Morning of the Marathon preparation & Timings

I absolutely loved my marathon experience that I decided it might be helpful to share our morning marathon routine. This routine worked well for us, but remember everyone is different so do what works for you on the morning of a marathon.

The Manchester Marathon started at 9:00AM, so we decided to work backwards when prepping our morning and timings. We were staying in Stockport which was about a 20 minute taxi ride away from the Old Trafford Cricket Club. Training runs work very differently to the schedule below, I usually roll out of bed, put on my running clothes, boil the kettle, pour myself a cup of coffee, drink said cup of coffee whilst scrolling Instagram, brush my teeth and GO.

5:45AM- Wakeup call for some this might be incredibly early but I am an early riser and my alarm usually goes off at 5:30AM on a week day so this time didn’t really affect me too much. If you aren’t an early riser or you don’t do well in the mornings then I would suggest doing this routine a couple of times before your marathon.

6:00AM- Breakfast & coffee, I wanted to makes sure I gave my body enough time to digest my breakfast before the race started, during my training I usually run fasted but I knew this wasn’t going to be possible for a 26.2 mile run. I needed to fuel but at the same time I didn’t want to risk getting a stitch as it was something my body wasn’t used to. I made sure I trailed and tested this before race day so I knew my body would adjust. For breakfast I opted for a big bowl of jumbo oats with blueberries and peanut butter which is my favourite breakfast so I was very happy.

I usually have a large cup of coffee prior to running on a usual training run and I never usually have to stop for the toilet.  I knew the excitement and nerves would get to me which we all know usually results in needing the toilet more frequently so I opted for strong but small coffees- espresso style. To be honest with you I am not sure how affective this was as I still needed the toilet twice before the race.

6:30AM- Shower time, I always like to have a shower on the morning of a race day as it makes me feel refreshed and ready to start the day. For my training runs I usually roll out of bed, throw on my running clothes and brush my teeth but that isn’t the case for race day. Then it was time to pin my running number to my vest eeek!

7:15AM: Taxi arrived, we decided to book the taxi for 7:15AM as we thought this would give us plenty of time to get to the start line especially, we knew there wouldn’t be any traffic that early on a Sunday morning. When we got into the taxi the driver asked us what time the race was starting and when our reply was 9:00AM he said ‘I’ll see what I can do about getting you there for then but there are lots of road closures’. As you can imagine my heart rate went through the ROOF, this is not the kind of stress I need on race day.

7:30AM- Taxi dropped us off, the taxi managed to drop us off about half a mile away from the race start line which we were happy about, we could do with some fresh air anyway to help with our nerves and excitement. This is definitely a lesson learnt through next time we will definitely check with the taxi company about road closures next time.

8:00AM- we arrived at Old Trafford Cricket Ground and went straight to the bag drop, the Manchester Marathon organisers suggested dropping your bags off prior to 8:00AM but they were not as strict as most places. At most races we have been to the bag drop off and bag collection points are at two separate locations, however at the Manchester Marathon the bag drop area did not move so there were not really any time restrictions.

8:15-8:30AM- We made our way to the pens which was about a 15 minute walk away from the bag drop by this point we had already walked about 7000 steps and we hadn’t even started the run. We made our way straight to the loos for one last comfort break before the marathon started.

9:10AM- we crossed the start line and the race was underway!

 

Another Space Review

Another Space have two studios in London located in Covent Garden and Bank. Both studios offer a choice of three classes which are HIIT, Yoga & Spin.

There is no need to get a membership and there isn’t a joining fee either, instead you can just purchase class as and when you feel like going. Another Space have a challenge where by you can complete 7 classes in just 7 days for £77. You can also purchase a pack of 6 for £105, 9 for £135 or 12 for £160. Each of the classes are valid for one calendar month from the date they are purchased.

They also have an intro offer where you can purchase 2 classes and one buddy pass for £30 which is valid for 2 weeks. They also have credit packages on offer where 1 credit is £20 or 5 credits is £95 (which lasts for 6 months).

The timetable at Another Space is really great as they have classes available from 6:15AM in the morning which is great if you want to get a sweat on before work. They also have lunch time classes if you can’t fit it into your schedule pre-or post-work. They then of course also have evenings classes where the latest class starts at 19:45PM.

We have been to the Covent Garden Another Space twice to try out their Spin class and absolutely loved it. The First spin class we tried was the Tuesday evening class at 19:30 with Olivia, it was incredible. Olivia brings so much energy into the class and we LOVE the fact she takes part in the entire class even if she has taught several classes already that day.

We then returned to the 19:30PM Class on a Monday with Alison and it was just as good, with it being a Monday the class was jam packed and everyone was sweating the weekend away. Alison sure did make us work hard the windows were steaming up and our legs were on fire.

The changing rooms are a good size and there is plenty of space to get changed. We love that they have lots of lockers as we do find some studios in London are lacking lockers or the lockers they do have people leave them locked for when they next return to the studio.

We liked the chalk board in the changing rooms as well so you could write down the locker you had chosen, it can’t just be us that always forgets the locker they have picked!

If you don’t want to go in the changing rooms pre-or post-class then there are also lockers outside the studios you can use, which we will definitely be doing next time if we are dashing off home.

Another Space sell Fresh Fitness Food shakes in their studio which are also delicious, we have in fact just visited for a shake in the past.

The new studio in Bank has recently opened and we would love to get down there and give one of their classes a try. We have tried Spin twice now so we would opt for a HIIT class at the new Bank studio.

The Avoidable Fitness Accidents You Somehow Didn’t Avoid

You probably see on our Insta stories of us at the gym most days, but that’s because there are 2 of us so it does look like we are there all the time. But in actually fact we aren’t and we do have rest days and understand the importance of these rest days.

Millennials and Generation Z, (which is us!) are much more health conscious than their parents and as a result it means we might be overdoing it a little. In fact most sports accidents could have been prevented but, as it is most people only understand their errors after the injury has happened.

Below are the top 7 freak and painful fitness accidents that we are here to prevent you from getting!

My gym bag is always packed and ready

First of all your body needs rest days. You might think that hard training every day can make you stronger and fitter, but ultimately if you’re in the habit of packing your gym bag every morning you might have developed an unhealthy obsession. Your muscles experience micro-tears as you train. It’s precisely those tears that will help to get you stronger and fitter, but you need to give yourself the time to heal. If you’re trying to maintain or improve your performance, a rest day will ensure that your hard work isn’t counterproductive. Ultimately, we’re talking here only a day or two break after a hard session because Going to the gym too often is unhealthy.

I don’t go to the gym, I cycle

If you’re not a gym addict, you might have chosen alternatives to stay fit, such as turning your commute to work into a fitness option. Cycling to work is extremely popular London especially since the introduction of the cycle scheme that now lets employers pay for a portion of the costs of a new bike. If you’ve got busy days, it’s the perfect workout as it doesn’t come in addition to your standard routine. The main risk you can be exposed to, assuming you’re a confident cyclist and won’t fall each time you need to let go of the handle to indicate where you’re going to turn, is traffic. London traffic is busy and can be dangerous (if you’ve been injured by a driver remember you should be making a claim after a cycling accident.

I’ve read lifting is good for toning

A lot of people are turning to lifting to tone their muscles and accelerate weight loss. It’s now common knowledge that weight lifting doesn’t have to make you bulky! We would recommend starting with a personal trainer so you are able to learn how to lift without putting your body under harmful pressures.

I’m a runner

We love running it’s one of our favourite forms of exercise but we also understand that it is a high impact exercise that can also weaken your joints. Ultimately, running can hurt when you’re new to it, and while it’s not an injury you need to give your body time to adapt to the impact and to take it easy.

I use energy-boosting supplements to keep going

Energy supplements are popular at the gym, especially if you want to push yourself to be able to see results faster, we have all heard of pre workout (personally we just drink coffee) but often these are not that healthy and in fact most supplements don’t increase your energy.

I’ll lose the weight through boot camp training

If you think that you can spend a week on a boot camp to shape your body to perfection, you need to reconsider your choices. Boot camps, while being effective as they work on minimal calories intake and maximal efforts over a short time, can actually put your health at risk. Similarly, HIIT training, which offers an everyday alternative to the boot camp cure create similar pressure in the body. Intense workouts can lead muscle tissue to break down and release poisonous myoglobin into the bloodstream.

I prefer to train at home

Yoga and stretching apps are extremely popular because they offer the possibility to train at home. However, it’s important to remain realistic about stretching. If you overdo it, you incur the risk of tearing muscles and tendons. You may not manage your splits in a week, so take it easy!

I guess what we are trying to say Is be sensible with your training! We love training and we feel great afterwards but we know when to listen to our bodies and take a rest day! No one is perfect we have all over trained our bodies in the past but don’t wait until you get an injury for you to realise you need to take those rest days.

Osprey Europe Trillium Bag Review

We were invited to a Press event with Osprey Europe back in September 2017, but unfortunately due to work commitments and working a 9-5 job we couldn’t make the event.  As you can  can imagine we were so gutted that we couldn’t make the event as it but we were extremely grateful when we were told we could still receive one of their Trillium Series Duffel Bags.

Its safe to say that since we received these bags we have been using them every single day WE LOVE THEM and we feel like now is the perfect time to write a review.

The design of the bag is fab and we couldn’t believe how compact they were. When we first received the delivery we were surprised at how small the package was especially as we had seen photos of the bags online.  We soon realised they were fold away bags and immediately thought it was a brilliant concept.

When someone mentions a fold away bag we automatically think of those shopper bags people use when doing their weekly shop but no no no these bags are not flimsy in the slightest in fact they are incredibly durable and amazing quality.

The Trillium comes in five colours; Black, Granite Grey, Sunburst Orange, Truffle Green & Vega Blue. Rachel has the Granite Grey which also has florescent yellow details and Annie has the Truffle Green both of which we love. The Trillium 30 costs £50 which we think is fairly priced especially as the quality is second to none.

The bag has Padded straps and if you extend the strap fully it allows you to carry it as a shoulder bag. If you choose to shorten the straps it turns into a cross body bag. We mostly use it as a shoulder bag!

We particularly love the main zip on the bag as it allows you to fully open the bag up without having to remove everything in the bag, we have all been there when we are trying to find that one thing (usually headphones) and you just cannot find it and end up removing everything from your bag.

We have been taking our Duffel bags to the gym as they are the perfect size to fit our work clothes in and also fit  perfectly into the gym lockers. We also love the fact that there are a number of different pockets allowing us to separate our sweaty gym wear- sorry if TMI but its true!

We have also taken the bag away with us when we have been for weekends away as it is the perfect size for hand luggage. We would also recommend packing it in your hold luggage if you are doing mini trips within a big trip and don’t want to carry a suitcase everywhere you go.

So many people have asked us where we got our gym bag from and we seriously couldn’t recommend the Trillium Duffel enough, it is everything you could want in a gym or weekend away bag.

Morning Run in Jersey

As you know by now we always start every trip we go on with a morning run, it set us up nicely for the day and also gives us a chance to look around running to sites and viewpoints we wouldn’t otherwise get to see. I visit Jersey quite frequently so know the island relatively well but that doesn’t stop me waking up in the morning, tying up my laces and getting outside.

I set out at 7:00am when it was still dark outside, as I was running the sun began to rise and I was quite literally running into the beautiful sunrise. It was so peaceful outside with only runners in site. As I am training for a marathon I knew I had to run a fair way as I always save a long run for the weekend, I googled the distance from St Aubin’s to St Hellier and it said it was roughly 5 miles so a rounded trip would get me up to 10 miles which was perfect.

It was such a beautiful morning it looked like the sky was on fire, by the time I got down to the harbour I just had to stop and take some photos to share with you all.  I wish I could wake up every morning and run along on the beach, I even saw horses galloping along the beach it was truly magical.

Rachel will be joining me in Jersey in June for the Jersey half marathon which we are already so excited about, for someone who has never been to Jersey before running the half marathon will mean she hopefully gets to see a large amount of the island in one go (the island is only 9X5 anyway).

We cannot think of a better half marathon to take part in, the views are going to be truly stunning, if any of you are also running the half marathon in Jersey then please do let us know! Fingers crossed the wind and weather in on our side on the 10th June.

The Perfect Winter Coat

Is it just us or every winter do you have that one new coat that you will always choose to wear over any other coats you own? That is exactly what we have been doing with our Lapasa coat, we absolutely love it, especially as we are now matching head to toe!

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Lapasa very kindly sent us both a windproof winter puffer coat in the colour burgundy (our favourite colour) and we haven’t taken it off since. Although it feels quite thin it is incredibly warm and the perfect coat to take if you are travelling somewhere as it is very light weight.

We have been working with Lapasa for a few months now (catch up on our previous blog post about the brand here), we absolutely love working with Lapasa the products are an amazing quality and we couldn’t recommend them enough as a brand.

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It is the perfect every day use coat, but would also be great for any outdoor winter sports. We have worn it on so many winter walks over the festive period and everyone always complements us on it.

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Lapasa have so many amazing products we couldn’t promote their leggings anymore than we already do. They are super soft and fit amazingly (they are super high waisted which we love). We have got them in a range of colours and literally live in our black ones.

The jacket is £35.95 which is such a good price for a coat especially as it is so versatile. You can also use our code ‘TWOBRITS’ at checkout to get 5% off all orders, we always order the products from the Amazon (the delivery time is amazing).

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Walking In The Woods

Do you ever just wake up in the morning and all you fancy doing is going for a long walk through the woods? We LOVE walking we think it does wonders for the mind and we always feel so much better for it.

There is something about getting out of bed on a Sunday morning, putting on some trainers, our scruffy clothes and getting outside to enjoy the fresh air in this beautiful world we live in. Sundays are usually our rest days from the gym so instead we slow down the pace and just go for a casual stroll instead, it’s the only time of the week where we actually slow down, no wonder our minds work at 100mph if our bodies are doing exactly the same.

We have both been lucky enough to grow up with the woods just a stone throw away and trust us we don’t take it for granted, we absolutely love it and we make the most of it wherever possible.  Sunday morning are always so peaceful we rarely see another soul, which always surprises us as we always expect to see lots of people, although saying that  most people are probably enjoying a lazy Sunday in bed  as we are known to wake up unusually early.  You will see us out in the woods come rain, snow or shine, we especially love it in the snow it’s like our own little winter wonderland where we can pretend we are in Narnia it’s truly is beautiful.

We have never understood why people HATE walking? Walking is free and one of the easiest ways to get fit and become more active yet so many people hate it. As a society it has become too easy to get from A to B without using your legs, there are so many different types of transport these days it has resulted in us not having to walk.

We are those people that think it’s possible to WALK anywhere and everywhere, we recently saw a meme on Facebook of this and it made us laugh because that is us down to a T! We always try and beat the Google Maps whenever we walk anywhere it’s become a little game we have, because we are so COOL!

Post Christmas Fitness Classes in London

Almost everyone’s Fitness motivation is on a high come the 2nd of January once everyone has got over their NYE hangover and wants to start living a healthier life, it is a new year new start bla bla bla. We are here to help you choose some classes that will help whip you back into shape.

Barrys Bootcamp- it’s time to sweat out all the wine and mince pies you have consumed over the Christmas break and nothing is going to make you sweat like Barry’s Bootcamp. You can read our previous review here where we go into so much more detail, but we would definitely recommend the full body class. Half way through the class we both turned to each other and mouthed ‘I am going to chunder’ it was funny as we did it at the same time but luckily we didn’t because that would have been embarrassing.

One 10 cycle-if you haven’t read our One 10 review before you can find it here. We will definitely be showing our face in One 10 during the month of January it is such a fun sweaty session that will leave you wanting to go back for more. One 10 Cycle has some of the best spinning instructors in town and they are always there encouraging you whilst whipping your but into gear.

Kobox- because who doesn’t love a post christmas punching session? Kobox is located on the Kings Road so the perfect location if you want to do a spot of sale shopping afterwards. We love a Kobox class and they really get you sweaty which is always a good thing! Their tag line is perfect ‘where fight club meets night club’ because it is SO true!

Another Space- why not attend a sweaty Cycle class at Another Space. Another space is located in the heart of Soho only a short walk from Covent Garden. We love attending Olivia’s class she brings so much energy into the room it’s incredible so definitely book onto one of her classes! Oh and the shakes after the class are even more of a reason to get your butt down there they taste amazing!

Motivation to get outside & run

Sometimes we all need a little bit of motivation to get outside and run no matter how much we love running. Now the weather is getting colder it can become harder to find the motivation to put on our running gear and get outside (it’s hard enough getting out of bed in the morning let alone getting outside).

We actually much prefer running in the cold, we can run faster and further, but we do occasionally need a little kick up the butt to get us out in the first place.

Make a plan at the beginning of the week- we like to roughly plan the days we go running but we will always be flexible depending on the weather. If it’s a miserable evening then there is no point forcing yourself outside, you won’t enjoy it and it may put you off going out again.

Download a Podcast- If you have downloaded a podcast that you are really looking forward to listening to then this is likely to motivate you to get outside. Set yourself a deal that you can only listen to the Podcast when you are out running that is sure to get your but into gear.

Running gear- make sure you invest in some running clothes and gloves that are warm enough to get you through the colder winter months. Last year we invested in some running gloves and we have never looked back, they are amazing.

Just keep telling yourself how amazing you will feel after- try and remember the feeling you get after every run, we love the feeling after a run we don’t get this feeling after any other workout. You will also find that running takes up less of your time than heading to the gym, you don’t have to wait for anyone to finish with equipment and you also don’t have the journey time to factor in.

Make a date – we always find that arranging to run with someone else is all the motivation you need, you have made a commitment to your friend after all.

Find a local running club- If you haven’t got any friends or colleagues who enjoy running then why not find a running club to join there are so many free running clubs around and it’s a great way to keep you motivated during the colder months.

Sign up to a race- sign up for a spring run that way you will have to get outside and run otherwise. Having a race in the calendar and something to work towards is a great motivator especially if you haven’t run the distance before.

How to Train to Run Your First 5K

‘How can you run so far? I wish I could run as far as you two but I just can’t’

We hear this so often and everytime our answer is ‘we never used to be able to run either but everyone can run, so if we can do it you can as well’. The first race we ever did was a 5K colour run, Rach was on placement year and trained really hard for it. Annie on the other hand was still at University and thought the typical 5km isn’t that far I don’t need to train but boy was I wrong. It was that run though that made Annie want to train properly and actually get into running (after the embarrassment of having to walk some of the way).

5km is honestly the hardest milestone to get to and we tell everyone this time and time again. Start short and just extend your run bit by bit each time and before you know it you will be able to run 5km, it will take time depending on how frequently you run so don’t get disheartened when you first start running and have to walk after 5 minutes.

We have set out some top tips below that we would have found helpful when we first started running

Listen to music- make sure you have a good playlist when you running, something that is going to inspire you to keep going. When you first start running you might want to create a playlist that has a variety of different styles of songs so you can see what you do like or what you don’t like when running. We like to have a mixture between old classics (got to love a bit of spice girls), chart music & a couple of dance songs thrown in the mix.

Download a good podcast-we have recently started to get into podcasts when we run. We find it passes time really quickly as you are concentrating more about what the person is saying on the podcast rather than thinking ‘how much further have I got to go’ after each stride. We have been listening to lots of blogging podcasts and our favourites at the moment is ‘What She Said’ by Lucy She…. And ‘Made Online’ by… this way it means we actually gain knowledge about blogging whilst we are doing something that is good for us- win win.

Invest in some good running trainers-you won’t know how important these are until you actually have them.

Download a running app- make sure you download a running app to your phone so you know how far you have run and what pace you are running at. Not that the pace is important but you will find the more you run the faster you become so it can be interesting to look back at. We are using the Fitbit app as we both have Fitbits but prior to that we always used the Nike running app which we found really good and the distance was always accurate.

Map your route- we always like to have an idea of where we are running so we have something to aim for when we are running. We sometimes use the app map my run as you are able to choose the route you want to go and also know the distance before you leave the house. We would love it if you could give an app your address, let it know the distance you want to run and then allow the app to choose the route for you. If this app already exists then please do let us know because it would be so cool and your run would be different every time which also brings us on nicely to the next point.

Mix up your runs-When we first started out running and wanting to hit 5KM we used to run/part walk the same route every time as we wanted to see how much further we could run this time compared to our previous run. Running the same route over and over again can become borings so if you are feeling unmotivated to go out on a run try a new route because a change of scenery may be exactly what you need.

Running 5km is such a brilliant goal to have for any new runners, find a race you want to run and enter it that way you will have something to work towards (or run towards lol).

Good luck you can do it!