Oh hello there!
This post is coming at ya one week later than usual because I really wanted to share my BMO Half Marathon recap with you guys last week. We’re already a week into May and I’ve got some fun new things to tell you about, but first, an April goal check-in is in order.
It was a big, big month. I started my new job (spoiler alert: I love it), started the race season, and did a lot of thinking and reflecting in the process. Looking back on the 3 goals I set for April, here’s how it all went down:
1. Be a sponge – A
I’ve been in my new role for a solid month now, and what an amazing start it’s been! When I said I planned to be a sponge, I meant soaking in as much information from my new coworkers as possible in order to be my best in my job. It’s a strange – and rather uncomfortable – feeling, flipping from being a go-to person on your team for information, to the total newbie who needs to lean on everyone around for help. This is especially the case when you’re an extremely independent person with very high expectations of yourself, which (sometimes to my own detriment) I am. I’m sure some of you out there with type-A personalities would agree.
Having said all that……. I have done lots of being sponge-like over the past month. In the process, tons of learning has happened. Outside of things that are super specific to my role, the biggest and best learning so far is that I have somehow managed to land within the coolest, most supportive, hilarious, creative, caring, ambitious and loving team I could have ever imagined. Seriously, my co-workers are some of the most remarkable human beings I’ve ever met and I’m still pinching myself, wondering how I managed to get so lucky. Not only do they make me laugh (and they’ve already seen me cry!), but they make me want to ask for help because everybody brings such great perspective and insights to every conversation. It’s #joblove to the max. ❤️
2. Get outside for at least 3 workouts per week – B-
My workout volume wasn’t any less than it usually is, but I definitely didn’t hit 3 outdoor workouts per week. Due to early morning work starts (which would have meant running in the dark alone, and I’m not down with that), as well as a few rainy mornings and my new addiction to barre classes which are taught in studios, I ended up being indoors more than planned. However, I did take my long run outdoors every week and spent more time outside on the weekends. Now that the sun is starting to come up between 5:30 and 6am, it’ll be even easier to get outside for early morning running during the week.
3. Practice race nutrition and pacing for the BMO Half Marathon on May 1st – A+
Done! And it worked perfectly. As I mentioned in my race recap, I ended up taking roughly 1/2 of a gel in at the 8 mile mark of the half marathon, followed by water from an aid station. Vega Endurance Gels are a little larger in volume than other brands, and because I felt a little bit of a cramp happening in my ribs about 15 minutes after taking it, I decided not to finish the rest. At that point on the course, there were some rolling hills ahead. This meant harder efforts and more stress on the body, and taking on fuel right before a hard effort is not a good idea (unless you really want to cramp, and I did not!) What was eaten definitely provided me with a noticeable boost of energy though, and I’m glad I executed that way.
I’ve already looked at the course map for my next race (the Scotiabank Vancouver Half Marathon on June 26), and water stations are spaced 3-4km apart. Considering this, as well as the elevation profile, my plan is to take a gel just before the 4th water station. It should be located at around the 8.5 mile mark, and the 2 miles that follow are fairly flat which means digestion and cramping is less likely to be an issue.
3 goals for May
Moving swiftly along, here’s what I’m working on this month.
1. Unplug more often on weekends
In a nutshell, the weather is gorgeous, it feels like summer (and soon will be), and I want to make the most of it. This is pretty much the opposite of what ended up happening last summer due to the half Ironman training schedule I held myself so rigidly to, and I’m not letting that happen again!
Projects at work are ranking pretty high up there on the crazy busy scale these days, which means that my time spent in front of the computer during the week is longer. On top of that, I’ve got this little blog/business to grow, and that means screen time too. However….
If there’s one thing I’ve learned throughout my working adult life so far, it’s that taking breaks away from technology to disconnect often results in making an even bigger, more important impact when you return. It’s just like running for days on end without a rest day – something I used to do quite regularly. Eventually the workouts lose quality, you can’t push as hard, your body gets worn down and injury becomes a bigger risk. It takes constant reminding, but I know that I’m a better teammate, blogger and business owner when I take time to relax and open myself up to inspiration from non-digital sources. I have plans to do that in several ways this month, and you’ll see plenty of photographic evidence. ?
Add 1-2 speed workouts to my training each week
I’ve talked about this before, but speed work is my least favourite kind of run session. My body tends to gravitate towards long tempo runs, but knowing that our bodies adapt to what they’re repeatedly exposed to, not mixing in the challenge of hitting faster paces will probably translate into a plateau, not a PR. Therefore I’m planning to add 1-2 speed workouts into my regimen per week, depending on how well I recover from them. And, to keep fitness interesting, fun and social (one of my bigger overarching goals for 2016), I’ll be doing plenty of sweating with friends and attending the barre classes I’ve recently fallen so in love with.
Finish the first half of a personal development course at work
One of the things I love SO much about lululemon as a company is its investment in people, both as contributors to the company and individuals in society. I was recently introduced to igolu, an amazing program that you should read more about if you’re into being the best person you can be. As someone who loves learning about goal setting strategies and personal development, I’m beyond grateful for the opportunity to access this program and the amazing leaders that teach it.
Throughout May and June I’ll be working on level one of igolu’s Communication Series, which is called Personal Legacy. It’s all about becoming empowered to design and and leave a unique personal legacy in the world, and how the goals you set and the way you show up every day supports that. I’m really looking forward to this and all the sessions that follow.
Now it’s over to you! I’d love to hear…
- How was April for you? Any accomplishments or wins you feel like sharing?
- What’s going on this month? What are you excited about?