We’ve been without internet for around 3 weeks, which hasn’t been as relaxing in practise as I would have hope for it to be in theory. So what’s been happening whilst I’ve been on this internet hiatus?

I’ve been cooking and eating nice food. The above I actually made before we lost connection but figured I could show it off anyway because it was super nice.

I’ve spent a few fuzzy nights out as well, which these days are rarer than rare as I’m becoming old and lazy.

One of those fuzzy nights took place on this years (most likely) rainiest day when we ventured north-east to celebrate Brownswoods 10th Birthday and danced our little socks off.

Last month also saw me returning to Run Dem Crew which has been nice and sorely missed on a Tuesday night. I’m still too busy at work to be able to run every week, but there’s another race on the horizon so I need to get my act together!

We also enjoyed a taste of British summer during our internet free weeks which resulted in this years first BBQ.

As you can see, I’m the happiest when there’s food around or on the go ;)

We sadly also had the terrorist attacks during these internet free weeks too. As heartbreaking as these kind of incidents are (no matter where they happen!), we stood united and marched on, determined not to let hate and fear win.

I’ve taken some new approaches to my marathon training which has meant:

  1. Keeping my (social media) mouth shut and just getting on with it
  2. Only saying something when I have something useful to say

And this is one of those instances…

It’s safe to say that my training hasn’t gone to plan whatsoever. I was keen on getting another PB in Paris so I figured I’d ease myself back into training last autumn, but I just couldn’t find my running mojo.

Once I reluctantly got back into the swing of things, I almost got hit by a car, which left me with an injured ankle and out of action for 6 weeks.

My perfectly planned 6 month training plan was reduced to a pathetic 12 week emergency schedule and with Paris Marathon now being less than 5 weeks away, I wanted to share a few things I’ve learnt the past months:

Change the things you can and don’t worry about the rest

Not being able to walk properly for almost a month forced me refocus my efforts back in December. Instead of panicking about about my ankle situation, I decided to change the things I could have an impact on, like:

  • Getting enough (quality) sleep
  • Hydrating as much as possible
  • Focusing on eating better
  • Cutting down on alcohol and other habits that left me feeling fatigued

I didn’t see or feel any changes straight away, but I kept at it in hopes that it would help and having done my best to improve these areas of my life in the last 3 months, I can honestly say that it has made a huge impact!

Learning the difference between “enough” and “lazy”

One thing that I’ve been really bad at in the past has been to stop when my body tells me its had enough. I would push through the pain, over do it when I should be resting and generally just doing anything in my power to stick to my training plan.

This time around I’ve made a conscious effort to try to listen to my body, to be flexible with my training and stop when I feel pain. I admit that I still struggle with this because sometimes I feel like I’m just being lazy. I’ve been feeling guilty about the fact that I started out doing 4 runs a week, that then went down to 3 and that now stand at around 2 a week. However, I have come to accept that the reason for this is not laziness, it’s because my body just isn’t recovering fast enough for me to be able to do more than those runs at the moment and that just has to be ok.

Be thankful for what your body can achieve

In the last four months I’ve gone from completing reluctant runs, to not being able to walk at all, to running 17 miles without any issues. I’m definitely not as fast as I used to be, my condition isn’t as good as it was when I did London marathon and I find it very difficult to stay motivated at times when I feel like I’m not making progress. But whenever I feel down about my current achievements I try to remember what an incredible thing it is to be able to lace up and run, whether that’s for 1, 3, 13 or 26 miles. I should be proud of how quickly I’ve bounced back from my injury instead of torturing myself for all the things I’m not able to do.

There’s no denying that this marathon training has been a real struggle for me, but I overall I’ve learnt some valuable lessons and I can only hope that once race day comes, I will be able to celebrate the journey that lead me to the finish line – even if it looks like it’s going to be a slow and painful one!

So we’ve survived the first month of 2017 and whilst it feels like the world is going slightly mad and backwards, I’ve been trying to stay low-key and focused. I really wanted January to be the month where I laid the foundations for this year and I have to say that so far I’ve been relatively successful.

One of the main things I was keen on doing was to fully make this flat feel like my home and create an environment that I love being in. I’m not fully there yet, but it’s coming together nicely and I love spending time at home.

Another thing that I was determined on doing was to get back into running. To be honest, I feel ashamed of how much I took using my legs/feet for granted… After my accident and injured ankle, every run is a celebration (or at least in theory!) In reality I’m super slow, sluggish and constantly paranoid that I will hurt myself again, but I’m trying to stay positive despite my wavering confidence and swollen ankle in the evenings.

The last, but maybe most important thing that I’ve done since the new year is to delete most social media apps from my phone. I noticed that constantly watching people broadcast their (curated) lives and comparing myself to to them was having a bad effect on me, so now I’m trying to limit the time I use social media.

I’m the first to admit that I’m not perfect and the whole thing is still work in progress – but I don’t really check social networks during working hours, I don’t have the majority of the apps on my phone anymore, and all phones are banned from the bedroom (I even bought an alarm clock, so no excuses!).

Then there’s some other bits and bobs too, but I won’t bore you with that now. Instead, here’s to a decent!