Week 18 and I am getting ready to go on holiday for a week…
This week’s blog is brought to you by a tin of sardines, because I am going on holiday.
Sardines are the national dish of Sadinia
Monday 24 August 2015
Once again I feel like I continued to make progress with my training last week, and I am pleased with that. This week is going to be difficult as I try to clear my work before going on holiday
I will be starting my day in the same way every day with 4 spirulina tablets, and a bowl of Rude Health muesli mixed with flaxseed; sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds; goji berries; hemp; chia and maca; plus the wheatgrass, chlorella, baobab, and acai berry. I will also be drinking three litres of water a day. I am hoping that doing that will provide me with a decent base to ensure proper fuelling of my body.
I will be doing my extended two-minute drill every day, and that will very much be a minimum, with the intention to add in a lot more fitness training besides that.
I was at meetings in London today, so before setting off I started my morning with the two-minute drill from a booklet called The Fat Burner’s Bible which I got from Men’s Health magazine some time ago. It is 8 exercises for 15 seconds each and is intended to jump-start my metabolism, meaning I should burn fat more efficiently all day. I increased the time to 20 seconds per exercise. I did sit ups, press ups, high knees, side to side hops, jumping jacks, squats, mountaineers, and bodyweight thrusters, pushing to do as many as I could in the 20 seconds and leaving as little time between exercises as possible.
I decided to walk from City Thameslink station to my meeting and as I came out of the station the rain had stopped enough for me to take off my coat and fold it into my bag. That did not last for very long, and while my coat kept the top half of my body dry from the rain I still got soaked elsewhere and I was sweating inside my coat. I got to London Bridge station, only to find out that our meeting point was Tower Hill tube station, so having partially dried out while walking around the station, I now got soaked for the second time that morning before reaching my meeting. It had been a tough walk in those weather conditions. I dried out through the meeting and then encountered some more rain as I walked from there to an excellent lunch with Karl, Kramar and Max in Houndsditch. There was some useful discussion of The 100 Peaks Challenge, among many other things, and the time went far too quickly. Sean and Olly were not able to be there, unfortunately, but we all agreed this should happen a lot more often, so there will certainly be a next time.
Legends Who Lunch
Unfortunately, it had started to rain again by the time I left to walk to the Royal Albert Hall, which turned out to take a little longer than half an hour to walk the 7.25 miles which my Garmin Fenix 2 recorded (although it became 6.4 miles on Strava). So that was around 11 miles in terrible weather conditions carrying my laptop in my backpack. Sounds like pretty good training for Ricochet to me. I passed a statue of Shackleton, which I thought was very appropriate. And the Proms was excellent. I had almost dried off by the end of it.
Looking a lot drier than I actually was
- Two-minute drill
- Walk (London) – 3.1 miles – 48 minutes 28 seconds
- Walk (London) – 0.7 miles – 10 minutes 23 seconds
- Walk (London) – 6.4 miles – 1 hour 52 minutes 23 seconds
Tuesday 25 August 2015
I began my day with the two-minute drill.
I was down in London again for another meeting, and this time I was bathed in sunshine as I walked from City Thameslink at a pretty decent pace. I had intended to walk from Farringdon but the trains were running late, so I decided to make up for that by walking back from my meeting to St Pancras. And that was when the rain returned. I noticed a couple of times that my watch lost the satellite signal, which would explain why it recorded my distance as 4.8 miles while Strava has me at 4.1 miles. I was very pleased with my pace again, and especially because the weather had deteriorated so much.
Jimifer had a baby girl after 32 hours of labour. I imagine that must have been almost as hard for Jo as the Winter Fan Dance was for him.
Jim avoids the ice rink
All joking aside, my congratulations and best wishes go to them all.
- Two-minute drill
- Walk (London) – 1.5 miles – 19 minutes 21 seconds
- Walk (London) – 4.1 miles – 47 minutes 56 seconds
Wednesday 26 August 2015
I began my day with the two-minute drill and then went into the office.
I finished my latest book, Sniper In Helmand by James Cartwright, telling the story of his 6 months with 1st Battalion the Royal Anglian Regiment on the frontline in Helmand Province, Afghanistan in 2007 during Operation HERRICK 6. It is a very honest, open and heart-warming account, giving lots of detail about what life was actually like on the ground, and features Ross Kemp. It is an easy read and very worthwhile.
A very worthwhile read
I did not manage to do any more training in the evening thanks to my workload heading into my holiday.
- Two-minute drill
Thursday 27 August 2015
I did my two-minute drill when I woke up and then headed into the office again. It is very frustrating how work is getting in the way of training this week, but hopefully once I hit the weekend and leave these shores I can make up for that.
- Two-minute drill
Friday 28 August 2015
We were driving down to Gatwick so that we were ready for our early morning flight on the Saturday, and I ended up only doing my two-minute drill.
- Two-minute drill
Saturday 29 August 2015
So it is goodbye to Blighty for a week, and looking forward to visiting Sardinia for the first time.
I’m sure I was meant to remember to buy something…
I am not a fan of flying, though only because I find it so very boring. The only interesting parts are the takeoff and landing, and inbtween you are packed in like…sardines. It did not help my mood that the person in the seat next to me decided that some covert vaping was in order. I think I dislike those things even more than I hate cigarettes, which is with a passion. It was hot and sunny when we landed, which was perfect for me.
Definitely on holiday now
We took a walk down to the port of Isola Rossa, just to find out what was on our doorstep near to the hotel, and then I decided I would do something I had planned for every day of the holiday, swim for an hour and see how many laps of the hotel pool I could do in that time, finishing the final lap that I started before I hit the hour. It was a salt-water pool, which I found a little unusual, and generally left me feeling thirsty after my swims. I am not very good at swimming, and do not do it nearly as much as I would like to, but I kept going for the full hour, which I was pleased with. We were on half-board for the holiday in the hotel, which meant all you can eat buffets for breakfast and dinner. I knew I had to be sensible with my eating, but could not resist the starters this evening.
You can see more photographs from Isola Rossa here.
You can see more photographs from the hotel here.
- Walk (Isola Rossa) – 1.6 miles – 1 hour 16 minutes 51 seconds
- Swim – 14 laps – 1 hour 00 minutes 56 seconds
Sunday 30 August 2015
What a way to start the day 🙂
We took a more extensive walk around Isola Rossa in the morning (although it showed up on Strava as a shorter distance) after I enjoyed a breakfast of muesli with fruit, which was to be my breakfast of choice throughout our stay.
The main landmark
Then later on we took a walk along the coast to the next beach, stopping there for lunch before coming back the same way. It seemed to me that there were other tracks which could be followed, and that was to be my downfall the following week. Anyway, the lunch menu was interesting.
I went for pasta…
As was the ice cream man’s approach to making a sale at any cost.
Decided against wading in for an ice cream
My second swim of the holiday saw me move up from 14 to 15 laps in the hour, so I was pleased with that, and I followed it up with a Para Fitness session over at an area overlooking one of the bays, which was a lovely location for a workout in the late afternoon sun.
Respect my authoritah !
To be honest, it was far too hot to be doing anything before that time. For the purposes of this holiday, my Para Fitness session would be 4 x 25 press ups, 4 x 25 dips, 4 x 25 sit ups, and 4 x 25 squats. After dinner we went for another walk through Isola Rossa, this time following the outer coast road all the time, and at that late hour the place had really come alive.
It’s that landmark again
I also finished another book, which I had raced through since really starting it on the flight out. Sniper One by Sergeant Dan Mills is an outstanding account of a truly remarkable story, and I do not understand why it has not already been made into an action movie, detailing a tour in Iraq in 2004 with the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, when they found themselves essentially under siege in Al Amarah. It also includes the incredible story of Private Johnson Beharry, which led to him being awarded the Victoria Cross.
Could not put it down once I started reading it
Looking back at my week, I realised that I definitely needed this holiday, not only to relax, but also to allow myself the time and space to get properly active again. Having a great pool at the hotel was perfect for what I needed right now.
- Walk (Isola Rossa) – 1 mile – 30 minutes 52 seconds
- Walk (Isola Rossa) – 2 miles – 55 minutes 21 seconds
- Swim – 15 laps – 1 hour 03 minutes 48 seconds
- Para Fitness
- Walk (Isola Rossa) – 1 mile – 26 minutes 14 seconds
Positives from this week – I got my holiday off to an active start and it was great to be swimming.