Friday, November 12, 2010

The day after...

Now considering we walked more than the scheduled 3km 'Steady Run' on Saturday (mall walking counts too right?), ate only Jack in the Box for every meal (hopefully a nutritionist isn't reading this), and flew the night before only to arrive at 11:30pm, you'd think the thought of running 7km with our Running Room group at 7:30 the next morning would NOT be something we'd be looking forward to... luckily you are wrong!! You see, if you read the blog about our shopping trip, you'll notice that new running attire was a big part of why we crossed two provinces and a state in order to get prepared for the winter running season, and looking good in new clothes definitely trumps not wanting to get out of bed... well this Sunday anyway!

As it turned out, the day was a perfect day for running, it was hovering around zero degrees and sunny .. a perfect day to try out the cooler new thermal layers we purchased the day before. This was our first Sunday run with the group and it really amazed us at how much better the run felt and was executed with a group setting.

First, it must be said what a great diverse group of ladies (and gentleman.. sorry Bryce!) that we get to run with a couple times a week at our clinics. Knowing the three of us and our personalities both individually and as a group of three, it seems amazing that they've even let us stay as long as they have! PLUS they don't seem to judge our singing while running, the stories we tell OR the fact that they don't even question having to take our jumping photos after a run to keep our blog up to date! We like to think of ourselves as the group from the movie "Open Water".. the louder you are, the less likely you'll be left behind!

Ok, back to the run.. We were told that the route was going to be a flat start with an uphill middle and finishing down Signal Hill. Thanks to perfect weather and proper attire, the whole run went off without a hitch. We did the “run 10min/walk 30secs” which we hadn’t done before and really enjoyed. Shannon was great with keeping up on course both on the road and with the timing.. the unfortunate part was when we got ourselves off course at the end of the run when she left us check on the runners behind. Luckily we found our way out, with a few extra km’s to our belt. Our overall elevation was a 66m gain which must be said is still 20m short of the week's previous!

Overall we all agreed that we felt great after the run and look forward to more Sunday runs as we get closer to February.

A step by step account of 3 running princesses’ shopping trip to America in about 28hours!

GOAL: Head to America (Seattle area) to Target and Outlet Malls to find much needed Running Gear!

  1. Flew to YVR after work with empty suitcases, picked up by my mom who lives in the area and head to Chateau Hanson for dinner, wine and early to bed.
  2. Woke up 6am, hit the road by 6:15am, turned around at 6:27am because I forget my purse. Idiot, I know.
  3. Cross the border at 7:05am, no issue (male border crossing guard thankfully!)
  4. 1st stop: Jack in the Box!! Who knew they listed the calories under each item?! We each had Sourdough Breakfast Sandwich (409 calories, 21g fat… pffft… no big deal). SO DELICIOUS! Thanks Bryan!!
  5. We hit the road to our 1St destination TARGET!!!! (*Please note this is my maiden voyage to Target with the most experienced Target shopping mentors one could ask for)
  6. Miss exit for Target, have to loop back around (Lovely scenery btw)
  7. Arrive at Target and lose all flipping self control
  8. Ok let me back track…
  9. Arrive at Target, Christi begins to explain and demonstrate the “Science” behind successful Target shopping. There are steps and there are rules:
    a. Step one: grab a cart (1 each, no sharing), head to clothing section first. Fill your cart with EVERYTHING you possibly could want (some items may be cast off later, but for now take EVERYTHING!).
    b. End at the dressing room and try everything on, trying not to be distracted by the strange teenage boy who has now come in, asking for our opinion on his jeans and also telling us why his dad and him just had a huge fight and he was left stranded at Target. It’s perfectly acceptable to hide in your dressing room for as long as need be ensuring the door securely locked.
    c. Once finished trying on clothing decide on next department to shop, or if you are like me, freak out when you realize the other girls have expertly tried on everything already and you still have over half a cart load left. Begin to panic and start trying on things way faster! No more admiring each piece for 5 minutes each!
    d. At this point you can break off and head to which ever department you like. For example, Felicity headed to Electronics, checked out some DVDs then over to Christmas goods. Christi headed to shoes then undergarments. I finished up in Clothing, and head to Christmas stuff!! SO MUCH CHRISTMAS STUFF!
    e. Next all meet up in the foods section, shrieking and gasping over all the foods that America has, and Canada doesn’t, and at ridiculously low prices as well. Vitamin water for $1.00?? Not fair!
    f. Coming close to the end of the Target experience, head to the Pharmacy section. Pick up Vitamins, Aleve (American strength!) and then go nuts in the ‘mini, travel size’ aisle!
    g. And finally the last step: Check out. Christi schools us on how to pay for everything in 2 or even 3 different transactions, separating things into “Things I bought in America, and things I (clearly) brought with me down here. Ask if we have to pay the tax since we are from Alberta; yes we do. Bummer.
    h. Try not to let nauseating panic set in when your FIRST transaction goes through at almost $250. Start removing stuff from second batch of goods, while breathing deeply. Pay for 2nd transaction, ok not as bad as the first, but with support from experts, one can successfully bring their heart rate down and come to realize the value of said goods bought.
    i. And the very last rule: “No regrets, no returns”. You’ll actually end up regretting putting stuff back.
  10. Stop one: CHECK. Head in direction of Outlet Mall
  11. This is the point Christi advises we begin counting backwards time wise; Our flight home is at 9:15pm, it’s now 11am, so we have to be at the airport for 8:15pm, have to be at Chateau Hanson for 7:30pm for our airport shuttle, that’s a half hour from the border, give yourself an hour at the border, and a half hour from Bellisfair Mall to the Border, and hour at the Mall, an hour at the other Outlet mall and driving in between, gives us a total of about 2 hours at the first outlet mall. SEE, clearly a science here and extremely necessary to bring an expert like Christi along. I would have ended up lost in Washington state for the weekend, most likely bankrupt after the 2nd stop.
  12. Spent the next two hours picking up coupon booklets, grabbing Starbucks, and running from store to store ending at the Nike outlet where we caused mayhem trying to pay for our running gear. We were all half way through paying for our 2nd transactions, when we realized we could tell them we were from Alberta and not have to pay the taxes! The trouble this caused, with only 6 cashiers, us taking up 3 of them, and a line up half way around the store, well let’s just say we may have damaged our reputation as friendly Canadians. But, after all was done, we left with some sweet running gear at awesome prices AND didn’t have to pay no stinking tax!
  13. 3rd destination, Outlet Mall #2, perused Lulu Lemon and Nine West, grabbed last minute socks and outer shell from Reebok outlet then hit the road again. Time check: on schedule!
  14. 4th destination, Bellisfair Mall. We split up to make the best use of our time; Felicity to shoes in Macy’s, Christi into the mall to find a Santa party dress and myself to Victoria’s Secret. Power shopping at it’s finest!
  15. Now this is where Christi’s expertise comes in handy once again and not only fascinates, but overwhelms me as well. She takes us back to the truck and explains how we now have to divide everything into those groups I mentioned before, the “Things I bought here” and “Things I (clearly) brought with me”. We all open our empty suitcases and bags in the parking lot and begin ripping off receipts and packing so as too look like we have been on a road trip. (Good thing I bought socks and underwear!). At one point, a mall security guard drives by and we all go white and wonder if he’s about to take our license plate and call it ahead to the border. No time to panic, kept ripping tags and packing!
  16. Still on schedule, we headed towards the border and make one final, imperative stop: Jack in the Box, again. Proceeded to eat an undisclosed amount of calories, enjoying every minute of it and then headed straight for the border.
  17. This time when we cross the border, as luck would have it, we have a grumpy female border crossing guard, who after tallying our total (claimed) purchases sends us straight to the duty office to pay duty on our merchandise purchased. This was annoying because Christi has never had to pay duty before, but then again, we only paid about $15 each. Not that big of a deal.
  18. Sped back to Chateau Hanson to catch our Airport shuttle (Thanks Mom!) and arrive on time for our flight with significantly heavier suitcases.
  19. Overall we all agree it was a successful shopping trip, got what we went there for (Running gear) with maybe a few extras and just as fun as going to PHX to run a race!
  20. Oh, and one last rule… don’t look at your bank statements for a few days after you come home. Wait until you fall in love with everything you bought so that you can justify it and avoid buyer’s remorse! ;)