We never know where life is going to take us or what challenges it brings. In January 2010 I was happy, so happy I wanted to stay that way for as long as I could. I realised that if Ali and I wanted a long and healthy life together, we had to change. I was clinically obese, had a bad back and my knees were feeling the strain. I had various health problems and I was ageing faster than my years. I looked ahead to a life I did not want. It was time to change. By the end of the year I had lost 4 stone - 56lbs. My confidence rocketed - I had taken control and it had worked. I was exercising, enjoying buying clothes, speaking up for myself.

I began to believe in myself again, I began to dream. For years I had watched marathons with admiration and a lump in my throat. In April 2013, I ran my first marathon.

This blog is about living life as a slim person, staying slim and fulfilling my dreams. Come and join me, support me, advise me!

Take care, Sue

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Preparing to succeed: week 1 - expect the unexpected!

Well, marathon pre - training week one draws to a close.  It hasn't gone quite to plan I have to say, but that's the point of the trial run (excuse the pun) -  to set out the plan against the reality.  And I've certainly done that! So time for  quick stock take ready for this week's cunning, super-duper improved plan.

How did I do? The core runs went into the diary - tick. I was flexible and ran when I could - tick.  But.....I've only managed 2 runs and one cross training session all week.  This in no way reflects my planning, commitment or opportunism (of course). But it does reflect the way my life tends to go!  The maxim 'expect the unexpected' certainly held true and it brings home to me that this really is about 3 lives and may well need to be extended to the two furry fiends that allow us to share their space.

To cut a long story short, I've been in serious carer mode this week. We're all in one piece and very grateful to the wonderful staff of the NHS and our local vet Frances for that. This is what matters more than anything else, my challenge is to see if I can do a marathon as well.

From a running point of view, it's not been great. Not just because there were more pressing things to do than run, it's also because it's very unhealthy being in hospital - sitting or standing for ages; healthy food and drink options hard to find.

I was so glad I had my plan B. The 'be positive and flexible' rule came into play this week, and this of course is just what it's there for. It meant I managed 3 runs (7m and 10 & 5K) and a good cross train. I just ran when I could and made the running count. I also realised I had a very important secret weapon - Ali was excellent at encouraging me to get out and run and that made a big difference.

The cross training session was in fact a failed run, I took a totally dead sports bra with me to the gym so had to make do with those funny machines. The upside; I did some good quality exercise and I was able to do the equivalent of running backwards which I find really therapeutic and gets my gluteus going. I suppose it makes a change from running in circles..... The downside - I was irritated, my lack of preparation and attention to detail (!) meant I missed a hill or speed workout I really needed this week. Grrr.

On the food front, I am very pleased that I didn't lapse into comfort food mode, well maybe I did a little bit! I got M&S healthy options from the train station and carried apples everywhere. I only ate 1 kitkat (that was definitely comforting).  I walked quite a bit trying to find which ward Mum was in, and I even thought about running to the infirmary and back (I didn't but I might, it's another option).

So, what lessons and tweaks to the plan?

I ran through a crisis. My rules helped me keep positive and run. I did not give in.  I could have run more. I could have got up early and run before work, and its good to know I have that to draw on later when I need to up the ante a lot.  I undermined myself, I could have been better prepared and had the equipment I needed with me.  I missed my Twitter friends and the encouragement and inspiration I get from them too, but they were there when I finally resurfaced - thank you guys!

Next week? A long run is a must. I want to get to grips with the garmin heart monitor, I've never used one before. I need a hill session and I could do with a spin class. My hamstring is niggling (I suspect from sitting down so much) so I want to make sure I get some yoga or pilates in.

Stats for this week:

  • Sunday road run - 6.3m. 56.04min
  • Monday beach run - 7m. 1:12:18 min
  • Friday treadmill - 3.1m. 26.54mins
  • Thursday cross train - 30mins. 402 cals.

Overall assessment? 7/10, a good start but....

I suppose me, Ali and Mum have done a marathon of sorts this week - though not a running one!  And what really matters is that we're all in one piece, one week nearer my marathon and a few steps on in my training plan. Onwards and upwards as they say!

Take care