Five lessons from London Marathon 2019 (including how not to run it)

It’s now been a week or so since I staggered over the finish line on The Mall, and I’ve been enjoying not breaking out of walking pace since then (I couldn’t have if I’d tried for the first three days). But while I’m just starting to think about lacing up the trainers again and getting going on the next challenge (nailing my 5K PB this summer), I think it’s a good opportunity to reflect on the big day and what I learned from it. Setting off too fast Training had gone well, tapering had been sensible, and the weather was […]

Continue Reading

Nuggets of running wisdom (part three)

Following on from blogs one and two, I’ll now bring this mini series of blogs to a close with four final nuggets of wisdom that have helped to inform and improve my running performance. Given my role as a dietitian, I’ve decided to finish up with some ideas on nutrition. I’m not claiming to be an expert on sports nutrition (yet!), but I’m starting to move in that direction at least, so I hope you enjoy my thoughts below. 7. Running on ‘empty’ can be a good thing When we train for a marathon, one of the key things we […]

Continue Reading

Nuggets of running wisdom (part two)

Following up on part one, here are the next set of nuggets of wisdom which have helped to transform the way I look at running. These three are all focused on specific elements of a training regimen. 4. Park runs = helpful I always used to think running training had to be really specific. In other words, if you’re training for a marathon, all training sessions have to be focused on going long, or at least long-ish. Only if you’re training for short or middle distances would you bother with high intensity, short duration training, right? Wrong. Very wrong. In order […]

Continue Reading

Nuggets of running wisdom (part one)

Well, that came along quickly…it’s now just FIFTY days until the London Marathon 2019. After getting fed up with relentless training from 2013 to 2017, I took a year off marathoning last year, and it has had the desired effect of making me return with a fresh focus and love for it. But, determined not to fall into old bad habits, I have decided to become a ‘student of the sport’, learning from experts and putting a lot more thought into training rather than going hell for leather on every run, slowly sapping my reserves and enthusiasm in the process. […]

Continue Reading

Sports nutrition (and combining passions)

I’ve always loved sport. In fact, some (my wife) would say I’m obsessed with it, based on what must seem like an endless stream of ‘unmissable’ action from around the globe (test match cricket is particularly rewarding for truly year-round entertainment). But it’s not just the watching that floats my boat. If I go more than a couple of days without going for a decent run or some serious physical exertion (ideally with a competitive element), I get very crabby. So that’s most of my spare time covered, but my day job is of course centred around nutrition, and primarily […]

Continue Reading

A meat free year (and the growing evidence base)

I blogged last year about my steady drift towards a fully plant-based diet, and discussed some of of the key considerations and questions of doing so. I’m happy to report that this drift has continued, and I managed to avoid eating meat for the whole of 2018. Well OK, that is not entirely true, as I had one mishap on the flight back from my own stag do in Porto, when I ate a bread roll with chicken puree which I thought was hummous. Hard to believe that my abstinence was broken, not for a juicy burger or Sunday roast, […]

Continue Reading

Marathon blues

I’ve got the marathon blues. Last year’s final few weeks of long training runs were so punishing that I’d made up my mind long before race day that I’d be taking the following year off. More importantly, I then stubbornly stuck to that decision despite the euphoria that followed. So, I won’t be running London on Sunday, and it will mark my first year in six without a marathon. With my usual home town half in Bath also cancelled this year due to that (first) ridiculous week of spring snow, the only organised runs I’ve been doing are Park Runs. […]

Continue Reading

Veganism and the plant based revolution (part II)

A week later than planned (as ever), here is the second part to my blog on plant based diets, this time looking at the final four FAQs that come my way as a Registered Dietitian. Some of it is a bit lengthy (and I promise future posts won’t always be), but it’s a huge topic and one that could probably have been split across about five blogs rather than two. I could easily have expanded on all of these answers, but it’s a start at least! Q2. What about protein? Protein remains all the rage, and people often worry that a plant […]

Continue Reading

Veganism and the plant based revolution (part I)

Q: How do you know if someone’s a vegan? A: Don’t worry – they’ll tell you There’s something about vegans that really gets under other people’s skin. They find themselves the butt of jokes for being smug / puny / dull / joyless / awkward / sanctimonious etc etc…and to be perfectly honest, I’ve had times when I’ve thought the same. I used to be more than a little sceptical of veganism (and vegans), thinking it an unnecessarily restrictive lifestyle, and the preserve of preachy individuals who wear shoes made from hemp. No-one likes being told what to eat (or […]

Continue Reading

Introduction to Intensive Care

My clinical career has seen some significant changes recently, so I thought I’d write a quick post to briefly update and reflect on a busy few months in the day job  (and inevitably the language will be slightly more clinical than usual – apologies!) For the second half of 2017, I took on the role of Senior Specialist Dietitian in Lower Gastrointestinal Surgery and Gastroenterology at my previous trust, Imperial. Given the nature of the surgery and diseases in this population (e.g. bowel cancer, crohn’s, pancreatitis), patients are often unable to digest food normally, with their intestinal tracts either inaccessible […]

Continue Reading