Live More Now: Goals & Motivation

Disclaimer: I received three Buff products to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

This post is part 1 of 3 in my Live More Now series.  

After giving birth to my first child, I purposely did not set any lofty fitness expectations for myself. I was out of shape from pregnancy and a few months of bed rest/reduced activity and was recovering from a c-section. I certainly wasn’t about to sign up for an ultra.

And guess what? This fun pregnancy business didn’t end when my baby was born and I didn’t get my body back away. Because there was this adorable little creature sucking all the nutrition out of me

Don’t get me wrong, I love nursing my child and all the benefits associated with it. However, breastfeeding (for me anyway) means that my body is full of hormones, I’m burning more calories, and I dehydrate way more easily.

For the first while, I woke up every morning feeling like I had arthritis in my hands. It wasn’t excruciating but enough that it would sometimes wake me up and prevent me from falling back asleep. I also had trouble with my shoulder when doing things like taking off a sports bra over my head. And worst of all, my knees and hips were more tender and susceptible to injury. Eventually these things subsided and despite continuing to nurse, I’m now getting to a place where my body is finally starting to feel more “normal” again.

An opportunity came up in April through BibRave to test out a few Buff products while tackling some goals. By this time the days were getting longer and I was excited to spend more time outside with my maternity leave buddies, my baby and my dog. I’m not solely motivated by the prospect of new gear but it definitely helps!

So I expressed my interest in participating but told them that I didn’t have any lofty plans. I just wanted to get out for more walks, hopefully hit the trails, and maybe even a get in tail-end-of-the-season easy front country snowshoe.

Full-blown summer came swiftly and by the time I received the products so the snowshoe was out (although I did see some snow). However, I have managed to get moving and achieve some even better goals.

Up next: I’ll tell you about the three Buff products that I received.

Aftershokz Trekz Titanium Wireless Headphones

Disclaimer: I received Aftershokz Trekz Titanium headphones to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

I’ve tried a few pairs of bluetooth headphones for running over the years but the Aftershokz Trekz Titanium ($129.95 CAD) are my new favourites. And they couldn’t have come at a better time.

Unlike most headphones, the Aftershokz Trekz Titanium use bone conduction technology which sits over your ear lobe instead if in your ear. This means you can still hear what’s going on around you, which is HUGE for safety. I even feel comfortable running with a stroller along busy streets while listening to music or audiobooks. You can’t exactly carry on a conversation with someone but you can easily hear important sounds like sirens, cars honking, or yelling.

The trade off is that sound quality isn’t mind blowing, and seems to vary depending on how the sit on your ears. But it’s more than adequate for listening to some tunes on the run. The Aftershokz Trekz Titanium also contain dual noise canceling microphones for handsfree calling. At the press of a button, you can utilize voice commands to dial a number or, if you have an iPhone like me, you can ask Siri to check your messages, the weather, etc.

The headphones themselves are super lightweight and flexible. It took a short time to get used to the fit and feel of the open ear design but now are comfortable. They are designed to repel sweat, dust, and moisture, which is a must for our rainy Vancouver climate.

I, of course, chose the slate grey colour because I’m super boring like that. But they also come in pink, ocean blue, and “ivy” green (looks like more of a lime green to me) if you are feeling colourful.

Once unboxed, I had the Aftershokz Trekz Titanium set up and synced with my phone in minutes. The instructions are simple and the controls are easy to use. There are just three buttons: volume up/power, volume down, and a multifunction button. I haven’t performed a test yet but the specifications state 6 hours hours of continuous play / 10 days of standby time per charge. They charge in 1.5 hours using a micro USB cable (provided).

Win a pair of Aftershokz Trekz Titanium!

In celebration of Canada Day, Aftershokz is giving one lucky Canadian some of their favourite products in (you guessed it!) RED. Enter now at canadaday.aftershokz.ca!

Giveaway ends 6/29 at 11:59PM ET. Must be eighteen years or older and be a resident of Canada to enter.

Prizes:

  • AfterShokz Trekz Titanium headphones in red (1)
  • AfterShokz Sport Belt in red (1)
  • AfterShokz Water Bottle in red (1)
  • AfterShokz Towel (1)
  • AfterShokz hat (1)

TransAlpine Run 2016 – Stage 6

This is part 9 of a series detailing my experiences travelling to Europe and completing the Gore-tex TransAlpine Run. The TransAlpine Run is a 7-day stage race from southern Germany across Austria and into northern Italy boasting a distance of 250 km and elevation gain of 15000 m. Eight of us traveled there together as Team Ultra Crazy to attempt this huge goal.

I participated in the race in September 2016 but am just finished up the last few posts finally in June 2018. Accuracy is not guaranteed.

St. Leonhard in Passeier to Sarnthein

33.6 km | 2440 m ascent | 2153 m descent | 9 hour cut off

You may have noticed there aren’t a lot of photos during the first half (or the “up” portion) of the day for my TransAlpine posts. When starting this race, I quickly learned not to take many photos until descending because I desperately needed all the precious minutes and seconds to make the cutoffs. I’m not sure why I took a few this day, but it could have been a disastrous mistake. I remember this was an awesome but difficult day with the last cut off being really tight!

There was lots of beautiful and scenic climbing as per usual. We had to get up over the ridge, down some steep, technical, rocky terrain, through the alpine for a while, and then straight down into town. We saw more cows of course, by this point I was getting a little less nervous around them.

You may have noticed there aren’t a lot of photos during the first half (or the “up” portion) of the day for my TransAlpine posts. When starting this race, I quickly learned not to take many photos until descending because I desperately needed all the precious minutes and seconds to make the cutoffs. I’m not sure why I took a few this day, but it could have been a disastrous mistake. I remember this was an awesome but difficult day with the last cut off being really tight!

There was lots of beautiful and scenic climbing as per usual. We had to get up over the ridge, down some steep, technical, rocky terrain, through the alpine for a while, and then straight down into town. We saw more cows of course, by this point I was getting a little less nervous around them.

Chris stuck very close by me the whole race but ran off ahead a bit as we descended through farm land. It’s easier for him to run as his pace down than putting on the breaks to slow down to mine. Every so often he’d wait for me to catch up. So of course this is when I bailed.

I had been running down this weird cobblestone trail near a German lady when she fell. I stopped to make sure she was alright, although we didn’t speak the same language. She managed to continue on. Moments later I fell and cut my hand open on a rock. It wasn’t a big deal, however, I always feel a little off when I lose blood. I wrapped my Buff around it to stop the bleeding and caught up with Chris.

The next aid station was in sight below so I saw a first aid attendant there. He washed it out a bit, wrapped it in a ton of gauze and told me to get it checked out again at the finish line. Chris got me some sugary snacks while I sat and shook off my lightheadedness for a few minutes.

We finished this stage in 8 hours and 18 minutes. I believe we stayed at Hotel Alpenblick that night which was a short drive from the finish line. I remember ordering a three course meal which was heavily cheese and the salad bar was amazing!