"} Get a life, Get active! By Fit Lesley: February 2012

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

An extra day....!

I didn't go for a run last night as I went to my usual Tuesday night steps class.  However, I made up for it tonight ...

After a full day at school, followed by an enthralling governors meeting which went on until 6pm I was tired but ready for a run!

The weather was fine (for a change) and I enjoyed the run.  I could have kept on running forever tonight - but time was ticking and my family would think I had been kidnapped if I was out too long so I returned home after 8.66 miles and 1 hour 21 minutes of peace and quiet!  

So was it an eventful run?  No not really!  Not far from home I saw a lad on the other side of the road running at what appeared to be a "good" pace so I thought if I followed him it might encourage me to run faster.  After making this decision I crossed over the road, and this is as far as my plan went!  Just as I crossed over the road  my "pace maker" did too, I decided against crossing back in case he thought realised he was getting stalked by a mad middle-aged female runner!  A bit further into my run I came across a gang of giggly teenage girls blocking my path - all dressed in "Onsies!" I came to the conclusion they were going to a leap year onsie party! I wonder if they realised how silly they looked waltzing down the street looking like oversized babies!  The rest of the run was uneventful but the thought of these girls kept me smiling throughout!

So I had an extra day in February so my run totals should be fab ... WRONG!!   I'm blaming the snowy weather at the beginning of the month for making me fail to hit the 159 mile monthly target I'd set in order to be on track for achieving 2012 miles in 2012, but hey ho there's always March!

So How am I doing...?  Here's the evidence!

To be on Target= 330 miles

Actual Mileage Achieved to date:

3 sports (Run, Walk & Cycle) =  354.50 miles    =  1657.50 Miles Remaining

2 sports (Run & Walk)  =   342.20 miles     = 1669.80 Miles Remaining

Just Running =  247.30 miles  = 1764.70 Remaining    

 I need to keep going!!

I CAN and WILL Succeed!

Monday, 27 February 2012

Excuses, Excuses, Excuses!

I woke up this morning with a definite Monday morning feeling!  I considered walking to work but managed to think up 101 reasons (well 5 actually!) of why I couldn't!

  1. It was raining and I don't do getting wet before work! (good enough excuse on its own!)
  2. I was making pizza's with the little darlings today therefore had all the ingredients to carry - very heavy when flour is involved!
  3. I had new shoes on and didn't know whether they would give me blisters! (pathetic excuse as I wear different shoes to walk in!)
  4. I had a really, really bad headache and was feeling out of sorts with the world! (self inflicted!) 
  5. I really couldn't be arsed bothered!
By the time I had churned all the pros and cons of walking over in my head it was too late to walk so off I set in my little car!! 

Once I was home and had done my chores (poor little cinders) I was feeling no better (stressed, over-worked and unappreciated!) and could easily have used some of the above excuses not to go for a run but I wasn't listening to that little voice this time ... I was going!  

My training plan stated a short and fast run!  I managed the first quite easily and failed miserably on the second!  I ran 4.77 miles in 45 minutes, average 9.30 minute miles. 

After feeling so buoyant after my fast run last week and my long run on Saturday tonight I'm feeling despondent! 

My 1:59 goal seems to be slipping through my fingers and time is running out! HELP!

Views today's run here!

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Day of rest!

I haven't run today as I am having a rest day after running 13 miles yesterday!  I keep having to remind myself that rest days are just as important as running days!  

So what did I do on my rest day?  Well I tackled the ironing mountain that seems to grow at a tremendous rate and also went for an afternoon walk with my hubby and doggy - and that's it! 

View my walk here.

Back to running tomorrow!  3 weeks to go ....

Saturday, 25 February 2012

A run in the sun - sort of!

Well, I got up this morning and it was another beautiful morning.  I had already decided that today was going to be my long run day as I'm out tonight and didn't fancy running a long run after a boozy night out with the girls! However, as it turned out I did my long run today after a boozy night IN with the girls on Facebook - not ideal but character building stuff!

My plan of action was to set out mid morning, but I was forced out the house earlier due to my 16 year old daughter driving me demented trying to get One Direction Concert tickets!  She's obsessed with them (or should I say with Harry!) and has only just been to see them! I luckily escaped the stressful situation.  I left the house with a smug smile and a wave at my husband shouting over my shoulder "See ya in 2 hours, have fun!" as I ran out the door! (Another benefit of running!  Ideal excuse to escape mayhem!).

I wanted to do a half marathon distance today and had a route worked out in my head!  I set off basking in the glorious morning sun, listening to the birds tweeting and inhaling all the glorious fresh air!  I had already disposed of my hat and gloves last week, but I think perhaps now is the time for my fleecy tights to go too - I was sweating cobs!  At least all the nasty alcoholic toxins will now be expelled from my system, leaving it free for me to corrupt again this evening!  I felt dreadful for the first couple of miles and even considered cutting my route short but knew I'd be cross with myself if I did so I plodded on!  Once I got into my stride I felt a little better, and then after about 7 miles the sun decided to hide behind some dark clouds and I felt more comfortable and less sweaty! Note to self - wear less layers on sunny days!

As I approached home I had a sneaky look at my Garmin and realised that if I ran just a little faster for the last mile I would get a sub 2 hour half marathon!  My legs weren't cooperating at all with this, so I didn't quite manage a sub 2 - this time! I did it in 2 hours 3 minutes - 3 weeks to shave off 3 minutes!  Doable or not?  Perhaps I'm saving myself for the real deal in 3 weeks!  

Talking of which once I got home my Liverpool Half Marathon information pack, including my race number was waiting for me!  I'm number 52 - I'm hoping there is more than 52 runners or I might just end up last!   
I was slightly disappointed with the inferior quality and colour of the number compared with the Great North Run's one but as long as the chip on it records me accurately and under 2 hours I will be happy! 

Another positive was when I got home my daughter had managed to get good seats for the One Direction Tour (its not until March 2013) but life's good in the Wallace household!  Phew I think I may have left home if she hadn't got them!  After a shower, rest and lunch I went for a 4.86 mile "recovery walk" with my husband and dog to stretch my muscles! The sun was still hiding but it stayed dry although the dark clouds that followed us looked ominous! 

Anyhow, off out tonight with the girlies, so time to swap my trainers for my dancing shoes!  I think I may need the assistance of a little wine tonight before my legs are willing and able to strut their stuff!

You can view my activities here - My half Marathon distance run! and My Recovery Walk! unfortunately I don't think my Garmin will work on the dance floor so you can't view tonight's activities!!  Now there's a thought - I wonder what would happen if I did...! 

Friday, 24 February 2012

What a beautiful day ...

Well after another awful day yesterday weather wise it was lovely to see a little bit of sunshine today! It was still chilly, but it was nice to see the sun making an effort for a change!  I didn't run yesterday but I did manage to walk to and from work.  I also went to pilates last night in the hope of strengthening my core - after many years of trying perhaps I need to accept that this is as good as it gets!

Anyhow, I also walked to and from work today - 2 days in a row -  not bad 
although my car was in for its MOT today so I didn't really have much choice!  When I was walking home tonight I was amazed to pass through a large group of young teenagers lurking in the underpass SMOKING!  It was like walking through a thick fog.  It was on the tip of my tongue to be all teacherish and tell them the error of their ways, but instead I took a deep breath (difficult without choking to death!) and kept on walking. I thought society had changed and it wasn't acceptable to smoke these days - 

unlike back in my day when EVERYONE who was anyone smoked, but I guess I must be be living in cloud cuckoo land (not a bad place to live I don't think!) and its obviously still deemed cool!

By the time I had done my motherly chores and I could go running the sun had gone to bed, but I wasn't going to be deterred!  It was dry, and amazingly still fairly light - what more could a girl want?!  WELL, perhaps running a good FAST pace!  I didn't quite get under 8 minutes a mile like I did on Wednesday (obviously a fluke!) but it gives me something to aim for!  I have just watched the film P.S I Love You and now feel totally depressed - need to run it off tomorrow!

Tonights run can be viewed here!

Hopefully the sun will have a good nights sleep and wake up happy and ready to shine on me during my long run in the morning! Fingers crossed!

Wednesday, 22 February 2012


Well I failed yet again to walk to work due to the horrendous weather BUT I did go for a run tonight! I must admit I really wasn't in the mood.  I was tired after a busy day at work and I just wanted to slob out and feel a bit sorry for myself!  I gave myself a good talking to, and came to the conclusion if I didn't go I would be full of regrets later! So I got kitted up and braved the rain!  After narrowly missing getting less than an average 9 minute mile yesterday  I was determined to succeed today, and made a conscious effort to set a good pace!  I was delighted when I got home at the end of my 6.07 mile run to find I had managed an average 8.54 minute miles! I wasn't bothered about being wet any more! It's amazing how a simple thing like running can change your mood!

I just need to keep that pace going now for double the distance and life's good!

click here to view my run and see my splits!

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Just a quickie!

As I said yesterday today was going to be a busy day and I wasn't sure if I would fit a run in, but I did manage to squeeze a quickie in!

However, I failed miserably at walking to work - it was absolutely throwing it down this morning and I really didn't fancy getting drenched and then having to get changed etc., so I opted out and took the car! Hopefully, I WILL walk again tomorrow!

Anyhow, as soon as I got home from work I got changed into my running gear and set off out the door.  Luckily by this point the rain had stopped although it was windy and rather cold! Due to my time restraints I decided to run a short run FAST faster than my usual pace!  I was slightly disappointed when I got home to discover my average pace didn't start with the number 8, but I'm getting there! My splits were 9.05/8.53/8.59/9.02 minutes each mile, so if I speed up my warm up I'm there!

Today's run was 3.69 miles in 33 minutes, my aim is to get faster!

Due to my daughter's "A" Levels options evening I couldn't go to my usual steps class either - believe it or not I do actually miss frantically throwing myself around to music!

So where does this leave me?  Well its 25 days until the Liverpool Half Marathon and I'm slightly confused.  Should I be working on distance or speed?  Oh how things change - when I was training for the Great North Run I was just concerned about doing the distance, this time I'm speed obsessed!

Monday, 20 February 2012

I survived the first day back!

First day back to school AND a Monday morning - not a good combination but I survived the ordeal!  I decided in the holidays that I was going to leave the car at home and WALK to school for the rest of the term in preparation for the K2B walk - every little helps as they say!  Just typical that I woke up this morning (actually I was woken up by an annoying bleeping in my ear!) to find it was raining!  BUT that wasn't going to stop me. I had already told my daughter her taxi service was cancelled until further notice, so I was determined to stick to it!

Apart from the rain I quite enjoyed the brisk walk and got to school feeling far more awake (if not a little warm!) than usual! The day didn't go too badly when you consider the little darling's had 2 wet playtimes and a wet lunch time to contend with! Fingers crossed we get a little bit of dry weather for the rest of the week!

In my Half Marathon Training Programme 
today is a rest day (apparently the most important day of the week!) - and that's exactly what I have done, apart from my short walking commute to work!  It felt very strange to have the whole evening stretched out in front of me with no plan of action in mind, especially since I haven't had any muscle soreness (very surprisingly) from yesterdays long run, but the programme says rest so rest I did!  Well sort of - I tackled an ironing pile the size of Mount Everest and feel quite smug about it!

So what lies in store for me tomorrow?  Well according to the bible Half Marathon Training plan I'm supposed to do Interval training tomorrow BUT real life might just get in the way as my daughter has an "A" Level options evening, so I will have to see what, when and if I can fit a run in!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Back to school tomorrow!

 All good things must come to an end, but what fabulous weather to end the holidays with!         
woke up up this morning feeling surprisingly wide awake and raring to go! I say surprisingly because I had a late night last night after a busy day shopping in Manchester then seeing and dancing with the rather gorgeous and fabulous Olly Murs at the MEN.  Then, once we got home I had to relax and unwind with a cheeky Gin and Tonic (or two) before hitting the sack! 
Anyhow, I was up by 8am, threw open  opened the curtains  and was delighted to see the sun was shining!  I decided there and then that I was going for a long run!  After  a Breakfast of Weetabix and a couple cups of coffee to get me going I was ready for the off - and strangely the sun was STILL shining, it was a bit of a shock when I opened the door and felt the blast of ice cold air!  Hey Ho you can't have it all!  I had a route planned in my head, and wasn't really sure how many miles it was but knew it would be over 10!  The main problem with Kendal is its in a "dip" so if you want to go any distance at all it involves going up a hill, there is no escaping it if you want to escape Kendal!  So off I went weighing up the best of the bad options before selecting which hill I would tackle...! Strangely on such a glorious morning I didn't see any other runners or walkers out, but came across many cyclists and horses!!  The riders of the horses must belong in the same gang as the youths who were blocking my path on Friday as they seemed determined not to clear a path for me to pass - or perhaps they just didn't have very much control over their horses! After many "excuse me's" shouted at varying volumes followed by fake extra loud coughing, huffing and puffing I was eventually allowed through! 

I know I said that to get out of Kendal you have to go up a hill, so logically that must mean coming down a hill to return... well ... it surely didn't feel like it today!  What ever happened to that glorious downhill feeling?

However, I DID make it home feeling not too knackered and was delighted to see I had done 12.09 miles in 1 hour 52 minutes, average pace 9.18 minutes per mile = a PB for me for that distance.  Bodes well for the 18th March!  A little more push and I might just achieve a sub 2 hour half marathon! I was reading a magazine article recently about accomplishing running goals (yes I'm becoming obsessed!), and it advised a very powerful technique for success was "posting goals" - making up a sign with your race time goal on it and posting it in key places where you will see it every day throughout your training programme so GUESS WHAT!  This is key place number ONE!  

My goal for Liverpool is 


Anyhow, after a shower I tucked into a very welcome bacon butty, followed by a chunky Kit Kat and a coffee - I know not the fuel of an elite athlete but by jove it was good and I had worked for it!

Later on, once I had relaxed a little I managed a short 2.60 mile recovery walk with dog and other half before enduring the football on TV!!

It is now wine  O'clock CHEERS!

Yes, ME!!!

Friday, 17 February 2012

Last day of the holidays...

"I can't believe it" (as Victor Meldrew would say)  that a week has gone by already!  Usually its "Phewww, it's Friday at last, today it was "awwwww it's Friday already!"

But hey-ho, did I do all I had planned?!  Well, not really! 

 I had envisioned lots of nice long walks with the dog in preparation for the Keswick to Barrow walk (in 85 days) and lots of nice long runs in preparation for the Liverpool Half Marathon (in 30 days eeek).

So what did I get up to...?

Well, my husband has been working away all week so its been nice not to be woken up in the morning during the holidays (Zzzzzzzzz).  

On Monday I had a girlie shopping day in Manchester with a friend, although not much shopping went on, mainly gossiping, drinking coffee, eating and drinking wine (what are holidays for?!) 

On Tuesday I managed to fight past the pile of valentine cards on the mat (not) to go for a 8.83 mile run, then later a couple miles walk with the dog!

On Wednesday I had a lovely day with my daughter having a makeover photoshoot!  I never knew having a photo taken could be such fun, waiting very impatiently to see the photographs now!  Later I went for a 5.88 mile walk with the dog!

On Thursday I went to the running workshop,see yesterdays blog if you missed it (keep scrolling down the page until you see It's Official!), then I met my Mum for lunch and did a bit of shopping .

On Friday (oh yeah that's today!) I went for a lovely sunny 9.35 mile walk with the dog, then later went for a rather wet and miserable 5.49 miles run and got road  path rage!  Some people have NO idea!  The first thing I came across was someone stopping me to ask the way to the pub, surely its not PC to stop a runner in action for directions especially not to the pub (although I could and did help through gritted teeth!), another problem I encountered was idiots texting and not looking where they are going, preventing innocent running pedestrians passing, I hope none of them could lip read! THEN there was the usual brolly problem, because it was raining torrentially I was rammed and battered by several brolly's who's owners had there heads down and didn't care about the rest of the world Grrrrrrr, to add insult to injury there was the usual idiotic drivers heading for the biggest puddles to drench pedestrians and also big groups of teenagers barring the paths whilst standing around with nothing better to do, I felt like shouting "Go home its raining!".  Anyhow after muttering obscenities and keeping my fingers under control I finally made it home - drenched right through to my knickers!  I wasn't a happy bunny, especially after the day started off with such fab weather - I thought spring had sprung!  I knew it was too good to be true!  

On Saturday (that's tomorrow!) I am going back to Manchester with my daughter and her friend to have another shop (hopefully I will this time, as I desperately need new trainers!) and then to see the rather lovely Olly Murs at the MEN!  There IS some advantages about having a teenage daughter!

On Sunday I'm hoping to fit in a nice long run, then I suppose I will have to face the planning work I have been avoiding all week!! I could always just wing it - I'm sure the kids wouldn't notice...!

Just realised that that sounded like my own version of "The Very Hungry Caterpillar story!!!"

So you see not much running or walking going on - I've decided I'm too busy to work, its getting in the way of me enjoying life!!  BUT only 6 weeks until the Easter Holidays and I'm off to NEW YORK, I can't wait - soooo excited!

2012 Miles in 2012.  How's it going...?

Well I have forgotten to keep you updated on my year long challenge of completing 2012 miles in 2012!  Ideally I would like to achieve this through running and walking but I think this will be too challenging so as a safety net I included cycling too!  Who knows I might just do it without the cycling if I set my mind to it!

I have set myself a target of approximately 38.50 miles a week worked out mathematically as follows: 

2012 / 366 days =  5.50  average miles per day
5.50 miles  x 7 days =  38.50 average miles per week.

I am keeping two totals at the moment - one including running, walking and cycling, whilst the other includes just running and walking.  At the end of the year I can see which challenge I have managed - or not as the case may be.

So to date there has been 49 days in 2012 (including today!) which means ideally I should have completed 269.50 miles to be on track - have I?

The answer is Yes and No!!!  Yes if you include cycling, no if you don't!  But I'm not far off!!

Target= 269.50 miles

Actual Mileage Achieved to date:

3 sports =   271.70 miles    =  1740.30 Miles Remaining

2 sports =   259.40 miles     = 1752.60 Miles Remaining

Why don't you join me in the challenge? I have had many excuses from people of why they can't do it including not having a fancy Garmin or I-phone to record mileage.  STOP right there, you don't need one!  All you need is the internet, which you have or you wouldn't be reading this and the motivation to do it!

Step 1:  Register on the Running free  website. (IT's FREE!)
Step 2:  Join my group 2012 miles in 2012 on Running Free (ALSO FREE!)
Step 4: Record your activity on the running free website by logging in and then clicking "add" at the top of the screen.  A drop down menu (add training) will appear with several options.  Select the device you have used to record your training and follow instructions.  DON'T PANIC if you don't have a fancy device - select "direct" in the drop down menu and manually input your mileage.  I am trusting you not to cheat! There are many websites such as Runfinder on which you can plot your route onto a map and it will tell you the correct mileage. 
Step 5: Encourage and motivate your fellow group members and compare your mileages!

I fully appreciate that this challenge is now 49 days in, but you can still participate by logging training you have already completed (i.e backdate it!) or start from TODAY and work extra hard!

- you know you want to! 

Thursday, 16 February 2012

It's Official....

I've improved my running style!  Some of you may remember that in November I went to a Pose running coach to find out about the technique and how to change my running style to improve my speed and endurance and decrease the knee and hip pain I was experiencing during long runs.  For those of you who didn't know me way back then you can read about my first Pose experience by clicking here!

This morning was my 3 month review appointment to analyse how I am getting on implementing the technique.  I was apprehensive about going, but not as daunted as I was the first time!  My main concern was that I wouldn't have modified my running style at all, and would still be sporting all the same bad habits.

We headed back to the same park we visited the first time and did warm up exercises and gentle jogging, before she videoed me running.  I still felt incredibly self-conscious especially as there were several families playing in the area at the time, as well as having to dodge the remains of snowmen ( I'm assuming these great mounds of snow, were headless snowmen!).  Once she had videoed me she asked if there was any areas of my running i wasn't comfortable with, to which I said "Running downhill".  I feel fairly comfortable running up hills, but when it comes to running down I seem to put the anchors down and my pace drops to a snails pace. This always irritates me as I see this as being the main area in my running that I could pick up valuable time if I could get over my fear of falling flat on my face! Anyhow, she suggested we run to a nearby long steepish road and she would give me tips etc. on running down it correctly.  We spent about 20 minutes repetitively running up and then sprinting jogging down again.  Its all about correct body posture and "the lean", and once I was conscious about how I should run down hills I could feel the difference but my speed was still dire compared with hers!  But hey that gives me something to work on - lots of hill work!

After spending just over an hour outside we headed back indoors to analyse the video of my current running technique and how it had changed from the original session.  I'm pleased to report I am now a "fairly efficient forefoot runner" (her words!).  She used a metronome alongside the video footage and worked out I had mastered a cadence of 180 steps per minute, which is the lower end of the ideal cadence spectrum! Not bad considering in November I had a very slow cadence of around 150 steps per minute and was over-striding!  I am now running with "baby steps" on hot sand! I have transformed from an Elephant into a Gazelle (haha in my dreams!).  Next we looked at my "pose" and body posture which were now correct and my bum no longer sticks out! (hooooray!), even my arms were now behaving how they are meant to and I have relaxed shoulders, hands and arms!

So all in all a fairly positive result and I am progressing!  When I look back at my last run before the "new running me" emerged I ran a 8 mile run at an average pace of  9.45 minute mile. My last 8 mile run a couple of days ago I managed an average pace of 9.13 minute mile! I am chuffed with that improvement!

When I run now I consciously think about my style and try to maintain it throughout the run.  As I get tired my technique tends to "go" but it gives me something to think about and takes my mind off my jelly legs concentrating on my pose and cadence instead!  When I was training for the Great North Run last summer I started suffering with knee and hip pain once I started to increase my distance and number of training sessions per week, however since working on my technique I have had no problems at all even with increasing my distance for the Liverpool Half Marathon and running daily during the Janathon challenge.  So touch wood - it appears to be working for me! There are lots of mixed opinions about the benefits of forefoot running and a lot of sceptical "experts", but I am pleased with how it has transformed my performance and I am happy to continue practising these new techniques until they become instinctive and I manage a sub 2 hour half marathon!



Sunday, 12 February 2012

Whoopie Doo Da!!!!

After 9 days of snow and ice and not being able to run outside (suffered the dreadmill instead!) I finally managed to hit to streets today and RUN!  There was still icy snowy patches but nothing I couldn't cope with!  At one point I ran down the middle of the road to avoid the ice and snow - I felt FREE and liberated!  I managed 6.58 miles in just over an hour!

God it felt good to be out, I enjoyed every minute and I am praying the thaw continues so I can continue to enjoy my freedom and more to the point TRAIN!

Liverpool Half Marathon is only 5 weeks today! 

Bring it on!  I WILL get a PB! 

To view todays run: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/149076510

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Advice Please....!

HELP!!! I need new running trainers and went to a specialist running shop this morning who informed me after inspecting my feet and gait etc that I need a neutral trainer! I'm not really sure what this means I run like but can anyone suggest a good shoe? Asics V's Saucony? Is it worth spending silly money or do you get similar with cheaper trainers? I'm sure some of you with years of experience can advise me...!

Friday, 10 February 2012

Schools out ....

Schools out for Summer 
Half Term! 

I'm hoping the weather is going to improve for next week so I can get some nice runs in whilst I'm on holiday. At the moment every time I go out I'm risking life and limb and that's just walking!  I've ordered some Yaktrax Running Crampons -someone I told misheard and thought I'd said Running Tampons, and asked the difference!! 

Hopefully once they arrive whatever the weather I will get out for a run - that is IF they actually work!

Another snowy icy day in Cumbria, but school was unfortunately fortunately open!  The kids have been like wild caged animals today as they have been stuck in all week because the playground has been too dangerous (aka the danger of children having fun!), then yesterday when school was shut the weather was so bad none of them went out at all! Boy did we know about it today...  I need the holidays to recover!

Actually a good run would have done the trick (for the kids at school - but I was really meaning for me)! The stress just floats away as I pound the streets and cover the miles, and I end up with a runners high then enjoy annoying everyone else slumped on the sofa when I get home but ALAS that wasn't to be either so I was left with braving the Gym followed by a box of chocolates retrieved from the Christmas stockpile and a bottle of wine!  (for medicinal purposes I hope you understand!).

Anyway back to the gym and the DREADMILL!  Arghhhhhhh! Its not my best friend at the gym, it all seems a little pointless running nowhere watching the many people swimming not much further in the pool! It is SO boring and it seems to take me forever to cover short distances.  Anyway in the hope of spicing things up tonight I varied the speed and incline regularly to keep me on my toes, and blasted music through my headphones as a distraction!  Whilst running outside I don't listen to music but enjoy my own thoughts and the scenery, but at the gym I need to find ways of entertaining myself to keep me going! I will stop the moaning and grumbling because although I don't love the gym I like it better than doing nothing!

Anyhow I managed 30 minutes on the treadmill, 30 minutes on the bike, 15 minutes on the cross trainer and 5 minutes rowing!

Fingers crossed that the sun comes out and melts all the horrible white  dirty brown stuff away!

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Post Janathon Blues...

Snow and ice go away
I NEED to go for a RUN today!

Well, February the 9th and my running total so far for the month is 11.4 miles, a whooping average of 1.26 miles a day. after my average daily run of 5.10 miles in January its PATHETIC!!!

Where has it all gone wrong....?

Well, in my defence the first couple of days in February were well earned "Rest Days", then the snow descended on us, followed by CBA syndrome and depression due to not getting into the Great North Run and now we have sheet ice!!!  On the positive side of all this - SCHOOL is SHUT so I get an extra day off, I just can't get out the house to do any training!!

So what have I been doing whilst being a lazy arse?!  For some insane reason, I got it into my head that if I can't do the Great North Run, then I will do a full marathon!!!  Am I MAD?!!!   Running 26.2 miles is no small feat for me ... but too late now ... entered and confirmed in Chester Marathon on 7th October 2012! 
240 days to fit in loads of training, panic and cry!!!

So entering a Marathon was supposed to give me my Mojo back, but currently I don't feel like doing anything that resembles training!  HELP!!!  

I'm spending lots of time reading up on Marathon training programmes and advice, just need to get back into action sometime soon, after all I have the Liverpool half to endure enjoy first! 

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

The wait is over ...

I got a red cross, which doesn't mean I need an ambulance... I didn't get a ballot place for the GNR! 

Now what do I do?!

  1. SULK and pack in running.
  2. Apply for a charity place and harass all my family and friends to sponsor me AGAIN!
  3. Apply for a different Half Marathon.
  4. Think "what the hell" and go for a Full Marathon!
  5. Do all three - 2,3 and 4!
Oh decisions, decisions what to do!!!

Great North Run Ballot!

I entered the GNR ballot which closed at 12 noon yesterday and I STILL haven't heard whether I have got a place!

I know I'm very impatient but if I don't hear soon I am going to stamp my feet and have a major paddy - BE WARNED!

Its all very confusing as my entry still has an orange B confirming that I have entered, other people have got a green tick (obviously got a confirmed place!) and other people have nothing!  Does this mean me and the "nothing people" don't have places or are they still dilly dallying around?  HURRY UP the suspense is killing me!

The ballot is apparently completely random - a bit like the lottery - well I've never won that so that says it all!  

The views for the GNR website will have increased excessively in the last 24 hours due to the number of times I have logged in to check my status! I'm getting more and more frustrated/irritable/impatient/edgy/antsy the longer it goes on - especially as more and more people are hearing and I'm NOT!!!


Sunday, 5 February 2012

No Running its Snowing, so Blogging!

Where, oh where, can the snow plow be? Oh where, oh where can it be? With it's blade on the ground & it's salt flying 'round, Oh where, oh where can it be?

A mixture of being away this weekend and snow means I haven't managed to run since Friday! Fingers crossed it will have thawed by tomorrow so I can go out, or I will have to resort to the Gym!

Anyhow, having time on my hands I decided to finish reading the book I had to review, and even review it!

Here is my review of the book on the left ...

"As a fairly inexperienced but avid amateur runner and cyclist I have recently taken a keen interest in enhancing my performance, especially in relation to improving my speed.  I regularly read magazines and internet sites hoping to gleam that “missing” thing that will turn me into an Olympic athlete.  When I was contacted via my blog to review the “Breathe Strong, Perform Better” book I thought it was too good an opportunity to miss since I was getting a £12.99 RRP book FREE! 

This is where it appears I have been incredibly naive, and the whole point of enticing me to review this book was so that I would be so impressed by the theory I would then shell out on a Powerbreathe device currently retailing for the most basic model at around £30!  I mistakenly assumed on picking up and studying this book that I would be able to “Breathe Strong, Perform better” just by changing the way I breathe whilst exercising, not by investing in expensive equipment.  However, as my interest had been awakened by the techniques described I decided to continue with the book to the bitter end, although I had no intention of buying a Powerbreathe device.  From my understanding after reading this book inspiratory muscle training (IMT) is primarily for those with some form of medical breathing issues such as Asthma or Cystic Fibrosis, not for a relatively fit individual like me!

However, that aside back to the book review...

The premise of the book is that breathing muscles can be trained in the same way as any other muscle in the body, and this can be achieved by using a Inspiratory muscle training device such as the POWERbreathe, which, by no coincidence was created by the Author of this book!  The book claims training increases inspiratory muscle strength, power and endurance, as well as athletic performance, in as little as four weeks.
Laid out in two parts, this book first details in great depth the theory behind the device and IMT, then in the second section moves on to explain in a more practical sense how the device can most effectively be used across a range of sports, the breathing related challenges faced by some individuals and the justification for IMT.

My main criticism regarding part one was it was too scientifically intense and I felt at times I was studying A level Biology! The sections that were simplified and easy to follow I found interesting, but there were many more parts that completely lost me!  However, it did offer a good range of research to support its arguments.
In my opinion, the sole purpose of this book is as a training manual to go alongside the Purchase of a Powerbreathe device, and because I read it as an information book I found it somewhat repetitive in places. However, saying that the book is fairly well organised and gives you plenty of information and research together with exercises and tips on how to train effectively for all types of sports, so if you have already purchased a Powerbreathe I would definitely recommend this book, nevertheless, if you want to improve your performance without a device this book is pointless.  All in all this confirms my original feelings – there is no easy way to improve your fitness, it’s all down to hard work and determination.

I will not be investing in a POWERbreathe device as a result of reading this book, however if the company would like to send me one to trail and review free of charge I will be more than happy to oblige!"