Tag archive for life goals

The 3 Best Things About Visiting Melbourne

1. FAMJAM/#jornapalooza2015

April helping Uncle Scotty use the computer.

An extremely cute Easter bunny.

I love that the whole family likes games. Simultaneous Wits & Wagers and My First Carcassonne.

Cutest dinosaur ever (Seth).

Jemma and April.

The entire Jorna family together! This hasn’t happened in a long time. It made Pat (Scott’s dad) so happy. :’)


We went to a rugby union game. I learned all about weird things like BORING IN THE SCRUM.

Scott’s cousin hooked us up with ultra cheap tickets to the footy. The Hawks demolished the Cats. It’s one of my life goals to go to a full house AFL game at the MCG (100,000 people) (happens about a dozen times a season according to Scott), and this was close, but not quite. There were 72,000 people there, for a FIRST ROUND GAME! Melbournites love their sports.

Hawthorne cheer squad.

We even caught a Canada vs. Fiji Rugby Sevens game on TV, which made me laugh, and made Scott run to his room to put his jersey on. Canada was even winning for most of the game! But then Fiji smashed us. They seemed like they could run twice as fast as the Canadians.


I ate 5 meat pies in 2 weeks. :D

We went out for dumplings, but they weren’t great. Should have researched a bit more about where is good these days.

At one of the spots on our impromptu pub crawl. We also went to a bar that was a little house right in the middle of the CBD, and Transport, and possibly somewhere else. Hmm.

Really expensive fancy margarita and really expensive piece of pork something. Too tipsy to remember the name of the restaurant. The pork was mega delicious though.

– we also ate lots of lamb, vanilla slices, parmas, flathead, Freddo Frogs, etc etc. And brought back an entire suitcase filled with Savoys, Tim Tams and BBQ Shapes.


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Pre-Calgary Skeleton Update

The past month of skeleton has been really fun and exciting for me. While many people are really hurting from the unseasonably warm temperatures in Whistler, it has been great for me because I finally moved up to the top of the track a few weeks ago! (My goal for the year!) The warmer weather means the track has been a little soft, and soft and frosty equals slow. Bad for PBs, but excellent for scaredy cats like me. (BTW we are still going 115-120 km/hr on slow days.)

We had our BC Cup races #3 and #4 a couple weeks ago (when I had only done 6 runs from the top before race day). The ice in our OT session was soooooooooooooooooo slow, then the next day the track crew worked their butts off and made the ice 15 km/hr FASTER than the night before. I was TERRIFIED. I dragged my toes (to slow down) so hard. I ended up coming something like +16 seconds behind the leader in a two heat race, which is quite ridiculous in a sport that usually comes down to hundredths of a second, but I figured it was better to challenge myself and get more experience from the top than go back down to corner 3 and have an easy race.

BUT, I’m getting more and more comfortable every day. I’ve even started doing little jogging starts this week, and this weekend it actually was quite fast, and I was nervous, but I forced myself to not drag my toes… and I was fine! 128.6 km/hr!  So I think from here on I can pretty much run as fast as I can.

Tomorrow I am driving to Calgary with a few teammates for a week of training. Similar to last year, but this time for an Alberta Cup race and not for Can-Am week (there was no Can-Am week this year). We will do 3 days of Official Training, 2+ Icehouse sessions, and 2 days of racing. Exciting!! I’m hoping to improve my pushing skills x92398723937823. It will be very interesting to see how I do compared to last year because I understand SO MUCH MORE now. Plus my new sled works way better than my old one. I am very much looking forward to it.

All for now, I have to finish packing.

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2014 was pretty great. I did a fair bit of travelling (Ottawa/Calgary/Portland/Listowel/Nanaimo/Osoyoos). I dyed my hair purple. I finally graduated skeleton school and started training with the BC team. I got to attend CanAm week in Calgary, moved up to corner 3 in Whistler, fell off my sled, did 2 180’s, raced in several races and attended summer dry land testing too. I got to ski a few times, started weightlifting lessons and doing yoga. I worked a lot, and started monthly games days with some work friends. I ate a lot, lots of Tasting Plates events, offal at Black Hoof twice, life-changing ice cream, and even attended a food bloggers conference. I gave up sugar for 3 months. Oh and I also did a buttload of crochet and cross stitching.

2015 hasn’t been that great so far… broken fridge/sickness/I think I need glasses… but I’m sure it will improve.

My goals:

  • get way stronger
  • slide from the top of Whistler
  • improve my blog
  • finish my blanket
  • handstands
  • be nicer to Scott

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Skeleton at COP in Calgary

Last last week I was lucky enough to be able to take part of Can-Am week at the COP in Calgary. It was a week intended to give extra coaching and training to new sliders. That being said, Matt and I were definitely the most new out of everyone. Most of the other people had been sliding for a couple years and already had experience on a bunch of different tracks, or at least had a lot of experience on the Calgary track. There were a few guys from USA, a few from Ontario, a whole bunch of people from Alberta, and the four of us from BC.

The Calgary track is not near as fast as Whistler. But it does have its own challenges. The main one for us was that it is REALLY REALLY BUMPY. Also really really dirty. Because it is so close to the city a lot of dirt blows in. Also the track workers just aren’t as awesome as at Whistler. We are so spoiled at Whistler. There was bird poo frozen onto the track, and also sawdust? Yuck.

ANYWAY because it wasn’t so fast we were able to start from the top on our second run! This meant doing my first ever running start!! (My skeleton/life goal for this season!) The first few runs I did two-handed “running” starts (really I was pretty much walking). Fun! Later we had a couple sessions in the icehouse (an indoor push track practice thingy) where Ivo helped us work on our real one-handed running starts. It did help a lot but I will admit I still pushed somewhat tentatively on the real track because I was terrified of popping the groove and also crashing. PS you can see a video of me doing a running start on my Facebook wall.

The best part of the week was that there were always at least 3 coaches watching our runs. One coach even took videos. Then after each run they would come give us feedback on how we did and how we can improve. Very cool and very helpful. A lot of the pictures in this post are stills from the videos.

Here is a video of me sliding out of corner 7 and into corner 8: http://www.ubersense.com/video/view/HSASsJKB?e=115353

And here is a video of me disappearing into a puff of snow on the straightaway: http://www.ubersense.com/video/view/raMv6Rnw?e=125545

Like I said, the track is not super hard. There are only two parts that I had to worry about. 1) corner 8, which has the potential to flip you over if you go into it too late. I came close to flipping but managed to stay right-side-up the entire week. And 2) the kreisel (a 270 degree corner 3 pressure corner), which I also survived fine. Maybe just because I did “safety steers” though, which helped me but also slowed me down a lot. The fastest speed I got was only 107.9 km/hr!! (The good dudes were getting around 114 km/hr). One time I was NINE SECONDS slower than Mitch. NINE SECONDS!! Was I even on the same track?? I swear there was a short-cut I didn’t know about, haha.

On the last day of the week we had a fun race. I expected I was going to come in last place, and I did, but they were some of my best runs of the whole week so I still felt pretty good. They were my quickest and cleanest runs with my best push times. That’s success for me. Also it was really awesome that Lesley was able to come watch, it made me feel supported.


All in all it was a successful week. I learned SO MUCH. LIKE, SO MUCH. Everything makes a lot more sense now. It was tiring and challenging at times, but also super fun. While it was extremely embarrassing being so bad/new sometimes, the coaches and other sliders were always really encouraging and friendly. I loved meeting other sliders and making new friends. I’m so glad I was given the opportunity to take part in the training week.

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My Journey Into Weight Lifting

I’ve been putting this post off for a long time, because I didn’t want to be all “LOOK AT ME I’M SO GREAT AT FITNESS” and then end up not sticking with it and looking stupid. But it’s been 6 months now and I’m still going to the gym on a regular basis so I think it’s safe to say I’m somewhat committed.

Before six months ago I hated exercising, I thought. But actually I think I really just hated running. I did the Couch To 5K program a couple years ago and hated every second of it. When I got home from a run I felt like puking! People say things like ~you never regret a workout~ but when I’d come home from running with a purple face, shins hurting, and feeling a thousand times worse than I did before the run, I DID REGRET THE WORKOUT. I was quite content on the couch before I went out!!

But then I got into skeleton. Skeleton isn’t really the sportiest of sports (probably part of the reason I like it), but even as a beginner it does involve walking up inclines, carrying really heavy things around, and keeping your body really tight on the way down. And I sucked at that. So I joined a gym.

I started with the cardio equipment because they weren’t as scary. But upon further research I realized I really needed to be in the weight room. I got a bunch of books on weightlifting from the library and tried to memorize some of the exercises [this was pre-smartphone] and slowly started trying more and more things out in the weight room. It was terrifying at first!! Weights are intimidating! I mostly stuck to the machines and dumbbells at the beginning, and only when it wasn’t very busy. [Getting my new phone later helped a lot because you can sneakily look things up while at the gym.]

I followed the dumbbell only routines from The Body Sculpting Bible For Women for several weeks. They were fun and challenging and not too complicated. The best thing was writing down the weights I used in a little notebook [eventually replaced by phone] and seeing the numbers go up and up every time. Super addicting! I finally understood what people meant when they said they never regretted a workout because I always felt great after a sweaty lifting session.

Over the past few months I’ve progressed from those timid dumbbell moves to exciting stuff like deadlifts and power cleans with the barbell! I’m a million times more confident at the gym now. It’s been a fun journey, thanks to watching other people, reading on the internet, and coaching from my skeleton friend.

My original weight lifting goals were to try not to embarrass myself at the skeleton tryouts, but then they took out the weight lifting part anyway. My new goals are to get my benchpress to 100 lbs, and my squat and deadlift to bodyweight. [Currently benching 65 lbs, squatting 75 lbs, deadlifting 75 lbs…. so I’ve got lots of work ahead of me.] And to be able to do pull-ups and handstands.

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