Week 1- “I’m sure foam rolling isn’t supposed to hurt this much!”

WOW I cannot beleive that week 1 is gone already!

What a week, hey! So this week I started back at the gym which I am very happy for though if nothing very tired. I haven’t been to the gym in golly must be a year and then longer than that on actually doing any weight at all. Thankfully I had a PT session where I went through what I was looking for, upper and lower exercises I could do on alternative days which takes 30min so I could do it in my lunch hour. I managed to go four times this week and that’s really what I’m wanting to continue with. Two days upper and two days lower should be enough for me to see an improvement in a couple of months.

I also went running, YAY! So I will be doing a mile on the treadmill after my legs day mainly because I won’t be going back out afterwards. It’s so early in the game that I don’t want to overdo it! I also managed to get out and about this week on a few late night runs which I am thankful for. The other half is happy to cycle next to me so I’m going to take him every time until he isn’t lol.

I had my first go at foam rolling to, OMG that killed!!! I asked around and it seems that I am using quite a brutal one so I will be getting a new one which doesn’t have all the nobles on. Then I’m going to try again!!

I went to my first Park Run of the year. I didn’t do an amazing time, wasn’t expecting to with all the other exercise I was doing, but at least I went. Then straight afterwards my sisters Godfather Michael took us though some really good exercises and stretches to do afterwards which we are hoping to add our weekly roundup.

So my total for Week 1

Running – 14.3/1000 Miles
Cycling – 0 Miles
Swimming – 0 Miles

In other news I’ve managed to do something to one of my lip piercings so that’s had to be taken out and now it looks like a mess! I’ve also got my green hair back so we can all rejoice, YAY! And today is my sister 39th which means we have exactly 1 year till Disney, 1 year before all that excitement and I’m excited!! I need to come up with some sort of training to do for it………

Tomorrow is also my first weigh in of year year……eeeeekkkkk

Bring on Week 2

Western Swimming Pool – Mountain Course Challenge

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So are you ready for a challenge?? I know I am!

Well as Nessy 2.0 is in full swing and has been since the 31st I thought a New Year Challenge would be good and this little beauty dropped into my work inbox and I knew instantly that I wanted to do it.

I’m 100% certain that I will have no trouble doing the running or the cycling as the other half pointed out it’s only around 6 miles a week, which I can do (fingers crossed) in a bad week. It’s going to be the swimming that I am going to have trouble with. I’ve worked it out that it’s around 200 lengths a week which is wowsers! I’ve looked at my previous swims, my last being on the 2nd July, sadly, and well it looks like I do around 40 lengths at a time. Nowhere near where I need to be but I’m certain if I try hard enough and swim for a full hour I can make that more, maybe even 50? We can only see.

So how am I going to attempt this challenge?

Well I’m going to just keep to my normal running pattern while adding in some cycling. I’m hoping to start doing some more cycling, especially on the Turbo Trainer inside when the other half is home so I’m actually getting exercise. Now I don’t think this is going to record how far I “cycle” so I’m going to have to go out and about on my actual bike, oh it’s been a long time!! The other half has shown me a Strava route he does and it’s around 6 odd miles so if I aim to do that once a week I should be more than in on the cycling. The swimming is going to be another matter. I will only be aiming to go once a week and I guess I am just going to have to try my best with how much I’m swimming.

I’m wanting to use the as a spring board for the rest of the year as ideally I’d love to be running, cycling and swimming throughout the year.

Now I do have a slight issue with all the above, I’m on holiday on the 15th March!!

Sooooo I’ll have the Coventry Half to do which will more than push me over the distance for the running and I know I will be making the other half cycle to Hinckley again and that’s around 20 miles so that will add to the cycling. Once again it will be the swimming! I know there is a swimming pool down the road a wee bit from the other half’s parents so it will be checking that a) I can go and b) what we will be doing on holiday so I can go swimming as if I can go a few times at least while I’m on holiday I’m hoping it can put my lengths to being close to the amount needed.

I guess we will just see!

I’ll be doing weekly updates anyway as I’m wanting to use this blog as more of a training diary!

 

#Run1000miles 2019

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HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!

When I first started running I just wanted to make sure I got from point a to point b. I wasn’t worried about mileage or how fast I was going, I just wanted to run and then well I did run and I learned I could go further and faster than I ever thought.

I then bought magazines to read up on what I could do and what I shouldn’t be doing and for motivation.

Then I learned that there we’re amazing feats of strength and endurance out there. I always knew about triathlons and dream of one day actually doing one but I never ever thought there would be something called an Ultra run. I didn’t really know there was anything out there further than 26.2 miles. You never really know about these things unless you start looking for them I guess.

Well I am amazed and delighted about ultra running/distance running it’s defiantly something that I want to progress myself to!

Back to the magazines and I regularly read Runners World, Trail Running Magazine and Ultra Magazine. Now my first foray into Train Running Magazine was when we went to Wales camping for the week, I’d never have thought it would be a magazine for me. I am always scared of doing anything which might falter my ankle, it was mainly the other half who said I should try it because well you never know!

So I did and I love it, it’s not all fell running! It’s about running the unbeaten track about seeing the beauty out there whether that is on a canal trail or up some mountains it’s all the same and I love the magazine for this!

Now it wasn’t long into reading the magazine that I came across #run1000miles. I looked up as much as I could do and joined my first running Facebook group. The Run 1000 Miles one and boy was I inspired!! So much so I am setting this as my target for this year. I want to run 1000 miles. Now I know I am just a beginner runner and I shouldn’t be putting any amount of strain on myself but I kept wondering and wondering if this was something I could do and well a challenge is a challenge right, if it was easy everyone would do it.

I’ve worked it out that it’s around 20 miles a week, which if I do it right I can run 4 nights/mornings of around 3 miles which would give me 12 miles and then do my Park Run on a Saturday which is 3 miles which would give me 15 and then a long run on the Sunday would give me the rest I needed.

I’ve thought long and hard about how I want to progress this year and I really would like to have a run streak and run everyday but I don’t want to do that encase my body isn’t happy I’d hate to hurt my hip like I did when I started my Winter run streak and then spend half a day crying because I couldn’t continue with it, so I’m aiming for 6 days running. If I run less I run less I’m not looking for miracles. I’ve also seen somewhere and cannot remember where sadly, that if you want to run a marathon you should be strength training 4 times a week and running 4 times a week so that is my ultimate aim.

Well I’m looking forward to this anyway. The new Trail Running magazine comes out on the 3rd Jan and it’s supposed to have a log in it to keep a record of how much your running so I will be using and using this place to record how I do.

I’m hoping to write more weekly on how I am doing, take more photos and maybe film but defiantly I’m wanting to do a weekly blog post of my training and how I am doing in all aspects of it. That way I am super accountable and I can defiantly write more here than I can on Instagram, even if my thoughts are all over the place lol!

Are you planning on running 1000 mile? Do you have another aim? I’d love to hear about it!!

My year end running stats

So tomorrow is the New Year and I thought it would be great to do a little end of year review.

So on the 29th May I did my first run, Couch to 5K day 1, since then I have ran exactly 342 Miles according to Strava! This has been over 116 runs of which two were races, one Bubble Rush Fun Run and the Leicester Half Marathon, 13 Park Runs of which one was in England and one was international. I’ve run countless miles with my sisters, my other half and my pup Joey.

I thought it would be lovely to look back on each month and how the mileage above totalled up!

May

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So May was the month that started all this craziness, I had one holiday in May it was a lovely weekend away to Liverpool/Birmingham. Yes the one where we decided on the way back to run a half marathon! We also had the T.T. races over here which meant a) family friends being over, b) living of coffee and sugar so I could stay up super late at night to look at motorbikes and get up early for work and c) I got to droll over a lovely Dakar Rally truck. Oh how I wished I could of seen all the dials inside!

My total mileage for May was 5.7 miles

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June brought more running and a lovely birthday run out along our old Railway line.

My total mileage for June was 25.4 miles

July

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July was a heavy month, firstly you had my first ever “race” a little fun run which I ran all the way and at the time this was unknown for me! Then I had my birthday day trip to Liverpool for the Terracotta Army which was amazing! I also had a week away camping to Wales which was amazing as it wasn’t during Winter lol. I also managed my first hour long run without thinking about it which was just truly amazing. Then on the day after we came back from Wales I went to my first Park Run!

My miles for July were 57.9 Miles of which 1.1 miles was our Bubble Rush Fun Run and 20.3 miles was while we were in Wales on holiday!

August

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August brought another weekend away in Birmingham and our first non Manx Park Run! August also seen me run from one side of the Island to the other!

My mileage for August was 46.8 miles

September

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September brought our long weekend in Copenhagen, which for the record was amazing! We managed a run every day we were away just so that we had some ace runs on our Strava accounts.

My mileage for September was an amazing 62.9 miles, of which 11 miles was while we were in Copenhagen.

October

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Oh October how I loved you! October brought our two week holiday to the other half’s parents in Leicester and the Leicester Half Marathon! I still to this day am amazed that I did it!

My mileage for October was 57.2 miles of which amazingly 43.8 miles was while I was on holiday!

November

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November brought me my 10 Park Runs!

My mileage for November was 52.1 miles.

December

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December brought our weekend away to the Christmas Markets in Krakow which in turn brought us my first even international Park Run!

My mileage for December was 31.3 miles!

Overall I am so so amazed, I still cannot believe I am doing so much with only running 6 months! I’m looking forward to seeing all the challenges I have in 2019!

Krakow Park Run

Oh Krakow, how I loved you! Not so much the Christmas Market but the architecture was just amazing. Now if you’ve read my previous posts you will know that I made a huge mistake in Copenhagen in that I stupidly forgot to bring my Park Run barcode which meant I couldn’t partake in the Copenhagen Park Run. Oh how upset I was, in the end we did a lovely run but it wasn’t the Park Run I wanted to do.

When we first booked to go to Krakow going to the Park Run was a no no, mainly due to us all going to the Salt Mines that day, well low and behold a couple of months before we went it turned out the Salt Mines was in the afternoon so we could go to the ball as Cinderella would say.

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I was super excited so I made sure my Park Run barcode was the first thing that I packed, I couldn’t miss out on another opportunity because I was stupid again!!

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We got up early and walked the half an hour to the Park run which was actually a really nice walk especially so early in the morning and thankfully the Park Run was really easy to find. It turned out to be one and a bit laps of a park in the middle of Krakow.

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We made it with a few minutes to spare to take the Park Run photo at the top of this blog. I was really surprised at how many non locals there were, it’s always nice to find out that these Park Run’s bring everyone together from a wide range of places. While we waited for the start we had a lovely natter with a lady who was on holiday as well.

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And we are off!!!

Corrine went off ahead (you can just see her racing ahead in this photo lol), because of how flat the course was she wanted to see if she could PB. I’ve been having problems with my hip, it turns out that I kick my hip out when running because of the broken ankle I had and this now causes massive amounts of pain when I run. I had decided at the beginning that I wanted to see if I could PB myself but well the run was just very meh which meant that I actually ended up running maybe half a mile, then running back to my sister to run the rest with her. I think in the end I was more worried about going down the 800 stairs in the Salt Mines to worry about getting a PB.

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I love this photo! It shows how much I was enjoying just taking a step back and running with my sister.

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I was really happy and surprised with Jess, she has been finding it hard to get out running so when she does it’s a big thing and for the fact that we only stopped twice during this whole run shows how much she has been moving forward. I am forever proud of her.

How cool is the Santa at the end there!

Yep at the end of the race we had a Santa giving out cookies lol, I didn’t accept one so cannot say how they tasted but they looked mighty fine.

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Overall I was really super happy with my Krakow Park Run experience, everyone was so lovely. We got asked to have our photo taken by what I think was the main guy and also to have a group photo with everyone else which was just lovely. We normally are not quite so forward and try to stay in the shadows but everyone was so nice and well it’s a lovely memory to have!

I would of loved to of PB’ed. I can see how the course would help you do this because it was so flat but it just wasn’t my time. if I ever go back you can guarantee that I would be trying my best though.

Just hit my 10 Park Runs!

Wow! I never thought that when I started running that I would be doing this much let alone trying my hardest to go to an organised run every Saturday!

Well today I hit that magically number of 10 Park Runs, next year I’m going to hit 25 and earn a t-shirt (it’s one of my goals!), for now though I thought I would run you past the last 10 Park Runs.

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My first Park Run, I remember come back from holiday in March and wondering about where to go next and what to do next when I came across Park Runs, to be honest it took me ages to find out that we actually had one at home! The next day I was running it!! My first Park Run was done in a time of 41.27 and it was the first time that I actually had gone out and gone for it, prior to this I had just bobbled around. Never actually racing. I remember being dead but looking at that number on my Park Run profile feeling so so proud!

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So straight onto my second Park Run and I think you can see how much I was trying, it looks like I’m in pure pain here!! My time for my second run was 40.19 I had already smashed my first time by over a minute!

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For my third Park Run I thought I would mix it up and actually try eating some breakfast……yeah that wasn’t the wisest thing. I have since learned that I’m not a eat and run kinda girl, not even slightly. The only things I can eat before a run are energy bars and even then only a few brands. My third Park Run was done in a time of 39.35, I was under a 40 minute Park Run!!!

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Park Run 4 was in Birmingham. I was deep into my Park Run love by now and wanted to add other city’s to my Strava and try other places. I had also managed to persuade my sister into doing the Park Runs with me! This run unbeknown to us was more of a trail run because there was a concert thingy going on and they had to move everything around. For trying a new place I loved it!! My time was 40.23, which for a new place, only adding on less than a minute made me very very happy.

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Park Run 5 was back at home and in a completely different place, Conrhenny and OMG I loved this race. We had to move from our normal place of Nobles due to T.T. week. My time was an amazing 39.23! I had to walk up the hill on the second lap too which I remember being really upset about when I should of been happy with another sub 40 5K!

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Park Run 6 was in aid of Mannin Septis and as such once we crossed the line we got a lovely badge, which is happily on my Salomon vest. This Park Run was done in a time of 39.32, which was just 3 seconds less than my previous time!!!

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Wow now Park Run 7 was something!! I managed to do it in 37.25 which is over a 2 minute PB!! How I did this I don’t know but by now I was beating every time I’d previously made. Now I think about it maybe because this Park Run was supposed to be our Copenhagen Park Run, I forgot my barcode like a stupid person, so I was just running in pure anger of not adding an extra place to my list.

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Park Run 8 was turning out to be a family affair, this was the day our mum said she’d like to be running next year!!!! So she came along to walk it while we ran and I will forever be proud! I ran this one 36.34, which is amazing because I was in SO SO SO much pain, I had fallen the night before on my knee and managed to bruise it to no end, so much so it’s still bruised as I’m typing this!!

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I completely forgot to take a photo prior to my Park Run no.9 LOL!!! But this was a massive NSV (Non Scale Victory) for me, I had through moving hell and high water managed to fit into my Christmas Tikiboo Pants, which I know for a lot of people wont mean anything but to me it was heaven on earth. I ran my 9th Park Run in 36.46, 10 seconds more than Park Run 8. I’m not upset with this at all because I gave it my all. It was also a very very muddy run so to only lose 10 seconds due to slipping and sliding, I’ll take it as a win!

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This brings me to Park Run no.10!! The one where we paced Jess to a PB! I knew from the outset I wasn’t going to win any new times as I really wanted to support Jess in achieving her goals, so we did this Park Run in a time of 44.15, which meant we managed to get Jess under 45 minutes. Win Win I’d say!

Now onto all the other delightful information my first Park Run was in a time of 41.27 with my last timed run being 36.46. This means that in 9 weeks I had beat my first overall time by over 4 minutes. This is amazing progress. Defiantly better than I could ever of thought.

Moving forwards I have around 5 Park Runs left in the year, it would be 6 but we’re in Poland one of those Saturdays and no matter how much I’d love to be doing the Park Run the Salt Mines wins each time. I think it’s unrealistic to get below a 35 min 5K by the end of the year but I think a 35 something min 5K would be amazing!! I’m also going to make it my main Park Run aim next year to be running a sub 30 min Park Run and also to get my 25 t-shirt, which I will wear with so much pride!!!

 

 

13.1 things I learned from my first Half Marathon

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So I don’t think you’ve missed it, but I completed my first half marathon last month and boy do I still feel proud about it and well I thought it would be kinda fun to do one of these, so here is 13.1 things I learned from my first half marathon.

1) Go at your own pace, no matter what you will be slower and faster than the people around you so go at your pace not theirs

2) I still haven’t got my fuel down pat. I thought I was spot on with my Honey Stinger chews but for some reason on the day they were really hard to eat. Back to the drawing board.

3) There is no harm in walking, whether that is in mile 1 or mile 13. I was surprised at how many were walking so soon and if I knew this was acceptable I wouldn’t of panicked so much prior to the race!

4) Wearing my hydration vest was the best thing in the world. I was able to skip all the fueling stations as I had exactly what I’d trained with on me. It also meant I didn’t have to fight with anyone over that one cup of water lol.

5) It will be tough, oh so tough but you can do it! By mile 10 I felt like I was done but I managed to crawl the last 3.1 miles and if I can you can to.

6) Always always have a natter with whoever your running with. This is s random one from me as I suffer from anxiety all the time but I made the effort to have a talk with everyone I was running with. Not only does it make the race go faster but it was so lovely getting to know new people.

7) You will sign up for new races even though you think you’ve gone to hell and back!

8) You will be overly emotional near the end and might have a few choice words to say when someone thinks you should be running and you don’t have the energy.

9) You’ll feel like the biggest bitch about no. 8 when you’ve crossed the line and calmed down!

10) There is no better feeling than crossing that line and knowing it was all worth it.

11) Once you’ve settled down you will probably start to think on how you could of ran faster/better, if I did X,y,z maybe I’d be at X,y,z……

12) Walking afterwards however hard actually helps A LOT or it did for me. After I finished we had to go and get picked up which includes a mile and a bit walk. As we were going to be spending 8 hours travelling back home later in the day the walk directly after the race helped me immensely.

13) You’ll want to do it again and again and again even though you feel dead.

13.1) No matter what anyone says, be proud of your medal and your achievement!

November Goals

Oh October how you went by fast! So so fast!

I didn’t manage to do anything much at all last month, I didn’t hit my running target, I didn’t get back swimming, I haven’t even managed to get to Zumba and I only managed to get my weight down to 18st 5 (259lbs). What I did manage though was my first half marathon!!!! And I did get out and did some cycling. So the good defiantly outweigh the bad.

Now for November I’m wanting to just get back into a running routine. I had a week and  bit off after my half marathon to give myself the time to heal and then I feel over quiet badly on my knee which has made me not want to get out at all because it’s sore.

Running

Last month I said I’d really like to run 100 miles and well I’d like to move that to this month but lose a few and say I’d like to run 75 miles this month. That will make it my highest mileage and bring me closer to running the 100 miles a month I’ll need to run 1000 miles next year. At the end of this month is Thanksgiving for American’s and for a long while there has been a running challenge of running everyday between Thanksgiving and New Year. I’d really like to do this. It would mean running 1 mile a day everyday. I’m thinking if I get myself running during lunchtime when the other half is on a late, that would be 2 miles and then I could go for a longer run on the days the other half is off or on an early. I might even attempt to get myself out in the mornings for a run. We shall see.

Cycling

Once again I’d like to get myself out more. I managed to get myself out doing a few miles when we were away so I’d like to get myself out a few times this month and I’d like to go on the turbo trainer when the other half is on a late. That way I am getting some exercise in.

Swimming

Ahhhh swimming, it looks like the timetable is actually a lot better over winter, so I’d like to start trying to go once every two weeks again. Even if it is just for 45 minutes. We still have a few swims on our tickets, so it’s not like I need to worry about the costs. I once again might try and get myself out early and swim before work!

Weight

I’m adding a new header here, I finally admitted that I needed some help with my weight. I’d been doing well and managed to lose just shy of 2 stone myself with calorie counting since I’ve started to run but I want to lose more and I want to lose it a wee bit quicker than I am doing so I joined Weight Watchers again. I had a long time deciding on whether I should join another diet again but I knew that a) Weight Watchers does work if I stick to it and b) it was more regimented than what I was doing and that would be better or me and c) they had a weekly weigh in and there was actually people I could talk to if I needed to. My sister who lost a lot of her weight lost it calorie counting but she seems to have forgotten how hard it was to lose it, (though she did lose it super quickly but eating a super regimented diet and lots and lots of exercise) so I find it really hard to talk to her about losing weight. My first week was great and I lost 5.5lbs, my second week I will probably put some of that on, but I know why so all is good. Ideally I’d like to lose between 4 and 8 pounds this month, nice and slow but a lot quicker than I was doing before!

That’s about it on the goals, I just want to make sure I get out and run. The weather has turned super quick and I’m finding my ankle is getting stiffer and stiffer so I can see myself not wanting to go out. I’m hoping that making myself doing the mile a day will actually get me out as I won’t want to lose my “streak” per say. Plus I’m not going on holiday this month so I will be here the whole time, all the more reason to make sure I do more!

Leicester Half Marathon // Race Report

Oh my where do I start with this one…firstly I still cannot believe that I actually finished a half marathon in any shape or form and I’m so proud that I managed to finish and finish within my time frame of 3 hours.

So I will start at the beginning, the very beginning. On May 27th I wrote a blog post on here (OMG! What have I done) which was basically me signing up for my first half marathon and 5K after we came back from our weekend away in Liverpool/Birmingham and being inundated with loads of people in Liverpool with amazing medals. Somehow on the 4 hour boat trip back home I had managed to wear down both my sisters and we signed up to do the 5K and the half marathon that week! Prior to this I we all hadn’t done any proper running ever. The thought of even doing a 5K was something.

On the 29th April I started the Couch to 5k, the weather was horrendously hot, just OMG hot but I had already decided it was a now or never kinda thing. I really really wanted to be able to do that half marathon next May. For once I had decided to give myself more than enough time to train!

After doing the first week of the Couch to 5K I just couldn’t believe how hard it was, so we did week 1 again. The thought of actually running a half marathon was now setting in and I knew it was going to be hard, very hard. After doing week 1 again, I steadily went through the C25K system until we got to Week 4 and I did the Bubble Rush. This was my first actual “race.” It wasn’t far only just over a mile but it was my first time running for that long both in time and distance at once. I was immensely happy I managed to do it and the Bubble Rush defiantly gave me a little boast to keep on going.

Then you get to week 6 of the C25K and I’m on holiday in Wales. I had up to this point made sure that I was running the 3 days which it suggests, even if they were back to back. Now I was going to keep to the C25K system while on holiday but as I was already running for around 20/30 minutes with the system I just thought what the hell and decided to run for half an hour at a time. On one day I was feeling really good and ran for an hour (14th July), this was the first time I had ever ran for that long and it was an amazing feel. I just kept going and going and going!

After my hour run that was it, I didn’t do anymore of the C25K and just went out and ran my own thing, whether it was to a certain milage or time I just got out and ran. I also went to my first ever Park run the week after we came back from our holiday in Wales.

I was looking around the internet on possibly doing another half marathons next year and found out that the Leicester Half Marathon was on the day we we’re going to come back home, I had some birthday money from the Other Half’s parents as a birthday present so I signed up. Nothing gained nothing lost right?!

Training

My training for my first half wasn’t probably what most people would do, once I had done the couch to 5K and learned that I could run I just went out and ran. I didn’t have a schedule at all, if I was having a good day I went for it. Closer to the time though I did make sure that I was running around 3 times a week, twice at 2 miles or 5 miles and then once longer. I know that once I hit English soil I tried to get out every day for as long as I could whether that was cycling or running just to keep me going, because of my ankle doing a taper was out of the question, as soon as I stop doing any type of exercise on it, it seizes up and I just didn’t want that on race day. My longest run was for 10 miles and I did that the first week we we’re over. I mainly did the run to see a) if I manage to run that far, I knew I’d already done a run for that long but I knew afterwards I couldn’t go any further and b) to see what my timings were like and c) to see how I managed with eating on the go.

The Day Before

The day before race day I made sure we just dallied around, I didn’t want to do anything above and beyond and truth be told I was super nervous. What I did do which I normally wouldn’t was drink around 3 litres before bed, this right here was a BAD mistake. I was up most of the night peeing. Here was me worried that I wouldn’t be hydrated and I really don’t think it helped. Next time I might just try and drink a little more throughout the day and not all in one go. I did manage to sleep for a long while which I am grateful for.

Throughout the week we had been checking the weather and at first it looked like it was going to be amazing and then the rain came in, so I knew the night before it wasn’t going to be a dry race and made sure I countered this in my clothing. I picked a t-shirt which was thin and I went with an old pair of leggings which I also knew were thin this way when they got wet I wouldn’t feel like I was wearing something super heavy. You can also see in my flat lay above what I had decided to wear for my race and also my nutrition for my race. One of the one things I had ummmed and arrrrred about was whether to take my Salomon hydration pack. It seems that a lot of people even if they train with them do not bring them to the races. I had trained with mine since I started to do bigger runs and for me, he’s a little safety blanket. I already knew my own hydration drink wasn’t going to be served at the feed stations so for me it was an easy call. It also meant I could just breeze past the feed stations as I was entirely self sufficient.

My other half had decided that he was going to cycle around the race and take photo’s of me for me, which just filled me with joy, so he spent the afternoon getting his folding bike all sorted and the camera so he was ready to go.

Race Day

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Race day morning was something else. We had gotten the other half’s dad to drop us off at the starting point but we could see how bad the traffic was so got stopped off at another point and walked around the mile to the start line, by this point I was REALLY nervous, this was my first race and I really didn’t know what to do or where to go, thankfully we could see a load of runners so just followed them to the start. The rain by this point was very close to monsoon weather it was just so heavy, I really couldn’t believe how much it was raining.

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After we followed everyone we managed to get to the start line, which I thought would be something more, but really happy we found it. A quick few snaps (the first few were taken with my mac in a sack over my number lol) then off to the toilets to have a quick pee before the race.

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Then it was 15 minutes to the start so I handed over my waterproof jacket to the other half, got myself in position (as far back as I could go) and did a few stretches to help out my hips and such. I had a lovely natter with a few people next to me, one of which was doing the Marathon (it was his first) and I think he was either putting it on youtube or he was doing some Instagram/facebook live thing. I’ll never know lol. You can see him kinda in the first two of these photos, in the white t-shirt and grey shorts.

The Start

When the clock ticked down and it was ready to go, I was expecting the little quick start slow start thing, it happens every time at the park run, you kind of fast walk up to the start line then run over it. It was at this point I started my Garmin and off we went.

I had already decided that once I clicked on my Garmin I wasn’t going to be paying any attention to it, apart from on the odd occasion to check how fast I was running. I didn’t want to see my time till the end just because I was worried I would panic if I was close and zoom off at the beginning. My other half knew my target was three hours though.

And we’re off

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The first part was through the main roads of Leicester and it was all closed off for us, it was really weird running through all the red lights!! I stayed with the lovely lady from the start (in the white t-shirt) and we had a good natter for around a mile or two. I found out that she had taken up running because she had lost her other half late last year.

Already I was really worried about my timings not because of timings but more to make sure I was going slow enough. The first mile I was running 11.02 min miles, this was fine as the first mile was all downhill.

I was quite amazed at how many people were already walking after a mile. I’d read the information leaflet which stated there was no walking in the first 3 miles. I guess the amount of people walking was quite unexpected for me.

It was at around mile 2ish that my lovely friend had a loose shoelace and I continued without her (I did ask if she wanted me to wait for her though!).

By mile two I was running 12.04 min miles, so getting more into the times that I wanted.

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Mile 4 and I was still feeling really good, the girl in the purple and me did quite a few cat and mouse things. I would always catch her up and she would continue on just a wee bit faster than me, you’ll probably see her in quite a few photos lol.

Whereas before I was amazed at how many people were walking I was now amazed at how many people were zooming past me. I had kinda hoped they were really fit and started late more than they were going fast and I was going to meet them later on because they had slowed down.

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Still on Mile 4 and going good.

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Going onto the 5th Mile and I still was feeling really good. This part was really bad in the way that it was on a duel carriageway and cars were going past super fast. With all the rain we were having I was really trying to stay away from puddles to keep me feet as dry as possible. With the cars splashing us with full frontal water this just wasn’t possible.

I do really like the last two photos here, mainly because they were taken from a different vantage point.

My timings were also doing well, by the end of mile 4 I was doing 12.20 min miles.

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Mile 7 was into Watermead Country Park. This was the first time I had actually gone into this park and it was lovely. That little bridge there was quiet hard to run over. By this time I was actually starting to wan. When I had done my training there was always something to give me little breaks, whether that was traffic lights or crossing a road ect, so by this time in the race I had been running for my longest time without a break for a while and it was starting to become tiring.

I was still doing good with my times and doing a 12.22 min mile.

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I’m in mile 9 here and starting to really feel the effects of not stopping and continuous running. You can also see just how wet the race was in this photo, when I say it was wet it was wet.

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Going into mile 10 here and I had already told myself that I could start walking in mile 10 if I needed. Only because my limit prior to the race was 10 miles so everything over that was the unknown.

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Running in mile 10 here.

By this time my times were going down and I was running a 13.35 min mile, which shows how much trouble I was having with the continuous running.

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Running into Abbey Park on my 11th mile. In the first photo I’m just having a quick natter with the two people in pink and joked whether they had already finished, to my surprise they had!!! I was just amazed and shocked. I was finding the whole run really hard and to know people had already finished was just something I was in awe off.

I’m not going to lie it did make me feel quite down as I was trying my best!

Going into Abbey Park was great though, we try and get to abbey park every time we go away as I love it, so I was starting to run on known ground.

By this time I did allow myself to walk for a bit and do some walk run walk run stuff. This can defiantly be seen in my times because I went all the way down to a 14.29 min mile.

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Not only was I walking here I was just so tired. I was starting to really find this hard.

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This was just after the feed station, love the guy trying to get a cool photo while I’m just finding it hard to keep running at this point.

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Onto mile 12 and I can feel that I am almost finished. I was trying to run more than walk but it was getting super hard to just motivate myself to actual run. I knew I wanted to but actually doing it wasn’t working.

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Running into the last mile now and going past the Clock Tower in the main town centre. I think I was trying to do a shuffle run here. My other half had told me I was doing good time and I was just trying my best. I hated walking past everyone when they were giving encouragement but by this time I was walking more than running.

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This photo was taken just before the hill into the closing part, I found this hill the worst part. I knew about it before the race but actually being faced with it when you just don’t have the energy is something else.

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This is it now, the last .1 of a mile and I kid you not when I say this has to of been the hardest .1 of a mile ever. I remember walking up to the barricade and being able to see the finish line just up ahead and not having the strength to run. I had a quick exchange with someone who was giving encouragement just generally saying how hard it was and for some reason decided to attempt to run to the end.

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And this is me finishing.

I had managed to finish my half marathon in a time of 2h 50m and 13 seconds. Just under 10 minutes than my 3 hour target. I came in at 885 out of 959, I just couldn’t of wanted for anything better. I had given it my all and I had managed to hit my target smack on.

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One super tired Nessy here. I think I am actually trying hard not to cry here. I was just overwhelmed with finishing. When I first broke my ankle I never thought I would be running, it was a dream of mine for so long and then it was just unattainable, so when I started to run I never would of thought I would have been running a half marathon and one so soon.

Just your typical yep it’s actually a real medal photo.

It’s taken me a while to get this race report up mainly because I was going through some mental breaks which made me not feel as amazed by finishing my half marathon than I should of been and I am only just getting back into a better mental place with it.

I’m internally grateful that my other half had faith in me and that I had the internal faith myself to finish this and I’ve already got a load more races that I want to do. I’ve got my Run Rock’n’Roll in Liverpool to do in May and I’m hoping to do the Leicester Half marathon next year and do a time of around 2h 30m as a target, it would be nice. I’m also pondering doing my first full marathon next year!

Overall I think if I was going to do anything differently id have liked to of done more longer runs, I found that most things I read said to only run a two thirds of what you expect to do because you’ll be able to finish it on the day and I did do that but for me actually being able to run a full 13 miles would of helped. I know I managed to run all the way to 10 miles because I had already ran it and mentally knew I could physically get to that point. After that it was purely a mental and physical thing on whether I could finish.