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Tag Archives: dragon boat race

It’s Been Forever

19 Aug

It feels like it has been forever since I have sat down to write on this blog, and then I look at the last date I posted something and I realize it has been forever!…well, forever in the world of the internet lol πŸ˜›

Let’s play catch-up shall we?

Weight Watchers News:

I have been slowly, but steadily, losing weight. FYI, when I say slowly I mean slooooooowly. In the world of Weight Watchers, those that lose slowly call themselves turtles and oh man am I a turtle, sometimes I think I am closer to a sloth lol

In an effort to embrace my weight loss journey in all it’s slow glory I made myself a bracelet, to remind me that just because the weight is coming off slowly doesn’t mean it isn’t coming off and I am not alone in this slow journey.

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Mr. Pots:

My sweet potato is growing at an incredible pace! If you remember, it started out like this…

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And now looks like this!

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It is actually way bigger than this now, this is the most current pic I can find…I’ll take a new one soon!

I haven’t yet figured out how to tell when it is time to pull the sweet potato out of the dirt but I’m working on it, sorta…A friend who grows pretty much everything says if it is like with normal potatoes I will know to pull the sweet potato up from the dirt once the flowers have bloomed and died. I haven’t seen any flowers yet but I check daily for them.

Food:

I have mastered the art of making epic, healthy, pizza at home. Yummy! I’ll write a separate post detailing what I did, for now just enjoy the picture. πŸ˜›

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Hair:

Yeah, so…I did this…

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I wanted a change so I chopped my hair off, yay! I donated the hair to an organization that makes wigs for people with cancer. I figured if I was going to cut it off, it might as well do someone else some good rather than just go in the trash. I did look in to selling it, cause ya know, being poor sucks, but from what I could find only creepy people want to buy hair and I wasn’t comfortable putting my hair in to disturbing situations like that.

Dragon Boat News:

My team, The Twisted Hips, raced in Victoria BC and won Silver in Diamond Division (the divisions at the Victoria Festival are weirdly named, that is the equivalent to B Division). We worked our butts off, had one race where we got cut off by another boat but didn’t let it phase us and had our final race questioned because three boats had a collision, or maybe it was more like two boats collided and one was nicked, not completely sure. Protests were filed. Drama. Drama. Drama. End of the day, we still won silver. πŸ˜€

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Oh, and while we were roaming the town between races we came across a Subway bike cart thing, they were giving out free Subs and all they asked was for us to tweet a selfie of us with the sub and #sandwishes. Of course we said yes lol Free lunch! πŸ™‚

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So yeah, I guess that is enough for now. πŸ™‚ We race this coming Saturday so hopefully I’ll soon be telling you about yet another medal we are adding to our list of accomplishments, cross fingers for us!

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Poor Little Bee

15 May

Yesterday was race day, yay! It was the FCRCC Knockout Race which means your team races three qualifiers then you go on to the knockout round which sounds pretty much exactly like it is.

There are 7 teams in the heat, you race, the last two get knocked out, the rest of you immediately paddle back to the start line and you race again. This happens for three races in a row. The final race there are only three boats and the pressure is on!

It is soooooooo much fun! πŸ™‚

There are no medals for this race, just bragging rights.

We earned a tad bit of bragging rights since we came in second place in B Division. Not too shabby!

However, despite a day filled with racing, and fun, and hanging with the team, and repeated sunscreen application, and the joy of not being at work on a day I normally work the one big memory that won’t leave my brain is of…*dun-dun-dun*…a bee.

Yup, that’s right, a honey bee. Ya know, those cute little guys that are integral to our ecosystem and that are dying out? Those bees.

honey bee clip art

Might as well lean back in your chair and be comfy for this…

Some of us went to McDonald’s to get drinks, hey, it’s Summer Drink Days, don’t judge! I decided to try the lemonade, which fyi, delish! I didn’t quite finish it when we had to go warm up for our next race, the Knockout round, so I left it in the cup holder in the arm of my camp chair.

When we got back after our three back-to-back races I figured take one last gulp to finish the lemonade off and throw away the cup. Seems a fairly normal decision, right?

Well, note to self, next time look in the cup, and the straw! I take my sip of drink and something solid-ish is all of a sudden in my mouth. I thought it must be a lemonade seed and was kinda surprised cause this is a McD’s drink, so, not real lemonade, right? I mean, it comes out of a machine, it is processed in some way I am sure…but maybe I am wrong and there are real lemons involved in the making of this drink…who knows!

Not wanting to swallow a seed I pop a finger and thumb in to my mouth to remove it and what do I remove but a dead honey bee.

Yup.

Let that sink in a minute. I had a honey bee in my mouth.

My. Mouth.

*shudder*

What if I had opted to chew and swallow the “seed”?? Ugh, the thought makes me cringe. (seriously, cringing right now from having written that!)

I guess the lure of the sugar in the lemonade was too much for the bee to resist and down the straw it went, where it promptly got stuck and drowned, poor little bee. And then instead of having a proper funeral, or whatever it is bees do when one of their own goes down in the line of duty, I almost ate him! Then I threw him to the ground in a silent freak out! *shakes head at self* So disrespectful.

I actually do feel kind of bad. I don’t feel bad about killing certain creepy crawlies, especially if they are in my apartment, but I try not to kill them when I am outside and in their home environment. Plus the whole endangered thing! Oh the guilt! So I’m going to take some wild flower seeds with me when I hike this Wednesday and scatter them around, maybe some of them will grow, and help out the honey bees in that area, and karma will be balanced once again…or the bees have a little bee network and they now know I was indirectly responsible for the drowning of one of their own and the desecration of his body and now I’m on the honey bee hit list…

Dragon Boat Video

7 Aug

Okay, hopefully this works, here is a video of my teams second, third and fourth race at the Harrison Dragon Boat Festival from a couple weeks ago. πŸ™‚

Just in case anyone was interested lol

Quick Note: I tried clicking on the link once it was in my post and it gave a message to watch the video on YouTube so there is a link on the screen that will take you to the video on YouTube. No big deal but for some reason when I do that it plays the video suuuuper slow and the picture is out of sync with the audio. Hmm. That could very well be my computer doing that so it may play well for you but if it doesn’t than I apologize, I don’t know why it is acting wonky. 😦

Harrison Dragon Boat Race Festival July 25, 2015

29 Jul

This past Saturday was the Harrison Dragon Boat Festival, held at (in case you didn’t guess) Harrison Hot Springs. The race is held on a beautiful lake. This means clean, heavy, choppy, water – it’s pretty much awesome. πŸ™‚

2015-07-26 12.00.59There are four races in a day, which is average for festivals. The day and most of the night prior it was raining and not cold exactly but not warm, ya know, cause of getting drenched every time you went outside on account of the rain so we all prepared for a rainy race day but lucky for us when we woke up it was overcast and windy but not raining, yay! πŸ™‚

The paddler’s village is on the beach so we all lugged the stuff we would need for the day the whole 5 minute walk from the motel to our team’s tent and settled in for a day of awesome.

Our first race started fairly normal, the teams lined up, madam caller gave us the mark to go and boom! We are off! Then all of a sudden we weren’t because another team rammed their boat in to ours! Fyi, this is not normally a contact sport so yeah, not cool.

Since the team that hit us never came over to apologize we don’t know for sure why it happened, I am going on the assumption it was an accident since there was no reason for them to do it on purpose.

Let me set the scene for what happens when dragon boats collide…the boat with the most momentum tends to go over / into the second boat so the dragon head and part of the boat actually ends up inside the other boat. Since there are people in the way this generally means the dragon head hits or goes over top of a paddler, or two, or three…and sometimes hands and paddles get squished between the boats. Sometimes boats tip, sometimes they don’t, there are a lot of factors that decide that.

Here is a video of multiple dragon boat crashes, you can see how there are a lot of different reasons for boats to flip. Just ignore the propaganda type text that is talking about dragon boating lol oh, and no, none of the crashes shown are our crash, I don’t think it got caught on video which is too bad really, it’d be fun to see!

So yeah, we got hit, at first we kept paddling but we got the call from the water marshal to stop so we did, then once the boats were no longer connected we were told to keep going so we are hmm, maybe halfway through the race and have to start from a dead stop while the other teams had kept going (well, except for the boat that hit us). Basically we just dug in and gave it everything we had and then some to stay in the game. It is amazing how motivation and adrenaline can help boost you lol For that race we ended up coming in second place, I know right?! You’d of thought we’d be last but nope, second. πŸ™‚

The water referee saw the collision and recommended we file a complaint with the officials so we did and they took 6 seconds off our finish time. That kept us in second place finish for the race but that’s ok, it’s still a good finish, especially considering the collision!

The remaining three races seem a bit anti-climatic compared to the first, no more collisions, no more drama, just normal racing. We placed first in races two and three which put us in to the medal round for Division A Rec which is awesome and terrifying all at once.

Part of me was all “how’d we get in to A Division? We’ll never medal in A Division, dammit, why aren’t we in B Division?” but I think that was just my nerves talking. I know how we got in to A Division, we earned it, and we were going to show everyone there we earned a spot in that medal race by kicking ass! πŸ˜‰

There was a bit of nerves, a lot of encouragement being shared amongst the team, reminders that we know what we are doing and we’ve been doing great all day so just keep it up then before you know it we are lining up for the race and there is no more time for nerves, no more time for doubt, no more time for anything but focus, determination and control. Relying on training and technique and muscle memory, relying on our steersperson to keep us safe, relying on our caller to keep us motivated and in the game, relying on ourselves and our teammates to get us to victory!

So how did that race go you ask? Oh you know, fairly well, we only came away with the GOLD MEDAL!!!

The Twisted Hips Won Gold!

The Twisted Hips Won Gold!

You can see me over to the right wearing the black baseball cap. πŸ™‚

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After the festival was over we all went back to the motel, we were in a bunch of suites but congregated in one as it was the biggest. All the normal things happened after that, people showered and changed, we all kept our medals on, went for dinner at a local pub, got congratulated by random strangers (fellow dragon boaters and non-dragon boaters) as we walked through the town, then we ended up back at the motel to celebrate (aka drink and revel in our victory lol) πŸ™‚

The next day those of us that stayed overnight (which was most of us) went for brunch where I had the most amazing omelette ever, Mmm! and we slowly started to drift back to our vehicles. We all car pooled to some degree so don’t go thinking 22 people all drove up there individually! πŸ˜› You could tell that nobody wanted to leave even as we were all saying how we should leave because the goodbyes kept being drawn out, excuses were found to take pictures, people lingered for ages until finally we all went our own way. You’d think we were never seeing each other again or something when in reality it was Sunday and we were going to see each other at practice on Tuesday lol

Our last race weekend group selfie…

Some of my awesome team!

Some of my awesome team!

Fort Langley Cranberry Festival 2014

13 Oct

This past Saturday was the Cranberry Festival, yay! πŸ™‚

It is a dragon boat festival that isn’t a dragon boat festival lol The teams competing are dragon boat teams but we race in canoes, with canoe paddles, the boats hold 10 people (instead of 20 paddlers, one caller and one steers person), the first bench has only one person on it instead of two, the steers person sits instead of stands, the boats purposefully collide with each other and the races are a lot longer (2km minimum instead of 500m).

These races are wicked fun and are a great way to end the season – no pressure, no worries, just go out and have fun with the team. There are no prizes, no medals, just bragging rights lol πŸ˜›

My team

My team!

At the Cranberry Festival it is all about the final race, it is an obstacle course and really, it’s the only race we care about on the day lol From the start line you head towards a bridge where people have dropped pumpkins, you have to scoop up a pumpkin, go under the bridge, do a figure 8, go back under the bridge, turn around, partially beach the boat while one paddler jumps out and does an on-land obstacle (they take their paddle, have a cup of cranberry juice balanced on the flat side, run down the beach without spilling any juice, collect a bag of cranberries), the paddler jumps back in the boat, we unbeach ourselves, turn to go in the opposite direction we are facing, go around a buoy, go under the bridge and get past the buoys that represent the finish line. Awesome huh?

Someone cheering for another team took video of part of the race so you can have a look and see a bit of what it was about. The boat that gets away from the beach first and gets an awesome breakaway lead, that’s my team *nonchalant shrug* Cause ya know, we’re awesome like that. πŸ˜‰

After that turn (when the video cuts out) we headed straight, went under the bridge, passed the finish line and had time to turn around and watch the rest of the boats finish the race, it was a crazy long lead lol

We were especially happy with this win because our team had never won at this festival before, we broke our curse! wOOt! πŸ˜€

 

Race Day: DZ 500m

7 Jun

This weekend is the DZ 500m Dragon Boat Race Festival! πŸ™‚

My team. :) We didn't all realize there was a camera looking at us lol

My team. πŸ™‚ We didn’t all realize there was a camera looking at us lol

It is a two day event but each team races for only one day, there are three races per team per day. In the grand scheme of things it is a fairly small festival, mostly used as a qualifier for the Rio Tinto Alcan Dragon Boat Festival (the largest North American dragon boat festival). It’s a good festival to gauge where your team is in comparison to other teams, and a great chance to see how your team does in a 500m race since you most likely haven’t competed in a 500m race since last season.

Racing during practice, either against a stop watch or other teams that are on the water practicing is a completely different thing than racing in festival, obviously lol.

We had an early start, we met at 8am and our first race was scheduled for around 9:30am…I think…I know it was around there but these things almost never run on schedule lol When we were getting ready for warm-up we were told they (the race officials) were running behind then in an almost magical turn around they were running early *rolls eyes* Ah well, keeps things interesting! πŸ˜›

We had excellent race times for all three races! πŸ™‚ Yay!

First Race: 2:15

Second Race: 2:14

Third Race: 2:11

wOOt! wOOt!

Even though we are racing against other teams we are also racing against ourselves, we always want to do better than our previous race and we are oh-so-happy that we got faster with each race!

Plus! Not only did our times get better with each race we came in first place in our division! FIRST PLACE! *happy dance*

This is an excellent way to be heading in to our next race festival and talk about a boost to team morale, what a truly awesome way to start the race season!

Oh and on a vain note, we have new jerseys this year and we all looked amazing! πŸ™‚ Last year we kept having jersey issues and we ended up going the whole season without a jersey, it was really nice to actually look like a competitive team this year lol One of my teammates designed the jersey and wow did he make them look sweeeeet! I didn’t take any pictures during the day, our races were back-to-back so there was no time during the day and afterwards when we were hanging out it didn’t really cross my mind but next festival there will be more time between races and we’ll probably take a team photo so I’ll post one then so you can see the jerseys, we all love em! πŸ™‚

I’ve been pretty good about eating healthy today, well, except for a cookie I had earlier after our third race as celebration for doing so well lol Yeah yeah, I know! I shouldn’t celebrate with food but those cookies were staring at me all day and I’d just done three races, gimme a break lol πŸ˜› Other than that cookie I did ok, oatmeal, banana, babybell cheese, salad, turkey bacon, egg, toast with peanut butter, tea, water…I think that’s all of it…that’s not sooooo bad, right? *nods head* Right!

8km BMO Run…and a Dragon Boat Race

4 May

Today I ran. πŸ™‚

I know to a lot of people running an 8km is nothing, it isn’t even long enough to count as their training but to me 8km is a huuuuuge accomplishment. I’ve never run that far and today I did. Today was a good day lol

The race didn’t start till 9:30am which means I got to sleep in later then if I had gone to work, yay for sleeping in! lol I had to be downtown by 8:30am at the absolute latest in order to catch the shuttle bus that would take me to the start area, I decided to get there for 8am just to play it safe, I was highly paranoid about missing the shuttle and not being able to get to the start area in time and not running, that would have sucked. Luckily that didn’t happen.

So I got downtown, checked my backpack, boarded a school bus (um, when did the leg room in those seats become sooooooo small? I barely fit!), got shuttled to the starting area and then proceeded to try to find shelter cause oh yeah, I forgot to mention, pouring rain! Brr! It was a funny sight, all these groups of people wearing running outfits huddled under huge trees trying to stay warm, limber and dry. I went under a tree for the length of time it took to write a text, I was trying to keep my phone dry-ish, after that I decided screw this I don’t want to huddle under a tree like cattle *rolls eyes*, so I wandered a bit. From where we were waiting we could see the half-marathoners go by so I went by the sidelines for a bit to cheer them on, I was encouraged by their speed. I’d had the horrible thought that I’d be the absolute slowest person out there and be passed by and left in the dust but the majority of them seemed to be running at a speed I felt I could maintain for quite a while, phew! One less thing to be freaking out about!

While standing around waiting I randomly started talking with a really nice lady named Kristi, she is from Manitoba and came here specifically for this run. Crazy huh? We chatted, she is one of those super friendly people that you just instantly get along with. Without even planning it we started running together, I thought she’d leave me behind super quick cause she has been training for this unlike I who kept intending to train and didn’t, oops! πŸ˜‰ But she didn’t, we stuck together for 3-4km? I can’t quite remember the distance…the only reason we split up was she stopped to use the bathroom and I kept going. Now that I think about it maybe I should have waited, that would have been the polite thing to do…but before I could suggest waiting she waved me on and said she’d see me at the finish line as she headed off course to the washroom so I just kept going. I kept an eye out for her the rest of the run, I was absolutely convinced she’d catch up with me but I didn’t see her, and trust me I would have, she was wearing a very bright orange jacket.

At the same spot I left her there was a water station, I was one of those people grabbing a little cup of water while running by, how weird is that? I’ve only ever seen that on tv before lol Anyways, it turns out it wasn’t water, it was some sort of, I dunno, sickly sweet something, gack. It was nasty and made me thirstier then I was before I drank it. Not cool. This all happened right before a hill and about halfway up the hill I am sad to say I started to walk, I was super thirsty, had a sickly sweet taste in my mouth and I haaaaate hills. Looking back I wish I had managed to run that hill, I had run all the previous ones, because walking that hill somehow gave me permission to walk all the other hills if I felt like it, sigh. I know at the time I felt like I had to walk it, a quick walk granted but still a walk but I wish I’d pushed myself a bit harder, seen just how much more I could have done. Running is a mental game after all.

There were volunteers along the route cheering the runners on, for the most part I didn’t notice them much but there was this one group of 4 teenage boys who were holding up signs with quotes and cheering. One had a sign that was a quote from Gandalf (from Lord of the Rings) but this other sign really helped me. It said:

The voice in your head that says you can’t do it is a liar.

I know that quote, I’ve heard that quote, hell, we’ve all heard that quote or a variation on it but the timing of that sign, held by that stranger really helped me. It helped me to speed up, to run a little longer, and every time after that I wanted to stop I repeated to myself Β “the voice is a liar, the voice is a liar, you can do this!”

Yeah I know, Β I’m crazy lol πŸ˜›

I have multiple official times because of how they released the 8km runners on to the course, we were merging with the half marathoners who were already running, because of that our official start line was farther back which meant we started running before we actually go on to the race course. So, we crossed over two mats that registered our running chip at the beginning and then crossed over two at the end. This gave us our time for the actual distance of 8km as well as the time for the real distance we ran. My results are:

(heads up, don’t expect to be impressed or anything lol)

I did the 8km in 1:03:09

The goal I set for myself was 1:10:00 so I am very glad I beat my goal, screw glad, I am kinda proud. πŸ™‚

But, to keep this in perspective, the fastest runner of the 8km was a guy from Victoria BC who did it in 28:20! Eesh! The average for the 1858 participants was 56:06 which means I was 7mins slower than average which, considering my lack of training and the fact that I am not a runner doesn’t seem that bad…to me lol

what my Runtastic App tracked

what my Runtastic App tracked

Every single persons name gets called as they cross the finish line, which I thought was awesome, made me feel special lol

front and back of my medal, there is a spot in the back that will get a chip inserted in to it that shows my time

front and back of my medal, there is a spot in the back that will get a chip inserted in to it that shows my time

As soon as you cross the finish line there are volunteers urging you to keep moving, they are thrusting water and juice boxes in to your hands, you get given a medal, then food, lots of food! A banana, some yogurt, this lunch box thing that had all kinds of yummy treats inside (all healthy) and because it’s how we roll here everything was recyclable or compostable. πŸ™‚ I heard some people from the States commenting saying how you know you’re in Canada when not only do the garbage containers have multiple slots for all different types of recycling and composting but there is a volunteer at the garbage can to make sure you throw stuff in the right slot lol I guess I am so used to that I didn’t stop to think it might look weird to someone not from here. πŸ˜›

I then had to rush to get my bag from the bag check area, snag a cab and get to the dragon boat regatta my team was competing in today. They knew I’d be late for the races but that I’d do my best to get there as soon as I could. I missed the first two heats but got to race in the third. πŸ™‚ They were all so happy when I showed up, all proud of my medal and asking questions about how it went. I’m so lucky to have a team that supported my doing the run rather than be mad I was going to miss part of the regatta.

We had a good third race and I heard from the team the first two races went really well also. πŸ™‚

Then we all went for food, which fyi, from the time the race was over until about 7pm I have felt like a bottomless pit lol I started the day off with a protein packed healthy breakfast and for the most part have eaten fairly healthy throughout the day, each time I ate it was a meal with protein to try to help my poor body get over what I put it through lol

All in all I am feeling great! A bit of muscle pain in the calves and thighs, my knees are kinda sore, but nowhere near as bad as it could be. It may have been a rainy day, and I may have spent it soaked to the skin from about 9am till 1pm but it was an awesome day and I’m so glad I decided to run the 8km! Who knows, maybe I’ll run a longer race next time!…wait, next time?? What the hell am I talking about?! I’m not a runner! lol πŸ˜‰

Sidenote: I apologize for the lack of pictures but I was so busy enjoying the day I didn’t think to pull out my phone and snap pics of things as I went through the day, I know I know, bad blogger! πŸ˜› There were official pics taken but I haven’t received a link yet to see them, once I do I’ll post one so you can see how much of Β a drowned rat I looked like lol

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