The Half-Marathon Diaries: Week 4
|November 27, 2011||Posted by Nada under Fitness, Uncategorized|
Hello, and a happy Sunday to all!
So before I go on to re-cap this week’s training I think I need to make a few clarifications regarding friday’s post. I was mostly being sarcastic/humorous (well attempting to be) when talking about the arranged marriage stuff but judging by the comments I was a little bit misunderstood!
Arranged marriages are definitely not common in the Arab world nowadays, unless you’re born into royalty or come from a very upper class family that’s likes to “maintain good breeding” shall we say. But even those instances are far and few between. All the people I know that have gotten married have met and been in relationships to their own accord before getting married. The cultural traditions we have are less to do with introducing the bride and groom and more with how the engagement is carried out (the groom’s family visits with the bride’s family to “ask for her hand” etc. I could write a whole post on this so I won’t go into detail), as well as the wedding.
As for marriage age- some people do tend to marry young (again, especially those within a royal family), but for the most part it varies depending on the couple’s individual circumstances, just like it would anywhere else. There is somewhat of a social stigma around girls marrying late because she’d be “past her prime” but that’s a very traditionalist view and isn’t really an issue in modern-day society, at least not where I’m from.
Another thing I want to mention is that I was raised in a very open and liberal environment, something that perhaps not everyone from the Middle East can relate to. Bahrain was a great place to grow up because unlike Saudi Arabia, where they’re still stuck in the middle ages, and unlike Dubai, which is said to have lost its cultural identity as an Arab country, it had the perfect balance of traditionalism and westernized culture. Of course there were and are certain cultural norms that I adhere to but I can’t say that I ever felt oppressed in any way or was restricted from doing anything I really wanted to do. I also have a wonderfully honest relationship with both my parents. They would never push me to do anything I didn’t want to do, let alone to marry someone I didn’t want to. I think my mom knew I wouldn’t be jumping at the chance to get married straight out of university (although some girls do choose to) – she probably just sent me that e-mail to see if I was interested in getting to know the guy.
I often joke with my father and say things like “What would you do if I brought home a British guy?”, he laughs, makes a joke about fish and chips and tells me that if I brought home someone that made me happy, that would make him happy. My mom is exactly the same. Would they prefer it if I ended up with a “nice Egyptian boy from a good family”? Of course.
In Egypt we have a saying that goes “Illy na’rafo, ahsan min illy mana’rafoosh”, which roughly translated means “We should stick with what we know/what were familiar with”. It’s only natural they would want me to end up with someone from a similar background.
Anyways, enough marriage talk for one post! On to what’s important:
Week 4: Nov 21-27
Monday: 1 hour of fitness yoga
Rest week! Felt really nice not to start off the week with a run. It’s not so much that I’m not enjoying my runs anymore, but with everything I have going on it all has to be scheduled in meticulously, so the lazy Monday morning was much appreciated. I went to my regular yoga class after lectures and got some good stretching in as well.
This was a fast paced run with 10 minutes of continuous intervals. I’ve been running indoors as a result of having to shower at the gym, and I actually prefer running on a treadmill for intervals/speed work. It felt good to sweat it out with an intense run for once and I set a new personal record for a 5K (29:32)!
Friday: 20 minute run + cool down + strength training circuit
Another intense run – I felt the need to compensate for the duration so I threw in two tabata tracks which were KILLER. My shins were on fire afterwards so I used a foam roller for the first time afterwards which helped a lot. I did this ST circuit afterwards followed by a much deserved dip in the jaccuzi and sauna session. All before a full day of classes, by the way. Impressive? I though so too.
Saturday: Body pump!
Yeah, I’m totally milking this free trial membership. I initially headed to the gym with the intention of doing some more strength training but I wasn’t really feeling it so I checked the classes schedule and was psyched to see body pump on. I kept the weights super light as it was my first time getting back into it in a while but it was still an incredible full body workout.
Only downside is that also means full body ache the next day – my glutes were not happy campers this morning.
Sunday: 58 minute run + cool down
This was a HARD run. I wasn’t feeling it to begin with and felt like giving in at about 10 minutes but I stuck it out. It probably didn’t help that I decided to do crazy intervals in between which totally depleted my energy by the end but I managed to push through. The last 10 minutes were torturously slow. Anyways, I felt great afterwards as I knew I would, and I managed a new personal record for a 5K (27:47) AND 10k (57:01)! Very pleased with that.
I rewarded myself with some foam rolling, more jaccuzi time plus a prolonged session in the steam room. They infuse the air with some sort of menthol/eucalyptus scent which feels amazing for about 10 minutes then it starts to get to your head. Strange.
So how did I do with my goals for last week? Pretty darn well! Check it out:
- - 118 minutes of running - check!
- - 2 sessions of yoga (all in the name of rest and relaxation of course) - done and done.
- - 1-2 sessions of light strength training - think I overdid this one with the body pump on Saturday but still, check!
- - Lots of stretching! - check, thanks to yoga and my new love AKA the foam roller.