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Seeing Clearly

March 4, 2012

Good morning! I hope that you are all having a fabulous weekend so far. I’ve mostly been revising and running, but I did get the chance to have a bit of time out as well – more on that in a bit. First of all, thank you for the brilliant comments on my last post on My Truths About Exercise. If you missed it, go and have a look, not because what I wrote is particularly insightful, but because the comments are so thought-provoking.

Back to the rest of my week. The revising has been boring, but I’ve been getting through it. To relieve the boredom I’ve had a couple of tough runs. Liverpool Half Marathon is two weeks today, so this week is when my plan got serious. Well, actually I haven’t really got a written plan, but I have a plan in my head. On Tuesday I went to running club and did a challenging speed session. We probably only covered about 3 miles, but there were lots of hills, sprints and longer efforts. I knew that I had worked hard because the following afternoon the DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) set in.

On Thursday I took advantage of the beautiful countryside where my parents live and ran my favourite 6 mile loop. My parents live right on the edge of the Cheshire Plain, so if you set off in one direction it’s almost completely flat, and in the other you can find some serious hills. I very much felt like sticking to the flat route, but it ended up being quite speedy. It took me a couple of miles to warm up, but then I ran the other 4 miles at my half marathon goal pace. It was so sunny and still – the perfect running weather. The daffodils were blooming and I passed a couple of sheds with newborn lambs, so I was in a brilliant mood.

Yesterday afternoon it was time for the the most dreaded run on my schedule, the 12-miler. I know for people training for longer races 12 miles must feel like a doddle, but it was a big deal for me. I did the same route as Thursday twice, so thankfully it was flat. I forced myself to go steadily and it was fairly easy going for the first 9 miles. It started to get a bit tougher after that, but my legs sort of went into autopilot and I was home before I knew it. I swear there was some sort of time warp out there, because although it took me 1 hour 54 minutes, it felt like it was no time at all. So, the run itself was fine, but I was so exhausted in the evening. I must have looked in a right state because my parents were asking me whether I was OK every 10 minutes. I guess I’m just not used to running that far! I also had my first cold bath yesterday (I didn’t have any ice … well, that’s my excuse!). It was awful – I don’t cope well in the cold! I only lasted a couple of minutes, but I hope it might have helped a little bit with soreness.

When I’m revising for an exam I like to take some time out to take my mind off it. I had a contact lens check-up on Friday, so took the opportunity to go shopping with my Mum. My eyesight has changed quite a lot, which explains why I’ve been straining to see long distances, so I picked out some new glasses. These are the ones that I went for:


It’s going to be a little while until I get my new glasses and contacts, so I have to cope as I am for a little while, but I’m really looking forward to being able to see who’s coming towards me again.

We also took the opportunity to eat some good food. I could really be a lady who lunches, who needs a job? We went to Patisserie Valerie and I had a giant bagel with cream cheese and smoked salmon.


We also checked out the new frozen yoghurt place in Chester. Mum and I were both quite full from lunch, so we shared a small cup of caramel fro-yo with raspberries and pomegranate seeds.


I flipping love frozen yoghurt – that is all.

Although I loved the bagel, it wasn’t the only bread that I had on Friday and I don’t think my stomach thanked me for it. I felt bloated and really uncomfortable again. I don’t usually have a particular problem with eating bread, but lately I don’t seem to know when to stop and it doesn’t make me feel good. I’m avoiding all bread for a week or so, and then I’ll go back to eating it occasionally, which hopefully won’t cause any issues.

Anyway, it’s back to my makeshift workstation on my parents’ dining table. Have a lovely Sunday everyone!

Have you been enjoying the spring-like weather over the past week?

Have you ever taken a cold / ice bath? Is there any way to make it more bearable?

21 Comments leave one →
  1. March 4, 2012 8:06 am

    great on on the 12mile run!! thats a fantastic achievement, and no way a doddle!! I am trying to build up to long distances. that patisserie valarie is a lovely little cafe, I had a nice avocado and mozerrela salad their once. I have not yet been able to take a cold bath, bit of a wimp.

  2. March 4, 2012 11:22 am

    Fantastic 12 miler there Sarah, well done.

    I missed the truth about exercise program but will watch it on iPlayer, I was really keen to watch it and managed to forget to not tape it, one of those forgetful moments!!!

    Keep up the great revision, perfect weather for it today – rain so hot chocolate and hitting the books is easier.

    • March 4, 2012 12:09 pm

      Hot chocolate now there’s an idea …
      Unfortunately the dull weather doesn’t do much for my motivation, but at least I have a nice view of my Dad’s garden.

  3. March 4, 2012 11:47 am

    What gorgeous specs 😀 I can just imagine them on you – I’ll bet you’ll really suit them!

    Well done on the run as well – you’ve had a really strong round of training by the looks of it. I wonder if the Liverpool Half goes down by the docks etc. After doing the Liverbird Marathon out and back along there over and over again I’m not so sure I’d want to see it for at least another decade 😉 It’s always really chilly by the Mersey though, even by my standards, so perhaps allow for that in your race day outfit?

    It’s bloomin freezing and rainy here today – come back Spring, all is forgiven! And I’ve never taken an ice bath. I know, what kind of distance runner am I? (well, a crappy one, but I’ll reserve that moaning for my blog!)


    • March 4, 2012 12:08 pm

      Thanks for the tip. It’s a funny time of year, so I’m not sure what I’m going to wear – I think I’ll have to decide on the day.
      I’m not sure that I’ll take another cold/ice bath!

  4. March 4, 2012 12:37 pm

    Those glasses are very pretty- I like the neutral colour too.
    I had a few ice baths when marathon training as it really did help to stop the stiffness. What I did was have a warm shower first (to wash my hair and stuff), then run a cold bath but only about 6 inches deep maybe, and put in about a tray of ice cubes. I set the timer for 5 or 10 mins, put on a jumper and then got in. It was cold (the worst bit was having numb legs when I dried myself after the bath- it felt very weird) but as that was during the spring/summer it was not so bad. Wearing a jumper is a must though. I know some people drink a hot drink while they are in there too, but for me drinking in the bath is just weird so I would not do that. But if you like that you could try it? And wear gloves if you get cold hands.
    On days when I could not be bothered/ did not fancy it, I would just turn the shower to cold and spray my legs for a minute or so, then finish with warm. (That is what they do to racing horses I think)- the idea is that the cold contracts your blood vessels, then when they warm up again the blood flow increases and brings all the nutrients etc to help with the muscle tissue and things. So having cold then warm water in the shower helps this also.

    • March 4, 2012 2:43 pm

      I would love a pair of dark frames, but they just don’t suit my colouring, so I always tend to go for a neutral colour.
      Thanks for the ice bath tips. I think next time (if there is one …) I will definitely wear more. I’m with you on drinking in the bath – it just seems odd!

  5. March 4, 2012 3:04 pm

    Mmmm, that frozen yoghurt looks delicious! Wish we had somewhere that sold fro yo near us!

    I’ve been loving the weather we’ve had lately. Today’s been odd – alternating between heavy rain and sunshine. But yesterday we went for a nice walk to the playpark, along the seafront etc. Looking forward to spring/summer when we can do that more often 🙂

  6. March 4, 2012 3:20 pm

    I’ve been loving the weather – and the lambs, bless them – but it’s pouring here today 😦
    And I’m impressed by a 12-miler; I’m half-thinking about doing a 10k this May but not entirely sure yet!
    I love frozen yoghurt too, shame there aren’t places like that near here!

  7. March 4, 2012 3:52 pm

    Awesome run Sarah, you’ll do awesome at the Liverpool half! I loved the spring weather over the last week or so, it’s been so nice, although it seems to be coming to an end 😦

  8. March 4, 2012 4:14 pm

    Love your glasses I think they’ll really suit you! Well done on that run, 12 miles is a long distance for anyone! I could never manage the ice bath thing, the best I managed was turning the shower to cold and letting the water run over my legs. I get like that when I eat white bread as well, it never sits well with me. Hope the revision is going well!

  9. March 4, 2012 6:09 pm

    Good luck with the revision! And well done on the run 🙂 Been enjoying lovely weather up until today, where we’ve had snow and sleet – am hoping the better weather comes back soon.

  10. March 4, 2012 7:56 pm

    Good luck with the revision, I think I’ll be heading down that route in the next 6 months, so I’m enjoying the studying break for the time being.

    A colleague of mine wants to buy a bin, and literally submerge himself in ice water up to his shoulders for ice baths. They don’t own a bath, so he thinks a bin will be the next best thing. Craziness!! I think a nice hot drink would be nice, maybe treat yourself to a yummy hot chocolate?

    Well done on your 12 mile run!

  11. March 4, 2012 9:11 pm

    Oh I do miss DOMS! I know it’s painful but I’ve always found it so satisfying. Sounds like you’ve worked out well, well done on the fantastic 12 miler – very impressed! I adore daffodils so it sounds like a lovely place to run.

    Your glasses are gorgeous, I’m sure you look fabulous in them 🙂

    So jealous of your fro-yo, I love the stuff but there’s nowhere near me that sells it. I’ll have to live vicariously through your photo.

    Good luck with all of the revision lovely, hope it’s been going well!

  12. March 5, 2012 12:15 pm

    Well done on the 12 miles, that’s hard core! Love the new glasses too, they will look lovely on you.

  13. March 5, 2012 1:02 pm

    Your new glasses are adorable! I need to get my eyes checked. I’ve been trying to avoid it because of the expense, but I’ve been doing so much reading lately, that I really need to do it!

  14. March 5, 2012 6:03 pm

    Now I want froyo 🙂 Nice job on getting through the 12-miler! I haven’t run that far in almost a year, that sounds so difficult these days.

    I’ve never taken an ice bath because I am also very sensitive to cold, but some people really do swear by them.

  15. March 6, 2012 2:24 am

    I love frozen yogurt! Love the new glasses 🙂

  16. March 8, 2012 8:28 pm

    Well done on getting through the 12-miler. I have huge admiration and I don’t think I could ever run that far!
    The yoghurt dessert looks absolutely beautiful! I’ve never had frozen yoghurt but I can imagine just how nice it tastes. I look forward to someone bringing out a dairy free version so I can taste it for real.
    I’m love love loving our Spring weather! It really does lift the spirits. Let’s hope it lasts!

  17. March 8, 2012 8:29 pm

    p.s. Love the new glasses! I’ve had the same pair of glasses now for 8 years and they’re horrible (and too strong now), so I end up wearing contacts all the time!

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