Friday, April 24, 2009

post for my mother...

so, I often think that my mum takes too many pictures of flowers, and leaves and the such. but, recently, being overwhelmed by the beauty of the cherry blossoms, here a tribute to spring time, the cherry blossoms, and my mum.
as you can tell, the blossoms come in white, and light pink, and dark pink, and with small pedals, and big pedals. and, a huge wonderful lush smell...

and, a tulip

Monday, April 20, 2009

Sunday, April 19, 2009

spring has sprung...

and, in vancouver that means a few things:

first, the cherry blossoms come out. and, cherry blossoms are pretty much the best natural thing in vancouver in the spring. I was running the other day, with a little breeze, and it was beautiful to have pink pedals falling around me, with a beautiful smell to add too it.

it also means that it is NHL playoff season. which, if you don't know, is a bandwagon to hop onto when you are a canadian. I am currently watching game 3 of the canucks vs st louis blues. (blues just scored this second, making it a 2-2 game... dang. this is an exciting game. i wish that i had more than a fuzzy television to watch it on) The other night, i was watching game 2, with a co-worker friend of mine (at her friend's place). we rode our bikes back after the game, and it was very much a "i am a college freshman" moment. christine's bike is a crappy old mountain bike, it was warm, lateish at night, she is wearing a ~15 year old hockey jersey that is too small for her, and we had just polished off a bottle of wine. classy girls, very classy...

on that note, watching the game the other night made me wonder if the st. louis blue's coach oddly resembles the green goblin???!?!

it also brings the sunrun. an annual crazy event in vancouver. we are talking 50'000 people and more. it is a pretty neat event, with the runners at the front most often finishing before the walkers at the back of the line. today, it was supposed to rain (yup, on the day of the sun run), but it has held out. in fact, the weather was perfect. between 10-15 degrees, overcast, and dry. :)

it was a funny story this year, because i did the 10km route, twice. yup, pretty much, I ran my race, then I walked right back to the start to meet a client of mine, and another girl from the gym, and walked it with them (taking almost exactly two hours!). at first, i was a little annoyed that I was going to have to do this: the one girl has a disability, and is diabetic, and had never walked more than 4km in her life. She was encouraged to walk by one of the staff at the gym, and then no one wanted to walk with her... so, a few days ago, people were telling me that we should discourage her from participating.

I don't know about you, but no matter what, if someone has been encouraged to enter something like this, you don't subsequently try to discourage that same person from participating. so, instead of discouraging her, I decided that i would be the one to walk with her. So, after a bit of organization, Christine and I ripped up our 10km runs, and then went back to meet the two walkers. and, it was great. totally inspirational, actually. 'cause both of these individuals were not necessarly thinking that they were able to do it. finished the day with a bruch at milestones, and a bike ride home :)

My results (first time around!):
time: 47:28 (a 10km personal best by about 5 minutes!!!)
split: 4:45/km,
Place: 2414

finally, last week, I also got the information of the kids that I am going to be taking to haiti. 27 kids, all from the states (not one canadian!!!); 13 boys, 14 girls (which is amazing, since when I went, my first team was 20girls, 7 boys; my second team was 20 girls and 2 boys!!!). it is wonderful to finally see their faces, and have it be a bit more real.

we gave our notice to our landlords yesterday. kinda strange to think that in almost exactly a month, I am going to be heading to haiti, and then shortly thereafter, heading to montreal.

oh yes, and, in other exciting news... if I am able to manage it, I am hoping to be hopping on the "let's get coached" band wagon in the fall. I have loved doing these tri's. and, if i can get better through the help of another amazing individual, then, okay. sign me up.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


I watched this video this morning, and it gave me chills... (i got it off of Simon Whitfield's blog...)


a applicable quote from Chariots of fire: "I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure."

Monday, April 13, 2009

random easter monday thoughts...

so, it was easter this weekend. a quiet, relaxing four-day weekend. And, i had nothing to do.

anthropology paper: finished.
imnola: finished.
master's degree: finished.

woo! it was ridiculous. today, i just thought "what the heck. i am bored." i had no idea what to do with myself. What do people do all day long!? anyone!?

On saturday afternoon, i went on a hike with my good friends Erik and Celine, on the northshore to walk Erik's dog. Up at the seymour preservation forest, which (oddly enough), i have never been too. The rainforest here on the west coast is amazing. and, as i was walking, i realized how much I am going to miss this. this being the outdoors, and the beautiful accessibility of the mountains and ocean and temperate weather.

so, here is a picture of me, sitting on an old water (?) pipe.

easter has been nice. i think that my favourite service in the church calendar is maundy thursday. what an epic idea. i think god was quite on top of it when he did that whole foot washing thing.

i am on a "oh no. i am approaching a weight that blinks a flashing red caution, you are approaching fatness." diet. ha ha! not really, i just feel that over the time that I was writing my thesis, my healthy eating habits when down the drain. So, I want to really be on top of that prior to going to haiti, because when in a developing country, you don't really have as much control over what you eat. so, I want to take advantage of it now.

racing a 10km on sunday. the sun run. north america's 2nd largest 10km race. should be pretty fun :) going to try for a 10km pb... perhaps approach 45 mins? but, there are always so many people there, it is pretty hard to get a pb...

planning on racing at shawnigan lake on may 24th. decided for the olympic distance. it is cheaper, and allows me time to not be as ridiculous about training as i pack my house up. (eeep! am i thinking about that already!?)

some photos from NOLA. thank you facebook.

at the breakfast diner, day before raceday...

at the burger and beer joint. following race. Donna, Zach, Kirsten, me.

Hammering on the bike!!!

Hydrating on the bike :)

Pre-raceday practice swim. Kirsten broke her toe just prior to this :(
Me, Zach, Donna, Mary, Kirsten, Christian


Transition 2!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

70.3 Race report!!!!

So, the first thing that I want to say, is that before you look at my time, and before you look at the splits, you have to read this statement:

Every single person I talked to went 15 minutes slower on the run than planned.

So, here are the stats:

Amelia Payne
F 25-29
Vancouver -overall:
694 division: 27/101 1 female:41/649

swim time:33:44 T1:
3:20 Bike time:
2:51:45 T2:
2:46 Run time:
2:16:07 3.5 mile split: 33:27 total time:

Before I left, I had a couple goals, and I now that I am finished, I can tell people what they are… since, before hand, I kinda like to keep those things to myself:
1) To finish strong, and feel like I was happy with what I had just done.
2) To be out of the swim before Donna, and within 10 minutes of her on the bike (D~ I love you!!!! I am so glad that I got to race this with you… you are such a huge inspiration to me. I know that I would not have done this, had I not seen you do lake stevens last year. Let’s do one of these events again sometime soon…)
3) Not have my bike break down, or my aerobars fall off.
4) Finish somewhere between 5:30 and 6 hours, broken into something about this: swim, 32 min. Bike, less than 3hours. Run, less than 2 hours.

Did I accomplish those? Hell yeah!!!! Well, not the run, but, read the first sentence in this post. The run was hard... Very hard.

I am going to skip the pre-race prep… other than to say that I was sure that I was going pee about every 30 minutes. It was ridiculous. The energy of everyone who came to NOLA was amazing, and it was so wonderful to meet new friends, and be reunited with old friends. To the girls who raced: Mary, Donna, and Kirsten. YOU GUYS ROCK! Well done on an amazing race.

On the morning of the race, we slept in. Kirsten and I were meant to be leaving the mansion to go to the course at about 5:15. We jumped (and, yes, I mean jumped) out of bed at about 5 after 5. Ran downstairs to be pleased to see that Christian was in the kitchen toasting up some bagels, and brewing up some coffee. About 10 minutes later, we were out of the house, and towards the course.

On the way there, we could see the lights from at least 15 minutes away. I haven’t ever done one of these before, so I can’t compare it to other races, but it seemed really well organized. We got there, and all I could think was “shit. This is really about to happen.” And, it felt great. It was exciting. I turned on my ipod, got my transition ready, decided to walk the 1.2 miles to the swim start, rather than shuttle bus it. On the way there, I looked at the water, and noticed something swimming. Someone assured me that it was something like an otter, and nothing that would nibble on me. But, in my head, I thought “wow, I am sure glad that there are so many waves in front of me. Maybe the animals will eat them instead of me.” ;)

The swim was great. I saw mary and donna just before the start, so I was able to start with Donna. It took me a good 400 meters or so to find my rythmn. I count that down to not having an open water swim since September. The water was warm, and calm. There was lots of room, so nothing frantic, or kicking and splashing.

Ran out, made use of the wetsuit strippers, and flew through transition. I was glad that there was another girl in my age-group out at about the same time, telling herself outloud to slowdown. It helped me slowdown as well. I was only 1.2miles down. 69.9 left to go.

Jumped on my bike, and told myself sllllllloooooow down for the first ½. Lost a water bottle right within the first 5 miles (I say screw the bottle holders behind the seat. Everytime I tried to use it, the bottle would either fall out, or I would almost fall off my bike trying to reach behind me.) D passed me within about 10 miles, and said hello. I felt good that I could keep her in my sight. I was feeling great, got drinking and gu-ing early. First part of the bike was so great. First favourite part of race: on the first 1/3 of the bike, and seeing a police motorcade of about 5 cars cruising towards us. And, about 200 meters behind those cars was a single cyclist making it look so easy. It was like the world was his. I also liked how the bike was marked out in KM’s. my preferance for the bike. In about 20 minutes, I was right behind D again. I said hello to her, and I know I gave her a little mental push… she went slightly ahead of me, and I knew to let her go, and let her have the race that she needed to do. After the second turn of the y out and back, was when the wall of wind hit. I went from easily maintaining about 34km/hr to pushing 23km/hr and having a hard time doing it. This was hard. Sure, the course was flat, but the bike was definitely challenging.

Cruised into T2, and quickly out. Thought as I was running by the port-o-potties if I should stop. Decided not too. Wondered later if that would have been a easy way to slow myself down again for the beginning of the run.

My goal for the run was a 2hour time. To start slow, and to have a strong 2nd half. It took me at least 3 miles to find my legs. And, that is not the problem. I expected it to take about that long. But, it was what happened during and after that surprised me. at about mile 4, i started feeling cold... oh no... sweating shutting down? so, i walked a bit, and then took some gu, chased with water, and gatorade. was fine with temp after that. but, the run was soooo hot. the wind, and the burning of my feet. I tried to positively self talk my self, and think "run like a kenyan...." but, it didn't quite work. so, eventually, my goal changed: it became "finish this run. 10 minute miles, with walking for 1.5 mins at the beginning of everyone, and then doing a shuffle...." and, i finished. it was hard, it was long, it was hot. but i finished...

and, the finish was amazing: another favourite part of the race.... 10 000 fans cheering along decatur st... they closed the street down, which only happens on Mardi gras. the crowds were allowed to close in and it was like a tunnel (similar to the hill climbs on the tour de france). it was amazing. and, amongst all that, in my head, i was not sure that i would make the city blocks that people would count down towards the finish. but, all i could see was the line, and the numbers counting down. and, all i knew was i had to do my best to get there and finish stong. it was ridiculous how focused it felt.

so, ironman 70.3 down. half of me is an ironman. next one... ? maybe austin?! we will see a little later in may. :)

loved it. it was amazing, although the run seemed like a deathmarch. i can't wait to do it again.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

First time ever! IMNOLA

so, i already want to sign up for next year's race..... but, to tell you the truth, i can think about training in Montreal, and I don't think that I can handle it. but, oh man... i already want to do it soooooo bad.... in addition,

i love this place. i love the architecture, I love the cafes on the streets, i love the multiculturalism. I love that the people i have met here, i feel like i have known them forever. they have been my friends forever, and everyone here is for one reason: the 70.3 tomorrow.

Tourist Information Maps & Downloads Register for 2010 online at

This city is crazy, and when i think about how much this race is bringing into the city, i think that it is so good for it. it is a city that is not physically active. A city that has had so much devestation, and needs so much help. so, to have 3000+ athletes coming and throwing money into the economy, and showing people what it takes to do a ridiculous feat of athleticism.

I have now set up my gear, filled my bottles, and collected my nutrition. it is about bedtime, and i know that all i can do is all i can do. so, here we go.

beautiful city, beautiful people, and a beautiful goal. I am as ready as possible! and, it is really so exciting!

Thursday, April 2, 2009


are the letters for Vancouver Airport. where i am sitting. where all i can think about is how hot it is that 3000 athletes are all getting their raceface on, and their positive selftalk together, and their bike lubed, and tires pumped, and body glide prepared.

3000 athletes, ready to race for 70.3 miles, through the bayou of New Orleans.

That is fricken hot.

and, the best thing about it, is that no matter how slow I go, i am going to be getting a personal best! yeeehaw! i think that might be one of the best things *Ever* about doing a race for the first time. And, finally, i am stoked about the whole thing. la la la!!!! I will update on the weekend!