July Training Recap

July Training Recap - A Pretty Place to Play

July you have been epic! There've been travels and trails and sunshine and races and all of the good stuff. I don't really know where to begin recapping it, but I do know that I feel immensely grateful for everything I've experienced and how awesome training feels right now.

July Training Recap - A Pretty Place To Play

The first week of July was spent out in Menorca on holiday. A proper holiday. Time when I could do whatever I wanted, or nothing at all. I've not stopped since we went to India in January and it was great to have some time to hang out with Mike and take a breather. While we were away I discovered that I really love swimming! I swam every day either in the pool or out in the sea, exploring some of the island's beautiful bays, and I loved how strong spending time in the water made me feel.

July Training Recap - A Pretty Place to Play

Exploration really sums up my runs this week. In Menorca I spent some time exploring the Cami de Cavalls, a path that stretches along the entire coast of the island and is amazing if you fancy a bit of trail running! The 10km stretch I did was tough, but I loved the challenge of running on a whole host of different terrain. I even made a little video of my adventures but I've been terrible at editing, I promise it'll be up soon! 

July Training Recap - A Pretty Place to Play

Love Trails was another opportunity to explore. This time we got to play outside on the beautiful Gower Peninsula in South Wales. It was a lot of fun heading out with the Mikkeller Running Club to run up some hills and drink some beer, and it's defiantly inspired me to check out their monthly runs from Brew Dog Clapham. The whole weekend was immense, Mike discovered a love for trail on the basis that every run seemed to end with a beer and even got competitive in the legendary Beer Mile Relay. I don't think I've seen him so in his element in a long time! We'll definitely be back next year.

July Training Recap - A Pretty Place to Play

After months of structured runs and illness it's been really nice to spend time running for fun. Hitting ParkRun with Backpackers, catching up with friends on a run around London, taking part in the Epic London Relay, things I might've passed on at other times in my training cycle. It felt good, and it was nice to mix things up. 

July Training Recap - A Pretty Place to Play

Strength training continues to be a joy. I love every moment of it. Yes it's hard, but it's also an amazing learning opportunity. How often do we really try and understand our physical weaknesses and then work on them? Yes we might try to run faster, or longer, but what about strengthening your lower back so you can hold your form? The whole process is fascinating and I love feeling the changes to my body. Getting stronger is awesome. 

July you've been fun, you've taught me lots, you've got me excited for the future. August you're going to take all of that and make me a bad ass. 

How's your training been this month? 

June Training Recap

June Training Recap - A Pretty Place To Play

Erm how is it the end of June already?! This month has been EPIC. Marathon training is well under way, there’ve been some fun races and I got to go explore some amazing new places. The straight up joy I’m feeling about life right now is something else, I just can’t describe it. However, I can recap what I’ve been up to for the last month!

June Training Recap - A Pretty Place To Play

So, I am all signed up for Bournemouth Marathon after deciding to push back the ultra. There’s a few reasons I made this choice, but ultimately it feels right. I’m super excited to run Bournemouth, it’s a special place to me, and after the 10km last year I know I’ll have a blast running along the coast. Training is, once again, in the hands of Chevy Rough, and we are, once again, taking the Power, Speed, Endurance approach. The big element missing from my last training cycle was strength training. I was going through a really stressful period and I don’t think I could have handled more than running, but now life is a better place I am all about complementing my running with lifting heavy stuff! Most of this month’s training has been focused on exactly that, building my strength and making sure my form in the gym is spot on. I’m seeing progress and I’m loving every moment of it, nothing makes you feel like more of a bad ass than lifting heavy things!

Running has really taken second place this month, at least in terms of my training plan. However, that means I’ve been able to get a few fun races in, hit Park Run with my crew and generally have a bit of fun, especially on the trails of Ibiza! You can read about The Lady Garden 5k here,  and my Grachtenloop 10k race report will be up next week! I also loved that I got to mix things up with some hiking in the French Alps - I always forget how much I love hiking, and it was awesome to go and climb some big hills! It’s pretty nice to be able to freestyle for a bit, especially after months of my running being really structure and then being out due to illness, although I am looking forward to getting in to the real meat of marathon training. Albeit in the heat. Ouch. It’s also nice to see a bit of progress in my running, even though I’ve not been focused on it. My times are down and I feel like I’m keeping my form more consistently when I run, which can only be a side effect of all that strength training. 

June Training Recap - A Pretty Place To Play

The real highlight of this month has been the opportunity to forge connections with other runners. Community is what running is all about, and getting to spend time with my crew and the 361 Ambassadors has been really good for me. I feel energised, excited and like nothing can stop me. It’s pretty special. It’s hard to generate energy to be creative and keep going on your own, and I am mega lucky to have a whole tribe of amazing people who’ve got my back. 

So, what does next month have in store? I reckon July will be all about trail running somehow, oh and whatever coach has up his sleeve! 

What did your training look like this month? 

*images: Anna Rachel Photography, 361 Degrees and Natasha Wynn*