Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Another Busy Day

Don't you love this time of year? We are hitting chaotic ... and every year I seem to forget how busy it actually gets. For some silly reason (oh yeah, December babies fitted in with the outdoor shooting season ...) we have three of the kids' birthdays between now and Christmas, not to mention Christmas, end of the school year ... etc etc ...

Soooo Sunday after Saturday's Incline run was a lovely rest day - I got my Christmas Class (Stamping) ready - I have three classes in different places all doing the same class over the next few weeks and then went and watched Cameron play his rep Cricket game - which they lost, badly!

Yesterday (Monday) I ran a short 6.5km and it was hard work, I seem to have got sluggish and lost all speed (if I ever had what you could call "speed"), I'm sure it will pass, but I feel like I've spent months getting no where. Did my delivering and managed to get to the shops to make sure I had Charlotte's birthday gifts organised (yay! only Monday, and I'm feeling organised for her birthday onFriday).

Today, Tuesday, is usually my short run and spin class day - I either struggle and get up earlier to do the run before spin, or do it after spin, which usualy means the whole day seems to disappear quickly. So I tried a new idea today, I ran to the gym, did spin class, then ran home - now, that is a good workout! 5km pretty much exactly to the gym and the same home. Felt pretty good too, I've just been delivering and now just need to hop in the shower, try and get dinner semi ready, pick up the girls from school, get Charlotte organised for her Dance lesson then back to the school for the first of three teacher interviews (I'm on the Board of Trustees as the Personnel person so its time to do the annual new staff interviews - just one place to fill this year, which is an extra teacher as our numbers have gone up - must be a good sign of a good school when the teachers don't leave!), I'll quickly take Charlotte to dance between two of the interviews, once that is done, I'll rush Rhiannon off to her Touch (rugby) game, watch that and then get home for dinner *phew*.

I'm pretty sure I'll have no trouble sleeping tonight!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Rimutaka Incline

18.4km - 1:45:27 (5:43/km)
Fun run - so no places :)

I love this run, off road - first 11k is up to the summit with a gradual incline the whole way, last 7km is down from 500m to 60m (I think, it is a really steep down!). It follows the old railway course, tracks are long gone, but the tunnels are still there and pretty cool to run through - if not pretty dark and worrying about twisting an ankle!

I even have photos - kind of. My two sisters walked it, they left 2hrs before me with the walkers and chatted, had fun, took photos ... kind of sounds like a better deal than running ;)

I left home at about 8am - a lot more relaxed after David realised on Friday that he wasn't actually working like he thought this weekend, so instead of worrying about kids getting to places on time and having the right people pick them up, and rushing back for other drop offs, I could just relax and enjoy the day off and let him worry about it. Got to the carpark at 9.00, got on one of buses to shuttle us to the start, picked up my number, trip to the toilet, and I was ready to go!

There was a misty rain the whole drive over, and still slightly misty wet when we started - bonus though, the wind was blowing the right way and for a point to point run, wind blowing the right way is a bonus!

Set off - I found I was puffing way too much, my body just didn't really feel in the groove, possibly tired - its been a busy week with a trip to Auckland, meetings, work, tonight will be the first evening I'm home for nearly two weeks or eating crap (although I tried hard not to and wasn't as bad as I could have been) for a few days in Auckland, then really not getting back to the good eating after we got back ... whatever, I felt sluggish. Groin muscle was soreish to start, but not too bad.

5km Drink stop - this is Julie ... just imagine it is two hours later and I'm running up to it! Ha Ha

I wanted to finish the run with a 5:40 pace, I started off pretty much bang on that and kept it there until about the 8th km when the incline gets steeper for the last 3k up to the top, I kept on slogging/jogging and felt pretty slow, but was passing people rather than being passed so I was probably doing fine. Got to the top absolutely stuffed and stopped at the waterstop and took my time having some water and a gel, brought my pace right up to nearly 6:00/km, but I knew the downhill would be lots faster!

Nearly at the summit!

Old remains of the train at the top

Crossed the creek slowly ;), went through a tunnel, again slowly ... finally set off down the hill and picked up speed, had to slow down again for the very stoney steep gully ... and then finally it was all down hill, with a couple of slow tunnels (slow because I didn't want to trip!).

One of the tunnels

Most of the downhill is spent looking down making sure you're not going to trip on any stones, or turn an ankle - but fun!

2.5km to Finish! Really?!

The advertising for this course says 17.5k, I knew it was more like 18k from last year, but even still, I thought I had about 1k to go when I reached the sign that said 2.5k to go! What! I was ready to be finished by then, and that 2.5k felt like a long long way. I ran this is 1:48 last year and thought I would blast that for a PB easily, but was getting a bit nervous that I would be slower. Ended up 3min faster - but really, thinking about it afterwards, I was definitely more sluggish than I would have liked ... probably the first time I've run a race where I just haven't run as well as I can, well, as well as I could on the day, but definitely not where I think my fitness is at.

Here I am, at last!

Nice thing about being the runner, not the walker, is that my sisters were there to cheer me in at the finish - poor things had to wait for an hour because they walk so fast! Julie's partner had nicely offered to come and pick us up at the finish end, so he did the patient wait as well. So, came in, stretched, hopped in the car, went and got some lunch - Les drove us over the hill where Georgie and I picked up our cars and I headed home.

Today my legs feel good - quads from running down that hill? Don't really hurt at all - that Maungatook training I do, plus all the biking must be good for something! Groin muscle is kind of sore, but not too bad considering it was a hard, long run the day before so hopefully it is on the mend.

Rest day today - I'm liking my switch to long run on Saturdays and a total rest/family day on the Sunday :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Is it still Thursday?

Actually, here, it definitely isn't - it is Friday afternoon! But I can still pretend and do Three Things Thursday can't I?

  • It's been a long time since I wrote anything here - no reason really, I just didn't get around to it, and the longer you leave it, the worse the mojo gets ... so it's been a while.

  • I planned my training for London 2011 today, for the upteenth time ;) But I think this is definitely what I'm going with. I had dreams of speed work, hill work, all the serious stuff I read about and admire and will make me a faster runner. I've discovered everytime I push it to hard something gives. I recovered from the hamstring injury well - no twinges or pain at all anymore. But now my groin is sore. I've decided I need to just concentrate on getting the distances in and building that endurance, the speed will come when the last 5kg finally comes off and with the training. With that in mind, I'm going with my original plan of doing Hal Higdon Intermediate II programme, I followed Intermediate I for my first marathon and it worked well so there is no reason to change what isn't broken - except to make it a bit harder.

  • I have about a month until the Wanganui Half Marathon, I've tried to train hard for it, and am definitely building a good base. Not sure I will be as fast as I want, in fact I know I won't, but I'm still hoping for a goodish half marathon and then marathon training will start straight after, I'm excited, and nervous.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

7 Months! ... aka Here I am

I had to look at the London Marathon site to see how long it is until the big day, was surprised to see exactly 7mths ... that time is going to tick by awfully fast.

So where have I been, what have I been doing?

Well, for a couple of months I really wasn't running, and it was very frustrating, not to mention worrying. Not sure where I got to the ages ago that I was here, but I ended up going to see a sports doctor, she sent me away to get my knees x-rayed and ultra-sounded, they came up with nothing and after more examination she decided (but I don't think was really sure) that it was the very bottom of my hamstrings hurting, basically that is where I was pointing to was hurting coupled with the fact my hamstrings were very weak, seemed to be the logical explanation. She sent me off with instructions to strengthen the hamstrings and that yes, I could run, but not consecutive days and not too much.

So I left there, had already started seeing a Personal Trainer, have carried on seeing him. I started running 5-6km 3x a week and since then have slowly built up. I saw the Doctor again last week and she was very impressed at how much stronger and more stable my body is and we set an appointment for two months time with the plan being that I probably wouldn't need it, but to have it there just in case, and okay to run, but stick to the 10% rules.

So where am I at now? Feeling pretty good :) I've upped my mileage to about 35km/week, I ran 14km last Sunday without the injury playing up. I ran 12km yesterday, that felt fantastic. I'm running a 10km race on Sunday, so that will be a good test to see where I am at. All the strengthening work I've been doing has definitely made my body feel stronger and more stable, speedwise and running fitness wise, I'm not quite where I was at pre-marathon and just after the marathon when I was probably at my peak, but I'm definitely getting there and am pretty confident that I can built up that fitness again pretty quickly.

At this stage I'm pretty much following the same build up as I did last year. The Masterton Half Marathon is in a few weeks, which was my first half last year. I'm hoping to run it, but will see how the body feels, I definitely won't be doing it "as fast as I can", but am hoping to be able to run it at an easy/slow pace, just so in my head I know I'm back at half marathon fitness again. The Rimutaka Incline is on the 13th of November (about 18km), I'll definitely be aiming for that and then the Wanganui Half Marathon on 12th of December ... I'm really hoping to put in a good race and good time at Wanganui, after that I will start marathon training again. Feels like I'm in a time warp in some ways, same plan, same place as a year ago ... except this time I know I've done it once and I can do it again.

I've been eating crap again and it is showing on the scales, I wonder if you ever win against the eating demon? I know in my head that to run just that much faster and easier I need to lose that last 5kg, but I can't seem to buckle down and do it. Oh well, I will keep trying though!

Family is good ... we're in that nice inbetween winter and summer sports time, we have NOTHING on Saturday which is very unusual (okay, I lie, the girls do have cheerleading, but that is later on in the day - no getting up early for it!). I'm not even running or spinning, I'll be resting my legs ready for the Pelorus Trust 10k on Sunday.

Shall I try and promise I'll keep updating here better, or just make no promises - but try?

Monday, July 26, 2010

8 Months, 21 Days

Whoops, skipped a few!! Oh well, that is life :)

Okay ...


1 Spin Class
45min Cross Trainer

40min Cross Trainer (cross-country ... hard work!)
30min treadmill (snuck in a 1km slow jog)

1 Spin Class
50min Cross Trainer

I really really want to run :( ... the 1km I did on the treadmill on Saturday just reinforced I'm not healed, definitely not sore and limping around, but I could feel it ... and know that if I had run, say 5km, it would have been sore. Patience isn't my best attribute, and this just plain sucks!

On good (and being totally optimistic!) news - I've persuaded three of my sisters to enter the relay with me for the Tarawera Ultra ... should be lots of fun!! It is about a month before London, so hopefully I'll be back into it, fit and training ... the 23km I'll do should equal a good long training run for the marathon.


Just don't want to talk about it!


Busy, busy, busy ... as usual :) Not such a bad weekend, Saturday was quiet for us, the girls both played netball at 9.00am which means we were finished with sport early, which gave me time to go to the gym. Went and visited my new great nephew, he is rather gorgeous - a good looking baby! Sunday, off to the gym again, and then I had a Stampin' Up workshop in the afternoon - days sure do fly by! Everyone back at school and work today ... I'm about to do the very exciting job of hanging out the washing, then on my bike to deliver and then back in time for the Mr Sky Man to come and connect us etc, fingers crossed it all happens this time!!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

8 Months, 25 Days

Just sneaking in before the day finishes to keep up with the daily blogging! Not a whole lot to say today ...


Zilch ... we'll call it a rest day! Dad rang this morning and said I could have the day off, he'd do all of them today, under questioning, he's supposed to be only doing about 30min on his bike, he has had his stitches out but the skin isn't knitting together quite like it should (he had internal and external stitches) ... but he is being his usual stubborn self and feels fine, so isn't listening quite like he should. Anyway, it was raining, and I although I tried to persuade him being out in the rain and the possibility of slipping etc wasn't a great idea, there was another part of me quite pleased I didn't have to go out and get wet! I thought about going to the gym and doing a stint on the cross-trainer, but decided a complete rest day would probably do me the world of good.


Double blah


Ahhhhh a nice day at home, I got so many little things done today! The Sky TV people were supposed to come this afternoon and get us connected, we've been with Telstra forever, but have finally got sick of waiting for their Home Media to start and have decided to switch to Sky and MySky (I miss so many good programmes working in the evenings!). Anyway, the technician rang at about 10.00 and said he would get there about 3.00, of course at 2.55 I had to go out and get the kids from school (it was still raining), and he left a message just after to say that they couldn't do it in the rain (the satelite dish needs to be put on the roof of the house). Why he couldn't have worked that out earlier I really don't know. Oh well, nice day at home, housework got done, phone calls got made, stampin orders got dropped off, my workshop for Sunday is all organised (and its only Thursday!).

Spin tomorrow, plus a cross-trainer workout ... hopefully will balance out the work dinner later on!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

8 Months, 26 Days

Happy 100th Post to me!! ... pretty sad when I'm pretty sure I've probably had it going for about a year (just checked, first post was 2nd September) ... so another day in the thrilling life of Lisa trying to get to the London Marathon :)


1hr Cross-Trainer - I've decided to emulate what I'd be running pretty much on the cross-trainer, hoping that will keep my fitness somewhat where it should be for when I start running again, in fact I'm thinking that once I'm okay to run that for a while I might try running 3-4x a week and using the cross-trainer the other couple of days, its not such a bad work out and I feel like its making the leg muscles stronger. So today, I decided to try and make it equal a longish, easyish run. I set it for 60min and manual (because I couldn't workout how to change the time on the fat-burner programme from 30min) and alternated between 5min on 1 and 10min on 4 ... trying to make sure my heart rate was pretty much in the fat burning/sweat, but not high cardio stage. I think it worked pretty well - it felt like a good workout, albeit seems like a long time and is pretty boring (I don't think it as boring as the treadmill though!).

1hr Delivering - Dad must have been given the okay to get back on his bike because I came back from the gym to find a box with not nearly as many bills in it as it said on the box, he must have taken a good chunk of them himself. Probably not so great because he probably should still be taking it easy, but a bit of a relief as I still have grocery shopping and helping Rhiannon with her paper run to do!


Blah, just the same as yesterday ... and the scales are matching that - not moving, good that it isn't upwards, but downwards would be nice. But, well you have to WORK at them coming down!


I have a new Great Nephew, born at 6.50am this morning! That makes my "greats" now number four ... does that make me old? LOL Romeo (I still can't believe my niece is making the poor boy live with the name Romeo through the rest of his life, especially his school life ... ) was born after only about a 4hr labour and 30min pushing, wow - 7lb10oz :) Rhiannon is hoping we'll go and see him at the birth unit this afternoon, but I don't really see us fitting it in, maybe a quick 5mins on the way to the supermarket. Tracy (my niece) was living a pretty hard life up until she got pregnant, addicted to P and alcohol and doing some pretty awful things that go with those addictions, the last 4-5mths she has really cleaned herself up, is living with my sister, and is back to the sweet niece I've always known and supported through some pretty hard family times ... hopefully she will stay clean and this will be the making of her (and yeah, my family could be a soap opera ;)).

Time for a shower and getting ready for the afternoon usual rush!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

8 Months, 27 Days


1 Spin Class
45min Cross-Trainer (on cross-country programme ... hard work!)
1hr45min Delivering
0 Housework ;)


Not bad, not good ... it is hard to balance getting hungry from working out with eating right, one day I might get my head working with my body!!


Well, quick one today ... its been a busy day! 3.00pm, just waiting for afternoon tea to finish cooking (Sizzlers in bread ... pack of 8 means 2 each for the kids so I can't be tempted because someone will miss out which = me being in trouble! LOL). Once they are cooked I'll go and have a shower, then off to drop of the first one at Jazz, deliver the last of the bills in the car, then home to get dinner ready (Pumpkin Lasagne ... yummmy) ... with gym and hip hop drop offs/pick ups inbetween!

Not a lot else happening ... thats what happens with trying to blog everyday, anybody who can be bothered reading, gets to see how mundane my life really is ;)

Monday, July 19, 2010

8 Months, 28 Days ... & I'll show you mine

Marlene's I'll Show you Mine if you show me your's

Okay, I don't have many medals from running at all, they don't always give them here! I'm disappointed they didn't have one for the Rotorua Marathon, that would have been one of my proudest.

Mine aren't anywhere exciting, in fact I'm probably the most relaxed person about medals, the only reason they're hanging up at all is because my husband or the kids have hung them up!

But here they are hanging on the framed (by hubby, not me, of course! LOL) medals from my shooting days ... my proudest medals - I always said the London Marathon medal would probably get the same equal proud feelings. Anyway, the ones in the frame are my Oceania game medals - first in the Womens' Individual match and second in the teams match ... way back in 1995! ... note the two Australians either side of me, that is worth a LOT of medals LOLOL.


Lets call it training ... it will eventually become that!

Yesterday -

1 Spin Class
30min on cross-trainer
2.5hrs delivering on bike

Today -

1.5hrs delivering on bike

Nothing too exciting, but definitely feel like I'm keeping my muscles moving and my cardio fitness up there.


Yesterday - okay, not great, but okay. Today the scales had me at less than I was Friday, for me, and a Monday morning, that is an accomplishment :)

Today - bad lunch ... but it wasn't really bad (half a thing of chips, chicken sandwich and sultana scone). Breatfast was good, dinner will be healthy shepherds pie. As long as I keep to the no picking after school, that is an okay day ... not a weight losing day, but shouldn't be a gaining day.


The kids are back at school today, yay! for a quiet house ... boo! for the getting back to rushing around. I've got to pack the girls in the car amongst some bribery to do some of my delivering ... as in me driving, and them hopping out to the letterboxes. Dad came off his bike last week and has internal and external stitches in his leg and has been told NOT to bike for a while (for avoidance of blood clots that he is prone to and an ulcer forming on his leg) ... so the bits and pieces he usually bikes for miles to do on his bike, I'm doing in the car - just don't tell him I'm taking the lazy way out ;)

Hubby has a job interview this afternoon ... fingers crossed for that - I think I've mentioned a bit here about his work and their lack of motivation to pay him his commission payments, we ended up going to a lawyer and mediation and as a result ARE slowly getting paid ... but things aren't great ... he loves his actual job, but the stress of their money problems etc just isn't much fun.

I'm about to be totally indulgent ... ignoring the bathroom that really needs a good clean ... and going to sit and watch Outrageous Fortune taped from last week :)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

8 Months, 29 Days

Okay, time to get serious ... serious about updating the blog - do you think I can do it daily, even if I just have drivel to write about? Maybe some daily headings :)


Running = not happening, I've made an appointment with a sports doctor for 2nd of August (first available appointment). I ran 10km a week ago, absolutely loved the run, took it at an easy pace, leg felt good while I was running, the sun was shining albeit cold ... it was one of those perfect runs BUT by night-time I was limping around again - not so good.

So I decided to make the appointment, what I'm hoping will happen is that by then without running for just over three weeks it will be almost better from rest and the Dr will say start slowly, or rest it a bit more. I'm not sure I need the appointment, or whether rest will do it, but giving it takes 3-4 weeks for an appointment, I didn't want to rest for a few weeks, run, find I needed an appointment and then have to wait another few weeks. So, that is the plan, for now.

I'm picking the Auckland marathon isn't going to happen, I should be training now. I'm okay with that, I can always do it next year - way more important is to get right for London next year - 8 months and 29 days away!

Exercise - so what am I doing instead? I'm doing the three spin classes I can get to each week and on Friday I gave the cross-trainer (elliptical) a go at the gym, figuring that my leg seems to only hurt from the running impact ... I'm hoping it is closest to running and will keep my fitness up there ready to run again. I did 30min on Friday and boy did I have sore muscles yesterday, obviuosly you use different muscles, or muscles differently on it! Good news though is that my knee/injury DIDN'T hurt, so it should be an okay alternative - yay!

Weight Loss

Insert high pitched screeching laugh ... or maybe call it weight GAIN. I have been awful the last week, its like a total mental thing - can't run = eat instead, absolutely pathetic behaviour! I'm exercising, I'm burning calories, I don't have to run to stay this weight ... but I do have to eat right! Hopefully slightly back on track since yesterday.

As for official weigh-in on Friday, I did sneak a look, but hated what I saw so I'm pretending it didn't happen ... blinkers are on!

Stupid, because one of the things I know I need to do is drop that last 5kg, impact is hurting my leg and causing the injury, less weight = less impact, pretty easy equation.


This school holidays ended up being busy for me! The first week my "real" job had half the team away, so I did about twice the hours I normally do ... although Dad did all the delivering so it wasn't so bad, I had time to take the kids out to the movies one day, and time to spend some time baking doing stuff at home before I left for work the other days. Last week Dad managed to come off his bike and he has stitches in his leg ... and been told NOT to ride his bike for at least a week, so I've been doing all of it ... good exercise, but lots of time! I'm lucky I have good older baby sitting kids, and good kids that are happy to entertain themselves.

Yesterday I spent a lovely WHOLE day at home ... made pumpkin soup ready to freeze, some scones ready for lunches next week and started a craft project with the girls ... and even did some tidying and vacuuming!

Today it is spin class and then I'll do another 30min on the cross-trainer ... delivering and then hopefully time to finish the craft projects (so my name isn't mud! LOL).

Back to school tomorrow!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Bits and Pieces

So how was the knee after Thursday's 5km? Well, by Thursday night it was sore and I was cursing and swearing and resigned to the injury just not getting better. Friday morning I woke up and it was still a bit sore, went to the gym did my physio stretches, did a spin class and its been feeling good ever since, well "good" as in it feels about where it was before I ran on Thursday. Maybe there is hope. So, I'm going to continue with the physio's idea that along with the strengthening exercises and taking it easy it will get "manageable", but I'm also going to book an appointment with a sports doctor and get it looked at. So, slow and easy 10km tomorrow ... I'm going to try taking an antiinflammatory before and after and see what happens ... that maybe a lot of the pain is inflammation?

Barefoot Running - even after reading Born to Run and being fascinated with all the research, and definitely being able to the sense of it - it still isn't something I aspire to do. But, funnyish story, I was talking to my Dad yesterday about it and he reminded me how on the last leg of the running tour they used to do around here (3 days of running, 5 legs I think? It was an annual thing for a while and he ran it each eyar) they used to have to run across the river, so because he didn't want to run in wet shoes he always wore sandals for that leg of the race ... my Dad was a trendsetter way back about 15yrs ago and he didn't even know it! LOL

Official Weigh-In - well, yesterday morning I managed to get to 68.4kg ... a whole 400g less than the week before (that is 0.9lb). Any loss is a good loss so I'm happy. Now, to do the same this week! It was easier to eat better this week because I started work at 3.30pm everyday (except Tuesday) - I normally start at 6.30. Anyway, that meant I had lunch at home, and then left at about 2.30 - avoiding that early afternoon when all I want to do is pick and eat all the wrong stuff! I was very good at bringing the right snacks and dinner with me and sticking to them :)

I think that was all! Happy Birthday to Josh my now 16yo!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Baby Steps

Baby steps are good, strides would be better, but any little step is good :)

On the eating/weight loss front, official weigh in day is tomorrow, but I weigh myself everyday, and I've lost all of a grand number of about 200g so far this week, hopefully that will hang on for tomorrow's official day. I'm actually pretty happy with that - I have dropped my exercise sooooo much the last couple of weeks and I was really worried my body would go into shock and put on weight, so my "trying" and doing okay, but not perfectly at following points again and 3x spin classes a week is keeping me on track and at least maintaining. I'd obviously love to be losing more, but I've got to look at the big picture. I haven't even done any biking/delivering for nearly two weeks! That is usually what burns those extra few calories ... but my Dad (who I suspect is more addicted to exercise than I am LOL), did the last few days of last month because he knew I was trying to rest my leg, and then this week when we start up the month, he insisted on doing Otaki (the first few days) because I'm starting work early most days this week. It's certainly been nice having some time at home, especially as it is school holidays, but I feel like a lazy slug!

On the running side of things - I ran 5km this morning! Yay! and really enjoyed it, I was a bit worried that I'd enjoyed the time off too much and it would be hard work to get back into it. But it felt like coming home, and although I could tell my legs were a bit "gosh we haven't done this for nearly two weeks", my fitness felt good. As for my knee (and yes, I'm calling and admitting its a knee injury now), it started off good, a bit stiff but pretty freely but I could feel it the whole way, and was very tentative on the downhills because I felt like the extra impact would be too much. I came home and iced, and rolled ... now I'll just wait and see how it feels later tonight - it usually after I've sat at work in front of the 'ole computer screen for a few hours and not kept moving that I feel it. If it is no worse than before I started today I'll still not run tomorrow or Saturday, but I'm hoping to do a slow and easy 10km on it on Sunday.

I've just finished "Born to Run" and one thing that has made me think about is the enjoyment of running - I think I've been pushing and pushing to get better and better since I started, I think now, especially while trying to fix the knee, I just need to get out there and run slow and enjoy it .. something I'm definitely going to work on. I'm still a goal seeker, I still want to break that 4hrs for a marathon, and better my last time, but reality is, Auckland is 16wks away and I don't think this injury is going to let me train hard for a while, so I plan on (hopefully!) getting the miles in, getting the hills in, but taking it easy and just enjoying the running ... and then doing the same with Auckland. In an ideal world the injury will get better and I will be able to train "harder" for London ... because, really, that race is the important one :)

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Training Programmes and "Summer" of Weight Loss

Firstly ... Training Programmes. I love planning, writing lists ... just not so good at keeping to them! LOL

So, for my first marathon I followed (religiously, never missed a training run) the Hal Higdom Intermediate 1 programme, and it worked well. This second marathon training cycle, I had planned to follow the Intermediate 2 programme, but blend it with some speed work and hill work. About a week ago I sat down with my spreadsheet and blended in the latest RW's half marathon programme in with the Hal Higdon one ... using the RW's speedwork etc and mixing it with the right mileage. I was more than happy with it.

Then, I admitted defeat and admitted that I'm injured and decided to take a week or so off, I worked that into the training programme, I figured I am more than half marathon fit, missing the first couple of weeks of the Higdon programme wasn't going to be a major, and in fact when I worked out the whole programme had that all fitted in.

Then, with being injured, and all the blog reading etc I do, I thought maybe I'd look at the FIRST programme to see what it says ... I keep saying to my younger sister who has struggled with injuries that it would be good for her, so should listen to my own advice. I had a look and the whole concept makes a lot of sense, but I know I want to run more than three days. While looking at the site with the FIRST programme, I looked at their five day marathon programme, and thought, now that looks like me. So now I'm not sure what to do! Too many choices.

So Hal Higdon? Big plus, his programme worked really well for my first marathon - and I really like the two harder weeks, then an easier week concept ... mentally I found that worked well.

Marathon Training Program - Has the "extras" worked into it, has a longer run mid week (the only thing I thought would maybe work better with the Higdon programme), it is a twelve week programme which gives me a bit of time to work on the injury.

I think I've pretty much decided to scrap my well worked out programme from a couple of weeks ago and go with the Marathon Training Programme ... and if the knee is still not quite right, cut down to four days a week - which with the longer mid-week run, I think would work well. I'll probably use the spare 5th day to work with a Personal Trainer to work on my core and strengthening.

Maybe, I'm just a programme whore, and can't get enough of them? LOL ... but I do love working with a spreadsheet ;)

... and the injury update? Physio really does think its my knee, I told him I was sceptical of that because it just doesn't feel like my knee ... but he explain how all my other muscles are fine, there is absolutely nothing to point towards anything else, plus it is definitely weight-bearing pain which points towards a joint injury rather than muscles (something like that anyway). BUT the big thing that has me convinced that maybe he is right (and sorry Mr Physio man for doubting you and saying I doubted you), I talked to my sister the next day - my younger sister who ran my first few races with me - who has been off with a knee injury for a few months, and comparing notes ... her injury started in exactly the same way. Damn. So I'm doing the exercises, I definitely won't run until Thursday ... it is a week after the half marathon now and I can still feel soreness when I move wrong. Thursday I'll run an easy 5km and see how it feels, I'd planned to then take another couple of days off and throw myself into a 17.5km as per the programme on Sunday - but I'll assess that at the end of the week. Meanwhile I'm trying to do three spin classes during the week to keep my fitness up :)

"Summer" of Weight Loss

Kerrie over at Mom vs Marathon is putting together a group of people wanting to lose weight over the American summer (it will be our winter), I need something to give me a good rocket up the a** to get myself back on track, so I'm going to join in with the hope it will give me the motivation I need.

I'll put my beginning weight and some photos up tomorrow (I'll try and convince my 11yo to take some photos in the less workout clothes as possible to get a "true shape" shot).

This not running makes me eat even more believe it or not ... I'm so frustrated with myself and lack of control at the moment :(

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Harbour Capital Half Marathon Report

Before I ran my marathon, I had this planned as my next big goal - my first under 2hrs half marathon. Then I ran a half marathon before the marathon and got my under 2hrs there, so I changed this goal to 1:55. I didn't count on gettin injured though. I've been nursing this stupid injury for about a month, my training definitely hasn't been what I wanted it to be, so by the time I got to Sunday I'd readjusted my goal to getting under 2hrs.

After Christchurch my leg was pretty good, the physio sent me off with the exercises and the expectation it would get better. After a couple of weeks of training pretty hard, my leg was definitely getting worse not better. So before this race I took three days off, dosed myself up with Voltarin and hoped for the best.

My plan was to push myself to start faster, get to under 2hr pace, or very close to right from the beginning and then keep it there until about 13km. Then, if needed, push myself to run a couple of fast k's to make sure I kept my pace to under the magic 2hrs (half marathon pace for under 2hrs = 5:42).

We parked at work, about 10min walk away and walked down to the stadium. Weather was a typical winter Wellington day - cold, wet, southerly.

Got to the stadium, found my sister, niece and great niece - left Cameron who was running the 10k and Rhiannon who was running the Magic Mile with my niece and my sister and I went off and lined up for the toilets. I'm usually way too early to races, this one I was running late! While in the toilets they called for everyone to line up, so it was a rushed toilet stop and then off to the start. Ugh, one of my tactics was not to get jammed in at the start, I had to push myself to the middle because it was already crowded. Dianna had long gone and I know was going to try and stick with the 1:40 pacer (she's much faster than me! LOL).

Got my ipod going, got my Garmin going, and I was ready - just in time, only took about 30sec to reach the start (I much prefer the different starts for each event), and off we ran, and no jamming in - yay! Probably because we run from the stadium and the entrance is wider than a normal road, by the time we reached the pathways down and hit the road people were already settled into reasonable pace, and I must have been in the right place - no weaving, getting frustrated.

So - plan to hit about 5:42 pace? First 5k splits = 5:35, 5:35, 5:37, 5:33 and 5:34. Whooaaaaa ... the voltarim and rest obviously worked, my legs were actually working right!

By about 8km I was getting tired, I was a bit worried about this ... I'm usually a slow starter in case I overdo it, but this time I wanted to push myself. At about 9km we turned a corner and suddenly had the wind behind us, just as I needed it. Second 6k-10k splits = 5:37, 5:39, 5:42, 5:41 and 5:27.

This was an out and back course, so it was about 9k I the main bunches started coming the other way, I saw a friend from school first (she finished in 1:31 ... whoa!), was looking for my sister, didn't see her, didn't see her ... thought I must have missed her. At about 10km (0.5km) from the turnaround, there she was! ... she is quite funny about my running and I know lots more worried about me beating her than I am about catching her ... I can imagine her panic when she realised I was only a k behind her - she said afterwards it really sped her up ;).

13km I stopped properly, had a drink, had a gel and regathered, that pushing it was getting tiring! 11k-15km = 5:33, 5:40, 5:42, 5:45 and 5:34 (the 5:45 was the drink stop, I was quite pleased I managed to gather the time back afterwards).

Those last 6km I was just telling myself to hang on and keep running and making sure I kept my overall pace in about the same place! I was quite surprised everytime I looked at my watch that I was still keeping up, because I didn't feel like I was! I think the wind was behind us most of way back which probably helped.

Last splits, 16km to finish = 5:36, 5:38, 5:52 (drink stop), 5:37, 5:36 and 5:42 (there is a killer short steep ramp/hill going back into the Stadium).

I didn't look at my overall time until just before the finish and suddenly realised if I pushed it I could get a PR ... so I pushed myself into a sprint and managed 1:57:27 ... 13sec faster than my previous fastest time ... yay!!

So ... the damage? Well the voltarin obviously masked the injury, because by Sunday evening I was seriously hobbling. Monday I was still sore ... and Thursday now and its still not good :( I'd already decided to take at least a week, probably a week and a half off to see if that would fix it - but I was hoping by now it would be feeling good and then a week extra would give extra healing time. I'm off to see the physio in about half an hour, hopefully he can work some magic!

And the kids? Cameron (14yo) ran the 10km in 51min, which isn't bad because his training seriously declined about the same time the World Cup started ... bit hard getting up and running before school when you've spent half the night watching TV! ... he said it was easy and should have run faster (he hadn't run that far before and was worried about pushing it too hard).

Rhiannon (11yo) ran the mile in 9:22 ... not too bad, she isn't quite the natural athlete her brother is, so thats pretty good for her :)

Righty, better get myself ready for the physio and those little running around jobs I need to do afterwards!!

Thanks for reading :)

Oh ... and a last couple of pictures - I wonder why people are forever mistaking my sister and I???

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A comparison

Before I do the Wellington Harbour Half Marathon report - how about a comparison :)

One year ago I'd been running for about six months, this race was my 3rd (I think) 10km, and my goal was to run it in under 1:05 (6:30/km). Little did I know how much this day was going to change my life.

(BTW - that is my sister running next to me, she WAS so supportive in my first few races, during that run we agreed that this year we'd run the half marathon together ... we ended up running our first half marathons together last October :) ... she is now injured and hasn't been running for a few months ... I miss her!)

Yes, I'd already taken the big step and made some changes, one year ago I'd lost 16kg (35lb) and trained myself to run 10km ... so big changes had been made.

BUT this was the day my number was drawn out of lots and lots of other numbers and won me a trip to run the London Marathon ... from this day I got serious about my running and losing more weight.

You can see from the photos how far I've come ... another 13kg lost (STILL haven't quite reached the magic 30kg!), and wow! I actually look like a runner!!

Time wise? 10km last year = 1:04:05, about 6:25/km. Half Marathon this year = 1:57:27 (5:34/km).

I didn't win a spot prize this year, and I still haven't run the London marathon ... but I have run a marathon, something I'd never even dreamt of doing (in fact, totally said NO I never would! LOL), I'm training for my second marathon and ultimately the 2011 London Marathon.

... and yes, I'm very proud of myself and my journey :)

I'll try and find time to write the race report tomorrow!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Long run yesterday ... in the rain

18km was on the plan yesterday. Saturday, total rest day, the weather was perfect for running ... as I walked back from the netball courts for about the third time I was muttering about how finally we had a great running day, but I knew I needed a rest day, plus of course, three trips to the netball courts, two drives up to Waikanae for soccer drop offs, a couple of drives down to the gym for gymnastic and cheerleading drop offs ... well, I'm not sure a run would have worked into my day at all anyway!

So yesterday, I wake up ... raining, again. I spent all of last winter running and it hardly ever rained when I ran ... the last month, all it seems to have done here is rain and rain. I got up, I had a card class to run over in Lower Hutt in the afternoon so there was no option of waiting for the rain to stop. 7.45am I got out of bed ... and the rest of the house was still asleep *sigh*. Had my breakfast, got myself organised and off I went. Muttering about how I really really need to get my act together and buy that good running jacket I keep promising myself! It rained steadily for about the first 7-8km, and wasn't so bad ... just very wet. About 10k it seemed to stop a bit and I was thinking, hey! this isn't so bad ... at about 12k the heavens laughed at me as they opened up and it bucketed down, bucketed down to that point where it was a mission to find places on the footpath where I could place my feet without them landing in a few inches of water.

I'd decided before I left that even though it was a long, slow run day ... that at about 13km I would up my pace to 5:30/km, with this infuriated sore leg, I have really slowed down - I was just starting to run my shorter runs comfortably at 5:30/km ... now they're more like 5:45ish, and I was hoping to run the Wellington Half next week at 5:30/km, not much hope of that now - but I did want to push myself to that pace when I was completely warmed up and should have tired legs, just to see how it felt. I managed a km like that, slowed down for the next km, and tried it again at 15km and just couldn't get myself to that pace. Not sure how much the sloshing shoes and drowned rat look would have helped/not helped. But I think I've got to face reality that there is no way I can run that speed for a whole half marathon.

So the injury? Was feeling pretty good, but the last week or so, it is definitely slowing me down and not getting any better. After the half on Sunday I am definitely going to take a week completely off running, maybe two to see if that fixes it. I'm supposed to start week 1 of 18 weeks of marathon training that first week, but I'm pretty sure even missing the first two weeks will be okay, I'm pretty sure I've got enough base fitness that will still be okay to start right into Week 3. Very frustrating though ... definitely not what I had planned, I'd hoped to train up to a great Half Marathon at Wellington and being more than ready to dive straight into some good, hard marathon training.

So, cross training today which = delivering on my bike ... and the sun is actually out, yay!

Oh ... and GO! the All Whites ... 1-1 against Italy ... Wooooohoooooooo!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Still running

Got to say, not a lot of excitement happening around here!

Training wise - all is going good - leg is still sorer than I'd like, I'm hoping it will hang in there until after the Wellington Half Marathon (two weeks away) and then I'll decide whether I should just give in and take a week or two completely off running. Straight after Wellington is supposed to be the 1st week of my 18 week training programme for the Auckland marathon, but I don't think a week or two off and starting on Week 3 would actually make too much difference, I'm running the k's and distance of those first few weeks now.

Anyway, latest runs?

Tuesday - 8.0km - early morning, slowish, done.
Wednesday - 6.5km - another early morning, another slowish, sluggish run.
Thursday - 10km Tempo - after breakfast and dropping the kids off, great run - love it when a run goes well :) Perfect tempo run, warm up, building up speed to middle k's then slowing down to warming down for last couple of k's.
Friday - 6.5km - early morning, sluggish and slow.
Saturday - rest day - way too early wake up call to get to Palmerston in time for 8.00am warm up for gym competition.
Sunday - 16km - nice long run, felt good, felt strong :)

and, here we are at today, Monday. No run today, but a good 2.5hrs on my bike delivering, so not a total slug. I was going to push myself to a spin class tonight, but my leg is a bit sore after yesterday so I'm not going to push it. I'll do the same tomorrow as I did last week - run and then spin class later on in the morning.

Nice to see some sunshine outside today - it feels like its been ages!!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Christchurch Half Marathon

Here I am! I really need to be better at updating here ... but what can I say, running, 5 children (well, 4 at home anyway), two part-time jobs ... sometimes life just gets too busy!

So this past weekend, I had my responsibility, husband and child free weekend - it was bliss :) and when choosing where to stay I figured out the Christchurch Half Marathon was the same weekend, so it was off to Christchurch I went. When I booked, I forgot that it would be winter, and that Christchurch is darn cold in winter! The weather was awful the week before, but as the week went on it was looking more and more like they'd put on a good day for Sunday's marathon event.

Um, so going back a bit - I flew to Christchurch on Friday, got there early afternoon, booked into my hotel and then spent the afternoon wandering around getting my bearings and finding the craft shop to buy the embroidery cottons I needed (one of my other passions is embroidery, and a weekend away for me = time to sit and do it :)). Picked up my race pack and picked up some dinner and went back to my hotel room for a lovely evening of sitting in bed watching TV doing my cross stitch - yeah, I'm just the ultimate party girl! LOL

Saturday I slept in (bliss!), hit the shops, bought a few things ... looked at running jackets but just didn't have the money to spend quite that much and was still thinking it was going to be nice the next day. Got back to the hotel for another quite evening.

It was about Saturday afternoon I did the silliest thing ever before a race, I fiddled with my dead toenail (from Rotorua), it had come half off and I tried to help it, ended up clipping it the best I could and by Saturday night it started hurting ... eh oh.

Sunday morning I woke up to rain, oh yay. Also woke up to a really sore, obviously becoming infected toe. Darn. Oh well, just hoped like anything that once I started running I wouldn't feel it. At my toast with peanut butter and a banana, drank my sports drink and off to the start I went.

It was quite lonely on my own, I think all the races I've done I've had my sisters, or family, or other people I know around to chat to. I was all alone in Christchurch and it was quite strange! Once I'd lined up with the other 5000+ people I chatted to a couple of people near me :) I was VERY good and lined up at the 2:00 sign ... because that is what I expected to run it in. Finally, off we went! It took me just over 2 minutes to pass the start line ... and instant frustration ... why oh why do walkers insist on lining up in the wrong place? How many times and places were they told to place themselves towards the back? Ugh! Here is an absoute typical, what I felt like I was doing for a lot of the race -
I love that they got the squeezing through photo, and then the after photo! LOL The guy in blue doesn't look happy with me at all, but hey - line up right folks!!

The race itself went well - I never got the soreness in my Popliteus muscle (have I told you that that is where the physio has decided my injury is? Reading about it, I totally agree - good to know what we're working with!). I think there was no soreness because of the standing around, then walking a couple of minutes to the start, and a slow start ... I could probably learn something from that ;) and then, well I got into the groove - I've decided that I really get into my own head when I'm running, people ask me about the scenery or this and that and I never have a good answer, I must be pretty focussed on what I'm doing. Toe didn't hurt, yay. It was wet and cold, but I didn't really notice it while I was running, it was probably better than a stinking hot day.

I didn't really have any big goals for this race, I haven't trained that well while mucking around with an injury, my real aim was just to run the 21k as more of a training run before Wellington in a couple of weeks, Wellington is where I want to run a GOOD race. But competitive person that I am, once I started, I really did want to break that 2hrs, as you do ;) I just never quite caught up on the slow start though, I did inch closer and closer to the magic 5:42/km and at 17km ran a 5:30km, but couldn't sustain it much longer than a k and settled back to 5:40ish pace. Once I saw the finish line I realised that I was close and tried to finish off fast, but couldn't quite do it - I ended up with a 2:00:35 official time, I did finish with a 5:42 pace as well, but managed to run an extra .15km ... probably the weaving around people. I'm more than happy with the time, its exactly where I should have been with realistic expectations. And folks, I'd like to point out again, I lined up at 2:00, I ran it in 2:00 ... so why did I spend the whole race trying to get past masses of people running slower???

What I've learned? I need to run a few races before I hit London next year (yes, my entry has been sent and should have been received!) ... if I'm frustrated at a crowd of 5000 people, imagine how frustrating a crowd of 40,000 is going to be - I have to work on this more than anything! (have I mentioned I hate crowds at the best of times! LOL).

As for the injury - it felt great, I had a twinge at 7km, but it went away and felt good through the whole race. The toe was fine until I stopped and boy was it sore on Sunday night, not being able to sleep sore - finally Monday the infection obviously "came out" and I was able to clean it out (I won't go into that gorey description ;)).

My leg felt great on Monday, and Tuesday I was full of confidence until I started running! LOL It took a while for it to work properly, but once it did it was okay.

Went back to physio yesterday and he is amazed at how it has healed, it is definitely better than it was ... not what he expected at all. So I have some more strengthening exercises, instructions to ice after running and I'll see after Wellington, he is pretty confident it is healing and healing well and should come right and with the exercises should be able to keep it from recurring, yay :)

A few congratulations from Christchurch - Andrew ran an awesome marathon and PB'd by heaps!! - I admire his bravery, I need to get brave like that and have the courage to push myself just a bit more without worrying about how I'm going to feel at the end.

Bernie Portenski - wow! what a woman ... Bernie used to live here in Paraparaumu, she belonged to the same running club as my Dad and I remember at least one marathon where I biked along beside my father and he was running the same pace as her and another local runner ... she always had everyone laughing with her rather full personality :) She broke the world record 60-65 age group record for the half marathon.

Suzi Richards - she was 2nd woman in the marathon (2:56 - wow!) another local! I know Suzi from the local Sports Office when I was the Cricket Assn's secretary and I was in and out of there all the time - I'm not she'd know me, but she was always happy to smile at the kids and give them a drink or treat while I was busy using the copier :)

Its nice to go so far away from home and see local faces up on the stage receiving prizes :)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

It's that time of year again!

After months of conditioning, months of training ... it all comes together - sounds like a marathon! Actually, this post has nothing to do with running ... it's time for gymnastic competition season, oh yay - I think ;)

Charlotte (8yo) is our little gymnast, Rhiannon (11yo) used to be - but once she got past about Level 3, you could tell she just didn't have the natural strength needed for the harder grades so she finished up. Charlotte has had that natural strength since started walking and following Rhiannon around the gym at about 9mths old, heck, I swear she was doing somersaults in the womb!!

She had a "rough" year last year, not rough really, but we said no to her current coach coaching her, we just thought it was too much for a 7yo, too serious, we weren't ready to take that step. Turns out we might have been wrong because she spent a year wasting time being kept to the "whole group" level, rather than being trained to her ability. This year Gill demanded we give Charlotte to her, so we gave in ... and she is doing great ;)

So, here you go, two videos - her floor routine (which was actually pretty rough) and her vault. She came 11th out of 23, so nothing earth shattering ... but better than last year when I watched her first competition and couldn't believe how bad she had got, and she came last!!

So the next couple of months we not only have to fit the netball and soccer and my running into the weekend, we have gym competitions to fit in as well!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

That is interesting

I'm sure that last time I tried to write a post from work I couldn't because the signing in part was blocked ... oh well, we'll go with it!

After struggling with my funny leg pain for a few weeks I finally went to the physio today ... best news is that he said I could carry on running, it's not getting worse, and while I'm running it actually feels okay, once I've got over the limping 2-300m start. He said not to do anything too hard like speed work or hill training, but doing as I've been doing, keeping it easy should be fine ... yay! He said it was up to me and how I felt as to whether I should run the Christchurch Half Marathon next week - that yes, it would make the overall recovery take a bit longer, and that I'd definitely expect to aggravate the pain and to be sore for a couple of days, but it won't do any permanent harm, although if I expect to do Wellington WELL a few weeks after that, to think about how I wanted to approach it, so at this stage I'll go with my original plan of treating it like a long training run for Wellington, unless I get to the end of next week and its not feeling any better, I'll reassess then.

So what's causing the pain? After much pushing, pulling, prodding all my muscles - especially my hamstring which was his original expectation was causing the problem - he decided that all my muscles seem fine and that it is looking like it is my knee, of course I looked at him a bit dumbfounded with a "huh? but my knee doesn't hurt?" ... but when he explained how its all attached, and how all the symptoms seem to be happening when the knee is engaging (walking down stairs, bending my leg up to do quad stretches), hmmm maybe he is right. He did say that its definitely not a typical presentation and gave me some exercises and stretches to do to build up around the knee and to support the knee, then next week he wants me to run right before I see him so he can double check the pain while it should be freshly there (see, he said I could run!).

So, certainly doesn't seem anything major, and hopefully with a bit of massage, bit of knee strengthening, we'll fix it. He thinks its caused by a few things all amassing together, the high mileage from training for a marathon (he mentioned how surprising it is that I haven't had anything hurt up until now), trying out speed work so running differently and the fact I have double jointed knees (do your knees bend backwards?) which makes them looser and probably more susceptible to them moving around more than they should.

I ran a nice 10k yesterday, I should have run 6k on Tuesday, and 8km yesterday - but skipped Tuesday and did a spin class instead ... so yesterday decided to go a bit longer, and it was nice :) Rest and physio today, then plan on 8km tomorrow and Saturday and then I'm still undecided about Sunday, I think I will see how I feel. Probably 14km - originally I wanted to do 18k before next week's half, but I think I'm probably better taking it easy and doing the 14km. I ran a marathon only a month ago, so I'm sure my body still has the fitness to manage a half marathon without an 18-20k run in the few weeks before!

Life is going to be crazy the next few days, we seem to have lots on, Dad is away so I've got the whole delivery job to do ... I'm looking forward to next Friday when I get to escape all responsibilities for a few days, yay!!

Ha Ha

Out of a crowd of 30,000 or so at the all important All Whites game in Wellington (where they made the World Cup) ... guess who's ugly faces are in an ad?

That is my oldest son on the left (covered by his mate's hand), and his two friends. They had no idea until they spied it on the stuff.co.nz homepage! LOL

Friday, May 21, 2010

Lifetime ... and a few other bits and bobs

Yuppers ... I am officially a Lifetime member of Weight Watchers :) I've joined, rejoined and rejoined again, Weight Watchers over many many years and never once did I really join with Lifetime being my ultimate goal - it was always to lose enough weight to look "normal", Goal or Lifetime always seemed too far away. But here I am, a Lifetime member - and really, I have to thank running more than anything for that achievement!

The best thing about Lifetime? I don't pay anymore (unless I go over goal weight+2kg) ... wooohoooo!! Plus, I don't have to worry about missing a week as I only need to go once a month to keep the Lifetime and freebie going. I do, however, plan on going at least two weekly for a while yet, I still need that accountability each week and I still have a few kg's to lose.

This week I lost 800g ... which sounds good, but I hadn't mentioned how last week I managed to put on 1kg ... now hopefully this week, I can start to lose some "real" weight ... not weight I've already lost and get on track to becoming a lean, mean, running machine!


I've been trying to take it easy, which has been hard ... I know to lose weight I also need to run (or that's what I think), so this week when I really really wanted to lose weight and at the same time my body (darn leg) is screaming at me not to, well it's been hard. Monday and Tuesday I didn't run at all - Tuesday I did however do a spin class, I always forget how much I love the spin classes! Wednesday I ventured out for a run - I ran just over 7km and it was okay, my leg still hurt when I started off, but felt pretty good by the time I'd finished. I took yesterday off and then ran 8km this morning. My leg felt much better when I started this morning (yay!), but unlike Wednesday when by halfway it felt great, I could feel it the whole run ... not hurting, just not "right". It was supposed to be a tempo run today, and I did attempt it, but between being a bit scared of pushing the leg too much and a mean horrible head wind, the tempo didn't really happen.

So, two weeks and I'm supposed to be running a half marathon. I'll keep running as planned this weekend, but taking it easy - I'll do 6km tomorrow and 14 or 16km on Sunday (I haven't decided yet) and then reassess on Monday - if it still doesn't feel better I'll go and see the physio, I'm actually thinking a good massage, movement of the muscles will fix it - my gut instinct is that it isn't anything serious - just a nagging inflammation of the muscle. Because I just about never take any drugs for anything, I don't have any painkillers/antiinflammantries in the house and keep forgetting to buy them ... a good dose of those before my runs for a couple of days might very well go along way as well!


Apparently I'm very inspirational ... I still believe that anybody could do what I'm doing, I'm not that amazing ... but reality is, people seem to believe I'm that inspirational lady. So much so, I have two emails sitting in my in-box that I need to answer - one from David's boss who along with some mates is planning to run the Rotorua marathon next year and wants me to direct him to some training programmes and give him some tips on how to do it and one from a sales rep that David knows (he sent an email out before the marathon as a push for the fundraising site with my story) who is overweight and has downloaded the C25K programme after reading about me, but also would like some tips and advice.

David reckons I should start charging, I'm still blown away that people think I might be able to help them!

I just hope they're not like my friend who was inspired and started running, within in a couple of weeks she tripped on a stick on the footpath and broke her ankle ... hmmm very inspirational! LOL

Monday, May 17, 2010

Calorie Counting

After doing Weight Watchers for the last 18 months, and off and on for too many years to admit to, I've decided to stop counting points, and count calories ... and take more notice of the balance of food I'm eating (protein, carbs, fat, salt). I started the year saying this was the year I wanted to make habits of eating healthily, I think that will be the key to keeping the lost weight off.

So why move from points? (especially as I don't plan on giving up my WW meetings) Through marathon training I haven't followed points properly at all, I do use them as a base to what I'm eating, but as wonderful as I believe the WW programme is, I don't believe it caters for athletes (wow, did I call myself an athlete? LOL). I found it really really hard to figure out how many extra points I could eat with the amount of exercising I was doing, so after much thought and googling I am using www.myfitnesspal.com and trying to record all my food and my exercise. Plus although out of all the diet companies out there, they probably promote "normal" eating the best, I don't believe they promote healthy, natural eating as well as they could (as an example, one of their frozen meals that I regularly take to work for my evening shift dinner, has 1100mg of salt - that is half my salt intake in one small meal).

But, of course, I have a few questions ... do you think the Garmin is accurate when it counts calories? I'm pretty sure it is for running calories, but what about biking? I've been wearing it while I do my delivering, on a regular day I'm usually out for 2-3hrs and bike 20-30km over that time - according to the Garmin, for example, today I've burned 600 calories. Last Wednesday I ran, biked and helped my 11yo deliver her pamphletts - all up (according to the Garmin) I burned about 1500 calories. Now 1500 calories, plus the 1200 (worked out from height, weight and wanting to lose 2lb/week) is 2700 calories to eat for the day - thats a lot of eating - and I did eat, a lot, that day.

Next question, do you think you should eat all those extra earned calories? Personally, I'm leaning towards NOT. I'm thinking that at some point the body goes - nah, I'm not taking any notice of any more burned calories, I'll only notice/use so many of them. No scientific thought in that all - just a gut instinct, and also knowing that I definitely don't lose weight if I eat over a certain amount.

Anybody use calorie counting to lose weight? Any ideas, thoughts? I'm thinking I will have to work to find what balance works for me, as I'm thinking everyone is different.

Long term I'm hoping to ditch another 18lb, short term definitely another 6lb - 6lb for health, the extra 12lb, I think will make me run better and faster. Very long term, I want to find where my body sits as to how many calories it needs to maintain, how many extra calories I can eat following calories burned to maintain.

I never want to be disgustingly over weight again and I know, oh so KNOW, that I could put all that weight back on in a blink of an eye - I have to work out how to manage my eating, exercise and weight so this can be a life time thing.

As for running - I've run a few small runs and yesterday ran a lovely 14km, I'd really missed those long runs over the last couple of weeks! Bad news is that I have quite a sore "back of my" leg - I *think* it is the bottom of my hamstring, but in the evenings my knee is aching a bit, and my calf seems to be sore while doing day to day things. The hamstring actually hurts as I start to run though, so I think that is where the real soreness (I'm too scared to call it an injury) is. It is fine after 1-200metres and isn't actually hurting the rest of the run, but I have decided to be good and not run today (which I didn't plan to anyway, Monday is a x-training day), and to also have tomorrow off. Hopefully by Wednesday it will be starting to feel better, I'll do a small, slow and easy run Wednesday and see how it feels, Thursday was a planned rest day, then a smallish run Friday - hopefully that will be enough resting to fix it.

Have a good week everyone :)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Pencarrow Lighthouse Fun Run

So, no breakfast in bed for Mother's Day, I was up before 6.00am, waking Cam, Rhiannon and Charlotte and getting them going at about 6.15am, and we left at 6.45am ... I'm always so scared of arriving too late, and I was very conscious that we were all going to be late entries (as in I hadn't entered us - I wasn't sure how I'd feel about running 10km after running a marathon the week before!).

We arrived in Eastbourne just before 8am - the nice entry people only charged us one late entry fee (*phew* that was a saving of $30!!), entered myself into the 10km and Cam and the girls into the 5km.

We toilet stopped, sat in the car for a while, put our numbers on and then went and stood in the light rain waiting for the start. The 10km left at 9.00am, the 5km at 9.10am - by my calculations, the girls would take about 35-40min so I expected them to finish about 10min before me. Cameron is a speed demon, so he'd be there to wait for the girls at the finish. I instructed them to make sure Cam started in the front and the girls towards the back, and I went to line up for my start.

I tried to put myself in the "frontish" part but STILL ended up weaving through walkers and slower people, so frustrating, why don't they put themselves in the right place? There were only 108 runners/walkers so it shouldn't have been a problem ;) Anyway, off I went, and first thing I noticed is my legs felt great! No stiffness, soreness or anything ... yay! I tried to keep to about 5:30/km, I wasn't sure how much tiredness I'd feel later and didn't want to overdo it.

At about 3km I started catching this tall guy, now I'd just read the day before about how much men hate being passed by women, and boy was this a classic example, I started passing him and he suddenly SPRINTED away from me, I just let him go and figured I'd catch him later - I'm more than happy to run my own race, I could see it had hurt him though, his head was up gasping for air ... silly man LOL - about 4km I was slowly gaining on him again, and guess what? Got to passing him and he stuck beside me, until I realised I'd pushed my pace to about 5:10/km and I didn't really want to do that so I let him go ahead ... and what do you know? It only took about another half km before I caught him again and passed him again.

I had a quick gulp of water at the 5km turnaround and carried on, I picked up my pace pretty naturally through the last 5km. For some really dumb reason I thought my 10k PB was 56:20, and I also thought that if I kept 5:30/km that would be 55min, so as I got to 5:25/km I was feeling pretty pleased with myself. I never look at the total time when I'm running, I usually know by my pace if I'm on track or not!

About 3-400m to the finish guess who I came across walking? My two girls ... eh-oh. The deal was that Rhiannon (11yo) would run with Charlotte to the halfway turnaround point, then Charlotte would let her go - Rhiannon wanted to run the whole thing, Charlotte was doing the younger sister "I'm scared, i want Rhiannon to run with me" act ... so that was the deal we made. As I passed them and cheered them on Rhiannon was doing a major dramatic eyeroll at me, so I knew Charlotte had had a hissy fit of some sort and persuaded Rhiannon to stay with her ... Rhiannon is such a good older sister. I was the good mother I am, and carried on running ;) I passed Cameron coming to look for them just after that so I knew they were fine.

I glanced at my watch then and saw 53:something and thought - cripes, that is fast! It wasn't until I stopped that I remembered 5:45/km is 57:30, 5:30/km is 55min ... and my previous PB was 54:20 - duh! LOL I finished in 54:13 - so a good PB. I was pretty tired by the end, I think that was a marathon just a week previously showing!

I got to cheer the girls in, Rhiannon came in before Charlotte, Cam had obviously stayed with Charlotte and Rhiannon was released from her big sister duties. Charlotte came in a little while later with Cameron.

I was right about the rolling eyes, Charlotte got the stitch and cried and wouldn't let Rhiannon leave her. I think the next one we do, we will quietly leave Charlotte at home so Rhiannon gets a chance to do it at her own speed in her own time - 8yo (and being particularly nervy at the best of times about new situations) is perhaps too young to expect to run on her own.

So, the official results?

Official time: 54:13
30/77 Total Finishers
14/44 Females

A whopping nearly 12 minutes off my time (1:05:58) from last year!!!

Official time: 23:07 (and that was with a quick puke halfway)
2/37 Total Finishers
2/6 Male Finishers
(they didn't have age groups - but definitely first in his age group at 30ish? yo man beat him).

Rhiannon and Charlotte:
44:22 and 44:59
33rd and 34th.

We went to the local shopping mall afterwards, wandered around the shops for a while, had some lunch and then went to the prizegiving - where even with FOUR of us there we managed to win no spotprize at all :(

It was a nice day though - and a nice way to spend Mothers Day, running with the kids enthusiastic abut running too!

I went and saw my Mum in the afternoon and then came home and assisted the kids cooking of dinner (Rhiannon made a devine - way too many calories - cheesecake ... yummy).

Oh, and Cam's wee puke stop? He just about always does it at the end of a race - I'm not sure if it is because he is putting absolutely everything into the run, right to that puke threshold point - or whether it is his whole breathing/nose equipment. We are waiting on a specialist appointment for him to have a look at his tonsils, he has, and always has had, terrible breathing problems - at 8yo he got his nose scraped out and adenoids out, but he still struggles to breathe properly - he uses an allergy spray for his nose which definitely helps, but he is also a terrible snorer (so terrible that when he goes away for soccer/cricket tournaments he always gets a room to himself), and I think he needs the tonsils pulled out (the Dr agrees they are VERY big) ... so I don't know if it is "puke threshold" or another aspect of the whole breathing equipment thing - it will be interesting to see what the specialist thinks.

Oh, and another thing with Cam - he ran his school cross country last week and came a disappointingly (for Mr Competitive) 14th - he got tripped towards the end and reckons he would have come 12th if that hadn't happened. But interestingly - it was *only* 3.5km ... I reckon if he'd had another 1.5km to run he would have passed a lot of the kids in front, us "Watsons" are just not genetically made for speed - my whole family is better at endurance, and Cameron definitely has those genes :)

Friday, May 7, 2010

So, what's next?

Actually I was going to do a Rotorua Holiday post ... but my batteries in my camera just died. So, instead, the other thing that has been on my mind - what's next?

Ahhhh well, lots of plans. You can all roll around laughing (my friends who know me do, and then they say typical Lisa), but I sat down about a week before the Rotorua marathon and mapped out my training plan right up until 31st October - including recovering week, 4 weeks post marathon and finishing on 31st October with the AUCKLAND marathon!

I have that niggle that my first marathon was SO good, that maybe I shouldn't spoil it ... the next one might not be as easy ;) But I have to get over that and stay confident. I *think* I will aim for about a 5:50-6:00/km pace which works out to be 4:06-4:13 marathon, we'll see how the training goes before I set that in concrete and make it a true plan, but I will definitely start off with that time in mind.

Before that marathon though I will be running a couple of half marathons, the first being Christchurch :) Why Christchurch (which is only a few weeks away)? For years when I was shooting Queens Birthday Weekend was the big North Is v South Is shoot and I'd go away that weekend every year - with lots of small children (although not as many then, but small then) I loved that weekend away. Then when I stopped shooting I missed it for a couple of years, then when I started with Stampin' Up I went away over to Australia about this time of year for their Convention and had a bit of a holiday at the same time. Call me weird ... but I really like being alone, and that one weekend a year has always been a life saviour for me to recharge my batteries. So, I said to my husband the other day that for Mother's Day I'd really just like the okay to go away on Queens Birthday weekend by myself, for the first time ever he didn't seem that thrilled - but, um, hello darling, you work 6-7 days a week, you leave before we are awake and come home about 6-7pm, um, darling? What do you think I'm doing while you're at work - because it sure isn't sitting on my butt eating bon-bons! Anyway - of course, having this wee addiction to running now, I then looked up what races were around that weekend so I could decide where to go ... and Christchurch popped up. I love Christchurch and the pull of doing a "big" half marathon made it perfect. I booked my air tickets last night - just need to enter and book a motel and I'm away :)

I'm not planning on racing Christchurch too hard, its still only about a month after Rotorua and my next big, want to do well, race will be Wellington Harbour Half Marathon a few weeks after that.

So, that is my next big goal - the Wellington Half Marathon, this is the event that I won my big spot prize at last year :) I'd like to pick up speed for this one, I'm setting my sights high and want to aim for about 1:55 and for the next 7 weeks I'm going to work on a bit of speed and building up for that.

Very conveniently, after Wellington it is exactly 18weeks until Auckland ... so I can start marathon training straight after.

Also, over the next few months until the marathon training gets into the longer k's I'm going to go to the gym and work on building my core muscles and strengthening my body - have you seen the pictures of how I run? So stooped, I'm going to work on strengthening which I'm hoping will naturally fix that.

AND lastly, my original goal weight was 65kg ... to run really well, I should go to 60kg - I'm going to work on that as well :) (I'm only 5'3" so 60kg (132lb) isn't *that* light, just in case you think I've really gone off the deep end).

So that's it ... the next lot of long term goals :)

In the immediate future I have a 10km "race" on Sunday. At Pencarrow, I ran this last year and really liked the course. Cameron and the girls all want to run the 5km so we'll all go and do it, once again I'll be going by feel, not aiming to race - the last thing I want to do is over do it and end up injured when I have all these big dreams!

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Rotorua Marathon!

I did it!! I'm a marathon runner :)

From Fat (December 2008)

To Marathon Runner

So, this could get long.

First off - at least three reasons running Rotorua was BETTER than running London would have been -

1. The Haka ... wow, now that is an emotional start - it was going to be emotional anyway, to just be there, finally doing it ... but the Haka, well lets just say the first few hundred metres I had to get myself under control to run properly!

2. My awesome sisters! Three of them secretly arranged a road trip up to Rotorua to surprise me and cheer me on through the race. I knew nothing about it until a photographer seemed really intent on snapping a photo of me at about 6km ... the thought process went something like this ... why does that photographer seem to only want a photo of me, gosh she looks like Georgie, oh Sh*t! It IS Georgie, I turned and looked across the road and there is the car full of my other two sisters and my niece :)

3. I can't imagine what the crowds would have been like in London - to go from events of a few hundred people, to running with 2000 was bad enough, I found it frustrating the first few k when we were still sort of packed together. I'm not sure how I would have handled that for 42.2km - at least this way, I had a chance of running a marathon at MY speed, not the speed of the crowd I was with, which with hindsight is probably a good thing.

So, lets see if I can do one of those really good reports that I enjoy reading, with a bit about the splits, I'm not very good at remembering - I think I just get into my head and run!

1-5km: 6:15, 5:56, 5:59, 6:02, 6:14
First km was slower, obviously because we were all bunched up and it took a while to thin out. Also the first few km's were through roads which have had roadworks happening, so there wasn't a lot of room to spread out. It was probably a good thing as it helped me have to stay slow. The last km (6:14) was the first drink stop, it was a mess, everyone stopped at the first table rather than carrying on to the later ones, I for one didn't realise there were a few more tables to run to. Pace was generally good though, I was feeling good, I was on my way!

6-10km: 6:09, 5:57, 6:00, 6:08, 6:07
Its at about 6km that the annoying photographer who turned out to be my sister turned up! and when I looked across the road realised THREE of my sisters were all there to cheer me on, that was such a surprise and such a boost having them there.

What's that photographer doing???

It's my sisters, the sneaky so and so's!! (they'd even texted me in the morning asking me about the weather and wishing me good luck! LOL)

It was still pretty flat up until 10km, I think the 5:57 was probably trying to make sure I kept my overall pace at about 6:08, after the first slower k and then the water stop, I probably pushed it to bring that pace to where I wanted it - then fell back to exactly where I should be the last couple.

11-15km: 6:01, 6:06, 6:13, 6:17, 5:53
and then came the hills :) I stopped and walked through all the drink stops and had a gel at about 13km - there was also the first hill at about then too, so that will be the 6:13/6:17 - the 5:53 was down hill after the first up. My plan was to be strong up the hills but not to worry about the time too much, and to use gravity and make up time and "gather myself" down the hills. I used this method through the race, and it worked :)

16-20km: 6:12, 6:04, 6:08, 6:22, 6:19
From 18km to 21km it was a 100m elevation climb, which you can see from the times! One of biggest proudest moments of the marathon was my strength up the hills, I passed lots of people going up them and felt strong going up - definitely had no desire to stop and walk, hurray for the Maungatooks! The only thing I was slightly worried about was that maybe all those people I was passing were actually very wise and "saving" themselves, and I would be paying for it later. It was here my family found me to cheer me on - at about 16km, it was good to see them!

Running strong up those hills!

21-25km: 6:29, 5:52, 5:55, 6:40, 6:02
Spot where the downhill after the uphills were! LOL the 24km is where I had my second gel stop, not sure why it took so long! It's about here it was lovely and scenic, the road was closed for about 5km, and it was just really nice - just the runners, no cars or crowds and the lake :) Halfway time was 2:09:something, spot on - I was aiming for 2:10 halfway. I was really pleased to get to half way, about 18/19km was probably the only time I had "negative" thoughts, I was thinking how we'd run so far and weren't even halfway yet, I knew once I got halfway it was just a matter of counting down kms.

26-30km: 6:12, 6:19, 5:50, 6:10, 6:05
Still feeling good! Another big hill from 25.5-27.5, another strong run up it and then catching up time going down. Still right on target with my pace, still feeling good. I knew (or thought) that after 30km it was all flattish and downhill.

31-35km: 6:07, 6:06, 6:19, 6:08, 6:49
Third and last gel break at about 35km. From about 33km to 36km it was a steady, slight uphill (that didn't look uphill when we drove around, but sure felt it after running that long!). Once again though, lots of people walking, and I was still running fairly strong. My family and sisters were all at about the 35km mark - it was good to see them! I'd said to David I wasn't sure about him stopping at the 35km spectator mark, I was scared I'd be really tired and the kids wouldn't have good memories of me ;) But turns out I was pleased to see them, and I was still looking and feeling strong :)

7km to Go!!

36-40km: 6:18, 6:19, 6:15, 6:22, 6:26
Its these kms where I finally started feeling tired, you can see I got slower, I thought it was going to be more "down" hill, but infact it was a very slight continous downhill that felt flat. I think 39-40km was a drink stop, I seem to remember my Garmin beeping the 39km before the drink stop, but the sign being after it. The later drink stops I'm pretty sure I stopped longer and slower!

Three of the supporters ... isn't my niece cute??? She is wearing the red hat in support, I just finished knitting it for her - plus a matching red jacket, but she wore the hat to support her Aunty Lisa ;)

I do have photos of my family, I haven't uploaded them anywhere though! I'll do that later and maybe do a Rotorua holiday post :)

41-42km: 6:16, 6:16 0.45km: 2:35 (5:49 avg) The last couple of km's I just dug it in and ran, numbers girl I am, I was checking my time from about 38km and working out how slow I could run and still break 4:30, by these last 2kms I knew I could run at about 8-9min/km if I had too, but I just dug it and ran the best I could, turned out I didn't do too badly!

As I hit the finish line my sisters were just before the finish and my family lined up by the finishing shute, it was good to see them AND the finish!

Chicked at the finish line! LOL

VERY happy to be finished!!

Feelings and Thoughts
I feel like I ran a perfect first marathon, I never hit a wall, when I finished I felt great - legs were sore, but "health" wise I was amazed at how good I felt - no dehydration headache, dizzyiness or anything, I just felt normal. Stopping and drinking was definitely good planning. My first half was 2:09, second half 2:13 - I would have liked to have negative split, but reality is, it was probably hillier in the second half. Plus, 4min difference is close enough to knowing I paced myself really well.

... and okay, what is with the pacers??? the 4:30 pacer was in front of me for the first 10km, I was at the time, before the hills started, running a 4:15-4:20 pace. I *think* knowing the course that maybe they planned to run those first 10km faster and then slow down during the hills - but surely, from everything I've read, running too fast in those first 10km wouldn't have been a good plan? I passed and left them at about 15km (when the hills started which is why I think they were maybe planning for the hills) and never saw them again - but I dunno, makes me think I'd never run with a pace group. I never saw the 4:15 group, so they must have gone off faster as well ... and of course finished a good 7min before me, but in the beginning my pace would have matched what I would have thought they'd be running.

and lastly, I've decided marathon running is very much like childbirth. I've had five natural/drug free births (more from luck and speed than being any sort of super woman!!). I'm the third sister of six, when I was pregnant with my first one I heard ALL the horror stories from my lovely older sisters ... after giving birth the first time, my first reaction was "wow, that wasn't *that* bad" ... well, I feel the same about this marathon too - it really wasn't so bad, in fact I can honestly say I enjoyed the whole race! I just hope I don't get to marathon no. 5 and finish it by saying "that's it! I'm not putting myself through that pain EVER again" LOL.

Official Results Net time: 4:22:40
843/1541 Total Finishers
212/528 Female Finishers
41/89 Age Group

... and Cameron (14yo) ran the 5km - his results:

Net time: 24:26
15/180 Total Finishers
10/69 Male Finishers