I’m not training for a triathlon but…

I’ve been doing some swimming and cycling recently. But not a lot of running. My hip is still sadly niggling me.

I saw my physio last Friday just to check it wasn’t anything serious as I was going into an Anna Panic (as Ben says, Pannakin mode). Ideas of arthritis and stress fractures were floating around my mind. Yes, seriously over-reacting I know. But I do have arthritis in my family…And an over-active brain when it comes to injuries and niggles.

Anyway the physio said I’d just tweaked my groin/hip flexor area and running Netley had aggravated it further and caused my back to tighten up to compensate (I get an ache in the top of my glute/lower back as well). Panic over. He said it really depends on me when I can get back to running – as long as the pain isn’t unbearable I can run. But I’m still taking it very cautiously and not running for the time being.

My lovely friend at my running club gave me a three day free pass to her AMAZING gym which is just around the corner from me so I thought I’d put that to good use over the weekend. The gym has two pools: one inside and one outdoors (yes, in Britain).

On Saturday morning I got up early and headed there for a swim. Bear in mind I haven’t swum in years (ignoring holidays). I rocked up to the pool in my bikini (I have no actual swimsuit), no goggles and no clue. I got into the Medium Lane (there was no slow lane) and started breast stroking. But I worried this might niggle the groin/hip so changed to front crawl. I wear contact lenses so I had to keep my head out of the water. This is not an easy feat when doing front crawl.

Now no disrespect to them, but there were a lot of older, shall we say senior, ladies there in their swim caps, goggles and proper swimsuits. I did feel slightly judged by them and also hugely inferior (if looks could kill…). Evidently, these ladies go every single day and I was encroaching on their territory. The Medium Lane was becoming ridiculous with people walking up and down the lane so I switched to the Fast Lane and was quickly overtaken a lot by some speedy ladies. Oh my poor ego…

I enjoyed about 15 minutes of swimming until I became bored. Up and down. Up and down. But I stuck it out for 50 minutes. The next day I managed 45 minutes – and even ventured into the outdoor pool (now that gets you moving!) and felt my front crawl improve a lot (it helped bringing goggles). I then treated myself to a good 10 mins soak in the Jacuzzi.

After my swim on Saturday I realised I could get to parkrun to see Ben run.IMG_6730

I got there just before 9am and loved the look on Ben’s face as I cheered him and he realised I was there. It was nice to still make parkrun to support – though I looked a little like a drowned rat with my wet hair.

image Ben did a good run, just under 22 minutes. We had a nice cup of tea and chat with some running friends and Ben got on top of his football sticker swapping…

Football stickers swapping

Yes, he is 26 years old.

Monday morning Ben and me got up at 6.10am (ON A BANK HOLIDAY MONDAY – sorry for the caps, but that is early, am I right?) to go for a 30 mile bike ride with a fair number of guys from the running club (or ‘injured’ club as some said as a lot of the people there currently couldn’t run because of injury, myself sadly included I guess).

HERC 26.05.14 bike ride Photo credit – Kelly

Well as you can see I’m one of the few not wearing a jacket. In my running-focused brain I thought I’d get warm on the cycle, even if it rained.

Well the heavens opened up and I was FREEZING. Ben, my loving husband, gave me his jacket though and cycled in just a running t-shirt. Honestly, I don’t know how he survived in the absolute freezing and wet conditions as I was still so cold despite the jacket. He has definitely earnt a few Husband Points!

image Just a little bit hilly…

image image

By about 20 miles though I wanted to be home. I was so cold and wet it just became very difficult to enjoy. Don’t get me wrong, if the weather had been better I’d have loved it. The route was scenic, the hills were tough but satisfying…but being so cold for so long is just not fun. Total time cycling: 2:19:12 though we stopped a few times to regroup.

As soon as we got home I was in the bath with a coffee (again, lovingly made by my husband after he’d had a shower). I just couldn’t get warm. I was also starving. I didn’t have anything before cycling and nothing on route (this is the same for running) but on the last stretch of the ride I started to feel dizzy and weak. Not good at all. Need to be more sensible next time. This is a whole different thing to running!

After a big bowl of porridge and then a proper shower I felt more human. Thankfully we were going to Nando’s later as well with a friend so I could eat my body weight in chicken. The calorie in-out balance was definitely returned to normal by the end of the day 😉

Running, cycling or swimming – which do you prefer? I think we know my answer to this 😉

Are you a fair weather exerciser? I don’t mind running in the rain at all. No problem. But cycling…well not only is it cold but I felt a lot more cautious going downhill as I was scared to slip.

Have you ever felt dizzy when exercising?

Draw a line under it and move on

Hey, hey, hey! How’s things going?

It’s funny, I feel so much more rested when I get up pre-6am than when I do post-7am. How weird is that? Even when I don’t set an alarm my body naturally wakes up around 5am and so I try to fall back asleep and then wake up feeling so groggy. Don’t get my wrong, I don’t leap out of bed with a smile on my face when the alarm goes at *whispers* 5.15am but once I’m up I feel pretty good.

After my run on Sunday I felt my lower back was slightly tight and my outer knee (IT band territory) was feeling slightly niggly. I started to panic: oh my God I’m broken again!!

I saw my physio on Tuesday morning and explained everything to him. I also mentioned about my hard leg workout the day before. He said I’d been a bit stupid. My legs were probably exhausted from the tough workout which had then put more pressure on my back and IT band when I ran… whoops. But he did his thang and said things felt less tight than before and my right leg was a lot stronger again now. He said I wasn’t to worry and that things were heading in the right direction and I could continue to run.


I still need to leave a day between runs and I’m not running over 4 miles. Progress though! So my next run is Thursday 😀 and I can do Parkrun Saturday. Finally!

On to matters of food… I’ve been back in the salad groove as of late (maybe to offset my current cake overload…dear lord, it’s gotten out of control this week!)

Salmon salad Rubbish photo I know

This beast of salad contained pretty much all my favourite foods (except cake…). Tinned salmon, broad beans, two kinds of lettuce, broccoli, roasted butternut squash, beetroot, onion, garlic roasted courgette…oh my life this was so good. I love beastie salads because they take so long to eat and you can really enjoy them. And tinned salmon in my books is so much more superior to fresh or smoke salmon – am I alone in that opinion??

We also tried hummus baked chicken.


I basically just topped chicken breasts with roasted pepper hummus and then baked it in tin foil. It was easier to serve it in the foil as it was a bit messy. Quite a rustic look I like to think… Served with roasted veggies. Ben loved this.

So…let’s talk about the amount of cake I’ve eaten recently. Tuesday, as well as my physio, was also ‘bring a cake to work day’. Well, can you get a better day than that at work?? My lovely work friend was concerned I wouldn’t get any cake because I was in a bit later due to my physio appointment. So she got me a ‘mixed grill’ style selection platter…

IMG_5832OK, so what have we got there? Giant slice of Victoria sponge, underneath that a rather generous slice of baked cheese cake, some rocky road and a Mars bar crispie cake. At first I was flabbergasted by how much she’d gotten me.


Yeah… well it took me two sessions during the day to finish the plate off but it happened. I don’t even want to think how much sugar or how many calories I consumed. And then…later on…I had another cheeky slice of Victoria sponge.

I don’t often feel guilty about the treats I have, but I really felt quite bad for what I’ve eaten. I mean let’s be honest, it was a lot. I also woke up this morning feeling quite bloated and not great. Spin was a joy I can tell you. Ha!

But I drew a line under it and today and for the rest of the week it’s all about sensible choices and healthy nutritious meals. I don’t eat rubbish and cake every day and I exercise regularly. I eat healthy meals and I only have a crazy blow-out once in a while. I’m not going to starve myself or ramp up my workouts. Life is not about punishing yourself.

Then Saturday it’s afternoon tea…shhh.

What do you do when you’ve had a bit of a ‘bad food’ blow-out?

What foods are your naughty go-to foods?

What would be on your ‘mixed grill’ selection platter of cakes?