Archive | challenges RSS for this section

Janathon day 6…

Yesterday I decided to do yoga earlier… today I completely failed at that and did it at quarter past midnight again…

Still I did it and that is what counts ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

What’s more I even felt better doing it…I managed to press up from the floor to plank without having to go on my knees and crawl about and I lowered down to the floor without just flopping!! Woohoo progress!!


Janathon day 2

Well that was a shock to the system all round!!

First day back at work, made even more shocking by an early morning PT session!! It was worth it though, the PT was awesome despite it being push day and me having to do Viking presses which are less exciting than they sound!!

I also had to bench press and do rowing sprints and kettlebells… that is one way to wake up in the morning!!

Later that day…

(As they say in movies and such when they can’t think of how to fill in time)

It was time for day 1 or Yoga True from Yoga with Adrien it was awesome and quite simple if not actually easy when you haven’t done yoga for months!!

Willow cat helped too ๐Ÿ˜Š

2018 Janathon is go!!

Happy new year lovely people!! It is a whole new year (obviously otherwise the happy new year greeting would be wierd…) and that means a whole load of people telling you about goals and resolutions and suchlike. I am not going to do that. I have goals…I wrote them in a book…I might show you a picture of it but I am not, at this moment going to tell you all about them in great detail. I will probably do a more detailed new goals post later on when they are clear in my head and when the new year new you nonsense has died down…

If I had a new me for every new year I would be on the 41st version of me and I would have no idea what was going on…

Anyway… it’s january, so what else could I do but sign up for another Janathon and get on and do some exercise!! It was a run too…first on in ages, this is the start of getting my head back in the right place to run! I liked it too ๐Ÿ˜€

Reboot days 106 – 124: well… the system works… and other pictures…

I am extremely far behind and I started this post 3 weeks ago… so I am leaving the beginning as it is then you will get a lot of pictures for the intervening days… and I will restart with aplomb from today ๐Ÿ˜

The system I mean is the system of listening to people who know things and doing what you are told and getting better as they predict.

This seems to work a lot better than ignoring things and hoping it will go away…

Day 106: Wednesday…<<<<<<<<<
ually pervasive sensibleness, I limited wednesday morning gym activities to upper body work… supersets consisting of: Incline bench press / chest fly, Rows / reverse fly. followed by two sets on the viking press and some core work followed by the dreaded but very important hip mobility elastic band stretches!

luchtime I decided to try out runnign again… I had permission and everything so it was ok! It was a suprsingly good run too… more running less walking all round quicker and it felt better ๐Ÿ˜€ yeay! back to training!

ter, of course there was dancing ๐Ÿ™‚

and now for all the pictures…

Reboot day 69: Walk a mile in my shoes

Well not so much a mile, more, well …you’ll see ๐Ÿ™‚

It was Saturday, I had tried to run but really wasn’t in the right frame of mind… I was struggling to know what exercise to do…

It shouldn’t really be that hard but some days you just don’t have a decision making capability…

faith good ideaAnyway, I came up with an idea, it was part intrigue, and part laziness. Not physical laziness, but mental laziness. I was an idea that seemed like a good one when I had it…and I decided that if nothing else it would lead to a good blog post ๐Ÿ™‚

The things I do for you guys!!

I decide to do one of the workouts I planned for my best client. I chose the most recent one from this Friday, I got my stuff and I set myself up in the kitchen. It had to be the kitchen because I needed a smooth floor…

First was tabata, I have random exercises on cards, I picked out 2 from the cardio labelled exercises and alternated them for 4 mins of 20 seconds work, 10 seconds rest. Then I did it again with another two randomly picked cards.

I did Med ball power knees because it seemed like a good fit, and look, voluntary fancy burpees!!

After this I did the resistance band section, these were the small resistance bands which I have previously talked about going round knees for such things as squats… These exercises are all a lot more difficult than they look… this is a thing I know about resistance bands. I even did the required 15 reps…15 reps is not my favourite amount of reps…but I did it because they were the rules…do the exercises as written…

Following this was the turn of the fluffy cloth workout… sounds nice and easy and happy doesn’t it… well really not so much…

there are commercially available workout thingies that take the form of sliders that you put your feet or hands on and move them about in different ways… they are expensive and can be simulated with a smooth floor and some microfibre cloths…

So that is what I did.

These exercises are excellent because you have to use your core and stabiliser muscles as well as the muscles being worked just to keep from over sliding and falling down…

Excellent and evil!!

My client actually banned me from ever bringing these back a while ago (yes she can do that) but relented last week and so I decided this workout that I also did… it was HARD!

Good hard but hard!!!

I can sort of see why she banned them to be honest but hey are so effective I think I will use them again!

The last thing I did was some core exercises using the little Pilates ball ๐Ÿ™‚ I remember these being easier (not easy but easier) when I used to go to Pilates!!

What have I learned from this experience?

Well a couple of things actually…

  1. I am not an easy trainer
  2. My client is a lot fitter than she thinks she is (she made this look easier than I felt it was)
  3. If I want to get myself back to full fitness and drop some fat (which I do explain-y post to follow) I should write myself workouts and get my arse into gear and do them!!!

So that is what I am going to do… I am going to treat myself as I would my own client and make no more excuses!!

Remember when I said never again…

I did… I said never again.

I said I hated it and I wouldn’t ever do another one.

I wrote about it a lot… here and here

Well… I may have changed my mind.

Its ok…I can do that, I am allowed ๐Ÿ™‚ I make my own rules you know ๐Ÿ˜›

In case you haven’t already guessed, I am talking about running. Specifically running races, and even more specifically running a half marathon.

Yes…that’s right, after several strong hints, you have guessed it! I have signed up to run another half marathon. Brighton half marathon on 25th Feb 2018 to be precise.

brighton half marathon

So, there it is…

I suppose that I have a little bit of explaining to do…

I have been thinking about this for a while, I have actually been putting some serious thought into whether this is a good idea or whether I should just let the whole thing go. This is the first difference between this time and the last time. Last time it was a spur of the moment decision made after a little persuasion from ย my friend Rachel who wanted someone to run with her and convince her to train. Don’t get me wrong, I decided to do it of my own free will, but I didn’t have the idea for myself and I never really wanted to do it for the right reasons.

I didn’t do the last one because I wanted to run a half marathon, I did it to help out a friend. Which is all well and good, but it didn’t really set my head off in the right place. I was negative about the whole thing from the outset.

This time it is different. I have thought, a lot…and bored people talking at them about it. I have decided that I want to do another one.

Not “I feel I should”

Not “It would be a good thing to do for charity”

I want to run (or walk/run) a half marathon. I want to do it for the following reasons:

  • I want to run a half marathon to prove to myself that I can.
    I know this seems odd as I have already done one, but the experience of the last one was so bad that I have discounted it in my head)
  • I want to see what I can do with the right training and the right food and basically the right versions of everything I got wrong in the last one.
  • I want to do it to prove to myself I can stick at things and improve, to prove I am not a failure.
    Yes…I do feel like one after the failed walk and the disastrous last half…I know I am not one in general, but sometimes we have to do things to banish the feeling.
  • I want to run a half marathon for me.

So that is it, me running a half marathon because I want to… noone forcing me, noone pressuring me to do it, just me against myself.

I *could* just go out and train for a half marathon and run the distance with no race I suppose…but I want an official tick. I want a deadline and a designated place and time to do it. I like to have something tangible to train for.

Also I like shiny medals…

Not that you are really allowed to go around wearing your medals…not for more than one day any way…

I don’t see why not though…I might do this time…I fully intend to be proud of myself at the end and not just grumpy and broken!

In fact I am going to try not to be grumpy at all during this process…

Ok…no that is a complete lie..I will be grumpy sometimes but I am determined not to be sad and angry throughout the race!

I will, of course, keep you informed about how my training is going! The very first thing I need to do is figure out a training plan…and how to run… and how to eat while running and drink… ok…I’ll take those one at a time…

but for now…



Reboot Day 2: lulled by deadlifts…

Hello and welcome to day 2…

Have I told you about my not new any more new trainer Matt 2? Well I know I have as i just looked it up, but it was back in May last yearย (here…just in case you wondered)ย so I’ll let you off if you have forgotten. Well anyway, I had training this morning with Matt 2 (who will henceforth be know as Matt because that is his name). If you are a regular reader if these ramblings you will not be surprised by this, Tuesday has been my PT day for almost as long as I have been writing this!


This is a thing apparently…

So this morning I turned up at the gym bright and early (only minutes late) ready and raring to go…

well…ready and resigned to the fact that I was there and someone had planned me a work out so I had better do it… but that’s ok…I was there at least ๐Ÿ˜€

Todays session started well, after the warm up we headed down to the lifting racks…

Yeay lifting…

Even more yeay we were doing deadlifts (and by we were I mean I was). Deadlifts are my favourite thing (well one of them…) woohoo 5 x 5 deadlifts at 70kg ๐Ÿ˜€ fun times!! It turns out this was just to lull me into a false sense of security…or as I think it was put, get me back into it gently after my week away from the gym climbing mountains…

This deadlift fun was followed by cardio/kettlebell/trx circuitry!! Which is aeswom because well…kettlebells but also because I asked to incorporate more cardio into my workouts despite hating it… but also awful because rowing sprints…250m rowing sprints…bleuch! Good for me, I know but bleuch because they are hard work!!IMG_0852

The other things were single sided 10 reps per side…which is 20 reps really…which gets Matt a look because everyone knows Sams don’t like high reps… I don’t think he cares though and I do them anyway because I know they are sometimes beneficial!

And that was day 2…well the before work morning part of day 2 anyway…

yes…that does mean there is more!

I am holding tight to my current wave of motivated enthusiasm and attempting to make some things a habit…

Things like running at lunchtime ๐Ÿ™‚

It was raining, and thundering, and I had worked out once already so I didn’t technically *have* to go, but I went anyway.

I got changed and ventured out into the rainy but still warm and annoyingly humid outside world and ran around again!

I am doing the 10k trainer programme app thingy that I have used before and starting at the very beginning due to my year long hiatus from running and I am up to week 3 today was week 3 day 1 and involved some 1.5min run intervals and some 3 min run intervals.

Strangely, despite the rain and the fact that I was running, I actually had fun…

Just maybe I don’t hate running any more!


And that is day 2 done ๐Ÿ˜€

willow yeay


So, I did the thing…

You know…the thing where I had to walk, in a bra, overnight…

yeah…that thing…

OK…I sort of did the thing…

I am really annoyed and angry to tell you that I failed to finish the thing due to my stupid foot playing up and making it impossible to walk…

The foot that got plantar fasciitis…(I told you about it here) that put me on crutches last year…

Well guess what, it decided that this walk was a good time to return! I managed 13 miles, even though it started hurting in mile 2, I didn’t want to stop but I could hardly put it down ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I had a horrible feeling that if I carried on I would end up on crutches again. So I went to see some medics, who agreed with me…

I did wear a wonder woman bra in public, with a cape attached though, so that is a plus…and a huge step forward as I am definitely not in the “shape” I would have once said I needed to be in to wear a wonder woman bra in public!

Things I have learned from this experience:

  1. I have no idea what size bra I wear!
  2. I have finally learned to listen to my body…I am not injured but I would have been if I had carried on!
  3. Capes really do get in the way!
  4. Things wouldn’t be challenges if they were easy!

Body Positivity


3ย years of hard work…

I am not putting up that picture to show off… This is not a look at my weight loss etc post or picture…although to be completely honest it is good to remind myself how far I have come once in a while…

The whole point of this picture is it represents a fundamental change in my attitude!

When the first picture was taken I hated pictures, I wouldn’t look at the camera and I could barely look at the resulting pictures without being miserable for ages.

Now, believe it or not, I am willing to pose for photos, I mostly don’t hate them and I even have more selfies than is sensible on my phone! But this is about more than photos. It is about confidence and attitude. It is about finding the courage to stand up to the judgmental attitudes of today’s society. To stand up to the attitudes that say you have to be a certain size or shape to dress a certain way.

Even at the end of my first 365 I wouldn’t have dreamed of wearing the muscle shirt in the top picture without a second top under it. I still qualified every achievement with disclaimers about needing to lose more weight, or still having lots of things I needed to change. It was almost as if I was not allowing myself to be proud of myself , I couldn’t let anyone thing I was pleased with me the way I was. After all what would happen if they thought I was still fat…I felt I had to acknowledge it before they said something!

Just in case you are new or have forgotten this was the end of my 365 project…

me 365

day 365 ๐Ÿ˜€ย 

This was me, I was happy because dancing, I was happy because 365 days of exercise is quite a big achievement, I was happy with my progress.

The one thing I couldn’t say I was happy with was my body.

Now the end of 365 me was a differently shaped me to the now me. Partly because I have been a little less dedicated to my eating, and quite a lot because I have been doing a lot of heavy lifting… but this isn’t the point, the point is…

We are allowed to be proud of ourselves. We are allowed to like our bodies and appreciate them for what they can do!

I know what you are thinking…what changed? and when are you going to get to the point and tell me what body positivity is?

Well first things first…what changed?

Well…obviously I did…but what made me change?

The first thing was this person…


Whitney Way Thore click for more info

This is Whitney Way Thore, star of a show called Whitney Fat Girl Dancing, and a dancer who works to encourage people to accept their body and not body shame others. I don’t watch her show often, but I happened to catch an interview with her and of course she was being quizzed for promoting obesity and such like. and she explained she has PCOS ย which made her gain weight and that she was aware that it could be unhealthy to be overweight but then she said “Appreciate your body for what it can do.” and that if it is stopping you doing things you want to it is time for a change. That one line started to change my outlook.

Then I found Grrrl Clothing, an amazing company run by Kortney Olsonย ย I have told you about them before hereย they are all about body positivity and fitness at all sizes…which quite honestly is rare in a fitness clothing company! The breakthrough really came when I found their FB group Grrrls. This group is full of amazing women who all support each other and all subscribe to the Grrrl philosophy which comes handily written on the clothing tag.


This is important. No negativity about yourself or others. As soon as you start to do this your outlook starts to change.

How often do you look in a mirror and criticise yourself, or tell yourself that you are stupid, or tell other people that you need to lose weight or are so fat or whatever. As soon as you stop this and start to look for positives, everything changes. Not instantly…it is not magic… you can’t wipe out years/decades of social conditioning in one hit but it starts to happen. You start to appreciate what your body can do whether it is lift heavy things, run a long way, make children (I have heard this can be a good thing but I remain unconvinced :-p), or just move you around through your busy day to day lives. You start to realise that you can be and do anything you want to do at any size and that the dictates of society are quite frankly rubbish…

Society says you have to be skinny to be attractive…well no actually the thing that makes a person most attractive is confidence. Society says women shouldn’t lift weights because they might get all bulky…well, bulky is unlikely in women and anyway…why shouldn’t women be bulky if they want…

Society says working out is for weight loss and for looks…well no, working out is for health and for whatever your own personal goal is!!

Before I go on any more I am going to show you some of the awesome women in the group who have inspired me to walk around with scary bright leggings on and muscle shirts with no vest tops under them…to walk around with confidence!

These are not the only inspirational women in the group by a long way but it just shows, no matter what size, what shape, what background we come from, there is no judgement! ๐Ÿ˜€

So here’s what body positivity means to me:

Body positivity is about believing in your own self worth, about believing that I am strong and capable and worthy of confidence as I am right now! It is ok to want to work on self improvement, it is ok to still want to lose weight but the difference is I am doing it for me and for health and to be an even better me rather than as a punishment for being a bad me!

I work out because I like it.

I wouldn’t mind losing some more fat, but I am proud of myself for who I am at the moment!

I can spend three days in a row dancing and walking miles and still walk the next day! I can lift 100kg (almost…) I can ride my bike for mile and miles I can swing a kettlebell about like nobody’s business and I can do all of these things right now.

I am fit and I am healthy and I still have chocolate sometimes and that is ok!

I am still mildly terrified of posting this without the caveats I mentioned at the start. I still have the fear of people judging me for being too fat or too weak or, now after writing this, too show-y off-y…

but you know what I am posting it anyway along withย these pictures of the me that I am proud of right now!


So be who you want to be, be who you are and don’t be ashamed of it! Don’t let “society” dictate whether you wear leggings or shorts or vest tops or giant hats covered in peacock feathers or what ever you likeย because at the end of the day it is not their business…it is yours ๐Ÿ˜€


A weekend of dance, walking and rain!!

This weekend started so well!!

It was Rochester sweeps festival which involves.. well… Dancing and more dancing and some waking about… all with fantastic people! So that was pretty damn awesome and is exactly what this whole fit enough to dance in a mask project was all about!!

Lovely crazy friends!

Then came Sunday… a day where I was scheduled to walk 20 miles from shoreham to south water on the (infamous) downs link path. This walk was beset with disaster from the get go…

First the path was closed then the detour (as with all good detours) left me in the middle of nowhere then a dog attacked some sheep (not my dog…I don’t have one) then it rained for the next 5 hours!

So miserable was it that I stopped after 14miles… still in the plus side I did 14 miles ๐Ÿ™‚

Soggy but still sort of smiling…this wasn’t the end of the walk…I got wetter and less smiley!ย 

Optimistic and smiley at the start of the walk…

Monday involved more dancing…well a long procession and then a little bit of dancing at Hastings Jack in the Green festival… it would have been fun… but there was so much rain!! Still there was dancing and that is always good!!


This was the view from the end of the procession…it looks nicer than it should do!


Mythago, processing…look at the floor…so wet! (photo from Hastings Observer click for source)

Despite the weekends wet drawbacks, it has reminded me of something…I am a damn sight fitter than I used to be…I have turned into a person who can sandwich a 14 mile walk in between two days of dance without crippling myself!! this, my friends is progress!! ๐Ÿ˜€

Dan Alatorre - AUTHOR

helpful writer ramblings from a disturbed mind just like yours

Helen's Book Blog

A blog about books...


K Morris, Poet and Author

one poem every day

the haiku man

Carrot Ranch Literary Community

Wrangling literary arts for writers: words for people!

Postcard from a Pigeon

Musings by Dermott Hayes, a writer

Milly Schmidt

The Cat's Write

Satyr Tales

Twisted stories to amuse and confuse.

Mick Canning

My Writings

Iron Warriors Lifting

Serious about muscle


Myth and legend in dance

Powerlifting Pastry Chef

Lifting all the things. Eating all the noms

The New Girl

Notes and thoughts on an Escape to the Isle of Skye

I didn't have my glasses on....

A trip through life with fingers crossed and eternal optimism.


One Step, One Breath, One Mile at a Time

A photographic blog โ€“ one self-portrait a day


I live the life of a Fat, Black Woman. Apparently, you're mad about it.

Gin or Gym

Thoughts from a recovering Gymophobe on life, fitness and coping with being in my fifties

The Fitness Project

A non sugar coated diary of my path to a healthier life

Blog โ€“ Nerd Fitness

My quest for fitness, health and superpowers

Life Lessons, Laugh Sessions

Learn every day, just remember to laugh along the way

Comfitment Issues

A fitness blog for people with commitment issues

Did That Just Happen Blog

Sometimes even I can't explain my life!


Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.

Mama G's adventures

If you can't fly with the big girls....stay off the broom

Touch Of Cinnamon

There are words that kiss us as if they have a mouth

Trenton Babbage Enterprises

All you'll ever need, if you're only looking for stuff that's specifically here

Art Journal

Art inspired by life

Red Van Travels

Let the ad-van-tures begin...

The Cocktail Challenge

Our attempt at mixing, drinking and tinkering aka getting drunk and feeling fancy

Living Out Loud

With my feet on the ground and head in the clouds...

Who Shot Tony Blair?

In a post-Brexit, pre-dystopian Britain, the people really are in charge. Which is what we all wanted, right?

Building Belaquis

Bodybuilding | Meal Prep | Ramblings

Dinata Misovec

Has Senior Adventures

kirilson photography

the stories behind the pictures, and vice versa

Bryony Page - My Blog

2016 Olympic Silver Medallist in Trampolining, Sheffield University Graduate in Biology, Public Speaker. Twitter:@bryonypage1 Instagram:@bryony_page


from the pretty to the gritty

Lifting Barbelle

Health & Fitness Coach โžก Sports Science BSc ๐Ÿ“š A little bit in love with Country Music ๐Ÿค  Fitness Blogger ๐Ÿ’ช Coffee Fiend โ˜• Dog Lover ๐Ÿถ โฌ‡โฌ‡ Contact:

heavy barbell

Sex, weights and protein shakes. Mainly weights though...