Category Archives: Health and Beauty

“my slow run pace” REALLY!!!

“My slow pace of a 7 min mile”

Who the hell are these freaking people kidding!

Okay, this is a little bit of a rant! As you all know I am pretty much into my endurance racing but what I am not into is a blog or Facebook post that seems to imply that if you are running 10 minute miles you are not a runner. I get that pace and feeling slow is all relative to the individual but to imply for all runners that a 7 minute mile is slow is just well BULLSHIT!

Pictures of tiny little young runners that might not be elite level but they are still well and truly in the ‘faster’ crew! Saying they are slow because they ran a half marathon in 1.5 hours! Jog on!!!

So what is my truth! I am a 11.25 to 09:20 minute a mile runner! Yep I can fluctuate a lot during my running. I generally run half marathons in just over 2 hours but guess what – IT DOESN’T BLOODY MATTER WHAT SPEED YOU DO!

Sure, I would actually like to run quicker and when I was younger I did! But I am now 39 and I am training for a 100km ultra-marathon. And cause I am freaking crazy it is an up and down crazy ultra-marathon… some days I do wonder why I can be normal and just find a nice small 10km… who the hell I am I kidding I had ‘sprinting’ a 10km. I honestly would rather run for 4 hours at a steady pace than try to run 10km under 1 hour.

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So here is my message to you! If you run, you are a runner! If you ride a bike, you are a cyclist! If you swim laps, you are a swimmer! And if you do IRONMANs or ultra-marathons like me, well you are crazy!! Kidding, well maybe not but you are an athlete! You are all athletes.

Shaming people who are doing “their” best by implying that your run is slow is not healthy. We should be supporting anyone that wants to get fit or to that matter anyone that wants to have fun and move their bodies!

So to the 22 year old that is whinging because she is running a slow 7 minute mile – enjoy your running, be grateful that you can run – many people don’t have the ability or the privilege to be able to run, try to beat yourself next time, smile because you are alive! Don’t whine that you are slow, celebrate because you are doing it!

This morning I ran for 1 hour and did 9.28km. In 89% humidity and 28 degrees Celsius; have I told you I hate humidity! By the time I got back to my hostel there wasn’t a inch of clothing that wasn’t wet. I crossed paths with other runners, walkers and tai chi groups. Each set of people smiled at me (through most of the runners looked like me dripping wet rats!) and even the street sweeps said good morning. I count this mornings run as a bloody good start to the day!

So if you are a slow runner, drop the word slow! You are a runner! Period!

Rant over! 😀

Blessed Be,
Robyn

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Week 6: Operation Blackall 100 – Challenge to Ring the Bell

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Some weeks are a little harder than others! Despite some really good things happening last week including this:

IRONMAN Certified Coach - Robyn Caddell

Can you believe it? I am an IRONMAN Certified Coach! I am working on my first program for an amazingly talented athlete and look forward to seeing what she can do on her first IRONMAN 70.3.

But back to Blackall. I was extremely slow this week. Not one run felt in the zone. Thursdays double run didn’t happen. I made it back from yoga just before a massive downpour and the lightening just isn’t my thing to run in! By Saturday I woke up and felt like I could sleep for 3 weeks. I decided not to run and did my 1.30 run on Sunday afternoon as a walk.

So this is what the week ended up looking like.

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This week also needs to change because I am no longer going to Bangkok!

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I have decided to stay in Penang until the 31 May because productivity wise I am powering through my other course and goals I want to complete. I realise that to shake it up and move when I am this close to finishing is probably not a good idea and plus when I head to Myanmar and Laos I just want to be a ‘tourist’ and a not worry if I have to do a Skype call or get some research done.

I am going to do 4 yoga sessions a week. Two Yin Yoga and two Hatha. Yin is literally my favourite style of yoga because it complements my endurance training. Nothing like doing hip openers after a week of running to get the body in tune!

This weeks weather doesn’t look nice again LOL but this is Penang and it is hot, humid and stormy!

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I have also discovered that I am not tolerating certain foods. I no longer have good reactions to naan bread or too much Indian food. I am all good if I eat the Thali’s which have much more vegetables than sauce and rice instead of naan. Food don’t you know I love you why do you have to plague me with troubles??

I do feel very sorry for my coach with all my changes and weird shit. Oh I am off to this country, I want to include 4 sessions of yoga, and numerous other things I have put him through since he first started coaching me just over 19 months ago. He is currently training for IRONMAN Asia-Pacific Championship in Cairns on the 12 Jun 16. So I am trying not to be too much of a pain in the arse! I promise Coach!! But I am excited to start being mentored by him in the future. Dan is a very good coach and I couldn’t imagine a better guy to learn from!

So I can’t tell you want the end of this week will look like but fingers crossed it is green and happy!

How do you deal with fatigue and not feeling like training?

Blessed Be,
Robyn xox

Part 3: Once a ghost now a butterfly: My journey of recovery

Welcome to Part 3 and the final installment of my journey of recovery, if you haven’t yet read Part 1 and  Part 2 please click on the links and read them first.

So after finally admitting that I was in fact an alcoholic, my life turned into an even bigger roller-coaster! If that is even possible! I have been struggling with posting this part of my journey Despite all the hell that led me to the journey of recovery, recovery at times hasn’t always been pretty. At least the initial years weren’t.

I felt like a 13 year old child that didn’t know how to do anything. The fact that I was a newly promoted Sergeant trying to keep my shit together didn’t help. I took up knitting while attending 12 step meetings. I am not sure why but a lot of the young newly sober women were doing it. I even managed to knit my two dogs fancy little dog coats which they hated and on the first outing in them successfully managed to lose them!

Trying to discover who I was without alcohol was a very painful process. For a time I over indulged in casual sexual relationships and that certainly didn’t bring me any closer to discovering who I was. I look at photos from my early years of recovery and I still see a frightened little girl.

I attended 12 step recovery for the first year but didn’t actually do much about creating a life I wanted and healing my past. My second year of recovery was spent in the Middle East on deployment. Try being a year sober in a war zone. I came home a bloody mess. My third year started badly given I was still trying to understand what had happened in my head while I was in the Middle East but I managed to feel better despite trying to decide if I hated recovery or not.

1930653_38101001420_5048_nMy forth year was horrible. I had left the military and my partner broke up with me at the same time. I returned to live with my family and while I didn’t drink I wasn’t sober by any stretch of the imagination. My head was a bloody mess. Eventually, I got what is called a Sponsor and I worked the 12 steps! My life dramatically changed for the better…. Then I went back to a war zone!

I went to Afghanistan as a civilian and without meetings and a support group I did get twisted. Luckily I moved to Dubai and while I fought hard the internal battle of not wanting to go to a recovery meeting I knew it was positive in my life. My recovery was really good in Dubai and I grew a lot. So when my professional and relationship chapters of my life were done I knew it was time to leave Dubai.

When I returned to Australia 9 months later, I struggled to connect with the recovery program. Ironically this is where I had my first major successes but I no-longer belonged there. For a time I struggled with the fact I no longer wanted to attend meetings because in Dubai and before I had gone to Afghanistan and both in Sydney (where I got sober) and Perth, the other people in recovery became my social circle.

I have connected on a different level with other recovery platforms and thankfully due to the internet I am able to tap into a recovery program that fulfills my spiritual and recovery needs. That is not so say that I won’t reconnect with 12 step recovery when I return to Australia. I see my recovery has an organic life that needs to be nourished and developed. I have some misgivings about 12-step rhetoric but I also fully acknowledge it helped me get to the point I am at now.

With or without 12-step recovery here is the thing I need to tell you about recovery! It is amazing! Once you get through the initial OMG I am going to be boring without drinking, who will love me without drinking, the drink was my lover etc etc life gets amazing! Here is a list of a SMALL snippet of the things I have done sober:

  • Climbed Mt Kilimanjaro
  • Done an IRONMAN
  • Travelled to 50 countries sober (I went back to England and France sober in total I have been to 54 countries – and counting!)
  • I’ve walked the Camino de Santiago – even wrote a book which you can pick up here Camino – Amazon US
  • Run marathons in Dubai and China
  • I’ve added to my tattoo collection – I had 2 when I got sober I now can’t count them!
  • I have an amazing relationship with my Mother!
  • I’m currently studying and preparing to launch a company I have been wanting to for sometime now!
  • I’ve even danced on top of podiums in a Florence nightclub!

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Being sober hasn’t stopped me from having a life. There are only two things in life I cannot do! That is drink and drug. That is it. While there are many other things I choose not to do because they mean I don’t sleep very well; there are only two that would completely destroy all that I have worked to achieve in the last 11 odd years.

I don’t know when the ghost turned into a butterfly but at some point on my recovery journey I decided that I not only liked who I was sober but in fact I loved who I was sober. This woman is fully in love with being an eclectic, gorgeous, feminine, strong, confident and proud woman thriving in recovery.

I can only imagine the craziness and amazing things life has in store for me but one thing is for sure if I continue to follow a spiritual practice and honour that I am thriving in recovery then I won’t miss a second of it. No sitting on the couch wondering why I can’t travel, no waking up next to a guy who’s name I don’t know, no lying to my family and friends. It is going to be a roller-coaster and some things I won’t like but I will be present!

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If you are struggling with addiction of any sort I ask you to not sell yourself short. Seek help be it in the rooms of 12 step programs or elsewhere. Because you are worth living an amazing life!

Blessed Be,
Robyn