What’s beyond the target

Have you ever been so fixated on a goal that it is all you think about? Losing weight, making money, finding love, running a race, achieving a new PB etc etc.

It’s great to think about the goal and it’s also great to look beyond the goal and to stretch yourself further. Let me explain.

When I was getting back into running, all I thought about was running a 10km race and loosing weight, especially off by bum and tum. Through training for a 10km and then for a 13km race….. I started thinking I wonder if I could run a 1/2 marathon. I started dreaming about it, visualising it, imagining myself crossing the finishing line and the once ‘crazy idea to run a 1/2 marathon’ many years ago started to take shape into reality as the seed was sown.

So by looking beyond my original goal of running 13km, and focusing on something bigger and more exciting, the original goal happened by ‘course set in motion’ it was inevitable that it would happen in preparing and training for my 1st 1/2 marathon.

Another example is of a man breaking a board with a karate chop. His hand doesn’t just stop at the board, it has to follow through with momentum, his focus is beyond the board. The golfer swings the club to hit the ball, and his club, arm and body follows through completing the swing. His body doesn’t stop as soon as his club hits the golf ball.

So what are your goals you’re aiming for? What will that goal give you when you reach it? What’s beyond the goal, that if you focussed on that, the original goal will just happen as ‘a course set in motion’

Let me know how you go, share your goal below in the comments and how you’ve expanded your mind to think beyond it.

Make it happen, make every day come alive. :)

Beetroot Benefits

There are many health benefits in the humble beetroot, it’s the perfect vegetable to add to your diet.

Long Run Beet JuiceThere have been many research studies showing physiological improvements when people drink beetroot juice. Beetroot juice contains high levels of nitrate which widens the blood vessels, reducing blood pressure and allows more blood to flow. It also cuts the amount of oxygen needed for muscles.

Apparently Usain Bolt, the world’s fastest man, and Olympic Gold Medal winner drinks it. So if its good enough for Usain it’s good enough for me and you too. :)

I drink a fresh juice before my long runs and I really do believe it’s improved my performance. I prefer it to gels as it’s a lot lighter on my stomach to digest. When I’m running anything longer than 13km, I run wearing a fuel belt. Depending on the distance I run with up to 4 bottles – 2 x water and 2 x diluted fresh juice (recipe below)

Long Run Juice

2 x apples

2 x carrots

1/2 beetroot bulb

Additional items you can add are – chunk of lemon, ginger and/or small chunk or broccoli stem.

Enjoy :)

Putting Your Best Foot Forward

RunnersAre you looking for a new pair of runners and are overwhelmed by the choice. You can choose by brand, price point, a specialised shoe like bare foot runners, high support or low support.  ”But I just want a pair of  runners. Why does it have to be so complicated?” … yep I hear you.

The best advice I can give is to stay clear of the discount shoe sellers, retail outlets or online stores that don’t know about the technical details of running shoes.

e shoes they sell or don’t ask what type of feet you have. What do I mean by this?

About 4 years ago, I needed a new pair of runners and at the time price was by far the deciding factor for me. The selected half price shoes, didn’t suit my foot type and even though they were comfortable in the shop when I walked in them, they soon provided me loads of grief when I started running outside, resulting in injuries.

Studies have shown, that when you run, you have at least 3 to 4 times your body weight going through your feet. That said isn’t it worth paying a bit more attention to your foundation to prevent injury.

So what’s the answer… just 5 steps

1. Know your foot type

A – Pronate or not

Underpronator – Foot rolls outward and you push off mainly from the small toes on the outside of your foot

Normal – Foot rolls in slightly and you push off evenly from the front of your foot

Overpronator – Foot rolls inward and you push off from your big toe.

B – Foot strike

Do you strike the ground with your toes 1st, mid foot or heel 1st.

2. Get a Gait analysis

Select a retailer who can offer you a gait analysis – basically you run bare foot on a treadmill, and are filmed from the back. The video footage is replayed on a computer screen to show how you run – your foot strike and whether you pronate or not.

3. Compare the options

Select a couple of different shoes that best suit your running requirements and gait analysis.

4. Test before you buy

Put the shoes on and run on the treadmill, reviewing the video footage of yourunning in the new shoes. How do they feel when you run? Are they comfortable, do they rub, too loose etc?

5. Run in comfort

Select the shoes that feel the most comfortable and enjoy running and remember to replace approx. every 800km to ensure the best support for your feet.

The Best Ways To Select Your Fruit & Veg

FruitOk so you’ve heard a million times how you need to eat at least 5 serves of fruit and veg a day right? That it’s good for you….. But …..

- How fresh are they?

- Where have they come from?

- Are they organic?

- Have they been treated with pesticides?

- They seem expensive compared to other foods?

The best way I’ve found, from experience, in finding my own answers to these quesations, is really my philosphy in life.

Keep it simple, Keep it real

VeggiesBuy seasonal fresh produce.

The availability of most fruit and vegetables these days is pretty much year round, however it doesn’t mean to say that it’s at it’s best or freshest. You really can’t go wrong, by listening to Mother Nature and following the seasons – Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, and eating that season’s corresponding fruit and veg.

Not only will they be in bountiful supply, they will be at their freshest and cheapest too. Double whammy. :)

Check out my Seasonal Fresh Produce checklist here - Seasonally Fresh Produce

Butter Squash Wtown crop

Buy direct from your local farmer

Farmer’s Markets are springing up all over the place, and growing in popularity, as people become more aware of eating fresh, organic products, buying locally and supporting the local farmers.

I love them. I find them fun, interesting and its always great to meet and chat with the farmers selling their produce to find out about where they’ve come from and how they were grown. I always mange to pick up some bargains of the day, so I can go home and create some yummy delights in the kitchen.

If you haven’t been to a local farmer’s market, google up your nearest one and drop in at the weekend, trust me you’ll be amazed at the quality, freshness and price compared to your local supermarket.

Enjoy, Happy Exploring and Shopping

7 Ways to Beat The Winter Blues

The seasons have just clicked over from Autumn to Winter and your motivation for exercise has dropped a bit. “But it’s too cold, I don’t feel like it, it’s so dark outside, do I have to, can’t I just hit the snooze button one more time, I’m SAD”…….sound familiar. Well here are 7 ways to help you get back on track to keep the SAD-ness (Seasonal Affective Disorder) at bay.

1. Reconnect to your WHY

What is your fitness goal? Why did you start exercising? Was it to loose weight, get into your skinny jeans, feel more energised, run 5 km, run your 1st marathon? What ever it is for you, reconnect with it, so the end result and the reasons why you want it are greater than your reasons to stop. Believe me, focussing on the WHY really does keep you moving forward.

2. Variety is the Spice of Life

As human beings we are wired to having variety in our lives, to keep things interesting. So if you’ve always exercised a certain way, then break your routine up a little, take a zumba class, boxing, yoga or spin. I did this very thing last year, took the winter off running, and entered a a ‘Tour de France Challenge’ a spin challenge at the local gym. The aim was to see how many kms you could ride in 23 days, and was run at the same time as the Tour de France. It was amazing how my focus shifted away from the cold winter to a new challenge. I even surprised myself coming 3rd, clocking up 1178 kms in 39 classes in 23 days. :)

3. Dress in Layers

Keep your body warm and wear more layers at the start of your winter runs, including gloves and a light jacket. You can always take them off when you start to warm up.

4. Walking on Sunshine

The shorter days and longer nights, can really throw our bodies out of whack. So make the most of the daylight hours, even if its a short lunchtime walk or run during the week, then make the most of being outside in the daylight during the weekend.

5. Vitamin D 

As sunshine provides our body with natural vitamin D, our reserves can be depleted in the winter months. So if you’re living in a place with limited daily sunshine during winter, then you can increase your Vitamin D intake with a vitamin D supplement.

6. Bring it Indoors

Bring your running inside by using a treadmill, either at home or at a gym. Challenge yourself with different work outs – hills, sprint, undulating courses. There are many courses pre-programmed on treadmills.

7. Nuture 

Winter is a time for contemplation, resting and relaxing, so follow your heart and enjoy some time out too.

What’s your favourite winter activity? Let me know in the comments below.

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