Friday, September 6, 2013

Summer of RUN

With a gammy foot and a temperamental leg the lack of running-related social media posts on my behalf has decreased over the past week or two.  And for a few weeks before that my life has consisted of 80% work, 90% wedding planning and 80% running. Yeah, somehow that adds up to way more than 100% - hence why my leg and foot probably decided to kick off.

To bring you up to speed (some sort of attempt at a pun?) on my summer of running, I'm training for the Mablethorpe Marathon on October 6th.  It's a very small (still 26.2 miles, hyuck) race - only 500 entrants - two laps of a half marathon course.  Flat, by the beach.  The site describes it as 'friendly.'

I chose Hansons Marathon Method for my training plan this time around and I'd highly recommend it. If you like running, it's like music to a control-freak, plan-driven, numbers-orientated runner's ears. You run almost every day.  Except Wednesdays.

You'd think - my legs will get tired.  But, my legs are actually (aside from this week's exception) stronger.  I feel less tired.  I'm (dare I say it?) faster.

A few things that have made my summer running very enjoyable:
1.  I got sent some GU Chomps.  They're super tasty and a nice alternative to a gel.  I used them for before a Tuesday evening speed session when I realised I'd been working like a chicken with its head cut off all afternoon and forgotten to eat something sensible and needed some sugar to amp me up for a sweaty session.  They also work for during long runs - nicer texture than a gel.  I usually don't have stomach issues with gels and didn't have issues with these either - but I know some people do so ya know make sure you try anything on your training runs before using on race day. Obvs.

2.  I got track in my life.  A coach that explains to me where to put my arms and my neck and that I should be running faster, come on, you're almost at the line, you should be right at my side not behind me, you can run faster you're just not trying hard enough.  It's cleaner running - no cracked pavements or people standing at bus stops or red lights to slow you down.  Pretty liberating!
3.  My footwear has branched out.  I have shoes for different occasions.  Get down with different shoes.  Treat your feet! Adds a little bit of variety to a running schedule (and a little bit of chaos to our apartment storage... let's not go there...)

4.  I've learned about blisters.  The hard way.  These 2XU moisture control socks are a new discovery.  Who knew there were socks that stopped that blister business before it started?  They are lovely. And they're pink! (Thanks 2XU for sending me these.)
5.  Iron.  If you run loads, you need an iron supplement.  If you don't take an iron supplement, you'll most likely start to feel dizzy all the time and super tired and convince yourself you're pregnant. I bought Floradix FLORAVITAL from the crazy hippy healthfood store.  There's plenty of other (cheaper) supplements to go for though!

6.  Maca.  It's pretty new to me and I've been introducing it slowly to my shizzle.  Maca has apparently been used in Peru for endurance and energy for over 2000 years.  It's pretty dense in minerals: calcium, potassium, iron (see above), phosphorus, magnesium, silica and zinc. All things runners kinda need.  Someone told me maca powder was taken by Inca warriors before going into battle to increase their strength, stamina and endurance.  
Not that I like to pretend I'm an Inca Warrior or anything... ahem...
I was sent some tablets to try, and have been told these ones are entirely vegan...

In general I would probably go for a powder to add to smoothies and salads - there is an organic brand which you can buy from Amazon for like £5.  The Naturya brand also do Chia seeds and other lovely vegan goodies. 
7.  We Do Run Run and the twittersphere (oh god, I've actually said that word?).  When I first started running it was just me, some crappy trainers I'd bought from Sports Direct and some admittedly embarrassing Girls Aloud on my ipod.  A few years later and despite still blasting a bit of Cheryl from time to time, running for me has really changed. And it's mostly down to all the interesting and inspiring people I've met via - the internet.  Go check out We Do Run Run and I can guarantee you'll be shuffling into a pair of shorts and cranking up the volume on your awesome music choices before you know what's happening to you. 


  1. Aww, I love this! Hope your cranky foot is behind you now. Mablethorpe sounds lovely!

  2. Being a beginner at running I find all your post really helpful. So many practical tips! Iron! That's why I was soooooo weak and light headed. Kind of did not clue in until you mentioned it.
    Also, love your sense of humor.
    Thank you for sharing.

  3. I buy maca powder from Holland & Barrett and use in my pancakes (just eggs, milled chia seeds and maca) - they are so good I have to make a triple batch now otherwise the kids don't leave me any!