Bruises, Tears and Smiles

June 04, 2019

Saturday was my first really tough day in the Tour de Victoria training clinic with Trek Procity.

I promised you an honest account of my training for the big day, so if you are thinking about it and wondering what it’s REALLY like you would know.

  • Cry count: 1.5
  • Fall count: 2
  • Thinking I should quit: 0
  • Moment of pride: 3

Saturday was our first hill and the hill of choice was Gonzales Hill (Observatory Hill) we rode there from Trek on Catherine Street. I started the ride by falling over in the parking lot. Yup, before we even set out I managed to tip over. Everyone had gone but Bill (from Trek) who usually rides in the back of the pack to make sure we are all safe and no one gets left behind.. needless to say I spend a fair amount of time with Bill.

UGH. Here I am, on the ground, Bill asking if I am okay and me trying not to burst into tears out of pure embarrassment. Deep breath, take a beat, tell Bill I am fine (having no idea if I really am) and back on my bike to catch up with the group.

I know I have to calm down my brain so I can calm down the rest of me to not freak out on this ride, and I actually do a pretty good job of that.

Off we go!

And go.. and go,, and up some hills.. across some roads.. around some construction.. up more hills.. over a bridge.. The warm up is feeling like the training at this point and by the time we arrive at the bottom of Gonzales Hill I admit to being a little shook.

In the distance I see the group waiting for my arrival, and I am happy to be joining them.. wait.. I have to stop … wait .. WHAT Sidewalk.. NOT STOPPING.. PANIC PANIC PANIC.

I would say I fell “off” my bike, but when you are clipped in, and don’t get unclipped intime, you don’t “fall off,” you fall OVER with the bike still attached.

Good news: The group was in shock as I SLOWLY tipped over and hit the ground, as they said it was confusing to watch because it was actually pretty graceful and they didn’t fully comprehend that I was going to hit the ground.  I did.

Everyone confirmed I was okay, and in good spirits.. after which picture were taken. Please see evidence below.. where someone on my Instagram pointed out that one of the pictures looked like a piece of 3D chalk art you often see from a street artist. That’s right – I’m ART!

Still to come.. I meet an angel, I attempt the hill, and what happens if one foot clips in and the other doesn’t.. and you do it anyway.

Training Log #2 – Team sports at 50

May 29, 2019

Wondering about getting your kids into soccer, hockey, or baseball?

Do it.

Not because you expect them to become great athletes, but because it will give them the basics of how to work in a team.

It’s not natural to be learning this at 50.


I think that is what has me on edge the most; not the fact that the 100K Tour de Victoria course seems to be uphill both ways, but that you ride it as a group working together to get it done as efficiently as possible. The thought that someone will be relying on me is terrifying. I can deal with my own physical short comings, but the thought that I might hold someone else back makes me itch.  

 Good news: The clinic I am doing with Trek Victoria is with a fantastic group of people and even with my screaming insecurities I am am having fun and find myself smiling and laughing more than trying to hide. 

My XL Life

May 19, 2019

I am back on a bike! 70 pounds heavier and 10 years older than the last time, but I am back.

Goal: Tour De Victoria — Chosen Distance: 100k

Tour De Victoria is not a race, it is a tour of one of the most beautiful places in the world to ride, it has 7 distances available and is a timed ride. I will have some big hills to deal with and need to learn the art of riding as a group, not something I ever did in my triathlon days.

So I apply a lesson I learned long ago and use regularly, find people that know what they are doing and let them teach you!

The team at Trek Victoria has stepped up to make sure I will not only know what I am doing but that I have the fitness required and have as much fun as possible.

Susan Secret: I have NEVER played a team sport. I am 50 years old and have been pretty much a solo act when it comes to my sporting endeavours because the thought of someone having to depend on me, or me on someone to get the job done is terrifying! I had NO idea how much team work was going to be part of this ride.

So here we go.

First up, I need the gear! This beauty is the Trek Checkpoint AL3. Perfect starter for my needs!

I also needed something to wear.. everyone said bib shorts are the way to go.. so I did. I am posting this for all you ladies that have walked into a bike shop and turned and ran the other way because it feels like the only people who belong are a quarter of your size and you SO don’t belong. You DO and the chances are good that the staff is ready to help you find what will work for you.


Shoes and helmet also required and taken care of.. heads up they have a new fastener system for helmets now that keep you from clipping your chin.. but until you figure it out you are trapped in your helmet.

I also wanted to go for a ride before my first official ride with the Tour De Victoria clinic, so I recruited a few friends. Big thanks to Richard and Laura Cook who are wonderful examples of people who love to ride and are more than happy to share that joy with an inexperienced rider like me!

I’m so impressed Laura could take this picture while riding!

So here we go! Wanna come along for the ride? You can literally or figuratively! Sign up at Tour De Victoria for the distance of your choice or just check back here for updates on my progress!

No more secrets

April 23, 2018

I was spoiled on my 49th birthday in the most lovely way! Robin Farrell who does the morning show on Ocean 98.5 arrange a surprise trip to MD Esthetics (who she endorses) so I could have some treatments as a birthday gift, plus get started on a fantastic skin care plan.

It wasn’t about desperately trying to look younger, it was about feeling and looking my best as I head into mid-life. Robin looks fantastic and her outward appearance is augmented by the sparkle in her eye, spring in her step and zest for life. She knew that I had been feeling frustrated with a few changes in my skin and some of the other facial changes as I was getting older, things that I was trying to take in stride as gracefully as possible, but as I looked in the mirror it didn’t feel like me looking back.

I was a bit unsettled by my reaction, laugh lines had always been something I said I would embrace and love every single one of, and I do, but the droopy eyes and some of the other sag was totally unexpected and I was NOT digging it. NOPE, not at all.

After Robin took me on this little adventure we had some back lash at the station, Mom’s saying that we were setting a crappy example for their daughters by not letting nature take it’s course and being happy with it. Well. I had to pause for a moment. Could this be true? I am a 5 foot tall, middle aged women with a fat battle that I am sometimes winning and sometimes not. I have even been on billboards in all that glory, standing in front of thousands and even in a wrestling singlet at a world event competing as an athlete representing Canada. Outside of always trying to have fabulous hair and on occasion having a skin routine, I have rarely hidden or went out of the way to change the way I looked.. I have embraced the moments and not let societies preset ideas of beauty dampen some career highs.

Yet here I was THRILLED with a botox treatment!  I said it. BOTOX. BOOOOOOTOXXXXXXX.

It is awesome. Subtle. Perfect. I look in the mirror and I see me! A very happy me! MD Esthetics offers a few different treatments to make sure you see the reflection you want in the mirror that I am considering as well.

The complaints that I heard about setting a bad example for girls growing up, didn’t fall on ears that weren’t listening. I took a moment and truly thought about the why’s of what I was doing and if I was behaving in a way that might be setting a poor example for generations behind me. Here is where I stand.

NO MORE SECRETS.

That for me is the trouble spot. People pretending behind photoshop or enhancement procedures. That is  what sets up unrealistic expectations for youth. If someone says to me.. “Susan! You look great! What’s your secret??” I will happily say “Thank you and go see the team at MD Esthetics, they work wonders!” If they have more questions I will tell anyone exactly what worked for me. If my niece says to my sister, “I hope I look as great as Auntie Susie when I am old.” I hope she says, “You will,” and follows up with a smile and tells her to ask me about the first botox shot I had.

No secrets, no shame.

As my new friends at MD Esthetics say:  Feel Confident. Be Yourself. Look Amazing.

If you want to know more, just ask! Myself, Robin Farrell or the wonderful team at MD Esthetics. The best possibly thing you can invest in is yourself, and when you do, it should always make you smile!

Look who turned 49!

March 21, 2018

 

So much of this list in one picture!

I am calling 49 my “good-bye” year as I gear up to say “hello” to 50 and all that this stage of life has to offer!

So I made a list.

This list is the top 49 lessons of the last 49 years. I didn’t include a few big ones like learning to walk, potty training and speech.. but they are kind of a given, mind you learning to spell anything longer than the word “cat” was fairly monumental in my life.

Anyhoo.. here we go!

#1. Laser Hair Removal. If you want to be hairless it is 100% worth it.

#2. Buy clothes that fit. Seriously, don’t even worry about that stupid number, just buy what fits, it looks better and you will be more comfortable.

#3. Cry with yourself, but have a time limit. We all need a pity party now and then, watch those tears pour down your face and have a good melt down, then move on.

#4. Love Fearlessly. It’s the only way. It will lead to hurt so bad you want to rip your heart out, but big picture totally worth it.

#5. Learn now to manage your money and learn young.  Start HERE

#6. Compliment often. Strangers, coworkers, friends, lovers! If they say, wear, do, create something you like – tell them.

#7. Say Hi to strangers. Everyday.

#8. Live for someone else, even if it’s just for a moment.

#9. Be clear in what you want, in life, love and professionally.

#10. Do the work.

#11. Celebrate the smallest of victories both professionally and personally.

#12. Be true to you but gut check often and listen to what others are saying both verbally and non verbally.

#13. Learn to shut up.

#14. Sometimes it’s okay to be totally unreasonably. Just don’t make it a habit and accept the repercussions.

#15. Ask.

#16. Praise publicly.

#17. Correct privately.

#18. Make mistakes – and own them.

#19. Find the best. Watch, ask, mimic, move on.

#20. See their faults. Accept them.

#21. Be kind, when it’s the last thing you want to do.

#22. Happy thoughts – you control your mind. (thanks Bob)

#23. Listen to all – Decide for yourself

#24. Respect hierarchy but don’t let it hold you back.

#25. Find your tribe. Love your tribe. Know it will change.

#26. Have a “go to” outfit (casual / dressy / professional)

#27. Have a “go to” fancy and comfort food meal.

#28. Quit smoking. Seriously. Shut up and quit smoking.

#29. Have an up to date passport.

#30. Cut ties. Family, friends, professional contacts. If you have to, do it. Do it simply, professionally, and with class but move on.

#31. Ask Questions. If you don’t get the knowledge you need ask different questions or ask different people. Don’t stop.

#32. Be solution driven.

#33. Try it.

#34. Make sure that person is okay. The person crying in the bathroom stall, the person that hopefully is sleeping on the park bench, the person that just seems off..

#35. Learn to speak hypothetical.

#36. Social media isn’t the enemy. The way you use it is.

#37. Apologies.

#38. What goes around comes around — sometime YOU are the come around.

#39. Lose with class.

#40. It’s not all about you and that’s okay.

#41. Help when you can and sometimes when you don’t think you can.

#42. Seek help when you need it, and do it quickly.

#43.  The only person that defines your success is you. Understand this is a blessing and a curse.

#44. You will change. Physically, emotionally and spiritually.

#45. Laugh.

#46. Do what scares you – on your own time.

#47. Leave when unhappy. Do not stay in a marriage, work situation or place that makes you fundamentally miserable, Before you leave be confident you tried to make it work.

#48.Laugh at yourself. You’re funny.

#49. Give ALL the F&C@s. The world is worth you caring.

 

WORLD RADIO DAY!

February 14, 2018

It’s World Radio Day! Much of the time in radio we talk about the listener, because that is truly who it is all about. Today I am going to turn that around. Radio is full of colorful characters! Brilliant minds, and not just creative ones but also problem solvers in the most linear logical fashion. People motivated by a muse and people motivated by a dollar. People learning to work with personality types that clash loudly, yet that is where the brilliance lies. Radio is creativity, meets technology meets bottom-lines and it THRIVES! Sometimes being in radio can be surreal.. real life is suspended as you dress up like a football and get tackled for concert tickets, wakesurf 100K for charity, talk to someone who called feeling desperately alone until help arrives or working for hours on a piece of radio magic that takes 45 seconds to deliver and once delivered it’s gone. I love the pieces that come together to make great radio, the many voices in many departments that work together to paint a big fabulous audio picture! Working in radio you are part of the change in the world. Words hold power and the best broadcasters know it, revel in it, take responsibility for it, change the world with it. I could go on and on and on.. but I have a mic waiting for me. Big love to the broadcasters that make the magic happen everyday. xx

That’s my girl!

November 29, 2016

My first full time job in radio came just after my graduation at Fanshawe College. There was a few of us in line for the gig, but I succeeded and the job was mine! It wasn’t until later I discovered that part of the reason I got that job was because I was female and there was a mandate at the time for a more equal work place.

That wasn’t the best discovery ever.

Lots of doubt followed, but I determined that I would work three times as hard to “get up to speed” and make sure I didn’t disappoint the people who took a chance on me. (You know who you are!)

My journey hasn’t been without bumps but I hit my stride; and yet have never really lost that feeling I need to “get up to speed” or let down the people who first believed in me. That insecruity has been part of what has driven my success.

Over the past couple months we have been building the new team at Q103.1 and I made a fabulous discovery as the resumes and audio crossed my desk.

We have come a long way baby!

long-way

 

We had a strong selection of men to consider, but the women! Different sounds, characters and levels of experience, but so much talent! It has been a joy and privilege to listen to so many broadcasters that won’t be hire to help create balance in the work place based on their sex along with a base level of talent. Nope.. these ladies SHINE with creativity, talent and strength. We now have enough wagons to circle and we are. Women are building each other up and pushing each other to new levels of success.

I salut the women who came before me that lit the path in the time when it was toughest. I am just one of the women that are reaping the benifits from the work you put in. I am thrilled by the women I see that will benefit from the doors I have played a role in breaking down.

Is there still a “glass ceiling?” Do we still walk out of meeting dominate by ties and wonder if we are taken as seriously as we should be? On the odd occasion are we still called dear and asked to grab the coffee? Do women still gather and are mystified by decisions made by men on what the female demo will like? Do we still get labeled overly-emotional and/or a bitch when it’s better described as passion and leadership?

You bet. (Seriously even the being called dear and asking to do a coffee run) 

But, more and more men are joining us in the bafflement over sexist behaviour or at the very least are willing to consider that past attitudes might need adjustment. It is an exciting time in radio.

Keep it up ladies, I am thrilled to have the opportunity to witness what’s to come.


 

 

 

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