“It’s extraordinary what you can do with the power of people together”

I just want to take a moment in this blog to say what a man Greg James is! I know this isn’t dog or agility related but I couldn’t not mention it in here. Greg James is a Radio 1 … Continue reading

My favourite blogs

I love reading other blogs and often take my inspirations from what others write. Just because I’m a dog blogger doesn’t mean I just read other dog blogs, so I sharing my favourite blogs in rough categories to make it easier … Continue reading

Guinness passed his MOT

This weekend I took Guinness for an MOT check-up with my good friend whose a McTimoney Chiropractitioner. I’m pleased to report that she was mega impressed with his muscle definition. His back legs are feeling really good and even, his core is … Continue reading

What is my lack of fitness stopping me from doing?

I sound like a broken record at the moment… “I’m so unfit”… “I want to be stronger”… “I wish I was fitter”. I’ve been saying it for ages and not really doing much about it. But the other day while … Continue reading

Our Fitness Plan

I’m lazy. There I said it! To be honest I’ve never tried to hide it. As well as being lazy, I’m also extremely busy (odd combination I know!). Therefore I really struggle to implement and stick to a fitness plan! More … Continue reading

Back in business

I decided to take the next step forward with Guinness’ training and booked onto a weave and contact workshop with Kathryn Stickney. Afterall weaves and contacts are one of the issues we have in the ring. I haven’t been able … Continue reading

So… is your agility dog fit?

Dog Sports.Cz do a slow motion video of the International Border Collie Champ every year. It’s always great to see (although a little scary) exactly what our dogs are going through and really emphasises the need for safe equipment and … Continue reading

Fitbits, Fat Bits and Pet Trackers

For the last few weeks Guinness and I have both been trying out our own fitness trackers. I went for the FitBit Charge HR and Guinness has been using the Tractive Motion Sensor, currently the first and only pet tracker … Continue reading

On Yer Bike!

I’ve half-heartedly been trying to get fit for a while, and whether he likes it or not Guinness has been coming along for the ride. This weekend we were on it! Saturday I dusted off my bike after a month … Continue reading

So have we retired from agility?

The answer is Hell No! I’ve had so much to blog about I’m afraid letting you know about our agility training had to take a bit of a back seat! The good news is we are back at it, big … Continue reading

Can You Dig It Winter Series

Well it’s been a while since I was at a show! December was the last time, I left Guinness at home while I judged the morning then went home at lunch time. Today was a different kettle of fish. We … Continue reading

A Dip In The Pool

Recently I took Guinness to Well-Dogs Hydrotherapy in Betley, Cheshire. He likes to swim in the lake but he would benefit much more from a proper swimming session in warm water. Lorna who runs Well-Dogs is lovely and we have … Continue reading

Week 9! NHS Couch 2 5K! Finish Line!

Finished!

9 weeks of NHS training program and I am a runner!

This week is just as expected, 3 runs of 30 minutes.

I did the first run with the podcast, another with my own music using my watch and the final listening to the podcast again.

I haven’t found it easy. I’m not a super sexy, easy runner. But I did run for 30 minutes without stopping. Plus I always feel good when I finish. I struggle a little through the runs, sometimes I feel close to the edge of my ability .But I can always keep going and I can always finish!

It’s absolutely awesome! In 21 years of being fairly fit and active I have never been able to run for much more than a few minutes and now I am running 2 and a half, nearly 3 miles.

My pace is average, quite slow but good.

I’m going to make sure I go for a run at least once a week so I don’t lose fitness, but as long as I have time I will be running for 3 days a week and work to increase how far I go in 30 minutes.

For anyone considering doing this then I would say YES YES YES! Honestly I thought I’d never be a runner and even though I do lots of walking, climbing & play sports I have never ever been able to jog and this has got me jogging easily! For 30 whole minutes! When I started the podcasts 5 minutes of jogging seemed like a marathon but in a few weeks 5 minutes is nothing.

Everyone can be a runner with a little help from the NHS. Thank you so much!

Week 8! NHS Couch to 5K

I feel great!

28 minutes runs! Get in there!

Each run is still tough. It’s a struggle. But the after feeling is fantastic. Every time 60 seconds left I get rocket shoes and get up to a near sprint at the end.

I haven’t been doing these podcasts regularly. Things have gotten in the way. But I’ve been doing them and I’ve completed each one!

When telling my friend he said “Why didn’t you do 30 minutes!?”. I thought this myself, I could do another 2 minutes! It’s only 2 minutes! But that’s what comes next and only once Week 8 is finished.

I’m still amazed at the progress I have made. I started this not being able to run for 3 minutes. I never thought I’d be able to run for 28 minutes. My pace isn’t bad either. 11/12 minutes miles! That’s good. I use MapMyFitness phone app to record the section I am running to get stats about speed and calories.

It is very important to me that I keep running. I don’t want to lose this new fitness I have. I don’t want to give it up because I know I will quickly decrease to being unable to run for very long again. I shall keep this up after completing and I shall keep my new stamina. Not only that but I want to improve! I want to up my speed! Faster, harder, fitter!

Bring on Week 9! Stay tuned for the final of my NHS Couch to 5K Experience!

Week 7! NHS Couch to 5K

Week 7!
Every run of the week is the same again, doing long runs with only a days break in between. A different form of stamina building.

5 minutes walk. 20 minutes run. 5 minutes walk.

This week has been tough and long. I’ve not kept to the schedule very well due to various things, so I’ve had a week in between runs at time. Not recommended, it definitely makes it much harder! However for one run I covered 2 miles! Another run it was 1.5 miles. Not bad! Laura is great as usual and talks at all the right times to keep you motivated. I do find the music a bit boring though, especially on long runs, but it is upbeat enough.

As usual I did it! Not too shabby. It was hard, i nearly gave up, I pushed and I feel good.
It’s very important to do your runs with only one day break, even if its raining or you’ve had a bad day get out there and have a run. You’ll feel worse if you have longer breaks.

On to Week 8! Nearly finished! But I shall keep it up.

Week 6! NHS Couch to 5K

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Finished! My pace has slowed so bad after 2 weeks off, but that doesn’t matter. All that matters is that I kept going and I completed them.

Split into 3 runs. Each run starts and finishes with 5 minute walks.

Run 1 – 5 minute run. 3 minute walk. 8 minute run. 3 minute walk. 5 minute run.

Run 2 – 10 minutes run. 3 minute walk. 10 minute run.

Run 3 – 25 minute run.

This makes more sense now. Last week we increased through the week to a long run, then it has been important to go back to easier shorter runs and progress to a long run again. Next week we move on to longer runs every time.

Boy do I hurt now! I’ve really struggled with my stamina and breathing after my very pathetic cold & break. But I’ve managed fine and felt better each time. The 25 run was tough. I started off very well, then developed a horrible stitch that came and went. For the last 5 minutes it felt like a knife in my hip! But then I finished! Walked it off & feel a little sore, but good.

Now I can’t wait for next time and to keep improving! Brilliant program.

Week 5! NHS Couch to 5K

Wow! This week really steps it up! Week 5 is split into three podcasts, each run is different!

Every session starts and finishes with a 5 minute warm-up and cool-down walk.

Run 1: 5 minute run. 3 minute walk. 5 minutes run. 3 minute walk. 5 minute run.

Run 2: 8 minutes run. 5 minute walk. 8 minute run.

Run 3: 20 minutes run.

Gosh! Having just completed Run 3, doing 5 minute runs in Run 1 feels so long ago! It felt like such an achievement. Each session I started off with a little bit of dread, then finished with a great feeling of elation and achievement! It sounds and feels like crazy progress but it really works. The big one is run 3, running for 20 minutes! I started off sure that I wouldn’t be able to do it, but quickly pushed that thought away and kept telling myself I could. Laura said I could do it too and I believed her!

It’s all about pacing yourself. Which is easy by now! Plus I find breathing nice and easy too! For the first few weeks I was panting away sucking in and out breath. During week 4 and 5 I’ve been able to concentrate on slow breathing, in through the nose and out through the mouth. I still breath in through my mouth sometimes and get a little out of breath but that’s fine.

I couldn’t believe it when I ran for 20 minutes tonight! The most I had done was 8 minutes and suddenly I’d done 20 minutes! The feeling is awesome. And it’s doo-able! Almost easy! When Laura told me there was 2 minutes left I started pushing faster and getting less tired, almost as if I’d hit a runners high! (If there is such a thing). I actually struggled less on my 20 minutes run than on my 8 minute runs. Wow. To think only 5 weeks ago I couldn’t really run for more than 2 minutes, and some people can’t even do that when they start this. Running with my dog outside in the fresh air is so beneficial as well, and it’s great for my dog! Although he finds it far easy than me being a Border Collie.

This plan really really works! And feels sooo good. It’s one of the best things I’ve ever done so far.

Week 2! NHS Couch to 5K

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Now finished Week 2!

90 seconds running and 2 minutes walking. Repeat for 20 minutes.

2 minutes sounds like a long time walking, however it’s enough rest time after 90 seconds running which feels long enough. 90 seconds is a good time of running, it’s doo-able, but you feel it.
Remember this is designed for people who can’t run very well.

After my first 90 seconds I had a stitch, but I walked it off after 2 minutes and it didn’t come back again.

As long as you keep a steady pace it is quite enjoyable. My muscles felt it afterwards in a good ache way. After last week I wasn’t sure I’d be able to step it up but I really surprised myself.

I feel great! Bring on Week 3.

http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/c25k/Pages/get-running-with-couch-to-5k.aspx