parkrun #16

I was shattered on Friday night and was going to have a lie in on Saturday morning. However, I woke up at 8:20am and it was a beautiful morning. In the end I decided to go for a parkrun, my sixteenth one.

It wasn’t an easy run for me, which felt strange at the parkrun as it’s only 5km. I’ve mentioned recently in my long distance training for the half marathon that my right shin has been hurting. This happened early on, and my left shin started to hurt as well. I powered on through but I had to walk for periods of time, and walk up the dreaded slope halfway through the run.

I finished in 34 minutes and 47 seconds, which is my slowest time so far for the Braunstone parkrun. To be honest I thought the time was going to be longer than that, because I had to walk to ease my shins. I still managed to run up the slope at the finishing line and shortly after I finished running, my shins felt fine.

I’ve been running for two years and I’m surprised that I’ve only just starting experiencing pain like this in my shins. Maybe it’s because I’m training to run such a long distance that I’ve never ran before. It’s starting to annoy me now since I really want to run the half marathon in October. I guess with more training my shins will become accustomed to the longer distances.

I must remember to rub some Deep Heat on my shins next time I go out for a run. That’s what my parents have suggested doing, as it helps to ease pain and may help while I’m running. I don’t need to put any on when I’ve finished running as the pain goes away quickly.


Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear 🙂

parkrun year #1

I can’t believe that it’s been a year since I first discovered the parkrun!

I was away in Guernsey for a short break and on the plane journey there, someone told me about the parkrun taking place on Saturday. By chance I had packed my running gear, because I was training for the Race for Life, and I wanted to experience running somewhere completely different.

On Saturday 14th May 2016, I ran in my first ever parkrun along the coast of Guernsey. I enjoyed the experience of running so close to the sea and the parkrunners were very friendly and welcoming.

I then soon found out that there are are several local parkruns near where I live, which I had no idea about. After my trip to Guernsey I went to the Braunstone parkrun and had the same experience of meeting a friendly community of runners.

Since discovering the parkrun in Guernsey, I have ran a total of 15 parkruns. My slowest time has been 35 minutes and 38 seconds, which was my first parkrun at Guernsey. My personal best so far has been 32 minutes and 1 second, which was achieved at the Braunstone parkrun.

I am so glad that I was told about the parkrun. It is a fun way of keeping fit, a great way to meet new people and a convenient way to time yourself, as you get your result at the end of the run for free. I must admit, I am not the most committed parkrunner out there, but when I do make it at 9am on a Saturday morning, I feel great running along with hundreds of runners.

I’d like to be able to complete a parkrun in 30 minutes- that is one of my targets for this year. I’d also like to reach the milestone of 25 parkruns, which means 10 more parkruns to go. I’d aim for 50, but that’s another 35 to go. Who knows, I might reach that target if I try hard enough.


Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear 🙂

15km round #2

I’m glad to write that I managed to run 15km for the second time!

It was glorious this morning and I was determined to complete 15km this time. Last Sunday I tried to run 15km but it was a failed attempt, due to pain in my right shin. I ran 5km and then called it a day. Today the pain came back in my right shin, so I walked it off a few times and after about 4km, the pain had gone and I felt comfortable enough to carry on with 15km.

Having to walk on several occasions during the run this morning meant that my time was a bit more than my 1st attempt at 15km at the Resolution Run, which I completed in 1 hour and 38 minutes. I completed 15km today in 1 hour and 42 minutes. I thought it would’ve been much longer than this so I’m pleased with the result.

My shin feels fine after the run; my legs hurt which is normal for me after a long run. My father mentioned again that feeling pain in your shin while running is normal. I don’t like to use Google for looking up illnesses or pain, but in this instance I searched for pain in shins on Google and it came up with shin splints. I don’t want to cause myself injury, so I’ll bear this mind while running and if the pain becomes unbearable, then I’ll consider seeking advice from a doctor or look at physiotherapy.

I really need to get myself down to the gym to aid with my training. I’ve struggled to get up early in the mornings before work for my new job, but this week I’ll aim to get down to the gym at least once this week. I wonder if not going to the gym for a month has had anything to do with my right shin while running. I tend to do cardio which uses my legs, and I need to built up more stamina in my legs to complete the half marathon.

Speaking of half marathon, I’ve only got 5 months to go! Ideally I’d like to run 15km again before I step up to the next level and run 17.5km.


Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear 🙂

Dance for Life

Last night I had an interesting and very fun experience. I treated my mother (it was her Christmas present) to go to Peter Kay’s Dance for Life, which was in aid of Cancer Research UK. Held at the Nottingham Motorpoint Arena, thousands of people danced for three hours with Peter Kay as the DJ along with actress Sian Gibson.

My mother and I wished we knew in advance that people were dressing up for this event. Most people were dressed in 80s gear, but there were also smurfs, Where’s Wally?, Elvis Presley and other quirky characters and celebrities. People were also dressed up with t-shirts designed for the Dance for Life in florescent colours and were wearing light up trainers and glow sticks. However, I did wear my pink running t-shirt which I’ve worn for the Race for Lifes, and I saw some other people wearing them too.

The atmosphere was electric! Peter Kay and Sian Gibson took it in turns to play the DJ set and there were really funky images on the large screen behind them, like in the photo below (you can just see Peter and Sian in the middle). The music was a mix bag as well, with 80s and 90s music and popular modern party anthems. A Zumba group from Nottingham also came onto the stage to show some Zumba moves and join in with the fun.

Night fever!

Dancing for three hours straight was a lot of fun, and tiring as well! Everyone looked shattered at the end of the night, but with big smiles on their faces. It was a fun form of exercise- I’d love to go to another Dance for Life again!

Another funky backdrop

I’ve completed three Race for Lifes (5km which I walked and two 10km ones which I ran), which were also in aid of Cancer Research UK. Last night was a very different way of raising money, as the majority of the money paid for tickets is donated to the charity. Peter Kay also encourages people to get sponsored for the three hour dance-a-thon via JustGiving, which has raised over £52,000 so far!


Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear 🙂

15km (failed attempt)

This morning didn’t quite go to plan (as you can tell from the title of this blog). I was hoping to run 15km for the second time; it’s been way over a month since I last ran 15km which was at the Resolution Run in March. I signed up for the Leicester Half Marathon recently which means I’m definitely running 21km (13 miles) this year.

The run was going well at first. I passed my father this morning walking one of our dogs called Barney. Barney tried to run with me which was cute, and he was confused whether to stay with my father or run with me. He stayed with my father in the end which I’m glad of. I need to have a go at running with Barney; he’s a Springer Spaniel who is full of so much energy so a run would do him the world of good.

I hadn’t really ran that far when my right shin was starting to hurt. I carried on running, ignoring the pain but I had to walk for a bit. It’s not the first time that this has happened. I’ve felt pain on my right shin before when I’ve been out running, which has only happened a couple of times. I really wanted to carry on and run 15km, but I didn’t want to injure myself. Each time I resorted to walking my right shin felt sore, so I decided to call it a day and walk back home.

Ready for running on a Sunday morning

I managed to run 5km this morning, the equivalent of a parkrun. I was disappointed that I didn’t make it further, but I believe that I made the decision to stop running. My father told me after my run this morning that it’s normal to feel pain in your shins when running. There’s not a lot of muscle on the shins, it’s all in the calfs. I just hope that it doesn’t start becoming a regular occurrence as I want to be able to complete a half marathon. The pain didn’t really last that long when I got back thankfully.

I do need to make long distance running a regular thing now since it’s just over 5 months away until the big day! I also need to get back to the gym, as I’ve not been for over a month! This is because I am struggling to adapt to my new job- I feel so exhausted at the end of each day and I struggle to wake up early enough to go to the gym before work. I don’t want to go to the gym after work as I wouldn’t be there until 6pm, which is a peak time for my gym. I used to be able to get up at 6:20am a few days a week in my previous job, so if I persevere, I’m sure that I can make it to the gym. Even though I’ve not been to the gym for a while, the 2.5 mile walk to work has been doing me good.

I need to work on my adaptability.


Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear 🙂

Update #16

It’s the month of May- how did that come around so quickly?!

I’ll admit, the past few weeks have been hard for me. I won’t go into details, but it always seems to be the case that when your life is looking up, it’s going to come down at some point. I’m at the down point currently, but I’ve had the comfort of my family and friends and I know what I need to do to move forward. My blog definitely helps me in this respect, as I can look back on what I’ve achieved and how I’m developing as a person.

April saw the end of lent, which meant that I could start eating meat again! I have enjoyed being back on the carnivorous diet, but I continue to opt for vegetarian options when I fancy it or when it sounds particularly tasty (I had a spinach, cheddar and butternut squash tart this weekend, which was so good!). As per tradition (for the past two years), I had bacon in a hot cross bun for breakfast on Easter Sunday and then a lamb roast dinner in the evening.

Before the end of lent I made two vegetarian quiches which worked out rather well. One was spinach and ricotta and the other was made with Mediterranean vegetables. Since starting my new job I’ve not had as much time to cook in the evenings, but hopefully I’ll be creative one night (or during the weekends) and make something new to post on my blog. I like to maintain the foodie aspect of my blog all year round, not just around lent.

Last month I signed up for the Leicester half marathon. On Sunday 15th October I will be running 21km (13 miles) around Leicester, which will be my biggest fitness challenge yet. I need to go out long distance running at some point, since 5 months will soon whizz by before I know it!

I ran my fifteenth parkrun in April. It wasn’t my personal best but it was nice to run on a beautiful Saturday morning.

I’ve just thought of this target- it would be nice to be able to complete a parkrun in 30 minutes by the end of this year. I think that’s an achievable target, considering that my personal best so far has been 32 minutes and 19 seconds. All I need to do is run 2 minutes and 19 seconds faster then I will finish 5km in 30 minutes- I can do it!

The feminist front has been quiet for me last month, but I like to keep myself updated with what’s going on in the movement towards gender equality. I follow many feminist pages on Facebook, such as Women’s Rights News, My Favourite F Word is Feminism and Feminists United. Generally there is a lot of positivity and empowering posts which make my day.


Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear 🙂

parkrun #15

It was glorious this morning, so I couldn’t possibly miss out on doing a parkrun today. The sun was out and the sky was completely blue. It’s been a while since I last ran at the Braunstone parkrun (almost a month), and I feel better for running this morning.

The last parkrun  I did was my personal best at 32 minutes and 1 second. This was the week after I ran 15km at the Resolution Run, which was also at Braunstone Park. I felt pumped because I managed to complete the distance equivalent to 3 parkruns, which helped me to achieve my personal best so far.

Today I finished my 15th parkrun in 33 minutes and 14 seconds, so I didn’t meet or beat my best time. I still feel happy about it though, because I hadn’t been out running for a while, and I’ve not been able to get to the gym either.

Since starting my new job three weeks ago, I have been walking (most days) 5 miles a day. I walk quite fast on my own so it’s a good form of exercise. I’d like to fit in the gym, which I can. I’ve just got to get my act together and wake up a bit earlier in the morning on work days. The gym I go to is on my way to work which is very convenient.

Now that the British spring is in full swing and the summer is on its way, I’d like to try running at more parkruns on Saturdays. I can’t next Saturday as I’m away for the weekend, but maybe the Saturday after that. When the weather is nice it does motivate me more to run. It’s nice to see lots of runners ready to run 5km; generally the better the weather, the more parkrunners.


Happy reading and blogging!

Clare Bear 🙂