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Three’s Company at Femsport Vancouver 2013

September 16, 2013 in Events, Exercise, Race

Femsport 2013 - Tire Flip; Photo Credit: Rick MacDonald

Femsport 2013 – Tire Flip; Photo Credit: Rick MacDonald

I participated in my second Femsport Women’s Strength & Fitness Challenge on September 7, 2013 in North Vancouver. I competed in the open division having previously competed in the novice division (first time competitors only) in 2012. While last year’s experience was nothing short of special and memorable, my overall experience and performance this year was markedly different than last…

First off, I competed both as an individual and as part of a team this year. My 3 person team was formed about 2 weeks prior to the event so I must give kudos to my teammates Michelle and Jessica for enthusiastically entering the open division with me considering they have never done this before. On top of that, they did very well in every event. I really enjoyed the camaraderie that comes with being part of a team. In addition, my younger sister, May, and friend, Mary, decided to enter the (novice) competition as well. Together, we supported and cheered each other on along with the many other competitors who were giving it their all.

With a better idea of what I needed to improve on from last year, I focused on establishing goals for each particular event. For example, I wanted to do the the (50) box jumps in 47 seconds or less and I set the bar real low for the obstacle course by simply establishing a goal of not falling or tripping on the course (I stumbled 3 times last year).

The challenges on event day started with the tire pull, kettlebell lift, box jumps, tire flip and obstacle course. Inverted rows and the car push were not included in Femsport Vancouver this year. While tire flipping (flipping a 270 lbs. tire six times) was my most challenging event of the day, it was also the most rewarding and enjoyable.

After the final event was completed, I was filled with a strong sense of pride and accomplishment to have achieved my personal best in all of the events with a relatively sound mind, as I was a nervous wreck the previous year. Placing 2nd place overall in the individuals open division and 3rd place in the team category was just the icing on the cake. Click here for the final results.

I was thrilled to have my daughters in the crowd to cheer me one for the final event, the obstacle course. When I asked my 2 year old what she remembered from the event, this is exactly what she said, “When you roll through the wheel; that my favourite part. Then you run, run, run and put the stick in.” and then she gave me a big kiss :). I hope that one day, my daughters will recognize that I did this event (among other things) not only for myself, but also for them. I hope to be for them, what my mother and many inspiring women have been for me.

The supportive and empowering atmosphere that surrounds Femsport and the athletes within it has inspired me, and many other women, to continue to strive towards personal bests, have fun, and support those who want to do the same.

Tire Pull:

Kettlebell Liftt:

Box Jumps:

Tire Flip:

Obstacle Course:



June 10, 2013 in biking, Events, Exercise, Outdoor Activity, Parenthood, Race, Running

We participated in the SunRype TriKids Triathlon this past weekend with Malaya swimming, biking, and running to a successful finish. The experience was fantastic and very memorable. Words can not describe how proud we are of our 4 year old daughter for the effort she put forth. We could also tell that Malaya felt a sense of accomplishment for her hard work and it was so heartwarming to witness. She didn’t say it but you could see it and feel it in the energy she was emitting after the race. The most gratifying part of the event for Dawn and I was not watching Malaya swim, bike, or run, it was seeing the smile on her face at the end. For her to feel good about herself for accomplishing something she worked so hard for was the ultimate prize. It didn’t matter if she was the fastest, or if she came in 1st, 2nd, 3rd or last in this race; there was none of that kind of win-at-all-cost competitiveness at this event, at least not from our perspective. Our experience with this race was such that the focus was on each kid doing their best and having fun. Mission accomplished.

At the end of the day, when you ask Malaya how it was, she says it was fun. Which part was the most fun? “All of it!” Here’s a short video of Malaya’s experience in her first ever triathlon.

We have to give credit to the organizers of this event for creating a safe race environment for all the athletes and spectators. The event was so well organized, from registration, to pre-race orientation, race package pick-up, and race day execution. These guys did a terrific job and it has been one of the best organized events we’ve taken part in.

For more info on the SunRype TriKids Triathlon Series, visit their website and check out any upcoming races in your area.


Marathons & Marriage

September 26, 2012 in Events, Race, Running

Lululemon Seawheeze Half-marathon Vancouver

Malaya & I cheering on runners at the lululemon seawheeze half-marathon.

By the way, did we mention that infrequent blog posts is going to be a regular thing here?

Summer arrived late but we’ve had a fantastic stretch of summer from July onwards and with the nice weather, it’s kind of strange that I have not been running much at all. Yes, we’ve been busy with other commitments and have spent a lot of time playing with the kids outdoors thanks to all the extra daylight but sometimes it’s not a matter of finding the time and it becomes a matter of finding the motivation.

We’re all motivated and inspired by different things and I would love to know what fuels your fire, so please share and post in the comments.

My latest little source of inspiration comes from the lululemon Seawheeze half marathon. Lululemon put on their inaugural Seawheeze half marathon in Vancouver on August 11th and although we didn’t sign up for this race, Dawn and I brought the kids down to cheer on the runners. Our very own ampleant was running her first ever race so we wanted to be there to cheer her on.

We planted ourselves close to the finish line to watch the participants endure the last stretch of the race. Watching the runners go by was definitely inspiring and made me want to start running again. There were runners who finished really strong and looked like they were good to go for another 21km. “I wanna be like them.” I thought to myself as I pictured myself running my next race with the same speed, energy and vigour. And then there were runners who looked like they were gonna pass out and not gonna make it. One runner even stopped in front of us, hunched over and gagging as if she was going to show us last night’s dinner. It may not have been pretty but the effort was inspiring and the fact the she managed to get herself to finish the race was awesome.

It was definitely a thrill to watch people cross the finish line and it was inspiring to watch people achieve what they set out to do. I recommend you do this if you’re needing a little motivation and inspiration. Check out the video and look at how much fun it can be to cheer people on.

Congratulations to all the runners, our ampleant, and an extra special congratulations to our friend Arlyn & her now husband Ellery who got married on the spot after finishing their run. This couple had arranged to have their wedding ceremony performed right at Jack Poole plaza by the Olympic cauldron where the racers gathered after the run – what a unique and fantastic idea this was! You can see them in the video at 3:14. “May your hearts beat together in marriage and in marathons.” Lovely.

Ps. Arlyn also makes stuff sometimes.


Femsport Challenge Vancouver 2012

August 27, 2012 in Events, Exercise, Race

FEMSPORT is a strength and fitness competition which challenges female athletes to test their strength, agility, power, endurance & speed.

FEMSPORT participants have the option of competing on a team or as an individual athlete in such challenges as:
•    Inverted Rows
•    Kettlebell Lift
•    Tire Flip
•    Box Jumps
•    Obstacle Course
•    Tire Drag
•    ….more details CLICK HERE

Dawn competed in her first ever Femsport Challenge in Vancouver on August 25, 2012 and placed 1st in the novice division.  Download the full 2012 Vancouver Challenge Results here.



The Kinetic Family Guide to The Rush – Part 2 of 2: Lessons Learned.

July 7, 2012 in Exercise, Outdoor Activity, Race, Running

RUSH2012 Fly on the Wall

Rush 2012, Photo by Suhkraj Bhattal Photography

First off, a shout out to the B.C. Lung Association, Pinnacle Pursuits, and all of the volunteers for putting on another great RUSH event. It’s always nice to participate in a race that is so well organized. Secondly, congratulations to the winning team, Team Exhalent, for an impressive 3hr:28mins finish. And last but not least, a big pat on the back and thank you to everyone who participated and helped raise over $60,000 for the B.C. Lung Association.

Our team finished 7th overall (Race Results) which was a huge improvement from our 27th place ranking in 2011. It was a lot of fun and we’re happy we completed the race unscathed, and more importantly, with our relationship still intact. Here’s a RECAP of our day & the lessons learned that we hope to build on for next year.

June 23, 2012 – We arrived at the race start location at Jack Poole Plaza just after 9:00am where we noticed that the opening ceremonies had already begun. Not wanting to miss out on anything, especially any clues or hints, we skipped a planned pit stop to the washroom and headed straight for the Rush stage to join the rest of the Rushers. We thought we’d have some time to sit back, gather ourselves, and perhaps take turns going to the washroom while the other person took note of any pertinent information being given out but that was definitely not the case. This is the rush; expect the unexpected...

RUSH 2012 It takes two

The Rapping Parents, Photography by Jorge Pasada

Runners up in the Rush video contest (we were one of them) were summoned to the stage to perform a snippet of their ‘rushified’ song for another chance to win a Gold Rush Pass. The competition had begun before the race had even started. The battle for the Gold Rush Pass came down to us and Team Wolfpack with their rushified version of NSYNC’s Bye Bye Bye (Rush Rush Rush). With Team Wolfpack’s superior vocals, we were in tough, but we managed to win the crowd and thus win the challenge. With Team Wolfpack having won the previous (mouse trap) challenge on stage, it came down to a tie-breaker task which involved Dawn eating a couple of goat testicles to seal the win for our team. The lesson learned here is not to practice eating goat testicles for the Rush but to arrive to the race early. Had we arrived any later, we would have missed our opportunity to challenge for the Gold Rush Pass.

RUSH2012 Scramble Start

Photo by Suhkraj Bhattal Photography

The race got started with a mad scramble for balls which teams needed to obtain the clue sheet. Once we got our official Rush clue sheet we were on the phone with our support team right away. Once again, I’d like to reiterate how critical it is to have some sort of support in place. Dawn and I alone, probably could have spent the entire time just trying to figure out clues. Although we had already identified the general location of some of the checkpoints, thanks to some pre-race hints, we still spent a significant amount of time at the beginning solving the rest of the clues. In hindsight, we spent too much time standing still at the beginning when we could have been making our way to our first checkpoint and solving clues along the way. It’s important to start quickly. Much like an Olympic one-hundred meter sprinter at the start line, a fast start when the gun goes off could be the difference between silver and gold.

After about 2 hours, we had completed 3 checkpoints challenges (at UBC). We had also solved the majority of the remaining clues and mapped out their locations. It was just a matter of getting to the checkpoints in the most logical and quickest order possible and successfully completing the checkpoint challenges. We completed two more checkpoints around the Langara & 49th Avenue area and were halfway done. We were making good time and reached a critical point in the race where we had to decide which checkpoints to go to next. There were a couple at Queen Elizabeth Park which were the closest to us at the time, but there were also 2 checkpoints near Vancouver City Hall that were easily accessible along the skytrain route. We chose neither and figured our best bet was to hop on the skytrain and head for checkpoints which were closer to the finish line. We completed our next 2 challenges at BC Place, one of which was a charity checkpoint, meaning we didn’t have to do the challenge since our team raised over $500 for the B.C. Lung Association. It is totally worth the effort to do the extra fundraising to qualify for the Charity Checkpoint pass.

RUSH2012 Finish Line

Photo by Suhkraj Bhattal Photography

With 7 checkpoints in the bag, we were pleased about our progress and hadn’t yet encountered anything too painfully challenging; that is until we got to our next stop. There were 3 checkpoints around the Main/Terminal area and these would be our final 3. There was a checkpoint on a grassy field just north of the Telus World of Science which required a little bit of mathematical skill and engineering ingenuity. We quickly and regrettably learned that these were not our strong suits. After painfully getting through the exercise, we were down to our last two checkpoints.

The next one was in Chinatown and got through it quickly without much trouble. We were quickly off to our final destination: Pacific Central Station. We were still feeling pretty good about our chances at this point. Looking back at it now, this last challenge wasn’t really as daunting as it seemed to be at the time. It required plenty of patience and some critical thinking and at this point in the race, with us being so close to finishing, we sadly buckled under pressure and flustered ourselves out of contention. We felt so hurried and worried about getting this last checkpoint over with that we lost our ability to listen and listening just happened to be critical to completing this challenge. As a Rusher, it’s in your best interest to take a minute to listen carefully to the instructions at the checkpoints. It could cost you a trip around the world.

Well, that was our Rush 2012 experience and we hope that fellow and future Rushers can learn something from our experience and now that we’ve given you the low-down (go here for Part 1), what are you waiting for? Registration for next year’s event is now open. Get out there and Rush! 

RUSH2012 with Team Exhalent

Picking up some pointers from 1st place team, Team Exhalent. Photo by Suhkraj Bhattal Photography