day of.Nike Village

Nike Village took over Toronto Harbourfront with loads of runspiration and all the essentials pre-race. It was a great way to spend a couple hours on Saturday to mentally prepare for Sunday’s race. Followed by some healthy fuel and relaxation, the body and mind were now set for Sunday’s early wake up call of 5 am.

Sunday’s race was incredible. The route was spectacular, so well thought out, and by far the best route I have run so far. It was fast, exciting, and surprising.  From an aerial view it was even the shape of a Nike Swoosh (that Nike, so clever).Course Map

Terrain varied from sand, grass, boardwalk, and pavement which kept things interesting. With each new turn, my body and mind filled with excitement with the unexpectedness of what was up ahead. The real badass moment was running along Billy Bishop’s tarmac. With airplanes in sight and the cityscape behind us, what a view to take in. This was one of those “I need to stop and take a picture” moments. This picture below from Nike is far superior than the one I quickly captured in excitement.Runway Photo 20004325_race_0.9843545996596968.display

Not only was this route perfectly planned, but the course was lined with cheering fans, pumping music, jammin’ bands, and even a choir rocking gospel music in their Nike’s. It was the kind of course that makes your heart happy, a route that fills you with energy and leaves you with the urge to keep on running. It was magical and flew by far too quickly. Finishing at 1:30:45, I wanted to keep on going, it was seriously that much fun (I hope the picture above shows you just how much fun!).

Official Race Results

To top off an amazing event, Nike rewarded participants with a custom Tiffany & Co. necklace. A nice touch compared to your typical finisher’s medal. Talk about a  “silver lining.”

Race bib & blingAnother race to cross off my list and time to start planning the next set of races. I’ll take your reco’s! In a perfect world, I’d be heading to San Fran in October to run the Nike Half Marathon. However, I’m not sure if I am ready for that commitment at this particular moment, but could probably be easily persuaded (hint hint).


Better for it. xx







Race Recap – Niagara Falls Women’s Half Marathon

Joy. Balance. Gratitude. Empowerment.

All smiles for miles. Both pre and post-race, my smiles come from a place of pure joy. I went into yesterday’s race with a different mindset, an unspoken intention. My intention for this race (as always) was to push limits and surpass previous set goals, but most and foremost to enjoy running for what it is and remember why I love this sport.

Running races isn’t always about fulfilling the need to beat my previous self (although that feeling is unreal), but remembering that there is a balance, a sweet spot, a moment to relish. I wanted to enjoy race day the way I enjoy my weekend long runs; taking in the fresh air, admiring the beauty that surrounds me, getting lost and running because I can. In yesterday’s race, I did just that; with thousands of strong beautiful women around me, minus the getting lost part – thanks to a well-marked course and all the voluncheers! 🙂

Pre-raceThe Niagara Falls Women’s Half Marathon is one of my favourite races to date. Canada’s largest half marathon catered to women with all the frills. From the organization, to an early morning dance session, pretty porta-potties, chocolate, wine, and empowerment, nothing was overlooked. Everything was perfect.

Amongst the presence of close to 4,000 participants, Kathrine Switzer, best known as the first woman (as a numbered entry, 261) to run the Boston Marathon in 1967, was there gracing us with her words of courage and empowerment. Her motivating speech had ladies cheering with excitement and in tears of joy, strangers hugging and encouraging each other on the journey we were all about to endure. As I have said before, this is my favourite part of the race, that meditative moment of self-realization, that puts the whole journey into perspective. Gratitude and joy flowing through the mind, body and heart for this gift; of health, of strength, of wellness, of soul.

Front Wine SelfieAs with any new race, I love the unexpectedness of a new route (partly why I sometimes get lost on my leisure runs), the unknown holds excitement. Each step covering new territory, taking in new scenes. The course for NFWHM was beauteous in its scenery, running along the falls and along the Niagara parkway overlooking the river. The sun was shining, my body felt strong, my mind was clear and my soul was happy. I pushed along with positive vibes and encouraged the women around me to keep on going. There was a tremendous amount of love at this race,  all of us running together as one family. The camaraderie of sisterhood.

Action Shot

For me, pushing through those final moments, I go into sensory overload. It’s hard to explain, but there is A LOT going on, physically and emotionally, it’s almost hard to focus on the finish line. And then, there is this moment, of stillness, when everything blurs together and you see the light beam on  the smiling faces of your biggest supporters in that final stretch, waving and cheering you on. This is the moment your energy skyrockets through to the finish line and it’s over. And you couldn’t be happier. Another goal achieved, the thrill of survival, embracing your cheerleaders and in this case wine country calling your name.

My time 2:08:16 wasn’t on par with what I thought I would finish in, but this race wasn’t about the time and with that, I am all smiles.


I’ll be out again in the next day or so, to keep the legs in gear for Sunday’s Nike Women’s 15K which I am super pumped up about. This time, I’ll be surrounded by so many of my lovely running ladies who inspire me daily to push the limits. Can’t wait!

Be empowered. xx

Run Rest Repeat

In 2014 I crossed a huge running accomplishment off of my list of goals- to run a half marathon (read all about it here). It was truly self-fulfilling and I was on a major runners high for weeks following. I instantly started to think of what my next race would be and after consulting with a few running friends; I committed myself to running Hamilton’s Around the Bay 30K. What was another 9K right? I thought it would be relatively easy (so to speak) after my first half, however with this deep freezing winter we had, I think I may have overestimated my love for running. HA!

With months of training for the 30K and race day quickly approaching (10 days away), I have crazy butterflies fluttering around the pit of my stomach going into this one. Some excitement but mostly nerves, I am “trying” to keep positive knowing that my body and mind are capable of magical things and that I will push through the mileage and hit this goal head on. I’m not too focused on a finish time, but am hoping to finish in 3 hours, average finish for 2014 was 3:07.

just run

My running goals for 2015 are to run more races and get better at running shorter races. I also plan to get more social with running and hit up some run clubs now that the weather is warming up.

Here’s a list of upcoming races that I will be gearing up for. I always love a good training buddy, so let me know what races you are training for and/or join me in one of these upcoming races. 🙂

Upcoming Races

March 29 – Around the Bay 30K

April 19- Toronto Yonge Street 10K

May 10- Sporting Life 10K

June 14- Nike Women’s 15K Toronto (hoping to get into this one!)

runspirationJust Run. xx