I’m going to Sleep

I posted the other day about how I’m going to try to get between 8.5-9.5 hours sleep a night.

Last night wasn’t good sleep wise and I’m going to do something about it to get back to normal. As a result I feel pretty crappy. :-/

I’ve been listening to this audiobook, Night School, and it’s just reinforcing to me, how important sleep is and how I need to get it nailed to be healthy.

Sleep is possibly more important than anything else (training, nutrition etc), so I’m going to get it right. I hate lying awake for hours trying to get to sleep.

Last night after along sleep on Tuesday night, I woke at 1am and didn’t get back to sleep until about 5am. I got about 6 hours sleep, but needed to reset my body clock for going back to work on Friday, so got up for half 8 / 9am.

Today I’m going to fix it.

– A relaxing day, no caffeine after noon.
– A few walks (no naps!)
– Reading and spending time wi Fit Girl.
– Later on, before bed, a bath with this lavender bath essence.

– Then some of this lavender spray too.
(And no gadgets / blogging after 830pm.)

Hopefully I’ll get to sleep and stay asleep until morning when I’ll start my work routine (and an early morning run too).

Fingers crossed it all works. Jet lag be gone!

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8.5-9.5 hours sleep REQUIRED

I took my time off as a chance to do a wee sleep test. For two weeks, for most of the time, we didn’t set an alarm and ended up waking up usually when we were ready.

When I’m working and in my normal routine, my usual hours of sleep are around 10-11pm to around 6-7am. So I usually get 7-8 hours sleep.

Sometimes less (when I can’t sleep or get up early to train), or sometimes more (at weekends when I sometimes don’t set an alarm.

When i was on holiday this time, I used my garmin vivoactive to simply record how many hours I slept.

They say 6-8 hours is ideal, but there’s a test you can do to check what sleep YOU need.

What you do is spend 7-14 days without waking up with an alarm and take the average to see how much sleep you need.

You should spend the first few days getting out of your old sleep routine, and into your natural rhythm.

So that’s what I did, and the results were hardly surprising – I need more than 7-8 hours sleep. (sleep on holiday was magic by the way).

In 10 days, I slept for 91 hours (including 1 nap). That’s an average of 9 hours a night (and didn’t include the day I did sky diving, or the nap I had after that).

Or in the last 7 days, I slept for 62 hours, or an average or 8:51.

I’ll take 9 hours sleep as my ideal then.

So based on that, my sleep times of 10pm – 6am is too short (8 hours).

Fit Girl wakes at 6am, and I’m awake then (and like to train between 630-8am), so I can’t really change my wake up time regularly.

But is it any wonder I’ve been struggling to get up to train early?

So what are my plans to get 9 hours sleep?

I already tend to go to bed pretty early (in bed by 10pm, with 10:22 (22:22) as a warning time to try to be asleep by.

Simple, once I get back into a rhythm at home, if I want to be at my best, here’s the plan:

1. In bed for 9pm, aiming to be asleep for 9:30pm (or before, warning time 21:21).
2. Set a daily alarm on my vivoactive to remind me it’s time to put the devices away and get to bed: 20:30. 3. Charge iPhone (& electronics) downstairs instead of in the bedroom. 4. Read instead of being on Facebook / online.
5. Chart sleep and loosely aim for 8.5-9.5 hrs sleep a night on average.

Finally, I’m reading this book just now:

Night School: Wake up to the Power of Sleep by Richard Wiseman. If ever you want to know why sleep is so important, give it a read.

Oh and if you’re not sure if naps are s good idea, think again. Read the book if you’re interested to find out why. (I LOVE my naps!)

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Time to come home…

I’ve had a good two weeks out… walking and exploring lots, no running, no training, and eating whatever I wanted. Good fun had. :-) I’ve had a great time.

I have no idea what the scale will say when I’m back (and I don’t really care)… but what I do know is that I’m going to ease back into training when I’m back, then in June and July I’m going to build my training back up again (see plan below).


This week, I’ll start up running again (Thursday, Friday, Sunday – little easy ones)… and on Saturday I’ll play in the gym for a bit. Light weights. Maybe I’ll rest Friday, depending on how I’m feeling.

I’m going to mix up what I’m eating too, I’m hopefully going to be eating more, to support my training. More carbs anymore fruit and veg most probably.

Jet lag usually breaks me … we’re leaving Vancouver at 9pm tonight, so I’ll try to sleep on the plane… But then we get in to Heathrow at about 1pm tues, which may be about 5 in the morning in my head. Then we’ll travel up to Glasgow where it’ll be about 430pm Tues when we get in.

I have no idea how to get over jet lag except for SLEEP and set my watch to home time as soon as I get on the plane. We’ll see.

Anyway, I’ve had a good break and I’m looking forward to getting back to simple enjoyable things when I’m back (eat, train, sleep, smile, have fun).

Anyway. I’m up for pancakes for breakfast today. Yahoo.

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Granola for breaky…

I’m going to mix up my breakfast when I get back from my holidays.

I was going to make overnight oats (and I still might a few days a week), but I thought I’d make done granola and have it with berries and Greek yoghurt (perhaps easy on the sugar / honey / maple syrup – getting the sugar from the berries)..

Here are two granola recipes I’ve come across which I’ll make a mix of:



Something along the lines of:

300g oats
50g sunflower seeds
50g pumpkin seeds
50g chia seeds
100g flaked almonds
50g coconut flakes
2 tbsp coconut oil
2 tbsp crunchy peanut butter
50mls maple syrup
50mls honey

Handful of blueberries / raspberries (added when serving).
Greek yoghurt (added when serving).

I’ll follow one if the methods above to cook it as a big batch, then serve it with blueberries (or raspberries) and Greek yoghurt).

Do you have a good granola or overnight oats recipe you’d like to share? If so, please comment (and I’ll try it).

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I’ve been thinking whilst I’m on holiday… what’s one of the most important thing to me… ?

One of the most important things to me (that I don’t take for granted) is my health / being healthy. I want to be a healthy and happy athlete. :-)

I’ll go into this in a bit more detail, my Why I want to do this, and my How and my What I’ll do to support it, but in the meantime, here’s some lines to live by:

H is for Healthy – healthy body, healthy mind, healthy eating, healthy life.

E is for Eating Well – optimally fuel and hydrated for health and performance.

A is for Activity – being active with exercise and non exercise activity (15k steps a day avg).

L is for Learning – always learning and reading to improve understanding and self.

T is for Training and Recovery – including running, walking strength, rest and a good sleep routine.

H is for Happy and Helping people – doing things that make me happy and helping people too.

Y is for Yes – I can do this, and so can you too. :-)

Finally, if you haven’t read, Start with Why, by Simon Sinek, I’d recommend it. :-D

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Summer Training Plan 2015

I’m on my holidays just now, but before I went away I got together a training plan to get me back into training.

I’m going to focus more on running, 3-4 run days a week, maybe more runs if I do a couple (or 3) a day (close to the Thunder Run 24 HR run).

I’m training towards the Thunder Run 24 at the end of July (2 months training, building UK my mileage, fitness and endurance)…

…and then the Loch Ness marathon at the end of September (2 more months continuing my build and getting in my long runs too).

Here’s my weekly plan, fitting in 3-5 runs, 2 strength and / or HIIT sessions and 1-2 rest days.

Mon: Rest
Tue: Intervals or Hill runs
Wed: Lower Strength / HIIT
Thu: 1 / 2 or 3 runs
Fri: Fast finish run (or rest)
Sat: Upper Strength / HIIT
Sun: Long run

Here’s the daily plan, (I’ll be using heart rate for most of my running training.)

Mon: Rest day

Tue: Intervals or Hills

Wed: Lower Strength

Thu: Base run or 2 or 3 runs a day

Here’s the 2 or 3 runs a day (and some fast finishes):

Fri: Fast Finish

Sat: Upper Strength

Sun: Long Run

Or long run fast finish

My strength days will be Wednesday and Saturday. I was doing strength training 3 times a week, but it’ll take s back seat now that I’ll be focussing more on running.

Lower weights on Wednesday, and Upper weights on Saturday before long run Sunday (I don’t want sore legs before that). This is the sort of HIIT I could do:

Or even as simple as, 4-5 exercises, repeated:

1. Squat or box jumps
2. Sledgehammer or KB Swing
3. Press up or Mountain Climbers
4. High Pull or Plank Walk Ups
5. Clean n Press left / right

Something along those lines. :-)

I’m back at the end of May and I’ll restart my training in the first week in June. In the meantime I’m enjoying taking some time out on holiday in the sun. :-D

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Sky diving in Las Vegas…

It was a nice day for a Sky Dive in Las Vegas today. We were up early and picked up at 7am.

I have to admit I did have butterflies for a bit beforehand… and the waiting around didn’t help much. But I was up for it.

We did our sky diving with Las Vegas Extreme Sky diving. I jumped out the plane with Warren, and Fit Girl jumped out with a guy called Brian.

See the elevation chart, we flew up to around 15,200 feet… and there were three tandem jumps happening. Fit Girl was first out and was surprisingly calm and controlled.

The next person jumped, then it was my turn… We went up to the opening in the plane, I looked up to the sun, tucked my legs under and then we jumped.

It was scary as anything but I was trying to take everything in…. Free falling for about half of the way… then Warren realised the parachute (thankfully). We went around and around a bit… It was cool. Still taking everything in.

Then not far from the ground… I started to feel sick…. Oh no…water rush and everything… I told Warren, but I managed to keep it down. When we landed I sat on the ground and was sick, just a little. Lol

It was good fun, and I’m glad I did it – but now I just need to stop feeling sick. :-)

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