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Signing back in

We both have been very quiet the last few months. Not intentionally but sometimes things don’t quite go to plan. But that one is a very pleasant surprise.

Last August we’ve found out that we were pregnant! Wow! We talked a lot about family planning and trying for some time but it just didn’t want to happen. I was training like mad for my series of Half Marathons in July, September and October. Plus taking up an acting up role, I was stressed out. So I put it all down to rigorous training, high demanding job and a very, very  hot summer. I ignored all the signals, completed Frome Half Marathon at the very early stage of my pregnancy in extremely hot conditions (well extremely hot for UK I would say). I took my PB that day. Felt great! Couldn’t’ wait for next one. Plus I became hungry for full Marathon. And then BOOM!

It took 3 pregnancy tests to convince me that I was pregnant! Plus first visit to midwife and couple more weeks after that. Probably when we had our first scan it hit me hard. Seeing teeny tiny human shape inside you and the heartbeat, growing, breathing moving, was very emotional and amazing moment for both of us!

Now we are 2 weeks until due date. Our emotions are mixed. Super excited, terrified, happy and absolutely cannot wait to meet our little one.

Over the next few weeks (too ambitious of me?!) I will capture and share with you my pregnancy journey. How things went? My training schedule, nutrition, emotional roller-coaster and realisation that that we will be a family! I will be a mum! All I can say now is that my priorities have changed, my mind adapted, I gained pretty healthy weight and I CANNOT wait to be able to sleep on my back and lie on my stomach again!

Happy reading!

Irina

Happy, Healthy and Huge!

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Posted by on 5 April, 2014 in Health & Wellbeing

 

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August Mileage

August was a varied month for Team PI, Irina ran a LOT of mileage again, preparing for the Bristol Half on 15th September, and Paul had his first two swims in a wetsuit, first in the sea of South Devon and then at our local lake Triathlon Training Centre (I’ll blog about that after my next visit).

Meanwhile it is a testing time physically, mentally and emotionally with both of our jobs reaching their [very intense!] busiest time of the year in the next week or two. We’ve been trying to keep the training up (which is also a stress reliever and source of enjoyment), and been carefully managing our energy levels through sensible nutrition.

Paul also went on a two day mountain navigation course in Shropshire at the Long Mynd, with Marshall Cale of Love The Hills, which was fantastic and I’ll need to get out and practise soon to solidify those new skills! Hoping to use them to do some camping/hiking and solo hikes next year.

Paul’s August Running: 17.9 Miles
Paul’s August Cycling: 49.9 Miles
Paul’s August Swimming: 1.7 Miles
Paul’s August Hiking: 16 Miles

Irina’s August Running: 84.4 Miles!!

Irina is penciled in for the 25th Bristol Half Marathon on the 15th, unfortunately Paul has to work that day! However, Paul is hoping to find a suitable Sprint distance Triathlon to fit into the busy next month, watch this space…

Paul.

 
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Posted by on 1 September, 2013 in Mileage & Stats, Running

 

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July Mileage

July was an interesting month for us, both started new jobs and I saw the end of my old 12 hour shift pattern which included regular nights. These were definitely having a negative impact on my training goals, and since the change to good old Mon-Fri 9-5 working I have been able to significantly increase my strength and conditioning training, which I’m very happy about! 😀
I’m working on some way to collate those workouts and present data on how much both of us do aside from running, cycling and swimming (as much to keep for our own records as to share with you!).

Irina ran the very hilly and hot Frome Half Marathon this month and posted a very impressive time of 1:57! Her mileage last month with the training for that is seriously impressive!! Her dreams of running a marathon must surely be set to come true next year…

Paul’s July Running: 26.5 Miles
Paul’s July Cycling: 77.5 Miles
Paul’s July Swimming: 4 Miles

Irina’s July Running: 85.3 Miles!!
Irina’s July Cycling: 7.8 Miles

We’re off camping for a long weekend this weekend, where I hope to do some sea swimming in my new (and first ever) Triathlon wetsuit. Can’t wait to experience the major difference in swimming in a wetsuit having never done this before… I’m also doing a basic Mountain Leading Navigation Course in August, which will hopefully pave the way (pun intended! ;)) for some solo hiking/camping expeditions and more exciting hikes for TeamPI in the future.

Here’s to new jobs, more training and seeing better results! Bring on August… 8)

Paul.

 

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The Frome Half Marathon 2013

Yesterday I ran the Frome Half Marathon. It was amazing! Superb organisation, marshals, spectators, water station, water sponges (more later in the blog). And the route! What an scenic route! I loved every minute of it (apart from the hill after 11th mile! Ouchy!). Thank you Frome! I will certainly be back next year! (with better tactic for the hill after 11th mile!)

As I had to drop out of the Bath Half Marathon earlier this year due to a injury, I was desperate to find a Half Marathon close to Bristol. I came across Frome HM, which sounded well what shall I say… lovely. (I have to admit I didn’t read the full details like hilly course!). I wasn’t much concerned about the fact that we would actually have a summer and a heat wave. My main concern was torrential rain! But who would have thought that we would get a heat wave!?! Yes, it was hot! Very hot!

The organiser did a amazing job and had a real sense of duty of care! So they put up extra water stations for the Half Marathon runners. Thank you for that! We needed it, even if just pouring the water over yourself. Plus water sponges! When I saw the sign I asked myself ( a loud) what that might be? And then I saw two girls with a big pile of sponges and huge bucket full of water, I had a big smile! Yes, of course, amazing idea! It was cool and refreshing and gives you that extra push for few miles.

The spectators! What a crowd! Very supportive, very uplifting! And very generous. Some had their garden hoses out and offered a very welcome cooling down spray! Plus loads of kids with their water pistols, and spray-bottles! But my favorite was the drummer! You don’t expect to hear or see a full size drum kit in the middle of country side! But don’t mess with Frome crowd! They had it! So a Big Thank YOU!

Oh the the route! I’ve seen big mansions, farms, beautiful country houses, springs, woodlands, country cottages and so much more! I constantly was making comments (a loud). Sorry to fellow runners! I was trying to keep the spirits up! 🙂

My preparation was optimal. Training went well, I even run 12 miles on a hot-ish day, tapering was tough but I pulled it through, hydration and fuel before the event excellent. I was ready! Excited and couldn’t wait to go. I kept a close eye on the weather forecast and the temperature were getting higher. Very unusual phenomenon during British summer. So my tactic was simple, time doesn’t matter, just keep going, watch energy levels, hydration, don’t push too hard, just make sure you cross the finish line! But as many of us runners know, once you are racing, you are racing! Even if you only racing for your own PB. And I did! 1:57:16! Get in! Couldn’t ask for better time considering the heat.

I can say that I am fully recovered from my injury and can attack the 3 Half Marathons in September/October this year! Happy all I can say!

Irina

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June Mileage

Well June has been one hell of a month for TeamPI!! We went on holiday to Scotland and did lots of mountain walks including some quality scrambling and bouldering. On our return we both started in brand new jobs as well! Knackered doesn’t even describe how tired we were at the end of the month, lol!

Anyway, we still managed to get some mileage in around all this, and have measured and included our hikes from Scotland too (although not including lots of shorter days all spent on the feet and sightseeing).

These next weeks will be very trying, Paul is  moving from 12 hour day and night shift patterns back into a busy office / management role and Irina is taking on a LOT more management responsibility in her new position, so we have a new life/work/fitness balance to strike, which will no doubt be testing, but we are very determined to not let our great progress and fitness goals slip…

We firmly believe that excellent nutrition, good training plans, and realistic (but challenging) goals are the key to success, and that there is no real reason that a busy job or lifestyle should stop you! (People seem all to happy to make excuses or procrastinate their way out of their ideals). Not TeamPI! 😉

Paul & Irina’s Joint Hiking Mileage in June: 40.7

Paul’s June Running: 14 Miles
Paul’s June Cycling: 10.9 Miles
Paul’s June Swimming: 0.6 Miles

Irina’s June Running: 47.1 Miles
Irina’s June Cycling: 7.7 Miles

Due to financial constraints, Paul’s summer Triathlon plans have to take a back seat for now, but Irina is running the Frome Half Marathon in a few weeks, which looks like it will be a great new experience and a tough hilly run!

Time to ramp up that training…

Paul. 🙂

 

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Improving Running Cadence & Mechanics

Since I’ve been more interested in Triathlons in recent months, and plan on taking part in some more this year, I have been looking at ways of making my runs more efficient for that crucial final stage (along with improving my swimming & cycling technique of course!).

One of the best pieces of advice I’ve come across recently was written by Andy Bullock in a small Q&A section of the 220 Triathlon magazine. In it he was talking about the foot striking close to, or beneath your ‘centre of mass’ (COM) and also about measuring and developing your ‘cadence’.

Cadence seems to be the buzzword in running at the moment, and there is a LOT of talk about it. Most opinions seem to suggest that the ideal cadence is 180 (foot strikes per minute), however I also found some research which suggests that this number should be a minimum cadence to aim for.

Why care about this? Well, the number of times your foot hits the floor, and conversely, the amount of time you spend in the air between strides, all has an impact (literally) on your body. The slower your cadence, the more you are in the air and the harder you land on the foot. This slower turn over means there is a higher impact, which in turn could cause more injury and is a far less efficient way of running.

How to measure cadence? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on 18 March, 2013 in Injury, Recovery, Running, Triathlon

 

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