Sweet stuff

What I ate the week after the challenge ended. Oops

We are in the second week of February already, where the hello did that go!? How did you all get on with your January “detox”? Mine went ok-ish I’d say overall. Let’s have a quick reminder of what I was trying to achieve:

  • Run 2 x 1 mile run per week and one 2+ mile run per week (With a side/semi-long-term goal of doing 1 mile in 6 minutes and 2 miles in 13 minutes)
  • Eating – No Added Sugar!
  • No alcohol

If you need more info than that, the full challenge write up can be read here, and let it be known that I think you’re a little bit weird (but I like you even more than the “normal people”) 🙂

Following are some notes on how I did!


The easiest way to summarise how I did on this part is by the following table:

Week 1 Distance (miles) Time 1 mile Pace
0.9 6:08 6:45
2.01 13:59 6:56
1.04 6:37 6:22
Week 2 1.03 6:31 6:19
1.43 12:21 8:38
1.51 11:05 7:19
Week 3 2.01 13:36 6:45
1.01 6:56 6:53
0.78 6:57 8:55
0.49 3:19 6:44
Week 4 1.02 6:53 6:46
1.01 7:24 7:21

I think one word to describe these is results is inconsistent! The best times I was pretty happy with:

Best 1 mile pace: 6:19

Best 2 mile pace: 6:45 x 2 = 13:30

There were some shoddy times in there as well, plus I didn’t quite keep up the distance properly with the 2 mile runs, but I was happy enough with what I did.

Most of the slow runs involved me running somewhere with extra luggage on my back, for example I ran to my Dads house and back a couple of times to pick up tools for the car (more to come on my adventures with that in the next post!), and also ran to the shops and back at least once with some supplies on my back on the way back. This naturally slowed me down!

I also gave blood at the start of week 3 which seemed to throw a bit of a spanner in the works with my cardio, I was breathing much heavier even though my runs were slower. I am guessing there is something in this, less red blood cells equals less oxygen getting to the muscles!? Apart from that though it was a good experience and I signed up to give again in April 🙂

My final excuse for the lack of action and slowness in week 4 is that I played a game of 5-a-side football with the guys at work on the Monday. I haven’t played in maybe 2 years, and some muscles I had completely forgotten about were aching like hell for the rest of the week. Lesson learnt, no more 5-a-side while training for a run! It was damn good exercise (and fun!) nonetheless.

In terms of the goals, shaving 19 seconds off of that 1 mile pace is going to be hard but I am going to carry on doing these short runs to see how long it will take me to do it. I double checked my previous PB and it was 6:30 so I shaved 11 seconds off of that with minimal effort really, so I am confident I can do it, just not sure how long it will take me. I’ll let you know if/when I do no doubt 🙂


No Sugar

Now come the two parts I did not do so well on! You can view my whole list of violations at the bottom of the post, as it was too long to include in the main post… 🙂

A general commentary would be, I started off allowing myself a few sauces (tomato, pickle, salad cream) but then decided that they clearly have added sugar so I should write them down on the violations list (these are small ones which I’m not that bothered about really), but after a few major slips I tried to go more hardcore in the latter weeks. However I still managed a few major slips in those weeks as well. The big violations were:

  • 5 profiter rolls in week 1 – left over from xmas, were going off, couldn’t face chucking them so ate them instead…
  • Tea & biscuits & a few chocolates in week 2 – when doing my car repairs. Manual work requires calories!
  • Massaman curry – Although this is made with coconut milk, which is technically natural, it is pretty laced with sugar. D’oh!
  • Week 3 – Gave blood – they made me eat crisps and biscuits! I think this one is allowed 😉
  • Week 4 – Thursday round friends house, ate a massive bit of chocolate based pudding. Friday went round the in-laws, ate 4 chocolates.

I guess the main thing I can take away from this is that sugar is indeed very addictive. I really found myself craving it, and knowing that I wasn’t supposed to have it made me want it even more. I also came a cropper when we ended up going round friends or our family’s houses and pudding was served up. I just think it’s rude to say no, and you should know by now I hate to see good food go to waste! 😉

One other thing that occurred to me was people have a lot of chocolate and other sweet treats they are trying to offload leftover from Christmas (as they are on a diet/detox as well!) so maybe January is not the best month to do this challenge in.

Going forward, I think a more balanced approach to reigning in my sugar intake will work better for me. What I’ll be doing will be eating low/no added sugar during the weekdays and evenings when I am more in control of what I eat, but when we go out or round others for dinner, I won’t sweat having the sweet treats that are on offer. This will make it seem an even more special treat when we do go out, rather than just another unhealthy snack on top of the 7 I’ve already eaten that day 1! See MMM’s King for a day method for more info on that line of thinking.

Oh one final thing, I also have eaten a huge pile of sweet stuff in the week directly after the challenge finished so again I think the famine / feast thing applies here and a smoother consumption pattern will be more healthy and sustainable in the long run!


No Alcohol

Six words on this one:

“What the hell was I thinking?!”

Haha! In all fairness I drunk far less than any other month of the year so it was a partial success – according to my app on my phone it was 29 units, which is well within the 21 units per week (so 84 for the full four week challenge).  On the same line with the sugar, going forward I think a more sensible moderation will be a good strategy rather than just trying (and failing) to stop altogether, with the less frequent booze up for bigger celebrations. I can’t see me drinking that much more in February as not got many big nights out planned and have the two half marathons to run at the end of the month, which should keep me on the straight and narrow.

I am hoping this new attitude will keep with me for longer this year, but am obviously still up for a party when the time is right!



I’d give myself a 8/10 for the running effort, 6/10 for the sugar, and 7/10 for the alcohol.

I think this year the things I’ve done are more likely to stick long term though, because after January Detox I, while I did better with that, I didn’t really have any long term goals. Especially on the running front, I am kind of glad I didn’t break the times I was going for, as this will keep me motivated to carry on hopefully long after the end of February!

So above all, I feel like I’ve taken a lot away from the challenges to take forward and hopefully have a faster, fitter, and healthier 2015.

What about you? How did you get on with your January detox/diet/fitness goals?



Full food & drink violations table:

Week 1 Drink Food Notes/Bad Excuse
Monday Pickle in sandwich. Small dollop of honey in porridge
Tuesday 5 profiter rolls! Massive fail!
Thursday 2 beers Tomato sauce
Saturday Tomato sauce
Sunday Tomato sauce. Packet cheese n onion crisps
Week 2
Tuesday Piece of chocolate cake at work Someones birthday at work
Wednesday 2 biscuits. 3 chocolates. Fixing car. Need Calories
Friday 2 beers Massaman Curry, sweet chilli dipping sauce Friends round for dinner
Saturday Leftover portion of curry from last night
Week 3
Monday 2 packs biscuits, bag of crisps Gave blood. They made me do it!
Thursday 5 small beers Chocolate cake/pudding thing Out at friends for dinner
Friday 1 beer 4 chocolates Round the in-laws
Saturday 4 small beers, 3 medium red wines  Friends round for dinner again 🙂
Sunday 1 small chocolate
Week 4
Wednesday 1 small chocolate
Friday Pickle in sandwich


  1. I don’t normally eat 7 unhealthy snacks per day anyway, that was an exaggeration to make the point have more impact, and also for mild comic effect. Although I have no doubt that some people do!