Living la Lija Loca: hills and clothes

Yesterday… All my troubles seemed so far away, now it looks as though they’re here to stay…I wonder if Paul McCartney had been in training when he wrote that.


Yesterday I felt like a hero, my legs felt like rods of iron, and I was dazzled by endorphins in all their shiny goodness. I thought it a good idea to do something that I like to call ‘Lunch Time Lunges’. It’s pretty self-explanatory: during lunch time, I do some lunges & squats, and then stretching and foam rolling. It all went well, and after work I tackled the set workout: 6 miles, with 8*2 min hill runs.


Sensible me shortened the run  to 5 miles with 6*2 min hill runs because of Lunch Time Lunges, and didn’t I feel smug getting two workouts in?!  I am a freak of nature because I actually like hill runs. Mentally it’s easier to throw yourself up a hill as fast as you can than run on flat – I think because you already know the hill will be hard. The satisfaction of reaching the top is great. I honestly urge you to try a couple of hill reps and see if you don’t feel like a champ at the end.


But, today. Today, my quads and glutes are quite angry at me. Tonight I’m going for a gentle run with the Striders to loosen everything up a bit. Anyway, now that pity party is done with, let’s move on to the next topic.


Now that the weather is heating up, and the sun is still about when I run, I have recently been considering a Very Important Topic: running clothes.


Hear me out. On the list of decisions to be made when you go running, the sartorial ones often top of the list: is it hot/cold/windy/wet, will you need leggings/three-quater-length pants/sun visor/gloves, is that pair of socks clean, and this is before you try to pick which shoes would be the most appropriate for the task.


House of Fraser have launched a collection with a Canadian brand called Lija, and I’ve been sent these images to see what I think. And to share them with you to see what you think.  Generally the collection is for running and yoga, and is available now through HoF.

Lija 1

I’m not ashamed to admit that, as well as functionality, the colour and style of the clothes is important to me too. I’m a sucker for bright clothes, particularly in the dead of Winter, and it makes me feel happy just wearing bright colours. And I know Gilly generally likes to put on as many luminescent clothes as she can too. We’re the double-trouble-colour runners.

Lija 2

So. Based on the images, I am a fan. I love the colours of the clothes – I find that there’s not such a huge choice of bright colours for running gear here. Maybe I’m looking in the wrong store. But these are colourful and fun, without being too girly and fussy. The material looks lightweight and breathable too.

Lija 5

I had a look on the HoF website, and the tops/shorts generally start at £40, and the pants sorry, trousers, start at £60. After a quick look on some other label sites, these are competitively priced.

Lija 4

Overall I’d say they have a lovely, sleek look that gives them an edge on a purely aesthetic level. My favourites are the pink sports bra and the turquoise vest top. They are priced within the more aspirational brand level, so they might be one of the items that I ‘treat myself to because I deserve it’ rather than be my go-to label. However, I’ll definitely be checking out my local House of Fraser to see how they look in the flesh. You can see more of the collection here.



Ellie B


PS – I was sent these images to share, but all opinions are my own.