Sunday, October 27, 2013

Out of the running?

Its been a whirlwind week with ups and downs....mum flew into town for 3 nights on her way from London to Auckland - one of the great pleasures of living at a halfway point in the world...I thoroughly enjoyed her visit and was spoilt with some great massage.  We also got to wine and dine at some lovely spots both in town and locally.

Just as mum was about to get in the taxi and head for the airport my gorgeous girl Soph called to ask what might be the cause of the blisters that were starting to break out all over her skin - my mother immediately said chickenpox - and this was later confirmed to be correct - chickenpox is not nice at any stage but can be awful when you are 20 years old and in the middle of end of year exams.  Soph is not sure yet what this means for the exam she is due to sit later this week e.g. will she need to sit in a room on her own - or will she be well enough to sit it at all - I guess we will find out when she talks to student health on Tuesday.

Then I had the chiropractor tell me that I mustn't run for a week due to my IT band which is thoroughly overused and very painful - not good with 5 weeks to go to the marathon - I have had four days off so far and the pain is lessening but I am becoming concerned about running on it again and causing permanent damage - time will tell.  Might be the wake up call I need to stick with triathlon as I never got injured doing multi sports.  I am contemplating walking the marathon distance at this point - after all what's another hour or two out on the course!  

The most exciting news is that in less than 8 weeks time I will be home for Christmas - not that I am counting or anything but bring it on - I just can't wait.....after all there is just no place like home :)

Friday, October 18, 2013

Some new toys

This week has had some ups and downs - I have been waking up in the night with an aching hip and both ankles in pain so I decided I had to find myself a chiropractor.  Thankfully the chiropractor I had seen in Auckland earlier in the year had given me the name of someone to see here, so off I went to see him.  Apparently the band between my hip and knee is wound up very tightly and the chiropractor also said I was standing on a 'lean' so needed a few adjustments so I can stand up straight again.

Anyway I have my running programme now for the next four weeks which is the most challenging part of the marathon build up and with the distances building I decided to try a new toy to help reduce dehydration issues:

The camelbak worked really well and I carried 1.5 lites of electrolyte (nuun), stopping after one hour 40 mins to refill it with water and to eat a chocolate gu. 

Another challenge is working out which products are best - I heard my chocolate gu has caffeine in it and my other electrolyte tablets have sugar.  Who knew there was so much to look out for!

Anyway, the good news is that I ran 19 kms this morning in 2.15 which 3kms further than I ran last week on my 2 hour run and I was a km ahead of schedule.  

So what was different today? It was 3 degrees cooler than last week at 7am although the temperature steadily rose as the morning progressed.

Also, usually I run without having breakfast but today I had a banana before my run and then the chocolate gu at the hour 40 mark.  I also took on 2 lites of fluid - 1.5 lites of which was electrolyte.  I will review all this information as the marathon date gets closer to make sure I have the best day out I can (and it may well be a whole day out at my current pace!)

So it's off for a massage this afternoon now that the hard work has been done for the day. Awesome!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Tracking well

Well its Sunday again and I just finished my two hour run - I am tracking consistently at 4 Kms per 30 mins, so managed 16 Kms comfortably in the 2 hours today - 1km an hour slower than I would be tracking if I was in Auckland.  The temperature was up 5 degrees on last week - my water consumption went up accordingly and despite stopping to buy more water I had run out before the 90 minute mark. Not good but I won't have that problem on marathon day with water stops every 3 Kms (so I am told).  

There are 7 weeks to go now till the marathon  and the next 5 weeks are the most important as this is when you put the miles in the Bank - I expect I will be lifting my distances by almost double between now and mid November.  

A few of my colleagues in my new company are also taking part and the most common fear is dehydration - other colleagues are refusing to do more than the half marathon for this reason.  I am tempted to join them due to my slow pace but will assess things nearer the time.

I also finished the  Paleo 30 day challenge  this week but will keep the eating regime up as it really works for me.  I am not sure the scales truly reflect the weight loss so I took this picture this morning showing my trousers have a lot more room in them - I am happy with the result.

Anyway - a great run which I finished comfortably just outside our local cafe - Flock - where I picked up a freshly squeezed orange juice - YUM!

What a great way to start a Sunday morning!  

Friday, October 4, 2013

One year anniversary

Well its hard to believe but 1 year has now passed since I arrived in Singapore and so much has happened over 12 months.  I have travelled on business to Hong Kong, China, Japan and Australia and also been lucky enough to get home to NZ three times to celebrate Christmas, Easter and my dad's 80th birthday.  I have competed in triathlons (getting two podium finishes - 3rd place), aquathons  and duathlons and am now registered for the Singapore Standard Chartered marathon in December.  I have had more visitors staying with me in Singapore than I ever did in Auckland - which is just awesome. So has it been a good move?  Yes, it has.

When I look back it was a fairly risky decision to leave a good job and head to a country I knew little about - but as my cousin Geoff often says - Life is a Daring Adventure or nothing.  I am now on contract till June 2014 and then will reassess what is next.  My daughter, Sophia, has been accepted to attend university in France for the second half of next year so I may look at options in the UK for a short contract so we can enjoy some fun in Europe together - who knows what the future holds.  Exciting times.

Anyway, back to the marathon which is now 8 weeks away.  I flew along on my run this morning and wasn't sure whether it was due to the Paleo diet (day 27) the training plan or what.  However, when I got home I checked the temperature and suspect that as it was about 8 degrees colder than usual (and raining) it may have been due to that - although the diet and training plan are clearly contributing.  It was exciting to feel so good though!

It is also a 'rest' week from a training perspective and I only had an hours run scheduled - the easier week is a pleasure but I am sure training ramps up again next week and will continue to do for the next 6 weeks or so before tapering off before the big event.

I am also excited that a few people who I am now working with are also training for the marathon so its great to be surrounded by people with the same interests!  I hear there are 25,000 people who participate in this event and that the pace is fairly slow given the numbers - well that shouldn't cause me any concerns :)

Anyway, after my run I enjoyed my Paleo breakfast of bacon, eggs, mushrooms and avocado - I have got very used to this type of breakfast and despite the 30 day Paleo challenge coming to an end I doubt I will ever stop eating this way - I feel and look leaner and eating this way is now becoming a normal part of life.  So, here is to the second year in Singapore - I wonder what might it bring?