Saturday, August 28, 2010

Summer Vacation - Saltspring Island

Following Lake Cowichan we headed straight to Saltspring Island. The ferry terminal at Crofton was only about 45 mins away. There is something about Saltspring, that as soon as I am on my way, I can immediately relax. Plus, this time I was already relaxed from being at the lake for two days!

We had a couple days to ourselves before being joined by some friends on Tuesday, and then even more friends on Friday for the weekend, bringing the weekend total to 11 people! This allowed for total downtime, then a bit more activity, before a bit of chaos (but fun) for a few days!

Sunday and Monday were the two hottest days we have ever spent on Saltspring. Even the ocean didn't feel too bad (and it is way colder there than Vancouver!). The weather was good the entire week, and between Friday evening and Tuesday evening, I was able to eat every meal outside. That is one of my favourite things about summer.

When on Saltspring we eat and drink like Kings and Queens. I like to think that calories don't count there. Of course not everything we are eating is unhealthy, but the volume makes up for that! Still, there is not too much to complain about fresh pasta with corn pesto (not cooked with bacon, but added at the end for the boys - SO GOOD), moules frites, fresh halibut, fresh salmon (caught that day), and fresh crab (caught by Graeme). Plus lots of salad, bread, and bakery pies. And homemade Baileys ice cream in the ice cream maker which was brought along for the ride. Oh and don't forget the chips, and eggs benny (with salmon and crab and avocado), patisserie treats, lunch pizza and beer and wine!

Yes, it is a culinary feast.

While my back wasn't allowing any riding I did manage to get some running in to try and keep things in balance (ha!) and we swam in the lake almost every day (though I was unable to swim for too long, at least I was in there).

Really the main things accomplished were reading, eating and general relaxing. Which is never a bad thing!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Summer Vacation - Part 1

We hadn't planned on a summer vacation, but after being asked for the 100th time what we were doing for vacation plans, I decided I wanted one. We had already planned to take a few days off, so we added to it and made it into 9 days straight.

The first weekend we headed to Lake Cowichan, hosted by Karen and her family. There were 15 of us total, and we enjoyed the HOT sun, lake and most of all the general relaxing. Plus, the meteor shower was still visible on Friday evening and we were treated to a great show, lying on the dock. It's amazing to think how far away the meteors are. One of them was so bright it was like a strike of lightening and lit up the entire lake!

How could you not relax here??

My Back

Well, so far August has not gone how I had hoped in the training department. I have a bad back - 45 degree S-curve scoliosis and 2 degenerating discs (L3 & L4). Scoliosis diagnosed at 13 and the discs in my mid 20s. I have been going to physio on and off since I was 13.

I would say in general I have been lucky the last few years with the amount of pain I have had to deal with. My teenage years and through my mid 20s were worse.

Interestingly enough, since I started running, I have had way less back issues. Without any scientific proof, I believe this is because my core muscles have strengthed since starting to run. I have also noticed that when I have been injured (not back related) and unable to run, my back seems to get worse.

The last few years, having found Moveo and the ART (active release therapy) practitioners, any time my back has acted up, it has only taken a session to have it calm down. Releasing of my psoas muscles has given relief to the tension and pulling in my back.

Unfortunately this has not been the case this time. I have had a number of ART sessions, massage, and other "work". And it is getting better. But its very slow. I was barely able to stand and sleeping was difficult in the beginning, but now I am back to running. Riding however, seems to be aggravating. It's only 2.5 weeks to Whistler Gran Fondo, and I have not been on my bike (for an actual ride) since the beginning of the month. I guess I will see how the next few weeks go.

At least I can run now, if not for as long as I was able to a month ago.