It’s been awhile

While I was away…

I went back to work
Started my Masters in Leadership
Ran a handful of trail races… But didn’t race them..
Herniated a disc

And generally put running on the back burner.

Tonight though, I found that high.

Sweaty and happy, it’s time for a soak and a good book.

More to come….

What I’m reading: I’ll Be Gone In The Dark by Michelle McNamara

Reading prompt #9: An espionage thriller

This isn’t a genre I’ve read much of and as I write this sentence, I actually can’t name another espionage thriller I’ve read. Since I’m admittedly ignorant of the genre, I googled “best espionage thrillers books” and John Le Carré’s The Spy Who Came in from the Cold came up as the first result. Book selected.

I actually quite liked this book and ripped through it in under five hours. It’s a great travel read… Engaging but not overly complicated. No huge cast of characters to keep track of but still many plot twists to keep you interested.

Number of books read: 23

Reading prompt #2: A book that’s been on your TBR list for way too long

Mr Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore, by Robin Sloan, was the perfect marriage of the internet age with a Dan Brown-style adventure mystery. I loved it. Plus it was about books…

It is in the romantic setting of a tall, narrow bookstore with three storey ladders- that roll– that this book is set. I mean, how could I not fall in love immediately? That is my dream, to own a rolling ladder in a my library. Layer in codes, puzzles, Ruby and Google and I couldn’t put it down.

Number of books read: 22

Reading prompt #16: A book published in 2017


This book is so f*cking good.  

“Your mom is your blood and bone before your body even knows how to make any.”

This. This quote, it settled in my heart and has not left my head. For days. It’s simple and perfect and so true of motherhood. That Ms. Koul has the talent to put words to this truth is astounding. It makes me so jealous of her talent. 

Go read this book. Support a Canadian woman. Learn about her experiences as the child of immigrants, what it’s like to have her skin, her hair. Recognize your own privilege and then look around you. Where can you give a hand up?

Number of books completed: 13/52

Periodization without really trying

I was looking over my training stats tonight, after feeling guilty about not running for four days this week. Turns out I did three weeks of building kms and naturally dropped my running this week by about half.  

The last three weeks have been 19-24km/week and this week was 10km. Tonight’s run, I was feeling every bit of the 75km I’ve done between 26 March and 22 April. I’m good with what I have gotten done but, if I feel okay tomorrow, I might squeeze in another 4-6km.

Tonight, I knocked out 5km on sore tired legs and I’m proud of that. This morning, an endurance athlete said to me that I should train on tired, end of the day legs when I’m already exhausted. That will help mentally prepare me for ultra distances. Well big check mark for me there. I’m dead tired and my legs are feeling achytiredsore.

Time for bed. Hoodieruns needs to get some sleep.

Reading prompt #24: A book set in the wilderness

This pick is a bit of a weird one but it’s perfectly in line with my recent trail and ultra obsession. And Barkley is definitely set in the wilderness.

I’m running more and more consistently than I have in the last year and have been thinking a lot about doing an ultramarathon (50km minimum) in 2018. As part of my pseudo-research, I watched The Barkley Marathons: The Race That Eats Its Young  on Netflix. That, coupled with the recent running of the 2017 Barkley and the gripping efforts of Canadian Gary Robbins, fascinated me and has encouraged the growth of the ultra idea. That of course, led to a book purchase… And here we are.

This book is self-published and would benefit from some gentle editorial attention. However, part of the charm of the book is the approach and rambling of an original Barkley sicko, Frozen Ed. It captures both the history of the Barkley and the author’s experiences of multiple racing attempts (and one finish) from 1986-2009. There are also course descriptions, colour commentary and some of the crazier stories of the Barkley. 

As a person interested in the sport of ultrarunning, I was hoping for more information on how to manage some of the logistics of running long distances; strategies for eating, foot management, training methodologies/philosophies were some of the logistics I was hoping to learn about, given Frozen Ed’s 10+ starts and training periods for Barkley. I think if you are dreaming of starting Barkley, you probably want to read this book for context and historical information. For the rest of us, this is another way to feed your curiosity but the documentary is better. It’s got a better narrative. 

There will not be a Barkley in my future. I shall be satisfied if I write a book that gets used as a Barkley Marathons checkpoint book.

Number of books completed: 12/52

And with that, she takes the lead!

I’m trying to run further than @bigbrnz in the month of April​. With today’s 10km, I have taken the lead*!

Today I ran 10.2km in 1:15. Slow but 1) it was a long, slow run on purpose and 2) I was pushing over 80lbs of kidlets and stroller. 

Here’s a picture of me and the empty stroller. The kidlets were busy on the swings in the second park we stopped at because, “Mama! I wanna go to da park! No, the ODDER park!”

It was gorgeous and sunny today. My forehead got some sun, my mind got some endorphins. It was a good day.

* I think I’m the lead. @bigbrnz hasn’t done a sync yet.

Reading prompt #14: A book involving travel

So, it may not be traditional travel but close enough. This was a fun read, exciting and out there. It was not as good as 14 but had an interesting blend of science, action and enviable minds. 

Finishing this book​ on a crummy day was my activity to fulfill my No Zero Day. I’m also cranking out my physio exercises. I’m tired but they are important.

Number of books completed: 11/52

For real, my Wednesday run and No Zero Day Thursday

Wednesday was 5x250m intervals – roughly. That’s imperfect, it was really 5x 3 telephone poles…
I think I clocked my fastest post-partum mile in three years!! 8:45 maybe? I don’t know my Garmin is dead. To be confirmed.

Today, I did not run. My legs needed the rest plus the weather was shit. In the spirit of No Zero Days, I did do my physio exercises. And I’m reading. Thank you, past me. This has been good investment in me.