Running up that hill…

And if I only could,
I’d make a deal with God,
And I’d get him to swap our places,
Be running up that road,
Be running up that hill,
With no problems.

Running up that hill, or as it is known by me and my mate Amanda, that f**king hill. I was owed a training session so we decided to stick that session in today, my 35th Birthday.  I got to the session in a really positive frame of mind.

We walked up that f**king hill and I had a funny feeling what was coming. Hill Sprints. Bloody, bastard hill sprints. These have been my stumbling block for a while. There is always something you have a mental block on. In the past it’s been burpees or step ups with a medicine ball, powerbags etc but this time it has been hill sprints.

Now let me point out this hill is pretty steep, this ain’t your average hill. I don’t know what gradient but it is steep. The path is uneven, it can be muddy at times. Standing at the bottom is very daunting, You trudge the first few metres and then you look up at how far you have to go & just think “christ, I can’t do this” Now the last time I did “hill sprints” was epically challenging. I certainly couldn’t sprint them, I stopped quite a few times, I cried and I almost bottled it. I eventually did them but it was the slowest walk ever, at one point i debated crawling on my hands and knees. (see https://andthatsjustthewarmup.wordpress.com/2016/04/02/negative-nora-comes-out-to-play/ )

So I was apprehensive to say the least. So the first two ascents were very sedate, a gentle walk (I still felt out of breath!) but nothing too bad, did some squats, lunges & walking single leg deadlifts at the top. All good. But the 3rd time “when we get to the concrete water trough, I want you to run”. Now this concrete trough is only a few metres from the top. But omg, it hurt. My lungs were burning, my thighs were horrifically painful but “its ok he only makes me do 3” I thought, WRONG!!! “Let’s go again” he said. So back down we went and back up, this time jogging from about half way up. Now if I thought my lungs were burning last time, then I was mistaken because oh my god I honestly thought they would explode this 2nd time, my heart felt like it was going to burst. “it’s ok that will be it” WRONG!!! “let’s go a 5th time” he said, “are you kidding me?” I said.  No he wasn’t. This time he wanted me to run the whole way (when I say run, I mean the slowest jog ever,  team GB will not be needing me any time soon!) Now i didn’t manage to run the whole way but the fact I attempted and finished it was a big thing. But oh my god I really thought I was going to keel over. I have never felt such burning in my lungs.

It wasn’t perfect. I still keep saying “I can’t” (note to self I must work on that!) But it was a million miles from my last attempt.

I’m glad I’ve done it but that was really bloody hard. I had to push, I mean really push past the pain in my lungs and legs, I had to consciously make that decision to do that, to reason in my head that yes it would hurt, a lot but the pain is temporary and the positives outweigh it. That is something I have struggled with in the last year or so. It is the hardest part of training, to push yourself through something you know will hurt when every cell in your body is screaming “no, don’t do it, go home”. I had forgotten what it felt like to do that, the euphoria you get from achieving something you thought you couldn’t and also being so sweaty your hair is literally dripping. I’ve not done that in ages and my god it was hard but it felt so good. It is the thing I’ve been missing, I didn’t even realise till tonight, how much I have been holding back.

But yes everything aches now and I fear getting out of bed in the morning maybe interesting. but for now I am well chuffed.

H x

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Rose tinted glasses…

Nobody said it was easy
No one ever said it would be this hard

Coldplay, I bloody love this song.  And, it is resonating a lot with me today. I had a little scout round the Internet and found this interpretation

“Basically, this song is saying that “he” screwed up. He doesn’t know how to explain it, because it was against reason, whatever he did. He wants to be able to explain what he did with science and reasoning, but he just can’t, because love doesn’t work like that. And this person means everything to him, so he wants to try it over again, but the other person thinks that there should be something to explain it.”

Substitute love & person for training and you’ve essentially hit the nail on the head with where I have been at recently. I’ve screwed up and I want to explain why with science and reasoning and I can’t, because there is no reason. I can give you a million excuses about children being ill, OH being away, undergoing my training to become a Baby & Preschool swimming teacher and it is just all nonsense. Ultimately I’ve not done what I needed to do because I wanted the easy life.

Now I’ve been training long enough to know there is no easy option. You do or you do not. You make a choice.

One of the things I’ve been thinking about recently is the fact as far as training goes I have rose tinted glasses. I fondly remember starting all this fitness malarky and in my head it was amazing, awesome, lovely, I enjoyed every session and it progressively got easier.

WRONG! It was hard, I cried (more than once), it hurt (a lot). There were things I found stupidly hard (step ups with a medicine ball, flinging a powerbag about, BURPEES!!!!) and gradually I mastered them and something new came along and I felt progress and it hurt all the time but I got to a point where I wanted to push myself because I’d already surpassed what I thought I could do. But no it wasn’t easy at all. I certainly did not enjoy every session.

And I think I’d forgotten all that, i’ve not been pushing myself, I’ve been holding back. I wish I could explain why but I don’t know. For some reason I’ve become reluctant to just let it go (No Frozen sing-a-longs please), I’ve been reluctant to let myself go.  I suspect last time I didn’t really know what I was doing, I just went with it and took everything 1 day at a time, but this time I’ve already got an idea of how it feels and it ain’t pretty.

MjAxMi1kZjYxOWQ5OTE2MmExMDNlI’m frustrated at me, I know my PT/ Trainer/Coach/Yoda is frustrated. We’ve had an honest discussion today and whilst I might not have wanted to hear what he had to say (because I’m mad at myself) deep down I know what he says is right.

So as I see it I’m now at a crossroads. I either get a grip, sort myself out and start doing what I know I can do, regardless of how much it hurts or is uncomfortable or I can jack it in. I’m not about to quit so I’ve just got to suck it up, accept it will be uncomfortable and get on with it.

H xx

 

 

Well done Hannah!

Just a quick post today. My mate Hannah who I have known for donkeys years started her own journey in the new year. She’s been hitting the gym, working with her PT called Dan and sorting her nutrition out.

I’d not seen Hannah since August 2015 and when I saw her recently (over Easter) the change was incredible! Not just aesthetically but also mentally. She was like a positive ball of energy and the progress she has made so far has been awesome.

I don’t think she’ll mind me saying this but me and Hannah are cut from a very similar cloth. Both disliked PE at school, both struggled with weight for one reason and another, both tried a variety of ways to lose weight.

I know how hard it is to take that step when you have tried multiple things before and you feel like it will never happen. I know how daunting it is and how you have to really give your head a shake and forget the past and push through the pain, discomfort & self conciousness. It isn’t easy, at all. But Hannah is doing it and know she still has goals she wants to achieve but she’s doing so well, I just wanted to give her a bit of a mention.

I’m struggling at the moment but seeing Hannah and her progress so far has given me hope that’ll get back to it. I’ve had more downs than ups recently but for every knock, I’ve got back up and carried on. Eventually I’ll stay up!

Well done Hannah!

H xx

Congratulations!

http://whineorwine.co.uk/?p=1512

Gotta say, I can empathise with the post, a lot! Nothing worse than being so many months post birth and being repeatedly asked!

Or in my current case being 19 mths post birth and repeatedly being asked when I am going to lose the baby weight, how much have I lost so far.

Feck off.

And then the whole, trying to defuse the situation and trying to make the person feel bad when they are mortified because they’ve just been a complete douche bag and you feel mortified that you STILL look like you have a stowaway on board!

So if you have time read the above post, I love the Wineorwhine blog.

H x

The problem with spring & summer…

IMG_5510
My rather attractive post training face haha

The problem with spring & summer when you train outside in a public place is the lighter evenings bring out more people. That is more people to see you red faced, sweating, huffing & puffing, with the occasional “Jesus!” or “Bollocks!” thrown in.

Tonight my session was rammed full of dog walkers, passers by and even a couple of people flying model aircraft! And they were treated to the sight of me running (aka jogging) the shortest distance, with a very tiny incline, doing squats, reverse lunges and single leg deadlifts in between.

I’ll be honest, I’ve not trained much recently due to visiting home & undertaking my Baby & Preschool swimming teaching certificate (which I passed BTW, go me!) so tonight was hard, really hard. I was hot, sweaty, my head was literally pounding as I suspect my blood pressure when through the roof. A few people walked by, I don’t know what they thought and neither do I care.

Andmy one bit of advice if you are starting on your own journey, is don’t give a shit about what other people think. I could tell you that no one watches you but that’d be a lie, I used to watch other people in the gym so I am sure people watched me. I am sure I got a few glances tonight too but do you know what, so what? I might be fat, I might be sweating for England, I might be red in the face and feeling like I’m going to die but at least I’m trying and I’m not perfect and I have a long way to go but I’m making progress (slowly) and I’m getting out there. It doesn’t matter where you train, outdoors, in a gym, in a swimming pool, at your local community centre, people will be around, you can’t let that intimdate you!

So my advice is focus on you and screw other people (not in the biblical sense!)

H x

Argh!

Ok I’m annoying myself now.

If I have a normal, mundane week I can eat well and train no problems. So why is it when I have a slightly out of the ordinary week I can’t??  I mean, I have all the right intentions, I plan my meals, I still plan my workouts etc But when it comes to the crunch I don’t do it.

excuseTake last week. Last week I was on a 3 day Baby & Preschool Swimming teacher course  and then OH was away at a conference in Galway the 2nd half of the week. I’d sat down the week before and planned all my meals and snacks, considered how I could cook things the night before and take with me on the training and then I’d planned to do some catch up training sessions after the course had finished.  But it just didn’t happen. I ended up eating “fast food” each day ( I bloody love Subway!) and snacking on Twix bars (you don’t want to know how many Twix I consumed in 3 days. And I had takeaways etc when I had loads of food in the fridge. (Disclaimer, mum did cook some healthy stuff while she stayed so it wasn’t all bad!)  Then Friday we drove to Southampton for an engagement party Saturday and then drove back Sunday, and it is fair to say we didn’t eat well yesterday at all!

Now in my defence, my course was stressful and exhausting, I had zero energy last week, so I can kinda get maybe not doing the sessions BUT that is no excuse for my eating.

Safe to say the scales gave me a bit of a punch in the face this morning. I’m not upset, it is what it is and ultimately it is my own fault but I am annoyed at myself. I’m annoyed because whilst I know you can’t be perfect  or even near perfect all the time but there were things I could have done differently. I don’t know if I’m just bone idle  or I’m being to my harsh on myself. All I know is recently, “normal” mundane weeks are becoming few and far between and therefore whilst I could get away with the odd crappy day or even week, it seems to be more and more and it is hampering my progress. So I can’t keep having these “i’ve got a billion excuses” weeks.

H xx

Negative Nora comes out to play…

tumblr_lqjgs4v0np1qztbyqo1_500“get up, you’ll be late!”
“just text him and tell him you’ve a migraine”
“get up up you lazy cow”
“Tell him you’ve got a flat battery & can’t get there”
“FFS will you just get up”
“Flat tyre?”
“Listen, get your fat arse out of bed, brush your teeth a get in the bloody car”

That was a genuine conversation in my head this morning between me & Negative Nora. I did go, although I was 5 mins late whilst I argued with old Nora.

I really wasn’t feeling the love for training this morning. I’ve not really any reason for you other than I’m a bit tired (situation normal) and I was up late last night preparing for a training course on Monday. But I knew what was coming . Today it was “Hill Sprints” day. On my 90 day target I needed to achieve 3 Hill Sprints up a big massive steep hill. When I say sprint, I mean a very very slow slog up the hill.

So I got there and had to walk through the woods and up the top of the hill, which seemed to take an eternity. All the while Nora was still trying to persuade me that it was a bad idea.

I eventually got to the top of the hill and then she really started. “You’re fat, you can’t do this, people like you don’t do this, what’s the point, lets sack it off, go home” So whilst I ignored her, I walked down the other side of the hill to get to the starting point. I don’t remember the hill being a) that steep or b) that long and I vocalised the fact I really didn’t want to do these hill sprints.

So there I am, in the rain and cold, feeling like a petulant teenager. I just wanted to be anywhere else.  “Just one foot in front of the other and keep going, you don’t have to sprint, you can crawl it if you want, just get to the top” I was told.

So I started my first attempt. I stopped after a few minutes and declared I couldn’t do it and I wanted to just jack it in and go home. (Negative Nora was going a few fist pumps at this point), I did a bit of ugly crying. (Ridiculous right? who cries over walking up a hill! Although it is a bloody steep hill!) So we went back to the starting point. After a few mins to sort my head out (felt like a few hours) I attempted it again.

And I did it, it was quite possibly the slowest attempt ever, although I’ve not contacted the Guinness Book of Records for official verification, I can’t imagine anyone else would have been much slower tbf. But I did it and  got to the top, I did debate crawling the middle section (which is the steepest point) but I stayed on my feet. I touched the post at the top, then declared I was stupidly thirsty (but I’d left my water in the car). I did consider drinking water out of the concrete animal trough that resides at the top of the hill but it looked a bit mucky, so decided against it. Then I went back to the bottom of the hill (I did consider rolling down). I did the “sprint” another 2 times. TBH the second 2 times passed me by in a haze, I was concentrating on just keeping going.  It was slow and horrible but I did it.

Apparently I should feel chuffed with myself for overcoming a massive mental hurdle and not giving in to Nora. Apparently today has been more about mental achievements and everybody finds that bastard hill a killer. But I just feel annoyed at myself. Annoyed for feeling so negative. I know not every session is brill and I certainly know some sessions just make you feel shite but this was on a whole new level. Nora was pretty damn convincing for a while there.

The only positive I’ve got is that I have been training long enough to know these feelings are temporary and in a day or two Nora will bugger off back to wherever she came from and no doubt she’ll pop back for a visit at some point but she is not a permanent feature in my life. So today I might have had a bit of a meltdown, but I eventually kept going and got through what I needed to (albeit not very elegantly!)

The quote at the top of the page sums it all up, but this one probably more accurately describes this morning:

hunter-madsen-quote-this-too-shall-pass-just-like-a-kidney-stone

H xx