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It’s ok to change your goals – here are a few tips

12 Dec

Before I gave birth I was all set to pop the baby out and get straight back into training to then run the Marathon Du Medoc 5-6 months later and then the New York Marathon in 2015. But do you know I changed my mind – surprisingly ;-) !!

Trying to run a marathon so soon after having my first baby would have been nuts and as it happened we couldn’t get over to France which was a shame as my friend got married half way round whilst running it! But for a good few months in the lead up I punished myself for not being able to do it. It was only when my physio said I couldn’t train anyway running wise in her opinion until I had passed the 3-4 month mark that I thought ok – Zoe once again you are trying to run before you can walk on this one. I asked my running friend in the UK whether he could help with a program and I think he thought I was bonkers!

There are some women out there that publicise how quickly they have gotten back into shape after having their baby but I figure they were firstly probably very fit and secondly probably trained throughout their pregnancy which I did not as I was not allowed to. Ho Hum…

When I finally got back into running it was hard, harder than I thought it would be – I’m back running almost properly now but it is hard and I have no desire to run a marathon at the moment. I am thinking I prefer my shorter distances again and would be happy to stick with them for the moment. I wonder how I ever did it before and sometimes when having to train on the treadmill I think – gosh this is boring just thud thud thud on the treadmill. Every day I train it feels easier and like I said in one of my previous posts I have my running mojo back – finally but yes sometimes it bores me but I think that’s probably normal as with doing anything over and over again.

the girl that runs - it's ok to change your goals

So I figured it’s ok to change goals without you or other people judging – at the end of the day running is something I do and love but I fear sometimes I put too much pressure on myself to achieve and to bounce back like a battery bunny! I’m sure I will be back training for longer distances soon as I know what I’m like and always like to go further and further – but right now I’m happy just running as for so long I couldn’t!

In my work environment I am always telling people they have to have SMART objectives (Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Realistic and Timed) I think for me in my running the Achievable and Realistic areas I need to work on :-D!

So I had a couple of thoughts/tips about training goals and changing them etc:

1. It’s ok. 

No-one has the right to be hard on you (unless you are a professional runner and are being coached!) and we are often our worst critic. Think about your goal and whether it is really something that you can achieve or will it end in you punishing yourself – i.e. trying to run a marathon 5 months after having your first baby having done no major training for a year before! – nuts

2. You can always try another time

Just because you can’t do it now doesn’t mean you can’t do it another time. I know I have at least a couple more marathons in me I am just trying to relax and build up to ten slowly and not pressure myself as I’d be more likely to quit than achieve my goal knowing the way I am.

3. Work out a plan if it helps

If you are like me and need objectives and targets to work towards then why not sit down and make a revised plan. Plan the races you’d like to do and can do in the next 12 months and work out how you will get to your goal which might be running a first/another marathon, running faster etc. Put the plan in place and work towards it with no pressure (easier said than done!)

Getting my running mojo back in the rain

2 Dec

We’ve had shocking storms in Brisbane the last week or so. But whilst our house has been damaged and we are waiting for repairs something positive came out of it. I got my running mojo back!

I have found in the last few months getting back into running after having my baby has not been as easy as I thought and I haven’t been that motivated. I found when running outside or on the treadmill that I had plateaued and I didn’t feel i was improving. So anyway…

Running in the Rain - the girl that runs

I managed to find somewhere to shelter but it wasn’t the best day to be running outside!

I was out running with baby M in the Baby Jogger before my PT session and the heavens opened and it absolutely threw it down. I was right out in the open and there was no shelter. I managed to stand out of the rain eventually and it just rained and rained and rained. I was contemplating cancelling PT because I didn’t think I’d get there in time –  but something switched inside of me – that old familiar focussed running drive – saying ‘come on just sprint and push through the pain and the rain – suck it up’.

There was a couple standing sheltering nearby watching me probably wondering what is she going to do with the baby in the rain. Baby M was fine by the way – he was bone dry whereas I was like a drowned rat! So I looked at them, smiled, put my running face on and sprinted in what i can only describe as torrential rain for a good KM. It felt great to push through that pain barrier and sprint hard. I raced into the shops and by the time I came out the rain had stopped and I went to PT but had I not sprinted and been in the rain I never would have realised that I’m stronger than I thought and my strength was always there I just had to find it again! So here’s to another good week of running!

happy running :-)

Tips for staying motivated when injured or unable to train

15 Nov

This week has been another interesting week with my second cortisone injection in my other wrist. This one hurt a lot more than the first and I have been on a bit of a downer wondering what’s going to happen next! My wrist seems to be improving but I haven’t been able to do anything – my family have been helping whilst I rested but being an active person it has been very frustrating and I even froze my gym membership for a week or so to get a bit of rest – I can still run but I have to run a bit funny so my wrist doesn’t pull so I decided to rest!

I guess what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and sometimes things that happen to slow you down are actually a good thing and force you to realise perhaps you needed the rest – so all good.

I was hoping to get a race in before Christmas but it’s unlikely now and I am actually ok with that. I’m intending to start running outside more with the Baby Jogger now bub is old enough so I can’t wait once my wrist is strong enough.

It's hard when we are unable to train but keeping positive and upbeat is the key.

It’s hard when we are unable to train but keeping positive and upbeat is the key.

4 Tips to stay motivated when injured or unable to train 

It’s not forever

Often we see hurdles and setbacks as the end of the world and a real killjoy. I know with being pregnant, then being injured I have certainly felt that way. I don’t think I had ever not trained for so long and it drove me nuts. Friends that I had disappeared as I no longer had those things in common and I felt quite isolated. Often we learn a lot from these experiences and just remember it isn’t forever.

Cruel to be Kind 

In not training because of an injury or health issue or even pregnancy you have to remember it is for a specific reason. It’s not like you just can’t be bothered – there is a specific reason and you should remember that. Running with an injury would be pretty silly just as running when pregnant unless your doctor has given you the all clear.

Other Opportunities

Take the time to use the time for other opportunities – get that book read or call your friend that you haven’t spoken to in a while and enjoy the time off as if you are anything like me when you eventually get back to training you will work extra hard to make up for lost time!

Set a goal for when back training 

When I was pregnant I set all sorts of goals for when my baby was born to give me some motivation to push through the pregnancy. I know dead on week 12 I signed up to a new gym and started slowly getting back into training. I bought a few new gym clothes and was very excited about getting back so I had something to look forward to – but that’s just me – you might have other ideas but it helped me to keep going. I know when I go back to the gym in a matter of days I have set myself some goals to really get myself back into training and a couple of targets which if I don’t make them I’ll get over – but I’m being positive that  I will achieve them!

Anyway onwards and upwards – have a great week of running!

Zoe :-)

Exercising with no car and a baby!

29 Jul

Hope you had a good week last week. I was so proud of myself as I did my first run – it was very slow and very short but I did it :-) I think I did 20 mins in total of walking for one minute and running for another at 9km p/h – not much and quite slow but a start :-) it’s hard to do too much cardio at the moment when breast feeding but getting there.

The week continued to go well with my trying all sorts of different classes at the gym such as CX Works – an awesome ab class, a boxercise class, Body Combat and RPM. For the first time in a long time I felt really good.

The weekend was interesting and took turn for the worst when my car clutch and gears died! Thankfully we managed to pull over and slow down but had to be towed back to the mechanics and my little car is now sat waiting to be fixed. As a result however I suddenly realised I wouldn’t be able to go to the gym and I haven’t really started running again properly otherwise I would have run outside – then realised I couldn’t anyway  as baby M is still in his capsule so I can’t use my baby jogger until he is out of that.

So I attempted to train using my XBox at home doing the Nike training program. It turned out to be a bit of a farce since baby M didn’t play ball! 


I found myself every minute or so soothing him or sticking his dummy in his mouth much to his amusement as I can’t let him cry out too long at the moment and wouldn’t have been able to hear the instructor anyway! I did manage to do a few squats and some sit ups but it didn’t go as well as I hoped. It was quite funny looking back at it but you really had to be there. 

I realised how much my life has changed since having a baby and how even simple things like exercise I had to alter when I can’t get to the gym. 

I thought about what things would work in future if I couldn’t get to the gym and have listed below. If you can think of anymore feel free to post your ideas in the comments box below!

Some ideas for training with baby 

Walk outside with the stroller – I do this most days and wander around the neighbourhood where I live. If you aren’t good with your own company then invite a friend. You could also use your baby backpack/front pack such as the Baby Ergo (i have one of these), Baby Bjorn etc

Max buggy

Train at home – I have weights, my XBox and technically don’t even need a gym membership :-) Timing is the most important as I found out – preferably train when baby is asleep :-)

Train with baby – There are lots of classes for mum and bub these days as well as exercises you can do at home involving your baby – see these two articles from Good Housekeeping and for some ideas.

Again these are just recommendations and my opinions – I’m no expert and it’s always good to consult with a doctor or physician before starting exercise.


Training when sick?

20 Jul

I’ve been offline for the last week or so as both my husband, baby M and I all got sick and it’s been a nightmare. Luckily I wasn’t too bad so it meant I could keep going for everyone but meant I was really tired and visits to the gym went out the window.

I know a good number of people that come rain or shine and sick or not they still train.

Do you train when sick?cold

As soon as I feel unwell I cut right back on training especially cardio and when in a gym environment I am a strong believer that I shouldn’t go as I could pass whatever it is I have onto other people and that’s not fair not to mention I could make myself even worse.

As a runner I really do take it seriously when sick as I have been in a number of races over the last 11 years where people have lined up on the start line and someone has died! A lot of the time it has been an experienced runner who had a virus and didn’t realise they had a virus and thought it was just a cold and pushed it with a fatal result.

Here are a few tips to consider when feeling under the weather and wondering whether to train *

1. Feeling warm?

If you have a high temperature then that can be a good indication that you should take things easy or lay off training completely. Get yourself along to the doctor rather than the gym!

2. Slow down

Feeling slightly under the weather but still want to train – just slow down – instead of those sprints maybe consider an elevated walk, weights or a slow jog and see how it goes. Struggling when slowing down then it’s definitely time to to go to the doctor and stop training.

3. Know your body 

You know yourself better than anyone and if you really do not feel right then simply don’t train. It’s not worth it in the long run you will make things worse and end up unable to train for a lot longer than if you had rested when not feeling well at the start.

Further reading

Womens Health & Fitness published a great article about training when sick you might find interesting too.

*please note these are just my opinions and I am not a qualified doctor/trainer etc so always consult your doctor/physician when starting exercise or feeling unwell or if you have questions regarding your exercise.

Back to the gym!

30 Jun

Today was my third time back at the gym after having my little boy – he’s 9 weeks old now :-) I started back to training last week as I figured I’d give my body a couple of months to heal.

Great to be back

It was so good to get back into the gym but first I had to get there!

It’s no longer simply racing out the door to the car to the gym but now I have to make sure baby M is fed and nappy bag is ready to go, and then get him into the car and drop him off at the creche. The first time I went back last week I was so nervous leaving him but the girls in the creche were amazing and even came around when I was training to let me know how he was doing – he was asleep and has been all three times I have dropped him off!!

Getting there slowly - 9 weeks

Getting there slowly – 9 weeks


I’m taking it easy training wise and running is off the cards for another few weeks until I hit 12 weeks just to be on the safe side so I have been doing a mixture of:

  • Walking uphill doing a bit of pyramid training – raising the incline by 1.0 every minute and then back down again on the treadmill,
  • Hammering it on the bike on the hill program and
  • Some light weights to get me back into training gently and I love it.

I get the adrenalin rush and plug into my music and it’s so great to be back! My new gym I joined has a cafe too so I make sure I have enough time to have a drink afterwards and then back to being a mum!




I’ve set myself a couple of short term goals to get me back into my training:

1. Run a race or two by the end of the year

2. Not stress over times and weight – just to enjoy the training

3. Build weights into my program and struck at it – have never been big on weights but understand their importance in a training program

so the fun begins again and I can’t wait – a few more weeks and I can run – yay!

Happy running :-)

The Size of a Cow….. well that’s how I feel anyway!

18 Mar

I don’t know if you have heard of the Wonderstuff – but they were one of my favourite bands in the 80s and they sang a song called “The Size of a Cow!” and lately that’s been on my mind when I look at my ever expanding baby belly! I can’t see my feet anymore and my husband has to put my socks on and help me with my shoes when we take the dog for a walk! It’s all for a great cause but been a bit frustrating!

Sleeping has been a challenge between my constant requirement to go to the toilet and struggling to get comfortable on my side – but it’s not long now!! I’ve had a little bit of swelling in my legs and things are starting to be pretty uncomfortable now.

Pregnancy really has been like training for a marathon like I said in one of my earlier posts, but I have the big day to come and rather than the recovery – that’s when the real work begins – I can’t wait :-D. I’m a little bit nervous about labour and I watched the movie ‘What to Expect When You’re Expecting’ and realise I wont be the character in it that sneezes and the baby pops out! My GP said to me that labour was like running a marathon – one tough day and then it’s done and it’s the pregnancy that’s hard so I am keeping that at the back of my mind. Cow

We’re pretty much set – just parents in waiting… the Baby Jogger is set up, the bassinet is in place, the car seat capsule thing is being fitted tomorrow, nappies are ready – we are just waiting for our little guest to arrive in 6 weeks or less hopefully.

Post baby weight

I’ve been reading lots of running blogs lately and there have been lots of races going on and I feel like for the last year it has been another world – reading and writing about running but not actually doing it. I am starting to feel a bit pressured into post baby and getting the weight off but friends have been supportive and have been giving me lots of advice to not rush things. There is a lot of pressure with celebrities seeming to lose every ounce of their baby fat once the baby comes out but in the real world I don’t think it works like that – so I am going to try and do things slowly and sensibly and enjoy having my baby and get back into training gradually.

Anyway that’s it for now. Have a great week of running – I’ll be doing the same soon – yay!


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