June 28, 2017
Peace; Love & Awareness by Donation Run & Yoga Movement Series
Join Jo VanGroningen and me; Kristy Goss as we come together to present this awesome by donation movement series to raise much need funds and awareness for 3 different charities related to mental health and wellness right here in Waterloo Region.
With these events we hope to not only raise funds & awareness, but to bring the community together to dig into a very important resource; each other, as well as exploring a second ally to your overall mental health and wellness; movement. Inspired by the untimely loss of her brother to a battle with mental health, Jo is dedicated to spreading the message of wellness, love and acceptance more than ever. We want everyone to know that if you're struggling, that its ok, its normal, and that you deserve to get the best help available to you.
Dates are: July 16th, July 23rd & July 30th - All 3 events start at 7:00pm & you can join us for a fun group run, yoga or both. Each event includes free refreshments at the end of the yoga class sponsored by Ashleigh Konrad, Remax Twin City & Ron Braniff Trucking Ltd. Click on each date to RSVP/obtain your tickets and ensure that we have enough food/drinks for everyone.
Suggested donation for each event is $10 & We will also be selling EXCLUSIVE event tanks for only $30 (this includes a $5 donation)
At the end of the 3 events, all of the funds will be split equally into 3 parts and donated to The Suicide Prevention Council, The Coping Centre & The Canadian Mental Health Association. Please contact me at email@example.com with any questions, to order a tank or donate in lieu of your presence.
Hope to see you there!
Thanks to the super talented Megan Lambe for the poster and for her continued support!
May 04, 2017
Did I just run 50K?
Last year I watched in amazement as a good friend of mine broke into the ultra running community. I hung onto her every word with incredible amazement, got lost for hours reading various race reports, started following ultra runners on instagram and was introduced to a whole new world and type of running. I had so many questions like; how do you run 50k, do you eat food while you run, don't you get tired, what if you get a blister, why does it take so long?I would spend an entire year watching and asking more questions. I didn't understand what it took to become an ultra runner, but as the weeks crept on, I discovered that I wanted to find out. I spent the winter running every day, working through a new injury and attempted my first full marathon, which was at Disney and it went really well. I was convinced I could do the distance, I just wasn't sure I could do it on anything but a flat course after struggling through my 25km attempt at Run For The Toad last fall, and finishing in 2:52 which at the time I thought was the biggest fail and slowest time EVER. I wasn't even on the struggle bus that day, I was run-walking behind it with a scowl on my face.
Anyway, back to 2017 and my 50k attempt. At some point I completely lost my mind and decided to sign up for the Pick Your Poison trail race April 29th in Horseshoe Valley, ON, I had lots of time to prepare, felt strong and everything was going well, until I injured my achilles that is, plagued with that pain for weeks and weeks I wondered if I'd ever be able to get in enough training for this race, and doubt started to build in my mind. I also have a lot of wear and tear on the cartilage inside my left hip and had gotten called to the hospital for a full synvisc injection April 5th. I was hoping to push this treatment off until post race, but because of the level of damage inside of my hip, it had to be done by the head of the radiology department at Guelph GH, and I was smart enough to know to be grateful for this level of care and not turn it down. So that left me with 3 weeks to recover and train for a 50km. Luckily I ran into a friend who is a RMT/Osteopathy student and she was able to fix my achilles in one treatment, and omg that never happens, so I took it as a sign that things were going to work out, but over the next days and weeks as I watched my friends put in 30-40km training runs and hikes in, while I was healing, and couldn't help comparing myself to them, as I was conservatively keeping my running below 5 kms per day.
My confidence was slipping more and more every day. I wished I had never signed up, I no longer wanted to run the course with friends, I imagined the race would be nothing but a long, terrifying, embarrassing struggle. I imagined being taken off the course in a stretcher, walking the course limping, quitting. I imagined the smirk on everyone's faces who doubted I could do this. I heard the nay-sayers words over and over "Its too far, I don't think you should do it" and "I think its time you quit running". I guess I had to face those feelings and scenarios and accept that they might happen before I was able to decide whether it was truly worth the risk.
So there I was, race day, at the start line amidst a crowd of loud, excited runners, but I was - quiet, I couldn't speak, I felt like I was at my own funeral, I couldn't message anyone, or respond to any, I was frozen with fear, anxiety and I couldn't even feel my own hands or legs.
The race started and everyone took off, already everyone was passing me, I was instantly struggling and winded. Run for the Toad came to mind, and I decided that this race was going to be the same. I wasn't even at the 5km mark of the first loop and I still had 3 more 12.5km loops to go. Soon after I caught up to a friend and we chatted a bit, and it helped me ease my mind as I finally settled into a good comfortable pace with her. When we finished the first lap together, I was excited, I kept saying "this is awesome" and even through the toughest of the hills I was able to laugh them off and I never got discouraged again. It's amazing what friends can do, how far kind words can go, how someone else can inject confidence into your heart and change everything. I stayed with my her until around the 30km mark and continued off on my own, at a point where I was feeling confident and comfortable enough to do so. I hustled all the way to the end of that 3rd lap, make the quickest stop yet at my bag drop and headed out on my last lap ready to fly through it, still on track for a good finish. I got through the next few kms ok, stopped to take a walking break and to send out a message to tell a few of my friends who might have been expecting me to be finishing soon, that I still had 10kms to go, that I expected those last 10 to take about 90 minutes. I was still on track for my B goal of 6:45. Seeing all of their messages was the most motivating thing I'd ever seen, full of a new found energy I set off into the forest smiling and moving swiftly, ready to give it everything I had. Very shortly after I tripped on a root, fell knees first, and did a sliding face plant. Suddenly there I was on the ground, face first in the dirt, feeling a lot of pain. The runner just in front of me stopped and ran back, asked me if I was ok, I couldn't find my voice at first, but I eventually replied "yeah I think so, thank you" He asked if I needed help getting up and I repeated again, this time a little louder that I was ok, even though I had no idea if I was or not. I just stayed there, my face in the dirt. For a moment I considered just closing my eyes and staying there. My bottom lip shook as I took survey of my body, I heard another runner behind me so I decided to get up. I stood beside the trail choking back tears - not allowing myself to cry, wiping dirt off of my everything. I didn't know what to do, so I decided to just go. Over the next couple of kms the swelling in my knees from the fall loosened up a bit, but I noticed my hands were badly swollen. I stopped and took a gel and a few bites of a clif bar, checked my phone again and updated my wherabouts just in case. More determined than ever I continued, sometimes fast, sometimes slow, watched all three of my goal times pass by on my garmin, but I finished happy, healthy and sprinting across the finish line. A friend who had already finished greeted me with a hug. I felt great, but the whole thing felt surreal, it was like those 7 hours had never passed, that I had never ran, that this couldn't be it. I don't know why, but except for a few moments that I can quite clearly recall, the whole thing just doesn't seem real! I hated every step of the first 3kms, but before I knew it, I was finished the first lap, then somehow I was at 30 kms, then I fell, but then I blinked and I was finished. lol. Oh what a strange sport, but so incredible at the same time.
A steep, challenging course, through beautiful forests and unforgiving hills,a well organized, well supported event. Official race time was 7 hours 5 minutes.
April 12, 2017
I hope you'll join me for the 2nd Revkor Cambridge Renegade Relay - sign up here! It all goes down Saturday April 22nd.
We'll be meeting at Revkor Cambridge at 190 St. Andrews Street at 7:15am sharp to head out for a fun group run around town to get you warmed up for a post run Revkor sweat session with superstar teacher Christie followed by a core workout and stretch with Erin, owner of Revkor Cambridge.
We are collecting items for the KW Princess Project - so please bring a donation with you on Saturday if you can.
There are lots of fun other things going down that weekend inlcuding an Ivviva trunk show, kids/mamas boot camp style class & korboard openhouse - so make sure to check all that out too!
I am in love with this community, and I can't even begin to describe how much your support means to me, and how amazing it feels to show up to an excited crowd full of familiar faces to run with.
Got any questions about running or learning to run? Hit my 'contact me' link from the main page and let's chat!
Until then here is a short list to prep for the relay:
1. Comfortable running shoes - we'll be on our feet for about 30 minutes
2. Comfortable running clothes - dress in layers - we'll be jumping right into a Rev class afterwards, you'll probably want to ditch the sleeves for a tank.
3. Water Bottle - you'll be able to refill it at Revkor.
4. Wondering what to eat before? my go to pre-run breakfast is a coffee and a banana and I like to have an apple handy as a post run snack, as I digest them really well, love the fibre, vitamin C and water content of apples.
5. Head out for a few short practice runs between now and then, try running for a few minutes and walking for 1 minute to start, trying out 2-3 kms at a time to get your running muscles ready, and to avoid soreness/doms, and to build up your running endurance.
6. Stretch after your runs - Gentle stretches for 30 seconds at a time to target the quads, glutes/hips, calves and hamstrings.
August 30, 2016
This pudgy, freckled face brings tears to my eyes.
4 years ago; I looked a bit different and felt a lot different about myself.
I used to run because I hated my body, the harder I ran, the harder I was
punishing myself for being fat, slow, and just never good enough. I loved
and clung to running because I hoped it would change me, little did I ever
know how much it actually would.
Last year, I had to take 6 months off of running for a severe tear in my knee
and the resulting surgery.
Choked by my own tears for 4 months leading up to the surgery I didn't know
who I was anymore, I blamed myself, I was embarrased of myself, I didn't know how to describe myself anymore, I couldn't say "I'm a runner" or post running pictures, join friends for a run, or talk about my training runs, or races, or medals... and every time I walked into yoga I had to say things like "I can't bend my left knee anymore, I'll have to modify some things throughout your class" etc.
Even walking was painful, everything was painful. Everything seemed hopeless, but at some point along the way, thanks to yoga and meditation, I conceded to what was happening to me, made peace with it all and went into surgery with zero expectations.
I woke up in recovery on November 03, 2015 covered my face in my pillow and cried for 30 minutes straight, felt like I was at the end of a lonely road, broken down.
30 minutes later I'm back in the ward room, full of other people who had also come from surgery that day. A nurse came by, asked me how I was doing and if I wanted to go home. I couldn't have cared any less about myself or where I was going at that time, I honestly would've let someone push me off the side of that hospital bed into a trash can. I shrugged my shoulders and buried my face.
He said "Ok Kristy, Get up and walk over to the end of the room and back and you can go home." I looked up through wet, blurry eyes and just stared at him and shook my head, cleared my throat, and said "oh, um I just had knee surgery, I... I don't, um can't..." and then rolled back over and hid my face again. He came around to the side of the bed held out his hand, smiled and nodded his head. I took his hand without another question, stood up, and as my feet hit the ground, I took some steps and my life started over. An hour after knee surgery and I was walking.
The next day I was walking, entertaining visitors (thanks ♥) and picking up my son from the bus stop. Less than a week later I was driving and back to work, 5 weeks later I was running again, and I haven't stopped. Today will be 265 days of straight running.
I no longer look at my body and think things like "fat, slow, ugly" All I see now is strength and resilience. I feel gratitude for every step I take, for every friend who helped me along the way - and to this day.
I remember every single person who's ever messaged me to check up on me, to cheer me on, to share their story, to tell me I inspired them to go for a run, walk or ride. I thought that the tear in my knee was the worst news I've ever gotten, but it turns out it was one of the best things that's ever happened to me.
June 29, 2016
I Kept Going
Because yoga has become such a big part of my life, the longer I practice, the more I read, the more I learn, the more I notice the parallels, and the application that my yoga practice has on the rest of my life.
While out for a long run last Sunday around the 8km mark I found myself climbing what seemed like an endless hill and thought to myself – just turn around. Turn around, sail down that hill and this will all be over. Take the easy way out, just do it, no one will know, and your finish time will be fantastic.
But I kept going.
It got harder, seemed like it would defeat me, and even seemed stupid to continue at this slowed pace, with fading energy and laboured breath. As I passed people walking the hill, at times I even felt embarrassed of my struggle, but I kept going.
I kept going even though I had the option to turn around, to walk, to quit, I didn’t have to keep going, nothing was forcing me to. This led my mind to my mat, as I thought about the parallels of the challenges I face in my yoga practice.
On my mat, kicking up into hand stand trying with all my might to bring all of my energy into that centre line –that centre line that just doesn’t seem to exist, in that body that just doesn’t seem strong enough, thin enough, in a practice that doesn’t ever feel like it is enough. I try to kick my practice to the next level; re-watching all the videos of advanced yogis effortlessly lifting up, staying up, going back over the “10 steps to handstand” articles I’d read, re-read and bookmarked. It seems so easy, I’ve worked so hard at it for so long, I just don’t understand why don’t I get it, why can’t I do it…but I keep trying.
I keep kicking up.
Practicing them feels physically and emotionally like running up a hill, full of exhaustion, excitement, disappointment, embarrassment. It feels like…hard work, like practice, its feels good and bad. Practice and all is coming. When? When I’ve practiced more, I decide. So I keep going.
Back on the hill in my running body, I keep going. I feel like I’m coming close to the top, I have now forgotten all about turning around, because I’ve decided that like in my yoga practice, the only way to go forward is to go forward, and that going the easy way is going backwards. The only thing that crosses my mind now is what lies on the other side of the hill, which is sure to be something easier than this moment. The hill, struggling, suffering, failure practice; none are permanent, and I can get through it. Suddenly with each inhale, my body isn’t tired anymore, it’s full of power, strength and determination, it has everything I need right now.
Back on my mat, still practicing handstands, I’m not there yet, but I’m not just going to take another posture that’s easier for me, that makes me look better or feel better, I’m going to just keep going forward with my practice and see what’s waiting at the top of the hill for me, with any luck it will be another hill.
I need these hills in my life, I need them to show myself to me. I need them to keep going. I need them as proof that I contain the power to overcome them, that I am enough, that if I practice strength in my
heart and mind, all is coming. I need hills to give me patience, hope and strength for the next one to come. I don’t need a downhill course; I’m not going that way.
June 10, 2016
Introducing: Run Yoga Repeat!
Any type of physical activity can leave the body susceptible to injury. I'm very fortunate to say that sustainability and functional movement in yoga was a part of my teacher training, and that I already integrate these principles into my thoughtfully prepared private and group class sequences.
So what does this mean, and what will a yoga class with me look like exactly?
First, I want to help you make your body strong and stable, so that you have great posture in your every day life, as well as the ability to safely move through different postures on the mat. We'll start where you are, and progress together in a safe way. You won't always look like everyone else, and everyone else won't look like you, and I promise in my classes, it won't matter to me.
I'll guide your body into the postures with interesting and precise cues and alignment, but I won't guide your body into someone else's shape.
Second, I want to help you make your heart and mind strong, so that you can live your yoga off the mat, and maneuver the ups and downs of every day life with a delicate balance of confidence and kindness.
Third, I want you to know that I've dedicated my teaching to integrity and kindness. That means I'm always going to give you an honest, up to date representation of what yoga means to me, and that I strive to be authentic and respect your time, body, all aspects that make up your practice, and whatever reasons you have for showing up on your mat.
So I know that you're probably wondering, what does my practice look like?
While my practice changes every day, and I do set goals for myself and enjoy moving towards and through more advanced postures, I can honestly tell you that the main goal of my practice always has been, and always will be freedom. I remember my first day of yoga teacher training, we were each asked to share why we were here, and not being prepared for this question, I remember clearing my throat, and with a shaky voice saying the first thing that came to my mind: "I'm here to let some things go", and I did.
The benefits of yoga are plenty and although I can't and won't promise anything to you, I do know that if you follow the principles of yoga, in the right ways at the right time there's something there for everyone. The amount of those benefits being directly related to the amount of energy you put into the whole process - and no - not just the physical appearance of the postures.
Although I can say with confidence that they are important, and each time you enter, hold, and exit a posture, each breath has something to tell you when you can tune into it.
Run Yoga Repeat with Kristy Goss © ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.