me_shine

Unfortunately, by total accident, I discovered how many days they are until the Royal Parks Half Marathon. I’d been telling myself it was next month. Which is true, it is next month. It’s just that next month is only 17 days away. Ek!

Now, if I’m honest, I feel relatively confident about it. I’m not too far behind in my training. This will not be a repeat of the worst 10k of my life. I’ve been doing a mix of exercise including walking, dancing and running.

Walking
I’ve been walking for up to 4 hours, several times a week, in training for the Shine walking marathon next week (see the photo on the left for an idea of what my Shine costume will be like). I think all this walking is helping my running massively, as it gets my legs used to being tired – very tired.

Dancing
I’ve also dived into the deep end and started attending dance classes at Pineapple Dance Studios. Having gained confidence from attending the Post Olympics Dance classes for the past year, I felt ready to try Pineapple; something I’ve wanted to do for years. Now, I’m not going to sugar coat it. It’s harder than I’m used to, but it’s a good harder. It challenges me. I’m in love with the commercial jazz class which involves stretching for the first thirty minutes. It’s improving my flexibility, which in turn improves my running.

Running
Over the past few weeks I’ve also returned to running for an hour minimum. It’s nice to be able to run for an hour again; something I haven’t done consistently since last summer.  I even broke a record today. I did my longest ever run; 1 hour 33 minutes. I’m planning on running for two hours this Saturday. I think the half marathon will actually take me 2 hours 40 minutes, based on my 10k time, which when I train properly, is 72 minutes. So a half marathon, being the equivalent of two 10ks, should take me about 2 hours and 40 minutes. Now, if I knock out 2 hours this week, I’m just 40 minutes shy of my predicted time. Which sounds a lot to be shy by, but you’re not meant to run a half marathon before you run a half marathon, if you see what I mean. You’re meant to leave the full thing for the big day.

Tips
Anyway, if you’re still reading, and haven’t been offended by my overzealous use of commas, I came up with some post run tips today:

1. Change your clothes as soon as you get home. Sweaty clothes make you feel cold once you stop running. Don’t do what I did this evening and sit straight down in the clothes I’d been running in.

2. Stretch. Again don’t do what I did this evening and sit straight down after running. Stay on your feet for five extra minutes and stretch those legs! Though be careful not to over stretch because your body is warm, which makes you think you can stretch further than you can.

3. Chocolate milk. Apparently it’s good for repairing your muscles. Read more here: http://www.runnersworld.com/nutrition-for-runners/is-chocolate-milk-really-best-for-recovery?page=single

And finally…
Tomorrow is rest day. A big rest day. A humongous rest day. Also, a big thanks goes out to my flatmate for taking the photo. He paused his Skype call with his cousin to take it.

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