The Highs and Lows of Sport

Happy Friday everyone!

So…on Saturday I completed my 1st race post crash!!

http://www.parkrun.org.uk/hazlehead/news/2015/06/02/event-37-boyfriends-being-nice/

Callum was my support runner (thank you again!!!!) – he was fine with a slow run, since he had the Edinburgh marathon the following day. I was too scared to look at my watch but he knew I wanted anything sub30, although I told him just before the race I thought I could get 27.30!

Anyhoo, 26minutes and 10seconds later (and only 8+ minutes onto my PB!) I finished!! I was so so happy!! I love conquering goals; no matter how big or small! Thanks to everyone who supported me during the race – I never realised how many readers there are!! Callum I hope our speedy time isn’t what made you ill at the Edinburgh marathon 😦 get well soon!

Oh, and since Callum was so charitable to me, please be charitable to him. He is “running until he drops”: at least 1 mile on the 1st of June, 2 miles on the 2nd, 3 on the 3rd and so on – up to 30 miles on the 30th! It is for a GREAT cause so please dig deep and sponsor him here!

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(parkrun article. Ok, it’s predominantly about Kylie Babez’ win (shock horror!) BUT my 54th place is mentioned!)

Speaking of Edinburgh, I was informed on Strava that I lost my CR for the marathon on Sunday! Grrr!

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(Gotta love Strava to keep you motivated…!)

And just to kick me while I was down, I woke up on Monday morning with excruciating pain in my calf and Achilles. In fact, scratch that, I hadn’t slept a wink due to the pain. I tried ice, hot water bottle, painkillers, massage….nothing seemed to help! Had I pushed too hard at parkrun? Did I overdo it? Not again!

So I am back off the running.

HOWEVER, conversely I have managed to cycle outside for the first time since the crash (lots of firsts this week!)!!!!!! Phil Mann you are a LEGEND!!! He took me out, making sure I was comfortable the entire time! We started on grass, then just cycled around Hazelhead where we only saw a couple of cars. A good way to ease into it!

AND I didn’t cry once…! Kyle will be surprised to hear that considering I am crying at every little step forward these days! Oddly, I don’t cry from the steps back (cue calf issue), only the good stuff! I may have to be institutionalised soon.

I digress. When I got home from the hospital, Phil was one of the 1st visitors I had, and brought with him champagne, Rego recovery drink (hilarious…) and his injury sweets of choice (he is constantly injured!).

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The champers was for when I first cycled outside again. So guess what was opened on Tuesday night…?!?

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Phil came round and we watched a Doric movie and chatted the night away!

There were more celebrations had this week, but more on that later!

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(but it still included alcohol and cake!)

I guess what I’m trying to hint at here, folks, is despite highs (cycling outside) and lows (ANOTHER injury), you should ALWAYS look at the positives!

Could I cycle at all 2 weeks ago? Nope.

Could I run 5km 2 weeks ago? Nope.

My calf WILL heal and I WILL get out there again! My bike strength and confidence WILL come back!

I’m getting there… slowly but surely!

Thanks so much again to everyone for their encouragement! Can I also ask that you support Freyja through her injury!?! She is trying to qualify for OLYMPICS but is in an air cast at the moment!!! Wish her a speedy recovery too!

And when you’re down, Pinterest really does help make you smile!

do it

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And how cute is this?!

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Oh, and some ACTUAL USEFUL INFORMATION (you’re welcome) for any Spotify members out there:

 http://www.runnersworld.com/general-interest/spotify-announces-new-feature-for-runners

Speaking of “highs” (gettit?!), did anyone watch the documentary on BBC about Alberto Salazar? I may be biased, but I believe Kara Goucher because I ❤ her!

So…IS Galen a doper?? And what about Mo…??


How is everyone?

Anyone dealing with injury?

Who has races coming up?

Weekend plans? 

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New Year’s Day with a Double ParkRun

Happy New Year, everyone!

I hope we are all refreshed and re-energised to have the best year ever! My Hogmanay was spent with Andy and his kids. I made jewellery with them while Andy and Kyle played Playstation games, then when they went to bed Kyle and I headed back home and popped some Champagne watching Jackie Bird!

Feeling great on the 1st (1st time for many years!), we had planned on doing double Parkrun with a few of our friends. Hazlehead was at 9.30am and the Beach run was at 11am. We live in between both. The plan was run to Hazlehead, do the race, run back to the flat, do a shot, run to the beach, run home. All intended to be easy and sociable. However, being competitive, an “easy race” wasn’t in our vocab. The boys had a proper race while I tried to keep up. Icy trails and uphill to half way made for a 1st 5k time of 19.30.

Ron Gauld (north east running superstar!) won overall and Kyle in 2nd. He has an obsession with making inventive wine concoctions. That morning, he brought a bunch of beetroot wine (don’t knock it ‘til you try it, people!) so myself, Ron, Kyle and Phil (THE bad influence of the group!) downed a glass of that (beetroot is good for athletes 😉 )

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(quick stop off at the flat to “warm up”)

On the way to the beach, we stopped at our flat and Ron fancied whiskey, so that got cracked open, and I had some Ciroc. Feeling a little buzz, we only had about 20 minutes to make the 2.5 mile journey down to the beach start line! I forgot to start my Garmin but I think my 2nd 5k was 19.40 and I got 1st female again. Kyle won overall that time, leaving myself as the only double winner! It was the most fun morning ever to start the year off! Ron gave us a bottle of his beetroot wine to take home, and he is now onto his banana batch!

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(SUCH a fun morning!! Although I think Kyle is having too much fun??)

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The 3 of us (Phil got a lift to the beach) made the paper for doing both and running from one to the other, but luckily the Press and Journal left out the alcohol part…!

Then it was on to Mum’s house (it was her birthday on the 1st!) for some awesome food, jelly shots and cocktails!

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(homemade meringue) 

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(creme brulee from scratch) 

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(Ron’s beetroot wine)

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(cranberry vodka jelly shots)

Unfortunately, the lack of water and addition of alcohol, along with 2x5k “races” really made my quads hurt. I tried ice and rolling but THIS seemed to be the only method that worked:

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(a foam roller on one leg AND a rolling pin on the other!!)

We ❤ New Year! We all stayed at mum’s that night so we could go to the Lumphanan Detox 10k the following morning!


Questions for you:

What did you do for Hogmanay?

Any New Years Day races?

Resolutions?

Christmas Week

I hope everyone had a very merry Christmas?!

I feel like this was the most unorganised I have been – usually all the presents have been wrapped and are under the tree by the start of December! I suppose I’ll let myself off, given that Lanzarote and Budapest made for a busy month (not to mention Leeds!)

Christmas week I was working, but I still managed to fit in my swimming reunion at Brew Dog and 6 Degrees North #ladsnight!

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(Robbie, me and Phil (who I’m doing the Kalmar Ironman with!))

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(Scott, Andy and Martin)

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(Phil, Wan and Scott)

There were no girls in our swim squad at COAST for a good couple of years so my teenage years were spent trying to fit in with the boys! I love how successful my team were – Robbie won 2x Commonwealth Games gold medals and has swam at the Beijing and London Olympics, Andy made a Commonwealth Games final, and everyone else was in either Scottish or GB teams, having won at least 1 national gold medal! …Look at us now :S

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Christmas Eve after work Mum and I went into town to watch the panicking-last-minuters do their shopping while we had our Starbucks, then Emma came over for our annual baking evening! We made Cinnabons, Salted Caramel Butter Bars (make these as soon as you can!) and churros made in my waffle-maker!

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(Cinnabons)

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(Salted Caramel Butter Bars)

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(Waffled Churros)

The following day was CHRISTMAS!! Emma picked me up to take me to Parkrun, where Freyja (another Olympic qualifier!) and I decided to dress up and join in for fun…Half way through and neither of us could handle taking a “race” easy, so Santa and his elf decided to go sub-6 miles for the 2nd half. It was a PW for the both of us of 21.03 but it was the most fun personal worst ever!

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(it was too cold to break a sweat!)

Then Emma took me to Mum’s house where I got a nice long shower and an extra hot chocolate!

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The rest of our day looked a little like this:

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(2 robins just chillin’ out together = unheard of!)

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As for presents, I got a bluray player with surround sound from my uncle (!), lots of makeup and clothes from the rest of the fam, BUT ALSO…:

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Lots of cycling stuff (cycle clothing not pictured!)

I sent this to Noodles straight away, thinking he’d be proud. This was his immediate reply:

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Merry Christmas to you too, Scott!

Kyle and I had our Christmas when he got back the following night, but no rest for the wicked as we had to leave the following morning bright and early for the Ribble Valley 10k that was on the Sunday….!


Questions for you:

What did you do for Christmas?

Any Christmas traditions?

What did Santa bring you?

Ever raced Christmas day?

The Good, the Bad, the Ugly…then back to the Good!

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend!

Despite the weather, we were pretty outdoorsy!

THE GOOD:

Saturday morning I was like a spring chicken so I’m glad I just chilled on Friday! We decided with all our extra energy we would do 2 races for bants! The 1st: Hazlehead Park Run. Wowzers there were a lot of puddles!!!! I am such a sissy girl when it comes to puddles normally but in this case I was a total fairy!! Cue arms flapping all over the place and girly screams whenever my foot gets wet for 20 whole minutes. I think Kyle was embarrassed running with me (my race pace is his warm up pace, and with his niggling Achilles he didn’t want to push both races!) but at least I had someone to talk to (although my extraordinarily heavy breathing did get in the way!)

Also, despite waking up in plenty time to do a sufficient warm up, we are total faffers, so my time of 20.22 had to be my warm up for the 2nd race! My 2nd worst time ever in a 5km but, with the conditions and hills, I’ll take it! Plus, I was too busy yapping to NEWLY-ENGAGED speedster Stuart Milne (overall winner) in the 1st half mile about the engagement holiday to really race! 1st place female so I’ll take it.

THE BAD:

Then it was on to Tyrebagger for a charity Children In Need race! An hour after our 5km, we had 8km on what I was told would be “a slightly undulating route, not too dissimilar from Hazlehead Park Run”.

I had never been to Tyrebagger before, and whenever Kyle and I come across a hill together he sees it as a speed bump when I see it as Everest, so no one warned me how HILLY this race would be!! Holy moly!!

When at my fittest, I am not too shabby on the uphills, but I cannot run downhill to save my life! Guys were bounding past me at every steep downhill and I had to work to catch up and get them again on the uphills! Kyle ended up winning and I was 2nd female so good team effort from us!

We thought we were hardcore running twice but Callum was BEASTING his Saturday by doing the Aberdeen Park Run, then cycling to Tyrebagger (7ish miles?), coming 3rd overall in the hill race, to then cycle home!! All this 1 day before Fraserburgh Half Mara yesterday where he beasted that too – 83 mins in awful conditions!! Well done dude!

THE UGLY:

Let’s bear in mind I do not do trail races. I am a city girl (if we include Aberdeen as a city) and hate peeing outside, cleaning myself in rivers, being stung by nettles, being bitten by beasties…you get the jist. Add a race to this mix – think rocks, puddles, mud (LOTS of it), plants and trees in the way, slippery bridges etc – and I finished the run not the happiest of bunnies!

In road races my preference, upon finishing a race, is sitting on an actual seat. One can then select a beverage and snack of one’s choice from an array of treats being handed out by friendly volunteers out of tents and stalls. One can use an actual working toilet. One can rest and recover indoors with heating and warm showers.

In the outdoors, I forget this. I finished the race. I then proceeding to sit in faeces. Yep, straight in there. I didn’t even think. Remember above, when I said I was a sissy girl, yeah that happened again. Lots of screaming; attention-drawing, damsel in distress type screaming. Kyle and Callum were in stitches for the duration of our cool down…!

I tried to get Kyle to take a pic (for all the non-squeamish readers) but he was laughing too hard that he completely missed! Proof:

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(never did I think it would be difficult to miss my butt!)

What a mess. Literally.

BACK TO THE GOOD

After an afternoon of more Walking Dead and pjs, we had a wedding to go to! One of Kyle’s admin girls was getting married at Aberdeen Uni and we were invited to the after party! She was gorgeous! It was so much fun, and we even won a bottle of Champagne for winning Blackjack at the “Casino”!

It was an awesome night! Slightly too much wine, as made evident on my long run the following morning, but hey ho that’s for another time!

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(we scrubbed up well!)

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(out of his sweet stash, Kyle gave me these. How romantic….excuse the stovies stain)

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(the wee ones were playing the piano for me so I was cornered by myself for quite some time)

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(…but that didn’t matter because I went on to win some Champers!!)

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Questions for you:

Anyone race this weekend?

Did anyone watch Children in Need?

Ever won anything at someone else’s wedding?!