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Wednesday, 27 January 2016

the challenge: week 4 - strong not skinny

Previously, in my life, probably aged between 16 and 30 (basically up until 6 months ago) I’d always wanted to be slim, I probably even envied the bodies of girls you would describe as skinny.  But with a healthy chocolate habit, a dislike of vegetables and a complete lack of interest in exercise, I was never going to be one of the girls.  Plus, I’d always managed to sustain a size 10 – 12 in clothes without huge amounts of effort.  That’s not to say I just ate whatever I wanted whenever I wanted, but I didn't really make conscious efforts not to eat things (does that make any sense?).

However nowadays I've become much more enviable of girls with athletic, lean and toned builds.  You will have seen in my last post that I gave Chloe Madeley a shout out, seriously that girl is looking hot!! I also find that I follow more and more fitness and exercise related pages on Instagram, and I find I'm much more aspiring to that muscular (not to be read as body builder) physique.  So, in conjunction with my running and training, I'm going to be focusing a bit more on my own build, and toning up.  I would love more than anything to have toned abs, that’s the stuff that dreams are made of.  If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you’ll know I caved into the  media frenzy and bought the Lean in 15 Cookbook, so as of Monday I'm now focusing on meals with more protein.  I can already see a very slight definition in my stomach, however there’s a little podge of fat I need to get rid of first so I'm hoping the running will help with that.

I'm also starting to think about taking protein powder but I'm a bit confused about how and when? I'm concerned that if I don’t exercise enough to burn it off, I'm just going to put on weight? If I do a 45 minute circuits class is that enough to warrant a protein shake? Any help and advice would be much appreciated.

I know I'm never going to look like any of the pictures below, but a girl can dream right?

Anyway, I  know these latest fitness posts won’t interest many of my old readers, so I thought I’d do a little ‘Fit Girl Inspiration’ below as you know, celebrities and all that is kind of in line with what I used to write about.

I know at first glance a lot of people would say Millie is too skinny, but this girl is all about #strongnotskinny if you follow her on any of her social media channels you’ll know she works out like a demon.  I guess she’s just naturally a very slight build, but she’s definitely a muscle machine.

Have you seen that ass?! I follow her and her ‘Fitnesswithlucy’ pages on Instagram, I don’t and never have followed any of the plans but it’s a nice little bit of body aspiration, and a lot of the posts act as a good motivation to get out of bed and do a quick HIIT session (just to note, I have NEVER done that!).

This is some impressive dedication to fitness.  Alice has shared several times pictures of herself a few years ago, and wow has she changed her attitude to fitness and food, and lost a lot of lbs along the way.  Plus she now makes a living out of it (I think?!), and some of the photos of her meals she shares look soooo good, you can’t help but want to whip up a healthy salad rather than eat a big plate of beige… ok I kinda want to eat all the beige food too, but her salads do look good.

Do let me know if you have any fitness junkies (preferably with killer abs) you think I should be following, the more the better.

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

the challenge: week 3 - feeling sorry for myself

So my whole January kick-starting my training, working out 6 days out of 7 has gone to pot.  I've been ill!! I never get ill.  In fact, I was even proudly declaring to friends on Saturday that I hadn't had a sick day for over 3 years, and then what happened? Sunday I'm hit with the dreaded lurgy, I guess you could say it's my own fault for bragging but I was not expecting this!

This is the first time in years that I've actually been completely wiped out which means exercise has had to well and truly take a back seat.  I am disappointed as I had been doing so well with my first two weeks of training, but I guess it's better to rest and get well quicker than try and drag myself to a class just to feel even worse after.

So I've spent the last 3 days  moving from the sofa to bed, I'm hoping to make it into work tomorrow and all going well, I'd like to get back to the gym on Thursday.

I've got plans though, plans to spend money with the intention it'll help out with my running, that's the sensible thing to do right?! I just read Jo's post (go check out her blog, it's a good 'un) about all her running essentials.  Jo has really inspired me to learn to love running (well, try to learn), but first I need all the gear.  The wireless headphones are top of my list, but I'm also going to be compiling some running playlists, and I probably need some gloves too...well I have to look the part.

I'm also trying to find some running / exercising blogs so if anyone has any recommendations then let me know.  I'm a big fan of Lydia's blog, and have recently become obsessed with Chloe Madeley's blog FitnessFondue, she is my current #bodygoals , she looks amazing, I dream of having abs like that!

But for now, I'm sticking to the sofa, feeling sorry for myself and filling my body with Vitamin C.

You can read here why I''ve signed up to do Total Warrior in 2016, hence my January training plan!

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

the challenge: week 2 - running

The dreaded run....

Which was every bit as awful as I anticipated.  I think it's become so transfixed in my mind that 
1. I  hate running and 
2. I just can't run that I have lost any ability I may have.

So me and The Mr dragged ourselves out of bed on Saturday morning to avoid the rain and head out on my first run of the year, my first run in my training plan for Total Warrior and my first run ahead of a lot, lot more dreaded runs.

I managed 3k, by managed I mean it was interspersed with A LOT of walking, and it still took 20 minutes, and I still hated every minute of it.  Other than the satisfaction of knowing I'd get out of bed on a Saturday and gone for a run... unheard of!

But, the reality is, I've got to keep going, I've got to be able to run 10k by August and that's got to include some hills!!!

What I can't understand is, I can survive a 60 minute Body Combat class, I can get through a circuits class and I can enjoy an hour long dance class, so why is running for longer then 10 minutes so impossible for me? 

This is where I need your help, please let me know of apps, blogs, imaginary personal trainers that scream in your ear that you use to help you, because at the moment, I feel like I need a miracle...

P.S. If you would like to sponsor me, I'd very much appreciate it, you kind find my justgiving page here which tells you a little bit more about why I'm doing this.

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

the challenge: week 1

Women's Health and Adidas Trainers

So here we are, 1 week after my big new year announcement, and 1 week into January.

As you can see, I've bought myself some new kicks, and purchased a copy of Women's Health, both of those things mean your fitness levels are immediately doubled right? I mean, just reading Women's Health makes me feel like I can run a marathon, and live off protein shakes and salads.

Ok, so I've done a little more than that.  I've got to admit, I started off this week feeling more motivated about exercise in my life, then I went to a circuits class and that motivation seemed to fall of the edge of a cliff as I was being repeatedly lapped by everyone else in the class.... yeah, me and running aren't friends. 

In fact, it's the running I'm most nervous about in Total Warrior, someone can give me a leg up over a high wall, and I'm pretty sure I can wade through mud, but run 10k?! And some of it over hills?  I can't run 10 minutes without stopping for 8 of those to get my breath back.  So this is where I really need to focus my training, I'm getting the boy (should I call him the mr now we're wed?) to take me for a 'jog' on Saturday.  We have done this twice before in our 7 year relationship, both times I've sworn I would never do it again, so you might want to wish me luck with that.

An adidas OOTD
I thought I'd add my OOTD, cos' you know, I technically used to call myself a 'fashion' blogger. So here I am in my finest gear, #postsponsoredbyadidas, not really, I just happened to be super co-ordinated tonight and what better time to show it off!
But back to the circuits, (the picture above is headless because I'd just got home, and no-one needs to see my red face and hair slicked back...with sweat, attractive), usually on a Wednesday night I do a gentle yoga class, the sort where you spend ten minutes at the end lying on your back with your eyes closed, which I usually spend planning what I'm going to eat as soon as I get home, but since our gym got flooded (along with most of Cumbria) not all classes are back up and running.   Hence why I ended up in a circuits class with 50 other much, much fitter people than me.

But, I survived!! And I'm here telling my tale.  Well, I say tale, that's all I really have to say about it, it wasn't fun, it was hard, but I did it.

And on a serious note, if any of you have any tips for how I can somehow get this ass to run, then that would be very much appreciated.

Friday, 1 January 2016

2016: a challenge

I spent a long time staring at the screen wondering how to start this post.  Truth be told, I didn't expect to ever start blogging again, I guess last year I lost my mo-jo, I was too busy in the run up to the wedding and then I couldn't find the motivation to start again, and I knew if my heart wasn't in it, then it probably wasn't the right thing to do.

But here we are, 1st January 2016 and I'm back.  However, I don't imagine I'll be doing outfit posts, or make up reviews any time soon, blogging this year is going to be a little different for me.

On May 26th, 3 days after our wedding, my dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.  My parents didn't tell us until we got home to ensure we would enjoy our honeymoon.  Since then, life has been a roller coaster.

2015 was filled with highs and lows, my wedding day being the best day of my life, my dad's diagnosis being the worst, and I'm still trying to come to terms with it all.

So, rather than making a New Year's Resolution, I decided to set myself a New Year's Challenge.  This year I am going to train for, and take part in Total Warrior.  And I'm going to do it to raise money for Pancreatic Cancer UK.  

Total Warrior
I wanted to do something which would really be a challenge for me.  Anyone who knows me well, knows that me and exercise have never got along. Admittedly, in the last year I have got significantly fitter than I was 12 months ago, but I've got the wedding to thank for that.  But I'm no athlete, and this is going to be hard.  I can't run for 5 minutes, let alone complete a 10k obstacle course!

But I can't really expect people to sponsor me to complete something that isn't a challenge.  My dad has his own challenges to face this year, so I thought I'd join him and do something completely out of my comfort zone.

So why am I back here? Well, I'm hoping it'll act as a motivation for me, I need to start training so I'm going to use this space to capture that, I'm hoping by publishing it, it'll give me that kick up the arse when I need it.  But also, without getting too cheesy, I'm hoping it'll act as almost a therapy, sometimes writing things down comes much easier than talking about it.

2016 is going to be a physical challenge and an emotional challenge. 

Some people may say it's ignorant but I haven't asked many questions about my dad's diagnosis, I don't want to know, I'd rather enjoy the days, months or years we have ahead of us rather than counting down towards a prognosis given by the doctors.  That would be too hard. So I'm focusing on the now, and I'm going to hopefully help raise a little money on my way.
So here we go.  And if you can any words of advice, I'd love to hear them.
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