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Berlin Marathon

It’s been less than 24 hours since I arrived home from Berlin and I wasn’t sure whether to write this post or not. I kinda just want to forget about the weekend, but I always think it’s important to remember this feeling.

On Sunday, I stood at the start line of the iconic Berlin Marathon. This race has been the focus of my training for this entire summer. Back in May, I created a twenty week training plan, and then I stuck to it. I did the early morning runs, the long slow runs and the speedy interval runs. I ran up and down the mountains in France on holiday, whilst Rob and Jude were still sleeping. I even ran on the beach in Mexico. I have never trained so consistently for a race before. I felt much faster and fitter than last year, the hard work was paying off.

After a week holiday in Mexico, we can home and was keen to back out on the road. My first run was a slow six miles and it felt easy. That weekend was my last scheduled long run before the race, eighteen miles. I set off with my Terrex backpack loaded with energy gels and water. I got thought that run and I was feeling pretty good. It gave me a confidence boost and I planned to focus on speed work for the last few weeks of training. Everything was going great until the next morning when I woke up, I stepped out of bed and I felt a sharp pain in the sole of my right foot. It was so painful that I couldn’t put my foot flat on the floor. But to be honest, I wasn’t too concerned at first, after running eighteen miles you can expect to have a few aches and pains the next day right? I just thought that after a few days it would be gone. Unfortunately, the pain didn’t go. I started icing it everyday, (I’m still not sure if that was a good or bad thing to do) I went to see a physiotherapist. He told me to completely rest until the race. No running at all. So that is what I did.

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Fast forward to race day…

I stood at the start line feeling nervous. I started having flashbacks of running the London marathon last year. I started thinking about the pain of those last few miles. But then I started to think about all of the training that I had done this year. All those miles. I knew that I had put the time in so I told myself that I was ready. I thought that my foot would no doubt be hurting by the end, but I did not think for one second that I wouldn’t be able to finish the race.

Standing in a crowd of forty seven thousand runners is pretty incredible! As I ran across the start line, I was buzzing! I had spotted a pacer and decided to stick with him until the half way point. I started talking to another AR runner who was also following the same pacer. We decided we’d stick together.

The race course is epic! The crowd was cheering us on and the sun was lighting up the streets. As we came past the 4 mile sign, I was already starting to feel pain in my foot.

In my mind the race was split up into three sections. Miles 1-10 warm up, 11-20 hard work & 20-26 survival. I tried to relax and I told myself this is just the warm up. By the time I reached mile 10, the pain in my foot was constant, it was hurting with every single step. Looking back, I know this is the point that I should have stopped. This is when I knew that I might not make it to the finish line. BUT, instead of stopping I let me ego take over. I was telling myself that it was going to be mind over matter. I tried to forget about the pain and I put my headphones in and turned the music up. I walked through the next water station, and made a deal with myself. As I looked up at the 20K sign I thought, if you can make it to 30K you can finish this race. I set off running again.

I reached the 25K sign and the pain was unbearable. I was running on my toes because it hurt too much to put my heel down. That’s when I had to stop. I knew I couldn’t finish like that, I still had another 19K to go. I felt so angry and frustrated! I stood at the side of the road and watched hundreds of runners run past. I limped over to the medics, I took my phone out and sent a text to Rob. ‘I’m out’.

After two hours in hospital, I saw a brilliant Dr who examined my foot. FYI when you’re running a race, you’re not carrying your purse with you. I had no ID, no proof of address and no cash. I had to text Rob to get his credit card info. (You can then claim the money back from your travel insurance.) The whole situation was a drama and not the way that I had imagined the day going at all! Anyway, the Dr strapped my foot very tightly to stop anymore swelling, gave me a strip of painkillers and the address for a clinic to go and collect a set of crutches.

I got back to my hotel room feeling very sorry for myself. I couldn’t actually believe that I had flown all the way to Germany to do a race and I didn’t even finish. I really wished that my flight was booked for that night so I could just go home. I knew that all of my friends were out partying to celebrate and I was stuck in my hotel room on my own, eating a massive bar of chocolate. Thank God for chocolate!

So, two days later I am back home and I’ve finally written back to everyone that had sent me a message. It turns out people really don’t care if you cross that finish line or not. Every single message has been so encouraging! I’ve stopped feeling upset that I didn’t finish, I am proud that I laced up, I took on that brutal race and I gave it everything that I had. Injury or not, anything can happen on race day. Running a marathon is no joke.

I’ve done it before and I know that I will do it again. Who knows, I might even head back to Berlin next year. But for now I am going to focus on rest. The whole summer of training has been tough. It’s been a huge time commitment too. I’m also going to try not to complain about not being able to run for the next few weeks. I am going to respect my body and be grateful that it will heal. I know that health is a luxury that unfortunately isn’t given to everyone.

For anyone else who is injured at the moment, let me know what you’re doing to recover? I’m booked into a Cryotherapy session next week. I’ve never tried it before but I’ve heard good things.

As always you can hit me up on social @adrienne_ldn Stay tuned, I’m already plotting my comeback!

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The Latest…

This summer has been crazy fun & mega busy! Hence I haven’t updated my blog in a while…

So , here’s what I’ve been up to lately…

TEDx Talk

At the start of this year, I wrote down a list of goals for 2018. I also wrote down my ten year goals. (yes I am that person! I blood love goal setting) One of the things on my list was to speak at a TEDx event. Well sometimes, opportunities come up a lot sooner than we expect them to! I was waiting to board a flight at Heathrow airport one morning in February, and I got an email asking if I would speak at TEDxMauerpark in Berlin. I was absolutely buzzing! I boarded the flight and then had twelve hours to think about what my talk would be about. I decided that this would be the perfect opportunity to share both my mission and my own story.

My TEDx talk is now live on YouTube…

Tresemme

Over the last few months I have been working with Tresemme as part of their ‘Be Your Own Pro’ campaign. I love this campaign message as it is all about mastering a skill and becoming a pro. As you know, I am huge believer in the power of neuro-plasticity and our ability to acquire any skill, if we firstly believe that we can do it, then are wiling to work incredibly hard for it!

It was great to be a part of this campaign. It was the first time I’ve ever been a part of a hair campaign. It was even featured in Marie Claire magazine! Huge thank you for Tresemme for including me in this campaign. Representing for the curly girl crew!

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Marie Claire

As well as the hair feature, this month I was also featured in Marie Claires ‘Power With Purpose‘ list! I was named as one of the women using social media to have a positive impact. Many of the other women named on the list, are women that I really look up to and admire, so it was incredibly flattering to be featured! Thanks Marie Claire. You absolutely made my day! Go check out some of these fab women …
@FreddieHarrel @ZannaVanDijk @StyleMeSunday @CarlyRowena @Mre.Soeur

Urban Decay

After spending the last six months working on my public speaking and writing over twenty different talks. I was SO happy when Urban Decay reached out and invited me to deliver a talk at their annual company summit. I spoke to over seven hundred people about confidence and individuality. I then interviewed, model and body positivity activist, Felicity Hayward. It was such an amazing experience and it just confirmed to me that I want to use my voice and my passion to host more talk this year. Watch this space!

Get To Know

This summer, unfortunately our schedules have been so busy! Hayley, AJ and I, have barely been on the same continent for long. However, we’ll be back very soon I promise! I’ve met so many inspiring women this year, I will be enlisting them to share their magic with our Get To Know community as soon as possible.

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FIIT

I am now the Master Trainer at FIIT, aka the newest fitness app, on a mission to make fitness more accessible, affordable and effective. FIIT only launched a few months ago but they already have thousands of users. It’s been great to work with some of London’s best fitness trainers. So far, I have created over one hundred workouts for the app. Click here for all the info. 

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Marathon Training

I started my marathon training this year with fierce determination. I learnt a lot from my first marathon in London last year and this time around, I began to see the rewards of sticking to a training plan consistently. I prioritised both running and sleep like never before and the results have been MEGA!! Sleep has been the real game changer. As a morning runner, shout out to the 6am crew!, I became committed to going to bed before 10pm every night. It might sound boring, but do you know what is even more boring than that? Listening to someone complain about how tired they are all the time. We all know those people! So after two months of solid training in June and July, things changed quite a lot in August. We had not one, but two family holidays. The first was to France and the second was to Mexico. I know how insanely lucky we are! Traveling and making memories with Rob and Jude is literally at the top of my priority list. Nothing makes me happier!

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Yesterday, I completed my last long training run. Before I went out, I was a little nervous that I would suffer as a result of my two weeks off. (I have no regrets, those Mexican Pina  Coladas were insane!) I was planning on running 16 miles but I managed 18. It’s only three weeks until race day. I’m equally excited and terrified! I know how hard running a marathon really is. For the next few weeks I will be focusing on speed training, lots of shorter speed runs and interval training. I plan to run three or four times each week and I’ll be going to bed early as much as possible.

My current obsessions ;

Podcast – This week my podcast has been replaced by audio books. I’m currently listening to Kevin Hart’s book, ‘ I can’t make this up’. It’s both hilarious and moving. I’m only four hours in to the 18 hour book narration. If you don’t yet have the audible app. Download it today. I’m getting through loads of books that I don’t have time to read.
Food – I’ve re-discovered bagels recently. OMG I’d forgotten how good they are. Who knew a bagel and a cup of tea could bring me so much joy!
Travel – Tonight, I’m editing a vlog for YouTube of our family Mexico trip. What a place! I can’t recommend it enough. The food, weather & the people were all amazing.
Races – After Berlin, I already have my next race lined up. I’m running the Royal Parks Half Marathon in London in October.
Guilty Pleasure – Scrolling on Right Move. We are currently saving to buy a house, so I scroll through the Right Move app for inspo. Oh and the World Cup! I’m not into football at all but this summer I totally got behind the England team and I loved it. It was Jude’s highlight of the summer for sure.

So … that’s life lately.

Any Q’s? Hit me up on Instagram & Twitter @adrienne_ldn  #TheLatest

Why Consistency Works

I often talk about consistency and about creating habits for success. A habit is essentially a behaviour that we repeat regularly. Over time our conscious choices become our daily habits. Eventually, our habits become subconscious, we might do the same thing each morning when we wake up, eat the same foods, drive the same route to work etc.

We can of course change our habits and our behaviour, initially this requires an intentional act. For example, let’s say you want to get fitter. You buy a pair of running shoes and you go out for a run. The intentional act is done. But one run doesn’t make you fit. So this is where consistency comes in, if you then continue to run three times each week, running becomes a part of your routine, it becomes a habit.

Single acts of intention do absolutely nothing without the act of consistency. One small daily habit like brushing your teeth for two minutes twice each day, ensures you have good oral health, BUT, only because you do it every single day. This small act alone doesn’t achieve much but add constancy and suddenly the impact is huge.

So, here’s the bad news… 

Once you achieve a goal, it’s not enough to say ‘Okay I’ve achieved it, that’s done.’ You must continue to do it in order to maintain your success. Consistency really is the key. You need to build these habits into your life so that they become a part of your DNA. They become non negotiable. They begin to form your identity.

Here are a few habits that I am practicing, I find it far easier to implement and stick to some more than others…

  1. Going to bed before 10pm.
    I have a long list of reasons for doing this, but essentially, I live a very active lifestyle. I prioritise sleep to rest, recover and fully recharge. I avoid caffeine in an attempt to improve the quality of my sleep. I get up early everyday and I don’t want to feel tired when my alarm goes off. Sleep is when your body regulates your hormones, appetite and immune system.  I could go on…
    I have to be incredibly disciplined to go to bed before 10pm, sometimes it is a real challenge, but I know how much it will affect my productivity, my mood, my work and my training.
  2. Getting up at 5:45am everyday.
    This is a habit that overtime I have grown to love. It has become a non negotiable. This is the single habit that has had the biggest impact on my life. To read more about it, click here 
  3. Not Eating Sugary Treats.
    This is the habit the I struggle with the MOST. I love sugar! I can go with a lot of things, alcohol, meat, dairy products, sure thing. But when it comes to sugar, I appear to have very little self control. It’s incredibly frustrating and something that I’m working on. If I figure out an effective solution, I will of course share it and no doubt become a millionaire for helping the world to break free from those sweet sweet shackles.
  4. Exercising 5 days a week.
    This varies from running, body weight training, resistance training, stretching and walking. (Yes, walking counts as exercise too) Again, there is a huge list of benefits and reasons that I do this. Regular exercise enhances your cognitive function, reduces stress and anxiety, improves your health, boosts your immune system, etc
    It has become a habit that I don’t even really think about much anymore. It’s just a part of my day.  I try to constantly challenge myself physically by taking on challenges, this year it’s the Berlin marathon. I do this to ensure that I do not become complacent and also to actually practice what I teach. I never want to stand on my soap box and tell others what they should do, so I attempt to lead by example instead.
  5. Learning.
    I currently dedicate two hours of each day to learning. This is mostly by reading or listening to podcasts and writing notes. I also watch keynotes, lectures and TedTalks online. Knowledge is powerful. I recognise that I am incredibly lucky to have access to so much information and resources, FOR FREE! I wish I’d had the passion for learning that I have today, when I was at school. I guess the difference is, now I’m learning about the things I am totally fascinated by, I still don’t care about Henry VII’s wives.
    I encourage you to spend more time learning. Whatever you wanna learn more about… coding, business, psychology, the stock market !? You can literally learn anything and everything online these days. Make the most of it.

What are your daily / weekly habits? Good and bad? What things do you repeat consistently? People say change is hard. I disagree. I think initial change is easy, but maintaining that change consistently is the hard part. People want to believe that change is hard as it validates us for not doing so.

I’d love to know your thoughts, you can hit me up on social media @adrienne_ldn.

 

 

Summer Juice with Truenopal

How great is this heatwave!  I am totally loving it, but training for a marathon in 30 degree heat has been tough! I’m doing my best to stay hydrated by drinking lots before, during and after exercise. I’m also not drinking alcohol at the moment, due to my early morning running routine. Try to take on a ten mile training run with a hangover is not fun at all!

So, what am I drinking instead? Well, I’ve been experimenting in my kitchen with Truenopal Cactus Water, to create my own hydrating summer juice. So far I’ve tried all sorts of flavour combinations. I’ve adding slices of fresh oranges and lemons, watermelon, basil, mint & chilli. This combo was my favourite…

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  • Fresh Mint
  • Lemon
  • Fresh Ginger
  • Apple
  • Ice
  • Cactus Water

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If you’ve never tried cactus water before? Here’s all the info …

Truenopal cactus water comes from the fruit prickly pear, that grows on the cactus plant in the sonoran dessert. It is 100% natural, has no added sugar or artificial flavourings, no sodium, and is suitable for vegans. I have partnered with Truenopal this summer as part of their TrueYou campaign. I absolutely love their message as it is encouraging us to always be our true-selves. Check out the hashtag #TrueYou on Instagram to see other people sharing what this message means to them.

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As always you can hit me up on Instagram & Twitter @adrienne_ldn 

 

Confidence & Self Love.

Last week I was invited by Urban Decay cosmetics to deliver a talk about confidence & self love. Here’s what I had to say…

CONFIDENCE IS NOT SOMETHING THAT YOU ARE BORN WITH OR WITHOUT.

I believe that confidence is not something that you are born with or with out. It is not a personality trait. Often people mistake the behaviours of outgoing people, it’s easy to assume the if someone is extroverted then they must be confident. However this is not the case. In fact, you can be either an extroverted person or an introverted person, but you can still be confident in yourself, your own abilities and your unique talents.

Confidence is actually a skill, and like any skill, it simply requires practice. When we’re growing up and discovering our sense of self, many things can impact our self confidence. Our experiences, our social and cultural influences, and our parents, all play a role in building self confidence. 

Many people say that they find public speaking difficult. I myself, used to find it incredibly daunting. Last week when I stood up in front of seven hundred people to deliver a talk, I felt surprisingly calm and confident. I believe that everyone has the ability to master public speaking. Sure, at first the idea can seem overwhelming but that is simply because you’ve never done it before. If public speaking is something that you want to pursue, whether you are an introvert or an extrovert is irrelevant, you just need to practice.

Once you start to practice something, over time you will become more capable. Then you start to believe that you can do it and hence you start to build your confidence.

This year I am training for my second marathon. If I just focus the 26.2 mile race, I can’t even get my head around it! It’s terrifying! But, once I create a training plan, I break it down and  I start off my running four or five miles. I know that I can run five miles quite easily. I then increase the distance each week. I slowly start to become more confident running further and further. I prove to myself that I can do it and over time I build up to running twenty miles. It’s simply by practicing what I want to achieve, that I become more confident.

HOW CAN WE PRACTICE CONFIDENCE…

Well there are a lot of ways, but you have to tap into something that works for you, here are three ways to get started…

1 – Remind yourself of your achievements, big and small. Remember how hard you worked to achieve it. Whether that was studying for a degree, getting a job promotion or running a 5K race. You worked hard to do that. No one did it for you. We often look forward to our future goals and aspirations, but it’s important to also look back and see how far you have already come. Also, remember that work ethic is everything! If you are willing to work insanely hard, there is no doubt that it will pay off.

2 – How to overcome feeling self- conscious… It’s easy to be held back by what others think about us or what we think that others will say. However, in the last year or so (since I turned 30 last September) I have learnt something that is incredibly powerful and liberating… ‘No one really cares.’ Now bare with me whilst I explain, I’m not suggesting that nobody cares about you, but we live in a fast world, there is always something going on, most people are distract most of the time. No one is really paying attention to your every move. It’s amazing when you realise that if you try something new, even if you fail, no one will notice because they’re too busy and they’re already looking at the next thing. Please don’t let the fear of other peoples opinions or judgment stop you from doing something or from being yourself. 

3 – Earn credibility with yourself. What does that mean? It means that if you set yourself a goal, you have to stick to it. Let’s say, you want to wake up earlier to go to an exercise class before work. If you set your alarm and you get up and do it, then you are proving to yourself that you mean what you say. You will start to trust yourself, those initial goals then become habits and overtime this this will build your sense of identity and self confidence.

CONFIDENCE & SELF LOVE 

So many people are now talking about self love but what’s it all about…

The self love movement is one that encourages women to prioritise their own happiness and well-being. The aim is for women to let go of feelings of shame, guilt and self criticism, and to instead focus on love, acceptance, compassion and respect. For many women this process can be incredibly difficult due to the  cultural and social norms that surround women, beauty, equality and a lack of diversity in mainstream media.

Over the last few years the self love movement has grown and grown. I believe that social media has played a huge role in spreading this message.

Bloggers & social media influencers are using their platforms and using their voice to share the truth. The truth about our bodies, our emotions, our passions, our reality and our imperfections. We are talking about topics in a far more honest way than ever before. Everything from body hair, saggy boobs, motherhood, botox, sex, money, self worth and self love. It’s amazing to see so many women standing up and using their voices. Voices that are being heard loud and clear!

So, I encourage you all to join the self love movement and to celebrating your uniqueness. You are a one of a kind. No one else on this planet has had all of your experiences, your influences, or your life. You have a unique perspective. You have a voice. You have ideas. You matter and you should take some time to truly acknowledge that. Because, whatever your age, gender ability, size, colour, no one else is YOU. 

Owning who you truly are, requires confidence but once you get there, it’s magic! Let’s all start practising today.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, as always you can hit me up on social media @adrienne_ldn on Instagram and twitter. Please share this post with a friend that needs to hear a message of encouragement.

 

Summer Skin

How great is this weather! I am totally loving the summer heatwave. Over the last few weeks, I have switched up my skin care routine, my main focus is on sun protection, deep cleansing and hydration.

Running outside is apparently not very good for your skin, especially running in the sun. I try to run early to avoid the heat and I try to stick to running in the shade as much as possible, and I always wear SPF. If you live in a city then it’s even more important to wear SPF everyday, the combination of sun damage and city pollution can clog your pores, cause breakouts and enhance the ageing process.

This summer I have been using Decléor ‘Aroma Sun Expert Protective Anti Wrinkle Face Cream’ SPF 30. It feels like a moisturiser but it’s not too thick. It’s one of the only suncreams that I have used that doesn’t cause pimples.

Cleanse

I have two favourite cleansing products at the moment.
1. Origins ‘Checks and Balances’ Frothy Face Wash. I’ve been using this face wash for at least a year. I never really used to consider face wash as an important part of my skin routine. I always thought more about  creams and serums, but since I started using this face wash I have a lot less breakouts.
2. This is a new one that I recently discovered, balanceme ‘Restore and Replenish Cream Cleanser. It’s a natural skincare brand and is free from parabens, sulphates, microbeads, artificial fragrances and colours. It’s great for removing make up but it’s not harsh and doesn’t leave my skin dry.

Moisturise

Daily essentials. Origins Ginzing Ultra-Hydrating Energy-Boosting Cream & Origins Ginzing Refreshing Eye Cream. These are my two absolute favourites that I use every single day. The face cream is quite thick, so it is really hydration and makes my skin dewy but not too shiny.

Refresh

Earlier this year I was sent a gift from Caudalíe Paris, one of the products they sent me was their Beauty Elixir. I’d heard that it was a best seller but I had not idea what it was. Well, I’m not a beauty expert but it really is AMAZING! It’s a natural product made with rose, organic balm mint and rosemary. It’s super refreshing, especially in this hot weather.

Repair

My night time skin routine, is pretty simple, I cleanse my face and then use Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair serum. I’ve been using this for about a month and I keep telling everyone about it! If you invest in one new beauty product this summer, I highly recommend this is the one!

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6 Runners That You Need To Follow on Instagram

  1. @Estelle_trouilloudIMG_4777 2
    Estelle’s beautiful photographs make me want to relocate to the mountains! She is self confessed outdoor sports addict, oh and she has the most beautiful dog too!
  2. @MaxwilcoIMG_4774
    Max is an endurance athlete, producer, photographer & consultant at WeAre:TrackHouse. Max’s dedication to running is mega inspiring! & he knows his stuff when it comes to the science of running & sports nutrition.
  3. @JessiezapoIMG_4780 2
    Jessie is a fellow adidas ambassador, running coach and founder of GirlsRunNYC. I love Jessie’s inclusive attitude to running & her uber cool energy & style.
  4. @susie_chan_IMG_4775
    Susie is an endurance runner and race pacer. She always has a smile on her face and I just love following her.
  5. @thewelshrunner
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    This guy!! Matt is an INCREDIBLE runner, totally dedicated & super speedy!! I met him last year at the Great South Run and I’ve been following him in awe, ever since.
  6. @amandarunboston
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    Amanda is an amazing runner, yoga teacher, adidas ambassador and a new Mama! I met Amanda last year in LA when her son was just a few weeks old. Check out her instagram for running & Mama inspo!

I’m sure there are so many more!! I just wanted to share a few people that have inspired me to lace up this week. Who are your fave runners to follow? Hit me up on Instagram and share that running love! @adrienne_ldn