Buenos Dias

Good morning from Guayaquil, Ecuador!

After spending a night in Tumbes Peru, we crossed over the border to Guyaquil yesterday afternoon. 

Tumbes was hoppin´!  So many people everywhere!  It was fun but daunting.  We stayed at Hotel Chica.  Sparse but relatively clean so who the heck cares!  There was a sweet little roof top patio with a view of the street.  Sadly, the mosquitos came out at dusk and they were vicious!  So we retreated to our room for an early night.  Up at 6am the next morn´ to catch the CIFA bus to Ecuador.

A 4 hour bus ride turned into 6 which my bladder handled only slightly better than Anna Marie´s.  Alas.  We hopped in a taxi at the bus depot/giant shopping mall and made our way to the most lovely hostel I´ve ever seen.  I wish I knew what it was called!  It´s set in a private garden with a pool, plenty of flora, a view overlooking the city and hammocks from which to enjoy said view!  And a resident bulldog  It´s truely breathtaking.  We considered staying an extra day just to enjoy the hostel a little longer but decided we might get bored and that it would be best to keep moving and preserve the pristine memories we already have.

´Next is a bus to Banos where we´ll spend a night and maybe do some horseback riding.  Then to Quito for a few days to explore the capital city.  Hopefully I´ll be able to upload some photos from there.

xoxo

Lima Beans!

As in from Lima.  I think they were actually pinto beans.  But they were delicious and cooked into some kind of Peruvian risotto of sorts.  There was octopus in it too!!  Had some ceviche to start.  It was in a brilliant orange sauce that I´d have thought was something toxic if it hadn´t tasted so good and real!

Anna Marie met me at the airport after a very uneventful flight.  We made it back to the hostel around 12 30 and were in bed just before 2am.  Anna Marie thought I was crazy to have spent the last 3 weeks training my body to quit the snooze alarm and wake up at 8 15am everyday.  I was curious to see if my efforts would be successful.  I woke up this morning thinking it had to be close to 11am.  Anna Marie started to rustle in the bunk above mine and I stuck my head out with a big smile for her just as she stuck her head out over the edge.  She erupted in giggles saying “It´s 8 15! It´s 8 15!” Hehehe..  I guess it worked!

We are soon to leave on a 19 hour bus ride to Tumbes.  I don´t know what we´re going to do there but Anna Marie is the planner sooooo  We´ll see!!

Love you all! I hope I´ll post some pictures soon (the only one I´ve taken so far is of a sign showing a baby eating a giant sandwich.  You´ll understand why it´s so amazing when you see it!).

xoxo

Good Bye Little Lumpies

There are a number of things I love about my miniature blender. It is superior to my old giant food processor in so many lovely ways.

  • It’s small enough to live on my counter yet large enough to contain an entire breakfast.
  • It’s eradicated my need to wash an entire food processor every time I make a smoothie.
  • It actually makes a smoothie and not a lumpy.

But perhaps my absolute favourite thing about my miniature blender?  When it blends it smells like a motorboat.  Like the motorboats I used to ride in, as a child, at our family cottage.  What can I say?  Warm machine smell makes me nostalgic.  Mmm.

IMG_1313

Back from whence I came.

I have returned.  It’s been a long time since I’ve posted.  There wasn’t any one reason for my absence.   I got a little discouraged.  I wasn’t “good” at it right away so I quit. And I found the technical processes quite cumbersome.  Well, d’uh I wasn’t “good” at it.  Whatever that even means!  I didn’t give myself a chance to be good at it.  A nasty attitude I’ve seen resurface in my life.  It’s caused me, in the past, to give up when I probably should have bucked up or buckled down.  Like those few months I tried to go to University.  I’ve thought often of my abandoned little blog and how I don’t want to be the person who cast it aside so quickly.  The person who didn’t give it a chance to develop into something.  So I’ve decided to come back and give it another go.  With the added benifit of making sure I use less photos.  That’s the part that was really getting me down.  Okey dokey then..  Moving on!

 

I feel like I have so much to tell you, world wide web!  When I started writing this blog I had just begun the couch to 5k program.  I’m happy to announce that I have completed said program!  And since run a 5k race (and not come in last)!  And completed a sprint triathlon(and not come in last!).  And am training for my first 10k.  And am preparing to meet my BFF Anna-Marie, who has lived for years in Australia,  for 6 weeks of travelling through South America!!!

But first things first. 

The 5k was held in Grand Beach, oft spoke of as one of the greatest beaches in Canada.  It’s pretty superb.  And a sweet spot for a first race ever! 

My pal Leah and I agreed to run run this first race together if not side by side, at least covering the same course on the same day.  Leah’s been running a year or more longer than I have so I was nervous to try to keep up.  I was pretty fresh of the couch to 5k program at this point.  We drove out to Grand Beach the day before.

 

I'm on the left.  I sacrificed the a flattering photo of myself for you Leah.

(I sacrificed a more flattering photo of myself for a more flattering photo of you Leah so no complaints!)

 

We spent the night at the lovely South Beach Casino and Resort.  There were dolphins everywhere in that place!  On the lamp shades,  the carpet, the front desk, in statue form.  Dolphin city man! Not that that’s relevant. 

 

We woke up bright and early, breakfasted, pinned our numbers on and made coffee that tasted like tires.  We didn’t drink it. 

Drove to the start and got more and more anxious.  Little did we know, everything was going to be okay. 

 

Once we found the start line we settled ourselves way at the back.  I think that was my idea. We waited for the gun and..  I’d love to say “took off!” but it was more like “began our slow dissent upon the finish line.” My dissent being much slower than Leah’s actually a runner pace.  About 1.5k in I reached the best part of the run which was passing my most favourite Aunty Judy’s cottage where she was waiting on the porch with an enthusiastic wave and a big smile.  I rounded the corner and got all teary.  I couldn’t believe that I was doing what I was doing.  Until a few weeks before the race I had never run 5k in my life.  I thought a lot about my Dad and how I wished that he could be at the finish line and hoped that he would be proud of me.  It really was an emotional run.  I revelled in it though.  It was a clean wash of emotions that I was feeling in ways I hadn’t felt before. ……Until the last 1.5k where I really didn’t think of anything at all except for the fact that I was running over the loose sand along the shoreline.  Uh what??  I was under the impression that it was going to be hard packed sand.  And it would have been without the wind causing waves that splashed further up the shore than and average day.  Whatcha gonna do? I could see the finish line, I hadn’t stopped to walk yet and I sure as hell wasn’t about to.  I kept on going and even sped up for the last hundred metres or so and then..  As soon as it came it went.  I was over the finish line.  Huh? Oh! Yipee!!  I saw a clock on my way in that said 37 minutes and some seconds that didn’t register. 

P1010217

 

I met up with Leah, who finished 4 or 5 minutes before me, and my main man Steve who was an excellent photographer and supporter to us both.  We all had some good hugs and high fives and then high tailed it to my Aunts for an amazing waffle brunch.  

It was an amazing day.  I accomplished something I never thought I could.  I had shown myself that just because I couldn’t have done it 2 and a half months before it was so worth sticking it out and not quitting. 

Who knows, maybe one day I’ll be saying something similar about this lil’ bloggy.

 

Have you ever quit something, only to triumph over it (in your own way) later on? 

What’s your proudest moment?

And yes, I understand those questions are probably being asked to my Mom.   

xoxo

Do I need my gas mask?

I discovered a few things this morning.

  • I prefer organic carrots immensely.
  • I’m very scared of orange/pink/red mold.
  • Spell check in Word doesn’t recognize the word “mold.”

I ran out of organic carrots a couple of days ago and have yet to make it to Ye Olde Carrot Shoppe to replace them.  Which is probably why I woke up craaaaaaaaving carrot oatmeal as per my last few oatmeal sessions.  No bother, I thought I would just “borrow” (yeah, they’ll be getting them back!) a small handful of mini carrots from my house guests.  Shred, shred, shred the carrots and your left with the little butts.  Too big to meld with oats so might as well pop ‘em straight in the hangar (my mouth). Guh!  They tasted SO bizarre!  Like waxy toy soldiers or something.  Bleh!  Oh well, they were much less offensive mixed into  el oatties.

Virtually Inoffensive Oatmeal

Check this out!

What IS that?!

I found it in here

My distrust of Safeway has only been furthered.

I have never in my life seen mold like this.  Yes my yogurt was past it’s best before date but not poison toxin past.  Prehaps this is totally normal.  I tried to google it but mostly I kept coming back to jello mold recipes and time’s too tight today to be wasting away on google.  Besides, if I explored too far I would probably wind up wanting to make a jello mold.  I don’t want to want to make a jello mold.

Yesterday I completed day 2 of week 4 of the couch to 5K Yipee!  I am almost desperately looking forward to being able to run for longer than 5 minutes.  I want to run long, interesting routes.  And so yesterday I took my training to the monkey trails.  I’m apt to think this will benefit my training in the long run, working on harder trails and all.  We’ll see.

I’d love to do day 3 today but I’m going to give my leggies a breaky instead.  Maybe go for a walk before heading up to spend Mother’s day on my Mum’s farm learning to make sushi from her Japanese  WOOFer.  Uhh Hell Yeah!

Thoughts after Coffee

I’m drinking a delightful latte.  Made with fresh whole milk straight from a farm.  I don’t know if a coffee gets any better than this.  Well, the dribble of maple syrup helps it along.

Latttttttahhhhhhhhh

I’ve been thinking lately about how thrilled I am to be active again.  To be working towards a fitter body and life.  I see a tremendous amount of change in my both body and demeanour.  I am definitely aware that my lower back doesn’t hurt anymore.  The pain of it doesn’t nag me in the middle of the night or cause me to stop short going down a flight of stairs.  I can carry heavier loads.  I can comfortably tie my shoes from a standing position.  I sleep better.

I’m also inspired to see myself thinking ahead to my goals, as in working to accomplish something.  Sadly this is unlike me!  I’m more or a “sit back and wait for what may or may not come”er.  So what is the magical difference?  What makes it easy to start another week of the Couch to 5k plan but so hard to put the groceries away all at once?  What is the satisfaction of knowing that the more I do now and the more I stick to it the bigger the fitness challenge I’ll be able to tackle later on.  Don’t get me wrong, I marvel every time I go for a swim or walk or runny thingy or do push ups and planks.  I savour the sensations and really love pushing myself in the moment to see how far I can go.  But the real motivation is the experiences to come.  Maybe it’s as a result of being a beginner.  Or maybe it’s part of my disposition.  I’m not sure.  And I don’t dislike these feelings, but I am intrigued by them.

I read recently, about running specifically, that running doesn’t make you a better runner but the rest and recovery of your muscles afterwards make you a better runner.  I can believe this to be true.  But I’d also like to add a period of reflection to go with that rest and recovery.  As well as a healthy measure of looking forward.

I’m going for a cold runny/walky thingy this aft.  I look forward to both the time spent doing it and the time spent after doing it.

About last night….

Dinner was an awesome favorite of mine.  It’s pretty easy to make, the hardest part is getting all the ingredients.  I like to shop at a store called Dong Thai (in Winnipeg on Notre Dame, a block or two east of Balmoral ).  I suppose for a bigger city a shop like this is no big deal, but to this Winnipegger it’s a magical place where things are foreign, tasty and cheap!  Having stocked up at Dong Thai I was all set to make THAI BASIL PESTO or something to that effect…

I put almost all this stuff in the food processor (not all the ginger or chilis) + a few cubes of frozen mango and a huge clove of garlic blended til I thought it looked right and then refrigerated for a few hours.

Here’s what dinner wound up looking like….

Basil, Thai Basil, Mint, Ginger, Thai Chilis, Soy Sauce, Lime Juice, Sesame Seeds, Coconut Milk, Sesame Oil.

Over brown rice with Steamed Veg.

Today is more cold rain.  The weather has been doing this for days now and I am SO ready to get outside!  I’m set to start week 4 of the Couch to 5K and am really REALLY looking forward to it! Hopefully tomorrow..  Or maybe even later this afternoon. Managed to sneak it in ‘tween rains late this morning.  It felt great!  I liked the 5 minute run segments best!

On a side note, I’ve updated the “about” page..  If you’d like a better idea of why I’m telling you what I eat and what I exercise.

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