Sunday, November 25th, 2012
I’m on the record as being generally ‘meh’ about Yoga. Pilates, love it. Yoga? Meh. I tried it a couple of times and it just didn’t take. It was too slow, not challenging enough, the instructors were uninspiring – for whatever reason, I didn’t find the right fit. I plowed on with various other exercise, did lots of Pilates and plenty of stretching at home. But every time I mentioned my blase attitude towards Yoga, Yoga fanatics would tell me Bikram would turn it all around for me. I was skeptical. All that slow movement and breathing coupled with an intensely hot room you say? Not exactly appealing. Nonetheless, I decided to give it a go.
Thursday, October 4th, 2012
Any of you who follow this here blog will know that I’ve been on quite the fitness journey over the past couple of years. This has led to me running seven half marathons (with three more coming up this month), a full marathon, getting into boxing and pretty much throwing myself into any other fitness challenge that comes my way. Because of the role fitness has taken in my life, I started my Spikes and Heels website, dedicated to fitness for badass woman.
I get so many questions here, on Twitter and in real life about running and general fitness-related stuff from how to stay motivated to what kit to wear that I’ve decided to start doing some YouTube vids to answer some of them. The series will be called Fit For Life. My aim is simply to get more women to embrace fitness as part of their lifestyle and stop being scared of it.
So, my first video will be about running. What do you want to know? You can ask me anything – there are no stupid questions. If you’ve been looking to start running and are afraid to go into a running shop to find out the basics, just ask me.
Leave your questions in the comments section below and I will make a video addressing them ASAPtually.
So, ask away!
Subscribe to my YouTube channel here
Tuesday, September 25th, 2012
Yesterday, Nike posted a link to this site, Designed to Move, and as I scrolled through it, my jaw hit the floor (take a moment to check it out for yourself so you can see where I’m coming from). Here is all the research needed, slapping us in the face with stats, about the real cost of inactivity. We have stopped moving. A couple of generations ago, movement and exercise were a part of daily life, now we have gadgets and machines that do all the moving for us so we’ve become sedentary, inactive and basically, lazy. Designed to Move details the cost of this, physically, emotionally and economically, if this downward trend is to continue. When I read stats about how inactive kids have become and what that’ll mean for their futures, it hurts my heart. So allow me to reiterate what Designed to Move says, but in not quite such a delicate way: GET OFF YOUR ASS!
Tuesday, May 29th, 2012
Olympics mania is well and truly upon us. Try to avoid it if you wish, but it’ll be hard what with the barrage of advertising and the stressing about whether you’ll have to barricade yourself in your house for a couple of weeks/go on holiday while its on. It’s probably no secret that as a runner, I’m very excited about it all. I can’t wait to see all these world class athletes battle it out (while trying to remain not bitter about the fact that I didn’t get tickets to anything). I’m loving all the emphasis on sport and getting active because heck, as a pretty unhealthy country, that’s what we need. So I’m all excited, then all of a sudden, some dopey UK Athletics official decides to drop a clanger last week when he declared that Jessica Ennis is fat. H’excuse me?!
Friday, March 9th, 2012
I came across the picture on the left recently, of me after I finished my first half marathon in October 2010. That look on my face is my ‘I can’t quite believe I just did that’ face. The pic on the right is from a shoot I did for Nike a couple of weeks ago. I put the two shots side by side and it was quite literally right there in front of me how far I’ve come. Running has been the propeller component that kick started this particular journey in my life, but it’s become about so much more than the running.
Thursday, June 16th, 2011
Last year, I went from couch potato to crossing the finish line of a half marathon in four months. I noticed some pretty dramatic changes. Sure, I lost some weight and was generally much fitter, but I was also much happier, more focused and very determined – and it was spilling over into every aspect of my life. I just felt great. I wanted everyone to have that feeling.
I got the first Team Bangs on the Run together and we ran the Paris Half Marathon. Interest in what we were doing grew. I just got the Second Team Bangs on the Run team together, ready to start training for Run to the Beat in September and it has become somewhat of a personal mission of mine to get more women to run. Check out my hopes, goals and dreams for a Team Bangs on the Run Nation in the manifesto below.
Thursday, October 1st, 2009
My mother and I started doing Pilates together a few years ago. While I was off gaining North America weight, my mum got really good at it. Now she’s like Catwoman and I can barely touch my toes. Now that I’m home, we decided to start going to classes together again and last week was our first one.
Our teacher is a lovely, softly spoken girl named Abby. She gently guided us through the exercises. Whenever I do Pilates, I’m surprised that breathing, which I don’t tend to have trouble with on a day-to-day basis, suddenly becomes so hard. There’s a whole technique involved and it’s guaranteed that at some points in the class I’ve forgotten to breathe altogether.
Abby explains the exercises really well and uses a variety of colourful metaphors to help you understand. Here’s some of the best:
- Imagine you have a pint glass full of water on each leg
- Imagine you’re balancing a glass of champagne on your belly button
- Imagine your hips are car headlights
- Imagine there’s a wall behind you
- Imagine your head is a cannonball
- Imagine you’re trying to stop going to the toilet
- Imagine there’s a head of a nail against your belly
- Imagine you’re spilling water into your belly button.
I was just hoping my cannonball didn’t crash through the wall and my car headlights didn’t go off, causing me to spill all that champagne into my belly.
By the end of it, I was a knot of random, lifeless limbs in the corner of the room. But you know what they say, practice makes perfect and all that. Hopefully this week’s class I’ll remember to breathe and the exercises will seem a little easier – but if nothing else, I’m bound to learn some good metaphors.