Easter relaxing and running with an Ironman-in-training

What a fantastic Easter weekend! On Easter Saturday I met up with Support Team members Amy and Cam. They had had quite an adventure getting to mum and dad’s which involved Cam changing a tyre on their 4×4 on top of a freezing cold windswept hill. I should mention Amy was apparently instrumental to this procedure (she held the tyre nuts). 

What may seem like a nightmare for some, this was such exciting news to hear as it shows just how well Cam is recovering for a very troublesome injury that has being shadowing this lovely pair for several years. 

After sharing greetings Amy and I set off to Seaham Hall Spa for a day of unwinding, relaxing and much needed catch up. After what has been a long few months of injury, new job stresses and moving house this lovely treat was just what I needed. 

We started the day each with a full body message where the beautician unsurprisingly told me I held a lot of tension in my calfs. Then we made are way around the various swimming pools, steam rooms, hydropools and sauna’s. popping into the Ozone restaurant in between for a bite of lunch (absolutely delicious Asian style). We finished the day with several hours in the outside jacuzzi. 

It was just bliss and I could feel all the stresses melting away. Thank you Amy and Cam for such a lovely day! 

When I got home I was on to the next challenge. Making two sets of Pace eggs (a very old English tradition) for the annual Church Competition and the inaugural Valentine (Paul’s family) competition. I am not gifted in the creative/crafty arena but I gave it my best shot over the next two hours until bed called me.

Easter Sunday is always a great occasion. My mum has always been passionate about recognising Traditional Easter Games so they don’t die out and the Pace Egg, Easter Bonnet and Egg jarpin competitions after Mass at the Sacred Heart Church always draw a large crowd. 

This was the first year I didn’t enter a bonnet (after claiming my first ever win in the competition last year with a rather nifty Easter Hatinator I decided to retire while I was ahead!) but I did return to the Pace Egg competition with an aptly themed attempt. 

As I say, I am not gifted with much creative talent so I was pleased with my Egg and Spoon race efforts! Particularly when Paul informed me I had come second in the Valentine competition!

I got through to the third round of the Egg jarpin competition, myself and Muriel (a member of my support team) celebrated getting further in the competition than we ever had before. I told you it was a great weekend!

After the jovial Easter traditional games at Church and an Easter egg hunt with the family Virtual runner John Dowling and I joined Paul for a run in the rain. 

For my runs with Paul we are following the guidance of his Ironman training plan. This means we have to run in a certain heart rate zone. 

Have I told you Paul is taking part in the Italian Ironman in September? A long distance triathlon which means  he has to complete a 2.4mile swim in the sea, followed by a 112mile bike ride and finished with a marathon. You have to do all of this in under 17 hours to get the official title of being an Ironperson. (I am pretty sure that is not the title the Ironman team give you but my feminist side took over there).  Exercise Madness. But I am very proud of his dedication to his training no matter the weather.

Anyway back to running in our heart rate zone three. This is your aerobic zone so about 70-80% of your maximum heart rate. 

To work out your maximum heart rate there is a rough guide of subtracting your age for 220. But I found this helpful online heartrate calculator which provides you with recommendations of your maximum heart rate and your different training zones. 

On our runs together Paul and I have discovered that I have quite a low heart rate. I mention this not as a concern but because it does prove a point of frustration for Paul! So we run to his heart rate zone three. 

I really enjoyed this run round North Gosforth. With Paul’s mantra ‘we’re going to be wet no matter whether it’s light rain or hard’ proving true as we started in pouring raining and finishing in drizzle. 

We pace each other well, Paul is very good at consistency and I apparently pushed him a little faster (but this meant we were out of his heart rate zone on some occasions). We ran 6.1miles in 59:40 average a pace of 9:39/mile. 

Thank you John for your support! Running with you on Easter Sunday was particularly fitting, as an active member of Sacred Heart!

It was so lovely seeing so many members of my support team over this weekend!

You may have noticed my support team member and niece Clara popping up in a lot of my posts recently. We are currently all living together at my Mum and Dads for various reasons (we can’t move into our new house for another 6 weeks and Beth and Chris have just had the lovely Eliza). This has meant We are really, really lucky. Paul and I have been able to complete our training (runs/swims/cycle) and there is often food on the table waiting for us and my niece waiting wanting to find out what we have done and have a go herself. 

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