As the weeks in lockdown have gone on, marathon training has become a huge part of my daily routine and focus. Running and workouts (I’m still working through Briana K Fitness’ Fit At Home programme which I picked up for just $2 in one of her excellent sales!) have provided me with a period of time each day which makes some kind of sense, and has a purpose. Despite everything else going on, and the often-overwhelming sense of helplessness (see the many posts on attempting to grow enough vegetables to feed all our local friends and neighbours), fitness remains the same. It is slow progress, requires above everything else some determination, and the joy of having something big like the marathon ahead of me is that there is a goal.
I’ve now completed the full four weeks of Fit at Home by Briana K Fitness, and on Monday morning I will be starting Sweat It Out, her other entirely bodyweight focused workout. We are so often encouraged, by the press and social media, to believe that our goals around fitness should be to do with weight loss rather than actual fitness itself. I can’t deny that I have often felt the same, but as a six foot tall woman, I’m slowly, at my ripe old age, starting to realise that I will never fit what I’ve come to believe is the “ideal” but if workouts and runs can help me feel stronger and fitter then that is what motivates me now. I will probably never feel “small” but does that even matter? Having said that – being able to buy leggings in extra long lengths does make all the difference to my confidence when out for a run!
With our out-of-home exercise time still advised at just one hour per day, marathon training is a little bit of a challenge. I am now timing my runs exactly so that I step back in the front door just as my phone says 1.00hour. Sometimes this means I’ve squeezed in nearly seven miles, but more often than not I am sitting at around five miles which is completely fine, and I would rather keep my mileage down but be able to stick to the rules. I get home, complete that day’s assigned Briana workout and then take a shower before keeping myself moving as much as I can during the day.
Sometimes I rack up those steps by doing housework, or playing with the dog in the garden (which I know we are very lucky to have) and sometimes I just pace in a circle around the garden, or I have become a recent convert to Leslie Sansone and her Walk At Home videos on YouTube. They’re brilliantly American, so easy to do and are just a nice fun way to go for a “walk” at home. If you’re like me, and get a bit twitchy if you’ve not kept moving quite a bit then these are the ideal way to get a little light exercise in. I’ve even got my Mum involved.
It’s 154 days to the new date of the London Marathon 2020 and I’m back up to around a 7.5mile run for my long runs. I have some goals for May, and a mileage that I am keen to get up to by the end of the month – so expect plenty of reporting on how that’s going!
My top tip for everyone is if you are able to have a pair of indoor trainers and outdoor trainers (my indoor ones are a fairly beaten up old pair that I brushed and cleaned up as much as I could!) then that will be your saving grace on rainy days. You don’t mess up the floor with your workouts, and you know that your indoor trainers are always nice and dry and cosy!