MAGNOLIA416's SparkPeople Blog MAGNOLIA416's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Race Report: Waterfront 5K Yesterday I had an uplifting 5K race! The vibe was so positive, everyone was out exercising and many were in their charity tshirts. The weather was nice and everything was well organized. Great day! <BR> <BR> I had hoped and planned to run the half marathon, but I had a few setbacks during training. I had a cold for 4 weeks, and then I got plantar fasciitis. I was initially determined to at least walk the HM, but a couple weeks ago it became obvious that I had to drop to the 5K because my fe... Mon, 17 Oct 2016 09:08:46 EST from 10K to Half Marathon! In exactly 77 days I'm going to run a half marathon for the first time! I'm excited and terrified. I've had a cold for a couple weeks so that has compromised my training but I still have time to even out my training I think. My goal is to finish in less than 3 hours, I have a heart problem and I started training late so I think that's a reasonable goal even though it's not fast. <BR> <BR> This is me after a 10K a few weeks ago (a half marathon is 21K): <BR> <img src="http://photosaws.sparkp... Sat, 30 Jul 2016 14:54:57 EST Happy birthday, BoniDale! Here's a picture of myself with Bonnie when we got together in Peterborough, Ontario in June. We had a lovely day of eating, walking, talking and window shopping. She got me to walk up and very long, steep hill to catch a gorgeous view of the city! I didn't take enough photos! <BR> <BR> We met here on SparkPeople first! <BR> <BR> Happy birthday, Bonnie! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Wed, 22 Jul 2015 10:36:35 EST Healthy Habits Reset Challenge - Day 1 I’m doing the Healthy Habits Reset Challenge! <BR> <BR> It’s a spring challenge to re-prioritize our goals. I’ve actually been pretty motivated and focused on my goals for a few months, but I’m still up for the daily lessons we’ll get from the challenge. <BR> <BR> Day 1 is to set my goal, and list 3 reasons why it’s important to me. <BR> <BR> Goal: commit to strength training <BR> weights 3x per week and yoga at least 1x per week <BR> <BR> 1 - feel strong and steady <BR> 2 - increase my... Thu, 12 Mar 2015 14:04:26 EST International Women's Day! There's still so much work to be done for gender equality....but let's talk about the good stuff. Tell me about a woman you adore, or an accomplishment by a woman you know. It could be yourself! Sun, 8 Mar 2015 14:05:38 EST he lived long, he prospered RIP Leonard Nimoy <BR> <BR> Here's a vintage interview with Nimoy by the broadcaster I work for, in which he gives a thoughtful perspective on violence: <BR> <link><BR>entertainment/television/television-ge<BR>neral/leonard-nimoy-explains-the-spock<BR>-pinch.html </link> Fri, 27 Feb 2015 12:36:18 EST FitBit year in review - 2014 (finally!) Just this morning I got my 2014 FitBit year in's pretty cool! <BR> <BR> I set mine up with Metric but the review shows miles...that's 3700km. <BR> <img src=""> Fri, 30 Jan 2015 08:55:56 EST "Slim By Design" Here are "6 kitchen hacks to help you shed pounds" by Brian Wansink. He wrote a book called Slim By Design: <BR> <BR> <link><BR>nks-slim-by-design-6-kitchen-hacks-tha<BR>t-can-help-you-lose-weight.html </link> Fri, 9 Jan 2015 14:16:28 EST Happiness Project Happy New Year! January is so full of Gretchen Rubin says in The Happiness's "the fresh start, the total commitment, the leap into the unknown" <BR> <BR> I started a Spark group for The Happiness Project last January and we lost momentum. We're just getting re-started and would love some new members! It's based on a book of the same name, and it has ideas and tasks for each month of the year. It's nothing too overwhelming but it can be life-changing. The theme for... Fri, 2 Jan 2015 17:07:23 EST running clinic! Last night I joined a 5K running clinic at the Running Room, I can already run 5K, but I do it so slowly and I haven't been running regularly. I feel like paying for this clinic makes the commitment more serious and makes it more likely that I truly will go to the group run 3 times a week. <BR> <BR> Also! When I run alone I don't really push myself. I'm the slowest runner in my new group, so I'll have to push myself to stay somewhat close to the group. Right now I'm not too far behind but I ... Tue, 7 Oct 2014 09:51:27 EST Tweed Ride Toronto On Saturday I went on the Tweed Ride Toronto! It was super-fun, even though the weather was much too hot for wearing tweed! It was a fundraiser for Bikes Without Borders. We wore old timey tweed and met in Trinity Bellwoods Park for live music (unplugged of course) then biked as a group around downtown, then back to the park for a tea party! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src="">... Wed, 24 Sep 2014 11:40:19 EST VegFest Guelph Yesterday Guelph, Ontario had its first VegFest and I was there! This is me with Gene Baur, co-founder of Farm Sanctuary, and an IronMan finisher! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Mon, 22 Sep 2014 14:34:59 EST Race Report: Sheenboro Granfondo Hello! This was a 35K bike tour in rural Quebec. I didn't get great photos. I did it with my Dad. This was the second time I did this and it was easier this year though I still walked up one of the hills. It felt great and I'd like to do more bike touring like this instead of just biking to and from work on city streets. It rained at the start but just a bit! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> This was the only time I stopped to take a pi... Mon, 22 Sep 2014 14:15:52 EST Race Report: Beaches Jazz 10K Yesterday I ran in the Beaches Jazz 10K. It wasn't a great run for me. It's a bit discouraging that I think about running so much, and I put in a decent amount of time training, but I'm not really making any progress. Before I give up on running, I'm going to do the Acceleration Gliders that Jeff Galloway recommends and see if that helps running become easier. <BR> <BR> The course was mostly pretty and flat, and it was nice to have a race to start my birthday! After the race I took a shower... Mon, 28 Jul 2014 11:19:55 EST Esther the Wonder Pig Wow! I met Esther the Wonder Pig's dads yesterday! <BR> <BR> Esther is an internet star....she was adopted by Scott and Derek, who were told she was a mini pig. Two years later, she's 625 pounds of fun! <BR> <BR> You can see oodles of cute pictures of Esther with funny captions on her Facebook page: <BR> <link><BR>nderpig?fref=ts </link> <BR> <BR> I haven't met Esther herself yet, but I hope to do a bit of volunteering on the farm sanctuary Scott and ... Mon, 28 Jul 2014 11:14:06 EST I'm so vegan I get kale for my birthday! One of my work friends brought me kale from her garden (and a vegan cupcake!) today. My birthday is on the weekend. I'll eat the cupcake but not the icing, and I'll savour every bite mindfully. I'll enjoy the kale over a few meals. <BR> <BR> Lucky me! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Fri, 25 Jul 2014 11:03:14 EST Race Report: Pride and Remembrance 5K Hello! I ran in a 5K race today. It was for AIDS and LGBT charities and it was extra-festive this year because World Pride is here this year. <BR> <BR> <em>364</em> <em>437</em> <BR> <BR> I did it in 39:29, and I was working hard! I'm not happy with my time. I've been running every 3 days for several weeks, plus Body Combat and Zumba, plus getting enough sleep and eating mostly well. I took a few walking breaks but fewer than usual. So why isn't my time improving? I guess I'm running... Sat, 28 Jun 2014 20:41:43 EST raw vegan running heroes! I met Janette Murray-Wakelin and Alan Murray last night! <BR> <BR> I've been hearing about them in the veg community for awhile...they're in their 60s and in 2013 they ran a marathon distance EVERY DAY for 366 days!! And they're raw vegans! And it was in the Australia heat! AMAZING!!! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 08:47:46 EST until further notice: CELEBRATE EVERYTHING! <img src=""> Thu, 29 May 2014 10:53:06 EST Bike to Work Day It's Bike to Work Day! I joined one of the group rides down to City Hall for breakfast, speeches and a bike fair. I feel so safe and visible riding in a group of cyclists, I wish I could ride to work in a group every day! <BR> <BR> <em>332</em> Mon, 26 May 2014 09:34:51 EST minimalist running shoes? Hello! <BR> <BR> I "need" new running shoes because my two beloved pair of New Balance shoes have really been working hard! I took a chance on buying these minimalist shoes last night. I haven't worn them outside yet so I can still return them. <BR> <BR> I LOVE how light they are! And the colour! BUT I have flat feet and I'm wondering if these are the right shoes for me. I'm working on landing flat/on the front of my foot, so the pronation should be less of a problem if I can keep that up.... Thu, 22 May 2014 10:23:06 EST Race Report: Sporting Life 10K Hello! This race was last weekend. I didn't train properly. I was surprised when I started running, and throughout the race, at how great I felt! I felt strong and I didn't get bored or tired like I have the other times I've run 10K!! Unfortunately I didn't PR, but I had a nice time, I felt great and the weather was perfect! <BR> <BR> <em>365</em> Tue, 20 May 2014 08:57:17 EST Fed Up (documentary film) Hello! I went to the HotDocs film festival last night to see a new documentary called Fed Up. It's having a cinematic release in May and will be available later from iTunes or on DVD. You should definitely see it! <BR> <BR> It's narrated by Katie Couric and was produced by the women who did An Inconvenient Truth. <BR> <BR> One of the main themes of the movie is that despite calorie-reduction, it is hard to lose weight if we eat processed foods. I guess that sounds simplistic but the movie i... Wed, 30 Apr 2014 09:37:20 EST Våffeldagen! Today is Våffeldagen...a day to eat waffles in Sweden! <BR> <BR> Here are some waffles from a Toronto restaurant called Hogtown Vegan. Not all vegan food is healthy! It's a dish called "Un-chickn n' Waffles" and it's a southern US specialty, apparently, served with steamed collards and mashed sweet potato. That's not how they do waffles in Sweden though! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Tue, 25 Mar 2014 09:14:04 EST First Day of Spring!!! Today is the Spring Equinox! The weather is above freezing! The sidewalks are clear! I wore my capri yoga pants to the gym this morning without leg warmers to cover my calves and I was just fine! <BR> <BR> I love the optimism of spring! It's hard to believe that it was -12C here just a few days ago. <BR> <BR> Happy happy! <BR> <BR> Any signs of spring in your day? <BR> <em>126</em> <em>67</em> Thu, 20 Mar 2014 09:41:10 EST Travel With Style This hilarious video was on Facebook today. It's an ad for J.Crew. Really clever! I've got some travelling planned for April and thought this was fun to get me even more excited about my trip! <BR> (I'm going to Sweden, France and England!) <BR> <BR> <link> </link> Wed, 19 Mar 2014 11:14:22 EST Race Report: Achilles St. Patrick's Day 5K Hello! <BR> <BR> I ran my first race of 2014 today! The sun was shining and it was very well organized! <BR> <BR> But I'm bummed out. I had a slower finish time than I hoped for (42:10). I've been going to the gym a lot the past month so I was hoping to break my 37 min PR. But it wasn't to be today. The weather was cold (-12C/10F) and the wind was so strong the first 1.5K that I could barely breathe. And I'm on Day 8 of a sore stomach. <BR> <BR> I'm thinking about what went right and wha... Sun, 16 Mar 2014 22:36:14 EST belated Happy International Women's Day! Hello! I have so many fantastic female friends in real life and here on SparkPeople. Yesterday was International Women's Day and my friend posted this quote on Facebook. I still see gender inequality at work and in social situations. <BR> <BR> “When statistics come in saying that only 29% of American women would describe themselves as feminist - and only 42% of British women - I used to think, ‘What do you think feminism IS, ladies? What part of 'liberation for women' is not for you? Is it f... Sun, 9 Mar 2014 18:59:56 EST Pancake Tuesday Today is Pancake Tuesday, Shrove Tuesday, Mardis Gras and Fettisdagen (the last one can be your Swedish word of the day!). <BR> <BR> For Lent I'm giving up food court lunches and I'm cutting down on meaningless internet time-wasting. I haven't quite decided on how to measure or limit that yet. <BR> <BR> I'm also thinking of writing a short letter or postcard to someone once a day during Lent. I heard of someone else doing that and it sounds nice. I have til the end of today to finalize my ... Tue, 4 Mar 2014 09:01:56 EST Oscars Phew! As of a few minutes ago I finished watching all the movies nominated for Best Picture. I liked all of them and loved some. <BR> <BR> Philomena <BR> - a sweet story with a twist I wasn't expecting. An elderly Irish woman teams up with a British journalist to find the son she was forced to give up for adoption when she was a teenager <BR> <BR> Her <BR> - probably my favourite, but I don't expect it will get Best Picture. It might get Best Screenplay. A man in his 30s-40s develops a re... Sun, 2 Mar 2014 16:25:03 EST Streak Into Spring! "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence the, is not an act, but a habit." <BR> Aristotle <BR> <BR> Today a Spark Challenge started called Streak Into Spring. It's a 20-day challenge leading up to the Spring Equinox. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>st=feel_better_and_get_fitter_by_spring </link> <BR> <BR> My streak will be to get at least 15,000 steps a day on my FitBit and to bring my lunch to work. Are you doing the challenge? What streaks are you working on... Sat, 1 Mar 2014 22:45:54 EST women's curling! The Canada vs. Sweden women's curling, gold medal match is on right now! The 2006 Swedish women's team did a video with the Swedish metal band Hammerfall and it's awesome. Which band should get Canadian curling babe Jennifer Jones in their video? <BR> <BR> <link><BR>lqbG5CU </link> Thu, 20 Feb 2014 09:12:37 EST Family Day (Ontario holiday) Today is Family Day in Ontario. It was only started a few years ago and it's not observed by all businesses. I get it off work and it's nice to have this long weekend for the long stretch between Christmas and Easter. But I kinda wish it had been called something else... I always feel left out of things called family. I have a great relationship with my parents but they live far away and my boyfriend is also far away, so I rarely feel like I'm in a family that way. I notice it a lot during e... Mon, 17 Feb 2014 21:50:53 EST Winterlicious brunch Winterlicious is a food festival at restaurants around Toronto. During Winterlicious participating restaurants have a special menu. Yesterday I went for brunch at the Windsor Arms (a posh hotel) for their Winterlicious vegan brunch and this is the deliciousness: <BR> <BR> Winter Kale Salad <BR> Tossed with Hemp Seeds, Sundried Tomatoes and Avocado, and Grain Mustard Dressing <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Roasted Curried Cauliflower Stea... Mon, 10 Feb 2014 10:59:25 EST RIP Pete Seeger "Being generous in spirit is a wonderful way to live." <BR> <img src=""> Tue, 28 Jan 2014 16:32:22 EST board game bar! Snakes and Lagers is a new board game themed bar in Toronto! It's not officially open yet. The same owners have had a board game cafe for a few years called Snakes and Lattes. Hilarious name, and it's *always* busy! We have 2 other board game cafes in Toronto (that I know of). <BR> <BR> This story is sort of about how games are good for face-to-face interaction: <BR> <link><BR>t-board-game-bar-in-canada </link> Fri, 24 Jan 2014 14:13:22 EST The Happiness Project Hello! <BR> <BR> I've started a SparkTeam for The Happiness Project. It's a book with sections for each month of the year on how to be happier. <BR> <BR> <link><BR>ndividual.asp?gid=61745 </link> <BR> <BR> You can read some quotes from the book doesn't appeal to everyone but if anything here speaks to you, give it a try! The book is pretty popular so it's easy to find in stores, online or at the public library. <BR> <BR> <link>www.goodre... Thu, 2 Jan 2014 07:31:51 EST Happy New Year! Gott Nytt År! Bonne Année! Let's give 2013 a sweet kiss goodbye and let's rock 2014! <BR> <BR> <link><BR> </link> Wed, 1 Jan 2014 10:33:35 EST God Forsättning! That's the Swedish greeting for the week between Christmas and New Year's. It means something like "Good Continuance" but it doesn't really translate into English. <BR> <BR> Hope all my Spark Pals are having a nice holiday of some kind with some time off work, good food and inspiring companions! <BR> <BR> Mon, 30 Dec 2013 10:12:03 EST Night Before Christmas for RUNNERS! This is pretty funny! <BR> <BR> <link><BR>night-before-christmas-runner-style/ </link> Mon, 16 Dec 2013 07:43:05 EST trainer appointment My last blog was asking what I should bring up at my appointment with a trainer at my new gym. Well, one of my commenters was was mostly about trying to sell me an expensive package of training sessions. BUT I enjoyed chatting with the guy and he did give me some tips. <BR> <BR> The one I'm thinking about the most is that I really need to work on my strength to improve my running. He suggested kettlebell classes or Body Pump. Those classes don't look as fun as yoga or zumba, but ... Sun, 15 Dec 2013 10:55:04 EST questions for trainer Hello! <BR> <BR> I joined a gym a couple weeks ago and tomorrow night I have an appointment with a trainer to teach me about the equipment and give me a fitness profile. Any suggestions on questions I should ask? <BR> <BR> thanks in advance! Tue, 10 Dec 2013 15:27:06 EST US Thanksgiving & fall food I have so many American Spark pals and Facebook pals that I've been getting a lot of Thanksgiving updates. I love Thanksgiving! Canadian Thanksgiving was last month. There's no reason I can't eat Thanksgiving-y food though! <BR> <BR> Hope you're all enjoying guilt-free treats and quality friend/family time! Thu, 28 Nov 2013 18:04:22 EST big step that looks like a baby step I've gotten over my fear of falling of a treadmill and finally did a treadmill run this morning! <BR> <BR> It's cold and dark so I don't feel like running outside much. If I'm going to run a half marathon next year, I can't afford to not run a few times a week all winter. Other than buying half marathon books, this feels like the first big step to committing to rung 21K! <BR> <BR> Next step will be to pick a half marathon and register! <BR> <BR> <em>315</em> Tue, 26 Nov 2013 09:25:01 EST gym pyjammas Wearing my sports bra to bed is proven to make it more likely that I'll exercise in the morning before work! I've found the trick that works for me! <BR> <BR> (Also, having all gym clothes and work clothes ready the night before helps) Thu, 21 Nov 2013 10:21:41 EST Spark Streaks Hello! <BR> <BR> I really believe in the power of streaks. I think it was from a section in the first Spark book. I've managed two streaks...getting to work on time every day and exercising every day (even if just a 30 min walk). <BR> <BR> I'm trying to track my food every day but I really don't enjoy it so I'm struggling with that one! I'm also trying to keep my apartment organized by daily tidying but so far I haven't made that a habit. <BR> <BR> Today I read this story in the newspaper... Tue, 19 Nov 2013 09:48:33 EST World Gratitude Day! Today is World Gratitude Day....what are you thankful for? <BR> <BR> I'll start: <BR> - my new normal health is pretty good! <BR> - my boyfriend <BR> - my parents and brother <BR> - my friends <BR> - cool co-workers and one of my managers is kind and reasonable <BR> - a great appointment with a financial advisor <BR> - excellent food to eat <BR> - Netflix! <BR> - SparkPeople <BR> - Vega One smoothies <BR> - fresh bread <BR> - my bike <BR> - the huge park in my neighbourhood <BR> - comfy sho... Sat, 21 Sep 2013 20:52:28 EST TO Veg Food Festival Last weekend was the Toronto Vegetarian Food Festival, it was a blast! <BR> <BR> German VEGAN bodybuilder Patrik Baboumian broke the world record for most weight carried 10 metres EVER by any human, right before my eyes! <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Vegan athlete panel! <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Me with Georges Laroque, a former NHL player who is now vegan and deputy leader of t... Fri, 13 Sep 2013 19:32:10 EST ABBA: The Museum Last month when I was in Sweden, ABBA: The Museum was one of the most fun things we did! This is me dancing with holograms of the members of ABBA, what a hoot! Definitely hit this museum if you're in Stockholm and have even the tiniest interest in ABBA. <BR> <BR> The museum's motto is "Walk In, Dance Out!" and it's so true! I was happily humming ABBA songs with a spring in my step the rest of the day and for a few days after actually! <BR> <BR> <img src=" Wed, 28 Aug 2013 10:15:45 EST Colin Baker - The Sixth Doctor I went to see Colin Baker speak at Fan Expo on Saturday. He played the Sixth Doctor in Doctor Who. He was charming and funny. I don't know if you can tell how sweet and warm he is in these photos so you'll have to trust me. Great story teller! <BR> <BR> I can't figure out how to add the photos to a message board thread about him, so I'm making a quick blog post! <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=" Tue, 27 Aug 2013 09:26:43 EST