Back to road running

So I went for a 10k run yesterday. First time back on the road since the half marathon. 21 degrees out. Managed 5.47k!
Disappointing but at least I did something. Really need to work on my pace. Never mind, it doesn’t matter, I’ve a wedding to go to today, a fabulous dress on and I’m having wine for breakfast! Go me 😉



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The Rock n Roll Dublin Half-Marathon and Awesome Americans

I know, I know, I am so late in writing about the Rock n Roll Half Marathon in Dublin. But, anyway, I did it. In 2:38:19. Not the fastest time, I’m not quite Mo Farah…yet but, I did it. It’s been a very quick 12 weeks in the build up to the race.

Initially, I had to overcome some idiotic body image hang-ups. I felt too fat to run. Then I saw people recovering from cancer, women running in only their bras in aid of breast cancer research and a guy in a blonde wig and the most painful looking Baywatch costume ever. I was an asshole for having body image issues. Throughout the run, the sweat, smells, grunts and nose emptyings (from others, not me, honest) I didn’t once look at someone and judge them for how they looked so I doubt anybody judged me. I had nothing but admiration and respect for all the runners.

The race itself was interesting. Getting ready and waiting around, I was prepared for. People not starting in the coral they we supposed to, I thought was a bit odd but anyway, I overtook most of em quick enough. The route itself was fine and the bands, particularly the ‘Keltic Kats’ were brilliant. However, there was a distinct lack of support. I’ve only run two 10k races in the past, but in each of them it seemed all the locals were out in support of the runners. This one, not so much, and I felt the irritation of the drivers held back by these pesky runners. A lot of the run was very quiet and although the live music did perk you up a bit, it seemed to exacerbate the quietness after you’d passed them. Come mile 7, they’d run out of water. Really! It was ridiculous, I was ok with the isotonic drink but the husband couldn’t have it due to being “allergic” to orange and others didn’t want it anyway. I thought it would be better organised than that. Then over the finish line…yay…NO WATER. We had to wait for them to get water to us. Didn’t they know how many people were running? Other than this minor (actually major) issue, it was a great day…in hindsight. I have also come to the conclusion that Americans are born with an innate umph, loudness, politeness and joy. Especially when going passed the bands when they started dancing and clapping, and thanking every volunteer along the route. It was awesome. Some also just stopped to take pictures of the sites. This was great as it helped me gain an appreciation of my surroundings as well as being baffled as to why they were stopping during a race. Maybe it was more of a run rather than a race. I think I need to get the word “race” out of my head, it’s too pressurising, I ain’t ever gonna be an elite athlete and I’m ok with that, I just need to run and enjoy it! Well, I say that now, but during the run, I felt like this:


Yeah, not the most positive thinking I know. But, damn, that running was hurting!

I wanted to die after mile 8, kill myself at mile 9, and if I was anywhere close to it, I’d have jumped at the chance to get on that buggy bus at mile 10. I didn’t though, didn’t even see what the damn bus looked like J go me. So it’s over, and I’m glad, and I’m excited for the next adventure…the Rock N Roll in Edinburgh next April. I also have a 10K race in 4 weeks. Best keep running. Here’s the photographic evidence that I actually did the damn thing:






So, throughout my first half marathon adventure I’ve learned a lot, such as:

1) Don’t put off the long run – just do it, it’s worse if you put it off.

2) You will easily get used to warm water and realise that it aint that bad.

3) If you need a break from training, take one, but accept this will effect your time/pace. I also can not run when hungover.

4) You can run a half marathon on 3 hours sleep.

5) Summer running sucks! Don’t be put off going for a run because it’s raining, running in the rain is a glorious thing.

6) Running belts are irritating especially if you have an awesome ass that causes the damn thing to bounce a lot.

7) Fat, thin, tall, short, old or young….you can run a half marathon.

8) Protein bars are vile.

9) Half marathons are hard.

10) That beer and pizza fest you promised yourself after the run, ain’t gonna be as rock n’ roll as you’d imagined, you’re probably gonna be too tired, you’re legs will feel funny and you’ll find you alternate between periods of sheer exhaustion and mania very rapidly.

So, now what should I blog about? I wrote an article about football, maybe I should just watch football for the next few months and earn some ‘true fan’ status and revel in the Green Bay Packers winning the Superbowl next year? IT WILL HAPPEN. GO PACK GO. And, I’ll have to blog about the fabulous cake I’m gonna make in celebration of my doing the Blessington lakes 10k again and the start of the football season.

Or I guess I should keep writing about health and fitness? I’ve set new goals, time to start picking up weights I HATE STRENGHT TRAINING, but I need to tone up my bingo wings. Also, need to try and improve my running times.


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I did a half marathon!

Official finishing time:
2hrs 38 mins and 19 secs

Really pleased with that. Will write more tomorrow, but for now, it’s time for pizza and beer.



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I have a half marathon tomorrow

• Why didn’t I train more?
• Why didn’t I work harder on my pace?
• Why have I allowed myself to do absolutely nothing the week before the race?
• Why didn’t I do more long runs?
• Why did I sign up for this in the first place?

I have a half marathon tomorrow. I’ve only ran two very slow 10k races before. My bag and kit are ready. Up at 5am! My goal is: finish in under 3hrs oh and no matter what, well unless you break a leg, do not end up on that damn buggy bus





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Tis a Beautiful Day for a Run. Half Marathon Training: 8 Days to Go

So today was the last long run. Considering I’ve only done about 4 longuns, and had some failures along the way (stooped ass summer weather), I wasn’t looking forward to this one. I had planned to get up at around 8am and go on the run early to beat the heat and get it over with. So 10:40 came and up I got! Ah well, what’s a holiday without a lie in?

I was making a significant effort to change my thinking about the run, to get myself into a positive frame of mind.

“This is going to be awesome!”

“We can do this”

“I will be ok”

“You’ve only got 8 fucking days left so just do the damn thing”

I also had a protein bar in preparation for the longun. It was an interesting experience. It said “flapjack” on the packaging, but I aint ever tasted a flapjack like it. mmmmmmmmm squishy squishy protein.

And off me and the husband went. I even did a little pre-run pose:


After my blog yesterday, I decided to follow the advice of this lovely lady. I wasn’t going to aim for distance, I was going to aim for time. Rather than push myself to 16k, I was just going to aim to run for 2hrs. The way I see it, is, if I can run/jog/power walk for 2hrs, I should be ok to get through the half right?

Weather wasn’t too bad. Warm but overcast and it looked like it might rain. RAIN! FUCK YES! BRING IT ON!

So, the path we were to follow was some of our 5k route and then the Blessington Lakes 10K route. The one with the killer hill. During the run, I got my photo taken as my husband acted as some lame ass paparazzi dude!20130728-184422.jpg

I also noticed, that despite my post holiday weight gain, my legs don’t jiggle so much when I run (yes I was looking…don’t judge me)

Then we came to the lakes route, I’d turned off the pace and time notifications on the running app because they bug the hell out of me.

“What do you mean I’ve only been going for 7 minutes 11 seconds? Fuck you, you’re lying you are. Lying. I can’t keep going for 17 million hours when I’ve only just come this far” (and so on).

Here is the lake. And yes, it is now known as ‘The Loop’. I’ll explain later. And yes, I was going to run around the whole damn thing. I’d set my alarm to go off an hour into the run and I was going to have a powerade gel. Who knew I, Me, Leanne, would be running for so long I was going to need a glucose gel? It was Strawberry and Banana flavour and it wasn’t so bad until the husband piped up that he would imagine the texture would be comparable to something else, he’d never tried before, and probably wouldn’t. (Unless it was Hugh Jackman…I think he would then). But anyway, “thanks husband, that was a really valid comparison, well done you”.


It also didn’t help that he thought he’d be funny and started screaming and running really quickly whilst looking behind him (ya know, as in “I’ve just had a glucose gel, so I’m like Popeye, and can run really quick because of the energy it’s given me”). I didn’t get the joke and truly believed Jabba the Hutt had started chasing me, and to be fair I was going slow enough for him to catch me. So I started screaming and sprinting. Then I just hurtled abuse at him (husband, not Jabba the Hutt – who I think I successfully burnt off) for being a prick.

Now, this hill. That hill. The bane of my life. The one I’ve never been able to beat. Today was the day. I was going to beat it. You wanna know how I beat it? Yeah, you guessed it. I did the route in reverse and ran down the motherfucking thing rather than up it. YEAH, SCREW YOU HILL. SCREW YOU.

And, I savoured running down the damn thing. It didn’t matter that there were other hills I had to get up in order to be able to run down it. It wasn’t THAT hill!

During the run, it rain, downwards (when it rains sideways, it really is no fun), a guy also passed us, meh, he’s a quicker runner than me. So what? He passed us just after a particular difficult incline (which I ran up!) and the strange thing happened of me holding some sort of a conversation during a run. I used to HATE talking during my runs, I preferred to concentrate my efforts on not dying!

The Fast Running Man : “How are ya?”

Me: “Hey, good, you?”

The Fast Running Man: “Not bad, that was some hill eh?”

Me: “Yeah, I think it’s killed me, (cue my CBT thinking, and taking the advice I give to patients…If it’s a negative thought or sentence, always say “but”, always give it a “but”) still, what comes up, must come down”

The Fast Running Man: “Exactly, you doing the loop to?”

Me: “Yup”

The Fast Running Man: “Well good luck, see you later”

Wait a minute. Shit. Am I still running? Yeah. Oh. Shouldn’t I be dead right now?

Between the conversations, the glorious glorious rain, and the little breeze. I got a stich. I think about 1.5hrs in. And it hurt like a mofo. At this point I stole Fiona’s mantra and just kept repeating: “This pain will go away, this pain will go away” and it did. I never knew stiches didn’t kill you before now! Everyday is a school day eh? Then the husband (I was his friend again by this time) told me it was 14:20, I took out the app, 5 minutes to go. Then the 5 minutes had passed and I’d ran 2hrs without stopping or walking. I’d hit 15.8K, so yeah fuck it. Keep going until you get to 16.

16k done. And, I’d also learned my lesson. I’d cello taped some money together (I can’t bare the sound of the stuff jingling) and we went off to shop, bought water, revelled in my brilliance, and realised that stopping and walking just emphasises all the pain you’ve created. Blisters and burning feet. The sign of a good run. Remember back in the day when that minute of walking during the Couch to 5k app was the shortest minute of your life? When you were dying after 1.5minutes of running? Well, you’ve just run for 2hrs. 2damn hrs!

And yes the picture of the husband below is blatantly plagiarised from a motivational picture I’ve seen before, but I don’t care. It’s pretty, I’m brilliant, I’m slow, I still don’t care and I just might be able to do this half marathon without ending up on the buggy bus!





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It’s nearly time….I may die

It’s 9 days and counting until my first Half Marathon. I have been on holidays for the last 2 weeks. This meant I was going to train hard. And train hard I have. If you count eating considerable amounts of junk food, drinking copious amounts of fruity flavoured beers and not running anywhere, then I aced it!

The Hot Run

Sunday 13th July

We planned our long run. 14K. Running belt on and loaded with coconut water. It was 75 degrees. The lessons we learned?

1) If the tarmac is melting – IT’S TOO DAMN HOT TO RUN!


2) Warm coconut water is not a pleasant rehydration experience.

3) Take some small change on a run, it’ll come in handy if you’re dying of dehydration.

We managed 7k, and we had no choice but to stop. Walked for about 20 minutes and then thought “lets try again”, only managed another 3k and by this time I wanted to die and we had run out of water. I also had a severe headache due to dehydration. Running was not a safe option!

So disappointed, dejected and anxious about my impending doom I did what anyone else planning a half marathon in a couple of weeks would do. I went on holiday, did no training and drank 🙂


This week I’ve tried to get back at it. It is still too hot outside, I am not used to high temperatures so I’ve been doing my running at the gym.

Tuesday – Hungover, struggled to get 3K done. UH OH. This aint gonna be a pretty run!

Wednesday – 10K I managed 5k in 31:08. Ok, I was on and off the thing like a whore with cystitis but I did it.

Thursday – Road run, too hot, yet again, 5k in 36:28.

Friday – Beer and Ben and Jerrys

Today – Hungover, Risotto and Chocolate

Tomorrow – 16k long run!!!

I also bought some energy gels and protein bars today, guess I’m getting serious, I need to do this long run tomorrow of I will have NO confidence for this half marathon.

I’ve also found that my thinking during the runs is more negative lately.

“I don’t care if I end up on the buggy pace bus”

“I can’t do this”

This along with my inevitable post holiday weight gain, the continuous e-mails from the Rock n Roll Dublin Half Marathon organisers reminding me of the strict pace/time limit and the severe depression associated with me going back to work on Tuesday hasn’t put me in a good frame of mind.

I need to make a conscious effort to change my thoughts:

“I can do this”

“I will do this”

“I will not end up on that bus”

If I am anxious about something, my reaction is to avoid dealing with it. I’m anxious about the run so I don’t train. If I train, I fear it will highlight, magnify and rationalise my anxieties. In reality, avoidance aint helping. If anything, it’s making me more anxious, so I just need to get out there and do it.

Tomorrow, new day, healthier diet and for the love of Bilbo NO MORE BOOZE!
I am also getting e-mails re the race countdown and asking if I’m starting to taper down my training….Um kinda haven’t got the thing started yet!

And re the weight gain. I was on holiday. Meh, I’ll loose it again and I enjoyed every bite and sup!

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Skinny doesn’t always = happy or healthy: the woes of the gym

The heat is still on here in a very very sunny Blessington, so again, it was off to the gym to do the run on the treadmill and shy away from the blistering sunshine. Not that it’s much better in the gym mind, but, it had to be done.

I again continued with the 4 song rule and got 9 minutes in the first two songs! I didn’t feel too bad except for dripping in sweat and dying of heat stroke! Ew.

I decided on an end treadmill, near the fans, and also near a group of about 5 girls on the cross trainers looking like they were expecting Hello magazine to come in any minute. Time to look at my arse kick it on the treadmill girls.

Also, to make matters worse, the husband went for a swim, I looked longingly at him in the cool cool pool. Relaxing and swimming, and floating, and being all neutral, temperature wise. Then, an all female aqua aerobics class started and I just laughed at him! Then I stopped laughing when I realised the instructor was directly in front of me and was face to face with me when she was showing them how to squat. *don’t look like you’re dying, don’t look like you’re dying, look like you do this everyday…oh wait I minute, I basically do, anyway just look cool, yes pout, that’ll do it, oh wait breathe, don’t forget to breathe, oh, she’s gone, yay. Oh, nope she’s facing me again*

Back to the actual running, I upped the speed a little, I seem to be more mentally prepared when I know it’s only a 5k run (and yes, I can not believe that I’m saying “it’s only 5k” either), and that I will have a jump off break every four songs to rehydrate, I have to do this, otherwise…I would die, and I really don’t wanna die, I’m only off for about 15 seconds, and it doesn’t count when you pause the run. That’s my excuse, and I’m sticking to it!

Well, I only went and did it, didn’t I? I only went and got a personal best for my 5K!
photo (15)

I am thinking, in fact I am pretty damn certain that my run looked kinda like this and the girls behind me were an angry Bruce Banner like in their envy:


I am therefore, as of today, totally cool with the gym. No more avoiding it. So, to those who are concerned about going the gym…I always felt too fat, and I am still somewhat conscious of all the very fit people around. I would avoid the gym, I was convinced I’d be judged and laughed at. But, think of it this way, have you ever laughed at anyone working out, fat or thin? Probably not, and if you have, fuck you, you’re a bitch, you got your own damn issues right there.

Remember, (and being a therapist specialising in the treatment of eating disorders, I know this all too well) Skinny does not necessary mean healthy, or happy. I managed to get my overweight ass (albeit only 2lbs overweight…so damn close) to 5K in under 32 minutes yesterday, I am awesome.

I’ve never come across it were I have felt people are looking at me or judging me because I am at the gym. If people are looking at you scornfully, and with disgust because you’re working on getting your fat ass healthy, screw them, they don’t matter and always remember…


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