Tub on the Run


9 Comments

Scoring a B+ this week

Now, I’m not quite “all over it”, but I’ve done pretty well this week I think.  Headline news is that I am 4lbs down on my weigh in last week, which is really great.  It’s not been the strictest of weeks, but it’s a dramatic improvement on the weeks that have gone before.  Anyway, we have a #TransformationTuesday in the making…

Transformation Tuesday in the making

Ignore the lovely face – it was very bright out on our walk today, and I should have remembered my sunglasses.  I am hoping that in a month or so I will be able to post another picture with some noticeable progress.  Every journey starts somewhere right?!

How has this week been different?

Food wise, we haven’t really planned too much.  Luckily there have still been a couple of frozen meals from a batch cooking marathon I did a couple of weeks ago.  A quick nip to Tesco to get some fresh veggies and milk, and we were away!  One day I was incredibly late home, so we ordered takeaway, but other than that, we’ve been sensible.  Breakfast has consisted of porridge, lunch has been soup or leftovers, and teas have been mostly freezer food.  We’re actually beginning to use up some of the stuff in the cupboard that we’ve had for ages.

Favourite food thing this week: Stur squash.  Beki, who blogs over at Miss Wheezy, wrote a post about Stur this week.  They are doing free samples, so I thought I would give it a go, especially as I saw they have a peach iced tea flavour.  My sample arrived really quickly, and it tastes exactly how I expected it to!  Win!

http://instagram.com/p/uS-Hgrn1La/

Ooh.. I lied a bit.  I have two favourite things – the second is Christmas pudding Nakd bars!  They’re… well… Christmas puddingy without the calories of a Christmas pud!

http://instagram.com/p/uJQHFln1AC/

Next up – exercise!  I have a plan, and that plan has worked quite nicely this week.  Of the 7 days, I completed 5, which I think is a good start.  For the runs, I haven’t actually run as I don’t want to kill my knees off, so I’ve walked the distances.  Matt joined me for kettlebells at the start of the week, and also came out on my long “run” today.  I don’t think he’ll be joining me for kettlebells again – he doesn’t quite get that feeling of joy that I get from lobbing weights around.  It’s probably not helped by a muscle twinge that he has been having in his shoulder either.

I’ve struggled a bit with yoga too.  My wrist strength is noticeably poorer than it has been in the past, which makes any poses like downward dog, or even cat/cows intense.  I can’t hold the poses for too long.  I always thought that this was a problem only I really experienced (again, I don’t think the weight helps), but it seems I am not alone, and Ekhart Yoga have even posted a video to help build that strength.

I’m hoping that over the coming weeks and months, completing this video regularly will help me to progress more comfortably in my yoga.

Favourite exercise this week:  My walk with Matt today.  It was nice to get out in the fresh air, and he got to play with his camera too.  Win all round!

Sunday walks

Next week, I’m hoping to have eaten a little more into the cupboards and freezer, and then next weekend batch cook a few more meals and also make some soups.  Exercise wise, I plan to start some gentle (read: super slow) running.

How has your week been?

 

 


6 Comments

3 runs of Couch to 5k done

I ran my third run of Week 1 of the Couch to 5k programme tonight.  Again, there were no internal arguments about going out.  I knew I felt better for going out for a run after my rubbish day on Tuesday, and today was on par with then to be honest, so I applied the same logic.  It is so nice to be out and clear my mind.  Okay, it isn’t an entirely clear mind – I fill it with “has it been a minute yet?  I’m sure that Laura said it was only a minute I had to do.  I must be nearly there.  Oooh…. bunnies!”.   By the third run segment, I feel like I am settling in to my groove a bit more.  It was another out and back run, complete with photo from the turning point.

Cycle Path

I’ve really enjoyed this route.  I think I may have overkilled the beach somewhat with my previous attempts at Couch to 5k.  It is reassuring doing the same route but it gets very dull very quickly.  I need to work out another route so I don’t suffer the same with this one.  I’m not sure I’ll get bored of seeing the wildlife though.

Sheeps

I thought I’d mix it up for the sheep – I walked past them on the way out, then lumbered past at a run on the way back.  I tried to sneak up on the distraction bunnies to get a good shot, but they’re wily little things and knew I was there (I suppose it’s quite hard to hide a 5ft 8, 18 stone beetroot).  I did get a couple of photos of them, but they aren’t the best quality.

Distraction bunnies

I’ve noticed that the ankle that I twisted the other month in my car park gymnastics is quite sore to run on.  It’s not unbearable and it isn’t causing me to limp, but I am conscious that I don’t want to roll it again.  I remember having to do wobble board exercises at physio when I was younger.  I’m wondering if there is something else I can do.  Yoga does seem to help I think, so I am hoping to roll the mat back out next week.  I was hoping to having done so this week, but it turned into a busier week than I thought it was going to.

I’ve also thought about whether to move to Week 2 on the plan, but I think I am going to do Week 1 again.  It isn’t like I’m in a rush after all.

Not a bad start to May! 🙂

 

 


12 Comments

Beautiful evening for a run

It has definitely been one of those days today!  I have to admit I was glad to escape the office at the end of the day.

I was due to go out for a run this evening.  It took me a lot longer to recover than I would have done 4 months ago, and I had hoped to get out at the weekend, but I was just too sore.  Normally I would have griped and whined about going out for a run tonight, but I didn’t give myself the option.  Plus I was looking forward to my tea, which motivated me to get out and back as soon as I could.

There were a couple of distraction bunnies that were very welcome, plus some sheep which gave me a passing glance as I lumbered past.  It was a gorgeous evening out, and I was glad I went.

Railway Line

The only thing I wasn’t too keen on having to do was quickly diverting into the railway station’s toilets.  I am hoping my stomach also remembers what running means sooner rather than later too.

I took a slight diversion back, along a tiny trail next to the train line on the estuary side.  My ankle was glad of the softer ground, as it had started griping a bit.  I think that is the call to start my yoga practice again (oh the joys of regained inflexibility!).

So having come home in a bit of a grump, having had a headache all day and stomach ache for the majority of the afternoon, I returned from my run with a little bit less weight on my shoulders and a cheerier outlook.

 


15 Comments

Stop the press!

After months and months of procrastinating, not running, but plenty of belly button gazing, I actually went out for a run yesterday.

Oh.  Em.  Gee.

It was painful.  The bunnies that were out for their evening meal made me smile though, and provided momentary distraction.  I am starting right back from scratch at Week 1 of Couch to 5k.  I did get a bit wrapped up in myself and ended up going further than I meant to by the half way point.  It was quite nice though – the fresh air did me the world of good.

What surprised me was that my ankles and feet are sore.  I wasn’t expecting that.  I know it shouldn’t be surprising really, as I haven’t done any significant load bearing activity for a long time and my ankles and feet have lost their running memory temporarily.  I don’t remember feeling like this on my first round last year.  I’m not sure what weight I was back then – I’ll have to go and find out.

My next outing will be on Friday.  I hope the distraction bunnies are out again.

 


21 Comments

One of those light bulb moments

A few weeks ago, Matt brought home a magbook by Runner’s World.  I have to admit I was a bit surprised as Matt will generally be happy to follow my lead when it comes to weight loss methods and he has had absolutely zero interest in running after I dragged him out of the house last spring as I was getting towards the end of Couch to 5k.  The book is “Run Your Belly Off” (or RYBO from this point on).

My current reading pile

My current reading pile

He read a few chapters himself and liked the sound of it.  A few days later, I picked it up and started leafing through it.  It was at this point I had a bit of a light bulb moment.  I know this won’t come as a shock to many people, and if I am honest, I suppose I’ve known this all along…

Weight loss is simple maths.  Calories in versus calories out.  There must be a deficit.  Everything else is just advice or diet industry spiel.

Deep down, I know all of this.

I know this is probably a bit “durr” to some people, but for years I almost feel like I have sought for the magical solution to it all.  Slimming World gloss over the simple fact that it’s maths by introducing “syns” (though there is logic in restricting some fats and sugars etc), and Weight Watchers have their points system.  Distractions? Maybe.  I guess it depends on your mindset, and clearly some people do really well following these kinds of plans and I am in no way knocking it.  For me, I’ve used it as a crutch, going to the classes and feeling as if that alone, that small commitment in itself should be enough to yield spectacular losses on a weekly basis.  Sustainable?  Not for me at this moment in time.  That much is evident by my own journey so far.  Meal plans, syns, points have all meant that I have become lazy and reliant on just doing what I’m told and not really thinking for myself, eventually “rebelling” and ordering Domino’s, Chinese, Indian etc.

This really shouldn’t be surprising news to me.  My sister lost a large amount of weight a few years back just by being more mindful.  There was no cutting food groups out, no deprivation, but tweaks like more veggies, better meat, more fish, less processed food.

Can I calorie count?  Yes, of course.  There are plenty of apps and websites out there to help you do just that.  Will I calorie count?  I would be interested to see what I am shovelling in every day or week, definitely.  Longer term?  I won’t rule it out, but I suspect that after a period of re-educating myself on labels and portion sizes, I will have it as a fall back tool.  It is not something I see myself doing on a daily basis in the long term.  How many calories do I need?

I did the maths…

Right now, my basal metabolic rate (BMR) is 2,021 calories.  That is what I use per day.  Without doubt I eat more than that as I have gained weight since January (5lbs up – whoops!).  The book then goes on to say that in order for a person to lose 1lb of fat per week, there needs to be a weekly 3,500 calorie deficit.  The deficit can come from exercise and/or cutting down on the calories.

There is a running plan in the book too.  It takes 12 weeks to complete, at the end of which you’ll be running for 30 minutes.  The first week is all about walking.  I have to admit I was surprised that it is 3 weeks longer than Couch to 5k, but I’ll be seeing how it goes.  It is time to build my confidence back up and get back to running for 30 minutes in one hit.  I have things that I want to do at the end of the year which mean I need to stick at this (I WILL be beating my 10k time set at the Weston Christmas Cracker, and I am literally counting down the days to the day that they accept entries).

Pleasantly surprising is that Matt also wants to start running with me.  As I mentioned before, he doesn’t like running.  Despite this, I think he had a nasty shock courtesy of the scales.  Also having had a conversation with his friend J recently, where J is now studying to become a personal trainer and needs a victim guinea pig person to practice on, Matt has volunteered to be just that.  However, rather than be completely unfit, he wants to build a base level of fitness in preparation for his PT sessions.  Woo – I have a running buddy!

Watch this space!

Now I must go and plan some meals!  What are you having for tea tonight?


10 Comments

Janathon: On the home straight

I feared I had fallen off the Janathon wagon.  I’d exercised but not tweeted or blogged about it since last Monday (I think), but I have managed to catch up with the Janathon wagon and jumped on board – ready in time for the end!  There are only three more days to go!

Not Much of a Runner wrote an excellent post about preparing for the -athons, and I am genuinely wishing that I had paid a bit more heed to his warnings sage advice.  Needless to say that unless you have a truly exceptionally interesting life, the chance is that blogging every single day is much harder than exercising each day.  Don’t get me wrong though – I will be very much looking forward to a complete day off on 1st February!  Juneathon means I am going to have to think a bit more and be more creative about what I am doing, both in terms of exercising and blogging.

Today’s exercise has consisted of a run. It was meant to be 2 miles, but was only 1.67 in the end. I was pleased with my pace but I really need to stop walking as it is hard to get going again. My knees were a bit tender and my ankle was a bit grumbly but overall it wasn’t too bad. Best bit? I finally got to wear my base layer, it is cold enough at last!

Weigh in wasn’t too horrendous – I maintained.

 


12 Comments

Janathon Days 16 to 18

Janathon Day 16 consisted of the very exciting:

Janathon Day 16

Janathon Day 17 was slightly more eventful:

Janathon Day 17

That is what you get for pratting around in the car park.  Matt has just pulled up, so I attempted some sort of skip, hop or jump and rolled my ankle on a seam in the tarmac.  And no, my husband did not come to my aid.  As I scraped myself off the floor, he actually asked where I had gone.  The floor.  One rolled ankle, a slightly bruised heel of my hand and a cut on my knee.  Thankfully, I did not put a hole in my work trousers.

Janathon Day 18…

This morning, the swelling in my ankle had gone, it didn’t hurt and so I thought that perhaps I would be ok to run.  I delayed the run by half an hour, waiting for a rain shower to pass through, but once it was dry, I changed and headed out.  I started at a nice pace, and the first half mile felt pretty good.  I then had to stop to negotiate my way past a family (you DO NOT need to walk 8 abreast, people!), and carried on.  I made it up the first hill and my ankle started twinging.  I considered whether it was pain or a niggle and decided on a niggle.  I kept going, passed two ladies and then broke to a walk as my ankle started to hurt.  I tried walking it out for a bit, but no joy.  I attempted another run a little while later that resulted in some limping.  I could feel that my shoe felt a little bit tighter than it had at the beginning, so I imagined that the swelling might have come back.  On the plus side, the two ladies that I passed on my way back smiled and said I was doing really well, which made me smile, so thank you ladies!

I was right about the swelling.  So here I sit, post-shower, with my exercise ball on two yoga blocks with my feet up and a tubi grip on the offending ankle.  Ibuprofen duly taken to help with the swelling and stop the shooting pains.

I had the choice of 3 or 4 miles today, and completing the other tomorrow.  I am going to have to use a joker for Jantastic for this week.  I won’t be running again now until Tuesday, which will hopefully be enough time for my ankle to heal.

Now it is time for a cuppa, catching up on some blogs and reading A Storm of Swords now, while trying to take my mind off the fact that I really doubt whether I’ll be able to complete a half marathon.  It seems an impossible distance – I haven’t run beyond 6 miles yet.  Anyway…  Tyrion has just come back round from his injuries, Davos has just been rescued and Daenerys has just been proposed to.


11 Comments

Janathon Day 14: Are we nearly there yet?

As I started on the downhill slope to home time, the usual demons started up…

“you don’t want to go out for a run… It’s dark, cold and wet”

I will freely admit that I agreed with my little demon.  It is dark, cold and wet.  I won’t lie – I considered not going out.  Then some synapse fired and reminded me that it is less than 7 weeks to Silverstone Half Marathon, and every little piece of training helps.

I’d considered nipping in to the gym.  It was only meant to be two miles, which is just about bearable on the treadmill.  But no.  I decided to go around the marina, which isn’t a route I usually do.  I thought perhaps the change of scenery would be helpful.

Out of the house I ventured.  Into drizzle, wind and cold I stepped, and of course, my Garmin took a little longer to lock.  Not my best start.  Once the planets had aligned and the Garmin locked on, I started off.  Or rather, I attempted to get the two lumps of concrete attached to my hips moving.  It was unsuccessful.  Ok… Maybe I’ll feel better when I get into it.  After all, I have been harbouring intentions towards trying my hand at lamppost intervals.  I tried a couple of lamppost intervals.  Nope.  Not working.  Ok… Maybe back to familiar territory?  I headed back towards the trainline.  Still nothing.

I never regret going out for a run, despite all my whinging about it beforehand, but I came very close to regretting today’s attempt.

14th Jan Run

I aborted the run as I was becoming progressively more miserable.

Tuesday nights are Slimming World weigh in nights, and I pootled off, convinced that I would have put weight on.  Upon arrival, I took my jacket off, and H (who helps out at Slimming World), pointed out that I had a rather unfortunate wet patch across my chest.  Yep, it looked like I had some pretty spectacular boob sweat going on.  Delightful.  It would appear that my waterproof jacket that I wear for running is not as waterproof as I give it credit for.  Fortunately, I maintained my weight this week, so I didn’t quite put the cherry of a weight gain on what was turning into a rubbish evening.

I got to thinking why my run was so awful today, and I suspect it could be one or a combination of the following:

  • I need to buy a new sports bra.  I had bounce, and bounce is not good.  I need strapping in, and firmly.
  • I haven’t had that much in the way of protein.  I didn’t have much after my long run and I have been sore.  I know that if I eat more protein, I am generally a happier (and less stiff) bunny.
  • I am tired.  A lot of things feel like a chore at the moment, and those things are less physically demanding than running.
  • My legs are physically tired.  Yes, probably they are.  My shins are a bit sore, right ankle isn’t happy and my left knee is joining in the chorus of niggles.
  • Not eating close enough to a run.  I hadn’t eaten anything for nearly 6 hours before I went out (and even then, it was hardly a nutritious meal – a stuffing baguette and Diet Coke).

Four miles are on the card tomorrow.  My plan?  Wear my other bra, bed early tonight, eat something at about 4:30pm and start feeding myself with proper food instead of rubbish.

Let’s see what tomorrow brings!


24 Comments

Janathon Day 12: The Long Run

In the middle of my funk last night, I posted to Twitter that I am struggling.

Tweet

I can feel self-sabotage brewing.  I have never run as much as I am now, and while I really do feel like I am beginning to make some progress (my heart rate average is lowering, though my average pace is staying relatively stable), I am beginning to wonder whether I can really do 13.1 miles.  Thirteen point one miles is a very long distance for me (and for most people I would imagine).  I don’t want to fail, but I almost feel that it is inevitable.  I’ve tried getting into running so many times, and my consistency requires more work.

I genuinely hadn’t intended the tweet to be seeking pity or anything, but I was genuinely touched by the response I had.  It was reassuring to know that most people will feel the same at one point or another.

So this morning, I scoffed some porridge, waited an hour, faffed around a bit, tried to find some clean workout clothes, eventually found them, stepped outside and faffed a bit more whilst waiting for my Garmin to sync.

A couple of minutes later, off I toddled.  6 miles on the plan, but I needed to do just over to get my 10k recorded for my Virtual Runner race.  I chose to go from home to Darts Farm, which turns out to be around 6 miles.  It was a mildly undulating route.  Unfortunately I didn’t break my 10k record, but it was relatively close.  I probably would have done it, but for getting stuck behind some walkers and their dogs.

One thing I am beginning to find is that my heart rate is coming down, but the perceived effort seems to be getting harder.  I don’t know why that is, but I really flag in how I feel towards the end, though this isn’t entirely represented by my pace.

Anyway, I arrived at Darts Farm.

Darts Farm

I took £2 with me so I could get a drink, which I desperately needed by then.  Matt was meant to meet me there, but had got a bit sidetracked.  I busied myself by shopping for my Foodie Penpal (new matches came through!).  We also bought lunch to bring home.  Matt picked me up and home we came.  I plan to spend the rest of the afternoon doing laundry, catching up on the Janathon and Jantastic blogs, and pottering.

Janathon exercise, done.  Jantastic Week 1, done.  10k for Virtual Runner, logged!

Logged for Virtual Runner


8 Comments

Janathon Day 10: argh! mile 4!

This week my mileage sees one of the larger increases, and my two mid-length runs are 4 milers.

Originally I was meant to go out yesterday but a serious crash on the motorway meant I was three hours late for work and I ended up having a relatively stressful day trying to catch up with myself. I postponed in favour of prawns and Spartacus.

Mum had invited me around for tea tonight. Dad was out and Matt was on his way back from Birmingham so we thought we would have a nice evening chatting away. I said I would need to go out for a run, so after a quick pit stop home to get changed into my running clothes, I headed up to Mum’s where I also got the chance to run a different route (a very welcome change!).

My run looked something like this:

Mile 1: aaaaaarrrggghhhhhhhh….. Stitch!! I should not have eaten that yogurt before I came out…. Urge the paaaaaain (melodrama? Moi?)

Mile 2: cough…. Wheeze…. Cough… Thanks Mr 2 Stroke Moped for leaving a stink trail for half a mile. Hmm…. Stitch… Hmm left knee isn’t happy…

Mile 3: woo I am feeling good! Ok, with the exception of breathing out my backside when I reach the top of a rather brutal hill (but importantly, I made it to the top of the hill in a semblance of a run)

Mile 4: oh God. I am dying. Who put this hill here? I am sure this is meant to be flat. How much further? 0.75 of a mile? Ok… Huff… Puff… Walk… Now? 0.64? You have got to be kidding me. A watched kettle never boils? A watched Garmin doesn’t change either!

Mile 4.08: woo! Home!

And so I returned to my parents’ house, beetroot in colour, shining and a bit soggy with sweat, probably smelling as pretty as I looked.

My run was rewarded with a lovely hot shower and chilli con carne.