My family have been coming to the Lake District for decades, always staying in the same house on the edge of Coniston Water. Usually we are blessed with torrential rain, the odd sunny day if we’re lucky. This year, however, the weather’s been scorching and we’ve gone the entire week without wearing a raincoat – a miracle!
I’ve used this week to try to ease back into my triathlon training. On the 14th August I’ll be taking part in the Diamond Triathlon at Eton Dorney and then in September, the Hever Castle Triathlon. My original training plan was scuppered when I got shingles, which meant that my dedicated training became much more sporadic. As my shingles disappeared so did my fitness, and I temporarily waved goodbye to my triathlon goals. However, I’ve since talked myself out of this negative mindset and am now just looking forward to taking part in the events and trying to get round in one piece. As long as I cross the finish line smiling, I’m happy!
Over the last week I’ve been trying to increase my overall fitness and get my body used to regular exercise again. I’ve been doing a mixture of long mountain walks, yoga and trail and road running. Seeing as the house we stay in has direct access to the lake, I was intending to get some long open water swims in, which is what Jess usually does, but this turned out to be a bit of a disaster. The first time I tried I got completely freaked out by the ‘lakeweed’ swirling around my face, and the second time my goggles kept leaking and fogging up, which made it impossible to swim. I’ve now ordered my millionth pair of goggles (very dorky ones that look like they’re half snorkel mask, half goggle) in the hope that I will finally find a pair that fit my small face.
We did a great walk across Morecambe Bay, which I wrote about here, followed a couple of days later with a walk up Bow Fell. This mountain’s about 3000ft high, which proved a bit of a slog on the hottest day of the year. Going up was basically like being on the stepper machine at the gym in a sauna – a complete killer on the legs and bum and turned me into a sweaty mess! The views were beautiful though and it was great to be able to sit for a while at the top without getting too cold or blown away by gusty winds. A diet coke and packet of salt and vinegar crisps at the bottom have never tasted so good!
I’ve done a few 4 mile runs along the roads and up some of the fells around the house. Fell running is exhausting as the terrain is very uneven, varying between rock boulders, boggy mud and grass. I have a new found respect for proper fell runners – they must be some of the fittest people out there and they make it look so easy.
This morning I did a 7 mile run, again partly on trails and partly on the road. I felt so sluggish the entire way round and was ridiculously slow. A lot of hill walking combined with muggy weather this morning really seemed to zap my energy. I managed to plod my way around and although I can’t say I hugely enjoyed it, I’m pleased I managed to fit it in – as Jess would say, ‘it’s one more in the legs!’
As I was trying to pack light, I only brought my trail running shoes with me which I used for mountain walking and for running. As the mountains were quite dry they worked well on the walks and provided good grip for running on the trails. However, they felt very heavy and inflexible on the roads, which I think made the runs feel tougher than they usually would. I wear the Adidas Women’s Agravic Boost Gore-tex shoes and in general really like them – I’ll definitely be taking them to California as Jess and I plan on do a lot of hiking and trail running when I’m there (in 26 days in case you’re wondering…)
Overall I’ve had a great week away and it’s been good to find my groove again. The next few weeks are pretty busy with weddings and a trip to Ibiza, but I’m hoping to stay motivated and fit my training in where I can.
I’ll end this post on this super cute picture of Jess and I when we were little and chubby and had to be bribed up the mountains with pockets full of sweets!
Are you training for a triathlon? Have you been to the Lake District?