The Week in Review

This week has been a great one for pushing distances and endurance but I have learnt something too, namely that the long weekend run is not going to be realistic. I have missed it three weeks in a row now, simply because I am exhausted on Sundays. It is sensible to learn from this and adapt rather than force a routine that isn’t going to be optimal. Add to that the fact that the weather is warming now (today was six degrees) and I will now be able to cycle to university and back on Mondays and it is clear that I HAVE to rest on Sundays. That means that I am only going to be running twice weekly, swimming thrice weekly and cycling long distance once. So, as a result I now have the opportunity to stretch the distances on my runs, safe in the knowledge that I don’t have to hammer through one at the weekend. This appears to be the routine I have fallen into naturally, and right now my swimming is in the ascendancy so it seems logical to follow the path of least resistance to fitness and health.

Another thing that is becoming prohibitive is that living in a small town is making it increasingly difficult to devise longer courses on which to run. I am going to have to utilise my ingenuity here because I really don’t want to start doing laps of the same course. That fills me with the dread of tedium. I used to run laps around a local waterway but I could only ever achieve four, some 7 miles or so because it simply bored the bejesus out of me. Running long distance has cured that and I really don’t want to go back.

All in all it has been a very productive week. I am only a fortnight back into my swimming routine and I am hitting 3000 metres regularly, which is not far from Iron Man distance swimming, albeit drills and lap swimming for now, rather than open water. I am seriously considering shooting for an Iron Man triathlon. I had in mind to do it a few years ago during my degree studies but I was unlucky enough to be in three car accidents in two years and that was that. Right now I am quietly homing in on the possibility, but I doubt it will come this year. My target for 2016 is to shed my excess body weight. As an adult I have suffered an illness that required me to take medication that caused weight gain. I am now off it and I am determined to get my body back. It is something that is so frustrating to me because I wish that, if I was going to be overweight then I would at least have enjoyed the excess. To be betrayed by fate like that seem so unfair. I got the consequences without the fun bit of the deal.

No more. This is the year I return to the state in which I entered the world, and I am getting closer and closer. I calculate that I have around a stone to go to get back to single digit body fat percentages.

The Week in Review

This week has been one that petered off. I haven’t been able to do my long weekend run due to chucking down rain and also being unwell in the night doing the Aztec Two Step (Google at your own risk).

I have settled down finally into my running/swimming rhythm, however, so hopefully that will stick now. I’ve pushed up to swimming over a mile and I have been able to run ten miles with relative ease. My Apple Watch turns out to have been a good purchase for use in conjunction with exercise, despite the minor irritation of accidentally activating the crown with my sleeve. As soon I am able to wear either a long sleeve running top without a jacket or just short sleeves that should be fine.

So there we are. Not that great a review, but the truth. I am hoping that the horrible rain passes soon and I can finally break the half marathon barrier.

The Week in Review

Summary

This week has been an interesting one. I have pushed my morning run over the eight miles mark, I returned to the swimming pool (an event which itself spawned a post about irritating people at the pool), and I managed to sabotage a promising shot at a half-marathon distance run by ingesting fart fuel.

This week I have learned a lot about myself and the limitations of my body (i.e. I do not seem to be anywhere near reaching them yet) and the farting incident in particular has taught me a lot, especially in terms of planning my diet and timing meals well in relation to runs.

I have also hit a couple more personal milestones. The first is the fact that this is the first full week I have completed my running regimen whilst wearing proper running trousers, running gloves and running shoes. This turns out to have been far more important than I ever imagined in terms of keeping warm, comfortable and remaining injury free. Of course, I have no doubt that at some point I will pick up a strain or muscle tear but it is all about reducing the risk and likelihood of doing so. In addition to this I have purchased an Apple Watch. Whilst I confess to being an Apple devotee I will say that this watch was purchased with running in mind. I hate wearing my phone in an armband and I get annoyed when I have to stop to skip a podcast/song or check on my exercise statistics. Now it is all there in the Runtastic app on my watch; easily accessible with a mere flick of the wrist.

Unfortunately a tough night with the kids means I missed my cycle ride to university and I was not able to take the kids and dogs walking or hiking due to the fact that it has rained heavily more or less all weekend. I fear that the torrential rain that is predicted tomorrow is going to stop me from cycling again, but I will try my best. I am happy in wet conditions but I do take a few busy roads en route which I would not like to take on in a torrential downpour, purely from the point of view relating to safety concerns. Fingers crossed on that front.

I am pushing hard to be a real distance runner by summer, regularly putting in runs of double figures and I would love to be able to run the 21.5 miles home from university at least once this semester. Whether or not I will be able to stretch myself that far without doing myself some damage is a matter of fine margins, but I can try my best nonetheless.

This Week’s Media

Video: BBC Question Time, Redmen TV

Podcasts: BBC Any Questions, Real Time with Bill Maher, The Rubin Report.

See you on the road.

The Week in Review

So, this has been my first full week as a sports blogger and it has largely been good fun. I hope that I can keep it up. I have mostly discussed my activities rather than equipment, food or some other aspect of fitness and the outdoors. Right now I am mostly enjoying being able to consistently do the sports I love. The last ten years have mostly been devoted to the hard work of raising young children, but now that my youngest has reached the age of five (this seems to be the cut off point from absolute dependency and them being able to function for at least an hour or so without harassing their parents) I have more free time to devote to myself. Well, some free time at all actually. Kids are time consuming and demanding little creatures but thankfully they do gain their own space over the years. I do miss the littlest years when they slept all the time, allowing me to bung them in a papoose and go hiking, but at the same time there is a lot to be said for simply having the time and space to be oneself. You have no idea how much you will miss that until it is thrust upon you.

Roundup

This week was all about getting my running chops back. I have covered 26.82 miles over four runs, which is not exactly a stellar amount but I reiterate that I am only just getting back into this and it is winter which limits opportunity somewhat. I am currently using the school run as a serious window for exercise. I walk the kids two miles to school (purely to tire them out)and then run home. I take the scenic route and have stretched the distance from 3.2 miles initially up to 5+ miles. Very often if I have an errand to do I will combine it into the run. I have no doubt that wandering into the bank in running gear raises an eyebrow or two, but who cares? I certainly don’t. I only cycled one way to university this week due to me having an absolutely paint stripping headache during the day. It would have been dangerous to cycle home so I took the train, which turned out to be wise as I was very unwell when I arrived back. All in all a good week, with a learning curve in there about resting between hard runs/rides (this caused my headache). I hope to push through the 30 mile barrier when running this week. As summer comes I will also throw some long bike rides in there too.

Recommended Listening

I am a machine for devouring music, films, TV shows, podcasts and audiobooks so I am going to post my listening for the week – all of which was consumed during exercise, but not whilst cycling of course. Note that video I just listen to rather than watch.

Music: Dream Theater, The Astonishing

Podcasts: Real Time with Bill Maher, BBC Any Questions

Video: BBC Question Time

See you on the road.