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Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Off to #RnRMTL

oooh a racecation you say? 
Yup! This gal is off on a last minute super cheap awesome run trip! 
 God love airmile points and some luck on finding flights!! 
I am off to lovely, amazing, historic, beautiful MONTREAL! 
Oui to #allthefab
Check out my #RocknBlog post for #RnRMTL HERE!
This will be my 39th halfmarathon! I am pumped to be doing it in a FAB city! 
Here is the halfmary in a nutshell: It is a fairly flat (and elevation - way lower than Calgary) half with some great scenery! I will start on a big bridge, run thru 2 islands, pass through an amusement park, the Biodome and other Epo 67 sights, run on Grand Prix race track, cross another bridge (might do four bridges actually), up some waterfront, through some of historic Old Montreal,  and finish in a lovely park -- Parc La Fontaine is an 84 acre park in the middle of the city!. I am excited by this route. What a way to sightsee!! 
I will also be working at the RnR Expo - Shop at CEP and come say Hi!!
So...yeh. Ummm Montreal is FRENCH speaking part of Canada. And French is RUSTY. So I figure I shall rely on my super elementary skills and share my "strategy". If someone says “Bonjour” that means Hello. If someone says, “Bonne chance!” that means good luck! Say “Merci” (thank you) back. And, if you are asked something in French, say “Je ne parle pas français” (I do not speak French). Say it with a smile and here's to hoping I can figure it all out with a smile, mad signs and a laugh!
I have a few days to explore Montreal on my own. My friends live a ways from "the City" but I will definitely be doing some sightseeing. There are a lot of National Historic Sites in this city and I cannot wait! Most notably, I want to check out Vieux-Montréal - so much to see in the historic city centre, including Old Port of Montreal, Bonsecours Market  and Notre-Dame Basilica, which has roots back to the 1600s when it was first dedicated as a catholic parish! I am not Catholic, but this church is freaking amazing! Some of you might know it is where Celine Dion got married. Me, I am less concerned with who got married there, but want to get close up to the architecture. 
I am also pretty excited about a visiting Rodin exihibit at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts – the biggest exhibition devoted to Rodin ever presented in Canada.

I would be remiss if I did not mention food and Montreal in the same sentence.  It’s been more than  15 years since I last visited - I shall be going to eat a "montreal" bagel at Fairmount Bagel  and  an amazing Montreal Smoked Meat sandwich at Schwartz’s DeliAnd then there is poutine -- it’s a Canadian thing. Poutine is fries, cheese curds, and gravy. It is a zillion calories. But...when in must partake! And, then ... as luck would have I shall also be enjoying ice cream at Cafe Coronet in Saint-Lazare – because my friend Jimmy owns that place. And, ice cream is what is totally ON after a half marathon. And, well, it may happen pre-race too. 
Like I said, Oui to #allthefab 
There is not a #remixchallenge in Montreal but I will pick up my World Rocker Medal
And when I get home, the Double Beat medal will be in the mail...
...And then after Vancouver, the Rock Trio will arrive, then after Vegas...the Groupie! SQUEE!!
The #blingwhore will be soooo happy!!! 

Have you got all your autumn races finalized?
If you want to run a RocknRoll race, get $15 bucks off using promocode CRANTINA. 
If you wanna run VEGAS use promocode CRANTINALV! 
Come run the strip with me - it is going to be a blast!!
DO IT! You know you wanna!

Thursday, 10 September 2015

Special Delivery: THE ultimate training box from RnR!

Goodie galore! Who doesn't like to arrive home after a HorridLongDay and see a pressie at the door?
A few weeks ago....I received a special delivery from the wonderful Ashley and the Rock 'n' Roll  team. All of us on the #RocknBlog team received it, but we are spread out (North America & Europe) so we waited til EVERYONE received before posting all the deets of the awesome pressie!
So WHAT was in this "little FAB box"?
I became a part of the Rock n Roll team in January 2014 leading up to the inaugural RnRVAN race. I have to say RnR - especially Ashley our intrepid leader - takes wonderful care of us. She calms crazy nerves when you cannot register properly, answers all the questions about everything race related - or sends us to the right person to help. She definitely puts the ROCK in our team! And, since she also loves to tell us how much she loves us - she said...get ready...for some love in a box!
SO yes...there was a lotta love in the air...but WHAT was in the BOX????
#allthefab to help me get my training on!

#RockNBlog Ambassador Training Rock Box
Brooks Performance Hat
CEP Compression Socks
Garmin Coupon
Endurance Formula Powder Stick
GU Energy Gels Qi’a Cranberry Vanilla Cereal
Maui Jim Coupon
$25 Sports Authority Gift Card (using THAT on my next trip to the STATES!!!)
Transamerica bank mobile phone charger
2015 Team Rock ‘n’ Blog Brooks Technical tee
AND a WONDERFUL personalized note from Ashley --- so FAB
I have definitely enjoyed wearing the gear! I actually had to wait to wear the hat - cause I didn't want to get hair dye on it! But it is DEF coming to my next RnR race with me!
The BEST thing is when you know other tweeps on the #rocknBlog team see other shirts!
Rainbows AND High5s with Susan!

Are YOU running another RnR race?
If you were thinking about #rnRLV ...exciting news on that front ---> we has a code! Rock n Roll have given me a super awesome discount code for the Half and Full Marathons in Las Vegas on November 15th!  Use the PromoCode CRANTINALV will get you into the half or mara for only $145! But you gotta sign up before September 30th! Use CRANTINA for $15 bucks off any other remaining RnR Races!! See you out there  ❤

Sunday, 6 September 2015

Strip at Night discount code

Who wants to come to Vegas? 

You know you wanna Rock n Roll and party every day --- and get some awesome medals! 

You have seen the medals, right?? Lookie lookie here

RocknRoll has given me a superFAB discount code for the Half and Full Marathons in Las Vegas on Nov 15th!  
Use the promocode CRANTINALV to get $15 off 13.1 or 26.2 - if you sign up before September 30th!
DO IT! You know you wanna!
Come run the strip with me - it is going to be a blast!!
Use code Crantina for all other 2015 races! 

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Off to Toronto to #RunHappy!

Back in July, Brooks Running and Strides Running Store posted THIS on FaceBook:
Your worst winter running look? The want a BAD winter running photo???
My first thought was...oooh maybe if my pic is BAD enough, I could get a new pair of runners!

So I submitted THIS photo with bad hair, bad brows, bad all kinds of stuff...
figuring it was a pretty good showing of why I might need help looking good to train this winter!
Background on this photo:
A bad snowstorm with epic wet snow, high winds and 10 miles ensured all of me was frozen!!
It's an epic representation of a long run in a Alberta winter, to be sure. 

Fast Forward to Mid-August and I get a letter informing me I was a GRAND PRIZE winner
(just fill this form out ... and answer a skill testing question)

I truthfully didn't believe it. 
But I filled in my paperwork and sent it get another confirmation email.
And then I phoned...still in disbelief.

Yup, I won an all expenses paid trip to Toronto!! 
So, my sister and I are off this weekend for an amazing whirlwind of activities which includes a makeover, photo shoot, a whole lotta awesome Brooks gear entry to Toronto #NightRace! My sis and I are doing the 5k - as she hasn't been running much, and I just finished Trailstoke race. 

To be truthful, I am not sure what exactly is happening or is all involved - but clearly there are some surprizes in store. Regardless, we are super excited and we leave first thing TOMORROW!

When I am back I will give you the download!!
Until then, check out my IG feed or Twitter! 
❤ I will totally will be posting some pics of my weekend action 
Brooks Canada will also be posting sneak peeks of the fun! 
#alltheFAB (indeed)

Friday, 28 August 2015

Are You EVER Ready?

ummm she whispers quietly...
are you READY for FABFRIDAY?

Honestly. But This week I am already ready for it to be over.
Yet, I am sort of wanting to drag it out!
Are you EVER really ready?
Really the question is I ready for awaits this weekend?
Yes. I am open to all the amazing possibilities that await.
I am scared, nervous, determined ... and I am telling myself to BREATHE.
I am off to Revelstoke, BC run a whole lotta miles up and down a whole lotta mountain.
I expect I will live to tell the tale...
Look for photos resembling THIS on Saturday evening ...
Whatever you are up to this weekend ... go make it fabulous my friends!
Life. It's Fabulous.

Embrace it. Love it.
Celebrate All the Awesome!

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Race Report - Calgary Womens Run: #allthefab

This past Sunday, I ran 10km at the Calgary Women's was so much fun! Here's my little recap. Thanks to Dawn and Howard for their amazing photos!!

I have a little pre-race ritual where I like to lay out all my sort of gets me to focus.
The morning of the race, I parked a mile away so I could have a nice easy run to the race and shake out my legs! As soon as I arrived, I see Melisa - BIG HUGS - then Dawn who snaps a few shots! 
 I had a new top and was trying to take a selfie to show it off...but got caught by the photographers roaming around....I love this pic actually!  
I stretched out, and visited with all the gals gathering before the warm-up and race. 
I love that so many of my running friends do this race!! It is great to see em all out there!

 Though my legs were tired from running 16k  Moose Mountain the day before, I had been training with back to back runs, so was prepared. My intent is to run with a smile. Push when I didn't want to and get some extra miles in!  And with a whole lot of women who are here to run because they love it is really encouraging. we have a chat with the race director, lineup in the chute. and off we go! 
 I love this route - it is all along the river. It is an out and back and what is fabulous is that the front runners in both the 5k and 10k races come back towards us. There is a lot of cheering as we all run past each other - such an encouraging environment! I find it super inspiring to see how fast some of these women are. And they are also encouraging to us "regular" runners.

The run was not as smooth as I wanted, my legs were tired and I was not really able to keep up the pace I set out at. But I felt determined. Plus it is hard not to be buoyed by the atmosphere. The volunteers are great cheerleaders as are the families of runners waiting for us at the end. It is hard to describe the fun of this race - but I think it's because we all love a local race, we love to run, and we hang out after.
 The prizes are great, there are lots of awards and a category for moms and daughters. 
An, we were graced with fantastic weather to hang out after the run. 
While I did not meet my time goal, I had fun, ran a steady pace and was overall pleased with my training run. To me that's why I run. I have work to do, but I'll get there. Next year I'll beat that time! 
Oh .... and check out the FAB necklace from Nik Naks - a neat, different piece of race graft - much better than a t-shirt if you ask me!! 

Thanks for a fun run
See you next year!

Race Report: Getting Dirty on Moose Mountain 16k

I love hitting the trails - and I am so so glad I discovered Moose Mountain Trail Race - as it is pure awesome.

Not only is the location amazing - it is one of those small community races that is just the BEST! It isn't easy, not at all, but it is gorgeous and (while I have only done it twice) it is a favourite.

You have a choice of 3 distances - 42, 29 or 16k. I have done the 16k twice...but there is a big badass medal that goes with the 42...tempting - but tough to attain - since the 29 has over 2000metres of elevation gain (16k has 1000metres)!

This report is a tad late ... Race happened Aug 22nd. 
I got up bright and early - though not too bad as the 16k starts at 11 - to head out. Smoothie in hand, tunes a blazing. It's a 40 minute drive from my place!!! I love that is a small community race - you can see from the photos. There's not a lot of "fancy" - not chiptimed - it's small - only 150 runners.  
We (all 50 of us) got our safety talk, a description of the course and the terrain - it has snowed up in the higher elevation the night before - so we were told to expect muck. I believe I said - 'Oh it couldn't be muddier than last year!' And, off we went!
This pic taken by the lovely Heather - does not show the constant climb of the first few Kilometres. But this is the widest and least technical of the entirety of the race. The longer distances started at 8:30am - and by the time the 16k went off we were not even 2k in before the first 29k-ers came barreling in. Those folks were fast and furious. By the time we turned off the main route to take the telephone loop, we were about a kilometer in I was passed by the first marathoner. He was on fire. Then, a couple minutes later (I find it hard to tell time in the bush) the second place runner - my friend Marky from Red Deer came blazing by. These two held their places for the rest of the race. Finishing that grueling marathon in just over 4 hours. Many of the 29k-ers finished their race in 4-5 hours - to give you an idea of the toughness of the mountain trail.

It is somewhat hard to describe the race - it is rough terrain - as in not all nice established path. Sometimes you are not sure if you are going in the right direction and sometimes it is just hard slogging through muck and mud and some big "hills". Yet the profound beauty surrounds you and the air is fresh and you feel so alive. I tried my best to run when I could and walk some of the uphill slopes. And try not to get stuck in the calf deep water. After the first 4 boggy sections there was a definite - oh sod it I am so gonna be filthy and I plowed through puddles like a 5 year old!

The view....hello!!!!
At one point the view was so fab I tried to take a selfie to send to a pal stateside to show her what she was missing...but it doesn't show much except pure exhilaration. 
The view on the 16k is not as grand as the 29k route - but I still like it. Some of the path that is hard to love - its can be rocky, slick, some of the ruts are hard to navigate - but over all it is tough and a damn good run!
I might be slow, but the trail is just so beautiful, and I have learned to love it. And, being at the tail end of the 16k, I could hear marathoners as they would come and pass me. The forth person to pass was the first woman - we hooted and hollered and cheered as she went by me. And, every time a marathoner passed me, my spirits were buoyed and I felt a surge of adrenaline.

 I love how the trail markers demonstrate the rugged nature of this race - another reason it's awesome. You HAVE to pay attention to these puppies! Thing is - you are lost in the forest and just gotta run - it is hard to gauge where you are and how far you have left. I finished the race in about the same time as last year - yet somehow it felt faster and stronger. Oh well, I loved it out there.
And, the volunteers are AWESOME! On the route - the one aid station we had was a couple guys, an ATV and a dog! Seriously - gotta love it.
When I finished Karen's daughter Katie was cheering like mad at the finish, so I high5'd her and got through the finish for a hug with the RD! Then a visit with these lovely ladies.
And afterwards you hang out and eat the BEST homemade soup! Congratulate all the finishers...
Rachel rocked the 29k, Terry killed the 42! It was fun to see others and compare notes.
And admire the dirt accumulated on the trail
It was a glorious day to run - and yes it was muddy, which made for some slick sections.
But man, so fun. And, it was a great run the week before my next trail run.
My soak was long and filthy. I MAY have tossed out a body puff ball after I was finished!

Do you trail run?
Have you hiked or run out in Kananaskis?