My girls just turned 1 year old on July 3, and that first year sure passed by quickly! When I think back to last summer and trying to juggle and manage two newborns, it seems like a lifetime ago. Last summer was so challenging being a brand new mum to two babies at once! But Geoff and I are very lucky with these two monkeys, they are super healthy, they eat very well, and they sleep like logs thankfully. And they are hilarious! They have been sleeping through the night since they were only a few months old, and they now sleep straight through from about 8:30pm to 8am every night with a 2 hour nap each afternoon. They started walking at 11 months and now basically they're running! Will have to find a race for them soon :)
Playing with dad <3 font="">3>
Recent family trip to Lake Country, BC
Gray Monk winery in the Okanagan!
I've been back to full time work as of the beginning of January, when the twins turned 6 months old. The transition went well, and even though I have to travel to Calgary about once a month we make it work. I continued breastfeeding all throughout this time, which meant multiple pumping sessions during the day (twice while at the office) for months, and extra time pumping first thing when I awoke before working out, and right before bed, in addition to several nursing sessions daily. After starting to slowly taper down in May, I finished nursing about a week shy of their 1st birthday. I'm proud of myself that I breastfed them for a whole year. It was a bit sad to end but at the same time very freeing!
When I returned to work, I also started doing early morning training sessions at dark o'clock as that was the best time to fit in some training. I've gotten myself into a good routine since then. Since January, I've slowly increased my weekly training and generally end up doing about 3 early mornings each week starting at 6am. My weekly volume has increased to 9-10 hours consistently which works for me and I can easily handle this amount. I have not been doing a lot of higher intensity/speed/interval training in either bike or run, mostly just easier low HR/MAF running with occasional mile or 1/2 mile repeats worked into a long run, and strength work on the bike with bigger gear and steady grinds, with the majority of my riding done indoors on the trainer (but getting outside when I can, generally about once a week).
We got a run stroller (Thule chariot) back in April and now I run with the girls two or three times a week after their dinner for 40-45min. I stopped coaching swimming in St. Albert at the end of January, and joined the group instead in February, which was a nice change. Now I just show up and get told what to do, and it's fun to swim with others in a lane again! Teacher becomes the student...
|An early morning spin at sunrise|
It's so awesome to be back racing this year after sitting out last year due to pregnancy and having some serious FOMO while everyone around me trained, raced and got super fit. So far for races, I've done a couple of the MEC 10km road race series in April and May while pushing the girls in the chariot, and another local 10km at the Garrison in early June, and have gotten faster with each race, which was the goal. The April race with crazy hills I ran 57min, and in the May race 50 min on a flat course. In the June race the girls and I crossed the finish line 1st for women, in 47 min and change - the course was a bit short of 10km though. Super fun though and a nice, flat route which is good when you're pushing these two!
Geoff and I and the twins at Loops 4 Troops 10k in June, with Ailsa on the right, who won the 1/2 marathon!
I raced Wasa Lake Olympic Triathlon on June 11, which was my first 'real' triathlon in almost 2 years. It was great to get out there and really push the effort and this is truly one of my favourite races, one of those 'grassroots' triathlon races that are slowly disappearing due to all the 'corporate' Ironman and 70.3 races out there. Support your local races people!!
I ended up placing 4th for women, which I was happy with, in 2:24 (swim 23, bike 1:08, run 49). Slower than in 2013 when I did this race but not too shabby.
Wearing the sharp and lovely Coeur sports team race kit
Wasa Lake - 4th place female OA
Walking around during one of our stops on the long drive home from Wasa Lake
Then 3 weeks later was the Great White North triathlon, and I raced the Olympic distance. I had a superb day, and ended up winning the race for women! It was an amazing feeling to cross the line in 1st place, and it had actually been my 'secret' goal in the back of my mind to win the race. I felt really strong in the swim (which was super short, I swam 15:30 something, ha!), and also on the bike my legs felt great! The run was hard, as always, but I held it together for the 10.6 km and surprisingly felt stronger on the second half.
Always happy to cross a finish line!
Next up, is my fave hometown race, the St. Albert sprint triathlon on Aug. 13. I haven't been able to do this race since 2013, so I am really looking forward to it! This will be my last triathlon of the year. I was planning to do the Arizona 70.3 in October, but totally missed the boat and didn't sign up, and it sold out! Note to self, get your butt in gear and register earlier next time :$ We are still planning on going to AZ in October, so I may plan to do a half marathon or something while there. So it was a relatively short triathlon season with 3 races under my belt, which is perfect. This year was all about just getting back into it and I didn't plan any 'epic' or big races, which was a good plan for me.
Next year, on the other hand, will be different. I need a big goal to work towards and to challenge myself, and that will be Ironman. It will be an even bigger juggling act to manage than I'm doing right now, but I am looking forward to it. Personally, I function well and am more accomplished and productive when my plate is overflowing with things. I like the daily grind. And I love everything about Ironman, including the training and preparation, the personal challenge, getting myself as fit as possible, putting together and planning my days and weeks of workouts like a puzzle, I love the entire race day itself despite how much it hurts, and I especially love that magical finish line experience! I'm currently trying to figure out which start line I will be on. There are a couple I have my eye on, and I'll decide in the next week or two. I also want to race a half ironman next summer, as I haven't actually done one since 2013.