My worst nightmare…

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11 miles…amazing! A new PB and I felt great. However, the next couple of days proved otherwise…

I was sore. Expected. I kept well hydrated and refueled my body for the following couple of days, as well as took epsom salt baths, foam rolled and stretched. However, none of this seemed to help and I knew on Sunday evening, that I was in trouble. My right hamstring was not happy. I’ve never before suffered with hamstring or any kind of muscle problems, in my legs, so this really started to worry me.

Monday morning came around and after speaking with my trainer and a really lovely friend, I thought it might be worth going for a sports massage to help the muscles. I have to say, it was really worth it. The next morning I felt like I had new legs, but as the day wore on, the soreness and pain continued. Wednesday quickly rolled around, and after the last two rest days, I thought I’d give my interval run a go. I was in a good mindset, prepared and ready to go after work. I started off at a good pace, not pushing myself, just running and felt good for the first set, but things quickly changed. Into the second set, my hamstring started cramping and I gave up, walking slowly back to my car and doing some stretches before heading home. All I kept thinking was, the Reading Half is in 10 days…this is not good.

As there was no let up, I decided that it was best to see a physiotherapist. This is where I am extremely grateful for my aunt owning her own practice, in Henley, so was able to be slotted in yesterday afternoon. He was great. Very thorough, reassuring and confident with his practice/diagnosing me. At the end of our session, he sat me down and told me exactly what I didn’t want to hear…I wouldn’t be running the Reading Half. Deep down, I had kind of known it from the past few days…the pain was bad and even staying positive wasn’t going to help it.

I’d be lying if I said I okay about the decision. I’m not. I am very upset, disappointed, frustrated and sad. I’ve trained for months to run this, a very hard couple of months, but not for anything that won’t happen. There will be other races and lets face it, there are worst things going on in the world then having to pull out of a race!
I’m extremely thankful for everyones support, love, get well wishes, kind words and advice. From people I know and don’t and I’m very thankful to know those people. The social networking world/community can be a negative place, but it can also be a very positive and helpful one.

I want to wish those reading this and running the Reading Half, the best of luck. I’ll be there to support you guys, waiting at the finish line!!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone <3

Emma xx

St. Lucia – Island of dreams!

Firstly, let me apologize for being quiet recently, its been a pretty full on couple of weeks and I’ve been away, which is what I want to focus this blog about! So, lets get started…

This year, my parents celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary, a huge milestone, and what better place to go, than the gorgeous island of St. Lucia. I couldn’t believe it when my dad suggested it and before we knew it, the hotel was booked and the countdown began! I’ve never been to the Caribbean Islands, which made this trip even more exciting and summer weather during our winter – YES PLEASE!!!!

Our flight left early on Sunday morning, which worked great, because we landed late afternoon and made it to the hotel as the sun was setting. Giving us time to settle in and freshen up before dinner. Now, little did any of my family members know what I had up my sleeve…about 4 months prior to our trip, I visited my aunt and uncle one weekend and casually mentioned our trip. Little did I know that the next day, I was at the travel agents with my uncle, and they were booking the same trip to surprise my parents! Keeping it quiet was pretty easy and I couldn’t wait to see their reaction. Once we arrived, my uncle and aunt, along with my cousins, placed themselves by the hotel reception, to surprise everyone as we walked out – mission complete!

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Catching up! 

For the rest of the week, our days were spent by the pool, down at the beach, sunbathing and catching up. We planned two trips – zip lining in rainforest and a day out boating around the island, covering ourselves in mud and soaking in hot springs – which was brilliant! The weather was unreal, blue skies and highs of 28-30 oC, cooling slightly at night. We slept with mosquito nets over our beds, enjoyed the freshest of fruit and amazing juices at breakfast, drank THE tastiest coffee EVER, explored the local towns, drank coconut water from fresh coconuts on the side of the road, climbed a mountain, ran with a pack of crazy dogs on a trail run and experienced some pretty hairy car rides! My parents were spoilt on their anniversary and we were really taken care of. It’s safe to say we dragged ourselves to the airport to go home…! A truly wonderful week!

Emma xx

Back in the game, thanks to a new friend!

Roll back 2 weeks ago, and my mindset on running and training, was at the negative end of the spectrum! I am happy to say, that has now changed, and it was all thanks to a new friend I’ve made, Charlie.
I first ‘met’ Charlie on Instagram. After messaging a few times, following her on IG and reading her blog, we finally met for our first run a few weeks ago. I’d not run with anyone before, so this was a new experience in itself, and one I won’t forget. Her passion and love for running is contagious, because I felt very inspired to get back into running and my training plan after our run. Since then, we’ve met a couple more times for some (very) early and longer runs, which has been great. She is such a sweet, friendly and kind person, who’s been a real help, giving me training tips from hydration through to clothing/shoe recommendations!
If you don’t follow her yet, do, and take a look at her blog as well! A real inspiration to all bloggers/runners out there!

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Photo credit to Charlie. Definitely looking forward to more runs and coffee!

Although the past 2 weeks have been very full on, I’m feeling pretty damn good and extremely grateful for all the love, support and encouragement from friends and people I’ve never met! It’s comforting to know that I’m not the only one who experiences these running lows, so thank you to all of you 🙂

Have a lovely weekend and happy running!

Emma xx

I’ve hit a wall…

I’m into week 9 of my training for the Reading Half and I can’t quite believe race day is only 8 weeks away! I’m super nervous, but I’ve got time, so I’m focusing on getting stronger and my training schedule.

Saying that, however, over the past 2 weeks, I seem to have hit a bit of a wall. Admittedly, I’ve lost all interest in running and my training schedule. I was quite hesitant to talk about this, because running is a true passion of mine, but things aren’t always sunshine and roses! I’m not sure if its the cold, s**tty weather, dark mornings and early, sunset evenings, or that I’ve had to do a lot of my runs recently on a treadmill. THEEE most boring and painful piece of equipment, EVER!…I’ve felt like a caged animal and acted like one too!

So, after chatting with my trainer, and having a bit of a load off, we’ve decided to reduce my weekly runs for the next 2 weeks. This takes a bit of pressure off and enables me to rekindle my love and the joy I get, from running. Most importantly, it gives my body the rest it needs, and is telling me it needs.  I honestly don’t know how a lot of you do it around work and general life happenings, so kudos to you all!

I hope that this little break will get me back on track and back to loving this sport, because it pays a huge part in my life and if I could never run again, I’d be devastated.

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Emma xx

Hello 2017 and recent happenings…

2017 arrived pretty quick and I can say it hasn’t stopped! Back into the swing of things with work, half marathon training and life in general!

I’m currently sat in my favorite restaurant, with my cousin, with full bellies and flowing cups of tea/coffee. She’s working on her portfolio for a new job and I’m about to post this ‘recent happenings’, inspired as always, by Heidi.

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DOING – typing away, coffee in one had, and my cousin next to me. Nestled in the warm restaurant on the sofa – perfect!

HEARING – the cooing noises from 4 babies behind us, with the chatter of their mums and the coffee machine buzzing away

DRINKING – soya cappuccino and water! The only two drinks you’ll find me with, oh and green tea!

EATING AND COOKING – recently I’ve been inspired by Alexandra, and a few other awesome ladies from Instagram, by making ‘abundance’ or ‘veggie’ bowls. My go to at the moment is quinoa topped with avocado (of course!), tuna or chicken, spinach, roasted veggies, beetroot and drizzled with tahini! Total win! With the cold weather we are having at the moment, hot drinks usually accompany these bowls! I’ve also been baking a lot. This coconut flour pumpkin bread, by Ashley, has been my go to, along with energy balls and constant batches of granola which I love to snack on and have as pudding with yogurt and frozen fruit. Overnight oats have taken a backseat and warm bowls of porridge are enjoyed all the time at the moment, not just for breakfast! Half marathon training has played with my appetite and I quite often crave a warming bowl before training.

WANTING – My holiday…5 weeks and 2 days to be precise! My family and I are off to St. Lucia to celebrate my parents 30th wedding anniversary.

PLAYING – Take That or Michael Buble…The only guys in my life! Ha! I absolutely love their music and find it super relaxing/a change to the repetitive radio songs at the moment. My mum and I have also been playing lots of board games in the evenings, nestled by the fire. Scrabble and Cluedo are our favs!

DECIDING – What to bake and cook next…! I’ve got a few recipes saved which I want to try, so I’ll be sure to use the rest of today/weekend to try them out.

ENJOYING – Cozy evenings by the fire. This is what I love about the Winter, and probably the only thing!

WATCHING – Silent Witness is back, making Monday nights enjoyable again! It’s my favorite show, I love a spooky/crime drama! I’ve abandoned Netflix recently, as just can’t seem to find anything on there. Tempted to cancel my subscription, but I know there are a few shows due to arrive on it soon. Might hold up on that one for now!

READING – Currently into The Girl in Cabin 10 that I was given by my parents for Christmas, along with The Poison Artist, which is next in line. Both sci-fi/thriller based and rather scary at times. I’ve been warned The Poison Artist is extremely dark, which makes me even more excited to get into it!!!

LOOKING – out the window at the rain drizzling down…a grey day today, the total opposite of yesterday which was blue sky and warm, winter sunshine.

LOVING – life. Its the death of recent famous people and family members that make you realize how short and precious life is. So enjoy it. Do something that scares you, enjoy your favorite glass of wine or bar of chocolate. Book that holiday you want to go on or buy that pair of shoes you have fallen in love with. At the end of the day, you can’t take it with you, so you may as well enjoy it now!

BUYING – Not a lot…I’m saving for St. Lucia in February and my trip to America in June. I can’t wait to enjoy another couple of weeks in the sun with best friends and lots of laughter!

PLANNING – My year…I’ve got 2 holidays booked and have just booked time off for when my good friends visit in May. I can tell 2017 is going to be a good one.

WEARING – My favorite dress from Gap, thermal tights (I told you I hate the winter), boots and THIS amazing scarf I was given by my friend for Christmas. Its like a rug, I kid you not, and I hate taking it off!

CRAVING – Warm bowls of oats and chocolate chip cookies…I have a few recipes that I think I need to bake!

SAVORING – My current set up right now.

FEELING – Content…Something I haven’t felt in a while. Life is pretty good right now and I am extremely lucky and thankful to have the people I have in my life. I may not see them all but this quote, that I saw once in a shop, reminds me that “friends are like stars…you don’t have to see them to know they are there.”

Have a lovely weekend everyone <3

Emma xx