Archive | Uncategorized

Make this your super-fit year. Here’s how & why:

Why wait until illness forces a team of medical professionals to heal you? Why wait for disease to force you to take the time to get better? Why not commit to getting as strong and healthy as you can now, so that you enjoy your body and revitalized health?

Wow, that’s a lot of questions and challenges. And now for the reality.

When I set out on my super-fit journey at age 50, I knew one thing: I could not do it alone. I did not know how to pull it off. So I sought help — coaches, running club, friends and support. In short, I surrounded myself with a wellness team to help me get on the path to better fitness.

For the journey of my book, Older Faster Stronger, I focussed on turning back the clock on aging, to recapture the fitness and energy of my 20s. This is what I asked myself: Why enter the second half of my life in an aging decrepit vehicle when I could train myself into a younger zippier sports car? While my project was almost entirely physical — run a fast marathon, lose weight, kick the social smoking habit, eat better, get stronger and faster — I also wanted to get happier. I wanted to haul myself out of a mid-life malaise and charge into the second act of my life with the wisdom of my years but the piss and vigor of my twenties.

I am proof that it’s possible. I’m also proof that there’s no end goal to this challenge. Though we can achieve goals along the way, we can’t ever achieve super fitness then set it on the mantle like some trophy collecting dust. Super fitness entails a continual striving to improve wellness, in every way.

I can report that training has become a happy habit. I actually look forward to runs, pumping weight, doing yoga and moving my body in a myriad of ways. I’m tweeking my training in 2015 to give myself more of what I love because doing what I love is the key to adherence.

I enjoy shorter harder runs, so I’m focussing on 5 and 10K events this year. I love being over-all fit, not just runner fit, so I’m taking more time to lift weights, do yoga and other sports because, hey, I want to have fun with my younger fitter body! One of the biggest surprises of my super-fit year was discovering just how much I enjoy competing so I’m entering many more races; focussing on shorter ones allows me to do that.

Do I have it all together? Not by a long shot. Finishing Older, Faster, Stronger was hard because my favorite place to be in the world is INSIDE A BOOK, writing, researching, meeting people and trying to wrestle all that into something readers might enjoy. Writing a book is a hugely challenging but satisfying and even comforting place to be. Frankly, I miss being inside Older Faster Stronger. 

So what’s next? I’m continuing to live the journey by speaking to running groups, book clubs, university groups and companies. If you would like me to speak to your group, just scoot up to the contact button and drop me an email.

As for my next big writing project, I’m test driving a number of ideas to try to figure out that next big step. This is not easy work. There is so much I want to do. Many days it involves enough questioning to drive me batty. I get mired in the questions. But, being on the super-fit journey means striving to improve all the areas of our lives — family, career, relationships.  Which is when I recalled one of my favorite quotes in OFS, from sports psychologist Peter Jensen. He told me, “When you’re ready for the lesson, the teacher will appear.” I said, hell, I turned to a running coach to help me run a marathon. Maybe I need a life coach to help me sort through these career questions! The very next day, a partner of an old friend friend called me up, asking for a signed copy of Older Faster Stronger for a Christmas gift.  She told me that she had changed careers, become a life coach. So the super-fit journey continues……





Who’s Your Fav Running Podcaster?

I may be hugely biased, here, but I had a blast speaking to Kari Gormley of The Running Lifestyle. She’s a great interviewer, really funny (we had a mock fight over who’s Kathrine Switzer’s bf) & is infinitely curious about running so asks fantastic questions. She speaks to a wide range of guests about running culture, training, racing, & eating. Subscribe to her show and listen to her podcasts while on a run. And why not start with this one:

If you have a fav running podcaster, hit the contact button and flip me an email to let me know. When I’m not running with pals at my club, I love running with podcasters yakking into my earbuds about interesting stuff.

running lifestyle screen shot running lifestyle screen shotrunning lifestyle screen shot


Marathon pioneer Sylvia Ruegger on how running makes us courageous

Sylvia Ruegger achieved her dream, running in the first-ever women’s marathon in 1984, then had her chance at a medal in 1988 snatched away from her. Rather than lamenting what might have been, she focuses on the person that running has made her.  Here, the national director of Start2Finish, a running & reading program for underprivileged kids, talks about how training and setting big goals makes women courageous, gutsy and mentally strong in this fifth & final installment of the virtual video launch of Older Faster Stronger. To watch all the videos in the series, click here. The launch of OFS was also a fundraiser for Start2Finish, where I am proud to volunteer as a running and reading coach. If you missed the launch & would like to contribute money or your volunteer time as a coach, please visit their website.



How to motivate yourself to run to 100 (and live Older Faster Stronger!)

Here’s the third installation of the virtual video launch of Older Faster Stronger, featuring professor of health psychology Catherine Sabiston on how to muster motivation to start training and keep training. Listen to her thoughts on intrinsic motivation, catching the social contagion and more! To see all three videos, in order, click here.


Eating for Performance to Live Older Faster Stronger

Here’s the second installation of the virtual video launch of Older Faster Stronger, featuring nutritionist Kirsten Bedard on eating for performance. She overhauled my eating style and set me on the path to gaining muscle, getting leaner and setting personal bests at every race distance I attempted in my super-fit year. Here is what she has to say!


Virtual/Video/Viral? launch of Older Faster Stronger

Check here over the next week for the video virtual launch  (and you can make it viral!) of Older Faster Stronger. A fantastic panel of women discuss — guess what — How Running Makes Us Stronger Faster Younger & Powerful!

First up, video highlights of the launch at Hart House, University of Toronto with a packed room of runners and readers. The room was abuzz with energy! Thank you all for coming out. And thank you for sharing links to this great discussion.

Over the next week, I’ll post the following:

  • Kirsten Bedard on eating for performance (Dec 4)
  • Professor Catherine Sabiston on running for brain health (Dec 5)
  • Karla Del Grande on how she became the fastest 60-year-old woman on the planet (Dec 8)
  • Olympic marathon great Silvia Ruegger on how running makes us powerful, gutsy, courageous! (Dec 9)

Hope you enjoy these inspiring women talk about all the ways running makes us strong.



What happens when an overly exuberant running pal plays the Pan Am Games ticket lottery?

She orders tickets for you! These tickets are the best seats (Section GA1 and Row GA4) and she’s charging straight cost of tickets, simply eager to ease the load on her credit card.

This is what’s available:

Tickets for Tuesday July 21- 10:00-12:45pm preliminary session $75.00 X4

Women: 100 Metre Round 1 Races; 5,000 Metre Final Race & Medal Ceremony; 400 Metre Hurdles Semifinal Races; Javelin Final & Medal Ceremony

Men: 100 Metre Round 1 Races; Long Jump Qualifying; Pole Vault Final & Medal Ceremony

Tickets for Tuesday July 21- 6:00-8:50pm medal session $145.00 X4

Women: 800 Metre Semifinal Races; 100 Meter Hurdles Semifinal & Final Races; Hammer Throw Final & Medal; Ceremony Triple Jump Final & Medal Ceremony

Men: 10,000 Metre Final Race; 3,000 Metre Steeplechase Final Race & Medal Ceremony; Shot Put Final & Medal Ceremony

Tickets for Wednesday July 22- 10:00-12:45pm preliminary session $75.00X4

Women: 400 Metre Semifinal Races; 100 Metre Hurdles Medal Ceremony; High Jump Final & Medal Ceremony

Men: 400 Metre Semifinal Races; 800 Metre Semifinals Races; 10,000 Metre Race Medal Ceremony; 400 Metre Hurdles Semifinal RacesDecathlon; 100 Metre Race, Long Jump & Shot Put

Tickets for Thursday July 23- 10:00-1:30pm preliminary session $75.00X4

Women:100 Metre Race Medal Ceremony; 200 Metre Round 1 Races; Long Jump Qualifying

Men: 100 Metre Race Medal Ceremony; 200 Metre Round 1 Races; 1,500 Metre Semifinal Races; Hammer Throw Medal Ceremony; Decathlon 110 Metre Hurdles Race, Discus & Pole Vault

Tickets for Thursday July 23- 5:45-9:00pm medal session $145.00X4

Women: 200 Metre Semifinal Races; 400 Metre Final Race; 10,000 Metre Final Race & Medal Ceremony; Pole Vault Final & Medal Ceremony

Men: 200 Metre Semifinal Races; 400 Metre Final Race; 800 Metre Final Race & Medal Ceremony; 400 Metre Hurdles Final & Medal Ceremony; Discus Final & Medal Ceremony; Decathlon Javelin & 1500 Metre Race

Tickets for Friday July 24- 10:00-1:20pm preliminary session $75.00X4

Women: 1500 Metre Semifinal Races; 400 Metre Race Medal Ceremony; 4×400 Metre Semifinal Races; Discus Final & Medal Ceremony; Heptathlon; 100 Metre Hurdles & High Jump

Men: 400 Metre Race Medal Ceremony; 110 Metre Hurdles Semifinal & Final Races; 4x400m Semifinal Races; Triple Jump Final & Medal Ceremony; Decathlon Medal Ceremony

Tickets for Friday July 24- 5:30-8:40pm medal session $125.00X4

Women: 200 Metre Final & Medal Ceremony; 3,000 Metre Steeplechase Final; 4×100 Meter Semifinal Races; Long Jump Final; Heptathlon Shot Put & 200 Metre Race

Men: 200 Metre Final & Medal Ceremony; 1,500 Metre Final & Medal Ceremony; 110 Metre Hurdles Medal Ceremony; 4×100 Metre Semifinal Races; Javelin Final & Medal Ceremony

If interested in purchasing any of these tickets please contact my running pal, Lily Wong

The only I have is a) Lily is awesome b) these events are taking place in Toronto and c) Lily has saved you time and effort of playing the Pan Am Games ticket lottery!



Talking sex and radishes (and a little running) with author Sarah Waters

Best-selling author Sarah Waters (six books, more than a million sold) is a champion walker. She takes breaks from writing her door-stopping, historical literary page turners by exploring corners of London, England. “London is a great town for walking,” she told me during a recent video interview when the author was in Toronto to promote her latest novel, The Paying Guests. Nothing better than walking, she says, to spur on creativity.

After our interview was over, I thanked her with a copy of my running book, Older Faster Stronger. She stared at it for a moment (gasp, was she thinking I’m a shameless self promoter?) then told me that she used to be a runner. “Maybe I’ll get back to it,” she said.

Okay, I will not take credit if Sarah Waters picks up her walking pace a little. Oh, stuff that. Of course I will!

If you’re a super fan, check out the full, uncut, unabbreviated, blisters and all interview.


I’m humbled by response to #OlderFasterStronger

The last few weeks since the launch of Older Faster Stronger have been a blur of interviews, fantastic social media support from new running & reading pals across North America and some pretty positive reviews about how I butted out the cigs, pushed away plates of pasta and dragged myself off the couch and onto the road to run Boston Qualifying marathons. I do realize that I wrote a MEMOIR; still, it’s humbling/weird/cool to hear what others are saying about my journey in major publications such as Maclean’s, Toronto Star, Runner’s World, and on NPR and Daily Xtra. What’s my reaction? Geeze, I’ve been slacking doing book signings at the NYC Marathon! I need to up my game, pump up the iron, get back on the track. Coach Elaine McCrea at the Runner’s Shop, I need a new training program!!