Woman with a Plan – training begins

So i had been thinking about doing the C5K (couch to 5k) plan to get back into shape with my running and crawl back to where my fitness levels used to be.                      945412_654059871311731_1355178416_n

I found i did have the C5K and C10K on my old Ipod so i had planned to do this to start running again. But after mentioning it to my friend Jess she came up with a plan for me! 😀

Jess has run alot of races over the years,10k’s, Half Marathons and Marathons which she takes all pretty seriously so i trust her judgement alot.

The plan invovled 2 power walks/slow jogs in the week with Peanut (i can do during the day) and one proper longer run on the weekend. This way i can build up my stamina and still get my legs/body stronger and used to running again.

It means i dont have to worry about when i can go run in the evenings as i just dont have time right now! Alex gets home then its dinner time almost straight away and then i go nap for 3 hours before the night feedings begin.

Im pretty much exhausted all the time and just couldnt work out where to fit the runs in so this is much easier.

I really do like this idea! and so she worked out the plan for me to follow which started last week while my Mum and Sister were visiting.

Week 1 of the plan invovled two power walks, 2.5 miles, 2 miles and then a 3 mile run/walk on the weekend.

I did manage to do the walks as we were walking everyday but i forgot to take my Garmin with me to record them.

As for the run i didnt manage to get out and do it as my Mum and Sister went home on the saturday afternoon and i spent the rest of the weekend being depressed. 😦

I just couldnt face going out in the park and just wanted to curl up under a blanket on the couch or cry alot. I kind of knew i was going to be upset when they went but it suprised me how much i was.

So this week im on week 2 of the plan and according to the weather we are due storms from friday! And so this afternoon me and Peanut headed out for our power walk.

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It was nice and quiet in the park a few people walking dogs or running as we began our walk. 🙂 Peanut was soon asleep as i did a few laps up and down to make the 2 mile power walk.

I could really feel it in my thighs, bum and lower abs so i know i was working out correctly with a good pace 🙂 So i was very happy with that.

I had planned to do some workouts at home but Peanut doesnt sleep much in the day anymore and makes it hard for me to do so.

Its either getting a chance to eat and make lunch or do a workout and at the moment food and napping have to come first! (if i cant to keep my sanity).

But i have noticed weight loss from all the walking i did last week! So as long as i stick to the power walks and other little walks im heading in the right direction! 😀

So this week i have another power walk to do with Peanut and a long run on the weekend which i can do in the rain as it will only be me.

I still plan to go out walking with Peanut on non workout days as well as long as the weather is good as the air and Sunshine is good for both of us 🙂

Grandma came to visit! :D

So my Mother and younger Sister came over for 6 days to visit us and get to know Peanut! I was really happy that they had managed to make the trip over from the UK to see her and bring some goodies! 🙂                         1013434_521733901215262_132447535_n

They had bought their hand luggage and a huge suit case filled with stuff for Peanut! woohoo! 🙂

My Mum and Sister had bought alot of second hand baby clothes for a 3 – 6 months old from charity shops and carboot sales!

And even had a few bits for 6-9 months! (this child is spoilt lol)

Lots of stuff for autumn and winter and so my little one wouldnt get cold or run out of things to wear!

They also had two books which were the follow up of the pregnancy book i have ‘What to Expect when you’re Expecting’. Which is a really good book and i recommend it to anyone who’s pregnant or planning to get pregnant!

And so it was the next book on newborns and then the third one on toddlers both of which will come in very handy. 🙂

The newborns book is set out month by month so you roughly know what to expect and again is very very good and handy to have.

They also bought me some child reins for when she is bigger and walking. I havent seen any of these in Italy and im sure we will get strange looks from all the Italians when we do use them. But i like the way they stop the child from running off and you have some control over where they go when there little. I had them when i was little and the harness ones are much better than the wrist type.

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Also they bought over Christmas pressies for me and Alex which was a bit of money and some Christmas cards YAY! I usually get the Christmas pressies in October when i visit my family in the UK for a week or 2 which im not doing this year, so it was nice to recieve them still. 🙂

And 2 packs of ginger biscuits, 2 big bars of mint aero (my favorite chocolate) and some nice toffees! 🙂

Both my Mum and Sister were eager to spend time with Peanut for hugs and cuddles so i was happy to let them feed her, change nappies/dipers etc as it gave me a little break from it all. It was so nice to have the help and spend time with them and watch them with Peanut who they love to bits!

They really exhausted her with all their attention and stimulation which Peanut really liked.

And this also ment i could catch up on some much needed sleep and get some of my reserves back.

We also had some adventures out and about going shopping near the shops near me. And then further to the other high Street near me where theres a Macdonalds so i got a chance to change her nappy for the first time out of the house.

I also sat and fed her in a quiet corner at a table while my Sister had some food, so im feeling way more confident about going out with Peanut now.

They both loved the warmer weather here in Roma and soaked up the Sunshine we are having as its been cold in the UK and they have been in jumpers and thick coats over there.

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My Sister is quite confident now doing stuff here and going to shops and things along. She doesnt speak any Italian but she Always manages to get her point across etc. I always find it amusing that she carries on chatting away to people here in english even when they dont understand her lol!

We had long walks every day so i was very tired by the times we got home from them so didnt get to run this week. I know i said i would but im just going to start this next week instead i think.

I plan to do two speed walks with Peanut in the week and a proper run on the weekend this way at least im getting out and moving and building up stamina.

Anyway my family and parents are very laid back and they dont try to dominate us with advice on how to raise Peanut. They are there and happy to give advice if we want or need it but let us get on with it rather than trying to take over.

So it was nice to ask my Mum questions on things like when Peanut had wind or when we were playing with her. Also she knew what little noises she made that ment she had wind. My Mum also thinks Peanut is very advanced for her almost 7 weeks as she already has her head raised and is trying to talk and get what she wants across to us.

She also loves to stare at a picture on the wall above the sofa when i feed her which is made up of different coloured pieces of material different shapes and sizes. She will stare at that for ages and ages mesmerized by it.

They bought her a bouncer as a present which Peanut loves! It has little lights on it, vibrates, makes music and has things she can touch and stare at and shes very happy when she sits in it.

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My Mum and Sister love her to bits and took loads of photos and wished we lived closer so they could help out. I really wish we did it would be nice and good for Peanut to.

They were a bit sad that next time they see her she will be much bigger but i did point out it ment they could do more things with her then to.

I really enjoyed having them visit and i wish they could have stayed longer than 6 days. But having them here has made me happy and made me more confident with doing things with Peanut.

I really got upset when they had to leave today as i didnt want them to go (yes i was desperate enough & tired enough to beg my Mum not to leave 😦  ) and my Mum then got upset because i was upset. But they promised to skype as much as possible and would come visit again next May.

I think Peanut will miss them to very much as she loved having them here and all the fussing and attention.

Sometimes its very hard being an Expat and living in another country away from family…

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Colour Run 5k Roma – Cancelled

A race came up i really wanted to do on the 5th October but it was only 4 weeks after i had given Birth at the time and there was no way i was in shape to take part which kinda sucked! Plus i was not supposed to run/ do loads of walking until after my 6 week check up!

Then due to very heavy rain the race was cancelled that day and then eventually cancelled all togeather in Roma for this year.

People were not happy the way it was cancelled that day with no information when it would be held instead. There was a lack of communication and people went to the meet up place anyway on the race day to see what was happening. But of course no one was there!

Having it cancelled completely is sad for those who signed up (there getting a re-fund on race fees apparently) but this also ment i wouldnt miss the first Colour run! 🙂 I honestly dont mind waiting for next year to run it as i would really like to take part.

I have found nothing is ever properly organised when a race is held for the very first time anyway and they always seem to have things that go wrong. After all its the first time they would set up, have the course set up etc.

The Colour run has already been successfully held in Milano and Versilia so i know they will push for Roma again to.

So anyway i decided to blog about the race even though its not being held here in Roma this year now. I have a friend who had already signed up for it but hopefully she will still want to run it when it comes again next year.

Also my bestie Jess did a Colour run on Sept 29th but in Brussels. She didnt enjoy it very much as the whole thing seemed to be messy how it was run etc plus they all got lost at one point apparently lol. But this was the first time this race was held so things were bound to go wrong the first time as i have said! 🙂

You can read her amusing blog post about it all on her Blog: http://jessicaontherun.com/2013/10/21/brussels-color-run-2013-race-recap/

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The 5K Colour Run seems to have taken off over Europe and i first noticed it on facebook some months ago and joined the race page as it spread through Europe this summer! Going from London to Dublin to France to Italy etc

I have to say to me it looks alot of fun and its not based on speed etc you can walk, run, jog it as fast as you like and the aim is to have fun and yes you guessed it get covered in colour!

I know alot of runners like races to judge their speed and to see if they can make a personal best or break a current running time and yes i do to.

But sometimes its nice to have a fun run where its more about enjoying yourself and having a good time then focusing on that other stuff. And this is the type of race where you can let your hair down and not worry to much about how fast you are running but how much colour you can get covered in! 🙂

But its best not to wear your best running stuff or your watch or other equipment which would get covered in colour and could even break because of it.

In the race kit you recieve a 2013 Colour run white t-shirt, your bib number, a White colour run head band, a temporary tattoo & a sachet of colour to be used on the race day!   pacco-gara-300x297

Price wise i dont think its to bad for a registration fee for something like this:

Individual Registration
• € 19 for the first 1000 Members
• € 22 From 1001 to 3000 Subscribers
• 24 € Over The 3000 Members
* Registration as a team (4 or more people)
• € 17 for the first 1000 members
• € 19 From 1001 to 3000 Subscribers
• More than € 22 The 3000 Members
Special Rates *
• Under 13: 8 €

• Under 8: Free Membership (Race Kit NOT included)

Apparently its been priced much more expensive in other countries! Not sure why though!

I have to admit its a very different looking race, something very different from the normal thing and i can see why its taken off so well as it has!

Heres the youtube video for the colour run 5k in other places  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2qBK1snWRuA

It does look alot of fun so im looking forwards to when they decide to hold it next year! And by then i should be back to my old fitness levels making the race alot more fun 🙂

Even if i try it once and decide its not for me at least i have given it a go!

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My First run in 10 Months!

Today i had my first run since becoming pregnant and giving Birth! So my first run in 10 months.  1235291_234724346680370_583840264_n

I have been itching for WEEKS to go run but i was good and waited for the Doctors all clear to say i could exercise again.

Yesterday i was pretty much bouncing off the walls wanting to get outside and run. And it kind of drove me a bit crazy having to wait until today.

So today I pulled out my running clothes and found a big top to wear & my running pants which i used before i lost weight when i very first started running. Everything else i have is all size 10 and im a large size 12 at the moment so they were all tight.

I then had to find my running socks which were at the bottom of my sock draw, hair band etc so it took a while to get ready.

After all this i discovered i couldnt find my good headphones and mini ipod! eek panic! I looked everywhere knowing i had packed them for the hospital but couldnt remember where i had put them once home. :/

In the end i had to use my old ipod and a pair of earphones which only worked in one ear! but it was better than nothing and allowed me to have the music i needed. 🙂

It was kind of exciting and frightening lacing up my trainers and getting ready to go out to the park. As in my head my running is where i left it where i could run 10km but physically i don’t know if my body can run that distance at the moment which it probably cannot.

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So this was just going to be test run i wasnt following any training plans yet this was just a run to see if i could run, how far, how it felt, slow and steady etc.

I made sure i did a bit of stretching just before i headed outside to warm up my muscles. And left Alex and Peanut to have some daughter, father time togeather even though she was asleep. 🙂

Once in the park my music and Garmin went on and off i started! It didnt go to badly i can feel the fitness still there even though i did have to run/walk but mostly run at a very slow pace. I did speed up several times as my legs remembered the pace i used to be able to run but i had to slow down again as this just made me tired.

I must admit i half enjoyed the run and part of me hated it! I know i did better than i thought i would but i still wish i could have done a bit better even if it is only almost 6 weeks since giving Birth.

I did get an achey pain in my left shoulder and my left knee and when i finished with the run i found a light pain in my right side from lack of drinking enough water before going out. I also felt dizzy and very tired, the tiredness probably from lack of sleep mostly catching up with me.

I walked home and straight into the fray as Peanut was awake and Alex saying we needed to give her a bath! Apparently she had woken up the moment i had left the building! lol

So i didnt have time to stretch at all or even to think it was dashing to get changed then help him bath her. Then i had to amuse her for 20 minutes before feeding her then doing the more than 10 minutes of rocking and burping.

So i didnt even get a chance to think about my first run or anything else apart from just feeling very very tired…sigh. We just seem to be running round like head-less chickens alot trying to get things done every weekend.

I do know i will get to run on weekends when Alex is home that is for certain but week days im not so sure now…..

Its 7 – 7.30pm when Alex gets home now and its already dark outside. I have to make dinner then i tend to go have a nap at 8.30/9pm until 11pm so i get a rest before the night feedings.

The other option is to get up at 6am which im doing already to feed Peanut then go run again in the dark but again its not the best thing….

So im not sure about my options quite yet! Although Alex will be getting the 2 hours off a day from December for 1 year so he will be home earlier then and maybe it will be easier at that point!

I do know when Peanut gets to 3 months and can lift her head up then she can go in a jogging stroller if i managed to get one some how!

Theres one on Amazon.uk for £119.99 which looks quite nice http://www.amazon.co.uk/Baby-Trend-Expedition-LX-Jogger/dp/B0029ZDC0E  Although on the Amazon.it there 500 euros!! crazy prices!! no thanks! lol

This would mean i could go running in the day no problem with Peanut for company! 🙂 So im giving that some thought for sure if i can get one from the UK 🙂

Im going to see how my body feels Tomorrow and i might go for a run again 🙂 Also my Mum and Sister visit this next week so i will squeeze as many runs as i can in when they are here! 😉

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Post Pregnancy belly first 5 weeks

So i decided to take some pics of my post pregnancy belly and see how far it goes back into shape before i start exercising again after the 6 week check up (the check up ended up being at 5 weeks so i only went to 5 weeks with the pics). So its all down to nature and my fitness level before getting pregnant should help to, also lots of water & healthy eating again and lets see how far my body bounces back naturally!

The first pic is 6 days after giving Birth as you can see my belly isnt as big as it was but its a bit saggy & sticking out swollen! I still had alot of excess water, blood and hormones to get rid of through which would help it go down more.

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The next pic is my belly 2 weeks after giving Birth, i have been drinking water (although not enough as i have been getting headaches so need to drink way more) and i have been wearing the compression underwear every day to help get my muscles back into shape. Im still a bit swollen as you can see.

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2 weeks after

Week 3 drinking alot more water and eating healthly again i think its gone down some more. Its weird i dont miss my big pregnant belly and it kinda feels like it never happenend! Im happy with how far its gone down now on its own and it wont be to bad to work it off after the 5 week checkup.

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Week 4 been getting a little exercise from all the carrying Peanut around and pacing up and down burping/rocking her for 10 minutes after each feeding for the last 4 weeks so i am kinda working out in a way. Also the muscles in my arms are getting a good workout as she starts to gain more weight!

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week 5 I have gotten the all clear to exercise again from the Doctor! woohoo! So this is the shape i will be starting to exercise with so its not to bad 🙂 i have started doing plank a day so far i can hold it for 1 minute with a bit of a struggle will be nice to get back to 2 minutes like i used to 🙂

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week 5

So now i can exercise again lets see how long it takes to get this left over baby weight back down! 🙂 Im going to continue with plank a day to get my abs and core back into shape and i should start a few test runs next week and see how they go!

I love having a goal now to get my body back to where it was before getting pregnant 🙂 and i know i can do it as i lost a ton of weight when i first started running 3 years ago 🙂

I just have to make sure i get naps on the days i want to run so im not to tired to go even though im going to be doing some short distances.

Im hoping eventually to get back to my weights workout to but that all depends on Peanut and her sleeping patterns. As shes decided to be wide awake alot of the day or just takes 1 hour power naps now!

So lets just start with planks and runs and see how i get on 🙂

I promise now there will rarely be belly pics 🙂 I just wanted to chart my progress.

Walk before you can Run

So me and Peanut went for our first solo walk in the park last friday:) It was really nice and relaxing and she dozed enjoying the movement.                    1376457_524188384323168_135712780_n

It gave me a chance to listen to my body again which i Always used to do when running.

I have noticed my left hip and knee are very unhappy again! My hip is slightly out of alignment and always has been so my foot doesnt point forwards when i walk it points outwards slightly.

So im finding my hip and knee are feeling very tight and stiff when i went for the 1 mile walk. I did have this when i first started running and it did cause alot of pain and problems.

But this time im not going in as a newbie! I have done the stretches and yoga which helped before in the previous last 2 years!

So i now know what should help this problem and hopefully prevent myself getting injured before i have began to run properly!

Plus my running shoes will help as there designed to help with this type of problem and which is why i got advice and researched it. Using just any basic running shoe or the wrong ones would just make the problem worse and lead to more injury.

Im doing more walks in the park with Peanut now so this should help stretch them out and get myself to move alot more again as i didnt do much the last trimester.

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Its nice and relaxing in the park and im happy to walk my running route again starting to get into the flow of being outside again and getting active.

Next week i will try a few short test runs and see how it feels just so i know where i stand before i start any training plans etc.

I had the urge to run all weekend but stopped myself from going as i still feel i need to wait at least this week. I know why i want to run because to me its a good stress releaser and gives me a clear head.

Plus i just want to get on with losing this left over baby weight now i hate just waiting about.

I have also started doing plank a day this week as well and managed to hold one for 50 seconds which isnt bad as i havent done any in over 9 months! But im confident i will be back to holding them for 2 minutes again at some point like i used to. 🙂

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Never Forget Vajont – 50yrs ago tonight

I wanted to blog about a place in the mountains (Dolomites)  we pass and have visited when we go up there for the summer. A place called Vajont and the disaster that happened there over 50 years ago this evening the 9th October at 10.39pm.

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The Vajont Dam is situated in Erto one of the towns which make up the area of the Friulian Dolomites Natural Park of Erto and Casso.

This morning Sky Italian news played small pieces on the disaster as its the 50th anniversary and im glad that they did! Making people especially the younger generation know what happened there so long ago

One of the reasons i know about this place is because we pass it every summer we go to the mountains on holiday and have visited there. And have seen the several documentaries/films about what happened. (some are on youtube if you have a look).

Also Alex has talked about it alot as his parents passed under the dam 24 hours before the disaster happened on their way back to Roma from their honeymoon in1963.

A Dam was built in the valley it was built as the tallest dam in the world across the Vajont gorge and all the studies they had done said the mountain Mount Toc was believed to be safe. The Dam was completed in October 1959 and in Feb 1960 they began to fill the basin with water.                               40248_457166503593_1689299_n

The villagers who lived in the towns below had not been happy that the Dam had been built. And in 1960 minor landslides and earth movement were noticed and so they stopped filling the basin with water which was already very high.

After some other warning signs they decided to do some tests with models of the Dam and discovered if there was a landslide the wave generated could top the Dam slightly. And so they decided to quickly lower the water in the basin down to 25m believing this would be safer.

This of course was a mistake as it just made what was about to happen all the more worse.

On the evening of October 9th at 10.39pm a huge landslide took place…earth, forest and rock slid into the basin at a speed of 110km’s per hour! No one had predicted the strength of what was happening as a megatsunami wave was created topping the Dam higher than anyone could have imagined!

Almost no one in the villages of Longarone, Pirago, Rivalta, Villanova and Faè  had a chance as the wave swept over them in a matter of minutes hitting them with such force and the towns were wiped from the face of the valley.

Killing more than 2,000 people in a matter of minutes and where they once lived into a flat mud plain.

Rescuers when they arrived didnt know or understand what had happened had to function in the dark looking for survivors which were not many trapped in the mud. And infact entire families lost all there members and those who did survive were traumatised for life.

Ironically the Dam still held with barely any damage and does still stand to this day!

Its scary to think whole towns and all those people could disappear in the matter of moments all because the people in charge didnt want to notice the warning signs that had been happening for 3 years previously. Their Dam and wonder of the world because of its height was more important than the safety of the people who lived below it.

And when they did finally begin to do something to prevent something from happening it was already to late. And alot of people had already known the disaster was going to happen as people who worked at the Dam had predicted it. Even the villagers had lived in fear knowing something could happen but not knowing the extent of what would occur!

I have seen the Dam with my own eyes and it is impressive, you can also still see where the mountain still bares the marks of the landslide.

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Its a strange place, quiet and beautiful but you can sense that something terrible has happened there. And even walking around the village on the hillside which is virtually empty there is an eerie peaceful silence.

I dont think we should ever forget such a man made disaster such as this and perhaps the biggest in Italy’s history.

And i would urge anyone passing that area to go and see the Dam and surrounding area for a few hours. See with your own eyes what happened and the Dam which i guess is now a monument to those who lost there lives that night.

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The life and times of a writer, runner and triathlete