Sunday, November 23, 2014

Quickie Workout #116

Remember to go for QUALITY over quantity. If you are unclear what the exercise is I am describing, please look for a video or arrange for an in-person tutorial with me.  Please consult your doctor before engaging on any fitness regime.

Don't forget to breathe! Please email me if you want tips on how to make the quickies easier or more challenging (mollie@ptmollie.com).

Warm  up- 1 min running in place; 1 min skipping (get up high!); 1 min running with high knees (up up UP!)
1 min- Alternating side squats
1 min- Hop hop squat (nice and deep)
1 min- Alternating reverse lunges
1 min- Push/Press ups against the wall
1 min- Wall sit
1 min- Bicep curls holding tins of soup or weights if you have them
30 sec each direction- Small arms circles with tins of soup in your hands
1 min- Star jumps
1 min each leg- Arabesque pulses
1 min- Low squat pulsing down low while on your toes. Keep those heels up!
1 min- Plank

Friday, November 21, 2014

Weekend Challenge- Get SMART

SMART goal setting is one of the techniques I use with my clinic.  Each letter of SMART stands for something to help you define your goal clearly, which turns helps you meet it.

Specific
Measurable
Attainable
Relevant
Time bound

For example, let's say your initial goal was to 'be fitter'.  What does that mean?  How can you know if you are fitter or not? When do you want to be fitter?

Let's work on it a bit.... being fitter might mean doing 30 sit ups in a minute. Or running for 30 minutes without walking.  Or play 5-a-side without needing a sub.  Or chasing the kids in the park without needing a break.  These are specific activities and some are measurable.

If you have time to train during the week then setting a goal of being able to run for 30 minutes without walking is attainable.  This training should be running or cardiovascular-related as that is relevant to your goal.

Finally, when do you want to do this by?  Next week might not be realistic, but perhaps by 24th December as that gives you 4 weeks to train and you can already run 10 minutes without needing to walk.  This is the time frame you have to work with.  You will know on 24th December if you met your goal if you trying running for 30 minutes and see how you do.

Of course you can have mini-goals within this larger one- such as run 3x/week increasing each session by 5 minutes.  Let me know if you have a goal but aren't sure how to make it SMART. I am happy to help.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Race Review: Run Hackney 5K

Hackney borough was keen to get people moving in 2014. With the huge interest in their half marathon, a free untimed 5k was add to the weekend lineup.  I was lucky enough to do both. Here are my thoughts on the 5K.


Registration process & fees: free race and registration was online. Easy-Peary

Location: Hackney Marshes was the start/finish for both the 5K and half marathon which was a bit of a challenge to get to if taking public transport. The park itself was big and the area was set up for the half marathon meaning there were a few food stands open and some health-related vendors. Tweets from the @runhackney account said there would be a bag check, but when we arrived there wasn't. Eventually they did open up the tent but you left bags at your own risk.  The ladies at the info tent were nice enough to take my bag as the race was about to start and the start line was at the opposite side of the park from the baggage tent. (Thank you ladies!)

The weather that weekend was exceptionally hot.  The park didn't boost many shady spots which made waiting around for friends to turn up and the race to stat a bit warm. Luckily Lauren was there and kept me company while we waited for Leah to arrive.
Course & bogs: I could tell on Saturday that there definitely were not enough porta-loos for the half on Sunday. Most were locked for the 5K but there were enough available for the 5K runners.  The course started in the half marathon starting gate.  We headed towards the road, passed the community center, and then along a shaded (mostly) paved path through some woods.  The path was a bit narrow at times for runners at varying speeds to keep a steady pace or chat with friends (ahem).  We came out of the woods and across the middle of the park, to wind around onto the paved path on the other side of the park. You finish back where you started, just headed in the opposite direction. Leah clocked the course at just below 5k but that might have been we were tight in the corners.  As this was untimed, the three of us were enjoying ourselves and catching up (I will say I tried in vain to finish unofficially under 30 min only to find out the course was short).
1st medal of the weekend

Atmosphere: The sunshine was out and people were excited to be running. The weather was a bit of a bummer (who'd think we'd be able to say it was too hot in London?) but it helped keep the race fun rather than competitive. It was one of the first times I ran a course with friends, which was a nice change from the endless dialogue in my head that usually occurs when running on my own.  The park wasn't too busy, which meant there weren't spectators cheering you on.  I am pretty sure we ended up running through a cricket match....

Bling/goody bags: Lovely bling and a bottle of water.  
Tips if you decide to take part next time: Get your friends involved and keep it social. No timing facilities so you don't need to worry about anything but having fun,  Hopefully it will continue to be an annual race offered free to Hackney borough residents and encourage people to take up running as a hobby.



Monday, November 17, 2014

Race Review: Inaugural Hackney Half

Hackney Borough was keen to get people moving in 2014. With the huge interest in their first ever half marathon, a free untimed 5k was add to the weekend lineup.  I was lucky enough to do both. Here is my review for the half marathon that took place on 22nd June.  Over 12,000 people took part.

Registration process & fees: Registration was online and costs £35 which is still a bargain for a flat course through London that provides a medal. No extra money to shell out for accommodation or  transport (aside from local) if you live in the Greater London area.

Location: Hackney Marshes E9 5PF. The baggage tent is huge but the queues were still long just before the race started.  I am not sure if this was because people were arriving late, couldn't find a place to park their bike (racks were for triathlon racking,which had most people confused as to how to lock up their bike.  Many many more racks needed for next year as community participation was huge), had trouble finding the venue, or the volunteers working in the tent were overwhelmed. Luckily, they let me check my Brompton.  Next year if would be great if there were meeting point signs to help people connect before and after the race.  There was a large stage on which there was a group warm-up and for after the race, there were bands.
Familiar sight of lines for the loo.

The weather that weekend was really hot.  I knew I wouldn't be getting a PB so I tried to enjoy myself instead and take in the sights.  Unfortunately, people starting fainting and puking after mile 6.

Genius!
Course & bogs: The course took you through many different areas of Hackney, including by my friends' on Hackney Downs and through the Olympic Park.  There were plenty of watering stations with an amazing Dolphin pouch of water instead of a bottle. I ended up carrying one most of the way to both drink and pour on my head.  Next time the weather is that hot, I will bring my own bottle and nuun tabs. By the time I got to the Powerade stations, they were out. I was so desperate for electrolytes, I picked up a half empty bottle off the ground, threw away the cap and guzzled it down. Not my proudest moment but a necessity to survive.  I had a Haribos in my bumbag that I ate around mile 10 as I was starting to fade.

The Olympic Park was towards the end, probably miles 9-11. You had to run up a ramp and then through a newly laid out park which had little to no shade available. It was very hot so this was a breaking point for many people as they slowed down and walked.  I really commend the emergency services and volunteer marshals (like Becca and Laura) for helping out that day (and hugging me even though my shirt was soaking wet from pouring water on my head).

Atmosphere: Hackney residents were out in full force cheering us on, while others (who I expect didn't know about the race) were looking at us like we were crazy. One gentleman even was standing out with his garden hose to cool runners off as they ran by. It was a Godsend.  

Bling/goody bags: Lovely bling (same style as 5k but gold instead of silver with a different ribbon), goody bag with water, a few product samples, and info about vendors who had booths at the start/finish line.

Not enough bike racks
Tips if you decide to take part next time: Sort out transportation ahead of time as Sundays are tricky for early starts.  Also, unless the organizers provide the correct type of bike racks next year I would leave your bike at home.  Pick a specific spot to meet friends afterwards as the venue is large and the finish line area cuts through the middle of the fun.

Organizers have taken on a lot of feedback from 2014 and implemented some changes for 2015.  Registration opens today so act quickly to secure  a place for next year!

2nd race of the weekend

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Quickie Workout #115

Remember to go for QUALITY over quantity. If you are unclear what the exercise is I am describing, please look for a video or arrange for an in-person tutorial with me.  Please consult your doctor before engaging on any fitness regime.

Don't forget to breathe! Please email me if you want tips on how to make the quickies easier or more challenging (mollie@ptmollie.com).

Warm  up- 1 min star jumps; 1 min prisoner squats; 1 min star jumps
1 min- Lunge and then lift the knee you nearly touch to the ground up as you stand up.
1 min- Repeat on the other side.
1 min- Triceps extension over your head
1 min- Speed skater jumps
1 min- Plyometric lunges
1 min- Side plank on the right side
1 min- Plank
1 min- Side plank on the left side
1 min- Mountain climbers
1 min- Crunches
1 min- Leg lifts
1 min- Crab walk

Friday, November 14, 2014

Weekend Challenge

Let's keep it simple this weekend.  Unplug for 1 hour today, Saturday, and Sunday.  Go for a walk, grab coffee with a friend or visit your mum.  Turn the phone off, unplug the computer, and leave the iPad tucked away.

#justdoit

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Quickie Workout #114

Remember to go for QUALITY over quantity. If you are unclear what the exercise is I am describing, please look for a video or arrange for an in-person tutorial with me.  Please consult your doctor before engaging on any fitness regime.

Don't forget to breathe! Please email me if you want tips on how to make the quickies easier or more challenging (mollie@ptmollie.com).

Warm  up- 1 min plank; 1 min bicycle ab exercise; 1 min mountain climbers
1 min- Plank with feet hopping together and apart
1 min- Push/Press ups
1 min- Walking lunges
1 min- Wall sit
1 min- Reverse walking lunges (carefully walk backwards)
1 min- Jumping jacks/Star jumps
1 min- 1 legged squat
1 min- 1 legged squat on the other leg
1 min- Calf raises
1 min- Tricep dips
1 min- Bicep curls with tins of soup, water bottles, or using resistance band
1 min- Squats