Day 1 in Vancouver, Van City or as the SeaWheeze folks lovingly called it #VanSweaty was absolutely perfection. I may have been a bit ambitious with all that I wanted to jam pack into the day before a race but it worked out just fine. I was even able to stay well hydrated and ate amazingly.
Thursday night I flew into YVR around 8pm local time. After a harrowing experience (my man got stuck in traffic coming to get me to get me to the airport), we then had to fill up on gas and get me to the airport in 40 mins. If you live in Toronto that’s an ambitious goal. I made my flight with 5 mins to spare and I arrived safe and securely in Vancouver. Christina (The Athletarian) had flown in earlier that day & after walking around all day she was exhausted too. We threw ourselves into bed, chatted like teens at a sleepover & waited for Angela (Eat Spin Run Repeat) to arrive. We fell asleep around 10pm & I vaguely recall opening the door around 12:30am for Ang before tumbling back into bed.
Friday we woke up way too excited around 5:30am, showered and found a perfect grocery store around the corner from our hotel. Urban Fare (very similar to Whole Foods) had a fresh to order breakfast menu so I eagerly ordered scrambled eggs, bacon, toast & hash browns to fuel my day properly. Christina got a massive bowl of oatmeal with fresh berries & nuts. Angela, hands down, had the most shocking breakfast by pounding back an entire fruit tray.
We slowly made our way down to the Convention Centre for race packet pick up & the Showcase Store (exclusive SeaWheeze pattern Lululemon clothes). We knew that arriving at 8am when the doors open may have been a good strategy but folks had for sure been lined up since 7am or earlier. The line up wasn’t horrible per se. It did stretch all the way around the convention centre… But we got to stare at an amazing view while waiting in line.
I didn’t look at the exact time but we may have gotten our packets by 9am. The frustrating part that happened was getting our packets and then being stopped from entering the store. They had reached capacity and couldn’t let anyone knew in. We could see groups spread out all over the floor. The strategy was grab as many clothes as possible and start trying them on, on the floor. The good thing was we could check out merchandise from afar and know what we wanted to grab. Positives for everything! I strongly wanted to usher the boyfriends & husbands who were just sitting on the ground doing nothing out of the store though. They were taking up capacity! Lol. Deep breathing and excitement over exclusive SeaWheeze apparel took care of that! We finally got in and beelined for our gear. After trying things on we used our phones to take pics vs finding mirrors and we were good to go. My haul included a Scuba Hoody (bottom right), Zip Up Jacket (top right), Speed Shorts (bottom left), Stripped Pullover with a zipper up the back (middle left) and a pullover with a zip up for the man (that one is top left). The hat I bought at the Lululemon store on Robson later that day.
Ang & I parted ways with Christina as she had other plans for the day so we quickly hit up the Lululemon store on Robson. Ang doesn’t have a bricks & mortar store in her city so there was a bunch of stuff she wanted. I grabbed the black run hat (in picture above) for the race the next day in case of sun as I had forgotten my Oakleys in Toronto.
Lunch was at the Cactus Club Bentall 5 location. We were joined by Danielle (Twitter peep) and had the most ridiculously amazing salads. I had the Quinoa salad with Chicken Breast & Ang dug into a Raincoast Greens salad. I stole some of her avocado for some of my snap peas. Conversation was light and excited for the next day’s race.
We were able to put our legs up for maybe 20 mins before we hopped in a cab to Kits beach and our first SUP lesson on the ocean! Although I’ve gone once in Toronto I knew the ocean would be a whole other story. We were met by Kristy from Stand Up Paddle Vancouver. I loved their boards. We used Boga Yoga boards which I found much more stable than the SUP love boards I used in Ontario. We had a great time in this little cove. I got my legs used to being on a board again, cheered Ang on for her first time, did a bit of yoga and just loved being out on the water.
We hopped out of the water around 5 and ran around the beach to meet up with my Magnum team mate Kyla! I hadn’t seen her since April so needless to say we kind of totally did the run and
squeal and hug.
We decided to do a quick dinner at Boathouse which was pretty much right across from where Lululemon was hosting the sunset yoga! I settled on tuna tacos and sweet potato fries. Needless to say they did not sit well and my stomach was in gassy knots post yoga. No idea which one caused the stomach cramps so that’s off the pre-race menu for the future.
Sunset Yoga was absolutely amazing. Get 2,000 people together in one place, under a blue sky, by the water, chanting OM and smiling and you get a very very happy place.
This was an amazing way to end the first day in Vancouver. Smiles, happy hearts and exhausted enough to sleep well through the night. Stay tuned for my race recap!