Overhaul of training and eating..

More details about a big event that I am training for will be released soon, mainly due to funds and some other factors mean I may or may not compete.

But what I am focussing on, is getting myself ready for this epic, once in a lifetime challenge. If not I will be in the best nick of my life. So its a win-win all round.

For this event, I want to train in the most sensible way I can, which means minimalizing the risk of injury and working on more muscle groups than the ones I just use for running.  Last year’s downward spiral in my running journey I think wasn’t helped with the monotonous plod on the pavement and boredom it created, so my new plan is more mixed, more trail-based and I am much, much happier in the first week of my new training regime.

So, taking into account my age,  44, and where I am at now in regards to weight, type of training and eating plan I have been looking in the below areas for improvement.

Abel & Colesmoothies and clean eating.  We have been getting the weekly ‘Simple recipe’ food box for quite some time now and really enjoying the meals.  Nothing quite tastes as delicious as organic food to me, and besides, its got me back into enjoying cooking.  We decided to add onto our weekly order the smoothie box, this week’s recipes were banana bread, kale zinger (oh boy, that was hard-core), and a mango one which I will have later today.  I am not one to jump on the scales every day, but I know  need to lose quite a bit of weight to be able to take on this challenge, so that my body isn’t spending unnecessary energy lugging around surplus weight.


Jeff Galloway (Buy Jeff’s book here) – 3 minutes run: 1 minute walk – I bought Jeff’s book a while back and only got round to picking it up yesterday.  I decided that this is the way I will train for my event as its the best chance of protecting me from injury and conserving energy to ensure I can go for longer periods and more mileage.  Some of the stories in the book where runners have achieved PB’s in races using this technique is incredible.

Without Jeff in mind I have been doing this style myself on my runs last week on the trail hills, but now have set the run/walk programme into my Garmin and going to try this out on my run on Thursday and see how much mileage I can cover.  It will be weird as I know I will feel odd walking so early in the run, but I have heard so many good things about this technique that I must give it a go.

Hydration – aiming for 4 pints a day.  This out of everything, is the biggest challenge and always has been for me, something as simple as drinking water! At the moment I seem to be powdering my nose all day.  Apparently when you start hydrating more then this is natural until your body gets used to the new amount of water!  Some days I just seem to drink coffee – which is NOT good.  So, this I am hoping generates some energy for me, can’t do me any harm right?

Swimming – Adding in swimming to my weekly schedule, this is to help with breath and also to give my arms a good workout.  My first swim was this morning and I managed 20 minutes in the pool,  next week I am aiming for 30 minutes.  Next time I am making sure I put my goggles on and old lady swimming hat.

Next focus: climbing steps…. lunges and everything else to build the leg muscles.

Have a great week all xx


Trail Raider #4

Yesterday I took to Cirencester Park trails once more in an attempt to complete the 14k’s route that I had downloaded on ViewRanger.  Guess what…. I got lost again!  I really can’t work out what I did wrong too as I was certain I took that specific path previously.  Never mind!  Things kicked off badly when I realised I had forgotten to switch Strava on. Gah!

Two fatalities en route were:

  1. Trainer came full off my foot and stuck in the mud.  A comedy hobble back to retrieve it, was just glad no one else was on that trail to witness that.
  2. iPhone smashed screen on the ONE PIECE of pavement thats on the trail. Grrrr….

but the positives….

  1. I did complete 5.6K’s of trail (mostly uphill trail) and 2.4k’s of intervals back to the traffic lights.  I still need to get that proper LSR in and consistently if I have any hope of running Bath Half well in March next year.
  2. I learnt from an experienced trail runner friend that there is no shame walking hills on trails as its preserves energy and keeps good posture rather than trying to run it – why I lump pressure on myself to run the entire lot is ridiculous really.  I could cover much more ground by walking those hills and running the rest.  Taking the Trail Raider to a different location this weekend might do the trick.
  3. I didn’t get killed by a horse I nearly collided with.

The last 3 nights, I haven’t slept very well at all, so any running today is out (and I like to at least have a days break in between running), tomorrow I’m not working from home, but Weds, Fri and Sunday are looking good.  Going to try for a longish pavement run on one of those days on my old route that I used to do to death here – its a varied route through town and out to an army base here and back.  So a good long stretch.  Be good to see what I can do on that old route.


eye bags say it all… but happy to be out on the trails…

Going to get back to some Yoga too, that may help me sleep and also loosen me up a bit, had some calf pain on my trail yesterday (although nothing like before) but want to keep on top of it before it becomes an issue and I am sidelined.

Other plans now that my husbands shifts are being changed is to book a regular class of something else,  whether that be Yoga, Pilates, Aqua Aerobics etc… I am really not sure at the moment but know I need something else to compliment what I am doing now.  The fittest and best running performance I had was earlier this year when I was doing the Jillian Michael’s 30 day shred alongside my running training and getting in good ten milers.  I know I need that again. There’s a running group here in Cirencester too that I may join, I was going to before but circumstances prevented me, but now might be a good opportunity.

Still have no plans really to book races for next year,  see what wings my way.  Cheddar Gorge I wouldn’t mind having a bash at again!  Feel a lot freer not having too many plans running wise… which makes me happy.

BB x





Morning joy

Went for a gorgeous run this morning, been waking up early this week, 5:30am starts (yawn)… however this morning as I was watching the weather forecast predicting crazy temperatures I decided to take myself off for a 7am run before the day started.

Not a soul around! Just my soles… ha ha


Normally I am jostling around tons of people and annoyingly people who walk sideways and backwards in Cirencester on my pavement 2 mile runs,  not this morning, there wasn’t anyone around.  My daughter hadn’t woken up so  I took advantage and so glad I did.

Just popped out for my normal 2 miler and ran really well for it, my pace is picking up again and I believe my two milers are making all the difference to my mindset and building my confidence again.


Work has been super busy lately and I’ve kept my head down most of last week stuck in spreadsheets so am thankful for an easier week this week and a time to concentrate on running and what I want out of it.  My plan seems to be working and I am finding the joy again, in places where I didn’t think I would.

My footfalls were re-focussing my attention, I seem to be landing a bit differently and it seems to be working for me. I seem oddly enough to have a flatter foot now… which I am sure I have read everywhere isn’t right, but it seems to be better for me.

My Disney vacay is coming up fast – 52 days and counting and after weighing myself this morning aim to lose 5 pounds in weight for then too, to feel good in my clothes and give me a buffer for the glorious USA dinners.  This means strength training too, a touch of swimming and most importantly really cut out a lot of crap I have been eating (and been in denial about).  We have decided no more desserts till Disney!  I can see me falling face first into a Banoffee pie as soon as I get to the States.  Desserts are my favourite thing ever, so this will require a will power of magnificent proportions.  There’s a jogging route around the hotel in Walt Disney World which I am looking forward to exploring too.

Trail Raider started last weekend too and I am testing out the camera and apps.  Had a total fail with ViewRanger, I totally need my glasses to view this properly. However the camera worked out well, here’s a little clip – note to self, I must aim the camera higher than my arm swing!

Tomorrow I will head out again and see how it goes, then its two days break till my LSR weekend trail intervals… can’t WAIT!

BB xx

Back to nature…

Yesterday I took myself off in my new Mizuno‘s to test them on the local trails… these Mizuno’s are an early birthday present to myself, along with a new ‘do and next up a spa day! (don’t tell the bank manager!).

I went with Mizunos as I have been really impressed with the  Mizuno Wave Inspire 11 that I bought earlier in the year, wide enough to accommodate my feet, best of all its taken the pressure off my right foot bunion issue.. which seems to be no issue at all now thankfully.

My local park is Cirencester Park, owned by Earl Bathurst, its 3000 acres in total and has many trails throughout to explore and only approximately a mile trot from my home.  As you enter the park is has a slow rising hill, affectionately called Big Bertha, which really tests the lungs and great for hill work… the trails branch off and out from the top of Bertha. I did 4 miles steady uphill and 1 mile downhill, with a one mile cool down walk after.  The shoes felt super light and springy and much lighter than the Karrimor ones I had bought last year.   My feet felt really cushioned and supported throughout my run, which was thoroughly enjoyable too.

Trail running has become a new love, its a whole different run, no terrain is the same so it takes away the monotony of pavement pounding which has just become very boring for me.  Plus the locals around here hate runners on the pavements…


Mizuno Wave Hayate 2 trail running shoes

There was no-one else on the trails yesterday too, just the birds chirping and the sunlight filtering through the trees, it was so peaceful, I truly loved it.  What I like too is the challenge of the terrain, some parts were hugely muddy to navigate and others I seemed to fly down.  This type of running seems to be the key to finding my joy in running which is one of my goals for the the remainder of the year.  Too much is focussed on times and performance in running, that it had become to stress me out.  With running being my release from stress, it had started to become a stressor – that had to stop!









NEW BLOG POST: Trialling a trail

This week I purchased some Karrimor Trail 3 Shoes, wanted to start at the cheaper end to see if I liked it or not… and guess what.. I did.  The muscle groups used for trail running are very different to the ones used for normal pavement running and boy, did I feel it!


Start of the trails….

Started off in Cirencester Park, a perfect day for a run, with a little chill in the air.  The park has small trail paths which are mostly uphill (will be feeling that tomorrow!), and it really, REALLY challenged me!  Huffing and puffing my way up the first one, I didn’t think I could carry on, but suddenly I just concentrated on my breath and it felt much better.  I had no agenda but just to try it out, coming down the paths was just JOY, running with all the leaves around me and fresh air, hardly anyone in the park and I could just listen to nature! Perfect.  Just went 3.5 miles, a little broken, but felt really strong.  Still full of allergies, will have to remember my tablet tomorrow as I plan a very long run.

My mileage on the 100 mile challenge stands at 51.5 miles, so only 48.5 to go! Fantastic! I am going to try and get the 8.5 done tomorrow and another 10 on Saturday!  A big challenge I know but why not! Hope to stand at 30 miles to go on Sunday – thats 3 x 10 mile runs.  I can do that!


Cirencester Park trail


Cirencester Park… things got a little muddy here….


100 mile challenge! 48.5 to go, into the 40’s!

This challenge has been brilliant.  Its been great to get as much running as I can in my time off as well as concentrate on what I am doing. I am still a sluggish runner, mindset screwed and allergies stopping me taking in as much oxygen as I need, its annoying but not the end of the world.  I seem to get the mileage done, in a clunky way.  The consistent runner who doesn’t stop to take breath seems to be far out my reach at this stage, but I will persevere.  A whole year of running has shown me that this is not a sport for the faint hearted, you need to have grit and determination to plough ahead, and thats what I plan to do.

Hope you are all running well and happy, BB x

New trail shoes!

Fed up with pounding the pavements of Cirencester I have decided to get out and find some trail running routes. The first location I am going to check out is locally in Cirencester park, it does have pavement type pathways but also trail ones too, so for a beginner like me, this is perfect. As for footwear I asked my fellow running friends for recommendations and they mostly suggested Karrimor.  Seeing that this is a cheaper brand of running shoe, I thought it would be perfect for me to start out with, especially if I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought as go back to pavement pounding and they are relegated to the back of the wardrobe, somehow I doubt that!  Will update tomorrow once I have road tested them.