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Feeling a bit fed up of not running and a bit of a fake too

21 Apr

I’ve been trying not to broadcast the fact that I haven’t been able to run lately due to a couple of minor (or major – depending on how you look at it) health issues. Initially when the doctor said no exercise that takes my HR up over 120 I ignored her and I carried on doing a bit of running here and there and also a lot of road riding with my friends. I’ve always been stubborn like that! I know… hard to believe ;-)

But then i started thinking – I have been running for 10 nearly 11 years and this is just a short period of no running – perhaps I should listen to the doctor. So I stopped the running and continued with the riding. Then I started thinking about all the hospital bills we have been paying and how my stubbornnImageess and determination to still train could potentially push those fees out to the foreseeable future and I caved.

I found myself ashamed and feeling like a fake – I mean here I am writing a running blog but not able to run right now. I felt miserable and very sorry for myself and probably drove my close friends a bit nuts and it was only the other day that my training buddy in both riding and running said ‘why not write about it on your blog’ – the thought horrified me, but then I thought about it some more and I thought I would come clean and get it off my chest.

It’s so hard and frustrating when you have always been used to running. Sure I am no elite runner, but running is in my veins – it’s what i do and what I love – so to be told I can’t do it for a while has been agony and I have felt a whole range of emotions ranging from anger, stubborness, feelings of failure to a wide range of others – crazy eh!

So I will continue to write about running, my thoughts and experiences and I hope you will continue with me on the journey – if not I will see you on the other side when I eventually am able to run again – I can’t wait for that – but for the moment I am content with light riding, walking and weights (not too heavy – pushes my HR up!) and trying to eat sensibly.

Happy running !

Walking vs Running – can you compare?

13 Apr
© Abcdk | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images

© Abcdk | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images

Happy weekend – how is your training going? Mine has been good this week – still doing moderate training compared to my usual high intensity training due to having to take it easy – but all good – I am training and I am thankful for that.

I have been doing a fair amount of walking lately so got to thinking – I’ve often seen a lot of books and articles talking about walking and I guess as a runner I have always overlooked it as a credible element of training but I know a lot of people that regularly walk as their exercise, and as well as eating a healthy diet they are very fit and healthy so I decided to look more into it in comparison to running.

I guess it is easier to compare another high impact exercise such as cycling more than it is to compare running with walking  as the intensities are completely different. But I tried to put together a list that might prove helpful:

Running                                                             Walking

High intensity                                                    Low to moderate intensity

Harder on the joints                                         Easier on the joints

More calories burned                                       Lower calories burned

Less time needed                                               More time needed if wanting to burn off calories

Harder to do as you get older*                       Easy to do at any age

* I put an asterix by this as one of the men I used to train with in the UK was in his mid seventies and had been running all his life and could still outsprint me so I guess I would say it may be harder to start running when you get into your twilight years but not impossible.

I’ll always be a runner as long as my joints allow. My husband isn’r a runner so we do a fair bit of walking too and I think I enjoy both for different reasons. Running more for the exercise, adrenalin and the sheer fact that I can do it (most of the time), whereas walking is nice when you have more time, and just want to chat, catch up and do something that is exercise but not too full on. During the summer my husband I when he gets home from work we’ll grab the dog and take her for a walk and catch up on our day and by the time we get home we are both wound down from our crazy days – so benefits in both I feel.

More reading

Here are a few posts I found that may be of interest looking at the benefits of running vs walking and vice versa

Runners World 

Fit Day

Natural Health Mag

Is your goal getting in the way of training?

22 Feb

I realised one of the things holding me back from my training lately is focussing on the end goal rather than all the little ones that make up achieving the big goal. I have that problem in my business sometime – have you ever found that too?

In fact sometimes I find the big goal is so crippling that I struggle with demotivation to do any of my small goals and training sessions thinking – what’s the point I’m not going to achieve the big goal so why bother!?!

I’ve started to change my attitude and focus on achieving one goal one step at a time which is far more productive :-)

My BHAG (big hairy audacious goal) in my training is to get through this year with a number of things going on and then push for the New York Marathon in a year or too and pump my training right up – I guess that’s what has been holding me back – right now one day at a time is more appropriate :-D

But it’s good to have goals though – right?

So I guess the point of my post today is i just wanted to say if you are in the same boat as me with focussing too much on the big goal try not to worry too much and take each training session one day/step at a time – if you want something enough you’ll get there :-) you just need to believe in yourself and your training!

Happy training ! Have a great day

The joys of summer training

15 Jan

Wow it has been hot the last week or so in Brisbane, thankfully today is a bit cooler, but still sticky! I’ve found myself missing the cool weather in the UK and longing for my husband to treat me to that spa and swimming pool I’ve aways dreamed of!

Training has been tough in the last week or so just trying to push myself to train in the heat. I’ve been getting up really early in order to keep as cool as possible in training, and unfortunately going to the gym doesn’t help as my gym doesn’t have AC!!

sunI’ve learned a few things in my training time when it comes to the heat which I thought I would share:

Slip slop slap

If you must run outside and in the sun at least cover up or put on sun tan lotion. I know a lot of people that won’t wear sun tan lotion because they don’t like the feeling of it on their skin, but frankly I would rather feel greasy than get skin cancer and Australia is renowned for it!

Drink plenty of water 

My friend always says I don’t drink enough water and at this time of year it’s really important to ensure you take on water before during and after training. The amount varies from expert to expert but I always go along the lines of the pee test – nice and clear means all nicely hydrated before a run, but brown and the darker the pee is not good! I remember once race I did when I pee’d afterwards it was brown like watery tea! Not good! Try and carry water around with you or choose a running route that you know has drink fountains on the way round. A camelbak can help if you are like me and not very good at running with a bottle in your hand or around your waist.

Training times 

When the heat is on like it has been the last week or so I try and train early or later on in the evening to avoid the heat and the sun. For those of you blessed with a gym with air con or home with air con I would be taking advantage right now. I’ve been doing my P90x a fair bit at home with the air con on as it is cooler than doing weights at the gym right now!

Isotonic drink 

I passed out with heat stroke a fair few years ago now and just before my friends had gotten me to drink salt water and also juice to replace the sodium and sugar that I’d lost in a mammouth 30k run I had done in the boiling heat on a very hot day in London (very unusual) but now i tend to drink isotonic drinks to help replace any sugar/salt lost in training during and after training – this for me is important especially on hot days.

Find some trees 

I tend to vary running routes when hot and find routes that are shaded and less out in the open to help me keep relatively cool.

Well here are a few things i do – how do you keep cool in the sun when training?

Happy running!


Walking, running and the frustration of slowing down

7 Jan

Hope you had a great Christmas and new year. It’s taken me a while to post as I have been pretty busy and a few things going on but I’m back now!

My training has actually been going well with riding, running, walking – although I have been pretty frustrated as due to a medical issue my doctor asked me to keep my heart rate down a bit so the other day I went out for a run and tried to stick to the heart rate she wanted and it was so frustrating as almost no sooner had I started to run I needed to walk again and I was running around the lake near to home and was having a mental battle in my head with my head saying I could do it and my heart saying ‘but you have sprinted around this lake so many times before, what will people think when they see you running and then walking’ – but I stuck to it and actually felt ok. Interval training as we all know is a great way to keep fit – but try telling that to a seasoned runner that just wants to run and not walk – as you can see I haven’t quite resolved that issue with myself yet!

My mother in law used to do a lot of walking and she got extremely fit doing just that as well as observing a balanced diet of course. I can’t resign myself to just walking though not just yet! I need to RUN!

I was thinking about new year resolutions and have decided not to have any as everytime I seem to set them I never achieve them so I decided this year will be a year of achieving but without goals :-) I’m just going to go as hard as I can and see how I do. Have you made any resolutions?

Bye for now!


How’s your training going? Mine resembles a rollercoaster!

15 Dec

So Christmas is almost upon us! I can’t believe it and don’t know where the year has gone!

I don’t know about you but this year has felt like a particularly hard year in training, work and life in general. The number of people that have said the same to me is really high.

My training has been like a roller coaster and I have been sick a bit, demotivated a bit, pumped to train a lot, injured and healed and then it all starts again. I figure its just been a normal year !

I’ve been finding training tough the last few weeks and its no coincidence that there have been a few things going on health wise and life wise – but normally where I would pound the pavement or treadmill this time has seen me pull back a bit. I think sometimes we need that and to have a breather!

I’ve started making my running plans for 2013 and hope to start racing again and really ramping it up now I’ve had a bit of downtime – so once the silly season is over its back to it!

How has your training been this week? Hope you’ve had a great week!

Cooroora Mountain in Pomona – it’s not for the faint hearted!

3 Dec

How was your weekend? Mine was pretty full on actually – in a great training way. On Saturday I did two rides on the Sunshine Coast – one was 60k and pretty full on hill wise and the second one was more sedentary and a recovery ride of 15k. The next day I got up and climbed up Mount Cooroora in Pomona.I thought I might be able to jog up bits of it to get a short run in but noooo way. It was the toughest climb I have done in a while.

Mount Cooroora, Pomona

Mount Coorora, Pomona.
Copyright The Girl That Runs 2012

Home to the annual King of the Mountain race and also where my husband grew up I  have always looked at the mountain in Pomona and thought – yeah I would like to climb that in training and maybe one day do the King of the Mountain.

So after our two bike rides on Saturday we got up at 4.45am and climbed the mountain… All I can say is I take my hat off to the guys that run the King of the Mountain race as it was an extremely confronting and tough climb. Being afraid of heights didn’t help but I was determined to face my fears head on.

It felt like a simple trot in the hills at the start and I thought – yeah this is alright, but my friend Paul said -

“Zoe we haven’t got to the mountain yet this is just the warm up”.

I soon realised what he meant. The guys – Paul and my husband told me when they were growing up in Pomona that there were no steps or rails, people simple scrambled up and down the mountain. Now there are rails in some places but not all and when I say rails I am referring to very simple chains that at one point were keeping me from dropping down and breaking a few delicate bones!

View from Mount Cooroora

The View from Mount Cooroora, Pomona
Copyright The Girl That Runs 2012

At one point I didn’t want to go any further as we ran out of chains to hold onto but they both pushed me and I am glad I did as the view at the top was spectacular.

Coming down was tough but nothing like the climb up. I felt a lot more confident and happier than going up and was very happy when I finished!

I figure sometimes I have to push myself right out of my comfort zone in training as it makes me realise how much more I have in me. We often get held back by our fears and thinking we can’t do something – but I want to encourage you that I managed to get up that mountain despite having a fear of heights and lived to tell the tale :-)

Bye for now :-)


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