Couch to 5k – Week 4

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This week the pace was knocked up a notch with our routine progressing to –

Run 3 minutes, then walk 1 1/2 minutes.
Run 5 minutes, then walk 2 1/2 minutes.
This is repeated twice.

There was an evident improvement in my fitness levels this week, which was apparent when moving up to the full five minutes of running. This made me and the rest of the running group feel proud, especially when thinking back to week one, when we felt tired after one minute of running.

I was a little apprehensive before starting week four, mainly because I was going from the treadmill on holiday, back to the windy pavement. However, other than feeling a little more achy than usual the next day, I managed fine. As a group we meet on a Wednesday with our Coach, and then I completed my next two runs on Friday and Monday.

Unfortunately, my Mum, who is also completing this course with me, has injured her calf muscle. She was really beginning to get into running so I hope she will be joining us again soon!

I’m looking forward to beginning week five, and hope that it continues to be as successful for me!

If anyone lives local and would like more information on how they can complete this course, don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Image sourced from Pinterest.

Couch to 5k week two and three.

So, for the last two weeks I have been on holiday in Bahrain, which is why I have decided to blog about week two and three together.

I’m not going to lie, it was difficult finding the inspiration to run whilst on holiday in the lovely weather. However, I figured that half an hour out of my day, three times a week, isn’t a great deal so I stuck to it! And besides, with all the eating and drinking over the course of the holiday, my figure appreciated some exercise!

My view from the treadmill

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Week 2 routine:
90 secs running and 2 mins walking for 20 minutes

Week 3 routine:

90 secs run 90 secs walk
90 secs run 90 secs walk
3 minutes run 3 minutes walk
90 secs run 90 secs walk
90 secs run 90 secs walk
3 minutes run 3 minutes walk

Each routine begins with a warm up of brisk walking and dynamic stretches, and then, a cool down of brisk walking and long stretches.

I completed all of week two whilst away and two runs of week three, which means I only need to do one run when I’m back home before Wed, as I leave Bahrain this evening. I’m really proud of myself for sticking to running, as before, I was definitely the type who wouldn’t bother whilst being away. I feel this only proves how successful the course is going, and hopefully, in a few weeks i’ll be completing the full 5K! I got that into it, I even decided to do other exercises in the gym 🙂

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One concern that I do have, is that I’ve completed my runs on the treadmill on holiday and may feel the difference when going back to the pavement.

Have any of you taken up a new fitness regime lately?

Couch to 5k – Week 1

Here’s something a little healthy to add to your Easter weekend!

So, as stated on my last post, this week I began my journey from the couch to 5k. This is a program heavily supported by the NHS, which is designed to encourage anyone to take up exercise.

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The course lasts for nine weeks, when we should be able to complete the full 5k! I’m completing the course with a running group, which includes four of us and our running coach, Pete. It’s great running as a group because we can all encourage each other and having a coach there to support and inform us all, is just fantastic!

Week one: 5 minute warmup, which includes a brisk walk and some gentle exercises.
Followed by 1 minute of running and 1 and a half minutes of walking.
This is repeated 8 times and then completed with a five minute
walk to cool down. When we got back, we did some vital stretching!

Beginning running like this made it much more fluent and really broke it down. It’s fab having Pete there to show us the important exercises, and knowing we have a coach will inspire me to keep it up! As a group we meet with Pete once a week; however, in order to finish the course successfully, we must also run on our own at least two/three times a week.

Yesterday we set off on our first run without Pete, and just ran for a bit and walked for a bit. This is obviously better than doing nothing but it just didn’t feel structured. However, I have found this fab app called Get Running. It has the program on the app, so you just pop your headphones on and that tells you when to warm up, run, walk and cool down. If you wish, your music can also be played alongside the app and that’ll just cut in with the instructions – it is £1.99 but I think it will definitely be worth it!

I will be completing my final run of week one in the morning and I’d say it has definitely been successful. I’m proud of all of us for just getting out there and giving it a go, because that’s the hardest part! Now I have my app, I’ll be able to carry on with the course while I’m away!

Holidays and fitness

This is just a quick update for you guys and some things to expect on Charlotte’s Web in the near future.

My blog will be quiet over the next couple of weeks, this is because I’m escaping this awful weather and going to visit my grandparents in Bahrain. I can’t wait and I’m sure that I’ll have lots to tell you about when I return; I couldn’t think of a better way to spend the Easter break. However, it does feel weird ironing all of my summer clothes whilst it’s snowing outside!

Something else I’ll be telling you all about is a new fitness regime that I’m embarking on. Basically I will be using a local personal trainer and the idea is to go from the couch to 5k in nine weeks. This is something I’m a little nervous about, while I dabble with fitness, you know the odd step/aerobic class and gym session, I’m definitely no pro! For two of these sessions I will be on holiday, so I’m actually completing the course in seven weeks.

Is it possible? I haven’t ran since school! Anyway, I’m going to inform you every step of the way; complete with before and after pictures, how I’m finding it and any weight loss that I’m hoping will occur! If you have never stepped foot in a gym and are not convinced that I’m an exercise novice, I will also inform you that my Mum is doing the course too, and as she will say, she’s a complete beginner! On holiday I’m going to have to get swimming and in the gym so that she doesn’t overtake me! 🙂

I’m hoping that informing you of my honest experience along the way, will encourage those who have toyed with the idea of running to give it a go. The idea of the course is to give you the ability and confidence to keep the running up, long after the nine week course. It’s something that I’d like to keep up because unlike the gym it is free! My first session is tonight, so I’ll probably do my first post about this before I go!

Hope you all have a lovely Easter!

#GlobalStyler

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Since Boohoo informed me about #GlobalStyler, I’ve been looking forward to writing this post! For those of you who haven’t heard of #GlobalStyler, it is a campaign by Boohoo, which encourages fashion lovers from all over the world to photograph themselves in their favourite Boohoo clothing.

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It’s fantastic looking through the feed and seeing how everyone styles items, each in their own individual way. As well as bringing people together with similar interests, the campaign also offers a prize of a trip to the fashion destination of the winners choice – check out the details by clicking here.

People have taken part from all over the world and my entry is from Lincolnshire. I took my photographs at Hubbards Hills, a public park about 20 minutes from my house. I’m wearing my favourite Sophie Peter Pan Collar Boohoo dress.

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I love the Peter Pan collar on this dress and think they add a touch of elegance to most outfits. The skater style skirt also feels flattering, flowing over curves, rather than clinging! These features along with the pattern and two tone contrast, create a really girly look. I styled the outfit with tights because it was a cold day; however, when the weather warms up, I think this would look fab with little, frilly ankle socks.

If you like this dress too, it is currently in the sale at only £12, bargain! Take a look here.

What do you think of this look? Do you have a favourite Boohoo item?

Thanks for reading, I’ll look forward to checking out your entry!

Helpful, healthy food

So it’s that time of year again, when everyone goes on a health kick in prep for the warmer weather coming.

It’s not just about losing weight, eating healthy and exercising just makes me feel better in general. I’ve been doing quite well in the healthy eating department; however, it can get a little boring, so I thought I’d share with you all a couple of recipes that I’ve found on the way.

The first recipe is from the Philadelphia iPad app, which I’d definitely recommend! It has loads on there and breaks recipes down into the type of dish, for example pasta, chicken etc. So anyway, I decided to make Salmon with Philadelphia and Chive Topping.

It’s a super easy dish and is literally made by spreading garlic and herb Philadelphia on salmon, then mixing bread crumbs, lemon zest and chives together and adding them on top. It is then baked in the oven.

Salmon can be served with whatever really, for a healthy option I’ve tried new potatoes and salad, and also once with a baked potato.

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Anyone that knows me or reads my blog, will probably know that I’m a Jamie Oliver fan! Therefore, my second healthy recipe is from his 15 Minute Meals, of which I have the book and app – both fantastic.

The meal is Grilled Steak, Ratatouille and Rice – it is a little more complex than the Philadelphia dish, but it’s still fairly straight forward. The steak is cooked on a griddle pan, the recipe states saffron rice, although I just used standard rice and then the ratatouille is basically all put together in one pan.

Ratatouille would be zero pro points on a weight watchers diet (I left out the anchovy), which is awesome because it really is where the flavour of the dish is! I definitely recommend you check it out!

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Healthy eating can be boring and dull, so these offer a bit of an alternative. I also wanted to share them because they’re quick to make and use proper ingredients.

What do you think to these recipes, are they something you’d try?

Mother’s Day Snaps

So this weekend was all about Mother’s Day!

Ours was lovely, I was spoilt by my five year old who chose my presents all by herself; these included a floral dress, a beach cover up for our holiday and some chocolate.

We went out for lunch as a family to Kenwick Park a local hotel, restaurant and health spa; it really was lovely food with a special atmosphere. A brilliant treat and me, my Mum and Nana all received a daffodil plant to take home – just for being Mum’s!

Here’s a few snaps of my Mother’s Day, if you follow me on Instagram you may have seen a few.

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Hope you all had a fab time! Xx

Time for a touch of spring

So, it may still be trying to snow out there but I for one am bored of this cold weather, and how it is controlling what I wear! Therefore, this week I dug out my pink River Island blazer and added a splash of spring to my outfit.

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To be honest, it’s an item that I’d hid away for warmer temperatures, when I could dress it once again with pretty florals. It was only after going shopping and seeing all of the spring/summer collections, that I was inspired to wear it now.

Of course, when it’s cold enough to snow outside we still need to be practical; therefore, I dressed it with some dark skinny jeans, a cream lace top, brown wedges and a brown clutch. I didn’t realise when putting this outfit together but most of the items are from River Island, except for the clutch which is New Look. I feel the brown tones work because they keep the outfit perfectly between season, and the lace has a similar delicate feel to the blazer.

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I kept accessories simple with a Primark necklace that I’ve had forever, a floral bow in the hair, my lovely Prairie Charms bracelet, which I’ve had so much wear out of and a simple ring.

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It’s amazing how wearing bright colours again can be so uplifting, this is definitely an item that is keeping a prominent position in my wardrobe. I love how timeless blazers are, and there are some great patterned and bright ones on the high street – I may have to add some more coloured ones to my collection 😉

Hair and makeup – check.

I’ve blogged about how fab my 11 year old sister is at creating hairstyles before, and she really is so creative!

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On Saturday night, I was going out and to be honest my hair is at a stage where it could do with a trim, so I wanted it putting up. She did it for me with a braid one side, a twist the other and then a bun at the back. I don’t think I’d be as good as her at doing hair now, never mind when I was so young.

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She really is talented and has got a natural flare for it; it’s a great way for her to earn a bit of pocket money too 😉 hehe. She’s great at styling her own hair as well as other people’s.

It worked out well for me because my Mum used to be a beautician, so while my younger sister was doing my hair – my mum started doing my makeup. Haha – who needs a salon? It was nice because although I love makeup, I’m a bit of a stick it on and go type – while my Mum really pays attention to detail. I could do with them at my house every time before I go out!

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So here’s a little post to having a talented family 😉

Steels – a local gem

I’ve been meaning to do a blog about Steels, the fish and chip restaurant in Cleethorpes, for a while now.

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When people think of the seaside they think of fish and chips, and Steels is definitely one of the best in this area. If you’re local, you’ll probably know how fab it is – if not, it’s certainly worth a visit if you ever find yourself this way on.

Today, we went for a family stroll across the seafront and couldn’t resist going there for some tea. It’s everything you expect from a fish and chip restaurant – yummy and traditional. They offer plenty of other things on the menu; however, I have to admit because the haddock and chips is so delicious, I usually stick to that! What I like best about the food, is that it’s good quality and not too greasy! The portion sizes are huge and the essential extras are included, such as lovely bread and butter as well as a pot of tea.

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It’s a whole family pleaser and my daughter is a fan of the chicken nuggets and chips, followed by the ice cream that comes with a children’s meal. I also have to mention how helpful the staff are; the lady who served us today was so friendly, and spoke to our five year old as much as she did us! Today wasn’t a one off, every time we’ve visited the staff have been really nice.

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I wanted to write a post because people are always quick to moan about the area, and never highlight the good parts. We had a lovely day together and the restaurant is definitely a local gem!