Contrary to the apparent norm, I always gain a noticeable amount of weight in the summer. Unless I’m doing theatre between the months of May and September (during which full-time work and rehearsal schedules strip me gaunt), I tend to put on 5-10 pounds without fail. Whether it’s the constant beer and ice cream specifically or the culture of hedonism in general, it seems that even the most active Toronto summers render me soft and brown.

My summer diet

I try not to get too bent out of shape about my body, since I’m generally pretty petite, strong, and in good working order regardless of weight fluctuations, but it sucks to leave summer sundress season when none of my cooler weather clothing fits. I have to come up with fun incentives for myself to get back into the cooler weather exercise routine I rely upon for sanity and muscle mass come autumn. This year, I’m doing races.

On October 3rd, I will be combining charitable fundraising with a bit of a fitness challenge by participating in the Run for the Cure 5k race.  I wouldn’t have thought I would require training for such a reasonably short distance, but hubris aside, it took me an entire 36 minutes to run 5k at the gym yesterday. Though I’ve never been a serious runner, I used to be able to complete that distance in well under a half-hour. To see 36 minutes on the clock was a little bit of a blow.

To make the most of the event, I’m setting a couple of reasonable goals for myself. Specifically, I aim to  shave 10 minutes off my 36 minute 5k race time and raise at least $150 for breast cancer research. If you want to donate to my fundraising page, I’d be much obliged!  My grandmother was successfully operated for breast cancer in my third year of university and I lost my great aunt Rita to the disease last fall, so it’s a cause close to my heart.

I’m also doing the CN Tower Climb at the end of October with some of my colleagues. That should be interesting. I may enjoy exercising to some degree, but taking the stairs to the top of the western hemisphere’s tallest free-standing structure will surely suck.

What will NOT suck: the zucchini bread I’m about to bake with zukes from my garden. We can’t be healthy ALL the time, now can we?