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Injury Update

Wow. I am completely blown away by the response to my accident post. Confession: I didn’t delete any of the comment notification e-mails and I still read through them from time to time when I need a pick-me-up. I wish I could respond to every single one of them. But one-handed typing is a slow process. Just know that your support and well wishes mean SO much to me, and I can’t believe I have so many amazing people on my side.

If you’re catching up, I sustained a serious injury skating on Friday. The details are in this post. Right now I’m recovering from surgery in Ottawa and limited to the use of only one arm.

This post is a bit of a follow-up one to update you on my progress. It’s in point form again because that is still how my brain is working at this point. Mostly just updates and random things since being released from hospital. Not all future posts will be like this, don’t worry :P

  • Went in for a CT scan today and met with my surgeon. Looks like the elbow joint is in the right place after the reconstructive surgery. Just a little extra space where scar tissue will grow. That will probably lead to a “cranky elbow” for the rest of my life.
  • One of the screws may be out of place. I’ll know by Friday if they want to go back in and fix it.

the elbow joint

  • The doc said my radial head (seen above, connected to the forearm) was crushed when I hit it. Actually “mush” was the term he used. That’s what the screws are in. There is very little cartilage there left to heal, but the surgeon is hoping my young body will be able to do it and hold on to the screws. If not, they will have to go in and replace it with  piece of prosthetic. I’ll be following up with my surgeon every week and will know in about a month if it’s healing enough to leave it alone.
  • Me and my three screws are now “Susan and the Three Amigos”
  • I’m staying at my sister’s in Ottawa until at least Saturday. We’re taking it one follow-up appointment at a time!
  • Pain management is a tricky issue. The pain is too intense to go without painkillers, and pain can actually hinder the healing process. Right after the surgery I was taking the maximum allowed dosage of percocet. Without it, it’s excruciating. BUT, I think it is getting better with each day, and I’m slowly weaning myself off the drugs.
  • From the moment this happened I said “I don’t care if I’m limited to one hand for months – I just don’t want to be in this kind of pain.” Pain scares me more than anything else surrounding this ordeal. I just don’t want to be in pain.
  • I have suspicions that my family thinks I’m going to get hooked on painkillers.
  • The effects of the anaesthesia lasted for two days. It made me so nauseous that I couldn’t walk. I had to get wheeled out of the hospital.
  • I washed my hair today for the first time in five days.


  • My sister Sara has been a godsend. I was without the use of both my arms in the hospital because of where they put the IV. She did everything from put chapstick on me to holding the phone up to my ear. She’s helped me to the washroom, has been preparing all my meals, and keeping on top of the logistics when my brain just can’t handle it. She’s an amazing caregiver. Expect a guest post from her soon ;)
  • It will probably be a year or so until I can do any form of light upper-body weight lifting. Even then, it may just be something I always struggle with. I will miss my budding yoga practice the most. The thought of doing wheel pose now makes me cringe.
  • I’m oddly not that upset that my fitness routine or career won’t be the same. I’d planned on becoming a fitness instructor in the coming months. Right now the idea of going back for more surgery is more frightening than not being able to stick with my “old plan.” Everything else just seems so small when put up against the big picture.
  • My sister keeps trying to feed me junk food and I have to explain to her that I’m a sedentary person right now.

Elgin Street Diner poutine in Ottawa. Crispy shoestring fries, mushroom gravy and squeaky cheese curds. Still the best poutine ever.

  • My hunger signals are way out of whack. I have to time my snacks with my pain meds, otherwise I forget and experience a significant drop in energy. My energy, mood, and ability to deal with pain are hugely improved when there are calories in my body.
  • The anaesthesia made everything taste really  salty. I find myself craving really simple, bland foods. Like peanut butter sandwiches, fried eggs, bagels, and mild tasting fruit.
  • Dawson’s Creek is awesome for recovery. Both mindless and distracting. Joey is more likeable the second time around, but I’m still Team Pacey.

  • Reading has been difficult as I still have a slight inability to retain information.
  • I’m getting pretty good at this one-handed typing thing ;)
  • If you’ve been wondering about blog content now that I have limited cooking and activity skills, you’re not alone. But I do think recovering from an injury will give me some welcomed perspective. And perhaps it will give me the chance to blog about some things that would have otherwise been replaced with yet another cookie recipe. We shall see!


  • I’ve been up walking around today, feeling more and more like myself. Getting back on my feet has been more difficult than anticipated. Movements are very slow, my body is still in shock.
  • My mom pointed out that since I fell backwards on the ice, I could have landed on my head. My elbow was just “taking one for the team.”
  • I love you all. My arm may be in pieces but my heart feels very full <3

A Worthy Gain

What’s up.


That would be me in my new personal training uniform. So unreal to be able to wear it now!! My client roster is slowly starting to fill and I can’t believe how lucky I am that I get to go to the gym, help people get in shape, and call that “work” :)

Mucho gracias for indulging me in my last post about Jagerbombs. Despite being an employed trainer now, my behaviour has been decidedly “un-trainer-like.”


We’ve had people visiting these past few days, which should always be met with celebrations. When they said they were going to Smoke’s Poutinerie I had to go. I knew it was going to be bad. Real bad. But I seem to have this insatiable food curiosity that sometimes takes away from my better judgement.


I know a few people would be horrified by their treatment of the classic poutine – a dish of fries, beef gravy and cheese curds. Smoke’s has a large menu filled with various toppings and varieties. We’ll agree to call it a “fry and gravy” place ;)

I went for the Country Style: slow roasted chicken breast, double smoked bacon, sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions.

Not gonna lie, I was a little horrified upon seeing what I’d ordered.



I had to dig deep to find the actual poutine part…


Omg, I can feel my arteries clogging all over again just looking at this. I think I finally have my This Is Why You’re Fat submission.

I arrived to the Poutinerie after a heavy weight-lifting workout, which in retrospect was perhaps not the best idea. My stomach was loudly growling and I polished off the whole thing. The whole thing! In terms of how poutines go, it was just alright. I think I liked the Elgin Street Diner in Ottawa better. I prefer shoestring fries and mushroom gravy :)


We walked down to Trinity Bellwoods park to enjoy our greasy boxes. The same place as the blogger picnic, and my favourite park in Toronto!! Okay, the only park I’ve been to in Toronto…


Chris got the triple pork poutine with pulled pork, smoked bacon and Italian sausage. A little something he coined “poutirnalism.” Eating mass quantities poutine for the sake of mankind.

I of course immediately regretted stuffing myself with such food as I had to go directly to a job interview (part-time job at a coffee shop – fingers crossed!), and then to a fitness assessment!

I offered to be the victim of a fitness assessment at my new gym to get an idea of how they go about doing them. Keep in mind, mine was much harder than what they do to the average person. The trainer I was working with obviously wanted to see what I’m made of ;)

I tried to explain to him that I’d just eaten a pound of poutine, and that I’ve been feeding on hamburgers and cake since travelling to Banff in June. I can’t say I was surprised when I stepped on the scale and discovered I’ve gained 6 lbs in the last three months. Every ounce of that gain is the result of good food and good times I wouldn’t trade in for the world. But there’s always something about that numerical value that seems to sneak out of the scale and slap you across the face.

You mean I can’t eat a pound of poutine on the daily?? :P

Yeahyeahyeah, I guess now that I’m settled in my new home, it’s time to settle back into my usual eating routine as well. Noted Mr. Scale. Noted.

Weight gain aside, I did pretty well on the fitness assessment. There were a lot of lateral raises, ab moves and lunges among other things. My core strength needs work, but my legs and back are waaaay stronger than I was expecting. My shoulders are still struggling a little, but I’m workin’ on it :)

Lunch was eaten at 1:30pm and I didn’t start to feel snacky until 9pm!!


I reached for this Daryl’s All Natural Regular Elite Granola Bar. A Canadian-made protein bar that I spotted in the fridge section of a local natural foods store.



Ingredients and stats are okay…


But the taste? Meeehhh. Notsomuch. The texture was lovely and reminded me a lot of my own homemade bars. But I thought there was too much honey and the dried fruit was a little tart.

I awoke this morning with the determination to get back on the straight and narrow. This of course meant celebrating Waffle Wednesday!!

I whipped up quite possibly my best protein waffle recipe yet:

  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup unflavoured soy protein powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • several shakes cinnamon
  • 1 packet stevia
  • 1/4 cup egg whites
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


Made two medium-sized waffles. While they were cooking, I also cooked peach slices with cinnamon in a frying pan.


Thrown on top with flaked coconut and sugar-free syrup.


They tasted like real waffles!!


The recipe has 270 calories, 3g fat, 25g carbs, 4g fibre, 0g sugar, 37g protein.


It’s love!!

Even though I woke up incredibly sore from weightlifting and the fitness assessment the day before, I was still pumped for a noon-hour spin class.


Pre-spin fuel was a few figs topped with my Easy Peasy Cream Cheese Icing.


All I did was mix together a wedge of laughing cow cheese and a tbsp of marshmallow fluff. SO good!!

Unfortunately, I got my days all messed up and there was no spin class happening once I got to the gym. Instead I just hopped on various cardio machines while watching Sex and the City. Just as well!


For lunch, I stir-fried every fresh veggie I had in the fridge and added tofu balls.


I tossed the whole thing in Averie’s peanut sauce and it was divine. Stir-fries are becoming one of my favourite summer meals!

I’ve been trying to avoid the chocolate cake my roommie brought home, so I snacked on my own version later in the day.


Deep Chocolate Vitatop with Dark Chocolate Dreams Peanut Butter.


That right there, really is the stuff dreams are made of ;)


I will leave you with the above image to drool over. My dad, big sis and little step-sis are arriving in less than an hour and I’ve got things to do! I’m superduper excited to see them and show them my new city :)

18 Things From Ottawa

1. Being met by a smiling sister

We were almost diverted to Toronto because an airplane went off the runway at the Ottawa airport when we were about to land. So I was especially happy to see this face waiting for me!


2. Surviving the car drive from the airport


Sister Sara, although being a licensed driver for over a decade, is still something of a newbie. This has by far been the most dangerous part of my trip so far ;)


3. My sister’s cute apartment


Including hand-made decorations by me from 1994!


As well as a toaster oven with a warning I probably could have used once.



4. Talking to my mom and Nana on Skype


Everything about this shot is perfect. My confused grandmother, my mom super close and off the screen, me in the corner with the camera to my face…


5. Poutine


I’m surprised some of you didn’t recognize what I was holding up in the teaser photo from my last post! A sign that I have been a bad Canadian blogger. Please meet one of our best dishes: poutine.


That would be french fries + cheese curds + gravy. This is the Elgin Street Diner speciality, were they use a mushroom gravy. To. Die. For. Traditional Quebec poutine is made with beef gravy, although turkey is my favourite. Also, Holly informed me that the term “cheese curds” in Wisconsin is usually used to describe battered cheese. Poutine is just made with the regular curds (which are kinda like squeaky blobs of cheese).


6. Breakfast on the balcony





7. New weight lifting moves

Back: Compound rows thanks to Janetha (please excuse the meathead link, but the move is the first video on the right :) )

Biceps: Standing dumbbell cross-chest curl

Triceps: Single-arm 90 degree cable extension (from Oxygen Magazine)



8. Unintentional vegetarian days

After a week of eating hardly anything but beef in Alberta, filling up on vegepate has been a welcome addition to my diet.


Especially when eaten my favourite way – on a pita with cheese and hummus.


Homemade sweet potato and black bean salad courtesy my chef sister.


And lots and lots of greens



9. Almost getting killed on a bicycle in rush hour traffic

…and forgetting we’d promised “not to mention this to mom” ;) I also learned that the back of my ankle is a very, very bloody spot. Thank you to the kind people of Ottawa who helped me as I stained their sidewalks with my blood.


10. Watching my sister’s rowing practice


…and then hopping in the speedboat with the instructor to watch!! I got to see the sights of Ottawa (including Parliament) from the beautiful Rideau Canal. I also got bit by the rowing bug…must look into Toronto teams…


11. Indie rock concerts


Including dancing to the sounds of Library Voices alongside my big sis :)



12. My insatiable sweet tooth

Despite living off a diet of red meat and refined sugar in Banff, my taste for the sweet stuff is still going strong.


My sister, just like my mother, has excellent taste in chocolate. Feels like I never left home :)



13. Decadent yogurt

Read: 7% fat. It’s like a much better and fluffier version of ice cream.

Which makes a most excellent topping for coconut oatmeal.



14. Exploring a new city



And still finding a piece of home :)


15. Hanging out in coffee shops


Bridgehead is like the Evelyn’s of Ottawa – they’re everywhere!!!


16. Running along the Rideau Canal


Including the 1-mile to the gym and back. Makes for the perfect warm-up and cool down for weight lifting!


17. Getting caught in my first Ontario-style rain storm

That lonely tent is what could have been of the Taste of Wellington event today. Boo :(


18. Catching up on Glee


…while getting a major crush on Jesse St. James. Yet I am oddly more intrigued by Finn after finding out Cory Monteith was a 9th-grade drop-out. Le sigh. Some things never change…


Till next time!! <3