May 26, 2009

In the Saddle and on the Rock... Penticton Adventures

Andrew and I headed out to Penticton Friday afternoon (following my morning run) to meet up with some friends in Penticton for a weekend of biking, climbing, eating, camping and more. We rolled into the hills of Penticton Friday evening and made our way over to the trails of Three Blind Mice and rode for a couple of hours before making our way to camp. The campsite was gorgeous situated right on lake Okanagan. We met up with Mark and Nikki for some needed beers and mexican food! After a day of driving and biking we were both zonked and enjoyed some much needed rest!

The next two days consisted of waking up with hot sun, good coffee, and some healthy morning faff. We rode our bikes from camp to the trails: big rides entailed. The trails in Penticton are very different than those in Vancouver. For one, they are much much dryer and a little smoother. The climbs were technical and I enjoyed seeing my improvement throughout the weekend. The descent also allowed me to practice really letting go of the brakes and learning to let speed be my friend. The views of lake Okanagan were beautiful as well as riding past the multiple wineries really reminded me of bike and wines throughout Mendoza Argentina. We rode from 4 to 5 hours or until we were hungry and the heat was too fierce.

Back at camp we had Lunch and lounged/slakclined until the sun eased a little and our energy got renewed enough to head to the crags. We managed to get in enough climbs inthe evening i the peace and welcoming shade. It was really great to get to the crags as people were leaving from a full day of climbing. On Sunday night we literally had the crag to ourselves. It was nice to get back on the rock. Climbing with the crew was geat as well as they are confident and knowledgeable climbers.

Back at camp we made loads of delicious food and enjoyed time by the campfire.

All in all a wonderful weekend out by the lake in the hot sun!

Live, Love, Laugh,...DREAM!

May 22, 2009

Crossfit Vancouver and training

I am feeling stronger and stronger after each session of crossfit at the Vancouver gym. I feel like this will improve my power, speed and strength enormously and in return allow me to perform even better in whatever sport I am currently participating in.

I am also enjoying training again back in Vancouver. I have been on the bike loads, back on my feet running (although I would like to get out more on technical trails) and back in the boat kayaking. My next big race is Explore Sweden with the Yogaslackers and am hoping to conquer some trail runs as well as some kayak races. I am looking to race in the cyclocross circuit this fall on my new cross bike that I absolutely love thanks to Steed Cycles and Giant Bicycles.

Lots and lots of fun to be had.... Waking up everyday is so exciting!

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

May 19, 2009

The Giant TCX first bike tour: Hornby Island!

 Following a morning of volunteering for the North Shore Triathlon Bike Check at Steed Cycles Andrew and I biked over to the Nanaimo ferry on our cross bikes (all toured up with panniers and camping gear). We had decided last minute to bike to Comox, Denman and the highlight: Hornby island for the weekend. It was to be my first time touring with panniers and touring on my lovely new Giant TCX Cylcocross bike. It was also my first time on Denman and Hornby islands. 

We managed to leave Steed Cycles at 2pm to catch the 3pm ferry (we left the car in west van to save time) to Nanaimo. We were so glad to be on our bikes as the ferry line-ups did not look appealing or fun at all. We arrived on the island around 5pm and with loads of energy took the scenic route around the bay before hitting the Island Highway. The highway between Nanaimo and Nanoose Bay (Parksville) is quite busy and loud and not the peaceful bike ride one looks for on the island but once the highway splits into inland and oceanside the noise diminishes, the nervousness of getting hit diminishes and island life begins. I love the smell of the forest and the ocean... Its the one thing I miss loads living in the city... After many hours of riding, singing, chatting, get lost within thoughts we made it to Comox by 10pm. I must admit that my neck was cramping rather vigorously within the last 15 km and I believe I biked those last km with my neck cocked sideways with a little grimmace on my face. Arriving at Mark and Nicki's place in Comox was a welcoming site, some pizza and beer were on the menu along with some good chatter...

The next morning feeling strong again, the three of us heading back down to Buckley bay and managed to catch the 11am ferry to Denman. It was a gorgeous sunny day and my excitement was building. We rode across Denman quickly and managed to time it perfectly with the Hornby ferry so we rolled our bikes on and enjoyed the scenary and break. 

Once on Hornby we cycled to Tribune Bay and took lunch and coffee at Vorizo cafe. SO CUTE! Bought some snacks and some beverages for the night and made our way to the campsite at Ford's Cove. It is lovely there with some really cool rock but we prabably couls have done without the roosters in the morning! I think they decided to have a mass meeting right beside the campsite!!!

After setting up camp we jumped on the bikes sin panniers and found some trails and went for a walk around Helliwell Park until we all got very hungry. Back at camp we made some curry in a bag and enjoyed some fine wine and a fire until I fell asleep on Andrew in front of the fire. 

I had such a great sleep that night. Which is a blessing as we had a big day ahead of us. Before leaving Hornby we rode up one of the trails to the summit. It was gorgeous! and to my surprise I loved the offroad descent on my cross bike... go figure!

We stopped for lunch on Denman (best brie/pear bagel I have ever had!) and laughed at the poor cars waiting in line for the ferry as we cruised by and caught the next ferry on our bikes. Back at Buckley bay Andrew and I said bye to Mark and we began our big journey home. We made it on the 7pm ferry with relief and enjoyed pizza, fries and coffee with pleasure... we deserved it!

a beautiful weekend on our bikes! I have learned that biking onto the ferries is the way to go: cheaper, no lines and lots of fun!

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

May 14, 2009

clean and jerks

my pecs and lats are still aching from tuesdays work out. My heel infection is slowly looking healthier but whats on my mind? how to get my cleans down.... I got the jerk but am trying to get those fast twitch muscles to wake and move quickly for me... I will get there (mostly because I am stubborn and do not like to fail at things....). Life  back in Vancouver is proving to be even more fun than when I left for 6 months. I did my first ride down Neds (not the quickest nor prettiest ride but am getting there) and heading for another mtn bike tonight on Burnaby mountain. I am looking forward to running again once my heels are a little less swollen.  I am also back in the kayak in Deep cove (i love deep cove) This weekend I will get to try out my new Giant cross bike as Andrew and I are going on a mini bike tour to Denman and Hornby Island... Now I only need to have a talk with Mr. Sunshine and order in more constant sunny days...

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

May 11, 2009

Certified Kayak Guide

I spent the last 10 days on the beautiful west coast of Vancouver Island on a kayak guiding course with SKILS. It was a wet ten days but that didn't stop me from having the time of my life. I got to know 10 amazing and inspiring kayakers and developed a soft spot for the west coast of the island. We spent 4 days around Ucluelet learning about weather, tides and currents, navigation etc and then 5 days out on the wild west coast waters. I learned how to kayak surf, make sushi on the beach and more about our first nations people, seaweed and intertidal pools (to name a few). I am stoked about the ocean and stay tuned for some more ocean kayaking adventures. The pacific northwest keeps blowing my mind.....umlimited terrain to discover and adventures to be had. 

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!
check out some pics here