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running

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 November 18, 2015

Leeds Abbey Dash 2015 Race Recap

10km/ running

Leeds Abbey Dash 2015

When I woke up on Sunday morning, the date of the 2015 Leeds Abbey Dash, the last thing I wanted to do was get out of bed and run a 10k.

I couldn’t sleep at all the night before, falling to sleep around 3am. The 7:30am alarm was not welcome at all, neither was the view outside my window. It was chucking it down with rain and the wind was horrendous.

Reading back at my 2014 Leeds Abbey Dash recap, it seems it was pretty similar! I also had trouble getting a taxi! I ended up having to download Uber, which is something I’m really against due to my previous experience of an Uber, where the taxi driver spent the whole journey telling me I should get the Uber app and trying to convince me that my current taxi firm are liars. Oh, and that I should rate him 5 stars.

Apparently it was high demand, and they charged me 2.6x more than usual. So a 6 quid taxi cost me ÂŁ15.

Not impressed!

So, I finally made it to the race. Luckily the rain had calmed to a steady drizzle.

The start was muddy, there was no running on the mud.

As usual, the race started in waves and we started right at the back.

The rain wasn’t bad at all by this point. I had my Garmen on and decided to do what I did with my last 10k, run at my comfortable pace for 0.9 miles, then run hard for 0.1 mile.

I knew I wouldn’t beat my previous time of 1:04 due to not going for a run in a month, but I was determined to come under an hour and 10 minutes.

Leeds Abbey Dash 2015

It was tough going! There was only one water station half way and we had to queue for a cup and then queue for someone to fill the cup. I easily lost 45 seconds for half a cup of water. I wish I hadn’t bothered looking back. I’m kind of disappointed with the water station.

The Run for All events tend to have 3 stations that give out bottles so you don’t have to stop at all.

As always, it’s the last half a mile that’s the hard is in Leeds races due to having to run up a slip road.

My garmin clocked 6.2miles and I couldn’t see the end, it was really disheartening. Finally I saw the clock – there wasn’t the usually ‘finish’ sign like there usually is so it kind of crept up on me!

Leeds Abbey Dash 2015

I finished with a time of 1:08. Which isn’t as good as my last 10k, but under an hour and 10 minutes. I’m okay with that seeing as I didn’t train!

I love the t-shirt, too.

This is the last race of the year for me. I’ve done two 10ks, a 5k and a half marathon. Same again next year?

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Posted on July 25, 2015

Leeds 10k

10km/ running

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On the 12th July, I ran Leeds 10k. This is the second time I’ve ran it, I also ran the 2014 Leeds 10k.

I found this years so much easier than the previous years. Which was surprising as I didn’t have a chance to train for this one as the move really put me out of my fitness routine! I ran 4 miles the Wednesday before and that was it.

It wasn’t as hot as last year, which is always a plus.

I didn’t really have a plan of action. The first mile was frustrating as I was struggling getting past people and it took about 11mins 30 seconds for that mile! Just after the second mile, I decided I’d start to speed up during the last tenth of a mile. So I kept checking my Garmin and then ran as fast as I could for 0.1 miles, then went back to my normal pace.

This seemed to work pretty well. I came out with a time of 1hr 04mins 26 seconds, which isn’t my best 10k time but is 10 minutes faster than my pervious year, which is a great achievement.

I need to get under an hour though. I’m planning on doing the Bradford 10k at the end of Sept and the Leeds Abbey Dash in November. Hopefully I’ll get under an hour in the Abbey Dash. The Bradford 10K won’t be great time wise because I’m on holiday two weeks before! Terrible timing!

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Posted on June 13, 2015

Why you can be a runner, too.

running

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When I mention to people that I run, they look at me like I’m some kind of amazing machine.

I do a 10k before work, and my work colleagues are floored.

I get comments like ‘you must be really fit’ or ‘I can’t run’.

This is where I start to get on my pedestal and start preaching.

You can be a runner, too!

I was never a runner until about 2 years ago. In school, I was rubbish at sport and didn’t really like it. I’ve had bouts of going to the gym but never anything consistently.

I never thought I’d be able to run more than 10 minutes without stopping. I never really cared to.

Then when I moved house, it was summer. There were a lot of runners and cyclists on the streets around me so I decided to give it a go.

My first run, I ran 5k. I stopped and walked every time I felt too tired.

When I ran again, I focused on going a mile without stopping. Pretty soon, I was easily doing a mile without stopping. I made sure I was running at an easy pace that I’d be able to keep you. You should be breathing heavily but still be able to hold a conversation. If you can’t, you’re going too fast.

I read something that really stuck with me to keep me pushing through.

Basically, when you start running and you’re not used to it. Your brain panics a little. It’s all mental.

Start thinking of your different body parts and seeing how the feel. How do your legs feel? They’re hurting a bit but not too bad. How do your arms feel? Fine. How is your chest and breathing?

When you break it down like that, you can see that you can keep going a little longer.

After a few weeks, I was running 5 miles and I even ran 10 miles after about two months of running!

So if you think you’re not a runner, try again. All you need is a pair of trainers!

Here’s some things to think about if you want to give running a go:

  • If you want to use an app like Couch to 5k, just make sure it works for you. Everyone is different and some people might find it too easy or too hard.
  • Map out a route that’s about 2-3 miles long. Run at a comfortable pace and allow yourself to stop when you need to.
  • Aim to run longer than your previous runs. If you ran for 4 minutes before stopping, aim for 5 minutes next time.
  • Get a running app like MapMyRun to see your times.
  • Base your progress on comparing your previous runs – not comparing yourself against other people!
  • If you’re embarrassed about having to stop and people seeing you – just remember they don’t know how far you’ve ran! You could be on mile 20 for all they know.
  • People don’t really care what you look like.
  • Have fun!

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Posted on May 15, 2015

Leeds Half Marathon 2015 // Race Recap

running

Leeds Half Marathon

I did it! I ran a half-marathon on Sunday and DID NOT DIE.

I woke up at around 7am. The race was due to start at 9:30, with my wave starting at 9:55. I got a taxi into the centre at 8:45 and met my friend at the station and grabbed coffee.

I was feeling really nervous by now. I’m never sure how the wee situation will be. I didn’t want to have to stop on the way around but we managed to use the portaloos before the race started.

Leeds Half Marathon

We set off and I didn’t realise I was going above pace at first. I had wanted to keep my pace a steady 11 minute miles and then push a bit faster in the last 4/5 miles if I felt comfortable enough.

It was my first half-marathon and the first time I’ve ran anything over 11 miles so I was totally playing it safe!

Miles three and four were the hardest and you can see that with my splits. The sun was out and it was facing us, I started to fear that I was over heating, which then was followed by the fear of not drinking enough, or running out, or drinking too much liquid and needing the loo.

What’s a girl to do, ay?

I decided that I would keep myself well hydrated and drink whenever I needed to. If I needed to stop, I could stop to use the toilets but I didn’t want to pass out from being too hot!

Mile three and four were not only the hottest miles, but the steepest. I knew about these hills as I ran this part of the route in my 11 mile training run. Though it felt harder in my previous run. I think I had bigged it up to be too much! It wasn’t the hill that slowed me down but the heat.

I had my first energy gel at mile five. I then had one every two miles. I wasn’t really sure what my gel plan was going to be but I just did what felt right on the day. Every two miles felt good because it give me a short term goal to focus on.

By mile 7, I was still feeling really comfortable and had a real sense of IM DOING THIS.

Leeds Half MarathonThe crowds were brilliant, there were people outside their houses with water tables giving water out and it made me all emotional. People cheering you on and saying you’re amazing.. when you think of all the hard work in the training and then hear that it really starts to get emotional!

I almost cried a few times during the race just with how overwhelmed I felt. I never thought I’d be able to run a half-marathon. This time two years ago I couldn’t even run half a mile! And he I was, on mile 7 and feeling strong.

Getting to mile 10 was great, then 11, then I was at mile 12 and then mile 13. My legs were aching but I didn’t feel out of breathe. Just aching. The last few 100m seemed to last forever.

I crossed the finish line and wow, I remember stopping and initially feeling a bit wobbly and dizzy. I was given a energy drink, gabbed my tshirt and medal and drank all of the drink!

My finish chip time was 2:23:04.

I went in the race wanting to come under 2:30 for my first half so I’m so happy with that time!

Leeds Half Marathon

Next time I do one, I want to run it in under 2:20!

 Leeds Half Marathon

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Have you ran a half-marathon? How was your first?

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Posted on May 9, 2015

Ronhill Women’s Trail Cargo Tank

clothing/ running

Ronhill Women's Trail Cargo Tank

Ahh, running tops. Give me them all.

I recently spent some vouchers I had as a little treat for my half-marathon on Sunday.

It’s a new Ronhill running top. I’ve never tried this brand before, but I was won over by the colours.

Also by the two pockets in the back and the gel loops which can be used to store energy gels.

Ronhill Women's Trail Cargo Tank Ronhill Women's Trail Cargo Tank womens running top long distance running top

I was planning on taking my running bumbag on my half-marathon, but I think I’m going to give it a miss now and just carry my phone on my arm and use the gel loops to carry some energy gel and put a bit of tissue in the pockets.

Here are the features of the top:

  • Powerlite fabric
  • High content of elastane provides excellent support with great stretch and recovery
  • Treated with Polygiene – keeps your running kit fresh and odour free
  • Concealed key fob pocket on shoulder
  • 2 Powerlite stash pockets – ideal for trail cap and fuel bottles
  • 5 New twin gel loops for added stability when running
  • Fibre content: 84% Polyamide, 16% Elastane

I took it out for a spin today and it was very comfortable!

I’m impressed with Ronhill and will look out for their kit in the future.

Have you ever tried anything from them?

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Posted on April 17, 2015

Reebok Spartan Race // Race Entry Giveaway

running

Reebok Spartan Race

 

I’ve never heard of a Spartan Race before.

It’s the worlds leading obstacle race series. But what type of obstacles?

Quoted from their website:

There is fire, mud, water, barbed wire, and occasionally Hell on Earth.

There WILL be obstacles to catch you off guard. Curve balls, so to speak.

Get over it.

We’re here to rip you from your comfort zone. If you need a road map for each step of the way, then maybe this race isn’t for you.

It sounds pretty terrifying, right?

Reebok Spartan Race

The races come in 3 distances.

The different distances are:

  • A Spartan Sprint: 5+ KM / 15+ OBSTACLES
  • A Super Spartan: 13+ KM / 20+ OBSTACLES
  • The Spartan Beast: 20+ KM / 25+ OBSTACLES

You you complete all 3 distances within one calendar year, it’s known as a Trifecta and you’ll get a metal for completed your Trifecta.

Spartan Race Calendar

You can search through their race calendars yourself, but here are some key dates:

  • 16th May: London – Spartan Sprint
  • 20th May: South Wales – Spartan Sprint
  • 21st May: South Wales – Super Spartan
  • 4th July: Manchester – Spartan Sprint
  • 5th July: Manchester – Super Spartan
  • 18th July: Scotland – Spartan Sprint
  • 19th July: Scotland – Super Spartan
  • 5th September: Cambridgeshire – Spartan Sprint
  • 19th September: South – Spartan Sprint
  • 20th September: South -Super Spartan
  • 21st September: South – The Spartan Beast

Giveaway

I’ve been given the oppertunity to give one entry away to my readers, please enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win a free place in one of the races!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Alternatively, you can get a 10% discount with the code: BLOGGER15!

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Posted on March 8, 2015

Osmo Active Hydration for Women

exercise/ review/ running

Osmo Active Hydration for Women

Osmo have created a line of hydration products formulated specifically for women. Their motto is catchy and relatable:

‘We’re not small men’.

Osmo Active has been designed with women in mind and the hydration supplement counters the secondary effects of increased ovarian hormone levels in the blood.

Osmo Active Hydration for Women

During our menstrual cycle, our internal temperature can vary around 0.5C. We lose more sodium and plasma volumes drop. Osmo hydration helps prevent this.

It’s a powder based sports drink that’s packed full of nutrition to help replace electrolytes, boost energy and keep you hydrated during a workout.

The benefits are:

  • Increased Power Output
  • Improved Endurance
  • Avoid Premenstrual-Related Performance Decline

Osmo Active Hydration for Women

It’s simpl to use. You use the scoop the comes with the formula. 2 scoops for 500ml and 3 scoops for 750ml. It devolves well and there were no lumps or bumps with it.

It has a subtle taste which is perfect for me. I don’t know about you, but if I have a strong flavour drink while running or exercise it makes me feel really sick. I usually run with very diluted cordial!

Osmo Active Hydration for Women

I’ve done a few of my longer Sunday runs with this and I’ve been enjoying it so far. Both runs I’ve used it with have gone well and I did feel like I could go longer than the 5-6 miles I had planned.

I’m going to keep using this to aid my half-marathon training!

The 425g tub has around 40 services. You can get one from ProBikeKit here or Amazon by clicking the picture below:

Do you use any hydration products during exercise?

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This post contains affiliate links which means I may get a few pennies from any sales made. 

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