IRONMAN CANADA. WHISTLER. JULY 30, 2017.

Wow. What a day.

They tell you it’s going to be hard: that there will be highs and there will be lows. I don’t think you truly grasp those highs and lows until you actually experience it for yourself.

Last year, July 24th 2016, I decided it was time to get back into the world of Triathlon and I competed in my 3rd 70.3 distance Ironman, in Whistler. It was a high. I loved the course, the day, the emotions…so why not revel in that high and sign up for my first full in Whistler the following year…so that’s what I did.

Commence training. 

I began picking away at some form of a training plan in September, and joined efforts with Dylan Gleeson (coach, former pro, cousins husband…and after this year a Whistler- WINNER OF IMC 2017) for a coaching plan. I picked my way through the year of training, ramping the mileage and hours starting in the spring. Minimal injuries left me feeling strong and well trained come race week.

Race week came with a wave of emotions; mainly the realization that I wasn’t THAT nervous. This emotion came with its own set of anxieties how could I not be nervous?! Naive bliss is what I am calling it. I have put in the hours. I have put in the time. Now all I can hope is that my body and mind can pull this out for me. Not knowing entirely what to expect leaves a sense of calm… it was out of my control.

Nerves really hit race morning. On the shuttle bus passing the lake that in a few short hours I was going to be lapping- twice. The sudden fear arose inside – can I do this? I continued to echo myself, yes I can. I AM doing this.

Sorted in transition, wetsuit on, I made my way to the swim coral.

I am an okay swimmer. My mantra for the swim here was slow and steady. Find a pace that I don’t peak my heart rate and I can do comfortably without panic. I seeded myself in the 70-80 minute heat.

Walking into the water I saw a familiar face, Auntie Jan. A few smiles, a camera pose 😉 and a familiar face was all I needed to take this thing- and do it!

1:12:26- nailed it. 2.4 miles: I felt great: Did not panic once: Was ready to get onto the bike.

On my way through transition I saw my dad and Ange who commented on being proud of my strong swim. Que some tears. I grabbed my bike- and just post mount line I saw my family. Ryan and the kids were standing there perfectly placed; just as I was about to embark on my 112-mile bike journey…I needed that! I heard a lot of voices yelling my name- THANK YOU as I was beyond fortunate with the amazing support crew I had out there. My mind was in a foggy blur of emotions, all I knew was I had to get from A to B!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am doing this. This was my mantra. I was told a few times over that for Ironman day it is important to find a mantra that works. This one may sound corny as hell- but it worked. I brought this out in many high and low points of the race. It reminded me not only that I can- but that I currently AM.

I am doing this. I said it right out on to the bike. And this time, it brought tears. Not often enough do we say we are proud of ourselves. This is not one of them. I was and am so frickin proud of myself. Tears crept in and out all day. At my high times of amazement and low points where I would come across family cheering me on. Emotions were high.

The bike was great. I had never biked a full 112 miles- my goal was to get around a 6:30hour… while not completely knowing if this was possible. My butt was sore about an hour into the ride- oh god….just a few more hours to go! The weather was perfect to start the bike. From transition through to the end of the Callaghan climb- there was no wind and the sun was starting to shine through. The wind really began to ramp up on the turn around of the Pemberton Meadows. This is where I had to make a conscious effort to keep cadence up, as I had to pedal harder into the wind: And then, the climbs back to Whistler. The wind was in and out: not too bad and then gusts. But my mantra kept me moving forward. Even as I could feel my legs begin to die a slow death on the return- I was doing this. Gut rot was in and out on the bike. My saving grace was the Zantac I put into my bike box. I had to pop all 3 over the course of the bike. But if staved off the severe cramping and bloat and allowed me to still fuel.

The last 4 miles as I came back in to town as Green Lake appeared in the distance, I knew I had done the bike, and that I captured my goal- 6:33:02 on the bike.

Now the realization that I had a marathon to go was setting in and my mind wanted to overtake with negatives.  How was I going to do this?

I made my way through transition, out of the tent and on to the run. Started the first 100 meters with all the familiar faces. Everyone cheering- an emotional boost that turned in to a bout of strength. Passing Ryan and Kai, I got a big hug, and I was on my way to Lost Lake. I kept telling myself to keep running: One foot in front of the other: I can do this. I ran (slowly) for the first couple of miles- hiked a few hills and then the gut rot was back…and this time was accompanied by a strong sense of vomit. I stopped fueling. I couldn’t get anything in. New mantra set in: run, walk, and toilet.

My low mindset quickly began overtaking my positive thoughts. I knew I had to fuel somehow but didn’t think I could, nor felt like it. I started grabbing sips of Pepsi and taking licks of the salt stick I had decided to throw in the day before (thank god!). But still no energy and a failing mind. I came back through town to start out on my second lap. Passing the family and friend cheer squad- I was now walking and the mind was winning. My dad walked beside me for 100 meters or so asking what I needed, what was wrong. Nothing logical was entering my mind at this point- only that, I am going to finish this thing even if I walk to the finish.

Around the lake I found the girls cheering. Jodi, Cath and Carly were on bikes and cheering me on. Cath came at the right moment. All logic needed to be told to me in simple form. What are you fueling? I’m not I can’t. She told me to just start taking some Gatorade. Every aid station just get some in. The voice of reason was all I needed. And over the course of a few aid stations the sugar and electrolytes kicked in. This was the low of all low points. I didn’t want to be left alone. I was in fear of puking, in fear of passing out. In fear of… I don’t even know! They would ride ahead and wait. I’d see them again and then they’d do the same. And then I saw Ryan. He had ridden up to meet me and he began doing the cat and mouse game with me. This was what kept me mentally strong. Knowing I had support near me. And finally, the Gatorade kicked in, the adrenaline that I WAS DOING THIS kicked in and just like that- I was down to around 16km to go. I made a race friend on the Green Lake stretch. We were both not feeling it. I made a few along the course, but it wasn’t till Melissa that I was in enough of a positive mindset to know that we could finish this. We got through the last together. Talking, taking our minds off of the pain of the current game, choosing the next point to run to until we could walk again. She was just what I needed to finish this race stronger; and she said I was the same for her. (5:46:06 run time- not the imagined time, but I did it).

The first thing I said when I crossed that finish line… “I am never doing that again.” My cousin and I both said that an Ironman may be comparable to childbirth… I guess there is one more thing similar in them both; that with time, your mind invites that “never again” back in- and it becomes a possibility… for a potential in a long distant future.

My favorite picture of the race is the one below. It is the final stretch of the run. I had done it. But the reason this picture is my fav is because it depicts exactly what this race was all about- all the people. My family, my friends- all the incredible support. They were all there with me the entire time. Triathlon, they say, is a single sport. I beg to differ. The support, strength and encouragement you need from start to finish of this sport- from training to finish line-is nothing short of a group effort. This picture captures the entirety of it all. 

THANK YOU. I am so thankful, grateful; fortunate for the village I have in my life.

 

The run wasn’t really the one I hoped for but this day taught me a lot about myself.

When you want something badly enough you get after it.

When your body says I can’t your mind shows you it CAN.

You are stronger than you think you are.

I finally made the red carpet.

I AM AN IRONMAN.

IMC Whistler 2017

13:40:53

Bikini Season

I would like to know how many women DON’T have some sort of issue with bathing suit season. I for one do. I have an insecurity that I am working on- body confidence and self acceptance. I have made large strides personally in my development, but I still have issues that are housed within- and when bathing suit season comes about- I wish I was STRONGER in my confidence and rocking the skin I am in.

There are many reasons why this confidence is important to me – few of which are how I actually look to others. The confidence is one that lies within and the issue at hand is the projection of body confidence and learning how to ensure I project a positive form of it on to my children.

I write for an amazing platform PowHerhouse. Here they focus on female empowerment- be it work, personal, health, body and more. Tomorrow the Summer issue is released and here I focus in on my bathing suit season insecurities and progressions- and pose a challenge for you all as well!

Check out PowHerhouse tomorrow- and then check back here as I fulfill my challenge and hope that you join along too. Lets help empower one another- and begin a change to POSITIVE body reinforcement…and maybe one day, when we open a magazine or turn on the television- we will begin to see an image that reflects the actual world we live it.

#bikiniempowherment

Proud Mom

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This past weekend was a whirlwind of productivity- but so many memories were born from it.

The main event was Sunday’s Dance recital day! It was T’s first concert- and she did so great! She was a little piggy in the ballet performance. Yes piggy. And S was a black horse. The barnyard opened the show. They were so adorable! Proud Mom Moment.  The girls got to be on stage at the same time and their smiles could not have been bigger.

s horse 2015 seymourt piggy 2015 seymourIt was also the first year S had a group Jazz dance, and although bias, she was front and centre remembering the entire thing as she rocked her way through it.

I am so proud of my girls! The sense of enjoyment and accomplishment they find in doing such things couldn’t make me prouder.  Feelings they are finding at a young age, and i hope continue through life.

s jazz 2015 GT4_5651

 

 

 

 

 

It is amazing all that dance can teach a child. The patience, challenge, adversity, nerves, passion, love… the list is endless, and priceless.

The confidence they gain in self, if the only thing they truly walk away with in the end, is one of the most important life lessons they can learn through doing.

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i started reliving a past-time passion a few years ago- and this year i was in the recital for our adult jazz group. the family got to see all 3 girls in one place. its all for fun 🙂

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The Struggle Is Real…

Why is it so difficult to find the perfect denim short. On my search, the more women i talk to, the more feel the same struggle!

There are MANY options to choose from out there and the struggle to find the perfect pair is next to impossible. Hindering my ability to find true perfection are a few key issues: they are either too short, too long, too baggy, too boyfriend or too mom (insert the high-waisted fad here).

the great debate

the great debate

I want a pair that makes my legs look hot but not sexy for school pick-up. I want a rise that covers enough without giving me flashbacks of the 80’s mom-wear… sorry, I know its in, but for me, I can’t and won’t pull it off.

Depending on your shape and size brings a whole slew of ‘why can’t i find the perfect pair’ complaints and so, here we go…the search for the perfect pair.

Length

A guideline to begin the process is at least a 3″ inseam. Desiring short cut or long- add or subtract 😉 Mid-length is the universal length of flattering on all body types. If you are short, you may be able to add apparent height by wearing a perfect rise and a higher waist – yes, I said it. There are SO MANY options out there for the short shorts and they are a GREAT way to show off your legs… more specifically if you are long and lean. A low-rise is great for those with a short torso giving the illusion of a longer / taller you!

NOT following the 3" inseam suggestions- these true religion are staying pool side!

NOT following the 3″ inseam suggestions- these true religion are staying pool side!

Citizens- border line for length....not loving them.

Citizens- border line for length….not loving them.

You can go from 0 to infinity on the price chart with your denim…and more doesn’t always mean better. As mentioned above, it’s all about YOU, your shape and your goal to rock those shorts and show some leg.

I pulled out all my denim the other day having a ‘war with my closet’ as my husband refers to it. You know, when almost everything you own comes out and fills the floor, bed, closet counter..laundry bin 😉

I have styles from American Eagle, True Religion, 7 for all mankind, Citizen of Humanity, Rag & Bone…and more. The point is, the price points are all over and have no contention on the fit and fav- and this year, my running contenders are…

rag & bone boyfriend

rag & bone boyfriend

seven- last last contender- not a fav...but not THAT bad...

seven- last contender not a fav…but not THAT bad…

rag & bone

rag & bone

 

 

 

 

 

 

For me, the Rag & Bone seem to be the perfect mix of length and loose/tightness…the only real issue for both fits it, they stretch. Future purchases of these denim shorts will be at least one size smaller.

The middle contender is the Seven denim. I am hit and miss on the cuff, and find these aren’t too bad. The fabric is very soft and tends to hold its shape, so for now, these are my top three picks.

Now your turn #showmeyourdenim “favshorts

What are your go-to denim shorts and why!! I have a feeling this may be the clothing item that always leaved you looking for better perfection 😉

Mom Brain

What I have discovered through Motherhood is that ‘mom brain’ is actually a thing. There are different levels to this feeling – but my best description of it is a fog. I feel like my brain doesn’t completely function on a clear level- there is a sort of haze/fog that resides within.

I was at my Doctor today to see if the fog is in anyway related to hormones and how I can feel more ‘refreshed’…if that is even possible! Today I had a vitamin and amino acid IV drip. I have had these injections before, but never have they given me any form of a boost. So today we took it to the next level. I sat for a good 45 minutes as I was boosted up with a concoction of goods that in turn will hopefully up my energy levels, helping the mom brain, only temporarily but a place to start to see if this is in fact the reason for the spacey head. We will see if the energy soars from this magic potion I am hopeful but not holding my breath.  IMG_0393

I realize that sleep is a hot commodity that comes and goes depending on the day and the child. I can’t remember the last time I actually felt RESTED. This is such a foreign concept to me that I can’t remember the last time I woke up NOT TIRED. Is it actually possible to wake up feeling rested!? I’m serious. This is not a feeling I can remember.  I know that parts of this come with the territory of, M.O.M. But I also realize that without ever feeling truly rested my body can’t actually restore.

So now, with Doctor by my side, we are in search of the reason for my fog. And hopefully through the search, I will find restorative energy and mind.

 

Tip Tuesday- Find Fashions that only LOOK expensive!

tiptuesday

Tuesday Fashion Tips!

Foreclothes is a place to find amazing finds for a wonderful deal! So we thought todays fashion tip was PERFECTLY fit to us!

Pairing a closet with a few key staples will ensure you look great everyday! Finding those pieces don’t necessarily mean breaking the bank either.

To be sure your closet looks polished and not cheap, here are a few quick rules to go by.

– find the perfect fit. no matter what the item, if it doesn’t fit you right, it doesn’t look right! if it’s a must-have, then spend a few extra dollars at the tailor to make it pop in the way that it should!

– embellishments. try to avoid these items unless they are of high-end quality. if they aren’t, inevitably they will fall apart and look even cheaper. stick to simple, clean pieces and add that sparkle with accessories instead.

– launder your clothes properly! dry-clean only, hand wash, lay to dry…whatever it be, follow the directions to give the longest and brightest life to your items.

Happy hunting for those wonderful bargains and pulling the whole package together!

 

 

Monday Motivation

Monday…why is it that Monday is such a challenge sometimes!?

Before parenthood, Monday was an entire different ballgame: since parenthood…its just another day! There is no time for rest. In fact, the weekends are our busiest days! Hockey, soccer, baseball, ballet…maybe a date night if we’re so lucky! At least for the most part, my partner in crime is around to help out and spend time together. This past weekend however, he was out of town…which left me running the show- and leaving me short on energy and temper.

So, because its Monday- and I need a little extra motivation- I am going to channel my inner #girlboss.

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Have you read it? If you haven’t…its worth the enjoyable read. #girlboss

GIRLBOSS

Happy Monday!

Embrace YOUR Assets

Embrace Your Shape! October Style Tips

Figuring out the styles that flatter you is key to a sexy wardrobe and confidant you. Dressing your body allows you to show off the areas you love about yourself- long toned legs to rock a mini, arms that scream to be THE accessory to your sleeveless upper…embrace your assets!

 

There are four most talked about body shapes: Apple, Pear, Hourglass and Straight (rectangular). Find a quick reference below as to what may help flatter your body.

 

Apple: top heavy. This shape benefits from accentuating the legs and butt, drawing attention away from the waist/torso area. Drawing attention to the bust and neck is also a positive for the Apple shape.

 

Pear: bottom heavy. Using neutral and solid color opposed to patterns can help your bottom look slimmer- although these days we are trending large behinds! Think Kim Kardashian and rock that ass-et… However if that’s not for you, by bringing attention up to your waist and mid section, think belts and V-necks, will help balance out your shape.

 

Hourglass: narrow waist while hip and bust are equal yet larger than waist. A shape that many try to mimic- show off what you have without giving too much away. Simplicity goes far with this shape. Clean lines, scoop neck tops, waist belts, avoid extra fabric- layering isn’t the best option for this shape.

 

Straight (Rectangle): waist and hips are the same or similar. Stay clear of baggy clothing with no shape to avoid looking too boyish. Adding texture and feminine layering (think lace) can help bring out a flattering and feminine appeal. This shape can also ‘fake’ an hourglass by bringing your waistline in to exaggerate curves (i.e. a belt or crisscross dress).

 

Now lets talk FALL FASHION TRENDS and how to dress them for your shape.

LEGGINGS: Yes you read that right- leggings are making a bigger breakout this season, even by the likes of Rachel Zoe and Louis Vuitton. The key to wearing a pair that is right for you is fit and texture. Ensure the size is right. Too tight or too thin will leave you with a pair that is see through- exposing more than you hoped for. Pair with a tunic top, sweater or dress…something a little longer than a typical top. Leggings, although more recognized- are still NOT PANTS. Wear them tastefully.

 

Tuxedo Jacket: This is the perfect staple to add a classic feel to almost any outfit. Dress it up for a night out or down with jeans and a T. This is a great piece for any size as it is a piece that works both fitted or oversized. You can leave it open or buttoned- when buttoned, the neckline of the v is another reason it adds to most body shapes.

V-Neck: This neckline looks great on anyone. Reason being- it gives a slimming verticle line and a great focal point.

 

Over-the-Knee Boot: Shoes are a fun way to add a piece of you and a flare for style to your wardrobe. There are so many ways to wear this trend that can cater to any size and fashion style. Add a heel is you are looking to elongate your leg and/or add height. Pair with leggings and a Chunky-knit and you are on TREND for fall. Just ensure you choose the right Knit for your shape.

Chunky-Knit Sweaters: No matter your shape you can wear this trend…but the proportions for this style and your shape are key! Slim/athletic/straight and petite shapes can get away with the baggier knits. All above, aside from petites can also wear the longer knits- petites the longer knits will make your legs look shorter, so opt for something that finishes at waist or bum. For our curvy shapes (apple, hourglass), best stick with lighter weight materials that don’t add bulk and bagginess- this will just make your shape look bigger than it is. Grab a knit that is a nice weight and holds some shape through the midline to accentuate the smaller area on your body. A V-neck knit would look great!

Stud Bag: Accessorize! The right accessory will have you smiling ear to ear- and will finish your outfit off perfectly. The studded bag is a must have for Fall 2014…the other bonus- one size fits all!

And remember, if you feel uncomfortable you probably look uncomfortable. So ensure to find what works for you. No rule is set in stone- these are simply talked about guidelines!

Confidence

is

THE BEST

accessory!

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