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

Monday, 31 December 2012

The last run of 2012!

I have just done my last run of 2012!  It was only 3.3 miles but felt much further - it was wet, cold, windy and horrible - my legs really weren't willing but I did it all the same!

 ... so time to see whether I succeeded with my 2012 miles in 2012 challenge!

I am pleased to report I DID IT! Not just with running but with running, walking and cycling! A couple of months ago I was beginning to doubt whether I would achieve it at all, even with all activities being taken into account but luckily I pulled my finger out and did!

The final mileage was:

Running:  1057.75
Walking: 519.40
Cycling: 459.10
Total for 2012 = 2036.25 miles

If I take ALL activities into account I can add these miles
Swimming: 10.40
Rowing: 14.40

Making a grand total of 2061.05 miles
PLUS 40 hours “non-mileage” exercise such as pilates, steps and circuit training!

I'm chuffed with myself!!

It’s also that time of year to review my fitness resolutions of 2012 and set new ones for 2013.  

How did I get on?  

Did I achieve them all and did I sneak any additional challenges in?

         2012 Highs:
Getting a sub 2 for a Half Marathon.
Finishing my first full Marathon.
Getting a PB for the Keswick to Barrow 40 mile challenge!

        2012 Lows: 
Not getting in on the Ballot for the London Marathon.
Not achieving my goal for a sub 50 minute 10K.
Pulling out of the Fred Whitton four seasons cycling challenge due to hazardous weather. 

These were my goals for 2012, and the outcome of my efforts!

Run another Half Marathon and improve my time substantially! I didn't just run one half marathon I ran a total of 4.  I improved my time by 23 minutes 56 seconds!

Run 2012 miles! I have had a successful running year but still did not manage to run 2012 miles. As well as my 4 Half marathons, I ran 4 x 10K races, a 10 mile race and even completed a full marathon.  I think running 2012 miles was always going to be over ambitious!  

Cycle 2012 miles!  As I concentrated on running and entered many races my cycling was neglected!  I didn't come anywhere near this total!

Complete another Coast to Coast Cycle Challenge! Unfortunately I didn't achieve this as I didn't have the time to train alongside marathon training.

Complete another Three Counties Cycle Challenge and improve my time substantially!  I did do the three counties challenge again but I didn't improve my time.  

Complete the Fred Whitton Four Seasons Cycle Challenge! I had this booked and even received the timing chip and maps but unfortunately the weather was horrendous on the days I was due to do it and with high winds and floods I decided it was too dangerous and not worth the risk!

Finish Keswick to Barrow 40 mile walk in sub 9 hours! I part walked and part ran this and managed to do it in  8 hours and 24 minutes.  

Complete the Wainwright 's Fell Challenge! I didn't achieve this due to my husband needing a knee operation and he was unable to walk any distance for several months. I have reset this goal’s completion date to 3rd may 2017 – my 50th Birthday!

As mentioned earlier I actually ran my first full marathon during 2012 in 4 hours 21 minutes, although this was not on my list of goals!

I have decided that in 2013 I will be focusing my efforts on gaining speed and getting my 10k road time under 50 mins & road half marathon time under 1:50hrs - great to have my target in place and some purpose to my winter running!!

Fitness resolutions for 2013:
Compete in a duathlon.
Experiment with off-road running.
Run another Marathon and improve my time: aim for a sub 4 hour time!
Run a sub 50 minute 10K road race.
Run a sub 1:50 Half Marathon
Compete in a triathlon.
Run 12 races in 12 months.

What worked in 2012:  Following a detailed marathon and half marathon training plan with specific goals in mind. Experimenting with gels and recovery drinks, and finding out what worked for me! Hill Training improved my running stamina.

What didn't work in 2012: Speed training (running), any Cycle training.

Keep Doing: Follow training plans and set goals. Lots of hill training.
Start Doing: Becoming involved with the Tri club!  Start training with them – swimming, circuits, running, Turbo Training, cycling.
Stop Doing: Being negative and comparing myself to others! Making excuses!

Requirements (aims) to successfully accomplish goals for 2013: 
12 minute 500m (20 lengths) swim 
43 minute 18K Cycle 
25 min 5k off bike Run
Under 9 minute mile pace running long distance
Under 8 minute miles over 10k (or shorter) distances.
Retain resting heart rate at around 48 BPM, if goes above 58 REST.
Familiarisation with transition techniques.

My Strengths: Consistent when following training plan and motivated by challenges.
My Weaknesses
Lack of speed in all 3 disciplines for a Triathlon! 
Not confident in my swimming ability. 
No experience with transitions. 
Always “holding” back and not pushing myself 100% during training and races.  Always feel I have more to give at the end but I am reluctant to push too hard in case I overdo it and “hit the wall”. 

Areas to improve: 
Make each training session count! In the past whilst training for running all my runs have tended to be “mediocre” with no differentiation between hard days and easy days. Make a conscious effort to change this! Train more using Heart Rate monitor and identify the training zones each workout corresponds to, ensuring a mix of all zones.  Ensure some workouts are in HR zone 5 to develop speed and power.
Improve swimming technique and speed.  Aim for 2 minutes 25 seconds for 100m front crawl. 
Increase cycle cadence and learn to change gears more appropriately. 
Increase cycling average speed to 15MPH.
Increase road running average pace to 8 min/miles.
Improve skills required to drink and take on energy gels whilst on bike.
Practice transitions. Running with a bike, changing shoes etc

So that's me motivated for another busy year! The new year kicks off tomorrow with Janathon!! This year instead of running every day I am going to run, swim or cycle everyday to fit in with my Triathlon Training.

So all I need to say now is: 

and have fun keeping fit in 2013!!!

Bring on 2013!

Saturday, 29 December 2012

Christmas has been and gone!

Christmas is over for another year ... all that build up and excitement and then bang its gone!

Hey Ho! I have managed to keep exercising over the festive period (determined to get my 2012 miles in!) and even braved the scales today for the first time. I was delighted to have only put on a pound as I feel about a stone heavier!

The Turbo Trainer I got for Christmas (Not the bike!)
For Christmas I got a turbo trainer - so no excuses not to get some cycle training in now! I got a training "Spinervals on the Road DVD" which takes you out on the road with a real trainer.  Its quite good as he tells you what gear to be in and cadence and speed to keep at - the only problem being it is set in America so we are cycling down the wrong side of the road!!!  I have managed to maintain the cadence he tells me to keep but the speed is another problem!  I can't seem to get anywhere near the speed he says - maybe I'm in the wrong gear as I do get confused easily!

3 days of 2012 left - how many miles can I achieve?

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Still undecided!

Its nearly the end of 2012 and I still haven't decided what my goals for 2013 are going to be!

I desperately want to compete in a triathlon, and had the motivation to train hard to make sure I succeeded but then started with the "allergy" to "chlorine" problem.  Unfortunately our local swimming pool has been closed for the last few days and will not open until after Christmas due to maintenance works so I can't even test my "goggles too tight" theory out or try silly looking nose clips. If I can't solve this problem then a Tri will have to be off the radar.

Sometimes I think I am just nervous about this new venture and that I am just looking for a way out! If I had thought this much about doing a marathon I would never have done one so maybe I just need to bite the bullet and think "Sod it!" and enter one - no going back then! 

I know if I don't do one this season I will be very disappointed with myself!  Its the swimming lark that is sapping my confidence! Can I improve my technique, speed up and get good enough in 16 weeks?

I have even bought 2 books from Amazon "The Triathletes Training Diary" and "Your First Triathlon" and these did what they say on the tin and inspired me but there's  still that little voice inside my head that is saying "No, no, no!"

The only races I have planned for 2013 are two 10K races. One in January and one in February, the rest of the year is just a blank! I need to get some more races booked to stay motivated and challenged!

After my 10K race on Saturday I had Sunday as a day off!  Well a day off from running, I was very busy with Christmassy things and then I went to an extremely hard Circuit Training class on Monday night - I enjoyed it at the time but my bum and inner thighs didn't like me for it on Tuesday morning!  However, on Tuesday night for some mad reason I thought it would be a good idea to go out for a run.  It was a mild dry evening and I wanted to make the most of it!  I desperatly needed to destress after a hectic day at work so laced up my trainers and headed out the door for a short run!  However, it felt so good to be out and free and I was enjoying myself so much I ended up running just short of 8 miles.  Although it wasn't a fast run I felt so much better on my return! You can view this run here!

This morning I woke up and struggled to make it down the stairs - my inner thighs and bum cheeks still weren't happy.  However as the day went on they loosened up sufficiently enough for me to brave another circuit training class this evening!  Yes I know, I must be completely bonkers but hey its the last one until 2013 so I thought I would go for it!  My body will be delighted it's the last one - there was lots of groans and creaks from different parts as I attempted lunges, squats, jumps etc!

So one more get up for me and then I am on my Christmas Break!  Time to get organised, clean, shop and ...RUN!  I am still determined to succeed with the 2012 miles in 2012 challenge so no rest for me - I still have a few miles to get in! 

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Last race of the season!

Today I ran the Langdale 10K Christmas Pudding Race.  It was extremely cold and wet but I still managed a PB!

Read all about it here!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Could this be the end?

Well it looks like my triathlon career could be coming to an end before it’s even begun!
I think I am allergic to swimming, water, goggles or chlorine!

Last night I went swimming for the 10th time since deciding to try and improve my front crawl technique in order to get good enough to enter a triathlon.  However, I was so ill after swimming last night I am rapidly going off the idea.

Initially after starting swimming training 10 weeks ago I started to get a slightly stuffy nose afterwards but by the following morning the symptoms had gone. However, after each swimming session these symptoms have got progressively worse and last night they were what I would describe as extreme.  About an hour after coming out the pool I started with a slightly runny nose which progressed on to me sneezing (about 40 times in an hour) and that was closely  followed by an extremely heavy running nose (nearly emptied a box of tissues!) , a headache in my forehead, sore eyes and itchy skin.  I felt like I had been bull-dozed over by a truck.  I took some antihistamine to see whether this would work and after a good nights sleep I woke up symptom free. 

However I cannot possibly go through this every time I go swimming.  I have looked these symptoms up on the internet and surprisingly it appears to be a common condition and  suggestions include antihistamines, decongestants and nose clips as a preventative measure  or nasal sinus rinse to wash the chlorine away after swimming to lessen the irritation. Apparently also having your Goggles on too tight can increase the pressure on your sinuses. 

So, as I am always imprinted with goggle marks and come out the pool looking scary like the face from the film scream I have decided that this may be the problem!  My plan is to play around with my goggles and see if I can loosen them sufficiently without allowing water in and if that fails I have decided I will try taking an antihistamine before swimming and if this doesn’t work I am willing to look a Wally in a nose clip. However, if all this fails I will be giving up triathlons as a bad job and will be concentrating on another goal for 2013!
This saddens me as I finally feel I am slowly improving! I have gone from swimming 100 metres in 6 minutes 43 seconds to swimming 100 meters in 3 minutes 31 seconds!  Still a long way to go but getting better all the time!!!
I am thinking and hoping (fingers and everything else crossed) it might be the goggles as I have never had this problem before, but then again I haven't swam seriously before either for an hour at a time with my head under the water!
Watch this space for an update...

Monday, 10 December 2012

Time to get back into blogging!

A week has passed without me managing to blog! So here is my week in summary!

On Tuesday I went swimming after doing 3 mile interval training on the treadmill.  I felt more confident in the pool, still concentrating on technique rather than speed.  One day I will get faster (I hope!). Whilst I was in the pool there was a female instructor giving another female front crawl technique classes.  I hung around as much as I could to gleam some tips but started getting funny looks so decided I had best do some lengths!  I might look into the price of getting some technique sessions!

On Wednesday I went to Circuits, the previous time I had been it had been exceptionally hard and I had really enjoyed the challenge.  This time I was disappointed.  I'm not sure whether it was just me not being up for it or the session itself! Anyhow I was so frustrated by it I came home and ran 3 miles on the treadmill.

On Thursday I went to Pilate's to have a good stretch - should really do more as I am getting quite inflexible in my old age! I have done no exercise all weekend, unless you count shopping and lurching from pub to pub so tonight I felt the need to run!

I decided I hadn't done any hill reps for a long while and set off running up and down a hill close to my house - I was amazed to discover at the end I had run nearly 6 miles.  I really enjoyed the challenge of the hill! You can view my run here!

I have decided I need some additional motivation in this cold weather so have signed up for the second year running to do the Janathon challenge. The rules can be viewed here. The challenge is to jog (or participate in any exercise), log (the mileage on the running free website) and blog everyday in January! Last year my aim was to run every day in January and to complete a minimum of 100 miles.  I managed this and exceeded my goal by running 158 miles.  You can read how I did it here!

However, in January 2013 I will be following a triathlon training plan, so I am not going to overburden myself with running everyday as well but will aim to run, swim or cycle everyday in January instead. 

My Janathon mileage goal will be 220 miles or more, made up of approximately 80 running miles, 130 cycling miles and 10 swimming miles. The biggest part of this challenge will be finding the time and motivation to blog daily!

Hopefully I will succeed!

Monday, 3 December 2012

I've been a good girl this year ...

Do you think he will deliver?

I was very brave yesterday, bit the bullet and made an attempt to join the serious world of the triathletes swimming sessions. Bookings start being taken at 8pm on a Sunday.  I rang dead on 8pm, and continuously got an engaged tone, after 40 redials I eventually got through at ten past 8 - by then the session was full! 

I was first reserve for tonight's swim if anyone cancelled, but it wasn't to be and I didn't get a place! 

Never mind, there's always next week!  Instead I did a 3 mile run and went to aerobics!

Perhaps I will try my own swimming session tomorrow night!

Sunday, 2 December 2012

I'm just a failure...

Hello everyone, bet you've been wondering where I've been?!  

Nearly 3 weeks without blogging - well here goes for the excuses!  

I'm blaming Blogger! It hasn't been allowing me to write a new post (I have been trying - honest!) although it did although me 2 weeks ago to add a new page and blog when I ran the Brampton to Carlisle run! Very strange - even today it has taken me 14 minutes to connect to write this post!!! (I hope you appreciate the effort!).  I hope it sorts itself out soon and its just the cold getting into its wires!

Enough of blaming Blogger - the rest of my failings are my own doing!

Did I manage the 14 day core challenge?  

Errr.... NO!  I managed the first 4 days then I forgot and then when I remembered I was too busy and then I got so far behind in the challenge I just couldn't be bothered!  So no strong core muscles for me for Christmas!

Did I manage the run naked in November lark?

Errr ... NO! I just couldn't bring myself to run without my Garmin!  Pathetic I know but I NEED to know how many miles I have run, I NEED to know the pace I ran at and I NEED to see the nice little graph and map I get on Garmin connect!  I managed semi-naked - no music and no heart rate monitor - I just couldn't dispense of all gadgets!

So no core and no nakedness - what HAVE I managed to do in my 3 weeks absence?

I have been busy with swimming (still not getting any better!), Steps classes, circuit training, pilates and a little bit of running but not nearly enough which brings me nicely to another challenge! 2012 miles in 2012!  Am I going to succeed with this one? 

I certainly won't just with running!  I might just manage it if I take all my activities into account! 


Running - 59. 2 miles

Cycling - 8 miles

Walking - 16.1 miles

Swimming 3 miles

Total November Miles - 86.3 miles

so the years total is now ...

Running - 988.7 Miles
Biking - 439.2 Miles
Walking - 484.6 Miles 
Cross Trainer  - 14.4 Miles
Swimming -  8.2 Miles 

Total  - 1935.2 Miles

76.8 Miles to do in December if taking all into account but if I am just doing the 3 activities running, cycling and walking I have 99.4 Miles to do, and THAT is what I am aiming for!

I will keep you posted ... IF Blogger will allow me!