It’s been a while!

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So here we are nearly two years on…. I’ve since run one half marathon and know that that will be my last long distance run.  I’ve kept up running fairly regularly, although had a bit of a break last year when my diet and exercise went a little off the rails.

So here I am on a new health drive, running again and I’ve started yoga and trying to eat as clean a diet as I can. I’m going to be posting recipes here that I’ve tried so I can keep a record of what is working and log my culinary experiments!



A week of new learnings

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Well it’s been an eventful first week back in the routine.  The 6.30am alarm call on Monday morning was as painful as expected after two weeks of lie-ins and lazy days.

I completed my second full week of training: 1 threshold run – 3 x 10 minutes of running at 80-85% effort; 3 x 10 minutes of the dreaded hills and a 60 minute long run on Saturday.  And thanks to the trainer running the programme I have learned three new things that have helped my running.  They are only simple things but it definitely makes a big difference to how I train.

1. Posture

I’ve always thought that it’s important to stay as upright as possible while running but apparently leaning slightly forward at the hips is best. And I agree that it seems to help up the pace a little.

2. Hills work

Proving the ‘no pain no gain’ theory, the hill training is definitely having a speedy impact on my fitness levels (and also on the size of my calf muscles!)

3. Breathing

Now I know it seems obvious but having read this blog post by Trainer George Anderson who devised the programme I follow, I have something else to focus on.  It is amazing how much difference it makes if you get to a point in a run where you feel out of breath and not coping well – just focusing on the rhythm he suggests brings it all back under control.

Apart from running….

The week has been fairly busy getting back into the swing of work but ended with a great day – a mini school reunion with 16 old school friends at Soho House in London. We had a fantastic day of laughter, memories and catching up on each other’s news. I had gone with the intention of returning home on the 4.00 train.. but finally managed to get on one at 8.45pm and had to get a taxi home, leavening my car at the station.

So this week’s long run was a run into Bath to collect the car on Saturday morning.  Jess’ programme called for 6-7 miles and mine 60 minutes.  i mapped a nice route into Bath which came out at 7 miles so we set off in the pouring rain and freezing wind and reached the car in 1hr 6 mins and 6.5 miles.  When I set off I was really regretting the decision to stay later and drink more wine, but we had a great run which I really enjoyed and felt great for having done it.

And I wouldn’t have missed my extended time with my old mates for anything.

Happy New Year!

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A bit cliched I know, but I thought I would post about what my goals for the year are. I follow quite a few running blogs and most have been posting a recap of their year in running.  Mine has been spectacularly uneventful so I thought I wouldn’t bother with one of those. But a couple of things I have taken away from 2012…. I should have given myself more of a break from training after the NY marathon. I thought having the Bath Half Marathon booked in in March would keep me running but the reality was that I wasn’t really committed to the training and thought that just by doing the long runs every week I would be fine.  I did manage the Half – my legs felt fine at the end but I didn’t really enjoy it very much (mainly because it was too hot!) and my time was a whole 10 minutes slower than the year before.   I think now having studied the programme I am following this time, and based on some other things I have done this year, I understand a bit more about what will make me a better runner.

Simply put, in my training programme George Anderson says: “Running isn’t the only way of getting better at running.”  The programme includes body conditioning and having followed a programme in the summer to help me get into shape, this is definitely something I need to include more of.  So I am hereby committing to do more of this in 2013 as I know it delivers visible results.  I’m also following Dax Moy’s January Jumpstart.  I’ve followed his programmes before and they REALLY work – if you’re looking to get into shape this year I can thoroughly recommend it.

So, there we have it. Committed to ‘paper’. Will have to do it now in case anyone reads this!

Christmas ham

Christmas ham

After a good few days of lots of great food and wine, I’m looking forward to getting back on track. Bring it on!

What are you committing to do in 2013?

What scares you?

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“Do one thing every day that scares you.” Eleanor Roosevelt

I think I’ve been quite open on here about what scares me in relation to training for this marathon, but I think it’s important in life to do something that pushes you out of your comfort zone, something that scares you.

I ended up running the NY marathon because I wanted a challenge, but initially I was looking for something a little easier, e.g. a trek in Peru. But there is no guarantee that would have been any easier – I might have found trekking every day too arduous, at least with a marathon it was all over in 4 hours and 41 very long minutes.

These 100 mile cycling treks also sound like much too much hard work to me too.  But I suppose it’s what you’re used to.

This time my personal demon is running alone as you will no doubt have gathered by now. The distance doesn’t freak me out quite so much as it did last time.

I don’t know about Eleanor Roosevelt’s idea, but I think every once in a while it’s healthy to push yourself past the limits that you know – whether it be physical or mental, or both.

What challenge are you going to take up?

Orthodontist needed

Fright night





What have I done??

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So it would appear that people think that I’m actually going to do this marathon.  Very scary. I’m going to have to do it now.

I can’t believe that I’m already over half way to my (admittedly modest) fundraising target already – mainly down to the generosity of Winky’s lovely family and friends so far (and of course the wonderful Ann Hirst whose initial donation made me realize that now I have put the information out there, there really is no going back).

I’ve downloaded a training plan which starts in earnest on 1 November and I’m determined to stick to it and get myself as prepared for this marathon as I can be.  I really want to enjoy the experience and if you feel like you can’t do it, you really can’t enjoy it!

I felt fairly prepared for New York and the excitement and the crowds definitely help carry you round, especially for those last painful miles.

This time round I have to get used to running on my own for long periods of time and I remember from last time that those solo training runs when Jess & I couldn’t run together were definitely the hardest.

*cue sad music to tug on Jess’ heartstrings and make her change her mind*

(Just click here, you awesome sub 2-hour half-marathoner. You know you want to really).

What a feeling!

I will be posting about my training, not because I think you will find it interesting.  It certainly won’t’ be. But more to hold myself accountable.

Hello world!

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Welcome to my blog. I ran the NYC marathon in November 2011 with my friend and running buddy Jess and  I’ve been blogging for about 18 months over on where I wrote about our journey to New York, the trials and tribulations training and fundraising for the fabulous charity Breast Cancer Campaign.

But now that journey is over I thought it was time to start a fresh new blog about my on-going quest to stay fit & healthy and balance all of that with a family and running a business. So here goes!