DAY 1 Marathon Training


​DAY 1 kicks off my marathon training. I simply can’t believe this day is here.  6 months ago I sat in a Marathon training session with Alzheimer’s Society in London and was told it was way to early to start training and I had to wait until June to begin. 

It felt like an age away but now here it is. 😨😨 Todays training involved a 4am HIIT session (which  included the impossible 2 Point plank) followed by a very windy cycle to work. Praying it dies down for my journey home! 

Aldridge Running Club 10k

What a great event. 

Seeing things from the other side as a Marshall was awesome.

The frontrunner went past my station 6k into the run in a time of 17.19 minutes. He finished in just over 32 minutes!!! Each and every runner put their heart and soul into this race, the final finisher especially, injured and struggling to walk let alone run, but determined to get to that finish line on her own was simply inspirational. 

The bobsled team running on behalf of Teenage Cancer Trust in memory of Stephen Sutton work so hard raising money at these events and always bring it on with a smile and enthusiasm. 

I cannot wait to do this route, we as a club are not allowed to take part in our own event but run it ourselves during club on Tuesday evening. 

I am so proud to be part of Aldridge Running Club.

Beating my 10k PB


Sunday 30th April was an epic day for me, I took part in the Simply Health 10k Run in Birmingham.  Accompanied by my wonderful son I set off feeling nervous and wound up like a coil.  Not because I didn’t think I could do it but because I had set myself the target of getting a personal best.


In September 2016 I took part in the Womens Running Race Series 10k and got a great time of 58.58, my target for that race was to complete in under 60 minutes, it was my first race and the start of my true addiction to running.
My aim for the Birmingham 10k on Sunday was to get sub 54 minutes, then on 15th April i have no idea how but I went out and smashed the September time and ran a gobsmacking (for me anyway) 10k in 52.25, which elated and deflated me at the same time.  I could not see a way that I could or would beat this time.  I continued training to plan and worked myself up into a bit of a frenzy.

Being a non competitive person with other people it has come as a bit of a shock to me that I can be so competitive with myself, seeing it as a good thing though so that I am always pushing myself to be better, faster, fitter, stronger.  Something that never before have I done.

We got to Birmingham a little early which was great because I got to soak up the atmosphere and I have to say it really was electric, everyone buzzing, chatting, laughing, warming up, getting themselves ‘into the zone’ and all there for the same reason…. to run.
I started my run feeling happy and strong, very nervous but ready to tackle the 10km ahead of me.  I tried so hard not to check my watch to see how I was doing, pacing myself by trying to keep the 50 minute marker in my sights. This went really well until the 8th km when he started to pull away from me, partly because I was starting to struggle keeping up the pace and partly because at the end of the run coming out of the market area there is a massive (well not really massive, but it felt it) hill. 

Back on Jennens Road it flattened out I then hit the downhill coming into Curzon Street. Along came my second wind and my legs started powering me towards the finish line. Sadly forgetting the photographers along the way!!! Not the best pictures as a result.

Realising my finish time was 50.19 I was overjoyed 8 minute miles!!! I am still in dis-belief at doing it and ecstatic that I have.
2 years ago if someone had said I would be running 10k let alone running an 8 minute mile 10k I would have told them they were mad but a little bit of self belief and a whole lot of work I have. 

Joining a Running Club?

I have been running now for almost 2 years, I have always run alone for various reasons:

If i run with other people would I keep up?

If I joined a club would they be nice and would I fit in?

I run early in the morning and don’t particularly like running on an evening.

Is it going to cost a fortune?

Can I commit to a once/twice weekly meet?

Over the last few weeks/months I have gone backwards as forwards in my mind whether to join a club or remain running on my own. One thing primarily has stopped me: FEAR!  I tried running with a club on a Sunday a few weeks back, wonderful bunch of people, great run through Sutton Park, really beautiful surroundings, and amazingly no cost involved.  My problem is that Sundays are my long run day on the lead up to the marathon my training will require me running much further than the 10k for the group run, so sadly I have had to look at other options.

I had heard a lot of really positive talk about Aldridge Running Club via members and through the grapevine, so I took the plunge last night, overcame my fears and reservations and went for it.

Right from my first contact with them via Facebook the response was wonderful, I was given information and made to feel welcome.  I got to their venue at the Stick and Wicket in Aldridge a little early (I am always early! lateness is a pet hate) and mustered up the courage to enter an already very busy Social Club.  My terror overtaking me i was so close to turning around and running for the hills (or car park at least) but I didn’t, I have to face my fears ‘I can and I will’.  I was approached by the lady who had chatted with my via Facebook and instantly I felt at ease, she explained everything to me and to my joy there were 2 other girls starting too, plus a gentleman who had only been the week previously and looked like he had been there a lifetime.

I fully intended to do the Melish 6 route (6 miles) but when my two newby partners annouced they were doing the Industrial 4 route (4 miles) I backed out of the 6 and felt safer staying as a threesome.  The room filled to almost capacity and the Vice Chair announced a reel of PB’d from Park Runs, the results from those who ran the London Marathon and a few other snippits of info, then off we went.

The club provide a front runner, back runner and an in betweener too.  Plus as newbies we were assigned a buddy which was taken on by one of long standing male runners, bless him he really made me feel at ease chatting as we ran.  As the run progressed everyone slips into their own pace and the group gradually breaks up, I chatted with a couple of runners and then ended up on my own, which was fine and thankfully I managed to keep the person in front of me in my sights as I was not a 100% sure where I needed to go. 4 miles down the run was completed and it felt great.

I got chatting to another couple of members and even got semi talked into possibly joining the Cross Country Team in the winter. Something i never thought I would even consider but you know what I may just join that team!

Club running was ace, I loved it, I loved the company, I loved the support, I loved hearing everyone’s banter and most of all I loved feeling part of something. Why I have wasted so long thinking about it I will never know!

Www.aldridgerunningclub.co.uk

30 Day Thigh Challenge

My thighs and bottom have always been my problem area, no matter how much weight I lose, or how hard I try I have always hated them and have always been self-conscious of the way I look!  I have always dreamed of the ‘perfect’ pair of legs.  In honesty though, what is the perfect pair of legs?  Who has the perfect pair of legs and how do you get them?  Everyone’s perception is different and everyone’s desire is different.

My perception and desire is a beautiful pair of toned, not overly muscly and definately not stick thin, (I say that because I will never be stick thin so why dream it)  I could however achieve the toned aspect, but how?

I run, I cycle and I walk, all of these use your legs, they all use different muscles so why are they not toning and shaping my thighs and bottom?  Compared to when i started 3 years ago my body has changed dramatically but is still not where I want it to be.

(Me 3 years ago)

Me 2017 January (left) and April (right)

img_20170224_072729_969.jpg

My top half loves toning up and does so very easily, when I lose a few pounds sadly it always comes off my already very small top half, never my problem thighs and butt!

So after trying, trying, trying and not succeeding I am giving The Cycling Bug’s 30 Thigh Challenge a go.

http://thecyclingbug.co.uk/health-and-fitness/training-tips/b/weblog/archive/2015/02/13/take-the-30-day-thigh-challenge.aspx

I am on Day 9 now and today’s requirement was:

30 x Inner Thigh Lifts (on each leg)

35 x Scissors (these never fail to make me chuckle)

15 x Fire Hydrant (on each leg)

I cannot see a difference yet and am presuming that perhaps I won’t, but I do feel a difference, I can feel the exercises working and as the days progress the repetitions increase it is only going to get harder/better.  Plus these exercises are designed to not only tone but also strengthen this area so it really is win win, the stronger the better with the challenges I have ahead of me

I have also started adding my own little bit on the end of 3 sets of 12 Dead Lifts.

Toned, gorgeous thighs here I come…… butt next

Marathon Fever

A massive and huge Well Done to each and every runner today. Marathon fever has well and truly taken over me.

I had the pleasure yesterday of a trip to London and seeing the finish line on The Mall was electric. Watching the 50,000 ish people cross the line today on TV was even more exciting. 

From the Elite runners to runners like me the dedication and passion that each and everyone of them has put into training for this event oozes from their being. There were also acts of extreme kindness, one blew me away and reduced me to tears. David Wyeth had run and pretty incredible race in a truly amazing time but just 200 metres from the finish line he began to struggle, looking like he would not be able to carry on Matthew Rees assisted David to the finish. Forfeiting a possible PB himself. 

To me this act re-enforces the spirit and kind nature of the human race and the true comerardare of a marathon.

The ballot for 2018’s London Marathon opens on 1st May and 100% I will be putting my application in. To have a chance of securing a place in next year’s marathon fills me with excitement, drive, commitment and passion. 

I want this so badly and whether it’s next year or the year after one year I will be there and I will cross that line.