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Tuesday, 26 February 2013

The Tale of the Travelling Shoes

Are you sitting down? Because this story may take a while!!

Back in December I  saw a cool post from a lovely blogger in California talking about these cool shoes I saw on the Dr Oz show....

I was intrigued by Debbie's review and giveaway!! oooo. I checked...didn't see anything that said it was a US only giveaway so I entered. And wouldn't you know it i WON!

Hot damn i was so chuffed!!

Then Debbie messages me and says, well Therafit does not ship to Canada (what! boooo) but I will get them to you! Wow. How nice. Wait. I know that shipping is a pain from US to Canada (why I do not's not like we are that far or anything!!!) so I offered to help pay. But Debbie says no. So I know it takes time to ship and I am so excited to get them, I get her to ship to my parents house in Stettler where I am headed for the holidays. That way I will be THERE when they arrive. I wont miss their arrival if they come here while i am there for the holidays, right?

Ah...and then the UPS shipping nightmare story begins. You can read Debbie's story here!!! Basically Debbie ships em..they come straight to my parents town. where they SIT for 2 weeks. I ask where the shoes are and UPS keeps telling me they are going to be delivered. Next, they will be delivered the next day. Nope, now in a couple days this issue will be rectified  Another week passes and nope, no shoes. this town is 4,000. Where is this package?? Sigh. UPS is looking into it. I spend 2 hours one day on the phone and they tell me now the shoes are in Calgary (where I live) and will be delivered to me. No problem. Only they are never delivered but returned to sender. I raise holy hell with UPS who apologizes to me profusely. I sheepishly have to get a hold of Debbie to say...oh gawd...these shoes are coming back to you...and so the wait continues. The thing is UPS screwed up delivery. The local UPS shop shut in my parents town. So they sat there unattended. 5 friggen minutes from my mom's house for 2 weeks. I was livid. UPS promised me Debbie would not have to pay a cent to resend them. They would cover the cost for their self-admitted screw up. I guess Canadian UPS peeps didn't relay this to their American brothers.

Seriously are you laughing? You should be. It's funny when it doesn't happen to YOU! 

So finally....On Feb 8th the shoes were finally delivered. My Mom gave them to my sister who would bring them to me. Then she got sick!! aaaaaaaa

So then it took 10 days to meet up (we live a few hours apart) to get the shoes.

We RIP open the box!!! What is inside????

OOOOH look at these beauties. Not avail in Canada. No one else has em! Oh the red is UBER FAB!! LOVE. I am so ready to go.

So about those shoes...I feel terrible that I have not worn them very much. I have worn em a bit. Not a lot. The snow is melting here and its a gong show mess. I don't want to get them filthy. But TRUST me. I will wear em. I love how they feel right now. Comfy!!! I cannot wear them at work, since I wear dress shoes there. But as soon as it dries up a bit I am wearing them to walk to work! I am chuffed to bits. I love the look of them. 

THANK YOU, THANK YOU DEBBIE!!! I promise to wear them A LOT!!!!! 

I need to find Debbie something Canadian to send her...hmmm. Clamato Juice? Cheezies? hmmmmm. I will think about this!

Monday, 25 February 2013


The past few weeks (well, let's be honest...years) haven't been the greatest for me. A lot of personal upheaval, loss and confusion. And so I run. And not fast. But moving de-stresses me. Clears my head.

This weekend I so needed a run. So i did a few. A shortie 5k. And then on Sunday a little more mileage than usual (well since I wasn't allowed to run or exercise for the first two weeks of Feb. But I have kept miles up before that. So planned a 15km run Sunday  Alone. As Usual. I hate that sometimes. I am someone who needs a cheer section. Or just to know I am not doing it by myself. Most runners I know are lone wolfs. Not me. Maybe its my mindset...I am trying. It's long runs I struggle with doing alone. I have few peeps who are my pace. All the runners I know are Fasties, or short distance gals, so they do NOT do anything more than an hour ever.

So off I go. The first 5 km suck. Cant clear my head. Cant seem to stick a pace. Lots of peeps on the path tho. But I keep going. Dammit, forgot watch so estimate those 10 and 1s. Somehow iPod voice keeps popping up to tell me distance so I just keep going. One. More. Mile.

I get close to 7 and think, I am done. this is not going well. I have less than a kilometre to go before I can hit a bridge and peel off and go home. And I take a drink of water and get back to it. Better make that last K count right. And I keep going past the Bridge  Stop being a WUSS. You completely have another 7 left in you. Lameo.

And THEN I remember an online twitter convo with Sara Bown. And her comments about persistence and dedication  And I think about my last run with Cori and how we are running this week.


And so the inner dialogue goes. Countdown on the Ks. You can do this.And I hit my groove. I think I run a couple miles and only slow down for a patches of ice. Pace increases  significantly. Got the groove on. And then I see THIS.

I ran past. Then turned around to check it out again. I friggen laugh my ASS off. I don't know why, but the word WHORE on the pavement CRACKED ME UP. Somehow it distracted me....And made the last 6 k a good effort.

Yup. Might not have been fast, but i did 14km. DONE.  Slower pace than usual. I text my pal Calli (who lives 3 hours away) and she got outta bed. you got out there. you did it. Then i whine about the time and she texts back quick. SUCK IT UP. She's right! duh!! Can't a few weeks we will be running together again!! WOOT! I love a girlie road trip to do a run.

I LOVE  my friends. Ass Kicks when you need. Hugs at the ready. COMMON SENSE reminders!

Yup. I got done my run. It was a better day. And tomorrow is another day. And I leave you with this thought. Always remember it!

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Afternoon Quickie with Cori

Sometimes you just NEED a run. You NEED a boost. In the past few weeks I have struggled with motivation. Part of this a hangover from being forced to take 2+ weeks OFF of all exercise and physical activity. Part of it being distracted due to stuff at work. Oh, really, just sitting on my ass and not getting OUT THERE is the reason. No excuses.

So yesterday I knew i needed a pal to run wit.  I rarely have a Thursday I figured if I asked someone to run I couldn't jam out!!

I don't usually have anyone to run with so thought for a minute and  Cori  popped into my head! I didn't get to hang with her after the cupcake run a week ago...and hadn't chatted about her Goofy a perfect plan was hatched. I tweeted Cori to see if she could come play!

We had only ran together once before, and we had similar pacing, so I took a breath and tweeted my request!

Had to drive about 25 minutes to get to the south side of the city but was DAMN happy we did it! It was a nice easy run (with the exception of me wiping out on ice as we left the parking lot!! Can you say GRACE?)

Just a shortie run. 4km. I thought it took us jsut over 30 minutes. Easy pace..something both of us needed to get back in the saddle. Not fast - but felt nice to get out and get moving. 4km at a 7 minute pace is better than no run at all!

I am SO GLAD I asked. I rarely have peeps to run with, so it was a great plan. And the start of something good.

I am looking forward to our date next Tuesday already!

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Wordless Wednesday


Today I struggled to get up and get out to work on time. With one minute to spare I got in!

As the day drug on i thought about my run gear upstairs and was, like, ugh. I don't wanna. WHAT IS WRONG??? BAH! 

Work ended and i hustled off to run class. Hills. oh JOY. I knew i HAD to. No bitching, just doing.

I have struggled getting decent runs in since my surgery 3 weeks ago. Dammit. I need my mojo back, and I need a damn good run. Quit whinging and get yer gear on lady! As soon as we got out there and started moving it was good. Even as I looked up to that first looming hill, I thought. eww..OK. et's get this party started. And think about how good it feels to go downhill...GET IN!!!!

WOOOT! I FINISHED a 7km run. 6 hills. 6 long steep hills. There was some walking in a couple spots. But no stopping. And when my lungs burned I busted a hump to excelerate. Holy CRAP I FEEL FANTASTIC! 

I know this. Yet I dreaded today's run. Silly wrabbit! My brain is clear. My legs feel FAB! And my lungs were burning. Awesome. Can't wait for day off tomorrow and having a run with Cori

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Rock Your CEPs

How do YOU #rockyourCEPs? 
Have you tried CEP Compression wear? you should! 
Love how it helps allieviate tired legs in a halfmara! 
And they totally make a difference in recovery! 

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Reunited! a long lost post

*OMG! I just found this post i had not published I guess i had better do it now!
Sorry for being SO tardy!! 

We had lunch November 27th! 

It's like a week had passed not well over 10 years! 
I just had lunch with someone who I would definitely call my Running inspiration, Someone I havent seen in over 10 years!!

I first met Stephanie in 1999 when we both worked at the Canadian High Commission. She was in the Trade area, and I was in the Communications department. WE hit it off right away. Partly cause she was so lovely, easygoing and welcoming. And she was a runner. I wasn't  Not really. Hadn't been a runner for years. Since my cross-country days in high school. A long time ago.

But she was amazing. She ran. She didn't just run a bit. She ran 20 some kilometres at lunch. She whooped off well over 50km every week. Sometimes 100km a week. She was an elite athlete. She represented Canada on our track and field team. She was in a word - amazing. Wow. I could never do that. I admired her dedication. And her zest for life. We talked about running.  I thought maybe I should try it. Instead, I did the next best thing. I joined a women's Aussie Rules Football team. It whipped my sorry arse into shape and I learned to run. I ran around a pitch, rather than on the road. But she cheered me on and I never forgot her encouragement. I recall with fondness going to our favourite pub and drinking a pint. Her coach told her to have a Guinness the night before a long run! What a guy!!

A year later she left Australia, I stayed. Life happened. We kept in touch via email and then FaceBook! And when she finally visited my fair city from Ottawa I was thrilled to meet up. A great lunch, a long visit. And, of course some posing with the the Famous 5. Of course there is a back story. WE both love the Famous 5! But Stephanie is related to one of them ...Emily Murphy! Plus there is the exact same sculpture in Ottawa too!

Over the past two years she has been unable to run. At. All. She sends me amazing wonderful messages about how my running journey inspires her. And how proud she is of me. It means a lot coming from someone who has attained such accolades and competed on an international scale. I am such a small fish in this world, but her advice over the years has kept me moving, and made me a better runner.

Over lunch it was like we had never been apart. I LOVE how great friendships are like this!

Ah! Memories. And good friendships. It's a good thing.


I woke up crabby. I have been crabby all day. I seem to be getting crabbier by the second.

It's a good think I have no partner/husband/boyfriend/significant other. I am just so damn outta sorts! ARGH!

And, I couldn't put my finger on it. Until NOW.

Just got a text from my BRF who said...oooh I get crabby after not running. BINGO!!

I haven't run for over a week. Recovering from surgery. Minor  but still, I have just decided that given my immense crabtasticness, I am going out tomorrow. Short. Might have to walk, but I have to. I. Cant. Stand. It!!!

I shall get out and go for a nice brisk walk to my physio. Then NEW HAIR...oh cut and colour = good times. And then a wee walk/run. yes. I think that will fix what ails me.

Funny. I am a lot less crabby THINKING about a run!

Thank You Calli!

Saturday, 2 February 2013

HappyGroundHog Day

Groundhog Day is upon us. 
My heart palpitates.

So what will Wiarton Willie do? Will Balzac Billy come out to party? Is Punxsutawney Phil goin to show?
Oh my! Let the hunt begin. Now to search the interwebs to see what is up in the world of groundhogs. 
According to folklore, if a groundhog sees its shadow on Groundhog Day, it will scurry back to its burrow, signalling six more weeks of winter. If there’s no shadow, it means spring is just around the corner.
Please say spring's's freakin' freezing here!!!!!

Hurrah that Pennsylvania’s Punxsutawney Phil and Wiarton Willie did not see their respective shadows…woo spring is on the way!

But wait.

Nova Scotia's Shubenacadie Sam, and Quebec’s Fred, predict plenty of more winter weather ahead.
We are waiting for news from Winnipeg Willow – she’s taking her sweet time. And nada from Balzac Billy. YET.

Its a gorg day. I am dying to run. Doc says nope. Still have to have more recovery time. Instead I shall go with my nephew to the library to enjoy some fun and crafts and ...get this...ground hog dogs for lunch! awesome. 

Friday, 1 February 2013

Team CEP :-)

So here I sit resting after surgery. Thing holy crap this is gonna be a LONG couple weeks before I can go for a run. What am I gonna do??

Well, I have stocked up on the running mags that I haven't read.  I have a book on running a WHERE did I put that?? I am napping. And visualising. And making lists of wish lists of races. 

Today, I went shopping with my mom and sister. Am in Winners and get a ping that I got some email. So I take a snoop and the subject line reads, "Congrats on your selection to Team CEP 2013" WHAT?? Squeal!!! And less than 5 minutes later as I am trying to open the attachment my phone dies!!! 

ACK! Still. Happy Happy Joy Joy. Aha?? Me?? Here I was applying last minute because I figured they would NEVER pick someone like me. But they like me. They really, really liked me!

About an hour later I get home. Whip open FB and see THIS announcement on CEP Compression Canada's page!! And then I go to TWITTER and see this

YAY!!! OOOOh so excited to learn more and join the CEP Canada team! 

I was pretty stoked when I checked out the official press release. Lookit all the names of Team Canada and the Canadian Olympic team athletes! Marathoners, triathletes, speed skaters, oh MY! Scroll down to the very bottom of the list is little old me:

Tina Garstad //#1 Fan CEP Compression//10k, Half Marathon, where ever my shoes take me!

EEEK! I am so thrilled to be one of only a few recreation-level athletes (oooh this is a word I so rarely use to describe myself!) included. What an amazing opportunity to be invited to be a part of a “group of sponsored Olympians, Elites and Weekend Warriors who rock their CEP compression wear from the Olympics to personal bests”. 

Look for me out and about this year! I will be sporting my CEP compression gear as an ambassador for the brand. And using social media to connect with others doing the same!  An honour to be sure!

Thank YOU!  THANK YOU!! Thank you so much! 
How do you #rockyourCEPs? 

Find out more about the CEP and Team CEP Canada 2013 
by following me or any of the amazing team members.

Check out #rockyourCEP and #TeamCEPCanada2013 on Twitter.