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Training

Transition bag check list

September 10, 2017

Swim

  • Tri-suit
  • Wetsuit
  • Goggles
  • Earplugs
  • Vaseline

 

Bike

  • Bike (V IMPORTANT)
  • Tools
  • Water bottle
  • Helmet
  • Any other bike clothing you may change into
  • Cycling shoes
  • Socks
  • Garmin
  • Pump
  • Gas canisters
  • Sunglasses
  • Gels
  • Food bars

 

Run

  • Trainers
  • Visor
  • Any other run clothing you may change into
  • Garmin watch
  • Sun cream
  • Vaseline
  • Gels
  • Food bars
  • Race belt

 

Other bits

  • Waiver form
  • Medical certificate (I think this is specific to France)
  • Passport or ID
Lifestyle

Wish List!

February 11, 2015

I have a serious shopping problem when it comes to buying whole foods, clothes and sports wear! I literally waste sooo much of my limited spare time scrolling through sites and making shopping bags full of things that I really can’t afford! It really hasn’t helped this year that my placement is working at Harrods.. not only do I want the whole of Shoe Heaven, all of this seasons Chloe and Stella McCartney, but I also have the torture of the sports floor to deal with, (hosting Asics and Sweaty Betty.. oh and Stella McCartney for Adidas!)

I spend so much time in active wear that I find it really easy to justify the need for new kit! It is only typical that I picked a hobby that contains not one, but 3 sports worth of clothes to buy for.. not to mention the gym work that comes with it to add for a fourth!

Just incase anyone out there wants to buy me a gift, or wants some new purchases themselves, here is my wish list for the week,

Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.26.05Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.27.51Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.31.05Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.31.51Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.32.57Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.37.13Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.42.25Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 21.01.58Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 21.00.32Screen Shot 2015-02-10 at 20.58.48

 

– Rapha jersey with arm warmers

– Sweaty Betty bra

– Every Second Counts vest

– Castelli bib shorts

– Asics top

– OMM running jacket

– TYR swimsuit

– Sweaty Betty top

– 2XU Tights

– Lexie Sport Tights

Em x

Uncategorized

July Wish list

June 27, 2014

[gview file=”http://emilymae3101.wexel.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/JULY-WISHLIST-GALLERY1.docx”]

Training, Travel

Marathon Mont blanc race weekend

July 4, 2019

If you need a recap from my last trip to Chaminix you can find the blog post here and the vlog here. That trip was basically a training holiday ready for this trip where my Dad was taking part in the Mont Blanc Marathon.

I didn’t take part in the race, though It’s definitely now on my list (or at least one of the races that happen over the weekend), the atmosphere is amazing and Chamonix is quickly becoming one of my favourite places… so it would be great to race there! Any excuse to go.

We arrived on Thursday ahead of the races starting on the Friday (Dads race was the Sunday), which meant we could get a few days to watch and explore! This time we booked too late (standard) and so we couldn’t get a place in the centre of Chamonix like our last trip, though this really wasn’t an issue!

Where to stay?

We stayed in Les Houches which is a short and simple bus ride away from Chamonix – the buses are free and every 30 minutes, so they’re super convenient. We stayed at The Rocky Pop and it was absolutely perfect for what we needed, with the best outdoor breakfast area and some really good muesli to get us going!

We did have a car too, though you could definitely manage fine with the buses as we ended up using them a lot… especially on an evening when too much aperol was involved!

What to do? We managed to fit in a few more things on this trip, such as rafting… it was so much fun! Be prepared to get wet, it’s not as cold as you might think and it’s so much fun! My dad was obviously tapering and spent the first week (before we arrived) with my Mum and younger brother… they did Go Ape kind of activities and rock climbing, as well as visit some really cool looking skate parks! Here are some of the links:

Run/hike

Check out my routes here if you’re all about the running/hiking

Visit the glacier

https://www.chamonix.com/the-bossons-glacier,90,en.html

Rock climb

http://www.cham-aventure.com/cat/32-parc_aventure/6-activites-d-hiver.htm

Water raft

http://www.sessionraft.fr

Where to eat?

You can find more restaurant places in my previous blog post here, but I did manage to add a few (even if we ate pizza everynight!!)

Pizzeria Des Moulins

I’m going to say this is the best Pizza in Chamonix (we tried a lot), there’s so much choice on the menu and the dough is amazing! They make a good Aperol Spritz too!

Refuge Du Plan De Laguille

Not only is this place in the most beautiful setting, but the food is incredible! We had the most fantastically cheesey omelette, but the pies looked so good for dessert that I’m going to need to go back! If you check out my routes there’s a great hike up to here if you want to work up an appetite first!

Let me know if you have any other Chamonix recommendations!

 

Em x

 

Training, Travel

A guide to Chamonix, France

May 29, 2019

Mountains are good for the soul

It’s safe to say my first trip to Chamonix has had me fall head-over-heels in love with the mountains. I’m ready to retire and live in a chalet now.

I came to Chamonix last week to keep my Dad company on a training trip before he takes on the Mont Blanc Marathon next month. I follow a lot of great runners and adventurers on Instagram who seem to train in Chamonix on the regular, so I kind of knew how beautiful it was going to be… though it turns out looking at the place through an Instagram filter just does not do it justice!

I thought that I trained on hills… I’ve even been spending quite a bit of time running the Yorkshire 3 Peaks, so I was pretty sure I would be fit for Chamonix’s trails. Turns out, I’m not sure I will ever be fit enough! Admittedly, we didn’t come at the right time of year which meant we ended up doing a lot of routes which aren’t advised to do so in the current conditions… it meant trekking through lots of snow, which was pretty challenging.

The altitude is another thing to consider, it really did seem harder climbing than normal, so I figure it must be the altitude as well as the severe inclines!

I’m technically in Ironman training but I took the week off – well, I didn’t exactly ‘take the week off’ as I did over 17 hours of run/hiking… but you know what I mean!

Where to stay?

We stayed in the Heliopic Hotel & Spa – it was insanely beautiful! A spa is also really handy after a really after a tough day in the mountains. The hotel is located right in the centre of Chamonix, so it’s minutes away from all of the shops/bars and restaurants/ski lifts.

The hotel breaky is well worth investing in… it sets you up for a full day in the mountains and has an amazing view of the mountains to go with it!

What to do?

We mainly ran/hiked and there’s plenty of that to be done! I’m not going to share the routes as we definitely went off track a lot, but I can definitely give you a rough idea:

The vertical KM – more of a hike, pretty scary but absolutely amazing! A KM may seem like a piece of cake if you’re a seasoned runner… but trust me, it’s a killer! You can go straight up and back down, but we opted for a loop when we got to the top, making the whole thing actually about 7 miles!

The Mont Blanc Marathon route – we did about 19 miles of this and then caught the bus back from one of the villages back in to Chamonix (buses are free!). This route is TOUGH – especially with all the snow we had at this time of year, but once again, the views are worth it!

You can also hire bikes from the hotel (these are free but require a virtual deposit). We got the bikes and hiked around the villages, another great active way to explore!

Unfortunately, I didn’t make it to the Chamonix pool – it looks incredible! So, if you’re a swimmer, I would definitely say this looked to be worth a visit!

There are plenty of shops to break your bank account, plus some really great places to eat… more on that later, which I will definitely add to after my next visit (next month!)

We rented a car to get to and from the airport – this actually was great as It meant we could drive the Chamonix tunnel to get to Courmier in Italy. We timed this perfectly as we went to watch the Giro D’Italia and had the best pizza I have ever had!

Where to eat?

I definitely need to add to this list as we were guilty of going back to the same place multiple times!

Monkey

This was a firm favourite of the trip… we pretty much had a burrito everyday (the dream!) It’s also a bar and they have outdoor seating, it’s pretty relaxed atmosphere and far from fine dining, but the food is seriously good!

Moody Espresso

Coffee and cake spot sorted!

Annapruna

It may seem strange to go to France and eat Indian, but it honestly was one of the best meals I have ever had. Maybe save this for a night when you’re sick of bread and cheese (is that possible?)

La Mer de Glaces

I don’t go anywhere without finding the best ice-cream in town! Would highly recommend replenishing the lost calories from all the walking/running with some ice-cream here! I can say that the white chocolate and pistachio flavours are particularly good!

    

I’m heading back to Chamonix next month to watch the race – if you have any other must do-see-eat recommendations, please drop me a message!

You can watch the vlog here.

Em x

Training

Evivliv Advanced Pro 1 Disk review

May 12, 2019

“Built to go faster, EnviLiv delivers an Advanced-grade composite frame where stiffness is the number one priority. With highly aerodynamic tubing and aggressive positioning, maximum power transfer on this machine propels you faster than ever before. Extraordinary fork lateral stiffness and the unrivalled stopping power of aerodynamic disc brakes stack up for precise cornering control and stability. Liv’s 3F-designed frame aims to give women their optimal weapon with an unbeatable forward force. An integrated aero handlebar and stem, tubeless wheel system with 28C tyre clearance, and aero tubing features will punch through rolling hills, literally slice through the wind, and sprint ahead of the pack.”

Can we just take a moment to appreciate this bike? Not the incredible spec or aerodynamics (totally not going to pretend I even understand how good this bike is), but the colour! It’s so beautiful and literally sparkles!

I frequently get asked for advice on bikes and I’m pleased I’ve finally got my hands on the type that I recommend the most. You see, most people that get in touch with me are just getting into triathlon… so not necessarily out and out cyclists. Why does it matter you ask? Bikes are all different and not just because of the colours.

If you’re getting into triathlon and you’re only investing in one bike for everything… than this is where the Enviliv takes the stage! It’s super aero, meaning it’s nice and fast, it’s light for hills, but it’s also not too aggressive as a TT bike (the Avow) so can be ridden for all kinds of rides and sportives without causing issue to those you’re riding with.

 

I haven’t even had a bike fit for this new ride yet, but it’s still ridiculously comfortable considering how ‘race-ready’ it looks. It feels as fast as it looks to ride too!

I will still be racing on my Avow in Kona this year, but this is definitely the bike for hillier races where the TT bike would be a little on the heavy side. This would have also been amazing to have used on Red Bull Time Laps where TT bikes were not allowed!

Right now, it’s the perfect bike to train on over the summer months, I would highly recommend anyone to join the Enviliv gang!

Em x

Training

Winter running kit

January 29, 2019

If you keep up with me on my Instagram, you can probably see that I’m actually a big fan of winter trail running. It takes far more procrastinating and needs much more motivation to get me out on a faster run than it does a muddy, steady, wintery trail run!

I frequently get asked about what kit I would recommend for these kinds of sessions, so I thought I would put together a list of some of my current favourites. * I just want to make a point and say that a lot of the time I run in really old stuff, including a long sleeve run top that I got once from Aldi for £6, and that you don’t really need really fancy run kit, though it is wise sometimes to invest in some good key pieces to keep you warm and comfortable during winter runs!

Zone 3 RX3 compression tights

Didn’t know Zone 3 did more than just wetsuits/tri-suits? Me neither until a few months ago! I’m obsessed with these tights and really enjoy that they’re compression. When finding the link for this post I was v impressed about all the technical aspects of the tights (have a read), and ultimately I just love how they don’t fall down when running!

 

Sweaty Betty Zero Gravity run leggings

Another great tight option is the Sweaty Betty zeros – they’re amazing quality, high-waisted and really great to move in. Weirdly, I really don’t like them for in the gym, but they’re my go-to run legging. It helps that they come in so many lovely prints too.

 

Zone 3 seamless base layer

Another contender from Zone 3 is their long-sleeved base layer. My core body soon warms up when running so I actually prefer to have thin/breathable items and layer up if needs be. I’m guilty of running in all black (it’s my favourite clothing colour), which isn’t very sensible when running through some woods early morning, so I’m happy to have such a bright and visible item in my activewear drawer!

 

Salomon Speed Cross trainers

I have ran in Salomon Speed Cross (when on trails) for years, I basically just get a new pair every Christmas because they’re so great (and because I’m not very good at washing the mud from them so they get a bit worn and torn)! Running on the trails is made so much easier and more enjoyable in these.

 

Liv Norsa Womens Winter headband

I really suffer with ear ache and always have to wear a headband, whatever the weather! This is obviously a cycling head-band and I wear on my bike and when running… it keeps my ears nice and warm!

 

I haven’t included too much so hopefully your bank-balance won’t take too much of a beating but like I said, it’s not about fancy kit and I’m a big fan of some of my wardrobes golden oldies!

Em x

Training, Travel

Training at La Santa with Red Bull

January 23, 2019

I have never felt imposter syndrome so much as I did sitting on an Easy Jet flight, on my way to Lanzarote with Red Bull, to stay at La Santa and train with Lucy Charles…. I mean, WHAT!?

I’m still not over it.

In typical Emily fashion #NotAFitspo… I spent the night before (with a 4:30am alarm), downing champagne and cocktails with a friend! I felt like I blinked before I had my alarm ringing in my ears! I think all of the excitement meant I managed to avoid the hangover that I deserved.

I sat in EAT at Gatwick with the Red Bull team and other bloggers (I can recommend the bean and poached egg pot with feta and avo) holding in the extreme levels of excitement that was consuming me.

We arrived at La Santa and got shown to our apartments… the seriously slick, larger ones on the front that look way too fancy to be in a sports complex (excitement levels now through the roof). I dropped my bags and then headed to a group lunch, WITH LUCY CHARLES. It took all of my will power to sit and eat my Spanish omelette like a normal person without completely fan girling.

We then went on to paddle board – apparently this is not something to add to my (very small) list of talents, before heading out to a really lovely dinner outside of the complex.

Thursday’s alarm went off at 6:40am for a 7am swim with Bella Bayliss -OMG. It was my first swim in 3.5 months – though thankfully I still knew how to do it. We did some drills, and the main set was x3 sets of 200’s (steady, fast, faster), repeated twice. My lats were v tired after this but it was seriously cool to be coached by Bella with Lucy Charles swimming (lapping) next to me.

Then for breakfast – the best part of La Santa! I opted for savoury first with eggs on toast, beans and bacon, then on to fruit and yogurt and muesli (the order sparked some debate, please let me know in comments which order you would go?).

We then had to get ready to ride – I was so excited for this part! The ride was only around 25 miles, but nice and hilly/windy as you would expect in Lanzarote. It was a pretty cool experience to be riding and chatting next to Lucy for this, getting run-off-the-bike tips and Kona recommendations!

We really did train, eat, train, eat, train, train – so next was lunch, before a nutrition chat with Lucy and Red Bull – chatting all things caffeine! – FYI a Red Bull has pretty much the same caffeine as a coffee (and way less than Nocco/Monster).

I saved a Red Bull for the third session of the day, pre-empting that I may need it – I did. A run session with Lucy, Reece and Bella which consisted of a 5k(ish) run and then some efforts – the efforts hurt, I’m definitely not very run fit right now!

Far too quickly it was time for our last supper… another restaurant away from the complex and another delicious meal!

I somehow managed to convince my favourite photographer (once again, being an embarrassing fan girl), to do a shoot with me before I caught my flight home. It was pretty surreal being shot by James Mitchel, also getting tips and advice as I grow my passion in videography and photography.

To sum it up – it was the best trip ever! Ever, ever, ever! I’m really embarrassingly un-cool and a complete triathlon nerd. Thanks so much Red Bull! Head to my YouTube to watch the vlog!

Em x

 

Training

First triathlon: What do you need

January 6, 2019

So…you want to do your first triathlon, but you’ve got no idea what you actually need to do it. Unfortunately, triathlon has the cost of 3 different sports… each of which are very expensive in their own right!

How expensive triathlon is, Is completely relative to the person and where they’re at in their triathlon journey. Basically, it’s as expensive as you want to make it – there will always be a new super-duper bike that can help you shave seconds off, new tech to help you with the numbers, and the most expensive baby food labelled up as magic sports nutrition.

I’ve listed the basics below for what you’re actually going to need – I’m going to dedicate a whole post to help you choose your bike… it’s a tough decision to make (I care more about my bikes than I do my car!), so stay tuned for that one. Remember, you can always borrow from people for your first one, or buy second-hand to keep the cost low before you’ve decided to fully commit! So, here it is:

  • Wetsuit (depending on course)
  • A trisuit (this can be cycling shorts and top)
  • Goggles
  • Ear plugs (optional)
  • A bike
  • A helmet
  • Cycling shoes (optional but encouraged)
  • Sunglasses (optional but encouraged)
  • Trainers

Extras:

  • Bike repair kit
  • Spare tubes
  • Cycling kit
  • Run clothing
  • Turbo trainer
  • Pool membership
  • Race belt
  • A million more things that you can find in my Ironman kit checklist blog here.

It’s a fair list – and the chances are I’ve forgotten something, because you always need something else! As I mentioned, most people don’t go out and buy all this at once, they build it up over years of doing it, and borrowing where they can. It’s also really natural to start at the cheaper end of the scale and invest as your passion grows.

Be warned… triathlon is addictive. I never thought I would become the kind of girl who gets more excited about new cycling shoes than a pair of Louboutins, but here I am.

Em x

Training

RedBull TimeLaps 2018!

October 30, 2018

Red Bull Timelaps challenges cyclists to compete in the world’s longest one-day road cycling event. As summer fades to winter, teams of four will race through the night on the weekend the clocks go back in the UK, making it a gruelling 25-hour race against time. In a twist, at 0200 a ‘Power Hour’ is activated; and riders shift to a shorter course where laps count double

When Hannah and Emily (you will probably know them as Twice The Health) messaged me to tell me I was on their team for Red Bull laps, I probably should have had a look at what exactly it was. I was in full Ironman training mode at the time, and just assumed it was probably a bit of fun and nothing too tough. LOL.

About the week before the event I had a look at what it actually was and got in touch with a friend who had previously done the event, for any tips he may have. Chris (said friend) immediately asked if he could give me a call – turns out my reputation for being a tad un-organised and not very well prepared for things, slightly concerned him in regard to this event (and rightly so!). I soon learnt that the bike I planned to ride wasn’t allowed… and basically I had no idea what I was getting myself in to. Obviously, I took none of his advice and still turned up VERY under-prepared.

I travelled to TTH HQ Friday evening ready for an early start to Windsor park on Saturday am. Thankfully, Emily and Hannah organised a camper van (named Flash), which was the BEST THING EVER – I genuinely think I may have had to quit if we only had a tent! We (Me, Chloe, Emily & Hannah) arrived to Windsor and it started to concern me that I was freezing in joggers and a huge puffy jacket.

We may have been feeling pretty smug about Flash, but that soon disappeared once we realised we were pretty much the only team in transition without a gazebo for our bikes and ourselves when waiting to take over for our laps – big error.

I was up third for my stint and it soon became apparent after 1 lap that I was definitely not Ironman recovered, and that this was going to be difficult. I had nothing in my legs or my engine… I felt shocking. As soon as I finished my first hour stint, I shovelled in ALL THE FOOD in an attempt to recover and make it through the long day/night ahead.

By the time I was up again, the darkness had arrived! I turned up without lights and had to do some borrowing from the team (and still managed to pick up the wrong ones!), which meant the ride was VERY scary! It was a small lane, it was hard to see the edge, and huge pelotons of extremely speedy cyclists came flying by on the right. Also… I don’t know quite how to say this without sounding like a complete IDIOT (Which, I guess I am), but I was wearing sunglasses. Yes, I was wearing sunglasses in the pitch black. No, I could not see a thing.

The next few stints where marginally less scary once I lost my sunglasses. LOL.

After each stint, you had roughly 3 hours before your next one. This may seem like a long time, but by the time you had switched over, taken off your shoes/helmet and swapped some of your wet clothes for some warmer layers, had some food and calmed down… it was basically time to go get ready again. Basically what I’m trying to say is I didn’t sleep AT ALL.

I couldn’t actually decide which part was more painful.. riding or waiting to ride. It was so cold, and we we’re all so tired. The clock seemed to stand still from 7pm-7am.

Despite the pain and suffering… the atmosphere, support and solidarity in suffering was amazing. The people that kind of event attracts are the best kind of people – I can say now that we had such a great time, though at the time I would have said something more like; “why are we doing this”, “I would never do this again”, “this is ridiculous and awful”. It was ridiculously tough and a whole new kind of challenge, but I feel super lucky that I got the chance to do it with the most awesome team!

Em x

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