Monday, 31 October 2016

Knock-On Benefits Of Running & A Question Of Makeup






Am I alone in not wearing much makeup? When I was a teenager I did, because there was this sense that if you didn't, you somehow weren't taking proper care of yourself. I suspect that idea came straight out of the horrible fifties and I sincerely hope it isn't being shoved on to young women today in the way it was thirty years ago. Since I hit my forties I just can't be bothered. Perhaps with Age comes Confidence.

I am constantly appalled by the huge multi-billion pound industry that exists to promote lotions and potions and instruct women that what they really need is toners, sun protection cream, cleansers and moisturisers before they've put on foundation, blusher, mascara, eyeliner, lip liner, lip gloss etc etc etc every single day. The function of skin is to breath and expel toxins. It can't do that if it's clogged up with products.
Years ago I was asked by a lady what products I used because my skin was clear and healthy-looking. I told her I drank copious quantities of water, ate a good diet and steered clear of any skincare products that contained parabens, sodium laureth sulphate, parfum and colours. I'm not sure she believed me, so much has our faith in a simple approach to things been eroded.

I am very dubious about the ethics and politics of the skincare and makeup industries and the impact it all has on women's lives. Have we really reached a point where we're so used to seeing female faces painted that we don't think they are beautiful without it? Would we not be better off empowering women to feel beautiful without artificial decoration so the pressure is off for those who'd rather not? I personally feel Feminism will have done it's job when women can make informed choices without being sneered at either way.


It's now ten weeks since I started focusing seriously on my running. During that time, an interesting side-effect has taken place: we've drastically reduced the amount of meat we eat and have moved to fish, vegetables and rice, and we eat earlier in the evening. The result is my digestion is working properly for the first time in ages; I feel lighter, cleaner and more energised as a result, as well as properly hungry the following morning.

The knock-on benefits are interesting, too. When we took Uncle Charles out for Afternoon Tea on Saturday, I found I didn't want the cakes. I gobbled down the sandwiches because we'd not long been back from Parkrun, and then found I was looking round in vain for some fresh green stuff to go with it. Don't get me wrong, I still make cakes and eat them, and a packet of crisps in the evening is a treat, I just don't reach for these things in the same way I did. The heavy after-taste of sugar has become too overwhelming and I'd rather have raw fruit and veg. I've also stopped drinking which has been easier than anticipated, especially when the headaches that have been there the majority of the time for many months now have disappeared as a result, taking with them matching sore and cramped neck, shoulder and back muscles. I know it may all sound rather boring, but I feel so well on this new regime there's no way I'd go back.

Training-wise last week I ran a little over 24 miles which breaks down as: 1.79 miles on Monday; 8.74 miles Tuesday; rest Wednesday; 3.3 miles Thursday; rest Friday; 3 miles Sat and 7.5 miles Sunday (please note the Rest Days and that I am being Sensible).

At Parkrun I shaved off another 40 seconds and am now coming in in under 24 minutes. I'm very chuffed about this, although I was completely out of breath by the time I crossed the finishing line and doubtless unbecomingly beaded in sweat and glowing purple too, but who cares about that, eh? Especially when everyone else is beetroot-coloured too and we're all smiling and cheerfully clapping one another on the back :o)
My focus is now on reaching under 23 minutes, something I really didn't think was remotely realistic a few weeks ago. It just shows what practice, focus, perseverance and determination can do for you. 

Yesterday's 7 mile run was fun. I managed the first 5 miles without walking, then we did interval training over the remaining 2 which included a few hills, and got back to the car in 1.08 hours. It wasn't as hard as the off-road run we did on Tuesday, but I did find the relentless tarmac a bit boring, so on balance I think a mix of off-road and lanes is probably a good compromise. We're planning to head back out to the Giant Mousse Hill Run next weekend because I want to know if I can run it faster second time round. I have a feeling my improved Parkrun time is due to the extra miles and the speed work I've put in recently.

That's pretty much it from here for now. Ted has tried out his new bra harness and although he likes it, has decided road running isn't for him anymore (too sore on his paws I suspect, either that or there aren't enough squirrels about to tempt him) so he's going to stick to cross country running instead from now on. Oh, and I've just heard that #2 son passed his driving test this morning, first time. Go, F!

Hope all are well?

CT :o)

37 comments:

  1. Nope me neither. I just use soap and water to wash my face too. I am nearly 60 and ditched the gunk 25 years ago. People rarely believe I am 59 and I am convinced it is because my skin has been allowed to breathe properly for a long time now.

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    1. I think allowing your skin to breath makes a big difference to the way it functions and therefore looks, long term. Good on you.

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  2. I don't wear much makeup too. I like when my skin can breath ♥ Happy Monday ♥

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    1. Me too, Summer. Happy Monday to you too :o)

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  3. Your right with the side effects of the food we eat, far too much is over processed. Well done with your running.

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    1. I'm interested in how, once you ditch the junk, your taste buds work better. The flavours in real foods are just so much nicer than the fat, sugar and salt that's stuffed in so much processed food.

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  4. I never wear make up because I cannot be bothered to remove it.
    You sound like a MACHINE! It is true though how processed sugar makes us feel crap and once it's given up it's easy
    It's the giving up if you are stuck in a rut with it. Well done you x

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    1. It is a tad laborious taking makeup off, isn't it? Panda Eyes in the morning were normal here :o)
      I wasn't intending to shift diet, it came about through embracing the running and so it's been easy in many ways. It is hard to make those changes cold. PS- Giggling at being a MACHINE :o) XX

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  5. Hey CT,
    I probably wear make up once or twice a year, and that consists of a bit of mascara and a little concealer. I do have an spf moisturiser that I use daily. Living here can turn one's skin to leather if not careful. I think make up is a personal choice; fine if you wear it, fine if you don't. That said, I wouldn't mind a nice lippy that would make my mouth look fuller. My lips seem to be receding as I grow older. Running going well here. I'm not up to your standard yet, but am comfortably running 5k three times a week. People have asked if I've lost weight (I haven't), which is great for the ego. I feel more energised and my bowels are happy too! First park run next weekend! Have a great week.
    Leanne xx

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    1. I wear it sometimes when we go out and wonder if I were working in say an office with lots of other people would I feel the pressure to wear it daily? I'd like to think not but I can't swear to it.
      Am interested in your SPF moisturiser. Years ago I set up a natural skincare company, making the products myself from non-synthetic ingredients. The research I did before hand suggested you can get sun protection from beeswax and natural oils, which is what I use now.
      Great news re your running. I really hope you'll do a post after your Parkrun, but if not PLEASE drop me a text/ email to let me know how you get on. I will be sending positive thoughts to Cornwall from Hampshire :o) XX

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    2. It's a Simple moisturiser. Tbh I don't spend much money on this either! It helps keep my face from drying out, and I don't get pink cheeks on the sun. I'm not a sun worshipper per se, but am outside a lot. And I have quite fair skin, being strawberry blonde and all :))

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  6. I'm very impressed with your progress and the knock on health effects. It's not surprising really. Excercise always makes me feel like eating less stodge. When you are office bound or stuck inside the thought of cakes and chocolate always come to mind. As for make up, I only used to do eye make up and this I gave up in my thirties with the birth of son number one. I don't miss it! I always use an spf moisturiser like Leanne. More to stop sun damage than anything else. Interesting that you say beeswax does the same job. I will have to do some research. B x

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    1. I guess its because the more exercise you do, the more energy you get, so the need for fatty/ sugary food to boost energy levels reduces. x

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  7. Well done on the health and fitness, I am very impressed, it sounds as if there is a whole holistic thing going on there. Keep singing the praises of running, I am almost up off my arse, any day now. I don't really get on well with sugar at all. From time to time I stop eating it and I feel heaps better. Well done F on the passing of the driving test. Now he will require a car... CJ xx

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    1. ha ha! I WILL keep singing it's praises- I'm on a small mission now to read a post from you that begins 'Count Down to Parkrun...' :o) xx

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    1. I take that as a compliment indeed, coming from you, Si :o)

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  9. I use a tinted sun screen, mascara and lippy or lip balm when going out. Here in the desert you need protection all year. I also wear a hat most of the year. Because of menopause and other problems I have lost most of my eyebrows and lashes and now have horrible skin so when I do go out I wear a little makeup..
    Great news on the times in your running !

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. Moisturisers are the only thing I use regularly, a natural one from Green People and I also have a pot of Rosehip Oil which is great.

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  10. I wear a little make up, never wear foundation! By moisturiser is rosehip oil!
    Keep it simple I say! Xx

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    1. Ditto the Rosehip Oil! It's wonderful stuff xx

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  11. It's a make up free zone here too - including my 2 girls of 18 and 22. Basically, I could just never be bothered! Brilliant news on the running; really well done. I'm feeling a tad guilty at the moment as E is home for a few days, so I missed yesterday's run. I'll get back to it tomorrow. Funny about the sugar thing - I can normally eat chocolate like there's no tomorrow, but for the last few weeks I've found that I can take it or leave it. I just didn't make the connection with the running. Excellent news about the driving test; well done to F. xx

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    1. I reckon you can cope with a day off here and there. Would E run with you? I'm wondering re the chocolate and sweet stuff whether it's partly down to the endorphins released by exercise? With natural 'highs' maybe the body and brain don't need sugary ones? xx

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  12. I haven't used make-up for years and even when I was younger it was just mascara - I loathed foundation. I don't use creams either just soap and water and sometimes I think I am the only person who doesn't dye their hair! Well done on the running :)

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    1. Funnily enough there was a section on mascara on woman's hour on the radio this morning. I listened with interest - at no point did anyone mention the ingredients that go into these products or why folks felt the need to wear them on a daily basis.

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  13. I don't wear make up or use any of those cleansers and toners and I sometimes get asked about my skin - not often, but occasionally - and I never have an answer as to why it is like it is. I totally agree with your commend that skin is there to do its thing on its own. I think that my skin is like it is because I haven't added anything and it is free to do as it needs to. Also I think that if I start adding moisturiser now it will become dependent on it, I will wait until I am really wrinkly I think! Oh and I totally agree about the eating thing too! Glad you are feeling the benefits so much! You are doing really well with your running!!

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    1. It's fascinating hearing from so many people who don't do much/ any makeup and also avoid/ are careful about the products they chose. Diet and what you drink have such an effect on skin but I don't think many people think about it enough. xx

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  14. Make up - havemn't worn much for years - a little colour on my cheeks (I am always very pale) is about it. I do use cold cream on my face in winter - just to feed my skin really.

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    1. Winter skin protection is a good idea. I use moisturiser because I find my skin gets tight in cold weather as I'm outside so much :o)

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  15. I basically don't wear make up either. Never on a daily basis and only very occasionally I might use a product or two when I go out (and by occasionally I'd say a handful of times over the past year) Like you, any products I do have are paraben free etc and also cruelty free. I do research the companies I use and what other companies own them - so there are very few that pass the test.
    It's interesting that you no longer feel like eating sugary things. And as in all your recent posts I'm very impressed with the running!

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    1. I think the ethical part of who's making these products and what goes into them isn't considered enough by most people. I was really shocked when I researched ingredients. Most of the things don't need to be added at all :o(

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  16. I don't wear much make up either. I gave up eating chocolate and biscuits in May of this year And now do not crave them at all in fact I cannot eat many of them now. I also gave up eating bread well mostly not if I have to much bread I feel so tired in fact exhausted. Sounds like you're running schedule is on course.

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    1. It's great how, once you get over the initial hard bit of giving things up your body resets and you don't miss them. Makes it much easier to be healthy. What you say about wheat I've heard from lots of people. It's v interesting.

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  17. I applaud your enthusiasm. Nearly 30 years ago I packed in smoking and started running. The result is unbelievable. I've gone from 90 kg to 76 kg without even thinking about it, and like you I'm eating all the right things, but I think it does no harm to have a drink now and then, as a runner a Guinness or a cider is probably good for you :), and I've never seen a doctor in 30 years. One thing is I never run on roads and this is because the camber can lead to hip and knee injuries. It's best to run on woodland trails, parkland, over fields, and so on. By the way I like your snazzy running vest slogan!

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    1. I'm a big fan of Murphys, but only when in Ireland because it absolutely doesn't taste the same anywhere else :o).

      Interesting about the road/ off road debate. I prefer off road for lots of reasons and try to make that the majority of my runs. My husband prefers off road marathons as he finds the road ones a little monotonous. The dogs (who run with me) are happier off road.

      I can understand why people call running a religion, there is so much that is good about it and the benefits are, as you say, extraordinary.

      I'll pop over and catch up with your blog- thank you for the comment here.

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  18. Congrats to Son #2.......I never was one to use makeup. I didn't like the pasty, plastic look and all those people look the same - phony. My cheeks are natural pink, my skin feels good and I never did care to cover up pores with all that junk. I wash my face in warm water and it feels good, never use soap on my face and a very light natural face cream. Works for me and I'm only 73 - get mistaken frequently for 60 less. Unfortunately I see young people made up so horribly, they look like young t---ps and that is just sad. Natural beauty. Congrats on your running - Hope you make the 23 minutes. Keep working at it. For me I walk 6 miles every day and its all good and challenging. I yam what i yam - you are what you are. Life is all about challenges and it feels pretty great when one accomplishes one. Cheers. Hi Teds

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  19. I only wear eye makeup, but I suppose I am either a bit vain or lacking in self-confidence, as I really DO like to put it on if I am likely to meet anyone when I am out. Lipstick is for weddings only. Perfume whenever I am going out though. Face cream at night when I remember it (not very often) but I am lucky to have come from a family which has a naturally good complexion and doesn't wrinkle too much too early.

    I am really impressed with your running achievements. Well done. (Oh and the same to your son on passing his test. My eldest daughter is resitting hers next Monday.)

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Thank you for leaving a comment. I always enjoy reading them and will try my best to reply to every one. CT x