Wednesday, 21 April 2010

New blog - same address

Hello to my fellow bloggers, if you haven't already noticed, my blog has been re-designed.

It has moved to a completely new server so my blog will not update in your reader unless you re-add it manually.  I wouldn't want my readers to think that I have stopped posting!

If you could all update your blog roll, I would be eternally grateful as it will look like I've not made any new posts.

Thank you and I hope you like the new blog!

Sunday, 18 April 2010

13 miles? No problem!

Happy Sunday bloggies, hope you've all been relaxing and enjoying the glorious weather before going back to work/school tomorrow?

As you can probably tell from the title of this post, I ran my first ever half marathon today, 2 and a half months before my first, official half marathon race on July 3rd.  I am still in shock that I did it as I did not set out intending to run this far.

The first time I ran 10.85 miles, I followed it with a smaller run of just under 8 miles the next week, followed by 11.07 miles last week so really, it should have been a shorter run today.  As soon as I set off this morning, I had a feeling it was going to be a tough run.  I suffered with a horrendous migraine yesterday and spent most of the day asleep, which is very unlike me, especially as the weather was so beautiful.

Before I went, I fuelled with a mug of green tea, some water and an original 9bar.

Within my first mile, I realised just how heavy my legs were and I felt really clumpy.  I just decided to see what happened and didn't put any distance ideas in my head.  The sun was beating down and my ipod was giving me a banging selection of tunes to keep me motivated.  As it turns out, I ran to the end of my normal route, which ends when there is no canal left without going up and over a bridge at a main road and carrying on the other side of the canal.

I turned round not expecting to run the whole distance back.  My right hip flexor was giving me some real gyp and I had to stop numerous times to stretch it out, along with my calves.  I was keeping an eye on my heart rate monitor and my heart rate was hovering around 160 with a maximum of 170 when running hills.  This in itself is a big improvement to when I did my first long run on 28th March, where my maximum heart rate was 213 (!) and my average was 162.

As I was nearing home, I, maybe stupidly, decided to try and add on a little distance, even if it meant walking for a while.  So, at the bridge before I got home, I went up and over it and ran through the woods and did most of the usual trail that Mr JAG & I run together.  I got lost and ended up going all the way around to get to where I needed to which added on some extra time to my run.  Between miles 11-13 I stopped twice for a 2 minute walking break.

I'm not going to lie, those last 2 miles were the hardest miles I have ever ran.  Every muscle in my lower half was screaming at me, I had a nagging ache in my lower back and I really was running on empty.  I have to start taking some water and something to refuel with me, as I can't expect my body to run such a distance without it.

By the time I got home, I was ready to drop but feeling an enormous sense of achievement.  I stretched really well, focussing on my hip flexors and calves and then I spent 10 minutes foam rolling to work out those knots.

The husband very kindly made me a steaming cup of green tea whilst I mapped out my run, then I took it and added on some layers to my top half and sat in an ice cold bath for 10 minutes.

I have really got used to ice baths now, once the initial shock to your system is over, it actually becomes quite a nice feeling.  I sat with one of the husband's jumpers on, with my hands wrapped around my steaming mug of tea and just basked in my post-run glow.

After my ice bath, I refuelled with this bad boy:

Packing in a whopping 1100 calories (!) this delicious porridge contained:

  • 70g jumbo oats
  • 330ml semi skimmed milk
  • 1 scoop protein
  • 15g coconut
  • 75g Greek yoghurt
  • 70g chopped dates
  • 30g chopped hazelnuts

Considering I burned off 1204 calories with my run, I figured I had earned it!

I'm feeling a bit sore and stiff now but am rehydrating myself and will do some more foam rolling tomorrow.  I think I will try and get out for a short recovery run tomorrow as I have read that they are really good for helping the aches and pains disappear.

Not sure of what to make for dinner yet, no doubt something carb-tastic and protein packed!

Enjoy the rest of the day everyone.

Friday, 16 April 2010

Not done that in a while...

ate porridge for breakfast and dinner!

I was working til 6pm and was restless when I got home.  I was starting to pick at food and knew how dangerous that could be as it often leads to a binge so I wanted something comforting to look forward to that wasn't going to take an age to cook.

It started with a couple of chips pinched from the husband's plate and then a fudge ball  and that is when I started to think "it won't hurt to have a night off just this once" - fatal!  I grabbed the oats and quickly made my porridge and it really helped - I am now so full I couldn't eat another bite - woohoo!

As a result, I am way over my calorie allowance but I really am not going to stress over that at all - the alternative would have been so much worse!

I am so proud to announce that one of my closest friends Stella who writes the fabulous blog "stella does healthy eating" is featured in Company magazine this month!  They contacted her after coming across her blog and wanted to feature her in a piece about keeping an online food diary.  Though she has been very heavily edited, the article is a fun read and shows what a fabulous range of delicious foods she eats and proves that you don't need to exist on lettuce and plain water to lose weight and be healthy.

You can get this issue of Company for only £1 this month so get out there and buy it :-)

I woke up feeling a lot better this morning after feeling really ill last night.  I'm certain it was simply because I felt utterly exhausted as mini JAG often has physical symptoms of illness when he is extremely tired too.  I went up to bed and read for a little while but was asleep before 10pm in the end.  I didn't sleep so well though and woke feeling not very refreshed so I think I will have another early night tonight and won't bother setting my alarm in the morning so I can sleep as long as I need to.

I was supposed to train my legs last night but was in no real state to do it.  As a result, I won't have another window of opportunity until Tuesday because my long run is on Sunday so I can't do it before that.  I don't think it would be wise to hit them the day after a 10 mile run so Tuesday it is.

Here is my food for today:

Breakfast was porridge, topped with Greek yoghurt, strawberries, blackberries & pecans.

Mid morning I had a skimmed latte.  I did take one of my oat, fruit & nut bars to eat but didn't feel hungry so saved it for this afternoon.

Lunch was a rush job as I didn't have much time left to make something after I had been to the shops.  In the end, I ate the same as mini JAG which was a ham & cheese toastie on wholemeal bread.  I had left my camera at work though so wasn't able to photograph it.

Mid afternoon, I snacked on an oat, fruit & nut bar.

When I got home I snacked on 2 babybel light, a fudge ball and a couple of chips stolen from the husband's plate.  I didn't photograph them as I was on dangerous territory and close to having a binge - really proud that I managed to fight it off though!  I feel stronger already :)

Dinner was another bowl of delicious, comforting porridge.  I added in a tbsp of this bad boy for extra yum factor!

I topped it with Greek yoghurt, strawberries, blackberries & dates.

Nutritional breakdown:

Calories: 2163
Protein: 145g (27.5%)
Carbs: 216g (38.5%)
Fat: 79g (34.1%)
Fibre: 25.7g
F&V: 4 - not good enough, especially as all fruit & no veg!

Drinks: Lots of water, 4 cups green tea, 1 skimmed latte

Exercise: None yet - may head out for a run shortly

On a final note, I'm still waiting for some people to email me with their address following the draw of my fabulous fitness raffle.  If you have sponsored me for my half marathon, check to see if you have won a prize!

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Feeling a bit...

bleurgh and not sure why, just feel really nauseous and extremely tired.

Going to have an early night but didn't want to leave you all without a post.  Hope you are all having a great week, hopefully, I'll be feeling better in the morning.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010


Happy hump day bloggies, how are you all doing?

I've been a total carb queen today which is unusual for me as even on training days, my carbs tend to be quite reserved.  However, I've not been able to stop eating and I'm certain it's the increase in mileage with my running.  The good thing is, it has been controlled eating and not a binge in sight - hurrah!  I really like this listening to my body lark :-D

I've had a really good day today!  I finished work at 1pm and came home and had some fun in the kitchen making chocolate fudge balls and oat, fruit & nut bars.

I scoffed down 2 oat, fruit & nut bars whilst they were still warm from the oven and they were amazingly delicious!  I'm taking them to work tomorrow for the girls to have with their mid morning cuppa.

Before dinner, the husband and I went out for a steady, 5k trail run through the woods.  I had planned to go out and do a speed run but I really enjoy running with the husband so I'm going to go for speed on Friday instead.  I considered training my legs tonight but they feel pretty heavy today.  I'm sure it's running 14 miles in 3 days that has done it so I am going to rest them tonight and train them tomorrow instead.  Saturday will be chest & arm strength training and then Sunday will be my long run.

I am still so shocked at how much my fitness has improved recently.  I was running at a steady, 10 minute mile pace and my heart rate was averaging 138.  It got up to a max of 168 when I tackled some hills but apart from that, it was hovering around the 140 mark for the whole way.  Not so long ago, a run like that would have had my heart rate in the upper 160's lower 170's.  I was able to run alongside the husband and chat without getting out of breath and it all felt so easy.  I've NEVER seen progress this quickly with my running before so I am super happy!

Have you guys seen the news today about Britney Spears releasing the un-touched pictures of herself along with the airbrushed version?

I know I am not alone when I say I actually prefer her real pictures.  She looks so fake and plastic in the airbrushed pictures and her shapely figure doesn't even need slimming down!  Is it any wonder that young girls grow up with such poor self esteem issues when they compare themselves to these ridiculous ideals?  

What do you guys think?  Do you think she looks better before or after?  And do you think pictures should have a disclaimer on them stating they have been digitally altered?

Onto my food for today.  I started off with a delicious bowl of mocha porridge topped with Greek yoghurt & fresh strawberries.

Mid morning, I had a skimmed latte.

Lunch was a food doctor pitta bread stuffed with chicken and served with a chopped tomato.  I had actually planned to fill it with spinach too but there was just no room left by the time I had filled it with chicken.  It was my first try of the food doctor pitta bread and I was very impressed.  Lovely tasting and very filling, even though I wasted 2 whilst trying to cut them as they just kept tearing - grrrrrr!

Mid afternoon, I snacked on a chocolate fudge ball and 2 oat, fruit & nut bars.

Dinner was a prawn jambalaya.  It used to be the husband nagging me to make my spaghetti bolognese but since I made the jambalaya, he nags me for it every other day! 

An hour after dinner, I was still peckish so I ate a cinnamon & raisin bagel and I am now full.

Nutritional breakdown:

Calories: 2136
Protein: 159g (30.6%)
Carbs: 248g (44.7%)
Fat: 57g (24.7%)
Fibre: 38.8g
F&V: 7.1

Drinks: Lots of water, 3 cups green tea, 1 skimmed latte, 1 earl grey

Exercise: 5k run 

I had a preview of my new look blog today and it looks amazing!  I'm so impressed with the fabulous job my brother has done, he has obviously worked so hard!  He has completely designed it from scratch and every little thing I have asked for, he has done without question.  It should be ready to launch within the next week or so - woohoo!

Sam, a massive thank you! 

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Getting excited

Do you recall me talking about my fabulous brother re-designing my blog for me?  Well, it shouldn't be too long before it is ready to go and I am so excited!  I have seen some screen shots of the new look and it looks so much better - less cluttered, cleaner and more professional.

I'm totally moving away from the whole black and white theme, though I like it, it's time for a change.  Are there any changes you would like to see on my blog?  Is there something I currently do that you don't enjoy or is there something you would like to see but don't?  Don't be shy, leave me a comment or drop me an email at jagsfitnessblog(at)gmail(dot)com.

Today was a rest day from exercise though I really fancied getting out for a run.  In the end, I didn't get chance due to chores, cooking dinner and making a couple of visits that I had to make.  Tomorrow will be a run after work - just a short 5k run where I will work on my speed and include some hills.

My mini JAG is feeling so much better today thanks to the antibiotics - a big thank you to all of the well wishes, he asked me to say thank you :-)

Food has been lovely today and I have been feeling more in control.  There was a moment at lunch time where I was close to giving in - mini JAG had left half a doughnut and a few crisps on his plate (he doesn't normally eat so much junk but he has barely eaten the last 3 days so I figured it wouldn't hurt) and I was so tempted to finish them.  However, I knew that if I did it would lead to a binge so I quickly sprinkled them with salt so I couldn't touch them, then threw them in the bin.  It was a proud moment *grins*

I started off the day with my usual heaven in a bowl, topped with Greek yoghurt & fresh blackberries.

Mid morning, I had a skimmed latte.  I did take some sliced chicken breast to work to munch on but I really didn't feel hungry.

Lunch was leftover lamb chilli.

This afternoon, I have been a total hunger monster and have had various snacks, which included:

The chicken I planned this morning:

2 babybel light:

An original 9bar:

and my first ever nibble of goat's cheese - yum!

Dinner was roast chicken served with broccoli, roasted sweet potatoes, carrots & red onion.

Even after ALL that, I was still hungry after dinner so made up a bowl of Greek yoghurt, with 25g date & cacao muesli sprinkled on top with fresh blackberries & strawberries.

And I am finally full!

Nutritional breakdown:

Calories: 1988 calories
Protein: 180g (36.6%)
Carbs: 147g (28.2%)
Fat: 77g (35.2%)
Fibre: 21.8g
F&V: 11

Drinks: Lots of water, 4 cups green tea, 1 skimmed latte

Exercise: Rest day

On a final note, if you haven't already, check out the winners of my fabulous fitness raffle to see if you have won a prize!  If you have, be sure to email me with your postal address so I can send your prize at the weekend!

Fabulous Fitness Raffle - The Winners

A big thank you to everyone that has sponsored me for my first ever half marathon on 3rd July - your support is amazing!

I have drawn the winners of my fitness raffle.  Everyone that wanted to be entered, I listed your names down on a list and used a random number generator to pick out the winners.

The  prize winners are:



Rachel & Jan

ChocolateButton, Tara, Louise, Sam W & Herstory

Well done everyone!

If you have won a prize, please email me your postal address to jagsfitnessblog(at)gmail(dot)com and I will post out at the weekend.

Thanks to you all for your kindness!

Monday, 12 April 2010

The perfect woman...

this is what the husband called me tonight :-)

We went out food shopping earlier and I picked up 3 sirloin steaks for dinner, one for me, the husband and mini JAG.  However, my mini JAG has been pretty poorly for the last 3 days and has barely eaten any food so didn't want to eat steak.

Initially, I was going to put it in the freezer and keep it for another night but then I said to the husband "what the hell - I'll just cook all 3 and we'll have one and a half each".  Cue him saying I was the perfect woman.

I don't feel very womanly at the moment, I've just chommed down on 14oz of steak!  It was delicious though!

I had to call in sick today as the little man was so poorly.  He's been ill all weekend and has been running a fever causing him to hallucinate at times.  Last night, he got so hot, I was really worried about him so slept in his room with him so I could keep an eye on him.  We barely slept a wink as he was so restless, kept waking up, was too hot, then too cold, then needed a drink.  When my alarm went off at 5.45am I was exhausted and he asked me not to leave him whilst I went to work.

I took him to see the doc and he has tonsillitis pretty badly so is on antibiotics - get well soon my lovely mini JAG *mwah*

So, most of today has been spent with both of us trying to catch up on sleep!  I am heading upstairs shortly to hit the weights though and am training back & shoulders.

Food has been gorgeous!  I ate a late breakfast of porridge made with jumbo oats, skimmed milk, Greek yoghurt, chopped dates and pecans.

As breakfast was so late, I wasn't hungry at lunch time so snacked on a babybel light and an original 9bar this afternoon.

Dinner was perfection.  Sirloin steak - medium rare, served with red onions, spiced sweet potato wedges, baby leaf salad & tomato.

I'll be having a yummy protein smoothie after working out, made with:

  • 250ml skimmed milk
  • 1 scoop protein powder
  • 85g raspberries

Nutritional breakdown:

Calories: 1859
Protein: 181g (39.4%)
Carbs: 120g (24.5%)
Fat: 74g (36.2%)
Fibre: 17.4g
F&V: 5.3

Drinks: Lots of water, 3 cups green tea

Exercise: Weights - upper back & shoulders

I had a horrifying thought earlier today - I forgot to draw the winners of my fabulous fitness raffle!  As you know, I've had a lot on my mind lately and it caused me to completely forget about it.  Profuse apologies to all that have entered.  I promise I will draw the winners tomorrow when I get home from work.

If anyone hasn't read about my raffle, have a read of my original post here.  If you have, or want to sponsor me, leave me a comment at the end of this post and I will enter your name into the draw to win one of the fantastic prizes very kindly donated by Weight Loss Resources.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

The best thing about long runs...

is burning over 1000 calories and getting to eat them :-)

My 11.07 mile run this morning earned me a whopping 1205 calories and though I haven't eaten them all today, I will increase my calories tomorrow as I am always ravenous the day after running.

As my mileage is increasing I am going to have to try extra hard to hit my required protein intake every day as the last thing I want is to start shedding the hard earned muscle mass that I have built up over the last 12 months. I am going to make sure I keep up my strength training too and will be doing upper back and shoulders tomorrow.

Food today has been soooooooo lovely!

I fuelled for my run with an amazing bowl of mocha porridge topped with 50g Greek yoghurt, 45g chopped dates & 20g pecans.

After my amazing run, I made up a delicious protein smoothie:

My smoothie contained:

  • 250ml semi skimmed milk
  • 1.5 scoops strawberry protein powder
  • 85g raspberries

It was a lovely, thick smoothie and made enough for 2 glasses.

Later on in the afternoon, I snacked on 2 babybel light.

Dinner was my favourite lamb chilli with brown basmati rice.

After dinner, I was still wanting something sweet so I made up a bowl of delicious banana ice cream.  I topped it with chocolate sauce, made of maple syrup and raw cacao powder and sprinkled with chopped pecans.

Nutritional breakdown:

Calories: 1958
Protein: 143g (29.8%)
Carbs: 192g (37.6%)
Fat: 69g (32.6%)
Fibre: 28g
F&V: 7.5

Drinks: LOADS of water, 3 cups green tea

Exercise: 11.07 mile run - 1:47 minutes, 1205 calories burned

I'm really not dreading work this week as we are back to a full team which means my hours drop back down to their normal 25 - yay!  So, I will be finishing work tomorrow at 2pm - happy days!

Have a happy Monday people!

Beat my best distance and time!

I love beating personal records so I was absolutely thrilled to have smashed two today!

As I was up early enough, I fuelled with a bowl of mocha porridge topped with Greek yoghurt, dates & pecans. My poor mini JAG is really poorly so I snuggled with him for an hour and a half watching home alone whilst my breakfast digested.  About 45 minutes before I headed out, I took my thermopure which has really proved to give me a boost when I exercise.

I started off nice and slowly hoping to run for about 10 miles.  The sun was glorious and there was a lovely light breeze that helped to keep me cool.  About two miles into my run, I saw a barge coming the other way and it was filled with about 10 guys.  Typically, my song ended just as I was passing it so was able to hear the wolf whistles, one of them saying something about an "improvement in the scenery" and as I passed, I heard "oh god, what an arse".  The one thing I dislike about my new running tights is that they really don't leave much to the imagination.  I'm very well blessed in the derriere department so having my trousers clinging to every curve makes me a little paranoid at times!  At least they were going the other way.  Or so I thought!  On the way back, when I was bright red in the face, hot and sweaty, I saw a barge moored up under a bridge and as I passed through it, the guys were all out on the tow path so I had to pass through them.  Thankfully, my music was still blaring at that time so I didn't get to hear what they were saying.

Does anyone else feel uncomfortable about being wolf whistled/hollered after when out and about?

I managed to run a little further than my last long run of 10.85 miles so was expecting it take longer, though not much longer as I didn't have to take a walking break like I did last time.  As I got to the end of my route there, I stopped for 30 seconds, stretched out my legs and ran back home without stopping.

As I was completing my last mile, "On a Mission" by Gabriella Cilmi came on my ipod and oh my goodness, did it give me a boost!  I sprinted for most of the last mile, including up and down 3 pretty sizeable hills and then down the lane back to my house.  It's amazing what a great song can do for your energy levels.  I love ending my runs with a sprint, it really empties the tank and feels extremely satisfying!

As I got to my door, I checked my HRM and saw that I had knocked a minute off my time and I knew I had run a little further so I got in, stretched, foam rolled and then sat down to map it out.

11.07 miles - woohoooooooooooooooo!

Afterwards, I went and had an ice cold bath and managed longer than last week.  For the first 2 minutes or so, the pains in my joints was agony but after a few minutes, it started to ease off and then it felt very soothing.

I'm hurting now though so going to chill out for the rest of the day.

Going to re-fuel now with a yummy carb filled, high protein lunch.

Enjoy your day guys!