Walking and running (and cake of course)

Another weekend gone! And a huge well done to all you marathoners and racers. My social media went mental with it all. I loved hearing about everyone’s story and how it went, but it made me soo eager for my time to come.

I woke up on Saturday morning ready for a lovely run in the spring sunshine. I opened the curtains to find…rain and wind. Oh joy. Even Alfie wasn’t keen to go outside. But something that definitely brightened my mood was waking up to find that I had won the person of the month in Netley Abbey parkrun, which means I get to choose a free pair of trainers from Sweatshop! It was also lovely to find it wasn’t a randomly generated thing, but a committee decision. This made me feel very, very touched – thank you parkrun and Sweatshop!

But yes, the weather. I got to parkrun as normal to help set up and it was miserable.

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I was a bit grumpy and fed up. I even contemplated just going home before the running actually began. But I stopped my whinging and got on with it. The run felt a lot more hard than usual. I had heavy legs from Wednesday’s nine mile run and from the gym on Friday morning, but really I think my heart wasn’t entirely in it. This is clear from my almost minute slower time (21:56). I’m happy though – another parkrun done (49 to go until 100 woohoo haha) and I put in some effort so it was worth it. You can’t have a good run all the time.

Someone that did have a good run was this little fellow, Monty.

IMG_0293Apparently he loves running and had run over nine miles in one go in the week! I mean seriously, look at his tiny legs. Bless him, he obviously loves it. Very cute.

Later I met up with my dad to go for a walk at Queen Elizabeth Country Park (like last weekend). But this time we were going to walk up the very large Butser Hill.

IMG_0302 It doesn’t actually look that bad, but you can see the hill behind me in the photo above. I had Alfie and my dad had one of their dogs (the same breed as Alfie), Lexie. His other two dogs are Cavaliers and preferred to stay at home and sleep (being traditional lap dogs and highly lazy!)

IMG_0341 My dad isn’t in particular good shape and needs to lose a bit of weight but he was keen to get up the hill. He found it quite hard work but he made it and it actually didn’t take him that long at all! I’m so proud of him. The dogs, needless to say, rocketed up and down the hill as we worked our way up. They loved it! Alfie is very good off his lead and continuously looks behind him to make sure I’m still there, as if he’s worried I’ll disappear, and never goes too far away. I’ve only just started letting him off his lead so I was a bit nervous, but he’s very good and a lot more friendly to other dogs (not that he was ever particularly unfriendly, just more wary) when he’s off his lead than on. I think it’s because he’s more in control and knows he can run away if he needs to, bless him.

IMG_0309This is one of my favourite photos of him ever. He just looks so happy and free. I’ve never seen him run so fast!

IMG_0312 We made it!

The afternoon was lovely, though it was very windy at the top of the hill. We did some more walking at the top, where there were lovely paths and stretches of land. And then we headed back down – which obviously was a lot easier!

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We sat down at the coffee shop to relax a bit…and for me to have cake.

IMG_0336I had a slice of bread pudding. I’ve never seen this cake before and it looked absolutely scrumptious. Big plump dried fruits and so moist. Not overly sweet – which means I could probably eat far too much if I ever had access to the entire cake!

The next day I had my usual long run planned, this time 15 miles. I was tossing between 15 and 16 as I wanted to run 17 miles next weekend and don’t want to jump mileage too much but having run nine miles in the week I was dubious. Happily I didn’t need to make the decision really as I got slightly lost and my route turned out to be exactly 15.5 miles in the end! Perfect.

The run was fairly warm with the sun beating down and quite windy along the seafront. I kept things easy paced and towards the end, when I felt like I was really plodding, I was pleased to see I was running 8.10min/miles. I felt like the effort level was right down there and thought I was running a lot more slow, so this is good news I suppose!

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(8.02mins/mile)

I got back and just laid on the drive and my parents brought me a glass of water, bless them.

IMG_0321 I felt quite windswept and salty. Surprisingly during the run I wasn’t that thirsty but afterwards I was definitely needing hydration. My legs felt good, no niggles or issues. Just general fatigue! I showered and got myself a smoothie (again). Similar to last weekend but this time I added coconut water and yogurt. Yum!

My parents and I then headed out to enjoy the nice weather again by taking all the dogs (Lexie, Dylan, Sam and Alfie) to Stokes Bay, which is a lovely beach area with lots of fields and doggie-friendly areas.

IMG_0342It was actually part of the route I ran in the morning (those stones were fairly annoying I can tell you!) and it was a dog-walking route we used to do when my sister and I were little. We worked out it was 19 years ago since we’d been back together. Mad!

It was very windy though. Far more windy than during my run.

IMG_0334I also noticed several water fountains along the front which I hadn’t seen during the run. Perfect for future runs, meaning I won’t have to carry a bottle with me when it gets hotter and my runs get longer.

Then my parents lovingly stopped at a bakery for me to pick up a slice of red velvet cake (yes I know, I’m addicted to cake). Then I headed back home, ate lunch, enjoyed some ‘lovely’ house work, caught up with a friend on the phone, before finally collapsing on the sofa with Paddington to watch and cake to eat.

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Both the cake and Paddington were excellent. Feel good comforts in so many ways!

How was your weekend?

How do you enjoy the good weather?

Do you have a dog? Do you let them off their lead?

18 thoughts on “Walking and running (and cake of course)

  1. Looks like a good weekend to me! I am gonna live vicariously through you over the next 13 days as I am really trying to stay away from cake….and its HARRRDDD. I know youlove cake as much as me, so I am just gonna send my pieces to you 😉 My dad is not in great shape either, I keep encouraging him to do more, and he likes walking, but like yours, he gets out of breath easy….if you figure out a way of keeping motivation….please send it my way so I can keep my dad walking! hehe
    Tina muir recently posted…Meatless Monday- Enchilada Quinoa BakeMy Profile

  2. Congratulations on the trainers- lovely to hear that everyone at your local parkrun agrees you deserve it too.
    Cake + running= perfect weekend I would agree!
    I shall be writing an epic blog post soon about my weekend…. !
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted…Now and thenMy Profile

  3. I’m loving all the cute dogs in this post! Little Monty aww, can’t believe he can run 9 miles! My Mum & Dad have 2 yorkies and we often dogsit them. They are quite good off their lead but we make sure we have plenty of treats on hand to bribe them back with haha. I’d love my own dog, especially one for running with, but we’re just out of the house too many hours of the day 🙁
    Helen recently posted…Liverpool half marathon – 3rd time aroundMy Profile

  4. That cake! Looks like a lovely weekend and well done to your Dad! The weather wasn’t quite so good up here, when we have good weather we tend to crash my parents back garden, go to a local park or head to the beach, which is my fave cause you have to have fish n chips!

  5. How lovely that the committee nominated you for parkrunner of the month, and very much deserved I am sure. 🙂 Like you said, it’s much nicer to be nominated than chosen at random for something like this. Last year at the marathon I marshaled at on Easter day I was given six easter eggs by the race director as spot prizes for the race. Another marshal and I decided to choose six runners who had either been incredibly friendly all day (it was a lap course so they passed us 12 times) or who we had seen help out another runner on the course at some point and handed the eggs out to these people. It was lovely to spot just how friendly and helpful runners were being throughout the day.
    Well done to your Dad for going ahead up the hill even if he found it tough. Alfie always looks like such a happy chap! I always worry when my parents let their staffie/husky cross off the lead. He is a really solid dog and when he’s playing with other dogs I am concerned that he will take either the dog or the owner off their feet as he bolshes around. No fear of that from Alfie though. He is the perfect size!
    Mary recently posted…Back to school and getting organisedMy Profile

    • I adore the running community – they’re like a whole different breed of people! Everyone is just so NICE.
      Well, when Alfie picks up speed and races back to me he tends to leap at my legs and honestly sometimes I think he’s going to knock me over!
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…Afternoon Tea ConnoisseurMy Profile

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