My 1st England Vest!

This is my first blog post all about my training for The Chester Marathon, how I got here and how I get there………….Race Day 8th October 2017

Where do I start……I love sharing information and motivating people. I wished I had written a blog for my very first Marathon 2 years ago but I had no idea I would even have a story to share. Looking back I would have been able to see just how I did it! You soon forget! And thats why in a year I have raced 3 Marathons the last one as a qualifying race for Chester England Athletics Age Group Marathon.

Two years ago I had no idea how I was going to cope with the milage/long runs and especially nutrition.

My very first attempt at training for a Marathon was London 2015. I made so many mistakes! I learnt exactly what I needed to do to keep everything working. I picked up a niggle after 10 weeks of training that forced me to stop running and take a rest.

The best learning curve so far…

The secret was the “running” is the “easy bit”……the resting/massage/stretching/sleeping/stress management/nutrition and “making the right decisions when it matter the most” was the important bit!

So I visited my Physio Ian and I listened to everything he had to tell me, he works on fascia as taught by Douglas Heel and aline with an Osteopath approach, I now have more knowledge on how and why different parts of the body feel tight and how to pin point the part of the body that needs to be targeted to release the pain/tightness. This still is my secret weapon. I’ve never raced without a visit to my physio to unstick the muscles, get all the muscles firing as they should do and give the body a pre race once over. It works every-time.

My biggest fear when training for My First Marathon was that I had previously always picked up a niggling cold about every 6 weeks throughout the year and not just the winter months. Just when the training started to get going I would end up with a cold and feeling ill, another forced rest and recovery again! I had no idea how to solve this problem so I turned to a Natural Holistic Nutritionist. The information Daniella has given me blew my mind. The first thing I did was to go onto a 3 week detox!

It was May 2015 and I was running again after my discovery that a tight foot muscle forced me to stop running.. My 1st Marathon wasn’t for a few months so I had time to concentrate on my nutrition.

I asked for an intolerance test which came back as all clear! phew…but what was causing the reoccurring colds? I was asked to follow a simple list of foods, all low sugar and no gluten. “Well thats easy” I thought, “I can eat fruit/veg smoothies and eat plain meat and veg the rest of the time”……Oh no, not so easy. Low sugar fruit meant blueberries and green apples and not every day! So no Bananas! Don’t athletes need Bananas? That was probably the last time I ate a banana.

When I transitioned into this  way of eating I had so many questions. Its mainly how to replace the things you (think) you can’t live without..Mine was everything sweet, fresh and dried fruit/chocolate/sugar and the kids sweets (shh!). If they were left out they were eaten! I worked out that at least 25% of my daily food was sugar, that was a lot to replace each day with other food.

So lots of planning and thinking about the meals…this again was a big learning curve I found Paleo/Vegan/Keto I had never heard of any of them…I join Facebook groups and listened to every pod cast I could find. I soon learned that I love advice from a scientific approach. I felt there was so much out there that conflicted with each other who could you trust.

Fast forward 2 years and I’ve raced all 3 marathon on water, no gels and a sip of Argi at mile 20 & 250ml 20mins before the race. I ate breakfast 3 hours before each marathon (thanks to Paula Radcliffe’s advice) of 2 tablespoons of porridge with water and a tablespoon of chia seeds/pumpkin and sesame seeds. If I still felt hungry I would have a few almonds. This is super easy to prepare in a hotel room. Whilst the family can treat themselves to full English breakfast.


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