Candy - Cameo

In fact, wish I had enough coordination just to do this. Love this dance, and this song...

I wonder if they'll be doing the Candy Electric Slide at the Royal Wedding on Friday?! I doubt it.


Gold Dust - DJ Fresh

WISH I had enough coordination to do this.

Skip like 'elle perhaps?!


Run like 'elle on Redux

Run like 'elle gets hype on Redux.
To read more, visit www.reduxlondon.com

Run like 'elle on Zone 7 Style

Really happy to find run like 'elle on respected vintage fashion blog, Zone 7 Style.

I included some fantastic pieces from the Zone 7 archive in my recent photo shoot, which you can view here
If you haven't heard about Zone 7 Style yet, then you better get to know. A seriously extensive archive vintage sports and streetwear. Think '80s Ralph Lauren, Moschino and Gianfranco Ferre. To find out more about Zone 7 Style, visit www.zone7style.blogspot.com

Run like 'elle on Gurn

It seems the crew at Gurn aren't big on marathon running, or benevolence. But I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt because they certainly have good taste in music.

Check out their write up here

Or to read more, click here

Out on the road again

Today I went on my first run since the Marathon last Sunday. It's only been six days, but I've really missed it. I wanted to run sooner, but I had to wait for the blisters on my feet to heal and the swelling (I've got some nasty bruises around my metatarsal) to reduce a bit.

It's only now I've finished training that I really comprehend how intense the schedule was (I trained six days a week for 11 weeks), and I've been a little overwhelmed by the amount of free time I've found myself with this week.

Anyway, I'm in the country this weekend and it's definitely bare leg weather, so today I wore: sports bra by Triumph, crop top by Sweaty Betty,  sweat wicking vest, running shorts and ID running trainers by Nike, socks by Thorlo

Below is some of the beautiful scenery I saw on my run through Hay-on-Wye and into the Herefordshire hills. I only ran for around 20 minutes as my feet were sore, but I'll be back on the case next week.

Happy Easter everyone!


Countdown to race day tips

Whilst it may be one of the most famous, the London Marathon isn't the only marathon - and there are many more approaching, so I thought this simple breakdown might be useful. Written by personal trainer Matt Roberts and found on www.healthandfitnessonline.co.uk

Countdown to Race Day

4 weeks to go…
• Ensure your trainers are worn in and your kit has been tested on a long run – blisters and chafing could bring your marathon to a painful end
• Finalise your nutrition and hydration strategy – make sure you can tolerate any gels or sports drinks you intend to use on race day
• Try to cut out alcohol for the last month. Your body will function better if your liver doesn’t have to process alcohol

2 weeks to go….
• Start reducing your volume of training to ensure you’re rested and refreshed for race day. Eat a balanced diet and drink lots of water – at least two litres a day and more when you’re training

1 week to go….
• Use some positive visualisation and imagine yourself finishing the race. As training volume decreases, you may start feeling a little sluggish – this is normal, don’t worry!

One day to go…..
• Lay out your race kit, plan your route to the start of the race, and get an early night. Carry a water bottle all day and take regular sips
• Have a healthy carbohydrate-based meal at least two hours before bed – make sure it’s something you’ve tried. Don’t worry if you can’t sleep, just relax, be confident in your training and focus on how you’ll feel when you cross that finish line…

Race Day morning…
• Eat a tried and tested breakfast at least two hours prior to the start. Take sips of water or sports drink right up until the race starts. If you know you can stomach it, try eating half a banana or energy bar 30 minutes before the start so your energy stocks are full!
• Drink little and often throughout the race and don’t forget your gels if you’ve been practising with them

For more information visit www.healthandfitnessonline.co.uk/2010/02/matt-roberts-top-marathon-tips

NY Jump - Disco Deviance and Jump To It - Aretha Franklin

Getting down to the disco at run like 'elle HQ today. Even Mumma Moira's got her wriggle on!


Another man's perspective

That's the incredible thing about the marathon, everybody involved has a completely unique experience - be it good or bad, it is almost certainly intense. I think Charlie Dark - head honcho of the Run Dem Crew, explains his marathon experience really beautifully, so I've re-posted it here. 

Thoughts, feeling and musings from the heads at RDC Headquarters.

The Long Run Home

Monday 18 April 2011
Mile 24 courtesy Of Dom and the crew

And so as my legs recover and my body comes to terms with itself again I sit here in RDC Hq and contemplate the achievements of the past 48 hours. The London marathon has been a thorn in the side of many a runner since it’s inception 30 years ago and I for one have continually made promises to tick it off the list one day. As I sit here with my medal around my neck and think back to what I have learnt about myself on those tough 26 miles the following thoughts have entered my mind.

If you ever needed friends then you really need them when navigating the challenge of the marathon. With that amount of people cheering you along the faces become a blur but a familiar face can really lift the spirits when needed most. Knowing there were a bunch of RDC heads at mile 17 really spurned me on. And it was a special moment to see the rainbow and running men above the heads of the crowd. But its mile 24 that I really want to talk about.

Without question this is the most training I have done for any marathon and the benefits were definitely reaped earlier in the year at the Paris and New York halves but come mile 20 the wheels started to come off. Struggling through to mile 24 I hit the Blackfriars tunnel with a heavy heart and body of lead thinking that maybe I wouldn’t finish. Seeing a man drop to the floor in front of me obviously didn’t help and in the dark of the tunnel my mind started to play tricks on me.

Emerging into the sun light my thoughts were on survival but seeing Dom and the crew at the mile marker sent tumbles through the heart. Knowing your friends have stood in the street for 4 hours just to catch a glimpse of you will make even the most crippled body carry on towards the end and the smile that Harriet gave me will stay with me forever. Strangely enough as I hobbled past all I could think was isn’t her hair really blonde and doesn’t Dom have nice glasses.

I will take this time to thank Dom for making eye contact and giving me the look that sent me back on my path. A silent look that said a thousand words roughly translated as ‘Charlie you can do this’. A flickering glance on par with watching my newly born daughter open her eyes for the very first time. A special moment.

And so I shuffled on rather more slowly than expected and I’ve never been so elated to see Buckingham Palace as I was in that last stretch.

This weekend has been a moment of memories which will be permanently etched into my brain, a marathon of experiences which will never be forgotten and the realisation that as troubled as I may be at times I do have some real friends out there who really care about me. I left some black clouds and demons on that course on sunday and feel lighter and happier for it.

Today we commence Season 5 of Run Dem Crew experience and the future is looking bright. On the horizon are more runs and races with some special projects that I think will make you smile. The marathon may be a distance too far for some of you and I for one have had to have a serious think about if it really is the distance for me but what I do know is that with the community of people we have assembled we will always get to the finish line and we will never run alone. Big up to everyone who ran and all of the supporters who braved the heat to cheer us on and an extra special Big up to Richard and his family for making the undercover mile 16 RDC signs. Totally unexpected but most definitely needed.

Ten from the Dome for the sore leg crew
Running 26 miles is a ridiculous but brilliant idea which everyone should experience at least once in their lifetime
Watching it on TV is nothing like running it for real
No matter how many marathons you have run you should never underestimate the power of the distance.
The correct taper is just as important as the right training
Hill training must become your friend
It is okay to abandon the race plan when the wheels come off
Nothing beats a London Marathon crowd
Survival is an underrated word
Water is a powerful drug
Going hard is good but going home is very tempting
Over and out Charlie Dark

You can read my interview with Charlie Dark here, or for more information on the Run Dem Crew, visit www.rundemcrew.com

Post marathon pain

Today was my first day back in the office, and I had a morning meeting on the other side of town. In my pre marathon naivety I thought I would be back on form by today, and had even imagined myself wearing the high heels that I’ve continued to buy but haven’t been able to wear for the past few months. I WAS WRONG - I was hobbling harder today than yesterday!

After my meeting I went for a sports massage and saw Ed the physio again, you can view our first meeting here. Ed also ran the London Marathon on Sunday, and he achieved the disgustingly impressive time of 2 hours 59 minutes and 02 seconds – needless to say I think he was in more pain than me, but clearly a glutton for punishment as he told me he’d been for a run before I saw him this morning! Anyway, huge congratulations to Ed – that’s seriously impressive stuff.

After a rub down I headed back to the office, buying a giant bottle of water on my way – which I attempted to finish within the hour. The massage had got all the lactic acid, which was causing the muscle pain, moving around my system and drinking water emits it from the body. I finished the water, and could feel a definite improvement in the afternoon.

I now know that I should have had an ice bath as soon as I got home on Sunday, but I was so desperate to get to the pub that I only had a quick shower, (plus the idea of an ice bath is particularly unappealing). Apparently it works though, and my friend Salman swears by it, you can see my interview with him here.

After work I crossed town yet again, though this time it was for a nice relaxing massage – a treat from a friend. I got to Euston station, stepped on the descending escalator and realised it wasn’t moving.  So, in the midst of rush hour traffic I had to side step down the very long escalator, which was sooooo embarrassing!

Anyway, the massage was lovely and now, at the end of post marathon day 2 I’m feeling much more able bodied, though I have a feeling it’ll be a while until I get my feet back in to those high heels (queue heavy sigh).


Things I’ve learnt

There are two ways to run a marathon 1) for the experience 2) for the time. I think I did 50:50 but if I ever attempted another, then it would be for the time.

These are a few things I'm preaching, though didn't necessarily practice...
Get more sleep and rest well – it makes all the difference
Do a practice race - a half marathon or something just to get used to race procedure
Know your route
Have a pace watch - you lose track of everything, and if you want to keep time then it's vital
Strategise - a plan of action is no bad thing
Plan how to get to the location properly - my fundamental error, and not one I want to repeat
Make sure you have someone to cheer you on at miles 18 and 23 – mentally vital
Drink - take a swig at every drink station
Flip flops - a kit bag essential
Be prepared to want to run another

Lead. Inspire. Coach. Motivate. Succeed.

For the past eleven weeks I’ve been very lucky and have had a personal trainer on loan to me from Nike. His name is Brian Cochrane and he’s guided and supported me through every step of marathon training. Brian is a Nike Elite Athlete and teaches classes, teaches trainers and personal trains throughout the UK. He co-developed the popular Punch! boxing programme and contributed to several drills on the Nike Training Club app. He is active from morning till night, and yet he is always enthusiastic and interested – which makes a massive difference when you’re on your fourth rep of press-ups.

I first met Brian when I went to the Nike Training Club app launch back in January, where he and fellow Nike Master trainer Sonja Moses led a live workout session for the press and athletes attending. A couple of weeks later I was sent to meet him on the promise that he could get me ship-shape and marathon ready in eleven weeks. When I told him my training thus far I think he thought I must have been kidding, and it was almost definitely his (and certainly my) biggest challenge yet.

Brian devised a strict plan, which involved interval, tempo and long runs with one or two sessions of Nike Training Club per week. After NTC (Nike Training Club) Brian and I would sit down and go through the week’s progress. This was our only session together, but throughout this time he’s been on call, on Tweet (is that a term yet?) and on email answering my panicked questions and calming my nerves. He even found a way to fit in early morning drill sessions when I panicked that I wasn’t fit enough, and made a food plan, to get me in optimum pre race shape.

His mantra, Lead. Inspire. Coach. Motivate. Succeed. is simple, but his strategy is not. He’s been great, and I just wanted to thank him. That’s all. Thank you Bri, you've been great. x
For more information on Brian Cochrane, visit www.briancochrane.com

'obble like 'elle

I know I've posted this before, but it's only now that I can really appreciate this video. Watch this and you'll see exactly what I look like today! No exaggeration

I did it!

Yesterday I ran the London Marathon, and it was the best day of my life.

This is me, nervous but happy to be at the start line (finally)
I’m still on an absolute high, and even though I can barely walk and am finding it difficult to navigate stairs and the loo (slightly regretting not stretching out after the race), every ache and pain was worth it, because what I experienced yesterday was totally unique.

I barely slept a wink on Saturday night, and pretty much the whole week prior, but I was up early and ready on Sunday morning. I’d roped my housemate Toby in to coming down to the start line with me, and had booked a car to take us there. The car arrived and we made the journey from North to South East London, but all the roads were blocked off and we couldn’t even get close. After a few arguments and a pre race meltdown, we had to go to Mile End tube station and catch three trains to Greenwich Park. By this time it was 9.45 - the official start time, and we were still a 20 minute walk from the start line. Not an ideal start…

By the time I got there - along with a few other late-comers, the last of the runners were just about to cross the start line. So I whipped off my track pants and got in line alongside a man carrying a washing machine on his back, two rhinos and four bumble bees, already it was starting to become surreal. We started, and all I could think about was running slowly. Everyone had advised me to take the first half really easy, to save energy for the second half. So I tried to find my pace, but there were so many runners all going at different speeds that you spend most of your time (and effort) weaving in and out to get round people.

But, it was a beautiful day and the atmosphere was incredible. There were people lined along the entire route, which for the first part was mostly local families in their pyjamas sitting on their walls with cups of tea cheering. I saw church congregations yelling and even priest splashing holy water over the runners, about five brass bands, a steel band, a dancehall soundsystem and a crowd of people dressed as goblins and gouls – they’d even decorated their house too. I passed pubs full of people jollily taunting runners with pints of beer, I high-fived little kids as I passed them and I smiled and waved along the way, I had no idea that people would go to so much effort – both the runners and the spectators. It was so special and I wanted to take in every minute of it. I wished I could have taken photos along the way, but that was a feat too far.

Normally on a long run I go into a zone where I’m oblivious to almost everything else, but there was so much to distract you that I spent a lot of time reading the messages on people’s vests – I burst into tears three times just from reading them. I passed people with severe disabilities, elderly men and women, everyone. I was totally overwhelmed by the power human kindness and strength.

Crossing Tower bridge was a massive high.

It was at the half way point where I realized that the pace I’d set was slower than my ability, and that I had a lot more ‘fuel in the tank’, and needed to up-my-game if I wanted to finish in under 5 hours. So I sped up and was seriously ducking and diving amongst runners to get myself to the finish line.

Just about able to crack a smile...
I started feeling really sick and spent about 8 miles desperately trying not to throw up, I felt really empty too, so bit the bullet and took two carb gels (FYI they don’t taste any better, even when you’re desperate)

It’s true what they say about Canary Wharf, passing the faster runners is mentally quite tough – as they’re on mile 20 ish and you’re only on mile 13. Mile 18 was hard, but I don’t know if that was just because it’s supposed to be the all-feared ‘wall’, but it was at that point that I ate all the Jelly Babies I could swallow. By this point I never wanted to see another postcode beginning with E anything, all I could think about was the SW postcode where I was going to end up.

The next few miles are a bit of a blur. I just looked ahead as much as I could and ran. I passed two groups of friends at mile 24 and mile 25, and seeing them gave me so much strength and encouragment. At Embankment I was trying to tank it down the long straight road but my legs were tired and I must have looked exhausted! The last mile was pretty tough and I couldn’t have cared less about any landmark or spectacular site, all I wanted to see was the finish line. And I did – after 4 hours 45 minutes and 22 seconds of non-stop running I crossed the line, burst in to tears (again) and picked up my medal.

My official time
Looking absolutely knackered post race
I sat in the sun with my family and inspected my war wounds, I hobbled on to the tube with all the other runners and headed home. Then I went to pub with my trainer Brian and all my friends and had my first glass of wine in three months, and it tasted great.
This is an abridged version of the day, I could go one forever. But honestly, it was the one of the most surreal, but certainly the best day of my life. My time could have been better, but training for a marathon in 11 weeks is a challenge in itself and I completed it, and I’m happy.


Marathon essentials

Final preparations are in place, and my kit is laid out and ready to go.
It contains: Jelly Babies, Lucozade Jelly Beans in orange and lemon and lime flavours, my lucky (or so I hope) £2 coin with Darwinian apes on it, Lucas' Pawpaw ointment for lips, rubbing bits and the rest, Nurofen, Berocca, Nurofen gel, tissues, arnica tablets (for my bruised feet) Piz Buin sun cream, blister plasters, plaster tape and dressing (for my chest which always gets rubbed raw) i-phone holder and headphones, and the all important run like 'elle stickers.

I will be proudly wearing my white WaterAid vest with ELLE written in giant letters, Shock Absorber sports bra, Sweaty Betty luminous orange crop top, Dior sunglasses, bumbag, Nike leggings, Nike socks and Nike ID run like 'elle trainers.

I think that's everything....
Lots of love and luck to all the other London Marathon runners, especially the rest of the WaterAid team. 

And now it's time to sleep. Night night. x

Devoted to the cause

As a cheeky pre marathon treat, I took myself to Wah Nails today to get some WaterAid nail art to keep me inspired when the going gets tough.

I've even got a Swarovski crystal encrusted water drop on my thumb nail!

Marathon registration

Having put it off for two days already, after work last night I made the mission to the Excel Centre near Canary Wharf to officially register for the London Marathon 2011

I spend quite a lot of time at trade shows for work, and was not impressed at having to attend another - especially on a Friday night. But the vibe was actually pretty good, almost everyone on the DLR to the show space was a marathon runner and everyone was chatting and comparing stories - and injuries!

This is me collecting my running number and trainer chip. Everyone seemed to have a word of wisdom for me - which I gratefully received.
Runners were invited to scrawl a message on the giant numbers. Obviously I graced it with a run like 'elle sticker!
Not sure how this one got here...
This is Zack who printed my name on to my running vest.
And a little bit of luck wished us well as we left the building
I'm officially entered in to the race, so there's no backing out now. Eeek!

My marathon make-under

Yesterday I was invited to Bare Escentuals for a marathon make-under. What better way to spend a nervous Friday than being pampered with products to use for the marathon on Sunday?!

Running seems like a pure past-time, so the idea of being plastered in make-up doesn’t seem right. But then again looking super ropey with no make-up isn’t particularly appealing either! So off I went to the Covent Garden boutique to learn about mineral make-up…

Bare Escentuals is mineral based, so products are super light weight, allowing the skin to breathe – and are therefore perfect for sport. The line uses no artificial fragrances, artificial oils or parabens. Instead natural ingredients such as an active soil complex, The South African Resurrection Plant (which definitely sounds as though it means business) and avocado and grape seed extracts are just a few of the natural ingredients which are used in replacement – perfect for my sensitive skin.

So let the transformation begin…
Learning the upwards sweeping motion, which you should always use to apply products to your face. I used vitamin C&E enriched Prime Time primer, and eye brightening Pearl Prime Time
Bare Minerals foundation with SPF 15 is brushed on. There are 20 shades available, but I used medium and Medium Beige
Ionnis brushes Buxom Lips volumising gloss in Amber on my lips
I never ever wear eye shadow (I didn't even know how to apply it) but the team showed me using the Cup Cake and Bare Skin shades

Then it was the final touches - a light layer of Flawless Definition mascara and a brush of Flawless Radiance all-over face colour
The cupcake colours at Bare Escentuals
Tools of the trade
The finished product, with the lovely Bare Escentuals team
For more information on Bare Escentuals and Mare Minerals products visit www.bareescentuals.co.uk
Or pop in-store
Bare Escentuals
50 Neal Street
Covent Garden
Tel: 0207 836 7424

Lots of thanks to Kate, Anna and Ionnis for my Friday treat. The fun shrouded the fear - temporarily! x


Top marathon tips from fashion editor Avril Mair

Avril Mair is the epitome of the run like ‘elle ideal - a fashion industry expert who is interested in, and excels at running – and it seems, anything else she sets her mind to. 

A revered fashion editor and writer for Elle magazine, ex editor of i-D magazine, contributing writer to numerous publications including Vogue Japan and the Telegraph, author of Fashion Now (Taschen), and to top it all off a consultant at Chanel. She is a regular guest at the shows in New York, London, Milan and Paris, and her Tweets (@avrilmair) kept me amused throughout fashion month. 

Avril and I are lucky enough to have been trained by Brian Cochrane aka Nike Master Trainer aka The Tyrant. Brian helped Avril prepare for the San Francisco Marathon in just 13 weeks last year, and I’ve upped the ante this year by attempting to become marathon ready in just 11 weeks. 

I read Avril’s account of marathon training in April’s edition of Elle magazine and it was honestly like reading my own thoughts - the denial, the fear and eventually the enthusiasm. Having heard so much about her, I knew I had a million more questions I wanted to ask her – but I restrained myself, so here are just a few of them...

Name: Avril Mair
Home: Scottish (but have lived in London for 15 years)
Career: Associate Editor, Elle magazine. Editor, Elle Collections. Columnist. Beauty Extremist, Elle magazine. Consultant, Chanel. Writer

How did you get into running? I’d always run a bit, but half-heartedly. My husband is a competitive cyclist and I felt guilty that I didn’t exercise more. Somehow I got into it – living near the Thames in London has helped lots, it is a beautiful place to be at 6am. Also, when you travel as much as I do, running is the perfect exercise to take up – you can do it wherever you are. It is freedom, really. Once I started, I felt as though someone had given me wings. Now I’ve run in LA, NYC, Delhi, Paris, Berlin, Shanghai… I don’t always enjoy it, but it is what I do, regardless. I don’t do it as often as I’d like though

What made you decide to run the San Francisco Marathon 2010? Nike asked me…! (I now love Nike)

What was your marathon time? 4 hours 30

Can you tell us a bit about your marathon experience? Could have gone faster. Will next time, but those San Francisco hills are fearsome – it was a hard marathon for a debut

Who is your marathon inspiration? Paula Radcliffe, of course. She sent me a note the night before. Also, she has a glass of two of red wine the night before. I did that too

What is your marathon mantra? What’s stopping you? Nothing. Get on with it

What was your trick to integrating your training into your already busy schedule?
Get up early. I mean, earlier. Often 5am. Also, I’d squeeze in half and hour of interval training in the gym next door to our office instead of lunch

What did you tell yourself to beat the wall? If you ever hit it! I didn’t, but I never had a second’s doubt that I would do it

Can you name your top three tracks on your marathon playlist? I run without music – it’s a chance to think, to clear my mind, to forget about work and just blank everything out. Oddly, it’s also a great time to think about writing

What is your pre race ritual? Black coffee. Can’t run without it.

What are your kit bag staples? Nike Capri pants, Nike white vest, Shock Absorber bra, Hilly socks, Blax hair bands, Clarins sunscreen, Chanel lip hydrator, Chanel black eyeliner, JellyBelly sports beans in watermelon

What is your marathon top training tip? You can run, and run well, without letting running take over your life. I have a ridiculous schedule but I managed it. I didn’t work less, drink less, go out less… I just made it work. Really, there isn’t an excuse

What did you learn about yourself from running the marathon? Whatever you think you can do, you can do more.

And I thought Paula Radcliffe was motivated! Thank you so much for your answers Avril, you're a real inspriation, both in work and play.

To read a full account of Avril's marathon experience pick up a copy of April's Elle magazine.