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Tapering Madness

Tapering madness isnt new to me. I was the same in the week before edinburgh marathon this year. This week ive tapered off my longer runs in preparation for Bournemouth half marathon on Sunday.

Yesterday i woke up with pain in both knees. I never get knee pain!  Today i had pain in my ankle whilst walking. Oh and my calves have been oddly tight! I know its all in my head though!

Strangely im quite excited about Sunday. I remember before my first half marathon in March i was an absolute mess! I hated those nerves. Ive never felt so sick in my life. I had originally wanted to get a pb at Bournemouth but in reality ive changed my expectations and have decided to just go for the enjoyment factor. If i beat my pb then fantastic. If i dont so be it. Im going to soak up the atmosphere and have fun! Im signed up for another half marathon in November which should be totally flat so Im going to push harder for a pb there!

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Clean Eating Vegetarian Meal Plan

When I meal plan I’m looking for the fastest quickest recipes i can make. I hate spending too long in the kitchen. Theres usually a tired toddler floating around my legs who im trying to convince to go and play so time is of the essence. With that in mind here are some of my favourite recipe’s!

Breakfast
Its always a smoothie from my breville active blend. If not its porridge or overnight oats.

Monday

LUNCH: Omelette with a small amount of cheese and a red onion.

DINNER: Stir fry. I chop up mushrooms, brocolli, red onion, pepper and add some marinated tofu and fry it all up in coconut oil. I add a bit of soy sauce and some noodles and its something both my boys will eat. They love the noodles so i tend to have a bowl of stir fried veg more than noodles!

Tuesday

LUNCH: Tofu scramble in wholemeal pitta bread (make enough to have the left overs tomorrow)

DINNER: Mushroom, halloumi and avocado pitta. This is my favourite meal ive found in my month of clean eating. It was originally this recipe and ive changed it a bit to use the pitta and halloumi.
I spread the mashed avocado on both sides of the pitta bread then slide in the grilled halloumi and mushroom. DELISH! I serve it with a range of sides depending on whats around. Sweet potato fries go really well with it!

Wednesday

LUNCH:  Leftover tofu scramble in a pitta

DINNER: Avocado Pasta

Thursday

LUNCH: Scrambled eggs on toast

DINNER: Wholewheat pasta with fried brocolli, courgette, tomato and fresh basil. Ive based it on this recipe. I always make too much and i then use the leftovers for lunch the next day.

Friday:

LUNCH: Leftovers from Thursday evening.

DINNER: Portobello mushroom pizza

Saturday

LUNCH Pitta with garlic fried tomatoes and mozzarella slices

DINNER Tofu sausages and sweet potato mash or fries with vegetables.

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Clean Eating Weeks 3 and 4

So its almost the end of september. Back in August i spotted a tweet inviting me to try a month of clean eating. I had been wanting to try it for a while and thought if a group of us were doing it then maybe id have more luck at sticking to it.

I have suprised myself to still be going with it. When it comes to food i usually cave in to sugary snacks and sweets. I have found i ended up keeping my squash intake going as i was drinking enough water and was getting too dehydrated. At least i know if im drinking squash im getting liquids. And if im out then i drink bottled water. Its just tap water i have issues with!

September has seen me trying new recipes that i never thought i would try and using ingredients i have never really liked before including avocado and brocolli.

My breakfast smoothie is still a firm favourite and i love that i am eating so much more fruit and vegetables! Ive discovered overnight oats for the days when i have long runs and am playing with various different ingredients for that!

Ive lost 5lb although have gone up a bit today after a weekend of naughtiness. In my defence it was my grandparents 60th wedding anniversary so i let myself have a few treats. I could never be 100% religious with clean eating because i do believe you should have small treats occasionally but i will be keeping it up on a day to day basis!

I think with my new mud runs and obstacle course races coming up and my new way of eating this vest gymtalk sent me couldnt be more perfect. Its also amazingly comfortable and a really flattering style! Im in love with it! I wish i could wear it daily! Im definitely going to be including a couple of their tops on my xmas list!
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Disclaimer. Item sent as a gift.

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Race Report: Womens running 10k London Finsbury Park

So yesterday i went to london to run the womens running 10k. I’ve wanted to run one since seeing the photos last year so was really excited. It was the first race in 10 months of racing that ive travelled to alone! That was a tad daunting but I knew there were going to be some members from runmummyrun.co.uk there and I had arranged to meet them. Once i arrived and found them its like meeting an old friend you havent seen for a while. You all have one thing in common and you just gel straight away. We had a fantastic time together before the race and it put me at ease rather than waiting around alone! 

The race started at 10am and was two laps. I was hoping for a pb so had found the 60min pacer and I popped myself in just ahead of her. Sadly she was running a slightly faster pace and i went off way too hard and burnt out after 3 miles at a huge hill. The frustrating part was it was 2 x 5k laps so it meant facing all the same hills again. My 5k time was great for me. Just under 31 mins. But then the second half the hills totally drained me and i just focused on finishing!

The course is nice enough. I hadnt been to finsbury park before. It seems like a nice place with lots going on. Personal training sessions, outdoor gyms, football matches, bmf and much more. We saw it all. There wasnt much vocal support around the course. People were there to see their person and other than that were just silent! The marshalls were hit and miss on supportive. One spent the race on her phone. The guys around the course marshaling were really supportive with plenty of well dones, you can do it comments. Its just a shame they werent all like this!

I managed to finish in 65 mins which is 3 minutes slower than my pb but i was satisfied with that seeing as the hills took me by surprise!  I had registered for the race in January my number hadnt arrived so i had to collect a new one on the day so thought my text result wouldn’t come through but it did the moment i crossed the line!

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I finished and was given a medal, goody bag and tshirt. The tshirt is womens fit but a loose one. Its not one i will wear out but will come in handy for bedtime! I met up again with the lovely RMR girls and we stuck around to see the last few runners cross the finish line. As a thank you the race organisers gave us all another tshirt and goody bag which was very kind. We would have stuck around anyway though!

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Would i do the race again? I wouldnt race at finsbury park again. But i would do another womens running race yes. It was well organised and pretty flawless. The medals cute and goody bag was the most well stocked ive had in ages!

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Conquering Comfort Eating

The past 6 weeks for me have been a really tough time emotionally. I’ve really struggled in many ways and only a select few people know why and have been there to support me. I’ve been lucky to have them.

Usually when things get tough for me I turn to food for comfort. Whole packets of biscuits, Chocolate Cakes, Brownies, Family size bars of chocolate, you name it I’ll sit and scoff it. The worst times are when the boys are dropped off at childcare and I’m alone. Its so easy to curl up on the sofa and eat those bars of chocolate.

This year though I seem to have managed to finally overcome that comfort eating. Dont get me wrong I still turn to chocolate, but I grab a small fudge bar, or a milky way, not the family sized bar! The other day I even managed to put that emotional rubbish into going for a fast 2 mile run, I was sitting at home tearful, I could have walked to the shop and got some chocolate but instead I ran it out. I let the emotional pain fuel my run, I managed to run one of my fastest miles to date and felt somewhat better for it. I still came home and cried but at least I had done something positive with that emotion.

I wish I could pinpoint whats changed for me. Part of me thinks now I’m seeing the results of hard work, now I’m seeing the lbs dropping off, the inches diminishing, I don’t want to ruin it. Maybe thats why I’m managing to avoid the chocolate. Maybe its because I’m stubborn and determined and so I don’t want to lose that hard work. Who knows? But what I do know is I’ve overcome those bad comfort eating habits that have been there for years. I’m talking back to my teenage years.

It feels good to have overcome them.

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New London 10km – Winter Run!

London is a pretty special place to run in, but usually races tend to be in the spring/summer months. Next year on 1st February 15,000 runners are going to take to the streets of London for a new event, London Winter Run. The race will take in some key landmarks including the Eye, St Pauls, Big Ben and more!

To make the race even more ‘wintery’ there are also going to be snow zones along the route, I’m really excited to see what these will be like! The race is being run on closed roads and is ideal as a winter race to keep things interesting whilst your marathon training, will be a nice break from my Brighton training!! It looks like its going to be a really fun race! The race is being organised with Cancer Research UK so they are encouraging sponsorship.

Most importantly the event will include a medal, I’m super excited to see what this will be like, snow themed? There will also be chip timing (important for us running geeks ;-)) and key features such as a bag drop, warm up and polar bear hugs at the finish, how cool?! I will definitely be seeking out one of those!

How to enter:

Entry via the website

Standard Entry price is £39 which will end on 15th December, after that it will go up to £45 which will end at 19th January 2015. However if you enter the code below you can get £3 off your entry, limited time only! 
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Please note: There are limited spaces at each entry level so once these spaces have been filled they may move up to the next pricing level earlier.

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Insomnia

Insomnia is such a hideous problem. I have suffered on and off for years. My worst was when i was a child/teen. I’d lie wide awake for hours often not falling asleep until the early hours of the morning. Then i had my son and i was so tired i did sleep. And number 2 came along and it was similar. Occasionally i had a few days or a week of insomnia but it usually righted itself or the emotional issue related to it was resolved and so sleep was too.
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For the past month or so ive been suffering again with insomnia. At the moment it just feels like its getting steadily worse. Im awake more and more every night. It takes ages to fall asleep. Then once i am asleep little man will wake me and im back to square one. Brain in overdrive and unable to switch off.
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Ive tried all the usual things. Writing in my diary about the things on my mind, listening to relaxing music, breathing exercises. But nothings correcting itself yet.

I think the most frustrating thing for me is the afternoons when im completely knackered. I feel like my eyes could just shut and i could drift straight off, but i cant nap because little man doesnt and when he does its when we are in the car and im driving; so clearly cant sleep then! Its probably no bad thing i cant nap as it certainly wouldn’t help sleeping at night.

The problem is its affecting my running too. I want to run. I need to run. But the energy levels are so low anything over 5k feels a struggle. Not ideal with a half marathon coming up!