Thursday, May 31, 2012

Gym no Swim

I haven't posted for a couple of days because I've been sooooo busy at work - trying to right all the wrongs and get my project deliverables out on time. But you guys don't need to hear about that, I'm sick of it and I do a job I love so you guys will have no interest in it at all.
But just in case you are interested, one of my packs should be issued today (YEY!!) and I'm on track to get my other set of deliverables out in a fortnight, it should be next week but it's the Queen's Jubilee weekend in the UK and I'm taking the Monday and Tuesday off as a national holiday.
Speaking of that, I discovered that I haven't taken time off since Christmas (which was only two days off anyway) and before that it was July last year when I last had a holiday!
Paul, my boyfriend, is currently writing up his PhD (so proud of him BTW) so he's not taking any time off so if I took time off all I'd be doing is sitting round the flat and to me that seems like a waste of time and I lose a days pay. However, I think working such long hours consisting of busy days and trying to get all my training in for my swim and going to the gym in general I'm feeling pretty frazzled right now. So I'm going to take Monday and Tuesday off and try and unfrazzle myself!
I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to it - I'll find it hard to not concentrate on how much money I'm giving up but I'm sure two days less money isn't going to make me destitute!!

Anyways back to training - Tuesday was a bit of a disaster, the pool lanes were being used (again!!) and the main bit of the pool was really full so I did my slowest half mile ever! 22 minutes for half a mile!! I can usually do a mile in 34 minutes (average) so I wasn't too impressed with those stats!
In the end I got so annoyed trying to dodge people I went to the side of the pool and did stationary kicks for ten minutes, it shows just how much I don't use my legs while swimming coz it was hard! I felt a bit better about my session after that - not brilliant but not too down either.
That's the thing I like about swimming is once I'm in and wet even if I'm having a bad session I feel like I can't get out early because then I'll have gotten all wet and will have to wash and dry and straighten my hair (I have long very thick hair that takes ages to dry!) for no reason so I stay in and try and make it worth it.

Yesterday (Wednesday) I had my session with Tom in the gym - it was an absolute killer, he made me up my tempo more than ever and also made me do big sections without a break. I did an hour of training with only three breaks in between high intensity boxing, medicine ball work, sit ups and leg ups BEFORE going on the treadmill. I managed a mile at a 10 minute mile pace but had to stop and walk halfway through (so disappointed) so my average pace was actually 12.13 min mile. I then did a cool down walk for a couple of minutes to make it a 15 min session on the treadmill. I was disappointed I had to stop and disappointed I was only on the treadmill for 15 minutes but Tom told me that he had pushed me harder than ever with the other stuff so I'm going to have to take his word for it and not be too hard on myself.
After the gym I headed for the pool ready to at least get a mile out as it says in my training timetable but I was pumped from the gym so ready to do a bit more seeing as I'd not done so well the night before.
Anyways, I got to the pool to discover THE WHOLE POOL was booked out for swimming lessons!! I mean I know I live on an island and its important for kids to learn how to swim but jeez sometimes I feel like my pool is training half the UK the amount of times the lanes are being used!!
So I was a bit disappointed but I'd already put in an hour at the gym so its not like I hadn't done anything.
I headed home and had some chicken, salad and half a Spanish omelette for dinner and it totally hit the spot.
After that I chilled out, watched some TV put some laundry away and tried to get to bed at a reasonable time.

Tonight it's swimming only, I'm hoping anyways if the pool isn't packed / booked out completely.
I'm feeling pretty energetic today and up for a decent swim but we'll see how it goes - tomorrow it'll be three weeks until my swim!! Scared much!!

Oh and...
Still trying to get my Garmin to connect to my computer - any ideas?!?!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Urgh!!!

I really don't want to write this post but I have to, I'm feeling pretty crappy at the moment work is pretty mental and I've let it get the better of me.

But before I go into mega whinge I'll tell you about my weekend which was actually pretty good.
The weather stayed brilliant all weekend so I tried to spend as much of it outside as possible. I went into Glasgow city centre on Saturday to have a look at some clothes, the ones I've got a getting pretty tatty and are a bit too big if I'm honest and I also needed to take some clothes back that didn't fit.
After I did that I did a bit of window shopping more to be out in the sunshine than to actually buy anything.
On Sunday Paul and I went to visit his grandparents and then made ourselves a barbecue.
We marinated some chicken thighs in a spicy coating, cooked sausages and made our own burgers using minced beef. Then we made a simple salad of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and peppers to go with the barbecued food. Dessert was fresh strawberries and ice cream - All in all a pretty nice way to spend a lazy Sunday.

And now onto the whinge...
Monday at work was a disaster, one of my projects turned out to have lots wrong with it and I'm trying to compile it for issue at the moment which meant that yesterday was pretty stressful, so much so that I got kept back discussing things with colleagues and missed my PT session with Tom!
I'm going to make it up on Wednesday but I'm annoyed I was so late that I couldn't get my session done.
I tried to go to the pool to make up for it but there were swimming lessons on in the lanes and the rest of the pool was packed with people consisting of lots of kids playing with inflatable balls and I just knew that in the mood I was in, I'd just get more and more annoyed trying to get around people. So I gave it a miss and went home.
I was still trying to switch off from work, trying not to think over everything that needed to be done to be able to get my project out the door.
I was also really tired, from work and from the night before. I got woken up by a nightmare - I haven't had nightmares for years so it freaked me out more than it really should have done. It was about my swim, I dreamt that I had to be rescued by some divers because I found myself in the middle of the lake not able to move or keep myself above water! It must be because the swim is scarily close because I had the same dream again last night. I'm going swimming no matter what tonight so I'm hoping that will ease my fears!

The other thing that annoyed me was I let food get the better of me last night, I craved chocolate as a comfort to my bad day and general state of being and I let myself eat it - gutted.

So the scales this morning showed a 3lb gain, gutted again but I know why so I'm hoping I can rectify it in the next couple of weeks and be back on track with both my training and my eating.
I'm trying to not let it get me down and keep going.

Sorry for the crappy post
Have a good week.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Just Keep on Swimming

Last night was another gorgeous day in Glasgow, almost a shame to spend it inside in a pool but needs must!!

Like I said before, I wanted to do my long swim last night and I lasted two miles. After the week I've had I was just about done after 130 laps.
I swim in a 25m pool so 130 x 25 = 3250m
1 mile = 1609.34m
So 2 miles = 3218.68m
I know I'm slightly over but in this situation I'd rather being too much than too little

Anyways enough maths for now!
I did the 130 laps in 1hr 22mins which is basically a 41minute mile which I'm quite happy about - it was the first time I'd tried to swim the two miles in a long time so I was trying to pace myself early on so that I didn't tire too fast and not be able to make the distance.
Now I know how I was feeling at the end of it I'm going to work on my speed and try and get that down, swimming in open water is harder than swimming in a pool and I'd like to do the race in something near to 1.5 hours so although the above time indicates that I'll be able to make that, I'm sure I'll be slower in the lake.

The thing I'm annoyed with myself about is that I got out of the pool because I was bored!
I felt tired after my two miles but not so tired that I couldn't have done another mile or so but I just didn't want to and I'm annoyed that I didn't push myself that little bit further.
I have an underwater mp3 player which I should start using again. I usually put an audio book on it and the lengths seem to fly by when I'm listening to a book but the headphones are those that go around your ears and I have seriously tiny ears which means that they fall off when travelling through the water which is often more of a hindrance than the amount it helps me by keeping my mind occupied.

I'm going to go back to the pool at the weekend and do a two hour swim, I'm going to record splits on my Garmin as usual but I'm not going to count laps as I do them, I'm just going to see if I can swim constantly (at my normal pace) for that amount of time so that I know I'll have enough stamina to do that if I take longer in the lake.

According to My Fitness Pal 1.5 hours of fast, vigorous freestyle swimming burns 1283 calories so I went home looking forward to something nice for dinner with a few extra calories to play with.
This is what I made myself
Pulled Pork on a Wholemeal Bun with Salad and Coleslaw
And can I just say it was absolutely delicious, just what I needed after that long swim.
It was also made more delicious because it has bread in it.
Tom has had me on a very low carb diet for ages because we've discovered that although Hannah LOVES pasta and bread and potatoes - they don't love Hannah very much in terms of weight loss so I've been avoiding them as much as possible.
However, due to the amount that I'm training both with him and on my own in the pool and at dance class, Tom has said I should incorporate some 'good' carbs into my diet which basically means anything wholemeal or wholegrain and I didn't need to be told twice to get my gums around some bread!!
It was absolutely delicious and very quick to put together - I eat salad every day for lunch at work, I roast a whole chicken at the weekend and shred it and keep it in the fridge to add to my salad and I also chop a bunch of different salad things lettuce, cucumber, peppers, celery, beetroot etc and keep them in the fridge so all I have to do on an evening is rinse out my lunch box and put handfuls of salad in it, top it with chicken and I'm ready for lunch the next day - simple!
So if I'm having salad on an evening too I just have to do the same thing but onto a plate.
The pulled pork I made at the weekend - its dangerously easy, just some pork loin and barbecue sauce (the bottled stuff) chucked into a slow cooker and left to cook on low for eight hours then shred with two forks. I got the inspiration for that from here
I then had a bit of a treat and had a Devilmoo frozen yogurt for desert - yummy too and only 150 calories!!

I also thought I'd be brave and put up some photos in my snazzy new gym kit - excuse the hair, its my classic 'I've just been to the pool and can't be bothered to blow dry it' look!!
I can't believe I'd ever look like this - I don't pay myself compliments in general but even I'm pleased with the way I look!!
Not very clear but that's me in my gym kit




They're taken in the mirror as you can probably tell!! But that's me from the front....









...And that's me from the side.








The thing that gets me the most about these photos is that I look thinner from the side. I know that might sound silly but at my heaviest I really didn't look any different from the front or the side, I was just a big round ball!! And I have to say I love that I now shrink when I turn to the side!
I know. It's the simplest things that amuse me!!

Tonight I'm going to my dance class which will earn me some more calories in the bank and I'll have fun doing it too!!
After dance, Paul and I are going to the cinema, we are hoping to see the Avengers movie but if that's sold out there is plenty on at the moment for us to choose from so I'm sure whatever we get to see will be great.
I'm going to make sure I've eaten dinner before going to the movies so I'm not tempted by all the lovely ice cream and popcorn!!

Question for you all - What movies have you seen recently? Which ones would you like to see?

Also I need a bit of advice from you - You know how I recently got my lovely Garmin 310XT? Well I can't for the life of me get it to connect to my computer using the USB thing - does anyone have any advice for me? I've got my activities stored on my watch but I'd like to be able to pull them off to produce charts and graphs and whatever other lovely stuff I can do to help track my progress!! I'm stuck!!
I'm a control systems engineer and I've been beaten by a GPS watch!!

Anyway - Happy Friday everyone - I hope the weekend is a good one, if you're in the UK I hope you get to soak up some of this all too rare sunshine!!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Summer is here!!

It was an absolutely glorious day yesterday in Glasgow - the first of many I hope but then again I do live in Scotland!!
I love it when the weather turns and last night was brilliant, I was outside in just a t-shirt and the air smelled warm. I'm hoping you know what I mean by that because I love that smell!!

I was ready for it to get a bit warmer. We've had a pretty mild winter in Scotland this year to be honest but it seems to have gone on forever! I was just about getting sick of being cold and low and behold, the weather picks up and its nice and warm, just what I needed! :-)

Last night was another session with Tom and boy did it hurt!! He had me working constantly for just over half an hour at full intensity.
We're trying to improve my stamina ready for the swim in a few weeks so he got me doing boxing, kick boxing, high knees, lunges, crunches and work with the medicine ball all one after the other a full speed. I honestly thought I was going to die!
Then as if that wasn't enough he got me running on the treadmill for twenty minutes - actually it was a ten minute run, five minute walk and then a five minute run but I still managed to average a 12 minute mile which is pretty standard for me - my next goal in the running department is to be able to sustain that for 3 miles (i.e. a 5k) to be able to complete one in just over half an hour - It'll come I know it will I've just got so much else on with dance class and my swim coming up I'm not going to add another stress to myself just yet!!

The good weather should hopefully mean I can get outside and jog more there although I actually quite like the treadmill now. I used to hate it but now I've gotten over the fear of falling off it or getting caught in the conveyor belt I tend to just switch off. If Tom is there with me we'll have a chat or if he's not I'll put my mp3 player on and listen to music or an audio book and the time seems to fly by.

It sounds silly but I'm so proud of myself to even say that! I never thought I'd be able to do anything like that, never mind find it therapeutic!!

The gym was absolutely boiling last night though - they seriously need to think on improving their air con! The worst part is that the front of the gym is all glass but none of the panes open so you can't get any cool air into it apart from leaving the door open, which they did.
It didn't help!

After the gym I went to view a flat - it was nice but not for me, there were too many things I'd want to do to the place to make it how I'd want it and the price of it in the first place wouldn't allow me to do that.
So the search continues, I'm not in any hurry though - I'm on a rolling contract with my current rental flat and I like where I live and my flatmate Amy so I'm going to take my time and find the right place.

Swimming is on the cards tonight - I'm going to try and make this my long swim (aim for two miles to hit my distance but I'd like to do three to make sure I can swim for a decent length of time without tiring)
So I'll see how that goes for me, I'm just going to swim and see how far I get!!

How is the weather where you are? What do you do when working out to keep cool on a hot day?

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Another half a mile banked

As the title suggests I only swam half a mile last night but I'm not too down on it really.

The pool was full again and the lanes were being used for swimming lessons which meant I was in the main part of the pool dodging kids with inflatable balls again.

Also my muscles were killing me last night - obviously I started out the week a wee bit too enthusiastically and I'm paying for it now! So I used last night to stretch my muscles using the water as a good buoyancy aid and to give my body some support.

Half a mile took me 22 minutes which is a slow one but it was meant to be - I did most of it in breaststroke and wasn't trying to beat any of my times I'm just glad I forced myself into the pool for a start especially when I was feeling as tired and achy as I was yesterday!!

This morning I'm still very achy and tired, I couldn't sleep again last night so work is going to be hard today and the gym tonight even harder.

Like I said though I'm not going to be too hard on myself at all - the main thing is I drove to the pool, I got in and I swam which is exactly what I need to be doing right now (four weeks on Friday until the big swim!!!)

I have my session at the gym with Tom tonight and although I would like to go swimming again like I did on Monday night but I have a flat viewing so I'm not going to be able to go - I think there are swimming lessons on again tonight anyways so I'd be fighting the masses again so I'm not too disappointed. I'm still working out with Tom which will keep me moving and help get my fitness up to where I want it to be.

Is there anything you do to get rid of muscle aches?
What's your favourite way to unwind after a hard training session?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The aches and pains

My week seems to have started off well - I finished work for the day yesterday and headed to the gym for my session with Tom.
Needless to say my session was brutal, Tom made me do circuits for the first half hour and then he got me running on the treadmill. I got new running trainers for my birthday and I was wearing them so it was nice to give them a try for the first time. I managed to run for twenty minutes alternating between a light jog and a harder run - I still averaged a 13 minute mile which isn't the best but it seems my broken calf isn't going to give me anymore problems, I never felt a thing from it throughout the whole run!
After I finished with the gym I headed to the pool to make up for not going at the weekend. It was great actually - for the first time I've been going to this pool there weren't any classes on in the lanes so I didn't have to swim around people. The lane I got in only had one other swimmer in it and they seemed to be swimming at a similar pace to me which worked well because as I was travelling up one side of the lane he was coming down the other side so we never got in each others way. After the gym the swim was also calming so I just got my head down and swam and it showed on my times - I managed 60 lengths in 30mins which is a brilliant time for me.
All in all a good workout - if I were to have a little grumble it would be that I got chucked out of the laned area before I managed to finish a mile (64 laps - I know only four to go!!) for some aqua aerobics class but my time for 60 laps was so good for me that it really didn't bother me. I was also pleased with myself that I'd actually gone to the pool after my training session so I can handle losing 4 laps.

Today I'm paying for my enthusiasm last night, nothing too bad just the usual muscle ache after working hard - its a good feeling though.

I also lost a pound today since last Tuesday - I gained a few pounds a few weeks ago for some unknown reason and I'm still not back down to the lowest weight I've been but I'm now only a pound off. Things seem to be moving in the right direction again so I'm a happy bunny today, tired but happy.

Swimming again tonight lets see how things are after last night

Hannah

Monday, May 21, 2012

Naughty Naughty

I've not been the best at my diet recently - firstly there was my Birthday where Paul took me out for dinner and I also ate birthday cake and then after dance class on the Friday Paul and I halved a pizza (755 calories for a half - I made sure I counted that in my calorie counter)
Then after that things got a bit hazy - not in what I ate, I know exactly what I have eaten, I just haven't been counting it :-S
I'll admit I was kidding myself about what I've been eating but I'm going to try not to let it get me down and get back on track today. On the other hand I had a great weekend with friends and I'm not going to let anything put a dampener on that either.
Paul's uni friend Matt is moving back to America soon and Paul and Matt have an unhealthy obsession with milkshake and are constantly trying to find the best one in the UK and seeing as Matt is heading away soon, the deadline to find the hallowed milkshake was getting pretty near.
There is a place on a motorway that makes amazing milkshakes, its only a wee diner but well worth a visit so that's what we did on Saturday, we drove to the diner and got burgers and milkshake, a fitting Au revoir to Matt I think. I had the chocolate peanut butter milkshake and don't regret a single mouthful. I was going to take a picture of the shakes and food but seeing as this is meant to be a fitness / diet journal I didn't think me being a greedy pig would be a good advertisement.
Sunday was slightly better, Paul and I went into town to do a bit of shopping and then went home to make an early dinner, fajitas not too bad on the calories and spicy and tasty, just what I like.
When I weighed myself this morning I haven't put any weight on, I haven't lost any either but I'm pretty pleased with being able to do what I've done for my birthday and keep my weight in check.
My next cause for concern is my training for my swim - I should have gone swimming at the weekend but in all honesty I didn't want to and I know that if I'd forced myself to go I'd have either got annoyed with myself or not done as much as I should have done so although I'm disappointed with myself, I'm not too angry. I made those decisions and stand by them.
I have four weeks until my swim and it just means I need to up the anti on my training - its strange how since I've lost weight I've found lots of sports I enjoy doing, running being the main one and I'm surprised at how much I dislike swimming now but I'm doing this swim for charity and so I'm going to try my best to get round in a reasonable time.
So its back on the diet today - salad for lunch, porridge for breakfast and back at the gym tonight for another training session in the gym.
On the plus side, I ordered lots of lovely new gym clothes to wear because the others were literally falling down when I ran! So tonight I will be sporting some of my new things plus my new running trainers my brother and his fiance bought me for my birthday - I'm allowed a small girly moment to be excited about a new outfit for the gym aren't I?

Calories eaten so far today: 618
Predicted Exercise today: 1 hour training session: 692 calories

How was your weekend?
How do you get back from a bad couple of days?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Oh and...

Today is also my birthday!!!
Happy Birthday to me :-D

I'm now 27 and three stone lighter than I was on my birthday last year - now that's something to celebrate!!

Happy Birthday to anyone out there who shares their birthday with me

Hannah x

Keep on Swimming

After my weekend with my parents I knew I'd have to hit the gym hard to try and make my birthday celebrations great without having too much of an impact on my weight.
However with all the carbs I'd eaten I was feeling a bit bloated and low in energy so even though I was up for the gym with Tom I knew I wasn't going to be my usual perky self.
Tom noticed too but I managed to power through a session and was pleased with myself with what I managed.
I also had a good session on the treadmill - I was only on there for 10 minutes but I managed a 10 minute mile without my calf giving me any jip which is always a good thing.
On the bad side I tried to use my Garmin and foot pod for the run and it seemed to work but then being the Muppet I am I managed to delete my entry!! :-( Its gonna take me a while to get the hang of it - and I'm supposed to be an engineer!!

Last night I went for a swim. Check me out upping the exercise on my birthday week!!
To be quite honest it was horrendous - last time I went I got thrown out of the lanes to make way for a swimming lesson so I decided to wait until later in the evening to go this time to see if that worked... It didn't. 
This time instead of having two lanes in the pool, there were three meaning that the free space on the other side was smaller and the three lanes were taken up by the local triathlon team.
Now that's fair enough. They're entitled to use the pool but two of the lanes only had two people in it!!! I mean really!! Couldn't they have shuffled into one lane and either given the general public one lane to swim in or take that lane away all together?
So anyways, I was left battling to swim around other people in the main part of the pool and again I don't understand people. 
I was there swimming laps right next to the lane ropes, i.e. trying to keep out of the way of others, I'd been there swimming for about 20 minutes and then a woman decided to get in the pool and just stand leaning against the side right where I'd been swimming!! I'll never understand people who get in a pool to stand about - personally I couldn't be bothered getting so wet just to stand about!! Don't get me wrong, I go to the pool and mess about - I'm not one of those who think the pool is just for swimming lengths, i understand it's for enjoyment too but please people if someone is obviously working out - please don't get in their way!!
So anyway, I was battling with people getting in my way and wanted to get out several times due to frustration but I figured its always going to be like this and I really need to get my ass in gear for this swim in June so I persevered and swam a mile.
I did it in 44 minutes exactly which considering how many times I had to stop and / or weave around people.
On Thursday I'm going to swim 1.5 miles and then at the weekend I'm going to aim for 3 miles but would be happy if I only did 2 miles. But in short my swimming is going well, my mile was frustrating because of the people in the pool but the actual swim felt good.
I once again tried to use my Garmin for the pool - I know it has a swim setting on it, its one of the reasons I picked this particular model, but could I find it last night in the changing rooms? Could I hell!! So I just tracked a time instead but I'm going to read through my instructions again today and see if I can work out how to do splits for my laps and also a calorie count too.

Tonight I'm back in the gym with Tom for a massive session before my dinner out with Paul

I hope everyones week is going well - halfway to the weekend :-D
How is everyone else's training going? Is there anything you get frustrated with?

Hannah x

Monday, May 14, 2012

Celebrations have started

Sorry for not being around this weekend - I was out and about for most of it because my parents were up visiting. 
They have taken a weeks holiday in Scotland, one reason being because they got a very good deal on a hotel up here (I live with a flatmate up here and don't have the room to house my parents when they visit which means that their visits are few and far between) and its my birthday on Wednesday so they were trying to catch up with me as near to that as possible.
Paul and I met up with them on both Saturday and Sunday this weekend to try and pack in as much quality time with the rentals before I needed to go back to work and they have to head back down south.
On Saturday Paul and I drove over to where my Mum and Dad were staying, went out for some lunch and then took a ride on a steam boat on Loch Katrine which was nice but freezing! 
The boat has a tent like roof but was open all the way around the sides so you could get a good view of everything but that meant that it was very cold as the boat travelled across the Loch!! The air falling from the Scottish mountains surrounding the Loch wasn't exactly the warmest!
It was very interesting though, the guide told us things about the area that I didn't know.
Paul and my Dad were cheeky and went and stood near the engine house under the pretence of seeing how the boat was working, it was only after we got off the boat that Paul and my Dad told me and my Mum that next to the engine house was really nice and warm! 
My Dad's excuse for not telling us this fact was that if he had 'he'd have had to move out of the way for us!!' Cheeky men hey!!
On Saturday night my Mum and Dad took us out for a lovely dinner for my birthday because they aren't going to be here on Wednesday. 
Needless to say I ate desert and my diet went out of the window for the weekend. Its probably going to go out of the window on Wednesday too because Paul is taking me out for dinner as well but I'm going to try and counteract this with extra hard exercise sessions and my birthday only comes around once a year. 
I've got my training session with Tom tonight and Wednesday and I'm going to go swimming tomorrow night and Thursday and twice again at the weekend too so fingers crossed I manage to have a good birthday whilst also keeping my weight in check. 
If this doesn't happen I'm going to try and not get too disheartened and I'll just make sure I work extra hard in the coming weeks to get rid of the pounds I've put on.
On Friday I went and did something I've wanted to do for years but when I was overweight I never had the confidence. 
I went to a dance class, street dance to be exact. 
Now you can laugh all you want and believe me I laughed at myself too because I'm really not the most coordinated person in the world but secretly I've always wanted to be able to dance. Also, Tom is leaving my gym in a few weeks so I won't get my dose of two heart attack sessions a week like I have been getting recently and I'm concerned that my weight loss will suffer once he's gone. 
So I looked up dance classes and found a really good value one only a twenty minute walk from my flat and bit the bullet on Friday and went and I really enjoyed myself. 
I wasn't perfect by any means but it was only my first week and I certainly got a good and different workout from it so I think I'm going to continue with it and see how long I enjoy it for. 
That reminds me, I must book into the next class before it fills up!
So that was my weekend full of food, dancing and family - a pretty good one if I do say so myself and I've still got a nice mid week treat to look forward to, not to mention the size able bag of presents my parents dropped off for me from them and my brother and his fiance. Fingers crossed the week continues to be this good!! It's not a bad way of softening the blow of becoming 27 hey!!

How was your weekend? Any special dates coming up in your calendar? How do you deal with dinners out versus weight loss?

Hannah x

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Still aching but working hard

Last night at the gym wasn't as bad as I thought it might be.
Tom had me working hard but as soon as I got going my thighs seemed to loosen up a bit and they didn't hurt nearly as much as I thought they would.
I had a minor upset in the form of some air freshener which I'm quite sensitive, borderline allergic, to and the guy at the gym decided to go around spraying it all over the place right at the start of my workout! This led to me getting very wheezy and an itchy face which concerned me slightly but I worked through it and it settled down - I took an antihistamine when I got home too for good measure.

On another note - I had a play with my Garmin watch last night and I think I've figured most of it out and input all my settings in. Can't wait to actually try it out!!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Aches and Pains

Today I'm aching all over.
It started on Monday after the bike ride on the Sunday and then on Monday night I have my training session with Tom and after taking a week off last week because of my cold it hit me hard. 
I think Tom worked me hard too. 

He started me off with some boxing and high knees at a fast pace, I can't count how many times he says 'harder' and I'm thinking 'I was punching as hard as I could before!!' 
After that we worked on my abs (or abs that will magically appear when I've lost all the weight I want to) with a medicine ball. 
This basically involved more sit ups than I'd like to mention while holding on to a 6 pound ball. 
I also worked on my lower abs by gripping the ball between my knees, lying on my back and bringing my knees up to my chest - that one was harder than it looked when Tom demonstrated it to me!
After that I did some squats with the medicine ball which when my thighs were already hurting from the bike ride the day before absolutely killed! 
I should already have known that Tom wouldn't show any mercy, I'm talking about the guy who when I'd run so hard I gave myself a nose bleed let me stop to clean myself up and then said we'll just work on abs and a bit of boxing instead!! I would have assumed a nose bleed would spell the end of the session but obviously not - so a bike ride in my own leisure time won't affect Tom's opinion on my training at all - I think he just thinks of it as homework!
So after my legs were shaking from the amount of squats Tom then said I was going on the treadmill which didn't sound great to me because of the state of my legs but I'm nothing if not a tryer. 
So I got on the treadmill prepared for a disappointing run. 
I was pleasantly surprised with myself though, I managed to run for two sets of five minutes at a fairly decent pace, I think it was heading for an 11 minute mile although I'm still not sure of the settings on the treadmill at the gym.
Now that might not seem like much but it's the longest time I've been able to run for since tearing my calf without it seizing up. I think I might just have turned a corner with it and if I make sure I stretch it well before training, I'm hoping my calf is all better. 
It's great because I was up to between twenty and thirty minutes running without stopping at a 10 minute mile pace so I'm hoping that this is the start of getting back to that standard.
After training dinner consisted of chicken and salad, my main staple of food at the moment which can get a bit boring at times but keeping away from carbs on an evening seems to really work for me in the weight loss department so if it ain't broke don't fix it!

Tuesday was a bit of a disappointing day to be honest, I'd put in an offer on a flat which had been accepted but then I got some survey results back and it turns out that the property isn't in as good shape as I was originally led to believe. A lot of it is unknown too until a specialist could open up walls and see what extent the damage is so after a lot of thinking I have decided to walk away from the deal - I simply don't have the time to try and deal with those kinds of problems, I work too long hours and it could end up being a money pit too. 
So that was a bit of a downer but I'm glad it was caught before I bought the place and was left to deal with it all!!
After work I went to the pool - my swim is looming ever closer and I really need to get the lengths under my belt - two miles is a long way to swim in the pool but in open water it's so much harder. 
I did the one mile version about three years ago and I'm about three stone lighter and a lot fitter than I was then so I'm sure I can get round the two mile course but swimming is something you have build up for. 
The gym will help me with strength and stamina but the only way to be sure that I can swim the distance is to ermmm... swim the distance.
I was all prepared to see how fast I could do a mile, I'm going to build up to four miles in the pool to be sure I have enough stamina to finish the two miles in open water but I haven't been swimming for such a long time that I knew I'd have to build my swimming back up again.
However, I got in the pool and got half a mile under my belt in 25 minutes, which I was quite happy with, but then I was asked to leave the laned section of the pool because there were swimming lessons starting. 
The other section of the pool was pretty full and there was a group of kids playing with a big inflatable ball in there - I have no problems with that but I knew I'd get annoyed having to dodge around people so I decided to bank my half mile and get out.
Not the result I was wanting but I'll get there - I'm going to have a look at when there are swimming lessons at my pool so that I can avoid them next time.
Dinner was a veggie burger and salad, I have some nice lean pork chops that I was going to have but they are in the freezer and I totally forgot to take one out to defrost and you can cook the veggie burger from frozen hence my choice.

Tonight is my session with Tom again which I'm dreading it considering the state of my thighs today so I'll let you know how that goes tomorrow!!

Also, I got a new toy in the post last night!! Its a Garmin Forerunner 310XT i.e. a clever watch

I've heard good things about these Garmin watches from other blogs I read and I have been becoming increasingly more frustrated with not being able to track things properly and being an engineer I love my gadgets!! 
These watches aren't cheap though so I decided to wait until I got into a proper routine with my training so that I could justify to myself spending that amount of money and I think I'm at that stage now. The mere fact that I actually enjoy training tells me that I'll keep going.
The Forerunner 310XT is the waterproof version of the Garmin range so I figured I could use it for my swim training as well as my running. 
I also bought the footpod to sync with it so that I can use it when I'm in the gym on the treadmill too.
I have no idea how to use it at the moment but I'm hoping it'll be able to help me track my pace both in my swimming and running and help me to improve - I always get a bit of a boost when I know all my hard work is getting me somewhere!
Any advice on using my new snazzy piece of kit?

Anyway, that's enough from me, 
Have a good day
H x

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Sunday Cycling

So...
First proper post here.
On Sunday my boyfriend Paul and I decided to to go Loch Katrine, hire bikes and cycle round the Loch. There is some beautiful scenery just a short drive away from Glasgow and I'm glad the weather is turning so that I can get outside more and appreciate it.
It felt so good to be out and doing something active - I had been ill with a cold last week and so my training sessions at the gym stopped and I surrounded myself with tissues. Luckily I think its over for me and I can get back into my training for my swim, I've just over six weeks to go so I'm hoping I don't get ill again to put me back! I also tore a tendon in my left calf about two months ago so had to keep off it for six weeks or so, doing nothing more than some physio to aid recovery so I'd not been able to run or do much else with my legs which was frustrating.
But my leg seems to have recovered or is at least on the way so my trainer Tom has let me go back on the treadmill for short periods which makes me happy. I know, I actually said that, you weren't imagining it!! But even Tom said he'd never seen a bigger smile on someones face when they were told they were going on the treadmill as part of one of our sessions!! I even surprise myself sometimes these days!!
So anyway, I figured cycling would be a good way to exercise and test out my calf at the same time.
The cycle around the Loch is a good one, not too hilly for me to die early on but with enough hills to test you and then on the other side, enjoy the downhills and a chance to relax the legs for a little bit.
As you can see from the pictures too, the view is fantastic so your legs don't seem to bother you as much.
That little white speck is the Loch Katrine ferry which travels from the Trossachs Pier to the Stronachlachar pier which are 12.5 miles apart, a handy thing to know if you've cycled from one pier to another and your legs have given up!!
This photo looks moody and I would say typically Scottish but it was actually really nice weather for cycling, not too sunny to get too hot and only a wee bit of drizzle in places but not enough to make you wet and grumpy.
We even saw some Highland Cows

And this one isn't very clear but they were baby Highland Cows there too!
And this was my mode of transport for the afternoon
Technically this was Paul's bike but I thought his looked better leaning against the rock than mine that I'd unceremoniously dumped on the grass!! We had rented them anyway so they were practically identical.
We only rented the bikes for four hours and were conscious of the fact that we had to get back so we guessed that we were only a couple of miles away from the other pier when we set off to go back again so I'm going to guess that we rode 20 miles in total. For me who hasn't ridden for just under a year and for years before that one weekend, I was quite pleased with myself. I'm not sure of my pace and how comparable it is but like I said the trip was hilly and if nothing else was a lovely way to spend a sunny Scottish afternoon doing something outside and a bit different.

Monday, May 7, 2012

About Me

Hi my name is Hannah, I'm 26 and an Engineer living in Glasgow, Scotland.

I have been battling with my weight for years and last October something clicked and I realised I had to do something about it. I joined Weight Watchers and started going to the gym. I have a trainer called Tom who is awesome and up until now I've lost just under three stone which I'm very proud of.
I still want to lose another stone and a half which I'm determined to do but the biggest change I've seen in me is my love for exercise - I never thought I'd say it but I love being active and on the go. I've started running and swimming and would, at some point, like to take part in triathlons.
I've never been a big runner and have surprised myself by being able to run for longer than five minutes and most of all I actually enjoy it!
I've also signed up to swim two miles across a lake in England in a few weeks which I'm trying to train hard for in the pool to try and do it in 1.5 hours.
This has also been a lifestyle choice for me - I love my food, especially cake, and am not prepared to sacrifice that so I know I'm going to have to train hard to be able to eat what I want.

So... That's me and this is my diary and journey on the quest to stop being the fat girl and have my cake and stay thin!

Please feel free to comment / ask me questions

Thanks for stopping by