Silverstone Half Marathon

So here we are, my first ever 13.1 mile race. Sponsored by Adidas, the Silverstone half marathon. Wow, what a race. The most nervous i have been pre race to date! im not sure why, i’ve done the training and the distance, so why on race day do I feel the pressure?

I want to do well. Im so lucky i have the support from my husband, his belief in me is unreal and really pushes me through races. My whole family are a huge support as well as my new running family, the Isle of Wight road runners ❤ running, knowing they are all behind me, encourages me to do well for them as well as myself. So maybe this is why i feel the pressure, Silverstone is and iconic location and i think it was perfect for my first half. My dad is really into his bike racing and has been to Silverstone on many occations. Its been great to run round the track i know he has ridden around many times and although im not quite at the speed of him and his R1, i thought of him ‘knee down’ enjoying these sharp bends and fast straights. I wonder if its the same adrenaline enjoyed on this track.

We were able to stay with friends the night before the race as it was a bit of a way from home, with a 12 noon start we had plenty of time to get ready. We were super organised and even packed our proven pre race breakies with us 🙂 i had a yummy porridge with nuts and cinnamon and hubby opted for weetabix and nuts. We left with plenty of time but did not expect the traffic we were hit by! it took us 1hr 20mins to drive 20miles!! honeslty another 10mins and we would of missed the race! The weather wasnt great, so im glad we didnt have to spent to much time standing in the rain, we litrally had to jog from the car to the bag drop area. A quick bathroom break and then we had to head straight to the start line!

The course was good, it was so busy full of detemind runners, all with their own storys. I love looking around and seeing all the amazing organinstions and charitys that are being supported. Its such a great atmosphere. The Adidas team were amazing! so friendly and encouraging, shouting supportive quotes and messages to us all, giving out water, lucozades and hi-fives were they could. The support was overwhelming! Just when i felt a lull in the run, just round the corner supporters cheered us on further.

The last 3 miles i found hard. I wish i had my music to help as the bands that were playing werent always clear, i like a good beat to help my tempo, but then i would of missed out on the guy sinning frozen at the beginning! In my head i could hear my fellow IOWRR’s ‘Its just a park run now!’ now ive never competed in a park run before, and im not sure i want to! its HARD!! The finish was great, i could now hear the crowds and the music. It was such a lovely feeling. Finishing. I couldnt wait to see my hubby. I knew he was in for a great time and i could wait to hear all about his run and share my time with him.

As i took of my time chip, jogged to get my goody bad (best bit!!) i found him! ❤

Mike ran a 4 min PB! an astonishing 1hr 19mins! he came over all 31st! im so ridiculously proud of him! such an incredible time and achievement!! I was a bit slower at 1hr 44mins, still a PB for me as this was my first!! i dont think i have ever asked my dad his time on the bike!!!  Im pleased with my time and my run. Im glad i did it, not sure why i got so nervous before. Races are so fun! we werent able to stay long after the run to soak up more of this incredible atmosphere as we had lunch plans. A well earnt Sunday Lunch with our friends!

The race was really great, i love being able to say i have ran around the track and got an awesome medal!! Full of post race joy, i have now entered ANOTHER half marathon!!! I will be joining Mike in April in Southampton. He will be doing the full and im doing the half! It seems rude not to participate now 😂

I have defiantly caught the running bug!!

Now, to continue the training.. lets see if i can get a PB!!

Sparkle away,

A x




Fiji has landed!

I am crazy for this spring summer 2017 collection. It seems like it has been a long winter and these BEAUTIFUL colours are just what i need to pick me up! These colours have gone down a STORM with my ladies and we are all enjoying the much needed pick me up these fun colours bring.


OPI’s new Fiji collection s/s 17 is available in all 3 GelColor, Infinite Shine and Regular Lacquer.


So i have purchased 11 of these fabulous colours, ‘Exotic birds do not tweet’ (yellow) didnt make it in to my shopping bag this time as honestly i felt it was to similar too one i already have and yellow is not a massively popular colour.

These colours are really lovely and i felt they needed to be shown of on hands rather than a colour pop. Lucky i had a few volunteers happy to help ❤

 These are my models nails pre mani.

 as you can see we had great fun creating this multi coloured mani 😀


All super gorgeous colours. The index finger has a beautiful silvery shimmer and the pinki has a lovely green iridescence to it. As beautiful as this green gray is, i reall wish OPI would bring out a solid grey shade! The other 3 are a real solid creme.


All 5 of these are creme colours, they apply and cover beautifully. These all have 2 coat except *NO TAN LINES which had 3. These really arnt like these other OPI colours, they are more vibrant than the other ranges i have.

 Stacey opted for *LIVING ON THE BULA-VARD as her final colour to show of to the world! and what a great choice! its a really sassy colour and screams summer fun!

Now as i couldnt fit this colour on *COCONUTS OVER OPI here it is on another clients hand. This colour has probably been the most popular so far. Nudes have really been the trend so far this year, but with Spring round the corner i have a feeling this new collection is really going to take off!

Thank you all for reading! let me know your thought on the collection, if you have used it and what colours your loving!

Sparkle away,

A x

running for BLING

Tuesday 7-3-17

Normal work day for me, not a late one as im suppose to be going to track tonight. do i feel like it. no. I kept waking up with sore legs from my previous runs and gym session. I only went to the gym once last week! the week before i hadnt been doing much leg work as i want to focus on my running, but Sunday just gone i couldnt help myself! I did my usual super sets with 20kg sumo squats, good mornings and lunges. At the time i was frustrated as i couldnt get to the squat rack to do a heavier weight. now i am thankful!!

Work has been busy and i have a huge to do list which seems never ending, i finally get round to doing some of things on it and before i know it ive added twice as much! I defiantly was hoping today would be a quick day, tomorrow is my day off and i am defiantly looking forward to it!

Post comes.. ive been waiting for this.. my Virtual Run medal is here!

I placed 30th out of 198 people and completed a total of 94 running miles and 50 walking miles (walked with pooch) I opened my little parcel thrilled when i found out it spins around!


At first i didnt really take these virtual runs very seriously, i just wanted some cool bling that my hubby doesnt have, but ive really started to see the benefit. This was a month long challenge to see how many miles you could cover by running, walking or cycling. When i found myself uming and aring about going out or not i would often think, think of the miles! and before i knew it i would have my trainers or walking boots on with my Polar M400 and i was off! Its a great encouragement.

My day has been turned around! So i owe a big thank you to Virtual Runner UK for my lovely new medal and look forward to my next one!

Im now feeling so upbeat and good that i may pop along to track! possibly with my medal just to show it off!!

Sparkle away,

A x

What if we built ourselves up?

Why do we constantly focus on the negative? okay maybe not ‘WE’ but definitely ME. My most immediate thought is negative. To anything, I almost always have to refocus as soon as i can and see the positive.

I struggle to be okay with just me, my achievements and goals. i feel they are never enough. i always feel i could do more, fit more clients in, spend longer at the gym, walk my dog for longer, run harder and quicker. there is always something i could do better.

The more i think about it, the more i notice it. Recently i can see it and hear it in others and this makes me feel soo sad. I speak to SO many great and amazing people daily and listen to the way they are and i can hear it in them. The same thing i say to myself. im just not good enough. Okay so maybe im sensitive to this and perhaps because I feel this way i think i can hear in it others, but there are definitely others that can relate.

As i chat away its obvious to me that this generation is FULL of pressure. Some of this pressure we can not simply get away from, but i do think that by taking a set back and bringing a positive mind set is important and healthy. Things may not always go the way i want, but when i think positively and see ‘i am doing the best I can today‘ i start to believe it, and sometimes that’s all i can do. It sound so cliche but giving myself a positive message can help me tell those niggling negative feelings to do one!  I may not always feel happy, smiley and confident and thats fine, Im not a crazy robots that can conquer all with no emotion, and I wouldnt want to be. Its a constant battle of accepting that its okay to be a bit down some times and stopping myself from dwelling on it.

Im not saying that with my positive mind i can conquer all my problems and rule the world. but i am saying, seeing it through a different light can help me make more positive decisions and help me feel better and more positive about things. its a great cycle. when i feel ive done a good job i will smile to myself, and that FEELS great, so why not get the same feeling from a positive thought? Starting this process with positive thinking is NOT by any means easy, those negative thought are SSOOO powerful, but bare with it. Its worth it. If a negative thought can snowball why cant a positive thought do the same. I challenge you all to think more positive and see how it can change your day.

Try it, and let me know how you get on, follow my insta @rungirlrun90 to follow my journey

Sparkle away,

A x

90th Birthday

My fabulous Nan turned 90 at the beginning of Febuary 2017 and i had the pleasure of making her CAKE!

Now i love cake, i love any reason to bake a cake and feed cake to everyone! It gave me great joy to be able to bake my nans cake as this very lady taught me all my baking skills and still encourages me to be creative and keep baking, even when i dont turn out a great bake. She truly believes i will be the next Mary Berry and i wonder if TGBBO was still showing she would have me signed up in a heart beat!

I finally decided on 2 flavours for this masterpiece, a light classic vanilla sponge and a dark chocolate truffle cake, both covered in a dark chocolate ganache. It took me a ridiculous amount of time to decide what type, flavour and style of cake i would bake for my nan, although i knew she would be happy with a classic sponge i wanted it to be more special for her.

img_1682So here is my finished cake. I went to a local cake shop and hired the numbered tins, they were a little tricky to get used to but i got the hang of them in the end. funny little things, i mean they didnt have a bottom so i had to line them with foil – which was not as easy as it sounds, as place them on a baking tray. ( i prayed at this point the cake mixture wouldnt just pour out!)

I firstly baked the chocolate truffle cake, and unusual recipe, more of a brownie texture. I had my doubts about this as it had alot of egg and not much flour and took over an hour to bake! I didnt rush it though and i think it came out rather well. Next was the vanilla sponge. Nice and easy, just a larger about than a normal. i dont think i really appricaited how the tins would effect the bake of the cake, this started to worry me as i hadnt bakes a sponge for an hour before. i was so worried it would be hard and crispy! Thankfully i stuck to the recipe and checked the cake regularly and took it out just on time. I always myself stressing when i bake for others that when they cut into the cakes they will either be raw in the center or hard as a brick! luckily i havent had this happen but i do like to worry!

So after having a day to stress, i needn’t of worried, i was able to slice these in half perfectly and check out the centers before covering them in the dark chocolate ganache i made and cooled.

The ganche took AGES to cool down to the right temperature! i all most left it too long as i decided to go for a quick gym session to help get rid of my nervous energy!! It didnt take me too long to get in to the swing of icing, i was so worried i would get the ganache everywhere and make a right mess of things! After the whole cake was iced i realised it still looked a bit bare and plain. Not quite how i had imagined. I had brought some gold glitter and shimmer powder as i wanted the cake to be simple and effective rather than to fussy.

I had alot of fun with the glitter powder! how it changes the look of the cake!


I added a few chocolate swirls and that completed the cake. Once we got to the hall, I added a 9 and a heart sparkler and a few candles for when we sang Happy Birthday to her.


Here she is looks all beautiful and fantastic! i was even able to get a birthday selfie with her. She was ever so happy with the cake, it all got eaten and i was even asked to bake cakes for the WI my nan attends! not sure i could quite deal with the pressure but i took it as a big compliment. My nan even phoned several times after to tell me how much everyone had enjoyed it, and the party of course. My nan did a super job organising every and the fabulous buffet lunch.

It really ment so much to me being able to do this for her, it was a bonus that it was enjoyed and even though element of this cake were tricky, i loved making it and i cant wait to bake more!

Thanks for reading my little blog about my nan’s 90th cake. Hope you enjoyed it ❤

Sparkle away,

A x

Bramley 20/10

Race Day Sunday 19-2-17 and what a day!

It was a long day for us coming from the island, but it was worth it! i haven’t enjoyed a race this much. im really pleased with my time and who the run went, its left me wanting more and i cant WAIT for my half marathon in only 3 weeks!

We started nice and early at 6am getting our nutritional brekki in, trying to drink plenty of water too. ready for our ferry at 7.15. my first official race as a Isle of Wight Road Runner, i felt like it was my first day at school in my new gear 🙂  i was so excited being part of the best ever running club! on the ferry were are all talking tactics for the run, there was only a small number of us running and i was the only one running the 10miles. I dont think i could mange doubling the distance, i have great respect for those that did! i hope one day i will be able to run for that distance and time! my hubby finished 20miles in 2hr 8mins! a phenomenal time! the group i run with have some amazing runners and they have such great determination! they really inspire me.
I was quite nervous as we started the race as i prefer to run with headphones but at this race it was a big no no. I didnt want to be disqualified so i played by the rules and left my headphones in my bag. I wasnt really sure what time band i was starting in, all the 20 milers and 10 milers where running together. the route was 10 miles long, so the 20 milers had to go round twice.

I find my Polar M400 a great help when im running.  My hubby has set it up for me so when im running i can see how far i have been and how fast im going. He normally gives me a target time which i always think is way out of my abilitys, but i bare it in mind. As i run, i like to take in my surrounding, the landsape and other runners. I like to see them as my target and slowly take them down one by one. hehe! its defiantly encouraging, until i need to slow down for a sec and they get their own back! it makes it a bit fun. As i steam on, i check my watch and realise not only am I running at hubbys target pace, im going faster! im so shell shocked, the bugger was right, again!! after a quick panic thinking i will need to stop any second, i calm down and realise, im doing it. im actually doing it and im okay! no need to panic! Dont get me wrong there are plenty of time during the race that i want to stop and quit. Like every time i saw a camara lense pointing towards me! but i knew the end goal is worth it, the feel when its all over, the drink of water, the banana and MEDAL waiting for me at the finishing line!

Its such a euphoric feeling finishing a race, the feeling is great motivation for the next one! Its all over and ive done it! I was aiming to finish this run 5 minutes faster than my last 10 mile race, i bet it by 7 minute! 1hr 17mins, i really couldnt believe it, and now i cant wait for him to come over the finish line so i can tell him! i didnt have to wait long, by the time i had changed, looked in my goody back and proudly put on my medal. i walked over to the finish to watch him come over, 2hrs and 8 mins! What a stonking time! i completely forget about me and focused on my hubby! hes never ran this distance and this was the furthest he has raced! all in good prep for his marathon. I thought i was proud of myself but i was so overwhelmed with pride for him! he was in the top 50 and was the first roadrunner across.


The day was amazing! Its made me more excited for our half marathon. The IOWRR’s have really welcomed me into the club and i cant wait to do more runs with them! I couldnt believe it when hubby and i made there newsletter too! It was such a lovely write up and has made me want to push myself even further.


For now, my training will continue for the half. I have done a few track sessions, i may write about this another time! its so hard, but i hope the benefits will show in my next race!

Sparkle away,

A x

Keeping motivated

RACES! this is how i keep myself going, joining and looking out for new races. Although i know im not going to win, i want to still try hard and get the best time I can get.

So i have a race on Sunday, Brambly 10 mile. Im so excited as this will be my first official race as an Isle of Wight Road Runner and with a UK Athletics number. I have my club vest and hoodie all ready, my race pack semi ready. I hadnt planed on entering this race, a fellow IOWRR no longer can race so ive taken her place, I have to take my pack on Sunday to get it all transferred to my name.

I’ve up’d my weekly miles this year from 10-15 to 20-25 miles. Im trying hard to do at least 1 run a week over 10 miles as i am in training for the Silverston half marathon. I do a club run which variys in distance and earlier this week i went on an actual track session! with a real coach. I completely felt out of my depth. My running is a hobby, its scary being with all these serious runners who are training for marathons and triathlons! ive never reallyu classed myself as a ‘real’ runner, but prehaps i am?

The track session went well-ish. I didnt think at the time i had done well, i had painful blisters on the arch of my feet and with the 10 mile race just a few days away i was trying not to over do it. It didnt work! im hoping as i havent ran since i will be okay on Sunday!

All these little thing keep me running. The idea of going out in the cold, wet, dark evening does not strike me as a fun time, but knowing im with like minded people and thinking about my upcoming races, it pushes me through.

I have my virtual runs keeping me going to! My January challenge worked so well and i LOVE my Unicorn medal. This mouth is all about the miles, walking, running or cycling. I walk daily with my dog and when im undecided about a run, i think of the miles im missing out on and then off i go! so far i have completed 84 miles! i love getting a bit of bling!

Hubby and i have just signed up for the Bournemouth Bay 10k run in April. Im so excited for this run. This will be a milestone for me. I completed this run last year. My first ever race, in 55 min 56 sec. I cant believe i did it once and now im looking to take 10mins of that time! (well… we will see :D)


Looking back on where i started and how far ive come is ALWAYS a great way to motivate me. i never EVER thought i would run. let alone in race with other people! i have moments when im extremely proud of myself, and i am pleased with what i have accomplished. as we all should be – i dont think we all give ourselves enough credit.


So to keep me motivated I :

  • Train with a club! – having others around me is SO encougaging!
  • Join races! – a bit of healthy competition is great!
  • Virtual runs! – keep me wanting to go out for BLING!
  • Looking back! – thinking about how far and being thankful for what i have achieved
  • Social Media! – its great to get encouragement from fellow fitness friends

Follow me on Instagram- @rungirlrun90 ❤


Sparkle away,

A x