Friday, 30 July 2010

Nettle Warrior Update

You may remember me mentioning something called Tough Guy and the fact that I was interested in having a go next year. I heard about it because of an article in The Guardian and recently there was a follow up article from the woman who competed in it. It's a good article. I enjoyed picking up some tips and a bit more perspective, but this has sort of put me in two minds. There was someone who *said* they'd do it with me, but I'm not sure if he meant it. I'd be nervous of going on my own though I'm sure I could rustle up a few spectators...

I've started planning next years events in earnest (because if I don't do it now, between events, I get put off) and at the moment it looks as though there could be an event every 2 months or so which would work quite well. This would probably be the first one to get booked just because entries are open already and it's £94 before March 2011. A lot of money... but worth it I think :) plus planning this far in advance means I have plenty of time to plan and train.

I will be getting a day-to-a-page diary for next year so I can detail my training and study (oh yeah, OU again) properly. It's all very well having a list of things I could do during a week or having training plans pinned to the fridge but I find that I don't really stick to anything. My "training plan" at the moment seems to amount to "do as much as you can", when you can, but I need to concentrate on proper progress with so many new and longer events in the pipeline. Oh I will manage the longer runs for half marathon training but without much attention paid to fartlek or hillwork. I appreciate I may need to take a step back while I build up some of these basics I've neglected but I think it will help me lots in the long run (ha ha!).

Hopefully detailing exactly what I need to do in my diary will mean I actually do it as time will get blocked out. "No I can't come out before 8, I've got hill reps to do". Either that or I need someone to poke me in the right direction with a sharp stick on a regular basis.

As I enter my 30th year I'm going to be fitter than ever!

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Fast Slow Fast

On Wednesday I had arranged to go for a bike ride with my friend Jo. She lives on the way to the forest where I go mountain biking so the plan was for me to ride over to hers, go for our jaunt and then I'd cycle home again. Jo's not been riding in a while, and no discredit to her at all, but our ride was really leisurely by my normal pace. I enjoyed having a chat and exploring the local cycle paths and just did my "hard work" to and from. We have plans to try and do this weekly so between her and Phil I might manage a weekly longer ride. Jo and I will be trialling my cycle route to work soon. Would love to get started on that!

But in the mean time, here's the stats:
On the way out
3.32 miles
21.47 mins
9.1 mph av
16 mph max
243 cals

Mid section
4.19 miles
49.17 mins
5.1 mph av
11.4 mph max
345 cals
many pauses :)

Way back
3.34 miles
23.39 mins
8.4 mph av
17.2 mph max
479 cals

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Getting back into it

I felt exhausted when I got in tonight. I really didn't think I was going to go out for a run but then I thought, if not now, when? So I pulled on my trainers (new ones on Saturday) and stepped out the door with an on-the-go AudioFuel playlist including the 160 BPM track I'm raod testing.

I did not feel energetic. I only ran 2.3 miles. I didn't run fast. I didn't run continuously. But I did run and I enjoyed it. The new track was pretty good too :) I felt better the minute I started and although I've regressed a bit, hopefully it won't take too much to get back into the swing of things again. Definitely going for a run on Friday and Sunday now I've got my mojo back.

And a healthy dinner helped. I tried a risotto with half arborio, half bulgar wheat, with broad beans, yellow courgette and a huge handful of spinach, all home grown. Delish! Hopefully now the belly will begin to vanish, I'll start sleeping better and the energy will return :) Oh I've missed this!

Monday, 26 July 2010

Out of Practice

I've not done much for a couple of weeks due to changing jobs and going on holiday. Ok I did quite a bit of walking but it didn't feel like much, not when you take into account the cream teas and wine that was consumed. I've started to feel quite lethargic and not my svelt self for a while so now I am very keen to get back into things. I'm going cycling with a friend on Wednesday, signing up for the new gym at work and for at least one run this week. I can't do Parkrun yet again thanks to what will be a very enjoyable theatre matinee in Regent's park.

I do miss it though. Can't wait to get back into a routine of sorts or to get out for a run because I've got a new AudioFuel track to trial. It's been a trial to drag myself out this weekend though. Must make real effort tomorrow. I've got the Yately 10k next Wednesday and no matter how much I run between now and then I'm not really going to get any fitter so I'm just going to give it my all and try for that sub 1-hour PB again. I'm sure I can do it this time! At least I haven't regressed in the meantime...

Weight - (61) 61
Fat - (24.5) 24.6
BMI - (19.2) 19.2
Water - (54.9) 54.8
Muscle - (71.3) 71.2

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Thames 10k

Just done it! 1:04:20

I'm actually quite pleased with that given I really wasn't in the mood and I felt pretty tired but with the threat from a friend that if I didn't go and at least try for a PB she's make me drink my body weight in vodka I dragged myself there and somehow made it round. It was new terrain too. The event was in Beale Park near Reading which is a really pretty area and thankfully it was mostly flat, allbeit uneven ground. I was dreading there being proper hills when someone told me it was in a valley. Most of it was on trail but some was on tarmac. I hated the transition to tarmac, I found it really jarring. I think I actually went faster on grass! I got an achey shoulder but it went after 5k. I did have to walk a bit but I owe a strong(ish) finish to a lady runner who saw me walking around 8.5k and told me that there was only a little bit left and I could do it. Without her I don't think I'd have found the strength. Oh and Axel F really helped too.

Just out of interest I took my measurements again and here are the results. The previous ones are in brackets. Making progress...

Weight - (62) 61kg
Fat - (25) 24 .5%
BMI - (19.5) 19.2
Water (54.5) 54.9%
Muscle (70.8) 71.3

Monday, 5 July 2010

Mad dogs and Englishmen...

... go out in the midday sun. But runners go out in the early morning heat and still risk heatstroke. I made it to my second Parkrun on Saturday morning and not only made a new friend, first-timer Sarah (who is currently faster than me but never mind), but got a new Saturday PB of 30:50 which I'm relatively happy with given that the knee started playing up again and I got bad pains in my shoulders. I'm now also on the volunteer list and have made use of the Sweatshop vouchers we got to get myself a new pair of running shoes (to be collected in the last week of July).

Next week I've got the chance to go waterskiing through work so if I'm lucky enough to get a place (only 8 available) then I'll forgo Parkrun for a week. This won't become a habit.

The results for Juneathon are in and I'm not a winner. I may have been amongst the 13 who exercised and blogged everyday but I don't thikn I was as the chap said the final 13 all ran everyday, which I didn't. Bit disapointed but guess I'll just have to try next year.

I've just done my Monday Swissball class but have skipped Abs as I was feeling a bit queasy.

Friday, 2 July 2010

Measuring up

I have a new gadget. It's a body fat percentage measuring device. I've been interested to know what percentage of me is fat for a while and was going to go to the see Gorgeous Chris at the gym to get measured but first time I bottled it and second time I missed it due to a meeting anyway. So now I have a reasonably nifty handheld device that looks not unlike a PlayStation controller which, with the input of some simple data, measures my body fat %, muscle %, BMI, total daily energy expenditure or TDEE (the number of calories I need per day) and water %.

Most data is easy to determine.
Height - 178cm
Weight - 62kg
Age - 29
Gender - female

The two points I was unsure of were whether I'm an "athlete" or "normal". The criteria seems mostly based on resting pulse. Athletes qualify for 60bpm or less and mine's pretty much 60bpm. Alongside this I had to choose between "Very active" (intense exercise everyday) or "Moderately active" (moderate exercise with sports 6-7 days a week). I decided to take the readings with both though I suspect I'm normal and moderate.

Athlete/Very active
Fat % - 19
BMI - 19.5
TDEE - 2505
Water % - 59.2
Muscle % - 76.8

Normal/Moderately active
Fat % - 25
BMI - 19.5
TDEE - 2129
Water % - 54.5
Muscle % - 70.8

Not too bad methinks. I prefer the athlete reading but think that'd be something to aim for in the normal setting. A mate of mine who's a personal trainer recons women should aim for 15-20% body fat So. Let's see if I can get down to 20% body fat by the end of August.

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Difficult decision

Yesterday I went to see a chiropodist. For a while now I've had what I suspected to be an ingrowing toenail in my left foot which is starting to cause loss of feeling in the side of the toe. This worries me a bit so I thougt I ought to get it checked out.

According to the chap I saw, it's not strictly an ingrowing toenail but a similar condition caused by over-curvature of the toenail, more common in women thanks to our tendancy to wear silly high and pointy shoes. In extreme cases the toenail can actually grow to become a tube - youch.

As I have no infection I have two options. I can leave it and see if it improves on its own (and wear better shoes) or have an operation. The proceedure involves removing part of the nail and preventing it from regrowing by applying a chemical. It is done under local anaesthetic and is 90% effective. So far so good. But what worries me is the recovery period. I'd be effectively chair bound for two days and there's about a 6 week healing process with dressings ever decreasing in size. I'd need time off work and I'd not be able to run or do anything too active for probably 2 months.

I've got a few things booked up like the Yately 10k, Royal Parks in October, Surfing in September, Mountainboarding in August, which means that I'd not really be able to consider doing it until mid October if at all. I'd hoped to do Hellrunner, Tough Guy, Run to the Beat and Triathlon next year so will this affect that? Will I e able to get enough training ing? I'm really not sure what to do right now. I'm not optimistic that it'll improve on its own...