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Posted on April 10, 2017

Fitness Update // 9 miles!

fitness update

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I only had two workouts last week. A 3 mile run on Wednesday and a 9 mile run on Friday. Sunday was out for me as I went to watch my boyfriend in a bike race in the morning instead of doing training.

The 3 mile run was harder than it should have been. It felt hard which was annoying, but the 9 mile run felt great. It’s the easiest long run I’ve had yet and my pace was an amazing 10.39 per mile. Which isn’t fast for some, but I was doing about 12 min miles on my pervious long runs! That’s also faster than the pace of my last half marathon, I did that in 10:51 per mile so I’m feel a lot more confident for the half marathon than I was the days running up to this long run.

I was doing intervals on the long run. First of all, I’d run the last 10th of a mile as fast as I could. Then after a couple of miles I’d up the speed every half a mile. It seemed to not only help my overall speed, but it made it seem quicker as rather than thinking ‘5 miles to go’ or whatever, I was just looking towards the next half mile.

I don’t know when my next long run will be now, probably next Friday as I have plans this Friday. Doom on life!

How was your week?

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Posted on April 7, 2017

Fitness clothes

clothing/ running

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Newline are not a brand I’ve heard of before, but they recently contacted me to see if I would be interested in reviewing some of their running kit.

As I have a half marathon coming up, I was happy to accept!

They sent me this tee and tights to try out.

The first thing I must mention is that the sizes run very small. As a size 10/12, I found the large that I ordered to be slightly small on me. I always hate it when companies do small/medium/large instead of standard sizes as you never know what you’re going to get!

That aside, the kit itself was brilliant quality. I love the detail on the pants and the embossed graphic looks fantastic. The material is stretchy and the tights have my favourite thing – a back pocket!

The tee is made from soft cotton and feels great on the skin. It has moisture management to keep you comfortable on those long runs.

Check out their shop, they have some lovely things in plenty of different colours and patterns!

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Posted on April 3, 2017

Fitness Update // 23 mile bike ride

fitness update

fitness update

fitness update

I’ve had a busy week this past week. I was off work and instead of having a load of time to work out and blog, I’ve actually been having a life instead.

I went to London at the start of the week so didn’t get any workouts in until Thursday. I went to the gym and did a 45 minute spin class. On Saturday, I went on a 23 mile bike ride with my boyfriend which wasn’t actually as bad as when he took me on a 10 mile bike ride in October and I almost died. So that was great.

Then on Sunday I went on a run. I had hoped to go further but my legs could not carry me. It was a very slow run. I think my legs must have been tired from the bike ride the day before.

I need to get another long run in this week for the half marathon. I’m getting a bit disheartened about how rubbish my pace has been this time around compared when I last trained for a half marathon. I just don’t have it in my to up my speed. Boo.

How was your week?

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Posted on March 29, 2017

Degustabox March 2017

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Degustabox March 2017

I was so happy to get my Degustabox this month as I was craving some treats! I wasn’t let down when I saw what was inside.

Degustabox March 2017

Cadbury’s Dairy Milk Oreo

I’ve heard so much about this and can’t wait to try the new Oreo delights, especially the peanut butter ones!

£1.49 each

Degustabox March 2017

Weetabix on the go.

To be honest I’m getting fed up of these. I’d rather eat my breakfast than drink it. They’re a good idea but they’ve been featured so many times in Degustabox before!

£1.99 each.

Degustabox March 2017

Westons Cider

I love it when there’s booze in the box! More booze please! These two ciders sound delicious. Pure hopped cider which has a hoppy aroma with well-balanced smooth taste and Caple RD Dry Cider Blend No 5 which is a dry cider matured up to 18 months for a crisp and complex cider.

£1.99

Degustabox March 2017

Heinz Seriously Good Sauces

This tomato and garlic sauce will add a finishing touch to your meals. It’s creamy and smooth and I can’t wait to try it with chicken!

£1.99

Degustabox March 2017

Rebel Kitchen Chocolate Mylk.

I love chocolate milk and this diary free alternative is perfect for lunch boxes.

£1.89

Degustabox March 2017

Maldon Smoked Sea Salt Flakes

I’ve always wanted to try smoked salt and I can’t wait to add this to some of my meals!

£1.50

Degustabox March 2017

Gusto Organic Lemon Energy

This adult soft drink sounds amazing. Sicilian lemons, Amazon guarana, Siberian ginseng and wonder herb astragalus would also make a great mixer for alcohol!

£1.50

Degustabox March 2017

Pipers Crisps

Why do I open this? I ate nearly the whole bag right away. If you’re a fan of salt and vinegar you’ll love these. They’re packed through of flavour and delicious.

£2

Degustabox March 2017

The Jelly Bean Factory

Who doesn’t love jelly beans? I’ve never tried this brand of beans but it’s so fun trying all the flavours.

£1.49

Degustabox March 2017

£onepounders Chocolate Eclairs

Oh my god, chocolate eclairs remind me of childhood! This brand has 65 different types of sweets and chocolates!

£1

Degustabox March 2017

Naturelly

These are a fun and refreshing jelly snack. They’re great for a dessert or sweet treat. They’re suitable for children over 12 months, too. They have no added sugars or sweeteners!

£1.19

Degustabox March 2017

Whitworths

These bars are full of cacao, almonds, coconut, chia seeds, golden flax seeds, quinoa and acai. They’re basically every superfood in a bar!

£1.50

You can get a whopping £7.00 discount, which means the first box will cost £5.99 with the code FAZHX at Degustabox.

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Posted on March 27, 2017

Fitness Update // 8 miles

fitness update

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Things are getting serious now! I’m up to 8 miles on my runs!

This week I went to the gym Tuesday and Thursday after work and did 40 minutes cardio. Friday I ran 8 miles and as usual, it was hard.

I know I keep saying this, but I feel like I forget how hard it is when the run is over until the next time I run and I’m like ‘oh no, this again, why am I doing this to myself?’.

I weigh a stone and a half more than the last time I was doing a half marathon and I can really see the difference in my times and feel the difference running. It’s hard to lug the extra weight around. I’ve not weighed myself in ages but I’m hoping I’ll lose some weight. I just need to get the courage to step on the scale!

I also ran 4 miles on Sunday. It wasn’t the fastest pace, but 20 seconds per mile faster than my last 4 mile run a few weeks ago. So that’s something, I guess.

I’m going to London today, I’m hoping to run 9 miles on Thursday morning when I’m back and then go out for another run across the weekend.

How’s your week been?

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Posted on March 22, 2017

Training plan for my half marathon.

running

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I wrote this post at the start of the month but for some reason it didn’t publish. Doom on WordPress. I still wanted to post it. Since writing this post, I’ve been training and I’m not up to 7 mile runs and I ran my fastest 3 miler in ages last week! There is hope 🙂

 

1st March 2017

I’ve signed up for a half marathon on the 14th May.

I’ve been really struggling running and just had almost 2 weeks off doing any exercise whatsoever.

I am in severe need of training and in an attempt to motivate myself into believing it’s possible to run a half marathon in 2 and a half months, I’ve pulled off my training runs for the one I did two years ago to see if I am on track.

I’m heavier now, which is causing me issues.

At the time I was also going to the gym and doing some interval work on the treadmill. I intend to train similarly for my next half marathon.

Another thing that’s making me not want to run is where I live. I have a massive hill to climb either at the start or the end of my run. I’m going to alternate between having the hill at the end as a cool down and getting in my car and running by the canal. I do need to do some hill runs for my training, but not these type of hills! They’re ridiculous.

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In Feb 2015:

I ran 3 times and was running 3 miles.

In March 2015:

I ran 8 times. The most I ran was 8 miles.

In April 2015:

I ran 7 times. The most I ran was 11 miles.

So these are my goals, basically. It’s 28th Feb as I write this and I am going to go out for a run.

Then over March, I need to increase my distance to 8 miles.

Over April, increase to 11 miles.

It seems a lot more doable when I look at it like this. I’m hoping that through the half marathon training I’ll naturally lose weight. I’m going to eat well but not track and obsess.

Right, I better get ready for a run now.

Wish me luck.

*edit* Just got back from a painful 3-mile run! It took me 35 minutes, so only a few seconds longer than I ran three miles in February 2015. Maybe there is hope?

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Posted on March 20, 2017

Fitness Update // 7 miles

fitness update/ running

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7miles

Had a decent week this week running wise.

On Tuesday morning I went for a 3 mile run before work. I’ve been using these 3 mile runs as a chance to work on my speed and I managed to run 3 miles under 30 mins! It’s the first time I’ve ran that fast in around 18 months. Getting an average speed of less than 10 mins a mile isn’t easy or me, but I did it. I did the first mile in 9 minutes 20 seconds!

I went to the gym on Wednesday, but to be honest it was very half arsed. I was there for about 40 mins and did a bit of spinning and some weights. I just wanted to go home if I’m honest and wasn’t in the mood at all.

On Friday I ran 7 miles. It was hard, windy and kept raining a bit. I averaged 11 min 55 seconds a mile which isn’t great but I’m not focusing on speed, just getting the distance in. IT WAS HARD.

Next week I have to run 8 miles.

Send help.

How was your week?

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Posted on March 17, 2017

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

review/ running

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

I’ve always been very lucky when it comes to trainers. I was sent my last pair at the end of 2014, just in time to train for my half marathon in May 2015. I’ve been wearing them for running and going to the gym for the past few years. A few months ago, I decided to sign up for the half marathon again. A week or so later, I had an email in my inbox asking if I wanted to review a pair of trainers from John Lewis.

Yes. Yes I did.

When I think of John Lewis, I think of makeup, posh pans, perfume and Christmas gift sets. I never would have thought of looking to John Lewis for trainers.

But they sell them.

I was given a selection of trainers to pick from and I decided on the Asics GEL-Kayano 23 Women’s Running Shoes in purple/coral. I fell in love with the colours as soon as I saw them!

Key features:

  • FlyteFoam cushioning
  • Designed for overpronators
  • Fibre-reinforced midsole

These trainers are designed for overpronators and they’re made for long distances. They have a fibre reinforced midsole to help recover shape after impact, that, paired with the gel cushioning in the heel makes sure your feet are protected from every bump they endure. This helps them stay comfy mile and mile.

The FluidFit upper leverages seamless stretch mesh reinforcements to increase forefoot support, while adapting to the foot’s natural motion to create a custom sock-like fit.

These trainers are all about fitting to the shape of your foot and giving you plenty of support as you rack up the miles.

When I first got these, I put them on and wore them around the house to get used to them. Then I did what all good bloggers do – took these photos of them!

I first wore them at the gym, spending 15 minutes on the treadmill with them. I already had blisters from running in my old trainers, but these didn’t irritate them.

I’m sad to say that within 2 minutes of wearing them outside, I got them dirty. I had to run across some grass that was deeper and wetter than expected (pretty sure there’s a joke in there somewhere!). I’ve completed 3 runs in them so far. A 6 miler, a 3-milers and 7-miler.

They feel very light-weight on. You can feel how they hug your feet and I actually ran my fastest 3 miles I’ve ran in probably 18 months in them!

I was worried I would be covered in blisters as I didn’t feel I had as much time to bed them in as I would have wanted, but sometimes you’ve just got to get out there and run!

I must say that the sizes do run small. I’m usually a size 4 and I ordered these in a size 5 and they were a perfect fit. I’ve heard other people say they run small on review sites, so it’s not just me!

Do you like them?

 

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

Asics GEL-Kayano 23 from John Lewis

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Posted on March 13, 2017

Fitness Update // 3 runs in a week?!?

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half marathon training blog

half marathon training blog

Who even am I? I did 3 whole runs plus a workout at the gym! The half marathon training is well underway and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve felt a bit in a rut over the past couple of months but I feel like I’ve pushed past that.

Monday: 5 mile run.

As per plan, I need to add a mile each week. By the end of March, I need to be up to 8 miles. I went for a 5 mile run on Monday and it was hard, but I did it. 11:43 per mile.

Tuesday: 3 mile run.

I went for a quick run before work on Tuesday morning. Although it wasn’t my fastest time, I ran it 1 min 30 sec faster than the pervious week. That’s knocking 30 second off each mile. My pace was 11:13 per mile.

Friday: Gym: 30 minutes.

I did 15 minutes treadmill intervals, 10 minutes no the cross trainer and 5 minutes cycling. It felt okay. The treadmill was hard as I was really pushing myself on the intervals. I do 1 minute on and 30 seconds off. I found last time I ran a half marathon doing this really helped me run faster outdoors.

Sunday: 6 mile run.

I didn’t want to do it. I felt a bit hungover after drinking almost a bottle of wine on Saturday night but I did it! I’m not sure of my pace because I didn’t have any signal to start with so my FitBit recorded my first mile as 10 hours. I ran the full 6 miles in about 1 hour 10 minutes.

The fastest I’ve ever ran a 10k is 1hr 01 mins. So I’m very far away from my pervious fitness levels but I feel glad that I am at least doing something about it. I’m hoping to get faster in time.

I feel very accomplished this week.

Next week I need to do a 7 miler on Friday.

Wish me luck!

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Posted on March 10, 2017

Eating Healthy: Get Your Day Started Right With The Healthiest Breakfasts!

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healthy breakfasts

Some people seem to have it all figured out. They talk about their homemade smoothies, which are chock full of green vegetables, or discuss grains that you’ve never even heard of. They love flax and chia, and they wouldn’t even think of having a bowl of cereal in the morning for breakfast. The good news is that you don’t have to completely give up everything you love in the morning. Eat Clean Direct have came up with eight great breakfast foods that can help you get the day started right.

Many of these foods are ones that you are familiar with. There may even be several that are already part of your morning routine. Not only are they good for you, but they will give you the energy that you need to get through your busy day. These foods are:

healthy-breakfasts

Coffee

Believe it or not, coffee made the list of healthy breakfast foods! While moderation is important, coffee has a lot of antioxidants in it. Granted, you need to skip the sugar and cream and watch your intake. When you drink it the right way, though, coffee can help your heart and keep your mind sharp. It could possibly keep certain cancer at bay as well, including basal cell carcinoma. Finally, it may help you avoid type 2 diabetes.

Eggs

When you eat eggs, you are ingesting 13 crucial nutrients, like protein. When you eat a lot of protein in the morning, you are less likely to make poor snacking choices throughout the day. You want to get at least 9 grams of protein, but it is best if you consume around 25 grams. The B vitamin in the yolk is good for your memory, and the zeaxanthin and carotenoids lutein help your eyes stay healthy. Also, eggs are a very flexible food; you can eat them in many different ways, so you don’t have to worry about getting bored with your morning meal.

Grapefruit

Grapefruit has ample amounts of potassium and vitamin C (this is true for all citrus fruits). They also have fiber, so after eating a grapefruit, you’ll stay satiated longer. One study touted the benefits of eating a half a grapefruit prior to a meal; participants were able to lose more weight when they did this.

Bananas

Bananas are very easy to eat in the morning. You can grab one as you are heading out the door and then eat it when you have time. Some people don’t think bananas are a good breakfast food, because they contain around a hundred calories. However, they also have a lot of potassium, vitamin C and fiber. Even more importantly, a banana does not have any sodium in it, and you normally find fiber with sodium. That means that bananas are a great food for helping your blood pressure to stay under control.

Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt has a lot of protein, which will help to keep you full. You also get a lot of calcium when you eat this food. However, do not go for a flavored tub; it has a lot of extra sugar. Pick up the low-fat plain version instead and add your own fresh fruit. Blueberries and strawberries are a great option!

Berries

Regardless of which berry you choose, it is sure to have a lot of fiber, vitamin C and antioxidants. And, if you are trying to lose weight, berries are a guilt free option; they do not have many calories at all. There are a few studies that indicate that berries might help fight neurological decline and help people avoid cancer as well.

Oatmeal

There is a reason why generations of families have enjoyed oatmeal for breakfast. It has a lot of dietary fiber, which curbs your appetite. There are several different versions of oatmeal, and all of them are good for you. However, don’t go with flavored oatmeal because it has a lot of sugar. Instead, think about adding a little peanut butter and banana to get the flavor that you want.

Tea

Tea does great things for your immune system. It also has anti-inflammatory properties. In particular, white, black and green teas are great choices. They may help you avoid cancer, diabetes, and heart issues. However, be careful not to add a bunch of sugar to your tea!

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