Half Marathon · Running

The Sunday Run (2nd edition)

14 days..

I started the week off pretty good although I was a bit choked up with a cold but I was feeling pretty motivated.

Monday – 8 miles.   I wasn’t far off my usual pace so I felt good that I hadn’t lost too much with my knee recovery and hoped I’d sweat out this cold.  No knee pain during or after. Bonus.

Tuesday – 3 miles.  Another pretty good run and again no pain. Goodbye runners knee!! *touches wood*

Wednesday – 3 miles. I struggled a little breathing as my cold seems to be going to my chest and my nose was running like a stream…gross, sorry!

(google images)


Thursday
– 3.5 miles. I ran with Kevin and I struggled from 0.5miles onward, I contemplated quitting and just heading back home but kept going with a run/walk method, it was tough I struggled breathing and kept getting a side stitch. Not a good run at all. 

 

You cant quit when you wear Nike! #justdoit
 
Friday – rest

Saturday – rest

SUNDAY – 4 miles. Kevin ran with me as I have a bit of a chesty cough And he was concerned I might have an asthma attack( that’s true love right there, ha) I managed to run most of the way…stopped to tie my shoe lace and had a cheeky 15 second walk (Kev didn’t notice!) I was a bit slower than usual but still a million times better than Thursday! 

Tonight I’m having a HOT bath, a hot honey and lemon drink and an early bed in attempt to shift this cold.  If not I guess I just gotta man up and get on with it.  I have some serious training to catch up with!!

Starting to panic and feeling sorry for myself.  Here’s hoping for a better week of running!

Thanks for reading 😊 have a great week 💗

Angela xo

Fitness · Half Marathon · Running

Under Pressure

On Saturday my race number arrived with the post 

I have just under 3 weeks before I tackle Edinburgh Half Marathon, my training so far has been hindered with runners knee and I am currently suffering flu like symptoms and willing myself not to get sick.  I’m feeling sorry for myself, majorly!!

I wish I could just blitz the training in the next 3 weeks but my knee still isn’t 100% and seems to need sufficient rest time after each run.  I managed a slow 8 miler on Sunday (the longest I’ve managed in well over a month) with little pain, so hopefully I can get some good long runs in before the half.

I’m feeling extra pressure this time round for two reasons.

Firstly I’m raising money for charity.  I wanted to this last time but I didn’t believe I’d manage the 13.1miles and didn’t want to let anyone down.  Since gaining the confidence of completing a half already I decided I may aswell do it this time for a good cause.  Just my luck to be injured.

Secondly, I want a PB!!!! My goal for Alloa was basically to cross the finish line still breathing, FYI that sounds far easier than it is.  This time I want to beat that 2:15:29 ideally I’d have loved a sub 2hr but with so little training I really can’t see that happening. 

Can I add a thirdly? I don’t want to fall over this time.  I’d like to finish with no holes in my clothes or my skin.

I’m easing myself back into training this week if my knee will let me and will bring back my Sunday Run posts as they helped keep me motivated last time.  3 WEEKS….EEEK!!

  
Kevin and I are running for Yorkhill Children’s Charity, specifically for the Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research Team at the hospital.  

Our friends little boy spent the majority of last year in Yorkhill Children’s Hospital in Glasgow being treated for Leukaemia and we feel so blessed that with the treatment available his Leukaemia is now in remission.  It was a very tough year and we hope our funds raised will help other children like our little superstar Logan.

This is a cause very close to our hearts and if you’d like to help you can donate here

Are you training for anything at the moment?

Thanks for reading ❤ Have a great day 🙂 

Angela xo

Half Marathon · Running

Alloa (My First) Half Marathon 

I woke around 6am, I say woke, I’m pretty sure I didn’t actually sleep much at all.  I was buzzing with excitement but mostly nerves. Looked like the weather had gone our way. No rain!  I checked I had all my running gear and that my Garmin was charged, double checked, then triple checked.

For breakfast I fuelled up with a bowl of porridge, banana and cup of tea, avoiding my morning coffee with the fear that it might catalyst an unexpected bowel movement mid-race. Now that could be embarrassing!

My sister, Cheryl and brother-in-law Gary picked Kevin and I up at 8.30am to be in Alloa for 9am to pick up our race packs.  Gary has done Alloa Half Marathon before so was giving us advice about the tough hills we were about to endure. I switched off and checked my iPod was working for the 1000th time.

When we arrived the place was packed with excited runners, masses of bright yellows and pinks.  There were pipers playing bagpipes.(I can’t stand the sound of bagpipes but I didn’t mind them today.)  The atmosphere reminded me of T in Park music festival, with more running shoes and less wellies and the energy drinks were alcohol free, or I’d like to think they were. T-shirts identified charity runners and running clubs. One named ‘Troon Tortoises’ made me smile.. Surely I won’t get beaten by a tortoise.

We collected our race packs pinned on our race numbers, a quick loo visit and before we knew it a voice boomed over a tannoy announcing we had had 5 minutes till race time. Oh crap. Sh*t just got real.

Time for a photo.

Followed by good luck hugs and kisses.

2000+ runners gathered at the start line.  Gary suggested holding back so we didn’t get stuck in the pack which meant after the 10am gun we were roughly another 2 minutes before we crossed the START line.

Crowds of smiling faces lined the road on either side, cheering and clapping.  Wow, I suddenly felt overcome with emotion. This felt amazing.

Kevin found his way through the crowd just after half a mile and left Gary and I dodging our way through the pack.

Now unless you actually know me you won’t believe what happened at the 1 mile mark…..I fell. Yup, full body dive on the concrete and landed with my stretched out arms and head almost lodged under a parked car. Well that was embarrassing!

Gary’s face was a picture, he wasn’t sure whether to laugh at me or help me.  A kind lady helped me as I attempted to get up, I’ve no idea how she managed not to laugh.  Back on my feet I started running again, Gary and I kept laughing every few minutes and a guy behind us laughed ‘The rest of your race should be easy after that!’ I really hoped so.

Mile 2 was my fastest with a combination of adrenalin from the fall and an urge to get away from any runners or spectators who might have witnessed it.

Just after the mile 2 marker I noticed my friends Cheryl (not my sister), Martin and their little boy Logan in the crowd cheering us on.

Mile 3 I lost Gary, I think he’d been trying to leave me since the fall.  Haha!

As I approached mile 4, I’d started speaking to a woman running alongside me, she was around my age.  It was her first Half Marathon too, we ran together for about 3 miles chatting occasionally which took my mind off any climbs we faced. At 7 miles she started to walk, I tried to encourage her but she was starting to struggle.

I was on my own again, well not really, there were thousands of people around.  That’s when I started to notice my knees hurt, thankfully not anything serious, they were bleeding from my incident along with my elbow and hand that had started to sting.  What an idiot!! I had another chuckle when I remembered the look on Gary’s face. I’m pretty sure the image he had was far more entertaining.

At 8 miles there was a water station I’d passed by a couple but this time I could feel my mouth getting dry so I took a few mouthfuls from a bottle and without realising it I’d slowed to a walk for a good few minutes… Running and drinking is harder than it looks…that’s when I started to feel my legs burning and my calves tighten, making it harder to get the speed back up.  Like they knew I needed a boost Cheryl, Martin and Logan’s faces popped up in the crowd again, they had driven round back roads to get to a spot to get a glimpse of us again. ‘You’re doing great Ang!’ Just what I needed to get me going.

I don’t remember anything significant from 9-11, some high fives from little kids in the crowd as we passed, which made me smile.  I guessed Kevin and Gary would be almost, if not already done. Lucky them!

Mile 11. Hello big hill. It really was an uphill struggle and I started walking about half way, I’m not sure if I had to or if it was just because all the runners around me had,  my legs were started to ache. The worst thing about this hill.  It was steep and at the top there was no decline it was level for about a mile and a half then only very slightly began to decline. In my opinion the best bit about hills is that what goes up must come down…we were robbed of that pleasure.

On the plus side we were almost done.  That hill took a lot out of me 11.5-12.5 was a complete struggle, I was slow, really slow but I kept moving. About 6 of us kept passing each other then dropping back then passing each other again.

At 12.5 miles I seen a girl/ guy couple ahead that had passed me before the hill so I used them as motivation to go for it.  I caught them up on the final left turn into the finish line as the crowds got thicker again, the cheers were louder than ever.

I saw my friend Danielle’s little girl, Erin up on her Dad, Neil’s shoulders chanting AN-GE-LA, AN-GE-LA which made me laugh, she’s such a cutie.  The last few meters, I passed the couple and crossed the FINISH line.

I now know exactly what a runners high feels like!

The next 15 minutes was filled with hugs, medals, T-shirts, photos, Gary giving a detailed description of my ‘incident’, everyone laughing and lots of very wobbly legs!

Oh and I forgot to stop my Garmin!!

13.1miles  Official chip time 2:15:29


Kevin done amazing for a first timer and got a 1:55:15 . Proud of him.

My original goal was to cross the finish line (and not be last) which I’m so proud to have achieved but I thought I might have managed nearer 2hr. I’m not disappointed at all but now that I have a time to work on I don’t think this will be my last Half Marathon.

Have I caught the running bug?  🙂

Thanks for reading ❤

Happy St Patrick’s Day 🙂 if you don’t do St Pat’s then have an amazing day anyway 🙂

Angela xo

Fitness · Half Marathon · Running

The mind is a strange thing…

I’ve been told by a number of people ‘If you can run 10miles you’ll manage to run 13.1miles’.

I hope they are right.  Yesterday I ran 10miles…for the first time in my life!!  In all honesty I probably should have done this before yesterday (1 week before my first half marathon) however if you have been reading my blog you’ll know that my ‘training’ has not been hugely consistent.

I have been struggling with distance for the last few weeks and before today the most I’d ran was 7.5miles, at a push…which was starting to worry me.

Kevin and my Brother-in-law Gary, had planned to do a 10mile route on Sunday and  when I woke at 7.30am on the morning of, I decided I should probably join them, even though my gut feeling was that I couldn’t do it. I had to try.

Although it’s still quite cold here, the sun was shining and we had the clearest sky I’d seen in a while (perfect running weather in my opinion).

We set off together at 9.00am. Mile 1 was good,  the boys were trying to pace themselves so that meant I could keep up with them, we chatted. I felt good, even though I hadn’t ran for 3 days. ..Mile 2 I started to fall back while the boys added some speed and I lost them to the bends and hills.

Miles 3 to 5 I struggled, a lot. fighting with myself to not walk.  I’m not sure why I wanted to, I wasn’t tired, I didn’t hurt, I wasn’t thirsty. Was I bored? The mind is a strange thing.

Around the 5 mile mark I spotted Kevin and Gary in the distance, Gary was wearing the brightest lumo orange trainers I’ve ever seen and Kev was wearing a bright yellow top, so I knew it was them.  That was the push I needed, I felt as though I’d passed through some sort of mental barrier and was full steam ahead.

Miles 6-10 I was in the zone I kept thinking that the boys weren’t too far ahead although I hadn’t seen them since mile 5 and didn’t see them again until I was done.

During those last 4 miles I had stopped focusing on the fact that I was running, my mind wandered and I had lots of random thoughts, everything from planning an outfit for my friends 30th birthday party to ‘If Kevin and I have kids, will they be short or tall!?!'( I’m short, he’s tall and we have no plans to have babies any time soon!!!!) I also remember wondering  ‘how much faster I’d run if there was a shark chasing me?’. What the …. The mind is a strange thing.

At 10 miles and almost complete, I thought I’d be a bit cheeky and take a short cut to our finishing destination however Karma bit me in the butt and I actually ended up running almost half a mile further. What an idiot! Ha! That’s just typical of me!

When I finished I felt great AMAZING, there was no ‘breathing out my ass’ like I have experienced during and after a short 3mile run in the past. I felt strong. I felt like I could do more. I felt happy, proud and a huge sense of accomplishment.


Turns out Sunday was also International Women’s Day.

Ladies, you are all amazing! #girlpower

This run has given me a confidence boost, which I really needed for the Half Marathon.

I’m still ignoring the pace and focusing,  solely on reaching the finish line.  Here’s hoping the weather plays its part, today we’ve been sent thundery, grey skies gale force winds and torrential rain! One does love the Great British weather! Eeek!

Thanks for reading 🙂

Have a great week ❤

Angela XO

Half Marathon · Running

Running Update | Encouragement

Sometimes I feel like we live in a time where all aspects of life have become a competition with the next person (women in particular).
I’m not a competitive person by nature so it gets to me.
I think rather than bring each other down we should be encouraging and uplifting each other.
Last week I experienced encouragement from friends and from strangers at a time when I was having some self doubt, so I thought I’d share this with you.

IMG_2705

Before my Currently post last week I was going backwards and forwards on whether or not I was going to pull out of the fast approaching Half Marathon.
My sister had already pulled out, then my friend pulled, leaving just me and the guys who are ‘proper runners’, as for my training.. well I hadn’t been working as hard as I should have and I guess I just felt I’d be stupid to even think I could do it!

Then this happened..

IMG_2697
I found out a good friend of mine (also Kevin but not the Mr) is doing the same Half, he done it for the first time last year for charity and was also a newbie runner, he is now giving me some advice and assures me I’ll be fine on the day. Thanks Kev!

Then this happened…

IMG_2698

IMG_2699
Awesome words of encouragement from two awesome runner/bloggers Montreal Runner Mom and BlissfulBritt.
Thank you ladies so much, it really meant so much to me.

In fact so much so, that after reading these comment I managed 7miles on the treadmill without pausing or walking. What?! On a treadmill?!? No way!!
I set the pace (slightly, slower than what I’ve been trying to do), hid the stats, put my tunes on and I just went for it.
I’m pretty sure there were moments where I forgot I was even running. It felt easy, well easier than any run I’ve done before, I even felt like I could have kept going but I had to be home to make dinner for my dad.
I thought, maybe if I work hard I still have a chance at this….

IMG_2614

I knew I had to do a 7 mile outside too so before going on the weekly run with Kevin(back to the Mr), I said to him I was starting to worry about not being able to push my distance so he ran at my pace, to keep me going and helped me get another 7 miles in the bag!!!!!
It was tough, a lot tougher than that treadmill run!
I was running at a slightly faster pace than I had on the treadmill and a few times I slowed to a walk when I got a bit of a stitch or had to control my breathing but I survived it!!!!!
Kevin kept me going and every other runner we crossed paths with gave the usual smile or ‘Good Morning’ which I always feel is a positive boost.

IMG_2704

The running community is awesome!
Everyone is so encouraging, it doesn’t seem to matter whether you are a 5min miler, a 15min miler or somewhere in between.
This is something I think the world can do with a little more of. Words of encouragement can go a long way, make someone’s day or change their life in a positive way. That can only be a good thing, right!

I still have just over 3 tough weeks of training ahead of me to get the distances I need but I’m finishing this Half Marathon…Even if I am last to cross the finish line, on all fours with an oxygen tank and a defibulator.

Thanks for reading ❤

Happy Friday Folks, have a great weekend ❤

Angela xo

Chat · Currently · Fitness · Half Marathon · Lifestyle

Currently…

It’s been a few weeks since I last posted so I thought I’d share a little more than just another boring running update.
Here’s what I’m currently…

WATCHING
Scandal. I used to record it and watch later, now I’m home 9pm every Thursday, cuppa in hand, waiting for it starting. Obsessed.
*The U.S are a head of us Brits so no spoilers*
Any fellow Scandal fans?
Anyone else as envious of Olivia Pope’s wardrobe as I am? Those coats though *sighs*

IMG_2661

READING
Books…
….Suggestions welcome 🙂

Blogs…
The Weekday Table
Christie has a fab blog with awesome pictures. Her last few posts have really motivated me with working out and running. It’s not solely a fitness blog she’s a lifestyle blogger so there’s a little bit of everything. Go check it out!

LISTENING
Currently have these three on repeat

Mark Ronson ft Bruno Mars -Uptown Funk
In reality I should be sick of this by now but nope, still LOVE it!!

IMG_2656
Taylor Swift – Blank Space
I don’t care how cool you think you are EVERYONE secretly loves at least one T.Swift catchy number.

IMG_2658
Ellie Goulding – Love me Like you Do
Love this track from the much anticipated movie Fifty Shades of Grey, I really wasn’t a fan of the books, but I may have to make a point of catching the movie… For comparison reasons obviously *cheeky grin*

IMG_2657

LOVING
We have some daylight before and after work. Yipee! It’s the little things guys, always the little things!!
There’s been nothing more demotivating than going to work in the dark and coming home from work in the dark. Ugh.

NOT LOVING
The gym is still super busy, looks like the New Years resolutions haven’t tailed off just yet. I haven’t managed to get a space in BodyPump class for 3 weeks *rolls eyes* 1st world problems.

WISHING
Without wishing the year away. Winter, I’m so over you. Hurry up Spring!!

IMG_2665

FEELING
Not going to lie I’m having a mini meltdown…scared/worried/anxious my first Half Marathon is in 5 WEEKS (yesterday)
I’m not even close to where I’d like to be with my training in fact this last week I feel like I’ve taken 2 steps back.
It’s reminding me of my final year at University. The dreaded dissertation that you get all year to complete, yet me being me, I leave starting it until the last possible moment, meaning locking myself in and pulling all nighters for a month to get it done.
Beast mode training for the next 5 weeks!

IMG_2664

RUNNING
Although I wanted to have progressed more with my running by now my January goal was to run 6 miles (I really should be running much further this late in the game, eeek) which I managed but only on the treadmill, we’re now over a week into February and I haven’t progressed any. I feel I’ve been focusing a bit too much on pace forgetting that my initial goal is just complete the HM regardless of time (okay and maybe not come last!)

WEARING
Sadly I live in gym gear at the moment, post run outfit.
•H&M top and running tights
•Nike trainers

IMG_2655

So that’s my currently.. I’d love to know yours 🙂

Thanks for reading. Have a great week ❤

Angela xo