Entries are open for Juneathon 2015!


Juneathon: A yearly festival of activity and excuses

I know it doesn’t seem long since Janathon but, yep, it’s that time of year when I pester you to sign up for Juneathon.

In case you don’t know what a Juneathon is, it’s a month of daily exercise – running, cycling, gymming, swimming, extreme sunbathing, whatever and after you’ve done your exercise, you blog about it or if you can’t be arsed to write a whole blog post, you can just tweet your efforts (using the #juneathon hashtag) or post about it on the Juneathon Facebook Page.

New for 2015! Because Louise said on Facebook she wasn’t Juneathoning this year because a) it’s hard; and b) it’s not on Strava and if it’s not on Strava it doesn’t count, I created a Juneathon Strava Club. You can join the Strava Juneathon Club here but it only appears to count running, not cycling or anything else, so if anyone knows how I can change that, please let me know (and not just because I don’t want to be bottom of the Strava leaderboard. Okay, it’s because I don’t want to be bottom of the Strava leaderboard).

Juneathon is fun and it’s free and it’s a great way to make new friends/followers and we even meet up in real life after it’s all over and done with to stuff our faces then go to the pub to drink like the finely tuned athletes we’re not.

Sign up now at the Juneathon website and, remember, slacking is not an option.

You Can’t See Tits On The Radio

Fellow Janathoner, Millie – who blogs at Run For The Quiet – asked me if I wanted to talk about Janathon on her Preston FM radio show. Last year, I managed to weasel out of this by claiming to have a sore throat (actually, I did have a sore throat and was gutted I couldn’t do it), so Deputy Helen stood in for me and you can hear the fine job she did here.

This morning, however, I checked I didn’t have a sore throat by speaking to the cat and all vocal chords seemed intact so I had a shower and mooched about in my dressing gown until I decided that, although no one would know what I was or wasn’t wearing, I wanted to look presentable for my radio interview debut and put some clothes on.

Despite a bit of an awkward start when the line was crackly and I couldn’t hear what Millie was saying, the interview went well. I managed not to swear (I almost said ‘arsed’, as in: ‘if you can’t be arsed to blog’) or take the piss out of anyone and I also squeezed in a reference to bar push-ups and dressing gown dashes.

Anyway, you can hear the interview in all my dulcet-Essex-toned glory below.

Millie spoke to Cathy about Janathon by Geek On Radio on Mixcloud

Thanks Millie, for inviting me onto your show.

If you haven’t signed up for Janathon yet, sign up now at www.janathon.com and if you need more reasons to sign up, we’re offering prizes from New Balance, Helly Hansen, Audiofuel and more and if you need further persuasion, read Deputy Helen’s post about how Janathoners have more fun.

The JogBlog Guide To Healthy Habits

Krakau, Gefängnis Montelupich, Klosterschwester

The best way to get into the habit of doing something is to do it regularly. Okay, so obviously a habit isn’t something you do once, but how do you make something into a habit? Here are three of my tips to doing something more than once.

  1. Get a training schedule: I’ve got a couple of half-marathons coming up at the beginning of 2015 and I know if I don’t get a schedule and just leave my training to the ‘do a run when I feel like it and hope my mileage magically increases without trying too hard’ method, then it’ll get to January and I’ll think, ‘Oh shit, I’m doing a half-marathon in a couple of weeks and I haven’t done more than a couple of parkruns since August. Oops’ and then I’ll end up limping round the half in 3 hours and pretending my leg fell off or something.My favourite schedules are the ones by Hal Higdon. I especially like these because they’re in miles and not all that fancy 8 x 400m easy x I-haven’t-a-clue-what-you’re-talking-about stuff and I also especially like these because you can generate them into iCal files to import into Google Calendar, Outlook, iCal, etc.schedule
    Want to know just how successful getting a schedule is? Well, it’s Wednesday today and usually, I’d spend a Wednesday evening drinking wine while watching Waterloo Road and The Apprentice (DON’T JUDGE ME) but, because my schedule says I’ve got to do 7 miles tomorrow (actually, I should be doing the 7 miles on Saturday but I won’t be able to but schedules can be rescheduled), the wine will be absent. See, schedules are healthy habit inducing!
  2. Get a training buddy: In general, I don’t like running with other people on a social basis as I’d rather zone out and listen to my music but a really good way to make sure you get out the door is to arrange to meet someone; whether that’s by publicly stating on your running group leader’s Facebook page that you’ll be coming to the Tuesday night speed session (yes, I did that and to make sure I definitely didn’t weasel out of it, she came and picked me up and gave me a lift there) or to arrange to see a friend at parkrun. You’re not going to stand your friends up, are you? Nope. Well, not unless you’re a bit of a twat, anyway.
  3. Get signed up to Janathon: Okay, I’m biased because I’m the Queen of ‘Athons (curtseying in my presence is optional) and the more people who sign up, the better I look but Janathon is a fantastic way to get into the habit of exercising. Not only will you feel fitter by the end of the month but you’ll have so much energy you won’t want to stop and you’ll be begging me for a Februthon.

So, there’s the JogBlog Guide To Healthy Habits, and here are some tips from simplyhealth – what are yours?

Janathon Pyjama Plank Challenge: Winner Announced!

I know, I know, this is looooooooooooooooooong overdue but I’ve been working hard (okay, and pissing about on Facebook) on finishing my university assignments. But, they’re all done now and I am no longer a student. Yes, it’s gone quick, hasn’t it? I think I’m not a student anymore, anyway – or am I officially not a student until I get the official results in July? Or maybe I can pretend to be a student until my 16-25 Railcard runs out in October.

Anyway, the pyjama planker with the most friends – sorry, I mean votes – is Tor (who blogs at Running From The Zombies) for her gorgeous happy smiley-faced plank. Tor wins a pair of eGloves.


In second place, is Mark (whose blog appears to be down at the mo), who planked over his little doggy friend. Mark wins a copy of Born to Run by Christopher McDougall.


Unsurprisingly, this was one of my favourites, too. I’m not going to say which is my other favourite but it might be the one of Pete (who blogs at Running Still) with his kit off. But it might not be, as obviously I am not that shallow.

Well done to Tor and Mark – please email me your addresses and I’ll get your prizes sorted.

Thanks to everyone else who joined in the fun and posted their Janathon Pyjama Planks. Shall we do it again for Juneathon?

Janathon Pyjama Plank Challenge Giveaway!

Well, this is a teensy bit late, eh? Still, here are the entries we received for the Janathon Pyjama Plank Challenge. As mentioned on Helen’s blog about a billion years ago, eGloves will let the winner – as chosen by you – choose a pair of gloves from their range, up to a value of £30.

Helen has also nicked her boyfriend’s copy of Born to Run by Christopher McDougall, which will go to the planker with the second highest number of votes.

To vote, leave a comment below with the number of your favourite planker.

If I’ve missed anyone out of the gallery, please email me your planking photo.

Voting will be open until 31 March 2014.



Fame! Janathon radio interview


Millie asked me if I’d like to do a radio interview on Preston FM. Eek, I said, I’m scared. Then I remembered I was an attention-seeking media-whore and said yay, I’d love to, thanks.

Unfortunately, lurgy struck and a sore throat left me barely able to speak; not a good look for radio. So, a deputy was needed and I asked my trusty sidekick, Helen, if she’d stand in for me and she said ‘eek, I’m scared,’ then she remembered that she too is an attention-seeking media-whore and said ‘yay’.

And what a brilliant job she did of it too. A worthy deputy indeed. All the core facts about Janathon were mentioned; dressing gown dash, bar press up, excuses, beer and pizza. She also used the word ‘glamorous’ and ‘Preston’ in the same sentence, which probably doesn’t happen very often (my apologies to people in Preston, I’m just kidding – I’ve never been but I’m sure your town is lovely).

You can listen to the interview here:

There’s still plenty of time to sign up for Janathon, enter here.

The JogBlog Guide To Not Being A Lardarse Over Christmas

You know all those posts that are out at the moment? The we’re-going-to-piss-on-your-party posts cheerfully piping up with ‘advice’ such as ‘run three miles to burn off a mince pie’? Well, forget all those clichéd depressing doom-mongering party-poopers -  here’s the fun and easy JogBlog guide to not turning into a tubster over Christmas.

In the Pub

Got a work do or meeting friends for a drink? Get some exercise and get into their good books at the same time by offering to go to the bar for everyone, even when it’s not your round. Don’t get so drunk though you forget it’s not your round and you pay for all the drinks each time. Oh, and while you’re there, do a bar press-up.


Do a Santathon

Most of these provide – and let you keep – the costume, so, not only do you get to run a fun 5 or 10k with loads of other Santas, you also get bonus points by being able to dress up as Santa for your kids (if you have them. If not, I’m sure your boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife/dog/cat/hamster/goldfish/dead worm collection will be equally thrilled).

I took part in a Santathon with Shaun a few years ago. We’d only been seeing each a few months then, otherwise I don’t think he’d have agreed to do it quite so cheerfully (yes, I know Shaun needs to work on his ‘cheerful’ face). 


Supermarket slalom

Run to the supermarket, then make shopping into A Fun Thing by making a game out of slaloming around everyone fighting over the prawn rings and Ferrero Rocher. When you get home, pretend you’re in a body pump class by putting on some Christmas classics on the stereo using the bottles of port and Champagne you’ve just bought as weights.

Opening presents early is an act of kindness. Honest

Is there a bike shaped parcel in the garage? You’d better open it (carefully, as you’ll need to wrap it back up again) and give it a spin to make sure it’s in perfect working order. Imagine how disappointed the person who gave it to you will be if you open it on Christmas Day and find out it needs to go back to Halfords for a service? I’m not an expert on Halfords’ opening hours but I’m willing to bet a bottle of Babycham they’re not open on Christmas Day.

And if it gets a bit dirty while you’re test-riding it, you can blame whoever gave it to you for leaving your nice new shiny bike in a dirty old garage. 


Make a fitness advent calendar

Chocolate advent calendars? Pah! What you need is a fitness advent calendar. Get a chocolate advent calendar, eat all the chocolate, then write down a different exercise (body pump, spin, circuits, yoga, running, cycling, walking, etc.) on the door of each day. It’s a fitness lucky dip!

Go to the gym

Yes, this sounds like a normal thing to do. But there are three very good reasons for visiting the gym over the Christmas period:

1. If you go now, you won’t look like a New Year Newbie.

2. All those annoying people who walk on the treadmills are at home on the sofa, watching Elf while munching their way through a tin of Quality Street.

3. You can buy yourself some new kit. It is Christmas, after all.

Janathon practise

Oh yes, Janathon is looming and what would Janathon be without a dressing gown dash? Practise those dashes now!


Hand and wrist exercises

Don’t forget other parts of your body this Christmas and exercise your hands and wrists by writing down all those New Year’s Resolutions you’re not going to keep.

Play Temple Run

Okay, so you really can’t be arsed to do anything. Fine, let Usain Bolt run a few thousand metres for you instead on Temple Run. He even wears a Santa hat for you to laugh at. Let’s hope he got paid a lot for this.


So, that’s my guide to keeping fit over Christmas, what are your top tips?

Hi ho, hi ho, off to Janathon you go…

Yeah, okay, I’ve left it to almost the last minute again, but the Janathon website is now updated and ready to take entries for Janathon 2014. If the website had been updated a month ago, it would have been ready for the people who visited after they’d seen it mentioned on The Guardian running blog and Healthista but I didn’t know it was going to be mentioned so ho hum.


New for 2014 is microblogging, which is a posh way of saying if you can’t be arsed to write a full blog post, you can tweet your ‘athon efforts instead. Although, I am expecting the usual level of hardcore from the regulars, so no slacking now. Not unless you have a good excuse, anyway, such as Painted Runner, who is training for an Ironman. So, no wimping out with rubbish like ‘but I just did a parkrun in 48 minutes and now I’m too knackered to do anything except eat more cakes but I suppose I could probably manage a tweet’.


Off you go then. Sign up at the Janathon 2014 website.

The end of Janathon and near death experiences

Although Highway Kind coined the phrase ‘An annual festival of activity and excuses’, it wasn’t meant to be taken quite as literally as I seemed to have done this year. It wasn’t a totally terrible effort but I have made a lot of apologies for my slacking. BUT, in my defence, I do have a great excuse for my slackness over the last few days – a tree tried to kill me.

This evil bastard tree fell on top of the house on Wednesday night while I was reading in bed (The Safety of Objects by AM Homes, in case you’re interested. Buy it, it’s brilliant, just don’t read it near any trees).


(My head was a few inches behind the top left window. The one the tree is on.)

At first I thought it was the mice or squirrels or whatever it was that’s been living in the roof. Then I thought, they’re a bit nosier than usual. Then I thought, are there dogs in the roof? Then there was a loud crash and I thought, fuck, something’s coming through the ceiling, I’d better get out of here and on getting to the landing, Shaun came out of the bathroom and went to investigate the source of the sound then came back in and told me there was a tree on top of the house. Oh. Deciding that the bedroom might not be the safest place to sleep, we decamped to the conservatory where I spent a sleepless night listening to the rain and the wind and wondering if the trees in the garden were close enough to kill me if they fell over.

No more trees tried to kill me but the next evening all I wanted to do was sit on the sofa and drink wine and watch old episodes of Waterloo Road. Yes, this is how I celebrated still being alive. Party on.

Anyway, well done everyone who didn’t slack as much as I did.

p.s. We got our revenge on the tree by getting two men with chainsaws round to chop it up into many pieces. Ha.

Janathon Day 24: Easycore

Well, at least I didn’t try and wriggle out of Janathon by using the cute factor, a la Ms Fortnight Flo, who thought she could get out of exercising by getting her cat to write her a sick note. Okay, I admit it, I’m just jealous I didn’t think of it first, dammit!

Today I thought I’d have a change and do some core exercises from the PC Fitness DVD. I was a bit scared at first as I thought it might involve balancing, which I’m not very good at.

I needn’t have been scared though, no balancing was required and even I can’t fall over when I’m lying on the floor doing crunches.

I’m going out tonight and therefore may need a sick note for tomorrow. Hmm… where’s my cat? looey…?

Core exercises: 15 minutes
Balancing required: none
Sick notes possibly needed for tomorrow: 1

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