Getting there…

The plan this week was to slowly ease back into training, but it hasn’t happened. :-( This will be my third week of being ill, and whilst it’s not the end of the world not to be training, it’d be nice to be back to my old self again and able to go out and beast it or just get up and enjoy an easy run.

On Monday morning I did a hills coaching session with one of my super girls. Actually doing it was fine, even though I stepped off the gas a few times: 45 mins of 4 x 3 hills it was. But afterwards, the day after, I rather embarrassingly had sore glutes, the top of my glutes?!

Ha ha. I just haven’t been exercising as much lately, so a little touch of soreness is the shock I get for that.

This bug or viral infection or whatever it is, is making me put my feet up, and perhaps that’s a good thing. To give my body a rest.

In the last three weeks since mid August I’ve done:

Wc11 Aug (sickness):
2 runs, 1 strength, a cool down run and the 10 mile John Lucas Relay (where I pushed it a little more than I should have perhaps.)

Wc18 Aug (sore throat / cough):
A run to the gym and back, Metafit, a nice walk, and some more walking through out the week.

Wc25 Aug (cough / lack of sleep):
1 coaching run and plenty of walking.

I know I need to recover and get better, but there’s this little voice in my head telling me I should get back to training, go out for that run, get back to normal. But the sensible voice replied saying I need more time out and another wee lie in and day of rest will do no harm.

The cough is one of those annoying tickly ones that sounds a bit like I’m laughing when I try to hold it in. :-/ I can’t wait til I don’t have it any more.

Wednesday was quite good as I just went for a nice 20 minute walk in the sun (plus my usual 10 min walk to work) before work. I got my sun days and exercise for the day and started the day well. :-)

On top of the cough which I think seems to be clearing up (fingers crossed) my sleep hasn’t been too great again. It’s been ok, but a few nights where the cough has disturbed me.

So instead of focussing on exercising, I’m going to focus on eating well, getting better and getting plenty of sleep and relaxing time instead this weekend. And I’ll see how things are next week. Let’s kick this strange bug into orbit. :-)

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Greg does clever stuff with GPS – Yes?

I have to say… out of the interest of balance, I almost feel like I should do a NO one, or find a Garmin / GPS map that writes NO… but I’ll share this with you anyway…

Here’s a rather clever thing my friend Greg did with his Garmin in the streets of Glasgow:

Glasgow says Yes

Must have taken a lot of thought!

I still haven’t told anyone how I’m voting, but I’m glad to say I’ve made up my mind and am looking forward to placing my vote. :-)

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Strawberry Paleo Oatmeal

This looks tasty (from greatist):

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Yesterday I asked some of my Facebook readers to let me know what breakfasts they enjoyed…

I’m liking berries, Greek yoghurt and oatcakes with a sprinkling of nuts (flaked almonds) just now, and here were their breakfasts:

Anna’s one looks like lunch to me, but there’s nothing wrong with having salad type food for breakfast. If Dean Karnezez does it, then we can too.

Some ideas anyway. :-)

And here are some more from Kaizenactive’s Ultimate Fatloss Guide …

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It’s been hard to get my head around the fact that 124, or the amount I weigh, isn’t the important thing. Over the last few months I’ve been trying to see how what I do (eat, sleep, exercise) impacts my body composition, and weight).

When I started out, way back in June 2008, I was 147lbs… And after 6 months of exercising and being careful with what I ate, I got down to 135lbs. My ‘ideal’ weight for my height. Then I started running longer and training for marathons and the weight fell off. After a while I went down to 124lbs and without really trying (except for my ways of living: training and eating to fuel my body), I maintained it for a few years.

The actual numbers aren’t important what I’m looking at now is the fluctuation of my weight and body fat (more important) based on what I do – eat, sleep, train.

Since June this year for some reason, after training for and doing the Skye Half Marathon, my weight went up to around 128lbs and although I made an effort to eat better and be active, it didn’t tend to go anywhere near my usual 124lbs.

I started weighing myself daily on my wifi scales, just to see the results of what I was doing. (A bit excessive I hear you say, but it was simply to give me an outcome of what I was doing, and to make some nice graphs too). Here are the results:

As you can see from the weight graph above, what I did in June into July (namely changing what I ate slightly, and changing my exercise), helped me to have an overall downward trend for a few weeks.

Then in July one thing after another happened in July and life took over a bit. Now in August I’ve been struck down with some sort of viral thing and have needed to step back from training to allow myself time to recover.

Weight isn’t the be all and end all though. If you look at the more important graph, my body fat that the scales has measured shows a different graph. A longer dip into July (when I was training more consistently) and a slight increase into August (when I’ve not been training as regularly).

I feel fine in myself. I feel like there’s been progress. Maybe not that much, but apart from this cough or whatever it is, I still feel strong and like I want to focus on my training again once I get better.

Now here’s why body fat measurement is more important than weight. We want to burn fat, get rid of fat, not necessarily weight.

So if we look at my measurements 2 months apart, you’ll see that I’ve lost a measly 0.5lbs. But 26.5% of 128.5lbs is 34lbs.

25% of 128lbs is 32lbs.

So although I’ve only lost 0.5lbs of weight or more or less stayed the same weight, I’ve lost 2lbs of body fat. :-)

This is why weight doesn’t matter and why I’ll be focussing on getting the fat mass chart to change and hopefully take a downward trend.

Burn the fat, feed the muscle, through 1: mind 2: food, 3: cardio, 4: strength. That’s what I’ve been doing, and that’s what I hope to doing the next 5 weeks before my holiday. Eat good food to fuel my training, and hopefully reduce my body fat %. Getting better is first on my list though.

I’ll continue to measure my progress daily, and focus more in the next 5 weeks to see if I can make a concerted effort to see some change.

If you haven’t read this book, it’s well worth it. :-)

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Making good choices

When you’re watching what you’re eating for health or weight loss reasons, it can be hard to know exactly what’s best to eat when you’re going out for dinner, or even what you eat day to day.

I always try to choose the best most natural thing to eat, and sometimes have the occasional blow out and just eat what I want (ice cream, mars bar etc). But then I’m at a weight where I don’t need to lose weight. I’m maintaining my weight with mainly healthy eating and activity.

I tend to earn my food, so if I know I’m exercising a lot I’ll slow myself treats or to eat more. There’s got to be a balance though.

We went out for lunch today, and happened across a nice Italian restaurant. The menu was full of the usual: bread, pasta, pizza… But I opted for things on the menu which didn’t involve any of them.

For a starter I had calamari…

And for a main I had a chicken and prune salad …

Safe choices, tasty, and mostly natural. I had water to drink and really enjoyed it all.

I could have had pizza, or pasta, but I went for a tasty salad instead. I did that the last Italian I was in and it was good too.

You can make good choices too. Fresh, natural foods where possible.

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My 5 week plan …

It’s 5 full weeks until my holiday to San Diego and after the last two weeks of feeling sick and having a sore throat / cough, I’m keen to get back into training. But only when I’m ready. I plan to start training again next week, but I’ll see how I am. I’ll try it out tomorrow see how I am.

September is going to be a busy month for me. Hen night in Inverness one weekend, then a wedding the next and a wedding dance the next. Lots of travel and days out. Life might get in the way doing need to get a plan (and I need to start practicing walking in my new shoes too!) ;-)

For my training, I want to do cardio, either swims or runs, and strength training. And I’ll have the odd coaching session to replace some of my own cardio I’d think.

I’m away to Edinburgh a few days in september too, so I’ll take those days as rest days… but here’s the general plan outside of that:

Mon: AM Swim / PM Run

Tue: AM Strength / PM Rest

Wed: AM Swim or run / PM Run

Thu: AM Strength / PM Rest

Fri: AM Swim / PM Rest

Sat: Strength & Run / Rest

Sun: Rest / Swim Teaching

2-3 strengths (Tue, Thu, Sat),
3 cardio (Mon, Wed, Fri)
1-2 rests (Sun +)
1-2 coaching. (tbc?)

Here’s the main theme of the weeks;

5 – 25/8 – Back into it
4 – 1/9 – Ed on Tues, Inv on Sat
3 – 8/9 – Ed on Mon, Wedding Sat
2 – 15/9 – Inv on Sat (dance)
1 – 22/9 – normal
0 – 29/9 – Holiday

And here’s the detail:

5 – 25/8 – Back into it
Mon: 4M run (coaching)
Tue: Strength
Wed: Swim / Run
Thu: Strength
Fri: Swim
Sat: Strength & Run
Sun: Rest

4 – 1/9 – Ed on Tues, Inv on Sat
Mon: Strength PM: Run
Tue: Rest (Edinburgh)
Wed: Strength
Thu: Swim / Run
Fri: Run / Travel
Sat: Inverness / Hen night
Sun: Rest

3 – 8/9 – Ed on Mon, Wedding Sat
Mon: Rest (Edinburgh)
Tue: Strength PM: Run
Wed: Swim
Thu: Strength
Fri: Run / Travel
Sat: Rest Wedding
Sun: Rest

2 – 15/9 – Inv on Sat (dance)
Mon: Swim PM: Run
Tue: Strength PM: Run
Wed: Swim
Thu: Strength
Fri: Run
Sat: Travel Inverness dance
Sun: Rest

1 – 22/9 – 1 week before hols
Mon: Swim PM: Run
Tue: Strength PM: Run
Wed: Swim
Thu: Strength PM: Run
Fri: Run
Sat: Strength PM: Run
Sun: Rest

0 – 29/9 – Holiday!

Here’s hoping I can do it, and if I’m not better next week, I’ll take another week out and see how I am.

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