Running in the heat

It is tough. I run much better when it is cool, but luckily I am running for fun and not training at the moment.

But also the weather forecast has not been that helpful- I went out on Friday night in the sweltering heat, because I thought Saturday would be more storms, but in fact Saturday was overcast and would have been fine. Ah well.

Anyway, Sunday was a lovely 6.5 mile run looping around the fields. Just perfect to be home before most people were awake. Although it was so hot as the sun was blazing down.

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Too cool down after that I made a chai latte- I had some coconut tea brewing in my tea jug, and had some of that topped up with almond milk. I have made this with a little splash of cinnamon syrup too, but it is lovely just like that too.

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So summery.

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As we are off on holiday soon we have been trying to run the freezer down a bit. I found a scone in there so had it for lunch on Sunday with some lemon curd. Delish.

On Monday and Tuesday I had a run after work- both the same out and back route mostly through the fields. On Monday I ran out for 15 minutes, then turned around and headed home- I got back in 14 minutes so I was pretty pleased to manage that in the heat. My Garmin has been playing up a bit though- it finds a satellite, then when I start it, it loses the signal again so often the first half a mile of my run is not on the map, and then it affects the overall speed and distance too. Today was the same route but I didn’t pay attention to the time, I just enjoyed it- on my way back there was a lovely strong breeze so it was more comfortable.

I have been wearing my tennis visor which keeps my face cool, and trying to choose shady routes, but really in this weather I think any run is a bonus so I am just enjoying it.

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I made some fudge at the weekend as gifts for colleagues (note to self, boiling up sugar when it is baking hot outside is not the best way to cool down), so I packaged that all up. I got those cute bags and tags from ebay- so pretty. I got some red spotty ones too that remind me of Minnie Mouse, but will be good colours for Christmas.

We have been having some lovely walks after dinner too- I have not been using my hairdryer as it i so hot, so this lunchtime my hair was still wet from last night! This evening we had a walk which started off my hair drying at least.

Any cooling down tips? 

Not so much running

And not even because of the heat! On Sunday afternoon I was sneezing a bit, but thought it was because of the sunshine, but by Sunday night it had turned into a proper cold, with a sore throat and neck (I could only turn my head to the left as my neck was swollen on one side).

So, no running for me.

Tuesday and Wednesday I still didn’t feel great, so we had a walk on Tuesday and went to the cinema on Wednesday. We saw Boyhood, which was really good, but long, and I had work to do once I got home so was not quite in the right mood for it.

Thursday I was home late, too late for pump really, and so opted for another walk and a bit of a relaxing evening- I was pretty shattered.

Then at about 3.30 in the morning we had the most crazy thunderstorm I have ever seen ( to rival one from Florida)- lightning every 10 seconds at times, and so close by. Luckily it woke me up as I had to rush around to close all the windows!

This was waiting for me when I got home on Friday! I am doing this run in October (I am doing the 15K, but there is a 10K or 5K option too)- I think I must have decided to buy the top when I signed up, but it arrived on its own- they must be sending out the race packs later.  We had sports day at work so I had been outside in the heat a lot, but wanted a run as the weather here for Saturday was meant to be more storms- after seeing them the other night I didn’t think that was sensible. So at about 6pm I headed out on a short run. I did an out and back route- the first half a mile was shaded, and the next mile was through the fields- no shade but a breeze so I didn’t feel too bad. But then I turned around and the breeze disappeared. It was horrendous. Almost like it was hard to breathe, and although I had suncream on I almost felt like I could feel my skin sizzling and burning. I didn’t really enjoy the mile back through the fields and ended up feeling a bit sick- I was very glad of the shade for the final part, and took it pretty slowly.

Then I was awake early on Saturday morning, and although it was raining a bit at first, by 8.30 the rain had stopped and it was still overcast- much better running weather- I should have waited! I did a lot of tidying and cleaning instead, and then made some pancakes.

IMG_5772These were made with 1 egg, some almond milk, some of that Pulsin’ soya protein powder, coconut flour, baking powder and almond extract.  Not sure of the amounts- tablespoon here, a drop there, but mixed until they made batter that looked OK. It shows how hot it has been as the jar of coconut oil in my cupboard had turned to liquid! I had two topped with that delicious almond butter, and one with nutella, plus 2 doughnut peaches. Mmm, hello weekend.

More tidying awaited (during a busy week nothing gets done at home- I just put things into “neat” piles as that makes me feel better), before lunch.

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Sourdough with tomato pesto and avocado (yes, chopped the avocado on the plate as I had just cleaned and tidied the kitchen so didn’t want to make a chopping board dirty), plus some iced tea.  This was coconut pineapple black tea which I ordered here from ebay ages ago- I added half a cup of boiling water to the tea jug, left for a minute then topped with cold water and chilled overnight. It is delicious, probably my favourite home-made iced tea yet.

Also, was just emailed a discount code for the remaining Women’s Running 10K races (Bristol 2nd Augustl/ Glasgow 6th Sept/ Finsbury Park 27th Sept)- £20 if you enter LETMERUN – worth a try to see if the discount will work if you fancy one of them- that includes the technical t-shirt so pretty good value. I really enjoyed it and would keep my eyes out for them next year. 

Right, I am off to the allotment as I am hoping it will be a bit cooler out there now.

How have you been coping in the heat?

Deliveries!

Hey peeps!

I have been very lucky over the past few weeks to be sent a few some parcels with goodies to review.

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I was sent a few products from the My Protein group. I chose some True Women vitamins from myvitamins.com, some flaked coconut from myprotein.com, and some almond butter from thehut.com. I love the packaging that the vitamins come in- these will be easier to take on holiday than a little jar. Although they are rather large! I did get a tip from someone at work- to look to one side as you swallow as that helps open up your throat. The vitamins are suitable for veggies, and have plenty of iron and B vitamins in there, which is what I was looking for as I have been a bit worried about being tired recently. A small point was that I did find the website hard to navigate as I could not see an option to sort by dietary requirements- something I would find useful as so often I would click on something and find it was not suitable.

The coconut is gorgeous – it does have a small amount of added sugar (1%) but no sulphur dioxide which is what I was looking for, as so many dried fruits contain it, and it does not agree with my tummy. I am looking forward to baking with it, but so far have enjoyed some slices as a snack.

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This almond butter is so good- really drippy, and no salt added either, just 100% almonds. I decided to make some cookies from my Oh She Glows cookbook. The recipe is pretty much this one, only using almond butter not peanut butter. I just used normal flour instead of the oat flour, and they turned out pretty awesome!

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I added some flaked coconut to some of them before I baked them.

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Seriously- make them. Almond + chocolate + coconut is an amazing combination.

On Sunday morning I was up early so decided to head out for a run. I did 6.5 miles over the fields, but it was really humid and I was roasting by the time I got home. To cool down we had our first acai bowl of the year.

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This was a frozen banana, some frozen cherries and frozen blueberries, all blended up with some almond milk and acai powder. We put muesli in our bowls, top with the frozen smoothie, then top with a chopped nectarine and some coconut. Summer in a bowl.

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I had a few Holland and Barrett points so ended up ordering a little parcel of goodies online (although later found out that Ocado now stock coconut oil and for much cheaper, so I shall be getting it from there next time). I wanted to try the Salt of the Earth deodorant, as I would quite like to avoid aluminium (and have tried a few natural brands but not been that impressed). Unfortunately it is just that, a deodorant, and not an antiperspirant. I like the fact that they are both unfragranced, as often the fragrance irritates my skin, but I do still feel a little bit sticky still, so I think I might use them on cool days, but use my bad stuff on hot days.

I saw these meridian bars and had to try them (they are vegan and soya/gluten free)! The almond one is made with almonds, brown rice malt, agave nectar, rice bran, concentrated fruit juice, rice protein, rice starch and sunflower lecithin. It was rather sweet, but I liked it, and the texture reminded me of a less chalky Pulsin bar (I do like Pulsin bars, but they are just on the verge of being that weird chalky texture that some protein bars have). I bought the toothpaste on a whim- I have been using Green People moisturiser and liking it, so thought I would try it, although am using my current toothpaste first.

But my favourite delivery of all…..

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Wow look at these beauties! Wiggle were having a sale, and I could not resist. I have Asics trail shoes which I really like, and thought I would give a normal pair a go. I had to swap them for half a size up as the 5.5′s I ordered were more like 5′s (according to the US and European sizes on the box) but they are really comfortable. The only trouble is I don’t want to get them muddy.

Now, that should be enough for me, but Thoosa are now having a sale and I am really in love with their workout tops and slogan t-shirts…

Anyone else an online shopping addict?

 

And the winners are…

Hey folks!

A quick announcement first of all. The winners from the Urban Fruit giveaway (old school- names written on paper, Andy drew them out of a pot).

Hannah Ashley (via facebook)

Lara

Vikki Roberts (via facebook)

Poppy

Mary

Congratulations!

If you could all email your address to me (emailme@runningcupcake.co.uk) I shall pass it on to the folks at Urban Fruit and they will send your goodies out to you.

Rambles from this week:

Sweatshop on Wednesday was part of a new route and part of an old route- it introduced me to more of the field which I love! I was at the back but kept the other girls in sight, and even managed one mile at 8.55! I was pleased with that (and exhausted after!).

Pump on Thursday- getting used to the new release now.

Run after work on Friday- 3.5 miles- through fields including the long grass section so had to really slow. Very muggy and sticky but enjoyable.

Saturday- Went out for breakfast with friends. Hoped to spot Jenson Button competing in his triathlon. Saw a few cyclists whizzing by but no Jenson. The tea and company more than made up for it. Then got roped into helping decorate our bathrooms!

Sunday- 6.5 mile run looping through the fields twice. As you can tell I am loving running through the fields at the moment. When the sun came out it was baking and almost unbearable though.

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This is the part of the field where the grass is very long!

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You can sort of see tracks but they are pretty over grown. I love that this is only 5 minutes from where I live.

What is the best thing about where you live? 

Rediscovering home-made ice lollies

 

Hey peeps!

The weather here has been crazy at the moment- hot one moment, windy and cold the next, then dry, then thundery rain… our meals have been all over the place because of it. One day we want a hot dinner and warm drinks, and another day salad for tea and iced tea to drink!IMG_5733

Recently Sainsbury’s kindly sent me a few bits for my blog- some basil and lemongrass paste, and some ice lolly moulds. As soon as I saw the lemongrass paste, lollies popped into my head. Innocent used to make a smoothie with coconut and lemongrass which was just so summery, and I fancied trying to recreate it. Luckily this weekend was warm!

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I actually used my star moulds in the end. Now, this is not the most scientific of recipes- I had to measure the capacity of the lolly moulds (mine were about 400ml in total), so in a jug I mixed pureed mango (around 300ml- this was tinned as I couldn’t get fresh ones and didn’t want to use frozen fruit as I don’t think it can be frozen twice) with coconut milk (around 100ml), and then added a tsp lemongrass paste.

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I then poured the mixture into moulds and left in the freezer. I fancy trying a pineapple version too, as I think pineapple and coconut will go very well together too.

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They didn’t take too long to freeze either- we enjoyed our first taste the same evening.

I had loads of the puree and milk left over, so I am going to sort out my ice cream maker and see if I can churn it up to make a sort of sorbet.

I do like fruit puree lollies, but I prefer them with a little coconut milk as it makes them so creamy and really summery.

The basil paste was crying out to go in some tomato sauce with gnocchi.

IMG_5742This again is not really a recipe. Chop a red onion, brown in a little oil, and then add passata, basil and a little salt. The tomato sauce does splatter all over the place- you have been warned!

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While that is simmering away, cook some gnocchi. You can buy ready made packs in the fridge section (not sure how to make it from potatoes), and we tend to cook half and freeze the other half for another time. It takes about 5 minutes to cook.

Then put the gnocchi and tomato sauce in a dish, add some pieces of mozzerella (optional) and bake in the oven for 10 minutes.

IMG_5744Top with a little fresh basil if you have it. We tend to serve this with a salad. Crusty bread would be good for the tomato and basil sauce, but it tends to be pretty filling by itself.

Do you match your meals with the weather? We do have a few summer only meals (avocado and bean wraps) but some meals (like sweet potato chilli) we love so much we keep on having all the way through the year. I would only have ice lollies when it is really hot though, as they make me so cold!