Sunday, 6 May 2012

Bit of this, bit of that

I'm not sure where the time is going but I do know that I'm not keeping up - but gaining ground ;)

Hit by a tummy bug
Man, I got slammed by a 24hr tummy bug two weeks ago. One of those where you wake up at 3am and are not quite sure what is happening because you're not feeling great. And next minute you're sprinting for the bathroom. Up and down, up and down by 8am when there was nothing left in my stomach and my ribs were aching. My tummy stabilised by midday - probably thanks to being able to sleep for most of the day (well, I couldn't really do anything else I was so slammed!) - but I only started drinking water and eating dry toast later in the afternoon. By Thursday I was right as rain but way more weakened than I thought possible. Only really starting to come right now, two weeks later.

In the 'Berg, but not in the mountains
I'd fortunately recovered sufficiently to spend the long weekend - 27 April to 1 May - in the Drakensberg to share the weekend with my friend and her family to celebrate her 40th birthday. What a great idea and such a lovely weekend. What was even more fun was that we stayed on a farm just outside Winterton so we were not in the mountains, but could see them. This farm area is absolutely beautiful and peaceful. I totally loved the trees and grasses. And the weather was perfect: sunny, clear and warm.

I do like moos...

And I went kloofing with my two favourite boys (aged 5.5 and 6.5). Let's just say that trail running to get to where we got into the river... Auntie Lisa was hard-pressed to keep us with these speedsters! And in the river they were incredible, only slowing down later when they were getting a bit tired. They're better than most adults on uneven terrain. We must have been in there for an hour - slip-sliding and clambering. Helluva good fun!

Wouldn't be a birthday without home-baked birthday cake...

A lovely thing we did over the weekend was to build a puzzle - most of the 11 adults and children contributed pieces, sections or chunks. 1,500 pieces made up this Renoir. Morning, noon and night we were assembled around the dining room table.

And by the last night... et voila!

Back to the Berg this weekend
I'll be running Mnweni Marathon in the Mnweni area of the Drakensberg this coming weekend; my 4th time (not consecutively; 2007, 2009 and 2010). It's a divine area and a good route. I'm looking forward to camping, running and hanging out with friends. This is the post I wrote about Mnweni in 2010. Race time prediction? Dunno. I'd like to run better than in previous years but I have a feeling we're going to have a hot, hot, hot day out there and I haven't been feeling my best. So, will see what race day brings.

I have to buy a new happy-snappy running camera this week because my old-faithful gave up the ghost about a week after Thailand. I'd had this faithful little Sony Cybershot for almost five years to the month. It's been to every single event with me in this time; long races, sprints, orienteering. It has travelled with me everywhere. It has been rained on (no, it isn't waterproof), sweated on and it has been through very hot and very cold conditions - and lots of sand! I can get a little camera with double everything this one had (megapixels included) for less than I paid in 2007. Amazing.

It's full moon tonight and I didn't organise a Full Moon Run... again. I did run this morning. With Fred. A road run around Linksfield Ridge. I've done it twice before but not recently. It's actually a tough route. Will be fun to run it in the other direction (we went anti-clockwise) - it will mean steep hills near the end. I thought the loop would be about 15km. Not far off at 17km. Felt like 30km on some sections...

Dairy theory
I'm back on to this again... When I got back from Thailand I was running like the wind. Shouldn't have been really coming from sea level to Jo'burg's high altitude. After about a week I started feeling really nasty on runs; just not full of beans and really feeling it in my chest. Like huffing and puffing more than I feel. Last week was particularly bad - and I'd been eating quite a lot more yoghurt than usual.

I'm back on to thinking it is a dairy thing. I don't drink much milk (only really in tea) but I do love yoghurt, cheese, cottage cheese...

So I've had this theory for over a year about certain types of cheese making me feel like I've been hit over the head when I wake up. I've stayed away from these aged cheeses and I've been much better. Last year, to test this, I gave up cheese for 30 days. I always go back to cheese because I really do love the stuff and it's my favourite sandwich filler.

This past Wednesday night, after a particularly tough run of a regular route, I decided to test out my theory with a 'No Dairy' policy for a few weeks. On Saturday evening I ran this same route five-minutes faster and felt as good as I did in the first few days when I returned from Thailand.

Why I'm really thinking it is dairy is because in the two-and-a-bit weeks that I was in Thailand I drank no tea (=no milk), ate no cheese and only on three mornings did I have fruit with plain yoghurt for breakfast. Thailand is a great place to go dairy and gluten free.

Almost the start of '36 Days of Running'
Last year I did '35 Days of Running' leading up to my 35th birthday. This year another day is added as my 36th approaches. Start date is one week from now; Monday, 14 May. This year I'll do minimum 5km per run, which is manageable on days when I have yoga / dance class to fit in too. My friend Rebekah is doing 366 Days of Running, which she started on 1 Jan. That's inspiration to get me through the cold fronts that are sure to hit during my 36 days.

Wishing y'all a great week ahead. Every day is an opportunity for new, different and better everything.

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