Lakeside 5k Series 5/5

After the last Lakeside race, and the death of my uncle, and all the sleep deprivation, I threw the towel in yesterday and said I’m done.

I told the husband I was categorically not going to run the last race in the Lakeside series.

This morning a friend who had also signed up sent me a text. She’d just got back from two weeks in the US, and she was jetlagged and sleep-deprived (she’s a working mum of two).

She said she was thinking of running and asked if I was going to run. I said I’d do it if she did it. We did it! We braved the hoard of super-athletic runners from South East England and we ran our little hearts out.

It was altogether a friendlier race tonight, and the Marshall wasn’t packing up when I came around the corner either. However, life has taken its toll because I pushed hard but came in at around 30:58. I was TIRED. It was HARD. My friend set a PB after a fast start and struggling on the second lap – she did brilliantly.

I came home and hoovered up a huge plate of leftover spag bol and had a big glass of wine. It’s the first run I’ve done in 10 days and I am so glad to be back at it. I can’t really say I enjoyed tonight, because I honestly wanted to stop all the way round and go home, but I felt great afterwards.

I have another 5k race booked next weekend, and then after that a 10k trail run, with hills (omg). I am going to try to eat a bit better over the next couple of weeks. I can’t control the sleep thing, but I can at least try to fuel my forgiving body properly.

I am absolutely certain that I am reaching the limit of improvement with my current lifestyle (my time is pretty much the same as it was 9 weeks ago on race 3/5). I’ve been hovering around the same weight for over a year and I am just not feeling very energetic and healthy. I know how important diet is… for some reason it’s the one piece of the puzzle I find so hard to put together.

This Week’s Goal + Training Log #6


What a week. I have worked non-stop (it seems) to finish a project and various other work bits and pieces before the school holidays. I finally got there on Friday, just before going to collect baby F at lunchtime.

I’ve found this week quite hard going, but it’s a great feeling to be finished (for now!). The kiddos finish school tomorrow (Tues) at 2pm. Baby F came down with a vomiting bug in the early hours of this morning so she is home with me today instead of at nursery (glad I got all that work done).

Current goal: Finish family photo albums, years 2010-2017

I managed 5.5 hours on my goal, and have finished photo book 2011 and started photo book 2010. Hurrah! However, I have felt quite reluctant to work on this project and miserable about how long it will take me. After working on the books for two weeks my mind is really wandering and thinking about all the other things I could be doing. This is normally when I would get distracted by something else, so I’ve made a point of reminding myself this week that I have committed to getting this stuff done.

Focusing on just one thing has made me very aware of how much I have going on at one time. I can see that I take on a frankly ridiculous number of things. No wonder why I never have enough time to do them all.

Training

It was a mixed week. I did quite a comfortable run on Monday, but Thursday’s run was probably my worst since I started. Legs like lead, so tired and heavy, and I got a stitch, which I rarely suffer from. Then on Saturday I was back on form with a PB at parkrun. This week I’ve got a 5km race on Wednesday evening and I am hoping to run a slow 12km at the weekend to increase my distance. My joints have been painful this last week, and I’ve lost a lot of sleep tending to baby F overnight so not sure how things will pan out.

Mon – comfy 4.5km with some speedwork
Tue – rest
Wed – rest
Thu – planned a longer 6.5km, but gave up after 4.5km. Exhausted.
Fri – rest
Sat – Parkrun 5km PB 30:32 (Aargh! Just 33 seconds to shave off!)

This Week’s Goals – Week 2

weekly todo list

I am really easily distracted. My brain runs at about 100mph from the minute I wake up, so having a little public to-do list like this worked brilliantly last week for making sure I got the right things done.

I think each week I need to make sure I always add one procrastination-prone goal to the list (this will inevitably be something I have been putting off for ages). It’s really good to clear these kind of things as it just gives you a bit more mental get-up-and-go when you get them done. I also need to balance it with things that are easier/more enjoyable. Last week was a good mix, so let’s see if I can repeat that again this week.

On the agenda:

  1. Carry on getting photos sorted out on Mac/Phone
  2. Get back to inbox zero, for both personal and business accounts
  3. Three runs (one of these is a 5k race) and one strength session
  4. Get to the bottom of each of the washing baskets and put the mountain of outstanding clean clothes away
  5. Plan out shopping, meals and cooking for the start of the 3 week healthy eating challenge I’m doing from Saturday
  6. Keep within a £60 budget this week for food (no spending until Wednesday as that’s when I get some money!)
  7. Send Dad the book I bought for him
  8. Business goals: decide where/how/if to blog about these, but in the meantime get a quote out, do design changes for current project and get new email list up and running.

And here’s how last week turned out:

  1. Start my tax return (yawn!) – Done! Did the whole thing and got a £15 rebate, which will go straight towards debt reduction when it arrives.
  2. Do not buy any food except bare essentials like milk and bread (I am trying to use up everything in the cupboards/freezer/fridge as part of a money saving drive) – Done!
  3. Do two more runs – Done. And got a PB at parkrun on Saturday.
  4. Ring up and check what happened to my pension (I got a statement and its value had gone down by 20%) – Done. This was a paperwork error, the value has actually gone up. Phew.
  5. Start sorting out my photos (oh lordy – I am in a mess with these. My phone isn’t syncing with my desktop and everything is all over the place) – Done. I’ve fixed the corrupt library issue I had on the Mac, so getting it updated is now underway.
  6. List baby carrier and pro microphone on eBay – Not done. I decided to keep both of these items as the sling works as a back carrier (which I didn’t realise), and I’m not 100% sure I’m ready to sell the microphone in case I use it to develop any online course material for my business.
  7. Think about adding household accounts to YNAB (I am a total YNAB convert – it is the best personal budgeting tool I have ever used!) – Done! I thought about it and did it. I’ve added the household account and the mortgage account to a separate YNAB budget. The husband is going to transfer the TV licence over to the household account (he’s been paying that on the side for years), and I’ll be able to save any money from the household account that we don’t need each month and put it towards a) a kitchen/holidays/emergencies fund and b) mortgage overpayments. We’ve been working really hard at getting the mortgage paid off and are hoping to see the back of it within the next six years.

Getting Back Into It

Boo has learnt to climb up onto the sofa. She fell off head first the other day and has a nice bruise to show for it.

It’s funny, but when I’m happy and content, I find that my blogging inspiration dries up. When things are hard, or I’m suffering with self-doubt, I can write thousands of words – they just pour out of me and onto the screen.

I blame obsessive diary-writing for this as a teenager. All my teenage angst gave me so much practice in writing about emotions like frustration, anger and sadness, that it set me up to be a maudlin blogger for life. Writing about secondary infertility kept me going for three long years – there was so much emotion there I practically burned through my keyboard.

These days however, life is good. And my god I am grateful for it. I think partly I worry about somehow tempting fate to take all the good things away from me if I publicly talk about good things happening in my life. But partly it’s just that I’m happy. And my brain is less busy when I’m happy, which means the need to write (which is very cathartic for me) decreases.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t make for a) decent blogging and b) ever finishing any of the books I have started to write and not finished (because my mood affects my desire to write also, and writing is one of my big loves).

So.

I’m going to try something new.

Firstly, I’m going to write a “On The List This Week” post at the start of each week. I love my lists, and this is a great way for me to be even more accountable to the massive list of things I want to get done. It also means I share what I’m up to and hopefully find other people doing similar things.

Secondly, I’m going to try posting more often, even if it seems like I have nothing to say (omg, I can hear you all clicking ‘unfollow’ now).

Thirdly, I’m going to try to find more bloggers out there like me. I really want to read and share and see what other people are up to. It’s really the most fun part about it. I struggle a bit with the WordPress reader, but I’ve been clicking around trying to find new blogs to follow and have a few new ones on my list now (yes, that’s you I’m stalking, mwah ha ha!).

So, without further ado, this weeks “On The List This Week” is late as it’s Wednesday, but here it is anyway:

  1. Start my tax return (yawn!)
  2. Do not buy any food except bare essentials like milk and bread (I am trying to use up everything in the cupboards/freezer/fridge as part of a money saving drive)
  3. Do two more runs
  4. Ring up and check what happened to my pension (I got a statement and its value had gone down by 20%)
  5. Start sorting out my photos (oh lordy – I am in a mess with these. My phone isn’t syncing with my desktop and everything is all over the place)
  6. List baby carrier and pro microphone on eBay
  7. Think about adding household accounts to YNAB (I am a total YNAB convert – it is the best personal budgeting tool I have ever used!)

That’s it for today!

The Elusive Sub 30 Minute 5k

Post-parkrun today. Slow, but happy.

I know that for some people a sub-30 5k is super slow, and for others it’s fast. That’s the beauty of running – it’s all about bettering yourself, wherever you are on the continuum.

The last time I ran a sub-30 5k was 2004 (ouch!!). I am a lot older, and I’ve had three children since then. I was working towards it last year, but my sleep was so broken with a young baby that the running I was doing seemed to be damaging my joints more than making me fitter (I have osteoarthritis). I got down to 32:12 at parkrun, but had to stop as the pain in my right toe got so bad I had started to limp.

This year, things have been better. Sleep is not fully restored, but it’s at least approching the normal (broken) sleep of motherhood rather than torturous nights resembling Navy SEAL hell week.

On 18th April I did my first gentle run after a winter of horrendous joint pain. In the spring I’d changed my diet, added some supplements and cut down the sugar to reduce the pain and inflammation and it worked enough to get me out of the door again.

I’ve now been running for 7.5 weeks and I’ve built up a nice base level of fitness that means I can run (very slowly) for an hour.

This last week I’ve stepped up my training to include some hill repeats and 5k reps. I’ve loved it and I’m feeling much stronger, but when it came to parkrun today I could really feel the extra work I’ve done in my legs. Oh, and I’ve also had three dreadful nights sleep on the trot.

So, today’s parkrun time was 34:18, which is slower than I think I can run at this point, but it’s a good starting time to work up from.

After 7 long weeks I have also, finally, started to drop a little bit of weight. I was 5.5kg over my pre-baby weight to start, and I’m now 4.8kg over. It’s the first time the scales have shifted, although to be honest it’s not something I’ve been focusing on. Still, it’s good to see a move in the right direction.

When will I see a sub-30 5k again, I wonder? I am hoping before the end of the summer – I am down for a 5k race at the end of August, among others, and barring illness or injury I’m hopeful I’ll be able to do it by then.