Sunday, 18 July 2010

Sunday night quickie

Not a great week by any scale of the imagination. Had what I like to call Demonic Ovary Month ... felt HORRENDOUS for two days (cramps and nausea) but thankfully recovered in time for Wednesday training (just about anyway).

I did skip all other activities. It was time for a rest week.

I've started making up ground this weekend though, I think! 18km running in total, plus SUPER healthy eating. Well, with only a few minor blights. Have decided to really focus on diet for two solid weeks. Have broken the sugar hold from last weekend's binge and have stocked the fridge with veggies, fruit and lean protein options :)

Today was ALMOST perfect.

45min hill run, then had cup of cooked porridge (made with water) plus half an apple, two tablespoons of chopped walnuts and 1 teaspoon of sunflower seeds, plus a sprinkle of cinnamon and brown sugar. Tasteee.

Then I had a soy mocha before heading out running shoe shopping with two friends. Super fun (and successful).

Lunch was four Vita-Weets with Nut Butter and raspberry jam (on the run) and an apple.

Arvo snack was about 1/2 cup of pistachio nuts. Oh, and I had a beer :)

Dinner tonight was DELICIOUS from The Biggest Loser cookbook - beef strips stir fried with oyster sauce (plus chilli, garlic and ginger), with baby buk choy. Served with low-GI doongara rice. Made one recipe switch - cut the onion (blergh) and added the chilli. Super tasty.

I decided to spoil myself for dessert with a Fuji fruit (yum) and mango yoghurt.

So, let's see how the week pans out. No late nights this week and lots of running, gym and sleep plus good healthy food.

Have THE WORST first date story to share ... but will have to put that up tomorrow as the pain is still far too fresh to recount tonight.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Goldy Half and The Hunger x 2

The half-marathon - and activities after the race - last year was so much fun that a group of us decided to do it all again, and invite some newbies along. Once again, it didn't fail to impress! Arrived on Saturday lunchtime and, after dumping gear at the hotel, we wandered off to the expo. These things are kinda crazy, but they're also great for checking out all sorts of running gear and gadgets. I managed to refrain from buying, mainly because I was really hot and uncomfortable after flying from 13C temps to pushing 30C in the sun!

We had our traditional carb loading dinner at a restaurant in Broadbeach, after an agonisingly long wait ... next year, a booking will be essential! Plus the traditional glass of red. I was determined to make this a holiday as much as a race. Due to the dinner delay, we all went to bed a fair bit later than is ideal ... but I am a firm believer in the theory that two nights before the race is when you need to get the best sleep, not as much the night before. Of course, it all helps!

This year we had much less stress at the startline, we were lined up before the gun went off - which is always a good start - and we actually warmed up! None of which happened in 2009. My running at the moment is a little bit different as I'm a CanToo mentor. This means I am focussed on helping other runners achieve their goals, rather than on my own times and challenges.

The Gold Half was my first real experience of this, running with a girl who wanted to beat her previous time of 2h24min. As this was nearly 25minutes below my average half-mara time, I knew I could get her home in a good time but had to also be careful not to push her too hard. I was very proud of our efforts, as we took it out REALLY slowly in the first 11km and managed to steadily build the pace for the next 10km. In her previous race, my mentee had stopped running at 14km and never recovered, walking and running for the remainder of the race.

As we approached the 14km mark, she was starting to complain of being tired and having sore knees. I knew she was tired - so was I - but I knew that she didn't need to stop, it was purely a mental thing. So I told her to get to the 15km mark and she could stop, and repeated this at every km marker - saying "nah, let's stop at the next one". She twigged at the 17km mark, where I switched to saying "only 4km left" and stuff like that. And - whoo hoo - she took seven minutes off her time to record a PB. Unfortunately I did encourage her to sprint the last 100m, and she nearly collapsed at the finish line ... but she was very happy with her efforts and I was happy with mine!

My coach redeemed himself from last year's horrendous full marathon effort, where he blew up at about 31km and spent the next 11km walking in terrible pain. This year he was 12kg lighter and finished - looking good - in under four hours. An absolute legend.

After we all finished our respective runs, we headed back to the hotels for showers (painful in my case due to dreadful under-bra chaffing) and some extra sleep before hitting the town at 4.30pm!

The next two nights are pretty much a blur but can be summed up in one word: FUN. Dancing, drinking, flirting, guys, laughter, more flirting and guys, and more dancing and drinking. Oooh, so much fun.

I came back to Sydney, however, feeling like it was definitely time for some focus!

Heh, unfortunately this focus was undermined by what I call ... The Hunger. The Hunger hits me about two or three days before my period arrives (sorry to be blunt!) and during this time I am a bottomless pit. I usually have a very small appetite, preferring to eat small meals more regularly rather than huge meals in one sitting. Not when The Hunger hits. When it's around, I never feel full or satisfied. Example? I got pizza on Friday, which I never get, but I was tired and it was 7.30pm and I wanted to eat and go to bed early. I get a healthy-ish option from the local pizza place, but usually I eat three pieces - four at the very most. On Friday, I ate six! And I was still thinking of eating more when I put the remaining two slices away. Argh.

Saturday's 8km run definitely didn't work that off, and then I headed off to a wine and cheese tasting ... oh boy, I don't want to think of the calories there!

Sunday I went for a tough 7km hill run that hurt BADLY due to me already having sore legs, being a bit tired, needing new shoes AND the weather turning v. weird. It was that pre-storm weather.

Anyway, not content with the pizza and cheese and wine damage, I went to a baby shower where there were waaaay more cupcakes with delicious icing than necessary. I can't remember exactly how many I had ... at least two, maybe pushing three (I ate the icing off one - the cake was burnt and hard). Plus ... oh, so much junk. But damn, it was good.

Now, it's time for me to really knuckle down. 10 weeks to the September race, and I want to pace the 2h group and feel fit and healthy - not like I'm dragging my butt around! Nothing flashy, just sensible eating.

Although, I am contemplating trying Light n' Easy or similar ... just because I never seem to have enough time to shop OR cook. Hmmm.