I’ve heard that this is the point at which people begin to run out of motivation. I can relate to that. Yesterday, with a streaming cold, the last thing I felt like doing was exercising.
When I got home, I wanted to put my feet up with a hot chocolate and a great big slab of cake (why do we have so much cake in the house?) But I got straight on with a workout, while my lovely husband cooked dinner. I thought – a change is as good as a rest – and so I tried the NHS Stretch and Flex exercise plan. I went for week 2, as I’d done week 1 previously, if some time ago. As I have been active recently, and I was aware of the sorts of exercise involved, I felt confident to begin here. But obviously, the beginning is the proper place to start.
The podcast is easy to follow and includes a warm-up, some simple strength exercises, and some stretches. There are also videos online to show how the exercises should be done. There is minimal equipment involved – just things you can find in the environment around you (like a tree, a bench etc.). Although I did struggle to find a shoulder height railing in my house.
The podcast tells you that you can carry out the exercises at home, in a park; anywhere where you have room to move around. I have to say that, although I don’t mind running in public, with my face all red and my considerable flab wobbling, I would feel pretty self-conscious performing some of these exercises in the park. But maybe that’s just me.
The routine lasted about 35 minutes, and gave a gentle workout (just what I needed). I then followed this up with yet another Yoga with Adriene video. A lovely relaxing one, with lots of extended child’s pose. Again, just what I needed. And then I remembered that I’m supposed to be doing planks on non-running days, so I did some planking to finish off.
I did it!
Which type of planking would you rather be doing?
Today was a much more productive day. I wasn’t working (not through choice – gig economy – but that’s a whole different story). But at least this gave me an opportunity to have a good run, and to nurse my cold.
A colleague warned me yesterday that it’s very, very bad to run with a cold. I was a bit worried about this. I needed to run 5.5K today, as part of a 10K training plan that I’ve just begun. So I did what we all do when we are unsure, and Googled it. So, it seems that running with a cold is fine, as long as the cold is in your head and not your chest, and there is no fever. So that was fine.
I was so impressed with yesterday’s relaxing yoga, that I decided to prepare myself for my run with some more of the same. The next video in the series was a was a lot more challenging though, and stretched me in every possible sense of the word.
Then I wanted to warm up before heading out so I popped on another YouTube favourite – Leslie Sansone. I first started using Leslie Sansone’s Walk at Home videos a year ago, when I weighed nearly 20 stone, was very unfit and hadn’t even begun to entertain the idea of running. These videos got me moving around and motivated to do more. A quick 10 minute walking interval video had me nice and toasty for my run.
It was a beautiful morning for a run. I took my usual route, adding a couple of extra wiggly bits on to make up the extra distance. This also gave me some ideas for future, longer runs.
It was a good run. Possibly the best yet. I was running further than I had before, and I felt good about it. When I began to tire on the final uphill slog towards the top of the village, I reminded myself of those extra bits I’d added on; I would usually be on the final downhill stretch by now. And then I realised that I’d ran 5K, and was still going. I reached 5.5K about two minutes away from home, and then slowed to a walk. I collected the dog from home for a longer warm down walk, and then finished with some stretches. An excellent morning.
And amazingly, my cold now seems to have almost disappeared.
There are good days, and not so good days. I wonder what tomorrow will bring for #redjanuary?