Posts Tagged ‘fitness’

Sorry its been a while since my last post. ūüė¶ just a busy boy and its hard to find time to sit down and type up a new blog. I have loads of material just not enough time to put it all into words.

One of the things I have been doing is taking up road running. I have always had a keen intrest in running. I have done a few road races in the past. I did the Lady Godiva half marathon back in 2008 and the Two Castle 10km in 2009, so its been a while since I did a road race. But now that I am feeling loads fitter than I have been in, possibly my life, I am ready for another one.

I have been finding it hard to find time to train. If its not the weather it’s other commitments that keep me off the road. I am still getting plenty of exercise in other ways, be it walking, circuit training or loads of swimming. My problem is I would much rather swim than run. So I am swimming fit and not running fit. My friends think this is an odd concept. If your fit your fit and you can do anything. When it comes to physical things this is not true at all. You have to train your body to breath differently and your muscles need to learn to move in a different way. So you might be able to walk 10km without any issues but run it that’s another story.

But mental fitness now there is an exception to the rule I feel. You can put your mind to anything. Be it running 10km or 100km. Yes you need to put in as much mental effort into your physical preparations. But your mental fitness will be just as strong if you can ace one achievement you can do any other. You need to be able to believe in yourself and remain focused on the end goal. I believe these are the two key part of the mental fitness. Your breathing and working the muscle groups of your mental fitness if you would.

I have the mental bit sorted. Hell this week I have swam over 15km (9miles ) and swimming that type of distance (2 miles of there about each day ) takes a fair bit of focus. Yes I know I could have used that time to get some road running in. But I did have the Manchester Aquatic Centre to swim in so how could I not ? Love it, great place. So many focused people training there.

So I know I can do it. No doubt that I can. Mentally I am prepped and ready to go. Physically mmmm well I know I can do 5km without too much fuss in around 30 mins. But I do need to do more running. So next week I am in a different part of the country so it will be a running week for me.

So I have a goal. Be running fit by the 9th of June to run the 10km between Warwick Castle and Kenilworth Castle.

But why ?

People have loads of reason for doing all manor of challenges. Some it’s for the glory, for others it’s the personal achievement of just saying ” I did that!” For me it’s the “I did that!”

But …….

There is always a but here.

Loads and loads of people run for a charity. It’s a great gesture to give back to something you believe in or wish to support. And I am no different on this one. I already donate loads to charity, but this time I am putting me on the line in the hope that others will be inspired to donate to my cause. So I will be running for the Terrance Higgins Trust. (THT)

Supporting THT

Supporting THT

Terrence Higgins Trust is the UK’s leading HIV and sexual health charity, providing a wide range of services to more than 100,000 people a year. The charity also campaigns and lobbies for greater political and public understanding of the personal, social and medical impact of HIV and sexual ill health. You can find out more about this charity here.

Why have I chosen THT ? I don’t have HIV but I have friends who ether have HIV or have loved ones who do in their lives. Back in 2008 I was fortunate to be part of a non profit organisation called North Star Foundation ( now called North Star Alliance ) My function within North Star was to project manage the setting up of road side wellness centres in Zimbabwe, Zambia and Namibia. Other members of the team were setting up centres in East Africa at the time. Now they are all over Africa. These wellness centres provide long haul truck drivers, sexual workers and the community they operate in a free place to go to so that they can get sex education, HIV awareness and basic health care.

North Star Alliance

North Star Alliance

However while I was on¬†assignment in Africa with North Star I could not help notice how much awareness and education there was for HIV and sexual¬†transmitted¬†infections. Quite often I felt I was in the wrong country and that I should be in the UK aiding the awareness of infections. The UK has no where near the amount of awareness that I have seen in Africa. We very seldom hear or see anything STI’s in the media here in the UK. Its quite a worry really and its for this reason I feel quite strongly that charities like THT should be supported so they can have the funding to be as affective as they possibly can be.

So please click on the Supporting Terrance Higgins Trust image to take you to my Just Giving page so you can donate towards this great charity and support me on my 10km run for them. Or you can just click here. 

You can also read about my African Adventure blog that I did while I was with North Star in southern Africa by clicking here. 

WOW its been way over 6 months since my last post!

Sorry about that but its been a bit of a mad 6 months!

All mannor of ups and downs over the past 6 months thats for sure. Not really going to share them as such, as the downs, well I wish to just put behind me and focus on 2013. The lows of 2012 were just that, lows, mega lows and well the highs were good, but somehow they were over shadowed by the lows so they are not as much of a highlight as I would have liked them to be.

I guess I can sum up 2012 as being a year of mixed emotions with new people coming into my life and people who were never really in my life being evicted from my life ones and for all. Strange how that happens but I guess its the balance of life.

So its onwards and upwards for 2013!

I have already made a start on the new me for 2013.

I have started to weed out the people in my life that do not add any substance to my life. We just do not need these sort of people in our life that drag us under and use and abuse our friendships. It takes too much effort to support those that cant take the time of day to reciprocate the love, attention and dedication to the friendship that you may put into it. My biggest problem is I am way too soft hearted and it has taken my heart being crushed in 2012 to relise this. Its taken too long for me to relise this and as a result I had a lot of weeding to do! More weeding to be done I am sure as time progresses and I realise who are the true people that matter in my life. The people that both need me and I need them. True friends.

Another big change in my life is my weight! 6 months ago I weighed 111 kg’s ( 245 lb’s / 17 ¬Ĺ st ) and as I type this I am now down to 98 kg’s ( 216 lb’s / 15.4 st ) I don’t know about you but as I type them weights they don’t look a lot on their own. But it is a 13 kg’s (28.66 lb’s / 2 st) drop in weight and it sounds loads more impressive if you¬†describe¬†it as that !

Weight Loss

Weight Loss

So why the weight loss ? Well for a number of reasons.

  1. Its not healthy for you to be over weight (BMI of over 28! ) 
  2. Was not feeling good in myself ( lacking in confidence and not having much luck on finding a partner – a low point of 2012 was my boyfriend and I splitting up but the high point of that is we are still mega close, like brothers )
  3. People were worried about my health as weight related problems run the the family

The above are just a few of the main reasons. I guess the other one and this is a bit vain to say the least is I am enjoying the feedback from people about how good I am looking! But it only¬†motivates¬†me to keep at it. The irony is I dont really see the change in me. Ok I have dropped 4 inches off my waist and had to get a new belt and new¬†trousers but I still see my self as a bloke with a belly. OK OK OK I still have like another 13 kg’s to go till I reach what is deemed to be my ideal weight. Give me 5 more months !

Motivation is a powerful thing. You just have to find the reason to be motivated and the rest will come easy. People keep telling me that what I am doing is amazing and must take a lot of effort. MMM does it ? I think the only real effort I have towards this weight loss game is getting up at 6am 3 times a week to go swimming at 7 am. Yeah thats hard work when its cold and dark outside. Diet is not that difficult when your not focusing too much on diet. I still have KFC / Nando’s / McDonalds etc when I feel like it. But I do try and keep off the bread and eat more veg and fruit. The other night I was shocked to see how many¬†calories¬†are in one of my favorit dishes. I do a fab pasta tuna dish with a cremfresh cheese sause. 1023 cal’s ! I thought it was healthy ! Its not because of the cheese and the gluten free pasta but I will still eat it and not feel guilty about it !! Just eat little and often. Portion control is paramount here. My mom has been telling me this for years and never listend. Breakfast is also mega important so is lots of water. And a routine ! Get the balance right and it all fall’s into place.

Tell the world about it all too seems to help me. Not only do the comments and feedback from my family and friends motivate me to keep on going but it also motivates others in trying to emulate me. They know the type of person I use to be and I guess they feel if I can do it with relative ease they too can.  To me that has to be the biggest buzz knowing that though my changes I am inspiring others to change too.

I am a massive fan of swimming and go 3 to 4 times a week and try to do between 60 – 70 lengths of the local 25m pool in the morning before work and sometimes after work. And I love my tech as much as I love swimming ( maybe love the tech more than swimming ) I have a great bit of kit by Garmin called the Garmin Swim it lets me track my length’s automatically and then posts them to the web so I can then share them on Facebook and or Twitter so people can see how well I am doing and comment on how mad I am. Haha! But its great motivator and I love it.

So if you need some motivation just have a look at me. I am no fitness guru or freak. Just someone who is being sensible in what I eat and do as much exercise as my body and time will permit and it seems to be working for me.

Me at over 100 kg's in 2011

Me at over 100 kg’s in 2011

Me as of the 10/10/12

Me as of the 10/10/12

You can follow my swimming progress here Рone day just one day I might do the English Channel РGarmin Connect Profile