Wednesday, 16 July 2014


For all those who have been asking I promised to post some running tips, so here you go.

Running gear: you don't need anything fancy, dash on a pair of old tracksuit bottoms and a t-shirt and get out there.

If you don't feel confident, or don't want your neighbors to recognize you, (there's always that nosey one all up in your business) wear sunglasses. It blocks out all the people on the street, and helps you live in your own little world, just don’t wear them when it’s raining or at night time, cause ya ganna look like a weirdo!

Get a good sports bra, nothing worse then running and those babies are swinging all over the place, they will only slow you down, and it will be embarrassing if you have to hold them!

Begin slow if you have to, it doesn't matter how slow, build up your distance over time, there’s no rush. For those of you who find running a real chore, run, walk a bit, catch your breath, walk a bit, run a bit, it's a great strategy to keep you moving and before you know it you'll be back home. The fact that your moving is great, you ain't trying to me Mo Farah, your just trying to healthy.

Grab a friend and run with them. I enjoy running on my own, running is my thinking, cussing, praying, meditation time, but if company is what's ganna keep you going, then find a friend to drag along kicking and screaming. Tell them your friendship depends on their co-operation and support of you new healthy lifestyle.

Be safe: wear headphones by all means but make sure you can hear what going on around you, so don’t be turning the music up too high.

Change your route regularly so you don't get bored. I don't mind running the same route again and again, but I know that would drive some people crazy!

Mapmyrun is a great site, where you can plan your route and mileage.

Try some hills, they are great for stamina, and really make you strong.

Watch out for cars, humans don't bounce off bonnets very well.
Watch out for dog's who like to chase humans.
Watch out for pedestrians, prams and wayward children, especially if they are riding scooters!

Ignore any comments that may be thrown at you, from a passing car or an ignoramus person, do not let some ignorant arse-hole take away from the positive steps you are making. They don’t know you; you don’t know them, so lets keep it moving.

Like the trainers above, well their mine, pretty ain't they?  it took me a while to figure out what brand and type of trainer works for me, the website below has loads to choose from.If your serious about running please invest in a decent pair of trainers go to any sports shop and they will point you in the right direction. If you find a pair that you like and it’s a bit expensive, take the name down, then go find it cheaper on the Internet.

Asthmatics try to run when the traffic is not congested and try running in a park where you'll breathe more easily.  Run with your pumps, you never know when you might need them. There are some days your chest will play up and there is nothing you can do about it. It’s real important to listen to your body and pay attention to your breathing. Remember keep the music down to a minimum, Don't be frigthened to run just beacuse your asthamtic, obviuosly use your common sense, listen to your body and react according, especially if your asthama is exercise induced.

Be kind to your knees, jog on grass if you can or switch it up, try not to jog solely on concrete.If you live near a running track, make use of it.

Try not to slam into the ground as you run, think of yourself as gliding across the ground rather than slamming into it.  I'm a gazelle, I'm a gazelle. I’m a gazelle. I say though to remind myself otherwise I will rhino around the streets.

Some people are programmed to run fast some ain't, don't sweat it if you’re a slow runner like me, doesn't make you any less of a runner.  Some of us are gazelles and some are tortoises, does it bother the tortoise that he is slow, nooo so why should it bother us!

*Get a foam roller. Look it up. It's a runner’s best friend

*Hot bath with salt for achy muscles.

*Tiger balm for achy muscles.

*Kinseo tap for achy muscles or injuries that need healing. cid=3366&affid=7&gridview=1&sortby=bestsell&gclid=CLfqwdzRyr8CFSrItAod2kYAOA

*Beg your other half, your kids or a friend to rub down tired legs.

Mix it up, one of the big mistakes I have made in the past is only to run, this can cause injury, try other things as well, swimming, biking, spinning, body pump, yoga etc. It will make you an all round better and stronger runner, and develop all of your body.

Set yourself a goal, a race 5k, 10k, half marathon, and marathon. Whatever gives you something to work towards?

Hardest thing is getting out the door, but once that run is finished, they'll be no regrets. Especially once those happy hormones start flowing, you'll leave the house a miserable git, and return with the sunny disposition of Mary Poppins.

Some days you run and it's ganna be shit, accept it, it's like that sometimes, some days are body’s will rebel.

For runs under an hour you can manage on water, over an hour you might want start thinking about how to fuel your runs, e.g. gels, banana’s, isotonic drinks (mind the sugar).

Runners and carbs, yes been there done that, pizza, pasta, Lucozade, jelly beans, jelly babies, bagels with loads of peanut butter, no wonder my belly was escaping from my running shorts, screaming "Free me, Free me!"

Find healthy ways to fuel your runs, through complex carbs, rather than simple carbs. E.g. white bread is a simple carb, wholemeal bread a complex carb, here is a link breaking down different carbs

I myself am training for a half marathon and determined not to rely on my old staples, which done no good for my waistline.

Pay attention to injuries, have a rest from running if need be, you don't have to stop exercising, swimming,weights, kettle bells, spinning are all great options, to keep your fitness ticking over until you can hit the street again.

If you do injure yourself, get it checked out as soon as you can, in the meantime if it swells, ice and elevate and pop a couple of ibruprofen which should help with the swelling.

Keep a running journal or even just write your runs in your diary so you can keep a track of your progress and even write down how you felt, or the route you took.

Run in the rain, I promise you it's fun, it rains a lot in England, get used to it and get out that front door. I promise you will not shrivel up like the wicked witch of the West and you’ll feel like a total running badass!

If your running three times a week or more try not to do the same thing over and over again,push yourself do at least one long run each week, a medium one, and a short one where you work on speed.

The only way you can run faster, is to run faster,I do something called fartleck a fun way of gaining speed, run quickly from one object to another as fast as I can, then run slow, then run quick again, and so forth.

Happy Running.

Look below for further reading.

See you all soon Kat

Coach to 5k programme with downloadable podcasts.

A great site, for women runners

Running World magazine do a great site

This guy Hal Higdon does great training programmes for walking and running half and full marathons.

Want a local weekly 5k challenge try a Park, free timed 5k 's every Saturday.

An interesting article on why running may not help you to lose weight.

Opposite school of thought, how to run and lose weight.

Monday, 7 July 2014


Here are some tips and thoughts around sugar addiction, I have been on this journey of trying to cut back on sugar since last October. I am not a DR, a nurse or expert of any kind, just a woman on a mission to clean up my health and try and sort out a few health problems. If I can use my experience to help others who are also struggling or looking for change so be it.

Like any addiction first you have to admit you have a problem, if you’re pouring sugar into your tea or coffee, if you constantly snack on cakes, sweets and chocolates, if Crunchy Nut Cornflakes or Frosties are your breakfast of choice, if all your teeth have fillings or your missing teeth, you got a problem! If you can’t get through your day without some sort of sweet crack reward you are an addict!

What kind of person are you are you, the kind who prefers to go gung ho and just give sh*t up, then do a sugar detox or do you achieve better results when you slowly wean yourself off something? have a think about what approach is ganna work best for you. 

Make up your own mind, read as much as you can,  there is so much info on the Internet about sugar and its negative effects on quite a few health conditions see if giving up sugar can make a difference to your health and your family's health. Sugar is believed to be responsible for a myriad of illnesses.

Get those around you to support you, no sense giving up sugar and the rest of your family are munching their way through sugar, sugar, sugar, that would just be damn torture. Maybe it time for the whole family to change, but since I do not want to be the cause of no marriage break ups or children
packing their bags and leaving home to live with grandma who gives them all the sugar they desire,  take it easy, break them in slowly!

Take one day at a time, if you mess up start again, and keep going until you’re on the right track. Your not a failure just because you messed up. We all struggle with sh*t, the question is you ganna give up or keep going until you get it right? I found that stepping up my game each month really helped, so once I felt confident I would be a little stricter, and each month my will power would
grow stronger.

There is no special secret formula, no Harry Potter style waving of wands,  it's an addiction so you know things are going to get ugly before they get pretty. There is a school of thought that sugar is more addictive than crack, maybe now you'll understand why will power alone is not enough. I am the biggest sugar fiend in the world, if I can turn my back on the sugary crack then so can anyone, it will take a while but you will get there, it's not a race it's a life long change, you need to develop strategies and tools which are going to help you succeed.

Break out once in a while we all need a little sugar in our lives after all and indulging ,once in a while will not harm you, it’s the every day yamming that is a problem, so treat yourself then get back on track I have found I no longer feel a need to treat myself as much after almost 9 months of reducing sugar my palate has changed and sugar is no longer a must in my life. Just be warned, some people can find breaking out sets them on a slippery slope back into the clutches of  the sugary crack, so this method may not be the best for you, it really will depend on your personality!

Sugar, sugar everywhere, if your serious about giving up the sugary crack, then you better start checking labels, cause it is in everything, yogurt, cereal etc, and even in a lot of low fat foods to make them taste palatable! Water is now my main drink, can drinks and sodas and even fruit juice are choc full of sugar.   It is even in a lot of health foods, your ganna have to decide how deep you want to
go with the whole thing and what you are willing to eliminate.

I do not tend to use any sugar substitutes, no honey, no molasses, no agave syrup, sweetener.  nothing, It is all sugar at the end of the day and I am really trying to curb my sweet tooth. I started this new lifestyle on advice of a homoeopath and he advised me to knock all forms of sugar on the head. Yes I did cry when I left his office at the thought of giving up the sweet crack, but almost 9 months down the line, I am no longer crying but benefiting from my decision. Please keep in mind my decision was based on improving my health and I have had dramatic results, this is why I am so strict and passionate about trying to eliminate sugar from my diet, but it is not for everyone, nor does everyone need to do it, our bodies all react diffrently to different things, maybe sugar is my kryptonite.

Keep trying, even when you f**k up and have a massive sugar blow out, keep trying, and one day you will be able to walk away from that donuts, you will be able to put down that packet of chocolate biscuits after only 1 or 2, rather than yamming off the whole packet or maybe you won’t even have one! One day you will be able to turn around to the office baker/feeder and decline her Tupperware
box heavy with treats as she pushes them under your nose, trying to tempt you with her delicious muffins, homemade cupcakes with orgasmic peaks of buttercream icing or her delectable carrot cake that she is famed for. "F**k off b**ch I'm sugar free."

If you don’t buy it, you can’t eat it, keep it out of your shopping basket, out of your shopping trolley, out of your house and out of your life! Think of sugar as a lover, who has treated you very badly, you no longer want or need them in your life.

I am not advocating this as a diet but as a lifestyle change, sugar is no longer part of my everyday life. 
We broke up and I am never going back to the destructive relationship we used to have, that’s over, 
and although it was tough at first like all break ups, I got over it!

For those of you who are looking at reducing their sugar intake for health as well as weight reasons, limiting my sugar has given me a belly flatter than I have seen in more years than I care to remember, in fact it has been so long I have forgotten what is was like to have a flat stomach. I thought it was a problem area of mine, but I was wrong, after limiting sugar, I have found it is no problem at all, all I know is I look down now and I can see my toes clearly and I have a waist that mysteriously goes in, giving me some curves.

The other day I also found hip bones, A friend of mine recently panicked when she found hers thinking there was something wrong with her, I done the same thing I was wondering what these funny things at the side of my hips were, until I remembered that they were suppose to be there, I just had not seen them in years. "Hello hip bones, my name is Kat Francois, great to meet you again, its been a long time, how you been?"

Jokes aside, sugar is very addictive, slim or big, healthy or unhealthy we can all benefit from cutting     
down our consumption and encouraging those we love to do the same.

Below is some sugary crack reading 

Nuff love


Disclaimer: none of the images are mine, they have all been sourced from the Internet.