What is your why – and setting goals…

Having a good reason to train, exercise, be active or change things up to be a better version of you is important. Your why… your reason to get up early and train before breakfast, or your reason to do what others don’t with your nutrition or exercise… to have a good reason, or a good why… is to help you to be successful at it.

And it doesnt just apply to training… it could apply to any part of life… family, career, finances… setting goals and having a reason or why to achieve them, can be a good way to get things done and change your life for the better.

Here’s a way to start thinking about your why, your reason for doing it…and I’ve answered why deep down I’m on the health and fitness train…

1. What’s your why for fitness? Why is it worthwhile?To be healthy and fit, and to feel good. It helps me be the best version of me. It’s worthwhile as it makes me happy and I feel fortunate to be able to do it. I also get to spend time with nice people I like.

2. Why is it important to you? How does it benefit you?
It is important to me as I want to make sure I’m healthy, fit and well. I also enjoy the social support I get and being able to help others achieve their goals. It benefits me in many ways, sometimes not obvious and taken for granted – health, wellness, endorphins, perspective from others, achievement, reward from helping others.

3. Why do those things matter to you?
Helping others brings me a lot of reward and it’s important for me to be fit enough to run 10+ miles if I’m coaching someone to help them to do the same (or more). It’s also important for me to learn how to strength train properly and lose weight / build muscle so that I can help others do the same. And it’s a great achievement having built strength / achieved goals, or being able to run an event or long distance.

4. What makes it so special that you will choose to keep doing it – what is your why?

It’s become a way of life… a habit… a feel good factor. My partner does it too which helps, and I’ve set up a great gym on my doorstep so I can use it whenever I want. And being able to lace up and go out for a run (long or short) is such a privilege, and I hope to continue to be well enough to do it a long time from now.

What are your goals?
1. Consistently train so I’m fit and healthy – strength & running & good sleeps.
2. Train for the Glasgow half marathon at end of September.
3. To look at and do something with my career and and see where it can take me.

You get the idea… then once you have your goals – which should be positive and talk about what you want to do… not about what you want to stop or lose (ie weight)…now have a think about and write down how you’ll achieve your goals.

Will you get in touch with a friend and ask them to go walking or running with you? Will you ask your partner to join you on this journey? Will you get a coach or PT? WIll you get a training plan? What destructive behaviours will you stop doing?

Take it bit by bit – don’t change too much all at once. I’ve put three goals for me above… but you could just do one… or two maybe. Don’t let it overwhelm you, and if you can, let people you trust know about them and ask if you can lean on them for support.

It’s not a question of will power or how you can stop doing something you know is destructive, it’s about becoming the person who says no because they want to. Because your why is more important than anything that will power will break.

To achieve your goals – ask yourself these questions:

1. What will you start doing?
2. What will you stop doing?
3. What will you continue to do?
4. Who will you get support, advice or accountability from to achieve them?
5. What has worked for you in the past?

6. Is there anything in your way to stop you achieving your goals?
6a. If so, how can you work around them or overcome them?

7. How will you measure your progress?
8. What will success or the best version of you look like?

Finally, the last thing to think about is what do you see yourself as now?

Going back 10 years, I was overweight and had a pretty crappy routine. I binged alcohol too much (but was apparently having fun doing it). I was a typical Scottish under 30 female… drinking most weekends, wasting my money and time on what was fun at the time. I’m reminded of myself then and I think of ‘Drunk Lorn’ or ‘Overweight Lorn’.

I was likely having a good time, but I wasn’t very healthy and I hadn’t found my why.

And what would you like to see yourself as in a years time?

Now, 10 years on I’ve made exercise and training a major part of my life. I signed up for and trained for events, learned about how to train to be the best I can be and to achieve fitness goals I’d set myself. I raised money for charity along the way. I lost about 2 stone and turned my body from an overweight lump, to a fit and healthy athlete and coach.

Now I’m ‘Lorn the Athlete’.. or ‘Lorn the Coach’ – and I live my life by that. I think like a fit person, I think about food as a fuel, to help me recover, and sleep to help me recover and get a balance. I still eat what I want but I have a better balance and I’m able to stop doing things if I choose to and if I give myself a good reason for it. (ie alcohol, Diet Coke, coffee). I monitor my progress, do updates on here, keep a track of how I’m doing with numbers and I make sure I take rest, recovery and holidays / time out.

Athletes and coaches can be role models, so I try to live my life hopefully by setting an example… helping others to see that it can be done. I still have fun and I try to get a balance… which means ice creams and burgers are not off the menu, but I’m careful to get a good balance between food, nutrition, activity, rest and fun.

Decide what would you like to be in a years time… and go be it…. now.
Give yourself a persona, a way that you want others to start seeing you. Start now.

– A fit and healthy Mum or Dad, who is a role model for their kids? Why not?

– A runner who is fit and healthy enough to run a 10k, marathon or half marathon? Why not?

– Create your goal/s, and your reasons for achieving your goals…
– Learn, plan and get support and help from others.
– Answer the questions above, and get started. Get it done. Make it happen.

What are you waiting for?

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Wk32 into Wk33 nutrition & progress

I was pleased with the amount of running I got done last week, 4 runs including a long run before work, an effort session and two easier runs = 26 miles. I didn’t do a Strength session through the week as I opted for rear or running instead but I’ll get one done later today.

Here’s what I did:

Mon: Rest
Tue: 6.3M incl 3x1M effort
Wed: 3.2M wi FG
Thu: 10M & 4M walk into town and back
Fri: Rest
Sat: 6.5M wi FG
Sun: Bike & Strength

4 runs (26M), 1 strength, 2 Rest

Next week I’m away to Aberdeen from Wednesday to work from there and visit my Dad so I’ve rejigged things around this, and might rest / walk on Saturday instead of train, but we’ll see.

Mon: 5M Hill Run / Kelvingrove stairs
Tue: 5k wi FG
Wed: Bike & Strength
Thu: Rest
Fri: 5M Run
Sat: Strength or walk
Sun: 10-15M wi Jen & Glynis

Nice thing about being up there is that I’ve got in touch with Jen who lives in Ellon and connected with me via my Facebook pages years ago. I’ll do 10-15 miles with her and Glynis next Sunday early, in Ellon. 👍🏻

They’re training for an ultra, and Glynis is amazing me with her current streak of over 500 days running! (I couldn’t / wouldn’t be able to do that!)

If I keep going like this with my running, the frequent running including long runs should help me get to my 110 mile target (or more) for August. Yas.

I’ve been busy making some plans for the coming months, and hopefully it’ll mean that I keep on track with my training to keep me going.

Sleep was ok last week but could have been better. Maybe this week will be better.

My weight and body fat has reduced too, likely a result in the increase in running and trying to not eat like a greedy whatever… Maybe even down to less strength training = less mass.

Lean mass down 3.4lbs since the start of the year.

I’ve had set things for breakfast and lunch and still had the odd small treat. Eating little and often, fuelling my exercise. I’ve also cut out coffee but I doubt that makes much difference.

Here’s what I’ve been eating roughly:

Breakfast: fruit & nut cereal, blueberries, fayeh 0% fat Greek yogurt, milk and a glass of pineapple juice (fuel & sustenance) Snack: protein yoghurt with berries and granola (plenty protein)
Lunch: chicken, rice and beetroot and a few pop chips. (Energy in smallish portions) Snack: protein bar
Dinner: whatever …
Snack: a bit of chocolate or ice cream if I’ve exercised that day Water first thing and throughout the day.

I have to admit Thursday was a bit of a big long day, 10 miles running and 4 miles walking = about 25-30k steps and it left me feeling pretty hungry the next day.

The resulting deficit and hunger on Friday will likely mean weight loss… so I was sure to rest on Friday and eat a good lunch (stovies from the canteen!) and dinner and rest and recover.

Here’s the difference in 5 months:

2 April: 139.6lbs / 18% body fat
25.2lbs body fat / 114.4lbs other
109.5lbs lbm / 78.4% lbm
76cm / 101cm / 46% wth ratio

9 Aug: 135.9lbs / 17.5% body fat
23.8lbs body fat / 112.1lbs other
107.3lbs lbm / 78.9% lbm
74cm / 98cm / 44% wth ratio

Down -3.7lbs weight / -0.5% body fat
-1.4lbs body fat / -2.2lbs lbm
Waist down 2cm, hips down 3cm

Heading in the right direction.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Wk31 into Wk32 & The Ivy for breakfast

Last week I got 4 good runs in and covered nearly 26 miles. I had two rest days and did a bike and strength session too. I did speedwork on Monday and whilst it felt good at the time, I could feel it in my calves for the next couple of days.

I did a good easy 6.7 miles on Wednesday to round up my July mileage to 95 miles, then 4.5 miles on Thursday and a long 9 miles on Sunday. On Saturday I woke up early and felt good as I didn’t even really need to think to do a strength workout. It just felt right.

Mon 29: 5.4M intervals / 45 mins 8×2:2
Tue: Rest
Wed: 6.7M wi DMc
Thu: 4.5M wi FG
Fri: Rest
Sat: Bike & Runner’s Strength
Sun: 9M

4 runs (25.6M), 1 strength, 2 Rest

My sleep is better most nights and I’m waking at the same time most days, around 545, which gives me time to wake up properly and go exercise before work. And I had a good nap on Saturday too.

Here’s my plan for next week:

Mon: Rest
Tue: 5M incl 3 tempo
Wed: Bike & Strength / PM Physio
Thu: 10M
Fri: Rest / 5k or 4.3M
Sat: 6.2M wi FG
Sun: Bike & Strength

I’ll aim for 4 runs again next week, long run on Thursday morning before work. A tempo run on Tuesday and 2-3 Bike and strength sessions.

The bike sessions will be a quick warm up 2 mins then 8 x 20 secs @100rpm, 10 secs @80rpm, then 2 min cool down.

Then for strength I’ll do one of the following:

1. Barbell Squats / Barbell Clean n Press 4×6 / KB Swings 4×20 2. Barbell Deadlifts / Barbell Rows 4×6 / Atomic Press Ups 4×20

Then 25-30 mins of tabata or KB strength. Should be about 45-50 mins in total.

Last thing about last week was that on Saturday Fit Girl and I treated ourselves to breakfast at the new Ivy on Buchanan Street.

We pre booked for 1015am and were a bit early. We sat for a bit at the bar and waited a while on a couple of coffees, but after that it all got better.

The food was good, the service ended up being good too. I had avocado benedict, a coffee and a grapefruit juice. Fit Girl had a full breakfast and shared some of it with me.

The food was priced ok, maybe a bit more than usual places (£9 avocado benedict / £14 full breakfast), but the drinks were a bit of a rip off at about £4-5 a (soft / hot) drink.

The atmosphere was good though, the server / service was great, and the place is done up lovely / toilets are pink and all separate cubicles.

If you fancy a treat, then go for it, but make sure you save up for it (or expect it to be ££££ – £45 for two breakfasts including a tip!)

Make sure you go on their website and book ahead though as I don’t think they take walk ins.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Simple things that make me happy

I thought I’d write down a list of the simple things that make me happy/ hobbies or things that make me smile … to remind myself to do them more often.

In no particular order:

– Visiting / being with friends (it seems most have kids now, which is even more fun) – Engaging with others.
– Sitting in the sun watching the world go by.
– Travelling to other places / seeing the world.
– Breakfast / lunch / eating out.
– Eating real ice cream (or let’s face it, any ice cream)
– Spending time with my Dad.
– Working out in our gym.
– Running with others.
– Completing events and the accomplishment / medals that go with it. – Flying a kite (weather dependent).
– Spending time with Fit Girl.
– Spending time with family / nieces / nephews / Uncle / Aunt. – Running with my big brother.
– Going for nice leisurely walks in parks.
– Helping / coaching others to run / achieve.
– Gardening(!)
– Getting good sleeps and naps sometimes too.
– Hanging washing out on a nice day.
– Having a nice home and garden.
– Running on my own, listening to music.
– Running in the rain.
– Listening to music / audiobooks.
– Reading / relaxing.
– Eating a good steak / good food.
– Climbing Munro’s / getting out into the countryside (haven’t done this for a while). – A long walk on a beach.
– Planning and making stuff – ie the Garagym / garden.
– Driving.

That’s quite a lot really, and maybe it’s a bit different to your list.

What would you put on your happy list?
Is there anything else you’d suggest might be fun for me?

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Off coffee and going to The Ivy

Well, the plan to come off coffee has worked a treat. My initial plan was to stop having it most days and have one at the weekend as a ‘treat’. But somehow my taste bud have gone off it completely. It’s very strange, but hey ho, that’s fine.

I usually have it black but went through a phase of having wee flat whites… and now I’ve tried both again as one offs and I haven’t been able to finish them. It seems I can do without it after all.

Today we’re going to the newly opened The Ivy on Buchanan Street for breakfast. I’m looking forward to it and a nice wee stroll around town.

You can see their menu on their website.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Setting a running mileage target

You might remember back in 2017 I decided that I would set myself a challenge of running 100 miles a month after setting the challenge in the January and enjoying being motivated by it. It was a good way to keep the mileage up, and got me into the way of rounding up my monthly mileage.

I’ve been running since 2008 and for Christmas that year I got my first Garmin and I’ve never looked back since. Looking back I’ve run over 10,000 miles in 9 years and 7 months… an average of about 1,055 miles a year.

Some years I’ve run more than others…peaking at over 1,300 miles in 2010 … and seeming to make sure I’d rounded to a whole number from 2016 onwards.

In 2016 I ran 1050 miles, which was 2016km… numbers numbers numbers.

In 2018 I ran 1000 miles quite comfortably… but this year has been a little different. With holidays in March and June, and a focus on strength training in April and May.. my mileage has reduced.

Jan: 70
Feb: 75
Mar: 95
Apr: 70
May: 60
Jun: 60
Jul: 95
= 525 in 7 months / 75 miles a month on avg

Today I took notice of my mileage for this year so far and thought about what I’d like to do for 2019.

1,000 miles seems appealing and achievable. With 475 miles to run in 5 months to get to 1,000 miles this year – that’s an average of 75 miles a month.

But I have holidays in September as well as the great Scottish Run half at the end of September. But with my time off, I’ll need to reduce the mileage for that month and build my mileage in August.

So here’s the plan, which will take into consideration holidays, a race and winter:

Aug: 110
Sep: 70
Oct: 105
Nov: 100
Dec: 90
475 miles or 1,000 for the year

That could work, and if I don’t make it, no worries, I’ll just round up my mileage to a lesser annual goal. I’ll see how it goes.

So how do you set an annual goal at this time of the year?

Well I will say it doesn’t have to be as lofty as mine – make it work for you. Everyone is different – maybe 25 miles a month, or for higher numbers with less distance, use kms. 50km is about 30 miles or so… 100km is about 61 miles.

– Start with an annual number and work it back:

300 miles a year = 25 miles a month
1000km / 12 = about 83km a month / about 50 miles a month.
50 miles a month is 600 miles a year.

– or given than we’re 5 months in, see where you’re at now at the end of July, divide than number by 7 for an average. Times the average by 12 and set yourself a realistic annual goal, then figure out how you’ll aim to achieve it – month by month.

– Get a tracker – I use Garmin which I can access easily to see monthly and annual totals.

– Share your goal and keep a focus on it weekly.

– Plan weekly and monthly targets around holidays and use events and social runs or park runs to keep a focus on running and getting your miles in.

Now, 5 months to go in 2019, who is up for it?

Set your own goal and see what you can achieve. It could help you stay motivated to run during the shorter days / winter months.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Wk30 into Wk31 & progress

Last week I got a good amount of running done (4 runs / 26.5 miles), a couple of good rest days and a strength and bike session done.

I got into a good sleep routine and work life balance, and I seem to be waking up before the alarm in the mornings, so that feels good and it feels like I’m getting good sleeps.

Here’s what I did last week:

Mon 22: Rest
Tue: 3.5M
Wed: 6M + walk at lunchtime
Thu: Bike & Tabata Strength
Fri: 6.5M wi DMc
Sat: 7.6M FG
Sun: Rest / walk

Plenty exercise, plenty walks and rest and enough sleep (including a good nap on Saturday). It’s good to see my running getting back on track for July. I should o 90-95 miles this month after 60 in May and June.

Now here’s my plans for next week, alternating run days with gym days:

Mon 29: 4-5M intervals @630
Tue: Bike & Runner’s Strength & 5k
Wed: 5M @7am DMc
Thu: Bike & Runner’s Strength
Fri: 5k lunchtime (or am)
Sat: Rest
Sun: 9-10M

End of the month and there’s not been much change in my weight over the months. A bit of a variance in my body composition… -1.5lbs overall, down 2.8lbs of body fat since April, and up 1.3lbs lean mass. A cm down on my waist and hips …

2 April: 139.6lbs / 18% body fat
25.2lbs body fat / 114.4lbs other
109.5lbs lbm / 78.4% lbm
76cm / 101cm / 46% wth

26 May: 137.1lbs / 17.1% body fat
23.5lbs body fat / 113.6lbs other
108.7lbs lbm / 79.3% lbm

24 June: 137.7lbs / 14.5% body fat
20lbs body fat / 117.7lbs other
112.7lbs / 81.9% lbm

27 July: 138.1lbs / 16.2% body fat
22.4lbs body fat / 115.7lbs other
110.8lbs / 80.2% lbm
75cm / 100cm / 45% wth

Heading into the right direction but no biggy. Maybe I should try harder with strength, running, rest, sleep and eating better. August is around the corner, so maybe I will and maybe I’ll put some effort in to do some sole speed / tempo runs.

This week I booked a few trips, August to see my Dad and step mum, September Boston and October to visit my uncle and aunt. Nice things to look forward to whisky keeping everything else hopefully ticking along nicely.

I only have the great Scottish Run half marathon booked in right now but I’ll maybe look for a 10k or 10 miler in the rest of the year. Any recommendations for some good races to run, please comment.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment