Gravity Paragliding Experience

Runner’s Resolutions 2015

So I didn’t exactly fulfil all of my resolutions last year – but that’s fine! This year, top of my list, is to enter a race of some kind, hopefully more than one but definitely one because I still didn’t manage it last year! Then I also owe myself some new trainers – big time! The ones I have, have no tread on the inner side by my toes, they are wearing down at the back too, the mesh has ripped at the top meaning the leak terribly, the laces are fading and the holes which hold the laces (what do you call those?), well, they’re going too. Time for an upgrade. Last year I did manage to try out a bunch of new sports I tried Cycling, Surfing and Paragliding – damn cool! This year I want to try at least 2 more new ones again! There are two resolutions I’m starting my holding onto just for January but they may last longer: in solidarity with my boyfriend, who picked these resolutions for himself, I’m going veggie with him – I mean, we did both eat a whole cow each this Christmas, at least – and also giving up alcohol with him. Now, I’m allowing myself an occasional glass of wine and maybe a cocktail (although I may as well make it mocktail), but no more than one at a time, and no more than 2 a week. Gonna be tough people…gonna be tough!

Oh and my final one is to actually use this blog – nuff said! To help me do this I am following my favourite fitness bloggers, Tone It Up, in doing a Vlog for Vday (#vlogforvday) and seeing how that goes.

Post-gym Selfie

My Week In Exercise #1

Monday:

God knows why it’s such a shock to wake up, it’s a perfectly reasonable time, but I do feel like poo. I think it’s because I slept so badly last night – my bed is hideous and it’s on my list of things to fix. So right now I’ve had to flip so I’m sleeping at the ‘foot’ end, it’s just disorientating. Anyway I had a failed doctors appointment where they messed up my travel injections again followed by about 6 hours in Uni where I felt like I achieved nothing. Safe to say I was very happy to get to my first Frisbee Training Session of the year! It made my day but I had forgotten how tough it can be, especially as the fewer people you have at training (we had only 8, not enough for a real game), the more and the harder you have to run. I was badly out of shape, especially when it came to lunging and sprinting. It was a shock after having run slower, longer distances for so long. I’m now thoroughly enjoying feeling the burn, hoping that being more tired will help me sleep tonight!

Love this Sky

Love this Sky

Eating Raw and Fresh

Eating Raw and Fresh loving Tom-Juice this week

Mmm

Mmm

Wednesday:

After spending yesterday hobbling around and very sorely thighs – which I managed to pull and then didn’t manage to warm down, nice one – I had another Frisbee training to go to and this time it was outdoors. I love outdoors because there’s more room to run and it’s often a better game, for me anyway, but I was pretty horrified to figure that it’s already too damp and slippy on the grass to play in trainers. This means… it is time to stud-up and in my case, fix up my boots that were missing about half of their studs. Putting on said slightly battered (slightly small?) football boots and made me realise they are definitely going to have to go this season. Meaning I need to shell out for new ones – urgh really? When we went out later I definitely participated in some groovy dance moves; that’s exercise right?

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Stud Up

Stud Up

Thursday:

Aaah so excited to use my gym pass for the first time! It was actually a very good gym session. I completed 5km on the cross trainer in 25mins, which is certainly not my fastest time but since I haven’t been running in so long I was very chuffed about it – call it a spring board. I also did some rowing, only around 1000m but that’s about what I like to do without too much trouble, and then some matt work. I do everything on the matt; a bit of abs, a bit more legs (cos hell, these bad boys can take a beating) and some arm weights too. It felt amazing to be back working out inside, sort of reassuring since I know the temperature is about to plummet. I did a big stretching session when I got in today in an attempt to beat these damned pulled muscles.

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Walking home

P.s. I found a new rip in my trainers 😦

Friday:

Three guesses what I did today? Yep. Frisbee. I had another session today and I did a very short yoga session by myself beforehand which between them have managed to finally crushed these pulled muscles away and get some productivity out of my legs. Woohoo. Training 8-10pm is still killing me though, it’s not a pleasant time in the day for anyone.

Saturday:

I woke up so late today. I had a disastrous start, snoozing my work alarm and then falling asleep until 17minutes before I was due to start work. Somehow, by a miracle, I managed to make it out the house and up to University in barely any time and got to work without a hitch. I was so lucky, and also so tired. But after a stressful and long day at work I thought I was ready to collapse… then I got persuaded to the gym. We had an epic dinner planned so it wasn’t hard to convince me to burn some room for pudding. I cycled, doing 5km in 11minutes (which I’m sure is not impressive but hey, bikes are not especially my thing) and then went straight to a matt session. It was so much fun working out with someone for a change. We did abs and arms, and legs just by default but oh my goodness did we make that butt muscle buuuurn. 🙂 I genuinely loved pushing someone else to feel the burn with me. And now I’m exhausted.

Post-gym Selfie

Post-gym Selfie

In Gym

Plan for Sunday? Rest day…maybe a short run 😉 who can resist?

What are your Sunday plans? What did you exercise-up-to this week? Let me know…

Sig

The C-Word… Testing Distance

Yesterday I completed, not totally hitch-free, what was certainly my longest bike ride since I’ve got ‘back in the saddle’ and possibly my longest since pre-double-figures years. I cycled from my house, via a bakery for snacks, across mostly flood plains with smooth cycle paths, through a few villages on roads and then back onto the flood plans to our destination, the rather lovely, idyllic Stadtpark in Fürth (Bavaria). It was 13.3km according to mapmyrun, which makes me feeling pretty damn happy.

Lots of things were great about this ride- it is mostly flat and smooth, which is fantastic because hills are a problem on my old banger, it was beautifully sunny, fresh on the bike but warm enough to sunbathe when we pitched up for the afternoon, and it landed us at a train station so I could hop on the S-bahn home rather than struggle all the way back if I was aching (which I wasn’t at all in the end). So it could have been ideal. However, not too far in I noticed that I seem to have developed a leak in my front tyre, albeit a slow one. This may be the case or it may need another pump up, I’m not too sure. It seems too soon after the last time it was pumped for it to be natural- so tonight or tomorrow night will be an exercise in learning how to determine a leak. This will, of course, cut short my cycling experience if it is because there is absolutely no point, economically, in buying a new tube for a bike out here that probably should be scrapped anyway, when I’m going home in two months.

I was feeling pretty satisfied and nicely sleepy after my ride (and probably more after my energetic Saturday) last night and I woke up this morning feeling positive about my cycling to work and town today. Oh how I am now laughing at that thought. How do people get on a bike two days in a row? How? I am unreasonably bruised in the bottom department, and yes, it’s probably because my suspension isn’t the best and I wasn’t wearing squidgy-bum cycling shorts but still- ow! I am now not looking forward to that cycle to town tonight. I am considering riding the whole way stood up, it may be the only option.

Ps. I tried that- my thighs are burning! I use my thighs, often, to run and sprint, so why do they hurt so much more from this? I know it’s because it’s a new way of moving them that I haven’t used in years but I would have thought some of my spinning classes would have left some muscle memory.

Me on my very rusty beast of a bike

The C Word

No, not that C-Word… I mean CYCLING. That C-Word.

It may surprise you, but cycling induces mid-way between fear and disgust in me when I try it or even think about trying it. I learnt to ride a bike as a child, my bike was then a small pink one with Barbie printed across it and tassels from the handle bars and it had stabilisers too*. I didn’t get on well with that bike either. I subsequently tried, under great duress, once or twice during secondary school- mostly at summer camps- after falling off a few times I well and truly gave up.

My main problem with bikes is that I have no balance- no balance and a fear of falling off- and I really don’t know why. I feel like the balance thing is tied in with my fear of heights but why on earth my clammy-handed panic should also set in when I have barely a metre to fall amazes me. So then I move to a country where bikes are extremely popular and people are constantly asking me why I’m not cycling. I even get given a free bike! Okay, it’s just barely a bike, it’s old and heavy with barely functioning breaks, no lights and fairly busted handle bars, but it goes…after a fashion. And I completely ignore said bike, lock it in the garage and get on with walking everywhere; walking I love, I do a lot of it every day, so that’s just fine. But pretty soon I decided enough was enough- I’ve got to relearn to ride.

Me on my very rusty beast of a bike

Only riding without a helmet as a temporary measure!

Yes, it’s pretty embarrassing to be 20 and terrified of falling of a tiny little bike, and that’s before I’ve even started pedalling. I got on, amid minor tantrums and panicked squealing (the kind you get when you throw a child on a horse and it really doesn’t like it), and tried wiggling that bike all the way to town. And somehow, god knows how, I managed to make it in one piece. Now the real learning starts…

I’ve set myself the challenge of riding my bike at least twice a week. Now every time I ride it my legs just buuuurn, because those are muscles I haven’t used in a long time (I haven’t even been spinning in about 10months because I don’t have a gym pass in this country), but I should definitely see that as a positive thing. I’m enjoying the challenge of working new muscles and learning a new skill- even if I find it quite scary. And technically this means I have embarked on one of my new years’ resolutions, to take up a new sport, not that I’m capable of any kind of sport-y cycling yet, but I’m starting with the basics, and using it as functionally as possible to persuade myself to keep it up.

I will keep posting updates on my C-Word endeavours as I progress- is anyone else trying a new sport/exercise at the moment? Let me know, I’d love to hear about it! Also any tips for beginner’s cycling? It’s a baby step, but I’m pretty proud of this 20 year old scaredy cat.

Me on my very rusty beast of a bike

 

*On a quick deviation, I think stabilisers are a terrible idea, I don’t know if they‘ve actually fallen out of fashion to use for Training Your Child 101 these days, but they seem to have and I’m glad- they don’t help, it’s definitely easier just to learn to ride a normal bike and avoid having to learn twice, once with stabilisers and once when they’re removed.