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

Friday, 31 August 2012

Another month bites the dust ...

How is 2012 miles in 2012 going?

Today is the last day of August so its time to tot up my scores for the year so far ...

Running  - 737.7 miles
Walking  - 435.6 miles
Cycling  - 412.8 miles 

Total - 1586.10 miles 

To be on target now we are 2/3rds through the year I need to have completed 1341.33 miles!

This is how it looks:

Actual Mileage Achieved to date:

3 sports (Run, Walk & Cycle) = 1586.10 miles = 425.90 Miles Remaining

2 sports (Run & Walk) = 1173.30 miles = 838.70 Miles Remaining

Just Running = 737.70 miles = 1274.30 Miles Remaining   

So as you can see I might only just scrape 2012 miles together if I count all 3 sports!

How about 2012KM?

Well this is 1250.20 miles! Perhaps a more realistic target to aim for!

Thursday, 30 August 2012

The final countdown ... Day 37!

I guess there is nobody to blame (but me for entering!), Will things ever be the same again? (meaning my legs and my weight!) It's the final countdown! The final countdown to my First Marathon. 

With only 37 days : 22 hours : 36 minutes and 30  .... 29 ....28 ....27....26....25 seconds to go until The Chester Marathon! I'm beginning to feel ever so slightly scared!  It will happen however I feel, no getting off this rollercoaster now!

I have been plowing through my training plan with consistency and strength, and have amazingly remained injury free! But, I’m totally shocked. I’ve gained like 5 pounds since starting my marathon training: WTF?!  I thought for sure I’d lose weight while training, and this sucks. I'm hoping this is all muscle (in my dreams) and once I decrease my training my weight will decrease too!

BUT first there's other business to sort -  I have a PB Half Marathon or 2 to run!

My first opportunity to blast this is on Sunday at The Great Scottish Run (GSR) which incidently I booked as part of my marathon training plan (and had planned just to run it at a steady pace!) but now it's come to it it would be rude not to go for a PB!  

I have also just discovered that there will be pacers - no, NOT the chewy mint flavoured sweets - but men (or women I suppose!) who will be running the route at a given pace giving me the perfect opportunity to smash my PB - if I keep up with them!  BUT what pace will they be running?  I asked my old friend Google but since this is the first year GSR have had pacers I couldn't find my answer  but at other half marathons for around about my target time there seems to be pacers for finish times of 1:45 or 1:58! For a 1:58 finish I don't need a pace setter -  in actual fact I could be the pace setter! I  ran  my last 2 half marathons at near this pace with just 2 seconds difference - how's that for consistency!  BUT a 1:45 finish might just be asking for a heart attack!  I'm hoping that there will be a little man running for a 1:55 finish THEN I might live to tell the tale!  

How will I know a pace setter from the common variety of runner?!  Will they carry a Board? ...A Flag? ...  a Balloon? - THAT is the Question!  Feeling quite excited about the prospect of chasing a man for 13.1 miles - I hope he's worth chasing! One day I WILL get my PB!
Last night as part of my marathon training I did some Hill Reps - where I run up and down the same hill like an escaped lunatic until I can barely breath!  Yesterday I did things slightly differently.  I had read an article that said you should run with your heart not your legs - meaning take notice of your heart rate not whether or not your legs are grumbling!  So I thought I would give it a go!  Usually I would sprint up the hill, then rest for 45 seconds to a minute before sprinting down again and repeat.  However this time I sprinted up the hill, ensuring to get my heart rate to over 165 BMP (about 90% of my maximum, not that I know what this means except I'm working hard!) and resting until it was down to under 40 BPM.  I felt like I worked harder doing this and it gave me something to focus on but when I compare it to my previous Hill Rep training I don't think there's much difference! You can view this here!

This morning I got up to do my final short run before GSR on Sunday!  Because I am incorporating these  half marathon races into my marathon training plan I don't get to enjoy the benefits of tapering for these events in quite the same way as I would if I was just concentrating on Half Marathons!  Perhaps that's why the PB is being so elusive!  Anyhow, on this run after last night's efforts my legs felt heavy and uncooperative, so I decided when I got home to experiment with an ice bath!  Well, that's not strictly true!  I'm too wimpy for a full on ice bath so I braved a cold water bath instead!  I have heard from many sources the benefits of suffering this strange ritual so decided the time had come in my running career to give it a blast!  

After my long runs I have often braved a cold shower aimed primarily at my legs and thighs, so felt this was the next step!  I filled the bath with trepidation (oh and cold water!) and slowly lowered my trembling body in!  I had kept my socks and running gear on in the hope it might keep me warmer! As the cold water penetrated my body I gasped and thought to myself "Remind me why I am doing this?!". I sat statue still whilst my body became accustomed - I didn't want to cause a ripple effect and risk it feeling any colder!  I had a 10 minute target in mind - brrrrrrrrrrrrr - armed with my "runner's world" magazine to take my mind off this crazy stunt I tried to relax. Not moving from the waist down I sat ..... and waited!  Whilst reading and glancing obsessively at my watch to see when this ordeal would be over I seemed to become immune to the cold - or had my body warmed the water?  Fearing this was the case I topped up with some more cold to ensure the best results and waited for my watch alarm to sound! The alarm sounded and I was set free!  I pulled the plug and then removed my freezing cold wet clothes before diving under a nice warm shower!  Apparently a classic school boy girl error where ice baths are concerned! I was supposed to warm up naturally by wrapping myself in blankets for about half an hour before jumping in a warm shower!  hey ho I live and learn!  Perhaps next time I will do it right both with using ice and having a delayed shower!  In a sadistic sort of way I quite enjoyed the pain (pain and pleasure being the opposite sides of the same coin...?) and will definitely give it another go ... as to whether it works and does any good - well the jury is still out on that one!  I will have to get it right before I comment further! With more long runs scheduled I will have plenty opportunities to try!

You can view the short run that prompted this fleeting case of insanity here!

I have also put photographs from my "bling" scrapbook on.  Click here to take a look!

Monday, 27 August 2012

I failed....

Yesterday I ran the Fleetwood Half Marathon with high hopes of securing a PB!

I failed ... by 2 seconds!  You can read all about my challenging day by clicking here!

Saturday, 25 August 2012

I'm ready - or as ready as I can be!

Yeah, after lots of debating I have finally decided on my race day clothes and trainers for tomorrow’s half marathon! 

And with just 42 days to go until the Chester Marathon, it’s time to start thinking about my fuelling strategy and race day plan for it.  During my previous Half Marathons I have only used Dextrose energy tablets every 3 miles or so.  However, I have realised that I will not survive the marathon fully intact on this strategy and I need to have a better fuelling strategy in place, so it’s time to change!

I will start this change tomorrow with using gels during my half marathon race! It’s time to put all my research and experimentation into practise.  Although I have never used gels during an actual race I have experimented with many types during both my long training runs and my long cycle rides.  After experimenting with many different makes and flavours I have come to favour the high5 range of energy gels.  I appear to have a strong gag reflex and find it difficult to swallow unpleasant things!  (I would rather be ill than take medicine!)  However, I have tried to overcome this to benefit my running.  After lots of experimenting with gels I can tell you some are so thick and gloopy I found them near impossible to get down (and keep down!) and some just taste plain foul! In my opinion, the best out of a bad lot are the High5 range of products!

The sachets are fairly easy to open, and although I am unable to squirt the entire contents into my mouth at once (gag reflex won't permit this!) I do manage to slowly finish the gel in several smaller gulps.  The only downside to this strategy is the gel often dribbles down the outside of the sachet and I end up with extremely sticky fingers for the rest of the run.  A small price to pay to improve my running performance!

So... tomorrow’s strategy will include taking a gel prior to the run to ensure my carbohydrates levels are fully stocked and then taking another at around the 6 or 7 mile mark depending on how I feel.

I have also been taking recovery shakes after my long runs and find these work exceptionally well and have prevented me suffering muscle aches and pains the day after!  My favourite recovery shake is maxi-muscle chocolate maxi milk (the strawberry is nice too!). The first striking thing about Maximilk is it that it genuinely tastes like chocolate (or strawberry) milkshake, and is especially nice when well chilled! There's no dodgy aftertaste and I have no bloatedness  or stomach cramps afterwards! As this should be taken without 20 minutes of finishing exercise I will take one with me tomorrow to drink in the car on the way home!

fuelling strategy sorted – tick
recovery sorted – tick
outfit sorted – tick
trainers sorted - tick
safety pins - tick
garmin fully charged - tick

I’m ready for you sub 1:57 Half Marathon, 
I’m coming to get you!


Yesterday I watched a film and finished reading a book - both very different but both inspirational!!

Lets talk about the film first!  Run Fat Boy Run!  I have wanted to watch this for a while but never actually got round to it until last night!  Perhaps having a Half Marathon on Sunday somehow wormed its way through the crowd into my psyche hence watching it!

Anyhow, Run fat Boy Run!  What a hilarious film for anyone who loves running (or even those who don't!)! I laughed out loud (lots), I cried, I winced, I cheered the underdog and boo-ed the villain! The old romantic in me also enjoyed the love story aspect too!  I am currently training for a marathon so I think watching this man attempt to train made it even funnier for me and I felt I could empathize with him! After suffering during my 20 mile long run last week and experiencing "hitting the wall" for the first time I found this films analogy of this fabulous! I think this film may just against the odds inspire the depressed, the unfit and the demoralized to grit their teeth and keep running! I know I will think about him the next time I'm struggling - he never gave up so neither will I! Although Thank God I have never had a blister like the one he had - a truly laugh out loud and scream at the same time moment! 

Now onto a much more serious note!  

For the last week I have been immersed in a book - and yes you've guessed it - its about running! 

The book in question is "Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner"  By Dean Karnazes and what an inspirational read!  I can not believe how much the human body can actually suffer and I have come to realise that I am far too gentle with mine! 

The writer's endurance is extraordinary, and he emphasizes how mental strength becomes more important than physical strength in long races. I have often said this when I have returned from a run - usually when I've had a bad run its because I've convinced myself I can't without there actually being any evidence of such! I need a more positive head!

He communicates his emotions in an exceptional way and I really felt that I was on each run with him. It was funny, crazy, sad and most of all inspiring - this bloke is immense and he's pushed his body to it's limits and beyond. After reading this I have come to realise that anything is possible if you put your mind to it and that you should never put any limitations on yourself. One quote from the book that I love and can see in myself is:

 "The highest form of competition is self-competition, and I was proving to be the cruelest of opponents, ruthlessly demanding more of myself..."

I have been so inspired by this man I have ordered another book he has written about his running antics and can't wait for it to arrive!

Now for some of that positive mental attitude! 

Tomorrow I AM going to get a PB in my half marathon but I just can't decide which weapon of choice (Trainers) to wear!  I have several, (I sneak them into the house past my husbands shaking head) and they all have positives and negatives!  My favourite trainers are my Innov8 233's but because they are my favorites they are now a little worn!  I keep meaning to buy another pair but haven't got round to it yet and its too late now for tomorrow!  

Another pair I like are the same make but women's specific (don't know why they are different!) Innov8 X238's.  Slightly heavier with more cushioning but just as comfy and as good to run in!

I  have a couple of pairs of Asics which I hate for running in and have relegated to exercise classes only!  I also have a pair of Asics Nimbus which I got specifically for marathon training!  As I said I don't like Asics but the little man in the shop convinced me these were the ones to run a marathon in!  They feel like I am wearing lead wellies but I suppose due to the distance involved they need more cushioning (therefore are heavier) but I struggle to feel motivated whilst wearing them!  I should really wear them for a half marathon and see how it goes before the big one in Chester - but not tomorrow! Tomorrow I'm PB chasing so want my friends with me!
Innov8 X238

Innov8 233 (Same shoe but mine certainly don't look like this anymore!) 
Its between these 2 for tomorrow - I just can't decide! If the orange ones were in a better condition I wouldn't even think about it but as a hole has appeared in the cushioning in the back of the heel I'm a little unsure ...!

Oh decisions, decisions!

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Life is good!

Proud Mummy Day! Well done to both my babies who got good news today! Jess got 2A*'s, 7A's, 2B's and1C in her GCSE's and James got a confirmed place at Northumbria University!! 

Well Done to you both!! 

Let the celebrations begin! ♥♥

Now to top the week off nicely for the Wallace's I need a sub 1 hour 57 on Sunday!

OMG ... I had it all the time!

Feeling slightly stressed this morning as my daughter is off to school to get her GCSE results!  YIKES!  After  my son's 'A' level results last week I'm not sure how much more I can take!

Anyhow, to pass the time I decided to try and find my confirmation for the Fleetwood Half marathon (which is on Sunday) as I still hadn't received my number (or so I thought!).  I emailed the organisers and they said if I brought my email confirmation I could collect the number on the day! After searching through my old emails and pay pal account for some proof I had entered I was beginning to think I had dreamt it and hadn't entered at all!  There was NOTHING to say I was in!  In desperation I decided to wade through the pile of papers and old post that somehow accumulates on the kitchen shelf, thinking perhaps I might have printed the email off and put it here for "safe keeping!"  At the bottom of this pile was a large brown envelope and inside it was my race number and race day information pack!  Whoops!  When did that arrive?  I have no recollection of it whatsoever, although the post mark has 18th June 2012 on it!! Definitely a senior moment!   I hope the organisers don't have a big mark next to my name with "no number" on it, or should I swallow my pride and let them know I'm an idiot and I do actually have it?!  Number 61 - mmmmm I hope there's more than 61 runners!!

Now what to do whilst waiting for the phone call ...


Wednesday, 22 August 2012

At last ... a good one ... as my last!

Today I went to an Italian restaurant for lunch (and a cheeky glass of wine!) so I was slightly concerned how I would manage to run this evening!  Last time I had a BIG lunch I nearly died whilst running ...! To make matters worse I was meeting my runny buddy Gina, and we haven't run together since that fateful night! 

Anyhow, I felt great running this evening and had no problems keeping up!  Whooo hoooo maybe my fitness is returning! However, at about 2.65 miles Gina stopped to stretch as she was suffering a niggley pain in her thigh but couldn't start again as the pain was too much!  I think we are a liability running together and should perhaps give it up as a bad job for the sake of our health! lol  Anyhow, Gina phoned her husband for a lift home.  I stayed with her until he arrived then I battled on alone! All in all it was a lovely run, a nice warm DRY evening but not too hot with a nice cooling breeze! I ran 6.10 miles and my average pace was 8.52 min/miles.  Better than my recent runs so I'm chuffed with that! You can view it here!

Well, that's it now for running - I'm tapering for the rest of the week so I have fresh legs on Sunday for Fleetwood Half Marathon! Yikes! Bring it on!   I'm suffering excited nervousness!

One hour 57 I'm after you!!!

Monday, 20 August 2012

Another mad moment!

On my Marathon training plan for today it stated hill training!  Yikes these always hurt and I have avoided hills since returning from my hols but not tonight!

I ran to my usual hill - conveniently located outside the hospital - and was determined to keep running up and down for the predetermined time, and I did it!  I gritted my teeth and kept on running, I might actually go as far as saying I enjoyed the challenge and I felt like I had achieved something once I had made it home!

You can view my run here! (people probably thought I was an escapee from the hospital!).  I ran up and down the selected hill 5 times plus a hill (up and down!) whilst running there and back!  That makes 7 hills in 57 minutes!

It came ...

Yeah, my Great Scottish Run (Glasgow) half marathon T shirt and number came today! I'm not very impressed with the postie who scrunched up the envelope to shove it through the letter box!  What was wrong with ringing the bell?  -I was in!  

I'm in Blue wave which is apparently the 2nd wave to start, out of 4! Not sure whether to feel excited or daunted! When I entered I couldn't decide whether to order a small or medium t shirt as you never know how the sizes are going to measure up!  Thankfully I decided to err on the side of caution and ordered a medium thinking its better to be too big than too tight.  Luckily I did as I think a small would have been like a straight jacket on me! 

I hope I do Finish with Pride!

I've got Fleetwood Half to survive on Sunday first!  Still no number for that one!  :-(

On another note!  2 weeks after arriving back from my holidays I am back down to my pre-holiday weight!  2 weeks to put on and 2 weeks to take off!  I wish my fitness would return too!

Sunday, 19 August 2012

I must be mad ...

On Friday according to my marathon training plan I was supposed to do a long run of about 20 miles but unfortunately it was raining so I cried off!  Instead I went to the gym and went on the bike. I have been reading about cycling cadence recently and how having a fast cadence will make you faster and use less energy, so I thought I would practise "spinning" at a faster rate.  I tend to favour a low gear and slow pedalling. Anyhow I set the bike on a low effort level of 2 and tried to keep the cadence at above 98 RPM! It felt strange - my legs were going like the clappers! Immediately after this I went on the treadmill and did some speed intervals, then on the rowing machine before finishing with a swim and sauna!

Yesterday I was desperate to get my long run done, and was delighted to see that it was dry when I got up in the morning! I had my weetabix, got changed into my running gear!  I was dismayed to discover that my Garmin hadn't been charging and was out of power!  OH no, how was I going to manage 20 miles without the encouragement of my friend?!  I used the next best thing - runkeeper on my i-phone.  Not quite the same as I can't look at it as and when I want but need to wait for it to tell me how I am doing after each mile!

Anyway, off I went with Runkeeper set and some gels and energy tablets in my running belt and armed with a water bottle.  All was going well until at 3 miles in it started to rain, at 5 miles it became torrential and at 6 miles the wind joined in!  By 10 miles I was contemplating quitting and ringing home for a lift back!  However, by this time I was absolutely drenched (you only get wet once!) and things couldn't get any worse so I ploughed on!  Or so I thought ... things did in fact go from bad to worse ...  the roads started to flood and in places I was ankle deep in water!  My feet must have weighed twice their usual weight!  I was starting to get tired, demoralized and generally fed up when the rain decided to stop!  I had run about 14 miles and kept telling myself I only had 10K to go! Once the rain stopped I became aware just how wet I was!  My feet were squelching and I looked like an entrant in a wet T shirt competition - not a good look! By 17 miles my legs were starting to become tired, sore and cramping and I got slower and slower.  By mile 18 the will had left my body and it was all I could do to walk the remaining 2 miles home! I now know what hitting the wall is all about!  By the time I got home I was so tired and sore all I wanted to do was cry! It was only once I got home I realised I hadn't actually had any of my energy gels - hence the state I was in - my body was obviously so depleted of everything it gave up!  I eagerly downed a chocolate recovery drink and then staggered up stairs for a shower. OUCH!  as the water sprayed my body I felt like I was being bombarded with shards of glass - it was very painful!  I got out the shower and inspected my skin!  It looked like I had enjoyed a morning in Mr Grey's red room of pain!  I had welts on my body in all the places my clothes met my skin - around my neckline, around my upper arms, under my bra straps, under my knickers, at the waist and at my knees!  I was a mess and very sore! I have NEVER experienced any chaffing before and then to suffer to this extreme was unbelievable! Next time I will give running in the rain a miss AND religiously consume energy gels whilst running long runs! We live and learn! You can view this painful experience here! 

Today is a recovery day - my muscles are OK and I have no aches or pains just stinging and tenderness from the sores that are looking even more red and angry today!

A week today is my next half marathon race at Fleetwood ...

Bring it on!

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Run Bike Run!

Yesterday I decided that in order to improve my dire running times it was time I went back to basics! So I ditched my i-pod and instead headed out the door with nothing blaring down by ears so I could tune in to my body without any distractions!  I concentrated on my running style and cadence, and without music deafening me I could hear my trainers pounding the pavement and my heavy breathing - enabling me to change the way I run to reduce these sounds! You get many bad habits by not thinking about these things! It was a warm morning but I managed to run 4.33 miles at an average 8.59 min/mile pace! At last I managed to get under 9 - something I have struggled to do since my holidays ruined my fitness! 

Today, after being inspired by the Brownlee Brothers during the Olympics I decided to give a Duathlon a go! I'm a useless swimmer so a Triathlon is out the question!  

Anyhow, I got my cycling stuff ready - helmet, gloves, glasses and shoes and positioned them next to my bike in the garage and set off on my run.  Again I ran without music so I could concentrate on my technique. It was a very hot morning and very, very windy! I ran 2.5 miles and was chuffed with my average pace of 8.39 min/mile. I got back home very hot and sweaty and downed a drink of water before changing my shoes - much trickier than I thought when you have laces to negotiate when you are pouring with sweat and heavy breathing! The faster I tried to go the worse I got -it took me 3 minutes to have a drink, change shoes, get my helmet and gloves on! Not a good transition but I can only get better! I was off! When I'd been running I had realised it was windy but hadn't realised just how windy it was until I was being blown all over the shop on my skinny wheels! It was like having a competition with a ginormous hairdryer - it was very warm wind! 
I didn't cycle as far as I had planned as I didn't feel safe with the high winds but I think this was probably a wise move in hindsight! Once home again, another quick change of shoes (actually not so quick - another 3 minutes!) and I was on my way again for the final leg of my challenge!  My legs felt like lead and I did wonder if I would be able to keep on running for the full distance.  Thankfully after the initial shock to the system I started to feel slightly better but it was still awesomely difficult! I was delighted to see my house come into view for the 2nd time! My second run was at a much slower pace and I wasn't surprised to see my average  pace was only 9.31 minute mile! Although it was an extremely grueling workout I will give it another go in a few days time when I have forgotten the pain!  I have renewed respect for Triathletes and how fit these people must be! You can view my first duathlon here.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Why ... oh why?

I really don't know what is going on with my body, but I am fed up of it! It took just over a year of hard work and determination before I eventually started to get a faster running pace then in the space of 2 weeks (whilst on holiday) I'm back to square one! My biggest regret is not packing my trainers and keeping up with the training!

What I don't understand is ... on my first day back from my holidays I expected to run badly after 2 weeks of no exercise and excessive food and drink and was delighted that I ran at the same pace as I was doing before the holiday, BUT ever since that first run I have really struggled and have only managed slow! 

Less than 2 weeks until my next half marathon - its going to be a disappointment!

Tonight's run can be seen here!

Saturday, 11 August 2012

I Ran ... and survived!

After all the worry and panic I actually DID run today!  It was short and slow but a run anyway and without any side effects!   I feel better for having done it and I didn't look at my pace or distance once whilst I was running!  We caught up on the gossip and quenched our thirst at the end of our run by having a visit to Costa and I enjoyed an iced lemonade! That's the way to do it! 

It feels good to be back!

View my run here!

Time to bounce back ...?

OK I woke up this morning and knew the time had come! It's time I hit the streets again and get back some running confidence!  I've been using every excuse in the book why I can't or shouldn't run but in reality I'm scared! What's the problem ...? Scared of failing (again), scared of feeling ill (again), scared something disastrous will happen, scared that I won't be able to run anymore, scared to admit that I'd lost all motivation to run!

Thursday it was the ironing that kept me from trying!
Yesterday it was the sun and my bike!

So here goes!  I've given myself a good talking too!  

I CAN run, I WILL run!

I have wallowed for long enough! I have cried, moped, vented, blogged about THAT diastrous run and now it's time to move on and bounce back, put it behind me and think about how far I have come since starting running 15 months ago! The experts say "find something positive that came out of it to help you get over it!". mmmmmmmmm tricky one!  I can't find any positive! I have analysed what happened that day, compared everything to previous runs and I'm still struggling to find a concrete reason why it happened and anything positive about it!

Maybe.... the positive could be
  • noone I knew saw me walking home? 
  • I made it home?
  • I didn't actually die, I just felt like I was going to?
actually lets go for:
  • I have learnt a valuable lesson!  NEVER run after eating a huge meal!
The experts also say  "Use disappointment to fuel your next success." 


Well, I have decided... I am going to become process focused rather than outcome focused for my next few runs and try and have some fun.  I'm going to try and forget about times, speed and  distance, instead I will focus on the pleasure of running, the company I'm with and just enjoy the scenery and all!!  

I will keep in mind that running is part of a healthy lifestyle; it can make you feel stronger, happier and saner. (Is that possibile?!)

SO 2 days have passed and I've arranged to meet Vicky - my original running buddy who moved away, but is back for the weekend - and is willing to run with me at a gentle pace to get me going again (she says!).

So here goes - no getting out of it now!  Vicky is waiting!  I will let you know how I get on!


Friday, 10 August 2012

Beautiful sunny day for a ... bike ride!

I woke up this morning with every intention of going for a run BUT the sun was shining and my bike was calling and I couldn't resist!

I made some lunch and packed my bags and I was off - with absolutely no idea where I was heading.

After I had ridden for a couple of miles I saw a "Lancashire Cycle-way" sign and decided to follow it to see where I ended up.  It took me on lovely quiet country roads and I really enjoyed it.  However, after I had followed the signs going south for about 20 miles I started to wonder where I would end up so when I next saw a sign post for a town I knew I turned off towards it!  I ended up doing 39.20 miles and really enjoyed it although it was very, very hot and I ran out of water!   View my ride here

When I got home I Googled to see where the Cycleway went - good job I didn't stay on it - it is 260 miles long!  Slightly further than a day trip!


Thursday, 9 August 2012

Day of rest!

After yesterday's disastrous run I didn't have the heart, energy or inclination to run today!

Instead I stood and ironed for 5 hours! My husband gets the gold medal for wearing the most clothes on holiday! 

After putting away my piles of clothes I ventured into the garden with my book ... and relaxed!

As I was feeling slightly better this evening I went to Pilates and had a good stretch! 

Fingers crossed I still feel good tomorrow and I will try to run!

Road trip to the Dentist and my worst run...EVER!

I was too ill and depressed to blog about my running experience yesterday, but as I have now pulled myself together slightly I will share it with you, but first I will set the scene of the day as it panned out before disaster struck!

I got up fairly early at 7am (it is school holidays so there is no need for this!) after tossing and turning since 5am.  My daughter and I both had dentist appointments in Penrith (Some 28 miles away!) -  in the 18 years since moving here I have been unable to secure a place at a local dentist  so twice a year we have to endure the 56 mile round trip for the pleasure of a check-up! The good old NHS - providing such a marvelous service.  After a check-up followed by a scale and polish we met my Mum (who also lives in Penrith) to do a bit of shopping, believe me this is a near impossibility in a place like Penrith, then we went for lunch in a small Bistro type cafe.  

After perusing the menu all thoughts of healthy eating and detoxing after my holiday went out the window and I ordered a chicken and bacon club sandwich with garlic mayonnaise served with chunky chips, salad and coleslaw and after clearing my plate (would be rude not to!) I washed it all down with two large cappuccino's served with fudge. Quite some time later I waddled out of there feeling over stuffed and extremely bloated - but boy it was good at the time! After relaxing at my Mum's and letting my food settle we headed back home arriving back at around 4.30pm. Just enough time to sort out some washing and ironing before heading out the door again - but this time for a run!

I was meeting my running buddy Gina at 6pm.  It was another nice sunny day (highly unusual!) and this time I ensured I wore suitable attire and took a water bottle with me. We set off and after about half a mile we hit our first hill (the downside of living in the Lake District!). This was absolute torture - my legs felt like lead and my stomach gurgled and churned and as an act of rebellion sent garlic mayonnaise vapors up through my throat into my mouth, by the time I reached the top of the hill I felt thoroughly nauseous. But with mind over matter I soldiered on ... it got harder and harder to keep up with Gina, even when she slowed her pace. After 3 miles I started to feel dizzy and knew there was no way on this earth was I going to complete and survive the 6 mile route planned, so on approaching a path that would provide me with an escape route home I told Gina I was abandoning her and going back.  
I said I would have a gentle jog home, but when I became so embarrassingly slow I started to walk.  I felt like I was underwater, sounds and sights were distorted and I did wonder whether I would make it back even walking. Luckily I did and had managed to run/walk just over 4 miles!

I grabbed a fresh water bottle and sat down.  All of a sudden I became over overwhelmingly hot and extremely dizzy and my chest got tighter and tighter until I was struggling to breath.  I don't suffer from Asthma so I can only imagine that an Asthma attack would feel similar.  I honestly thought I was going to lose conscientiousness and started to get anxious - not helpful in the given situation. My husband started wafting me with a newspaper to cool me down and after a couple of minutes the attack subsided leaving me with just the tightness in my chest. Once I was feeling slightly better I struggled upstairs for a shower and then retreated to the sofa for the rest of the evening.  I couldn't face any food and was absolutely exhausted.  I kept drifting in and out of sleep whilst watching the super fit Olympians on telly - making me feel even more of a failure! Eventually I gave in and went to bed and being melodramatic I did wonder whether I would ever wake up!

I had a restless night again, and eventually at 7am I decided to get up.  I stuck one leg out of bed, then the other before pushing myself up onto my feet!  I assessed my body's reactions ... head felt OK, chest was slightly tight, stomach still gurgling, legs achy but I felt 100% better than last night!

I have googled and analysed my symptoms - a dangerous thing to do I know - and have come to the conclusion that I either ran on too full a stomach or my body was fighting bacteria that had got into my bloodstream during the scale and polish at the dentist and couldn't cope with doing that and exercising. One to remember for the future!

I'm not sure what I will do today exercise wise - I will bide my time and see how I feel later!

I going to put the whole awful experience behind me and not let it mess with my confidence - after all I have a half marathon to run in less than 3 weeks. YIKES!

You can view this awful experience here! 

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

I survived today's run and only 60 days until my first Marathon!

After my 2 weeks holiday in Turkey I went for a run this morning!  After spending 2 weeks in extreme heat I had it in my head that Britain is cold ... Oh I got it so wrong this morning!

I headed out the door with long pants on and no water!  OMG it was hot and hardwork!  I hadn't run in 15 days and was feeling slightly daunted about the pain that lay ahead since I managed to put on 5.5 pounds in 2 weeks by pure piggerism and slobbishness!!  I was worried all my previous hard work would have been wasted and my pace would be back down BUT I was pleasantly surprised that I managed 5 miles at a pace of 8.55 min/mile compared with 
8.37 min/mile the day before I went - so not too much slower!  Perhaps if I had worn more suitable clothing and I had taken a drink I might have managed the same pace!

Maybe participating in the hotels Aqua aerobics twice a day helped me maintain some fitness or my legs were just fresh, frustrated and ready to go!

To view today's run click here!

Now moving swiftly onto the next chapter in my life ... my first ever marathon is getting closer - only 60 days to go! But before that I have 3 half marathons to run, the first being in 3 weeks time at Fleetwood so need to keep the training going to get the PB I'm chasing of a sub1 hour 57 minutes which is a pace of 8:55, same as today's pace! Just need to maintain it now for 13 miles! 

YEAH! My replacement came!  Happy Bunny!
Today has been a very exciting day for me ... first the postman delivered 2 things which made me smile.  My Great North Run number and timing chip AND my replacement Garmin watch after the other one (which I only got at Christmas!) went faulty on me just before my holidays!  I have felt lost without it - but the timing was perfect - with being on holiday I wasn't without it long and Wiggle were fabulous about the exchange - no problems at all! Can't wait to use it tomorrow! :-)

 Then there has been the excitement of the triathlon and cycling in the Olympics!  God it inspired me to definitely give a duathlon a go sometime and later this week I am going to combine cycling with my running training just to see what it feels like running after cycling!  I bet its a strange sensation!

Last year in the GNR I started in white Zone G, this year I have advanced to Orange Zone D, so perhaps I won't be competing with banana's and sharks for space this time! Bring it on!

It's strange that this is the last of 3 half marathons I have entered and its the only one I have received a number for!

Now it's time for excessive exercise, detox and diet!

Well I'm back!

After 2 weeks in gloriously hot weather doing not very much exercise and eating and drinking to excess I am back on the programme today...

I will let you know how I get on!