Spring Flings or Forever Loves?

It’s officially SPRING! The sun has been shining the last few days in Squamish, and it’s inspired me to put together a list of my current favourites.  I’ve got new shoes, a new jacket, a new necklace, and some other great new things that I’m loving this spring.

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Hint – 2 of my faves are featured in this photo…

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New Beginnings

Oh hey, I’m still around!  I’m so sorry I haven’t been around for the past few months.  After injuring myself in late June and missing so much fun-ness over the summer, things got a bit crazy…

July was pretty same same, we had a rad Ladies of the Trails night at Salomon West Van, and Jay and I went to a family reunion at Manning Park where we decided to test my ankle and run up and down Frosty Mountain.  Spoiler alert – that was a really bad idea for the body, but so good for the soul.

But then August, August was INSANE.  Why you may ask?  Well, we decided to buy a house and move to Squamish.  Yep, you read that right!

2015-09-29 12.57.29Let me explain…

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Squamish 50 – Orientation Run #1 – March 22/14

Saturday morning was the first orientation run of the season for Squamish 50.  The guys – Gary & Geoff started doing free orientation runs, open to runners and their friends last year, and they are truly one of my favorite places to be on a weekend.

1) it’s in SQUAMISH.  I freaking love Squamish.  I love running the trails there.  I love the Brew Pub after for yummy hot eats.  If you know me, you know I hate long drives, and yet the drive to Squamish always seems shorter than I expect, and not that bad.

2) ALL my trail friends from fast to slow come out to run!  I started to count how many hugs I was involved in at the Nester’s parking lot on Saturday morning, and I lost count, because there’s just too many people that I know and love that come out to these events.  I joke, but I really wasn’t as excited to run, as I was to see my peeps.

3) The last time I climbed the Mtn of Phlegm was during the 50K race last August, and I was in a bad place at the time.  The wheels had fallen off of my bus, and I ended up crying while hugging Rob at the top, feeling utterly defeated.  I wanted a redemption of that hill!

These are definitely the top 3 reasons why I was excited for Saturday, so here’s some pictures, and how the day went down.

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As Seen…On Our Squamish Chief Hike

On our way to Squamish for last Saturday’s Squamish50 we decided to stop off and hike the first peak of the Chief, as Candice, Kim, and Norm had all never done it.  One of the most gorgeous rewarding shorter hikes you can do, the Chief is a must do!

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Not too much to say, so just a collection of some great pics we took along the way and at the top.  For reference we were moving at a nice casual pace and it was about 1:30 up, and 1:00 down.

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Squamish 50K – Race Recap

Squamish50 was my 3rd ultra, 3rd 50km, and 2nd 50km in the past 29 days.  Hah.  To say that I love trail running, and that ultra marathons are addictive is an understatement.  I have no idea how exactly I discovered this sub-culture, but it truly is a very unique family where salt pills, Advil, and gels are currency in which we trade or donate along the trail.  War stories of chaffing, blisters, bug stings, vomit, and tears are shared and relished in, and whether you are first or last, your achievement is celebrated just as loudly.  We are all out there suffering, and we understand how the trails have a way of breaking us down, leaving us vulnerable, unprotected, and scared.  The best and worst thing about trails is being in the woods, alone, beat down, hating life, wanting to sit down and bawl your eyes out.  It forces us to look deep within ourselves, find the inner strength that we know is there, or sometimes don’t even know is there, claw ourselves out of the hole we’ve fallen into, and come out stronger than before, even if our bodies are left weaker than we’ve ever known.  Ultras are so different from anything I’ve ever done before.  You never know what your day is going to bring, whether your body is going to cooperate, whether you’ve climbed enough mountains in your training, whether you’ve tapered enough or too much, and whether your head is going to allow your body to keep going for hours and hours of running, or whether it’s going to peace out in the middle of a race, leaving you high and dry.  I don’t know that I can fully put running an ultra into words for a blog post, but I’ll keep trying.  And hopefully, you’ll get out of it even a little piece of how magical of a world I’ve discovered and want to join me on the trails.

This recap will be a bit different from most – less pictures, more mushy gushy.  But either way, it’s the tale of my adventure of 50KM at Squamish50 on Saturday August 10, 2013.

Spoiler : I ended up 2nd out of 21 women in my age group!!!  My official time was 7:19:46, and I was the 9th overall female(of 86), and 30th overall finisher(of 160).

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2 sleeps til Squamish50!

I interrupt your recaps of my Long Weekend to scream about the fact that Squamish 50 is on Saturday!  Ahhhhh!

I know a ton of people running in all 3 of the distances – 23K, 50K, & 50M, and I’m really looking forward to seeing so many familiar faces out there, and hopefully getting to run with a few of my favorite similarly paced peeps along the way!

A fun little contest for my fellow runners…a few weeks ago, when James, Jay, Mariah and I were running the first half of the course, James left a token on a tree.  If someone finds this along their run, and brings it back to us, there will be a PRIZE!!  And for those of you who know what hubs’ favorite hobby is, you know this is a prize worth winning!!  Keep your eyes peeled for this!!

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Sunday Funday – Trail Running – Squamish 50K training – July 28/13

With Squamish50 fast approaching, James and I jumped on the chance to join some people heading out for another Sunday morning am in Squampton.  The plan was 21km, car aid station, see how we felt, and then continue for maybe 10 more, maybe more if we felt good.

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Spoiler : The first section was closer to 25kms, and was a very tough section, and by the time we got to the cars, we were exhausted and decided it was a better call for us to end the run there. 

Even with the shortened distance, it was a solid training run, and I’ve now run ALL of the 50KM course over the course of orientation runs, races, and my own training runs.  Not entirely decided whether this make me feel more confident, or scared…

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Sunday Funday – Trail Running – Squamish 50K training

After Saturday’s lackluster performance at 5Peaks Cypress, I whined and complained about joining James for a Sunday long run.  But then we started discussing routes, and decided to do the first part of the Squamish 50K course, which includes the “big climb”  that neither of us had run.  To be honest, James wasn’t totally on board with this route, but to convince me to come, he let me have input!!

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Spoiler : Squamish was totally the right choice, and we had a fabulous 28km run along some amazing single track (seen above), on a beautiful sunny day!

Squamish 50 is coming up in just a few short weeks, on August 10th, so I’ve broken down the first 14km for those curious who missed the orientation runs.

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As Seen…On Our Garibaldi Lake Trail Run/Hike

Last Sunday, Salomon West Van team members Gemma, James, and myself took our other (better?) half’s for a day trip trail adventure to Garibaldi Lake.

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I’m not quite sure if the views were worth the hike up….

NOT!  It was the most beautiful day and Garibaldi Lake was as beautiful, if not more beautiful than Jay and I remembered!  Jay brought the AfriCam, so obviously we took a ton of pictures.  And I’ll give you the low-down on the trail because it’s a great day hike for locals and tourists, and really is worth the climb, which by the way is not a super tough climb.

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