If you have been following my blog for a while, or at least since the start of the year, you will know that I signed up to the End to End challenge where you need to run 874 miles, the equivalent of Land’s End to John O Groat’s, in a year. Week 1 was hard and really made me wonder what I had done but I carried on, with the support of my mum who is also doing the challenge, and we have now completed our first month.
In our first week we ran 21.18 miles, a cracking start.
We kept up the hard work and 17 days in we hit the 50 mile marker which was our first big mile stone and resulted in our first postcard.
These postcards are such a brilliant idea. You get one at 50 miles and then every 100 miles after that. They are perfect for keeping you motivated and they give you something to work towards.
Never did I think I would be so excited to receive a virtual postcard before!
January has been one of the most horrific months we have had in a while in regards to weather. We have ran through rain, hail, wind and even snow. If it wasn’t for this challenge I can guarantee you I would have made a million and one excuses to avoid going out in those weather conditions, never mind exercising in them. It has been hard and I haven’t enjoyed every run. But I have enjoyed some of them. And I have enjoyed the feeling of accomplishment once finished. And the guilt free wine and chocolates of course.
Regardless of the weather we still set a target of running 75 miles in month one. This would mean we would break through the 800 marker and be in the next mileage bracket. It seemed a big goal and I was worried we were being a tad optimistic but on day 27 we managed to do it. We broke the 800 marker with 14 days to go and it felt bloody brilliant.
But it meant we needed to set a new goal!
So we aimed for 100 miles in a month. I really, really, was not convinced we could do this one. But 30 days in we went for our longest run of the year to date, in fact our longest run EVER, and manages to push ourselves over the 100 mile mark.
Which felt incredible.
Not immediately, immediately it felt awful. Everything hurt, I was freezing and wanted a long hot bath followed by my bed and the promise I would never have to run ever again.
BUT once I had caught my breath, warmed up and logged my miles and could see that we really had done it, we really had hit the 100 mile marker it felt euphonic.
Never in my life would I have believed I was capable of running 100 miles in a month. Prior to this my furthest was 100km in a month and 100 miles is 160km so that’s a big improvement.
And of course with 100 miles comes the 2nd postcard. Which really makes you feel like someone is celebrating your success with you and is very much appreciated.
Our exact distance is currently 100.21 miles which according to the End to End map means we are still on the A30 dodging cars! Hopefully we will move to a path with a nicer view soon.
Today is the last day of the month and we are not running. We are having a well earnt rest day. Tomorrow starts a new month, a shorter month, so no 100 mile goal here. But hopefully still a successful one.
My End to End running must haves this month
This month I have been introduced to Bio-synergy who sent me 4 products to try:
The WheyBetter protein shake,
PowerBeet for endurance and performance,
JointFormula to assist joint recovery,
ImmuneBooster to boost and protect.
I have been using all 4 of these for the last 3 weeks and I really like them. My favourite two products are the WheyBetter shake and the powerbeet tablets.
I have used shakes before but this one is higher in protein and lower in fat, carbs and calories. It isn’t as filling and therefore I don’t use it as a meal replacement as I sometimes did with my other one but instead I take it post runs to help with muscle recovery. I have the banana flavour and it is delicious.
My second favourite product out of the 4 are the Powerbeet tablets for endurance. I think it is these tablets that are giving me more energy and are contributing to the improvement in my distance running. They a re tasteless and easy to swallow and have now just become pat of my daily routine.
This month I also treated myself to a new running headband from Amazon. Previously I had been wearing my husbands neck warmer folded up several times, which was really big and really thick. These bands are much easier, stay in place and look a bit nicer too. I also think they are a bargain and great for keeping your ears warm on freezing cold run days.
Next month I am hoping to treat myself to a new pair of running trainers as my current ones are starting to look a bit worse for wear and a whole is appearing in the toe which will not help keep my feet dry when it rains, so if you have any recommendations please do let me know, as I don’t even know where to start looking!