NCAA and Waiting for Spring!

I’ve been caught up in the March Madness basketball tournament the last few days due to a pool at work.  What a ride.  After the first round, I was sitting at 9th amongst my pool members.  A few good games, and as of yesterday, I was sitting pretty by 5pm at 4th, and then 3rd within a couple of hours.  I was optimistic when I saw VCU play and start to take control of the second half against SFA.  Had they won, my place would have moved into 2nd.  Alas, it wasn’t meant to be, and even with winning the rest of the games yesterday night, I’m down to 9th at the end of day.  VCU cost me big time.  They game went into OT after a VCU player fouled SFA with seconds left on the clock.  Egads!  Well, I wasn’t terribly surprised as in the last few minutes I felt that VCU was ‘phoning it in’, and trying to run down the clock with their small lead.  Hello VCU?  Your confidence in a win, smacked you out of the tournament.  I guess that’s why they call it March Madness.  On the good news, I only have one team out, aka Duke from my picks moving forward.  It’s a hit as I had them moving forward to round 4 of my bracket.  😦

In other news, Urban Running Girl has marked down all shrugs for the $20 Spring Sale.  If you are wondering, “Why a shrug?” Yesterday, a customer posted an article about shrugs here.  Thanks Wendy Bumgardner!

Coincidently, Spring has apparently sprung, or at least it has been officially noted.  I’m not sure if Mother Nature has gotten the memo yet.  As of this morning, I see fresh snow outside my window.  Old Man Winter is like the house guest that just won’t leave or perhaps like the boyfriend you broke up with, that won’t stop calling.  Ok, old man, you’ve worn out your welcome.  It’s time you move on.  We’ve dealt with the ice storm, reading about this polar vortex, and numerous days in sub zero temperatures.  I’m ready to burn my winter boots and slip on some lighter, brighter and definitely more comfortable foot wear.  Oh, this is cool.  Have you seen this?  🙂  Custom design New Balance shoes.

I hope where ever you live, the weather has improved with more spring like conditions.  For me?  I’ll stick to my treadmill.

Happy Running.

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Black Friday Week – URG’s Biggest Sale

Black Friday week started today at Urban Running Girl.  All shrugs are now $20!  That’s right!  Just $20 til next Wednesday.

Save almost 40% off the regular price.  And since we can fit up to 3 in the same parcel for the same shipping cost, why not get two or three?  A shrug makes a great gift for that female runner who has every gadget and gizmo.

Shrugs are great for milder climates year round or as an extra layer for transitioning through seasons.  How many of you have found yourself taking off your jacket mid-run, and tying it around your waist?  Only to have it hang down to your knees.  A shrug won’t create that extra bulk that we’ve all experienced.

http://www.urbanrunninggirl.ca

Get yours today.

Happy Running!

Tinker Bell Race weekend – Video Recap

It’s been a rainy and snowy day in the Toronto area so I’m still running on my Treadmill.  Here’s hoping Mother Nature brings us some warmer temperatures soon.  It would be awesome to have something above 5 soon like we did in early January.  Even if only for a day or two. *Crossing fingers

I finally finished my video of the Tinker Bell Half Marathon weekend at Disneyland this past January.  Hope you enjoy it!

P.S. Urban Running Girl’s 20% off shrug sale is still on til Friday.  Enter code : URGFEB If you dislike the thought of tying your jacket around your waist one more Spring during a run, now’s the time the order!  Don’t miss out!

On a Snowy Day in February…..

Yikes!  It’s been colder than I would like since being back in Toronto. Perhaps since being in California my tolerance for the colder climate has gone down. I’ve been using my treadmill and staying indoors as much as possible. Yesterday, I managed 13K on the treadmill. I of course, could not have completed this without the help of my iphone. I am grateful that I own a treadmill, however, any run that exceeds 8K becomes boring and definitely uninspiring. I have no idea how some runners train for marathons on treadmills.  I recently have taken to my iphone to watch some TV shows and it definitely has helped to pass the time.  Yesterday, I got my inspiration from The Biggest Loser and How I Met Your Mother!

In other news, I wanted to let everyone know that Urban Running Girl has just launched a 20% off sale.  Just enter the code : URGFEB in the code box when ordering and you will receive this offer.  Don’t miss out!

Prior to leaving for California, there was a wonderful review written by Stephanie M for Urban Running Girl. She was the lucky winner of the PushPumpProgress blog giveaway. I wanted to share it here. It was a nice surprise and her review definitely made me smile.

URBAN RUNNING GIRL REVIEW by Stephanie M
Original link – An Essential Piece of Clothing
A few weeks ago I won my first blog giveaway ever from Michelle over at Push.Pump.Progress. When I saw the giveaway I wanted it SO BADLY! And then when I saw I won it I was SO EXCITED!

What did I win?

A running shrug!

What’s a running shrug? Well, according to the Urban Running Girl website, the company that makes these shrugs:

A shrug is a piece of clothing that’s designed to cover the shoulders and arms ONLY. Shrugs by Urban Running Girl are made of a light-weight 100% dry-wicking polyester, typical of other tech wear worn by active women. You can wear it over a tank or running shirt in place of a jacket. When you’ve warmed up enough, it’s easy to take off and tie around your waist, and unlike a jacket it won’t weigh you down.

The idea of a running shrug came about from the need to keep warm while warming up during an early morning run, particularly in the spring and fall. It’s too cool to start with only a tank top or t-shirt, but once warmed up and/or the outside temperature rises, it’s too warm for a long sleeve shirt or jacket.

So, you get warmth and cover without any unnecessary weight or flapping jackets once you don’t need the layers. Plus, the shrugs have built in mitts to keep your hands warm on colder days. Plus (!), this company is a small business based in Toronto, so if you’re interested in getting yourself this essential piece of clothing, you’d be supporting a local company instead of a big corporation. I was in Dick’s Sporting Goods a few weeks ago and saw that Nike is now making a similar product but it is twice the price and it’s Nike. Go local! (Also, I’m using the photos from the website because I have neglected to take a picture of myself wearing it. But I swear I have one!

I’ve worn my shrug a number of times and I am so happy with it. I wore it while running along the coast in North Carolina before Christmas and it was great with the wind and slight chill to the low-50s weather. When I was warmed by running and the humidity I took it off and couldn’t tell I even had it around my waist. I had to keep checking to see if it was there, which, of course it was.

I also wore it while running along the coast in Northern California after Christmas in similar, albeit slightly less humid weather, and it was again perfect for a mid-40s kind of day. After a few miles off it came. But once I was done running and was walking through my cool down it was great to have a layer to take the edge off the chill.

It’s been sub-30 degrees(F) here in Reno for the past few weeks, so I put away my running shrug, figuring I would have to wait to wear it until it warms up. BUT, yesterday I went on my long run with a wool short sleeve base layer, long sleeve tech shirt, and lightweight wind breaker. After 3 miles I was too hot and had to take off the long sleeved tech shirt and tie it around my waist for the remainder of the run. Lame.

So today, I wore my running shrug as my second layer under my windbreaker and it was perfect. I stayed warm but did not overheat. I may even layer it with other long sleeved shirts for days when it is too cold for just two layers but too warm for three.

I’ve already told some friends and family about this and I’m thinking that these shrugs will make great gifts for anyone I know who runs. Or really for anyone who does anything outside. My friends who hike and bike would probably like one, and really, it’s just a good layer for all kinds of uses. I could probably even layer it underneath sweaters to wear at work because my office has been freezing lately. Hmmm…note to self!

So, go on over to Urban Running Girl and check out the array of colors and order yours today! (Sorry, that sounded infomercial-y, but seriously, just get you one! You won’t regret it.) I love my shrug, and really do believe it is an essential piece of clothing. I am going to log a lot of miles in mine this year. Many thanks to Urban Running Girl and Michelle for hosting the giveaway and for randomly picking my name! Score!

Disneyland Tinker Bell Half Marathon Recap

We had a spectacular time in Anaheim during the Tinker Bell Half Marathon weekend. The weekend was jam packed with running, park hopping, and roller coasters!  Let’s just say, that by the time we left Anaheim to go to L.A., I was pretty much fueled with the help of caffeine and perhaps adrenaline.

We arrived in Anaheim on Friday afternoon and after a quick stop at our hotel, we made our way to the Tinker Bell Run Expo to pick up our race packs.  Once we got our race bibs and shirts, we did a little shopping at the expo.

I went by Sparkle Skirts and picked up a skirt for race day.  The booth was packed as many Tink runners were also in the mood for a little sparkle in their step.

Tinker Bell Race Expo

Tinker Bell Race Expo 2013

On Saturday, we made our way to the start of the Neverland 5K. The race began inside the Disneyland park, so we entered into Main Street to make our way towards the castle. As we were walking towards the castle, I had a chance meeting with Sean Astin. How cool was that?  As you can see, he was totally into Tink spirit as he was wearing wings!                             

Neverland 5K

Urban Running Girl & Sean Astin at Neverland 5K

Neverland 5K Finish

The 5K is fun, however, if you plan on running this race, make note it will not be a fast race. Much of the course has narrow running paths, and lots of congestion.

After our 5K, we headed back to the hotel to shower and get ready for a full day of fun at California Adventure.

On Sunday morning, we were up bright and early. Here we are, prior to leaving for the race.

Ready to run the Tinker Bell half marathon

Ready to run the Tinker Bell half marathon

I had an excellent time, running the course. I have to say, the people of Anaheim are fantastic at cheering along the runners. There were several marching bands, and cheerleaders from various schools.  Also, I can’t forget about the Red Hat Society ladies.  They were out in full force cheering us on! There were some great signs along the course, but my favourite by far was this one…

We found out at the expo that all male participants were put in corral C by default, therefore; ‘Peter’ and myself were not starting at the same time as I was starting in a corral ahead of him. This worked out perfect (or so we thought), as I had planned on stopping and taking lots of pictures along the way which would give ‘Peter’ lots of time to catch up to me, and that we would be able to finish the race together. Although, we did finish together, it came down to the very last minutes of our race. I had expected he would have caught up to me around the 15K mark, however, he was no where in sight, so I slowed my pace down, in the hopes that he would eventually meet up with me. It wasn’t until the last stretch of the race, where there is a hairpin turn that I saw him running up on the other side. I think I was about 200 meters from the finish, and I waited for him to run around the hairpin, so we could cross the finish line together.

As always, it was another excellent Disney running adventure. In the next couple of weeks, I hope to be able to share a video of our running adventure with you.

Birthday Blog!

I’ve been in a great mood lately.  January can be tough, and I’ll admit my mood can be affected by the weather.  However, last weekend the temperatures went up to 15 degrees!  It was just the pick me up I needed for my last training run before the Tinker Bell Half marathon this coming weekend.  I was able to wear a pair of running tights and a t-shirt on my long run last Saturday.  It was absolutely gorgeous outside.

Of course, Mother Nature hasn’t decided to change it’s winter season this soon.  The weather dipped down as of yesterday, and Toronto is back to -3 to +3 averages.  Which really isn’t that bad.  It certainly could be worse.  Today, I went out for my Birthday 6K run and it was quite pleasant at 1 degree.  The sun was nice and bright which took the edge off any dreary winter run.  Oh, by-the-way, Yes, it’s my birthday.  Today!  Yep!  No big celebrations though as I will have more than enough fun this weekend and into the following week.  However, I did have a slice of this….

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And THIS is delicious!  Our favourite cake shop called Dufflet calls it the Lemon Coconut cake and describes it as “Coconut cake filled with alternating layers of lemon and coconut buttercream; frosted with cream cheese icing and finished with snowy coconut”.

It’s absolutely worth the extra calories on anyone’s birthday!

Speaking of indulgences, I went a little kooky yesterday and had my nails done in the closest green I could find that matched Tink’s fairy dress.

What do you think? It’s O.P.I.‘s ‘Don’t Talk Bach To Me’ from the Germany collection.

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I plan on wearing a few items during the race to celebrate the Tinker Bell run.  Of course, I have my laces I used last year.  I love the little Tink metal attachment that came with the laces.  Not sure what else I will be wearing at the race.  Skirt? Tutu? Wings perhaps?

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If you happen to be on Urban Running Girl’s Facebook or Twitter feeds, stay tuned as I will try and post updates when I can about the weekend. 🙂

Until then….. Happy Running!

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season, and enjoyed some time with family and friends.  I myself was visiting family in Ottawa and Hamilton.  Luckily, I witnessed a little snow during Christmas in Ottawa as Toronto had none at that time.

Yes, I’ve been terribly absent from the internet in the last few weeks.  I primarily posted a few Tweets or Facebook messages from my iphone.  There were many times I was without a computer, and other times I was just busy with the holiday season.  Ahh life!  Things have begun to get back to normal again and I hope to create a blog per week. (at the very minimum)

Now that the holiday season is over, I’ve been back at my training.  I had to run on my treadmill for a few runs, but luckily the sidewalks have been clear enough this week to run outside.  I had a wonderful long run last Sunday, and I followed it up today with 6K.  The weather has been above zero degrees C, which is perfect weather for me.  Soon enough, I will be headed to California to run the Tinker Bell Half marathon in Anaheim.  Of course, this is a fun run for me.  I take a lot of pictures and video, so that tends to slow me down considerably, but it’s also a great way to keep the cardio during the colder months.  I must admit, I’m looking forward to the warmer temperatures as well.  🙂  If anyone out there is also racing this event, please let me know.  I of course will also be wearing my shrug on the race course (weather permitting) and in and around the parks, so if you do see me, please say hello.

Speaking of Disney’s Tinker Bell half marathon, I’m sure many are getting ready to depart to  Walt Disney World for the Marathon weekend.  For anyone out there who is participating in any of the races, have a fantastic time.  I’m sure it will be an awesome experience for you as it’s the 20th anniversary of the Mickey Marathon.  There will be much to celebrate.  The temperatures in Florida seem to be warm right now, so please keep yourself hydrated during the race.  I look forward to reading all the race reports.

If you are not racing this month, I hope you are keeping well and staying active.

Happy Running!