The Whole 30 That Wasn’t


I’ve done a few Whole30′s now.  Each time I do it I come away with something new.

I find Whole30 a great clean up, and it’s exactly want I needed.  With getting sick, and having to take 2 courses of antibiotics, and just generally eating crappy food.

I needed to have a clean up, for my mind, body and spirit.

But to be honest I really didn’t want to do it for 30 days. So I decided to do half a Whole30 instead, and focus on eating 100% paleo for 15 days.

Those 15 days however turned into 13 days, but I’ll explain that later.

As a birthday present to myself I purchased the 21 day sugar detox cookbook by Dianne Sanfilipo.  I ordered this book as an actual paper back rather than an ebook.  Yes I have paleo ebook cookbooks, but for some reason I prefer cookbooks that I can hold. It’s easier to bookmark the recipes I want to try, and easier to make notes on the pages.

It’s safe to say that I’m in love with this cookbook.

This cookbook became my foundation for my Whole15.  I took principles from the Whole30 program and the 21 Day Sugar Detox.

Yes there are differences from Whole30 to the 21 DSD, the main (for me) being that in the 21 DSD the only fruit you can eat are green tip banana’s & apples. More importantly however only one piece of fruit a day.

You don’t have those fruit restrictions on Whole30.

So while I took on these principals I didn’t always apply them. I’m an athlete (by no means a professional, but I still workout), so the extra carbs gained from the fruits were essential for me. Especially as a pre workout food for my long runs and speedwork sessions.

Now to get back to how the 15 days turned into 13. Well I blame this:
IMG_20140726_155955In one afternoon I won the club run, the cake raffle, a box of chocolates and a bottle brush (native Australian plant).

Yep I broke my Whole15 for cake.  Which by the way didn’t taste very nice.  The homemade naan bread that I had with dinner made breaking the Whole15 so totally worth it over the cake though.

Even though I broke my Whole15, I still gained a lot.  I performed better (hello win?!), sleeping much better, and overall just feeling on top of the world.

I might not do a Whole30 again (we’ll see), but a Whole15 or even a Whole7 will definitely be on the cards again.

What’s your go to meal for breakfast? For me it’s a frittata.
Have you ever done a Whole30 (or Whole15 or 7)?
What’s one food you can’t/wont give up?  I love cheese, and miss it everytime I do this challenge.

SAAC Race Recap: Gary Rice Vineyard


This weeks club run took us away from the Ironbarks of Stawell, and to the timekeepers Vineyard, for the Gary Rice Vineyard race. Located only a short distance outside of town.

This event was a Championship run, held under sealed handicap* conditions.

Each time I have done this race the course changes just a little.  This year we did one giant lap, and then 2 small laps.  For a (not quite) distance of 6.5km (more like 7km).

Having run this race before I decided to wear my trail shoes.  With recent rain I knew the course was going to wet and muddy in some sections, and boy was I right.

garry-rice-44Starting at the top of the hill was a plus, but I knew before I got to the first km that I was going way too fast.  That happens when you have a downhill start.  So while I was keeping pace with Meggy I knew I wouldn’t be able to sustain that pace, so pulled on the brakes.

Wearing the trail shoes had their advance, with a sections of rough uneven grass, wet mud, I got the grip I needed.  There is no doubt that wearing these shoes saved my ankles.

Meggy kept getting further and further away from me.  That’s ok, I’m not as fast as her.  My main concern was Dave behind me, he had to stay there.garry-rice-27

By the 4km mark I was getting tired, the downhill sections were a small blessing, all I could do was put one food in front of the other.

Once I ran past the pond for the last time, I yelled out to Tom “Where’s Dave?”. When he told me he was only 20 or so meters behind me I was like “crap, he can still over take me”.

I kept going.  My breathing felt like it was all over the place, and I was roasting. I should have taken my long sleeve top off before the run, but I was cold and didn’t think of it.

Starting downhill is a plus, but that meant that it was an uphill finish.  It’s not much of a hill, but when you can hear the runner behind you gaining, you just gotta power home.

So that’s what I did.

I know not the prettiest picture, but hey I was working hard and concentrating at getting myself to the finish line.

You can view my Garmin details here.

I finished the race in a time of 32:30, which a pace of 4:40 per km. This placed me first based on Handicap. WIN!

So while I can in first thanks to the handicap, I also won the cake raffle, a box of chocolates & a bottle brush (native Australian plant).


Everything’s coming up Matilda!


* – Meaning that handicap times are not disclosed to the runners before the race

Speedwork Session #1

Yes I love to run, there is no denying that.

The one workout I always skip because I just disliked it was speedwork.

I know that speedwork is important.  But the thought of going around, and around on a track just bores me.  Yep I used the excuse of “So why should I do a workout if I don’t enjoy it?”. It’s a valid reason right?

just a hillHills on the other hand, I could do.  I know that hills are speedwork in-disguise, so that’s the speedwork that I use to do.

Stawell is deceptively hilly.  This isn’t a bad thing, as when I go to do races in other towns, I’m better prepared for any hills I may encounter on course.

In town there is also Big Hill* which I use to do hill repeats.  To be honest I haven’t done Big Hill repeats in a while, as I’ve been really into Bobby’s speedwork sessions on a Monday night.

How I came to enjoy my speedwork sessions all started with the book “You! Only Faster“.  That book planted the seed of “if I want to get faster, I have to run faster”.

speedworkSpeedwork is important for any runner.  Not only does it make you run faster, it also makes you fitter. That in turn helps you to run faster for longer.  And guess what? Speedwork helps you to improve your pb.  Now you tell me what runner doesn’t like getting a new pb ***?

Now that I’m no longer sick, and my body has fully recovered I can really get back into my training.  You have no idea how delightful it is to have my mojo back (I missed you mojo).

Since I don’t like doing speedwork sessions on my own, I decided to accept Bobby’s offer ** of attending his speedwork sessions on a Monday night.

Each week is a different running routine, but each session is designed to help you get faster.

So I thought I would share with you some of the speedwork sessions I have done lately.


Run at 75-85% of your Max.  You’ll wear yourself out if you sprint.
Also utilise those walk breaks to recover.

To view the map/details of this workout you can view it here on garmin connect – Speedwork Session #1.

What speedwork sessions do you do?
Do you have a love hate relationship with speedwork?


* – Possibly not for much longer.  The mine in town want to open cut it (as it’s currently an underground mine), I’m really hoping it doesn’t happen, as it’s just too close to the centre of town.

** – Bobby is one of the founding members of the running club I’m a member of.

*** – I know that including speedwork sessions has helped improve me to get faster. I got a new 5km pb on a partially hilly course thanks to speedwork. You can read about it here.

One Million Steps Challenge


Did you know that there is a term now called “The Sitting Disease”.

No joke, if you are a person that has as job that requires sitting down for a fair chunk of the day. There is a high chance you may have the sitting disease.

The sitting disease does not discriminate.  Yep even us runners.  Just because I run doesn’t mean I’m not safe from this disease.

Does this sound familiar?  You get up from an 8 hour (ish) sleep. You have breakfast, you get in your car and drive to work.  Then at work you sit at your desk for xx amount of hours.  Then you get back in the car and drive home.
Once home, what do you do? Sit in front of the tv.

Doesn’t exactly sound exciting does it. Where is all the movement?

Even kids are not immune to this disease. If anything they are most likely to suffer from it the most.

When I was a kid, I loved playing outdoors.  Living in a country town we had to use our imagination.  We didn’t have an xbox or a computer.  All we had were our imaginations, a bike or a ball.

Let me tell you, me and sister and I had an absolute ball.  I have so many fond memories or exploring our neighbourhood.

Flash forward to now, where I tell my kids constantly “ok no more tv/computer, time to use your imaginations”.  Sure they complain (alot), but you know what, I love seeing what they come up with, and they have so much more fun.  Added bonus, they learn through play.rtg14-runmum

Right now they are so loving going for bike rides.  The skate park is one of their favourite places to visit.  We love running up and down the half pipe, when we are sick of riding it.

I also make sure they are involved in some sort of after school sport.  Swimming is compulsory in this house, so besides that they do Ballet (Miss K) & Gymnastics (Master M).

For me besides, running, I do my weight training, and I try to make the effort to walk up the street to do my errands rather than drive.  (I only live a short distance from the centre of town.)

The other thing is that although I might not work full time, I do work from home. so there are days, where I can just work away at the computer.  So although my life is not like that of some, there are some days where I hardly move at all.

This is why I have decided to take up the One Million Steps Challenge.  I started this challenge on June 21st.

What this means is that for 100 days I need to either walk, hike, jog, run, step, climb or do any other movement to log 1,000,000 steps (or equivalent activity) in 100 days.

My end date will be the 28th of September.

Anyone can do this challenge providing you have a device that counts your steps.  You may use a fitbit, vivofit, jawbone, or even just a plain old pedometer.

I’ll be using my fitbit, to track my steps.

Let me tell you now, I don’t get 10,000 steps every day.  Some days I get only 6,000, others 8,000.  But then there are days were I get in 15,000+ in.  This is why I’m keeping a track log of my steps in google drive.

If you are not ready for the challenge but want to make some changes consider the following:

  • Try to avoid sitting
  • Ask for a stand up desk at work
  • Stay active throughout the work day
  • If you work from home, consider a treadmill desk
  • Take the stairs
  • Go for a walk at lunch time around the block.
  • Invest in a seat like the Locus Seat or something similar
  • If you are a parent be active with your kids.

Do you think your lifestyle will lead you towards the sitting disease?
Have you taken the 1 million steps challenge?
Will you take the 1 million steps challenge?

Would You Rather #6

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these so I thought it would be fun to do another one.

Original questions can be found on Olive to Run Blog.

Would you rather run with one of your ancestors or your role model?
Easy it would so be one of my ancestors, providing that I had a translator, as I’m not fluent in Spanish. I love hearing about my family history.

Would you rather run a race that is a few hours drive but in a beautiful location or in your city with a short drive?
I live in a country town, so there aren’t a whole heap of races that are local or a relative short distance away.  And while I do enjoy the local races I do enjoy getting out of my home territory and exploring what other races have to offer.

Would you rather take an ice bath for half an hour or foam roll for half an hour?
I’ve actually foam rolled for an hour (P90x Mobility & Recovery), and have thoroughly enjoyed it.  Yes I have a love hate relationship with my foam during the session, but I get so much more benefit from it.

Would you rather have a black toe nail pulled off or have your entire back chaffed from running and forced to shower for a hour straight?
While I do enjoy my long showers, I don’t think I’d enjoy having a chaffed back.  Lying down or even sitting down could be problematic, so I’d rather loose a toe nail. (Which has never happen, thank goodness.)

Would you rather spend an extra $100 a month given to you on running/fitness or save it?
I’d save it.  I have a ‘fun account’ which is an account that I put money aside every week for anything I want to do.  Whether running events, massages or new clothes.  That works for me.  So if I’d be given extra money, I put it towards the house.

Would you rather be known for running the fastest marathon or running the longest distance at one time?
Both would be hard, but a marathon would be over and done with in 2 hours, while ultra’s can last 24+ hours.  I don’t think I’d survive either.

Would you rather have your medal handed to you by Kara Goucher or Shalane Flanagan?
Ooh tough one, as they are both top runners, but I’m leaning towards Kara. I think she has a friendlier face. That and I’ve known about her long than Shalane, even though they are both around my age, and both excellent achievers.

Would you rather lick someone else’s armpit after a marathon, or lick their foot after a marathon?
Both totally gross, but I’m going with the foot.  At least a foot, would have a ‘dri fit’ (hopefully) sock on that would take away most of that sweat.

Pick a few or answer all.

SAAC Race Recap – S&K Watson

In 2012 I won this race and set a new 5km pb (personal best) with a time of 23:43.

sk-watson-15Then in 2013 I went and did it again winning this race with a new 5km pb in a time of 22:44.

Each week Tom & I discuss who we think is going to win. Tom said me.  I thought yes that would be awesome, winning this race 3 years in a row would be fantastic, but I ended up tipping Gary S.  He’s been running really well lately, and has had a few podium places in the last few weeks.

First up of course was the sub juniors.  This week they were running 2km.  This distance is far for Miles, so I knew going slow, walking and taking it easy was the best plan.  I made sure I had his puffer on hand.

He did fantastic.  He didn’t come first (I expected that), but he did it, he hasn’t run 2km since last year.  He gave his best, and that’s what matters.

sk-watson-14Kayla also ran, but she made the mistake of going to fast at the start, and she ended up with a side stitch.  She tells me she has learned her lesson, we’ll see.

My handicap time for this 5km event was 10 minutes.  I made a mental note of Gary’s handicap time, which was only 3 mins.  He had a 7 minute lead on me.

I love this course.  I love it because it has a bit of everything.  It’s not flat, but does have a gradual uphill climb and then a gradual descent.  The track also varies, from granite sand to dirt road to dirt track.  Some parts are also technical, so I can say it’s part trail-ish.

sk-watson-26I ran pretty solid from the start.  I was happy with my pace. After 1km I noted that my pace was 4:30, I was impressed, that was a good time. I didn’t feel like I was going super fast, as I wanted to keep some energy left in the tank.

Having runners ahead of you is a good motivator. On Janae’s Blog her slogan is “It’s rude to count people as you pass them… out loud”.  I may have not been counting out loud but I was counting down the runners as I was passing them.

When I got to a mile left in the race I thought to myself, gez I may get it, I may come in first. I had now passed Bobby, which meant I was now in 3rd place. Then I gained on Selina and passed her to be put into 2nd place.  Approximately 100-200 further ahead I could see Gary.  sk-watson-37I knew with the amount of distance left I wouldn’t pass him, and I was ok with that, but I still did my best to gain on him.
As I said before I was running pretty solid, and I was feeling great.  I may not have crossed the line in 1st place (that went to Gary), but I did cross in 2nd with a new personal best of 22:29!

That marks 3 years of the same track and a new pb each time.  Feeling pretty proud of myself really.

You can view my map details here.

What’s your favourite course?
When did you set your last pb?
Any running goals you want to achieve?

100 Happy Days


adjective, hap·pi·er, hap·pi·est.

1. delighted, pleased, or glad, as over a particular thing: to be happy to see a person
2. characterized by or indicative of pleasure, contentment, or joy: a happy mood; a happy frame of mind.
3. favoured by fortune; fortunate or lucky: a happy, fruitful land.
4. apt or felicitous, as actions, utterances, or ideas.
5. obsessed by or quick to use the item indicated (usually used in combination): a trigger-happygangster. Everybody is gadget-happy these days.

Happiness like laughter is infectious.  Why wouldn’t you want to be happy?

I know for me happiness makes me appreciate life so much more.  Happiness makes you content, loved and all warm and fuzzy.

In this day and age there however are a lot of things to be negative or sad about.  Being positive doesn’t seem like a hard thing to do. But is it possible to be happy for 100 days?

I think so.

Recently while blog hopping I came across the 100 Happy Days project.  I’m calling it project rather than a challenge.  A challenge makes it sound like it’s hard or difficult, and being happy shouldn’t be hard. It should be easy.

The challenge project is simple.  For 100 days you take a photo of whatever makes/made you happy.  You share that image using a social media platform and via using the hashtag #100happydays.  I will be posting my pictures via Instagram, which will also be linked up to my Twitter and Facebook as well. (If you don’t want to share your images publicly you don’t have to.)

If you aren’t already following me on Instgram you can stalk follow me here:


There is always something to be happy about, no matter how big or small. That’s why I’m really excited about this project!

I had intended to start this project on the 14th July, but ended up starting it the day I signed up, which was the 7th July.  I was just so excited about it! My project ends the 22nd October.  So I look forward to recapping my 100happydays journey.

Have you done the 100 Happy Days Project?
What has made you happy today?
What is your most happiest memory?

Running Bucket List


There are so many runs out there.  Short, Middle, Long & Ultra.

As a runner, I will always enter races.  I do try to keep things local to home or to Melbourne.

However I have a running bucket list.  Why wouldn’t I?

So here are a list of runs (in no particular order) that I would love to eventually run sometime in the future.

Now just because some of these say Marathon, doesn’t actually mean I will run the 42.2km distance.  A lot of these ‘events’ have half distances, so that’s the distance I would go.

In the trail events, I would consider going up to 30km, but nothing over (at this stage).

Runs in my home state – Victoria

1. Great Ocean Road Marathon
2. Baw Baw Trail Festival
3. Solomon Trail Series (in various locations
4. Roller Coaster Marathon
5. You Yangs Trail Running Festival
6. Run Forest
7. Run from the Hills
8. Run the Rock
9. Hamilton Fun Run
10. Puffing Billy Great Train Race

Runs Interstate

I’d love to run an event in every state and territory.

1. Sydney Running Festival (NSW)
2. Gold Coast Marathon (QLD)
3. Ross Marathon (TAS)
4. Cadbury Marathon (TAS)
5. Great Barrier Reef Running Festival (QLD)
6. Barossa Valley Marathon (SA)
7. Perth Half Marathon (WA)
8. Australia Outback Marathon (NT)
9. Stromolo Running Festival (ACT)


1. New Zealand (Trail events)
2. New York
3. Chicago
4. Paris
5. France (Trail)

What races are on your Running bucket list?

SAAC Race Recap: Tylers Hardware


Event: Tylers Handware
Where: Rupanyup
Distance: 8km

This will be my 3rd year running with SAAC.  The Tylers Hardware Handicap however I have never ran before. I’ve also never been to Rupanyup.

Back in 2012 I chose not to do this run because I was running Run The Gap and I wanted to save my legs (the event was the day before the race).

The same thing happened again last year (2013).

This year the committee decided not to put a run on before Run The Gap (yay for being on the committee).  Therefore the Tylers Hardware Handicap got moved from May to July.

So now I can say I have officially run this event.

Rupanyup is a small town about 30 minutes drive from Stawell.

The difference between running in Stawell and Rupanyup is Hills.  Rupanyup doesn’t have any.  It’s flat as all flat.  This makes any runner happy.  Flat course = fast course.

tyler-hardware-13The sub juniors went off first.

Although the sun was out it was cold, and there was an icy wind.

I ran with Miles to allow that for my warm up. We went slow, but with 200m left he was dying. Not literally but he has asthma and the cold air wasn’t helping him, so he was struggling to catch his breath. He was doing so well too.  If we didn’t stop to walk he would have come first, but he came equal 3rd to his sister Kayla. Oh well next time.

Once all the sub juniors had come in it was time for us adults to run.

tyler-hardware-44The track was flat, and although I made a wrong turn (confusing cones), I ended up still coming 6th overall.

The track started from the Rupanyup football clubrooms.  It then went around the oval and onto the road, and then followed Jacks Track.  Then we did Jacks Track again.

The course wasn’t quite 8km (7.68 to be exact), but hey it’s not an ‘official’ race.  You can view the map here.

I was happy with my time of 37:17 as I finished hard and strong.

I also tested out some new shoes Brooks Glycerin 12′s for an up and coming blog post.

I will say they are great shoes, but maybe not for ‘racing’ in.  I think they will be a good training shoe however.

That being said it ended up being a great day, because waiting for me when we got home was a delicious Pork Roast, cooking away in the slow cooker.

Product Review: THIR


It’s winter here in Australia, and where I live, although it does not snow can get cold, thanks to Antarctic Southerly winds.

Normal headbands do not stay on for me. Doesn’t matter if they have that rubber stuff on the underside, they don’t stay on.  And when I wear them I look stoopid, they just don’t suit me.

Ear warmers on the other hand, those I can do, and those I do not look like a douche bag in. Not only do they keep my ears warm, they keep all those flyaway hairs off my face.  Another added bonus is that it acts as a sweat band, win!

sctm-beach-runmumWell I was in the market for a new headband, and I was looking at another Lorna Jane headband like I’m wearing here.

Then I came across THIR, thanks to them being a sponsor to the Surf Coast Trail Marathon.

With a strong sense of fun and adventure combined with bold design and vivid colour that will not compromise the performance of our adventures. Thir offers Multifunctional Headwear in UV, eco friendly and performance fabrics (Enduracool). The fabrics we use are moisture wicking, light and breathe well – great for marathons, ultras, trail-running, skiing, snowboarding, crossfit, mountain biking, cycling or a serious yoga session . We want to empower you to do your best, and our designs are all about attitude and performance while you challenge the outdoors .

They were also having 20% for SCTM runners, so I figured I will order one and then pick it up on race day (as they gave that option).

I ended up choosing the PiriPiri design.  I wanted something that was neutral, but not boring.

What’s different about Thir’s?  Well they are a multifunction headwear.  You can wear it multiply ways. Headband, ear warmers, balacava, cap, pirate hat (just to name a few), even as a neck warmer or a wristband.

It’s safe to say I love my Thir it’s soft, light, breathable, but also super comfy. It keeps my head & ears warm.

Thir’s live up to their mission statement (see above). They truly are a fantastic product and I can tell that my Thir will become a staple item when I go out running.

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.