Category Archives: cycling

Ultra Recovery…

I took the full week off workouts post ultra, I wasn’t really feeling sore, more like unbelievably tired. I’ve felt so shattered and I have to remind myself that the ultra was only 2 weeks ago and I ran 2 marathons in the previous 6 weeks before that. I probably should stop wondering why I’m feeling so exhausted!

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Mon: 45 min Spin + 6 mile Walk
Tues: Rest
Weds: 45 min Spin + 4.5 mile run to/from Spin
Thurs: Upper Body Weights + 3.6 mile Walk
Fri: Total Body Blast Circuit + 5 mile Walk
Sat: 5 mile run (inc parkrun)
Sun: 45 min Spin + 4.5 mile run to/from Spin

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I had a gentle 3 mile run last Sunday to get back into things and then got fully back into the swing of things this week, though it’s not been all smooth sailing. The tiredness has really been affecting me, as well as inner knee pain on the left knee which I keep getting the morning after a run.

In a bid to mix things up while I ease back into running I started my 30 day voucher for Cyclebeat which I bought a while back on living social. I haven’t been spinning since I pretty much blamed it for my injury problem earlier in the year. Thankfully it hasn’t flared up this week at all, so I’m pretty sure it was just the class with upper body weights at Boom cycle that triggered it.

I’ve been spinning 3 times this week. Once I went with my brother and we were near the back of the class and couldn’t hear a bloody thing the instructor was saying, the other classes have been much better though. I have pushed myself harder with each one, and I’m really enjoying them.

I’ve also started up weights again after my week off pre/post ultra, I’ve gone back to phase one of the Fat Burn Revolution just to build my strength back up for a few weeks.

I’ve run three times this week to ease myself back in, I did 4.5 miles total running to and from spin twice this week, which made for a pretty killer workout! I also went to parkrun with my brother on Saturday to have a little blast. My legs didn’t really feel that good, and the humidity made it quite a tough effort. I finished in 27.04 which wasn’t awful for the Highbury course. Hopefully going to get a few more parkruns in over the next few months to work on some speed.

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Tomorrow is the start of my Berlin marathon training, I’m not following an official plan, in fact I haven’t even drawn anything up, and don’t really feel like doing so. Coming off 6 months of following a training plan, I just want to wing it for a bit and run by how I’m feeling. I’m just going to go week by week right now and see how I feel.

Weekly work out wrap

After a pretty intense few months on the exercise front, I decided to scale back my efforts this week.

I have decided to cut my cardio down-not necessarily my running-but any cardio outside of that i.e in the gym, to bare minimum, and to incorporate more hiit workouts and less steady state cardio. I have decided to do this because my workouts were taking up insane amounts of time (2-3 hour sessions) and I have also been feeling pretty worn out lately, and probably have been guilty of over-exercising, so I have made a decision to scale back my workouts and incorporate more “active” rest days, even though I am still struggling with feeling guilty about taking rest days, but more on that in a future post.

Monday: 10 min elliptical warm up, Rowed 2000m as fast as I could (9.52) which I was reasonably chuffed with, followed with 1 hour of strength training (NROLFW) and 15 mins of hiit intervals on the stationary bike. (I decided to cut back on my cardio after this session!)

Tuesday: Ran 6.66 miles in 1.04. I did not notice the distance on my garmin as I was running to the supermarket and just turned it off at the entrance. I would have definitely ran another 0.01 mile if I had realised what it had stopped on though! This was a really good run, I felt really comfortable all the way through, and I think the cold made me push my pace which was good.

Wednesday: 10 mins stationary bike warm up, 1 hour of strength training (NROLFW) and 15 mins of hiit intervals on the elliptical. 15 mins of hip opening yoga in the evening.

Thursday: Active rest day. I was actually going to run today, but I couldn’t face going back out in the cold again, this is the first time I’ve slacked off a run in ages, and the first time in the winter that I haven’t been prepared to face the elements! Decided to stay in the warm and do some yoga instead. 25 mins of power yoga followed by 10 mins of hip opening yoga.

Friday: 15 mins hiit on stationary bike and the rowing machine, 20 mins of core work in the gym followed by 15 mins hiit on the treadmill and elliptical.

Saturday: This week’s long slow jog. 11.13 miles in 1.55. Really pleased with this run, felt easy throughout, and I could have even gone on for longer. Really debating running a 10 mile race next weekend now.

Sunday: 4 mile walk. Nursing a massive hangover and I had friends to visit, so took another active rest day, and went for a 4 mile walk with them to clear the head.

It’s been a really good week on the exercise front, with me listening to my body more and not going too overboard, although I would have liked to have got one more run in this week.

Totals: 39 miles. 9 hours 10 mins (A big decrease from the 11 hours a couple of weeks ago!), 3,577 calories burned.

Running: I am really chuffed with my running at the minute, I am still working on running one long run a week at a really slow pace. I haven’t done much interval work lately, I’ve definitely been slacking on that front, and I would have liked to have got another run in this week, but I’m pleased with the ones I did get it. My pace is definitely getting better over a sustained distance, and I am thinking about entering the Llanelli 10 miler this coming weekend to test that out.

Strength training: I upped the weights on my NROLFW workouts this week, and definitely felt it! I am onto the last week of this stage now, and looking forward to starting the next stage. I have also been researching some other strength training programs to take up after I’m done with NROLFW.

Yoga: I failed in my commitment to practising yoga 3 times a week, I managed 2 sessions, but would like to get at least one more short session in each week. My hips are definitely no where near as tight as they have been over the last few months, and I think yoga is the cause of that.

How was your week in work outs?

Did you get caught out with the snow, and how did this affect your workouts?

Do you get rest day guilt?

This weeks work outs

Wow, brief blogging hiatus there. I have been super busy the past week or so, and just haven’t had time to blog. Here is the round up of last weeks work outs:

I was feeling pretty spent at the beginning of the week so was going to have an easier work out week, but it just didn’t happen!

Monday: ‘rest day’ : 1.73 mile walk

Tuesday: 3 mile walk. Gym: Stationary bike 10 mins, Elliptical 10 mins, NROLFW 45 mins HIIT on treadmill 20 mins

Weds: 40 mins of hip opening yoga. Gym: 15 mins Elliptical, 5 mins rowing, 25 mins core work, HIIT Stationary bike 14 mins

Thurs: 5.48 mile run, followed by 0.58 mile cool down walk. Gym: 5 mins elliptical, 10 mins stationary bike, 6 mins rowing machine, NROLFW extra stage workout (I will be posting about this sometime this week!)

Friday: ‘active rest day’ : 25 mins yoga for runners

Sat: 3.17 mile run, followed by 1.27 mile cooldown walk

Sun: Boyfriends C25K intervals 2.37 miles, walk, 5 mins run, 2 mins walk, 5 mins run, walk cool down. Gym: 20 mins elliptical, 6 mins rowing machine, NROLFW extra stage 1 workout, 35 mins stationary bike (14 mins hiit, 21 mins steady state)

Phew that was an exhausting week of workouts!

Totals: 45 miles, 9 hours and 44 minutes of working out and 3605 calories burned. Ouch hard week! Loving that my totals keep increasing week on week, but its got to the stage where it is taking over my life a bit, my gym workouts are getting longer and longer, and I think I might start incorporating more HIIT instead of steady state to try and shorten them.

I felt a bit burned out during this week, and its no surprise really looking back at the week, that was a lot of exercise! I think I may have to have a scaling back week sometime soon, just to let me body have a bit of a rest and recharge the batterys. I also might try something new, like a few gym classes, or maybe start swimming again, just to mix up the routine so I don’t get too bored, and my body doesn’t get too used to the exercises I am doing.

I will have a New rules of lifting for women stage 1 report coming up later in the week! Really glad stage 1 is now over, it was very long and I am excited for a new strength training routine.

How were your workouts last week?

 

Birthday “Baking”

I have had a very busy day today of birthday “baking”. It is my birthday on Saturday so I thought I better whip up some Vegan treats.

First I made Vegan Peanut Butter Cups (which are better than Reese’s and Vegan…Win!)

Vegan Peanut Butter Cups- makes 12 small cups.

  • 100g good quality dark chocolate
  • 130g Peanut Butter (I used smooth but you can use crunchy)
  • 30g Icing sugar
  • Tiny bit of soya margarine

Melt half the chocolate with a tiny bit of soya margarine so its nice and spreadable.

As you can see perfection is not my forte!

I used these really cute small paper cases but if you want bigger peanut butter cups you can use muffin cases just cut them to about half the size.

Layer the cases with a thin coating of chocolate (this is very messy, but I find it quite therapeutic!) Then pop these in the freezer so that the chocolate hardens.

Yum in a bowl!

 

Melt the peanut butter and icing sugar in the microwave, for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, until you can stir it all together nicely. Leave to cool.

While that is cooling melt the remaining chocolate with another tiny chunk of soya marg.

Remove the chocolate from the freezer when it has hardened (around 10-15 mins.) Then dollop the peanut butter mixture into the middle of each case. Then place a small drop of the melted chocolate on top and spread.

Before spreading

After spreading

Pop back in the freezer for around an hour or so. To see the finished article you will have to pop back on Saturday, as I am saving them for my birthday.

 

Ha! Good luck to myself resisting those temptations! If there are still 12 on Saturday it will be a miracle!

This deliciousness of this afternoons baking session did not end there. It was time to try out these beautiful raw choc brownies from Wayfaring chocolate.

They were so simple to make, just blitzing the dates, walnuts and cocoa in the food processor until it looks like this:

So hard to resist eating this!

Then make up the icing which includes an avocado….what?! Yep, you read that right. Chocolate brownies with avocado…I was slightly dubious but being a big avocado fan I thought I would give it the benefit of the doubt. I used the handmixer to mix the avocado, cocoa, cinnamon, vanilla extract and agave. Holy yum! This icing is A-mazing! I cannot describe how good it is, but several spoon licks of mixture were had!

All that was left to do was pat the mixture into a tin, top with the icing and freeze for an hour. So simple.

Untopped mixture

With the amazing avocado icing

I did snaffle a few of the edges and these are seriously good brownies. My mum did not even realize it was avocado in there!

 

Finished article:

Beautiful raw brownies

Birthday Brownie!

Again I cant give a proper taste review as I have only had little tiny bits (massive self control not to eat the above slice!) and like the cups I am saving these for birthday Saturday.

I think this was my first time experimenting with raw desserts, but it definitely won’t be the last if these taste as good as they look!

This afternoon I biked 8 hilly miles, I definitely needed the workout after all that spoon and mixture eating, but making the goodies has to have some perks right!

I was pretty hungry when I got in, so I whipped up this yummy butternut squash and lentil stew from Jemma at Celery and Cupcakes.

I made a few adjustments as I did not have star anise so left it out, I used a green pepper instead of a red one, and I used red lentils instead of green as these were all I had in the cupboard.

Butternut squash and lentil stew

It was really delicious and just what I needed to refuel after a hard work out. The lentil substitution seemed to work out fine. Next time I may add a tiny bit less chili flakes as it was really spicy, perhaps I should actually use measuring spoons though, that would probably help!

 

 

It has been a very busy day of biking and baking.

I am going to see Fair Game at the cinema tonight, anybody seen anything good lately?

 

 

Monday Munchies

Ever have those days where you just feel so hungry all day, it does not matter what you eat, the feeling just won’t go away…yeah..that was me today!

I think I know why it happened, I had virtually no protein with my dinner last night which I know is a post-run error! I have certainly paid the price today. Will have to experiment with eating more protein post-run.

Today started as always with oatmeal:

Good morning Oats

I don’t usually use the sachets but this morning I felt lazy, so just took the easy option! I cooked them with half a banana in and topped with the other half and some small brazil nuts. I accompanied this with a kiwi:

Yes I eat the kiwi with the skin on

I eat kiwi’s with the skin on. Many people have told me this is simply not normal?! Thoughts and opinions? Skin on? Skin off? I think that most of the good stuff is probably in the skin so that is why I eat it….that and I am far too lazy to peel it anyway.

I was starving my lunchtime so I made OIAJ:

Empty jar

Much better

My oats were topped with flaxseed and some dates and were delicious. The SunPat nut butter jars are a nightmare though, so awkwardly shaped that it is impossible to get all the deliciousness out!

Post lunch I impulsively decided to go for a bike ride. Bearing in my mind I got a bike for Christmas and have used it for about 10 minutes since that point. The weather was too good to pass up and I wanted a break from running, so I went for it. I cycled down to a local park and back, it was 8.5 miles in total which I was fairly chuffed with, considering my lack of cycling lately. My legs are now paying the price for this!Stopped at the lake for a little break

I stopped at the lake half way around for a little break. The park is really beautiful though my picture does not give this impression! The last mile of so I found a bit tough as it was hilly, but I am glad I pushed through.

I came back to put my bike away and what should happen as I am wheeling it around but the back gate slammed shut, I thought I would be able to lift the handle on the gate but it was not working from my side of the fence. Fail.

Nobody else was home or home any time soon and I did not have my key with. I had also taken my shoes off and left them the other side of the gate. Double fail. So I was trapped on the other side of this:

I managed to find a chair in the garage which I used for a boost and then I was stuck on top of the wall thinking “how the hell am I going to get down?” I would have jumped if I had shoes on but barefoot jumping onto concrete from height seemed like a bad idea so I decided to lower myself which worked, though apparently I have damaged the trellis!

Post-drama I refueled with some falafel, oatcakes and hummus. Then I decided to whip up a tiny batch of Angela’s Raw Almond Butter

Raw almondy goodness

So yummy, I enjoyed it with some apple slices.

I was absolutely starving all day, so decided to cook a massive dinner. I usually like to eat lightly for dinner, but today I needed something a bit heavier.

Got carbs?

Big pile of steamed kale, absolutely massive sweet potato topped with tahini and simply spiced quinoa.

Simply Spiced Quinoa:

  • 50g Quinoa
  • 200ml Veg stock
  • Pinch of Cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin, tumeric and garam masala

Boil the Quinoa for 10 minutes with the stock and spices, then let it absorb for 15-20 minutes. So yummy and so simple.

I finished with a fruit salad, I am now absolutely shattered and have decided that I need to work a lot harder on how I am fueling my body pre and post exercise. How do you like to fuel pre and post exercise?