Injury update and the plank challenge continues

Hey guys. Well I certainly feel more positive now.

I saw my physio yesterday and she checked my knee out, bending and moving it, watching me squat and walk on the spot. Thankfully there’s no structural damage. Whew! Apparently my knee cap is moving slightly to one side when I bend it and this causes friction and discomfort.

She massaged my leg and then ultra sounded the affected area to treat the inflammation. She said I was definitely doing the right thing not doing the marathon. It’s a huge undertaking on a healthy body, let alone one that’s a big niggly like mine at the moment. But she said I should be fine for the Paris marathon. In fact she was very confident I’d be more than OK by January.

I’m going back to her next week for another session and she told me not to run in the meantime. To be honest, I am so focused on repairing myself and wanting to do well next year that I’m OK with that. Yes it’s rubbish, but I’ve got the bigger picture in my mind.

I am fully aware that when I properly getting back into running in January I will be slower. Long runs will be harder. But I have a base fitness and muscle memory, which I will try and maintain through regularly rowing, bike work and lots of strength training. Let’s be honest, I have years ahead of me to work on PBs 😉

It doesn't always work out


The plank challenge is getting very real over here. I am now able to do a 5min 15second plank. I can’t even believe it!! I now have to have music to get me through. I made Ben film me as I was convinced people (my fellow plank challengers at work) wouldn’t believe me. I probably won’t put that on the blog as, let’s be honest, it’s a pretty boring video!! Ben got a bit narked just sat there filming as well haha.

He did get on board though and did a 2min 30second plank as well. I am seriously impressed.

Amazingly my dad also attempted the plank challenge. Bless him, he’s not fit at all and has continually battled with his weight. So imagine my surprise when he managed a full one minute plank!!

Dad plank

I’m so proud of him. He said he felt muscles working that he didn’t even know he had!

And in the spirit of November almost at an end…here is what my lovely husband currently looks like with his Movember attempt.

Ben's Movember

Yep, that’s the man I married and love. The Mexican porn star lookalike. God help me.

Physiotherapist, osteopath or chiropractor – have you seen any? Technically my physio is an osteopath, I fully trust her opinion and guidance and she knows my running history.

Has anyone you know been affected by the Movember epidemic? I can’t wait for December…

Have you take time off running or a specific exercise what was it like getting back into it?

Friday Favourites

Happy Friday! I cannot believe how quickly time is flying. I’m started to get those pre-Christmas panics (you know the ones…cards, presents, food, decorations). But it’s still October. Whew.

I thought I’d do a post on some stuff I’m loving lately.

Treats in the office:

Although it’s always sad when someone leaves, I do fully appreciate them buying cakes for us to indulge in. Or having a wife that bakes cake and has leftovers!

Office treats

Clockwise: Halloween themed cupcake, oat and raisin cookie, caramel cupcake

Delicious! Nothing like cake to brighten up a day in the office.

Ben embracing the plank challenge:

I’ve been trying to do planks every other day, usually in an evening in my PJs just before bed. Ben sits on the sofa watching TV muttering some weak words of encouragement (“come on, it’s not that hard”). So when I’d collapsed into a heap on the floor I turned and challenge him to do a plank. I scoffed that he wouldn’t manage a minute.

Ben planking

Challenge accepted and accomplished! He proved me very wrong. He did a very successful minute plank. He refused to go further than a minute though. Apparently proving me wrong was enough.

Doing stretches in the ladies’ toilet:

Yeah it sounds weird. Yeah it is weird. I need to get these stretches in and so I’m squeezing them in wherever I can. Nothing major, just hip flexor stretches and pendulum kickbacks.


I live stretch in fear of someone walking in and seeing me though…Not like I haven’t already got a reputation at work of being a little bit strange (mug incident).

Slow cooker meals:

I’ve been enjoying a fair few slow cooker meals recently and I’m loving it.

Slow cooker

It does involve a little preparation either the night before or in the morning, but it saves so much time in an evening. Perfect for when I’m back late. More on my favourite recipes to come!

Running in thunder storms:

My eight mile run on Tuesday evening began with some scattered bits of lightening which was all very exciting. On mile four, however, the heavens opened up and it was a crazy downpour!

Running in the rain

Sorry that the video is a bit rubbish! You can see how hard it was raining in the puddles though. When I got home I was soaked and ready for a lovely hot shower.

Running in the rain

Doing my best drowned rat impersonation

But other than getting drenched, it was a good run. I kept it fairly easy running 8.30-8min/miles. I wanted to ease gently back in to it after my niggle reoccurrence and also with the race on Sunday.

My best friend and worst enemy:

I recently got a new foam roller as I found my smooth one wasn’t quite ironing out all my kinks. So I upgraded to this bad boy:


A Trigger Point foam roller. It has ridges in it to mimic a person’s hand, attempting to emulate a sports massage. I love it. It really does get into your muscles and work hard. Plus it’s nice and small to tuck away easily. Now if only I could take this to work and use it in the ladies’…

Cold weather running gear:

I can run in the cold no problem. I get warm quickly and it doesn’t bother me. All except my hands. They never get warm on runs. Last winter I just used regular gloves and they were sort of OK but a nightmare when I wanted to do something on my iPod. Now I have some great running-specific gloves with a thumb area that works on the iPod/phone screen!!

Nike Running Gloves

Plus they just look cool and aren’t bulky. In fact I feel a bit like a magician in them Open-mouthed smile

And here’s some random links for your viewing pleasure:

What things are you loving lately?

What’s your essential workout item?

Foam rollers: do you use them? I can’t live without mine now.

Pyjama plank time

Thanks for all the interesting comments for yesterday’s post. I really hope I didn’t offend anyone. That wasn’t my intention. Nor was it to say clean eating was wrong. Clean eating is what you want it to be, in whatever form that might be. Not eating processed food, not eating meat, not eating grains etc. My point was just that I get a bit narked with some of the attitudes around it when people become a bit tunnel versioned and dogmatic about it all. And that eating a bit of rubbish now and again won’t kill you Winking smile

Moving on! Not that I want to brag…but I’m off on holiday in TWO WEEKS time. To Mexico!

But I have a confession. I’m slightly concerned with what I’ll look like in a bikini. Not in the way you might think though. I have some embarrassing tan lines going on at the moment. With all the summer running I’ve been doing and wearing my shorts and vests…well, it ain’t great. Oh I’m going to be a hottie on those first couple of days.


Oh I look all smiley there, but now I wish I’d run in a bikini…[totally joking]

Every other day I am still doing my usual injury prevention routine (clams, side leg lifts, foam rolling) and have also added core work in because you can never do too much core! I amazed myself by doing a three minute plank the other night. In my pjs…naturally.

PJ plank

No idea where that came from (the plank, not the pj’s– they came from my dresser). I think it was because Ben was watching TV at the time and I could distract myself. And his occasional “come on, keep it up, don’t be lazy” comment helped as well. Love him.

Then last night after running club (a crazy off-road through the countryside run of 8 miles) I spent a lot of time foam rolling my kinks out. My groin still doesn’t feel amazing if I’m honest. But foam rolling is definitely helping.

Foam rolling distraction

Especially will Grease in the background.

Anyway, random story time. I overheard a conversation at the gym last night that made me sad. I was in the toilets just having a final pee before circuits (too much info? I’m setting the scene!) and I overheard two girls talking. One of them said to the other “Right, we are not leaving until both of us do 400 calories. Our target though is 450 calories”.

I’m all for people having targets and it’s great people are excising but I just thought that was a bit sad. Exercise shouldn’t be just about burning a set number of calories. OK, it isn’t going to be a daytrip to the zoo. It’s tough and I hate it sometimes, but there are very frequent moments – a lot in running – where I feel ‘kick ass’. Like I’m doing something amazing and I’m hard core. In reality I’m not, I know that. But I feel good. I know that this isn’t going to be the case for everyone but maybe it’s because they haven’t found their kick ass thing yet? For example, when we were warming down from circuits, Zumba had just started. 90% of the class were smiling. And they had some serious moves. They were kick ass.

What makes you feel ‘kick ass’? Going for a long run or a fast speedy Parkrun makes me feel unstoppable. I love how strong I feel, like I’ve just climbed a mountain.

What strength and core exercises do you do? I like planks, squats and lunges. Pretty standard.

What is your aim when you workout? A specific time, number of calories, goal distance, number of reps, exhaustion…? Winking smile

Sweet Sunday and WIAW

So last post I mentioned that I had very busy Saturday with lots of wedding arrangements and having lunch out with my mum and sister. Sunday was equally busy as well. We had our ceremony rehearsal at the church in the morning after the Sunday service, and all the ‘main players’ (ushers, bridesmaids, etc.) met us there and we had a dry run-through.

It was quite surreal and we joked all the way through it. Like my dad and me did a funny walk together up the aisle. People objecting to our marriage. Then when Ben was repeating his vows I kept winking at him or pulling faces so he kept laughing. It was very funny and the vicar joined in as well. It made things a lot less scary!

Then from there we went straight to our reception venue to go through the final details and timings. So I feel a lot more ready now. I know what’s going on and that everything is pretty much sorted.

Then came the fun part of the day; buying our sweets for our candy buffet. We looked in old vintage-style sweet shops but it was all a but too expensive (but I enjoyed looking anyway – anyone else get excited by things like that??)


So then we went to more cheap shops to get better value for our money.


And we bought just a few things…


Hehe. Yum!

And then it was a case of deciding which jars which sweets would go into.

PicMonkey Collage1

This was fairly difficult as I didn’t want to open any sweets yet so they would keep fresh for as long as possible…so it might need tweaking on Friday when I’m sorting out last minute details.


The doilies are great! I love the vintage look. And the paper plates will be for cupcakes that my friend is baking me for the day.


So it’s going to be a plethora of sweet goodies…I’m so pleased with how it’s turning out! I’m absolutely the least creative person, so this is pretty good for me. I got all the jars from charity shops so the costs have been kept down.


And I’m chuffed with the table favours too. I bought the paper bags from Amazon for like next to nothing and got some ribbon from Hobbycraft. Each table has a sweet name (like Jelly Babies or Liquorice Allsorts) and then each person on that table gets a bag full of that sweet. Top table gets a mixture of everything (win!).


So that was Sunday! Now on to WIAW. Thank you Jenn for hosting as always. Check out her blog to view what other bloggers have been eating (all very interesting!!)


As always, I’ll show you a bit of a mix of meals as Wednesday isn’t usually that exciting in terms of meals…

Breakfast is usually the same every day (apart from random pancake days!):

18.09 porridge

I mix about 1/2 cup of oats with 1tsp of wheatgrass and a sprinkle of ground flaxseed (a new addition!) and then unsweetened almond milk. Nuke in the microwave for 3.30 mins (stirring half-way) and it’s good to go!


Fills me up really well until lunch time (which is like a good 4.5 hours later!).

Then lunchtime [at work I usually have a tuna salad or homemade veggie chilli that I batch make at the weekends]. But I’ll show you a lunch I had at the weekend which rocked my world. Home-made hummus:


Chickpeas, lots of herbs (mixed and coriander), lots of minced garlic, lemon juice and a big dollop of tahini paste.


Then whizzed up in a food processor.


I had this with salad, chicken and one of my new favourite chutneys (Cheeky Monkey – banana chutney!)


Lovely. Really sweet and flavoursome, which complimented the hummus perfectly!

Dinner (from Friday night) was hands down the best meal of the week! Cauliflower pizza. The base was made with grated cauliflower, one egg and a big blob of goat’s cheese. I baked this for a few minutes, then added a tomato base…

14.09 pizza

Then I threw on lots of toppings (more goat’s cheese, chicken, mushrooms & courgette) and baked for about 8 mins.

14.09 pizza1

Doesn’t look like pizza, granted (except that it’s round) but it tasted gooood and I was stuffed.

Snacks…well I thought I’d show you my every day dessert after dinner:


Two chopped apples (always chopped, never whole).

With the wedding coming up I’ve not been that adventurous with my cooking (there are quite a lot of repeat offenders) but during my honeymoon I hope to have some very exciting eats!!

Workouts have been fairly standard. I did manage a quick interval run on Sunday (2 miles) despite not thinking I’d get anything in. And then yesterday I ran another 2 miles and did some core workout. I can now hold a plank for 3 mins, woohoo! Abs of steel! *Cough* Well, moderately firm.

And outfit of the day [dress from Warehouse]:

19.09 outfit

Important meeting in London today, so the smart dress is out in full force!

Happy WIAW all! Happy eating [and viewing]!