Tag Archives: strength training

Strength training, toddler style

Dear Little Ring,

Remember those days when you were just a lump? The days when you’d lie there keeping mama company for her strength training? The days when all you could do was lift up and try to grab my necklace as I struggled through pushups or planked for a minute over top of you? The days when you’d roll from side to side, lift your arms, lift your legs, but essentially still just a little lump? Remember those?

Oh how long ago those days were…

Dear Little Ring,

While I do so very, very, very much LOVE our daily snuggles, during strength training? Really? During pushups with your much larger lump directly under me? Really? During planks, clam shells, squats and lunges – Really???

Yes mama, really! (Note: He was totally lifting his legs just like I was AND reading his book – little show off! 😉 )

Running … with company

Full disclosure part 1: My training the last couple of weeks has fallen off the map.

For the last 10 days, the Princess and the Rings have been entertaining Big Ring’s mom and niece from Onterrible; the first visit since Little Ring’s birth. In the weeks leading up to the visit, I thought for sure I’d keep up with my running and strength training. I had a well defined plan, and I was determined not to stray from it. But then, our guests arrived.

Now, let me backtrack a moment. Big Ring and I are not well versed in the art of entertaining. Since purchasing our loft four years ago, we have hosted just ONE other couple, and that was long before Little Ring’s existence. Heck, I’m pretty sure we can count on two hands the number of times we’ve held dinners at our place. So really, we can’t be faulted for not realizing ahead of time just how stinking exhausting daily entertaining can be!

Initially I thought I would get my runs in at night, but after hours of driving around (it rained a lot) or sight seeing, or even simply negotiating acceptable activities for an 18 year old who loves to shop and a 76 year old who values her rest, by late afternoon all I wanted to do was crash in my bed. I did not want to lace up my sneakers. I did not want to brave the rain. I did not want to pull out the mat and activate my push-ups and planks. I just wanted to sleep.

So, I changed course and tried getting my runs in, after getting Little Ring sorted, in the morning. But that also proved challenging as I felt I was holding everyone else up for getting started on their day. Ugh. And my strength training, oh man, the only way I was able to get my circuits in was to opt out of an afternoon or two of activities – but that, too, was not always possible. I didn’t want to be rude.

Unfortunately (for me and my fast softening belly) the perfect solution to fulfill their touristy desires and my running needs was only just realized yesterday; the last day of their visit! When Big Ring suggested we walk around the Olympic Village, where his niece could see where the 2010 athletes stayed and his mom could relax with a cup of hot chocolate in one of the nearby cafés, we decided it would also be a great opportunity for me to get a quick run in on the Seawall out towards Granville Island. And so, instead of dressing in my regular wear, I kitted up in my running gear, and packed along an extra pair of Lululemon pants, hoodie and warm socks for the post-run activities. Win. Win.

Why the heck didn’t we think of that sooner?

Because sometimes, company and all, you’ve just got to run (ps. that’s not me!)


  • 2:30 p.m. BG before: 6.0 (2 biscuits, 16 grams carbs, no bolus)
  • Temp. basal: none
  • Distance: 4.95 km
  • Pace: 5:54 min/km
  • Time: 30 minutes (5′ warmup, 20′ tempo, 5′ cooldown)
  • 3:15 p.m. BG after: 3.3 😦

And so, my friends, instead of a week filled with three run days, two strength training days, and one cross training day, I managed just two runs, one strength day, and one 40-minute stint aqua jogging at the pool last week, and so far this week, I’ve accomplished just one run and no strength training or cross training … then again, the week is not yet done, and I no longer have company. Time to get back on that training wagon 😀

Strength training…with love

Who needs chocolates? Who needs flowers? Who even needs Tiffany’s*? Not me, not when I’ve got the two very best loves of my life, every day of my life … yep, I’m all romantic like that 😉

However, that Coach NZ, she’s all hardcore. No days off for Valentine’s Day, oh no, today we were back at it with strength training, but she did note it was strength training with love day!



  • 2 p.m. BG before: 6.4
  • Temp. basal: none
  • 3 sets 12 lunges
  • 3 sets squats
  • 3 sets calf raises
  • 3 sets 10 pushups
  • 3 sets straight planks (45 seconds each)
  • 2 sets side planks (60 seconds each)
  • 2 sets 30 airplane/swimming thingamabob
  • 3 sets 30 clam shells (both sides)
  • 3 sets 16 leg raises
  • 2:30 p.m. BG after: 5.0

Yep, there was love alright!

Laughing squats

We do pushups together in this family.

And when mama needs a little added encouragement with her pushups, the boy is right there.

“Look Mama, I can do the side planks too!”

And a post-workout, Valentine’s reward by way of America’s Test Kitchen recipe for chewy brownies = yu-um!!!


* Don’t get me wrong, Tiffany’s is always nice :D*

Planks, they do a body good

What Pilates, evil crunches, and straight diet couldn’t do for me, Coach NZ and Little Ring have! A series of events have recently occurred leading me to believe those two are serious miracle workers!


Princess: “I think I need to see the doctor?”
Big Ring: “Why?”
Princess: “I think something’s wrong with my belly; it doesn’t feel right.”
Big Ring: “What do you mean?”
Princess: “Feel it. It’s hard.”
With his hand on my stomach, he gave me a questionable look, not understanding my fear at all.
Princess: “It’s never been hard before, it’s always been soft. This is NOT normal!!!”


For the past few weeks, I’ve been struggling to insert infusions in my stomach, which has almost always been my go-to site for the infusions and before that the daily injections. I’ve been fighting to find a comfortable spot, I’ve been jabbing veins, which smarts like bloody hell, and I’ve got so many droplets of blood squirting up it looks like I’ve got the ebola of the belly! But last week was the tipper – I went through four infusions – FOUR!!! – in just two days! (Normally, one lasts 3-4 days.) I’d insert them and it would seriously feel as though I had a knife twisting back and forth in my belly. And one of them practically erupted under the skin – shooting blood like a canon when I pulled it out. I nearly went through a roll of toilet paper trying to clot the bloody thing!

Blood in the canula, never a good thing.

I couldn’t figure it out. What the hell was going on? Aside from when I was pregnant and my belly was stretched taut, I’ve never had a problem with my stomach for infusions – never. And then, four in one week – these suckers are NOT cheap!


I’d been staring at my belly – for like the thousandth time in the mirror in recent weeks – wondering what was going on, trying to figure it out. For the life of me I didn’t understand why it was not softening, why it was not becoming the pre-pregnancy Buddha wish pot it had always been. I analyzed the last bits of pregnancy, by way of stretched skin, still hanging at the lower part of the abdomen; the section from the belly button to the rib cage; the rib cage to the breast bone. (I think I’ve got my anatomy right :)) It was in the latter two that I saw something, something I had never seen before.

Princess: “Big Ring! Big Ring! Come quick!”
Big Ring: “What? What?”
Princess: “I need you to look at something… look at my stomach… what do you see?”
He paused. His eyes moved up and down the area in question. Then he smiled.
Big Ring: “I see a flat stomach! You’re getting a four pack!”

Uh what? I spent hundreds of dollars on Pilates, I’ve done hundreds of much-hated crunches, I used to run five times a week, I used to eat nothing but health, and always – ALWAYS! – I had a soft midsection. And yet, three months of strength training with Coach NZ (and her little sidekick Little Ring whose giggles keeping me going) have changed that. A twice-a-week, half-hour circuit of lunges, squats, planks, side planks, airplanes, pushups, leg raises, and clam shells have started me down the path towards having my first ever four pack!!!

Goodbye Buddha. Hello abs of steel 😀

Basic my butt!

Well hello legs, meet jello.

So you know that plan I told you about, about how I was gonna build some strength and abdominals into my running regime? Well, my dear, sweet, totally not evil, Coach NZ told me it was just “basic” stuff she was starting me on, nothing too strenuous, nothing huge, just a beginner’s session is all, strength-training for dummies really. Well, let me just say, she was either lying her pants off, or my body is completely out of shape. I’m going with the former 😉

My gawd, I kid you not, mere seconds after my first strength-training session, my legs were heavy and jello-like, even shaking to the point I nearly thumped all the way down the stairs on my butt. Totally not exaggerating, 100 per cent serious! And the next day, my calves felt as though they had a belt cinched around them, my inner thighs had a burn every time I crouched down, even my butt was feeling the tightness.

Apparently all thanks to the calf raises, walking lunges and squats. And then, add on top of those, three circuits of pushups, straight planks, side planks, airplanes/Supermans, oysters and leg lifts – it’s no wonder I was feeling a full-body firey burn!

It’s a good burn,” she says.

A good burn indeed, but basic my butt!

Okay, so it’s not my butt, but it did make me giggle 😀