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Thursday, 30 September 2010

September Review

Can you believe it's October tomorrow? This year is going fast. We moved into our current house last October.. In some ways it feels like no time at all since we moved into this house and did it up, in others it feels like we've been here forever. It was a total mess when we got it! So incredibly dirty and the walls had about 7+ layers of wallpaper on! It took us two long weeks of starting work at 6/7am working through the day until 6 then going boxing on the night.. I can't believe we worked as hard as we did, I don't know if we could do it now!! If we knew the amount of work it would be to get it in a liveable state we may not have rented it haha!

Anyway, back on topic! I decided at the beginning of the month that I needed some more focussed goals and I think it's worked really well as I've been pretty much keepin up with stuff whilst being at work.
Goal is in bold,1 September recap in purple and October goals in green!

Run 3 times per week according to the Run Less Run Faster Plan
- 1 run missed during September.. I'll take that! I'm keeping this goal for October!
Run 60 miles - My shortened run yesterday left me a bit short for September but 2.8 miles off target isn't too bad, I ran 57.2. I've just noticed the most miles I've run in one month is just over 61 when I was training for my half so I'm really happy to be close to that distance again. Going to shoot for 62 next month if I don't race and 50 if I do - factoring in a taper as I want to get a good time!
Do 120 push-ups over the month -120 done, October goal 150.
Do 25 chin-ups over the month - 25 done, October goal 35.
Do 1 core workout a week - 1 core workout missed for the month.. Since I only had to do one a week that's a bit rubbish! October goal is to actually get one a week in!
Do 1 gymnastics workout a week - Done and dusted! October goal is to stick to one a week and to try doing handstands twice a week... Eeeep!
Cook more from scratch - Done. I will definately be keeping this aim for October. Also adding in the aim to try buying a larger variety of fruit and veg and not get stuck in a rut.

How do you keep motivated? Does writing down goals help you feel more focussed or do you like to just go on what you're feeling and work with that? I'm definately a list lover so writing down the goals really helps me!

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Catch up

How's everyone's week going? I can't believe it's Wednesday already, I feel like I've been constantly chasing a to-do list as long as my arm all week! I got a bit out of routine at the weekend and it throws me right off track!!

Here is my belated weekly report...

Run 3 times per week according to the Run Less Run Faster Plan Week 1-3 done! Week 4 2/3, not bad.. Even though I didn't do as much as planned I did some tough running - slightly hilly trail intervals anyone? Youch!
Run 60 miles - (12.5 for the week) 4.8 to go
Do 120 push-ups over the month -80 done so far (0 for the week) 40 left
Do 25 chin-ups over the month - 15 done so far (0 for the week) 10 left
Do 1 core workout a week - 1 done so far (0 for the week)
Do 1 gymnastics workout a week -3 done so far (1 for the week)
Cook more from scratch - This goals been going well... Just need to remember to buy more veg, for some reason I've been lacking a little in that department!

I did a quick workout on Sunday... It was hard, I felt so sick as I'd had two drinks the night before and somehow they managed to give me the hangover from hell.. What a lightweight!! I managed to do a few bits and bobs,
Push-ups - 40
Chin-ups - 7
Frog stand - 43s
Chair dips - 30
Core - 10 mins

I was so glad to be finished.. Alcohol really doesn't agree with me sometimes!

I think the only other thing I've fit in this week is a short 2 mile run. I did that this morning.. I actually had 8 miles planned but several things got in the way.. Mike took my headphones to uni so I decided to shorten it to 6 as I just couldn't face 8 without music. Then as I was leaving my house there were two men just stood across the street staring at me. They ended up freaking me out cause I couldn't figure out why they were staring at me. I decided to go on as planned but during the first mile I started thinking what if they were watching me leave and they were going to rob me and basically freaked myself out completely. I started thinking about listening to your instinct and my instinct was telling me they were up to no good.. I decided to finish that mile as fast as I could and then run a faster mile home after a short rest.. My lungs were struggling today, as were my legs.. Even though I got my first lie in today (6.35!!) I think I'm still a bit overtired.. For so many reasons I just wasn't feeling it today and it was such a hard run.

Mile 1 - 7.53
Mile 2 - 7.43

I got home and everything was absolutely fine. No sign of the scary men which left me feeling a bit silly but glad! I did 3 chin-ups while the bath was running which added on to Sunday's workout brings me up to target for the month targets.. I've still got a few miles to try and fit in tomorrow but I'm not sure if that will happen as we're going back boxing tomorrow!!!! Squeeeeeeeee!! So excited!! :D

I got an award a few days ago and I've been so slow acknowledging it! The Happy 101 award! There were a few guidelines;

1. Post who gave you the award:
Embrace Nutrition gave me the award. Thank-you! Awesome blog and I love the name! Go check it out :-)

2. Name ten things you like:
  1. Animals
  2. Spending time with Mike
  3. Running
  4. Boxing
  5. Blogging
  6. Reading blogs
  7. Cooking
  8. Christmas (86 days...)
  9. Playing clarinet
  10. Trashy telly!
3. Give this award to ten other people and notify them with a comment (in no particular order): I'm going to continue my trend of highlighting UK bloggers..
Seeking Healthy Balance
Runner Mum
Bambi's Eats
So Much Delicious
Little Running Wife
Hotchoc26
Running From, Running To
Rambling on about Running
Caroline's Blog
Fitness and Cake

Enjoy checking them out! And happy humpday, hopefully it won't take me so long to get back here next time!

Friday, 24 September 2010

Trail Intervals

Hello everyone! I tried something new this week... And I'm not sure if I like it, but it was definately good for me! I had 10 400s planned so Mike suggested we go to a dirt track he had run on before, he told me it would be tough! We decided to bike down instead of jog as a warm up as we were a bit short of time.

The track turned out to be slightly uphill and quite bumpy! It was definately a challenge.. The uphill intervals were sickening.. I was literally dreading them each time. I considered quitting at 8 repeats so many times! I did get to 10 though, I'm not entirely sure how... I don't have my exact splits as I can't get them off the garmin at the moment, I'll try and get them later though. My pace for the repeats was supposed to be 1.50, my uphill interval times ranged from 1.48-1.53 and my downhill ones were 1.29-1.32. It said I was running at a 5.58 average pace for one of those. I couldn't believe that!

I skipped my tempo run planned for today as my calves were really sore still, not sure if it was running on the uneven land? Plus, honestly I might have skipped it anyway as Mike's sister has come to visit and she's only here 'til Sunday so we'll be spending some time with her before she goes back home. Speaking of which I'm going to keep this short and sweet!

Hope everyone has a brilliant weekend!

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Twice Baked Potatoes

Thanks for all the responses to my last post! I'm so glad you guys don't think I'm grumpy haha :-) Hope everyone's having a good day. I've had a good productive morning before my late shift today, I'm glad to be back on earlys and lates rather than middle of the day. I just seem to fit so much more in and then I'm not a major stress head!

Tia's impression of me being a stress head (maybe??)


Mike and I did some gymnastics stuff this morning, we didn't do a finisher as both of our legs are shot from yesterdays 10 miles. Poor Mike, he hates running those sort of distances but I try to pursuade him to come, it's good to have a running buddy plus it means we get more time together, it's a win win, for me at least! For the workout I did

Headstands (tried mainly to be free from the wall)
L-sit progressions
Back lever progressions
Frog stands

I didn't do any handstands today, still trying to get used to doing the headstands, it feels so wierd when all the blood rushes to your head. Mike assures me this will stop happening soon but he's been saying that a while now...

Roxie's not so sure...

It's a hard life being a dog!

When I'm doing the late shift I try to have a more filling lunch as I don't have lots of time to eat at work and I'm quite a slow eater. Today I made a recipe my gran taught me. Twice baked potatoes. They're a real yummy treat and definately very filling!

Start off by scooping the middles out,

Mash the middles with some S&P and milk

Add some grated mature cheddar

Fill the skins back up and top with a little bit more cheese

Tada!

Enjoy with salad and a salad cream dip!
I'm pretty sure that will hold me through 'til tea time! Speaking of tea I'd best get off and make myself some else I'll be pretty hungry tonight at work! Hope everyone's had a good day :-)

Monday, 20 September 2010

10 Miles Before 10am

I did something I've never done before, a long distance run before breakfast. It was hard going for 10 miles on a banana haha I definately prefer going mid morning but somedays there isn't time so I now know it's possible to go before! It was a tough run though, my legs felt horrible the whole time! Thank-you Sundays workout! It's a hilly route and it was windy again, all of those combined made me miss my target time of 8.47 by a longshot but I'm not too worried. I'd been having a good streak, it was bound to come to an end sooner or later!

10 miles in 1:33:45 average pace 9.23

Mile 1 - 9.16
Mile 2 - 10.04
Mile 3 - 9.36
Mile 4 - 9.19
Mile 5 - 9.18
Mile 6 - 10.01
Mile 7 - 9.19
Mile 8 - 9.16
Mile 9 - 9.09
Mile 10 - 8.27

Spot the hilliest miles!!

I've told Mike I think he jinxes me since I always run slower with him.. I think he just picks hard hilly routes though really and every run I've done with him recently has been really windy.. Not sure I can blame that one on him though ;-)

I was so glad to get home at the end of this run, it's odd how different runs can feel, sometimes I feel like I could go forever and sometimes every mile is a struggle. I really considered cutting it short to 8 miles but I made myself run the 5 miles out so if I had wimped out I would have had 2 miles to walk at the end of the run.. Not an attractive prospect when you can't wait to get home for a nice big glass of water and hot bath.. No ice baths for me, I'm far too wimpy with cold things!!

I had a major grump on this afternoon after the run. We'd done it early as I was at a meeting early in the afternoon with the charity I mentor for. So I'd rushed around like mad trying to get everything I needed to do in the morning done and I got to the place to find it had been cancelled. No-one else had shown up so it seemed to be just me who had not been phoned about it. I was really fuming, it takes me an hour to get there and that's all I was going for and I've lost my weekend off work to get today off to go to this meeting and nobody bothered to tell me it had been cancelled. So frustrating.

I'll try not to get too grumpy again now! Sometimes I think I might have one of the grumpiest blogs out there 'cause if I'm usually complaining about missing my times on a run!

Hope everyone else has had a grump free Monday!

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Warrior Workout!

I just want to start this post by saying a big thankyou to everyone who commented on my last post. I got some really amazing advice and if you're struggling with balancing your homelife with your fitness I suggest you go have a read here!

Here's a Roxie pic to say thanks!

September Goals - Week 3
Run 3 times per week according to the Run Less Run Faster Plan Week 1-3 done! Week 3 3/3
Run 60 miles - (16 for the week) 17.3 to go
Do 120 push-ups over the month -80 done so far (0 for the week) 40 left
Do 25 chin-ups over the month - 15 done so far (0 for the week) 10 left
Do 1 core workout a week - 1 done so far (0 for the week)
Do 1 gymnastics workout a week -2 done so far (0 for the week) 2 in total
Cook more from scratch - pizza - see below, greek saladdy type thing, stuffing balls with apple and sunflower seed coating to go with a sunday dinner... Definately going better, back to cooking like I used to!

I was going to do my 10 miler today, and after watching the Great North Run I was raring to go, but Mike said he would run with me if I waited until tomorrow.. So run postponed! We did a warrior workout based on Ross Training type workouts instead.. I wanted to do gymnastics but he reminded me he'd be running with me tomorrow so I went with it! I can't remember the last time I sweated so much! I'd planned to do 8 rounds and Mike was going to do 10 as his exercises were slightly easier than mine (based on what equipment we have, we didn't have enough to both do exactly the same). I decided halfway through that if Mike finished before me I would stick at 8 but if he finished after me I would go to 10... plus, 10 is a nicer number... He put his dumbbells down literally a second after I finished my 8th round, but he still finished after me so 10 it was!

10 Burpees
15 Band slams (I hate these!)
10 Dumbbell wood choppers

x 10 rounds in 16.41

So difficult.. These workouts always look so ok on paper... They don't feel it haha - if you want to get a good sweat on and only have 20 minutes these workouts are perfect!

Those of you who follow me on twitter may know I had pizza for tea on Friday, I've only just got round to blogging it! It was yummy, it had been ages since we made pizza for tea. We made a wholemeal base, I added powdered garlic, herbs and S&P.

Pizza base, pre cooking

Add sauce, I used a mixture of tomato puree, hummous and chopped tomatoes
Topping station!

Just before cooking
Yummy!

Mike's

And, some leftover dough with hummous and a few veggies on for Roxie and Tia... Well, it was just for Roxie but Tia loved it so Roxie had to share. Our pets will eat anything! I know what I'm doing with leftover dough in future.
Happy Sunday!

Friday, 17 September 2010

Balance

I'm just wondering, how does everyone cope fitting in work, relationships, exercise, hobbies, housework etc into their life. I just never seem to have the hours in the day to do everything I want to do. Lately I feel like Mike is getting fed up at me going running after work as we don't spend as much time together as we would both like. I don't want to let my fitness slip like I did last time I started work but I have no idea how to cram everything into my day. How do you guys cope? Do your partners get fed up when you go for a run instead of spending time with them? I totally understand where he's coming from he's not started uni yet so at the moment he's at home all day by himself so when I come home for 5 minutes get changed and leave again I can see how it's annoying but... I don't want to give anything up!

The time management tips I've been using so far are
  • Make lists with short daily tasks
  • Try and be realistic about what you can acheive
  • Be an opportunist - if you have a bit more time one day than you expected, get ahead of your list/diary
Yeah.. that list is a lot more dire than I thought it was going to be when I started writing it haha Can you add anymore for me?

Well the thoughts behind this post came about today when I finished work early and decided to get my long run out of the way a day early. That means hopefully I can do next weeks long run on Sunday as I have a pretty hectic week coming up. I think Mike was a bit miffed that I got a few hours off work and went running instead of chilling out at home..

I had another great run though! Whoever I borrowed these lungs from ain't getting them back!

8 miles in 1.08.59 average pace 8.38 (planned pace 8.47, score!)

Mile 1 - 8.58
Mile 2 - 8.42
Mile 3 - 8.55
Mile 4 - 8.54
Mile 5 - 8.38
Mile 6 - 8.31
Mile 7 - 8.30
Mile 8 - 7.53

I was really feeling the run again! If things stay like this I'll be one happy bunny! I could have gone faster but I don't want to burn out and lose this new found speed and ease, I hope it sticks around for Sunday when I can toddle off on my 10 miler having been inspired by the Great North Run, the more I read about it on people's blogs the more I wish I was running it! Good luck to everyone who's running it. Big shout out to Laura who will be running her first half marathon!

Before I go, I've got another question today - pretty much blog unrelated! I've been asked to bring my clarinet into work next week on Friday. The residents all have severe dementia and are between 60 and 90 so they will mainly remember pieces from their youth... I'd like suggestions of pieces to have a go at learning before Friday! So far I'm thinking of old musicals and pieces like Summertime and Send in the Clowns, maybe some war tunes... Any suggestions are welcome! I'm really nervous it's not music I'm used to playing! And I don't really have the money at the moment to go buy sheet music so I'll have to learn it all by ear... That should be ok so long as I can remember it on the day haha!

Thursday, 16 September 2010

A Confidence Boosting Run

I had one of those runs today which totally reminded me why I love running! I think I'd borrowed someone elses lungs and legs! It just felt so effortless which was so good cause most of my runs lately have felt really hard!

It was my tempo run today, I skipped the warm up and cool down. I know I shouldn't have but I didn't want to be out ages... I tried my new headphones out today.. It was so good to run with music again but they are getting returned. They are awful, they don't fit at all and fell out so many times in the first mile. In the end I had them tucked under my glasses and my headband to keep them in place - they're sports headphones too.. Maybe my time can be attributed to the fact I was so mad at my headphones for most of the run, the first mile was spent mainly swearing under my breath and making a woman on a bike giggle... I must have looked a bit crackers.. oops!

5 miles in 52.00 average pace 8.24 (intended 8.32 - planned times in brackets)

Mile 1 - 8.42 (8.42)
Mile 2 - 8.32 (8.42)
Mile 3 - 8.30(8.32)
Mile 4 - 8.30 (8.22)
Mile 5 - 7.47 (8.22)

Mile 1, right on the button, I felt really good except for the headphones... Mile 2, not paying much attention to the watch, ended up 8.32, ok I'll run 3 at 8.32 and one at 8.22 and that will even out to 8.32, sometimes I feel like a running calculator.. Miles 3 and 4 I didn't even feel breathless! I had to make a consious effort not to speed off as I want to save my legs for my long run. Mile 5 - looked down at the watch about halfway through to see 7.58, erm how did that happen? Ok I'm going with it.. I expected it would probably slow a bit but with about a quarter mile left to go I thought I might as well speed up a bit. I finished with a big grin on my face and walked through the front door of my house to my tea on the table hehe, Mike has good timing!

This is the fastest I've ever run 5 miles :-) I love the plan I'm following, even though sometimes it feels too hard I'm definately improving! I'm definately getting better at not starting too fast too, that has been a real problem of mine in the past, I start so enthusiastically but burn out, not anymore, hopefully!

By the way, I've totally forgotten to photograph my food this week... I've made some lovely lunches but it would appear I'm too half asleep in the morning to photograph them before work! Maybe next week.. It's a good thing I'm not a proper food blogger haha

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Resistance Training (aka intervals in the wind...)

Hope everyone's having a good week! Mine has started off well, been training at work so hours are a bit odd - 9.30-4.30. Not bad hours at all but not as good as the early or late shifts.. I don't like something that cuts right accross the middle of the day... I'm working less hours but I'm getting less done... how does that work?

I did something I very rarely do today. That was get up early to go running, before breakfast, and before coffee! A very rare occurence! I'd planned intervals today, Mike very reluctantly came along. He was trying to pursuade me to skip them but I wasn't going to budge. I feel like I lost so much fitness when I struggled to fit everything in when I was working at H&B. I'm determined not to let that happen again, even if it does mean occaisonally going without my morning coffee!

It was not a pleasant run today. I probably should have warmed up more, my legs felt like dead weights. We also had loads of out and backs to do which slowed me down more than I thought it would. The worst thing was the wind though. We're apparently going to have gale force winds by the weekend. Well that throws a spanner in my running works! Here's to hoping the weather man got it wrong!

Here's my times, the time I was supposed to run it in is in brackets so you can see how much I struggled this morning! Still, I was putting in the effort so even though it wasn't quite right it will have done me some good.. I have to remind myself to think of the positives when I don't hit a time goal!

1600m - 7.46 (7.44)
1200m - 6.12 (5.42)
800m - 4.00 (3.44)
400m - 1.52 (1.50)

I'm going to have to keep this short 'n' sweet. I hope to be able to catch up on all my blogs asap but tomorrow I'm going to be going non stop too as I have a trustee meeting til about 8

Sunday, 12 September 2010

September Goals Week Two

Hope everyone's had a good weekend. I've had a pretty relaxing day, got some cleaning done, I unfortunately managed to dye a load of washing blue after accidentally washing some new jeans with other stuff, not all darks. I've ruined my half marathon t-shirt... Mike said I could have his but I'm totally gutted! I emailed the race directors to see if they had any left, I want one to keep since it was such a special day! I've never done that before!!

We also went to my mum and dad's for a BBQ, my dad's favourite thing to eat is BBQ, we do them as often as possible over summer, starting as early as possible haha the vaguest hint of sun and my dad has the BBQ out... We got a bit rained off today so it might have been the last for the year!


I'm on track so far for my September goals, pretty much... Breaking longer term goals down really helps I think.

September Goals - Week 2

Run 3 times per week according to the Run Less Run Faster Plan Week 1 and 2 done!
Run 60 miles - (18 for the week) 33.3 to go
Do 120 push-ups over the month -80 done so far (40 for the week) 40 left
Do 25 chin-ups over the month - 15 done so far (7 for the week) 10 left
Do 1 core workout a week - done so far 1
Do 1 gymnastics workout a week -2 done so far (0 for the week - I always miss something out! Dammit!) 2 in total
Cook more from scratch - This has been going well, I'm going to start posting more of my cooking!

Speaking of cooking, Hotchoc26 (sorry I don't know your name!) requested the recipe for my pastabake.. I don't know specific amounts so this will be a bit sketchy but here goes! It's a total lazy girl/clean out the freezer dish!

Cook enough for about four portions of wholemeal pasta, I used penne. In a seperate pan fry off some quartered mushrooms. While they're cooking away switch on the oven to heat up and start making the sauce. The sauce was two tins of tomatoes, garlic powder, porcini mushroom powder, s&p, handful of fresh basil and about a tablespoon of tomato puree. After the pasta and mushrooms were cooked I stirred the sauce through and added a packet of defrosted quorn burgers, I would normally use quorn mince or quorn meatballs but I was all out. Top it with a layer of grated mature cheddar and bake in the oven for about 15-20minutes until the top is lovely browned! Serves 4-6

I was going to post a picture of my lunch for tomorrow. This was until I was halfway through cooking it and realised I had run out of not one, but two component ingredients... Lunch fail! Oh well, I'll be rethinking that one!

Saturday, 11 September 2010

The Run of Every Weather

Hope everyone's enjoying the weekend! I packed more than enough food yesterday.. I think I must have had eyes bigger than my belly when packing my pasta portion cause I only managed to eat half. I think partly I only managed half cause I was a teeny bit upset.. One of the residents clocked me right on the nose and reduced me to tears. How embarrassing. The boxer who can't be hit haha, I've been hit much harder but it totally caught me off guard. I hope I react better next time it happens! She did get me hard though it still hurts today lol!

I had a 10 mile long tempo run planned for today. Even though my headphones did eventually arrive just before I was about to head out for my run I'd spent the best part of the morning trying to pursuade Mike to come with me. He finally gave in and said he'd run with me on the condition that we go to the river trail. I said ok and waved goodbye to my pace goals, which I'd ever so carefully plotted out here and scrawled on my hand..

10 mile plan: Goal pace 8.47!!!!!
Miles 1-3 9.17
Mile 4 - 8.57
Mile 5-6 - 8.47
Mile 7 8.37
Miles 8-10 8.17

They will have to wait for my next 10 miler, which I think is scheduled fairly soon and even then I'm not sure this pace is remotely possible.. I knew I would not hit these goals as the trail route is hilly and rough terrain. We ran on concrete, gravel, mud and grass during todays run. Miles 1-2 were on concrete, miles 3-8 were a mix of gravel, mud and grass, mainly gravel and miles 9-10 back on concrete.

We also had the wierdest, and most annoying weather. Strong wind was going against us constantly for the first 5 miles. It's an out and back run almost all in the same direction. Mike kept saying don't worry the wind will help you on the way home... Almost exactly as we finished mile 5 and turned around the wind completely disappeared. It was totally still... wth?? I guess at least it wasn't that magical wind that somehow seems to be against you regardless of direction.. That would have made me so sad!

We also had a random rainstorm which lasted about half a mile but mostly it was hot sunshine.. After seeing AnneMarie's post the other day I decided to forget feeling insecure and stripped down to my sports bra (it's quite big and looks like a crop top)... As I did I swear some prissy bitch laughed at me. Instead of feeling fat and putting it back on I thought I'd like to see her run 10 miles, or go one round with me in the ring... her choice! I would put money on her not surviving either ;-)

The particular route we ran I have only run once before and had my worst run ever - recapped here! I went at it with a much better attitude today and even though I totally missed my time I feel ok, I don't think I could have done much better and the wind and hills will make me stronger!

10 miles in 1.32.18 = 9.14 pace

Mile 1 - 9.13
Mile 2 - 9.54 (hill+wind)
Mile 3 - 9.02
Mile 4 - 9.03
Mile 5 - 9.28
Mile 6 - 9.01
Mile 7 - 9.05
Mile 8 - 10.12 (killer steps - they made me cry last time haha)
Mile 9 - 8.48
Mile 10 - 8.34

I'm glad I got a negative split and finished strong. That was my main goal of the run, if only the wind had stuck around and helped me out it might have been stronger haha..

I'm sure most of you have probably seen the OIAJ (oats in a jar) creations floating around the blog world.. I finally got round to trying it, I had mine in a peanut butter jar with some set honey... It's really nice, Mike quickly got in on the action and I had to make some more (I'd been saving two jars).. I'll definately be making this again!



Yum! - What's your favourite OIAJ creation?

Friday, 10 September 2010

Intervals and Pack-Ups

Hello everyone! It's been a while since my last post, my time never seems to last as long as I want it too haha this week has flown by!

I've just about fitted in my running, I did my intervals yesterday. I only just had time after spending two hours leisurly wandering around food shops with Mike and his mum. I love having the extra morning or afternoon time while still doing a full day, it seems like I have a lot more time than if I was working a 9-5 job... Anyway after losing track of time (thinking I had more than I did again) I got home and got changed into my running gear in lightening speed and headed out for my intervals.

The workout was supposed to be 10-20 minute warm up, which ended up more like a 3 minute warm up as I was really pushed for time... Better than nothing? Hopefully! Then it was four 1000m intervals in 4.42, you can see the ones with the slight incline again, you can barely see it but it definately makes it harder! I did a 400m RI in between each interval and then jogged home to a quick lunch and bath before work.

Warm up .25
1000m - 4.40
1000m - 4.37
1000m - 4.46
1000m - 4.37
Cool down .5

4 miles in total

I picked up a few bits and bobs when we were out shopping yesterday for my packed lunches. I'm still not taking enough food, I've ended up hungry every shift, I'm going to have to start being more creative! I've made a big pasta bake to take today and there will be more than enough for Mike's tea and several more meals too. It ended up a bit of a mish-mash, I started cooking the pasta then realised we were out of chopped tomatoes - store cupboard essential, how did this happen?! So I popped out the the local shop to get some, after making the sauce I realised we were also out of quorn mince and quorn meatballs, our usual pasta bake protein sources. So we have wholemeal pasta bake with chopped up quorn burgers haha hope it tastes ok!

Pasta bake
The rest of my tea

Fresh roasted hazelnuts
Lets see how this carries me over.. surely I can't end up hungry on this lot! I've got slow releasing carbs in the wholemeal pasta, lots of protein in the quorn, yoghurt and nuts, a banana for some fruit and a cheeky treat size chocolate bar, just because! I'll find out tonight! Oh, I'll be taking my own coffee too, just been informed I've been drinking decaf!! No wonder it hasn't been waking me up haha! Hope you all have a good Friday!

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Sleepy, Hungry but Awesome 4 Miles

I've had my first two days at work, I'm really loving it so far, there's some real characters! I'm going to keep this post pretty short as I'm almost asleep - up since 5.30 eeeesh - and that left me rushing... 5.15 wakeup call tomorrow! I could get up later but that would mean missing Roxie's walk and I don't want to do that!

I didn't do my planned 10 miles yesterday. I didn't realise I couldn't leave the work premises on my break and as I was planning to go home for lunch didn't eat any :-( There wasn't anything there I would have eaten. I have never been happier to find a nakd bar lurking in the depths of my bag, even my least favourite flavour nakd bar hehe but it wasn't enough fuel for 10 miles.

I planned my food a bit better today but I still didn't take enough, guess I'll figure it out soon enough! I did my tempo run when I got home today. I decided to cut the warm up and cool down miles as I was really hungry before I set out and just wanted to get it done so I could get home and have my tea! Maybe that's why I ran so fast!

I was scheduled to do 4 miles at short tempo pace which is 8.17, here are my splits

Mile 1 - 8.26
Mile 2 - 8.10
Mile 3 - 8.21
Mile 4 - 7.51

Overall 4 miles in 32.48 average pace 8.12 yipeeeee that's almost a minute off my previous fastest 4 mile time!

Well I'm going to get off and read a few more blogs before bed, which I think will be calling my name reeeally soon haha.. Hope everyone's had a good day :-)

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Bodyweight Strength, Animals and BBQ'd Fruit..

Hope everyone's had a good sunday. I had a fairly lazy day after I'd done some training. We spent a while playing with Roxie in the garden I took lots of pics and when I was uploading them I found these pictures from the other day. I made some BBQ pulled jackfruit, it was the first time I'd had jackfruit and I'm not 100% sure of it... I really wanted it to be like this sandwhich I had in a Disney water park when I was a child and it just wasn't the same.. I guess I had too high expectations! It was a pretty nice healthy recipe though, find it here.

Ingredients and slow cooker

Jackfruit goes from this...

...+ BBQ sauce to this...
...to this!
nom!


I did some work on getting my push-up and pull-up numbers up today. Trying to get that strength back before it disappears completely! I did a quick circuit which would have been easy a few months ago but today was really tough!

1 chin-up
5 push-ups
30s plank

x 6

I confess, I had planned on 10 rounds but my shoulders were so sore! I did do a little boxing after. Five 1 minute rounds, enough to work up a good sweat!

Here's some animal pics I snapped earlier, drastically cut for the blog as I do get snap happy! I love pictures of the pets :-)

Tia, unimpressed to be modelling whilst doing more important activities..

Scooby

Roxie


This our neighbours dog Blue, she's a Weimaraner crossed with a Rhodesian Ridgeback. She is absolutely beautiful and knows exactly where to stick her nose to get the odd dog treat and stroke...

Love them all! I wish Blue could come and play in our garden too!

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Weekly Totals

September Goals - Week 1
Run 3 times per week according to the Run Less Run Faster Plan 3/3, done!
Run 60 miles - done so far 8.7 (17.7 weekly 9 done in August) 51.3 to go
Do 120 push-ups over the month - done so far 10
Do 25 chin-ups over the month - done so far 2
Do 1 core workout a week - done so far - none! Been too sore from gymnastics, at least that is working my core.. Still, not the best start ever..
Do 1 gymnastics workout a week - done so far 2
Sugar-less September - Eat less sugar in September, I don't eat loads but I've been slacking a bit in the cooking department which has probably added sugar to my diet. Making more of my own meals and desserts would definately be a good idea and this could be the kick up the bum I need to do it! - Well, I decided to drop this, kind of, the sugar counting thing. It wasn't working in a positive way for me, I can easily get too obsessive about stuff and I realised I really don't eat that much actual sugar in my diet. I have decided to replace it with a September resolution to simply cook more from scratch. I feel I've been a bit lazy in the kitchen lately.

After Maria answered my running questions she wrote some of her own, of course I wanted to answer them :-)

1- Why did you start running?

I started running to better my stamina for boxing.. Strangely, I ended up loving it! I hated running during school as a lot of you probably already know - I think I've mentioned it a few times.

2- Where is your favourite place to run?

Over the humber bridge or on the track. I like trails too, I'm looking forward to attempting the Good Friday hill race again this year. It was my first ever race last year, 7 miles of steep hills, when Mike and I told the organisers it was our first race they looked at us like we were insane and asked if we were sure about doing it! We were both so glad we did even though it was horrendous, we agreed it couldn't get much harder! It was really good training as there aren't many steep hills round here.

3- What would your ultimate running goal be?

I have lots. I guess my main one at the moment is to run a sub 2hr half marathon. I wanted to do that this year and my training was going pretty well but I flopped on race day and missed it by a long shot. I'm going to try again next year but I'm beginning to wonder if that reaching that goal so soon was a bit unrealistic.

4- Have you ever sustained any running related injuries?

I've had shin splints a couple of times and I get sore knees but nothing too awful.. Doesn't mean I didn't grump about it majorly at the time though!

5-What is your must-have piece of running kit?

I love running with a garmin, it's made me really competetive with myself and I love looking at all the stats after a run and knowing my pace. I sometimes like to try and ignore it though, it can make me a bit obsessive with pace and not listen to my body as much as I should be.

6- What other sports/ exercise do you do alongside running?

Boxing and basic gymnastics for strength.

Hope everyone's enjoying the weekend, and hope all my American readers are enjoying their long weekend. What's everyone's plans for tomorrow? I'm debating doing my long run but Mike thinks I should leave it 'til Monday... I'm undecided as I might start work on Monday so it would be easier to fit it in tomorrow but my legs might appreciate me waiting... Hmm I don't know! Guess I'll see how they feel tomorrow.

Friday, 3 September 2010

Friday Intervals

I don't normally run two days in a row, but I want a rest day tomorrow so I can hopefully get my long run done on Sunday. I found out I can finally start work and go in to get my shifts on Monday, I might even start on Monday I'm not sure. So I want my long run done and dusted before then! I wouldn't have run today if my legs felt bad but they felt surprisingly fresh.

My planned workout for today was intervals. 4 x 1200m (5.42) with 400m recovery. As we're trying to save money we have cut out the track from our weekly budget.. This makes me sad, I love running at the track but we're saving money for something important and it will be worth it... All will be revealed soon!

Warm up 1 mile 10.12
1200m - 5.34
1200m - 5.44
1200m - 5.36
1200m - 5.43
Cool down 0.6 miles at about 11min/mile pace.. so tired!!!
Total milage 5.6

Intervals on the road instead of the track.
Pros

*Cheaper - it costs almost a tenner for Mike and I to use the local track, it's cheaper to go swimming!!
*For part of the time you get to look like a super speedy road runner...
*Can go to areas where you will be racing - i.e. hills/bridge
*Following on from that, it gives slight changes which would not be present on a track, in this case I was running my intervals up a street and the next down a street. There is a slight hill which isn't really noticeable but it slowed down intervals 2 and 4 even though all intervals had the same perceived effort. I've put this as a pro as it's more realistic for racing.

Cons
*No visual cues to know when to speed up
*Garmin not 100% accurate on short distances
*Worse on the joints
*I like the fact that the track is the one place Mike and I can run together since our paces are so different.

Luke at The Super Fatlete tagged me in a fun question post! Here they are!

1. What is your favorite song quote?
It's not your birthday anymore, there's no need to be kind to you.. By Morrissey full lyrics can be found here, I remember laughing out loud the first time I heard it. I love Morrissey, we saw him live a few years ago and it was by far the best live show I've ever been to, he has some amazing stage presence.

2. What is your favorite exercise or workout?
I love sparring, it tires you out like nothing else I've ever done and it keeps you thinking all the time. I always get out of the ring feeling exhilerated and since it's such a hard work exercise you feel really good afterwards that you've got a great workout. And when you make improvements or land good shots or slip/block your opponents shots you feel really good too.

3. Favorite place to go on vacation and activity to do?
I have very fond memories of Florida as we used to go there on holiday every year when I was growing up but it will take some pursuading to get Mike there! I like going on holiday where there are plenty of places to go walking and exploring, I like rural areas best.

4. Do you collect anything, if so what and how did it start?
I used to collect thimbles and dolls in national dress when I was a child, I don't collect them anymore but they're all still at my parent's house. The dolls started as my grandparents travelled a lot and they used to bring me a doll from every country and I think that's how the thimbles started too. My brother and I used to get so excited for them coming home hehe. I also used to collect magnets, I had a radiator full of mainly Disney magnets, can't forget the masses of Disney teddies too haha!

5. Hardest obstacle you have had to overcome in your weight loss/fitness/training goals?
It took me ages to be able to do a chin-up. Ages! I did end up acheiving it after a few weeks total rest after some minor surgery though, proving that rest can be really useful sometimes.

6. What do you do now and if you could choose any career what would it be?
I work in a care home at the moment. The career I always wanted was to play in a big orchestra but as I got older I realised this wasn't an option. My career goals now are more focussed on a caring proffession

7. If you could choose an exotic animal to have as a pet what would it be?
I would love a pet monkey!

8. Do you use a reward system for your goals, (formally set or not) and if so what is your favorite reward?
No I don't, I've never really considered this idea before, maybe it would be good! The closest I come to this I guess is when I'm doing a long run I run a fast mile and then let myself have a kind of recovery mile..

Now, I tag everyone who reads my blog who ran today (or anyone else who wants to answer them)! Here's my questions - running/fitness theme!
  1. What do you feel is your biggest fitness acheivment?
  2. What is your favourite type of music to listen to when you run?
  3. What is your favourite distance?
  4. What's the most impulsive thing you've ever done fitness wise?
  5. What's your favourite post race/run meal?
  6. What's your favourite pre-run fuel?
  7. Do you use gels or anything similar to fuel during long runs?
  8. Why did you start running?
Let me know if you answer the questions!

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Speedy 5k!

Hello everyone!

I realised today that I was a week behind on my 10k schedule for the race in October. I decided I'd jig things around to get a schedule that would work for me.. I also unashamedly got rid of the 9 mile tempo, I just couldn't face another long run with no music! I replaced it with a 3 mile tempo run, which soon became a 5k time trial...

Here's the new schedule, it's almost entirely the Run Less Run Faster plan just slightly rearranged... Click to enlarge..
I ended up having a great run!

5k in 24.51 average pace 8.01 WOOHOOOO!! Fastest ever! (last time 25.08, 8.06)
Mile 1 - 8.03
Mile 2 - 8.02
Mile 3 - 7.59 (3 miles in 24.04)
0.1 - 0.46 (7.40 pace)

This run felt really strong for the first two miles, the last mile was really, really horrible! It was really embarrassing actually because at mile 3.05 I had to stop the garmin and spent about 30 seconds dry heaving by some poor persons fence. After I'd got myself together I looked around shiftily and saw two builders giving me funny looks.. oh no! I grinned at them and ran off, I felt rather silly!!

I was hoping to run a 5k in under 25 minutes so I was really happy with my time! Next time I'm hoping that my splits will all begin with a 7!

Laura at Live Well, Laugh Often, Run Much was kind enough to give me an award!


1. Answer the question: If you had one chance to go back and change one thing in your life, would you and what would it be?

I wouldn't change anything.. I have made some bad decisions along the way and I sometimes wish I'd worked harder in my first few years of university, I also wish I'd never got an eating disorder or met my ex boyfriend! But all those things made me who I am today and without those things in my life I would be a totally different person today. I might not love running or healthy eating, I might never have met Mike...

2. Pick 6 people and give them this award. You then have to inform the person that they have been selected for the award.

Hotchoc26
Simply Fabulous
Bambi's Eats
I Can Haz Fud?
Running From, Running To...
Brit Bride

Enjoy some more Brit blogs :-)

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Gymnastics

I forgot to put todays workout on my earlier blog post.. We did a gymnastics workout today. I had planned to go for my tempo run but I've had an off tummy since last night. I'm blaming some M&S goats cheese en croute thingummybobs Mike and I ate last night.. They were way too rich! I didn't read the label thoroughly until I got home and then noticed they had 118% of an adults daily saturated fat in one portion!! Is that even allowed... I don't think it should be haha.. There's another reason I need to cook from scratch more often, then you know exactly what's gone into your food! Anyway my stomach has been cramping all day and I was a bit scared to run. I can still do a run tomorrow (Thurs) and one on Saturday to keep up with my programme. All is not lost!

I really feel like I'm starting to make progress on the dreaded handstand.. Why can't I do it!! Today I managed a bit better, still can't flip over properly my legs fall like dead weights before I've got them over my head. I think it's something in my head holding me back.. I'm being a bit of a wimp I think haha. The headstands seem to be helping me get used to the positioning without feeling like I'm going to fall on my head and break my neck though.. I wonder if I'm the only person who struggles so much with handstands! The handstand push-up is a million miles away!

The rest of the workout was some tuck L-sits - not good on the iffy tummy... Needed too much core control which I couldn't seem to muster... Back lever progressions which are coming on slowly but nicely and some frog stands, one of which I oh so gracefully exited by almost falling nose first on the floor... I wonder why I was never too great at ballet...

Hope everyone's had a good day, any good plans for tomorrrow? My number one is to get my tempo run done I could be starting work any day now so I'm enjoying the luxury of running when I feel like it and not when I can fit it in!

Monthly Recap

I haven't included much of a recap this month as I didn't really have anything new to put this month.. Apart from my 9 miler on Monday I haven't beaten any old times as I haven't been testing any.. All goals are set to the 10k at the moment, where I hope to beat my own 10k time. It's an unoficial time as I haven't raced a 10k before but it will be tough to beat cause it was one of those runs where I could not have given another ounce of effort!

Monthly Totals - August
Miles 48
Push-ups - 80
Chin-ups - 10
Pull-ups - 0
Wrist curls -0
Core work - 1
Gymnastics - 5

I'm still a bit frustrated with myself.. My totals aren't where I want them to be, except for the running.. Quite impressed with that considering I took almost a full week off to let my legs recover and then another week off when I got poorly.. Can't help illness but I don't feel like I get as much done as I used to... I only have myself to blame for that...

So, to try and regain some motivation I've set out some specific September goals, which I might review week by week to keep on track. I think I'm struggling with motivation not having a fight coming up. I really miss being at a boxing gym. I hope we can get to one that works money wise and travel wise soon because it was such a big part of my training and I've been a bit lost without it.

September Goals
Run 3 times per week according to the Run Less Run Faster Plan
Run 60 miles
Do 120 push-ups over the month
Do 25 chin-ups over the month
Do 1 core workout a week
Do 1 gymnastics workout a week
Sugar-less September - Eat less sugar in September, I don't eat loads but I've been slacking a bit in the cooking department which has probably added sugar to my diet. Making more of my own meals and desserts would definately be a good idea and this could be the kick up the bum I need to do it!