7 different miles in 7 days

If a mile a day is going to work for you you have to be creative. It’s fun to think of different ways in which you can run your mile. I have planned your week for you in this post. 7 different miles in 7 days. I would be really keen to know how you get on. Any more suggestions then please let me know.

Day 1

Choose a mile route you have never done before. Time it and measure it using your smart phone. Enjoy exploring and making it as different as you can to the ones you have done previously. Take foot paths and turnings that you have thought about taking but never had. Run for 2 minutes and have a 30 second break in between. If you go over the mile then don’t worry, it’s fine. Make it as close to the mile as you can.

Day 2

Do the same route as day 1 but in reverse. You don’t need to measure it this time as you know it’s a mile. Try to beat your time from day 1. Run all the way or do some faster sections. Use landmarks such as lamp posts or parked cars in the distance to accelerate to.

Day 3

Drive to a hill in your local area and park near by. Jog to the foot of the hill put don’t include this distance in the mile. This hill is going to be your playground for the next 15 minutes (or less). Run to the top of the hill without stopping. Don’t look at the top but concentrate on your feet moving, imagine someone at the top with a rope pulling you up. There is no rush but you mustn’t stop. Use the down hill as your cool down. You can walk if you want but you’ll probably find the feeling of free fall with gravity is enough. Lean forward a bit and you will get down with little effort. Feels like flying!

Day 4

Pack your running gear into a ruck sack and head for a nearby city. I live about 30 minutes by train from the centre of London so perfect for this. Go to a hotel and use their toilets to change into your sports gear. Head out and run for a mile through the streets. You may want to do some planning in advance using something like mapmyrun online. Choose your time wisely. I find early evening best when commuters have started their journey.

Day 5

Go back to the day one route and do some high intensity interval training. The pattern below works for me and gets my heart pounding and breath shortening no trouble.

2 min warm up – slow jog
20 sec very fast
20 sec cool down – walk
20 sec very fast

Repeat until you have completed your mile. Structuring in this way in some ways is more satisfying than the ‘random’ approach.

Day 6

Find a local park to run in. Often our parks especially in the UK are underused and are associated with childhood. Some of these parks are beautiful and have good car parks. Drive to one and enjoy the change of scenery. Even better cycle to one and you’ve done a bit of cross training as well. Using the park map will tell you the best parts , maybe a lake or a stream or a secret woodland garden. You could have a look online before hand.

Day 7

This is treat day. Run to a pub about a mile away and have a drink. Enjoy yourself – have a few and be merry. Walk back if you want to. Take a change of clothing in a ruck sack if you want to make a night of it. Combine this day with a meal out with friends – take your friends on the run with you.

Why not make tomorrow your day 1? Of course you don’t need to run the days in the order suggested! The whole idea of this habit is to find what works for you.

Milerunner

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Mini-Guide on how to have a relatively healthy all-inclusive holiday

All inclusive holidays are notorious for being very unhealthy. You’ve paid your money and want to get value for that money once there. The dangers of this are easy to see. Here are some obvious ones.

1. Overeating: ‘free’ food being available all day. Meal times are dangerous with so many carbs on offer.
2. Drinking calories: With wine and beer on tap, all inclusive holidays are notorious for being very unhealthy.
3. Too much sun. Staggering from the dinner table to the lounger feeling heavy. You start with sun tan cream then get lazy into the second week. Heat rash and burn can result. Hello Pharmacy!
4. Dehydration: Water drinking can take a back seat. There is water in lager, right!
5. Spending too much money on trips and excursions: 2 weeks staying in the hotel grounds can be claustrophobic.
6. Not enough movement: No motivation to exercise is common.
7 Stress of being with other people: yes you are on holiday and yes you are with people that you love but stress and friction can occur especially at decision time. What shall we do today! Arrrrrrgh.

There are plenty more pitfalls but I will leave these to your imagination.

This mini guide is a few suggestions on how to have a healthy all inclusive experience.

1. Plan your alcohol: decide in the morning when and how many beers etc you will have that day. Make a judgement how many is too many. One sounds too few? Five sounds too many?
2. Be sensible with your carbohydrates: spaghetti and meat sauce with chips on the side might not be the best plan. In my opinion the danger foods are bread, rice, potatoes and pasta. Fortunately in all inclusive buffets there is plenty of choice so as a general rule these can be avoided. I’m not saying don’t eat a single piece of bread or a pasta twirl, just not at every meal.
3. Tune into your body. Several key questions will help you do this. Am I hungry? Am I thirsty? Do I feel dehydrated ( dry mouth, headache, unfocused, tired, demotivated to move). Do I feel stressed? Do I feel hot? Do I feel lazy? Most of these are easily answered and resolved. If you are not hungry then don’t eat! Simple!
4. Drink plenty of water. Make water your drink of choice at meal times. I find that a rule of no alcohol when eating is essential. Order a bottle of still mineral water as the first thing you do when the waiter comes around.
5. Give yourself space from who you are with. You don’t need to do everything together. Spend a couple of hours on your own. Fill this time with something healthy such as a mile run. You will have more to say to one another this way. Shared experience is valuable but limits freshness in conversation.
6. Take advantage of the hotel sports put on. There is usually plenty on offer from water aerobics to beach volleyball. In Cyprus at the moment I have done an organised Yoga class everyday. I had never done Yoga before – a great introduction to it. Outside and beautiful!
7. Plan your dedicated sun times. I comit myself to two fifteen minute sessions a day. One in the morning before it gets too hot and one in the afternoon for a final blast. To be mathematical and chef like I do 7.5 minutes each side. I use my phone timer to time myself.
8. Look around for trips and excursions. The holiday company you booked with will be all to keen to sell you ‘their’ trips. There will be entry of outside companies offering the same if not better just a short walk away. Have a look at tripadvisor (before or whilst you are there). You can search for attractions near you. Have a look at the highest rating first then move to the average ones and make a list of the pitfalls. A little bit of research goes a long way. Think carefully about hiring a car. Not always the best thing in my opinion. Yes you may be able to see more but can be the source of many an argument. Everyone gets a bit scared driving on a different side and into the unknown. Be a little considerate.
9. Be organised and sensible. . Use the hotel safe to keep your valuables in. Don’t leave stuff around the pool – don’t get paranoid though. People are generally trustworthy.
10. Try to exercise everyday and if you can help it avoid the gym. Get outside.

If you have a healthy lifestyle then 2 weeks of all inclusive can damage you and ruin all sorts of good habits.

These suggestions are mind and I am keen to hear yours. Please comment freely or email me at runamiletoday@gmail.com

Milerunner

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Tips on running a mile a day whilst on holiday

I am currently on holiday in Cyprus and am loving my mile runs everyday. The runs take about 15 minutes out of the day including getting ready and mean that I have a regular dose of exercise keeping my metabolism up and securing a bit of ‘me’ time. People generally don’t put exercise and holidays together but there is no reason why you shouldn’t continue – you will, I promise feel much better for it.

Here are a few tips on running a mile whilst on holiday.

1. Choose your time wisely. I find running first thing in the morning is best or just before showering for evening meal. Avoid hot times and if you have to apply plenty of sunscreen. Try not to run full up.

2. Take extra care of pavement curbs and uneven surfaces. The last thing you want is some awful injury. Watch crossing roads too especially if the country you are in drive on a different side of the road to what you are used to.

3. If you are on a beach holiday then try to choose a coastal route I am very fortunate where I am at the moment of an excellent flat coastal path easily accessible from the hotel.

4. Don’t feel that you have to run all the way. In fact I would discourage it. Why not take some photos on route or run for a coffee for half a mile then set back. Remember you are on holiday and treat these runs as ‘holiday’ runs.

5. Avoid the temptation of the gym. Yes it is tempting to use the hotel treadmill but avoid at all costs. You have an excellent chance of seeing new things and exercising somewhere different. Make sure you take advantage of it.

6. Encourage others to go with you. It’s more fun with others and they will help you to be and stay motivated. If you are in a hotel or other complex you may be able to put a flyer on a notice board asking others to join you.

7. Use a smart phone app to measure your mile. Turn off data roaming as you do it. Once you know a good route you can leave your phone in your room the next time.

8. Make sure you run everyday. Leave your running stuff somewhere obvious as an easy reminder.

So enjoy. You have no excuse, hangover or not, get out there and let me know how you get on

Milerunner

One Mile Run Done with a little push at the end

Today I went out on my usual one mile run. Nice and early – a bit of a hangover to be honest from last night. The sun was shining and all was well with the world. I went in a completely different direction, turned left then through a passageway which was overgrown with nettles so had to back track. I ran through nettles once before and my legs looked burnt afterwards! After about 7 minutes running I was approaching a mile but my legs felt strong and I felt I could keep going. Ahead of me was a bridge and as bridges tend to be it was a hump. A bit of an incline and then a decline. The urge took me and I decided to run over it, cross it, back over the other side and then did the same again. I ended up running about 1.3 miles – a little over the mile and that was fine. A small bit extra I know but that doesn’t matter. Sometimes a little push at the end of the mile feels like a real achievement. Might have an extra piece of toast with my breakfast now!

Milerunner

10 Reasons why I run every Day

“The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine” Mike Murdock 

There are many reasons why I have decided to run a mile daily. Here are ten

  1. A mile run is easy to fit into the day. It takes me around ten minutes to run the mile and this is very achievable on a daily basis.
  2. It is a short enough distance to avoid injury.
  3. Over a year I run 365 miles which is the same as 14 marathons.
  4. It burns about 60,000 calories a year and probably more as the metabolic rate is kept high.
  5. The run can be done anywhere:- from home, from work or on holiday. There can be no excuses to move.
  6. I am able to challenge myself easily within the mile by incorporating a few faster segments.
  7. I don’t need to procrastinate about going for the run as I know it will be over quite quickly. The psychological barrier is easily broken.
  8. I do not need to think when I will be exercising as I know it is everyday.
  9. My metabolic rate is kept high because it is always being given a daily boost.
  10. As I run everyday I tend to have more energy throughout the day and am much more positive about everything else in life.

Why do you run everyday? I would love to hear from you.

Milerunner

How to cope with the hard and heavy run

Sometimes you set out on your mile run and your legs just don’t want to move. They feel heavy, your stomach feels full and your breathing does not seem to be as fluid and as easy as it usually is. The run can simply feel too hard.

Here are a few things to do if this happens to you – and it will!

  1. Don’t go out too quickly. Slow your pace down and just allow your legs to take you. Don’t put more effort in that you have to.
  2. Don’t be afraid to walk for a bit. There is no shame in this – after all you are running every day. If you are finding it difficult then you are finding it difficult and you will just have to accept it.
  3. Try to run when your stomach isn’t too full. I only eat within an eat hour period during the day and exercise during the sixteen hours I’m not eating. This tends to be early in the morning. When I do run on a full stomach it is difficult and they are never my best runs. I try to avoid this.
  4. Realise that you are only running a mile and before you know it, the run will be over and you will have done the exercise for the day.
  5. You may need a rest day. Running a mile a day is brilliant if you can do it but for some it is very much the ideal – and that is fine. Running every other day is still excellent and maybe today you should just have a rest. If you run every other day remember that is still seven marathons a year. I would say though that if you start out on your run you should continue and just walk it. Just think of the fresh air.
  6. Try changing the time of day that you go out. I find runs after a very hard day at work difficult. Usually the run will be just what I need to kick myself out of lethargy but sometimes if I have mentally had it just doesn’t happen.
  7. Listening to music can help to make the run seem easier. Getting into the rhythm of a strong beat is sometimes all that is needed – give it a go.
  8. This might sound crazy but sometimes picking an object in front of you such as a lamppost or post box and running to it fast can make the slower bits seem easier. For instance if I run fast for 30 seconds, walking afterwards seems ridiculously slow and normal paced running seems easy.
  9. Run with someone else – Ask a friend to go running with you. Go for a coffee afterwards. Enjoy yourself and have an incentive to run.
  10. Remember that you are committed to exercises every day and that you’re onto something good here. Just enjoy your mile but if you can’t do it you can’t do it. There is always tomorrow – but make sure you go.

Thanks for reading. Hopefully these tips will help you.

Anyother tips are gratefully received as always.

Milerunner