Honolulu Marathon Training Week 17

Not a lot to say about this past week, except WOOHOO TAPER TIME!!!


I actually enjoyed this past training week and maybe took it a little too easy. I blame all the papers and assignments I have to write. Seriously, right now I should be writing… well, I am, but I mean writing other stuff. Scholarly stuff.

Can you tell I’m freaking out about the end of the term and the marathon being only 1.5 weeks away?!

Also, we received our bib numbers yesterday!! So, this is getting real.

YogiCrystal Nov Run

Happy for sun!

Here’s how week 17 went:

Monday – rest day / got a pre-race massage

Tuesday – run : 45 mins – 6 x 1 min strides, weather is getting cold!

Wednesday – rest / school work day

Thursday – run : 45 mins – Fartlek run, good pace

Friday – worked Black Friday, so no running

Saturday – worked all day, super exhausted

Sunday – run : 1 hour, 45 mins long run – good pace, felt good, really nice morning. Pretty happy with this run overall and feeling ready for the marathon!

Total KMs for the week: 34.3

Total KMs for November: 162.7

As you can see, it was a pretty easy week. I probably should have done another run or cross training workout, but full days of busy work on Fri & Sat really took a lot out of me. Also, felt good to get a pre-race, taper-time massage – getting these legs ready for the big day!

So far the taper is going well… I think. No going crazy or wishing I was running more, but this might be because of all the school work I have to do. Just doing my best to take it easy, get work done, and find time to plan my trip. One thing I do notice though, is that I’m hungry hungry hungry. Running less, but still hungry? Is this normal? 🙂

Do you enjoy taper time or find you go crazy?

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 16

Only 17 days till the Honolulu Marathon!!

And, it’s now TAPER TIME!! 😀

You can probably tell that I am excited. There’s still so much to do and plan, but at least the heavy parts of training are now complete. It’s been an interesting journey so far, so I probably can’t qualify in the proper words how excited I am for this trip and this race. If you’ve been following along, you’ve seen lots of ups and downs in my training, but overall I have no major complaints.

yogicrystal runner

Goofing around in the park after a long run!

Here’s how week 16 went:

Monday – run : 31 KM long run that I posted as part of week 15 training

Tuesday – rest day

Wednesday – run : 35 mins treadmill – seriously felt like I was going faster than I was. Does this ever happen to you?!

Thursday – rest / work

Friday – run : 45 mins – tempo, maintained a good pace for the whole run!

Saturday – rest / work

Sunday – run : 21.1 KM long run – made a huge decision for this week’s long run that involved reducing the distance. I stressed about it all week, but eventually I had to decide what was best for my mind & body at this time. Between running, work, and school I have been feeling a bit run down, so I knew that I needed to make this change for me. I was supposed to run a 34 KM long run, but changed this up to a half marathon at a slightly better pace. It was difficult because it was cold, but I got it done and that’s what matters. Honestly, probably the best decision for my training week, but not sure how it will translate to race day.

Total KMs = 34.69

I honestly have to send a big shoutout & huge THANK YOU to Saucony Canada for sending me some awesome shoes to test out this winter. I’m all set up and can’t wait to show you guys these wicked shoes. One pair I currently wear – Ride 9 – but this edition is the Reflex Series, which is super reflective. Hopefully soon I will get a good night pic to show you how cool these are! The second pair is the Peregrine ICE+ and these light trail shoes have Vibram Arctic Grip, which helps with traction over icy areas. They’re also water resistant, so while I am excited to try these out, I am in no rush for harsh winter conditions yet! 🙂

saucony canada yogicrystal

Yay for shoes!

What’s the longest distance you’ll run for marathon training? Have you ever made the big decision to cut it short?

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 15

Another week has flown by! And, it just occurred to me that at this time in 3 weeks I will be on a plane headed for Honolulu…

… Cue freak out in 3… 2… 1… 

All kidding aside, I am super excited but also a bit overwhelmed with what I have to get done over the next 3 weeks. I’m not sure what caused me to think that it would be ok to start my first semester of my master’s, while also working, and training for a marathon. I must have been temporarily insane… Or, just very motivated. Either way, here I am and the big day is getting closer and closer! I have 4 papers to write, so I better get to this week’s recap fast! 🙂

YogiCrystal Long Run 2016

Seriously matchy matchy here!

Monday – rest day

Tuesday – run : 60 mins – 10 min warm up, 6 x 1 KM tempo, 2 min recovery, 10 min cool down (Ran in a t-shirt & shorts!! Yes, I have to document the fact that I was able to wear a t-shirt & shorts in Calgary in November!)

Wednesday – rest / work

Thursday – run : 30 mins – easy pace

Friday – run : 45 mins – 6 x 1 min hill bursts, 1 min recovery

Saturday – rest day / work

Sunday – work – had to move long run to Monday

Monday – run : 31 KM long run – I hadn’t struggled too much on a long run in awhile, so I was due. This run was certainly challenging and I’m not totally sure why. The weather was nice and I was only a little bit nervous, so I can’t put the blame there. For the first 60 mins I listened to comedy, which was a nice change but somewhat difficult to maintain a good pace. Sometimes I almost tripped over myself when laughing too hard. I may not do this again, but it was good to try something new. Overall, my pace just wasn’t where I wanted to be, but damn am I proud of myself for getting all the KMs of this one done!

Total KMs = 54.06

Some of you may know that I’ve been an Ambassador for Momentum Jewelry, so I am happy to announce that I am on board for another year! I’m incredibly pumped about this opportunity because I love their motivational jewelry so much. You have no idea how many times it has helped me to look down at the Motivate Wrap on my wrist to repeat the mantra imprinted on the plate. You should definitely check them out and also keep an eye on my blog and Instagram for possible future giveaway opportunities. *wink wink* 🙂

Momentum Jewelry Ambassador

Have you ever listened to books, podcasts, or comedy on your long runs? How did it go?

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 14

Not a lot to report for this training week, which is totally ok in my books. This week was basically for recovery before the final big two week push, which I am now doing. I can’t believe how fast this training has been flying by and I already have so many thoughts and lessons to take away from this experience (which will definitely go into another blog post!). Also, I really have to start planning this trip… it’s getting close and I’m starting to freak out! It’s hard to find the time between work and school & I’m not great at flying by the seat of my pants. I like to have some things planned. I also want to balance doing tourist things, but also just relaxing on the beach. I miss the ocean everyday, so I can’t wait to be close to it again for a few days.

YogiCrystal Fall Run

Super excited for warmer weather in November!

Here’s how week 14 went:

Monday – rest / Halloween

Tuesday – cross-train : elliptical 40 mins – legs felt a little tired, but good workout

Wednesday – run : 50 mins – good pace

Thursday – rest / light walking

Friday – run : 30 mins – stressed & cranky, was happy to just get my run done

Saturday – rest / worked all day

Sunday – run : 1 hour, 45 mins long run – nice weather, felt pretty good. Really enjoyed this nice morning run as the sun came up and the temperature was a little warmer.

As you can see, a pretty easy week overall. It was nice nice to have the pressure of the huge long run looming over me, especially since I worked all weekend. Honestly, I really enjoyed that shorter long run because my nerves are certainly starting to build for the upcoming 30+ KM long runs I have ahead. I actually keep telling people how excited I am for the taper! 😛

The final push is on… I can’t believe it’s 4.5 weeks till the Honolulu Marathon!!

Do you ever get excited for taper time?

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 13

Wow, just under 6 weeks until the Honolulu Marathon!! And, it’s November 1st… Anyone else feel the year flying by?

Currently recovering from a family friendly Halloween of handing out candy at a friend’s place while also attempting to scare some older kids. 🙂 Second year we have done this & I’m enjoying the tradition. I used to help with handing out candy at my grandparent’s place in Halifax and now apartment living causes me to miss seeing all the costumes, so I’m glad our friends invite us over on Halloween.

Calgary Runner Marathon Training

I look crazy & this was only about 10KM into my long run!

Here’s how my training week went:

Monday – rest day / yoga : 20 mins

Tuesday – run : 45 mins – 5 x 30 sec strides near the end of the run. Not sure why, but I felt ill during most of this run & somehow managed to finish it. Fun times.

Wednesday – run : 30 mins tempo – good pace & strong effort

Thursday – rest

Friday – rest – Was supposed to run, but felt so fatigued that I decided to reschedule this run to Saturday morning.

Saturday – run : 30 mins – easy pace

Sunday – 3 Hours ~ 28.11 KM long run – Pretty good run, ran a partial new route, but the last 30 mins of this run were a struggle. I wanted to quit & I was tired, but I managed to push through. Starting to get anxiety about longer distances coming up. Two super long runs left!

Total KMs = 46.14

October Total KMs = 178.17

Phew, that’s some high milage in a month for me! It was a good month, I was able to get back on track, but I also dealt with a lot of fatigue. This could be due to the changing weather and shorter daylight, but still it was quite noticeable how I felt like I just couldn’t get enough sleep. You’ll also notice that this week didn’t have any cross-training or strength training, which was mostly due to fatigue and scheduling. At this point in the game only minor strength work will be done & I’m going reassess everything after the marathon. For now I’m just working on getting to the big day!

Momentum Jewelry sharetheSPARK campaign

#sharetheSPARK 🙂


As a Momentum Jewelry Ambassador I also got to #sharetheSPARK with two awesome people during the month of October and I was happy to choose friends who needed a little encouragement. Such a great initiative by this awesome company! Right now I feel like a lot of us could use a little support and love from those around us, so it’s nice to be a part of a campaign like this. ❤

How do you motivate yourself during the higher milage long runs? I need some tips! 🙂

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 12

Just under 7 weeks till the Honolulu Marathon! Time to freak out now, right?! Nawww, just kidding… 😉 Though, it is time to start thinking about what I’m going to do when I get there and also what I’ll be wearing for the race. Dress up in something fun or keep it practical so that I am prepared for the weather? I guess we’ll see…

Here’s how my week went:

Monday – rest / light walking

Tuesday – run : 30 mins – didn’t really want to run, but got my butt out the door somehow.

Wednesday – cross train : elliptical 40 mins – tried to do some leg strength exercises again and had some really intense hamstring pain in my right leg. Going to hold off on this for now.

Thursday – run : 60 mins – 2 x 15 min tempo in the middle of the run

Friday – run : 30 mins – good pace, easy run

Saturday – rest

Sunday – run : 25 KM long run – This long run actually went pretty well, which has me pleasantly surprised and feeling good! I ran a mostly new route, so I think that helped the time to fly by… I didn’t start ruminating about how much I wanted to go home till around 22K. That’s a big deal for me! 🙂 I had a little bit of left ankle pain, but mostly felt good and just enjoyed the whole morning of running. I even ran the last 6K without any music! Mileage is really amping up now!

Total KMs = 46.22

Grumpy Runner Run Calgary

Looking pretty grumpy about my Tuesday run 😛

The long run mileage is really getting up there now and I usually find myself being nervous the day before. I worry about getting bored or if my mental game will be strong. I know that I can do the run physically, but my mental game sometimes is a real struggle. I’m glad this week that I didn’t have many issues with this and I just ran and had fun. Nice change!

Thanks to Mud Hero & Deep Relief & GoodLife Fitness I received a pretty sweet care package of products to try out (pictured below). As an athlete, you hope that you won’t need to use these types of products often, but it’s good to have them for recovery just in case. The yoga mat, New Balance technical shirt, and handy carry-bag will definitely be used often – good thing blue is my fave colour! 🙂 Deep Relief & Mud Hero are actually teamed up to promote these events around Canada, so check out their site and sign up for one of these fun & crazy events in 2017!

Deep Relief Mud Hero

How do you calm the running mental game while training? 

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 11

Week 11 already?! Wow, time is flying. This race is coming up fast and I still have so much planning and training to do. I’m super excited of course, but also a little nervous. I guess that’s normal as you build up towards a marathon!

Calgary Running St. Patricks Island

Am I tired? Need my sunglasses? 😉

Here’s how the week went:

Monday – swim : 350 m kicking & hot tub for long run recovery

Tuesday – run : 30 mins – was supposed to be a hill workout, but I felt strange pains in my right ankle & calf, so I didn’t want to push it. Decided to switch up the plan and move hills to later in the week. Upper Body Strength 3 x (5 pushups, 10 crunches, 15 tricep dips)

Wednesday – elliptical : 30 mins; Lower Body Strength 3 x (10 lunges each leg, 15 squats)

Thursday – run : 45 mins random Fartlek – started to feel DOMS from yesterday’s strength (Oh no…)

Friday – elliptical : 30 mins & stretching/rolling (was supposed to run) – DOMS for real. Seriously learning a lesson here. I didn’t really want to notice my glutes this much.

Saturday – rest – to prepare for Sunday long run

Sunday – run : long run – 23 KM. This run was good and I certainly felt better than last week. It was also a couple of degrees warmer, so that may have helped. No wanting to cry… success! 😉 I kind of wanted to stop running around 15 K, but convinced myself that there was only 8 K to go and that I couldn’t give up. Somehow that worked! My long run milage is getting up there, so I’m going to need some different motivations to get me through the tough parts.

So, what do you notice about this week? Well, I didn’t get that hill workout done. And my very simple leg strength workout caused me to have DOMS for 2 days. Seriously, 2 days! Tough lesson learned this week… DO MORE STRENGTH. Because of these DOMS, I definitely didn’t want to push a hill workout, so I feel a little guilty missing that. I did add some cross-training (elliptical), so that’s a plus!

This week I was also fortunate enough to give Energy Bits a try after my runs. Have you heard of them before? Well, they are these little tabs that are made of 100% natural organic spirulina algae. These little tabs are packed with a punch – 40 vitamins & minerals with only 1 calorie per tab! Energy Bits are easy to take on the go and are a great way to get healthy, clean energy for your workouts or just to get through your day. They also have Recovery Bits, which I like to add to my smoothie after a long run. You don’t even taste them! I’m a big fan because they’re so easy and they have so many health benefits. They’re paleo & vegan, and also provide a source of iron, antioxidants, vitamin c, and more. Seriously, check out the Energy Bits site (after reading this post!) for more information. They’re also pretty awesome to follow on Twitter. 🙂

Energy Bits Recovery Bits

Yay for Bits!

What’s your preferred type of workout fuel?

And while we’re here, do you have a cure for DOMS?  😉 Hahaha (You know, in case I do this again…)

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 10

Well, it’s official. Winter has started in Calgary. And, you can imagine how impressed I am. *eye roll* You might remember when I mentioned that we barely had a summer here, so I’m definitely not ready for the cold and snow we’ve been having over the past few days.

Despite winter, here’s how week 10 went:

Monday – run : 12 KM long run – nice run, good pace.

Tuesday – walk

Wednesday – run : 60 mins – treadmill because it was cold & raining and I wanted to watch Aquarius (don’t judge!)

Thursday – run : 45 mins, 4 x 30 sec strides at end of run – took body a long time to warm up

Friday – walk (snowing started)

Saturday – rest

Sunday – run : 21.1 KM long run – Cold, snow, wind. I was really cold at 10K, wanted to quit around 12K, and almost cried at 14K while running straight into the freezing wind. But somehow I managed to finish this run. A little slower than I wanted, but it’s done!

Calgary Snowman October YogiCrystal

Look, I made a new friend on my long run. 😛

As you can see, I’m still missing strength training. Seriously, I need a kick in the butt. I’m just not sure what’s best to do and how much… I need to look into this soon.

Starting to get back on track with my training and it feels good! I’m a little grumpy about having to figure out my running schedule around snow already, but I guess it’s time to suck it up. Honolulu Marathon is 2 months away, which is super soon when you think about it. I still have lots to plan, so I am freaking out a little bit while also getting excited.

Momentum Jewelry sharethespark

#sharetheSPARK 😀

As a Momentum Jewelry Ambassador, I’m also excited that I get the opportunity to #sharetheSPARK this week with two awesome people. I love wearing my motivate wrap all the time as a constant reminder of what I’m doing this running thing for. Honestly, there was a point during my cold long run that I repeated my wrap mantra “Earned, Not Given” over and over in my head so that I could keep going.

Have you been to Honolulu for the marathon or vacation? Any things I must see? 

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 9

Oh what a week! Training week 9 flew by and it wasn’t exactly fun times. I was hoping to have a happy, positive training post for you, but that’s not happening for this week. There are some great take aways from this past week, so at least there’s that. 🙂

Runner Fall Autumn Training

Having fun with leaves!

Here’s how the week looked…

Monday – run : 10KM – was supposed to go longer (this was Sunday’s missed long run), but I didn’t want to push my leg pain too much. Actually kept a good pace, so I was happy. In the evening I started feeling a sore throat coming on and I wasn’t impressed…

Tuesday – sore throat really bad, some sniffles – cue Crystal being CRANKY haha

Wednesday – run : 30 mins – pushed through an easy-paced indoor treadmill run just so I could be active.

Thursday – run : 40 mins – felt ok, but took it easy with my cold.

Friday – walk : approx 3 KM just to get outside in the sun.

Saturday – scheduled for the Harvest Half Marathon, but did not run. Made the tough decision late Friday night. Decided to focus on The Running Clinic seminar that I was fortunate enough to be able to attend.

Sunday – Was still in The Running Clinic course all day, so I was exhausted and decided to rest after the course got out instead of going for a run. (Long run moved to Monday again)

Total KMs = 21.26

September Total KMs = 110.2

There you have it. On Saturday I had my first race DNS (Did Not Start) and this hit me hard. I was very upset and disappointed in myself, while also feeling like I was making the right decision for my long term goal. I had never DNS’d before and I never let rain & cold get in the way of a run, but seriously I just couldn’t bring myself to do it with this darn cold I have been fighting for a week. I worried about making the cold worse and I also had the running course to focus on all weekend, so that helped me to feel a little better about the decision.

Through all this I learned 5 key things about my 1st DNS:

1 – Listen to your body. It’s ok to do this and probably better in the long run. If you’re sick, you’re sick. Stop trying to fight or ignore it and just get some rest and help yourself get better faster.

2 – Go easy on yourself. I berated myself for this decision to the point of tears. I am not kidding. Then I felt guilty… seriously, what was I doing to myself? My bf reminded me that I was being silly and that I needed to stop with the self-deprecating comments. Accept what you can and move on without making yourself feel worse.

3 – Keep the major goal in mind when making a tough training decision. Honolulu in December for my 2nd marathon is the MAJOR GOAL. Being healthy and getting there is more important than running a half marathon in the cold & rain and possibly making myself sicker. Sure, I wanted to be at the race. I wanted to be around the running community and I wanted the kick in the butt/motivation that I needed for a training boost. But, I had to make this decision to “rest” (at a seminar) instead of possibly making my sickness worse. Sucks, but that’s reality because the big goal is in December and I need to keep that in mind.

4 – Listen to your support and be open to advice, even if it’s not what you want to hear. Being told that it’s probably a good idea that I DNS this race was hard to hear, but it was probably correct. I see that NOW. Haha Give your support systems (friends, partners, run club, social friends, etc.) the benefit of the doubt, especially if they have been there.

5 – MOVE ON. Consider the pros & cons, make the decision, and move on. Don’t dwell on it, don’t try to over think about what else you could have done… (How could I have avoided getting sick?! What did I come in contact with? Who made me sick?! Hahah All shit out of my control that I can’t change). Accept your decision and move forward. Focus on the training and goal ahead. Get back on track. Yes! We all can do it. 🙂

The Running Clinic Course

Learnin’ all weekend!

Training week 9 is done and I can’t change it. Time to move on and get back on track. All I can do is my best and I’m looking forward to it! Seriously, the Honolulu Marathon is 68 days away from this posting. That’s soon if you think about it! I’m getting excited and now it’s time to get pumped again for my training! ps. I can use all the support I can get. 😉

Have you ever DNS’d before? Any lessons you took away from that?

Honolulu Marathon Training Week 8

I’ll just keep this post short & “sweet”, because that’s basically how this training week went… Well, the short part at least.

Monday – rest

Tuesday – run : 45 mins on the treadmill (rain & cold outside and I just couldn’t get out there yet hahah)

Wednesday – walk : approx 5 KM

Thursday – run : 45 mins – Hill training in the middle : 5 x 1 min hill bursts on a crazy incline. I love hill training and usually do it more, so I must get it back into my schedule!

Friday – Worked all day, couldn’t fit something into my schedule

Saturday – conference all day, by the end I had weird pains in my left leg so I took it easy for the night. Threw a frisbee around with the bf in the park just get to get some sun on my skin.

Sunday – Supposed to do a 12-15 KM long/taper run. Did not happen. Pushed this run to Monday (today) just to be safe with the left leg pain I was having. I did try 100m of kicking in the pool and that was tiring (I can’t swim)! Highlighted for me how much I need strength and cross training. (So embarrassing, but I thought I would share that.)

Total KMs = 14.76

Calgary Runner Training Marathon

So, there you have it. Another week with some little issues that got in the way of my training. I was feeling a little frustrated with this on Sunday, but I’m just going to continue on. I’ve got the Harvest Half Marathon on Saturday so I am looking forward to that… as long as the weather is better than last year!!

One of these weeks I am going to report something good, I tell ya. 😉

Time to open up – who’s taken adult swimming lessons? I’m considering it for the new year.