Thursday, 31 May 2012

I'm not feeling very inspirational today.

To be honest ... I've been thinking I should stop writing this blog.

Because I feel like I don't really have anything to offer.

Like, my mate Kate is giving up smoking and because I did it in 2000, she asked me "how did you do that?".

I don't have anything to offer, other than ... I stopped smoking. 

That's hardly an inspiring or encouraging thing to say.

I stopped smoking.

Surely patches?  Surely a few a day, then a few a week?

Nah.

What about weight gain? Another vice?

Nope.

I stopped smoking.

But you still want one occasionally?

Yes everyday.

So how did you do it then???

I stopped smoking.

That is not in anyway helpful to you Kate.  Sorry.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Nothing much matters today.

Jesse, my 7 year old, just asked me why I looked so sad.

I told him I was thinking about a mum who had lost her babies.

I sobbed and sobbed and sobbed.  Jesse put his arms around me and rubbed my back and told me to lie down and keep crying until I felt a bit better.

So I did.  I cried and cried.  I cried for those parents who lost their three precious children.  It is unbearable.  It is unthinkable.  It is impossible.  How broken they must be. My teeth hurt from the ache I feel for them.  How broken they must be.

Nothing much matters today.  A family is suffering.


Monday, 28 May 2012

The thing about me is ...



"I hate public speaking. No, I detest it."

'I hate walking into a room of people I don't know and having to make small talk".

"I hate letting people down"

"I hate wearing my togs in public"

"I really struggle to motivate myself and stay motivated"

I will bet you anything that this list is true for you.  Guess what? You are not the only one.  That list is not unique to you.

Find me a person who eagerly volunteers to MC the kindy quiz night, or someone who loves to waltz into a room of strangers and razzle dazzle them.  Find me a person that really doesn't care about what other people think.  Like, really, truly doesn't care.  Find me someone who finds it easy to bounce out of bed every day achieving all they set out to achieve.

Here's another one ...

"The thing about me is ... I can't run.  I've tried in the past, but my lungs burn so much it's unbearable".

Guess what? This also, is not unique to you.

EVERYONES LUNGS BURN!!!

But not everyone gives it another go.


Sunday, 27 May 2012

Clarity

12 kms this morning! With Nicky.  Along the Hutt River, then winding our way back through the leafy streets of Trentham and Silverstream.

Sunday morning, and I'm running.  I don't have to run.  I could stay in bed.  But somehow, the grit that I discovered that I didn't even know I had, gets me in my running gear, in the crappy old nissan primera, and driving to Nicky's house.

I talked a lot on this run.  In fact, I'm pretty sure poor Nicky didn't say one word for the entire 72 minutes. Somehow, babies came up.  And it got me talking.  Talking about being a mum for the first time in lonely old London.  And I told Nicky about when Jesse was just a week old and not feeding and not sleeping, my husband got whisked away by his Dad to Holland for a family trip.  At the time it seemed completely okay and of course I wanted him to go ... a once in a lifetime opportunity ... all his family together in his Dad's homeland.  It wasn't until I was telling Nicky this story, that I realised I was holding on to something that didn't feel that good.  It kinda had the whiff of resentment.  I realised in an instant that  I had been holding on to that dark slither of resentment ... And it was on the run this morning that I threw it away and cast it off and left it in my dust.

I had no idea that it had made a home in me.

That was a good run.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

It's Saturday morning! I started this running group last year ... for women who had never EVER run.  I wanted them to know what it was like to claim their life back by simply ... running.

And I know how hard it is to make that leap from "I don't run" to "I run".

If you are thinking of starting ... click HERE to read about how to get started, how to keep going and how to get it done.

So it started small.  And now all up we have 30 women who turn up when they can.

It has been incredible to see women who have NEVER run ... making just enough progress every week and now most of them running 5ks, some training for 10ks and some even dreaming of half marathons!

And today ... Liz who started as an absolute beginner took out a new lot of beginners so that I could bust out a run with the women who had moved to the intermediate group.  It really is a wonderful thing.  This moving, growing, changing running group.

And today ... I ran with Red, Kathy, Brenda, Keryn, and Peggy.  Red and Kathy are training for the 10ks in June.  Red and Kathy had NEVER run.  And here they were ... training for a 10k.  It really is a wonderful thing.

If you want to be inspired ... read about these women.

Kathy

Paula

Liz

Run.


Friday, 25 May 2012

The Dip

It's totally normal.  And totally understandable.  To find yourself not running for a bit.

It happens to everyone.  You wake up on a running day ... fully planning to run ... but you don't.  Then you wake up on the next running day ... fully planning to run ... but you don't.

That doesn't mean that you're not a runner anymore.

It just means you're in a dip.

Be the nicest you can be to yourself.  Find some space and talk to yourself.  Find out why you didn't run.  With no sense of judgement or disappointment.  Be gentle with yourself.  Have a quiet talk.

Why?  Why aren't you running?

Work? Stress? Failure? Tired?

Give yourself plenty of time to find out why.  And when you find the "why", don't dismiss it.  It's a valid reason ... what ever it is.  If you dismiss it, it's possible you'll never get deep enough to find the grit you need to be a consistant runner.

Please be nice to yourself.  It's just a dip.  Be still for a while.  Listen to yourself.  Then gather the strength you know you have and run again.




Thursday, 24 May 2012

Live in the Day she says...

I'm pretty sure there are a lot of people that think I'm insane.

Because I'm always living in the next day.  Like I cook dinner a day in advance.  I always have my head in tomorrow .. thinking about kids sports, visitors arriving, my friends that need me, my family that want me.

I have a friend who thinks I run myself ragged doing this.  Live in the day she says.

It's Thursday.  It's run day.  And the in-laws are here.  And because tonight's dinner was cooked yesterday, as soon as I picked up the kids from Kindy and School, I got to drink them up.  Spending every single second loving them and playing with them and not worrying about time running out and not worrying about feeling stink about taking time for myself at the worst time of the day.

At 5.15pm, I skipped out the door after pulling out a piping hot lamb casserole with kumera mash and said "laters" to my family and the in-laws, knowing that they felt loved and provided for ... giving me the freedom to relish the run.

9kms of hills tonight.  Wonderful, glorious, challenging hills.  Home to scrape out what's left after the wolves devoured dinner and a long hot shower.

And what would you know ... I'm actually here.  In today.  Living it, as she says.


Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Doubt

Oh the dark cloud of doubt.  Heavy and settling.

Here's the thing.  I. Am. Not. A. Runner.  I was born cuddly and slow.  So slow my family called me The Snail.  At school, I lied to get out of swimming sports.  I painted fake bruises on my legs to get out of cross country.  I did anything and everything to avoid the utter, all encompassing, feeling of failure and humiliation that came from being last.  I was the chubby girl who sang in the choir and made my mates laugh.  I. Am. Not. A. Runner.

So training to run 10kms "fast" goes against everything I and my body knows.  I have to tell you this ... when Nicky and I are doing our sprints or running at "race pace" I can hear my 15 year old self shouting with shock ... "What are you doing??? You can't run! Remember! You don't run!"  And Nicky is FAST. She was born to sprint.  She goes so fast it's mind blowing.  So I feel slow and heavy and ridiculous next to her.  (She tells me later, that she marvels at the fact that I can just keep going.  In her mind, she is screaming to stop and walk after the sprints ... and she tells me that if it wasn't for me just keeping on running that she would stop.  Nicky, yet again, makes me feel awesome.  Not slow and heavy and ridiculous.  But awesome.)

So running tonight I hear it ... loud and clear.  It's not just in my mind now, the words are spilling out  "I can't do this.  I'm not a runner.  There is no way that I can run this 10k in 55 minutes."

She immediately says "I feel exactly the same way".

Ok.

We decide to just get this run done and kind of agree to reassess.

We get the run done.

I look at my watch.

Are you ready?

We ran 7 ks.  In 40 minutes.

That's 5 minutes and 42 seconds a km.

You do the math.

No more doubt.

I. Am. A. Runner.


Sunday, 20 May 2012

sick!

My boy Gus (aka The Goose) got sick yesterday.  Really sick.  72 trips to the toilet.  Depleted.  Oh my poor darling boy.  It was heart breaking.  Heartbreaking.

At 4.30 this morning that bug got me. So with nothing left in the tank I had to cancel my Sunday morning run with Nicky!

And lunch with my friends!

But I got to spend the morning in bed like this....






Saturday, 19 May 2012

The impossible...

It seemed impossible.  IMPOSSIBLE that Paula would ever run more than 1 minute.

Click HERE to read about Paula's start and her journey.

Paula ran for 4 minutes today.  Then, after a short walk, she ran 2 minutes.  Then after another short walk she ran for another 4 minutes.

It was, after all, possible.

If you think it's impossible for you to be a runner ... maybe you've NEVER run, maybe you're lugging around too much weight, maybe you've tried once but couldn't...

Paula is living proof that it is possible.

And now she's bloody talking about running 5ks and taking a running group!  The weight is melting away.  Her inner self is growing strong.

I'll say it again.  Put your shoes on .  Tie up your hair.  And run.

Friday, 18 May 2012

It happened so quick!

Just made a deliberate effort to eat a bit less.  And with the training for the 10k in June ... it happened.  That extra uncomfortable layer has melted away.

I like to eat.  I am a big eater.  My friend Steve's eyes go impossibly wide when he sees my bowl of food for lunch.  "Are you going to eat ALL THAT??".

He's so mean.  Steve bakes good.  And tortures me weekly with his delicious "something sweet for later" delights.  Here's his blog...

Blokes Who Bake


I am an awful, horrible, scratchy person when my calories are restricted.  I'm no good to anyone.  I love to eat.  Big bowls of food.  I always finish what's on my plate.  And I could always have more.  But my doctor says I am still carrying 10 kilos too much.  So I had to make a few tweaks.  And I started tweaking a couple of weeks ago.  And it worked.  Really quickly.  These are the tweaks that I made...

If I have carbs for lunch ... then it's just fruit for afternoon tea.  If no carbs for lunch, then I can have a couple of pieces of fruit toast with honey and banana on top for afternoon tea.

HEAPS of vegetables with BOTH lunch and dinner.  I devour a half a head of broccoli, and a bunch of bok choy and 2 carrots for lunch AND dinner.

And my other tweak ... easy on the carbs at night.  That doesn't mean I don't have mashed spuds with my casserole or kumera with my roast chicken ... it just means a little bit of that.  Not a lot.  I don't have pasta or rice at night.

OH! One more tweak ... I say no to lollies.  I simply can not have one.  And if I have even just one, I want to eat the entire world.  I do say yes to chocolate.  Chocolate satisfies me.  It doesn't make me crave more or eat more like lollies.

And...

I run.

And ... I've learned that running doesn't give me a license to eat like a sumo.  Just a license to eat like a good healthy kiwi bird who loves her kai.



Thursday, 17 May 2012

That was then...

I don't run in the rain.
I don't run in the wind.
I don't run up hills.
I don't run fast.

This is now...

I run in the rain.  And I love it.
I run in the wind.  And I love it.
I run up hills.  And I love it.
I run fast.  And I'm learning to love it.

It appears that we are more capable than what we think.

Give it a nudge.  See just how capable you are.


Wednesday, 16 May 2012

The Start...

Is actually the best place to be.

I have a friend who has gone back to the start.

At first, the start was a pretty rough place to be.  Because he knew that, in the past, he had been so much further down the path ... almost at the finish.  But here he was.  At the start.  With all that distance lost.

But instead of looking at everything he had lost... he decided to look at everything he could gain.  From the start.

At the beginning of something, we get to draw a line in the sand.  And we get to say ...
"Ok.  This is where I start.  Everything up till now doesn't count."

It really is like the dawning of a new day.   You get to have another go at it.

I have another friend who is starting on Friday.  She has signed up to weight watchers.  She's coming running with us on Saturday.  She is at the start. With all that glorious possibility ahead of her.

We're allowed lots of new starts in life.   So ... draw a line.

And if you want to draw a really deep set line... forgive.

Forgive yourself.  And start.


Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Washing it all away...

We just ran in the rain. Not drizzle. Not light showers. But rain. Actual rain. Heavy downpour rain. Drains swirling up and puddles pooling. Rain. Washing it all away. It was the most amazing run ever. The shower after... I will remember for ever. I feel light. I feel new.

That hurt a bit...

"Yeah ... I'm the sort of mum who puts my family first.  But I really admire you for taking time for yourself.  I really do.  I just prioritise differently".

That.  Was a kick in the guts.

Like I was winded.

But, like being winded it passed.

I DO put my family first.

Dinner is on the table every night and I play with the kids and I jump on the tramp and I do the washing and I keep a clean house and I support my husband who's work sucks at the moment ... and yes ... I run.

After all that is done.  I run.

That's a bit of a stretch actually.  I don't always get it done.  But I try.  Actually sometimes I don't try.  Sometimes I let the kids watch TV and I read a magazine and serve up cherrios and chips for tea in front of sponge bob.

But I love my family.  And I give it my best shot.  Most of the time.





Monday, 14 May 2012

No offense Nicky...

... But man ... I'm really happy that you wont be turning up at my house tonight for a run!

IT'S MONDAY!!!!

Rest day.

REST DAY!!!

I wonder sometimes that I'm not very motivational!!! Because I love rest days so much.  It must seem that I really hate run days!

It's not like that.  Really.  Promise.  It's just rest days feel so good because I can be sloth like and not feel like I should really be doing something.  So the rest days feel amazing.  Deserved slothness.

It's like when I was a smoker ... all those years ago.

Every morning I'd wake up with the burden of giving up.  I am so relieved that I don't have that burden anymore.

So now that running is a part of my life and here to stay, I don't have the burden of starting something.

Does that make sense?

Anyway ... it's rest day.  Gonna put on my new winter pjs straight after dinner, curl up on the couch and watch some telly.

Totally burden free.




Sunday, 13 May 2012

I did ok!

Mothers Day 2012
Jesse who is 7 made me a two tier storage unit for my headphones at work and for my lunch.  It also has the added bonus of having a party popper shoot built in, just in case I need to mark an occasion.

Gus who is 4 gave me his heart.

When I gushed and oohed and aahed over their creations ... you should have seen their faces.  You know what it's like right?  They were CHUFFED.  SO proud.

"Giving",  truly is a marvelous feeling.  They couldn't wait to give me their gifts.  So when at 5.50am this morning two little faces leaned over me with their sweet smell of sleep whispering ... "wake up mum we've got presents" ... I was tempted to say ... "the only present I want is A BLOODY SLEEP IN!!!" ... I didn't.  I cuddled them in to me and unwrapped their perfect, perfect presents.






Saturday, 12 May 2012

Wow. Running is changing lives. It is forming deep friendships and transforming women. There was a great turnout this morning at the running group. So many women. So many battles. So many triumphs. So much love. Thank you girls! It was a gift to see you this morning.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Decisions, decisions...

I was thinking about this today.  Because, yet again, I found myself, against ALL odds ... running.

EVERY thing was working against me.  The very tiny window of 37 minutes I had between work and Kindy/School pick up was dissolving and almost down to 30 minutes.  But not once did I think ...

"Nup.  Can't run now.  No time."

How has this happened?  This commitment? I've never been this committed to anything.  In my life.

It's the decision.

I made a decision a few months ago to train to run 10 kms in 55 minutes.  Decision made.

So, I have no more decisions to make.

On the days that I am to run, I run.  I don't have to decide whether or not to run.  Because I decided that ages ago.

Maybe that's what it is.  I decided.

Today's run was AWFUL by the way.  The most awful run ever.  Both Nicky and I suffered like we haven't suffered in ages.  25 minutes of sprint/jog/sprint/jog.  I said to Nicky ... this run will either break us or define us.  Man I hope it defines us.  Because tomorrow we have to run.  75 minutes.  75 MINUTES!

But I have no choice.  The decision is made.

Did we run?

Icy cold rain, howling southerly, scarily dark.

Did we run?

Yes!! 6.75kms of HILLS!

How did it feel?

Incredible.

Lung bursting, heart stretching, legs burning,head pounding incredibleness.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

It will pass...

On a big run the other day, I noticed that there are 2 points in a run when I'm done.  I want to stop.  With everything I have I want to stop.  In my head this is what's happening ...

"Stop.  You've done enough.   Stop.  You're not actually a runner anyway.  So stop.  You're done."

This happens 20 minutes in to a run and again 20 minutes later.

So I told myself this...

"You can stop when you've finished.  In fact, you can stop all day.  You're not done.  You've only been running for 40 minutes and you know you can run for 2 hours and 14 minutes.  So you know you can run past this."

And I did.

When those moments grip you ... scream in your head ... it will pass.  It will pass.  Keep running.  It will pass.

Turns out, that run was one of my favourite runs.

Running continues to teach me so much.

What ever it is...  it will pass.  Keep running.  And it will pass.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

What a waste!

We love rest days.

Mondays are one of our rest days.

This is what Nicky does on a Monday night ... and she looks forward to it all day...

A big glass of wine.  An indulgent dinner and probably pudding.  The couch.  Her favourite TV show.

Before we met, Nicky, like me really struggled to keep running consistantly.  So, like me, spent a lot of time thinking she should be running, but not running, so feeling guilty.

So when we did plonk ourselves on the couch with a big feed and a big glass of wine, we spent the whole time worrying about the fact that we didn't run and should've run.

What a waste!

Rest days are wonderful things.  But you gotta have the run days to have the rest days.


Sunday, 6 May 2012

Are we mental???


7.30 on a Sunday morning.  So cold everything has turned to ice.  And it felt like every single living person was where we should be.  IN BED!

But there we were.  Running. Gloves on and 17 layers to keep the biting cold out.

We're not mental.  We're alive! Running along side the sparkling Hutt River.  The morning sun is hitting the trees so golden and red they look impossible.  And we're running!

IT WAS AWESOME!

It never gets easier to get out there.  That I know to be the absolute truth.  But the feeling during and after a run just keeps getting better and better and better.  That is truth too.

Goodmorning world!  Thank you for putting on a spectacular show for us.  It was a true gift to be a part of the beginning of today.


Friday, 4 May 2012

Getting out there...

Oh it's so hard to get out there and run right?  It is SO HARD.

It's cold.  It's dark.  You're so tired.  It's raining.

There is simply NO WAY that I would be getting out there without these three things ....

1) Nicky - Running partner and now friend for life (Sorry Nicky... you are STUCK with me.. FOR EVER!)

2) A Goal - the 10k under an hour in June for us.

3) The training plan

I really don't think it's possible to do this thing without all three of the above.  You can't have Nicky.  She's mine! So find your Nicky NOW.  It's best if you are not friends first.  Have a read of this ... I explain it all there...

NICKY

And you need a goal.  Find the next run ... 5k, 10k, and Half Marathon.  And register for it.  Best if it's not too far away.  Ideally 8 - 12 weeks away.

Then google a training plan.  Print it out.  Put it on the fridge.  And get it done.

Nicky ticked off every day as we passed it and she got such a rush from doing that simple thing.  We just ticked our way through the training.

It's about the "why" too aye.  The why for me was getting slim.  I had been fat for too long and restricting my food and only eating certain things always ended in tears.  I've been slim and strong and fit for nearly 5 years.  Running is the ONLY exercise that can do that for you.

Run.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

A big heart...

Wow.  Those sprints on Sunday KILLED us.  Nicky was bent over and I was on the verge of throwing up.  And it was ONLY 20 minutes!!!

BUT... It must have stretched our hearts and lungs because last nights run was fast.  Really fast.
And ... easy. Our hearts felt BIG!

They (The people that know what they're talking about and actual runners) really push the idea of sprint training.  

I get it now.  It pushes you to the next level.

Here's the training plan we're following to get that 10k run done under an hour ... 


So ... rest day today.  My legs are twitching for a run though.  Really twitching.  

Made a delicious chicken casserole tonight ... massively healthy and hearty.  Perfect for a winters night.

1 leek - sliced and washed
2 cloves of garlic - diced finely
2 carrots - peeled and diced
500 grams of chicken (I used tenderloins but I reckon thighs would have been waaaay better) coated in seasoned flour

Sautee the leek and carrots in a good glug of olive oil until soft.  Then add a stock cube or gel.
Stir and coat.
Add the garlic and stir for a few minutes.
Add a cup of water and simmer for 5 minutes.

Place the floured chicken in the bottom of a casserole dish and pour over the leek mixture.

Cover and cook real slow for an hour at least.

You'll need to give it a few stirs to make sure the flour mixes with the liquid and forms a yummy sauce.

You could add anything to this right?  But I wanted to make sure the kids would eat it without saying ... I hate mushrooms, I hate those green bits, etc.

We had a heap of creamy mashed potatoes and just cooked brocolli.

Kids carved it up.  Then they made their own desert ....

Caramel yoghurt, wheetbix, milk, sliced bananas and golden syrup drizzled over the top.  Gotta admit ... they know what they're doing!


Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Finish it...

If you want to lose weight ... read this book.



April Loses It.

Like this facebook page...

http://www.facebook.com/Aprillosesit

And you will get it done.  You will finish it.

I met April today.  She lost 30 kilos in 30 weeks.

I also met women who have followed her advice and I have been astounded by their success.

This is real light bulb stuff.  You will get massive clarity on what it is that you need to do.

Guess what one of her secret weapons is?

Running.

Yep.

Running.

From her book...

"I also swear by the rapid results to be gained from running.  As opposed to any other form of excercise.  Nothing removes my fat bits like running.  It uses every muscle in my body so if affects every part of me. Some people prefer to steer away from running - if they have serious knee injuries, or the pounding from carrying excess weight makes running too hard on their body (keep in mind, this will improve as you get lighter).
Unless you have a really good reason, though, I strongly recommend running to everyone.
I swear, it's a magical appetite suppresent.  My desire to eat all the crap I used to vanishes."

Nicky turned up tonight bang on 5.30 ... with the howling southerly biting our skin and the dark closing in ...

We ran.