5 Peaks Heart Lake Trail Race Recap

After missing the Albion Hills event in July, and no events in August, everyone was glad to see the return of 5 Peaks to the Heart Lake Conservation Area in September.  And what a September!  The summer heat came in late, and everyone needed to prepare.

The kids 3k timed race starts first.  As a ‘Trail Crew Leader’ and slowpoke, it made sense for me to bring up the rear in case of stragglers.   I spoke with another volunteer who helped sweep and learned that not only was the race centred around a different site within the park but naturally the course had been altered from previous years.  That meant my favourite hill, which I always climbed like Spider-Man wouldn’t be there.  Oh well, the heat would make it plenty challenging.

Dig the hat.
Photo courtesy of Sue Sitki Photography

The Kids course was an out and back, and I encountered Shark Boy a little later than I expected.  He had the company of one of our Trail Crew Leaders, and I found out later that there were tears at the finish line due to an encroaching headache.  It seems his late nights in competitive gymnastics catch up with him.  A little more water and he was good to help his brother in the 1k fun run.

The Lightning Kid has been getting faster and faster on his feet but he also likes to use those feet to dance with Buffy.

As I had mentioned, Shark Boy got his second wind and wanted to keep his brother company.  The Lightning Kid didn’t mind a big brother chaperone but dismissed his mother from the job.  Apparently, he took a little spill but the community spirit at 5 Peaks is always huge, and he ended up picking up an adult guardian anyway.


For my part, the new Sport Course provided lots of shade, so I didn’t feel the heat too badly, and there were some nice views of Heart Lake along the way.  I’m pretty proud of the cruising pace I maintained, though I forgot to stop my Endomondo app for tracking.  My paces varied between 6:20/km to 7:16/km.


Courtesy of Sue Sitki Photography


The final race of the season is at the Kortright Conservation Area on October 28th.  If you live in the area, consider signing yourself, your friends and your little ones up! Use the code ‘IRONROGUE’ when registering.

Welllness Renewal – Part 1

This post is sponsored by Swanson Vitamins.  I received free products for my consumption in exchange for a review.

I’m not the first person to propose the idea of New Years’ Resolution goal setting and renewal in September, but I’m surprised that it isn’t a more widely accepted theme.  After all, if you’re a parent or a student yourself, back-to-school season is a much bigger transition than one winter month into another (with all due respect to Christmas).

I’m more focused on fitness within this blog than most other facets of wellness like mental well-being or nutrition.  And while I have some new ideas about fitness activities I’ll be trying, I will save that for a future post.

I am not ‘Mr. Supplement’ and I never will be, but between trying to stay healthy, recover from workouts, raise two boys in a less than hermetically sealed environment, there are a few things I consider adding to my imperfect diet.

As a family, we’re on board with the idea that the microbiome in your gut aids not only digestion but your immune system.  The kids get a little pro-biotic powder in orange juice or applesauce (to combine it with Vitamin C), but I didn’t have my own till I started taking Rainbow Light Men’s One.  I had tried other Men’s Multivitamins but so many gave me heartburn.  This one doesn’t and the 25,000,000 CFU of Bacillus coagulans is a nice bonus.

My wife likes Magnesium supplementation to help combat insomnia and to aid with workout recovery, so if you have hard workouts (or like me lately, infrequent ones that feel hard). According to this article, people are generally not getting enough magnesium in their diet and not getting the anti-inflammatory benefits. Whether it’s workouts or stress, inflammation is something you want to keep at bay, and there are bone strengthening and blood pressure lowering benefits to taking magnesium that are of interest to those of us feeling the years add up.   We picked up this one, which has magnesium in more than one form.  I’ve been taking it in the mornings because that’s when I’m most likely to remember, but it’s easy to take and seems to go down easy any time of day.


I first became interested in Chromium as a mineral fat-burning aid; i.e. something that would help me burn fat without being some crazy hormonal drug or anything along that line.  It’s early days with this one and I haven’t been taking it regularly or long enough to judge its effects, but the Swanson website says chromium helps with appetite and feeling full between meals.

On the other side of the coin of probiotics are digestive enzymes.  I don’t really have that many complaints about my digestive system (and if I did, I think I’d hesitate to share gory details in this space), but I wanted to try and be completist about attempts at aiding the gut microbiome and have the best immune system I can.  Like the Chromax above, I’ve been struggling to take this one consistently, as they are recommended with the ‘biggest meal’ which is not the breakfast meal in my case, and during the later meals, I tend to forget about vitamins and supplements.


The Swanson Vitamins website is excellent.  The selection of any type of product you can think of is a bit boggling, honestly.  Each product is laid out with its ingredients, uses, reviews and even a size chart comparing the tablets to a penny – Canadians might need to use their memories (or find a supplement that aids memory to remember pennies.  Speaking of Canadians, some products you might be looking for might be subject to export restrictions and not available, so look for this sign on a product page before you commit it to your online shopping cart.

I’ll be continuing the Wellness Renewal series in the coming weeks.

Do you use September and back-to-school as a reset point for your health and fitness journey?  Are multivitamins, minerals, pro-biotics or other supplements part of your routine?