Finding time to lunch and run

Finding time to lunch and run

MY mum’s birthday was on Thursday last week. With it being a school night we celebrated with a few cakes and a cup or two of tea. It was during the cake and tea celebrations that I suggested a meal out.

Always up for a celebration, the family whipped out their diaries. “No to Sunday,” my sister said. “I’m at a wedding.”

“No to Sunday,” Mum said. “I’m Continue reading

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Running and racing so far in 2017

THIS week I start my next block of training. My target race is the Salford 10k on Good Friday where I am aiming to break 41 minutes and get near to my 40:31 personal best. But before I focus on my next goal I wanted to look back at what I achieved during my last block of training.

It started in December with the Percy Pud 10k. It was my first 10k in six months and I was a bit race rusty. I found the race tough. I ran 41:43, just squeezing into the medals with third vet 35. I was pleased with the time, considering I’d not raced for a while, and happy to be back racing. The other great thing about the Pud was that we were joined by Olympians Eilish McColgan and Michael Rimmer.

This is Eilish McColgan gliding into the finish.

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And this is me stomping towards the finish.

Later in December I managed to run sub 21 at Pontefract parkrun, something I’d not done for a while. I clocked 20:58. Unfortunately on Christmas day I could only manage 21:23. Rather than let this ruin my Christmas I decided my slowness could have been down to a slight hamstring niggle and a bit of a cold. A few festive drinks later and I’d forgotten all about it.

My first race of 2017 was the 5,000m track race at Dorothy Hyman stadium, where it was rather windy. I finished in 21:21.

A couple of weeks later, back at Pontefract I ran Continue reading

Standing on the sidelines

Standing on the sidelines

THE miracle recovery I’d hoped to make in time to race last weekend didn’t happen. I had to withdraw from the 10k and seek medical assistance instead.

Having spent weeks training for this particular 10k, I was really disappointed not to be on the start line. I did everything I could to be there, and didn’t want to admit defeat, but in the end I had no choice. I could barely walk, let alone run.

I went to the race to support Chris.

I stood on the sidelines and watched, but even that was too much. Later that night, I couldn’t Continue reading

Do NOT let me eat cake!

MY summer of cake eating has caught up with me. My jeans are starting to feel a little snug. My floaty dresses are significantly less floaty than they were at the start of the summer.

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I’m not one for getting weighed every five minutes, but this morning, I decided that enough was enough I needed to assess the damage. I had to face up to things. I thought I may have gained one or two pounds, possibly three, definitely not more than four. Five max.

I stepped onto the scales. Then quickly stepped off again.

Nine stone nine and a quarter. That’s what it said. Nine stone nine and a quarter. That couldn’t be right. I reset the scales and tried again.

Nine stone nine and a half. Still not right. I reset the scales and placed them on a different tile in the bathroom. I took a deep breath, stepped back on.

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I jumped off the scales, and threw them into the cupboard. Nine stone ten, almost 11. A gain of eight pounds. More than half a stone. I felt dizzy and a little sick. ‘Chris,’ I screamed.

Chris came running up the stairs. ‘What’s wrong?’

‘I’m fat.’ I pointed into the cupboard where the scales lay upside down. ‘I’ve put on half a stone.’ Continue reading

The running week (12-18th September)

Here’s my training for the week after the Great North Run, where poor nutrition set me back.

Sunday was race day. I ran a PB, but didn’t eat well for the rest of the day. After the race, I had two Mars Bars, a nutty protein type bar, a tiny bag of Haribo sweets, a shop-bought protein drink (not my usual recovery drink), and lots of water. It took us hours to get back to the hotel. I missed lunch, not eating until 7pm, by which time I was so hungry I stuffed my face with a giant burger and chips (with onion rings, cheese, mushroom, bacon). I was still hungry so ordered another portion of chips.

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Monday: I woke up absolutely starving, so rushed down to breakfast without showering or applying any makeup. I needed food. I tucked into fruit and yoghurt, toast, scrambled eggs, bacon, beans, sausages and I think I had a tomato too. We drove back from Newcastle, heading straight to the cake shop to collect Chris’ 40th birthday cake.

Continue reading

Down with the kids

Down with the kids

FOR my first session after the Great North Run, I decided to try something different. I’ve signed up to four sessions training with a group targeting the cross-country season. And while I have no intention of setting foot on the cross-country racing circuit, I did think it would help my 10k training and my ambition of breaking 40 minutes.

So, last Saturday morning I went along to meet a different group in a different area, not really knowing what to expect. Despite taking a few wrong turns, I was the first to arrive. I sat in the car with Chris, and waited and waited, and couldn’t help but feel a bit nervous.

I stared out of the car window. A car pulled up and three children jumped out. They raced over to a big rock in the middle of the field, and immediately started climbing it, then they were off the rock and racing back to their parents. I felt exhausted just watching. They were obviously here for a morning in the park. They wouldn’t be running would they?

More people started to arrive. I say people, but they were young people, very young. Children, in fact, aged about ten, and they were all here to train for the cross-country. I remained in the car, hoping that no one spotted me. When they started running, I’d drive away.

A few more children arrived. Some of the mums were in sports gear. Perhaps they were running too? I stayed seated, keeping my fingers firmly crossed.

‘Come on!’ One of the mums was heading my way. ‘You can’t stay in the car forever.’

I’d been spotted. I stuck my head out of the window. ‘I daren’t get out!’ I said. ‘Are you running too?’

She nodded. I did a silent cheer and got out of the car.

I was hoping the coach would Continue reading

Going into meltdown after the GNR

AFTER the Great North Run, my body has gone into meltdown. During the race, I developed a blood blister on my foot, which is still throbbing eight days later.

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Then the day after the race, I developed a huge cold sore on my face. To anyone lucky enough to have escaped life without a cold sore, let me explain how truly horrible they are. Cold sores are small blisters that appear around the mouth or lips. They start with a tingling sensation and then start itching and burning. Little blisters form then crust over, so that when you smile, they crack and bleed. I told you! Nasty things!

Whenever I get a cold sore, my mum always responds the same way. ‘You’re run down.’ She’ll say. ‘You’re doing too much.’

She has a point. I usually get a cold sore when I’m not feeling one hundred percent well. I have never had one as a result of running a half marathon, but when you Continue reading