Tag Archives: why do I run

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 !

The girl that runs featured in @weightwatchers magazine

13 Sep

How’s your day going today?

I’m having a rest day from training as it’s been a tough week and I did a hard sprint session last night.

I’m really excited as I as interviewed a while back for an article about top blogs for Weight Watchers magazine, and it’s out. The blog is featured on page 33/34 of the October magazine.

Article in Weightwatchers magazine

One of the questions I was asked was why I started the blog and why and it was really great to be able to chat about my passions. I really hope it encourages readers to discover their passions and to write about them too.

I had never really thought about what my real passions were before but running would have to be one of my top things when it comes to things I love to do and talk about – much to my husbands sanity and friends too!

What are your passions? If it’s running – what is it that you like?

I’d love to know :-)

Running – an uplifting activity

13 Jul

The last week has been a bit all over the place with a number of things going on in my life, and I have really found it hard to gather the momentum to train. I don’t know what kind of person you are – whether you find having things go on and on your mind pushes you more and makes you focussed, or like me it causes you to lose focus of your usual routine with eating and exercise.

cat motivation

Do you ever have days when you feel like this? I sure do.

I had coffee with my beautiful friend yesterday and she said to me ‘you have to go back to the gym and train – you will feel so much better, you know you will.’ I agreed with her but secretly wondered if I could be bothered – but I missed two days of training and that’s a fair bit to me.

So this morning when the alarm went off I hauled myself out of bed and made myself go to the gym and jumped on the treadmill, and you know I felt great and had one of the best sprint sessions that I have had in a while. I came away from the gym feeling pumped and ready to start the day. That’s all it took – a little push and my motivation and mindset focussed again.

How do you motivate yourself? what has and hasn’t worked? What focusses you? I’m interested to know – wondering if I am the only person who needs a kick up the butt every now and again from a friend who knows me better than I know myself sometimes!

Happy training and hope you have a great weekend!

The Runners’ High

25 Mar

I saw this on someone’s Facebook page and as a runner it completely resonated with me :-)

The Runners' High

We all suffer with demotivation

11 Sep

I haven’t written a blog post in a while. I’ve not had writers block, more like runners block.

I go through this every now and again, and I find it hard to get up to run or find excuses to not run after work. I find myself doing mainly classes such as Body Attack, Pump and RPM rather than running, but I think I’m back now. It’s starting to get a little bit warmer, the sun is staying out for longer and its lighter for longer. My injuries seem to have cleared up and I am ready and raring to go again.

I ran with the Forest Lake running club – the Flakers this morning which made a nice change and did a nice comfortable 5k and felt pretty good. I’ve been concentrating so much on racing and being prepared for the races that I had forgotten what it felt like to run without pressure – it was good.

I recently started ballet classes too – yes I know – my husband thinks it’s the funniest thing he has ever heard but there is a method in my madness, it’s great for building up the strength in the legs and it’s also something different too. So I have been embracing my inner ballerina and go once a week. Loving it!

It’s easy just to give up when we are demotivated but often we need a break from the norm as the training can become a little repetitive, so it’s good to try other things and then when you eventually get back to pounding the pavement it’s great to get back to something familiar and you remember all over again why you do it.

I’ll be running tomorrow and doing my Monday pump class and back to my normal training.

Have a good week!

Running the stress off

26 May

It’s a well known fact that exercise makes us feel good – increasing seratonin to the brain. Well I sure needed it today. I had a little accident with the car! Oh yes I didn’t tell you, I passed my driving test and am officially a green P plater now!

Anyway I kind of misjudged the cars angle when coming out of the garage and i scratched a fair bit of the wheel bonnet thingy (not very technical!) and it’s now going to cost me $670! …..oops

So when I got home I was a little stressed thinking about it and decided that I would push myself to run and run off the stress. I also didn’t have a great session at the gym yesterday and my knee hurt so needed to prove to myself I was ok.

So I ran just under 8k outside and it was quite an undulating course, and you know what – I felt great. All my stress disappeared, I felt good because I ran well too – not super fast but comfortably and no knee pain. I felt strong running up the hills and felt happy just running and not feeling restricted in the gym.

I got home, sorted dinner out, and kissed my husbands butt a bit when he got home – but as it happens I didn’t need to as he was fine about the car and just said – try not to do it again! What an awesome husband I have – maybe he has been secretly running off the stress too!

Running makes me happy……

3 Mar

I remember being in Lorna Jane and seeing a vest entitled ‘Running Makes me Happy’ – I loved it so much I bought one for me and sent one to my running friend who at the time was serving in the Army in Iraq and she like me loved it!

Running makes me feel alive and energized – it literally makes you feel happy as the body produces more serotonin to the brain which in turn makes us happy.

This morning and on many mornings before I run I don’t feel happy – why would I getting up at 4.50am to drag on my clothes and haul my butt to the gym to get there to get on a treadmill and run like a hamster on a wheel to feel happy!  Although to be fair, once I have done my run I feel awesome but woe betide anyone who gets to me before I’ve done it – like my poor friend Karen.

Karen is awesome – she is the happiest person I know. I used to wonder what drug it was she was taking to make her that way but she is a naturally glass half full person and incredible to be around. Weeellllll – poor Karen this morning bounces up to me at the gym at 5.25 am after I had just staggered in and was her usual happy self only to get my grump pre run grunt! (Sorry Karen!). I staggered to the treadmill and once I had done a few speed intervals I was as happy as she was (well not quite…but anyway!). Maybe I should be running to the gym so by the time I come into contact with anyone I am already awake and happy…..But we all have our ‘thing’ that lights up our day, and other than my husband and my dog – running is my thing. It makes me feel like it was worth getting out of bed and a real sense of achievement.

Oh and Karen….I promise to be happier tomorrow – I might even smile before I get on the treadmill.

Bye for now…speaking of grumpy – I need to wake my husband up now! :-)

Further reading

Article from the Daily Telegraph talking about exercise and serotonin

My races

3 Oct

I was going through some stuff at home the other day and I came upon a box of medals that I have had from the races I have run.

It’s funny because it seems to be now that entering a fun run or general race means you get a medal  even if you don’t win. Don’t get me wrong I think it is a great incentive for running a race as I have been known to struggle round because I want that medal at the end. But I wonder how those elite athletes now feel knowing that even if they win they aren’t the only one that is going to get a medal…I guess that’s why prizes such as financial ones became more of a draw! (although I guess no one would turn down a financial incentive!).

Anyway I have my marathon medals framed as they are the ones that are the most significant to me. You’d have to bribe me now to do another full marathon I think, but I look at those medals and I remember the pain and the tears that flowed training for those races and the tears of joy when I crossed the finish lines each time. I can’t believe I did those races but I am very glad that I did because they made me mentally stronger – you have to be to get through the last 6.25 miles (10k).

So I’ve made a page on my site to show the races and times I have done. There are no super duper times but they are all times that I am proud of and mean something to me, and give me a reason to keep running and great memories.

If you had told me 10 years ago that I would be a runner, I would have choked on my doughnut! So I guess without sounding corny, running has been my life saver in a number of ways and it has introduced me to an awesome number of people with life experiences and advice that I will always cherish.

Pre-race jitters…

3 Aug

So I am running in the Townsville half marathon this coming Sunday and I was fine until my friend told me that only 220 competed in last year’s race…..I found myself rushing to Google the race, checking the results and panicking that I might be last!

I haven’t had a great week training wise. I didn’t run on Saturday as wasn’t feeling well and so ran on Sunday in Pomona on the Sunshine Coast as I was there to drop off my doggie who is staying with my mother in law for the next couple of weeks. I managed to run 10k before deciding it was a bit too remote (and warm) for me and racing back to the house, and I haven’t run since then.

Normally the week before a race I taper off but this is ridiculous. My husband decided that I shouldn’t run yesterday and today as I have been exhausted with work and college (studying a graphic design course two nights a week) and my achilles is not the best. Then tomorrow I just realised I have an early morning meeting and am out at night – so Thursday is the last option!

So all afternoon I have been thinking..’what if I am last!’, ‘what will I say to people’, ‘how humiliating’.

I think I just need to get over it!!

I am reminded of the Olympic Games creator Baron Pierre de Coubertin’s famous quote about ‘it not being about the winning, but the taking part’ he then goes on to say ‘the essential thing in life is not about conquering but fighting well.’ Awesome quote and very true but I still have that niggling feeling in my stomach like I always do before a race….

I think though what Baron Pierre said is so right and we should learn from it.

We concentrate so much on pushing ourselves and not being happy with our time that we forget why we are doing something to begin with – we run, because:

  • we love it,
  • we’re passionate about it
  • and regardless of what we think; we are good at it.

In fact 33% of you that completed the poll on this site asking why you run said it was because you enjoy it – so my thought for myself and anyone else feeling the same way tonight is remember why you do it,  appreciate it and enjoy it.

A bit philosophical for me tonight I know but worth pondering over….

How do you start running?

1 Jul

I am very excited as one of my very good friends who has always been a ‘non’ runner asked me for some tips on how she should start. How far, how much and generally just HOW.

I am not a trainer, I haven’t spent years at college learning about these things, but the only advice I can give her is by telling her how I started and that was a long time ago.

I was rather bigger than I am now and one of the girls that I worked with at the time invited me to run a 5k run to get us fit. 5k seemed like a huge distance to me who had never really wanted to step near a treadmill for any long period of time but I took her up on her offer, never being one to shy away from a challenge…I remember the first time we ran – it was for two miles and I almost threw up a lung when we finished. I am thinking we must have been running maybe 14 minute miles  back then and it felt like I had raced Linford Christie! But I persevered and carried on and followed a 5k training plan to get ready for the race. Well I remember the race day I felt like I was carrying the world around my stomach but I finished – I was compltely unprepared for what I felt crossing the finish line – complete elation! I found that running improved my mood and made me generally feel a happier person too.

After I did the 5k, we then decided to train for a 10k, then that turned into a half marathon and then for me it was the challenge of the full marathon. 20kg lighter and still running today I can look back and say it was the best thing I ever did. I found something I love and am relatively good at in the sense, the only person I challenge is myself and I can do it anywhere be it in a gym or outside.

So the suggestions I will be giving my friend about how to start running, how often and HOW are:

Prepare - first things first, make sure you have a decent pair of trainers. I am not encouraging you to go out and spend loads of money but running is quite harsh on the joints and I have had my fair share of injuries. I went into Nike and bought the prettiest looking shoes I could find and then found that they were  not at all suitable and struggled with blisters and rubbing all over my foot. Kit wise, something comfortable – I  run in running tights as I am not blessed with thin thighs and they rub together but I see other runners that are very happy in a tiny pair of shorts so it depends on what you are comfortable in.

Also, remember I am not a trainer – I am just giving advice based on what I did – so please ensure you consult a doctor or trainer before you start running if you have any medical conditions.

Location – Decide where you are able to run, are you planning on running outside or do you have a gym membership?  I used to run mainly outside, then went for the gym option and now do a mixture of both.

How far and how much - Start small, and just go by time. I still do this now. So many people are fixated on distance but I figure if I could run for 3 hours in a training run then that was fine – it didn’t matter to me whether that was 18 miles or 22 miles – time on legs is what my training friend back in the UK drummed into me. Maybe a 15 minute session, building up to 30 mins is a good start or just as far as you can do without being completely puffed out, this is where your training plans and trainers at the gym will be able to help. How much, well how long is a piece of string, depends on you and how much you want to do. A couple of times a week and then incorporating other exercise too to balance your training out – again – ask at your gym or use a training plan.

Follow a plan to help you see progress – the great thing about runing is you will see progress. You will find that running a km initially is the hardest thing you have done but a few weeks down the line you will be able to look back and see how far you have come.

If you haven’t run before you may need to start very slowly and start by walking and then work up to running for a while and walking for  a while each time you train to build up to be able to run without stopping. I know a few of my friends that started that way. Don’t go crazy if you haven’t run before!

Persevere - keep going. Everyone has bad days and when I was first running I found it so hard (I still do often) I wanted to quit many times. But it is so worth it and on those days when you feel great it makes you appreciate that sometimes you might have a bad day but you are able to pick yourself back up and do better next time.

Please see some websites that have beginners training programs which may be of assistance:

About.com running training plans

Coolrunning.com

Runners World

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