Mindfulness: Falling for fall?

Summer has always been my favourite season, and so when Autumn arrives it can be easy to feel despondent. Whilst social media gets excited for crisp leaves, warm jumpers and Pumpkin Spice Lattes, but I often struggle slightly- I think that’s the thing with the British Summer- blink and you’ll miss it.  That’s why it can often be quite startling when Autumn comes around.

That being said, the colder months are generally much better for me than they used to be, and I think that has a lot to do with running all year-round. Spending more time in nature, getting that endorphin fix, and trying to run during the limited daylight hours- without any of this, I’d be lost. So whilst I’m not overly excited about the end of Summer, things are looking up. And here are the things I’m looking forward to:

 

  • Blanket scarves. These are basically a socially-acceptable blanket that you’ll always have to hand during the winter months. I can even get away with wrapping myself up in mine when I’m at the office.

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  • Chai tea. I feel about chai tea the way many people feel about the Pumpkin Spice Latte. I’m in love with it. Cannot get enough. I love super sweet chai tea when you’re stuck inside on a super grey and rainy day. Preferably wrapped in a big blanket scarf.

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  • Bonfire Night! This is my favourite “holiday” of the year. We Brits snuggle up, watch fireworks and build huge bonfires, in commemoration of the Gunpowder Plot- an attack on the Houses of Parliament that was foiled at the last minute. It’s such a community event, and I absolutely adore it.

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  • Crisp mornings. Whilst Autumn/Winter in the UK is generally grey and foggy, every once in a while we get a gorgeous crisp sunny morning. These are the best to be out running in.

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So there you have it. I’m not 100% on board for the colder months, but I’m a damn sight more positive than I would have been this time two years ago!

 

What’s your favourite thing about the colder months? Please, give me tips on how to survive!

Lots of love,

 

Pippa

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Monday Motivation: A Life Outside of Running

Morning! This week’s motivation is courtesy of Ashley Higginson and Saucony. Ashley is a steeplechase runner who almost gave up on her sport completely. In the end, it turned out to be finding a life outside of running, and a sense of balance, that rekindled her fire.

 

 

This speaks to me a lot. Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about something Lauren Fleshman said in a recent Running On Om episode- that running was the kindling for a lot of the joy in her life- but that’s scary and, at times, limiting- especially when injury comes your way. I think recently I’ve become increasingly consumed by running, and I’ve started to realise I don’t want to define myself solely as a runner. Anyways, tangent over.

 

What’s motivating you this week?

 

Lots of love,

 

Pippa

Woman Crush Wednesday: Paula Radcliffe

This week’s Woman Crush Wednesday comes to you courtesy of the wonderful, the inimitable, the supreme: Paula Radcliffe. Even as a child, completely uninterested in athletics, Paula Radcliffe was always on my radar; regularly competing in (and winning) Olympic events, The London Marathon and The Great North Run.But I don’t think it was until Paula retired from professional racing in 2015 that I truly appreciated her, and what she’s done for the sport of running in the UK.

It’s thanks to Paula that the sport of running has grown so much in the past 10 years.

It’s thanks to Paula that a generation of women have laced up their shoes and taken up the sport.

And it’s thanks to Paula that I didn’t let anyone tell me I couldn’t run a marathon. 

The following documentary was commissioned ahead of Paula’s retirement, when she ran the London Marathon as a muggle. If you have half an hour I highly recommend giving it a watch!

 

Some stats on Paula:

  • She’s the current World Record Holder for the Women’s Marathon, with a time of 02:15:25. Just think about that for a moment!
  • She was awarded an MBE in 2002 after winning her debut London Marathon with a time of 02:18:55.
  • On her return to professional racing following the birth of her first child, she ran the 2007 New York City Marathon in 2:23:09, and did wonders for the perception of female athletes who’ve had children.
  • She has suffered multiple stress fractures in her back and femur, and tore a disk in her back- and yet she overcame every one of those injuries.
  • She officially retired from professional running in 2015, and has transitioned to commentating for the BBC.
  • She’s written countless articles, blogs and features on how to be your best runner, both in the marathon and over shorter distances.

 

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Who was it that inspired you to take up running?

Lots of love

Pippa xxx

Monday Motivation: Kara Goucher

It’s Monday again and I’ve still got 17 miles of inclines in my legs from the weekend. Ouch. For those reasons I’m in need of some motivation- but fear not, because gazelle-like #girlboss Kara Goucher is never far from my mind.

 

This video, made by her sponsors Oiselle, charts her journey to the Olympic Trials (which took place this February) and gives me serious feels. So if you need some inspiration, look no further. I watched it on repeat before Manchester Marathon-an alternative title could be: It’s the journey, not the destination.

 

 

How do you motivate yourself? And more importantly, how was your weekend?

 

Lots of love,

 

Pippa

 

Tempo miles, tempo smiles…?

Ahhhhh tempo miles. How I’ve missed you.

Not really. But also kind of.

My main issue with tempo miles is the mental stress of knowing you have to hit certain paces, and to be honest they just end up looming over your head all day. Or they do for me, at least. The weird thing is that I don’t actually have that hard a time hitting my paces- the battle is entirely mental for me.

Halfway through I’m just like… can we not?

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Views like this do help though…

But then once I’m done I feel an overwhelming sense of satisfaction at having achieved something I really didn’t want to do. I’m trying to follow a Run Less, Run Faster -type training programme, and whilst I’m noticing the benefits, I guess i’m still getting used to having to put in 100% at every training session- no junk or easy miles here!

The point is, tempo miles are an important part of training, and let’s be honest I just need to put my big girl pants on and deal with it.

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How do you get through tempo miles?

Lots of love,

Pippa