Reebok Spartan Race UK – GIVEAWAY!

Hi all,

I am so excited to announce another link up with Chase the Red Grape and the Reebok Spartan Race – this time however I get to focus on the UK races!!

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Although I have never done a Spartan Race myself, I totally embrace the concept, the mental and physical personal challenge and the overall sense of achievement that can come from completing a race.

Live in the UK and fancy challenging yourself? Whether it be the Sprint (5+km and 15+ obstacles), the Super (13+km and 20+ obstacles) or even the Beast (20+km and 25+ obstacles) you are in for one heck of a good time!

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Here are a list of the races and dates available in the UK this year –

Allianz (London) Sprint 16th May

South Wales Sprint 20th June

South Wales Super 21st June

Manchester Sprint 4th July

Manchester Super 5th July

Scotland Sprint 18th July

Scotland Super 19th July

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Cambridgeshire Sprint 5th September

South Sprint 19th September

South Super 20th September

South Beast 27th September

(For more on dates, times and race info head to http://spartanraceuk.uk/)

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And I am even more excited to be hosting a giveaway for TWO OF YOU to gain one FREE RACE ENTRY  each to a UK race of your choice!

You can also gain 10% off any UK race by using the promo code BLOGGER15

So, want a chance to win a free entry? Simply comment below or tag me on Twitter @ChasetheRG with the answer to the following question….

Why would you like to run a Reebok Spartan Race?

Competition closes 2pm (GMT) Wednesday 22nd April and I will announce the winner on Thursday 23rd April.

Good Luck! 

CrossFit – Back in the game!

Hi all,

How are you? It feels like ages since I have been on here to share a CrossFit recap with you all! What with being away, taking a break etc it has been almost a couple of weeks!

Last week David and I were back into the swing of things with CrossFit, a 3 day training week (missing one day due to the box being closed for Easter Monday) and we were looking forward to seeing everyone and just getting back into the groove of things without the madness of the Open!

Here we go – last week…

Tuesday Morning (7th)

tuesday wod

I wasn’t ecstatic when I read the board… 4, 8 and 12RM’s for 3 of my least favourite aspects! But I surprised myself getting 20kg for 4, 17.5kg for 8 and 15kg for 12 power snatches – 25kg for 4, 22.5kg for 8 and 20kg for 12 thrusters and power clean and jerks. Doing them one after the other was the hard part – the 4’s for the 3 moves, then the 8’s etc it was both a mental and physical challenge for sure.

But then it came… 30 overhead squats- ahhh! And again, I surprised myself. I went with 20kg on my bar – a weight I only did for the first time during the open and that was for 6 reps… and I completed in 8 min 8 seconds!

Thursday Morning (9th)

thursday wod

In case you are wondering what the above actually entails re the rings… imagine the rings being low, then going into a push up position with the rings in your hands… then for the overheads, raising one arm at a time (while still in push up) ahead of you without bending your arms. Pressing up in the push up between each rep. And the same, but arm to the side, for the side extensions. Have I confused you? Haha! sorry! Well all you need to know was that it was hard and a burner but a good exercise for strengthening lats etc.

The WOD was one of those ‘just get through as much of it as you can’! Believe me after burpees picking up a kettle bell sucks! And then going into heavy front rack lunges (25kg) – urgh! You also know that when a rest is ‘programmed’ into a WOD then it’s going to be tough! In the 20 mins I completed 2 rounds plus 20 kettle bell swings!

Friday Morning (10th)

friday wod

I don’t like Turkish get ups. And that’s the end of that chapter… :-(

But I do enjoy mixing things up a bit and that’s exactly what we had with the 3 rounds of pendlay rows and floor presses! We went for 25kg on both bars and it was awesome to see my progress in the floor press having not done it for a while. By the time you got to the 5 reps in each round though it was very tough but pushing yourself is kinda what made it so much fun! #weirdcrossfitmentality

After all that our arms, shoulders and lats were smoked so we were happy for the little huff and puff leg burner to follow. I completed the run plus 10 step ups in the first round and the run plus 12 in the second – at a 24 inch height.

Do you feel like you have been away for a lifetime when you take a small break in training?

Do you prefer heavy 1RM’s or lighter 5 or 8RM’s?

Turkish get ups… I can’t be the only one to despise them can I?!

Making a small change to a healthier happier you!

Hi all,

Small changes can make such a big impact to your health – it’s not all or nothing!  Sometimes it’s those little things that can add up to a healthier happier you! 

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Here are some ideas for you to try! Give them a go, what is there to lose! 

Drink water with your main meals.

Have a piece of fruit after lunch and dinner (if needed).  

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Try to get to bed 15 mins earlier each night. 

Walking is enough – try walking to and from work, parking further away from the shops, getting off one station early and walking the rest etc.

Adopt a fruit or vegetable of the week – try to incorporate it into your eats this week – for example spinach – add it to your soup, eggs, the green for your salad, smoothies or just as a side dish.  A GREAT one to try with kids – how could they add this ‘new veg’ into more meals?!

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Set your alarm 5 mins early each morning – use this time to stretch in bed, wiggle, feel your body and connect with the day. Think of 3 good things that could happen today. 

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Change one breakfast per week to some eggs and vegetables.

Try a wind down period before bed – half an hour before switch off all media devices and allow your body to relax… Read an easy book, sip some peppermint tea, do some gentle stretching. 

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Find a new recipe from a magazine or blog to try over the weekend or next week. Where to start? Try Googling an item you have always wanted to try cooking with – chia seeds, tahini, sweet potatoes, beets, salmon…

Make one of your hot drinks a hot water with lemon and honey – double points for swapping it for your morning coffee! 

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I could go on and on! Inspiration for a healthier happier you can come from anywhere!

Do you have any tips that make you a healthy and happy? 

What one ingredient were you afraid to try but now love? 

What from the above would you like to try? 

Why I Love Where I Live!

Hi all,

I hope you are all fantastic today and had a wonderful Easter weekend whatever you were up to.

Here, the sun was shining its little heart out and boy did we make the most of it! David was off work Monday too so we had a fun filled 3 days together – and today I am feeling refreshed and keen to share with you all!

Saturday we decided to head over to Loch Lomond to hike Conic Hill. We left early and enjoyed the 40 min drive from Glasgow – we really are so lucky to live near such beauty. Here are our pictures… truly breathtaking!

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IMG_0758IMG_0762IMG_0764IMG_0767
IMG_0790IMG_0791And we finished up with a cheeky portion of ice cream each – I had cherry fro-yo (so not really ice cream haha!) and David went for wild strawberry. Nothing beats handmade local ice cream and it was perfect to restore or energy levels on such a sunny day.

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We didn’t really have any concrete plans for Sunday but when we saw how beautiful a day it was outside, we decided to explore a bit of Glasgow in the sunshine! Lots to see, didn’t plan on walking almost 9k! 

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IMG_2617 (1)IMG_2613IMG_2609And yesterday we went out for lunch and a cocktail! We have wanted to try ‘Firebird’ for a while now after reading about its amazing gluten free pizzas and woah it did not disappoint. Sorry for the bad picture but we wanted to eat (David had already snagged a slice!) – we shared a butternut squash and goats cheese GF pizza with a side salad and hand marinated olives!

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And then off to Kelvingrove Cafe for cocktails… they were strong… just how I like it!

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And I’m still smiling from the fun!

What did you get up to?

Do you like hiking?

Do you like strong tasting cocktails?

Get to know me better!

Hi all!

Yes I am finally here! I have made it to the sunny wee corner of the world that is my blog!

What with being away for a few days at the beginning of the week and having to catch up on my school work when I returned, I haven’t been able to blog! I still have some school work to catch up on so today I thought I would keep it short and sweet with a cute survey that I have seen quite a few bloggers do, courtesy of Ashley over @ALadyGoesWest!

I love learning new things about other bloggers so hope you enjoy reading my answers!

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1. What’s your whole name?

Jennifer Margaret Audrey Fotheringham (Maiden name was Hicks)

  1. Are you named after anyone?

My two middle names are that of my Nanna and Grandma – and I love that! (even though I have a crazy long name!)

  1. Do you have any siblings?

Yes! One fantastic brother Paul, who is 4 years younger.

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( Yes in this pic Paul and David look very similar! Think its the hair and glasses!)

4. Where did you grow up?

Inverurie, Aberdeenshire in Scotland. A small wee town about 20 miles from Aberdeen. A fab place to grow up!

  1. What activities did you do in high school?

In the UK we dont tend to do much extracurricular activities in school. I loved drama and was always part of the school plays.
Outside of school I was always involved in Girl Guiding (I even became a leader once I finished Uni) and I danced from the age of 2- 15 – tap, modern and highland dance.

  1. Where did you go to college?

University (as we call it)! I went to the University of Dundee.

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(source)

7. What activities did you do in college?

I just had fun! I studied and then enjoyed spending time with my friends – lots of nights out (we can drink here legally from 18) and then had 2 years of travelling back and forwards to Edinburgh to see David!

  1. What did you study in college?

I studied History and American Studies (history, politics, geography, philosophy of the country)

  1. What was your first job out of college?

Finding a job was tough! But my first one was as a Box Office Assistant for the Edinburgh Military Tattoo (I moved to Edinburgh once I graduated)

  1. What kind of music do you like?

Mostly, rock and metal! Yes that often comes as a surprise to most! But I am so eclectic in my tastes – my ipod will have everything ranging from metal to pop, to 80’s electronica, to dance, to what is in the charts right now!

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(Never fear, just our Iron Maiden tour t-shirts!)

  1. What’s one hobby that you’d like to take up?

Get back into dancing, I quite fancy trying something with David, like salsa or tango!

  1. What did you think you wanted to be when you grew up?

From a very young age until the day I left University I wanted to be a History teacher. Things just didn’t work out that way when I didn’t get past the interview stage for my postgrad. There were only 8 places and 200 interviewed. I was gutted. But I do believe everything happens for a reason!

  1. What’s the biggest project on your to-do list right now?

I have so many to do lists in my head! CrossFit? A pull up and handstand. Home? Sorting out cupboards and putting clothes on ebay. School? Do more reading. But if I had to hone it down…. I would pick project Fotheringham! David and I planning on our future! Lots on the cards! #exciting

  1. Do you have any irrational fears?

I don’t think so… I don’t like going into water that I can’t see the bottom of – so it kinda rules out the ocean!

  1. Have you ever traveled outside the country? If so, where and when?

Yup! Europe – The Netherlands, France, Italy, Spain and Belgium. USA for our honeymoon. The United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi and Dubai) and Oman (my favourite place in the world).

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16. When’s your next vacation and where are you going?    

Don’t know! But due to a kind gift from my parents we will hopefully be planning one soon!

  1. Do you speak any other languages?

Nope! Scraps of French that I remember from school but that’s it.

18. What’s one talent that you wish you had?

I wish I had the ‘talent’ for CrossFit. Yes I can ‘do it’, yes I love it but I wish I was naturally talented at it – I certainly have the passion, commitment and drive for competitions etc… just wish I had the strength and natural talent so I could compete!

19. What’s something that you wish you did more of?

Yoga, swimming and recipe creating.

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20. If you weren’t in your current job, what would you want to be doing?

I am currently at school training to be a Health Coach so I am doing everything I can to be doing the job I want to do!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

I would love to know some of your answers to the questions above…

CrossFit – It all ended on a high!

Hi all,

Yes I am on holiday right now, but I was an eager beaver and got this post all ready to rock before I left – love the feeling of being organised!

It may be short and sweet but I wanted to recap last weeks CrossFit with you all – certainly a week of ups and downs but ending on a massive high that was 15.5!

So let’s get to work!

Monday Morning (23rd)

monday wod

We haven’t done strict press for a while so I looked back at my book and saw my last 5RM was 20kg and went for that. So glad I did, this soon became a burner, especially going into round two.

My arms were smoked and this WOD was not going to let them up. 20kg was a new PR for me a few weeks back during 15.2 but WOD’ing with it when my arms were already toasted was extremely hard work. I completed 35 reps but it took everything out of me to do that.

Tuesday Morning (24th)

tuesday wod

I was shattered – my body was so sore. Even the mobility at the beginning just tired me out.

The front squat I did at 31kg, yes only going up 1kg from last time but as any CrossFitter, 1kg can feel like the weight of the world.

By the time the WOD came I just knew I had to go slow and steady otherwise who knows what would happen. The 25kg bear complexes felt heavy and the pull ups and ring dips (banded) just felt like a chore. I completed 27 reps and felt like crying. Thank goodness the next day was a rest day…

Thursday Morning (26th)

thursday wod

This was so much fun! And after the past two WOD’s I needed something fun.

David and I were the only two there so we teamed up and cracked on! I did the box jumps ‘step up, turn around, and step back’ style and the power snatches at 20kg. We completed 3 rounds plus up to 6 snatches… David was so close to finishing that round!

And the row, which floored you as we had to do it immediately after, I completed 3.14.7.

Friday Morning (27th)

friday wod

We all were dreading the release of this workout! 14.5 was insane and there was no reason to believe that 15.5 would be any easier. Fortunately the WODs were in my favour with this one!

I like rowing. Yes I am tall and it definitely helps but I think this is one of the only aspects of CrossFit where being tall is an asset! Haha!

I was so pleased with the thruster weight for scaled (20kg) – it is a good thruster WOD weight for me.

My tactic for this one? Don’t tank yourself on the row. Simple as that. The row could seriously floor you on this WOD if you went out all guns blaring.

I completed it in 16 minutes 31 seconds and I am very happy with that! I may not be the fastest at this workout but I really really enjoyed it, and I never thought I would say that about thrusters! And after all, isn’t that why we do CrossFit/ the Open – to have fun and enjoy ourselves! Thanks Castro for ending it on a high!

If you did the Open, how did you find it/ how did you find 15.5?

Like rowing?

Time for some rest! Hints and Tips!

Hi all,

Hope you are well and excited because it’s finally FRIDAY!!!

The thought of Friday brought a lot of emotions for me – excitement but also fear, dread, nerves and that sinking feeling…. oh yes because today was the last day of the CrossFit 2015 Open!

I knew Castro would throw out a doozy for this year’s last hurrah and he didn’t disappoint! I will go into it more on my post on Monday but for now, yep it was hard, yes I did it scaled (woop!) and yes I friggin loved every moment!

And now… time for rest!

Yes David and I are now going to have a period of much needed rest. Our bodies are just screaming for it! We will take 5 full days off from CrossFit, fill our bodies will all kinds of nutritional goodness (as we always do), have a few treats (it would be unhealthy not to) and simply relax.

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Sometimes we all need to stop and listen to our bodies. Whether you are a CrossFit addict like us, a runner, gym bunny or tennis ace – we all need a period of rest. As I mentioned on Monday, David and I have been training at CrossFit constantly for the past 3 months – and finally our bodies went enough is enough.  So we listened.

We are joining my parents at a small lodge in gorgeous Perthshire for a few nights (Sunday to Tuesday) and I cannot wait. Bring on the laughs, loves and smiles!

So how do you rest? It sounds like a silly question but I know for some of us out there we actually struggle to stop and allow our bodies to recover. Here are my top 5 tips for your rest period.

  • Switch off

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So you have listened to your body and come to the conclusion that you need a rest. If you can (i.e. you don’t have to work/ have other commitments) try to switch off from the world, resting your body but also, equally as important, resting your mind. Take a break from twitter or facebook, pop on that Netflix series you have been dying to watch, pick up that book that has been sitting on your bookshelf unread for the past few months. Allow every part of you to de-stress and get into ‘chill out’ mode.

  • So you feel like moving?

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So you have been chilling for a while but now have the urge to move a little – you know what? That’s ok too! Why not use this time to work on some much needed mobility, stretching or foam rolling. Go for a walk in the park with your partner, friends or even yourself to connect back to nature. Try a ‘gentle’ yoga class or go for a short bike ride. Anything that makes you feel refreshed.

  • Fuel yourself right

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During this period of rest your body will require just as much fuel to keep on repairing and restoring. I know with the week (few months!) I have had my muscles need all the help they can get! Keep up with the proteins and healthy fats, why not try making your first (or 8th!) batch of bone broth? Try some new vegetables with every meal or blitz them into a berry or green juice? Just remember to nourish. Also keep up with the fluids, especially water.

  • Treat yourself

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Just because you aren’t working out doesn’t mean you haven’t ‘earned a treat’. Do you not remember all that you have done these past few days, weeks, months? How do you define a treat? Anyway you want! It could be a much needed trip to the cinema with your partner, a girly or guys night out with friends, a scoop or two of your favourite ice cream that you normally never buy, savouring a bottle of wine or a few margaritas, going shopping. Just remember to enjoy it and let it make you happy!

  • Sleep

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This is last but by no means least! Sleep is so important and we all know that, even if it is deep down! If you don’t manage the recommended 8 hours per night normally, really try to find time to do this during your rest period. You really will feel refreshed, I promise! Your body also does most of its repairing and healing during this time – just give your body the support it needs to get the job done!

And then before you know it, you will be a fresher, happier, healthier you to get back into training!

Have a fab weekend everyone!

Do you take rest days/ weeks?

What is your favourite way to treat yourself?

Favourite recovery fuel?

What I Ate Wednesday!

Hi all,

Hope you are well and it’s as nice and sunny with you as it is here in Glasgow!

Ok, it may not be warm, but the sunshine is so good to see – long may it last!

It’s been quite a while since I have done a ‘What I ate Wednesday’ post and I thought I should rectify that! So on Saturday I snapped my full day of eats to share with you all – and oh boy it was tasty!

Linking up with Jenn @PeasandCrayons and Laura over @Sprint2thetable – our lovely host for this week!

Saturday was an awesome day – the sun was shining and David and I had a whole day of fun planned – popping into town to buy gifts for some of our favourite people, picking up a few necessities of our own and going out for a nice relaxing lunch. Win win!

Breakfast

Eggs, Kale and Tahini – decaf coffee, OJ and water to drink

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A Saturday staple- if you have never tried the egg, kale, tahini combo before you must! Amazing flavour and a good combo of protein, veggies and fat!

Snack

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As we were walking around town we needed something to keep us going! Actually who am I kidding, we bought these in TK Maxx and couldn’t wait to try them – tasty but not as good as the pear ones.

Lunch

Margarita, Chicken Tinga Bare Burrito and Chips and Guac to share

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IMG_0721This was amazing! We headed to one of our favourite restaurants in Glasgow – Topolabamba and savoured every mouthful. They have so many gluten free options but we decided it was burrito time – just minus the wrap! Chicken, salsa, rice, beans and just the right amount of cheese… paired with chips and guac = essential! Not pictured is the stuffed squid we shared… it did not photograph well… but boy it tasted good.

And who can resist a margarita on a sunny day!

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Afternoon snack

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Shopping done and back home to put our feet up! Our weekend delight of banana soft serve with dates, coconut and almond butter. This is my nice perfectly proportioned one… you should see Davids… all the nut butter and dates!

Dinner

Baked herbed salmon with salad

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This dish was so flavourful, yet so easy to make! I cooked the salmon on cedar planks (thanks again Lindsay!) after tossing them in a herb mix (inc coriander, parsley, dill, fennel, garlic…) and placing a knob of butter on each fillet. Cover the tray the planks are on in foil, bake for 25 mins and boom! Done!

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The salad was a star in itself – leaves, tomatoes, cucumber, apple and olives… paired with the salmon beautifully.

We then binge watched ‘The Good Wife’ with wine and one of these little beauties my parents gifted us with – strawberry daiquiri dark chocolate liqueur… there need be no words!

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Annnd as per usual with revisiting my eats, I am now hungry again! Haha! Is it acceptable to have a liqueur chocolate at 1pm…???

What’s your go to Mexican favourite?

How do you like to cook your salmon?

Do you like the alcohol chocolate mix?

CrossFit – The WOD I was dreading!

Hi all,

Welcome Monday and a new week ahead! But for now, it’s time to look back to last week and my CrossFit recap.

Last week was another tough one to be honest. I didn’t feel as exhausted or drained as the previous week, which is great, but I still wasn’t achieving what I wanted to achieve, even though I truly was giving my all to everything.

I am looking forward to next week when I have a few days off on holiday. The open will be over and we can let our bodies relax for a few days. After all, we have been doing 3 months of solid CrossFit without a real rest period – and I really do think this is why I am struggling. I need a rest.

But for now I will keep going! Friday brings the end to the Open and marks the start of our holiday! Let’s just hope Castro doesn’t throw a doozy at us for 15.5… #wishfulthinking…

Monday Morning (16th)

monday wod

For my front squats, and seeing how last week went, I decided to stick with 30kg for my reps. And I’m glad because they felt so much better and more solid.

Very few finished this within the time cap – those clean and jerks just felt really heavy. I did try with 27.5kg to begin with but had to drop down to 25kg – I hate when I have to do that…

Tuesday Morning (17th)

tuesday wod

Same issues as last week with the pendlay rows but I’m getting there and felt a bit stronger. Still not able to touch my chest with the bar but once again that’s mobility issues and I know I am working on it.

I really liked this WOD as you were able to go at your own pace and compete against yourself each minute. I also liked the fact that the deadlifts, heavy at 60kg, could be done at your own pace and therefore I could focus on technique, rather than trying to rack out reps. I knew I could do 5 solid deadlifts each minute safely – so that’s what I continued to do each round. The step ups I did between 20-24 each round.

Thursday Morning (19th)

thursday wod

This was fun! And oh boy did I need a good solid fun WOD.

The mobility WOD was a killer on the hands but it was good to focus on opening up the shoulders and working on our grip. Definitely needed.

The partner WOD was a great workout. I used a 10kg plate and yep, you guess it, it could never be dropped (unless doing the plate burpees) – I dropped it once to take off my jumper… 5 burpee penalty – sigh! We completed 3 rounds plus 9 burpees in the 20 mins.

Friday Morning (20th)

friday wod

15.4 – my first open WOD this year where I couldn’t do scaled. This was the kind of WOD I was dreading – lots of barbell work. My 1RM push press stands at 27.5kg and my clean, on a very good day, 30kg. The scaled weights were 30kg for push press and 35kg for clean. I had to be realistic. It wasn’t going to happen. So I still challenged myself… 25kg for the push press and 30kg for the clean. I managed the 10 push press unbroken but then went on to the cleans… not one. I pulled and pulled that bar but just couldn’t get under it fast enough. Seriously the bar was so high up on my chest but I just couldn’t whip those arms under quick enough. I was gutted. Even though I had ‘scaled down the scaled level’ I still couldn’t get more than 10 reps…

But after a good cry in the car and a chat with David I realised that it was ok. First off I have a new 10RM push press! Ha! And second of all sometimes you just can’t get there. We are all feeling pretty shattered and as long as I gave it everything I could then how could I do any more than that. More work needs to be done on stopping being my own worst critic!

15.5 predictions…???

Training breaks/ rest periods, love em or hate em?

Are you ever hard on yourself for not being able to do something?

Friday Favourites! Smile!

Hi all,

Phew, it’s 5pm on Friday afternoon and I don’t know where the day has gone! Heck where has the week gone!

For me, it was school, school and more school but that’s ok because I absolutely LOVE it! So yes, I’m afraid blogging went on the back burner this week – just think of me, swatting up, slaving over my computer, with a huge smile on my face!

Smiles are going to be the theme today, as I link up, for the first time with Heather over @LifeinLeggings for ‘Friday Favourites’!

  1. International Happiness Day!

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Well, you have to smile when it’s Friday and happiness day! I was trying to think of all the things today that make me happy and it’s a good task to give yourself when you need a bit of a perk up! So I have decided on my top three – David, sunshine and warmth and wine! Preferably all together at the same time! #wishIwasonabeach

  1. Spring!

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I do believe spring has sprung in Glasgow! Definitely quite far away from summer but we have a good few more degrees on the temperature and the sun is out! It’s amazing how just a few more hours of sunshine can make you feel so much better! We went for a lovely walk in the park on Sunday and met this little guy – ok so just a common pigeon, but what a character!

  1. It’s the weekend!

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And the main reason to smile is that it’s the weekend! Our plans consist of going into town tomorrow and doing some present shopping and then having some lunch out… but what to have… half of me wants Mexican, the other wants Pho! I guess I will just have to see what I fancy when it’s time… but I do know if we go down the Mexican route then I will want a margarita to go with it #justsayin

  1. The eclipse!

To end on a quick one (did I not mention it was 5pm already!) – Today we experienced a solar eclipse! Not a full one but a good 90% of the way there! We were really lucky as it was quite cloudy in Glasgow but I did eventually get a peak. Quite haunting when it goes really dark all of a sudden and then lights up again. Feel very lucky to have experienced it though! (No pics, didn’t want to do more than a wee glance = eye damage :-S) 

So a quick hi and bye from me! Hope you have an awesome weekend!

What makes you happy?

Mexican or pho?

Have you ever seen an eclipse?

Journeys and joys of a lifestyle in Fitness, Health, CrossFit and Paleo