Travels: Olympics and Europe Travel Budget

Here is my budget breakdown for my trip this past February. I’d say I’m an average traveller. I’m not extravagant, but I usually don’t stay in hostels.

Travel Budget for Sochi/London Trip: February 5-19
Budget Actual Difference
Flight  $         2,000.00  $                1,556.00  $               444.00
Accommodation (Sochi)  $            600.00  $                    648.00 -$                48.00
Accommodation (London)  $            600.00  $                    605.00 -$                   5.00
Olympic Event Tickets  $         1,000.00  $                    783.00  $               217.00
Other Transportation (Train, Taxi)  $            300.00  $                    428.97 -$              128.97
Food  $            300.00  $                    303.24 -$                   3.24
Spending (Attractions, Gifts)  $            200.00  $                    350.98 -$              150.98
Communication (Phone/Data)  $                      -  $                    198.28 -$              198.28
Tourist Visa  $                      -  $                    192.50 -$              192.50
 $         5,000.00  $                5,065.97 -$                65.97


Travels: Moscow, London, Paris, February 2014

I made quick visits to Moscow, London, and Paris while I was over in Europe for the Olympics. I had two 10 hour layovers in Moscow (going to and from Sochi). I spent 4 full days in London (and surrounding area) and then I hopped on the train for a quick day trip to Paris.

Check out the videos I made of my adventures:

Running Essentials: Sport Watch

I have a very old Garmin Forerunner (I’m the type of person who will use something until it’s no longer functional before I buy a new one).  Even if it’s a bit bulky compared to the newer models, I still love it and I rarely ever  run without it. My watch has MANY fancy functions that I don’t use :P  But these are the functions I do find helpful:

  • My distance (i.e GPS enabled, with an option for measuring in miles or km)
  • My time
  • My pace
  • Lap time alerts (it beeps when you’ve completed a mile or km with your time)
  • Calories burned (which properly calculates with a function to set a user profile with age, weight, etc.)

Click here to find a watch for you.

There are also many Apps available that you can use on your phone. I have RunKeeper on mine, but I don’t usually bring my phone with me when I run.

What kind of features do you like to have in a watch/App?

New Years Resolutions 2014: Check in #3

I’m really liking these monthly check-ins. It makes me accountable for my resolutions.

1. Chai Latte obsession.

I purchased my allotted one Chai Latte at the beginning of the month at my regular coffee shop by the office. I haven’t learned how to make them at home yet, BUT I FINALLY found them in K-Cups for my Keurig (at Bed Bath and Beyond). I had 2 of them. I don’t know if that’s cheating. But whatever, they’re delicious, and only 60 calories ;)

2. 2 blog entries per month.

I did 3 entries last month (plus my Resolution Check In). Yay me!

3. Food garden.

Winter won’t go away. We had one nice week of “spring-like” conditions then the snow came again. Boo… This is actually an excuse. Haha. I can still go out and buy things to get started. It just hasn’t been a priority. I have concluded that I will only grow a basil plant since I will be away for a few months during the summer. I will write this down on my “To Do” list… right now :P

4. Run a marathon.

I’ve registered for the 50th Anniversary of the Calgary Marathon on June 1st.

5. Learn to cook.

My initial resolution was to cook once a week. I find it difficult to do this because I think it’s hard to cook for one person. I did make a vegetable casserole. It was a recipe from the back of a bag of frozen veggies :)  That lasted me a long time (with a combo of meals out with friends and an M&M meat shop gift certificate I wanted to use up from my parents). I don’t like to make anything else when I still have food to eat. Does anyone have any tips on cooking for a household of 1?

Running Essentials: Multifunctional Headwear

This will be a series of blog posts about what I consider MY running essentials.

My first running essential is multi-functional headwear. This is just a tubular piece of technical fabric that you can wrap around your head in a variety of ways. I use it as a headband to cover my ears (they get really cold when I run) and to suck up my sweat. I also use it as a neck warmer on colder days. I like this better than fleece because it doesn’t collect nearly as much condensation when you’re breathing (Gross!).

I got my favourite one as a gift from Buff Headwear, but you can get a variety of them at many outdoor/running stores.