Friday, 3 May 2013

when the Superhero Ninja Warrior met Barry Blue

That's me running and totally not noticing my friends in the crowd. As you can see, the Tower Bridge is on the background which means I was absolutely exhausted by this point. I only had few miles to go...

After the finishing line I hiked to a friends and family meeting area but could not find anyone. The whole city was so crowded and busy because of the marathon that my sister and my man got stuck in the traffic. I finally met them in Trafalgar Square. Kiira had made me this amazing pink bunny as a 'well done' present!

We made our way to Green Park where I was given recovery drinks... We named the pink bunny Barry Blue. He looked so sleazy and relaxed when chilling out that all I could hear in my head was Barry White singing. Blue seemed funny because he is actually pink.

Extra note: Week and a half after the big day I put on my trainers and ran again. The weather was summery and running felt nice. I might need to invest in smaller summer running clothes though. Black leggings felt way too hot. But the point is: running is here to stay.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

damn those 48 seconds!

The marathon is over. I did it and I did it pretty damn amazingly. My sister Kiira flew to London the night before to support me. She made me panda ears and helped me with my panda manicure. 

Stupidly early on Sunday morning we travelled to Greenwich to the start of the race. Trains were full of marathon runners and we both got pretty nervous.

Once in Greenwich the reality really started kicking in. We walked trough fenced roads that I later on ran on! 

Panda team met before the start to take some photos. I had to change into my race outfit. It all started feeling more and more real...

My best supporter and the ultimate panda fan Kiira with me.

This is me pretending to do some stretches. In reality I was so nervous that I couldn't really concentrate on them!

 I had to leave Kiira outside my start area. It was a tough situation. I felt like crying.

After the start of the race Kiira managed to break the camera. My boyfriend Rob has some pictures from after the race and even one of me running. I will post them, once I get the photos!

First half of the race was simply fun. I high fived every child who was cheering us on. The atmosphere was amazing and I steadily overtook lots of people. Around the Tower Bridge I missed Kiira and Satu who were there following the race but they saw me. By the time I got to the Canary Wharf the race started feeling bit more difficult. The sun felt stupidly hot and my energy levels were not the same anymore. Last hour or so was a struggle but seeing the London landmarks and knowing that the finish was in the horizon, kept me going. 

When I finally saw the finishing line I ran as fast as I could. Once on the other side those very same legs that juts ran so fast, didn't know how to walk anymore. I didn't know my official time until I met my friends who had followed me online. I ran the fucking marathon in 4hours and god damn 47 seconds! If only I would have known it was so close...

Nevertheless, I'm super proud of myself. These statistics just make me so happy. 

After the race I've done everything against the rules on how to recover. I've drank champagne and cocktails, ate cake and pastries, done shopping in high heels and still haven't done any stretching. But I have felt so good that fuck all this health shit at least for few days. It's finally a party time!

Thursday, 18 April 2013

there's no going back anymore

Above are my last pathetic fundraising attempts: self promotion leaflets. First I did the pretty coloured versions on computer (on left) but since I forgot them home yesterday I quickly drew a new design at work and photocopied it.

Today I travelled to Excel Centre to register to the Marathon. This is me drawing myself on the train.

I have the best running number ever: 3001! I got goosebumps when I saw it on the top of my registration station. I couldn't hide my overly emotional excitement from these lovely guys who handed me my marathon pack.

After the registration I ventured into the Marathon Expo. There were endless displays of sports gear and god knows what energy supplements but the first thing that got my attention was the beer tasting stand! Fuller's is the official sponsor of the London Marathon and obviously I had to test it. Look, it's a hobbit pint!

Then I got eaten by zombies... These zombies were advertising a race where the runners get chased by zombies! I mean, how cool is that! I do get scared way too easily though and am not sure if I would survive a zombie apocalypse. Again I managed to be so stupidly excited that I got given a green zombie wristband and then all the zombies wanted to take pictures with me.

I wasn't really too keen on browsing trough any of the serious sport stuff so the only other stand I visited was the WWF one. The panda people were super lovely and chatted to me for a good while. I also got this panda goodie bag. Back home I tested the peppermint and liquorice tea. It's quite yummy but doesn't agree with savoury food...

Tomorrow on Friday I will meet friends for some Italian food. It's a good opportunity to relax in a good company and stock up on those very important carbs. On Saturday my sister Kiira arrives to support me. So I don't think I will necessarily have a change to update my blog until after the big day. 

See you on the other side! 

Monday, 15 April 2013

5 days to panic...

After complaining about my too big running vest for few days I finally did the right thing and called the panda people. They were super nice about it and promised to send me a small one straight away. It arrived the very next day! I was stupid being afraid to complain about this matter. As my workmate Bill pointed out: if it would have been too small I would have not hesitated to contact them.

Running outfit sorted and my leg pretty much healed the next thing that happens is me feeling ill. Holy shit I managed to panic over this potential killer bug over the past few days. Literally everyone around me has been sneezing and coughing like there's no tomorrow. On Friday morning I felt really shit and then I panicked. The truth is that panicking doesn't help at all but how to switch off the panic, I'm not sure. So I skipped my last long run and tried to rest on Saturday.

On Sunday(yesterday) I felt much more alive already and attended my karate grading. My new belt comes in this beautiful bright shade of green. I'm tiny bit more ninja now which will hopefully boost my superpowers next week. Ninja Warriors with green belts run better than the ones with orange belts. It's a fact.

Sunday, 7 April 2013

the Final Countdown!

There's only TWO weeks to the big day! Metamorphosis from just a simple superhero to a special panda one has started...
Last Thursday I ran 30Km! Yes, THIRTY fucking kilometres! The day was rather horrible as well: blizzards and freezing cold wind. My fingers nearly just fell off because they were so cold. Good news are that after 2 hours of running the energy gel really works and that my fucking knee survived from the whole thing. Actually the whole leg feels nearly healed now. Today I ran totally without the knee support. The spring has also finally arrived after that horrendous snow storm. It's been sunny and pleasant for the whole weekend!

Postman brought me lots of last minute propaganda and also a panda running vest. The vest is too big which annoys me. Call me vain but I don't want to look stupid on my big day. Besides all that extra fabric will surely slow me down. It's so not aerodynamic!

Now I will take it bit easier until THE DAY. I'm scared....

Thursday, 28 March 2013

This post contains BOOBS!

So I run with the knee support bandage thing now and try not to panic. I try not to panic even when my left foot toes blow up in size and go tingly or when my flatmate sneezes all around spreading horrendous germs. I try just to stay focused. I finally did the sensible thing and stopped drinking ANY alcohol. It's been a week and nearly 4 days now. Probably the longest I've survived in years. How sad is that.

Today I finally did a long run after a way too long break. It was all about testing equipment. First of all my rubbish left leg was to be tested. I removed the bandage after 1 and half hours and then ran further 30 minutes. In total I covered roughly 20 Km. It's not as far as I wanted to go but I am still very cautious with this leg. 

I also tested Lucozade energy drink and one of these scary gels. I hated the gel. It made me thirsty for water but all I had with me was Lucozade. Not sure if it was needed.

And now to the main attraction of this post: BOOBS. I can not believe I'm actually posting a picture of my boobs online but one has to do it ones, yeah? The reason for this terribly offensive and immodest picture is to demonstrate the multiple uses of a sports bra. I heard this trick from another girl in the marathon training day: store the energy gels in your bra! Storage problem solved plus the gel stays nice and warm which makes it easier to consume.  At least sometimes life is much easier for a woman!

Friday, 22 March 2013


Above is me looking like a real ninja just before an evening run in the freezing cold weather. The sad truth is that I'm everything but a real ninja at the moment. I'm bloody broken. My left leg started aching badly behind the knee, so week ago on Thursday I saw Blossom, the super amazing osteopath. She explained to me that my muscles were very tight and were pulling my pelvis so that my left leg actually was shorter than the right one. Then she did all sorts of tricks and I nearly fainted. I wasn't allowed to run for 48 hours and even after was advised to take it easier. She also gave me strict instructions on how to stretch and warm up properly. Problem is that there are less than 5 weeks to go to the big day and right now I should be really pushing it with long runs. That's why I feel panicky. It doesn't help that the leg still feels rather odd and now I'm worried that the actual knee is giving up as well. Blossom tried to calm me down over the phone and told me to try knee support and do silly looking running in the swimming pool. I am just so frustrated because I feel like I don't have time to let my leg heal properly!!!!

Matters were not helped few days ago when I felt that I was getting ill as well. So in a mild panic I rushed into Holland&Barret health shop and bought everything the shop assistant advised me to. I used to not to believe in natural healing and all bizarre supplements but faced with marathon panic all my principals simply vanished. I even bought every child's nightmare: cod liver oil! Mine is in capsules though but luckily in an old-fashioned scary looking jar. I placed it between my heroic looking figurines. There it symbolises strength and recovery! Omega-3 is good for joints so this fish shit should get me trough this running challenge!

For the ill feeling I got Echinacea tablets. It's a pretty flower which, according to Wikipedia, can cut the chances of catching cold by more than half. That's enough reassurance for me. 

Thursday, 7 March 2013

food, glorious food!

I'm going to talk about nutrition! Yes, me who hates nutrition talk. Something has happened to me now after I started running those rather long runs. The usual amount of meals and the usual size of my portions don't seem to be enough for my body anymore. The poor thing is confused. I've experienced a series of mega munchies including eating the whole tub of Häagen Dazs ice cream in matter of minutes. I've also purchased cheap sweets that come with a serious warning about the side effects(see picture above). Luckily I am a grown up....
I tend to start yawning the moment anyone mentions healthy eating or the boring word nutrition but slowly slowly my mind has started changing. I should probably pay a teeny weeny amount of attention to what and how I eat around these super runs. Problem is that all the instructions are written in this boring nutrition language that again puts me to sleep. What I gathered so far is that carbs are good. Well, I like pasta.

This is my super food salad earlier today. It has such super ingredients as spinach, green beans, carrots, nuts and above all CHOCOLATE! I was given this chocolate chip salad dressing as a present by a very cool and nice person. It's genius. Always eat chocolate, especially with your greens!

If my tummy got confused by all this mega running so did my legs. My left leg has started behaving weirdly again. This time around it just has bizarre feeling next to the knee rather than the odd numbness. I finally took some serious action to sort the problem and booked an appointment with osteopath. She was recommended to me and sounded super good and caring already on the phone. I will meet her next week.

This is my left hand all pandafied. Right hand was an impossibility so it only has plain white nails. I have to stay in the spirit of saving pandas for my charity challenge!

Friday, 22 February 2013

egg head, pandas and munchies

I am sticking to shock hair colours at the moment and didn't want to make swimming pools funny coloured so I went and bought myself an egg head! Also bought a short sleeved running top and slightly shorter running pants because the weather seemed to be getting warmer. It did not. It's freezing again.

So I am fully back on track with running. Yesterday I finally did a LONG run as well after a long break from those. I decided to test drive these Marathon socks and either it was the magic of the socks or I am just a natural long distance runner but I ran 24Km with no problems what so ever! That is 3Km more than half a Marathon and only took me 2 hours and 15 minutes. I'm fucking proud of myself.

Because of all this positive feeling I decided to run for a charity after all. I've been hesitant earlier because all the charities available seemed to be about us humans. I am sure that they are all good charities but I do feel that it is the nature that needs taken care of before us western people! But then there was WWF with their cute cuddly panda image and I knew what I had to do. The person I love most in this world is Kiira my sister and she has always been obsessed with pandas. Supporting silly clumsy bamboo eaters would be the one and only right thing to do. So I set up a fundraising page:
I can not believe that I got donations pretty much straight away! It really gave me a super boost and I feel even more determined to train hard now!

One last thing. Running 24Km has given me mega munchies. Yesterday I ate massive portion of noodles in Wagamama in record breaking time and continued with a dessert straight after. Back home  I munched away a good big dinner again and shared a whole box of After Eights. Tonight I cooked mash for 2 people and ate it all but still wasn't happy. I had to visit the corner shop and found my all time favourite biscuits: chocolate topped ship biscuits! The correct way to eat them is to munch the excess chocolate away from the edges first (see the demonstrative picture below). I ate the whole box.

Oh and currently my hair is purple.

Monday, 11 February 2013

weird leg and massage toys

After the last post I'v spent a week not running and panicking about my weird numb leg. On Wednesday I went to Karate but struggled to stay in a fighting stance because of this weird leg problem. Luckily on Thursday my friend Jason,the sports massage guy, agreed to try to help me. He didn't know the cause of the problem either but gave a good massage. Him and my other friend Meikku gave me a bunch of tips on how to stretch better. I was also given few bizarre massage toys. The blue roll(see above) is the most painful mother fucking thing on earth! It says '66 fit' on it but I'm sure it should say '666'. I make such noises in my room, whilst rolling on it, that my housemates must think that I'm getting tortured. The explanation: 'It's just my new massage toy' doesn't seem to help either.

The other painful torture device is this spiky ball. It should help with my tight arches so I keep on rolling with that one too.

Friday morning I went swimming before work even though we had discovered a David Bowie pub the night before. So proud of myself. I managed half an hour swimming backwards and forwards in the medium speed lane. The lanes still confuse and annoy me. I'm confident that I'm the only one in the medium lane who belongs there because there's always some other idiots who go slower or faster. Grown up lane swimming is quite boring in any case. I prefer lakes and the sea during the summer! 
Yesterday on Sunday I went wall climbing and my leg seem to behave. Today morning I decided it was time to put the running shoes on again. When I woke up there was snow everywhere. It was lovely to run in the white landscape. I only did a careful half an hour jog. My leg still seems sort of normal so I will try to get back to the training plan tomorrow!

Saturday, 2 February 2013

I got a new head but where do I get a new leg?

The snow is long gone. Week ago my long run proved that it is much trickier to run right after the snow than in the snow. Melting parks are nearly an impossibility. Keeping balance in slush and mud mixture is not fun and defiantly not clean business. My feet were soaked and I was covered in mud. My pretty yellow running watch have proved very useful though. Threshold training goes pretty easily now. What I also started doing is run in the MORNINGS rather than evenings after work. Why I hadn't thought about it before, I really don't know. It's genius. I start work relatively late and don't even have to wake up ridiculously early to do my runs. It's so much easier in the mornings and gives you a super boost for the whole day. The best bit is that my social life is saved now. I can actually do stuff after work!!!! 

Late on Thursday I finally got a new head by my personal headmaster Hannu. Need to redraw the logo for this blog I suppose...

So those were the good news. Last week was crap. After that long run I attended a birthday party and drank too much which probably spoiled my week a bit. Then I have been the biggest mother fucking idiot wanker in the universe. This is my personal life, but well, being a big fuck idiot affects ones running mood as well. On Wednesday I was so emotionally drained and physically exhausted that I skipped the karate class. This obviously annoyed me as well. But now to the biggest problem of them all: I think I have a sports injury! This morning I woke up with a numb left leg. It stayed numb. I went running in any case. Running was ok but now the leg is numb, my ankle feels bruised and the bottom of the foot feels weird as well. I'v tried to google what's wrong with me but it just makes me mega paranoid. I'm not exactly hurting but worried that if I don't fix this weird problem it will get worse and my foot needs to be amputated or turns into jelly or.... PANIC!!!!!! What do I do?????

Monday, 21 January 2013

gadget geek

My pretty yellow running watch arrived in post much faster than anticipated. It took me all Sunday morning to figure out how to use the thing but at 13.21.37 precisely I took off for my first ever run monitored from the space by satellites! So cool. It's actually winter in here. It snowed all day. I ran all around Hampstead Heath free from trying to memorise where I went. Loving the GPS already. Running in snow wasn't that bad at all. Beats the usual mud defiantly!

After 1h 46min and 18.25km I was back. This is where I failed with my new toy. I didn't manage to save my run. What an idiot indeed.

Saturday, 19 January 2013

serious sporty girl

My dear workmate Bill is determined to design me an outfit for the marathon. So far I'v found something wrong with each idea. He doesn't seem to understand that practicality is the number one concern when it comes to running gear. I will NOT run wearing a helmet with antennas. We have some work to do with this....

This week I'v tried to stick to my training plan bit better. On Monday I did silly cross training in my room and on Tuesday I tried to time my run with a stop watch on my phone. That was stupid. My fingers were freezing and could hardly operate the phone. It's a miracle that I didn't drop it and break it. So I did some internet shopping and ordered a real super technical running watch. It arrived already today and tomorrow I will put it to the test. Just need to figure out how to use it first. Then I'v been climbing lots too(well twice this week). Today I did some multitasking athletic style. I ran to the climbing centre and back. I'm so sporty it scares me.

Sunday, 13 January 2013

I am following a training plan, seriously!

Hmm...somehow my corrected training plan looks, well, really corrected. The only thing I'v managed to do properly are the days of rest. But I have to say that the first week doesn't really count since it was the New Year and shit. This week my biggest failure was today as I didn't do anything. Luckily I swapped the days a little bit on the plan and did the long run already yesterday. It says 90 minutes on the schedule and that's precisely what I ran. I still don't have a watch to take with me but clearly my inner clock and distance estimating skills are perfect! I am a machine! I managed to cover 16.2Km which means not that fast speed but apparently you'r not meant to do the long runs too fast in any case.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

this brave little girl ran up some serious hills

I like this picture! I like brave little girls. Too often are girls sold the lie that they are fragile and dainty. No they are not! Girls are brave little human beings who love adventure! This also reminds me of my little sister who is the bestest person in the Universe. When I was probably around 9 and she was only 6, we were on a family holiday to Greece or Turkey(I really can't remember). We visited a crocodile sanctuary and you could have your photo taken with a small alligator. I freaked out but my brave little sister held the alligator and just smiled happily to the camera. She has always been the natural cool girl meanwhile I had struggled with all sorts of nonsense fears and insecurities. Now when I try to be this tough woman, she will be by my side cheering me on and that is all that matters. Kiira, you ARE the superhero and I love you super duper lots!

From emotional sister talk to the business of today..or better yesterday since it's past midnight already. Oups. My official training plan said threshold training but I went for some serious hill training instead. The main dude at the Marathon training day was a big supporter of hill training so I reasoned that I could do that. I don't have a watch which makes timing my running difficult but I am surrounded by big hills. I ran up 5 steep hill roads which felt HORRIBLE! I tried to run up fast and on the top of each one I felt like fainting and I could taste blood in my mouth. That's real training, isn't it?

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

New Year, new me and blah blah blah

This is Superhero Ninja Warrior after the xmas break. My hair turned sort of beetroot and it's pretty long as well. Face reflects all that heavy eating and drinking and total lack of any exercise.  All those winter sport activities that I planned to do, ones in Finland, were squeezed in 2 insignificant moments: sledding and tiny little bit of ice skating. To my defence it has to be said that first the weather was ridiculously cold, then I got very snotty and had fever and then the weather turned wet and disgusting.

But it's 2013 now and exactly 15 weeks to the BIG DAY. I started following a training plan TODAY with uhmmm...a day of rest. I did take Kidd for a longish walk though. It counts, doesn't it? And I was exhausted after a weekend of cycling all over the place. On Saturday I ran 10K after which I decided to cycle somewhere far beyond Stratford to meet a friend and then on my way back I got sort of lost and did a good detour around North East London. Yesterday I was lucky to be able to test ride a real racing bike. It was one of those über-trendy bikes with no gears which worried me but all for nothing. It was so light and fast and really a joy to ride! I even did that horrendous uphill from Hampstead Heath to Highgate Village!