Two words. Let’s begin.

I’m not known for my patience and I wore this like a flashing neon sign around my neck on Saturday morning. It was only my second training session and my new running coach mentioned that he would email me my training schedule sometime in the next week. Without hesitation I said, “And the training will make me run faster, right?” Fail… I could see it in his eyes.

Structure. Consistency. Those are the two words he used in his reply to me. He first wants to set some structure into my running routine and start with the basics. He wants to assess where I am at the moment and what I want to run, and what my goals are. Then I need to get some consistency into my routine and we’ll work from there.

One step at a time and one day at a time. 


I must admit, this gives me a chance to gauge where I am too. Here’s what we’re working with:

  • My 5km PB – 37 minutes : Dischem 5km race
  • My 10km PB – 74 minutes : Vaal 10km race
  • My 21km PB – 2h48 : Two Oceans half marathon
  • My fastest km – 6:01 minutes

My average pace for majority of my runs is 8 minutes per km. This is the part I want to change. I’m not aiming to run Comrades, I’m not even aiming to run any specific race. I just need to see whether or not I can run faster. That’s all.

Structure and consistency. One step at a time. One day at a time. Oh, and to learn to be more patient. Can I throw that one in as well?

*Image from, a great new site I happened to stumble upon* 


The iPod discovery

I find running through the winter months hard. If I’m honest, it’s very hard. But I did promise myself that this year, I would continue training and not slip into my usual running hibernation. Sp pretty much since the Jozi afternoons got dark and cold and the mornings hit 0 degrees, I’ve been doing most of my training at the gym.

It’s not too bad and I get to do some proper speed work and interval training which I hardly do out on the road. For years now, my iPod nano has ensured surviving running on the dreaded deathmill as long as I have a range of great playlists to choose from on my trusted old iPod nano. That’s all I pretty much used it for. Until now…

Playing around on my iPod recently, I noticed a Fitness section. Um, hello! Where’ve you been hiding? Fiddling with the settings, I managed to set it to run a 5K route, matched with one of my new playlists and decided to run on around the track at the gym instead of the treadmill for a change.

Imagine my surprise when I heard a woman’s voice come on, talking to me about my workout. Every now & then, she would tell me my pace, how far I’d run and how I was doing. How awesome is this? My very own ‘personal trainer’ in my ears! I know others have used their iPhones but I’ve never been keen to strap my phone to my arm at the gym and I find it too risky out on the road too. The size of that iPod nano is perfect.


I know that if I run x5 laps on the track, it measures 1km. So I was fascinated how near close to accurate the iPod was. (okay, 200m short) Googling it, I later discovered that I comes with a built in Nike+ sensor. All I need to do is a bit of calibration. I’m also checking out recording any runs to Nike+ because well, as all runners on social media know, you haven’t really run until you tell everyone, right? *winks*

I’m so excited about this! I think gym is great but every so often, you need to be doing something different or else you get bored and the novelty wears off. I guess this is like most things in life. Getting into a rut is so easy and yet so simple to get out of. You just need to know how. Sometimes, it’s right under your eyes! 

My iPod nano discovery is definitely going to help me get through winter! Okay, iPod, let’s run!

The LSD of my weight loss plateau

As every runner knows, if you want to improve your time, your pace and endurance, you need to work on three things: hills, speed work and LSD’s (long slow distances). In my opinion, the easiest of the three is definitely LSD’s. There’s nothing better than heading out on a fresh Sunday morning and running at a gentle pace as far as your body will take you.

It was on one such Sunday morning recently when I happened to be thinking about all the things that were on my mind and bugging me. The one issue consuming me is my weight, or rather my weight loss.

If you had told me at the beginning of the year what I would be weighing now, I would never have believed you. I would’ve thought it impossible, especially since the last time I weighed what I do was before I got married 12 years ago. But, as with my running, I stuck to a #LCHF (low carb high fat) program, experienced the pain of the hills and giving up carbs, then was delighted by the speed at which the weight fell off but I’ve somehow landed up plateauing. My LSD as I’ve started to call it.


I’ve been stable at this weight for two months now. No matter what I do, nothing budges. A slow and steady pace. Going far but not in any rush. I know it’s good for my body to be able to maintain this weight and not put any weight back on. But it’s frustrating. Damn frustrating. I’ve started to experiment – cutting out dairy (that didn’t last long), eating less nuts, trying bullet proof coffee (Google it) – and I’m hoping something kicks in.

I guess what I’m realizing is that I need to just hang in there. I need to be patient and go the distance. I reckon my body will eventually sort itself out. But I need to approach it as I do with my LSD’s. Enjoy it. Take the time to appreciate the scenery and thank my body for coming this far. Because who knows, maybe the next downhill is right around the corner.