Strong and healthy 2014

Hello and (belated) happy New Year. Looking back 2013 has been pretty good…and bad.

In running and fitness…

At the beginning of the year I was signed up the Reading Half Marathon (my first half). I enjoyed running and I was quite rigid in sticking to my training plan. I thoroughly enjoyed the half and my love for running just sky rocketed.


I found a local running club, started doing Parkruns when I could and signed up to a zillion races. It seemed throughout the summer I was running a 10k every week (at times I was!)


But we all know how that ended. I suffered from what seemed like one injury after another…if it wasn’t my hip, it was my IT band, or my groin…and now my knee. Believe me when I say I have learnt a lot this year about my body.

I have a few regrets from this year and a few races I wish I’d never done (Great South Run I’m looking at you). But you live in and learn. My physio (who I fondly think of as my therapist at the moment πŸ˜‰ ) says that it wasn’t me being entirely stupid in my running. She thinks my running really took off this year and my body wasn’t fully ready. It was a shock to suddenly be doing all this speed work and races and not backing it up with sensible strength work and stretching – I was a bit uneducated and keen. I was hitting good times and excelling in my running but it was a lot of pressure on my body. One injury leads to an imbalance or weakness and this can cause another injury…

Now I’m working my way slowly to building the running back up while also focusing on areas I would never usually focus on like my upper body to help support my legs.

Strength training

To be honest, I can’t even think about past January with running right now. I’m feeling very nervous about the M word in April (*whispers* Paris marathon). It’s not guaranteed I’ll do it. Please, knee, don’t let me down!

In life…

Ben and me are strong and happy πŸ™‚ He is my rock. How he copes with me moaning all the time about running is just unbelievable. He’s a saint. I always say he’s the nice one out of us as he’s just too damn lovely for his own good. I’m the selfish one between us for definite! And I can be sarcastic and cutting at times – something I should work on.

Skiing in February was amazing (wow I can’t believe that was this year??)…


My sister sprogging another lovely little girl in March…


Going on an ahhh-mazing holiday to Mexico…


Not too shabby! I don’t foresee any crazy life events happening this year, just more of the same: family and friend loveliness. And one of my oldest besties having a bambino and another getting married!

I’ve decided I don’t do resolutions. I have goals which I’d like to achieve – things like PBs and races – but I’m focusing instead on what is really important to me:

  • Become injury-free and strong in my running. Wow did you see this coming? This will involve my continued rehab of my current injury and then consistent effort every single week to strengthen my weakness (glutes, hips, hamstrings). Becoming a BALANCED runner.
  • Run a marathon. I want to achieve this SO much this year. It’s my absolute dream. But I’m only content to run a strong and healthy marathon that I’m proud of. If that means waiting, I will just have to wait.
  • Go to the cinema more and have more date nights with Ben. I love films and I love the cinema and I love Ben. This makes sense.

There are smaller things that I want to achieve day-to-day like trying to be less selfish and less sarcastic but I think these will be life-goals πŸ˜‰

Quick fire 2013:

Best film: I think Wreck It Ralph. We really loved watching it.

Best book: The Stephen King book 11/22/63. I knew next to nothing about JFK’s assassination and this book blew my mind. So clever.

Best song: Tom Odell Another Love. Really sad but really lovely. Sit in a dark room and mope to it.

Best race: Without a doubt Cheddar Gorge Half Marathon. No where near my PB but this was an experience I’ll never forget. I loved every second. Body-willing, we’re doing it again this year.

CG run

Best meal: too hard to narrow down so I have top contenders:

Best meals 2013

From left: the amazing meal in the Brazilian all you-can-eat. I wish I had two stomachs. The Caesar salad after the Bristol half marathon. I tell you, nothing tastes as good as running 13.1 miles first. Jamie Oliver turkey Milanese meal after the Reading half. I could eat this every single day (I have eaten it four times). The burger and chips after the Cheddar Gorge half (that relish…oh!) and the Caesar salad at my mum’s surprise birthday meal.

Here’s to more good food, happy family and friends, strong and healthy running and (please!) a successful marathon.

Was 2013 good to you?

Do you make resolutions? What are yours?

What’s your favourite film/movie/song this year?

20 Replies to “Strong and healthy 2014”

  1. Fab post……I have a strong feeling that 2014 is your marathon year! I’m really hoping to focus more on strength work too this year. I’ve really neglected it recently so hopping to get January off to a good start with it.

  2. Love this little recap!!
    I hope that 2014 is a killer year for you! And I’m praying that your knee is better so that you can kick that marathon in the booty!

  3. I am hoping and crossing my fingers so hard that you will be able to run a marathon this year Anna. If anyone deserves to, its you.
    I’m going to try and go to the pictures more this year – just have to work on my tolerance to scary movies that James loves so much!

  4. OMG I have never met anyone else who loves 11/22/63!!!! Every time I recommend it to my friends they shrug it off but I think it’s one of my favorite books ever! I also bought the audio books version and listsen to it while I run sometimes. When I went to Dallas for work this year it was all I could think about!! Looks like you had a fantastic year πŸ™‚ Here’s to an even better (and injury free!) 2014!!

  5. Aww what a lovely post Anna – I really enjoyed this! I don’t really do resolutions either, but I have a few goals to work on – personal, nutrition and fitness related – which I’m going to blog about later this week (I’m a bit slow off the mark there!). I hope 2014 is a happy healthy year for you and Ben and that you continue to make good progress with your recovery πŸ™‚

    1. I’d be tempted to become a member of a cinema but I do worry that we’d waste it….but I love going to the cinema! I just need to curb my pick n mix addiction as well a bit hehe. So expensive!

  6. I predict that 2014 is going to be fab for you and we’ll see you coming back much stronger and more determined! πŸ™‚
    This year it’s all about goals rather than resolutions. We always try and get in one date night each week with no laptops or phones allowed and it’s nice to have that mini break together on the middle of work craziness!

  7. Happy New Year!

    Fingers crossed your injuries from last year will soon be a thing of the past!

    PS – Megs was born in March…. πŸ˜‰

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