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Sunday, 31 October 2010

Halloween Part One

Happy Halloween! This post is picture heavy... be warned!

Last week I won some Rude Health Granola in Jemma's giveaway, thank-you Jemma. I've been wanting to try it for ages but not enough to spend almost 6 pounds on it..

I used it to top my peanut butter and honey oats.. and may or may not have sneaked a few little handfuls whilst the oats were cooking... sssshh!
Humungous bowl of porridge.. And I ate it all, we got up late and didn't eat breakfast until after we'd walked Roxie so we ate this at 11.30, I was veeery hungry by then!
We both had the same breakfast and both loved the granola.. I'm going to look into making my own with similarly healthy ingredients but a lower price tag.. Sorry Rude Health I just can't afford to spend that on cereal :-(

After our lazy big breakfast we relaxed a bit, I caught up with blogs and poor Mike got on with an essay.. So I guess I should say I relaxed a bit!! At around 2pm I went for a nice leisurly run... Went far too early after the mega bowl of porridge... It was sloshing around in my stomach the whole time... Yuck!!

Aside from that it was a great run.. I've been thinking, maybe I would benefit from a few weeks of leisurly paced runs, not following any plans just hopefully building endurance up. I'm not sure it's helpful to me to be always running as fast as I can, as tempting as it is! What do you guys think? I still consider myself a very new runner so I'd really appreciate your opinions!

5.2 miles 47.33 - average pace 9.09
Mile 1 - 9.06 (pretty flat)
Mile 2 - 9.38 (big uphill)
Mile 3 - 9.28 (rolling hills)
Mile 4 - 8.30 (big downhill)
Mile 5 - 9.08 (pretty flat)
0.2 8.44 (pretty flat)

I was really surprised that my pace came out in the low 9s I was expecting it to be closer to 10 minute pace. My pace varies quite a bit but I was barely looking at the garmin I was trying to just go on my perceived effort which was easy but still getting a sweat on and breathing a bit heavier than easy without being too hellish!

I came home to hot bath and a pot of tea. Perfect. (if you look at the breadbin you can see a pumpkin splatter from when we carved it, oops!)

Mike starting at the top.

Pumpkin braaaaaaains

My go at one of the eyes - and damn right I got straight in my pjs after my bath! What else are lazy days for!!

Look at the concentration

Sketching on the next bit...


Being silly!

This is when we got really out of character... We took it round to show Mike's mum and stepdad before tea and stayed for a few lots of drinks! We don't drink much often but it was a fun change! I'll miss living next door but one to them.

We got home and rather drunkenly made our tea.. Fajitas for Mike and I had nachos.

Excuse the awful pictures... There were some much worse ones haha

Tia got in on the action... She is like a dog!

Ooops... Nachos take one..

Nachos take two - much better!
What a fun day! I've somehow escaped a hangover.. It might have had something to do with the masses of water/green tea drunk before bed and the 2 glasses I had every time I woke up during the night.. Unless of course it hits me all of a sudden and I'm in fact writing this still drunk...

Hope you're all having fun halloween weekends!

p.s. Can anyone guess who we based our pumpkin on??

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Moving House is Stressful!

Tia looks like I feel right now... I could sleep almost anywhere - so tired this week!

I went boxing on Monday and I've only just got round to posting about it :-( Not good!! I've just had one of those weeks, our internet has been on and off all week and we've been chasing up house stuff. We were all ready to go this Monday, everything was in place to go with our money and solicitors and our vendor's solicitor had implied to her that everything was ready for her. However, all of a sudden it turns out the house she is buying is not ready at all, despite being empty. The solicitor selling the property she is buying is doing so for someone who has died and is not rushing at all. We have to be out of our house by a week on Tuesday so things are getting a bit stressful. I always wondered why people said buying a house is one of the most stressful things anyone can do. Now I know!! I really hope we get stuff sorted soon. I can't believe our vendor's solicitor didn't tell her her house would not be ready. I believe she is being truthful to us. The estate agents we are buying through have been really quite rubbish and they pursuaded her to use this solicitor which makes me think the solicitor is probably quite rubbish too. I really hope we get some answers on Monday!

Tia is unimpressed by recent house revelations... or by being woke up by me taking pictures of her.. not sure which...

Anyway - back to Monday's workout.

Heavy bag 3 x 3 min (30s rest)
Circuit 1.30 on each station, 30s rest between stations
  • Heavy bag
  • Heavy bag
  • Kettlebell squats + clean
  • Bike
  • X-trainer
  • Push-up/sit-up (9 p-u)
  • Incline sit-ups w punches
  • Med ball
  • Leg raises
Technique sparring 10 mins - worked on body shots and combinations, getting in and out.. My problem is boxing on the back foot.. I tend to just keep going forward, which is fine when I'm the stronger boxer. But like last Thursday when I came across someone who could hurt me I needed to be moving in and out and taking less shots so this was useful. I'm looking forward to putting it to the test next week.

We finished the last of the mule bars the other day. I'm going to order some more for lunch boxes for us both.
Apple strudel.. This one tasted a lot like an apple pie nakd bar, the texture was really nice again and so was the flavour.

I loved the mango bar, it had a really strong mango flavour, I can't seem to find the picture I'm sure I took though, but they all look pretty similar. I think this might have been my favourite bar.

Unfortunately neither of us liked the licorice flavour bar. It was too strong and for me had the added yuckness of coconut which I just couldn't stomach.

Well, I'm going to get off for a run soon.. I might give this energy gel a try while I'm out there..

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Haltemprice 10k

This morning whilst we were walking Roxie I realised it was the day of the 10k we planned to run right back in July. We decided not to enter the race as I was supposed to be working today and you know that big thing I've been going on about for ages, well we thought that was going to get in the way too. Talking about that, I was really nervous to post it on the blog in case anything went wrong but even though things could still go wrong I need to tell you all! Mike and I have bought a house!! We're hoping to move asap. Especially with this no hot water debacle. Which we are still without, 11 days on.

I'll share pics of the house as soon as we're in, currently our place looks like a total mess. There are boxes everywhere and I'm running out of clothes! We're also trying to run our fridge/freezer/store cupboard stocks down and that's why I've been on about budgeting so much lately.. Did anyone guess what my cryptic ramblings were on about?

Here is the mess that is my house right now :-( Roll on move day!


So, back to the morning. We got home from our long walk at 10.20 freezing cold having been out since 8.45 and I checked the race details online. It started at 11, race entries on the day a pound extra... Pretty much told Mike we were doing it and phoned my dad to ask for a lift. We ran around getting our gear on, feeding Roxie and downing some water. As it happened we got there a few minutes too late to enter but the woman said to just run it and not go through the finish line. So my time is not official it's my garmin time but I'm taking that, it's the same as the official one, had I got an official time I would have come 183/295 overall and 45/113 :-)

To get to the start line we had to run up two flights of stairs to try and register, failed to register and then run maybe .2 miles to the start line. Talk about last minute!! I felt totally unprepared for this race as when I thought I wasn't going to be able to run it anymore I lost my motivation and my running suffered. Adding to that my garmin wouldn't find a satelite, even though I had got it to find one at home which normally works so I don't have any splits and I didn't have a clue what pace I was going at throughout the race as there were no mile markers only km markers so I couldn't even lap it! I think it actually kind of worked well for me though as I just went on feeling and not on numbers, as I so often do!

My overall time was 52.19 average pace 8.25, 36 seconds faster than I've run the distance before. I'm so happy with that! I'll definately do this race next year, and properly. It was a great course, lots of rolling hills but they weren't so bad, it also went right through the village I grew up in and I ran past my old primary school so that was cool! I'm really happy with my time.. Thinking maybe I should run without looking at the garmin more often.. I'd have to have it on my though, I love looking at the stats afterwards!

Hope you've all had a great weekend.. I'm leaving you with some pictures from our walk this morning, we do an extra long walk on Sundays and I love the secluded field we take Roxie to play on, it's so peaceful and it has horses. Sadly only one horse was out to play today though..

Bye for now!

Friday, 22 October 2010

Tough Sparring!

Every time we go to a new club I seem to come out thinking, wow I've never been tested like that before. Last night was no exception! For the first time I got out of the ring knowing I would have lost the fight. I feel really happy about it though, I'd rather be tested to my limits in sparring than go into my first fight unprepared and get a shock.

The training went like this;
3 x 2 min skip
0.5(ish) mile run
3 x 2 min bags
4 x 2 min sparring

Round 1
I started off strong and felt like I looked good. I was cutting him down and landing shots, he wasn't landing too much. And when he was, it wasn't too bad.

Round 2
I think at some point during this round I hurt him and he must have thought bring it on! This is when I really started to feel the shots and he started getting more through my guard.

Round 3
He hit me with a strong backhand and bust my lip. Annoyingly he must have known he hurt me cause he asked if I was ok. (I hate showing hurt as if it was a fight it would fire her up!) I said yes and we carried on. He definately took this round, now he was cutting me down and it was me on the ropes. Dammit! He didn't land much while I was on the ropes 'cause I was covering up well with my gloves and arms. I think he gave me a nice big black eye in this round too!

Round 4
Unfortunately by this time I was really tired, and he wasn't as tired. Or he didn't look it as he was still throwing lots of punches. I took quite a lot in this round and got stuck on the ropes again... Need to figure out how to get off the ropes. No-ones really got me on them before, and if they have I've been able to escape! I like to be the one trapping them on the ropes haha, got by my own game plan!

After the sparring the coach said she'd never seen that much heart from a girl before. That was a massive compliment! :-)

Unfortunately I have to get off to work now, TGIF!

Thursday, 21 October 2010

New Boxing Gym

It feels like I've been away for ages! I have still been reading blogs though! This week just seems to have been so busy and flown by, this post has been half written since Monday. Coupled with the fact I've had a few too many 5am starts and my brain stopped working at some point on Tuesday this post might be a bit jumbly... Apologies in advance!

Mike and I made an important descision about our boxing this week. We decided the club we had planned to go to to was too difficult to work around.. It's two bus journeys away from our house which would make the travel time there over an hour each way, probably closer to two on the way home as the buses aren't frequent. That meant we would have to be reliant on family members for lifts. This has proved difficult in the past as we've ended up having to train at home on days when we've thought we would be going, missed runs etc.. You know how I get stressed when my plans change!!

So, although we really liked the coach and there were plenty of boxers at our weights for sparring we decided to try out a club closer to home. Our previous coach had slagged this particular club off and we listened to him and hadn't tried it out. It had been made out to be a lazy club with poor skills.. We decided we should give the place a try anyway, the fact we can get there ourselves is a massive bonus.

The coach seemed really up on her skills. I think there were some lazy boxers there a few of them lit up cigarettes after the session, so perhaps it's those giving it a bad name. It's not something that will get in the way for us. So long as they keep those nasty cigs away from us!

I'm hoping this will be a good move for us as we can get there ourselves which will mean we can go whenever we plan to. The training doesn't finish too late either. At the other club we wouldn't be getting home until 10pm which if I was on an early the next day would be hell as we eat tea after training!

I hope we've made the right descision.. We won't really know until we've been a few more times but I know I've said this a few times but I hope this move will be the one that gets us back into boxing as much as we were when I started this blog!

Anyway, enough of my rambling.. The training!

4 x 3 min skipping (inc 30 push-ups)
2-2.5 mile run (guess 9-9.30 pace..)
3 x 3 min bag rounds
2 x 3 min shadow boxing
Partner drills
Cool down

I was nervous for the run.. All I could think was please god don't let me be the slowest person out there! They had a long route and a short route and the coach sent us out on the long route. As it happened only Mike, myself and one other person ran the long route but luckily the pace was really comfortable for me and I was able to chat with Mike and the other guy, the other guy even said we did it fast so I feel confident for future runs!

Anyway, that was way back on Monday night! We're going back tonight, I'm going to jog there from work so I'll get there a bit late and miss the warm up, hopefully they won't mind.. Other people came in quite late on Monday so I'm hopeful it will be ok. They spar on Thursday nights so I'll get my first taste of what that's like at the club.. hopefully it will be good for me! And hopefully I won't be too tired after work.. Cross your fingers for me!

On another note, I recieved another Graze box... Unfortunately for me Mike decided he likes them too so I had to share! We're trying to work out if we can fit them into our budget as we really like them. I have another half price box (due to my 2nd not arriving, they refunded one and gave me another half price one) and two with a pound off so we have 3 boxes to decide if we're going to carry on getting them. You can still try one for free with this code KVRTFJ1B if you want to, enter it at Graze.

Hope you're all having a good week - roll on Saturday for me!

Friday, 15 October 2010

Winter is Coming

It's getting so cold here! I've got my first proper autumn cold - I'm blaming that on Mike though. Two weeks ago he started his masters and he's brought home all the nasty 'freshers flu' bugs! We're both sniffling and sneezing and feeling sorry for ourselves! Since we're both icky we didn't run today. A bit frustrating as I was going to run yesterday but I postponed 'til today as we were hoping we'd be going boxing in the evening yesterday but we couldn't get a lift in the end. Oh well! I did some push-ups, chin-ups and core work at home so I got something done just not what was planned... I did 60 push-ups and 10 chin-ups, not sure how long we did core for, about 10 minutes I think.. We forgot to set the timer off!

In a way it was kind of ok that I couldn't run today because our boiler is broken and we have no hot water so I would have had to wait for several hours to get a shower at either Mike's mum's or my parent's house - or have a dreaded ice bath, neither of which I was relishing! I hope we get it sorted soon, it's no fun without hot water!

I'm just going to leave you with two clips which had my crying with laughter the other day, they were on Rude Tube a UK program which shows the top 50 funny youtube clips in different kind of genres. The other day it was animals.. I'm a sucker for funny animal clips! These were my favourites, enjoy!

Enjoy your weekends everyone!

Thursday, 14 October 2010

My Birthday and Graze Box

Hope everyone is enjoying the week. I actually cannot believe it's Thursday already, this week has been non-stop! It was my birthday on Monday, I had a really nice day. Luckily I was on the early shift at work so after opening my presents from Mike and his mum and sisters I got my shift out of the way and was home by just gone half two. When I got home I was greeted by Mike and a cheeky monkey truffle which I forgot to photo but it was yummy and cute!

What's in the bag?

Tada! Nigella!

It's a huge book..

The recipe I plan to make first... Mexican lasagne.

The most yummy looking desert.. hazelnut tiramisu! YUM!

I love the little 'make ahead' and 'freeze' notes - very useful IMO

I also had a Pandora bag to open!


This charm was from Mike, it's actually not an official Pandora one but it's cute isn't it and I'm certainly not one to care about the labels!

My doggie charm which his sister Emma picked out for me
I can't wait to fill it up with pretty charms, I already have a very expensive wish list forming....

We went to an Italian restaraunt my mum likes for my tea, I hadn't been before but the menu looked nice and veggie friendly. I forgot to take any pictures cause I'm a dopey so and so! But it was nice, if a little posh! We shared a garlic bread and some bruschetta for starters, they were both nice but the bruschetta portion was tiny! For mains Mike and I shared a mushroom pizza and a pasta dish. I was so surprised by the pasta dish.. It was 6 (not very big) pieces of ravioli and it was almost a tenner!!! The meat eaters portions were good but the veggie portions were tiny! At least it left room for desert - tiramisu, of course! The food was nice but I couldn't believe the prices... If I was footing the bill it would not be in my budget - my parents can't have minded since they chose it but still, I didn't like the prices - I'm too much of a bargainista!

We did have a lovely night though, we had part of the restaraunt to ourselves and the music was quiet so we could all talk. Isn't it the worst when you go out to eat and you can't hear yourself think? Unfortunately on my birthday I was the party pooper!! We went home at about 9.30.. knowing I had to be up at 5 and had been up at 5 that day was making me fall asleep!

I got the chance to try a graze box for free the other day, I'm so glad I did, I've been loving it so far! It's been great to have in my bag at work and I loved the fact that you got a surprise when you opened it

Close up so you can see what's inside...

Honey bee good - honey caramelised peanuts, cashews and pecans ate all of this yesterday in one of my breaks at work, loved it! I'm a sucker for caramelised nuts! Despite the fact the portion looks fairly small it was actually very filling and satisfying. I guess I have eyes bigger than my belly as my gran would say!

Love mix - a fruit mix including cherries, gojis and apricots. I love that the sweetened fruits are sweetened by concentrated fruit juice instead of sugar, I always pay more for that if I buy them that way so it's a big plus for me. This was really yummy!

Golden honey nut hazels were lovely too, I'm a sucker for caramelised nuts! Again, these were really decadent and satisfying.

Swallows and amazons, a mixture of brazils cherries and organic mango, it was really nice, I liked having a bite of nut with a bite of fruit, yummy :-)

I was supposed to get a graze box yesterday but it never arrived :-( so gutted! I reported it on the website and since today it still didn't come in the post they refunded it so can't complain. I hope it still arrives though, they make perfect treats for breaktime at work and I was totally looking forward to it making an appearance in my pack-up!

By the way - try your own graze box for free with this code KVRTFJ1 you won't regret it!