Friday, July 31, 2009

July 31, 2009 - beach day!

well, i was determined to get to the beach today, so i took a cab up there.. and had a lovely sit in the sun and several swims. the water is finally warm enough in the ocean to actually get in and stay in.

the knee felt good enough to give it a go home by 7 pm so off i went with my purse and beach towel in hand. it was still rather hot.. i made it all of 12.3k before slowing down and walking in the rest.. still a great work out and really glad that the knee is better..

i ran 361.2k in july, my 3rd highest total of the year, amazingly enough!


January 392.8 392.8
February 353.1 745.9
March 342.6 1087.5
April 226.1 1313.6
May 444.0 1757.6
June 309.9 2066.9
July 361.2 2428.1

wow, this blog is now one year old! hard to believe it's been a year since i set a crazy goal of running 31 marathons in 31 days!

August 1/09 will definitely be a goal-setting day for me. don't think it will be quite as ambitious, but something tells me that my best marathons of the year are yet to come!


July 30, 2009 - weekly update

tuesday was a travel day home. wednesday featured a light 6k run in the morning and a light 3k run in the afternoon. thursday featured a light 5k in the morning then a couple of speed drills later in the day, including a post-op personal best of 18.24 over 4k. i tweaked my right knee at some point; however, so i may be on the running shelf for a few days..


Thursday, July 30, 2009

World Outgames Swim - 1 swim, 2 medals, 2 sex categories!

well, this story continues to get more interesting.

in addition to being clarified as the 'transsexual' gold medal winner of the World Outgames 1500M Freestyle swim, it appears i will also get to keep the Silver Medal i was initially awarded, given the fact that the World Outgames swim meet also doubled as the IGLA championships, (International Gay and Lesbian Aquatics). IGLA does not appear to have a transsexual athlete policy, but apparently evaluated me on a case by case basis and decided to classify me as a female for the event. As far as they are concerned, i was a female and i won the silver medal fair and square!

so the record books will go down as follows:

Jennifer McCreath 1500M Freestyle swim 28.31

World Outgames Gold Medalist
IGLA female 2nd ranked 35-39 year old swimmer, Silver Medal

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

World Outgames Report - my attempt at journalism!

Here's my attempt at being a journalist.. Let me know what you think!

....History was made in Copenhagen, Denmark this week as Jennifer McCreath became the first formally sanctioned and recognized Transsexual in world history to run a marathon and to compete in an international swim meet, and she brought home 2 Gold Medals for Canada in the process, as she and 12 other transsexual athletes (according to Outgames sports coordinator Tommy Kristoffersen) were among the 6500 athletes in attendance this week to participate in a variety of sporting disciplines at the 2nd World Outgames.

Jennifer ran the marathon on July 26/09 in a time of 4.19.53, and came back the very next day to participate in her first ever swim meet, where she completed the 1500M Freestyle swim on July 27/09 in a time of 28.31.

Both performances were good enough for Gold Medal wins by virtue of her being the only transsexual person in each of these two specific events. Technically, the Outgames had a category for both transsexual men and transsexual women.

What makes this story more amazing is that just 38 days prior to this marathon, Jennifer was released from hospital after a 4 day stay with what remains a mysterious yet-to-be-diagnosed lung ailment that was initially thought to be a blood clot. This ailment continues to restrict her breathing.

After running an slow and easy, yet incredible 5 marathons within a 30 day period this spring, McCreath initially focused her training to peak at the Outgames; however, the ailment forced her to cut back substantially. Just one week prior to the marathon, McCreath was still unsure as to whether or not she would even make the trip to Denmark, much less complete the run.

Ultimately, a time of 4.19.53 only ranks #14 among Jennifer's 18 career marathons, but given her state of health, she feels extremely satisfied with the fact that she was even able to complete the run. In fact, she came in with a solid game plan and executed it almost perfectly. Her plan was to run 6 minute km for the duration of the marathon. Her unofficial quarter split times were 63, 65, 64 and 67.53 minutes.

The swim turned out to be Jennifer's biggest highlight of the trip. Even on extremely sore and tired legs and a weak immune system, Jennifer shaved off more than a minute from her personal best training run. Jennifer got out to a quick start in the first lap, then slowed down to a consistent pace of 1.54 per 100M. her 400M split was 7.09 and her 800M split was 14.49.

After her swim, Jennifer was initially met with confusion as the time keeper was unaware of the transsexual category and initially awarded Jennifer a Silver Medal for apparently being the 2nd fastest female in her category, (for timing purposes at the World Outgames, Jennifer was initially assigned to the female category in both sports; and due to time constraints, rather than swim alone, Jennifer swam along side of females during one of their heat). However, the Outgames Swim program coordinator, Anders Tinning, confirmed on July 29, that a mistake had been made and that McCreath was in fact entitled to a Gold Medal for being the only transsexual to complete the swim, and that likewise, she would be stripped of the female category Silver that had been assigned in error.

In 2008, not satisfied with the fact that the Outgames had initially adopted the International Olympic Committee's policy for transsexual athletes, a policy that requires transsexuals to compete in their old sex until they meet a series of strict criteria for their new sex, Jennifer contacted the Outgames and submitted a policy amendment proposal that would allow for the creation of a 3rd sex category for transsexual athletes who only met 'some' of the criteria. Jennifer advocated that that a 3rd category would allow transsexuals to compete without the indignity of being labeled by a sex that was not consistent with their gender identity, yet at the same time, would not allow them to compete inappropriately against males or females for whom may have been at a competitive disadvantage. The Outgames graciously accepted McCreath's policy proposal and announced this decision as part of their January 2009 newsletter which has been posted here:

Overall, Jennifer had an enjoyable trip to Denmark. The trip started off with a flight to Halifax (which initially made an unplanned stop in Moncton, NB due to weather issues in Halifax), where she had a stop-over long enough to meet her father for dinner. Then it was onto an overnight flight to Keflavik, Iceland, where she would then connect to a flight into Copenhagen. Jennifer stayed at the still-being-built Cab Inn Metro, a building being dubbed as Copenhagen's largest hotel.

Jennifer regretfully elected to skip Saturday's Opening Ceremonies in favour of catching up on her sleep and to ensure that she was well-rested for Sunday's marathon. In addition to the sports, Jennifer was invited to a special evening reception where she and about 300 other delegates were welcomed to the games by the Mayor of Copenhagen, the Minister of Culture, and the World Outgames Committee. There, Jennifer mingled with a variety of athletes from all over the world, including several other Canadians.

Through the course of her time in Copenhagen, Jennifer enjoyed the outdoors, although the weather remained rainy and cloudy for the entire duration of her stay. Jennifer did not have much time for site seeing, but did manage to have one lovely stroll through a park, where she saw a family of Swans swimming in the river, including 5 very cute babies!

Jennifer also kept her tradition alive by finding a local pizza place to have her carb-loading supper the night before the marathon. The clerk at the pizza place was surprised at Jennifer's trans-appearance and initially thought she was the rock star getting ready to perform at a nearby outdoor concert!

Jennifer's story became wide spread throughout the Outgames, especially at the marathon, and she was often asked to pose for photographs. Jennifer was also apparently featured as part of a local TV evening news report on the marathon, as she was apparently depicted making her infamous funny face for a camera as she ran by the 15K mark. Unfortunately, Jennifer did not get to see the footage air.

Jennifer was widely popular among other athletes, dignitaries, volunteers, and fans at the Outgames and was often asked to pose for photographs. She graciously accepted and enjoyed every chance she got to meet with other people and share her story.

In addition to swimming, Jennifer had the exciting thrill of watching many other water sports, including other swim events, diving, and water polo.

Jennifer had a long 21 hour travel home as she had to connect once again through Iceland, and this time, Toronto, before getting home to Newfoundland.

Although happy with her performances, Jennifer was disappointed that the World Outgames did not make more of an effort to hype the news of the creation of the 3rd sex category. The transsexuals were essentially invisible, as they were not formally recognized or announced anywhere. Furthermore, they were often assigned to the male or female sex category temporarily due to the fact that chip timing companies were not able to formally recognize a 3rd category. Jennifer was extremely disappointed that the Marathon medal ceremony was postponed until Tuesday night, after she had already planned to depart for home. Jennifer was also extremely upset with the confusion at the pool around classification and medal awards.

Ultimately, McCreath did not go to Denmark to win medals or to compete with others, she was there to help raise education and awareness towards transsexualism and the many unfair issues transsexuals face in society. From this stand point, she left Denmark feeling as though lots was left on the table and that many potential opportunities were not realized.

Up next for Jennifer will be a return to the harsh realities of life as she struggles to find employment after losing her Government policy job with the Newfoundland provincial government in March. The good news is that Jennifer just found out that she will be interviewed in the days ahead for another Government Policy job, so she plans to spend a great deal of time studying for that.

In addition to looking for work, Jennifer plans to spend some time doing more volunteer work as a running coach in her community.

As far as athletics go, this week has given Jennifer renewed confidence that she is still able to participate in endurance sports despite continuing to suffer from shortness of breath due to her lung issue. Jennifer plans to continue with a strong training program throughout the rest of the summer to ensure that she arrives at the starting line of the Newfoundland Provincial Marathon at the end of September in the best shape possible. She also has not ruled out the possibility of an August marathon, possibly in Quebec, and she has also not ruled out the possibility of once again running 2 marathons in 2 days in 2 countries, as she is contemplating an Akron Ohio - Newfoundland double header!

News of Jennifer's success quickly caught on in her hometown of St. John's where local newspaper the scope wrote the following update on their website:

Jennifer's marathon finish was also announced at the conclusion of St John's Newfoundland PRIDE parade, which took place just minutes after McCreath crossed the finish line, where the news was apparently met with applause by hundreds of people.

More information about Jennifer can be found at her website

or right here on this blog

Formal World Outgames results for Jennifer and others can be found at these websites:

July 28, 2009 - travel day

a brutally long travel day but i am safely home.. will post a more detailed report of the entire trip soon.

meanwhile, check out this site for some pics of the Marathon..

this guy actually ran the marathon while carrying a camera and he took several awesome pics along the way, including a cute one of me. he and his three friends were all members of the Denmark 100 Marathon club. all of them have ran over 170 marathons! amazing fun to run along side of these folks..


July 27, 2009 - strange swimming classification

well, i was quite sore from my marathon but managed to get myself to the pool in time for my swim. in fact, i was there 5 hours early! (strange how they told me to be at the pool for 9.30 am even though my swim didn't take place until 1.50 pm). oh well, it was great to be there and see the swimming opening ceremonies and even better to be in attendance to watch many of the other great athletes.. i got to watch 200m breast strokers, other 1500m freestylers, the 200m Individual Medley, and the 4 x 100M freestyle relay. i also got to watch some diving and waterpolo.

anyway, i was informed that i was the only transsexual swimmer so i essentially had the 3rd locker room all to myself.

after i got changed, i found a seat to watch the other swimmers and mingled with several other athletes. including many other canadians..

anyway, my time was finally called and i lined up and dove in for a swim. i was swimming along side of 13 female swimmers, since they didn't want to take up the extra time to have me swim alone. i got out to a bit of a fast start but slowed down after the first lap and managed to swim at a consistent pace throughout the race. i was going faster than i had intended but the breathing was ok, so i kept going. by 500M i had a stitch in my side, which made it tougher, but i pushed hard to get thru the swim. i was worried that they would cut me off for being too slow, as they did for some other poor soul. (sorry, but i think it is inexcusable to cut people off who pay their own way to come to denmark for something like this).

anyway, there was no time clock but i monitored my progress based on the general clock on the wall. i was thinking i was just ahead of 30 min pace but turned out i was ahead of 29. i ended up scoring a 28.31, shattering expectations and recording a personal best.. i was very pleased with the swim!

excitement turned into surprise and disappointment though as at no point during the entire day was there ever any mention of the infamous new transsexual category. when i went to the table at the end to claim my prize, i was shocked to learn that had been classified as a female and not a transsexual! amazingly, i was actually awarded a Silver medal for being the 2nd fastest female in my apparent age category! (2nd out of 5 swimmers). (they gave medals for age categories as well as overall placements).

bottom line, this totally defeated the purpose of me being there. i was not there to beat other females. in fact, i was that to make a statement that transsexuals midway thru transition should not be classified as male or female.

anyway, i followed up with the games coordinator and they indicated that a mistake had been made and that i would be welcome to turn my silver in for a gold that i was entitled too.

but ultimately, this is not about medals. this was supposed to be about transsexualism. i wanted to make a statement that transsexuals were a part of the world and that were were recognized for our unique status while in transition.

Tolerance is great, but acceptance and embracement is better. although the Games agreed to create the category, i sense it was not something they wanted to be very open about. The only mention of the policy was from their January 2009 newsletter, which featured a story about me.

not once through the games did i ever see any posting indicating that transsexual athletes were here. in addition to this mix up at the pool, i see i was classified as a female on the results section of the marathon too.

bottom line, i can't help but feel disappointed by this overall experience.. i will be following up with e-mails to the games organizers and other LGBT sports sanctioning bodies to let them know my disappointment..


Sunday, July 26, 2009

July 26, 2009 - history made!

wow, i just completed the marathon about an hour ago. it went very well. i chose a pace that i felt comfortable with and sustained it pretty much all the way thru.. 2.08.00 on the front 2.11.54 on the back, giving me a fairly respectable 4.19.54 goal was just to break 5 hours so i am really happy... got a gold medal for me efforts too, which was great. i am now the first formally recognized transsexual in world history to run a marathon..

looking forward to dinner with dignitaries tonight and then the swim tomorrow

Saturday, July 25, 2009

July 25, 2009 - World Outgames

well, i had a great sleep and i have registered for the games. not sure if i will go t othe opening ceremonies tonight or skip them in favour of an extra long sleep. marathon tomorrow, swim on monday, travel home tuesday...


Friday, July 24, 2009

July 23 - 24, 2009 - in transit

panel discussion was great.. article and pic in the paper!

in iceland now enroute to denmark after an all night flight.. yikes..


Thursday, July 23, 2009

July 22, 2009 - swim

2k in the pool today in 41 minutes. this was my best swim since May! really feeling good now about my level of understanding of where my lung issue is at.. i am looking forward to a great trip and a great run and swim...

i spoke at Memorial University here in Nfld here tonight as part of a Panel Discussion about LGBT health care in the province, as part of PRIDE week. i told a passionate story of struggling to find health care products and services, and having to pay out of pocket for most of the ones i could find. i politely challenged policy makers and politicians (none of who bothered to show up) to work together with the LGBT community to bring our policies, prodecures, protocols, and legislation up to date with what the rest of the world is doing..

The newspaper showed up and i expect a story and photo in the Telegram tomorrow!


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

PRIDE week - media coverage for Jennifer

although i did not speak at the Flag Raising Ceremony of St. John's PRIDE week on Monday July 20, 2009, i was a major focus of media attention.

local affiliates of Canada's top two TV stations were on hand and both featured me in their stories. both CBC and CTV told a story that focused on the fact that PRIDE is becoming 'more acceptable' in society as politicians apparently couldn't wait to be seen publicly supporting the event and that more and more LGBT people are becoming prominent members of society. I am apparently being portrayed as being one of thos prominent members. Although neither station interviewed me, both showed footage of me being in attendance. CTV showed a clip of me sitting in the audience and taking pictures while listening to the keynote speaker, while CBC showed me standing proud while holding a copy of the current edition of the Scope magazine, a mag that featured a cover shot and article about me and my running. The fact that the Scope, an arts and entertainment magazine, chose to feature me, an LGBT athlete on their cover, is in itself, a news story, and i think that is great!

i was also interviewed by St. John's most-listened to radio station. A clip of this interview aired on the morning news the next day. An archive of this clip can be found here:

i was also the focus of a newspaper article in St. John's most-read daily newspaper, the Telegram. A scan of the article can be found here:

..later on Monday night, there was an Opening Reception at St. John's City Hall. I was approached at the last-minute and asked to speak to the crowd, and i stole the show with a passionate yet humourous speech that recommended that people take advantage of pride week to network and learn from each other. Specifically, that members of the LGB community and their supports take the opportunity to become more familiar with the T community and get to know what issues we face. My speech was heard by over 100 people, including many promenent members of St. John's LGBT community, as well as the mayor and one of his city councillors, a local MP, and the regional representative from .

i look forward to speaking at tonight's panel discussion about my experience with the local health care system.


July 22, 2009 - beach weather!

spent some time at the beach today and had my first real swim in the ocean. 18.3k of running, including a 6k sprint to the beach from the dr office in just 36 min. nice that i can maintain a 6 minute k over a stretch like that. couldn't do that the other day..

doc didn't have all the tests back but said that so far, no abnormalities.. she is quite confident that this is not a blood clot and will have me sent to specialists for further assessment in the fall.. ahhh, gotta love waiting lists! so much for access to health care.. lol


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

July 20, 2009 - pride

i attended the flag raising ceremony today for pride week. i did not speak at this event but i was hounded by media. i appeared briefly on CBC news tonight as part of a story that indicated that LGBT pride is becoming more acceptable in mainstream society - this by nature of the fact that politicians can't wait to be seen supporting the event, and by the fact that "more LGBT are becoming prominent members of society" (this being narrated as a pic airs of me holding a copy of the scope!

the fact that the scope featured me is becoming a news item itself, and i think that is great.

i also spoke to the telegram, the daily newspaper here, as well as VOCM, the most-listened too radio station here..

this evening, i attended the pride kick off reception and was given a chance to address the crowd at the last minute. there, i spoke to politicians and LGBT members about the opportunity that pride week brings for us to all network and get to know each other.. i encouraged people to speak with me and learn my specific story and learn the difference between trans and gay. i also encouraged people to come out and hear me speak at the panel discussion on health care that will take place july 22.

i also ran 9k today, had a nice visit with a friend, and had a lovely swim and suntan at the pond..

visit the family doc tomorrow and hope to get some answers to my lung issue, and hope to get back on estrogen..


Sunday, July 19, 2009

July 19, 2009 - much better

well, i didn't particularly feel good this morning but i dragged my butt out of bed for a meeting with someone that is looking for a running coach. we had a great chat and i have decided to work with this person, giving me 2 students! i am really thinking seriously about looking into formal credentials so i can actually start a business or get a job in this field.. but for now, some volunteer work will get me some experience and some good references, i hope!

once again, i set out for an afternoon long run, but quit after 10k. frustrated, after a few hours break, i forced myself to get back out there for more, and it went much better. i did an 8k set, took a break, and went back out for 13 more! that's 31k run in 3.26.41, over a span of just under 7 hours. this was a much-needed confidence boost. seems if i am having a good day, i can run these long distances as long as i take things slow. i am feeling great and feel as if i could run more. but i won't.. lol

gonna try to have an early night and see what tomorrow will bring.. 3 really nice summery days in the weather forecast here, so i suspect there will be plenty of outdoor running, swimming, and sun tanning.. plus, pride week is here, which i will be involved with to a certain extent.. really looking forward to it.. then it's off to the airport for denmark on thursday!


July 18, 2009 - miserable run

well, not a great day. very sluggish and rough with my breathing. the day got off to a good start with a 1.6k swim in 31 minutes.. much better than the 38 minute swim yesterday..

then it was a rest for a few hours then a long run attempt that only lasted 9.1k before i found myself out of breath..

it is easy to panic but i just chalked it up to being a bad day.. try to get a better sleep tonight!


Saturday, July 18, 2009

July 17, 2009 - stats update

the paper version of the scope hit the streets today. it has been fun and freaky to see myself on display at news stands all over the city... gas stations, bars, record stores, grocery stores, etc..

lots of feedback coming in, mostly positive, which is great. i'm really glad to see that is is now considered 'cool' to have a transwoman in a bikini on the cover of an arts and culture magazine..

anyway, an interesting week of running so far as i try to balance a mixture of getting back into game shape for denmark, tapering for denmark, and learning to cope with this lung injury.

07/10/09 fri 19.5k
07/11/09 sat 21.1k
07/12/09 sun 8.0k
07/13/09 mon 22.5k
07/14/09 tues 7.6k
07/15/09 wed 17.2k
07/16/09 thurs OFF but 15k of walking
07/17/09 fri 21.2k

only one swim, and that was today. it was after most of the running so it wasn't the greatest, but it was my first swim in over 2 weeks so it was important to get back into the pool 1.5k in 38 minutes.. arms were sore from moving and rusty from inactivity.

will try to have a long run and a swim over the weekend.


Thursday, July 16, 2009

July 16, 2009 - scoping things out!

i'd like to acknowledge the scope for their beautiful cover shot, and article on me in today's paper.

...and to specifically thank them for including a link here to my blog. as many of you will be reading this site for the first time, i'd like to welcome you. and say thanks for dropping by.

my actual website is this is where you will see details of me, my running, my transition, my recent news, and links to other important sites..

this particular blogsite that you are at now was initially set up to report on a training challenge i created for myself in August 2008. back then i intended to run 31 unofficial marathons in 31 days as a health and fitness strategy. in the end, i didn't quite make it, but the legacy of this blog lives on as i use this site to report on my daily running, as well as my general news of the day..

being in the media is scary, but i feel it is important to take advantage of any opportunity to help provide education and awareness to society about transsexualism both for my benefit and for others.

anyway, thanks to the Scope for writing about me and my running story. it is fun to be in the media as a transsexual athlete and transsexual advocate, and not just simply for being transsexual.

as mentioned, i am a perfectionist, so for the record, to clarify, it was 3 marathons within 8 days and 5 marathons in 30 days.. not 5 in 9 days.

one other thought, although they cite the term Gender Identity Disorder, this term is generally regarded as politically incorrect and out of date. i am not a mentally insane person. i am a woman who's biological make up is not consistent with being a woman (i.e. i require physical intervention in the form of surgery and hormone replacement therapy to turn my body into a female, hence matching my identity as a woman).

one more update, i will be going to Denmark. this is now confirmed! my breathing issues have improved slightly since conducting that interview. i am disappointed that this marathon will not be me at my best, but ultimately, this is not about finishing times, this is about participation, and i have determined that i will be fit enough to finish this run in good health, so long as i take it slow and easy.

it was a thrill to see the World Outgames ( adopt and accept my policy development proposal for transsexual athletes, and it will be exciting to become the first person in world history to run a marathon (or participate in any other sport for that matter) in this category. i am also looking forward to participating in a swimming event, the very next day, in the same category.

finally, as mentioned, i will be speaking at a Panel Discussion on the state of LGBT health care matters in St. John's, as part of Pride week. this event occurs Wed July 22 at 7 pm. more information available here:

i will specifically be speaking about the following:

1) an overview of me and the transition process i am following
2) an overview of global best practices for trans health

3) a series of personal experiences that highlight:

- challenges with Nfld not having a formal trans health protocol
- challenges in finding willing medical professionals to work with me because of that
- burden of having to travel away from Nfld to get services
- burden of having to pay for most of my health care and travel costs out of pocket

4) illustrations as to how and why our health legislation is discriminatory and out of date and needs to be revisited.

5) my recommendations for next steps

Dr Joan Quinn, a health professional in St John's who is well known as an LGBT health expert will also be on the panel and will provide comments and reactions to my testimonial.

there will also be a discussion about the issue of gay men not being allowed to donate blood.

we will also hear from two other panelists, including a transsexual man. this is certain to be an interesting, informative, entertaining, and controversial event.. c'mon out if you have nothing else on your agenda wednesday evening!

since i've got your attention, i also want to introduce myself as a recently-laid-off public servant. i was a senior policy and planning analyst with the provincial government for most of the past 2 years. i am currently looking for work in an environment that will allow me to utilize and showcase my skills in project management, organizational and business development, managing change, policy development, and information management and protection. i also have experience delivering training and facilitating business negotiations. i also have experience as a health and fitness and running coach. if you know of anyone looking for a talented person to come work for them, please let me know!

and yes, please do check out my website...

thanks for reading and come back tomorrow!


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

July 13, & 14, 2009 - running update

July 13 was an aggressive day.. started with a gentle 4.5k in the morning, then a strong up hill 8k climb to the park, a 46 minute run. then after 3 hours of sun tanning, i sprinted downhill home.. 8k in 39.35. not too bad at all, considering i was carrying a towel and a bottle of gatorade..

July 14 was a light 5k in the morning and a light 2.6k at night..

breathing is improving each day, which is awesome.

going to have a major test over the next few days that will essentially determine whether or not Denmark is a go.


Monday, July 13, 2009

July 13, 2009 - Drag Queens vs Transsexuals - my concerns with a particular Pride week event's theme

This has nothing to do with running, but I wanted to express my thoughts on the fact that Drag Racers (men who dress up in women’s clothing and run/race around the block for the purpose of entertaining others) will be acting and speaking on behalf of transsexuals and their issues at this year’s st. john’s pride week (apparently they will speak about the global problem of violence against transsexuals).

I’m all for drag queens having fun, but I’m sorry, but I can‘t give my approval of the concept that these people should be representing me or speaking about my issues. i'd like to think that i or other transsexuals are quite capable of speaking on our own behalves, and that we would welcome the opportunity to do so in a more appropriate environment. Likewise, let's allow the drag racers and their fans to enjoy themselves in their time of fun and pride and not get bogged down with advocacy work of others who probably don't want them advocating on their behalf anyway.

there's a huge difference between drag queens and people like myself who are in the process of medically transitioning from one sex to another. the concept of drag racing for entertainment purposes is fine withe me; however, it does nothing to dispel the myth that transsexuals are mentally ill or incompetent; nor does it help gain societal understanding of the fact that transsexuals require medical transition for health reasons; nor does it dispel the fact that drag racers and transsexuals are two different things.

if anything, this pokes fun at people like me.. transitioning is not funny, it is a serious matter with serious problems.. i don't think this is funny at all and i certainly don't like being made fun of. the 'violence against transsexual' cause is a good one, but i would not suggest having drag racers or a drag racing event as the means to raise awareness of this. violence is a serious matter and drag racing does nothing to help transsexuals get taken seriously in society

there's a time for fun and a time for business. i totally understand that LGB's and cis (non-transsexual) Ts see pride as a time for fun and celebration, hence the name 'pride'... but for a transitioning person like myself, I see pride as a chance for societal education and awareness. Having drag racers speak about us or act on behalf of transsexuals will only add to the confusion that is out there.

It's bad enough that the T community has been lumped together with the LGBs, it's even worse that all representatives of the T community have been lumped together with each other.

For those of you who are not familiar, LGB is an umbrella of people who do not identify as being heterosexual. However, T has nothing to do with sexual orientation.

T is a group of people that encompasses a variety of gender/sex differentiation matters. This includes everything from people who cross dress for fun or for profit, to people like myself who have a serious medical issue that requires physical corrective action from health care professionals.

For every pride week event that I attend, I will not be there to celebrate, but will be there to tell my story and teach people the difference between sexual orientation and gender identity.

I generally hate to be critical of the Pride week or the Pride committee in anyway, as I feel the concept is excellent and I know the people involved have worked really hard, but I do feel that they are making a major error here with this decision and it warrants my speaking out.

in addition to having transsexual health care matters discussed at another pride week event, i have proposed to them that an alternate stage be arranged in a different time and at a different place for transsexuals to represent themselves and speak about violence and other matters that are close to their heart.

Meanwhile, I wish the drag racers and their fans all the best and hope that their pride week experience is a good one.


Sunday, July 12, 2009

July 12, 2009 - Mews 8K road race

first official race for me in a while. this one was very different than any other. i ran at the back of the pack with my protegee and friend who i have been training to run. in just 10 weeks, i have gotten her up to the point where she was able to run an 8k race in 64 minutes. this was a very exciting experience for her, and equally exciting for me as a coach to watch my pupil succeed and shatter her expectations, much like i did back in May 2007 when i ran my first road race..

it was great to have an easy run with no pressure on myself to perform. just to keep her positive and motivated thru a challenging run in the summer heat. my work as coach did not go unnoticed and i was praised by many of the greatest local running coach for doing such a great job!

the rest of the day included 4 hours on the beach and nearly 4 hours of walking home!

breathing is slightly better than last week so i am optimistic about the future. i am going to give it a strong test tues or wed, likely a 30+ km run, and this, combined with a family doc visit, will determine whether or not Copenhagen is a go.


Saturday, July 11, 2009

July 11, 2009 - more summer!

more backpack running today in the hot sun! up to 26 degrees here! 21.1k in total running and did much better than yesteday. although there was a brief moment where the heat and sun got to me and i had to stop and walk for a while.. had a great time at the beach and the pond today..

will be pacing my protegee tomorrow morning on her first ever road race, an 8k. i anticipate it will be a slow and gentle run but that we will finish in good health and with a smile, and that's what matters most!

recaping totals, last week was 55.3k; this week was 90.9k. both were abbreviated due to taking 3 days off to move.. that in itself was probably the most challenging 3 days of the year. even tougher on the body than all those spring marathons i did.

i am finally starting to see minor improvement in my lung capacity, although there's still something wrong and the doctors still can't figure it out..

up to 2183.7k on the year now! still uncertain about whether or not i will be deemed healthy enough to travel to denmark for a marathon on july 26. will probably make the official call at the end of next week. i am assuming i am going and will plan a fairly taperish couple of weeks in anticipation.


July 10, 2009 - long day

4.5k gentle run this morning around the pond went well. topsail beach was great. photo shoot was fun and the sun tanning and swimming in the ocean was something i have waited 9 long months for! 20k run back into the city turned into a 15k run and a 5k cab ride due to time constraints (had a 7 pm meeting to get to...) that run was very slow and tough as i was tired from a long day, the heat, and a 15 pound back pack. it was also a wake up call as to just how much tougher it is for me to run with a back pack than it was last year..

i am proud to announce that i have gotten re-involved with the st john's pride week planning committee. specifically, i am part of a sub commitee that is organizing a panel discussion that will take place July 22 in st. john's. this will be a panel discussion about LGBT health care issues. specifically, 4 members of the LGBT community will give testimonials about their experiences and concerns with the local public health care system, and then 4 health care providers will react to these testimonials with comments and suggestions.. in addition to organizing the event, i will also be one of the participants.. it seems like a win win situation for me as i will have a chance to network and show off my skills in planning and management, have a chance to lobby health care officials regarding some of my very serious concerns, and have a chance to do something fun, exciting, and valuable for society!


Friday, July 10, 2009

July 9, 2009 - serveral short runs

packed my back pack and ran all over town today to a series of meetings.. 15.1k today, all with a 15 pound back pack.. that's 50.3k in 3 days.. not too bad considering all things.. i find if i run slower, then the breathing is much better.. frustrating to have to slow down even more, but at least it seems tolerable..

i'm still not convinced that this is not a blood clot in my lung. i have all the symptoms of a clot recovery victim.. and until i have a concrete positive diagnosis of something else, i will assume it was a clot..

well, big day of running tomorrow.. an 8k light jog with my protegee in the morning, then a 20k late afternoon sprint from topsail beach to water street.. going to be doing a photo shoot at topsail beach for a local magazine who will be featuring me in an article for their Pride week edition, an article that focuses on me as Jennifer the Athlete (who just happens to be a transsexual).... should be fun to see what that article looks like!


Thursday, July 9, 2009

July 8, 2009 - long slow distance

well, it was a 5k warm up with a friend around noon today, then a rather serious attempt at a half marathon training run. with a move, i needed a new drivers licence with my updated address, so i made the 10k run out there and then the 10k run back. pushing it as hard as i could, i managed to get out there with a buzzer beater of exactly 60 minutes. the run was quite challenging towards the end as i had to slow down to take a few walk breaks.

after a fast 24 minute visit to get my new licence, i was back on the road running home.. a major hill climb slowed me down a few minutes at km 13, and general fatigue slowed me further as i hit the last few km. 66 minutes to get back home.. so basically, i gave it all i could for 20k and was practically exhausted for the rest of the day after that..

now, i was still very sore from my moving.. so it was not as if i came into this fresh.. but it was still not a very optimistic run. i am just 18 days away from the world outgames marathon and if things don't improve soon, i will be cancelling the run and the trip..


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

July 7, 2009 - finally back online!

move is complete 31 labour hours of lifting heavy stuff in and out of a truck and up and down stairs.. not fun.. knees are in rough shape and arms are a mess.. but i should be fine in a few days..

breathing still an issue. hoping family doc will have some answers soon..


Sunday, July 5, 2009

July 5, 2009 - move almost complete

been working hard all weekend. the move should be done by this evening.. then comes the challenge of cleaning up the old place and unpacking at the new place..

i'll be offline til wednesday as it is going to take a few days to get the technician into the new place to set up the cables..


Saturday, July 4, 2009

July 4, 2009 - more moving, and a pond swim!

wow, over 12 hours of moving today.. including some very challenging 200 pound cabinets going up several flights of stairs! i am amazed at how much work i was able to do today.. and the lung issue wasn't that bad today.. more of the same tomorrow..

i took a break in the late afternoon to have a wonderful swim in Kent's Pond. the weather was sunny and 16 at that time so it was very pleasant.. i love that pond so much, especially when i can swim in it.. the duckies don't know what to make of me!


Friday, July 3, 2009

July 3, 2009 - smooth run and a move!

got in a 7.4k run this morning to pick up my moving van. the run was equally as challenging as other recent runs due to the lung issue. i spent 7 hours lifting boxes and furnature up and down stairs and in and out of a truck. i manage to survive but it was not easy. the extra heavy items seemed to really take a lot out of me.. going to try to pace myself better tomorrow and sunday as i will want to put in 12-14 hours of moving each day.. yikes.


Thursday, July 2, 2009

July 2, 2009 - great day

pretty good job interview today... information management and privacy job in government, something right up my alley! let's hope i get this one.. my current streak in government job interviews since becoming Jennifer is 0-14.

a 2k 40 minute swim in the pool this afternoon. breathing still not great. have to work extra hard to swim what used to be a light work out.. then it was a sit in the sun and a swim in the pond, which was really nice...

then it was an evening 8k run in 46.40 again, something that used to be a light work out now seems to take it all out of me. this would be consistent with being a clot recovery victim.. other runners i know who had clots talk about the same recovery symptoms that i am having.. i still think it was a clot. i am inclined to believe the emergency room doctor over the hospital doctor..

anyway, breathing was very tough in the run and the heart rate was pounding.. ran the first 5k in 30.30. then picked it up a notch in the end with 5.00 and 3.45 minutes for the last 2 k.

the real test is going to come early next week when i will try to run a longer run at a very very slow pace... if i pass that test, then i will likely keep my date in denmark.


July 2, 2009 - mid year weigh in

let's recap:

Jan 01/07 238 pounds
Jan 01/08 178 pounds

Jan 01/09 188 pounds
Mar 01/09 195 pounds
June 01/09 187 pounds
July 01/09 187 pounds

considering all i went thru in the first half of 2009 with estrogen, orchi surgery recovery, to be down a pound is excellent progress. and given that i spent most of June out of action, to break even on the month is also an excellent stat.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

July 1, 2009 - cold canada day

10 degrees and cloudy out east today. but not too bad for running. i had three separate short runs today.. all which included breathing breaks. i ran 6 minute kms but essentially took a 3-10 minute break in between kms. very frustrating but at least i am getting some exercise..

blood tests tomorrow. i hope they reveal something. i am now 4 weeks with these symptoms and no sign of improvement.. oh well, at least it doesn't seem to be getting worse..

job interview tomorrow too. then a moving van on friday! big couple of days ahead!