Tag Archives: Garmin

The necessity of the evil bugger

Leaving Garmin at home is NOT an option.

Following my last post, I had a couple people suggest I leave Garmin at home and run free of technology. I’ve heard this a few times over the years, especially last season when I endured some of my most troublesome times in the sneakers and was fast losing motivation. They told me I was putting too much pressure on myself, I had to let go of the numbers, just run for the love of running. They blamed Garmin. They said Garmin needed to have a rest.

Which is all well and good for short runs. I’ve had no problems some runs leaving Garmin behind and opting to feel my pace rather than see it. But for long runs, I will fight tooth and nail, no matter how frustrating that bugger can be, to keep her latched to my wrist every single time.

Garmin is about more than just keeping time and pace. She is my notification for checking blood sugars and she tells me when I need to take in more fuel. Without her, I would have no clue. My internal clock does not have a blaring alarm to alert me, and by the time you’re hungry, that’s generally the first sign it’s too late.

Liquid fuel (homemade sports drink) needs Garmin like I need Garmin.

Liquid fuel (homemade sports drink) needs Garmin like I need Garmin.

So, when she does crap out like she so inconveniently did Sunday morning, I am at the mercy of my fellow runners. (Thank GOODNESS I have found fellow runners!) These girls were my lifeline, being that alarm, every 15 minutes notifying me of the time. I’m not sure they realized just how incredibly beneficial that was. I was able to test my blood sugars right on the dot at 30 minutes in. (Side note: This was the FIRST time I have ever tested, while running, no stopping – and I didn’t fall flat on my face!!! Success!!!). I was able to start the process of taking in fuel as directed. I was able to get through the run without any mishaps, diabetes or run related. Huge, Huge, HUGE thanks!

Garmin Ladies!

Garmin Ladies!

TONIGHT’S SPEED INTERVALS
5:50 p.m. BG before: 5.6
Temp. basal: -40% (1 hour)
Carbs: 1/2 banana (15g)
Time: 59:57
Distance: 9.85 km –> 14 x 2:00 at 5 km goal pace with 1:00 walk in between each set.
Average interval pace: 4:43 min/km
7 p.m. BG after: 8.0

I’ve got to say, I’m really enjoying looking at my stats following these kinds of runs. Not only are they at a good clip, they are a consistent clip – 14 times over! That’s pretty freaking awesome! Now bring on the Christmas Eve rouladen 🙂

Purple = greater than 95 steps per minute. Blue = between 70-95 steps per minute.

Purple = greater than 95 steps per minute.
Blue = between 70-95 steps per minute.

My Birthday: National Running Day

I have long believed June 5 was the greatest day of all. Forget Christmas. Forget Valentine’s. June 5 is all about me. One hundred per cent me. And well, I kind of love me 😀 so obviously I love this day and I always will regardless of the new age that approaches.

Thirty five for those keeping track!

But the thing is, this year I had to share my birthday with another super special day: National Running Day. (Held on the first Wednesday of June.) I’m no stranger to sharing my birthday; with my brothers’ birthdays 3 and 10 days apart from mine, we’ve shared our celebrations for as long as I can remember, and I’ve always loved it that way. And so, when I discovered National Running Day would this year land on my birthday, I didn’t cry about it, I didn’t gripe about it, I didn’t shun it. Quite the opposite. I lovingly embraced it.

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5 a.m. baby!!!

BIRTHDAY RUN:

  • 5 a.m. BG before: 6.9
  • Temp. basal: none
  • Carbs: granola bar (18 grams) no bolus
  • Distance: 5 km
  • Time: 29:01
  • Average pace: 5:44 min/km
  • 5:50 a.m. BG after: 10.2
  • Temp. basal: +50 per cent

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Guess who got a new PRETTY Garmin for her birthday!!!

Today was a near perfect day. There was running. There was strength training, including gruelling sets of 35 pushups (instead of birthday bumps :D). There was free Starbucks. There was walking and laughing and loving with my boys. And yep, there was DQ ice cream cake too… a 25-year tradition started after I was diagnosed with diabetes; one of the only good things to come of this disease!

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Love birthday!!!

Are you an embracer or an avoider of birthdays?

Stumped by the lingo and gizmos

When I dreamed of coming back to running I thought it would be like riding a bike. Actually,  no. I thought it would be like running, something we’ve all done since we first learned how to put one foot in front of the other. And it was…for the most part. I got out there and it was as though I had never left, the wind in my face, the burn in my thighs, the spreading and releasing of my toes with each foot strike I made; a feeling more familiar than the back of my hand.

But then, three weeks ago, it all changed. Suddenly I was being stumped, stumped by all the running lingo and gizmos – terminology and technology I thought would forever be stamped not only in my feet but also in my brain.

Cadence? Tempo? LSD? (Okay, that one I remembered, but only because it reminds me of something else ;)) What the hell was all that???

I am now well into the second month of my running comeback, and it seems, according to Coach NZ, I’ve built a foundation around my running. The first month we concentrated on reacquainting my feet, legs, hips and core with the pavement. There was no Garmin to track my pace, or to measure my distance, or to sound the alarms for walk breaks. It was just me and my shoes running with the freedom of the wind before us.

But now, that welcome back banner is gone, replaced by my nemesis: SPEED!

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Month 2, Week 1: my first tempo run. Uh what now? For the life of me I could not recall what the hell I was to do on a tempo run. I knew it called for a faster pace, but how fast? Was it just a slight increase? Could I still run and chat if I so desired? Or was I to give it my all and feel like my heart would pop out of my chest (along with my dinner!)?

I opted for the latter. I still hadn’t pulled my Garmin out of the drawer at this point, and so to ensure I was putting a decent effort in, I figured I’d do the talk test. If I could have a conversation, I wasn’t working hard enough…the only problem, I didn’t have anyone to have that conversation with. But hey, it was dark, the boardwalk was near deserted, I figured, I could huff out a few words. So I asked myself “How are you doing,” and myself responded, “Just fine thank you,” which indicated to me that I wasn’t going fast enough… and to the dude who appeared out of nowhere (and who was quickly inching as far away from me as possible) that I was most definitely a crazy person. Hehe 🙂

TODAY’S RUN:

  • 8 a.m. BG before: 10.1
  • Temp. basal: none
  • Distance: 6.4 km
  • Pace: 6:26 min/km
  • Time: 42 minutes
  • 9 a.m. BG after: 6.2

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Beautifully crisp sunny morning = perfect for a run 🙂

And then came my Garmin run. After nearly a year since I last strapped the Garmin around my wrist, setting that bloody thing up was like trying to figure out quantum mechanics! I was pressing button after button, causing beeps here, beeps there, it honestly took 10 minutes to get it properly set up for a 15:1 interval run – and that was after the debacle of waiting for the satellites to kick in, which took forever!!!

For those of you who don’t live surrounded by condos, check out this video I did back in 2010, it will show the MANY frustrations I deal with when it comes to Mr. Garmin.

Yep. Once again, I am a slave to the lingo and technology!

Refusing the iBert bike seat

Oh man, the laughter that shot out of me the other night, I swear it shook the building!

It was the night of my last blog post. I had been walking around for days giggling manically; Big Ring knew something was up and was a little, dare I say, frightened. After posting my blog, I refused to leave his side until he read it. At first I waited patiently, but for some reason the guy was not interested in his computer, he was more interested in the real estate porn on the TV. I thought I was gonna pee my pants, I’d been waiting so long, but there was no way I was gonna leave the room and have him read it without me seeing his reaction! After what seemed like forever, he finally shuffled over to his computer, and started clicking on his million or so bookmarks. As soon as I saw my blog pop on his screen, I could feel the evil excitement bubbling in my belly, and could barely contain the laughter within me. I watched as he slowly scrolled down, reciting the words silently in my head. And then, when that shot of the green iBert on the beautiful Bianchi appeared, I couldn’t hold it in any longer, I was snorting like a fat little pug! His eyes shot open, his mouth tried forming words, but for a moment, it was just flabbergasted silence. And then, just as fast as he lost his words, he regained them:

“Not going to happen!” he said. A cavalcade of reasons why came flooding out of his mouth fast and furious. Some of them genuine observations and concerns, but most, big fat lies:

  • “It’s like putting steer horns on the hood of a Ferrari!”
  • “It’s $1,200!”
  • “It’s banned in Canada!”
  • “It’s not suitable for carbon-fibre bikes!”
  • “Could you imagine if Jens Voigt had one of those? He’d have to have SIX strapped to his bike!”
  • “It may be suitable for some road bikes, but it’s not for Lapierres; says that right at the bottom of the page!”
  • “You wouldn’t be able to see your Garmin with that, and if you can’t see your Garmin, there’s no point in riding your bike!”
  • “Mark Cavendish has a kid and you don’t see him riding around with one those!”
  • “The entire nation of France would lay a serious whoop ass on us if we did that to the Lapierre!”

I kid you not, the excuses were coming out of him faster than vomit after a night of tequila! Apparently he really doesn’t want iBert messing with his beloved mistress. Can I blame him? Not really, but uhm, I’ve been saddled with BOB, so really, how is this any different? I’m just saying!

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How dare I even think to mess with his beloved mistress!

YESTERDAY’S RUN:
5:30 p.m. BG before: 9.0
Temp. basal: none
Time: 30 minutes – 10 warmup/10 tempo/10 cool down
6:30 p.m BG after: 7.6

And if you missed it, “BOB” replied to my last post in the comments section 😉

Trick or Cycle

Happy Halloween from Princess and the Rings!

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Little Ring dressed up as Babby Merckx (Eddy Merckx’ long lost brother from another mother ;)) what did you dress up as?

In desperate need of advice…

Ohhh there were so many signs telling me to stay home, to not go for a run, to just stay in my pajamas, I’d be safer in my pajamas. But did I listen? Noooo. And what happens, just minutes after leaving the condo? I get dive-bombed by a bloody squawking crow – THREE TIMES!!!

Here I was, minding my business, waiting for my Garmin to kick in while burping up garlic toast and potato salad and barbecued mushrooms, and lime tart from last night’s barbecue (Note to self, stuffing yourself to near puking the night before a run isn’t the wisest thing no matter how good the food is) when this bloody black thing swoops right next to my ear, like not even a pinky nail distance away, I could feel the brush of its feathers, that’s how close it was. I nearly jumped right out of my toes! But I thought, okay, maybe it’s got hawk eyes and saw a worm poking up from the ground or something, it couldn’t possibly be going after me, right. Wrong. THREE TIMES!!! That thing wanted to take me out! That alone, should have had me turning back, but no, it just started my run a little sooner than planned (and by sooner I mean before the Garmin kicked in). Bloody nasty West Nile Virus infested bird! Lucky for me, today’s run was just a short run.


What, did you really think I was gonna take a picture of the psycho crow? As if! This pigeon was so much less threatening.

TODAY’S RUN:

  • 11:30 a.m. BG before: 6.6 (1/2 pear, no bolus)
  • Temp. basal: -50 per cent (1 hour)
  • Distance: 6.11 km
  • Average pace: 6:14 min/km
  • Time: 38:05
  • 12:30 a.m. BG after: 8.1
  • Temp. basal: +50 per cent (1 hour)

Alright folks, I need your help. Desperately. I’ve got a marathon in one week. I haven’t been doing much running in the last two weeks, or much else for that matter. So here’s my conundrum: After not running for a full week before the half, my legs were so fresh and were like giddy up the second I crossed over the timing chip tarmac and continued that way for pretty much the whole distance. I want to feel that again. So, do I run or don’t I on Wednesday? Conundrum No. 2: Pilates. I haven’t done any pilates for two and a half weeks and I’m scheduled to go in on Thursday. But what if my body has gone lax in its time off and then gets all sore and achy the next day and the next and right up to the marathon? So, do I go to Pilates or don’t I on Thursday? Do I go aqua jogging? Do I hit the trainer? Or do I take my taper down to a whole new level and veg my way to Marathon Day? Please help.

(Note: I reserve the right to ignore any or all suggestions, but I gratefully appreciate them all nonetheless :D)