Monthly Archives: May 2010

Happy Working Song

*I was mistaken, this post didn’t go anywhere and it is up, YAY!*

It’s job announcement time!

At the end of April, during final exams, I had a job interview with a branch of the government. It was completely on a whim because my Mum heard about it at work and e-mailed me to tell me about it, so I applied. I have been looking for a job for the summer for a very long time (I would prefer longer, but school is a full time job on its own, literally). Of course I really wanted a job with the government and I really wanted this job. Every summer they hire summer students and I figured that with the courses I was taking, even though I wasn’t finished the program, I could still look pretty appealing.

I sent in my resume and cover letter and waited to be contacted. I knew that it wouldn’t be until the Monday morning and that I would probably be going in for the interview that afternoon. Of course I spent Sunday night freaking out about what to wear, I actually felt like I had no clothes. You know that feeling?!

Monday morning rolls around and I have everything ready to go just incase. I get up early so I can go for a run so I would be home and showered before 9am when the person who could possibly call me would be in her office. I get a call around 10am asking if I could come in for 1pm, I was so excited that I didn’t just get shoved aside because I didn’t apply sooner.

I get all dressed up, I put on some nice dress pants and a fashionable sweater with a cute necklace and my favourite black heals. I head downtown an arrive a good half hour early (I have this fear that I’ll be late for things so I always end up getting places about 15-30 minutes early).

I walk around for a bit, but after a little while I decide to go to the building. I take a seat in the waiting area when who shows up but my Mum. Until this point I had been able to contain my nerves. The minute my Mum starts talking to me I can feel my nerves building and I was about to cry. I think I was just so overwhelmed with school and this amazing job opportunity coming up at the last minute.

During the interview I felt so confident, something just came over me. I put all the fears I was feeling behind me and stepped up to the challenge. That is until they mentioned that the job was from May-August, that is when my mind went “well crap, you can’t get this at all,” I explained that I was in school until July 9 (which I did mention in my cover letter) and they made a note of that and then we actually continued to talk. We talked about how a full government job interview would unfold and different style of interviews. I was curious and the man interviewing me seemed interested in telling me!

By the end of the week I got a call from the government telling me what I assumed, I didn’t get the job due to my availability….BUT they were actually looking into creating a job for me for July-August. SAY WHAT? Of course she mentioned that it might be a little while until they got back to me because they had to go through a few managers to get a summer position made for me.

Guess what?! I got a call today letting me know that everything had come through and that I got the job, the one that they made for me. How cool is that? It makes me so happy that they wanted me that much to make up a job for me! WOW!

Needless to say I have been doing a happy dance all day! Quietly while I was at school because some of those girls are competitive, and then out loud when I got home!

So that is the new and exciting thing that has come along! Of course I need to finish up the last 6 weeks of semester two and then I will be able to do this new and exciting thing!

Question: How do you over come the nerves before something like a job interview or a race?

I’ve found what works for me is giving myself a pep talk, there is a lot of positive talk and a lot of deep breaths.

Happy Running!

Protein Pancakes

Mmmmm pancakes!

I was introduced to these protein pancakes by Susan over at The Great Balancing Act . She has also recently come up with a Dairy-Free(ish) Protein Pancake recipe. Which I will be making soon for sure!

I have loved these from the moment I tried them! Sadly I haven’t been able to have them in a little while so I decided to have some for dinner! Sometimes I just want breakfast for dinner!

You can never go wrong when there are oats involved! That automatically wins me over!

1/2 cup Rolled Oats

1/2 cup Cottage Cheese

1/2 cup Egg Whites (or 4 Egg Whites)

1 Tbsp Ground Flax

1/4 tsp Baking Powder

1 tsp Vanilla Extract

Cinnamon (I put in tons!)

I put all of the ingredients into my Magic Bullet and blend until smooth (you can use a food processor too)! And then continue like you would with any other pancake, pour batter onto heated frying pan and flip when there are bubbles.

*Note: Sadly I used to be really bad at making pancakes, I know crazy eh?, and PB’s trick to making them with ease is when the edges get all shiny then they are most likely ready to be flipped. Since I was given that tip I haven’t had any problems and make yummy pancakes every time!

Of course no pancake eating experience is whole without some Pure Canadian Maple Syrup!

I used to use the sugar-free kind, which I must say I did love, but about two weeks ago I decided that I wanted to stop eating any and all artificial sweeteners. Surprisingly it has been going really well!

News on job front to come in the morning *Edited to add* The job news will be coming in the afternoon because I wrote a huge post tonight and it is gone, and I kind of want to unplug for the night*!

I Hope You Enjoy These and Happy Running!

Long Weekend Bliss

Last weekend was a long weekend for us Canadians, it was Victoria Day weekend! I took the time off to relax, read, go to the cottage, go for a long run and spend time spreading dirt for my parents in their backyard.

(People kept saying, “Kate, I think it’s soil”, my response, “Of course it is, but when you are spreading it for someone else, it’s dirt”) Here’s the pile I’ve been chipping away at, it was huge, and now it is a little less so.

Here we are before leaving the cottage on Sunday night. We even went swimming! You would think that with the weather we have been having that it would have been warm and wonderful in the lake. Wrong! It was ever so cold. I stood on the ladder long enough for my legs to get numb and then I took the plunge.

On Monday I went for a 10 mile long run in the heat. I did go out during a hot time of day on purpose, sadly, I just wanted to take some time to sleep and read in the morning and hang out with PB and when he had to go and do some nursing school things I decided to go out.

I put my headphones in and chugged along until I reached a well known 5 mile marker where I then turned around and made my way home. I actually listened to Skinny Bitch for the first half and then switched to music on the way back. This was my second time listening to the book and I will report back on what I think later. (*Note: The first time I listened to it/read it I didn’t like it at all, but something has changed since then and I no longer dislike it.)

When I got home I took off my shoes and walked around on the grass and took pictures of the pretty flowers!

My feet were so happy to walk around on the cool grass and be free!

More flowers!

Now I am off to make some dinner and get everything packed for Placement Friday tomorrow. Everything has been going really well there, I have done all the tasks that they originally planned for me (it took 3 Fridays) so now they have me doing really cool things!

Happy Running!

Wake Up and Say Goodbye

One of my goals for the months of May and June (and a bit of July), while I’m in school, is to get up early and run and do other exercises such as stretching and core work.

So what do I mean by early? With classes starting at 8:30am I get up at 5:30am.

[Source]

When I was working retail I figured out that I could get up 3 hours before I had to be at work and I would have more than enough time for an awesome run, a shower, food, and a little down time before I have to head out the door and walk to my destination.

So when I first started getting up at 5:30am consistently (during first semester I was getting up between 5:30-8am depending on what time class started) I was ok with it. I have always loved getting up early, but the first week of second semester was hard. I had 10 weeks of school and placement ahead of me and for some reason I didn’t want to be in school. During that first week I made a comment on a workout in Daily Mile that went as follows:

“Had no problems getting up this morning! Going to bed at 10pm seems to be working for getting up early. Awesome run! Listened to some music but switched to Run Vegan Run for some company.”

I had a response that made me giggle: “Well done! Lets see how you feel in 2 weeks of these early starts.”

I read that and laughed because it is true, especially for me, you know you feel great when you start getting up early and then down the road you start getting tired and grumble at the need you feel to get up so early, but you won’t stop because you know it’s good for you to do so. You know how good it makes you feel. (Of course there are always exceptions and sometimes taking a day to sleep in makes a world of difference)

So how do I feel in the middle of week 3? AMAZING!!

So how do I do it and keep on smiling? Here is what works for me:

I bought one of those Apps from the iTunes store that has music start playing quietly before you have the alarm set to go off. The quite music aids in waking me up slowly and letting me know that it will soon be time to get up.

When my main alarm goes off (that’s right I use 2 alarms) I have to accept that upon waking up I am going to feel a little sleepy, but that does not mean that I necessarily slept poorly or went to bed late.

I turn on my bed side table light as soon as my alarm goes off, I get out of bed and stretch to get things moving. I grab my water bottle from my bedside table and start hydrating.

Then I make my way to the kitchen to get some food in me before I head out the door. I normally have a bit of a Cliff or Luna bar while I sit on the couch and read some news and drink more water.

I always make sure my running clothes are waiting for me and my shoes are at the front door. I always charge my iPod shuffle the night before (if needed) and load up new songs if I find any.

Then I’m off and running!

Stopping to smell the flowers, and take pictures of them, along the way!

When I get home I make myself a big Green Monster, I have changed the recipe lately so I’ll fill you in on that: 3/4c chocolate or plain soy milk, 2c spinach, banana, Vega Performance Protein vanilla flavour. This is the best way for me to refuel before doing any core work or yoga and before I shower and get ready for the rest of my day!

That’s how I do it, some days are harder than others. This morning my eyes popped open at 5:15am ready for the day and excited to get out and run. Some days I’m dead asleep until 5:30am and groan a little when my alarm goes off. Every day is different and that is just the way life is.

Now I am off to read an relax before bed. One thing I forgot to mention is that I get into bed around 9pm and my light is normally off by 9:30pm and am asleep shortly after that.

Question: What works best for you when you need to get up early?

Happy Running!

*Wake Up and Say Goodbye is the name of one my favourite albums by David Usher

Did I Hear You Right?

I would like to tell you about what happened at lunch today.

During this condensed two month second semester for school we are at the school 3 of the 4 days for lunch and I pack my lunch everyday, no ifs ands or buts. I always pack the same things, in rotation of course so I don’t get bored: cottage cheese or yogurt and fruit, almonds, apples, pears, oranges, carrots and cucumbers to dip in hummus, pita and light Laughing Cow Cheese, salad with chickpeas, edamame…I could go on forever, the list is rather long. To save you from a post that is solely a list of food I will stop there.

So what happened today when I pulled out my lunch of cottage cheese, strawberries and blue berries with some almonds? A girl in my program looks at what I am eating and says…

“You know that fruit is basically all sugar, right?!”

This is the same girl who once asked me why I was always eating when she saw me; my answer, because we normally see each other at lunch and the time I have an afternoon snack (I didn’t actually answer her because the question was so stupid).

So how did I react today?

Sadly not with the answer I wanted to, which would have been, “Anything I am eating is better than the Brisk Iced Tea and chips you are eating, or the nothing you normally eat and sit there and tell me how hungry you are and how you want to lose weight by taking diet pills.”

What I actually told her was how healthy fruits and nuts are and that I like cottage cheese. I, again, did not feel the need to justify anything to her, what’s the point?

This happens to me a lot, it happened at my full time retail management job too, people see that I bring a healthy lunch or dinner on a daily basis and start questioning my food choices and ask me if I count my calories or if I am trying to lose weight. It’s like these people think that the only reason someone would pack a healthy meal is if they are trying to lose weight.

That is not the case, I like food that fuels my body, food that gives me energy and makes my tummy happy.

Question: Does this ever happen to you? Do people ever question your healthy choices?

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In other news everything at school is going well and I feel much better than I did last week. Last week I was feeling a little overwhelmed with the volume of school and placement, but I think I have the hang of it and I know that the, now, 8.5 weeks will fly by (but I’m not counting, ha!).I am really happy that this session is happening during the spring because that means the sun is up just after I am and it is so easy to wake up, especially when I go to bed between 9-10pm.

I love running early in the morning!

Question: When do you like to workout? Do you do it before school/work or after? What works best for you? I prefer morning workouts, but sometimes I know that it just is not possible to workout in the morning so I am able to cut out time in the afternoon to do so. I always book my workouts in my iCal the week before so they are scheduled in there and that time is for me.

Since this post is severely lacking in photos….

You get to see a picture that we took at the Dollar Store before seeing Iron Man 2 (great movie!)

Happy Running!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mums out there!

Yes that is right I spell it with a “u”, that is how I was taught to spell it by my Mum and no one has been able to change my ways. PB spells it with and “o” and I spell it with a “u”….sometimes we “argue” over how we will spell it as a future family. I bet I will win!

Here are the Mum’s that I love!

With my Mum and Dad after running the Ottawa Half Marathon back in May 2007. My Mum stayed out in the rain for almost 2 hours and was waiting for me at the end!

With PB’s Mum at the end of the PEC Half Marathon this past October 2009. It was also raining and we were greeted with open arms at the end!

My Grandma and Grandpa in Ottawa June 2007 after my graduation. I do not have a good picture of us together on this computer and I know she would want me to represent here with a good picture.

To all the mothers and mothers to be out there, thank you for everything you do!!

Happy Mother’s Day and Happy Running!

Placement Friday: Public Health

I know it is no longer Friday, but I still wanted to report back on my first placement day at the Public Health Unit.

I got up at 5:30am, like I had been doing all wee, and I went for a run! It was a nice, but kind of chilly for this time of year, 3.5 mile run in 30 minutes at 5:45am.

I like to track my workouts on my calender with star stickers because it makes me feel like a star, and I have a lot of stickers left over from when I was a camp counsellor. After that I had a delicious Green Monster and showered, I ran for a shorter period of time today because I knew I wanted more time to get ready. Of course I could have gotten up a half hour earlier, but I really didn’t want to.

Once I was ready I packed my food for the day. I knew that if I didn’t have enough I was only a 5 minute walk from my school and could go get fruit or tea there if I needed, and there was also a healthy cafeteria/store near the Public Health building.

I packed some tea and my travel tea mug from Lululemon which keeps my tea hot for a very long time. I made some shortly after getting there and didn’t get it just sit down and drink it until lunch, about 3.5 hours later and it was still piping hot!

Worked with Corporate in the morning, it isn’t all that busy on a Friday so we walked around with my supervisor and met people, and we talked about our backgrounds, it was great because she actually took the program that I am taking now so it was great to hear everything and see that what I am doing now really does pay off. We took a break around 10:30am and then did some replacing of documents in binders.

I had lunch by myself because my placement supervisor was out running errands. It was nice to have an hour to myself to sit and eat and read blogs and the news. While I didn’t do much in the morning it is still overwhelming to go into a new place and meet a lot of new people and be introduced to how things are done somewhere else.

On to lunch!!

For lunch I had some cottage cheese with strawberries and blueberries. It was very yummy and kept me full all afternoon! I have been playing with what to take for food during the school week, trying to figure out what keeps me full the longest because at school (except for Tuesday) we are 8:30am-12:30pm a half hour break and then 1-4pm and we are in a computer lab and not supposed to eat in there. I also munched on a very juicy orange during my afternoon break.

The afternoon was filled with working with HR and it was great and busy, I love being busy! We talked about HR and what I knew about what they did and then talked about what I was doing for them. Essentially I am helping them continue on their path to make everything electronic rather than having to go to someone’s file to find something. I was interesting and I am looking forward to being part of this project and hopefully being part of completing this step for them!

I got to leave at 4pm which was really nice, since it was Friday no one really stays past 4pm anyway and they said taht 7.5 hours was more than enough for a placement student, and I completely agree!

I ate a Caramel Nut Brownie Luna bar on my way home while listening to some music to close out my first day.

I felt really comfortable at Public Health and really liked the people that I am going to be working with. I am looking forward to the next 9 Fridays that I will be with them. I might be counting down the weeks 😉

I hope that everything had a great Friday and a great weekend! I hope to post more about the cool things I learn during my placement, even if they are really only cool to me.

Question: What do you take for your lunch? I am always looking for ideas because sometimes I find myself staring into my fridge and thinking that I have no clue what to make, even though I have tons in there. I would love suggestions!

Happy Running!