St patricks weekend half marathon at 13 weeks

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During at paddys weekend Paul and I ran a half marathon in Los gatos, it was great and at 13 weeks we still managed 2:15 which was great. The biggest issue for me was needing to go to the toilet or at least feeling like I needed to!!!!
The course was beautiful but lacked any kind of proper toilets along after mile 3 which was a big ol sad face for me!!!but I made do!!!

Apart from the toilet breaks I felt a little slower than I usually would for race day but that’s to be expected:) but being back in the racing scene was soooo amazing, it’s one of the things I love about running us the race morning feeling and since the north face ultra in dec I hadn’t felt it.

My partner in crime was the best and kept me motivated and kept an eye on me that I didn’t over do it-thank you baby:)xx

Tips for pregnant runners in first trimester:
Be prepared to have to pee and feel like you need to pee pretty much entire race

Be mindful of your body temp don’t overheat.

Hydrate loads drink drink drink

Eat a good brekkie

Show off your bump if ya have one!!!

Enjoy and revel in your achievement

More races to come!!!happy trails.xx

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Being a pregnant runner

So lately a lot of people when they realize I’m pregnant say “oh so you’ve stopped running” or “can you run now??”. I try not to get too defensive and assume anything. And accept that some people genuinely still adapt that old school thought of ‘pregnant women shouldn’t exercise, and nonsense like the exercise will harm the baby and cause a miscarriage’ etc which is just the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. And then some people just want to learn more which is great:)

But the other group of Busy bodies: if these people read even one medical journal article or a book on staying healthy and being the best for your baby, they would quickly see there’s not a single doctor nurse or person who would attribute a miscarriage to someone staying fit and healthy during their pregnancy.

Now everyone’s pregnancy will be different and I’m not a doctor so I’m not saying if you have a high risk pregnancy to get out and run a marathon etc but I am just trying to highlight and diminish the negativity still attached with fitness when pregnant.

Everyone’s fitness level is different and activities vary, I listen to my body, I am not trying to prove anything . I love to run I worked very hard to become a marathoner and ultra runner, and now I’m embarking on the most important ultra event to date-my pregnancy journey. I have always applied myself taken care of my body and been dedicated and this pregnancy is no different.

I am committed to staying fit, and running through my pregnancy (all be it lower mileage, more toilet breaks, slower pace, downsizing to half marathons). I am embracing all the changes and listening to my body and the baby. My doctor said I’m one of the healthiest pregnant women she had seen in a long long time!!!and to keep exercising and maintaining my routine because that’s what my bodies always done. Resting heart rate was so slow it blew her mind, on account of being so fit!!

Here’s 2 examples of what pregnant runners have to deal with sometimes: and feel free to have a laugh I did!!

-I was around a lady recently who congratulated me on being pregnant(she knew I was a big runner) and then offered me a cocktail I politely said “thanks but I’m ok”, she proceeded then to regale me with laments of how one drink won’t harm the baby this early and she knows people who drank their whole pregnancy and had perfect babies. I just said “oh ok but still no thanks.” Then in the next breathe she says “oh and you want to stop running and be very careful all that running will harm the baby “!!!!wtf!!
It’s this crazy double standard that makes this issue so controversial.

Secondly at the hospital- “do you smoke, drink, do drugs, get out of breath or lift heavy weights” it’s like how are weight lifting and getting out of breath same as drugs!!!!haha I’m sure someone will say there asking about work related weight etc but there really should be a second section for exercise related questions!!!

Everyone will always have an opinion so I want people to take from this-a more open mind about pregnancy and fitness and to women “run your own race and find “your”happy pace.

And to the nay Sayers I direct you this article from the Canadian medical journal published in the NY times:

“If a woman is physically active during pregnancy, she may boost the development of her unborn child’s brain, according to a heart-tugging new study of expectant mothers and their newborns.
The findings bolster a growing scientific consensus that the benefits of exercise can begin to accumulate even before someone is born.

It has long been suspected that a mother-to-be’s activity — or lack of it — affects her unborn offspring, which is not surprising, given how their physiologies intertwine.
Past studies have shown, for example, that a baby’s heart rate typically rises in unison with his or her exercising mother’s, as if the child were also working out. As a result, scientists believe, babies born to active mothers tend to have more robust cardiovascular systems from an early age than babies born to mothers who are more sedentary.”

My baby and I will see you at the finish line!!!

Long evenings are a coming…..

So with the clocks going forward this Sunday for us here in the states it’s time to make the most of “the stretch in the evenings:)” and the extra day light. I am still a morning runner and out the door before 530am but in the spring I like to take up something else too in the evening.
Even a walk on the beach or second run or cycle can be so refreshing. I know it’s hard to fit in even one training session never mind two in a day but it can be more motivating now it’s not dark after work.

Here’s a few tips I’ve picked up to fit workouts in once maybe twice when the evenings get longer:

Try something new every now and then it keeps you interested and connected .

Mix it up with a class or new activity.

Go in the evenings with a friend,partner,husband,wife etc make it a date.

Plan out your workouts at beginning of the week

Maybe plan every second day to have a lie in and work out in the evening instead.

Maybe give up the gym treadmill for all the beauty of a run outside and all the benefits of being in the outdoors.

Leave your gear out so as soon as you get home you don’t have time to change your mind:)

Treat yourself to a something new to wear for the spring look great feel great.

Sign up for a race/event

But most of all enjoy embracing the outdoors being fit and leading a healthy life for longer each day:)

“For two fitness”…..I’m an Ambassador for fitness when pregnant!

Well since my last ultra event I have been taking my mileage down a notch on account of being pregnant, but as always I was on the look out for another ambassador-ship where I could gel together being pregnant AND running and fitness. After much searching and disappointment at the lack of specific apparel for pregnant women I found F2F and that’s exactly where “For Two Fitness” comes into place. I have been chosen as an Ambassador for “for two fitness”

ForTwoFitness-AmbassadorSeal_200HOORAY!!!

“- You are committed to a healthy lifestyle for yourself and your baby.  For Two Fitness® is comitted to you!  We are the premier maternity fitness apparel brand, proudly made in the USA and available worldwide. We serve and celebrate moms in a completely unique way.”

F2F specializes in maternity wear for pregnant women but be warned once you slip into one of their many gorgeous and comfy pieces you may want to wear it afterwards too!!!!They have alot of different series for me the “running for two” is my fav and perfect for me but they have cycling for two, sweating for two, toning for two etc. Their apparel varies from dry flow tanks, long sleeves to pants to outerwear. I will be sporting F2F “running for two” tank at my race on the 16th in Los gatos. F2F has also been featured in Shape magazine, Fitness, US weekly and much more. My second fave item is:

000-jkt-blgrIt is so so comfy and stretchy, just perfect for me expanding more!!!!

 

For Two Fitness have given me a special deal to share with you, Use code “Irishbaby” to save 20% on your entire purchase even sale items!! Code expires in 60 days and may not be used to purchase gift cards. I will also be a guest blogger on their F2F blog page so will keep you all posted. I am so excited to have been chosen, thanks Amanda:) and to represent such a wonderful milestone in maternity fitness wear.

And check out their web page at http://fortwofitness.com/category/tanks

Happy running.

 

Running for two…..

Well much anticipated news but I am now currently running for…….two:) yep I am carrying a tiny little ultra runner inside.

its very exciting and I am thankfully not sick in any way at all, so I’m still running away and enjoying it. It is definitely an adjustment realizing I have to slow down a little bit and obviously my millage is not as it were when ultra training but I am still managing 35-40 mile a week which is great!!!

And it’s actually really nice just running for the love of running and going as far as I feel comfortable and as long as I want.

I’m sure every distance runner can relate that when your training you become somewhat of a slave to back to back runs long run meeting a certain milage each week etc, so it’s really nice to get back to basics.

All the toilet stops can be a pain but im really enjoying staying fit and running through my pregnancy.

First race with baby on board is a st paddys day Half marathon on march 16-it has been a couple years since I ran a half so I’m excited for it.

I will be updating my pregnancy running as I progress along with pics:)

happy trails.xx

Back from my sabattical!!! North face endurance 50km recap

Well better late than never, sooo much has been going on I am only getting bag in the blogging game now. Happy new year to everyone and hope all your new year goals are in full swing.

Well on Dec 7th 2013 I ran the North face endurance 50km ultra in 5 degree celius weather. Buuuuuuuuuuuuuuurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. I braved it like so many others in long sleeves and yes…shorts!!

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Unfortunately the ol down vest did not accompany me on my journey;( As you would expect from any NF race it was meticulously planned and marked out and absolutely relentless, not for the faint hearted or for the odd few who didn’t put in any training and decided they’d give it a go. I mean at the beginning Dean Karnazes said “and how many people are running their forst ultra today”???, two hands went up!!!So judge from that.

The elevation was over total 7800ft and it never stopped all the way to the finish. I had an absolute blast and came in over the finish line in 7 hours. I met some amazing faces along the way and got alot of love, as always on the trails from my fellow ultra runners. I am always so amazed at the camaraderie and once again at what my body can do. When I was finished I was freezing omg I never took my gloves off at all entire race.

I got to see and get a good luck from Dean Karnazes…wuhooo hes shorter than I always thought!!!heheehee

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The terrain was tough the distance was tough the elevation was ALWAYS THERE is the only way to put it, and at the finish line was as always my adoring husband and biggest supporter and Matt, Jess and the kids my tiny supporters. What a race, what an accomplishment and what news I have for you next.

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Happy as always!!!

Check out my next blog to find out my next big endurance event!!!…..

 

Happy trails everyone.xxxxx

Lake Chabot 50km ultra recap – overdue but finally getting around to it!

So I am finally getting around to recapping the Lake Chabot 50km ultra that I raced in on Nov 9th. I figured I better recap it soon before the NF Ultra in 2 weeks actually less than 2 weeks.

So the weather was lovely race morning, then it got into the late 70′s around 11am which proved a bit of a challenge for me as I wouldn’t be the best ‘heat runner’ but I trucked on and dealt with it overall really well. So I was very proud of myself for that.

The First 2 loops were grand, bringing me to the marathon mark and I felt fresh starting my final loop, however the last loop had alot of unforgiving uphill so it was definitely a challenge and I worked for it all the way to the finish line glory. I was tired, honestly the heat was starting to get to me, I finished in a time of 6 hours 16 minutes, and while there were still marathoners finishing way after the 7 hour mark, when we were actually leaving to get in the car, EVERY ULTRA RUNNER was done pretty much.

I mean what an unbelievably fast bunch and I was one of them. Just to put it in perspective I finished 4th in my age group and in order to have placed even 3rd, I would have had to have ran my race a full 46 minutes FASTER…WTF. I have alot more work to do.

I feel so honoured to have ran with all of them and joined the ranks of really amazing elite athletes and endurance runners. To run with individuals like that really boosted my confidence and I learned so much and also kinda couldn’t believe I was able to keep up with them. I mean at one stage I had another girl and 2 guys actually drafting behind me, they asked if it was ok and I said ‘yeh’ as I actually hadn’t seen anyone for prob an hour so I was glad of some company! They were thanking me for such a steady pace, they were running the marathon, and they complimented me on my pace, consistency and my legs!!!

I mean I train hard, thats no secret and I’m dedicated, but I guess I sometimes forget and doubt my ability and I was nervous race morning, even though Paul was like ‘Ru you got this its gona be no bother to you’ and he was right. I guess sometimes other people see in you what your striving to achieve, and you don’t even know you’ve achieved it all along. So thank god I had someone to tell me…!

I mean I know all the running 101 tips and rules etc, but I still toed the start line on Nov 9th after already running 38 mile that week, which was so stupid and it caused me not to finish as strong as I would have liked. So I am going to be alot more disciplined for the North face Endurance on dec 7th. I did my last back to back long run last fri/sat and I am gona put in a nice steady week this week and then enjoy a relaxing taper week of the race. Its tough though your mind plays tricks on you..but back to Lake Chabot.

I finished happy, and not too drained and Al and Tiff suprised me by coming out to see me finish which was sooooo amazing and of course my darling husband who never misses a start or a finish or a beat!!!heehee. He snapped loads of finish line shots which I will get up online this week.

Overall the race was great, location was challenging but beautiful. I feel ready to go get NF on Dec 7th. Heres THE BLING.

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Coastal trails as always had an amazing spread at each aid station with more than enough food, drink, snacks, fuel and friendly faces to urge you on through to the finish. Thanks to all the wonderful volunteers.

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Happy trails and Happy thanksgiving.

 

 

Night moves……running in the dark.

With the impending time change and morning wake up runs dark again and evening after work runs, even darker, its important to be safe and recognize that danger does exist both during the day and night but it can be more prevalent when dark.
I am gona cover some tips and safety issues and some things I have learned.

I primarily run early in the morning 5am, and yesterdays morning run took me back to my leggins, I know….old friends its been a while like 10 months, heeheehee. So wrap up and invest in some gear that has built in reflectors, its really handy and alot of running shoes come with that now.

Also you need a good head torch and maybe even a waist one too I see alot of people with those. They appear very effective.

Always make sure someone knows where your gone, your route and what time your gona be back at, jot it down on a pad and leave it for your hubby, wife, roommate, mum granny whatever.

Run with a phone. I mean its a personal choice and I would be lying if I said I did, all the time, especially when its day light. I mean I SHOULD…but sometimes its just nice to get away from it all, but safety wise we should all, when its dark have a ‘phone home’…if you will.

I run with a hand held pepper spray, a whistle and a pen knife. Like I said I run early, its dark and I run in a fairly quite location where theres not alot of residential homes etc for a few mile, but I gotta run when I can so I make sure I am safe. 

Run if you can in a residential or lit up area, its not always gona work out but if you cam…DO.

If possible run with someone, once again a personal choice. I know I am somewhat of a lone wolf….heeheehee and enjoy the quite time to just….run…but sometimes I think I would feel alot safer with someone…so its just a thought for everyone. Pass on the fitness friends.

Know your area, especially if your on holidays or visiting someone. I got completely lost in San Diego at night before, out running a quick 6 miler, quickly turned into 9 and I was fecking miles away from the hotel and freaking out, with no phone…classic mistakes that I have since learned from…so in conclusion research a route before running.

Don’t post on the internet, facebook etc your whereabouts, be clever be grown up do not let complete strangers know your runnig route time you are gona be out of your house etc.

Always play it safe, alot of rapes, injuries, kidnaps and beatings that have occured at least where I live, could all have possibly been avoided by all of the above or at least a few.

NO HEADPHONES OR MEDIA……BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS.

And watch out for wildlife know how to deal with certain animals, we have alot of coyotes on the area where I run in the bay area and they can be a bit frightening so know how to deal with them.

 

Happy safe running this Autumn and Winter seasons, enjoy the changes in the scenery and wrapping up. Sign up for a winter race, there hard core and that makes you hard core. I got two 50kms one in Nov and one in Dec. So be adventurous…..be seen and be at all times…safe.

 

 

 

 

 

Back from my blog sabbatical….hooray…

Hi everyone,

Well what a whirl wind the last few months have been, with a wedding, visitors and trying to balance training it proved all too much for blogging aswell but as I wind down I am finding more time to jott a few bits n bobs down and want to update you on my new endeavors.

Well I def can offer some advice on trying to plan a wedding, balance life and fit in running without tormenting yourself and being too tough on yourself. Yes I missed 3 weeks of long running-but I still managed to average a 45 mile week each week even without the long run. I just had to accept that during those few weeks there actually WASN’T enough time to and enough hours in the day, sadly.

The recovery time was a welcomed forced relaxation, which I think many runners never really take unless forced to and I am trying to focus on the positives of my break and acknowledge that my body prob needed time to rebuild and recover.

But this week will see me back in action and back on my game. And to commemorate my newly wed status and leap back into hardcore ultra training, I signed up for another 50km ultra on Nov 9th that will take me to Lake Chabot, ca and of course less than a month to that day on Dec 7th I will conquer the North Face Endurance 50km in SF. 

And with all that being said I am trying to figure out my next next move after all that, 50 miler in 2014 is my goal but which one I am toying with rocky racoon….any advice or race ideas welcome, I feel a destination race is on the cards.

I conclusion some tips from a hectic few weeks;

Accept some days you may not be able to fit it in

Prioritize the important things that need to be done; in some cases I figured out running came…need I say…for the first time….it came in 2nd place…ahhhhhh it was a strange realization, but one that needed to be realized when planning a wedding

Get up early 

Go to bed early, these tips are not for everyone but I found it worked quite well.

Eat healthy.

Realize and believe that conditioning isn’t lost in a few days or even a few weeks, have faith in your strength and your bodies ability to adjust and bounce back.

Set a new goal focus on that and begin working hard again…

Happy trails and running my friends.

Heres a pic of a not sweaty me….usually all my blog pics are very sweaty looking ones.

 

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