golden girls

Saturday was the Rum Runners Relay – which is my favourite sporting event of the year.

Robyn put together a great team of 10 strong and speedy girls and in the end… after 10 legs… from Halifax to Lunenburg… the Fundy Dippers won top ALL FEMALE TEAM!img_6464

* * *

But lets rewinds…

> The Fundy Dippers (not Diapers) came about almost a year ago after the 2015 Rum Runners Relay – we had a great mixed team but it was decided to try for an all-female team and see where we’d place.IMG_3577> Team-wear: After a strong showing on the roadways of the Cabot Trail, we decided to go with a long sleeve tee.RumRunners Tee_5 reference.eps> If you can’t run with music, make a team playlist. We blast each runner’s song from the support cars during their leg.screen-shot-2016-09-27-at-9-11-26-am> And what’s a race without signage! Any excuse for cutting, pasting and glitter* * *

We had great day with great performances, tenfold. Here are a few random pics from the day!

> Robyn tackled leg 1, which started at 6:30 am. img_6447 img_6446 img_6449> Cheering / dancing for Erica on leg 2 – who’s a super mama – nursing a 3 month old 5 minutes before her start! 14485025_10101852197204477_8590867637579038469_n 14449761_10101852197174537_4164652168537448840_n img_6452 img_645014469492_10101852164365287_5933439043454846240_n> I missed most of Steph’s leg 3 because I was prepping for leg 4 (i.e. standing in line at a porta potty) but she did awesome! (sorry)

> Not going to lie, I was a little intimidated by the runners at my start14424924_10154513079138582_7918706439114028639_o> My leg ended at Queensland Beach… yes, I went in knee deepimg_6455> Andrea (“I’m not a runner” but finished with a 4:45 average pace) killed leg 514449064_10101852162793437_3170715317584808517_n> Oh holy hill at the start of leg 6. Elissa had no problemimg_6456 img_6457> Kristin finished the very hilly leg 7img_6461> Amy breezed though leg 814481914_10154513104838582_4205791758828086084_o> Amélie crushed leg 9 (injured) 14380071_10154513110358582_1666279205527321213_o> And Sabrina brought us home, smiling!14445021_10154513115803582_3704117670599872582_o

After leg 10, we drove back to Halifax for a celebratory dinner – proud of our accompaniments regardless of our standing because we didn’t know who the other all-female teams were and how they did.

Then the next day, there was this:img_6482And now we’re all like this:giphy

Cheers! img_6483

So that’s that. My goal was five race this summer and they are all done (Bluenose Half Marathon, Cabot Trail Relay, Natal Day 6 Miler, Not Since Moses 10km and the Rum Runners Relay) – now it’s fall – and the only good thing about fall is fall running when the temperatures are perfect. Lets hope for 6 more weeks of wonderful marathon training weather!

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our tenacious team

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. And when your team doesn’t get in to the Cabot Trail Relay Race lottery, fake it.

Introducing #team71CTRR16_Team71 TeeLast weekend was the 29th annual Cabot Trail Relay Race. A relay run around the Cabot Trail in beautiful Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. “70” teams. 17 legs. 185 miles. ~24 hrs.

It was supposed to be our team’s third year – and with the CTRR being a live and learn kind of event we were excited to put our veteran experience to use.  However, when we found out we didn’t make it in, we were bummed. Luckily we all found other teams to join and here’s a peak at the weekend.

But first, how to prepare for the CTRR

  1. Training: Run a few races (like the Hypothermic half and Bluenose) and run hills because there are no shortage of hills on the Cabot Trail.
    CTRR16_train1 CTRR16_train2 CTRR16_train3
  2. Uniforms: If you are not really a team, it’s best to look like a team so other will know you are not a team but still are. If that makes sense. I designed team shirts which we had printed by Fresh Prints.
    And Robyn & Steph made team buffs (see peacock green below)
  3. Signage: Who doesn’t love an opportunity for a good craft & wine night? Plus, roadside signage support is crucial for running events.
  4. Music: Because you are not allowed to run with music during the CTRR, for the second year, we made a mix of all our Power Songs – which can be heard from the support car as you run by.
    CTRR16_MusicOur team also rented drums and entertained runners with their pop-up drum sessions on the road.

Back to the weekend…

Amelié and I caught a ride up with Kristin and her family Friday night and because Kristin and I were not running until the early hours of Sunday morning. We spent Saturday in Baddeck – hiking then relaxing on the patio of the B&B.CTRR16_driveCTRR16_hikeCTRR16_k&mThe others set off and conquered the Saturday legs and on Sunday morning, the alarm went off at 2:00 am, and we drove an hour up to Margaree. My leg (14) was 19.81 km at 3:45 am and I must say it was lovely. Although it was dark, I could hear the Atlantic Ocean and spring peepers and then the sun came up as we ran inland. Despite feeling a little pukey, I managed to finish with a 5:03 min/km average pace (1:39:53) but only placed 35 out 0f 70 (sad face emoji) Note: The pace at the CTRR feels a lot faster than an average race and if you don’t keep under a 6:00 minute/km pace, the finish line moves on to the next leg and your time is +5 minutes of the last runner across the mat. Our fellow Miramichi Lucky Charms teammate Hughie ran leg 15, followed by Kristin who ran leg 16 and then we rushed back to Baddeck to cheer in the finishers in at the end of leg 17.CTRR16_kristinCTRR16_finish4

Team 71 – not all present and accounted for. L-R: Duncan, Joe, Erica, Robyn, Mike, Steph, Grahme, Marcel and Jenna (and Liam). Missing: Jon, Josh, Amelié, Kristin, Greg and Me.CTRR16_team CTRR16_LegDescriptionsHappy trails!

More on this year’s CTRR : CTV Atlantic News – ‘It’s just completely different’: Cabot Trail Relay Race wraps up in Baddeck

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psst. I checked three things off my 100 Days Of Summer list including # 20, 62 and 74

team work

The Cabot Trail Relay is done and it was so much fun. It’s a rare but lovely treat to be on a team and the atmosphere all weekend is incredible – crazy costumes, amazing (fast) runners, beautiful scenery, and the best race organizers/volunteers out there who stay up (and dance) all through the night.

Our team was back for the second year in a row – a little wiser and much more prepared for the 24+ hour/185 mile race around the Cabot Trail in Cape Breton. Although we have yet to hone in on our team uniform, we came with playlist, signs and big silver balloons. Looking good team 42, looking good. QE2Quest_2015Screen Shot 2015-05-22 at 7.34.37 AMIMG_2461Last year I ran leg 2 which was great because my run was over and done with early in the day however, this year I wanted to try a night leg and run up in the Cape Breton Highlands National ParkIMG_5159 IMG_5163 IMG_5165IMG_2589 IMG_2578By the time my turn arrived (11:10 pm), it was pouring rain, 3 degrees and windy. Despite the weather, I was on a high from watching Beth and Kristin finish their mountain climbs and bounced off the “start line” with so much excitement. Although the rain and wind were nuts, I pushed through the 14 km run. It was so dark but I loved every moment.


At one point I ran past my mom (who was out on the side of the highway cheering me along) and she yelled “you’ll certainly remember this run”. Honestly, how often do you get to strap on a headlight on and set out in the night running up and down a mountain next to the Atlantic ocean?

Guys, if you ever get a chance to participate, do so! You may see snow (in May), you may see a moose or a bear, you may freeze and you may wonder why the hell you are out running in the middle of the night… but it will be a run like no other. IMG_2539 IMG_2596IMG_5070 IMG_5091IMG_2598 IMG_5103 IMG_5134IMG_5186IMG_5174 IMG_5195

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road trip

Off to Cape Breton we go!

Somehow I managed to get myself on a team for the 2014 Cabot Trail Relay. A friend of a friend was looking for a last minute filler for leg 3 and I said “Sure, why not?”. I’ve been told my leg is flat and short (13.5 km) compared to the others … it is actually one of the easiest (see below)!

What’s the Cabot Trail Relay? …

The annual Cabot Trail Relay Race is a 185 mile/276.33 km, 17 stage relay race through some of the most beautiful scenery in the world… beginning in Baddeck, Cape Breton, over steep mountains in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park, through many small communities around the famous Cabot Trail, to the gently rolling Margaree Valley.

How could I say no?

I managed to convince Mike and David to come along for the drive and while I am running / cheering, they can explore the Fortress of Louisbourg (win win). I haven’t been to Cape Breton in years and I am really excited to see the Cabot Trail again. Funny how you rarely take the time to explore your own back yard.

Even though I don’t know much about the logistics of the relay, nor do I even know my team name, I am pretty excited to meet everyone and see what it is all about. I am not running up a mountain or in the middle of the night so it can’t be that hard. Right?

In honor of getting outside and going on a pre-season summer road trip, here is a sample of some of my favourite stationery from the company Scout’s Honor Co. I have their cards displayed in my office as a reminder that it’s not all about work… especially when the weather finally warms up.

Safe travels!

EastCoastGirls_6144 GetOutside_6283 GreatSummer_6109 LetsTakeOff_6161 Pool_6225 RoadTrip_6291 SurfSunSand_6141 TheGreatOutdoorsCardSet_5699

And yes, it is true, East Coast Girls are hip.

Here is a map of the relay for those who care:


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All Scout’s Honor Co. images are from their website. Check them out!