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Race Report – Lorneville Loop 2015

Great well organized race and I really enjoyed running with this run pal (and several others). It was my first official race of the year and it started off.. hilly 😀

To Quiet The Mind

As promised, here is my report on the first race of the 2015 year; the Lorneville Loop 13km.

This race is a hilly, season-opener held in a community called Lorneville outside of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada.

The only distance is 13 kilometres with the race counting towards the Running Room points series.

This was my second consecutive year running this race as I found it to be a great test of early season fitness and I like supporting smaller races; I believe that it was capped at 200-250 people. This race also has a number of other things going for it as well:

  • It’s cheap, I paid $20
  • A honking big medal
  • Chili afterwards
  • Lots of door prizes
  • it raises funds for the IWK hospital in Halifax

Did I mention it's Big? Did I mention it’s Big?

Having run the race last year, it  helped me prepare a strategy for this year. Last year I…

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Running habits you need to break

Running habits you need to break

Perhaps you’ve recently set a goal to run a PB, or move from the 10K to the half marathon distance. If so, you’ve probably thought about all the new things you need to start doing to achieve your goal. What you should also be thinking about are the things you should stop doing in order to achieve those goals. Here is our list of the top ten running habits you need to break – the nail-biting of the running world, so to speak.

1) Forgoing rest

This is a bad habit that many serious runners deal with on a daily basis. When you’re pushing your limits, both mentally and physically, it can get easy to adopt the mindset that more is always better when it comes to mileage and effort. The best runners out there though, will tell you the importance of rest as a time for your body to recuperate and regenerate. This means sticking to your schedule–honouring off days and resisting the urge to add in an extra workout session or an extra double day.

chocolate oats2) Waiting to eat

As busy runners, we tend to fit our run in whatever nook and cranny of our schedule we can–which may mean early mornings, sneaky ‘runches’ (lunch-runs) or late evening adventures. When we have to rush off to our next appointment, it can be easy to fall into the habit of telling yourself, “I’ll grab a bite later.” This creates a twofold set of issues, the first being that your body needs nutritional attention post-run and neglecting that inhibits your optimum recovery and the second being that waiting to eat tends to lead to intense hunger, which may cause overeating, sabotaging some runner’s weight loss goals. Need some ideas to break the habit? If you’re a morning runner, prep a bowl of oatmeal to soak the night before, that you can grab and go right after your run. If you’re an evening runner, I can relate. With team workouts starting at 5:30 most of us weren’t getting home until 7:30 and immediately needing to eat. Talking with my teammates, it seemed like most of us on workout nights favoured meals like omelettes that were quickly prepared and nutrient dense.

3) Skipping your rolling

Does your foam roller sit on the floor of your bedroom/basement/officefoam rolling calf and silently judge you every time you look at it then walk past? If so, it’s time for a change and in order for this to occur, you need to change your mindset–instead of being an annoying nuisance, take steps to make rolling a positive experience. Make it a bedtime, or post-run ritual–throw on your favourite tunes, take your time and pay attention to trouble spots. Your legs will thank you later.

4) Static stretching beforehand

Static stretching before running is a kinesiology dinosaur, but you still catch people at it. The trick to fixing it? Just swap it for dynamic stretching–leg swings, butt kicks and high knees. Don’t forget arms swings as well–running requires arm motion as well!

5) Comparing yourself to your friends

This can be a tricky habit to break, particularly within running clubs or teams. When the urge to compare grabs you, try and remember who you’re running for. Chance are, your answer is for you, not for so and so.

Heel striker6) Heel striking

Studies have shown that heel strikers are more prone to running injuries due to the increased force with which their foot hits the ground, radiating impact up the leg. Don’t know if you’re a heel striker? Most running store employees will be able to assess your gait when you come in for a new pair of shoes. Or, you can try taking of your shoes and jogging a bit indoors–the way you run without shoes should be the same as the way you run with shoes. Try and imbed the feeling in your mind and apply it on your runs.

7) Overstriding

This is one bad running habit that I am personally guilty of. Recently, at a physiotherapy appointment, my physio took me up to the track and had me run for him. After a few laps, he pulled me off and told me that my cadence was 160 steps per minute–far under the ideal 180 steps per minute. It wasn’t that I was running slowly, it was that I was taking too few steps; I have long legs and a tendency to use them to their full capacity. He told me to speed up my turnover–taking more smaller steps would decrease my chance of heel striking and putting undue stress on my hip flexors (my personal ‘achilles heel’).

8) Starting too fastPioneer start

The most common of all racing habits, starting too fast and then tapering off towards the end is a mistake almost all runners have made at some point in their life. Resist the urge to speed up and the beginning by going in with a race plan of the pace you want to run and sticking to it for the first three-quarters of the race–if you’ve got jam left at the end, that’s when you should go for it.

9) Leaning back on the downhills

Just because I’m suggesting you shouldn’t lean back on the downhills doesn’t mean I’m suggesting you should lean forward (there, now I’ve mitigated my responsibility for an somersaulting). Leaning back on downhills increases the impact of your footfalls, which can lead to injury. Try and keep an upright body and quick turnover.

10) Racing easy days

Believe it or not, your easy days are some of the most important in your training schedule. They allow your body to get the sense of running being effortless, they allow time for recovery from harder days and they are a fun time to relax or enjoy the company of your friends. Resist the urge to push the pace on easy days–doing so will lead to overtraining symptoms of fatigue and will ultimately damage your racing goals

via Running habits you need to break – Canadian Running Magazine.

Lemongrass Ginger Quinoa

I will admit that I don’t love the taste of quinoa without other fresh flavours added. This recipe was created by simply digging through the fridge for potential vegetables to add to the mix. It turned out delicious!

Sauté on medium heat 2 chopped spring onions (the whites and some of the firmer greens) with 2 cloves chopped garlic until soft. Add 1 tsp of minced fresh ginger and 1 tsp lemongrass paste and cook for 30 seconds. Stir in 1 cup of no salt added chicken stock and bring to a boil. Add 1/2 cup of quinoa, reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork and top with remaining chopped green onion. Season with salt & pepper. This recipe served 2 hungry adults with seared yellowfin tuna.

Try it!

Flax Encrusted Chicken Bites

A fun and delicious way to eat chicken. Try this gluten-free recipe with Roasted Brussels Sprouts!

2 Boneless chicken breasts, cut into 2 inch pieces
1/2 cup rice flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup gluten-free bread crumbs
1/4 cup ground flax seed
1/2 Tbsp crushed red pepper
salt & pepper to taste

  • Using 3 shallow bowls, prepare one with flour (season with salt & pepper), one with egg, and the third with bread crumb mixture
  • For bread crumb mixture combine bread crumbs, flax seed, and crushed pepper 
  • Dip each chicken piece in flour (dust off excess), then turn over in egg to cover, followed by a good toss in the bread crumb mixture

  • Set covered chicken pieces on T-Fal ActiFry top tray. Alternatively place each piece on a baking sheet prepared with parchment paper
  • If using T-Fal ActiFry, cook for 15 minutes
  • If baking in conventional oven, bake at 350F degrees for 20 minutes, turning once
Enjoy with a spicy pepper chutney, or a favourite dipping sauce.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pine Nuts

A quick and delicious side veg…

Trim 2 cups brussels sprouts, half, and toss into a roasting pan or the bowl of the T-fal Actifry. Add 1/8 cup of raw pine nuts and 3-4 sliced fresh garlic cloves then drizzle with 1 Tbsp of olive oil. 

If using the T-fal Actifry, set to 15 minutes and start. Roasting in a medium oven requires up to 45 minutes and plenty of tossing throughout cook time. 

Serve with a few shavings of Parmigiano Reggiano and season with ground pepper and sea salt. Enjoy with CasaJos Flax Crusted Chicken Bites.

Easy Jerk Pork Roast

Slow-cooked for 10 hours, this roast pulls apart with a fork and melts in your mouth…but watch out, it’s fiery.

1 kg pork loin centre cut roast
1/2 cup CattleBoyz Original BBQ Sauce
1 generous Tbsp Grace Jamaican Jerk Seasoning
salt & pepper


  • In a small bowl stir together BBQ sauce and jerk seasoning
  • Pour sauce into the bottom of slow cooker stoneware
  • Rub entire roast with salt and pepper
  • Place roast into stoneware and coat all sides with sauce
  • Place cover on slow cooker and set time for 10 hours, low heat
  • Let the roast rest for 20 minutes on warm setting before transferring to a shallow pan (slightly larger than roast). Set aside juices in stoneware.
  • Pull the roast apart with a fork and pour juices from stoneware over pork 
  • Serve with CasaJos Roasted Spicy Cauliflower with Almonds for a warming wintry day meal

Roasted Spicy Cauliflower with Almonds

I love a new kitchen gadget. The most recent addition taking up counter space is the T-Fal Actifry. Not only does this little gem turn out healthy, delicious crispy chips, it makes fabulous vegetable sides. This dish was prepared to sit alongside a slow-cooked jerk pork roast.


  • 1 small head cauliflower, broken into 1 inch florets
  • 1/4 cup unsalted almonds
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp chilli pepper (I used Jamie Oliver’s “Hot Chilli Pepper” mill)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1tbsp olive oil
  1. Prepare cauliflower into florets, place in Actifry bowl, add seasoning, and drizzle with oil
  2. Set to 15 minutes, press start, and enjoy