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Week 2 of training [13th April-19th April]

I completed x3 runs and a yoga class.

My runs:

Two medium runs: 10.5km, 10km

One long run: 17.5 km [although i had a break after 12km, to look around my new house, so kind of cheating]

Total distance: 38km [My aim was 33-35km so en route]

Did I stick to my training plan?

Hmm well my week didnt start too well as I chose eating and drinking wine over exercise. I was meant to try out a bootcamp session but I decided to go to a jazz bar instead! I did join the running club and again missed their weekday training sessions but I went along to their group run on saturday morning. They met so early, that I nearly didnt go as I slept through my alarms [out here people like to run early to avoid the heat]. I am not a morning person but draggged myself out of bed ! There were three groups: an 18km group, a medium paced 10km group and a slow 10km group. I had no idea of their standard or ability so I decided to try out the middle group. It actually went ok, they ran faster than my running group at home but I could just manage to keep up! It was really nice running with other runners again as it really motivates me to keep going. Interestingly I noticed how hills I was quite strong at. However, it made me think, maybe I push myself too much when running up hills and hence it takes me longer to recover. Whereas the other runners would be slower up the hills, their recovery would be faster at the top and they were able to maintain the same pace. At the end we all stopped at a cafe and had breakfast together. They were all really welcoming and friendly. I will definitely be going again next week!

My long run this week was the same route as last week- end point brunch at Ruby’s diner! I found it easier as I didnt have to keep stopping to check googlemap and I knew where i was going! I had a break after 12km as ran to my new house, to meet the girl who wants to sublet her room. So I decided to do some hill training with the remainder of my run. There is this horrific hill very near to the end which last week i avoided and took the steps! I decided to run up it three times: first time slow jog, second time medium jog, third time medium-fast jog. Each time I would walk back down to and attempt to recover!

The hill which nearly killed me 

Me at the top of the hill


End point: my favourite brunch place- Ruby’s diner. I met a friend who also decided to run there- spreading the #runninglove. I had paelo nut muslei with coconut yogurt, fruit and pumpkin puree. Yumdiddlyyyum. 

My yoga class: I went to a class on sunday afternoon after my morning long run. It was an hour and a half of “Yin Yoga” which is a slow paced, meditative style of yoga where you hold poses for prolonged periods. It is supposedly quite beneficial for sporty people who dont stretch enough, since it targets the connective tissues of the hips, pelvis and lower spine. Also the poses in yin yoga are designed to improve the flow of qi in your body which is meant to improve organ health and your emotional self [ qi in Chinese medicine stands for your life energy, basically a vital force that flows through all living things]. A lot of people think Chinese medicine is mumbo jumbo and I have to admit, studying Western medicine as my degree, it is hard not to dismiss it straightaway. However, I think you should try have a certain appreciation for other practices and gain some aspect of understanding, before you make a judgement.  The yoga instructor said after the class you will feel the qi rushing into your joints, comparing it to new blood circulating around the joints. In total honesty, my hips felt so light and loose. It was a bizarre feeling, I dont really know how to describe it properly [maybe it was the qi?!?] ! My joints, especially my hips, can be rather stiff and achey  [running isnt always healthy] so i think this type of yoga will hopefully help me take more care of my joints.

Also all this running is fuelling my love of snacks: current obsessions are dates …… these are SO yummy. I have to be so careful as could basically eat all of them in one go. 

AND liquorice [they spell it so bizarrely]. Liquoirce isnt massive in the UK but out here, you have a whole dedicated part of the shopping aisle.  It took me about 20 mins and a lot of self control to choose!

Happy running people! Spreading the running love, especially to my lovely friend Laureen who is also training for a halfmarathon, as well as having to sit her medical exams. You go girl!