Tag: fun

Fitness Swellness: Run the Global Energy Race by Dempster’s!

Running with Billie Jean

My main reasons for running are personal: I run to stay fit, for a sense of accomplishment, to get me outside, to eat pretty much whatever I want to (hah!), and to stay sane (it is the cheapest form of the therapy!).

But as I’ve learned in the past 10 years of running, tying in giving back to help others as part of your racing makes it an even more worthy pursuit. Whether that’s fundraising for a charity (I’ve done so in the past for cat rescues) or even just participating in races that support a cause you believe in. Last year around this time, I raced in support of kids’ mental health programs, and this month, on September 24th, I’ll be running in support of food banks in the Global Energy Race by Dempster’s in Toronto.

The race actually takes place in three locations in Canada that day: the Base de Plein Air de Ste-Foy in Quebec, the Dyke Trail in Richmond, B.C., and in Toronto, it’s in Ashbridges Bay Park (where I used to train regularly!). There’s a fun 3k run/walk, which I considered doing with my dog, Billie Jean, but I’ve opted instead for the 10k run.

Here’s the best part: for every kilometre every participant completes, Canada Bread (Dempster’s parent company) will donate two slices of bread to local Canadian food banks. How much bread does this amount to? Well, last year, more than 10,000 slices of bread were donated.

I donate non-perishables regularly to the donation bin at my grocery store so giving to food banks is something I do try to support. I’m also keen to take part in this race as it’s part of a global movement to support healthy living, and it’ll be extra fun as I’ve rounded up two friends to join me that day, too!

Want to join the Global Energy Race? C’mon, do it for the good cause…and for the yummy carbs you can enjoy before and after the race! Register here today (and if you’re 16 and under, your registration is complimentary! Free! You just have to register on the site, though)!

And also, be sure to follow along on social media: @globalenergyrun #runwithus

See you at the start line!



8 Comments September 14, 2017

Fitness Swellness: Adidas #RunMore 10K race report


484 runners and I ran back in time last night in the Adidas #RunMore 10k race in Toronto. The race kicked off at 1 a.m. and ended at 1 a.m.! What a cool way to take advantage of turning the clocks back.

I usually use that extra hour to sleep more so I feel pretty darn productive having fit in a race. But a 1 a.m. race poses some interesting concerns: getting enough rest, when to eat, etc. The weather turned out to be unexpected, too. The day was warmer than it has been the past week, and it was of course colder at night but still warmer than I expected it to be, plus as luck would have it, it also rained pretty steadily from about 11 p.m. onward. I stuck to my original planned outfit, though (Adidas Energy Boost on my feet, Adidas leggings, tank, thin water-resistant shell and cap to keep the rain out of my eyes), and didn’t do my usual stressed-out change-my-mind-a-million times thing.

My goal for this race was to try to have fun. Does that sound odd? Maybe some runners can enjoy their races but I become a total basketcase all would up about doing well. PB or die, haha. I know I’m still weary though from the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon two weeks ago, and I’m sore from an intense Nike workout I did on Thursday with Master Trainer Eva Redpath. Plus, I also have two more half-marathons to run in the next five weeks and I can’t afford to injure myself and risk not being able to run those races. So I didn’t plan very carefully for this race: Friday night I went out and drank a lot of wine (oopsie) and Saturday,  I went out and had a big dim sum lunch; both are things I wouldn’t normally do with a race in 24 hours. Last but not least with regards to what how I set a goal for this race? I know I’m not nearly in as good shape as I was for my 10k PB time of 47 minutes. I think I was at about 53 minutes at the 10k mark of the marathon two weeks ago so I decided 54 minutes would be a comfortable, safe time to aim for. If I was feeling strong, I thought I could try to aim for 52 minutes.

start line

With it raining lightly, the race kicked off at 1 a.m., and I started off fast. The first few k I ran at a pace of 5:03, then it slowed to 5:06, then 5:13 and eventually to 5:26, which I wasn’t happy about since that is slower than the pace I have to  maintain for a marathon to qualify for Boston. In the spring, I was easily running 10k in training at a 5:10 pace in warm weather without it even feeling hard, so I’m not as fit and/or really worn down from the marathon. At about 7k, I ran into a huge puddle so my feet got soaked, and at 8k my stomach started bothering me. I’d also taken off my jacket a few k into the race so I was a bit cold (but I knew with it on, I’d be too hot), so I was dealing with feeling chilled as well. A good thing about the race is that it was out and back on a section of the Martin Goodman Trail that I run frequently, so I was really familiar with the route, which is mostly flat, except for one moderate hill.

I ended up finishing in 53:52 so I did a pretty good job of judging what my body is capable of.  That time places me 7th out of 25 women in my category, the 66th woman out of 266 and 154th out of 485 runners.

After the race, there was plenty of food (not only bananas and starchy carbs, but also juices from The Good Press (yum!) and some food trucks, and beer, hello! There was also a DJ and everyone hung out and celebrated; it’s too bad it was rainy and chilly, though, or else the party would’ve really been great. As it was, I was really cold and didn’t even go outside to the food trucks (that’s how cold I felt — it takes a lot for me to turn down some food truck eats!).

All in all, Adidas Canada put on a fun race with a unique concept and I’d definitely run it if it’s held again. Be sure to register early if it is, though, because it sold out quickly this year. Thanks to Adidas for the chance to use today to #runmore.

Next race: Rock n Rock Las Vegas Half-marathon, Nov. 14, 2015.

finish chute



Leave a Comment November 1, 2015

Travel Swellness: GO getaway to Niagara or Barrie

Inniskillin Winery

As much as Toronto is lovely during the summer (well, minus the humidity), sometimes you just gotta get out of the city. But visiting Niagara-on-the-Lake (NOTL) or Barrie isn’t an easy option when you don’t have a car. In fact, I don’t think I’ve been on my own to either destination since that last time I had a car. Add to this that you’re probably going to be drinking on your day trip, which then forces someone to take the role of designated driver. Le sigh…

But wait, did you know that the GO train has service to NOTL and Barrie? I didn’t. Now, this opens up all sorts of day trip possibilities for the summer! And it’s affordable: round-trip to NOTL from Union Station costs $36.30 for an adult, and it’s $26.90 round-trip to Barrie.

GO bus to NOTL

For NOTL, you get off the train at St. Catherines, then you hop on a GO bus that’ll bring you to downtown NOTL (and from there are some wineries that offer shuttles). Or, and I love this option, there are specific cars on the GO train that are equipped with bike racks, so you can bring your bike to St. Catherines and pedal to NOTL and from winery to winery. Throw a blanket, baguette, charcuterie and cheese in your bike basket and what a charming little outdoor summer day you have in store for yourselves.

GO train

I had the chance to try this GO train service to NOTL (however, we had a private bus take our group from St. Catherines to a couple of wineries rather than bike), and we stopped into Jackson-Triggs for a tour and lunch, and then a tour at Inniskillin. We learned much about the wine process (like how ice wine is produced, and what the windmill-like towers in the fields are actually used for — to find out, get yourself out on a wine tour!) before we hopped back on a bus for our group that took us back to the 6, bottles of wine in tow. And from these pics, you can probably tell we got a lovely little day trip out of it!

cheers in NOTL

This GO service made the getaway easy breezy and I’m already hoping to do it again soon.

Will you use the GO service for a getaway? What’re your fun summer plans??

FullSizeRender (25)

Oh, and here are the details of the dates of service:


Friday, July 3 to Monday, September 7

Friday, October 9 to Monday, October 12 (Thanksgiving weekend)

(once-daily on Fridays and three-times daily on Saturdays, Sunday and holidays)

* As a part of the summer service there is a connecting GO bus from St. Catherines to NOTL; check the GO Transit website for that schedule.


Saturday, June 27 through Monday, September 7

(four times daily on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays)

Jackson Triggs

Leave a Comment June 4, 2015

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