Sunday, 28 October 2007

My First Half Marathon

On the 2nd July this year I went for my first run in a very long time... I ran 1.6km and it took me 15 minutes (I know this because I logged it on 

It was an absolute effort, but none-the-less I decided that I would run on a regular basis to shift some weight, and to improve my general health. 

On the 29th July I turned 27 and received an iPod Nano, and a Nike+ sports kit (it measures and logs all your runs). Soon after I decided to enter the Auckland Half Marathon to see if it was something I could achieve. 

Since the 1st of July i've run 683km's,  lost over 2 stone and have made running a major part of my daily routine. 

Yesterday, I finally ran the Auckland Half Marathon, and I achieved more than I ever thought I would!!! I finished the course (21.1km) in 1h:31m:24s which is an amazing time for a first effort. It's a great run, on which you get to run over the harbour bridge, although I don't really remember it! shame... 

Out of a field of about 6000 runners I finished 206th overall, and 110th in the 16-34 year old Male category. I even beat former All Black Ian Jones which is pretty cool.   

In honesty it was utterly exhausting, but it was totally worth the effort and I've got the bug!!! I'm considering entering an event in a months time, and would plan to beat that time; I'll keep you posted! Here are some photos...

Receiving some pre-race physio from my good friend Si
In my gear, ready for the race
Laura & Gracie waiting for me near the finish line
Completely exhausted!
Ah... post race massage! 
The official results... click on image to see full size

Friday, 26 October 2007

Adidas Auckland Marathon

Well tomorrow morning I'm running in the Auckland Half Marathon. I haven't entered a running race since the egg and spoon at primary school, so I have a mixture of nerves, anticipation, and excitement. It should be a lot of fun!

I'm still taking sponsorship, so if you'd like to donate some money to the Heart Foundation NZ please follow the link and make a donation with your credit card. Every penny counts! 

Here is a photo of my badge - go 7055!!! I'll post again tomorrow once i've completed!!! 

Saturday, 20 October 2007

Some photos of Gracie

A tour of our new house

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Please Sponsor Me!!!

Some thing a little more formal... I'm running in the Auckland Half Marathon on Sunday 28th October, and I've decided to raise money for The Heart Foundation which is the official charity of the race. Please click on the link below to go to my sponsorship page, where you can make an online donation with your credit card. 

This is my first ever half marathon, so I've got no idea what to expect but I've been training hard, and am hoping to finish in under 1hr 40 mins - we'll see how I do! 

Thanks for your support! I'll try to get some pictures up, although I don't tend to let Laura photo me in my running gear! 

An eventful week...

This week I (Paul) went away with the staff from St Paul's to a beautiful place called Tarawharanui; It's a national park an hour or so North East of Auckland. I thought I'd write about it because I had a couple of experiences that I've not had before.

Firstly, on Wednesday afternoon we took a rowing boat out to a place in the bay, where we dived for scallops - this was great fun, although diving down to 5 or so meters and then trying to find scallops proved to be exhausting. We took 34 scallops back to our bach once done and they were cooked up and served as a nice mid afternoon snack!
Yesterday (Thursday) was even better. The team were sat on the deck having breakfast at about 8:30 when one of the team members spotted dolphins in the bay. We wondered down to the beach and watched them for a while, until I was able to persuade Mike & Rachel to go out in the rowing boat with me to get a closer look.

We got out in to the bay and they seemed quite happy to have us around, so we decided to jump in and swim with them - we swam with them for about 30 minutes or so, which was utterly exhilarating! 

Given that we weren't in wetsuits, we decided to head in to avoid hypothermia, but returned 30 minutes or so later with wetsuits, flippers, snorkels & masks, and spent a further half an hour swimming, diving, and playing with the dolphins - it was certainly the best experience of New Zealand that I've had, and one that I'll never forget.

Saturday, 6 October 2007

This weekend....

This weekend we have had beautiful weather. We've been out in the garden playing , out walking and as always, at church!. 
This morning we watched the All Black's get beaten by France which was amusing! It's a shame we couldn't drag ourselves out of bed at 2am for the England match-we did however watch the replay this afternoon. It's never the same when you know the result!
Gracie and Paul watch the rugby

Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Growing up fast...

I had written a blog post a few days ago that I felt explained and captured Gracie's personality at this moment in time; sharing this with all of you who don't have the pleasure of seeing her daily/weekly/or haven't even met her. I was so frustrated as I knew I would never be able to re-write the blog post in the same way because it just seemed to 'flow' as I wrote it. Rather than attempt to re-write it now I think I'll just share with you this one photo I've uploaded. I think this shows her determination to get where she wants to be regardless of our countless attempts to move her away from the cupboards. What's that they say about feisty redheads?!

Our Holiday in Oz!

Two weeks ago we went on holiday to Australia with our friend Alana for her birthday which was so much fun. We spent the week in Caloundra on the Sunshine coast soaking up the sun and playing in water. The weather was just beautiful and we all enjoyed a bit of sun and relaxation. Gracie had her first real experience of sand and sea-she wasn't overly keen on the sand but jumping in the waves was a big hit!

We also visited Australia zoo which was amazing. We were able to walk, sit and stroke kangaroos, stroke koala's as well as seeing loads of other animals. The highlight of the holiday was going to underwater world and watching the seal show. Although the actual place wasn't amazing the show was such good fun that we went back for the second showing later that day. Here are some photos for you to enjoy!

Gracie thinks her outfit is hysterical!
Jumping in the waves
Hanging out by the surf club (for all you Home and Away fans!)
Cooling down in the very cold water!
Hanging out on the beach at Maroochydore
Laura and Gracie by the beach
Gracie meets a Kangaroo

We meet a kangaroo too!
Shots of the beach at Caloundra

Paul & Gracie at their favourite Juice Bar
Paul doing the BBQ!
Gracie loving her spoon!

Tired at the end of a busy week!