Anti-blister running socks

Heavy lifting and my best run ever

Hi there, can you believe we’re halfway through January already? I personally welcome the end of this month with open arms because… closer to spring and more daylight, but my trainer had a very good point in this discussion last week, that if you wait for the month to pass, you might miss the good moments… because winter has its charms. He has a good point.

I’m joining Kim and Deborah for another Weekly Rundown link-up, which is where we share our week of fitness. My week hasn’t been great, although fitness-wise it probably has been quite good after all.

  • Monday – Mobility & stretch, walking & running 5,6 km in total
  • Tuesday – Gym day
  • Wednesday – Rest day
  • Thursday – Mobility & stretch, walking 7,18 km
  • Friday – Gym day, a nice heavy session
  • Saturday – Walking, 6-ish km
  • Sunday – Running & walking, 6,96 km


Mondays are run days, and the weather was glorious with nice sunshine, 7 C and not-too-bad wind, so I went down to the beach. This route includes a steep decline to get to the sea, and what goes down must come up… or whatever the saying is! On the way back, when you think you’re going to die, then you’re halfway up the hill. 😀

West Cork
The beach, cove, or whatever you prefer to call it. I love walking down here, and I love having walking distance to the sea.

Last week I read someone’s article about running inclines and how it builds strength in calves, glutes, hamstrings and more, and realised that this route is an excellent exercise for me to work up strength in those areas which will help keep the knees happy.


Gym day – and an exciting one! Today I was going to get a different program. I was hoping a heavier one with fewer reps, and I was right. Today I did 3×8 and all weights were increased. However, some exercises were easier than I thought! And my trainer saw that too so on Friday some will be heavier. Exactly my cup of tea! (Can you sense the impatience to build more muscle here?)

  • Warm-up with bodyweight squats and lunges
  • Squats with barbell, 32,5 kgs
  • Lunges with barbell, 30 kgs
  • Flyes, 6 kg dumbbells
  • Chestpress (I missed asking about the weight of the bar)
  • Dumbbell row, 12,5 kg
  • Tricep pulldowns, 7 kg dumbbells
  • Shoulder press, 6 kgs
  • Stand-up row, 17,5 kgs


I had massive DOMS in my chest, shoulders and triceps! This became a total rest day, also because I was quite busy. My Italian class started again. I started attending it in 2019 and it’s been on Zoom since 2020 – this is so convenient because in 2019 I had to go to Cork for it and it took so much time just to travel. I love having it on Zoom but I’ve taken a break from it during 2022 because I was so busy with studies and more, it was lovely to see everyone again.


This is supposed to be a run day but I had knee pain for unknown reason, around *those* tendons. I didn’t dare to run which was very disappointing and unsettling but I went for a nice walk instead, 7,18 km in total.
On Wednesday night we had near storm conditions, and Thursday morning was still very windy but sunny, dry and definitely good enough. But on the way back, the drizzle started and winds started increasing. In one area I could barely stay upright! It was a bit scary considering that area normally is the least windy around here, so if it’s bad down there, it will be much worse at home! But it calmed down and I came home ok.

It’s been VERY wet lately. So much rain. Fields are waterlogged, forest trails are waterlogged, forests are flooded, parts of roads are flooded. I wanted to spend a weekend away for a nice trail walk/run to celebrate my birthday in February but everything that isn’t roads or beaches can be expected to be flooded and muddy.

I actually turned back here, who knew what it would look like further on?

A much worse problem was that the worry about not being able to run – mixed with a few other things I had been thinking about – triggered a massive wave of negative thinking and self-doubt, in ALL areas of life really. I enjoyed the music session in the evening but I was not in a good place.


We’re back to normal now so Fridays are gym days, and this Friday was Fri-yay. I was in some really low mood in the morning but received a lot of reassurance by my trainer (and his sister/colleague who was also there) about yesterday, and I got a wonderful weightlifting session. The pep talk in combination with some heavy lifting seemed to solve all problems.. or at least get my thinking in the right direction.

  • Deadlifts with hex bar, 43 kgs!
  • Sumo squats with barbell, 35 kgs
  • Chestpress with 9 kg dumbbells, this was tough!
  • Flyes, 7 kg dumbbells
  • Tricep pullovers, one dumbbell, 15 kgs
  • Good mornings, barbell 35 kgs
  • Lateral raise, 5 kg dumbbells

This is the heaviest strength session I’ve done. I was still sore in chest and triceps after the Tuesday session, but I’m very happy with my performance, and I loved it! So satisfying and it lifted my mood very nicely.


Oh, the joy of DOMS, lol.

I went for a nice, long-ish walk to the sea and back. My Fitbit died on the way back (Who knows why? I thought it was fully charged! I really need it to work for my February challenge) but before the battery died it said 5,9-something km. I did those nice inclines to get back from the beach, and despite my deadlifts yesterday, my calves and hamstrings were happy.


I decided to go out, with the humble attitude ”to see if I would be able to run”. It turned out to be my BEST EVER run. I felt in great form, had some discomfort around the knees but decided to try to run anyway. It worked fine and the discomfort mostly disappeared after a while. Even during the first part of the loop I was able to run a lot more than I’ve done before, when I slowed down to walk a bit it was mostly because I was worried about overdoing it, I still don’t trust my knees. But today I definitely ran more than I walked, except on steep hills, and on some distances I got into some kind of flow state! It was absolutely wonderful and now everything around running feels so much more hopeful.

Today I did the same route as I did on Thursday, but kept going through the flooded area, it was worth the wet shoes, because it’s a lovely route, and the rest of the road was totally ok.

Other news

When we’ve done long walks I’ve always had problems with blisters under my feet. My running shoes are a tiny bit too large, it’s barely noticeable and I didn’t realise until I started having these blisters during the last 2 or so kilometres. I started looking in some online shops to see if there’s any specialist socks or similar for runners, and found a few different socks with double layering and some special material on the inside layers. I bought three different pairs and have tried two of them so far and they seem to work wonders. Problem solved, for now. I suspect they’ll be quite warm in the summer but we’ll see.

Anti-blister running socks

So this was a very mixed week but it ended well. Tomorrow we’re expecting another cold snap and I’ll stay inside, recover and maybe do some lighter strength work and/or mobility exercises.

How was your week? How is the weather where you are? What was your best training moment of the week?


38 responses to “Heavy lifting and my best run ever”

  1. Jenn avatar

    Look at that sea view! How gorgeous! That being said, I’m not here for all the wetness.

    Right now, we are in the 30sF. It’s cold but I love it. It’s led to my best “training”: a 5k that wasn’t necessarily a PR, but was the fastest 5K I’ve run in a year. By about two minutes! Yay!

    Keep your chin up and keep moving forward!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Thank you, Jenn. And congratulations to a great 5K race!! 30F is quite cold for running! I’ve become very used to running in about 5C (41F) by now and that’s quite pleasant.

  2. Deborah Brooks avatar

    Your trainer is right, winter does have its charms. I am more of a cooler weather run lover, I find it exhilarating out there. It is definitely better on a sunny day! Hope this week is even better for you!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Thanks Deborah! I always prefer 10C and up but cooler weather in the winter is fine for short periods as long as it’s above 0C and there’s no ice. Our main problem is to keep the house warm enough!

  3. Wendy avatar

    I love how you and your trainer are pushing you to lift heavy! You know I’m a fan. I’m not surprised you had a great run today after that heavy lifting on Friday–I always do as well. It’s almost as if the muscles are fired up and ready to go.

    I feel you on the negative thinking and self doubt, which is an ongoing struggle for me. Running and fitness definitely helps.

    1. Susanne avatar

      Absolutely yay for heavy lifting! And what you say about the muscles being fired up totally makes sense!
      Running and lifting is such good therapy for the head. I’m much more balanced since I started training. If I get into low mood it’s never as low as it could be before.

  4. Retirement Reflections avatar

    I’m glad that your week ended well. Enjoy your rest and recovery!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Thanks, Donna! Hope your week was good too!

  5. Kimberly Hatting avatar

    Sounds like you had a great week, and an especially good run after that big strength workout! I’m curious on the socks…are these new ones wool or a wool blend? I wear wool socks almost exclusively for running, year-round. Although one would think they’d be too hot, they actually are great for moisture-wicking. I also have narrow feet, so the extra cushioning and thickness helps take up some of the extra room in my running shoes (which are a full size “bigger” than my regular street shoes.

    1. Susanne avatar

      Hi Kim! That’s interesting that you run in wool socks, but for moisture-wicking I can see that it works, and thinner wool doesn’t necessarily get too warm. My socks are a mix of nylon, cotton and lycra, and the inner layer is Tactel. The Tactel is supposed to be moisture-wicking too.The brand seems to be 1000 Mile, I’m very happy with them so far!

  6. Jenny avatar

    That really is a steep incline- usually you can’t really see hills in photos, but I can see that one! I’m glad you had such a great run today. And I love that route, in spite of the wet path. I want to run there!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Oh yes, that incline is savage! But I found yesterday that on the other route there’s a similar incline. Our trainer had told my husband that runners from this part of Cork usually do very well because they get so much hill training!
      And, if you would ever visit Ireland, let’s do a run together along that fields-farms-hills route!

  7. Debbie avatar

    That view of the sea is beautiful. What a fabulous place to run or walk.

    Yes, it’s amazing how well those double layer socks work at creating friction between the two layers and not between the sock and your foot. Glad you found them and that they’re working well for you. I hate for my feet to get hot and they are fine for me in our hot humid summers. Hope they’ll be okay for you, too.

    1. Susanne avatar

      That sounds promising about the socks in the summer!
      There are some amazing places here for running and walking and I’m so blessed to be able to live here.

  8. Coco avatar

    Glad you were able to run on Sunday. Do you think the lunges or squats you did earlier in the week aggravated your knees?

    That looks like a steep hill! When I’m cycling an unfamiliar route, I have a hard time enjoying the descents because I know we’ll have to go back up somehow!

    Sorry the extreme wet weather is even impacting vacation plans.

    1. Susanne avatar

      I’m not sure what caused that knee problem last week but I don’t think it was the squats or lunges, I never feel any discomfort during or after doing them in the gym. When I was just coming out of the worst stage of the injury, I had pain doing squats but not anymore. I think it may have been sitting too long and not thinking about my posture or leg position on the Wednesday – I used to sit a lot with bent knees in the past, but it seems I can’t do that anymore but I did on the Wednesday night because it was so cold. Well, that’s just a theory. It could also be I just had a bad day. Tendonitis sadly is a chronic condition but with building up strength and mobility it will have less impact.

  9. San avatar

    Wow, I love the path down to the beach… even though it’s an incline, I would love to run there 🙂
    We’ve had a lot of wind and rain here in Northern California, so I can relate to the flooded trails.

    I have some double-layer running socks and I love them. I am glad they’re working for you too.

    1. Susanne avatar

      It is a wonderful route to run and gives some good strength training on the way back. But after you get up the hill, the rest of the way is one of my absolutely favourite places to run and I always do quite well there, probably because my calves are warmed up.

  10. Melissa avatar

    Great job running and lifting this week!! I’d love to get into lifting…I need to make time!

    1. Susanne avatar

      I hope you can make the time! It’s so worth it, both for the body and for the soul. Weightlifting is my stress therapy and mood lifter, plus it makes my body more prepared for running. All good things!

  11. Marcia avatar

    Your trainer made a valid point about how sometimes we want to “get through” a month and then we wonder later how the entire year slipped away. It’s hard sometimes to be intentional in darkness and bad weather. All the best with your new, heavier lifting plan! That’s exciting. I hope your knee continues to behave! Have a great week!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Yes, it’s hard to make the best of these dark months. But my ambitions with running have certainly helped! Now I take advantage of every good day, to go out running and/or walking.

  12. Darlene S Cardillo avatar

    Love the view of the sea. Mondays are my run days too if I can.

    Hope your knee stops giving you problems so you can continue to run.

    I’ve had problems with blisters in the past (due to bunions). I keep experimenting with different socks

    I was a French major and Spanish minor in college. I’d love to take Italian esp since my in-laws are from Italy.

    1. Susanne avatar

      Italian is a lovely language! I’ve studied some French in the past and looked into Spanish a little (very little) – they are all so similar but still with a lot of differences.

  13. Lindsay avatar

    What beautiful views you have on your walks and runs – just gorgeous! Glad the knee was able to come around for the best run ever and you made it back to your Italian class. For the past few months, I’ve been learning Italian through an online program and I just love it.

    1. Susanne avatar

      That’s great about your Italian studies! It’s such a beautiful and fascinating language.

  14. Michelle avatar

    Glad your week ended with a good run! I agree with your trainer – winter does have its appeal. I’m trying hard not to wish any time away and embrace what each season has to offer – hopefully I can remember this when the heat of summer rolls in 😉

    1. Susanne avatar

      Oh, it was such a good feeling, Michelle! I’m trying hard to enjoy the good moments of winter, but when the weather gets too bad (like today) I can only think of getting back inside after being out, a warmed up car seat, and sitting by the fire under a blanket!

  15. Lisa @ TechChick Adventures avatar

    Sounds like you had some good surprises this week with your run and the increase in weights for strength training. yay! Glad it lifted your spirits too. I’m very grateful for Zoom meetings. It’s nice to be able to join but not make the commute! My daughter will be taking a trip to Florence this summer along with Paris. She hasn’t looked at Italian at all, but has been learning a few French words. I took 2 years of French in high school so I’m helping her my super minimal French vocabulary! I’m sure she won’t remember any of it when she gets there. haha!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Your daughter won’t need any Italian at all to go to Florence! The times I’ve been there, when I speak to people in Italian they reply in English (although my Italian is better than their English) because they assume that everyone who doesn’t look Italian is an American tourist, and they love practising their English. It’s very annoying if you go to Italy to speak Italian, and the last time I visited a more touristy place (Venice, that time) I pretended I didn’t know English.
      Florence is stunning, however, and it’s probably my most favourite place of the big famous cities, with Rome as 2nd.

  16. Chocolaterunsjudy avatar

    That view in the first photo is stunning but man that looks like a hard run! Well, not down (I love downhill running but I know not everyone does). Glad your week ended on a high note.

    Your trainer is definitely right! We can’t wish our life away! Even if I’m also not a fan of Winter.

    1. Susanne avatar

      It’s a very steep hill for sure! I’m not able to run steep hills yet, I walk both up and down, but the walk up still is very good strength training for my legs.

  17. Kim G avatar

    I was just speaking to my friend today about how I can’t believe that we’re already halfway through the month – time is going by very quickly in 2023 already!

    You have such beautiful views for your outdoor workouts!

    1. Susanne avatar

      I love living here! There’s so much beauty and so many nice areas for walking and running.

  18. Zenaida Arroyo avatar

    I was about to say the same thing about the inclines. We don’t have any of that here in Chicago, totally flat here. That running view is gorgeous! Boo on all that rain. It gets to a point when it is just too much.

    1. Susanne avatar

      Yes, the Irish rain is what makes Ireland so green, which is good, but when it begins to flood places, not good.

  19. Shathiso avatar

    Gaborone is flat, flat, flat so you have to go out of town for any inclines, so I love the fact you are forced to do them – they are very good for you! That view as you run down to the sea is absolutely gorgeous!

    There’s a stretching routine that I do any time I have any dramas with my knees – let me post it here in case you’d like to try it:

    I find it easy to follow and quite effective too!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Thanks for the link! I’ll definitely check it out. My knee is quite good now but ti gets back to being a bit cranky sometimes so this is probably needed.

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