Vegetarian burgers – better than the ‘real’ thing

I don’t want to blow my own trumpet….but I’m going to – haha!

These burgers were delicious, really filling and super easy to make. At the minute, my diet is kind of vegetarian, I say kind of because I’m still eating fish. I’ll probably explain it more in a further, more detailed post about why I’m doing it, but at the minute, I’m just finding out what works for me.

Anyway – back to the burgers!

veggie-burgers

Here’s what went in them..

You will need:
2 tins of beans – I used borlotti beans but kidney beans would also work well I imagine
100g breadcrumbs
2 tbsp tomato puree
1 small red onion or half of a large one, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1tbsp coriander, finely chopped
Small sprinkling or chilli flakes or 1.2 red chilli deseeded and finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
1 egg
Burger buns (should you want them) and salad and sweet potato fries to serve!

To make:
-Drain the bins and empty in to a large bowl. Take a fork or a potato masher and mash the beans until they’ve all been squished.
– Add everything else but only half of the breadcrumbs before mixing well to combine.
– Sprinkle the remaining breadcrumbs on to a plate and then grab a handful of the mixture and shape into a burger before rolling in breadcrumbs. Once you’ve formed all of the burgers, pop some clingfilm over the plate and place in the fridge until you’re ready to cook. I’ve found that chilling them for an hour or so really helps them to keep their shape.
– To cook, heat a small amount of oil (I use coconut) in a non-stick frying pan (or any good frying pan you have!) and essentially just fry them on each side for between 4-5 mins so they’re thoroughly warmed through.
– Serve in a bun topped with lettuce and relish or whatever sides your heart desires!

Enjoy 🙂 If you do make these, please let me know by commenting below or tag me on Instagram @hbryan91

My week in training

So yesterday marked 100 days until the marathon – eek, things just got real! I’m slowly but surely getting back into marathon training. Here’s what I’ve done this week.

sunday-long-run

Monday:
As it was a Bank Holiday and I had been working all weekend, I did a slightly longer run today, ten miles to be precise. It felt good and although for the duration I felt like I’d been going super  s l o w and I felt pretty heavy, my average pace at the end was good!

Tuesday:
I headed to the gym, on slightly tired legs, for my first strength session of the week before work. Here’s what I did:
Warm up
3×5 power cleans

3×8 trap bar deadlifts

3×8 strict press
3×8 bent over row
3×10 (each leg) single leg squat (weighted with a dumbbell)

3×12 single leg hamstring bridges
3×12 hanging leg raise
3×12 single leg calf raise

Wednesday:
Today was supposed to be my speed session, however I had a slightly iffy foot, so I played it safe and did my speed session on the bike. I did a ten minute warm up then 2x 3,2,1mins with 90 second recovery between each and 3 min easy ride between sets, followed by a ten minute cool down. I then hit the mat for my glute accessory work and some core. I’ve recently been introduced to the BEST core exercise, called dying turtles…I was a dead turtle afterwards!!

Thursday:
I was meeting my friend Becca for dinner tonight so I had planned today as a rest day. However, I finished work at 3.30 and said to myself I’d go and do 30 mins in the gym. I managed to squeeze in a bit of power stuff, a couple of sets of squats, some press ups and some face-pulls. Better than nothing though ey!

Friday:
Rest day, pizza and chocolate – whoops!

Saturday:
I hit the gym early doors before driving home for a weekend with my family. Here’s what I did:
Warm up

3×5 push jerks

5×5 back squats

Then my favourite upper body combo (it’s a killer) 3×8 elevated bench press at 3 different levels then straight into 3×8 single arm row, different bench elevations again.
I supersetted this with front leaning Bulgarian split squats – trust me, they REALLY hit the booty.

3×12 hip thrusts
3x 20 second palloff hold
3×12 single leg calf raise

Sunday:
Sunday Funday long run day. I hit the roads super early  for 12 miles before cupcakes at my sisters babyshower in the afternoon. This felt difficult to begin with due to the ice on the road, but slowly the fog began to lift and the run was shining down on the road, it was bliss! I’m keeping all my long runs steady as I build back up, but this felt good.

Learning to Olympic lift again

A few years ago I started Crossfit, and loved it! However, trying to keep up with Crossfit Wods and marathon training proved too much, and so sadly it had to go. What went with it was learning to Olympic lift.

Without anyone at the gym to coach me, I felt it was too tricky, and dangerous, to try and teach myself! However, I’ve wanted to get back into it for ages as I really enjoyed it and wanted to add it in to my training sessions for power and strength, as well as to learn a new skill.

So finally, almost a year-and-a-half later, I’m learning again!

I’ve started with push jerks and split jerks and have also begun perfecting my power clean technique. I’d forgotten how beautifully frustrating it was, if that makes sense?! It’s like any lift I guess, or any session in the gym, you want to lift more and get better and when you do, it’s so satisfying!

I’ve posted a few videos below. I’m aware that my technique needs a lot of work, especially on my clean, but hey, I’ll get there!


If you’d like to learn to Olympic lift, or want to perfect your technique, I’d always recommend getting a proper coach to help you so that you learn the correct technique and how best to build it in to your training.

If you’ve got any tips for me I’d love to hear them too!

Summer training & races to come

Well hello there! It’s been a while since I properly posted a training update – or anything for that matter – so here goes!

I’ve had a little break but I’ve since been quietly working away, trying to improve my running and strength and slowly build back up towards marathon training.

long run

I’m running the York Marathon in October which will be my 5th marathon! York was actually my first marathon as well so I’m super excited to go back and run it again. Not only that, but it’s home turf so I’m hoping the family (including my 1-year-old niece!) can all come and cheer me on which would be amazing.

Aside from that, York is flat – yipeeee! My current marathon PB is at 3.25, which I achieved in London earlier this year. I’m not expecting to beat that at York but what I am aiming for is a strong finish. My goal is to be able to run that last 10k as strongly as I ran the first 10k. I realise I’m not going to be finishing the race as gazelle like as when I started it, but I want to be able to maintain a consistent speed, without seeing those mile splits climb.

So basically, that’s what I’m training towards. As always I’m doing my three gym sessions a week. This is made up of 2 strength sessions and a third focusing more on conditioning rather than lifting big numbers – I do love a bro sesh though as demonstrated below, ha!

strength 1

At the minute I’m running three times a week. Before anyone tells me that you need to be running every day to run a marathon, you definitely don’t need to. For me, it’s about getting in the quality sessions and finding out what works for me. I’ve tried running 6 days a week and for me, that just doesn’t work – particularly for my mental health! If you want me to do a post on training for a marathon on three runs a week – just let me know by commenting below or Tweeting me (@hannahbryan91).

speed session

This week I did a speed session on Tuesday, an easy run on Wednesday and a long run on Friday. I’ve got one more gym session to do (my conditioning one), which I’ll do tomorrow (Sunday). This might increase as the marathon nears but this depends on a number of factors i.e. time and my body! I’m currently getting some help with my nutrition which I’m hoping is going to benefit my performance and aid recovery so I might end up running more within the next few months, but I’m going to tell you more about the nutrition side of things in a different post!

easy run

Here’s a list of what I’ve got coming up:

August – Askern 10 miler
September – Great North Run
October – York Marathon, Sheffield 10k
November – exciting challenge to be announced soon!

I’ll try and get some other races in but at the minute that’s what I’ve got booked in.

The only other thing to mention is that I decided not to accept my Good For Age place for London next year. I hope I don’t regret it! My plan is to focus on Boston – providing I get a place! If I don’t get a place…then the Great Wall Marathon is on my list…!

That’s all for now training wise, I’ll keep you updated as the marathon nears. I’m ready to work hard for this one!

🙂

Race review: Nottingham 10 mile road race

Woah, it’s been a long time since I’ve blogged – apologies for that! I’m back now though and thought I’d share a race review from the Nottingham 10 mile road race with you.
nottingham 10 mile race
I ran this on a very wet Friday evening last week. Luckily the sun did come out for most of it though!

The race kicked off from Nottingham’s National Watersports Centre at 7pm. I got there at about 6.15pm and parking was super easy. It was a short walk to the registration area and luckily we could wait inside before going to the start line. There was no defined start line but it was pretty easy to figure it out – I just followed the other runners!

The course is essentially two-and-a-half laps around the lake. I was worried the route would be boring but it really wasn’t at all! If you need a huge crowd when you race then I wouldn’t recommend this, although where people were watching they did some great cheering!

I didn’t have a plan going into the race; in fact I didn’t actually want to do it at all after a long week at work – and it was chucking it down! I decided to just make sure I ran under 1.15 and use it as a great training run.

I felt strong the whole way round and came in at 1.13 – happy with that 🙂

There’s no medal at the end which I was gutted about as I love a good medal haha. When you pay to enter (I think it was around ÂŁ20 maybe) you can also pay for a finishers t-shirt though.

Every finisher also gets a goodie bag which had a mug and a banana in.

All in all, this was an enjoyable race and I’d recommend it to anyone who lives near Nottingham. A great way to spend a Friday night!

My next race was supposed to be Sunday however I’m now going to be watching the athletics in Birmingham which I’m incredibly excited for!

Training is going well though and I’ll have a full blog post on what I’m up to and what I’m training for at the moment up at the weekend!

🙂

Neighbourhood – Copenhagen

If you want effortlessly cool and edgy, go to Copenhagen’s Meat Packing District.

If you want one of the best pizzas in the city, organic cocktails and a buzzing atmosphere, go to Neighbourhood.

Copenhagen 4
In the heart of the Meat Packing District, Neighbourhood ticks both boxes. Remarkably discreet, the numerous sex and erotica shops on the street caught our eye when our taxi pulled up before we spotted the restaurant!

You can’t book at Neighbourhood, and it’s incredibly popular, so don’t go if you’re beside yourself with hunger!

On arrival we were told there would be about an hours wait, which was fine with me and we chose to grab a table in the bar area and order a couple of drinks and some bar snacks.

Copenhagen 3

I went for the Peas and Beas cocktail, which was made up or organic vodka, fresh muddled sugar snap peas, honey, lemon and egg white, shaken and served over ice – delicious and hands down the tastiest cocktail I’d ever had – I wanted a pint of it!

Copenhagen 1

Everything at Neighbourhood is organic and freshly made, even down to the beer Dane was drinking. We gulped down our drinks, well, I did, and promptly ordered another as our snacks arrived. We went for the olives and root vegetable crisps, the perfect snack to put us on before we went through to the restaurant.

Speaking of the restaurant, it’s made up of large, sharing tables and is the epitome of no fuss yet chic dining, with unpainted, stone walls and unique decorations.

The pizzas are their own take on the Italian classic yet the base is thinner, crispier and totally organic. Each pizza is also topped with a heap of rocket of fresh green salad.

I went for the Chili Salami pizza which was topped with spicy Italian sausage, picked chilies, roasted beetroot, tomato Passata, buffalo mozzarella, fresh spinach and Røde Kristian cheese.

Dane ordered the Kimchi Pork pizza. This was topped with braised pork neck, Korean BBQ sauce, kimchi, Bibb lettuce and ginger scallion vinaigrette and topped with fresh coriander.

Copenhagen 2

Mine was unbelievable and I’d say Danes was the same judging by how quickly he ate it and didn’t offer me any!!

A word of warning about the oils available though…the chili oil is pretty spicy as Dane found out, much to my amusement!!

Dessert for me was just as good. I had the organic orange chocolate mousse. On the menu it’s described as chocolate, chili, orange & cacao, topped with flakes of chocolate.

Dane had the organic ginger carrot cake as they’d ran out of the tossed cheesecake – seriously, the menu is worth checking out for the sound of that cheesecake alone!

Copenhagen 5

Our total meal, drinks and snacks included, was pretty reasonable for Copenhagen in my opinion and worth every penny – I’d have gone back the following evening!

London Marathon 2016

marathon 3

Well, where do I even start with this post!? Another World Major Marathon ticked off and 26.2 glorious miles around the streets of London shared with some of the most inspirational people I’ve ever had the pleasure of running with!

London, you were truly amazing…but before I get in to all of that, here’s a little run down of my entire race weekend.

Friday night was spent doing the essential final preparations, packing, updating my Ipod and ensuring I had a lovely, even fake tan glow – ha! I hit the hay early Friday night as I was up pretty early Saturday morning to have my hair done…priorities!

I arrived in London just after 1pm on Saturday and headed straight to the expo at the Excel centre. This is when the excitement really started to kick in! Signing the wall was such a surreal moment and it hit me that this was the LONDON MARATHON;  people enter the ballot year after year and are unsuccessful, and here I was about to run it – I felt very lucky to say the least.

marathon 1

After strolling around the expo my feet were starting to hurt, not to mention I was hungry and bordering on grumpy! With that in mind, we headed to our hotel in Peckham (oh hey Del Boy!) and then got an Uber to Vapianos (my favourite place!) for ALL of the carbs and all of the chocolate pudding.

Saturday evening was pretty uneventful after that. I had a final pre-race debrief with my friend Liv who was also running, (her first marathon!) and we arranged for me to go to hers (also in Peckham) Sunday morning so we could eat and then travel down to the start line together.

Me and Liv post race - VICTORY!

Me and Liv post race – VICTORY!

I barely slept on Saturday night but it was nothing a coffee couldn’t sort on Sunday morning. 7am was when I started to get stressed about getting taped up and getting to Livs house in time so that I could eat! We actually got to the start line in good time and after queuing for the loo it was time for some photos and a quick warm-up before heading to our separate start pens.

I was actually really surprised that when the gun went off at 10am I was over the line by 2 minutes past! I was a bit worried as the first few miles were spent trying not to trip over people and were slower than what I was aiming for – although really I’d only just decided on a whim and positive encouragement to try and average 7.45min/mi! The race soon thinned out though and it was time to take it all in!

The first 10 miles seemed to fly by and everything felt comfortable. Despite the fact I was comfortably hitting under 7.45min/miles I knew I wouldn’t be able to keep it up for the whole way round, but part of me thought what the hell, throw everything you’ve got at it!

My support crew were at mile 9 and 14 but I never spotted them which was a bit disheartening, but I just kept on turning the legs and ticking off the miles. At about mile 18 I thought the race was never going to end and I knew I’d be in for a tough fight from mile 20.

At mile 20.5 I saw the team and started to cry and shouted “I’m done” at them…nothing like being dramatic hey Han! Had I ran over to high five them though, I’d have genuinely found it hard to get going again! Thankfully, I’d spotted Faye (who I follow on Instagram and who had run Boston on Monday) and we’d been back and forth in front and behind each other for the whole way round. I knew she was a strong runner and was faster than me so I decided to try and stick with her.

marathon 4

Faye, along with the beautiful folk of London cheering on the masses, is what got me through those last six miles. Turning the corner and onto the mall was surreal and I knew I’d managed a PB. I crossed the line in 3.25.05 and promptly hugged Faye. What a run. A PB at London…London! It’s still sinking in to be honest. My training was average at best and I battled through more mental struggles during this marathon training than any of the previous ones, but I’m so pleased with that run. London, you were truly amazing.

marathon

For now though, it’s time to rest, eat and enjoy some time training without the pressures of a marathon. It’s also back to the drawing board to get some autumn goals nailed down…watch this space.