The Truth About 2015

Well. I think it’s time to be completely honest with you guys. You’ll have to forgive me – for about 4 months now I’ve been keeping secrets from you all. Can you believe it? What a bad blogger.

 

But…. the truth is…. that I am going to have a little mini-B! Yep. Later on this year, we will welcome a new addition to our family, and we’re crossing our fingers that a) it won’t mind being put in a running stroller, and b) that it likes Nutella. Because if it has problems with either of those two, we’ll have to consider some serious lifestyle changes. I know that a baby usually brings a whole host of changes, but let’s be honest. These are the ones that will matter.

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So! Now hopefully it all makes sense as to why I mysteriously couldn’t run fast in December, and why I was ‘slowly building back up’ this year.

 

Next week I’ll fill you all in on how running has really been this year. It’s not very different to what I’ve written already, but I’ve had to re-work my expectations on what constitutes a good run, a fast run, and what are good running conditions. But I just wanted to quickly share the news with you as I’m well aware that the past three-four months have been somewhat running-lite compared to before!

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I hope you all have a great weekend. I am a bridesmaid at a family wedding, which will be fun and ANOTHER chance to tear up the dance floor. If nothing else, thanks to Beyonce workshops, Miami and this weekend, this bub should have good rhythm!

 

Ellie B

Dancing Queen…

…Young and sweet, only seventeen As if I’ll tell you! A true lady never reveals her true age!

 

So this week = no running. This week = partying! My only form of exercise this week was hitting the dance floor, and this happened in quite.a.big.way. Unless you count eating cakes and pastries because I also did a lot of that too.

 

It all kicked off with my sister-in-law’s hen weekend. Because she is the next Beyonce (although not marrying a hip-hop star), we booked in for a Beyonce workshop on Saturday afternoon. We learned a dance routine to ‘Run the World’, with my sis-in-law starring as Queen B herself. We were rocking it all over the place, and we though it was pretty damn hot – until we got the video later on this week! Then we realised just how far from Beyonce we actually are. Still, never give up on your dreams and all that….

 

For a while I got confused and thought I was at a Nicky Minaj workshop

For a while I got confused and thought I was at a Nicky Minaj workshop

Later that night we went out to a club in Mayfair because it was also her 30th birthday that day too. Run the World came on, so we all lined up in our places, and the crowd formed a circle around is expecting something great. And not even 5 hours after the workshop, we failed. We were all convinced that we knew the right part, but in reality we were all doing something else. It was like this (totally worth watching – the dance starts a minute in and you won’t regret it!).

 

We fueled with afternoon tea. Every one of these cakes is inspired by an haute couture creation by the big designers.

We fueled with afternoon tea. Every one of these cakes is inspired by an haute couture creation by the big designers. Sorry the pic is so dark….

Anyway, the next day my legs were sore. My quads were burning – they hadn’t had a workout like that since I was doing pole routines last year. So even though there was no running that weekend, I consoled myself with my dance floor workout.

 

And this carried on throughout the week! On Monday I went to Miami for a work conference. I know. Before you judge me, let me tell you we had to do Very Important Work in the day, and only got to see Miami really by night. Even then we didn’t really see Miami. We saw a lot of a nightclub called Liv, and we liked it so much that we went back there again the next night. So there were another two nights of solid dancing there. So Miami summed up would be: lots of dancing, lots of work, lots of pastries, and no roller blading.

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This is actually what Miami looks like. In Real Life.

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Don’t get me wrong. Just because I’ve done a Beyonce workshop and have spend 3 of the last 7 nights partying on down, I haven’t upped my game. I still have my trusty 4 dance moves that I rotate throughout the night, and they serve me well. At least, they raise my heart rate and cause sweat to run down my made-up face. I don’t think they look good though.

 

Anyway, it was a lovely change to running in the cold (it has been colllllddddd here!). I’m sure that all the work I did last week equates to at least a ten mile run…. what do you think?

 

Ellie B

February Feelings

This week has been a well-balanced week. By well-balanced, I mean: running has gone extremely well, and everything else has not.

 

On Saturday I ran 7k throughout London. I love London because it is a giant mess of buildings. One minute you’re running beside an ugly building from the 60s, and the next you find yourself face-to-face with some piece of history that’s older than European-Australia by a couple of centuries. Such as this:

 

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St. John’s Gate, Clerkenwell, built in 1504 as the entrance to a priory, and later Samuel Johnson’s workplace. I totally Wikipedia-ed that, I did not know that myself.

 

Then later on this week I took advantage of the gorgeous, if not cold, weather that Durham was having to do two 10k runs by the river. Things were going right in my running, the sun was bright, and the air was crisp – a combination which always increases the endorphin effect by 1000%. I did not Wikipedia that, but I am fairly confident that it’s a fact.

 

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The rest of my week: it wasn’t awful, but it was busy. My internet died 10 minutes before I had to give a presentation to my colleagues throughout Europe. I had to high-tail it to a Starbucks where I tried to be productive on their measly wifi, and had to keep buying hot drinks for the pleasure. Actually, that last part wasn’t so bad.

 

SB and I are also away this weekend – we have a stag/hen night to go to respectively. And then NEXT WEEK I am off to Miami for a company conference!! It is going to be intense but awesome. Awesomely intense. I haven’t packed my running gear, because what with hen nights and conferences and late dinners and drinks I know I won’t be setting my alarm any earlier than I have to…..

 

Hope you’re all having a good week!

 

Ellie B

Running: It’s a Family Affair

A few weekends ago, my Dad ran the Sun Run in Sydney. SB, Dad and I ran the very first Sun Run in 2011 – it was also my last race in Sydney as we moved to the UK a few weeks afterwards, so I am really fond of it. It’s a 6.5k route that takes you from Dee Why beach along the coast, finishing up at Manly beach. My Dad has run it every year since.

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The UK has some amazingly scenic races, but there is nothing like running along Sydney’s coast first thing in the morning and seeing the sun sparkle on the water. It starts at 6.30 am, and the year I ran it, it was already really hot.  It was the perfect last race in Sydney.

 

Anyway. My Dad says that he’s not in as good a shape at the moment, and his pace was slower. I asked if it was an easier run because of it, he was very quick to interrupt and say “No!!”.

 

It turns out then he was younger, my Dad ran a lot. He ran half marathons and ran the City2Surf fairly regularly. For some reason I don’t remember him running when I was a child, and we didn’t talk about it. However, both my brother and I now are super keen (would you have ever guessed?) and it’s really nice to hear his stories: when he was 12 he did a 50mile walk with the Scouts, and he was in the lead. My grandfather drove alongside to him, and my Dad decided to run the last 10 miles or so because, why the heck not? Actually, I feel I should put a disclaimer with this anecdote: please see the asterisk*!

 

When we were younger (and still now actually) he was always someone who would encourage us to do put our ideas into practice, and more importantly, to stand by our commitments. If ever I wanted to get out of anything, Dad was The Worst person to turn to: he never let us off easy. He was annoyingly alllllll about the solution, and would always present the situation so you ended up thinking it was a good idea to do whatever it was you were trying to get out of.  And then you’d walk away and think “Hang on…. What? Ahh.. Dammit!!”

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Now I am a wise old crow, I can see that’s not a bad lesson to learn…. and it’s also 100% the mentality of a runner. Personally speaking, I have had to convince myself that running an extra 12 miles on blood blisters the size of a small grapefruit is a good idea, or that there’s nothing more comfortable than running in heat where you lose most of your fluids just from stepping outside.

 

I wonder if my brother and I like running so much because we have some natural physical tendency, or whether we respond to the training and discipline thanks to the mentality our parents nurtured in us**. It’s the same mentality that Dad had a few weekends ago: he knew it would be a tough race, and he knew he wasn’t in the best shape, but there was no way he would pull out! Far better to run it slowly, and bloody do it, than to not stand by the commitment and let it beat you.

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So, there you have it. A nice little post about my family and running for you. And Dad (because he has been known to read this from time to time), I’m not even after anything. Not even money. I promise.

 

Ellie B

 

*This is how I remember it. Maybe it didn’t happen like that. But I live 17,000kms away from my Dad and can’t just ring him to check because of the stupid time zones. So you’ll just have to trust me on this.

 

** Ok, second disclaimer. I’m not saying we’re a family of wunder-runners: I know literally millions of people do it, and are much faster than we three. But I do think it’s interesting it’s something my brother & I started independently. It’s been something we’ve all been able to bond over during the last ten years, and I wonder why that is. I’m sure it’s very interesting for you to contemplate to. 😉

My Most Recents

Happy Monday everyone! Did you have a good weekend? SB and I went to the seaside on Saturday. Let me tell you about beaches in the North East of England. They are beautiful. They have golden sand, big surf waves, and in the Summer time, ice cream vans dotted around for everyone to enjoy. They are some of the most beautiful beaches I’ve seen, and coming from Sydney, that’s a big statement. However. They are Never. Ever. Ever. Warm. Our plan was to go for a walk along the seaside, but we managed about five minutes before we ran into a coffee shop to stuff our faces with hot chocolate and chocolate cake.

 

This is how it looks in Summer. Don't be fooled by the people - it's not warm.

This is how it looks in Summer. Don’t be fooled by the people heading towards the water – it’s not warm.

 

To kick off this week, I am going to share with you all a few of My Most Recents. Enjoy!

 

My most recent run: A chilled out 7.5k today during lunch. Durham is a big university town, and recently a number of students fallen into the river after a night out and then drown. It’s eerie to run beside it, after seeing the police searches. But is still a pretty sight though.

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My most recent text message: To my lovely friend who is a paediatrician-come bus driver (it’s complicated). We are making plans for Friday night – yeee-haaa!

 

My most recent book: Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey, in which an elderly woman who has trouble remembering things wants to solve the mystery of the whereabouts of her missing friend. While also remembering what happened to her sister sixty years ago. It’s really interesting, and another realyl unique narrative.

 

My most recent inspiration: I was debating whether or not to run today. It’s cold and grey and to be honest I didn’t really want to face the hills. Then my issue of Runner’s World arrived through the post, AND I saw this on instagram:

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Awwwww how can you NOT run after seeing this?

 

My most recent TV show: Last Tango in Halifax. I heart it so much! It’s so cute, nourishing and warm all at once. It’s the Shepherd’s Pie of TV shows. I am watching it right now.

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My most recent movie: The Imitation Game. If you needed another reason to love Benedict Cumberbatch, this is it. He’s basically Sherlock with a conscience, fancy blazers, and cheek bones that could cut glass. The film is good too. All about WW2 codes and social injustice. I’m not just gushing about the star, I promise.

 

This week I am going to be running in London – I am really looking forward to it as London is one of my favourite places to run. I really hope that the sun is up before 7am these days….. It’s been a while since I’ve known this for sure…..!

 

I hope your Monday’s weren’t too bad – only four days left til the weekend now!

 

Ellie B