Get busy living, or get busy dying..

Its been years since I watched the Shawshank Redemption and its no shocker to say how much I thoroughly enjoyed it when I popped it on the other night.

Stephen King, to me, is one of the greatest modern American authors.  I am not a great reader by any means, but there has always been something about his work, his imagination, that has resonated with me.  The Shawshank Redemption in my opinion, is one of his greatest stories, and the words ‘Get busy living, or get busy dying’ stuck with me long after I watched the film.

How many of us go through each day, without actually enjoying it?  On the hamster wheel with work and home life/housework and another day has passed, just like any other.  All of us deserve more than this – we are more than our jobs, titles,  or anything else that we have been labelled with.

Which brings me onto the reason for this post, finally!  Recently I placed another order of coffee pods, the order previous to that hadn’t been that long ago and made  me take stock of how much coffee I was actually drinking on a daily basis. Eep, it worked out to be 6 cups (or sometimes more) a day. Not good!

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Reason that I have been reaching for my standard black Americano is that I am constantly ‘knackered’, dragging myself to bed as soon as I can, lacking motivation for anything and we all know this level of caffeine will disturb sleep patterns (and god knows what other health issues).

But its not just caffeine  I’ve been reaching for, its been sugar and salt too to give me energy – and unfortunately all this has piled on half a stone since this time last year, n matter how many miles I have run, you just can’t outrun a bad diet…

Now I am training hard for the Great Wall marathon, I decided to do a bit of research to combat this fatigue and fell upon Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome…

Adrenal Fatigue is a decrease in the adrenal glands’ ability to carry out this normal function. It is commonly caused by chronic stress from any source (including emotional, physical, mental, or environmental) that exceeds the body’s capacity to adjust appropriately to the demands placed on it by the stress.

Well I could very well fall into this category… looking at the symptoms, I tick every box.

  • Difficulty getting up in the morning
  • Inability to handle stress
  • Regular and unexplained fatigue
  • Cravings for salty foods
  • Mild depression
  • Insomnia
  • Overuse of stimulants like caffeine
  • A weak immune system (4 colds in 2017 alone)

Whether I have Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome or not I don’t know but I decided to check out how to battle it.  It can’t hurt, as the treatment is healthy lifestyle changes rather than anything drastic.

First things first I decided to focus on two areas this week rather than overwhelm myself with the lot;

Caffeine:  I have cut back on my cup of Joe.  Just having 3 a day, and drinking more water and herbal tea.  I’ve noticed the benefits of this after only 2 days in – feeling more awake and better within myself (emotionally).

Sleep: My daughter is nearly three and mostly sleeps in with us even after we have plastered her bedroom with Frozen posters and millions of toys! She has a habit of kicking out and mostly all night I will get kicked in the back, chest or face! So I normally get a very interrupted nights sleep.  This has got to stop, for our sakes and for hers.  So slowly trying to get her back in her own bed now.  With my husband on nights I tend to do the most childcare out of the two of us, and just need some space to myself even at night in bed.

So onwards and upwards – I have been swapping out some of my go-to bad food ‘crisps and chocolate’ for better, healthier, options.  Not looking at calorie content at the moment but choices, so been eating nuts, boiled eggs, hummus rather and will continue on with this…

Lastly, in prep for the Great Wall I have ordered a new aerobic step – the old one I finally found in the garage and managed to crush and break in the garage door (long story) so as soon as this arrives I will dig out my old Cher aerobic step routine which I did religiously back in the day! I actually can’t wait. Old Skool!

Hope you are doing well with your training and enjoying Spring as it seems to have finally arrived 🙂

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Running at Disney!

Well hello you fabulous lot!  Its been a while since I blogged – that’s because I have been soaking up the sun and getting some serious Disney miles stacked up, 80 miles!  over the past few weeks at Walt Disney World, Florida.  Not all of that was running, actually a very small percentage was running.  But I walked, and walked, and walked… for many, many miles around the parks and the whole Disney ‘area’ which is quoted as being the size of Manchester!

We left the UK while it was still mild, not really cold, but not really warm…and were then drenched in lovely sunshine when we got to Florida (the trip there was nasty via New York, which ended with me in tears on a bus, another story, another blog, another time).

We checked into the All Star Movies resort, one of Disney’s value resorts, which is located in the ‘Animal Kingdom’ area, first time we’ve stayed on site at WDW so to speak and it was utterly fabulous!  After a few days of getting used to the time difference, I tentatively went out for a short plod on their marked running trail which was a pathway running across the front of the 3 All Stars resorts which was a mile in length – it was a good chance to wear my running skort, probably for the last time for a while!  The route was heavily used by other runners which was great to see and in the absence of a gym in the hotel I guess this is how visitors got their workouts in each morning. Did the mandatory nods and thumbs up to the other runners, quite surprisingly with not much pleasantries in return…. All in all, I had three plods out over the two week period, I didn’t go far as I knew we’d have a mountain of miles to walk in the day, plus swimming too… just helped to fight back some of the Mickey waffle damage I was enduring!

The picture above includes a shot of shoes in a brilliant running store in Disney Springs, Fit2Run.  They have a brilliant collection of running items, including strollers, accessories,  supplements and more.  They had a Star Wars tech top – which I shockingly didn’t buy… may be next time.  I did purchase (or my husband did for me) a strap to hold my iPhone (my Garmin GPS is a bloody fail at locating me which is so frustrating).  I tried it on in the shop and it fit great!  Will report back after my first post-hols run this weekend, decided to start running with audio again – well Podcasts to keep me motivated as I am upping the mileage to train for the Bath Half HM.

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So now we enter PDD (post Disney depression), but and with a big BUT, Disney have just released their races for next year including Spring 2018 with a Star Wars dark side race… this is very, very tempting, and the husband DID agree to leave it a couple of years till our next Disney visit (it is 2 years really, in terms of numbers….).  lets see!

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In terms of other training, I have my swimming kit packed, plus have been doing Pilates and strength training this week, hello DOMS!  So lets see how I fare over the winter with training – I am in a much happier place, with the family healthier and a sense of renewal for the new year, I’m in good spirits…

Here’s a shot of the non-tech Star Wars top, I had to get this as it had 77 on the back… I’m an old Star Wars fan…. 🙂

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Do you listen to any podcasts while running?  Any recommendations?

BRxx

 

 

 

Sweet R&R…

Since my last post listing my strategies to bring my life back into balance more, I have managed to successfully start implementing this and can report back that I am feeling much better for it already.

Limiting my social media engagement has given me much needed freedom and space!  I am spending less but more quality time on Facebook and Twitter, if you haven’t done this already yourself, I highly recommend it.

It had come to a point where I was struggling being the admin of my running group, as much as I love it I began stressing about continuing to create a community (which had been successfully established months ago) and really feeling like I didn’t want to post anything on there (even my own runs) as 1) not to cause me anymore work to do and 2) I felt like I didn’t fit in any more due to my lack of running or have anything to offer.  Not cool.  A break is what is needed to re-focus, come back to centre, and be able to offer a lot more.

Not being able to run much through one thing or another, lack of sleep, back pain, man flu and a multitude of other things has challenged me so much this year.  However I am not prepared to throw 2 years of training down the toilet and thousands of miles.  In fact I am a woman with a plan…and a goal, that I am not sharing until its completed.

Man flu is now leaving me, so I am going to attempt a short trot out this weekend when I can fit it in around my husbands ever changing shifts (aside from clearing the garage out, the leaning tower of Pisa of ironing piles plus packing for Disney). Going to hit some trails and have some much needed me-time and I can’t freaking wait!  Will upload some pictures here which will re-boot my trail raider series…

Learning how to rest and recover is as important as training itself… however frustrating this can be.  I have had to learn this the goddam hard way, but thankfully I have learnt it nonetheless.  Going to stock up and remember to take on a daily basis zinc, iron and vit C tablets as a base to building a better immune system.  I seem to come down with every bug at nursery, so have been mindful to keep putting on the antibacterial gel on my hands after I have dropped Mia off and picked her up.  If this can save me from one cold then that’s one or two runs saved!

The Poppy challenge starts Tuesday and I will be logging in the KMs for this charity virtual race, I will be clocking them in both in the UK and with my Disney walked (and run!) miles.  Will be good to see how many steps I have taken each day.

Haven’t weighed myself for ages but I am still four pounds heavier than what I want to be… so going to be very good from now till my holiday and see what happens, I think regular weighing on the scales keeps me more in check, although I seem to have got out of the habit of this recently.  I keep forgetting!  Four pounds isn’t the end of the world, and if after walking around Disney for 2 weeks I don’t shift a couple then I really cant be assed and will accept those extra four pounds as staying put for a while.

My latest running buy has been this SiS Energy Drink  (£14.99) as recommended by a running friend.  Its instructions are to drink before exercise as a way of low bulk carb loading and during for fast sustained energy, its recommended to take 4 servings a day prior to a race ever with or between meals to achieve elevated carb intake. So lets see if this helps at all.  Will report back if it made any impact on my running at all… will need all the energy I can after such a dismal running performance of late.

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My holiday book just made it through the door too… Brain Training for Runners by Matt Fitzgerald… (£13.20) this has been highly recommended by a few runner friends now, so I am going to read up on this on the plane/by the pool and may be take my training in a new direction.  Will keep you posted.

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A big epic sorry too that I haven’t posted much running stuff in here, but this will be different next week when I upload the trails, and also in the coming weeks my Disney runs which will be epic.

@BoudicaRuns xx

 

Caffeine boost…

One of my recent finds and under recommendation from a runner friend is Truestart Performance Coffee.  I picked up a 80g pouch and have been waiting to test it out before my runs to see if it affects my performance in any way.

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pass me my Joe!

Truestart Performance Coffee has been developed by athletes and the only coffee designed for sports performance.  It’s a natural Colombian Arabica coffee, so has no nasty chemicals. It has the lift with its controlled caffeine release but doesn’t have the extreme highs and lows of regular instant coffees.  It’s stated to improve focus, mental performance and physical endurance and packs 95mg of caffeine per scoop. So sounds pretty good… but what does it taste like?

As I ran out of my regular coffee brand this morning, I remembered I had this in the cupboard and an ideal day to test it out as I had a treadmill run planned.  It has a very earthy taste and I noticed immediately the difference in quality from my normal regular brand.  It tastes very good!

My first coffee was at 6.30am and then another one at 10.30am with a short treadmill run planned for 11am, and boy did I fly on that treadmill! A complete sweatfest twenty minute blast.  Brilliant!  I aim to drink it again tomorrow ahead of my LSR to see how it works for that too. So far, so good!  Another boost is that it may also oddly help me reduce my caffeine habit with its controlled caffeine release, today I have had 2 coffees and that’s a massive reduction from the 6 per day I was having!

Happy sipping BB xx

 

 

 

 

 

NEW BLOG POST: Run Social app trial…

Another Amazon order! Now a  Garmin Foot Pod – this I really CAN’T WAIT to arrive. Mostly to see who is right, me or my treadmill! I have a feeling that it has not been tracking correctly, on outside runs I can run MUCH faster and further, inside not so,  this has always bugged me! With any luck the foot pod in conjunction with my Garmin watch will tell me for sure how fast I am going. I have no grumbles at all with my treadmill apart from this, so it will be interesting to see who is right!

I am also keen to start using the Run Social app that I have downloaded too. I first heard of Run Social when Tim Peake used this app on the Internal Space Station to run the Virgin London Marathon back in April and have been keen to make my runs on the treadmill more interesting.  As much as I love to stare at Norman Reedus (a huge cut out of NR is facing me on my treadie which my friend from the States sent me!), anything over a half hour ‘dreadmill’ run is just not very motivational at all.  Thought Run Social would be perfect for me to keep me motivated and go past the half hour boredom threshold.

From what I have seen from the app so far, you get a free route, in this case I have the Scottish Highlands 10k which I am planning to do tomorrow (if I feel well enough – another story), and there are other paid routes (I assume you only pay once, will update when I know for sure).  The paid for routes look equally as amazing – Tibet, Sequoia, Swiss Alps etc.  This should alleviate some of the boredom factor!   There is an option to buy a grip to keep it in place on the treadmill, or if you’re able to cast it from an Apple device to larger screen then this would be a good alternative.

You are able to run with others who are on the route too as their avatars appear which should be interesting, I have added some snaps below for you to see…. Will report back after I have used it! BBx