Monday, 26 August 2013

Recovery Week

Just over half way through the half marathon training now so this week has been all about taking it a bit easier as the long runs have got longer! So, it was only 5 miles this weekend and some short training runs in the week in preparation for a 10 miler next weekend.

I finally got myself a bike so I can do some proper outdoors cross training and went for my first ride today.  Only 10 miles but it's good to get out there and will become part of my regular training, plus it is something I can do with my man friend! 

From tomorrow it's more running: a couple of early morning 5k's, a bit of swimming and a spin class in preparation for the long run next Sunday!

Definitely need some motivation....

Saturday, 17 August 2013

8 miles and Sugar Free!

In the last 7 days I have run just over 22 miles and worked a very full week. I should be completely knackered, but I'm not.  The only thing i've done differently this week is completely cut sugar and white bread from my diet and i'm reaping the benefits already.  

Not wanting to sound like a North American infomercial but this simple change has revolutionised my training and every aspect of my life!  I have always been a sugar junkie and suffered the happy highs and sluggish lows (Not to mention massive weight gain!) that go with that on a daily basis for most of my adult life.  I would think nothing of chowing down on a few strips of dairy milk or a bag of fizzy jelly sweets pretty much every day! A couple of weekends ago though, I had an overdose and felt rough as a badgers bottom so decided to try to give it up as I can't carry on training and eating like this - my body can't repair itself with fat and sugar alone. I was fast becoming a sitting duck for diabetes plus I have to start seriously sorting out my weight cause I'm still 3 stone over what I should be so lugging all that fat around with me can't be a good thing!

Last week, I started to cut down and this week I totally removed all of the nasties from my diet by having a ready supply of frozen fruit in the freezer which I could add to a bit of yoghurt in the evening if I felt the need for something sweet.  I have also been having a few nuts for snacks and eating plenty of nutritious salad, and vegetables with a good serving of Quorn or eggs for protein. This has helped my blood sugar stay on the level and stopped the cravings.

So, the results after just one week are astounding! I'm not tired at all (until bedtime, also sleeping better) my groin strain has almost disappeared, I don't crave sugar any more (watched Andy watch a whole bag of jelly beans and I was not remotely tempted to have even one!), I'm seem to be more mentally alert plus I have shifted 6lbs in weight this week :)

As for the training, I have had to move things around this week due to going out all day tomorrow so had to shift the long run to this morning which was an 8 miler. I felt a lot stronger today and it seemed to go quicker with a lot less stopping for stretching along the way, plus I had more energy at the end of the run and ran around doing shopping and housework for a good few hours afterwards before I collapsed on the bed with my kindle! 

Next week is a recovery week, so no long run as such just 3 40 minute sessions and a 60 minute one next weekend in preparation for the big 10 miler the weekend after - might need some motivation......

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Seven Heaven

Good morning!

I really wasn't up for it this morning, had a nice early night last night but was woken up to the sound of a rather inebriated young man effing and blinding at his 'friend' arguing over which hand he had hit his 'friend' with - oh the joys of living in the 'bourne! 

Anyway, as I know i have to do these long runs, I dragged myself out of bed at 6am, got my ever growing running kit together (it includes a kind of utility belt full of water and energy gels these days) and set of looking like some kind pink podgy superhero!  7 miles is the longest i've ever run in my life so it was a little bit daunting but I told myself to take it easy, just get out and run till it's done.  So, that's just what I did!  Had a couple of very short stops for stretching and sucking an energy gel but other than that, managed to knock a couple of minutes off my 10k time from last week and even managed a little sprint at the end after the hill to take me up to 7 miles.  

This week, I have been cross training again with a spin class replacing a tempo run and an hour of swimming on my day off, plus the usual recovery and easy runs.  I can really feel the difference that spin is making now as I know that a couple of weeks ago I know that I would never have managed a sprint at the end of a long run, but the training I do in spin is helping me to get that extra burst of power when I need it!

All in all, I really enjoyed that long run and also loving that camaraderie from other runners/cyclists/walkers that I go past with a breezy 'morning' or a nod from a cyclist!  Nothing beats the feeling of running while the rest of the world is in bed with a hangover :)

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Nearly half way there!

Hello, it's Sunday again, the sun is shining and it's cooled down a little!

This morning was long run day after a slightly different training week, but more about that later.  As you know, i've had a bit of trouble with my left hip/groin so this week has all been about cross training.  I began with a gym session to replace a 30 minute run then a spin class on Wednesday.  I haven't been to spin for a very long time and thinking how much fitter I am now I stupidly thought that it would be easier.  It wasn't.  After a couple of hills my legs turned to jelly and I was sitting down doing the sprinting as any kind of hovering would surely result in an ungraceful fall to the floor!! Despite this, I am booked in again for next Tuesday as I reckon that I need that variety in my workouts and only by doing something more will I ever get good at it :) 

Had a day off on Thursday and Friday morning saw the return of what was meant to be interval training but due to my dodgy hip area I stuck to a 30 min easy run as that is better than nothing. 

Saturday I came to realise that i'm really getting behind in maintaining hydration and that was never going to help my body repair itself! So I filled some big bottles with water and a green tea bag to cold brew 3 litres of the stuff and made sure I drank regularly throughout the day - I think it may have worked!

This morning, I was supposed to do another 5 miler according to my messed up training schedule but as it jumps to 7 miles next week, I though it best to do at least 6 this week. I also had a new running belt to contend with and started using energy gels as the distance is increasing.  I began my warm up and the belt was annoying me already and when I began to run, the bloody thing just kept moving around my lardy belly, getting in the way and making me growl.  I ran past a bin and toyed with the idea of chucking it straight in there but I thought it best to keep it as I would most likely need my drink and gel later on at the passing out stage of the run!  I'm glad I stuck with it though because after tightening it up a bit I almost forgot I was wearing it and boy did I need the drink and gel later on!  Having never tried energy gels before I had it just over half way through my run at just over the 5k mark as I though it better to have it before my energy levels dropped too much. It tasted ok but the consistency was erm...strange to say the least but it's just fuel so best to get it down and carry on.  

I got to 6 miles and was tempted to stop but still had a little way to go home so I added another 0.2 miles to take it up to the 10k mark.  That took me 1 hr 15 min and 17 seconds. Hip wasn't too sore at the end but i'm sure it will be a bit stiff later so more foam rolling and cold showers for me - joy!  Not broken any world records but i have proved to myself that I can survive nearly a quarter of a marathon.  Just got to do it another 3 times in the same day and i'll be laughing!