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Santa buggy run complete!

Hello December! This weekend I’ve felt extremely Christmassy – the decorations are up, baubles are on the tree and my daughter completed her first Santa run!

The 3k route was just a few laps around our local park and my little one actually did run most of the course. We were by no means the fastest but it was a lot of fun. Half way round my daughter decided to motivate fellow Santa joggers by singing every nursery rhyme she knew at the top of her voice!

It was such a great event and lovely to see my girl give it her all as the crowd cheered her on. She hopped in our phil&teds running buggy a few times, but she mostly wanted to run herself. I’m so glad we did it with the buggy though, as I wasn’t sure how quickly we would all start running or what my daughter would be like in a structured run event; having the buggy meant we could still run if she was tired and she had a comfy seat to rest in while the race got going. I absolutely love how big the basket is on the phil&teds Sport running buggy and for the run it was packed with extra layers, snacks and toys just in case we needed them. Plus, compared to other buggies, it’s so easy to manoeuvre, great on all surfaces and keeps wonderfully steady when you up the pace with it.

As we approached the finish line my daughter decided it was best to complete the run in the buggy. As we jogged a little faster towards the end, my cheeky husband decided to make a break for it so that he could say he beat me! We’ll get him next year! My daughter also decided one guy in particular was the ‘real’ Santa, I have no idea why but her reaction to him was quite hilarious. We also learnt that she doesn’t like it when me and daddy wear Santa beards!

I’d definitely recommend getting involved in your local Santa run and it looks as though more more events like these are thankfully becoming pushchair friendly.

Here’s to another week trying my best to live a healthy lifestyle! As always, thank you for reading.

Chloe x
#mondaymotivation

How to keep running through Winter

As it continues to get colder I’ve needed to dig deep to get out the house to go for a run. Then I realised what I needed to do for some extra motivation – a charity Santa fun run! Having the Windsor 10k to prep for over summer was a great reason to keep training, and so I hope having another run in the diary will do the same for me over the next few cold weeks.

Running in the cold can really sabotage your motivation to go out for a jog. As much as I love running, I also love being warm! Creating a ‘Winter fit kit’* has definitely helped, as I know once we’re out in the running buggy neither of us our actually cold with all the layers we have one, and it’s pretty refreshing to jog when it’s cool. However, i’m so pleased to have another run to look forward to.

This time i’ll be running a much shorter route of 3k and i’m so excited that my daughter can join too, as it’s a pushchair friendly route; although if you follow me on instagram, you’ll see that she often likes to run too! We’ll also be raising money for Woking and Sam Bear Hospices.

I’m so excited for our next run and it’s already giving me an extra boost when I think about going out for a buggy run. In prep for the event I’ve pulled together a few essential items we’ll need for the day – see photo! Thank goodness for the large basket on my phil&teds Sport buggy as I often pack a fair bit!

About the photo: I have to be honest, this pic doesn’t include absolutely everything – that small person who comes with me running didn’t let me add all the extra layers, spare clothes, purse, keys, multiple snacks and toys, or nappies! Note to self, I’ll attempt another photo like this when she’s asleep!

My race day kit

  1. Christmas jumper – obvs!
  2. Extra layers – for me and daughter
  3. Gloves and hat
  4. Toys and snacks – to keep the little one sweet
  5. Water – my daughter is a bit obsessed with water bottles, so this is her ‘sport’ one
  6. Phil & Teds Sport buggy snuggle and snooze sleeping bag and waterproof cover
  7. Baby wipes
  8. iPhone and headphones – I’ll pack my headphones but I’m not planning listening to music on the way round, but I always regret it when I don’t have them just in case my daughter falls asleep and I fancy some music to jog to. Plus Netflix can come in handy if there’s any waiting around! 
  9. Running headband – I love my new ‘push it’ headband from runningbuggies.com and it really doesn’t slip. My hair loves to do it’s own thing when I run, but at least it’s now out of my eyes!  
  10. Trainers – maybe these should of been at the top of the list!

Wish us luck!

Notes*Next time I promise to share what my Winter fit kit involves! Looking back at posts I completely forgot to say how I’ve prepped for my Winter runs. Sorry about that! Stay tuned for more Winter running tips!

Treasure Cove Woking review

Woking has a new play centre and today I was able to experience all that Treasure Cove has to offer. You’ll find Treasure Cove where the almighty Blockbusters used to be and wow has it changed.

What to expect
This children’s centre is jammed packed with goodies to keep your littles ones entertained, and it’s surprisingly spacious. There are several themed areas for kids to enjoy, these include a dressing up area; a large ball pit pirate ship; a construction area; a place for toy babies and buggies, a music zone and lots more. To be put simply – everything young children love playing with.

Practical stuff – coffee shop and parking
There’s no on site parking but there are places to park not too far away, or you can park right in town and walk 5/10 minutes to the Treasure Cove. When you enter, you’re asked to leave your shoes and (if you have one with you) buggy just outside the main soft play area – the only thing is once it got busy, this small area (when compared to the rest of Treasure Cove) got a little messy.

The coffee shop was lovely and the cakes looked delicious, I didn’t spot any healthy snacks for the kids though and during busy times it could be a little tricky to bag yourself a seat in the main sit down area.

Overall thoughts…
We had a great time at Treasure Cove and I would definitely visit again. My only criticism would be the buggy park/shoe area and sitting area for grown ups was on the small side and could be a bit problematic during busy times – but isn’t that the case with all kiddy play venues! The toys and different areas for the children are brilliant and my daughter loved exploring it all. The staff were friendly and it’s lovely to see some life in a building that has been empty for so long!

**UPDATE** Since writing this review, you’ll see that the lovely folks at Treasure Cove have replied and it sounds like all the small things that maybe didn’t go as smoothly on my first visit, are being addressed. See the comments for more details and thanks again Treasure Cove for the reply – all the updates sounds great.

The WW Flex Effect – 3 reasons why I love it

Weight Watchers have announced some changes to their plan and if you’re already a member like me, you don’t have to look far to find a mixed bag of reactions to the announcement. I’m for one am over the moon to learn about the Weight Watchers Flex programme and here are 3 reasons why I already love the improved Weight Watchers plan and the flex effect!

1. More food, less guilt, healthier choices
The beauty of Weight Watchers is that you can eat anything you like, but with the expertise of Weight Watchers there is a wealth of material at your fingertips to help guide on what foods are best for healthy living and weight loss. The recent changes to the plan include a wider range of foods, mostly protein, that you no longer need to be count as part of your daily allowance. I love this because once again it will steer me towards foods that are healthy, will fill me up properly and (I hope) will stop me from overindulging on chocolate when I’m in one of those moods…

An example;
If I have 2 SmartPoints remaining at the end of the day and I’m hungry, I more often than not opt for a low calorie chocolate bar. I know this won’t fill me up but i’m a sugar addict (i’m working on that) and I think it will at least take the edge off my hunger and give me my sweet fix. Only problem is that one bar often leads to more (if I’m having an off day) and then I get myself in a vicious cycle, as I’m annoyed with myself for having eaten multiple chocolate bars then i’m like “well I’ve done it now so i’ll keep going”! However with more zero foods on the list, and foods that I tend to have around or i’m intrigued to try, I can now fill myself up on good things and i’m hoping this will help me to still enjoy a sweet treat but not go crazy on them as i’ll genuinely be full. I hope that makes some kind of sense!

2. Increase fuel for exercising
As my fitness improves and I’m exercising more, I’ve struggled to satisfy my post-workout hunger. I’ve read a lot about eating protein after working out (and in general) but I couldn’t quite get my numbers right when it came fitting in the extra protein into my Weight Watchers SmartPoints allowance; not that it couldn’t be done, I just needed the professionals (aka Weight Watchers) to spell it out for me!

3. Change can be good to get past a plateau
Completely my own doing, but I have been losing and gaining the same few pounds for last few months. I’m so excited to see if the Weight Watchers Flexible programme will help me get past those same pesky pounds and into the next stone down.

I’ll keep you posted!

5 unusual reasons why I love buggy running

I’ve been asked lots lately if I would ‘really’ recommend buggy running and my answer is yes! Can’t you tell? I talk about it all the time! Here’s a little on why I love buggy running and my Phil & Teds Sport.

1. I feel so free!
Getting fit and losing some unwanted pounds is really important to me, but I felt so frustrated having to be dependent on childcare if I wanted to go for a run (something I enjoyed doing before having a baby). Thanks to buggy running that’s no longer an issue. Plus, now my daughter is older we can make quite an event out of it by including a park visit before or after my jog.

2. It makes me feel like a super mum keeping me and my daughter active
This is a bit silly but when i’m running with my daughter in the buggy I feel like a right super mum. ”Check me out keeping fit and looking after this one” is what usually goes through my head. “Someone applaud me” but that never happens. The running bug seems to be catching too and my daughter does enjoy a good jog as well, and seems genuinely excited when I say lets go for a run.

3. Having all that fresh air helps me feel less guilty about staying in for the rest of the day
As much as I love running, I also like sitting on the sofa! Going for a jog with a park visit included helps me feel like we’ve earned ourselves some lazy time once we’re back home.

4. My Phil & Teds Sport has the best shopping basket
I use my running buggy to go for walks too and sometimes (often) that includes a visit to the shops. I’ve had my fair share of buggies and I can say with confidence that this has the best and biggest basket, which is so handy for picking up some essentials (or treats) when we’re out and about.

5. I feel so much fitter and stronger
The first run I went on after having my daughter was extremely challenging. I definitely thought that was it, no more running for me. I’m so thankful running buggies exist as mine has helped me to regain my fitness at my own pace, and at times that worked for me and my family. So much so that (if you hadn’t spotted) I completed a 10k run in under hour just a few months ago, all thanks to training with my running buggy.

Thanks for reading and see you again soon,
Chloe

An active day out at RHS Garden Wisley

Half term just gone me, my daughter and our besties headed off to Wisley Gardens in Surrey. Over the years I’ve heard of it but I hadn’t really thought of it as a place for young children, which I’ve come to learn was very foolish. This gorgeous setting is a great place to take kids and if you’re a Fitbit fan like me, you will definitely earn yourself some steps exploring all that the gardens have to offer. If you’ve not been before and you’re interested in heading somewhere new this weekend over the festive period, here’s a bit about our day out at RHS Garden, Wisley.

The Gardens
You can’t help but be impressed with these grounds and this post probably won’t do it any justice. Just believe me when I say that it is simply stunning and extremely varied. For example, there’s a Glasshouse which is home to tropical plants and a waterfall; a whole garden filled with unusual wood carved seats and statues; a large dinosaur that my daughter was fascinated with; and a kids park.

Park and soft play
The park for little ones is huge and surrounded by picnic benches, which is where we enjoyed our lunch. There’s also an indoor soft play and throughout the year you can find plenty of events on just for children.

Special events
This half term there was pumpkin carving, storytelling, a puppet show and lots of other activities for children to get involved with; and I’ve just seen there’s lots on at RHS Wisley over Christmas too – including stories with Santa!

Food and drink
There are several cafes were you can pick up lunch, cakes, coffees and so on. There are also plenty of places dotted around to sit and enjoy your own food if you fancy taking a picnic with you. That does keep costs down and saves on queuing during busy lunch periods. That said, the coffee and cake I had was delicious!

See you soon Wisley!
www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/wisley

Why you’ve not seen how much I’ve lost lately

I’ve been a little quiet lately when it comes to sharing my weight loss stats and that’s because i’ve been slowly gaining weight (well losing and then gaining what I lost) – since I got to my weight loss goal in March. Whilst I feel slimmer in some ways and definitely fitter, that pesky number on the scales has been rising and we all know I’m a little bit obsessed with the scales. So, here’s what i’m struggling with and how I hope to turn it around. Plus, should I hide my scales?

My trouble zones

Evening snacking: When it’s dark and my daughter is in bed I seem to snack like there’s no tomorrow. It feels like it’s a bit of me time and for whatever reason, my hands and mouth seem to constantly want food in them! But, i’ve got a couple of strategies…

I used to snack on frozen grapes. Because they’re frozen they take longer to eat and being grapes you get that satisfaction of going back for more. Does that make any sense? I kind of got out of the habit of eating them, especially when it’s a little colder, but i’m bringing grapes back! Also, when colouring with my daughter the other day I found it surprising therapeutic and kept my snacking hands busy, so I may actually get some of those adult colouring books and pencils which I used to think were a bit gimmicky – you win, i’m buying you!

Events: I’m guilty of admitting defeat before an event has begun. “Oh I’ve got a party and I know i’m going to be terrible so i’m going to be a massive piggy”. Instead of creating a game plan and making healthy choices during said event, I don’t track (and I usually track everything I eat and drink) and get carried away with the old prosecco, which eventually leads to drunken munchies. My strategy for this one is…

I must plan ahead and track what I’m eating and drinking during the moment. So that I feel better about those occasions where I will eat and drink more (but could do it more sensibly), I could go for a buggy run before the event to hopefully balance out any extra indulgences.

Tiredness:
Like many people, I tend to eat more when I’m tired, I just need to go to bed earlier!

To weigh or not to weigh: that is the question
While all of this has been going on, I’ve had more compliments lately on looking slimmer (people probably just being nice, but I’m taken those compliments vey seriously haha) and my stomach does feel flatter. Being able to complete a 10k run in a decent time I hope is evidence too that my fitness levels are ok, so why do I care about the number on the scales? I don’t know. It’s been my marker of good health for so long, I guess it’s tricky to abandon them.

Sometimes I think ‘should I just hide the scales’, as they can really get me down if I put on weight on when I feel like I should of lost a few pounds. Plus, I do love my Weight Watchers group, so perhaps I should bin my home scales so that I only weigh once a week at my meeting (as opposed to several times a week). That said I’d really like some Fitbit scales for Christmas!

My plan of attack
So that’s where i’m struggling and this is my successful weight loss plan in a nutshell…

  • Eat frozen grapes during evening snack attack
  • Get my adult colouring on to distract my hands during evening snack attack
  • Plan and track what I’m eating during special occasions to prevent massive binge on booze or food
  • Go for a buggy run the day before or morning of a special event as a damage limitation strategy
  • Go to bed earlier when possible
  • Weigh only once a week at my Weight Watchers meeting
  • Start taking my measurements to see if I am losing inches
  • Ask for some Fitbit scales for Christmas

Thanks for reading this brain dump, I really appreciate it.
Chloe x

5 reasons to feel motivated this Monday

Hello Monday! It’s October and as the days feel colder and the nights draw in closer, i’m determined to keep motivated with my healthy eating and exercise, so that I can feel my best in time for Christmas. After a pep talk with myself, I’ve come up with a few reasons to feel motivated this Monday and I would like to share them with you.

1. Christmas is just 10 weeks away. If you were to lose a healthy 2lbs a week, that could mean a weight loss of 20lbs (that’s over 1 stone) in time for Christmas!

2. Beyonce wasn’t built in a day 😉

3. I’ve loved running with my buggy and I don’t want the colder days to stop us from enjoying a good jog outside. So, i’ve dug out extra warm layers for us both, our running buggy rain cover (just in case we get caught out), and our gloves… winter fit kit complete!

4. I’ve already spotted a load of cool Christmas jumpers I’d like to stock up on, but this year I’d love to purchase one and not feel like the incredible hulk when I wear it – anyone know what I mean by this?

5, I’m guilty of overthinking this whole weight loss thing, I often have to remind myself to simply “trust the process and the results will follow”.

About the photo
This picture makes me laugh so much! I was maybe a bit dramatic crossing the finishing line of the 10k run I completed a few weeks back, but it really did mean the world to me. If you missed my post about it, here’s a little link to how I trained with my running buggy and run 10k.

10k complete! 

This weekend I ran 10k and it’s the best i’ve felt running in a very long time. I completed the hilly route in 59 minutes and 49 seconds! I never thought I would be able to run 10k after having my little one, let alone do it in under an hour; and I still can’t believe I was able to train for it with my toddler thanks to my running buggy. Today, I am very very happy!

Close friends of mine will know that I struggled (like many mums) to jog for quite some time after having my daughter – I needed to regain my strength and it wasn’t always possible to go running due to a childcare. So completing the 10k this weekend is a huge achievement for me.

As you know I trained for the 10k with my running buggy and I honestly can’t recommend running buggies enough, for the sense of freedom and to simply have a reliable buggy that you can do so much with. From strolls, to errands, to 10k runs. I love my phil&teds Sport running buggy and wish I had invested in one from when my daughter was tiny. I’ve had several buggies since being a parent, but there’s no way i’m rehoming this one!

Thank you to everyone who gave me a cheer on the way round the 10k route – it really made all the difference!

Chloe x

4 things I’ve learnt from training with my running buggy

At the start of Summer I decided to sign up to a 10k run, after many successful jogs with my phil&teds Sport running buggy. Although I was confident that i’d be able to get out and jog with my little one, I hadn’t been on many long distance runs, and I would need to if I wanted to feel my best in time for my 10k event. As that 10k approaches i’m delighted to share that we’ve done it! Training has gone so well and here’s a little of what i’ve learnt from the last few months buggy running with the aim to clock up those miles.

1. Make the most of nap times
Some of my best runs have been while my daughter sleeps or just after she’s had a good run around herself. It feels so satisfying to be able to use those times to train and to see my little one look comfy and content while I run; and not feel trapped by the nap!

2. Buggy running makes for a great day out
I feel lucky to have a running buggy that is easy to pop in the car and travel with, it also makes for a great everyday buggy too. The front wheel can be unlocked from running mode, making it super easy to push while walking and exploring. All of this means i’ve been able to incorporate visits to new parks and destinations, with a long run too. We’ll the pack the car with everything we need, have a good play and scout out a new running route before embarking on it. By the time we’ve explored a new area and had some lunch, my daughter is usually ready to climb into the buggy and rest her little legs; and that’s when I can start my run. It’s perfect!

3. Having a running buggy takes the guilt out of doing something for yourself
I’ve enjoyed running for a long time but after my daughter was born I suddenly felt guilty for wanting to get out and exercise; plus childcare isn’t always an option for me so I would feel incredible guilty for being so frustrated that I couldn’t exercise in the way that I wanted to. Having a running buggy has completely changed that. I no longer have to worry about when I can exercise, as I can simply do it with my daughter. I also feel like it’s had a really positive effect on her – she loves running, gets excited when she sees me in my running kit and heading towards the buggy and often says to me “run, run, run?”.

4. In hindsight, I wish I had invested in a running buggy sooner
I would highly recommend buggy running and the phil&teds Sport to anyone interested in being active with your little one, and if you want a sturdy, easy-to-use buggy with a big basket (great for shopping!). I’ve had my fair share of buggies and if I knew what I do know, I would 100% invest in a running buggy from the get go. I always thought running buggies were clunky, hard to push and only suitable for older children, but I was wrong on all of that.

Wish me luck for Saturday!
Chloe x

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