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Sunday 22 October 2017
A busy week as usual. Monday was work in the morning, and evening, but I needed to get into gear and get my gym session out of the way in the afternoon as I had a baking session to do for choir on Tuesday. Headed up to the Celtic Manor after work and put in a warm up and cool down on the treadmill before getting on the rower.
I was up early on Tuesday to do more baking; flapjacks this time. The Committee of Cor y Dreigiau (the choir I sing with) had said I could take cakes for the choir with donations to Leukaemia Care. Over £83 was taken, which was excellent, and I’d suggested a £1 donation per piece/slice. I took the remaining 20 pieces to work on the Wednesday but, sadly, although the donation was set at the same rate, of the 16 pieces which disappeared, there was less than £14 in the “honesty box”. However, there are three kitchens in the building, so I’ll try a different one next week and hope for greater honesty.
On Wednesday, I was up early to go back to the gym. I’d forgotten to read my training programme to see what I should have been doing so ran for 45 mins but at intervals; 7½ minutes running (8km per hour) and 2½ minutes walking (5km per hour). I also forgot to start my Fitbit for the first four minutes and had to go to the toilet midway through. As the toilets are a fair distance from the gym, the machine had reset itself by the time I got back which was really annoying. Not the best, but my own fault. The running was fine and I really felt like a runner rather than a jogger. The machinery told me I’d “trained like an athlete”, which again made me smile.
That evening, I decided to empty my little dragon money box as I couldn’t get any more coins into it. It was given to me a number of years ago in a work Christmas Secret Santa and I still have no idea who the giver was, but I’ve loved it and fed it regularly. Mainly full of coppers with a few random other coins, it contained over £13, which was amazing. Andrew then said that if I could be bothered to count it, I could have the contents of his huge bottle of coppers. It seemed to take hours but eventually I was done and Leukaemia Care would be a total of £33 better off.
After two rest days I was ready to get back in the gym for a workout and, boy, did I work out. Did my usual exercises and 10 reps x 5 on the leg press with the weight set at 50kg. That seemed pretty heavy, but I think I could do more. The main activity was the cross trainer. Worked extremely hard for 30 minutes; 1½ mins on Level 10 with speed over 130 per minute, and 30 seconds on Level 4 with a lower speed. The sweat was everywhere, including dripping off my eyebrows! Andrew had noticed how hard I was working as he completed his own routine. My legs really ached all evening, but it was an ache that told me I'd worked hard rather than that I was in trouble. Felt really accomplished.
One of my fellow bloggers put a really useful link to some yoga exercises in her post a couple of weeks ago. I contacted her and asked if I could put the link in here and she said yes. I haven’t had the time to try them yet but need to as she says they’ve really helped her hips, even doing some yoga just once a week. Hopefully they’ll help my knees too – there is a programme for sensitive knees. Not sure I’d call my knees sensitive, more like a complete pain in the arse. Still, as long as they can hang on in there for another six months, I’ll be happy. Anyway, here’s the link in case you’re interested in trying some yoga:
Today was an outdoor run, Storm Brian permitting. When I went to bed last night I wasn’t sure that my aching legs would let me run first thing (my preferred running time) but when I got up they were fine. Training must be doing some good, and maybe even strengthening my knees and legs in general. 3½ was the target distance today and, after my warm-up exercises were completed, I went out. It was very windy, but sunny. I thought I’d be keeping my jacket on the whole way, but I didn’t as I did eventually warm up.
Something strange happens when I go out running and I’ve noticed it the last few weeks as I tend to start with the same route before varying it, depending on how far I’m running. I feel really lumpy and wooden as I set off and it’s an uphill run past the back of St Cadoc’s Hospital, so I can never work out why the second mile seems to be the slowest, as it’s flat and I know where I’m going. Really odd. Apart from the wind, conditions were ideal and, after the initial lumpy feeling, the run was very comfortable; dare I say it, verging on easy. My split times were 11:37, 12:27, 12:09 and 12:03 (potentially) although I only ran half of that mile. A chap I saw walking his dog when I went out, I passed again towards the end of the run and he asked if I was enjoying it. I had to admit that I was. That said, this is a challenge until 22 April 2018 and then….no more running. I’m not stupid enough to think that my knees will be ok after that as they won’t be and I don’t want to be in a wheelchair, or having replacement knees too early.
Six months today until the big day. I’m really excited about the Marathon and can’t wait to be on the start line. Need to up the running a lot before then though, so plan to ask Rob if I can increase the distance by ½ a mile a week when I see him on Thursday.
What’s in store this week? More training, more baking, more fundraising. Oh, and having a bit of life too. See you soon.