Moobs and a Woody


Last week was pretty light on the training front, and with good (ish) reason, we are tapering into our first 50 mile race. The race is the North Face Bear Mountain 50 miler, as you remember the last North Face race  I ran didn’t go as planned!!

A few realizations hit us last week, first that we would soon be running a 50 mile mountain race on trails, second we have done no hill training and third we have done no trail running. So in a last ditch attempt to lock the door before the horse bolts we hit up some hill repeats and the trails, running three loops of the hardest part of the Sulphur Springs 50km course.   A little late but on the plus side both runs went very well and in terms of out and out mileage we have covered enough to prepare us for a 50 miler.  I even got a woody on the trail.

I told I got woody, what were you thinking?

Still just a bird.

Also what better way to get ready for a race than run another race.  Heather will tell you all the details of the race, all I will tell you is that it was called The Chocolate Race, and there seemed to be an issue with the mens T-shirts.

This race was clearly marketed for the fairer sex.

The Moob shot!

Yeah, I work out.

A first for Race In Pieces – a Give Away!  Leave a comment below reminding us of the first North Face race we failed at and you could win a signed unwashed (though only worn for modeling purposes) Chocolate Race t-shirt!

Planned mileage: 62km
Actual mileage: 57 km
Number of days run: 4

Excuses:  erm…come on its only 5km, and I did walk 1.5 km to the start of the race and back!!! Ok ok I skipped a day.


Mogollon Manifesto Week 2


Mogollon Training Week 2

Planned mileage:  62km

Actual mileage:


Number of days run: 4


Well I came up a little short this week.  Tuesday was a good day as I ran to and from an appointment.  Wednesday I couldn’t be bothered to get out of bed because it was cold (how lame) and in the evening I went to dinner with a friend, which I have no regrets about.  Thursday should’ve run further but didn’t.  Saturday should’ve run further but we hit up the trails for some serious hill training, which we achieved, I also managed to get stabbed three times by sticks so I gave up before I obtained a serious injury.  Sunday we took part in the Chocolate Race (more on that later) we did have a 3km round trip to and from car, but alas that doesn’t count so I didn’t quite get my needed mileage.

Let the berating begin.

Dirty Declaration


The Mogollon Manifesto has inspired me to declare my intentions and yes become publicly accountable for my mileage (even though I will be measuring it in kilometers). It also inspired/shamed me into writing again, I had very much lost direction in terms of blogging and had no motivation to write, as H says it was about the Death Race.

I guess I should start with declaring my goal race. My plan is to run the Dirty Girls trail race, a 24 hour run as far as you can loop format. Importantly there is a belt buckle on the line, a prize usually reserved for a 100 mile race. The buckle requirement for Dirty Girls is 120 km in the 24 hours.  That is my goal B, for the first time this year Dirty Girls is offering a 48 hour race, and on offer in this race is a 100 mile buckle. On seeing this I fired off an email to the race director to find out if I ran 100 miles in the 24 hours I would get the 100 mile buckle, she confirmed I would, guess what my plan A is!?!?!

There are plenty of other races planned between now and then, but more about those next time.

Planned mileage:  95 km (tad higher than H as my race is only 16 weeks away)
Actual mileage:  83km
Number of days run:  5

Excuses: poor weekday effort, too much fun to be had celebrating Heather’s birthday.

The Mogollon Manifesto


This week kicked off my official training for the Mogollon Monster.  Yup in 6 months time I will be completing my first 100 mile race.

When we started this blog to document our training for the Canadian Deathrace it was partly because there wasn’t a lot of info on how to train for the Deathrace and because we thought it would keep us accountable to our training.  Well it failed at both.  If a soon to be Deathracer stumbled upon our blog, it would not help them train any better or smarter, it would hopefully keep them entertained and show them what not to do.  As for keeping us accountable to our training, when I look back at my running log from a year ago it is glaringly obvious that we were not running enough, we were doomed from the get go.

So new year, new race, same blog.  I’m not going to attempt give advice on training, I will leave that to the professionals, there are plenty of books and websites out there.  But I am going to keep my mileage accountable.  They say to run faster you need to run fast.  Same goes for longer.

Starting now, every Sunday, I will publish something about my weeks training (at the very least my mileage vs what was in my training plan) in hopes that this will help me get out of bed at 5am and get my butt out the door, keep me focused, be a constant reality check.  Feel free to heckle or scold me for skimping.

Alright a little more background then onto this weeks training.  I actually have a structured plan for this race from Relentless Forward Progress.  Like all running books the training schedule is what a basic plan should look like, no guarantees, no promises to work for everyone, but a good place to start.  I’m using a 24 week plan based on 70-100 kilometers per week, attempting to only run 5 days per week, with back-to-back long runs on the weekends.  The week is from Monday to Sunday.  So with that here’s what week 1 looked like.

Mogollon Training Week 1

Planned mileage: 60km
Actual mileage:

Woo hoo!!!

Number of days run: 5


This week included my birthday and a weekend long education workshop that I had to take (or else not reach my required education credits for this year and not be able to work, medical field is the way to go if you want to be a life long learner).

Not going to lie, it was tough to fit it all in and this is my lowest mileage week for the next 24!  But I knew that it was going to be tough, and hey I still want to have a life so in all likelihood every week is going to be tough.

Pirates of the Spit


Saturday was long run day and our friend Geoff joined us for a 30km.  Dan designed the route and much to my surprise  he made it very flat and took us out along the Tommy Thompson Park, aka “the spit”.  The “spit” has not been kind to Dan, he ran a super hot 10 mile race out there, a super humid 15km race along there and one terrible, freezing training run.

Dan as tall as the CN Tower

So as we set out things looked promising, it wasn’t freezing and it wasn’t too hot, it was actually pretty great running conditions.  Things were ticking along nicely and then something happened just about half way.

That's some excitement! (This is a screen shot of my heart rate)

It was scary, hence the jump in heart rate.  So what could have possibly been so frightening?

Well we were just passed the turn around path and on our way to the point to run around the lighthouse when we were attacked…by a very aggressive Canadian Goose.

Do I really need to describe how scary this is?

On approach we could tell the Goose was pretty agitated and Geoff suggested that we divide and run around the Goose, in hopes of confusing it.   Geoff and I went right, Dan went left, the Goose went straight at Geoff and me.  I, of course, screamed like a girl, which scared Geoff causing him to scream obscenities.  I stopped dead in my tracks, as did Geoff with the squawking, nipping Goose RIGHT in front of us.  Dan had kicked into survival mode and sprinted the heck away from us and was now laughing at us.  His suggestion was to just run the Goose wasn’t going to do anything.*

So Geoff and I bravely counted to three and took off running when I turned to see if it was following us, I screamed once again because I was looking the Goose in the eyes as it was flying at our heads!  I  jumped into the bushes beside us and the Goose flew by and landed nipping at Geoff’s heels.  At this point I opted to back away while keeping the Goose in clear sight.  Geoff had made it to Dan and they backed away slowly toward the lighthouse, I told them I’d meet them at the turn off.  If they made it past that freakin’ Goose again!

I used my alone time wisely and back tracked to a porta potty (while warning everyone of the aggressive Goose they were about to run/cycle into to).  Timing was perfect as we both got to the turn around at the same time.  The boys were grinning so I asked what was up?  Did they meet the Goose again?

Yes, they had met the Goose again and yes it was still angry, so they bush-wacked around it, but the reason for the grins was that Dan found some money, lunch money!  That’s right Dan actually found $80 bucks.  All I could think was that some poor runner or cyclist lost their money trying to avoid being killed by a crazy Goose.  And it did beg the question, why was that person carrying so much cash, I mean we carry a few bucks for emergencies, such as water or freezie pops, but $80 and not making sure it was secure?

Geoff thinks we should be running faster

Not the aggressive goose, I didn't stick around to get a photo of that one!

No one realised how much danger we were really in.

Dan with his found riches

We carried on happily knowing that our bellies would be filled after our run.  Unfortunately for me the flatness of the course was killing my legs by time we were finally heading home I was thankful that it was uphill, but we got stopped at every stoplight so the last 3km were a total grind.  But the free lunch was calling us and we made it home to get cleaned up and hit the pub.

Dan spent his found riches treating us to lunch.

*I also took the time to learn about Canadian Geese attacks:

Thank you!

I broke rule number 5,6,7,8,9 but I did finally realise number 10 on my own.

Safety First


Since Dan and I are not training for the same goal races this year, we will be doing quite a few runs (or parts of) on our own.  As our training runs ramp up and we are out for 3+hours we thought it best to invest in those Road ID things.
After visiting the website we discovered that it was very simple and cheap to get a little tag for yourself with important info like emergency names and numbers (my poor Mommy is on both of them) and space for important medical information such as medication allergies.
Of course if you’re perfectly healthy you end up with some empty space on your ID but you pay the same price whether you fill it or not, so the Road ID people helpfully recommend that you use any extra space on you ID for a motivational saying.
Dan is lucky enough not have medical issues so he had two free lines on his ID where he decided to put his favorite saying:
“Pain is weakness leaving the body”
In retrospect that probably wasn’t the wisest thing to put on an emergency ID bracelet.  I mean if something were to happen to Dan and some cheeky person (like me) were to find him, I’d look at him lying there and think “well look at all that weakness leaving his body, maybe I should wait to call an ambulance”.*
I’m not perfectly healthy and have a couple of medication allergies including one with a particularly long name.  I didn’t have much room left on my ID.  I wanted “I’m kind of a big deal” because that’s a running (haha) joke shared between me and my family and it makes me smile when I think about how it all came about, but that didn’t fit.  So I have:
“Kind of a big deal”
By having to drop the possessive my saying no longer sounds self-absorbed, but more “This person’s a big deal and you should call 911 right away”.
At least that’s what I’m hoping.
* Please note that I would call 911 before making fun of finding someone in need of help.

If found, please call!