Tag Archives: Fitness

2017 Goals An Update Part Three

2017 Goals

At the beginning of 2017 I set some goals for the year ahead. I have been updating these quarterly and it’s time for the 3rd update already!

Want to read the first two posts? They’re here: 2017 Goals & 2017 Goals Update 1 2017 Goals Part Two

So let’s see how I’ve been getting on…

Health

I’ve not been doing so well on this lately. My weight loss is stuck at the 2 stone mark. I’m trying to eat healthier by going to the salad bar at for lunch most days but I have to confess, sometimes the temptation of the hot meal is too much. Also the salad bar is sometimes a bit of a loose name for it, there’s not always that much salad in it! I keep thinking of going back to making my own fresh lunches and freezing them. This worked out well for me. I have however joined a gym and am enjoying attending spin classes there.

parkrun

I am doing well in this! I started parkrunning in May and in September I ran to 4 out of 5 parkruns. I’ve gone from a time of 58:24 at my first parkrun to 45:25 at my last run. I’m really pleased. I’ve gone from walking the course, to walking then run walking a bit of the course to now run walking the whole course. I’m hoping to get under 45 minutes soon!

Read more books

I’m doing ok with this. Probably not as good as I’d like but I am reading and that’s the main thing. I’m currently on my 14th book of the year. For some people that’s probably a lot, but I know for others, that’s barely any! I went to the library recently and enjoyed reading an actual physical book again! I posted about I’d read over the Summer here: What I Read This Summer I intend to post a comprehensive list at the end of the year.

be me

I’m still doing well with this and I’m finding I’m becoming more confident in being honest with people and saying “Sorry, but it’s not for me”

I’ll post another update on my goals at the end of the year, but for now, how are you doing with your 2017 goals?

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Earning the Run in the Sun medal

I was doing so well with my running. I was seeing improvements but then on 1st August it all came crashing down. I went to the second Gosport Road Runners beginners group and the session went fine. However when I got out of the car and put my foot down it hurt a bit on the back on my ankle/heel. When I took my shoe off it got worse and that night I couldn’t sleep as the pain was so bad. A little bit of research shows I’ve done something to hurt my achilles. It took a good couple of weeks to calm down and for me to be able to walk down stairs properly! It’s still uncomfortable now and hasn’t gone completely but it’s definitely better than that night. So, earning the Run in the Sun medal didn’t go to plan at all!

The rules were run, walk or cycle as far as you can in the month of August. You must achieve a minimum of 10km.

Here’s how it went:

On 1st August I attended the second Gosport Road Runners beginners group. We completed 2 miles. It wasn’t until a week later that I was able to do anything and that was a push. We’d gone to Weymouth for my husband’s Birthday. I didn’t want to ruin the day so managed to hobble 2.62 miles around Weymouth. It was slow and painful.

I then didn’t walk again until 19th August. I can now walk almost pain free. I can feel the achilles grumbling but also saying “Very well then, if we must” We walked 5k along the beach from Lee-on-the-Solent to Hill Head.

pastel beach hut

In August I completed a very disappointing 12.39km or 7.7 miles. Not the 26.2 I was aiming for at the end of July. So disappointed, now it’s time to work on fixing this achilles!

Here is the medal! I love how it’s Summer themed and perfect for completing runs by the sea, or walks in my case! It was hard to capture but the background of where it says “Run in the Sun” is glittery. I love a bit of sparkle!

Run in the Sun medal

Want to read about the other medals I’ve earned? The posts are below:

Kidney Research 5K Medal

Wonder Runner Medal

Mermaid Medal

To the Moon and Back Medal

Unicorn Medal

All Aboard Medal

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How I earned my Wonder Runner medal

In July I entered the Wonder Runner medal on Virtual Runner UK. I just thought I’d pop here that I pay for all my entries and I write these blog posts because I want to. I don’t even think Virtual Runner know about these posts. I just like how easy it is to be able to earn medals without having a minimum pace forced upon me. I can do it at my own pace.

For this July challenge I wanted to try and cover more distance than I did in June for the Mermaid Challenge. My running was going from strength to strength so I had a good feeling about it. The rules were to run, walk or cycle as far as you can through July. I completed 8 runs and 1 walk.

I started the July challenge with a 30 minute treadmill run where I completed 2.3 miles. This was followed by a 2 mile walk in 43:32. I took this picture of seagulls as they flew overhead. Just look how blue the sky is!

seagulls

This was followed by two treadmill runs. One was a 5k and the other was just a mile. Then on the 15th July I completed my 4th parkrun at Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun. I completed the 5k course in 47:47.

parkrun finish token

Standard finish token picture!

I then did a 2mile run on the treadmill before completing my 5th parkrun at Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun. This was completed in 47:38 which is my current parkrun PB.

parkrun finish token

In July I also joined the Gosport Road Runners beginners group. At the first one we totted up 1.24 miles of running. I then finished the month of July with two 30 minute runs on the treadmill both totalling 2.2 miles.

For the Wonder Runner July Challenge I completed 35.7km or 22.18 miles. I’d beaten my June total and for August I wanted to see if I could complete 26.2 miles or more (marathon distance)

Here is the Wonder Runner medal.

Wonder Runner medal

Want to read about the other medals I’ve earned? The posts are below:

Mermaid Medal Challenge

To the Moon and Back Medal

The Unicorn Medal

The All Aboard Medal

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How I earned my Mermaid Challenge medal

I’ve found it so hard to find time to blog lately so I’m sitting down now and writing a lot of posts and scheduling them. Embarrassingly these posts go back to June! But without further ado, here’s how I earned my Mermaid Challenge Medal from Virtual Runner UK.

The rules for this challenge were to run, walk, swim or cycle as many kilometres as possible in the month of June. I earned my medal with 1 walk, 3 runs and 2 bike rides.

My walk was at Stokes Bay where I walked 2.07 miles in 51:23. It was a lovely evening stroll where I took lots of pictures. Hence it taking so long. I’ll just share the one picture of the sun beginning to set.

Sunset at Stokes Bay

The first run, well run walk was at Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun. This was my 3rd parkrun and I completed the 5k course in 53:38.

parkrun finish token

If you don’t take a picture of your finish token did you even parkrun?

The two bike rides I did were to and from Stokes Bay junior parkrun. One ride was just over 2.5 miles and the other just over 3 miles. They both took 22 minutes. Riding there was a breeze but on the way back it was so windy! It was really hard to pedal against the wind. Here’s a picture of the start line. Look at the determination.

Stokes Bay junior parkrun

I completed the Mermaid Challenge with two treadmill runs. The first a 5k in 45:13 and the second a 30 minute run in which I covered 2.27 miles.

Altogether I completed 25.5km or 15.8 miles. I was really pleased with how much I’d completed but was determined to beat it in July!

The medal is such a stunner. I absolutely love it. I love how the lanyard carries on the theme!

mermaid medal

Want to read about the other medals I’ve earned? The posts are below:

Earning my To the Moon and Back Medal

Earning my Unicorn Medal – The Hard Way

Earning the All Aboard Medal

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2017 – An update part two

2017 Goals

It’s time to update you all on my 2017 goals. If you want to read my original post where I set the goals, it’s here and if you’d like to read my first update which was published in March, it’s here.

Health

I’m continuing to do well with this. I’m being mindful when making food choices. My new work has a salad bar which is free, or you can eat a hot lunch. I’m making sure I access the salad bar most days only having the hot lunch once a week, or sometimes not at all. This is working out well and I’ve now lost almost two stone.

parkrun

As you know, this is going well. When the 2017 dawned, I’d never completed a parkrun. Now I’ve completed three and I’m loving it. I have improved my time each time going from 58:24 down to 53:27. I hope to keep improving this. I’ve found by completing more parkruns, it’s making me be more mindful of food choices and making want to exercise more in other ways too. If you want to read my posts on parkrun they can be found below:

My First parkrun

My Second parkrun

My Third parkrun

Read more books

In my last update I wasn’t doing too well with this goal. I had read three books and listened to the Harry Potter audio books. I’ve now got back in to reading and have read 9 books. I’ll probably post a list of what books I’ve read at the end of the year as I don’t plan on reviewing them all.

be me

Again this is going well. I’m only accepting invitations for events I really want to attend. Because I work with a lot of young people, they have a constant desire it seems to be out of the house away from their parents, whereas I actually like being at home. It’s lovely they invite me but sometimes I just prefer to be at home!

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May Roundup

I’m starting this post on a rainy Bank Holiday weekend. Those words go together so well don’t they? Rainy Bank Holiday!

In May I continued discovering new places. I’ve heard of Old Portsmouth from a few people so we went over one evening to have a look round and explore. We went on the walls around the Square Tower and Round Tower. From the top you can see the ferries coming in to dock at Portsmouth. We were so close to this Brittany Ferry I could hear the announcements being made about how to disembark.

Brittany Ferry

In May it was my Mum’s birthday so we took her for a surprise trip to Weymouth for a Birthday treat. We had lunch at the Red Lion pub who do really good seafood. We wandered around the Harbour and down to the Beach. It was a great day.

Weymouth Harbour

Donkey at Weymouth Beach

How cute is this fella? He was the only donkey left behind. Maybe he was glad of the break though?

As you may know from this post I completed my first parkrun. I’ve completed another one since and a practice run. It all came to a halt this week though as I’ve hurt my foot.

parkrun finish token

Also in May my lovely Winnie developed a problem! I was driving home from work and when I turned corners, the steering clunked. She got towed away to Smart of Portsmouth who fixed her up. Her steering rack had failed! I was pretty disappointed that this would happen in a car less than a year old!

I think that’s all for my May Roundup. I’ve done much better with blogging in May so why not read one of my other posts?

Coffee Update

April Roundup

My First parkrun

parkrun Number 2

Stokes Bay junior parkrun test event

A bit of parkrun practice

parkrun tourism bucket list

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A bit of parkrun practice

Fresh off the back of a parkrun PB I really wanted to practice, to improve myself and see where I can go with this running lark. Sunday however was a really hot day and I put off going out, I put it off so much I got to the point where I wasn’t sure if I should go or not. I put a status on Facebook saying so and everyone told me to go! So I did. I’d waited until just after 6 but it was still so hot!

I’d already decided to do the parkrun course but whilst walking the first section towards Browndown I started to put a little plan together. I’d see how I felt as I passed the finish funnel area as I know I always tend to get leg pain on the first out and back. And if I felt ok I’d continue walking until the second turn around, evaluate again and if all was good, run walk the last bit.

As I looked at my watch it wasn’t showing the usual display of pace. Instead of mph it was showing min/miles and I don’t really know what I do them in! I couldn’t figure out how to change it either so just pressed on!

I did get the leg pain as I went to the first turn around point. A pavement with a slight tilt one way always makes my leg worse. In this case the prom tilts ever so slightly towards the sea. I carried on hoping it would pass and as I got to the finish funnel area it was definitely starting to subside. Now my only complaint was how hot I was! I put my head down and marched on. As I got to the final turn around point I was feeling ok so started to run. Just from one bench to the next so I have no idea how long for but everything felt ok so I continued running a little and walking in between.

When I reached mini mountain I looked at my watch. One of my friends had urged me to beat 55 minutes and I was so close! I powered up mini mountain and back down the other side and then ran as much as I could between there and where the finish funnel would usually be.

The result? A 5km run walk completed in 53:27!

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parkrun number 2

 

parkrun logo

This Saturday was a busy and very parkrun filled day! I volunteered to help at Lee on the Solent parkrun this week and put my name down as volunteer coordinator. This role involves telling the marshals or funnel team what and where their roles are. This week I was telling the funnel team and had offered to train up a couple of others, so when they were volunteer coordinator, they’d know what to tell the volunteers. When I’d finished I saw the lovely Louise from Fareham Crusaders and we took a parkrun selfie. Louise always takes one before parkrun so I was happy to oblige with this ritual.

parkrun selfie

After taking a selfie I went and positioned myself at the back of the pack ready to try out my second parkrun. I’m going to be honest, I wasn’t hopeful for it being as successful as last week. When I’d got up on Sunday last week I had a horrendous cold that pretty much made me feel rubbish all week and left me with a horrid cough which I still have now. I did however have my shiny new trainers on my feet that I’d bought from Nick at Absolute Running. He’d promised me I’d PB in them but I was unsure from being ill.

Hoka Mafate Speed 2

After volunteering I went and found my place at the back of the pack. We had a new PA system donated to us this week and as a result I heard every word of the run brief despite being at the back!

As we started the route I began to get the pain down the outside of my calf. The camber of the pavement always makes this worse and the first part of the course does have a slight tilt so this may be why. As we progressed to the turn around point and started heading back the pain began to subside. We picked up Adam as we were passing the sailing club for the second time from his marshalling spot. He told me he planned to help me PB this week. I’m so grateful for how supportive people are of me and trying to run! As we passed the finish funnel the pain was gone and I was beginning to feel stronger. There were two older ladies quite a way in front of me and I now had these in my sight! I wanted to over take them. As we headed to our second turn around point Paula came to join me. She had already completed her parkrun in a very speedy 23.11! Having Adam and Paula walk with me made the time fly by. They’re both quite funny and so my attention was focussed on the conversation rather than what I was doing. I glanced at my watch and was managing to maintain 3.3mph. Last week I walked at 3.2mph. When I mentioned this both Adam and Paula were encouraging me even more to keep the pace and over take the two ladies…which I did!

As we made it back to the finishing straight both Adam and Paula were speeding up and shouting encouragement at me so I literally had to run. I couldn’t keep up with them so did a sprint finish (if you can call it that!)

parkrun finish token

As it wasn’t such a big turn out this week I finished higher position wise, and I also got a PB! Last week I finished in 58:24 and this week I finished in…..drum roll….55:03!! Amazing what new shoes and a bit of encouragement from friends can do!

I’m going to do a separate post about the rest of my parkrun filled day so expect that soon!

Want to read about my first parkrun? It’s right here: My First parkrun

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My First parkrun

parkrun logo

On 13th May I completed my first parkrun. I’ve volunteered at my local parkrun at Lee-on-the-Solent for 22 months but never completed one thinking I’m not fit enough and I’d never be able to complete it in under an hour.

In January I set myself some goals for 2017. One of them was to take charge of my health and another was to complete a parkrun. So since then I’ve been working on my walking, upping the distances and in time improving my speed.

On 13th May it was the Gosport Road Runners take over at parkrun meaning I couldn’t volunteer as I am not a member. So instead I was going to walk it. I put a call out on Facebook as in the past people have said to me if I ever want to walk it, they’d be happy to walk it with me. On Saturday morning I had my friends Rachel (who was also tail runner), Andy, Kieran and Louise walking with me.

The walk started good. The Lee-on-the-Solent course is a loose figure of eight and as we made our way to the first turn around point I was absolutely astounded by the amount of people there. As we were at the back of the pack we had to walk in single file as the main crowd of runners were on their return leg.

As we went around the turn around point I started to get twinges down the outside of my legs. This is always where my leg pain starts. Instead of focussing on the pain I decided to instead focus on the conversations around me which at this point was about dreams about Tough Mudder events!

As we continued making our way towards the other end of the course we passed the finish funnel and this is my only moment of complaint. The promenade was packed with runners and I had to slow right down to try and work my way through people meandering back to their cars. It was frustrating but I know how difficult it is to keep the prom free from runners. As we passed the finish funnel I actually over took a group of three ladies and couldn’t believe it. I was no longer at the back. This did however mean I got separated from my group for a while as Rachel had to stay with the three ladies at the back as tail runner (the ladies later dropped out) I instead began chatting with Louise, we chatted about all sorts of things but she also told me how when we reached the slipway we’d already walked two miles and the bulk of the work was done! As we were chatting I hardly noticed the time going by. I felt good at this point (though warm) and wished I’d left my jacket behind at the funnel. It meant I had to carry it for a lot of the walk. As we rounded the next turn around point and made our way back towards the finish funnel Louise and I continued to chat about parkrun, running and injuries.

As we got closer to the end Anna came back to find us. She had already rather speedily finished her run and walked the remainder of the walk with me. It was so lovely chatting away to her and she informed me of the amazing cakes waiting for us when we finished. That girl knows how to motivate!

As we made it to the ramp (or as the parkrunners like to call it, the mini mountain!) the finish funnel was in sight, along with a sea of hi-vis vests of the marshalls and funnel team. It was quite the sight and there were lots of people there ready to give me congratulations and well dones for completing the course.

I came 583rd out of 587 runners (so not last!!) I walked the majority of the course chatting away and feeling good and most importantly, pain free. There was one slight problem though…I forgot to take any pictures!!! D’oh, what sort of blogger am I?! Rest assured, next time, I’ll take lots!

Want to read my 2017 goals? You’ll find a post about them here and a quarterly review of them here

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April Roundup

I know I’m getting to this April roundup a little late. In fact, we’re almost half way through May already but hey, better late than never right?!

In April I went to the cinema for the first time in over two years. Of course it was to see Beauty and the Beast! I was dubious about the remake, wondering if it would be as good as the original animated cartoon version from 1991 that I remember watching over and over on VHS as a child. In truth, the remake was wonderful and every bit as magical as the original if not more due to the progression in film making. I was enthralled from start to finish.

I also left my job in April and one of my leaving gifts from my colleague was this wonderful chip cup!

Chip from Beauty and the Beast

I got lots of lovely gifts from my colleagues and the children and I got lots of flowers! I had 7 vases brimming with beautiful blooms! Below is just one of them. I love tulips, they’re so pretty and vibrant.

Tulips

Of course in April I’ve also taken some beach pictures when I’ve been out walking. I’m still determined to keep gaining fitness by walking more often.

Lee-on-the-Solent Beach

Lee-on-the-Solent beach

I love how the sun is reflecting off the wet sand in the second picture. Sun set at the beach is the best. As I’ve been doing lots of walking I’ve also discovered some new places in and around where I live. Below are photos of Fort Gilkicker that was built in 1863 and is soon to become “luxury homes” and the Haslar sea wall where you can see across to Portsmouth Harbour.

Fort Gilkicker

Haslar Sea Wall

As I’ve been doing lots of walking I wanted a new way of recording my walks as for some reason, despite having a full battery my phone will die when using apps like Strava and say it has no battery, thus losing my data. Then, annoyingly, when I get home and plug it in my phone shows a full charge again! I hunted high and low for my old Garmin Forerunner 410 but despite being sure I brought it from Sheffield with us, I couldn’t find it anywhere. I researched a few different tracking watches and settled on the Garmin Forerunner 35. It’s simple to use, tracks heart rate and has GPS. I’m pretty pleased with it and am loving tracking all the stats again.

Garmin Forerunner 35

I’ve also continued to volunteer at my local parkrun. I decided to go back to marshalling as I usually do a funnel role. I loved being back out on the course cheering everyone on. I was put back in my old marshalling spot of the playground which just so happens to have a café right at the side of it so it was coffee and marshalling for me!

parkrun marshall

Speaking of parkrun we’ve also had confirmation of the junior parkrun we’ve been setting up. Stokes Bay junior parkrun will start on 4th June! We’re all so excited about this. The trial is on Saturday afternoon for us to try out all the equipment and make sure everything works before we do it for real. Afterwards we have to have a training session on being an RD at a Junior parkrun. I’m guessing this will cover some safeguarding aspects with it being juniors.

I think that’s it for my April update! I have some exciting news too but that’s for another post!

Not had enough? Why not look at my other post from April…

My One Year Plan

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