Janathon Day 6: Day 4 of my 10k Training Plan & Muay Thai

I’m really suffering from anxiety and insomnia at the moment. For me, they often come together and in waves. For months I’ll be fine and then something will trigger my anxiety and I can’t get to sleep – and if I do get to sleep it’s usually about 3 in the morning and I get up at 7:30.

I had a bad night and was determined to keep on with my training programme, so when the alarm went at 8:00am, I dozed for 15 minutes and got up and out. It was another interval session and considering how my heart rate was all over the place last time, I included a 5 minute warm up into the session. Surprisingly, my heart rate didn’t jump all over the place and stayed in Z2 for the whole session. I felt really good – although I still have to shuffle up hills. I seemed to cover more distance as well in the same amount of time.

Towards the end of the run, the bottom part of my left calf was starting to hurt. I usually get some discomfort in my left calf when running, especially in my neutral running shoes. I think it’s related to an old ballet injury, but I might get it checked out because I really don’t want to have to quit less than a week into the new year!

In the same day, I also went for my first ever Muay Thai kickboxing lesson. I went with a friend who had been to Thailand to learn, and used to go 3 times a week (although she had not been for a long time). I was quite nervous! I’m not really one for wanting to punch things and to actually punch a person seems a bit weird, but my physio said that I need to integrate something that twists my torso into my training to help with my lower back, so I chose Muay Thai.

Oh my god. It hurts! It’s awesome and very, very tiring. We went to the beginner’s class at Wicker Camp MuayThai in Sheffield and in the first lesson we learnt the fighting stance, how to jab, cross and defend. We also got to do a couple of rounds of sparring to practice these. First we practiced aiming the jab and cross with hands, and then the pads came out.

I felt odd punching my friend (albeit with pads) and there was quite a lot of giggling at the incongruity, but after a while I focused down and really enjoyed it. I need to work on driving my punches from my hips and my fighters stance, I don’t think it’s as good as it can be, and I’d probably be knocked off my feet immediately if I got in the ring. After 2 rounds of punching followed by 2 rounds of holding the pads I found it hard to lift my arms up! I can’t believe how much effort and exercise it was, and I think it would be a good complement to climbing as it works the antagonist muscles and requires fast twitch, explosive movements – things that I’m not great at.

Wicker Camp also has an insane circuit training class on Fridays. I’d like to give it a go, but it looks pretty terrifying! Maybe after a couple of more lessons.

Some stats:

  • Distance – 4.5 km
  • Time – 33:38
  • Pace – 7:30 min/km
  • Elevation Gain – 90 m


  • Distance – 20.6 km
  • Time – 2:31:00
  • Elevation Gain – 427 m
  • Runs – 3