Thursday, December 1, 2011

One Month till 2012!

I cant believe that it is December already! Time is just flying by and now it is only one month until 2012. The last month has been pretty busy. I went to New York twice, the first time for a race Tim did and the second time for the NYAC All-Sports Dinner. It was great to meet more people from the NYAC family that has been supporting me all year. I am so grateful to be part of such a great TEAM.

Training has been coming along very well. I just finished off my second biggest mileage month of training ever and im feeling so great. This week will also be my second biggest week of training ever and it makes me very excited to see my progress. Last Friday we did a lactate test and it went very well. We always do a lactate test in November and this way we can compare where we are at and compare the results to the previous years results. On Friday I was able to improve upon my results from last year. My lactate was lower for each of the intervals which bodes very well for my upcoming season. Its always a relief to know that I am on track.

Next weekend, Saturday December 10th, a bunch of us from the TEAM will be entering a little race in Huntington Beach to support John Nunn as he races to get the USA Olympic 50km Trials qualifying time. We will be entering the 20km race as a workout. We plan on doing it in zone #2 pace and I hope that my result is better than when I did the Rock n' Roll Half Marathon last year in Las Vegas on December 4th. I did 1:41:20 for 20km's last year feeling very comfortable. Im looking forward to walking a bit faster again since we have mostly just been doing easy zone #1 workouts.

Keep on walking,


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Only 3 Seconds inbetween me and the Olympics!

Check out this newspaper article from my hometown's Peterborough Examiner on my season and my upcoming year trying to make the Olympic team. You can view the article here.

This weekend I am headed to New York with Tim as he will race 50km's at the USA 30km RW Championships. I look forward to being able to visit some family at the same time. Should be a fun weekend!

Keep on walking,


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Back at it, 42 weeks to go!!!

Back to training! Wow, 2 weeks off went very quickly but I am glad to be back and moving towards making the 2012 Olympic team.

I started training last Monday and its been humbling so far. I wish that I could have started back exactly where I left off but obviously that is not possible. So far training has been going well. The pace ive been walking  has felt easy but my biggest obstacle is my heart rate. Its normal that for the first few weeks that my heart rate is high before it goes back to normal but its just frustrating. Today I tried really hard to go slower so that my heart rate average would go down. Even though it was my lowest heart rate since I started training, im still not happy with it. Hopefully by the time I start the new week on Monday, my heart rate will be closer to normal or will be normal. Ive been able to train with my new TEAMmate Miranda Melville who just moved out here so its been nice to have some company for a change.

The Pan American Games kick off this weekend for track and field with the women's and men's 20km Race Walk events. Now that its come, I wish I was there but then I remind myself why I decided not to go. The games are too late in the year which is why most of the top athletes in the western hemisphere also decided not to go. I also didnt want to miss so much of base season if I didnt take a break until after the games. I already feel like im getting a late start by starting in early October but of course, I know ill be fine. I want to wish my TEAMmates Maria Michta and Lauren Foruges all the best on Sunday as they represent the USA!

Just over a week ago I found out that I was one of the recipients of the Canadian Athletes Now Fund. The fund gives support to athletes in all sports in Canada to help us work towards our goals. Their support this year is going to make a big difference for me and put less pressure on me in such an important year. If you have the means to donate, please do so in such a crucial year for athletes as we strive to make the Olympic team next summer. You can click on their logo on the right side of my blog and find out how to donate. Thank you for your support!

Im looking forward to everything that is to come this season. It should be one of the most exciting years of my life, I cant wait!!!! I look forward to bringing you all along with me on my journey.

Keep on walking,


Sunday, October 2, 2011

THREE Seconds!!!

After Daegu I returned back home to San Diego for 11 days before I left again for Germany. I really thought it was important going home in between races because it is really hard being away from my husband for so long. It was really good to re-charge and have a break from the travel. It went by quickly but I was excited to get off to Germany and finish off my season strong. 

I left on Monday, September 12th to fly to Dusseldorf and I stayed an hour away from there in Wattenscheid with Sabine and Bastian Krantz again. Its so easy being there and it feels like home. I was able to get some good final preparation in there before the race. The weather was much colder than I was expecting and so I ended up having to wash my warmer clothes pretty frequently, oops, didnt bring enough clothes!

Training went really well leading up to the race. When I was back in San Diego I only did one fartlek but it was my fastest 10 x 1k/500m fartlek ever. I knew this was really promising and as long as I could just maintain the fitness till the race, I would do well. Training went equally well in Germany. Only did one hard workout while in Germany and it was equally strong in the cold and wind. On Thursday, September 22nd I left Wattenscheid for Naumburg, the race city. It was nice to meet up with a few fellow Canadians and other friends. 

Race day, September 24th!!! I really had mixed feelings going into this race and event though my training had gone well over the last few weeks since Daegu, I still had the little devil in my head saying that I wasnt going to reach my goal. I still felt my usual calm warming up for the race and once we got to the start line, all the bad thoughts were gone and it was race time. Went out the first lap (1km loops) very conservative in 4:46 and then decided to get myself on goal pace of 4:40/km. I was walking alone after the first lap and it was hard to judge my pace. I ended up going 23:07 for the first 5k and even though I knew it was too fast, I didnt slow down for some reason. I just kept rolling and clicking off the km's. The next 5k was even faster, 23:04 for 46:11 for 10k, oops! Even though I should have been worried with that 10k split, the first thing that came to my mind was that I had a 34 second cushion on my goal time and I thought I would get the time no problem. The next 5k was a bit slower in 23:32 but I still felt confident that I would be ok. At 15k in 1:09:43 I calculated in my head what I would have to walk at a minimum to still get the time but with 1km to go I realized that I miscalculated and that even with going as hard as I could the last lap, that I was either JUST going to get the time or just miss it. Unfortunately, despite pushing myself as hard as I could, I walked 1:33:33. As you can tell by the picture above, this was quite disappointing. After I had a few minutes to think clearly, I was thrilled that I was able to walk a PB by 10 seconds which would also be a new Canadian record for the 3rd time this season and I came back from Daegu strong. How could I be disappointed? However, that goal I was going after was the Olympic A standard and I missed it by 3 seconds. THREE SECONDS!!! It was nothing. Its only 0.15 of a second per km! Seriously? I really just missed the standard by that little. Managed to place 3rd in the race and win 250 Euros which was a fantastic bonus. 

After a night of fun in Naumburg after the race, it was time to leave and go back home. I couldnt wait to get back home and get into a normal routine and take my break from training. I have now been off training for a week and its been nice to do things that I dont usually get to do before training. This week I will start doing some cross training and a bit of running but still no racewalking for another week. 

I have had an amazing season and here are some of my highlights:

- Four 20km personal bests (3 minutes and 49 seconds off my PB coming into the season), 5km PB and 1 mile PB
- Broke Canadian 20km Record 3 times
- Won my 5th Canadian Championship
- Qualified for my 2nd World Championship Team

I am proud of myself for believing that I had the ability to improve so much. I know that as long as I continue to work hard and train smart that I will continue to improve and qualify for the Canadian Olympic team next summer!

Thanks for the continued support this year. Knowing that so many people believe in me, it really does help me want to strive to keep doing better.

Yesterday morning I did a radio interview with The Fan 590 in Toronto. You can listen to my interview here. Start listening at 43:30.

Keep on walking,


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Peterborough Newspaper Article on Daegu

Here is an article from my hometown newspaper about my race in Daegu. Thanks to Greg Davis for following me through my pursuit to make the Olympics next year in London. Click here to view the article.

Keep on walking,


Monday, September 5, 2011

Disappointed is an Understatement!

I am back in San Diego now after travelling home from Daegu on Friday. I have now had almost a week to reflect on my race last week and it has been really challenging to get over my disappointment. The following are my thoughts on how I finished 37th place with a time of 1:43:31.

My training had been going very well leading up to going to Korea. Upon arrival at the pre-camp in Changwon City I had what I believe to be my best training ever and I was feeling great. Training in Korea was a bit up and down because of the weather. The weather during the pre-camp was cool but had pretty high humidity which drove up my heart rate a lot. My one harder workout while I was there went very well though and so it made me feel pretty confident for the race. Once we traveled to Daegu we got a drastic change in the weather. It was extremely hot and we had the normal humidity and so the temperatures went from about 20c in Changwon City to well over 30c in Daegu. This was a huge change for me, especially coming from San Diego. Training went well the first few days there and then 3 days before the race I started to notice that my heart rate went up considerably, way higher than it should have been even for the weather conditions. I also noticed that it was beginning to be harder to take deep breaths at any time during the day. I expressed my concern to our team doctor and we decided that it would be good for me to try and use an inhaler to open up my chest. I also started taking Singulair which is an allergy/asthma medication to see if that would help also. I noticed no difference. I was feeling very scared because I knew that this would be a problem for the race and there was nothing else I could do to try and fix it.

I felt good in the warm up and was hoping for the best. I kept cool before the race by putting bags of ice on me as we waited to be called out to the start line. My plan for the race was to stay with a group of walkers that had similar personal bests and seasons best as me so that I would have people to walk with and fight. When the gun went off I stayed at the back of the big pack which started off really slow. We went through the first km in 4:52 which was even a bit slower than I was planning to start off at so I was happy about that. I stayed in the same position until the group started to spread out. I stayed with the group of girls that I had planned on being with and went through the first 5km's in 23:57 which was right around where I thought I should be. After that point I started to feel myself struggling a bit to stay with the girls I was with. I started to drop off and feel worst and worst. By 8km's I felt as though I was loosing control of my body and every km seemed to get slower and slower. Went through 10km's in 48:39 which, even though it was slower than the first 5km's, wasnt too bad but I knew it was just going to get worst and it did. My breathing became more labored and my body heavy. I felt as though I could only control that my body was still in motion but not the speed or effort that I was moving. In my head I thought that I must have been going 7 minutes per km and didnt want to look at my splits to see what they actually were. People that were watching me race on tv or in person were saying that I was swaying and looked as though I was going to collapse. I knew in my head that I could collapse but didnt know if it would happen before or after I crossed the finish line. I was determined to finish since I didnt go all the way to Korea to drop out. I ended up collapsing at the finish line and started cramping really bad in my left hamstring. The pain was unbearable and I had to be taken away on a stretcher. I was just thankful to be done.

After talking to the Canadian medical and coaching staff, we determined that I was dehydrated. Despite my best efforts hydrating in the days leading up to the race, I obviously failed myself with balancing between water, electrolytes and sodium intake. This is the first time that this has ever happened to me and I am very disappointed that my result came from something that could have been prevented. I am embarrassed about it because I know to everyone it seems like "how could you not have been drinking enough?". Trust me, I was drinking a lot, I was going to the bathroom very often throughout the day and I wasnt just drinking water. In my opinion, I think the biggest thing I was lacking was sodium. I am not used to adding salt to my food when I am in the USA but the food in the village was prepared with little to no salt and so I was not getting enough in my food or in other areas of my diet on the trip.

I can go over and over what happened and why it happened but it doesnt matter now. I am going to move on from this now and not dwell on the performance and the mistakes ive made. I have had an amazing season so far and I have achieved so much so far that I will not look back on 2011 and only think of my result in Daegu. Instead I will think of the Canadian record that I broke and beating my personal best by almost 4 minutes.

I am now continuing to train for 3 more weeks as I prepare for my final race of the season on September 24th in Naumburg, Germany. I fly to Dusseldorf, Germany on Monday and will stay with Sabine and Bastian Krantz again before the race. I am looking forward to finishing off my season strong and putting revenge on how I did in Daegu.

Thanks for all the support that you have all given me through my good and bad times. It helps me move on to the next race and fight for better!

Keep on walking,


Friday, August 26, 2011

In Daegu at the Athletes Village

Yesterday the middle distance runners and I made our way by train from Changwon City to Daegu. It was only an hour and it was very scenic. There are surprisingly a lot of mountains everywhere in South Korea. We were in first class so it was a very comfortable ride and before you knew it we were there. We then took a bus to the village where we got our accreditation to have access to all the different areas in the village, at the track and race course.

The village is amazing. They are brand new apartment buildings with 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, full kitchen and common area. There are 5 of us in here and we are on the 14th floor which is great for the view but not so good when there is only one elevator and tons of athletes. Below is the view from our apartment.

Today I met up with my USA training partner, Maria Michta, and we did our last tune up workout, 5 x 1km with 2 minutes rest. I felt really good and was right on the pace I wanted to be on without feeling like I was pushing. I had to slow myself down on a few of them which shows that I am in good shape. We trained on a 1km loop in the village that they made specifically for the racewalkers to train on so every racewalker was training there this morning. It was nice to see a lot of my friends again.

After training and lunch I made my way over to the Mizuno Service Center which was a 5 minute walk from the village. I am so blessed to have such a great sponsor. They had a bag with my name on it with a bunch of clothes, different little bags and 3 pairs of shoes, all in my size and shoes I always wear. It makes you feel pretty cool and important to show up somewhere like that and they already had everything specific for me all ready.

Tomorrow is the first day of competition and I am looking forward to going in the evening to watch a few events and to see the stadium, which looks amazing!

I am going to do 12km's in the morning on the same 1km loop in the village. The countdown is on till race day. Now that we are here its getting really exciting!

Keep on walking,


Monday, August 22, 2011

In Changwon City, South Korea!!!

Last Wednesday I finally arrived into South Korea. I pretty much had a stress free trip and felt good upon arriving at our hotel/temporary home in Changwon City which is about an hour from Daegu. Its a pretty big city and we are in the heart of it which is nice for tourism but not so good for my training. We are a 5 minute walk to the track BUT there really arent any good places for me to train here. I ended up finding a spot beside a busy road that has some longer strips that have some bike lanes blocked off by medians. I found a section that is about 1,350m's total out and back that ive been training on. Its just over 3km's from the hotel so ive been walking there and then going back and forth and then head back. Its the best option I have here but its definitely not great!

The whole team has arrived now and I already knew most of the team already. Its nice to catch up with everyone again and to see everyone in such great shape. We have a small team of 32 athletes but I think that a lot of people will be strongly competitive. Everyone here is very focused and its a great group of people to be around leading into a big race.

The hotel is very nice and modern. I am sharing a room with Kelsie Hendry, a pole vaulter and shes a really great roommate, very easy to be with. The food here is top notch but the down side is that it is the same food for lunch and dinner....Sometimes they are some changes but the staples are there everytime. The really cool thing is that they have sushi and its great! I LOVE sushi!!! The hotel is next to a mall and so its nice to have that to kill time. Today we went to the movies and saw "Planet of the Apes", in english with Korea subtitles so that was a nice change from being in my room all day.

I head to Daegu on Thursday afternoon and will be there for the remainder of my time here. We will be staying in the Athletes Village with the rest of the countries so that will be nice. I race on Wednesday, August 31st so ill have plenty of time in Daegu to settle in before my race.

Training has been going very well here and ive been feeling great. We have been so lucky with the weather. It is MUCH better than I was expecting. The sun has only been out for roughly an hour the whole time I have been here so the temperature has been really cool believe it or not but most days the humidity is still high. I am hoping the weather stays this way till my race :) I adjusted to the time difference right away. I havent had any sleepless nights and I have been feeling good during the day. I got so lucky compared to some of my other teammates.

Today I did my last hard workout before the race and I did 10 x 1k on the track. I felt really good and felt like I didnt have to push the pace to get the times and so that makes me feel confident with just 9 days to go till race day.

I will write again once I get into the village in Daegu. Thanks again for all the support!

Keep on walking,


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Im Going to Daegu!!!!

This week has been a bit of a whirlwind! Like I said in my earlier post, I was told that I was going to find out this past Tuesday if I was selected to the Canadian team that will compete in Daegu, South Korea at the World Track and Field Championships this month. I had to wait all day and in the end, I was told that I was not selected. I had a feeling all day since I hadnt heard from anyone that it probably was not going to be good news and so I prepared myself so that I wouldnt feel shocked when I found out the bad news. I was told that I even though they considered my case for a long time, that it came down to the fact that since I had already gone to the World Championships in 2009 with the 'B' standard, that they couldnt make an exception for me when there were other athletes in the same situation as me. I understood their position and I took the result with no complaint.

I was sad about the decision at first but just like I had thought the whole month leading up to the decision, I said that if I did not get selected to the team that I would take it as a positive and look at it as an opportunity to get more training in leading up to the races in Europe that I will do in September. Right away Tim and I were thinking about our next steps and moving forward with training.

This morning when I woke up, Tim said told me to check my e-mail and he seemed to have known something I didnt. I hadnt gotten any e-mails that indicated anything except for an e-mail from my former coach Richard Borek saying "Congratulations on making the team, I dont know why they left you off the team in the first place". This really confused me because the last I heard, I was not selected. Turns out that our good friend, Allen James, sent an e-mail to several Canadian racewalkers stating how outrageous he thought it was that I was not selected to the team. This sprung Jianping Xu (JP), a Canadian racewalker originally from China, to send an e-mail to Athletics Canada's board of director's chair to ask why I was left off the team and he told them how much he thought the team was missing out on me not being on the team and how much it would help my development. Then e-mails started being spread all over. Apparently Athletics Canada's athlete representatives (Jared McLeod and Jennifer Joyce) thought that I should be named to the team and they never gave up on me. They kept urging Athletics Canada to select me and it ended up going to CEO Rob Guy. He then decided that I should be put on the team and said that he would make it happen. WOW!!! I was just shocked and amazed at all these people rooting for me. I am definitely not used to that kind of support. I am forever grateful to them for sticking up for me like that. I had no idea that any of this was going on the last few days. Finally I got a phone call from Athletics Canada saying that they reconsidered me and decided to put me on the team! It was just so unexpected!

I am thrilled to be going back to the World Championships. Two years ago when I was there, I thought that I had NO CHANCE to make the team again in 2011. I knew that I would have to walk the 'A' standard of 1:33:30 and I thought that I was many years from accomplishing that. Although I didnt quite walk the 'A' this year (yet), I am pretty darn close! Only 13 seconds off! I have completely surpassed my goals coming into this year and I hope to continue the improvement in the next month and a half as I race in Daegu and in Europe.

So here are the details-

Race: August 31st, 9am (EST- 11 hours difference)
Video Coverage: In Canada only, they will show the race live online at Everywhere else, they may show it live online at

I leave on Tuesday to travel to the pre-competition camp in Changwon City, South Korea. I will blog when I am there!

I cannot thank all of you enough for your support and encouragement! It makes such a huge difference for me and helps me stay motivated to work towards my goals. By the way, today is exactly a year till the women's 20km racewalk race at the Olympic Games in London. Daegu is the first step towards making it to London, here we go!

Keep on walking,


Friday, August 5, 2011

Still Waiting....

It is August 5th and I am still patiently waiting to hear whether or not Athletics Canada is going to send me to the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea. According to the website, if I get selected, I would be set to leave for Korea on August 14th, just over a week from now. Tomorrow is the last day for anyone to still qualify for the team. I think that no news is good news because this means that it wasnt a no right away. So far the Canadian team is quite small and so I hope that is to my advantage. Hopefully I will hear from them asap....

In the meantime, training is going incredibly well. I really couldnt ask for it to be going any better. I feel like I am back in the same shape as I was leading up to my PB in Bekescsaba, Hungary in April. Just finished my biggest mileage month ever totaling 576km's and I am still feeling great. I will have another few weeks of bigger mileage and then if I get to go to the World Championships then we will start to taper down and if not I will take a lower mileage rest week and then get back to the grind.

On Monday we got back from Long Island, NY where we were visiting Tim's family. We had a great week and were able to get all of our training in. My parents made the drive from Canada to see us for a few days so we were happy to have training partners again. We saw the sights of Long Island and went into New York City for a day. It was definitely a sweat bath being in New York. Both Tim and I dont miss living on the east coast in the summer! Our training went well but it wasnt as enjoyable as it is in San Diego. However, if I get the chance to compete in Korea, it will have been good acclimatization for the brutal weather they have there.

Last week Athletics Canada came out with their Olympic standards and qualifying period for the Olympics next year in London. Earlier we thought that we would only have from January 2012 till June 2012 to get the qualifying time but they have decided to extend it and we now have from June 2011 till June 2012. This is fantastic news! This means that when I go to Europe again in September, if I can get the A standard of 1:33:30, 13 seconds better than my PB from April, then I will have technically qualified for the Olympics. This is a very excited opportunity and I hope that I can put good training together and race smart in September to get the time. My plan is to go to a race on September 24th in Naumburg, Germany.

Hopefully the next time I post, it will be about me heading to Korea but if not, I am ok with that too. If I dont get selected, I will see it as a chance to get more training in so that I have the best shot possible to do the A standard in Germany in September.

Keep on walking,


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Loving Training

These days I literally have been training, eating and sleeping. I am on track to have my biggest month of mileage ever. I should hit 570km's for the month of July and I have been feeling great. My favorite part of training is the zone #1 workouts and its been nice to get back to a few weeks of base training again.

The plan after Nationals was to take a very easy/off week and then get back into the game and do some heavy training again. I did 2 weeks of base training of 140km's each week and then this week and next week I will be introducing one faster workout each week. This Tuesday I did a 10km tempo walk that was meant to be in zone #2, not too fast but not too slow. Tim walked it with me and we started off very conservative in about 5mins and stayed around that pace or a second or two faster for the first 5km's which we went through in 24:53. After that we were around 4:55/km and then the last km we pushed a bit but not too much to a 4:48 last km. We did the 2nd 5km's in 24:26 for a great negative split and finished the 10k in 49:19. The whole thing felt very comfortable and easy. I could have kept going with no problem and so it made me feel like I didnt lose any speed in the last few weeks.

On Saturday we are headed to Long Island to visit Tim's family. We are really looking forward to it since we havent been back there together in about a year and a half. I went alone in January for the Millrose Games for a few days but otherwise, it has been a LONG time. I am excited to visit our friends and family but I am NOT looking forward to the weather. We are so spoiled here in San Diego and going to the east coast is going to be miserable for training. We are going to have to wake up pretty early to train to avoid the really bad heat which will be hard because of the 3 hour time change. My parents are planning on coming to visit us in New York and will be camping at some of the parks on Long Island. Its going to be great to see them again!!!

I have been feeling great training. I have never felt this good at this time of year. Usually im beat up by the summer but I feel great and I feel like I will be ready for some good performances in September in Europe. Im very excited about it! Ive been getting some really good rest. I usually have trouble napping during the day but lately ive been able to fall asleep and sleep for along 90 mins to 2 hours, wow! It is definitely keeping me going though and helping me feel fresh everyday for another workout. This week I will have a forced day off on Saturday because of the travel to New York. This will be my first day off in a month. Thats always a question people ask me, "how often do you have a day off?", and its very seldom but I dont even notice it. I am just so used to my routine and the training is very smart so I dont feel like I need a day off very often.

The picture above is of me and Nick Christie, one of Tim's athletes at Cuyamaca College, training at Mission Bay Park. Its been nice to have some company the last few weeks with Nick and Tim training with me.

Keep on walking,


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Another National Title and Back to Training!

Well I won my 5th National Championship a few weeks ago in Calgary. The race itself wasnt too exciting. The course was not so great to walk a fast time and since it was at altitude and I had no competition, I just decided to kind of take it easy. I always find it hard to motivate myself at Nationals since I have no competition. This time was no different as I won by 15 minutes. I know that the other girls have a lot of potential and I hope that they continue to work hard and drop their times over the next year. I still managed to walk another Olympic/World Championship 'B' standard and so that is my 4th of the year. This, however, doesnt really change my situation for the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea this year. Since I went to Berlin in 2009 with the 'B' standard, in Canada they dont let you go again unless you have the 'A'. I unfortunately am 13 seconds off the 'A' standard and even though I have broken the Canadian record twice this year, that also doesnt make a difference. I have put in an appeal to Athletics Canada to try and still get selected for World Championships but I know that it is a long shot and am not expecting a positive outcome but it was still worth a try. I should find out the outcome of the appeal in the next week or so. I will keep you posted!

After the race I took an easy week to try and refresh my mind and give my body a small break before I started back into hard training again. I did a lot of cross training and really enjoyed it and it definitely got myself fired up to get back training. This past week my sister Ruthy and her boyfriend Drew came to visit and it was so great to have them here! We did a lot of things that I usually dont have time for or the energy for when im training. We went to the beach almost everyday and did a lot of sight seeing, it was a lot of fun! I still managed to get in an awesome week of training too, getting in 140km's so I was thrilled about that! We have decided to do some base work for the first 2 weeks back and then we will start to introduce some faster workouts again. This week I am hoping to get another 140km week in.

Unfortunately I dont really have any racing plans for the summer because there just arent any races to go to. While I wait to hear about the World Championships, I am planning on going to Europe no matter what in September to do a 10k and a 20k to try and beat my best times in both distances. I will update you guys on which races as we make more decisions. In the meantime, Tim and I will be in San Diego until July 23rd when we will head to Long Island, NY to visit Tim's family for 8 days. I hate going to Long Island in the summer because it is sooo hot and humid, especially coming from San Diego but it will be fun for sure.

Here is an article in my hometown newspaper, the Peterborough This Week. Thanks Greg!

Keep on walking,


Thursday, June 23, 2011

In Calgary...2 days to go!

I arrived in Calgary yesterday and the trip went pretty well. To be honest, I have been quite tired this week because I had a very busy weekend last weekend....too busy! I have had a hard time recovering from it but I still have 2 days till my race at Nationals and I know that I will be strong when it comes to the starting gun going off. Calgary is 3750 feet of altitude and even though this isnt very high and I have done quite a bit of altitude training in the past, I still think that it is going to be challenging for the race. I am not sure what time I will go after on Saturday as I dont want to crash too much because of the altitude.

We went to the race course this morning and its in a beautiful park along the Bow River. It will take place on two parallel bike paths there and the loop is a very odd 2,452.137m's! I am very annoyed that they couldnt figure out a more even number because it does make it more difficult for splits but we will do our best to figure it out! Part of the course has a pretty long gradual hill in it which is not very ideal for a racewalking race. So to say the least, it will be a difficult race.

For now, I am getting as much rest as possible. After my race Saturday morning (at 7am), I will be flying that evening to Eugene, Oregon to watch the Senior races at the USA Nationals so that I can watch Tim and our other TEAM members race. I am really looking forward to that! You can look for results of my race here. Wish me luck!

Keep on walking,


Friday, June 17, 2011

Hello Again! 7 Days till Nationals...

A lot has happened since my last blog. My training has sort of continued to go up and down but I would say more up than down, thank goodness. I got rid of the cold/infections that I got in Europe but about a week and a half later I started having problems breathing and so did Tim. We went to the doctor and he gave us both an inhaler to expand our lungs and an extra strength allergy pill/temporary asthma medication and it seems to have done the trick. I have been feeling better and better since I started taking the new medication. Now I am only on the new allergy pill and im done with the inhaler.

My zone #1's seem to be back to where I was leading up to the race in Hungary and my heart race keeps getting better every week. My fartleks/speed workouts have been overall very good. I keep improving and ive been doing some of my best times for certain workouts. This past Tuesday I did 6 x 2k and it was my best one ever. Now tomorrow I have 10 x 1k which is my last hard workout before Nationals in Calgary next Saturday.

I have been back in my hometown, Peterborough, Ontario for 2 weeks now and its been great to be with my family and to greet my new nephew, Bruno as he was born the day after I arrived home. He is just as cute as my niece, Anna. The first week I was home, the weather was brutally hot. I did 20k one day, finishing in 31c! I was dead after that, it sucked. Then I got sick from my niece as she had a cold but it was hard to resist hugging and kissing her! Shes so cute!

Last Saturday I did a 5000m race at York University in Toronto. My goals for the race changed since I had gotten sick again but I thought that I should still be able to do half decent since it was just 5k. We arrived at the race and there were huge delays because there was a lightning storm earlier in the day. Because of the storm, we didnt know when we would end up racing since they had to catch up on all of the other events. We didnt end up starting for 2 hours after our scheduled race time. This made it very hard to figure out when to start warming up. We ended up timing the warm up pretty well but we were hungry from waiting. Nothing we could do though! We finally started and I took it out way too fast. I had my training partner from Quebec, Bruno Carriere, keying off of me and so the pace wasnt so good that I did for us in the first km. Bruno dropped off from me after that and I struggled alone. My left shin started hurting almost right away and I hadnt felt it in the warm up. I could feel it every step and so that was hard to ignore. Also, racing a 5k alone is very hard for me. I can focus on a 20k race much easier than a 5k believe it or not. I really struggled with the pace but finished up ok considering everything in a time of 22:19.53, still an 11 second PB, ill take it!

I am home till Tuesday and then I will head to Toronto to stay overnight there before my morning flight to Calgary on Wednesday. I am feeling really good leading into Nationals. It is a race against myself and the clock. We will see what happens! Im excited though. Thanks to my fellow Ontario Racewalkers teammate, Sarah Raetsen, for the race pictures above!

Keep on walking,


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Glad Thats Over!

After a missed flight and long travel home, I am back in San Diego and am so happy! As soon as I landed I went to the doctor to find out what was going on with me and to hopefully get a prescription to get rid of whatever illness I had. Turns out I had an ear infection in my left ear, a sinus infection and a very tight chest. No wonder I was having trouble training and my heart rate was so high. I was able to start on antibiotics and an inhaler right away that night and 10 days later, I was finally cured. It only took 3.5 weeks! The longest I have ever been sick. It was so frustrating!!!

On a positive note, I decided to start back to training last Monday even though my heart rate was still very high and I did my first fartlek last Tuesday and I felt good, a little rusty, but good. There was the USA 15km RW Championships in Riverside, CA and since I wasnt feeling race ready yet, I decided to walk with my teammate Lauren Foruges to help her set a new personal best and for me to get a good tempo effort in. It was great. Lauren did fantastic and we accomplished what we went there to do and she did a huge PB walking 1:14:15 and I finished in 1:14:02 staying with her the whole race until the last lap when I pushed a little bit. You can listen to a little interview that we did with Racewalk Planet Radio after the race here. Thanks Dave Snyder and the Inland Empire Racewalkers for putting on a great event last Sunday.

Things seem to be back to normal for me now. Heart rate is back to where it was before and same with my pace. Yesterday I did my best ever 10 x 1km/500m fartlek and did the 15km's in 1:14:41, 14 seconds faster than my previous best. Things seem to still be on track for one last crack at the World Championships standard of 1:33:30. Ill have my hands full in Calgary at the Canadian Track and Field Championships where ill be racing alone and facing 3700 feet of altitude. The altitude isnt that high but it technically will still affect performance. We will see what happens but I am ready for the challenge. Just over a month to go!

Im in San Diego for another 2 weeks and then ill be heading to my hometown, Peterborough, Ontario on June 5th to visit with my family and to be there when my nephew is born on June 6th, im SO excited! Ill also be doing a 5000m race on the track on June 11th in Toronto so im looking forward to that too.

Keep on walking,


Monday, May 2, 2011

No Sesto for Me, Home Tomorrow

In case you didnt already know or notice, I didnt make the trip to Italy for the race yesterday. I thought that I was starting to get rid of this cold that I have had since the race in Hungary but it really hasnt gotten better, almost worst. Wednesday I had a decent workout and felt pretty good but the next day it was bad again, higher heart rate again and felt bad. I was supposed to fly to Italy on Friday afternoon and so I had just an easy 8k to do in the morning and I decided to try and walk on the track a bit and see if my heart rate would be any better on a pancake flat surface but it didnt make a difference, my heart rate was super high again. I decided to go onto the bike path after 2k on the track and things got worst. I went out another 1.5km's racewalking and felt terrible and so I jogged the last 2.5km's back. My heart rate was even super high running. After training, I knew that it just wasnt worth going to Italy. I knew that I wouldnt be able to perform to the level that I am capable of and I didnt want to embarrass myself or drop out. It was a very disappointing and difficult decision but it was definitely the right one. I then took 2 days off running and racewalking and just went for bike rides. I feel like I have been doing everything I can to get rid of this thing. This is the longest I have ever had a cold and I dont know why it is not going away. Im assuming that I will need to get some antibiotics to get rid of it at this point. It must be a bad virus or something.

So after the 2 days off running and racewalking, I decided that I wanted to try and racewalk today. Good news is that I felt the best that I have in a week, bad news is that my heart rate was the highest its been in the 2 weeks ive been sick. UGH!!!!! At this point I am just frustrated. Every morning I have been blowing my nose like crazy and this morning I wasnt and so I really thought id feel and do better today. I decided to stop after 8k because it wasnt worth it. I even tried slowing down to a march (almost) doing a km in 6:04 and my heart rate was still 10 beats higher than my usual 5:30 pace. So clearly something is wrong!

One thing to be excited about though is that I am FINALLY going home tomorrow after being away for 5 weeks!!! I cant tell you how excited I am. It has been a pretty good trip. It is definitely my most successful European racing trip. The 2 other trips I have done in 2008 and 2009, I didnt PB at all. Im coming out of this trip with a lot of confidence (despite this little hiccup of being sick). I am confident that I can walk that A standard of 1:33:30, even if I have to race alone to get it. I will now have just under 2 months till my next 20km race at the Canadian Championships on June 25th so I know ill be ready. For now though, I will first focus on getting healthy and then get some solid weeks of training in. Cant wait for what is to come!

Keep on walking,


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

"Distance Runner's Need Not Apply" and Racewalkers!

A local runner from my hometown Peterborough, Ontario, Rory Gillfillan, wrote an article for Canadian Running Magazine about funding and support from Athletics Canada and the lack there of for distance runners and racewalkers. You can read the article here.

There isnt much in there about me but its all the same scenario for me as it is for fellow Mizuno sponsored athlete and marathoner, Dylan Wykes.

By the way, im starting to feel better every day and today my heart rate was practically back to normal. Hopefully it just keeps getting better in these next few days leading up to the race on Sunday.

Keep on walking,


Monday, April 25, 2011

Sick All Week :(

So, ive been sick ever since the night after the race, boo! Sandor, the guy I was staying with in Hungary had been sick the whole week before the race and so I guess im not surprised that I got sick. Because of this, my training hasnt been good since the race. Some days I have been feeling ok but my heart rate has been super high. For the most part, I havent been feeling too bad but my nose and throat are stuffed up and so its making it harder to breath in training which is why my heart rate has been higher. Usually I dont have a cold for longer than a week but I just cant seem to get rid of this one. Its more annoying than anything! I tried taking a down day on Saturday and just ran but it didnt make a difference.

It is now 6 days until my last race in Europe. I leave for Italy on Friday afternoon and race on Sunday, May 1st at 10am. Im sure my cold will be gone by then and I will for sure be rested! I only was able to do 91km's last week which is even low for a recovery week from a race for me. I am looking forward to this race and it being over and going home. It has been a good trip but a long one and its time to get home to Tim.

You can view information about my race this weekend here. The results will also be posted there after the race. Im going into this race with no pressure since I have already exceeded my expectations a lot and so if this race goes well then its just another bonus! Im just hoping to get in a good fight with some of the other competitors and see what kind of time that brings me.

Keep on walking,


Tuesday, April 19, 2011


I had a fantastic week in Budapest, Hungary. I stayed with such amazing people, Sandor and Viki, two of Hungaries top racewalkers (pictured with me left). They showed me the city and we had really great training together. We then made the 2.5 hour trip to Bekescsaba by train on Friday afternoon for our Sunday race.

Training on Saturday went well. I was feeling good and the weather was looking to be perfect for the next day's race which started at 9:15am. The 1km loop was fast, I could tell. The turns were very wide and so I dont think it hurt us too bad for the 40 times we had to go around them. I knew when I decided to come to this race that I would have to walk alone since the men's race started 15 minutes earlier than ours and there were no women trying to walk a very fast time.

Right from the gun I as alone. I was confident that I could walk a fast time because, hey, I train every day alone so if I can push myself in training, why not in a race. I was feeling good and just clicking off the km's. I knew by the first 5k that it was going to be a good race for me. I went through the first 5k in 23:21 which was my fastest 5k in my last 20k in Huntington Beach. I knew that if I could maintain that pace that I could walk the World Championships A standard of 1:33:30. The next 5k was equally good in 23:22 (46:43 for 10k) which is right on for the standard and was still feeling great. Then started a bit of the mental struggle of 10 more laps to go and walking alone and having no one there to yell and support me. I reached 15k in 1:10:09, almost a minute improvement from my race in Huntington Beach (23:27 for that 5k). I thought to myself at that point, im going to get the standard! I "only" had to walk 23:21 for 5k and id have the standard. I did the next 1km in 4:41 which was fine because I knew that I could knock a few seconds off in the last km but the next 3km's didnt go so well...I sort of fell asleep and walked all those km's in 4:44, ugh! At that point I knew that the standard was gone but I was still going to have another huge PB. I did my last km in 4:38 and finished in 1:33:43, a 39 second PB, yay!!!!! Oh and by the way, another Canadian record! I was still thrilled and didnt care too much about the standard anymore. Im just glad that I am that much closer and that its within my reach if I have someone to push me in that last 5km's.
Take THAT Podebrady! What a way to come back after my disappointing DQ last weekend! I always tell people that racewalking is an event that you can get DQ'd one weekend and get absolutely no red cards the next weekend and that is exactly what happened to me. I came away from the race on Sunday with a clean board, not even any warnings. I honestly dont think that I did anything different in this race then in Podebrady but that is just how racewalking is.

One more race to go in my European trip. I am back in Germany now for another 2 weeks until my race in Italy on May 1st. I think that I have a really good chance to go for the standard in Italy since the race will be a lot more competitive and ill have some friends there that can push me through the tough parts of the race by yelling at me (good yelling!). Im just going to go for it again and at this point, I have nothing to loose. If I get the time, GREAT, if I do another solid time ill be just as happy! I have now taken 3 minutes and 40 seconds off my PB this year! WOW, my season has gone beyond my expectations already so im not going to get too greedy!

Thanks for all the support and believing in me. I am finally where I want to be and where I thought I could be and hope for much more to come.

Keep on walking,


Monday, April 11, 2011

First Time for Everything....

Unfortunately I do not have good news to report from Podebrady, CZE. I very surprisingly got disqualified a few meteres before 11km's. This is my first time being disqualified so you can imagine how upset and surprised I was.

I raced very smart and didnt think that I took very many risks but obviously the judges thought otherwise. My goal was to stay with the lead pack for as long as I could and try and go for the win. The girls in this race were all at my level so it was a perfect chance to race hard and go for a win at a big competition. I started off with the lead pack for the first km and then they pulled away for the next 2km's and after that I tried to work my way back up to them. By 4km's I got my first red card for lifting (you must get 3 to be disqualified). I had caught up to the group again at that point and the pace was feeling easy and comfortable. I then stayed with the group, leading at times and was feeling good. I got my 2nd red card at around 7km's but this time for bent knee (give me a break!) and at that point I felt like I was most likely going to get disqualified. I was leading the group with a girls from the Czech Republic, Italy and Spain and it seemed like the judges didnt like that. The other girls were starting to fade and so I started to pull away from them at around 10km's and just before I went through 11km's the head judge stopped me. I couldnt believe this was happening to me. It was my first time being disqualified. It is not like I even ever get close to being disqualified at any other race, I usually get no paddles ever so to get disqualified was a complete shock.

Immediately after I was pulled off the course, Andreas Gustafsson's father, Bo Gustafsson (Olympic Medallist in the 50km RW) came up to me and said that I looked the best that he has ever seen me and he travels to San Diego very often so he see's me quite a bit. He was telling me that he definitely thought that I would have won the race and to not let this get me disappointed. He said that I was "in the wrong country", meaning that they didnt like that I was beating their country women. This may not have been the case, maybe they didnt like my technique, I will never know. It was very nice to see a friendly face because I had traveled alone to the race. I do think that I would have won the race if this had not have happened. I felt really good and fresh after the half way point. I went through 10k in 46:55 and I know that I was ready for a sub 1:34 time. I was #96 on the DQ board in this picture.

SO, my immediate thought was, I want to go to a race next week. I knew that there were some National Championships happening in Hungary, France and Poland the next weekend and so I decided that I didnt want to only have 1 more chance to race in Europe. Here comes the crazy part. I met some nice people from Hungary at the race and I asked them if I could travel back with them on their bus and stay with them for the week and compete in their Nationals. They said that I could and so yesterday we made the 500km drive to Budapest, Hungary and now, here I am! It was a very quick decision, I had about 20 minutes to decide haha but I thought, why not be adventurous, I am in Europe! So far I feel like I made a very good decision. These people are so nice, I feel so glad to have met them. Training is feeling good and the race on the weekend ended up just being a good tempo walk :) So I didnt have to recover from much for this week. The race is on Sunday at 9am in Bekescsaba which is 2.5 hours away from Budapest. Several years ago many Americans came here to compete in this race and have walked fast times. When Tim raced here he broke his PB by 5 minutes so I hope I have the same luck. Maybe not 5 minutes but any PB will do! I am looking forward to it.

We will travel to the race on Friday and then I will leave Hungary to go back to Germany on Monday. It has been a whirlwind last few days but I am having a great time and am very happy to be here.

Keep on walking,


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

No Excuses

After my very disappointing season last year, I took a lot of time to think about what went wrong and why. Why am I sacrificing so much to be a full time athlete if I wasnt going to do what it took? That is when I decided that I cannot have any more excuses. "The Olympic standard is too hard, I cant do it", why not? I was putting limits on myself, telling myself that things werent possible. No more! If I do everything I can to improve, why cant I walk that Olympic qualifying standard. So what its almost a minute and a half faster than the (Old) Canadian record! This is when my whole mind set change and my new season began. I was ready to act more professional, do what it took to get to where I wanted to be. Training and competing hasnt been the same since.

Yesterday put up an interview with Toby Stevenson, USA 2004 Olympic Silver Medallist in the Pole Vault. It made me realize even more what I told myself at the beginning of this season and that the sacrifice will and has been worth it. Here is the video:

As I prepare for my race this weekend, this video really gets me pumped up to do a great race and im excited. I had my best 10 x 1km/500m fartlek this past Saturday by 41 seconds for my overall 15km split (1:14:55) and today I did 5 x 1km repeats just to move the legs a bit before the race this Saturday. Man, they felt easy, too easy. I went faster then I was supposed to or wanted to but it was hard to hold myself back since it felt so easy. Times were: 4:41, 4:39, 4:36, 4:36 and 4:34. My PB race pace is 4:43/km so hopefully I can improve upon that. I feel great!

I leave on Thursday night for Podebrady, CZE and am looking forward to it. Being away from home and Tim is difficult but it is always worth it for your dream. Here we come!

Keep on walking,


Friday, April 1, 2011

In Germany...brrrr!

After my many tears after leaving Tim in San Diego, I arrived safe and sound in Wattenscheid, Germany on Mondy night after what I must say, was the best long flight I have ever been on. I was lucky enough to have two seats to myself and so I was able to sleep, stretch out and relax for all 11 hours. It was the best I could have asked for.

So far everything has been going well. I have been staying with my friend and Sabine Krantz's coach, Heiko Schulze, for the first 5 days while I wait for Sabine and her family to arrive back to Germany after training in Flagstaff, AZ. I have been able to train right out of his front door so that has been really convenient since I dont have a car and Heiko works during the day. I have been training on a compact dirt path which feels much different from The Strand at home. I feel like it takes more energy to train on the dirt path then on asphalt. I notice that when I go on the little parts of asphalt through the trail, that my heart rate drops significantly, its interesting. For the most part though, the dirt is smooth and is fine for racewalking. I have trained on this path everytime that I have come here for races so I feel comfortable being on it. Tomorrow we will go to the lake where there is an asphalt path, 10km's around the lake. Its great! I have a fartlek, one last hard workout before my race next weekend in Podebrady.

The weather has been quite a bit colder than im used to in San Diego. The sun hasnt been out much and yesterday it rained practically all day....definitely not San Diego! Im currently all bundled up as I write this, trying to get rid of the chill. Tomorrow, however, it is supposed to be a beautiful day with 24c as the high. I hope the forecast is correct!

I think this has been the easiest transition to the 9 hour time change that I have ever had. The first few nights I slept all through the night, the last two nights I have woken up breifly in the middle of the night but after some time, fell back to sleep. Im feeling the least tired for the first week here, then I ever have. Its been great! I have a great feeling about my race next weekend in great part to this.

Tomorrow I will move over to Sabine's house for the remainder of my stay (4 more weeks) but before that, Heiko and I are going to a local club's soccer game, or should I say futbol game, tonight. Futlbol is huge in Germany so it should be a lot of fun!

Keep on walking,


Saturday, March 26, 2011

Off We Go...

Tomorrow I start my 5 week journey to Europe. I will be staying in Wattenscheid, Germany for my whole trip except for the 2 weekends that I go away for the races that I am competing at. My first race in April 9th in Podebrady, Czech Republic and my second and last race is May 1st in Sesto San Giovanni, Italy. I am looking forward to improving my time from a few weeks ago in Huntington Beach, CA and enjoying the experience. I will be staying with good friends of ours, Bastian, Sabine and Thomas Krantz. Sabine is a fellow racewalker and is Germany's best. I look forward to spending time with them and their new addition, 7 month old Thomas.

My training has been going very well since the race in Huntington Beach. I took the first 5 days after the race extremely easy to make sure that I had recovered completely and I did my first somewhat hard workout on the Saturday (15 X 500m/500m fartlek) and then 22km's easy on Sunday. After that I started back to normal training this past week doing 4 X 3km/1km fartlek on Tuesday, 20km's easy on Wednesday, 10 X 1km/500m fartlek on Friday and then 25km's easy today (Saturday). Overall I will have 142km's this week and im feeling great. The 3km's fartlek workout went so great, I felt so strong and still felt pretty fresh at the end of the workout. I think it was one of my best workouts ever, finishing the 15km fartlek in 1:13:24. My confidence has changed ever since I broke the Canadian Record. I know that I am capable of better this season and im very excited about it!

I have heard nothing but good things about the race in Podebrady. Everyone seems to do well there and so I hope to jump on the band wagon. In past results there have been a lot of women who are around my time so that will help pull me along. Only 2 weeks till the race, im excited!

For now I still have to finish packing and get on the long flight to Germany. I will post updates while im there!

Keep on walking,


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Race Video and Interview

Here is a video and post-race interview from the race in Huntington Beach, CA on the weekend. Thank you Chris Rael for the great videography!

Keep on walking,


Monday, March 14, 2011


Well...Its been awhile since I last posted and a lot has happened. I went to Florida and raced at the USA Pan American Racewalk Cup Trials and had a disaster race, a real disaster race walking 1:40:03. The reason for the disaster race was definitely too much travelling the 15 days before the race (I flew almost 10,000 miles in those 2 weeks) and I think I had too much stress in the week that I was in Florida and so all of that led to a big failed race. I was so extremely disappointed after that race that I really questioned why I was putting so much effort into all my training.

I went home from that race with a choice to either put that race behind me or rethink all my goals. Obviously I decided to move on from that race and make it fire me up and train with even more focus. Training from that point on has been going extremely well. I have been feeling great.

Exactly a month after the race in Florida, I had a completely different experience. We had some of our TEAMmates come to California for a race in Huntington Beach to try and get a 20km race in before going to Nationals in June. I decided that I would jump into the race as a hard effort and see how I would feel after not resting at all for it. I did 2 weeks at 140km's before the race and a hard workout (10 x 1km/500m fartlek) the Tuesday before and so I definitely wasnt planning on this being a peak race. I also had no pressure going into this race since no one knew I was racing and I wasnt thinking of this as being an important race at all.

The weather was perfect, no wind and 51 degrees. The course was perfect also, measuring at 1.051km's around, it was a circle with no turn arounds. We couldnt have asked for a more perfect situation. Chris Tegtmeier and I were planning on going 5:02 a lap which would give us 4:47 per km. My main goal was to feel as comfortable as I could to walk between 47:30-48mins for 10km's as possible so that when I did get in a "real" race that I would be confident that I could double that when I was more rested. I did not know that the day was today.

We just started clicking laps below 5:00 and Chris kept looking at me each lap asking me "Is that ok? Or should we slow down?" and I just said "Ya, I guess, I feel great, lets just keep going". So we just went with the flow and I felt amazing from the first step to the last. To show how good I felt, here were my 5km splits: 23:49, 23:43 (47:32), 23:34 (1:11:06), 23:16 (1:34:22), WOW! I am so proud of how I raced, it couldnt have gone better. Oh and by the way, I broke the CANADIAN RECORD!!!!! This was just so unexpected! Its amazing! This record was always a goal for me but I didnt think it would happen this year but im so glad it did.

This race has now change my whole outlook on my upcoming training and races. I used to think that I could achieve the Olympic 'A' standard but now I know that I am capable of it. I am now only 52 seconds off of the standard and I have 500 days exactly from today till the 2012 Olympic Games and I believe I can get there. I am so excited for what is to come!

Thank you all for your support! It makes the world of difference to have people in my life that push me to do my best.

Keep on walking,


Friday, February 4, 2011

Article in Hometown Newspaper

Today a newspaper article came out in one of my local newspapers in Peterborough, Canada on me and the race in New York City. You can view the article here.

Local race walker is in the groove

Rachel Seaman is back in the New York groove.

The reigning Canadian race walking champion from Peterborough continues to take a bite out of the Big Apple as she captured her third-straight Millrose Games one-mile title on Saturday at Madison Square Gardens in New York City, the 104th edition of the event.

The annual meet is one of the largest indoor track and field events in the U.S.

"I usually don't get nervous for races but for some reason I always do for this one," Seaman said on Monday from her home in San Diego, Calif. "My base training keeps me strong and I start each year strong. This race is based on speed and my training helps on a stage like this."

Seaman, daughter of Nil and Christine Lavallée of Peterborough, not only topped 13 other competitors, she also smashed the course record she set in 2009. Her time of six minutes, 41.32 seconds was a six-second improvement.

She is currently the only Canadian to hold a record at the Games.

"The past two years I had (longtime U.S. champ) Teresa Vaill to hang off but this year the target was on my back," said Seaman, 25. "Everyone was kind of expecting me to win and prior to the race they were even asking me how much I was going to win by.

"It was a weaker field than in previous years with some high school competitors but all of that just gets me fired up to perform well."

The victory is a positive step for the 20-kilometre race walk expert who looks to bounce back from a roller-coaster 2010. The season included battling illness in the spring, missing out on qualifying for the Commonwealth Games and enduring a car crash in Toronto just prior to the Canadian track and field championships.

"It was a tough year," said Seaman. "I was in good shape but my mental state just wasn't there. The car accident shook me up a lot, too. I've changed my outlook and am feeling strong."

Evidence of that came a week before the Millrose Games when she won a 20km race walk at the USA 50KM Championships in a time of 1:37:18 - a new personal best, topping her 2009 World University Games mark by four seconds. Â

Seaman says she expects she'll need to reach the Athletics Canada's A-standard of 1:33:30 to qualify for the 2012 Summer Olympics.

"My goal this year is to get as close as possible to the qualifying time for the Olympics," she said. "My main goal is to drop as much time as possible."

And her training is taking a step in the right direction with higher mileage.

"Last year, I managed only eight weeks total of 130 kilometres of more and already I've done six weeks of 130k or more."

Seaman is set for the U.S. Pan-Am trials next week in Florida, along with several races in Europe in April. She then plans on several months of extensive training alongside her husband and coach Tim Seaman (a two-time Olympian and former U.S. champ) prior to returning to Canada for the nationals.

"I'm feeling a lot stronger and I'm also back on the weights which I haven't done since I was in Peterborough and training under Richard Borek.

"I've got more confidence going into this race season," she added. "I know each race is going to get better and better."

Keep on walking,


Saturday, January 29, 2011

3-Time Millrose Games CHAMPION!!!

Yesterday I was just a bottle of nerves all day. For whatever reason I tend to get extremely nervous for the Millrose Games. I dont know if its because of the track being so small, the fact that I have to go practically 100% effort right from the beginning or what but I have been getting really nervous about this race the past few years.

I knew that the target was on my back since I was the 2 time defending champion and meet record holder. This year I didnt have Teresa Vail as my guide so it was up to me to go out in the lead. This however didnt happen until 2 laps into the race. Nirvana Zalba from Mexico blasted out of the start line and sprinted the first few laps and it brought us through the first 400m's in 1:33!!!! Wow, that was too fast. I knew that there was a potential of her doing that and once she did I was sort of afraid to let her go and get too far ahead of me. She ended up crashing pretty quickly and from then on I was in the lead the rest of the race. I was just trying to push as hard as I could the whole way and get as big of a lead as I could. I ended up getting a few paddles (lifting and bent knee) so with a few laps to go I couldnt tell if I had any red cards or how many so I didnt want to push over my limit the last few laps (I only ended up having 1 red card). I ended up finishing in a time of 6:41.32 which is a new meet record by 6 seconds from my win in 2009.

I am thrilled with my time and thankful that this race is over for another year. I just hate how nervous I get especially since I dont get half as nervous for races that are 100% more important than this one. Oh well! It was my first time wearing the NYAC letters on my singlet and it was so great to wear it in NYC. We had such great support from them at the race.

My dad and I spent the rest of the weekend in NYC and had a great time. We were able to work out in Central Park and catch a broadway show and bus tours. Now im looking forward to going back home to San Diego tomorrow and get one week of good training in before my next race in Coconut Creek, Florida on February 13th.

Keep on walking,


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Feeling Goooood

Last weekend was a great way to open up my real racing season. It was nice to be back on the roads racing 20km's. I had only done one 20km race on the roads last year and racing 50 laps on the track just isnt as fun :)

We woke up to great temperatures on race morning but the winds.....the winds were unreal! At the start of the race it was around 30mph winds. I have never raced in this bad of winds before and whenever I have trained in that wind, it has been miserable. I didnt let it bother me because being the first race of the season, time doesnt matter as much, its just about getting a good effort in. I attacked the race with Tyler Sorensen and the first lap was definitely too slow but it was really hard to tell the pace we were going with the wind and there was no km split (the laps were 1.6667km's). After the first lap (of 12) we got right onto pace of 8mins a lap. I was feeling really good and then with 4 laps to go Tyler took off from me (to chase the Olympic Trials standard of 1:36) and I tried to keep my pace from there but I started to tighten up and my last 3 laps werent so good. I lost a lot of time in those laps and my hopes of finishing in 1:36:xx wasnt going to happen. I ended up finishing in 1:37:18 which was good enough for a 4 second PB.

I am still very happy with this small personal best time because I am just glad to be back to where I was in 2009. This is still extremely early and I have barely done any workouts faster than zone #1 pace (easy pace) so I know that each race will get better and better.

Tim raced his first 50km in 4 years and it was definitely a tough day for him. Not only did he have the winds to worry about in his early stages of the race but once that died down the heat came out. By the time he was done it was 77F so thats pretty warm. He felt good through 30-35k and then Ben Shorey put a surge on and he couldnt respond and thats where Ben won the race. Tim really struggled after that and finished 2nd in a time of 4:25. After he started struggling he just needed to make sure he finished so thats what he did.

I am now in New York City getting ready to race at the Millrose Games tomorrow afternoon. I am looking to win my 3rd straight title. You can view the results after my 4:35pm race here. Wish me luck!!!

Keep on walking,