On the way to the Challenge, Raw Challenge

Annablogia Where Hundred Stories Meet - my Raw Challenge prep

My first obstacle race is due in a little over a month. I am pumped as never of course! Excited!? Nervous!? Scared!? All of the rest! While feeling many confusing emotions I am also trying my best to get physically ready for the race. I think mentally it is absolutely impossible so I just train, train, train! 🙂

First of all, running of course! Funny enough obstacle racing involves a lot of running. So I run! I usually go to the beach and run on the sand AND (most common) I run from Coogee to Bondi and back which, according to my running app, is about 10km. I make this distance in just  under 2 hours (something around 1hr and 40 mins). I must mention it again, I do NOT like running (giggling) therefore running itself is a challenge and you know what, I am enjoying it. I would love to be able to run 10km in 1 hour … and than see how far I can go.

Running must be fun otherwise its a burden hence pointless. Let’s be realistic, why would you leave your cozy couch and go running (especially if it is raining) if you are not in love with running or have a firm goal in your head, for example to arrive the first in your race? Clear goal, clear understanding of why you are running is one of the key aspects. If you are not sure most likely you cheat heaps and skip running from now and on. It is absolutely normal / natural… You need a firm goal. Take it or leave it, mate!

Here is a tip for you – figure out what KIND of runner you are – a lonely runner, a running buddy, a sprinter or marathon runner / jogger / walker. It is important because it will define your work out. For example, I am a lonely runner (generally), I like running with my own thoughts and pace, often dancing and singing along the way 🙂 I work out less and worse if I am not alone. However (!) I agree it is depends greatly on this other person so I will not throw the idea of a running buddy away 🙂

Apart from running, obstacle racing requires strength. A lot of it, to be frank! It is so due to the obstacles you have to overcome therefore you need a lot of climbing skills and strong muscles ready for the walls, robes and nets. Push ups, pull ups and chin ups must become one of your good friends when training for a mud run / obstacle race. Legs are as important of course due to running itself but also for jumping and simply getting through the mud pits. Crawling is another important ingredient, involving everything really. I have not done any so far but hoping that my childhood feel will kick in just right 🙂  The advice Raw Challenge gives is to regularly stretch your hips and crawl for 10 to 50 yards to get used to this.

I finally bought a push bike! YAY! (my former pink bike was broken and eventually got stolen) Now I get to do fitness fun stuff with my partner which is absolutely amazing because my partner does not like to sweat (giggling). Bike ride is an amazing legs’ work out so I minimize lunches which I absolutely hate and focus on squats and leg press.

Main mental blocks I have are heights (OMG awful) and bloody monkey bars mostly due to the pain they leave on my fragile hands.

Annablogia - Raw Challenge training

I have attempted monkey bars in my local gym couple of times and gave up fairly soon each time due to the massive blisters on my palms. They take forever to heal (because I carry on lifting bars and other weights while training other muscle groups) therefore I do not get to climb as often as I wish I could. Gym gloves do not protect much and also stop me from grabbing monkey bars firm enough. I was advised to try cycling gloves … Oh well, I guess why not!

Gym and weights are my passion / hobby / something I enjoy therefore lifting stuff and putting it down is very enjoyable; however always painful and might end up with injuries. I guess I just need to suck it up 🙂

Now, another very important ingredient of any training for any goal is food, water and nutrition of course. I am trying my best to remain clean (I mean, clean eating of course); however some days are easier than others. Main evil to it all is booze! I am staying away from alcohol but there are moments when I am weaker than other days (for example, when I am so bored I gotta have a drink to survive the night out). Alcohol is an excessive amount of calories, carbohydrates, fats and … an awful lose of energy and focus.

Let’s have a look how many calories we consume with each drink:

LIGHT BEER (12 ounce bottle):

  • Calories: 110
  • Carbs: 4.5 grams
  • Fat: 0 grams
  • Protein: 0 grams

CHAMPAGNE (4.2 ounce glass):

  • Calories: 95
  • Carbs: 1.6 grams
  • Fat: 0 grams
  • Protein: 0.3 grams

RED or WHITE WINE (4.2 ounce glass):

  • Calories: 80
  • Carbs: 1.5 gram
  • Fat: 0 grams
  • Protein: 0 grams

JACK DANIELS (single shot):

  • Calories: 55
  • Carbs: 0 grams
  • Fat: 0 grams
  • Protein: 0 grams

VODKA (single shot):

  • Calories: 55
  • Carbs: 0 grams
  • Fat: 0 grams
  • Protein: 0 grams

It might be not a 100% data of course but you get the idea 🙂 I do not want to be a boring mother to all the kids trying to propaganda alcohol free life. I am myself a massive party animal! However I know there is other way of living and I would love to share it with everyone who is also trying to be different 🙂

As always, eating well involves eating healthy! However there are certain products you need more than others. Clearly junk food makes us weak and addicted hence must avoided at all costs. Also our bodies need a little more protein when developing muscles,a little less carbohydrates and even less fat when shredding some extra fat (to look and feel better also leaning up for a better aerodynamics I would say:)). Dieting is 50% of any fitness adventure!

Annablogia - Raw Challenge prep - dieting

50% is a HALF so my advice is to think your eating plan through carefully, portioning, preparing and remaining conscious (not zombied by TV or friends) when eating. Also add vitamins especially iron for more energy and strength, vitamins you are lacking due to you your diet (for example, I rarely eat fish hence always take fish oil) and of course multi-vitamins to avoid catching cold and maintaining your health.

I am not a great example for anyone who is trying to achieve any fitness goals but I am thrilled to be a part of anyone’s journey. Therefore I will carry on sharing my tips, ideas and progress since I personally love myself digging more into what everyone does to overcome their obstacles whatever they are.

Annablogia - Obstacle racer


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