Running is the greatest teacher

"Life is simple, its just not easy". I don't know who said that. Someone wise, like Gandhi. Probably. Or maybe not. Maybe it was just a normal, everyday person, like you and I. We're all figuring things out, aren't we? We're constantly learning and evolving and living our lives, one day at a time, moment to moment. I think about a lot of stuff when I run. I mull things over and work stuff out. Once when I was out running, I wrote this blog post and was so consumed by the words that tumbled out of my brain, that I ran to [...]

By |2016-12-29T13:32:08+01:0020 March 2013|

The story of the running shoes

Now dirty and worn, these running shoes have travelled hundreds of miles with me. Through the sullied streets of Paris, and the parks and plazas of Berlin. Along the ashen coastal paths of Iceland, and through London. Oh, London! You're my favourite city in the world. These shoes carried me not just to the finish line of my first ultra marathon, but through hours and hours of training to do so. There was stout-hearted pushing of physical boundaries and brazen determination, gritted teeth and tears and beaming smiles and hands up to the sky ENLIGHTENMENT and glinting eyes. There was [...]

By |2019-06-26T18:51:51+01:008 January 2013|

Marathon melancholia

Crossing the finishing line of a marathon is a momentous occasion. After months and months of intense and dedicated training, the sweet satisfaction of heading towards that final stretch - those last few 'feel-like-they're-never-going-to-end' metres, that culminate in a heart-lifting crescendo as your feet, oh your tired, weary feet, pass over that finish line, is such a euphoric experience. It's called a 'runners high'. And you can understand why. But what happens after the race? What happens once the post-race rapture starts to wane? A sucker-punch, aimed right at the soul. That's what happens. "What goes up, must come down". [...]

By |2016-12-29T13:32:09+01:0015 October 2012|

Race review: The Royal Parks Foundation Ultra

Ok, so let me just start by saying that 50 kilometres is a really long way, guys. When I initially signed up for Women's Running Magazine's, 'Operation Ultra', and found out that I'd be running the Royal Parks Foundation 50K Ultra, I nonchalantly justified to myself that 50 kilometres was just 50 kilometres: "5 x 10 kilometres? That's not so bad!" I reasoned. And yes, I was right; 5 x 10 kilometres isn't so bad. IF YOU RUN EACH 10 KILOMETRES AT SEPARATE INCREMENTS, AND NOT ALL IN ONE GO. Of course, when I lined up at the start line, with [...]

By |2018-08-02T08:30:58+01:0010 October 2012|

Race review: The Berlin marathon 2012

On Sunday, I ran my last long training run before the Royal Parks Ultra, which is this weekend. This. Weekend. THIS WEEKEND! PEOPLE, I'M SCARED! This particular training run was to be a 'dress rehearsal' for the ultra marathon, and I was advised by my coach, Phoebe, to run slow and steady, wearing the kit I plan to wear during the ultra race, and to stick to the fuel and hydration strategies I have meticulously prepared my body for during the last three months of Operation Ultra. All in all, this training run was like every other long Sunday run in my training schedule. Well, except [...]

By |2016-12-29T13:32:09+01:003 October 2012|

The 4 races, 4 cities project – what’s it all about?

Half marathon, marathon, half marathon, marathon. 4 races. Paris, London, Reykjavik, Berlin. 4 cities. 3 down, 1 to go! Maybe you're new here and wondering what the hell the 4 races, 4 cities project is all about? Maybe you haven't yet read this post? Curious? Want to find out more? Excellent! You're in the right place! Here's a video about the 4 races, cities project. That's me talking, (the one with the messy hair). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yEpy27H9XYU    

By |2016-12-29T13:32:09+01:0024 September 2012|

Slowly does it

The Berlin marathon is looming, and so is my apprehension. My running coach, Phoebe Thomas, has made it quite clear that I am to run the marathon at a deliberately slow pace. "Treat it as a normal training run", she advised, "It's important that you conserve your energy, and remain injury free, for the ultra marathon the following week". The thing is, guys, I'm nervous. See, I know that I can run 26.2 miles, I've done it before, so that's not the problem here. As stupid as it sounds, I'm actually nervous about running slowly. Over the last few months of my Operation Ultra [...]

By |2016-12-29T13:32:09+01:0021 September 2012|

Something I learnt about LIFE through running

Yesterday, as I sat in my bathtub, waist-deep in freezing cold water, soaking my exhausted legs, I looked back upon that mornings 20 mile training run and basked in the sweet, blissful contentment of completing it. I smiled to myself knowingly, for only hours earlier, my mood had been very different. At mile 13, I had stopped to rest in the cool shadows of a giant tree in the park. I was tired, sweating, desperately gulping down water whilst wrestling with thoughts such as, "If you give up and go home now, no-one will know, or care". My legs were aching and I [...]

By |2016-12-29T13:32:10+01:0011 September 2012|

Race review: The Reykjavik half marathon

Iceland; home to active volcanoes, the Northern Lights, Björk, waterfalls, the delicacy of rotten shark, and most importantly (for me), the Reykjavik half and full marathon. With a penchant for combining running with travel, the Reykjavik half marathon instantly appealed, as did the lure of visiting the world-famous geothermal Blue Lagoon, just the tonic for soaking exhausted leg muscles post-race. I read up on some reviews of the Blue Lagoon before my visit actually, and although people advised that it’s a definite ‘must see’, it was suggested by many to not attempt to pick up the sand that covers the [...]

By |2018-08-02T08:24:14+01:0028 August 2012|

Ultrawhelmed

"Come on, have another drink, it's your rest day!" "I can't", I reply, "I've got a heavy weekend of training ahead, it's just not worth the hangover". Cue befuddled eye-rolling. Last Friday night, sitting in a bar amongst my friends, alcoholic drinks flowing (theirs, not mine), it suddenly dawned on me that ultra training is taking over my life. Supping on my non-alcoholic beer, my eyelids started to feel heavy and I longed for my bed. With a full day of work ahead of me on the Saturday and then a tough hill interval session in the evening, followed by a further two running sessions [...]

By |2016-12-29T13:32:10+01:009 August 2012|