As anyone who follows me on Instagram (@victoriamartinstyle) will know, I like to partake in the odd fitness challenge from time to time.
I've recently being following Australian fitness trainer Kayla Itsines' Bikini Body Guide programme and I've been seriously impressed with it. The first 12 week programme I managed to stick to religiously and I didn't miss a single workout and I'm really enjoying the step up in difficulty in the second guide too, weeks 13-24. It has vastly improved my overall fitness levels which, considering I worked out at least 3 or 4 times a week before I started the guides already is a pretty good indicator of the level of intensity of the 28 minute workouts. It costs around £35 for the 12 week plan and it is well worth the money. I paid about £30 for the Ashy Bines workouts and they were AWFUL! So poorly laid out, overly complicated, rubbish photographs and just not engaging at all.
My running has taken a back seat as a result in focusing on the BBG workouts although I did manage to run a 10km race in May with only a couple of weeks notice in under 54 minutes which is a PB for me. I would have been happy with anything under the hour mark that day so I was quite chuffed with my time and definitely think my improved time is partly due to the Kayla workouts.
I definitely workout better and am much more committed if I'm working towards some kind of goal. I ran the Glasgow half marathon a couple of years ago but haven't ran anywhere close to that kind of distance since the race day... mainly due to the fact that they moved the Glasgow half marathon from the first weekend in September to the first weekend in October, which is my birthday weekend! Not impressed.
Although I've been running for quite a few years, it really doesn't get easier; I think i'm just better at not letting myself quit now.
With all of this in mind, I decided I need a new challenge. A pretty big challenge. A 26 mile challenge.
Yup, I've (stupidly?) signed up to my first marathon! The Paris Marathon to be precise. It takes place on the 3rd of April next year giving me exactly 28 weeks to add 23 miles onto my 'comfortable', regular 3 miles.
Anyone know the French for, "WHAT THE F@*K HAVE I DONE?"
I''ve also decided to post my progress on a weekly #RunningDiary so that I'm publicly committing myself and that I'm a bit more accountable. So, if I haven't posted a#RunningDiary update in a few weeks feel free to send me abuse - I will no doubt deserve it.
I've started with a half marathon training plan to get me up to the first 13 mile point. The last time I did a half marathon I followed the Bupa training plan and I found it worked pretty well so I've downloaded it again. (Link here) All going to plan, this should take me up to December and I can then work on, ya know, doubling the distance!!
I've already had to make some changes to my normal routine... like swapping Vogue and Harper's Bazaar for Women's Health and Runner's World.
I've completed my first week of training so the first part of my #RunningDiary goes live tomorrow. Stay tuned....
Paris Marathon - I'm coming for ya!