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Email TinaFab at: tina_garstad@hotmail.com

Thursday, 22 January 2015

2015 #RunCalgary news

Many of you who know me know (or have heard of) the old me. The me who struggled to lumber through a 5k. Since 2009 I have gone from doing a 5km race in 45 minutes to under 30 minutes. Quite the journey. And, frankly, still such a long ways to go. But, as I hope this blog show, I have a hellova good time doin it!

 
Today...we have a little announcement of the Calgary Marathon variety! YES!!
As a Calgarian, I love me a hometown race. I have run this race a few times. Like 6.
 
In 2009 and 2010 the 5k. After losing 40 pounds I hammered out a 10k (and didn't die). Took on my first marathon in 2012, put in a solid half marathon effort in 2013 and followed up with another marathon in 2014.
2010: 5k(so hard); 2011: 10k (feeling fab); 2012: Marathon Euphoria; 2013: Love the Half
aaaand in 2014 ...relief at the Marathon finish (with my lovely sis)
This year? I am chasing an elusive Personal Best. I have been riding a steady pace, doing longer distances and I am now ready to get back to speed work, and hills and showing my half marathon a little love. So. I am going to run the most FABULOUS halfmara ever. 
I just ran my 34th half...so not sure this one will be Numba 36 or 37 - depending on races between now and May!
 
And further in the FAB news department  ---> I am once again an ambassador!
Yup, I am officially a Calgary Marathon Forerunner.  
 
I know and have run with (or chased) fellow ForeRunners SusanPeterRachelJen!
And, can't wait to meet the rest of the ForeRunner team KaellaJennyKevin, and Rafael.
Check us out here!
 Being an ambassador also keeps me accountable .... I gotta write up my plan, follow it, keep you all posted. All while having fun with the Calgary Mara peeps! I love that this is my hometown race and I get to help promote it. I look forward to sharing the latest and greatest with you all.
 
It's mid-January, I have just finished a half marathon in a decent time - actually my fastest in a year*.
 
Yes it's sort of a big deal for me to say I want to run a PB/PR/awesome race.  I KNOW I can do this. I am stronger, I just need to concentrate on training. And keep on forging through winter to tackle this race to a best ever finish. It is a distance I love, one I know I CAN do...but I just want to have it be the springboard to #allthefabulous that this year holds.
 
#CMS #RUNYYC #RunCalgary
#CMSForeRunner
 
* OK. I know I RARELY ever talk time/pace here.
When I say I want a personal best, I mean it. In October 2013, I contracted Shingles (the one of the arsiest afflictions known to man). Prior to that I was on target to breaking 2:25 mins for a half.  I've yet to that since getting #stoopidshingles. But have consistently shown improvement EVERYSINGLERACE since February 2014. Every step towards this goal counts. I will do the same in 2015 as I did in 2014 - every half will be an improvement on the previous.
So let's get out there and kick some ass shall we?
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Off to #RnRAZ

Tomorrow I am off to to Phoenix for Rock n Roll Arizona.
I am super excited for a number of reasons.
First and most importantly I am leaving snow and winter behind for 6 days. YEH BABY!
 
I have a LOTTA fun things planned that I am gonna do!
Check out my #RocknBlog post HERE!
 
I am hosting my first #tweetup with RnR. And, it's the FIRST #RnRTWEETUP of the year!
 
Oh yeh. THE MEDALS.
Yup. Bit of a #blingwhore. I don't deny that.
The #remixchallenge I love it. I really do.
 
And lastly ...
If you hadn't heard...it is my 34th halfmarathon.
I have been busting my ass and training with purpose. Doing interval and speed work. I am hoping to do my fastest time in over a year. I am feeling strong and ready to run!
 
This is gonna be fun.
 
Watch your Twitter and IG feeds for the #cactiSelfie
 
 



Sunday, 11 January 2015

You Like me! You really like me!

I won! I won! I won! I won! I won! I won! I won! I won! I won! I won! 
#humblebrag

Recently Milf Runner asked the question: "Is it really an award if you don't win anything other than the opportunity to answer invasive questions about yourself?"

She got the blogger award questionnaire from Cheaper Than Therapy!

I will say that as soon as read their responses (and mopped up my tea as I had spewed it out from laughing so effing hard) I knew I had to partake. I mean who doesn't LOVE bloggy awards that involve questionnaires and surveys in which one is invited to #humblebraggyshare.

On to my responses to the invasive questions errrrm I mean MilfyAward:

1) What is my current health-related goal?
Hmmm. Be even more Fabulous. I think BMI is bullshit. Maybe cause BMI tells me I am ginormous and obsese. I generally don't need any help in the 'feel bad about my arse' department.... scuse me while I reach for a biccie to go with my tea...I may not really get too crazy on this goal. I want to be stronger, smarter, eat better...and yes. Lose at least 10, maybe 20 pounds. I said this goal OUT LOUD to my doc and she didn't like that number. She tells me I am healthy and am "too worried" aobut my weight. Considering I like food, wine, and bread there might not be any "hydroxycut" type losses coming anytime soon. So my doc hasnothing to fret about. 

Oh though I have given up "sugar" - that white processed stuff. And have not had any in a month! I still have honey or agave syrup sometimes in my tea. 

2) What is my biggest irrational fear?
Let's see. 
Being eaten by a snake (I live in a place that only has garter snakes).
Being mauled by a grizzly (I do trail run and we do have bear sightings - this might not be as irrational.
Oh what the hell. I might as well admit this...i sometimes jump into bed...if i get to close something may reach out and grab me. (I have done this since childhood.)

3) Do I enjoy wrapping presents?
I prefer unwrapping pressies. However, I really do love wrapping presents. I strive to wrap as beautifully as my mum or grandma. They have perfect technique. But, I do a pretty good job. When i get my shit together and get the deed done. 

4) What is my favorite cross training activity?
What is cross training?  I should research this further. 
If you want a really REALLY good laugh...go to this link and scroll down to the cross training question HERE.

5) If you came to visit me, what would we do?
Sip tea, gulp wine, laugh and tell wholly inappropriate jokes and stories. And. Swear. A Lot!

6) I have two weeks off work and two round trip plane tickets to anywhere. Where would I go and who would I take?
I'd go to England. Leeds, Manchester and London. and do a lot of #5 with Cath, Jane and Kirsty. 

7) What’s the most embarrassing thing to happen to me during a run or a race? 
hmmm. Would taking a poop less than a kilometre before the finish line count? Would telling you that it was raining/sleeting and the tissues I had in my pocket were drenched ...so I used leaves make it sound even more mortifying? Or should I add that it was in a spot that there was about two trees. And, I am pretty sure the entire finish line area may have seen me. I hate that I sometimes have gut issues. 

I did have a personal best that day ...just sayin. 

8) Three best days of my life? Or at least the top three that come to mind.
I am not really sure. Wow. 
A couple years ago I could have answered this. Now. Not so much. 
The best three days...
Getting lost in London and finding parts of myself I thought I had 
Stumbling an advert for a flatmate in Canberra.
The day my nephews and niece called my name for the first time.  

9) Okay, so I HAVE to eat a fast food meal. Which restaurant would I choose and what do I order? 
Mucho Burrito. Tastes AWESOME and is fresh tasty and has visible veggies. 
IF I was in America...I might really like to try In N Out, I have eaten there once. I thought it was a good burger. 

10) Have I ever met a celebrity?
I have met (in passing or bumped into litterally) Dave Navarro, Robert Duvall. Sat next to David Wenham at a movie premier then saw him a few times at my local coffee shop when I loved in Melbourne. I have spoke to Prime Ministers and former PMs due to my work in public relations. I have seend and been in the room with hundreds of elite athletes (olympic or otherwise) which was kind of cool. Volunteering at the official media centre for the olympics is a neat job. Guess it depends on how you define celebrity. I tend to think society is obsessed with fame and celebrity. And really...because you make movies or on the telly you should be fanned over? 

11) Share a pic of yourself in non-workout clothes
Here is three. One is at a running event. One is with a running medal and some nuun. I seriously need to get a life. I had to look hard for these pics. 


12) If I could choose to have a “do over” and switch careers, what would I choose and why?
I think that maybe all those years ago when my mom's boss told me not to go to law school, i  might have ignored him and went. 

I am curretly looking for a job. Any of you tweeps got some leads? I would like  a job that might get me some dough rather quickly, but would ot require me to  .... um ... get my hands dirty. 

13) If I won an Olympic Gold Medal, how do I think I would react?
I recall practically puking when done some figure skating programs. But I do have a habit of having a HughJass smile on my face after any physical exersion. Am also know for tearing up when emotional So  bawling, with my big smile immediately post-event I'd no doubt be snivelling and grinning. And looking for my mum. Which upon seeing her would make me cry harder. Oh. And trying not to say Holy F*ck on live telly! 

14) What did I want for Christmas?
A new car. A new job. However, I did get some lovely lippie,socks, bath salts and wine cups and a beautiful handmade scarf. 

15) What skills do I lack?
A civil tongue.
I am thinking I was born without an ability to mute the 'inside voice'. 

Passing on The Milfy FABBY Award to …


Do you hate me for that? If so Sorry. #notsorry 
*when you look up that cross training pic you will thank me for the nomination*


If you feel left out, answer the survey questions in the comments!!!!!!!






#RnRVAN: Vancouver Rules!

#RnRVAN
I spent most of last year being excited about being a RocknBlog ambassador for Vancouver Rock n' Roll Half ! Heck so much so I blogged for them..but not on my own blog.

So YEH! I ran #RnRVAN - the inaugural race. And it was my FIRST Rock n Roll race. And, my 33rd halfmarathon. Did it lead up to the hype? Yes! I loved it.

But I also LOVE the city. It is one of my favourite places to visit! There are great sights, it is so lush and green,and it is never cold like Calgary. So I knew running a late October race would be awesome.


I have been lucky enough to have run twice this year there. 
In May I ran the BMO Half Marathon (for my birthday). It poured rain the entire time. Ugh. I had a tough race and while I enjoyed it I was determined to do better. I prayed to the weather gods. And I also concentrated my training. As I was going to be training for my Vegas Ragnar Ultra, running the #RnRVAN fit in perfectly with training. I had been doing a crapload of back-to-back runs to prep for Vegas. And, this would be the start of the "the taper"!

The lead up to the Race was fun... I got to offer a discount to my friends/family/followers.

Plus I wrote a few posts about me and my love of racing for the RocknBlog.My fav was the Top 10 Tips for Dressing Up your Race Gear

So...I had an amazing costume. I had been training hard. And I promised myself as I have been a bit hard on myself (and my half mara race times lately - thanks shingle I still hate you) I was going to HAVE FUN.
Part of the fun was attending the Run Expo. I had hear all about the RnR Vegas expo...I was certain this would be small in comparison, but it was bigger than most I had ever been to...with lots of fun stuff. I worked at it (for CEP - as I am a CEP Team Ambassador). But i had some time both days to snoop around and meet up with friends and HAVE fun with Cori and finally met Nikki and Brandi. And, I knew at least 40+ people from Calgary and Vancouver who stopped by the CEP booth to say hi! SO much fun. 
Race Day was amazing start to finish. I got up uber early...but the great thing is my cousin lives less than 5 minutes from the train. And I only had to get on for a few stops! ACE. As I made my way to the VIP reception (heloooo some breakie and bag drop off - SO AWESOME) people were stopping and saying hi, and saying how much they loved my costume. 

And no...those horns are NOT heavy. Made of fun foam, hollow horns and a little gold lame paint...attached to a snug fitting terry headband. I was praying it was going to not make me crazy for the race. But I got a real lift out of people cheering on the superhero look. Most people didn't guess Loki (Thor's little brother), but a lot of peeps did know. I would say I had at least 50 shout-outs an high-5s on race day. And 6 people asked to take a picture. I was so suprized. It made feel great, forget about running, an laugh and have fun.
It was cool, but not cold. Perfect run conditions. I was in coral 17 - it only took 30 minutes from the gun til when I started. This is good (Now, this is also the biggest race I have ever done...so I thought it was super smooth) I felt super comfortable the whole way. I slowed down after the first 5k, as I thought maybe I am going too fast. Overly cautious move. But i remained steady in pace. For severla kilometres I ran with Angela  - a Calgary blogger and my Ragnar teammate - she kept us steady til about kilometre 16 when I had tumy issues. Seriously I have 7km left and NOW i gotta go? GRRRR.

I had two pit stops in the span of 3km. And then I pushed. HARD. I felt amazing (oh helloooo to the big elevation drop which helped) and my tummy seemed to have shut up. I felt super strong the last two km and brought her home 11 minutes faster than the last Vancouver race only 5 months earlier. HURRAH! Even the race pics were great
The other thing that was new for me was all the bands. It brok up the race into little bits for me. Maybe a mindgame, but it works! It was a whole lot of fun. After the race, I was SO HAPPY to see Cori - in her FAB tardis costume. She rocked her first 10m race back from injury! THAT is my favourite photo from the race and I was so glad #RnR used it in social media. It makes me happy. 
After the race I just was heading back to my cousin's so I whipped over to the VIP area for a bit of lunch first. A smoothie, lots of fruit, and some eggs an salad were on the menu. oh yeh. And a beer. So delish. I was still irritated about my tummy issue. But I had my year's best half mara time...and am getting stronger. So hurrah all around! 

So will I run in a costume again? Hell yes! Will I run the Vancouver Rock n' Roll Half again? Without a doubt! Hope to see you there. Oh and would I purchase the VIP pass they offer? Yup. Totally need one for Vegas this November.

My next Rock n Roll event is #RnRAZ in less than a week! I cant wait. I have the #remixchallenge - 5k sat halfmara Sunday. Bring on Hallfmara #34!





Ragnar Adirondacks: Ultra Good Times (part two)

OK back to the #RagnarADK ...

...you saw the pre-amble..now on to the RUNNING portion of the Bondi Bandits Ragnar Adirondacks Adventure (check out part one here) ! The announcement (pre-race is here)!
Up we got at 5 to get to the PARTY started! 
We greeted each other, met Kim and Gail, loaded up the van, piled in the van and headed off to race check-in at Saratoga Springs.
This place was gorgeous! 
We jacked around, showed our safety gear and got our briefing and then saw off Lisa (runner 1) at 7:15 am. And thus began the UPHILL route. #awholelottahills in them there Adirondacks. I think the most uttered phrase MAY have been, "holy sh*t, it's hilly".
I was also amazed at the crazy weather. It was BEYOND foggy! It was also warm. It got quite hot actually by noon. Everyone's first set of legs went well and we were in high spirits. 
We had fun taking pics, selfies and snacking! 
In fact, we took so many awesome pics 6 pics taken by our team (3 by me, 2 by Jenny and 1 by Lisa were freatured on Ragnar's blog post on top 100 of #ragnarADK)! 
We bandited vehicles and our fellow Ragnarians delivering Bondi Bands and laughs!
Finally by around 4pm it was time for me to get ready to get my run on. As runner 6, I was taking on legs 11 and 12. I had 6.3 miles and then 5.4 miles - for a total of 12.7miles. It was sunny, warm and light...so i knew I could get one leg done without night gear. The team would wait for me at the exchange so I could put on the reflective gear. As I waited for Kim, I got really nervous! I had had a WHOLE day of WAITING! But I knew I could enjoy this run and I was mostly in park pathways.

So first a nervous selfie
And GO-TIME! 
 It was gorgeous! This was rolling hills. My pace was not as fast as I anticipated. But I was steady.
And the views were good. 
Then I got to the exchange...and got the night gear on. 

And off I went for the last bit of my run...less than 6 miles to go.
No city roads. But a lovely pathway. 
At one point, I wondered if I was gong the right way.
And I saw this sign
So...if I turned left there was beer and BBQ. But if I stayed on the path I got to Ragnar exhange?
There was a short moment of hesitation! Truth be told...my last mile was damn long. The hills were challenging from the get go. I felt em the last 30 minutes! 
 And then I was done. And seriously within minutes it was pitch black! 
And I had 10+ hours to wait til I ran again. I was thankful I had a short second set (about 6 miles).
There was some intermittent napping. We has a few night unsupported legs. An Jenny, Adam and Gail has some long runs with no shoulder, guard rail...and we couldnt pull over to help. But we tried our best to cheer. Or nap. There was some napping. but I swear not much. 

We jacked around night and day... 
And admired van artwork - our own and others. 
When I look at all the photos of us there were so MUCH smiles! 
No matter if we were at mile 3 or 30! 
Its a bit of a blur when I started my second set. Was it 7 am? It was foggy as hell! I remember being worried about Kim. She had taken a wee bit longer than we thought. But she has 16miles. Mostly in the dark. If I was feeling foggy...she must have been feeling like a dishrag! 
And then she arrived and off I went into the thickest fog I ever experienced! 
It was slightly spooky. 
When  I finished my run - just shy of 5 miles in 54mins I was pleased. But I worried we needed to make up time. Was I too slow? While I was running, the rest of the team had gone ahead to my second exhange area since I had short distance. When they got there, Ragnar advised us to double up (running legs together). That way we would still run the same amount of legs...and then 'catch up'. (there were only 11 Ultra teams and we were a little behind) Ragnar wanted us to finish in daylight, so suggested this. So Lisa and Jenny took off and ran two legs. Then Adam did his two legs. 

And then Gail and Kim joined me for my last two legs. It was 10 AND A HALF miles upFREAKINhill to the finish at Lake Placid. It was lovely but a little of hell on earth. And interesting enough someone (was it Gail or Kim) swore as much as me the entire leg! HA! I will say these two were the BEST to run with. We kept each other going. Each of us took turns saying WE got this! It was awesome. There was cursing. Eff You-ing to the hills and beyond. And a few "I am NEVER doing this again" uttered. haha. How soon we all forget! 

Gail was also kind enough to lead us in stretching at times

 The views were spectacular. 
And we were smiling! Mostly.
And then we were done. 
Holy hell it was hot at 3(ish)pm when we finished. 







I LOVE Kimberley's FAB video! It sums up our Bondi Band aventure perfectly!

Thank You THANK YOU BONDI for this awesome opportunity!
Honestly This was a whole lotta awesome and am so so grateful! 
And hella proudof all of us! 





Have you Run an "ultra" relay?