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Healthy Living

Will Run For Beer: Troubled Monk Race Recap

I was really excited to see our local brewery back for their second annual run this year. There was zero hesitation registering since it was such a great little community event last year. For only $50, you get a race entry with a Troubled Monk beer glass, a custom wood coaster, a free beer and BBQ after the race. I mean, you can’t get much better than that!


I kind of registered assuming I’d be running alone, but Shannon decided we were running the 10k together and that she was going to pace me to run faster than normal. This also meant we were wearing matching shirts that she picked up from Ardene’s. We picked up our race packages the night before and decided to stay for a quick pint as well. Brewery run perks!

Since the race start wasn’t until 10am, I didn’t even have to set an alarm and got to sleep in. I ended up cutting the sleeves off my shirt while waiting for my toast and I’m so glad I did because it was much warmer than anticipated. The race start isn’t far from my house, so after breakfast and downing some pre-workout, I decided I would just jog over and save the hassle of trying to find parking. I had 13km on my plan for a long run anyways so I knew that the extra km’s would help!

I found Lindsey and her family when I got there, then Shannon showed up and we hung out visiting until it was time to line up. The 5k went out first and everyone else followed a few minutes after. I saw Kris at the start line, she was walking the course with her Dad and I was pretty excited for them to see how beautiful our city actually is.

The Race

I was slightly worried about dying, since Shannon is much speedier than I am and had lofty goals for getting me a PR. I originally had no intention of racing, I was just treating this as a long, slow run as part of half training. We agreed on 10 and 1’s with an aim for a 6:30-7:00min/km pace. I actually felt pretty good for the first half of the race. It was a beautiful sunny day with a slight breeze. The course became quite congested after we crossed the river as there was a walk for ALS occuring, with participants coming the opposite direction. Once we made it past that we were about halfway and I was starting to fade. I knew I hadn’t hydrated enough and was starting to get stitches but kept powering through.

The second half of the race contains too many damn hills, which significantly slowed me down. I gotta say, I’m really looking forward to running a race with no hills soon. Shannon was continuously a few paces in front of me looking like her run was NBD, with me struggling to catch up the whole time.

Luckily in the last kilometer, there was a big downhill where I was able to gain a bit more speed for a strong finish. I picked up my pace as soon as I could see the finish line and was at an all out sprint trying to beat Shannon across. Because of course, I’m not competitive or anything *sarcasm*. I wanted to puke after that.

Official time: 1:14:41. Not a PR, but definitely my best time in awhile. My splits/km were: 6:46, 7:18, 7:22, 7:12, 7:53, 7:48, 8:16, 8:33, 8:00, 6:41. I have to mention here, after checking my watch, my heart rate was at a sprint level for 50% of that run. Yikes, looks like I have some work to do to increase my speed for SeaWheeze.


After I recovered from wanting to vomit, we headed for beer. Well, we were looking for water but ended up walking right by it and into the beer garden. It was an accident, I swear. Then we couldn’t leave the beer garden to get food and water, so we stuck it out, finished our free brews and visited with peeps. I had a good chat with Kris and her dad and gave them some lunch recommendations. It makes me so happy when out-of-towners get to experience the beauty of our little city and I can’t wait for Kris to come back!

This year they were offering runners a free smokie plus salads on top of the free beer which I think was a great addition. On top of an inexpensive registration fee, a beer glass and custom made coaster, this race has a ton of value.

We grabbed our food and some shade to eat it in before heading home again. All in all, it was a great morning and I’m so thankful for my friends and community! I will absolutely be signing up again next year and hopefully Liam too (there was a free kids race!).

Mark your calendars and join next year!


Sunday Runday #74

Another Sunday is coming to a close which means another week closer to SeaWheeze. Monday’s easy run was absolutely brutal. My body was still tired from the previous weekend’s activities, so after riding the struggle bus, I gave up and walked. Wednesday was speed day and the intervals jumped from 30 seconds of work to 1 minute of work with 2 minutes walk break. Let me tell you, 1 minute is much, much longer than 30 seconds but I managed to stay consistent in the 4:30 min/km range for three rounds.

Yesterday was long run day, which I incorporated into a local race. I’ll have a full recap to come later in the week. I ran about 1.25km to the race start since it was so close to my house and then completed the 10k. I originally planned to keep it slow and steady like the rest of my long runs lately, but Shannon challenged me to push a little harder. We ran 10-1 intervals for an average pace of 7:36min/km.

This definitely has me thinking that I should continue running 10-1 intervals for my long runs and for SeaWheeze so I don’t end up burning out.

Me dying while I sprint to the finish, while Shannon looks perfect lol. 

From Mary:

It was a beautiful day for a run! I’ve never trained for a half marathon before… I’ve got to say, I’m enjoying the long runs way more than I thought. Today had its sights set on 13 k-  and hitting that on my watch was a pretttaay great feeling!

(Mary is seriously crushing her half training. Related: I miss running with her on a regular basis!) 

Did you get out to run today?

If you’re new to Sunday Runday, it’s a weekly running date for anyone and everyone to join. It doesn’t matter the distance, the time if you’re brand new or a seasoned marathoner, heck you don’t even need to run. Walk, jog, run, spin, lift, bend, move. The point is just to have fun and motivate each other to get on our feet. Get out there snap a pic, and send me your mini recap to becky at thebexfactor dot com before 7pm MST every single Sunday to be featured in this post. Or, post to social media and share the link below. If you’re a fellow blogger, grab the banner and join the link-up with your favourite run chat from the week!

Healthy Living

City Chase Calgary 2017 Recap

Last year Cassandra and I participated in City Chase for the first time. It’s an Amazing Race style urban adventure race that was an absolute blast. We returned to City Chase Calgary this year as team Two Tired Moms, strategy in hand, ready for a day full of fun.

We hit the road early Saturday morning, armed with giant coffees, on our way to Eau Clair to pick up our shirts and bibs and freebies from our fundraising efforts. In support of the GoodLife Kids Foundation, participants can raise funds and be awarded various perks to aid in their chase depending on their fundraising level. Thanks to our generous family and friends, we raised over $500, which meant we got one clue answered, one free jump the line pass, and our clue sheet early.

City Chase Calgary 2017

We arrived at Eau Clair just after 8, grabbed our gear and hung out until it was time to go. This included visiting with Ange and Brie who were also a team in the race, a couple trips to the bathroom, reorganizing our bag, watching a morning puppy training class and drinking a couple bottles of Ocean Spray being handed out in the sponsor tents. Finally, just after 10 am we were off. While everyone ran off to get their clue sheets, Cassandra and I got started solving clues to find out where our Checkpoints were and plotting them onto a map on Cassandra’s phone. After another quick pee break, we were off. Initially we had hoped to start at the furthest point away to beat the lineups and allow us to hit all the stopped as we worked our way back to the finish line, but working with Ange and Brie, who have a much better idea where things are in the Core, we ended up scrapping that plan.

Our first checkpoint was Segway Frisbee, where one partner rode the Segway through a pylon course, then catch a Frisbee from their partner and in turn throw the Frisbee to knock a baseball off a pylon. Next up was the gorgeous Stephen Avenue GoodLife where we had to guess calories per serving of pictured items, with an exercise penalty for incorrect guesses.

City Chase Calgary 2017

By this point, we were close to the Calgary Tower, another Checkpoint location, with the task of climbing over 800 stairs to the top. While I knew it would be hard, I was kind of excited for it since not many people can say they’ve done it. The stairs are not open to the public, and it’s pretty expensive to ride the elevator to the observation tower. 100 stairs in and I was already dying but we somehow made it to the top without certain death. Coming down was almost harder as I felt super unsteady on my feet, making me descend slower, which made my quads burn and shake. All in all, it took us 40 minutes up and down with a break at the top to catch our breath and snap some photos. Not bad!

Next, we got to channel our inner Katniss while attempting to shoot an apple off our partners head with a padded arrow. I wish we could have caught ours on video as I may have shot Cassandra directly in the face. I was excited to stumble upon zorbing balls at another nearby park until we learned that we didn’t get to participate in zorbing races like last year. Instead, one person wore a mini zorbing ball thing and had to push the larger one until the hole was open so the partner could shoot an arrow into it. Definitely not as fun as zorbing races.

City Chase Calgary 2017 City Chase Calgary 2017


It was definitely time for lunch by this point. Our goal this year was to actually stop to eat since we failed to do so last year and it left us fairly cranky by the time we finished. We stumbled into Blaze Pizza to share a couple pizza’s and down a beer before heading on our way again. It was the perfect way to fuel up before our next challenge of pulling a school bus, which we got to complete as a team of four.

Blind Mario Kart was next, where we learned that one of us is bad at giving directions and the other might be bad at following directions. We were closing in on the cutoff time to finish with one more challenge to go, so Cassandra and I broke off from Ange and Brie to hustle to complete our final challenge, bottle rockets. Last year, Cassandra nearly knocked herself out diving to catch our bottle before it hit her on the top of the head, so this year we traded places so I could catch. Somehow Cassandra ended up shooting herself in the face instead of up in the air. Next year, we may have to consider not participating in this checkpoint, haha.

After six hours, almost 19 kilometers covered, and 55 floors climbed, we successfully crossed the finish line. While we’d have loved to see and complete more of the challenges, we had a blast running around the city doing silly things together. I seriously can’t wait until next year to do it all over again.