Diet forgotten, match abandoned. 2016 is go!

Happy new year everyone!

I haven’t written a blog post in a few weeks, for a couple of reasons.  I’ve been really busy with work, I’ve done some travelling and had a business trip to France which was much more stressful than I expected, and had some personal issues too. All in all, December was a split month for me, in some ways it was not the best month for me, but in other ways it was awesome. However, I did have some successes with running, so all was not lost!  I completed two more races since my last post, bringing my 2015 total to 19.

Ted Corbitt 15k, 9th December

It had arrived, the big race. My longest distance of 2015. The race that marked the final cell of my excel-spreadsheet-training-plan. It was an unseasonably warm December morning, which meant a last minute change to my running clothes. Running in one short sleeve tee was a nice novelty for mid-December!

 

Ready at the starting line with a running friend
Ready at the starting line with a running friend

 

The race was in Central Park (as are all my favourite NYRR races), with a 4 mile loop and then a 5 mile loop, starting and ending at the upper east side of the park.  The first 5k was fairly uneventful, I ran to my normal pace of 11:30-12:00 min miles. Same for the next 5k, although I’d started struggling a little more and had walked a quarter mile due to a bad stitch.  By mile 8, I was struggling but working hard to keep my pace up.
Hitting the 6 mile mark
Hitting the 6 mile mark
In no time at all, the finish line approached. Now, this wasn’t just the finish line of a race for me. This was the finish line of the longest distance race of 2015, the finish line of my training plan. Most important of all – THIS WAS MY LAST FINISH LINE TO QUALIFY FOR THE NYC 2016 MARATHON!
What a feeling, crossing that line. I did the race in 1:50:38, average 11:53 min/miles. In crossing that line, I completed my 9+1 race and volunteer requirements and I’m only going to run the bloody marathon next year!!  I can’t wait to start training for it already!
The evolution of expressions while running a 15k - 5k, 10k, 8 miles, bagel
The evolution of expressions while running a 15k – 5k, 10k, 8 miles, bagel

Somerville Jingle Bell Jog, 20th December 2015

I spent a few days driving up the East Coast before Christmas, and found a Christmas 5k to run in before I started my journey back to New Jersey.  I had one goal for this race – run as fast as I can.  In the previous week’s 15k, I did the whole race in the same pace that I run 5ks, so really I should be able to run faster in the shorter distances.
Because running makes me happy
Because running makes me happy
This was a fun course through Somerville, MA, just outside Boston. I really pushed as hard as I could to get my speed up, and finished the course in….
0:31:03
10 MINUTE MILES!!!!
I was so, so happy at the end. I guess this is what they mean by runners high!  It was the perfect way to end the 2015 race calendar.
Happiness is seeing smaller numbers on your GPS watch
Happiness is seeing smaller numbers on your GPS watch

 

A t-shirt AND a medal for this one. That never happens to me!
A t-shirt AND a medal for this one. That never happens to me!

So the running’s on track, what about the eating?

Erm, not great.  I’ll be honest, calorie tracking has been well and truly abandoned for a few weeks now, the diet forgotten.  I’ve been travelling so much in the past couple of months that I really struggled to accurately track calories, there’s been a lot of guesswork and it’s just not been working for me. Over the Christmas break, I did overindulge but I also tried to keep it controlled by not going completely over the top, so hopefully I won’t have gained too much weight.

On Christmas Day, I flew out to Bangkok to begin a 3 week vacation travelling round Thailand and Vietnam. Currently I’m in Koh Lanta lying on a hammock getting eaten alive by mosquitos!  It’s been a crazy few months, so I am definitely enjoying taking it easy for a few weeks – although I have managed to squeeze a few runs in!

(Only short ones though, it’s crazy hot and humid here!)
My new happy place. Koh Lanta I think I love you
My new happy place. Koh Lanta I think I love you

What about the calorie experiment?

Well, I’m starting again.  On Monday January 18th, I’ll be home from vacation and will start again with a 10 week experiment, with truly accurate calorie counts. Food scales, home cooking, portion control, the whole 9 yards.  I am also signing up for a half marathon in March, so I’ll have a new training plan too.
We learn from our mistakes, and become better people for it, and I’ve certainly learned that I need to be even more accurate with counting calories if I want to see results.  I’ve also learned that you can’t outrun a bad diet, exercise and a healthy diet are not mutually exclusive. You need both in your life.
Ok, let’s do this!  2016 is my year to Lose It For Science!
Pam x 

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