Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Better Running

Although it's hot and dismal, I have felt better running these past couple of days. I have drawn up a 10 week marathon plan, and feel quite confident.
I was 20 seconds a mile faster today than I was yesterday, although that could well be due to some vintage Bon Jovi.

I will run 6 days a week. Even if it's just 5k. I will swim twice a week, and I will bike at least twice a week. And unlike with the marathon, due to the triathlon I will do some speed sessions, too, in all three things.

It's a lot to do, but feeling quite buoyant the moment, so sure it will all be fine.

Monday, 24 June 2013

Better Swimming

I did a mile today. I didn't really time it, but I know I was swimming faster as I got more tired, and found myself stopping for a 30 second rest after every ten lengths. And tomorrow I am going to put my head in a sink of cold water and practise breathing out, and go for a longish run.

I now need to adjust my plan, to make it a standard triathlon training plan, as well as a marathon one. It's 6 weeks until the triathlon, and 10 until the marathon.

I am also going to knit a big moth.
That's rather exciting. It will be bigger and happier looking than this one.

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Rubbish Biking

So yesterday I just did a little 4 mile run, but the day before I cycled my work commute. I had forgotten how hard it is. The weather was dry, but the hills on the way home, with a nice 20mph headwind, were just dismal. I arrived drained and desperate for my dinner. On the very few flat sections, I felt I could really pick up some speed, so I think that's where the turbo has helped, but apart from that, I am rubbish at cycling, and I have a triathlon in just 6 short weeks.
Some serious training has to happen.
I can fit into my wetsuit, but it's unpleasantly tight.

Tomorrow I will get a decent length run in before work. I hope it rains. Big, massive raindrops. And a cold wind.

And I need to get down the beach on my wetsuit. I'm thinking of going to Cruden Bay. I'll take my daughter and make her sit on the sand and guard my stuff, although it's quite a shallow beach, I just need to get cold and swim with my face in freezing water more than anything.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013


I have decided not to do the half iron this year. I will do it next year.

The reasons for this are mainly financial, but also, I always knew I was going to be chasing cut off times, and would most probably come last. I didn't mind this too much when I could afford it, but now, the thought of putting myself into debt to come last and most likely have a crap day, is a very unpleasant one.

So, I will spend the next year getting better, much, much better, and will hope to be in the middle somewhere, and enjoy the thing. I may even do one somewhere else in the UK, as Aberfeldy don't give out medals! I need a medal. It seems mad to go through all that and not have something to hand round my neck.

So, next up is the Knockburn triathlon, a standard distance, the swim of which is still scaring me, so the next 6 weeks will be all about getting better at swimming.
I ran 5 miles today and the heat was horrible, I think I'll have to take a drink with me for shorter distances, then did half a mile at the pool, trying to maintain a decent stroke the entire time. I felt like I was moving faster, and my arms really ached afterwards, so I think my pull must be stronger.

And I'm definitely going to do Moray Marathon in September as well. I know I can improve my marathon time.  Just having music would really help.

So I'm still doing stuff, but cheaper stuff. I'm really not very good at this sport business, it takes me ages to get better, but that's ok, as I'm very good at other things.
But I still want to be properly fit, lose weight, and improve, and to reach the highest level of fitness I can.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Bring Me Tea!

Because my arms are barely working.
My arms and my butt are where I'm feeling it, my legs are in overall good shape today.

I thought I'd go for a swim, loosen up the muscles. I went too early. There was a school, as well as a group of learning disabilities in, and doing lengths was doing zig-zags, and I felt kind of shattered at half a mile, and went home. However, felt better for going, and did some quality stretching/yoga in the deep end.
I am awesome at yoga when there is water to hold me up.

 I have to embalm first thing tomorrow, so will either go for a little run or do some turbo before that. I need to cycle to work on Thursday, so need to get my bike muscles moving again.

I have also begun to work on a plan for the next nine weeks. I have to make sure I steadily increase my distances, and properly fitting into my wetsuit is becoming an urgent matter.
So far I have found a big pink A4 pad and some Spongebob stickers I forgot I bought. Tomorrow, with these fine tools, I will chisel a plan that will make sure I don't line up as unprepared for the half iron as I was yesterday.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Ythan Challenge

Ow, man. Just ow.

It was warm today. I don't do warm.
I am now shattered and stuff hurts. That was proper exercise.

It was all fine to start with, normal trails, and I was going quite fast, and the first few obstacles, like going under nets, were quite good. I know to keep my head down. I then went though a really muddy bog, and lost my trainer. The water was about thigh height, so no chance of getting it back, especially with people coming up behind. A marshal gave me a spare but tiny shoe, and that is the root of the ouch. I still had about 8k to go, so that's a long time to run in a tiny, wet shoe.

The hay bales were fine once I got the hang of them, many had a dent where others had put a foot in to help get up, as they were as high as my neck. However, then there was one at the top of a very went and slidey, muddy hill, so the bale was covered in mud, and had no foot hole. I pretty much pulled it onto myself, and others had to push the thing back up again. Then two men helped me over it in the most ungainly fashion possible.

The crossing of the river was proper fun. The water was beautiful and cold, I washed some of the mud off my face, and we had to stand for quite a while waiting for people to climb out. People were moaning, but I could have stood in there all day. We had to cross it one more time later on. A lifeguard was splashing people and these girls were making silly noises, when I passed him I help my arms up and said 'Bring it on!' and he splashed me good!

Not long after that, a marshal told me all the bales were done, but they lied! There were two to climb at the finish! And they have no footholds and the hay was so short on the top, I couldn't get a grip. Then I saw Chevy coming up behind me (oh no, you're not beating me), so somehow managed to drag and roll myself over them, and being right by the finish, I had a big audience for my lack of grace and skill. 'Come on, nearly there!' they shouted.
'Shut the fuck up!' I wanted to reply, but didn't. 

Anyway, I can't find my camera, so only have a rubbish phone picture, but these are the trainers I finished in, and the rather nice medal.

I will absolutely do it again, but will be a damn site fitter and stronger overall.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Feeling Wussy

I have genuine half iron fear.
I considered not doing it today. My calendar is scaring me. My lack of open water experience. My lack of anything. However, it cost so much I have to, and better I realise now, rather than 4 weeks away, just how much work needs to be done.

Yesterday morning I went out to do 3 miles before work and ended up feeling like I was going to puke after 2. This morning I was so tired getting out of bed an hour early wasn't going to happen, and I had planned 4 miles.
I haven't been eating that great and been finding it hard to sleep, so must stop being an idiot and sort that out.

However, tomorrow was going to be a rest day ahead of the Ythan Challenge, but now I will do the 4 miles then, so it won't effect the week much, and will just have to work harder next week. I need a plan. A proper progression of miles and brick sessions.

I have to bike to work more as my car is being an idiot, and has it's MOT next week.

I have to do a lot of things.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Double Sporting

First up I ran this morning. It was warm, in spite of dullness of the sky. I did 6 miles at 10:28 min miles. It wasn't particularly pleasant.

 I then went swimming, it was really busy and I lost count, but I felt quite strong in the water, and did a good 45 mins.

I then ate pretty much a whole and very lovely watermelon whilst doing my tax return. I'm glad the return is out of the way, but fear there may be consequences to eating that much fruit.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

How Crap Is My Left Leg?

Bloody crap, that's what.

Today I tried single leg drills on the turbo. I have read a lot about them, and as I have a whopping great imbalance I wasn't surprised it was a lot harder with just my left leg, but wasn't prepared for the severe and utter shitess.

I put it into a lower gear, and had been cycling away happily for half an hour, then I tried the right leg, yes it was hard, and there was a little dead spot when coming up to the top, but I soon eliminated that, and did 30 seconds. I then tried 30 seconds on the left leg, and had to put it into a much lower gear, and really, really struggled. Just like I don't seem to swim as well on the left, seems I don't ride, either.

So, I will do single leg squats, pedalling, and all kinds of stuff to sort out my useless left leg. I had kind of assumed it was stronger as it's a good inch and half wider at the calf and thigh than the other leg, but now I'm thinking it's just fatter.

Yesterday I ran 5 miles, today I cycled 15 on the turbo with the resistance whacked right up, and tomorrow I will both run and swim. Tonight I am watching Spartacus and doing weights and core work.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

On It! *punches air*

I feel my first week back has been ok, and I am rested, so this week is going to be BRUTAL, MOFOS!

It's kind of tricky as I have a crapload of extra shifts, so will be doing the hardcore 5:30am stuff.
I have very little time to swim, but will MAKE IT HAPPEN as well as get a long-ish bike in somewhere. Probably to work.

Tomorrow I will run 5 miles before work, and do lots of core and weights.
This morning I did 4 miles before work, and was totally shattered, my eyes bleary, felt a bit sick, but managed 10:15 min miles, and by the end was far more alive than at the beginning.


Saturday, 8 June 2013

Nearly Normal

My swimming on Friday felt a lot better. It's amazing how quickly the fitness can come back. It was super busy, and I was sharing a lane with an idiot woman with no sense of direction, but felt I achieved something, as my goal was to work on the pull I make whilst breathing, and I felt a bit faster and stronger doing that.

Today I did nothing, bar a walk. I had intended to get back on the 35k a week again this week, but will be slightly short. However, as a first week back after a poorly ankle, I feel it was wise to not push it. I will go for a reasonable size run before work tomorrow.

It's a week now until the next race, so will up things a little bit, but not too much. And someone has just pointed out the Peterhead Half Marathon is on 20th June, and I'm off work, and it's only £14 and there is a medal and a t-shirt!
I am very tempted.

Thursday, 6 June 2013

A Bit Quicker

Since Edinburgh, and the foot, I kind of lost the ability to run normally, there was nothing for a week, then it was slooow. However, speed is coming back to me. So damn glad I didn't have to rest all the way up to Ythan. The 11 min miles have become 10 min miles, and today's 5k was 9:30. It was warm, but I felt faster, it felt easier than the last few days. I'm hoping by the time next weekend comes I shall have my running groove back.

Tomorrow I shall swim. I want a good mile done, and to run 5k in the morning before I go.
Only 70 days of half iron training left. So not ready!

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

I Need A Battle Cry

What I lacked in distance today I made up for in intensity.

I did 10k on the turbo, the first 5k were a steady 18mph (which probably equates to 14 mph in the real world) and then I blasted it for the next 5k, and got it up to an average of 22 mph. My legs were shaking when I got off, and I changed my shoes and went for a 5k run, at steady-ish 10:02 min miles. The run felt good, it's quite cool today, and after getting so hot in the turbo, fresh air was super nice.

I'm watching a lot of Spartacus. There needs to be exercise class that involves swords and sand and lots of yelling. I'm going to start saying 'apologies' instead of 'sorry', and 'gratitude' instead of 'thank you'.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013


4 very sunny miles this morning.
Too sunny. I should have got up earlier, me and heat really don't mix. *moan, blah*

My legs were quite achey, and probably some DOMS from my day of climbing, and I started off quite slowly, just over 11 min miles on the bumpier of the paths, but ended up averaging 10:30 min miles.  My aim was to try and keep it steady, so it was OK.

Tomorrow, I will turbo then run, as I am sewing form home most of the day. I will also run on the road, and try and move faster.

And rollering hurts like hell at the moment. Like HELL!

Monday, 3 June 2013

I Ran!

For two miles. I kind of ache now, but not in an injury way, more in a 'I have run' way. I started off too fast, my legs were feeling quite energetic, I looked down to see I was averaging 8:25, and I don't do miles that start with 8 minutes (not yet) so slowed for the next one, keeping the foot in mind, and did that just over a ten minute mile.

I then went swimming. For some reason there were a load of kids there, must be an in-service day or something. The pool was full of floats and kids being idiots. I managed an uninterrupted half a mile, and then did 200m really concentrating on my stroke. I need to turn my head with my body more, and not just turn my neck, and keep my legs closer together. After a breath I feel like I have a habit of kicking out to get going, but if the turn is smoother, there doesn't seem to be the same dead-spot I need to kick out of.
I think.
But I need to get better at swimming (and biking, and running) and will do my best to get in the pool twice a week. My swimming fitness felt really in the toilet today, after not being there as much.

Sunday, 2 June 2013


No pain at all today. Lots of walking up and down big hills.
We went to Bennachie and did the 3 peaks.
I didn't take this picture, I forgot to take any pictures. I ate flapjacks.

Just a two mile run planned for tomorrow, and then a swim. I need to get some distance done with the swim, so will not use the pull buoy, and do a normal, steady mile. And it will be a juice and smoothie kind of week, and I need a bit more room on my wetsuit.
Being able to do it is up is one thing, I'd like to also be able to swim in it.

Saturday, 1 June 2013


Starting tomorrow, I am back on it.
My foot feels a lot better, although I've not really used it today to test that out. I have a day of walking up and down big hills planned tomorrow, and have made some of my banana-raisin flapjacks to take. No junk will be consumed.
If the foot survives a day of walking, the following day I shall run two miles, and then go swimming, and build up the running from here. I have found a sore, tight spot on the side of my calf, which I think it the root of the tendon problem, so shall make sure I massage and roller that, and along with sciatica stretches, I will keep on top of this.

It's 11 weeks until my first half iron.
It's 13 weeks until my next marathon.

I just want to survive both the standard triathlon I have just before the half iron, as well as the half iron, but the next marathon is going to be an improvement.

The juicer is back out on the kitchen side. I have a shopping list full of stuff for juices and smoothies, which will be the bulk of my diet next week.

Feeling all enthusiastic again. My next events will be good!
(Also worth noting that Chevy will be at Ythan. He can't beat me. Nope.)