Running Hi-Fives could easily end badly…

Today I had a 6km run on my schedule. Some of the Pumped group were meeting at the park for a time trial run but I had agreed to help a friend move house tonight so I had to be at the park a little bit earlier. Little disappointed I missed out on doing a run with everyone but hopefully it will happen on a regular basis! I ended up running the opposite way to them all near the end of my run they started passing, got a high five from Krissy whilst almost knocking out poor Renee who was in the middle of us. GO TEAM PUMPED!!

Starting out I was feeling a little sore in my arms and upper back from my session with Kate yesterday afternoon but it didn’t take too long to shake it out (thankfully). I did the first half of my run in very good time getting closer to the 6min mark (for me) but km’s 4 & 5 took my average back to around the 6:30 per km mark. Must have started out slightly too fast…


Goals for the week

It a day late really but I’ve only just time to print it all off and set a schedule!

Homework from the Boss this week includes lots of reps:
100mins Huffy Puffy (Running/Biking/exercise class etc)
100 Press ups
100 Tricep Dips
100 Aeroplane abs
100 Lunges each leg
100 Dead ants
100 Burpees
100 Step ups
100 Tricep press ups
We have the option of completing the above 1, 2 or 3 times over. I’m going to aim for 3x as there is a coffee voucher up for grabs for those who do so!

Extra homework:
2x pieces of fruit a day
2L of water a day
2x sugar free days
2x plank holds for as long as possible
Set two goals to achieve within the week
Complete 2 jobs you have been procrastinating with 
Send a text/email/message to 2 people you haven’t spoken to this year
Smile everyday 

My goals to achieve this week:
10 Nose to ground press ups (I did 8 yesterday)
Run Harry Ell Track (this was a goal I had last year in the 20 week challenge but was unable to complete due to an injury)

Jobs I’ve been procrastinating with:
Wash my car
Have a clean out any clothes that are too big for me

Motivation comes from the strangest places sometimes…



Motivation: It comes in many forms and more often that you like it sometimes seems to disappear right when you need it…


I was talking to a girl at work over our lunch break on Friday. She’s one of these tiny girls who eats everything (I mean everything! I like to call her ‘hobbit’ because she’ll have TWO breakfasts or dinners quite frequently), never exercises and stays tiny. We quite often chat and lately she’s actually been talking about getting on the fitness bandwagon as she jokes about how she expects her fast metabolism won’t last her whole life and she would like to get into good habits before it stops and she balloons.

She made a comment to me about how she is struggling to get into new habits and being motivated to do something when she seems to stay a healthy size without it already. She looked at me and said “it must be good for you being in the habit of lots of exercise never having to worry about needing motivation”

I WISH!! On one hand I felt quite awesome that she (being a nice healthy weight, thin girl) was thinking that I (struggling to quite literally work my butt off for years and still not quite yet in ‘healthy weight range’) could be this amazing, always motivated fitness god. I guess she didn’t quite go THAT far in her explanation but in my eyes someone who is ALWAYS motivated MUST be a god…

She doesn’t know it yet but my motivation for the weekend came from this conversation. I was exhausted Wednesday for some reason so I ended up skipping circuit after work and getting a very early night. Thursday I woke up feeling like I hadn’t slept and was even told I look like crap when I got to work… Always a good conversation to start the day: NOT. Liam and I had been invited out for tea that night and I basically had enough time to make a salad and leave so I had planned to swap my run to Friday evening. I was saying that it’s ok because Friday is my rest day so I would just swap the two. While this in theory is ok, it postpones my exercise and makes it more likely to not happen, come Friday my scumbag brain would start to say: ‘I’ve already put it off a day so why not more’ and herein begin the doom cycle of laziness. So Friday was spent determined to follow through and not being the doom cycle of laziness.

I was feeling a bit slack having two days rest in a row so I really pushed myself during my 5km time trial and it paid off. I knocked 40sec off my PB! I had a laugh at the end because I had been telling Liam that I felt like I was going really well in the first km, but had felt like I was slower on the rest. As you can see below my first km was actually the slowest…


On our walk back to the car after the run we came across a horse being walked, not very normal at all for us to see this in Hagley Park!


Saturday was spent running errands mostly, including buying some new running gear (YES!) so being a girl I had to test some of it out ASAP! I took a friend of mine up Rapaki Track (8km in total) who doesn’t do many hill workouts so it ended up being a longer time than usual but it was still nice to get out there and help to motivate each other. 


Sunday was a 7km run which I think I did quite well in. I averaged around 6:30 per km and wasn’t complaining as much as I had in the last few (apparently according to Liam). It was drizzly at the time so it got quite humid but unlike a few runs lately there wasn’t much wind (very pleased!).

Today was PT again (best part of my day!) It was a pretty hard session as per usual, really felt that leg press today :/ There was an uneven number for boxing class so I ended up staying for that as well. Arms are pretty dead now but it was worth it and it’s always nice to see some of the other Pumped ladies.

Kate also started a competition today called Fat Free February, partly to assist one of our Pumped members with her fundraising efforts for a friends daughter ( as well a slight monetary incentive for us as well. We pay an entry fee which goes into the bucket of winnings for the three with the highest weight loss (Based on body percentage so it’s a bit more fair all round), then each week when we weigh in if we gain weight we have to donate $5 to Ava’s Adventures. If we loose weight we can decide to keep the money or donate it anyway. Sounds like a good challenge to me!

Almost a week in a day…

Playing catch up tonight… it’s been a busy few days all in all :/

Thursday evenings run was a struggle. It was fairly warm but the wind was the killer We had winds of around 40km with gusts of 60-70km about the time I headed out. Thursday runs for me are a 5km time trial run and this is the first one of the year now that I’m back up to running 5km again. I was hoping to beat my time from Sunday but with the wind I did a slower run than normal.

Even though it wasn’t quite a PB it’s still a big difference that was from my first ever 5km. Just over two years ago I had managed to get myself up to running around 10mins without stopping but could not seem to get any further (the frustration!). I decided to join a program called Get up to Five run by the inspirational Bevan James Eyles. The beginners schedule started with 30 sec intervals of running and slowly over the 8 weeks increased to running 5km without stopping. I ran that 5km in around 42mins, I was ecstatic at the time thinking oh yeah that’s just under 8 ½mins per km!

That legs & butt homework circuit… I attempted it after my run on Thursday for the first time and man it burns! Probably doesn’t help that I’m still sore from other workouts but I had to get it done!

Friday was rest day, I normally still do a walk or a little circuit but I had woken up with a really sore lower back and it was still niggly in the afternoon BUT we had tickets to one of the Buskers Shows anyway so I didn’t have a lot of free time after work. The boy with tape on his face (aka Sam Wells) is originally from Christchurch and has become quite popular overseas. Luckily for us he tires to come back to play a part in the yearly buskers festival. I’ve seen him on comedy shows before but never live so was really looking forward to it – the night was full of laughter and it was well worth going to see!


Saturday I would normally aim for a hill workout but I knew I was going to do a stairs session the next morning so I decided to catch up with a friend over a brisk walk – we walked around both parts of Hagley which came to 8km and took a little over an hour. I was also quite distracted during the morning with Facebook updates: You see my amazing PT Kate and a few others were competing in Challenge Wanaka (she did the Half Ironman) and a couple of the girls from Pumped had gone down to watch and were kindly updating us all on how all our competitors were going. I wonder if I’d ever be able to compete in something like that – so inspirational! I would have to get far better at swimming haha.

Sunday morning I had a stairs session that Emily had organised for us. I got woken up at 2.45am and couldn’t get back to sleep until around 6am, which meant I only got a couple of hours sleep by the time my alarm went off. I was seriously thinking of not getting up and trying to catch up on lost sleep but in the end I got up and headed for the Stairs. It was very much an emotional and mental struggle at the time and I got there about 10mins early thinking ‘I could leave now and no one would even know I had turned up’. I stuck around, 9am arrived and Emily turned up so there was no backing out. We waited a couple more minutes for the others to turn up and began the walk up to the start of the stairs.


I forget how steep the short walk is to get there, in fact once you get to the stairs and look up you already seem too tired! We walked up the first set and Emily had arranged a few reps for us to do in between each set of stairs. In total we did 5 laps of the stairs (around 1000 steps all up) a mix of running, walking and going up 2 steps at a time. I got attacked by mosquitoes plus by the time we finished the temp was around 26°C and it was only 10am – this equalled a very warm and muggy workout.

Throughout the day it got hotter and Liam and I ended up waiting until around 8.30pm to do our run – even then it was still 28°C outside argh! We did 6km which was what was on my half marathon training plan at a slightly slower pace than I’ve been doing (It ended up being an average of 6:45 min per km).

Yesterday was a bit quiet workout wise; I was flat out at work all day and had arranged to meet up with a friend to check out a place to have some casual drinks for my birthday next weekend. I did go home and do a small circuit session before starting dinner though!

And we are back up to today finally! This morning started the best way it can: PT with Kate! We did a few weight exercises that I don’t normally do. My last set was a heavy bench press and I made the mistake of saying a swear word (can’t) straight after which means I had to get down and do 10 press ups. I got the giggles even getting down on to the floor… after the bench press my arms were not wanting to cooperate with me AT ALL!

It’s been horrible and rainy today but it cleared later in the day in time for a dry run. We went out later than usual so missed the 5km series race that some of the other Pumped athletes were doing. It was a hard run but I pushed through and finished the 6km a little longer than it took on Sunday.

My most AWESOME moment of the week so far: Liam text me yesterday and asked me to enter him into the same half marathon that I’ve signed up for. Of course I did this right away so he couldn’t back out of it 😉 I was already looking forward to that weekend but now even more so 😀

Now that we’ve got that week out of the way I’ll get back to blogging every 1-2 days…

Oh my… Legs & Butt Week!

The Boss gave us more homework this week, the main star being a Legs & Butt Circuit which we need to try to complete as many times as we can:
20 Step ups
20 Jump/lunge squats
20 Jump lunges
20 Wide/narrow squat jumps
20 Knee repeaters on each side
20 Deep wide squats
20 Wide squat jumps
20 Two feet jump forward into a deep squat, two little jumps back
20 Lunge hops each leg
20 Burpees
1min  Squat hold
1min Squat pulses
(Everyone who’s done one so far is cursing it)

I also have to do 162 press ups (my age x 3 and because I’m under 30 I have to double it), 100 walking lunges and increase my plank by 5sec every day.

I was pretty exhausted when I got home from work last night I skipped my run but today I’m back on track with circuit. It was a good session (even though I’m still suffering from DOMs after back to back PT & Boxing class on Monday) and she put emphasis on Legs & Butt week by starting with 100 deep squats. Phewf! Our circuit was broken up tonight: We’d do two stations followed by a short run and some interval reps outside (20secs fast, 10sec rest x4). You guessed it… the majority of these reps were legs & butt related – the squat pulses near the end seemed to get everyone.

I’ve been a bit excited the last couple of days about my upcoming half marathon (even though it’s still 16 ½ weeks away) but between Kate sending out details yesterday for our weekend trip away and St Clair posting beautiful pictures of the vineyards we are going to be running in it’s been good motivation. Check out a couple of the pictures on the front page of their website.

Note to self: PT then Boxing = Sleepy me

Yesterday’s run was the hardest one I’ve come across in a long time… I seriously got to the 1km mark and lost all motivation. Luckily Liam was with me, he told me to keep going and reminded me of my goal to run 5km again by yesterday AND my ugly consequence of 200 burpees if I didn’t achieve it on time. So all I did while I was hating myself for still running was think about my consequence, my mind was replaying over and over “200 burpees, 200 burpees, you got this! Or you have to do 200 burpees”. It took almost the next 3km to get my thinking back on the right track and I was then able to pick up my pace and really enjoyed the last km.

The bonus of finishing my run yesterday was realising that I’d also achieved my time goal of a 5km in under 32.5mins. About half way around because I was struggling I had decided to focus on finishing rather than doing the fastest time I’ve ever done so to get both – I was pretty amazing!


I was also able to tick off a 2min plank again – next goal is 4mins 🙂

Today was PT with Kate, it was the first time in ages that I’d done a session after work rather than first thing in the morning so my routine was put out a wee bit but it was still a fantastic workout nevertheless! Similar session to last week but I only did Leg Press & Lat Pull (no Bench Press). She decided it would be ‘fun’ to do reps in sets of 100 today, at least to start with – phewf!

After my PT session Kate has a group boxing class – she wasn’t quite sure who was actually turning up so she asked me to be her back up boxer if she had an uneven number. I must have agreed to this at the start of my last PT rather than at the end when my arms were already dead… It was an uneven number so I had 10mins to rest & hydrate before an hour of boxing.

I actually felt pretty good through most of the boxing class and meet a couple of new people which is always nice. Two hours later however I’m pretty tired and ready for an early night…

Sashimi, Stairs & Sunburn

It was a late night spent at my dads place for tea last night so I thought I’d merge yesterday & today into one 🙂

Managed to get through the first week back at work… I’m normally really good with making my lunch for work so I’m not tempted by the cafe downstairs but when I woke up on Friday I realised we’d already gone through all our salad type ingredients so there wasn’t much left for lunch. I remembered Tank had just opened at the mall down the road so I went for a wander at lunchtime. I got one that had roasted vegetables, feta, seeds and almonds – I wasn’t expecting the almonds to be whole, or so many of them but it was delicious.


Friday’s are planned as my rest day but it’s not usually a complete rest – especially when Kate’s homework includes 20mins of exercise per day! I decided to make use of the home gym area again tonight, I ticked off the 3rd of 4 circuits I need to complete for the week and did some extra exercises to make it past the minimum 20mins.

Then it was off to dads place for sushi night: he supplied the fresh sashimi (Salmon & Kingfish YUM) and my job was to bring the rice plus any extra veges I wanted. I love making my own sushi because I find bought sushi always has too much rice and not enough of everything else in the middle.


 This morning was an early start for a Saturday (much to Liam’s disgust with my alarm waking him up!) because I was meeting a few other Pumped ladies for a stairs session. These stairs are different from the ones I’ve mentioned in an earlier post but just as brutal. On my last lap of the stairs I counted about 116 steps which is far less than St Martins but they are steeper and have gaps of flat between each set. I was standing at the top of one set of stairs in this pic below, you can’t see all the way to top but it gives you a bit of an idea of what we were up against!


Emily had kindly arranged a circuit for us that included about 5 laps of the stairs, some with reps at the bottom and others with walking lunges in-between the sets of stairs or two feet jumps up the steps. The first time I did these stairs I remember jogging up the first 30 steps and dying, the whole rest of the circuit I walked. This morning I managed to jog up about 1/2 of all the steps I did (less towards the end) so I was pretty pleased to see the improvement 🙂

Before Christmas I subscribed to some magazines, a couple that I quite often purchase & Runner’s World (I’ve wanted to purchase this before but can’t find it here). A Free Training diary & some Brooks socks turned up in the post the other day so I also spent a bit of time tonight filling in my first week of training. Really looking forward to the first magazines turning up!ImageI spent a few hours this afternoon relaxing down at a domain watching Liam play cricket. It’s not my favorite sport by any means but it’s a good excuse to go lounge in the sun for awhile and show my support to him at the same time! Face got a wee bit pink from the sun – always sunblock up even in cloudy weather with a cold wind!!


Slowly speeding up!

I bumped up my run to 4km this evening, could have gone longer which is a good sign but my calf has been a bit grizzly over the last week so I’m trying not to increase too quickly and re-injure myself like I did last year. It was a lovely evening in the Garden City for a run with Liam however this meant that my new running playlist still hasn’t been used yet. All that work!!


I am not a fast runner by any means, toward the end of last year my average was around 7min per km so my first time related goal this year was to run 5km in 32 ½mins or less. This week so far I’ve been averaging between 6.15-6.40min per km which I’m pretty happy about and it means I’m much closer to my goal than I expected I would be. I am now aiming to tick this off my list when I run my first 5km of the year on Sunday – by the looks of today’s results below I’m sure I can do it 🙂 There may have to be a new time goal to achieve very shortly!

A big thanks has to go to Liam for helping me improve my speed. Although I’m mad that he can basically go the whole two years I’ve known him without going running (he does however play social cricket & hockey in their respective seasons) and then join me twice and complain that I’m so slow… he has helped me pick up my pace for which I am grateful for!

ImageAfter feeling pretty happy with my run time tonight I finished the evening with various medicine ball exercises and am about to go find my foam roller. Tomorrow is ‘rest day’ but I need to knock another circuit off my weekly homework from my PT plus I’m meeting a friend for a walk after work so it won’t be a complete rest day for me.

Off topic I know but in the past two days lots of tents and fencing have turned up at Hagley Park for the World Buskers Festival. I have tickets to a couple of the evening shows pre-booked and am pretty excited to see it all starting to be set up!


The Tyre…

Muscles were a tad stiff this morning after yesterday’s exercise shenanigans but nothing a good stretch and a lunchtime walk couldn’t fix.

Then I remembered it was circuit day! YESS!

I really enjoy circuit class with Kate, each class is different and you never know what to expect when you turn up… Today we got a slight inkling about an hour before start time “The tyre is coming out tonight ooooooohh”. Now I’ve been a part of the Pumped crew for 10 months now – I didn’t even know there was a tire!! The way it came across it sounded worse than the St Martins stairs… I will post a picture next time I’m there (Saturday by the sounds of it) but in a nutshell St Martins stairs is 219 steps of pain. Everyone seemed to be nervous about tonight as most of the girls had a couple of weeks off major exercise, especially the likes of classes.

Closer to the end of circuit she let us do each station as a pair, it made flipping the tire a bit easier 🙂



60mins later everyone was stuffed but feeling positive for getting back into routine. There were many times tonight Kate had to tell us off for stopping because we were laughing too hard, not normal but a nice touch to the first class back.

Being out of routine did mean a few penalty press ups over the course of the session… There are two ‘swear words’ at Pumped (Sorry & Can’t). If you say either of these it’s an instant 10 press ups. At a group class the whole group has to do them if someone slips up. Usually we are pretty good at not saying these but being out of the environment for a couple of weeks seemed to make all the difference – I think we had 5 swear words spoken tonight (I admit I said one of them).

Enjoying the relaxing right now, back to running tomorrow 🙂

Eeeek I’ve signed up for my first Half!!

Today I did it… I officially signed up for my first Half Marathon. 21.1 freaking km. This has brought up a mixture of feelings: excited, nervous, determined, scared… Entering when you are currently only running a few km at a time is a bit scary but I’ve run 10km before, that’s pretty much half right?! I’ll be fine!…

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Half way through my 20 week challenge last year I ran my first 10km at the Christchurch Airport Marathon (a few days before I injured myself the first time argh!). That day was an interesting experience all in all. I didn’t struggle as much as I imagined I would but watching the top athletes run was almost mesmerizing. The 10km race was an out and back course so as the likes of my two awesome running buddies and myself were slowly getting closer to the turnaround point we started to see some athletes coming back. Their determination, power and muscle was incredible! They all still seemed calm and collected like they were just out for a leisurely stroll, just a very fast one haha.

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This morning’s session with Kate was great. We started with some boxing to warm up and then focused on Bench Press (Smith machine), Leg Press & Lat Pull with a mixture of reps (think step taps/box jumps/dips/press ups/ski jumps over a bench and other ‘fun’ things) in the middle of each set. I managed to better or equal all my weights before Christmas for each one so pretty happy about that! As it’s the beginning of a new month Kate made me write down two goals to achieve sometime before the end of Jan and put them in her Goal Jar. I picked a couple that I’ve been able to do before but have gone backwards on and am planning to knock them off my list by the end of next week:
Plank a minimum of 2mins (currently up to 1.33mins)
Run 5km (Ran 3km today)

Liam joined me on my run this evening, we ran slightly slower than I did yesterday (my fault, not his) weaving in and out of the streets around our house. I must admit I enjoy running in the shade of the trees at the park better than on the streets, there wasn’t any shade on the run tonight! What made my day though was that Liam thanked me for dragging him out and then said that he’d join me on all my runs, to which I answered well you may as well run the half with me – he’s actually thinking about it – would be his first one too! 🙂

It’s official the holiday is over :(

Back into the work routine today, I admit getting up early this morning was a struggle! After what seemed like one of the longest workdays ever I put my running gear on and headed out to the beautiful Hagley Park for a run.


It was only a 3km run (coming back from injury) but it felt like a very long time since my last one – and I loved it! It’s strange when you get out routine with something getting back into it seems insanely hard, it’s like your brain forgets that you actually enjoyed the task and instead remembers it to be a boring and hard task.

I arrived home from my run and remembered “The Boss’ aka Kate had set us homework for the week: Complete the following circuit 4 times by Sunday – may as well get No.1 ticked off tonight! Must admit I’m really enjoying using the home gym for stuff like this!
100 High knees
90 Cycles
80 Jump lunges
70 Star jumps
60 Wide/narrow squat jumps
50 Step ups
40 Dips
30 Press ups
20 Aeroplane Abs
10 Burpees

Run done, Circuit done: Foam Roller – oh how I’ve missed you my old friend!

For some reason after a warm & very pretty windy run my dinner tasted magical so I had to share it with you. I made a avocado pasta dish with salmon and various greens YUM! 


I’ve been spending a bit of time this evening going through my music and creating an awesome new running playlist. After going for my run I remembered how bored I am of the current tunes on my phone – it’s not going to make going for runs any easier if I’m not enjoying the music! Any suggestions are welcomed 🙂

First PT session of the year tomorrow morning before work and there are mixed feelings currently: excited because I haven’t had a PT with Kate for a few weeks now… nervous because a few weeks off and a bit of indulgence in the holidays means I probably will struggle to pick up where I left off…