Not my usual run.

So the running hasn’t gone so well this week. After a great parkrun on Saturday I have just been too lazy to run all week. But sometimes stuff is just meant to be.

yesterday my car broke down on the way to work. The recovery service were there by 8am, yay! The man lifted the bonnet and sprayed lots of bits with something. No joy. He plugged in a computer and after an assessment got a big hammer out. I looked the other way. Then he told be that it couldn’t fixed by the roadside and called a truck to take it to a garage. The truck would be there by 10am.

I made a few phone calls texts and so on to sort out work. I was supposed to be operating that morning but fortunately my colleagues rallied round and managed to get all that sorted out. Now the battery on my phone was going flat.

By 10am I needed to pee. I was eargerly anticipating the arrival of the truck and transport to the garage where there would be loos.

By 10:30 there was no sign of the truck and I was getting desperate. There was no suitable cover for an al fresco emergency relief episode, so I decided to abandon the car and walk into the nearest village to look for a loo.

About 2 miles of wiggly walk later I came to the garage.

Just as I got there my phone rang – the truck man saying that he was by my car. ‘ you will have to wait ‘ I growled in my ‘spawn of the devil’ voice.

I enquired in the shop about a loo-  ‘outside and round the corner’ they said.

Sign on the door – ‘do not use, out of order’.

I went back into the shop . ‘Please can I use your staff loo?’ I asked politely.

‘No’ they said. ‘It’s against the rules -health and safey’

Reader,  what would you do?

Me, pride and dignity went out of the window ( don’t worry, as a middle aged woman you get practice y’know childbirth, gynae stuff).

Reader I begged. I explained my concern about peeing my pants. I said that if there had been a hedge I would have pee’d behind it.

The shop keepers were youngish Asian men. I could see the fear in their eyes. After all, what could be more fearful than a middle aged woman about to pee in your shop or even worse, if not quite so much fluid, burst into tears?

‘but you might sue us! ‘ they said

I promised not to sue and they let me use the loo. (Thank you youngish Asian men😁)

After that I ran back to my car. Yes I ran, in my little orange ballet flats clutching my over full hand bag.

So I did get a run in on Thursday after all😊


Posted in fitness, habits, middle aged women, Motivation, parkrun, running, time management, Uncategorized, work life balence | 26 Comments

Quote of the day

Posted in running | 4 Comments

Healthy choices made today;

Woke up early (not actually achoice, just lucky😊)

green smoothie for breakfast


Avocado, spinach and kiwi fruit. Very green but actually very nice!

Went to parkrun, which  I enjoyed😊 First time in ages that I have enjoyed running with other people


The arch is the start line. Afterwards I went to the shopping centre for a latte – and took the stairs instead of the escalator!

After my shower I’m going to my Bhuddist group  (takes care of my mental health!!)

How many healthy choices will I make tomorrow I wonder? (Lots I hope😊) How many will you make? Does counting them help you to make more?


Posted in balance, fitness, fun, habits, healthy diet, middle aged women, Motivation, Nutrition, parkrun, plant based, positive mental attitude, running, Uncategorized, work life balence | 11 Comments

What happened to February?

I know that February is a short month, but I feel like I blinked and I missed it! It’s been a poor month for running;


I haven’t blogged much and I don’t think that I have advanced much on the novel, well not in word count anyway. I was reviewing the novel yesterday. I can see lots of room for improvement, but that’s OK. Stepping away from it for a couple of weeks then coming back does give some objectivity, at least I can see what I need/want to do with it.

So what have I been doing? Spending more time with people who matter to me. Eating a bit of cake (I need to nip that in the bud- it goes straight onto the waistline!)

This morning I went out for a little jog and I had a little think. I was thinking about cee jay (ceejaykayfit) who wants to do a vegan detox, and SRG who is a vegan every day. I was thinking about recent health advice to increase fruit and veg to 10 per day and my low carb sausage and egg breakfast. What could I have for a low carb vegan breakfast? I struggled for a few minutes before hitting the jackpot – the green smoothie! Now it’s spring it will be easier to do, so shopping tomorrow for spinach, kiwi fruit berries etc tomorrow!

Then I got around to thinking about slow running girl and how she gets up early every morning to run. Why can’t I do that? I set my alarm early but I make a cup of tea and sit quietly drinking it instead of running. I confess that I like the P&Q of early morning and I like that cup of tea, but whose to say that I wouldn’t like the satisfaction of having done my run even more?

What stops people from changing? Well, fear is often a big factor. So what fear could possibly stop me from running in the morning? Honestly? Fear of being late for work, of being tired. I kid you not. Punctuality is quite important to me. As is being on top form at work.  Is this a reasonable fear? No not really. I mean, if you get up 30 minutes earlier, you can run for 25 minutes and stop then do your morning routine. All I have to do is do it, to prove to myself that it can be done. Then keep doing it until the ‘fear’ goes away.

what would you like to change but you never do?

what could your underlying fear be?

Posted in running | 27 Comments

It’s on it’s way!



So much more going for it than Christmas!

I made it out for a daylight run /walk.  Just under 5 miles. Average HR 135, so 10 above MAF but it was comfortable enough. Snowdrops are out everywhere!

Apologies for being less present in the blogosphere just now. As I haven’t been outdoors much there are fewer pictures, and there’s only so much you can say about running on a treadmill!

I’m also spending a bit more of my writing time and energy  working on my novel. Today I have been re-writing chapter 4 (I’ve only got 5 chapters so far!!). It wasn’t really working for me so I’m re doing it. Not as much fun as writing a new chapter- no increase in the word count so it doesn’t feel like progress, but I know that it’s time well spent.

To those of you in the northern hemisphere, happy running in the warmth and daylight☺️

To those of you in the south, make the most of autumn before the winter kicks in!

I’m planning a bit of a break for the next few weeks, for the reasons above.

See you soon, j xx


Posted in running | 24 Comments

Not up to much.

This is one of those blogs that sort of explains why I haven’t blogged!

Gross warning now, picture of my feet coming up. Just to point out my swollen painful ankle on the right. I’m telling you which side in case it isn’t obvious. (What do you mean you can’t tell? Just under the lateral malleolus-  what do you mean ‘it doesn’t look significant’ to you? What kind of a doctor ARE you?)


So no run this evening. Instead went late night shopping to buy a pair of black trousers to replace the ones that are too big. Celebrated smaller pants as follows;img_0724

Note to self, keep old trousers they may fit again soon…..


Posted in running | 27 Comments

How do YOU ride the roller coaster?

Apologies if anyone has missed me over the last couple of weeks. I’ve been awol.

I’ve been away for a few days, both social and work, then a short week to recover and get all my chores done before having friends to visit last weekend –and then? I dunno but I fell off the wagon – the Maffetone wagon. No long slow runs, no short slow runs, no runs of any kind, oh and cake. On a number of occasions.

I ate cake because I was feeling down. Maybe it was the lack of running, maybe it was the loss of routine. So highs and lows. It got me thinking about the roller coaster metaphor for life. ( and Shazza too – see shazruns!)

So how do you ride the roller coaster? Do you get to the top, put your hands in the air and squeal with delight as you plummet towards the ground as fast as gravity allows? Or do you grip the safety rail, tense your body rigidly, clinging on for dear life and close your eyes so that you can’t see the full horror of the danger you are in? Do you wish it was all over, that you’d never got on, that you don’t want to be there?

I decided that the roller coaster wasn’t a good metaphor for me. It isn’t a ride that I would choose, but I do choose life, so there must be another metaphor for my life.
I thought a while.
My life metaphor isn’t even in the fairground.

It’s in the hills! Of course it is, where else?

You start on a walk, there’s always going to be a climb to get where you want to be. It will be hard work but hopefully it will be enjoyable. There will be grass and streams and scenery, you can either rush past it and press on, or stop to enjoy it, depending on how keen you are to reach the peak.

The climb may get harder, but then you will stop and look back to enjoy the view of where you’ve been. You can see a hill top, you push towards it, but when you get there you realise that it isn’t the top, maybe you’d looked at the map and you knew all along, but either way you press on.
Eventually you reach the peak. The views are great and there’s a sense of accomplishment, but funnily enough despite all that effort you don’t stay there. It’s cold, it’s windy and there isn’t much room. You might be on your own so you stay as long as you like, but in the end you know that you have to leave to find food, shelter and company. There may be a crowd of people jostling to be at the top – they have climbed too so it’s only fair to step aside and let them enjoy the view they have worked for.
Maybe from the top you see another peak, possibly more interesting than where you are. So you climb down and then back up again. Your experience from the last peak may have made you fitter so it’s easier, or maybe you haven’t allowed yourself to recover properly, so it’s harder. Eventually you decide to head for home. Going downhill can be easy if the path is smooth and gentle or dangerous if too steep.

All the way the route you choose will determine your experience, how hard it is, how much you get out of it.

I love the hills and a much better metaphor for me😊

Just for the record I have squeezed in a couple of walks. Today I walked to the castle and back – prep for eventually running it. 9 miles in total. Last week 6 miles on the hill.


Posted in balance, blogging, fitness, fun, habits, healthy diet, heartrate, hills, Inspiration, low intensity, maffetone methid, middle aged women, Motivation, slow run, Stress, Uncategorized, walking, weight loss, work life balence, working mum | 25 Comments

New toy!!

So far so good with my new goal of averaging 14 miles per week. My garmin app sort of rolls the week along, always doing the last 7 days or tha last 4weeks. So I’m on 11.8 miles for the last 7 days and averaging 1.3 miles per day for the last month. No binge running! No 5 mile runs followed by 4days off😊

But my new toy😊!!!

It’s actually an app not a piece of gear.


So what is it?  Well. Every morning when I wake up I click on the icon on my phone and put my finger over the camera lens for a minute. It measures my pulse, so I get my resting pulse but it also measures ‘heart rate variation’ that is how much difference there is in the size of the gaps between heartbeats. Basically, the more stressed you are, either physically through overtraining, or psychologically due to life,  the more stress hormones there are circulating in your body increasing the sensitivity of your autonomic nervous system, the bit of the nervous system that controls your heartrate. The less regular it is, the more stressed you are. (I think.)So that’s enough science, I suggest that you google it if you want to know more☺️

back to the app.

Once you have done your HRV measurement the app asks you about how much training you have been doing, how you are eating, sleeping, feeling, alcohol etc.  It doesn’t have my HR data, but it does link with strava which I don’t currently use.

Then it calculates your recovery score and advises you how hard you should train that day. Interestingly I’ve had feedback from it one time telling me that my physiology was off so take it easy even though I felt OK,  and another time telling me my physiology was OK  but that my other measures weren’t so it was up to me what I did that day! Also, sometimes a higher resting pulse is associated with a better stress score, which is interesting because I always thought that a lower pulse was associated with better fitness (unless overtrained, which I never thought I was).

This app dovetails well with my MAF training. Often I alternate running at 8kph until my HR goes over MAF with walking at 5kph until my HR comes back down.  It usually comes out at an average 6kph.  After doing an hour at MAF at the weekend my scores went down(stressed). This week, with my foot still being a bit sore, I thought that I would just walk at 6kph instead of fast/slow. It was good because it kept my HR nice and steady just where it should be at my MAF threshold and not above it but sad because I didn’t feel like it was improving my running. Because I wasn’t running was I?

So what to make of this? Compared to last year where I was running 7.5 mins/km now I’m walking at 10mins/km albeit at a lower heart rate (120 vs 140+). It doesn’t sound like progress does it?

However I’m going to stick with it,go with the flow,(insert your own cliche) whatever!

So why?

I actually think that I am getting fitter. I can take the stairs at work now (8 flights) without stopping or suffering the same breathlessness that I used to. I wore my HR monitor doing it on Monday and it only took my HR up to 104.

I also think that I will be able to increase my mileage this way and I think that improving my endurance at MAF will ultimately increase my speed. So sometimes I will fast walk, sometimes I will walk/run.

So I’m sticking with my new year plan, 14miles per week at MAF for 3months. I wonder if I will be running at MAF by the end of March?

Posted in fitness, fun, garmin, habits, heartrate, low intensity, maffetone methid, middle aged women, running, slow run, stats geek, Stress, training plan, treadmill | 11 Comments

just for today.

Week 1 of 2017. I have set myself the goal of running 14miles per week average by the end of March. At my MAF pace that works out at just under 4hours running per week.

My first week of the new year has got off to a good start. 11 miles, four runs.


We were discussing achieving goals in the coffee room at work last week – someone has given up smoking as a New Years resolution – and we talked about ‘just for today’. It was a tactic I used when I gave up sugar and it worked really well for me. You tell yourself when temptation comes your way ‘just for today, I just have to get through today’ without sugar/cigarette etc. Of course, if you do, you feel like you have achieved something at the end of the day. And the next day you do it all again, until eventually it becomes a new way of life.

I wonder if it works as well for adding something in?

‘Just for today I’m going to do 30 minutes on the treadmill.’ I’ve tried this before with running outdoors, and failed. Having the treadmill at home means that I don’t have to worry about darkness, weather, babysitter, what to wear etc.

So just for 5 days , 2miles per day at MAF pace. Next weekend I will see how I feel and decide whether to have a longer run and a rest day or just stick to short runs.

One week at a time. 14 miles this week, that’s all. Review next weekend and plan the week after then.

Posted in balance, fitness, fun, habits, healthy diet, heartrate, low intensity, maffetone methid, middle aged women, Motivation, positive mental attitude, running | 14 Comments



New Year’s Day saw me taking a walk rather than a run. Yes, I went too far with the barefoot thing. I’d been doing it all week, then on New Year’s Eve tried to do an hour with Buddy. After 20 minutes the pain in the outside of my left foot was causing my ankle to give way a bit, so I just did a fast walk for the rest of it. The next day I decided to rest, but hubs was up for a little walk so we just pootled a couple of miles. To the pub – which was open! But it wasn’t but pre meditated and we hadn’t brought any money, so we just pootled back home again!

we saw lambs tails/catkins in the hedge, and fully grown sheep enjoying a sheep-y haystack Christmas cake.

Yesterday I put my shoes back on and it was fine. Today I tried again without, but it was immediately sore, so I ran with shoes again.

I’m thinking about a parkrun for Saturday, just to see how it goes. There will be lots of New Years resolution people there, so it might be too busy , but I will think about it😊

Posted in balance, change, fitness, fun, habits, low intensity, maffetone methid, middle aged women, Motivation, parkrun, running, slow run, stats geek, treadmill, Uncategorized, work life balence | 9 Comments