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Hey folks, Gareth and Michelle here! We will be blogging about our training for this year's "Seek the Peak" at Grouse Mountain and give a recap of the event once completed. Before we get on to the first post, how about we give you a bit of info on who we are and why we are doing this crazy difficult race.

We met during snowboard lessons up at Grouse Mountain over 10 years ago, while in high school. This past October we got married and with the crazy schedule of wedding planning over with, we finally had some free time to fill. In comes Grouse Mountain! The fine people at Grouse knew the story of how we met, they also knew about Gareth's (Golden Ticket Finalist) success of using the Grouse Grind as part of a grueling workout regiment to lose around 40lbs of post high school weight. It got him into shape for his career and also started the process of us living a healthier, more active lifestyle as a couple. 

Michelle is an elementary school teacher who teaches during the day, tutors children at night and teaches fitness classes on the weekend. Gareth is a full time firefighter, crossfit enthusiast and just recently returned to SFU part-time to gain more knowledge in his health and fitness studies.

We wanted to find something that would get us out and away from our busy and sometimes stressful lives, while providing us quality time with one another. Health and fitness has come to define as individuals and as a couple. In order to get better, we felt the need to take on bigger challenges and what bigger than 16km, uphill.

We hope you enjoy our blog, get some useful information and hopefully a few laughs, perhaps at our expense.
Ready or not...  (Training begins)

Hoping it was not a sign of things to come, the day started out in a torrential downpour. When I left work it seemed the rain had stopped and hovered over the valley, but there was blue sky over my final destination: the base of Grouse Mountain. I went solo on this training exercise because Gareth is working night shift.

After a quick sign-in and filling out waivers (should I be worried? Oh gosh, I may not make it back? What kind of "training" is this!). We met Kristin from Kintec. Kristin corralled us in the main parking lot to guide us through some dynamic stretching and some calisthenics to get our bodies ready. We headed to the trail underneath the powerlines, this would be a 4km run to clean out the body's cobwebs. Apparently it was supposed to be a flat run... in North Van! Not the flat runs we are used to in Langley, that's for sure. It turned out to be a pretty simple incline and a good starting point for the training. There will be groups for Relay and Individual options. The trainers were also very mindful of individual goals and abilities of the group with appropriate scaling.

At the end there was a draw for t-shirts facilitated by representatives from Columbia Sportswear and a brief outline of the next training session was provided. Overall a great intro to the training and meeting our coaches for the next 10 weeks. In future blogs we will put more emphasis on the actual training that we are doing and some of the off day stuff that we are doing on our own.

Thanks for reading,
Michelle & Gareth

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