28 Feb 2013

Last Day of the February Challenge...

...and my friend Jane and I realized we've failed miserably with our challenge. We've both had pretty brilliant months, training wise, but challenge wise it's been rubbish! Looking back we've realized that having burpees as a challenge isn't very easy when you live in shared accomodation - they're just not very easy to do quietly on your room.

But, why give up on challenges just because you've failed once??! I have decided to try a March Challenge, with tricep push ups! I have rubbish triceps so it feels like a suitable challenge. Plust hey're dead easy to do even in a tiny rented room in east London....

27 Feb 2013

Treadmill Pyramid Intervals

A while ago Triathlete Europe tweeted about how to make the most out of your treadmill workout. One workout they suggested was a form of pyramid intervals, in the format of 1-2-3-2-1-1-2-3-2-1 with equal rest inbetween, and that's the workout I decided to do today.

I started with a 6 minute long warm up and then I kicked off my intervals. The article suggested the pace should be 'hard' so I cranked the speed up to 14.5 kilometres per hour, or 4.07 minutes per kilometre. The first minute was fine ('Is it already over?! Oh!') and during the first rest I did question if the rest really should be as long as the previous interval but during the 3rd interval at a, for me, high speed I definitely started to agreee with the length of the rest.The first five intervals felt pretty good and the last five weren't too bad either (at least not in restrospect....) but I had to work to complete the session and focus on a good technique towards the end of the intervals. I finished off the session with a few progressive kilometres and by the time I was done I was suitably tired and sweaty.

After my running I did 3x200metres front crawl, focusing on technique, and although swimming still isn't my forte I did notice that I have become a better swimmer in the last few months (even if it doesn't feel like it!). Maybe there is hope, after all...

How's That Blood Pressure?!

For a few years now I've been sitting on my incredibly high 'I run marathon' horse, telling my hypertensive dad how he should start exercising again, eat better and lose some weight. Because surely if he did all that his blood pressure would settle somewhere nice and low and he wouldn't have to take as much medications. I have also been boasting high and low about how MY bloodpressure is nice and low (a bit too low at times), how I don't have any illnesses (I used to boast about no allergies/intolerances either, then it turned out gluten is my enemy....) and that yes I work a lot but that's fine because I don't get stressed or overworked.

Fast forward to yesterday, and I was at my GP's for a general check up and renewal of my contraceptive pill prescription. I hurried over to the surgery after an excellent study day, feeling all sorts of positive and buzzing with ideas for work. As usually I was 15 minutes early so I got to relax with a magazine until Dr Dhillon was ready to see me.

As the last patient of the day, and a fit and healthy 27-year-old, I'm sure Dr Dhillon expected a 5 minute consultation, and then hometime. After all, that's what I expected. After the initial chit chat Dr Dhillon measured my blood pressure and gave me 'the look'. As a nurse I know 'the look' well, because I'm sure I give it to patients too. It's that look of 'Oh bummer, this isn't all that good'. My blood pressure was a whooping 155/90, as opposed to last years 115/69. After three more measurements Dr Dhillon and I both had to accept that yes, I am indeed hypertensive. At 27. As a non-smoker. Despite eating well and exercising. Despite not being stres...oh wait! Thinking back of my average of 8 hours of overtime a week (since November) and never knowing when I'm going to finish when I get to work in the mornings, the headaches I've been having (which I've blamed at the air condition at work), the fatigue I've been feeling, my OCD Type A personality. Yup, I might just be a poster girl for stress!

So, what happens now? Well, I'm told to stress and work less, I've had to stop my contraceptive pill due to the increased risk of strokes(!), my blood pressure is being monitored and they're taking half my blood for various tests. For someone who's had one hospital admission in 27 years (appendicitis back in 2003) it's pretty scary to realize that you're neither immortal nor invincible....and I do hope that all you people out there take care of yourself (and your blood pressure) and don't stress yourself out. You only have one life, after all....value it!

26 Feb 2013

Gym vs Facebook

We all know one of them. You know, the kid of person that tells everyone on Facebook about every workout they've ever done. Quite often I wonder how they even have time to train, with all the photos, check-ins and statuses, not to mention texting before, during and after classes.

The gym for me is a bit of  mobile free zone, unless I'm on call. Dare to be uncontactable for an hour or two, and dare to train only for your own sake -  and not to tell Facebook about it.

Greatness is for All of Us

Damn right you are, Nike.

25 Feb 2013

Walk Like An Octogenarian.

Yup, that's me today. You know when you think 'Oh what do those PT/Coach types really know??!'. Well, I can tell you that they know how to make you ache in pretty much every muscles you have. I mean, I think I'm pretty fit. I lift weights. I can easily pull off a 25k run. Did someone mention 2h spiningclasses?! Yup, I can do that too. But make me do a 60 minute boot camp session, using only your body weight, and I walk like an arthritic ridden octogenarian.

Considering my current state it was a good thing that I got up at the crack of dawn and did a body pump class before I'd realized how sore I was, and that I'd already planned to run home from work.... Now I'm planted in the sofa, wrapped up in my electrical blanket, drinking Yogi Choco Tea. Let's not get into how I got a massive bump on the top of my head while practising back stroke yesterday - I've already been ridiculed enough at work!

Word of the Day

24 Feb 2013

Sunday Boot Camp

CrossFit inspired Boot Camp. Burpees. Push Ups. Box Jumps. Sprints. Coach Karl guided/pushed us through a tough and intense but varied session, and despite it being blistering cold it felt great to be outdoors. Great to have some lactic acid flowing through my muscles, to taste blood and to have someone encourage you to give that little bit extra. Coack K kept tweaking our technique - reminding us to engage our core muscles, keep our posture, push our hips forward when sprinting and not rush through any of the exercises (even when we did them on time).

After the boot camp ended I ran home from Southwark but despite running across Tower Bridge home, which I absolutely love, I didn't really enjoy my run. I felt cold and had a strong head wind the whole way. Running wise it was alright, but I can't say it was pleasurable or memorable.

Training wise this week has been a bit so and so.  Mediocre. One of those weeks that you aren't really happy with but are oh so important in your marathon training.

23 Feb 2013

Friendly Running

Today I went running with my friend Andy, a self proclaimed non-runner who has signed up for a 15k race, hence needing a bit of coaching on how to run longer than 5k. One of my sisters is the same, she doesn't call herself a runner as she doesn't run to race and only runs to keep fit.

Do you have to run to race to be a runner? Is there some sort of specific equipment required to be a 'proper' runner? A special mind set? Do you have to follow a strict running regime? I definitely don't think so, for me a runner is somone who runs. We all have different goals with out running, but whatever your goal is you're a runner as long as you lace up your shoes and go running.

Andy and I did 12k today, and I'm confident he'll run his 15k in style. I added on a another 6k by running home and all of a sudden I had done an impromptu semi-long run. A lovely run, with a lovely friend, now that's quality of life.

I Heart Whole Foods

22 Feb 2013

Someone Who is Busier Than You is Running Right Now

Earlier today I read about Jeanna being in a rush so she decided to do run time effective hill interval session. Hill intervals are not only time effective, they're also give great results. Another very time effective interval session is 'Björgen intervals',  as favoured by amazing skier Marit Björgen. The format is simple, 4x4 minutes, but don't let that fool you - these babies are hard! You see, they're V02 max intervals meaning that you'll spend four minutes running at roughly 90-95% of your max pulse. But for time efficiency, they're great! With a five minute wam up, three two minute active rests between the intervals and a three minute cool down you can have the session done in 30 minutes - is that time effective or what?! Some people will advocate a three minute rest inbetween the intervals, but that's up to you. If you really do manage to push your heart rate up to 95% you might need the three minute rest.

After my Body Pump class today I ran that exact interval session, except that I added on 4x2 minute intervals in a little bit higher pace but even with cool down I was still done within 45 minutes. The legs felt pretty good, my breathing was easy and I probably could have pushed myself a little bit harder than I did...but in the same way it was  nice to run a good hard session and still feel strong. Did I feel like I hit 95% of my maximum heart rate? No, but I probably was hovering around 90%.  A heart rate monitor is definitely on the top of my 'to buy'-list!

Sometimes V02 max intervals can be a bit tricky, as it's about finding a pace which you can hold for four minutes yet you should be proper tired by the end of each interval and that balance can be hard to find. Some people will run with a heart rate monitor (the absolute best way to do it, but then you also need to know your max pulse) but if you don't you'll just have to go on feel and percieved exertion. It's a great workout regardless, and no matter how busy you are you should be able to fit in a 30 minute run!

Good Technique

Today I'm having a day off, which is an absolute treat. I decided to go 'gym hopping', which means I go and try and new gym in London. The gym chain I'm a member of have a number of gym spread out over London and today I went to the Camden branch as I also wanted to hit Whole Foods.

 I had set my eyes on doing a Body Pump class and some interval running and the club had a 1pm class - perfect! I always set up my gear pretty close to the instructor as I want to see and hear all the instructions. In front of me was a lady who's technique overall wasn't that bad but she had a very poor squatting technique. Instead of bending her knees she kind of bent in the waist instead, hence not getting the most (anything?!) out of the exercise. The instructor was fairly on the ball with the technique, even if she wasn't nearly as good as my favourite instructor at my home gym, Roo, is, but she seemed to miss this lady totally. Poor technique isn't only dangerous, it also means all your training is a bit of a waste....

Now what does a good squat look like? I am no instructor or expert by any means but this is how I've learnt to do a squat. Bend your knees, like you're sitting down on a chair. Stick your bum out, keep your chest up and keep your weight on your heels. Squat down until the back of your thighs is level with your knees but make sure you can still see your toes, otherwise you're putting a lot of strain on your knees.

I think that the video below demonstraes a good squat

21 Feb 2013

Inspirational People

I love an inspiring story, especially when you're cold, tired and feel like training is going nowhere. Triathletes inspire me the most, along with ultra runners. These people push themselves to the max, for hours at a time, and make you believe the unbelievable. Them pushing their limits make you feel like you can push yours.

One especially inspiring person for me is Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee. He won the Olympic gold in triathlon after having had a torn Achilles tendon earlier in the year. Instead of giving up and sitting around waiting for the injury to heal he decided to take matters into his own hands. He started using the public pool for his rehab water running but as it was very crowded he built his own pool in his front garden, to stay in shape while injured. Before the Olympics he only got 6 weeks 'proper' training but still fought his way to an Olympic gold.

If Alistair Brownlee can manage an Olympic gold with a less than ideal preparations then surely the rest of us can manage to reach out more moderate goals?! Don't give up or give in but fight your way back - even if it means you have to take a detour!

19 Feb 2013

Favourite London Running Haunts Pt 2

Tower Bridge. I have lived in London for years now and yet it never fails to take my breath away. I still remember the first time I ran across it and every now and then I divert from my normal routes to pop over it.

 Running over Tower Bridge is often a crowded story, with Spanish tourists everywhere but if you manage to time it right you can have a beautiful run over the bridge, along the Southbank and onwards towards Battersea Power Station. On the way west you'll also pass many of London's sights - tourist running at its best!

Peanut Butter

I'm currently trying to broaden my horizons and try new things regarding food - get mysef out of this rut I seem to be stuck in. I want to have a dabble with paleo food, and see why everyone is raving about raw food. The other day I went and got myself some peanut butter the other day, because you know, it's meant to be good for you. But how do you really use it? Do you whack it on a sandwhich? Chuck it in a smoothie? A quick google tells me I can do delicious peanut butter cookies, but somehow I don't think they fit under the 'healthy' label. I also think I got the wrong sort of peanut butter, as mine is crunchy and salted while I see people recommending the smooth and unsalted version. Maybe I'll have to do some baking for the housemates this weekend...I do think those cookies would be very healthy for the soul!

18 Feb 2013

Base Training

Today I've spent 2 hours at awesome BOOM! Cycle in Shoreditch, being drilled by ex-pro cyclist Mark and semi-pro cyclist Martin. The first hour Martin took us through an hour of base training (read more here). Now on the paper it sounds easy, base training, but in reality - not so much! You'd think it's easy holding back and staying in the aerobic zone but, as Martin so well pointed out, it takes almost as much discipline to hold oneself back as it does to push oneself hard.  It's hard to do on your own, or to find places where you can find classes that focuses on base training. Today we dedicated the first hour to aerobic endurance, spending an hour firmly working with 70-80% of maximum heart rate. The second hour Mark took us through four climbs and four 'burns' where we pushed the anaerobic threshold and we all left the studio whipped into (slightly) better shape.

My ow performance? Well, considering how much I've asked of my body the last 6 days, I'm very pleased. The base training hour felt great and most of the second hour too. I might not have had as much 'juice' in my legs as I'd wanted to but I feel very satisfied with my efforts.

Now I'm recovering in the sofa, watching rubbish telly and eating all the food. Maybe not all the food, but a lot. Today's recommendation from yours truly is the Dark Chocolate dessert from Alpro - simply delicious!

17 Feb 2013

'Aren't You a Little Obsessed?'

Sometimes regular exercise/training seems to really annoy people.  Words like 'obsessed' are being tossed around, because surely no one trains so much without being obsessed. It seems like training/exercising isn't really allowed to be a hobby. You're allowed to hit the gym to lose weight or shape up, but you shouldn't like it, and you shouldn't do it too often. If  you do, then surely you're obsessed. With this reasoning then everything that you like to do on a regular basis is an obsession?! Or can the word only be used when describing regular exercising?

I like exercising. Running is my hobby, cycling makes me happy, swimming is my challenge and lifting weights is an accomplishment. All these things keep me fit and healthy, they make me better equipped to deal with my everyday life, reduces stress levels and boost my immunesystem. Is that being obsessed, or being dedicated to living the best life you can? You tell me.

Race Pace

My goal for the Greater Manchester Marathon is to do another marathon in less than 4 hours. This means running every one of the 42.2 kilometres at a pace of 5 minutes and 37 seconds - or preferably a little bit faster than that. My ideal race pace for this race is 5 minutes and 25-30 seconds per kilometre, as it would give me some leeway...unlike the Edinburgh marathon last year, when I finished on 3 hours, 59 minutes aaaaaaand....54 seconds!

Today I went out for a long run. The sun was just coming out from behind the clouds as I set off and the weather was pretty lovely.The plan was to go along the River Lea up past Walthamstow marshes and beyond (which basically means running until I see the big IKEA in Edmonton...and then see how I feel). The first 10k's I clocked off at a pretty steady 5.25 pace but as my legs grew a bit tired the pace came down to 5.30-5.35 pace up to the 22k mark. The last 5k's I was pretty tired and the pace was only around 5.45 per kilometre.  All in all it wasn't the greatest long run I've ever produced but considering this weeks training with, among other things, a 2 hour spincycling class, an interval session on the treadmill and one on the spin bike and some good weight sessions I give my legs top marks for holding up the way they did. Race pace didn't feel all that tiring in general, and with less tired legs I think the whole run could've been pretty grand. I ended up doing 27 kilometres, which was what my training plan said, so I can't fault the distance either. And yes, during those last gruelling kilometres I did think 'this is rubbish, why am I doing this??!' but I know that when I'm standing on the starting line in Manchester I'll be thanking myself for not stopping when I'm tired, but stopping when I'm done.

The best part of today's run? The weather. Thank you London for a sunny day, I really needed it. Spring is indeed in the air!

16 Feb 2013

A Simple Pleasure.

I love my bike. It makes me happy, it makes me fit and it takes me places. Today when I cycled to the gym I found myself cycling with a smile on my face, thanks to my bike and the way it makes me feel....Invincible. Immortal. Awesome. Alive. It reminds me of being a child and that first bike ride every spring after the snow had melted, filling you with happiness and hope. A simple, but great, pleasure indeed!

Breakfast of Champions

15 Feb 2013

Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

It's really scary yet equally exciting to step out of your comfort zone, ot at least it is for me. It kind of makes me feel like that first day in school as a kid....worrying about not being cool or good enough. This year I've decided to try two things I've been wanting to try for ages - crossfit & triathlon - and instead of worrying about making a fool of myself I am gonna embrace the challenge and appreciate the butterflies flying around in my tummy. I'm alright with failing, but I want to know that I at least tried - and to fail or succeed I need to be a beginner again, a beginner that as stepped outside of her comfort zone and into the big unknown.

This morning I was firmly stuck in the comfort zone though, running 1 kilometre intervals in the shoes on the picture below. I did five 1k intervals, and finished off with two 400m sprints, and while the legs didn't feel great they didn't feel rubbish either. It wasn't one of those sessions that make me throw my hands up in the air upon finishing, like a boxer having delivered a knock out blow. It was a mediocre session but what it positive that what's now mediocre used to be almost unattainable when I started training for my first marathon. Sometimes it really is the little things, eh.

14 Feb 2013

Push It!

Yesterday I had a day off and decided to do 200 push ups just 'for the fun of it'. Well I can tell you that today it's not much fun....I ache!

13 Feb 2013

Pink is the new Black!

Today I got this almost luminous sports bra from mum and dad Eriksson, by Swedish brand Ullmax.  For someone with a mainly black training wardrobe this is a welcome flash of colour. Pink is surely the new black??!

Eating Disorders Awereness Week

Video from organization beat

This week is Eating Disorder Awareness Week here in the UK, with the aim of raising awareness and increasing knowledge about eating disorders. Many of us know someone who is or has been affected by the disorder, or maybe you have been suffering from an eating disorder yourself. I spent my teenage years plagued by anorexia and I am now passionate about raising awareness not only about eating disorders but mental illness in general.

Earlier today I saw a someone on Twitter saying that 'An eating disorder is a reaction to life. Food and the relationsip with it is the symptom, not the cause' (@JayneMCox). For me personally that is exactly how it was. Losing weight wasn't a goal in itself, but a way to regain control of my life - and then I went on to losing control in every way imaginable. I became a master of tricking and deceiving my family and friends to think that I did eat and managed to squeeze in obsessive exercising at all times of the day. When I was at my worst I didn't even allow myself to use lipbalm as I was afraid that I would gain weight if I swallowed some of it.

For the sake of this story it would be good if I could say 'the turning point for me was....' but I can't do that. I didn't have a specific turning point, just an increasing feeling that I was wasting my life. I wasn't out there enjoying my life as my friends were, but stuck inside my own head with its crazy ideas. Eventually I had to make a decision - to stay in the claws of the illness or fight myself out of those claws. I decided to fight, and although I now like to call myself an eating anorexic instead of saying that I'm completely cured, I'm now taking on the world and all its challenges. I think that with my very prominent Type A personality and overactive thinking I will always have to watch myself not to fall back into any kind of obsessive behaviour but that wont stop me from living my life to the fullest.

12 Feb 2013

Favourite London Running Haunts Pt 1

Regent's Canal. Going from Paddington to Limehouse Basin, connecting Grand Union Canal and the River Thames. It's almost 14k long and the towpaths are very popular with runners and cyclists. The scenery is quite varied and idyllic, linking northwest London with east London.

These pictures are taken near the Old Ford Lock in October 2012.

Today I Like...

..this muesli from Eat Natural. Nuts, seeds, fruit, buckwheat - and a hint of cinnamon! One of my best finds since gluten and I broke up. Delicious.

11 Feb 2013

Comfortably Uncomfortable

The muscle in the picture is comfortably uncomfortable today...you know that niggling soreness that tells you that you've done some sort of movement that you're not used to. For me it's yesterday's back stroke stroke practice that did me in - not that I'm really complaining. I will continue to complain about my sore calves though, ow!

10 Feb 2013


My poor calves have taken a beating today and Friday. My current gait is of a shuffling/limping variety, and every step is sore. Now I've given them a good massage and dressed them in the awesome knee length home knitted socks I got from my sister for my birthday. No pain no gain, eh....

Long Intervals

3 - 1 - 3 - 1. Those were the magic numbers, in today's long interval running session. In marathon training long intervals can be of great help to increase speed and stamina. Often people talk about 1 kilometer intervals as the intervals to do when training for a marathon but seeing that the race you're training for in actually 42.2 kilometer you will benefit greatly from even longer intervals (2-3 kilometers). Today I had set my mind to do two 3 kilometer long intervals and two 1 kilometer long intervals. The long intervals I ran at a pace of 12.5k/h and the shorter at 13k/h, with a 0.5k rest in between them. It was a fairly tough session, my legs felt a bit heavy after the Body Pump session I'd done earlier and my calves were still a bit stiff after Friday's session but I executed the run quite well - and the feeling after a punishing interval session is amazing!

9 Feb 2013

Fat Burner Masterclass

Today I was invited to a Fat Burner Masterclass by the lovely people at BOOM! Cycle in Shoreditch. BOOM! runs plenty of specialty classes, from Performance and Fat Burning Masterclasses to Three Hour Sessions and Hip Hop Cycle, but this one was slightly special as it was being filmed by the BBC as a part of a series they're doing about health, fitness, the weightloss industry, the importance of being skinny and so on. The class was run by Mark Clarke, a previous elite cyclist who's gone via a career in the City back to personal training and creating two certified fitness industry training courses.

Marathon Training in Full Swing

Two blisters. Sore calves. One toe nail about to come off. Yeah, marathon training seem to be in full swing!

8 Feb 2013

Review: Craft Performance Thermal Tights

I have a pair of running tights from Swedish brand Craft that are just to die for. The fit, the breathability, the fabric etc are just perfect but a few years have passed since I bought them and I have forgotten the name of the model, which is rubbish when you want to buy another pair. After having spent an unknown amount of hours googling words such as 'craft', 'running tights', 'no zipper leg' with no success I took to Twitter. Craft contacted me and tried to help me find out the name of my mystery tights - with no luck. While they might not have been able to help me with the mystery tights they instead sent me a spanking new pair of tights, to test and review! The tights they sent me were the Craft Performance Thermal Tights  - and here's what I thought about them:

Bounce Back In Style

After yesterday's slightly disappointing session I wanted to do something hard today, to bounce back in style. The preparation for today's training was a world of difference from yesterday - as I'm on a day off today I had a good lie in, a good breakfast and then I got on my bike to cycle to the West End to do a treadmill run with progressive pace increase. I could have gone to a gym in the East End, but I find the 35-40 minute cycle to be the perfect warm up before a run, not to mention that the sun was out and I wanted to catch some vitamin D.

Once at the gym I got on a secluded treadmill and got going. The plan was to do a one kilometer warm up and then increase the pace every third kilometer until I had done 15 kilometers. The first 10 k's were easy, with the pace only going up to 11.5k/hour. When I hit the 10k mark I increased the pace to 12k/h which isn't very fast even for a Captain Slow like myself but as I'd already done 10k my calves were struggling just a little bit. The two last kilometers, from 13 to 15 k, I ran in 12.5k/hour pace and they were actually a bit painful. I didn't feel like I was dying of tiredness in the way you sometimes do when you do a really tough interval session, but the accumulated distance and the ever increasing pace had taken its toll - even if the speed wasn't great towards the end, it had progressively increased for a fair few kilometers.  I felt tired when I was done but very happy with both the distance and my execution of the session...I did leave it all on the field (treadmill) today!

7 Feb 2013

Pick Yourself Up!

This morning I dragged myself to the gym for my Thursday morning body pump session, after a lousy 4.5 hours sleep and being knackered from yesterday's 14 hour shift (oh the joys of working in operating theatres..), very reluctantly. It was cold, it was raining and I had to make myself a massive cup of to-go-coffee to bring on the tube as I was just too tired even to cycle! As I stumbled into the gym I wished I had stayed in bed and maybe that'd been for the best, but after having had a rest da yesterday I was roaring to get going again, and the morning was the only time I had to exercise. Now, it wasn't a catastrophically bad session, it just wasn't very good one. On the plus side was an added 2.5 kg on both the squat and the lunge track, on the minus side was a badly executed chest track and very tired shoulders during the shoulder track. Oh well, there's now only one thing to do - in the words of famous Swedish cross-country skiier Per Elofsson: Det är bara att bryta ihop, och komma igen! (translation: there's nothing to do but have a big meltdown and then bounce back)

6 Feb 2013

Today, I'm Resting!

We all know we need to rest, but it's not that much fun when you're on a roll with your training. I'm having a complete rest day today, hence not even cycling to work today. I don't know what upsets me the most, having to rest or having to wrestle the London Underground...

5 Feb 2013

Testing testing!

Got these beautiful tights in the mail today, from Swedish brand Craft, to test and review. Stay tuned....

Up Your Game!

I'm not a 'real' weightlifter. I enjoy lifting weights, but not as much as I enjoy running or cycling. When I do weights it's at the moment mainly when I do Body Pump, as it's pretty time effective. I try to load up as much weight as I safely can and still focus on my technique. This morning I decided to try and increase my squat weight, as I've been stuck on 35kg for quite some time now. It's mainly my upper body strength that restricts my leg weight, as I have to clean and press the bar up on my shoulders....and I don't have much upper body strength. Today I added on an extra 2.5kg and actually did manage to clean and press the bar up! 37.5 kg is now my new squat weight and it felt good. Now I only have a 100 squats to do later tonight as a part of my February challenge....

4 Feb 2013

3 Feb 2013

Just Run.

Having been priviliged enough to have company on my last two long slow distance runs I didn't feel all that inspired to go out and run alone this morning. Not to mention that it was 3C, windy and overcast and you can guess how (un)inspired I was. To psyche me up I put on my favourite tights from Craft, plugged in my iPod and set off aiming for at least 15k (my training programme said 8 miles). The first few kilometres I was waiting for the legs to feel tired and heavy, as it's been a while since I've had a rest day (bad, I know) but it just...never happened! Before I knew it I'd done 8k and since I wasn't the least bit tired or cold I decide to carry on. At 11k I still felt fine and perky but I decided to turn around anyway, and not overdo it. The run home was a delight, shuffle kept playing tunes and the legs just did their own thing...and for every step my smile got a bit wider. 2 hours and 7 minutes after I set out I was back home, heaps happier than before my run and 22.6 kilometres richer.  I also realized that this is why I love running - it makes me so god d*mn happy!

2 Feb 2013

Get Your Burpee On!

Second day of the February challenge is done! 40 burpees in the hallway, after coming in from the mornings 22k cycling, 60 minutes Body Pump and 60 minutes spin cycling. They weren't very stylish, and not very easy either for that matter, but at least they're done! I have a bit of a love/hate relationship to burpees - when you're in the process of doing them you feel like death, only to feel pretty great after they're done.... Tomorrow it's back to the squats. Go go go!

Accessory of the Day

The headband. Now, this is not a fashion statement but a necessity for someone who sweats as much as I do. I have them in all kinds of colours and get a slight panic attack if I forget to bring one (sweat in your eyes, ears, nose etc is rubbish. RUBBISH!). For the same reason I also have one of those slightly ridiculous cycling caps under my helmet and an assortment of hats to run in if it's cold. Take that, sweat!

1 Feb 2013

Love a Challenge!

My mate Jane does CrossFit and they do all sorts of challenges. Today Jane challenged me to do their February challenge - 100 squats everyother day, and 40 burpees on the other days. Now, I love a good challenge so today I kicked off with 100 squats. Seeing I'd already done my gym time this morning I ended up squatting in front of the telly, dressed in my flowery flannel jammies.... Tomorrow it's burpee time, bring.it.ON!

If Your Legs Feel Tired...

...wear one of your marathon finisher t-shirts. 6am hill intervals on the treadmill always feel easier in a finisher t-shirt!