Training 2020 totals – A very different year

No doubt year 2020 was very different to me and not only because of covid-19 but also because I climbed to Kilimanjaro and after that didn’t climb or run for the next 8 months. My IT band inflammation was a complete surprise to me and extremely hard mentally to cope with.

I am used to exercising and that being taken away suddenly in addition to home schooling, working from home and covid restrictions I admit I was not coping well. I tried to psyche myself by putting my energy to something else and that is when modelling /tv/movie extra roles came into play. They have saved many days when you want to do something, but cannot run or even go to the gym. At least you can act!

Nevertheless I have been able to do quite a lot of training, but it’s just been a bit different kind than before and there has not been any kind of goals this time. After my injury and verdict from the doctor finally early spring I at least knew what was wrong and could plan on how to get better.

Naturally in this case less is more so had to cut back on training extensively and concentrate on handling the inflammation. Took the inflammation pills I got from the doctor, but they had pretty bad side effects and practically my heart was pounding and blood pressure went suddenly up and then down. They just did not agree with my body.

So grateful to be able to train again

I did take the prescribed amount, but decided that I cannot risk being forced to take them again or at least would have to find another brand. Anyway luckily I then discovered ginger and turmeric and took capsules meant for joints that contained those for a few months and also drank shots of them regularly and still do every now and then. Late summer I didn’t feel the pain anymore and by September I wasn’t constantly watching out the leg and thinking about the pain and could slowly start running again.

At the same time I also started doing light exercises for hamstrings and glutes to get strength back which tshould support running. Apparently loosing significant amount of weight (16 kilos read more in ”My Weight Loss Journey” -series) and all that training caused the center of gravity to change and imbalance on the muscles. So more training to the butt that is!

I also found softer sports like Yoga which has been a life saver. It has helped me to keep myself flexible and also grow overall strength with movements based on my own body weight. It has definitely helped with getting the center of gravity back to where it should and my posture has improved so much! Four babies definitely caused changes to my body and I am glad I noticed now that I need to do something and not when it’s too late.

Anyways so year full of resting and softer sports with a bit of increase by the end of the year.

Let’s call year 2020 a year of mercy and recuperating <3

Total 2020

My favourite pastime, spend th
  • 2020 total 184 Activities, ascent 8927 m (2615 m was Kilimanjaro)
    • 2019 total 236 activities, ascent 18363 m (wow this was a lot..)
  • 2020 Running total 294 k’s, trail 76 k’s and basic 218 k’s
    • 2019 Running total 610 k’s, trail 307 k’s and basic 303 k’s
    • 2018 Running total 440 k’s, trail 190 k’s and basic 250 k’s.
  • 2020 total Hiking 67 k’s
    • 2019 total hiking 179 k’s (Impressive!!)
    • 2018 total hiking 56 k’s
  • Trekking 55,62 km (this was the Kilimanjaro Climb)
    • None earlier used this for Kili
  • Walking 141 km ( I had to start recording walking at some point when I could not run…)
  • 11 times weight training
  • 17 times Yoga
  • 18 Circuit training meaning different gym classes
  • 81 km of cycling

So all in all a lot more variety than 2019 which is not bad. Amounts are understandably not as high as 2019 but surprisingly not as low as I thought. There are weeks during springtime when I have 0 activities. That is unusual, but it was necessary to stop. Truly looking forward to this year and grateful that I have found softer choices and learned not to demand so much of myself. Less is more they say and I think I believe that too finally!

How about my targets for 2020?

Like said earlier I fairly quickly realised I need to throw all my targets to the bin after the IT band inflammation injury. After that my target has been to survive until I can run again or do any sport for that matter. So comparing to where I started from it was pretty good year.

I did not increase any distance goals, but I did improve my average speed from 6,5 to 7,1 km/h so even though I ran less, I did it faster.

Target for 2021

Is still to survive and put more focus on full body strength and toning.

  • I will keep running, but it will probably never be a thing I can do as much as I did.
  • I also want to focus on trail running rather than basic running. I love nature and my legs can handle that better.
  • I would very much like to get back to orienteering again this year. Need to wait for a few months for the snow to melt.
  • I have also started new hobby pole dancing, It’s very good whole body strength training and perfect support for running!

So still alive and kicking just not as hard as before but definitely with more determination and mercy on myself!

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Kilimanjaro – Day 8/10 – From Kibo to Horombo camp

Leaving Kibo camp heading towards Mawenzi peak

Finally down hill, yay! I was so happy to go to bed knowing I would be ”getting out of here”. I was already feeling better, but still not good. Anything you did was an effort. Getting up and going to the toilet even! I had hard time falling asleep the night before because I had slept during the day while waiting for the others to return, but did manage to get some sleep. Like always I woke up with the sun and waited for the hot water to arrive so I can get my morning dose of Milo as I was SO hungry.

For the first time during the whole climb up I was actually hungry and it felt good.

The path seemed to last forever! Distances are all skewed on the mountain!

Everyone woke up in their due time. This morning we were leaving a bit later around 10 am so we had more time to get ready than normally. I was keen to leave. Not only because I knew we are heading down hill and it can only get easier from here, but also because I knew there are showers at Horombo. Cold showers, but showers nevertheless. I don’t care how cold it is. I’m going there!

Everlasting path…

We said our goodbyes to the moon-like Horombo camp and the snow capped tip of the volcano and started our ascent. Sun was shining from a cloudless sky and we got some nice shots towards Kibo camp with Ubuntu ”girl power” team! (See feature image above post). It was a bit chilly so I did not have my sun hat on, but just a normal hat and sunglasses. Big mistake I learned later!

The path was wide and very long across the saddle between Mawenzi (second highest peak in Kilimanjaro National Park ) and Kibo (highest peak). You could see the moon-like scenery lasting as far as your eyes can see. Then finally the vegetation begins to change and we can see a few bushes.There was clearly more traffic on this side of the mountain than the one we climbed up.

Finally some vegetation also! The path was more like highway! So many people coming and going.

Ubuntu and Ashanti

It didn’t feel like 9,5 kilometers and I had even a bit too much energy. We reached the camp by lunchtime and had the last of our greeting dance with the team. Now everyone was joining the dance again, but the feeling was sad. The time on this magical mountain was coming to an end.

On our team everyone was needed and we could not have done it without them. The cooks, porters, guides. It was a well organized and seamlessly working community and team. I have very high respect to these people who made it possible for us. It makes me sad that now their livelihood is gone with Kilimanjaro National park closed due to Covid-19. Then we did not know yet how bad it will get. Later we heard that we were among the last groups to go up. Team Ubuntu was indeed very lucky!

Whole Team Ubuntu crew. We could not have done it without any of them! Thank you Ashanti tours <3

S-h-o-w-e-r and SMS messages

And then… the long awaited shower! Ice cold, but who cares. Me and Kirsty were brave and went there and it was so good! I cannot overrate how great and refreshing it felt. Funny how little things make you so happy… And a flushing toilet. No more finding suitable bushes or rocks!

Mobile coverage also worked on and off as we were camped on this ridge so I managed to send and receive a few SMS messages. Getting messages from home made me realize how much I missed my children, husband and even the cat! Just normal life felt like luxury now and I could not wait to get home.

Before that we still had one very long day and 18 kilometers ahead of us (well that’s what the guide said), to get to Marangu gate out of Kilimanjaro National Park. After nice shower and hot meal we were all again pretty tired as the day had been again long with 9,5 kilometers down hill. Took a nap, read a book. Somehow the afternoon passed by and it was dinner time again. After dinner I finally watched a movie I had downloaded on my mobile. Until now I had not felt like watching anything, but now I felt better and didn’t think I could anyway fall asleep anytime soon, so watching a movie would be a good pass of time.

View from ”space”

When we got to camp (3733 meters altitude) there was quite a few clouds so you could not really see where you were at, but at night when I woke up to go to the toilet the sky was clear and you could see the lights of all the roads, cities and towns below. We were still so high that it felt like you were watching the earth from space. It was so breathtakingly beautiful that I could not go back to sleep, but had to just sit there and keep staring at it for a while with tears flowing thinking about all the lives of the people there how they do not know that I am here staring down at their city from above wondering what they are doing. Thinking how there is so much life on Earth, how these little specs of light indicate where humans wander.

I think it was a bit of unburdening the stress of the journey both physically and mentally as well as missing home. In a way the mountain was both frightening and mesmerizing at the same time. You respect it, wonder it and admire it’s beauty, but still feel like we are here just to visit, this is not our place, we are just passing through.

Finally went back to my tent to sleep being grateful that I had seen that view all alone in the middle of the night. In the morning the clouds were back and we could not see downhill clearly anymore.

Unfortunately I could not sleep too well due to strange feeling on my lower lip which just seemed to get worse and worse… To be continued 😀

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Training – W10/2020 Finally a bit more training

Getting back to normal and a bit more training finally after a break. I still felt tired after training but it wasn’t as bad as the week before. Covid-19 virus was also spreading around the world already but there were not that many cases yet in Finland so we decided to go for a weekend getaway to a spa few hours drive from our house and stop over at Repovesi National Park for a hike.

It was a beautiful day and a good hike. New suspension bridge over the strait was ready and weather was amazing around few degrees and sunny. No snow anymore, but a bit slippery at times where snow had just melter.

New suspension bridge is ready!

It was nice to get away and thinking back it was good luck that we did it before things got worse as now it would not be even possible.

Anyway I was happy that exercising felt better again and was eager to keep going next week. I wanted to have a training plan, but have not quite made up my mind yet what my next goal would be and what kind my plan would be. That will surely come to me and decided to just enjoy doing whatever kind of exercise for now .

Nature’s art work


  • 1 hike 13,4 kilometers
  • 2 runs 4,84 and 7,1 kilometers
  • 1 treadmill run 3,1 kilometers
  • 1 stair climber to 50 floors 11 minutes and 48 seconds
  • 1 gym class 52 minutes
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Training – W3/2020 Back to gym and good news

Got the doctors approval letter for Kili and my hemoglobin levels are also now OK back to ”my normal” which is around 120-125 but ferritin level is still too low and I need to keep taking iron.

Training front. Not aching anywhere so could have gone to gym normally but went only once. For obvious reason I am a bit reluctant to do massive training as I do not want to injure myself.

Back to running though and aim to do a few longer hikes still. It seems like life gets busier and busier the closer we get to the date and everything is just spiralling around one date… 11 th of February.


  • Running 11 kilometers
  • Gym once times
  • Stair climber at gym to 100 floors so approx 330 ascent
  • Hiking 13,8 kilometers

Training plan

No plan… just trying to take it easy, do some basic exercise and a few longer hikes

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Training – W2/2020 Baby steps and getting things together

So another week passed by of this year and my arm has started to feel a lot better already. What I did learn is that inflammatory drugs are not my things and I should stick to just Panadol!

Of course it was good that I took them when the pain was at the worst but few days more around 4-5 days and I started getting ticking sound in my ears, had loss of hearing in one ear, my blood pressure sky rocketed every now and then and felt generally unwell. Luckily the arm was already better so there was no need for them anyway anymore and could stop taking them, but it was a bit scary feeling I must admit. Luckily the weird feelings subsided in a few days and in a week I was almost back to normal.

Back to normal means of course exercise. Thought I would not go for a run yet, but would make a nice slow pace hike in the close by National Park. Hiked up down 8,1 kilometers there with a short snack break. It was a really nice start in getting my body used to a bit more exercise after the break.

Once the game was open it was time to get back to running and gym. Started off with running and ”not being able to run for a few weeks” energy boost. I ran 10 kilometers in windy pouring sleet and did my best 10 k time so far, 1 hour and 8 minutes. I should probably go running in bad weather more often! It felt so good and my arm did not hurt too much.

Also did another short run 6,7 kilometers, but no gym yet as I decided that I should probably go and get a massage few times because the muscles in my shoulders and upper back are still hard as a rock. Right arm was also hurting a bit and desk work just seems to makes it worse so booked a time. After the massage I will go to the gym. That is a promise!

Other than training I have started to gather the last pieces needed for the trip together like a duffel bag and a sleeping bag that I was still missing. I feel like I got it all now and will do a post of my kit later when I ”test pack” it.


  • Hiking 8,1 kilometers
  • Running 16,7 kilometers

Training plan

No plan currently other than doing as much uphill training as I can on the ”stair climber” at the gym and just general hiking once a week in the forest. Apart from that just doing what I feel good with and trying not to get hurt, injured or sick

Still missing a few hundred Euros from my fundraising target to Unicef UK so please help me achieve it <3

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Training – Year 2019 totals

Since the year has changed I thought it would be nice to look back and examine what did I do on the exercise front.

Indoor climbing has been a new hobby

I know without looking at any statistics that I exercised more this year than the last, but how much? Well the amount of individual activities year 2019 was 236. Compared to year 2018 and only 140 it’s a massive increase. I have exercised almost twice as much as the year before so approximately every second day. Impressive I think!

One reason for this is of course that I had a plan. Plan that had target amounts of activities and type. I kept to my plan pretty meticulously apart from when I got sick or injured. What this has taught be is to think big, aim for something you never thought you could achieve and you might just get there, BUT keep the target tangible.

I had my targets through out the year. Targets like Best cooper’s test distance, Best 10 k time, Best average speed, One chin up, More than 5 kilos on squat each side, 10 kilos more on leg press and so on. I was competing with myself and it seems I am quite competitive after all. Especially if I am competing with me 😉

So let’s look at the totals first…

Total year 2019

  • Running total 610 kilometers of which trail 307 kilometers and basic 303 kilometers. Year 2018 total 440 k’s total, trail 190 k’s trail and basic 250 k’s.
  • Hiking 179 kilometers, Year 2018 56 k’s.
  • Orienteering 66 kilometers. Year 2018 zero.
  • Walking 63 kilometers. Year 2018 47 k’s.
  • Gym 27 times. Year 2018 18 times.
Gym mirror selfie

I am very happy with the results. There is more running and orienteering as a new one which could sort of be added to trail running. This would make running in the forests for me 373 kilometers which is a long way if we start thinking how far I would get I if I now started running towards Lapland. I would not get near Lapland but to Seinäjoki or Kuopio. If I add all my running together I would actually get to Kuusamo or Kemi. Still not above the Arctic Circle so I might aim to run enough k’s to get past Rovaniemi next year…

Anyway, there is a clear increase in hiking also which is natural having been exercising for Kili and visiting Norway and Lapland. Increase in going to the gym eI am especially happy about and there results can be seen in the form of more muscle mass, strength and toning.

How about my targets? How did they improve?

  • Best cooper’s distance: From 1600 meters to 2000 meters
  • Best 10 k time: From around 1:44 to 1:10
  • Best average speed: From around 6,4 km/h to 9,4 km/h
  • One chin-up: Yep did achieve that on straight legs and with a rubber band I can do 3-5
  • More kilos on all the equipment at the gym in general.

I have learned in year 2019 that I need to measure to be able to reach for something. When I measure I can see the difference. Consistency is the key here 🙂 First I wanted to reach for example 1800 in Coopers test and next time tried to beat my last record so very much competing with myself.

2019 was a good year in exercise front and after Kili I will continue having a training plan and logging what I do. I like to follow the progress and looking back to last year also motivates me. When I can see the numbers I know that all the hard work has not been for nothing since there is clear progress!

So back to it I say!

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Training W50 – More Christmas hassle but tying to keep training on

It’s been a while since my last post about something else than weekly training. Moving house caused a total chaos for our household that has lasted for a few months. There is really nothing you can do about, you just need to unpack one box at a time and get used to the new neighborhood. I really love the new house as we have much more space than before.

At the same time the choir end of year concerts have taken quite a significant amount of time during the evenings. We have had multiple performances. One was for the Finnish National Broadcasting channel Yle at the after party of the Finnish Independence day which is a really big thing here with about 2,5 million viewers. All the singing during the week concluded in the biggest concert of the year for us last weekend.

It’s clear the end of the year hassle is full on and it seems like the holidays are coming way too quickly! Prioritizing has been the word of the month and training has been first and simply no time for blogging as much as before.

In spite of all this hassle I have been able to keep up with my training pretty good and I can see progress both in speed and strength.

I have also started to dream about hiking, mountaineering and climbing so my mind seems to be set for the climb already 🙂

Wishing everyone a quiet and nice Christmas break and please keep following my blog I am hoping to have some time to update it during the break. I have so many ideas and posts ”almost ready”!


  • 1 basic run 16 kilometers
  • 1 trail run 10 kilometers
  • 1 gym training


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Finding high places – Repovesi National Park

Repovesi National park
Suspension bridge was under renovation and not in use

I was so happy I was feeling well enough to go for our planned hike to a National Park fairly close to our home for a day trip last Saturday. I have been wanting to go there for a while now as apparently it has good views and nice ascents.

The suspension bridge at the start of the trail was being rebuilt so they had a boat ride that took you to the same spot where the bridge would. This was the start of our trail.

Right after the suspension bridge there was very good spots for barbecue and picnic on the lakeside.

Area for barbecue and picnic after the suspension bridge
Stairs to the top of the cliff

After the suspension bridge we headed to the forest and towards our first ascent and found these stairs all the way up to the top of the cliff. The stairs were a bit slippery because it was raining and surprisingly long, but took you all the way up so no need for poles.

The rock formations along the way were amazing and some of them looked like they are about to drop off.

We took a few necessary view photos at the top and returned to the route I had uploaded earlier to my watch. We were a bit tight on time due to sunlight and last boat ride so did not want to linger too long at any spot.

Besides we would probably not be able to do the whole planned route anyway so decided to go as far as we can (and as many times up as we can) and head back the gravel paths as fast as we can. This proved to be a good plan later on although not waterproof.

View on the other side of Kuutti bay where a part of the rock has crumbled down

Our route took us through the forest to lakeside with view to the other side where a part of the rock had practically crumbled down.

At the end of the Kuutti bay we found another barbecue spot called Kuutti canal with an old duct rebuild in the 90’s originally used for log floating.

Here you could find firewood, tables, a little cottage and toilets also. Many seemed to be camping there and around the area for the night. We came back through the same route which is in between two lakes and pretty much the only way unless you want to go around either of the big lakes.

After Kuutti canal there was a forest section which went at the top of the crumbled cliff then down to an actual road with a few cabins so apparently you can get there by car from somewhere too. We wanted to find a quiet place to have a bite to eat so ended up in this spot called Olhava used for rock climbing.One of the best spots in Finland they say.

Olhava rock climbing and barbecue spot

And it did indeed look like it was just a straight wall up. Again a nice barbecue spot with a campfire to warm up while having a picnic.

Descent from Olhavanvuori

We were running out of time so calculated that if we are quick with the ascent we can make it up to the top of that cliff called Olhavanvuori for some nice views and then head back.

The ascent which began just before Olhava barbecue spot (which was a dead end anyway) was shorter than we thought and all the practice we have done has made a difference and it did not feel that hard at all anymore.

It was quite rocky so poles would be helpful here!

Top was at 141 meters and such beautiful views with Autumn colors!

Top of Olhavanvuori
Observation tower at the top of Mustavuori

Intention was to climb atop Mustavuori still which was on the way back so walked along the road a bit until we found the path up there. Again really good ascent and incline. Poles would be useful on this ascent too so rocky and fairly steep in Finnish scale.

At the top you can find an observation tower taking up up to 127 meters. This is a good spot to see an almost 360 view around the area. So many lakes and perfect spots for a summer cottage!

After taking a few selfies at the top of the tower (see feature image at the top of the post) we realized that we should really head back to the boat now so we won’t miss the last one.

Path to Ketun lossi ”Fox ferry” from the suspension bridge

Luckily the direct path to the suspension bridge from Kuutti duct is gravel so we walked briskly the whole way back to where the boat would leave.

What we had failed to double check at some point was the timetable. The last boat had gone an hour earlier so after we realized this, our only option was to walk to Ketun lossi, Fox ferry 1,7 kilometers along the lakeside. See the U curve on the right hand side of the track 😀

This ”ferry” moved with man power so pulling yourself to the other side was the only option. It was fun and we were at our car just when it got pitch dark.

Caught beautiful sunset on the lake though…

Sunset on the way to Ketun lossi ”Fox ferry”

Next time do not forget the head light and remember to double check the timetables! Then again next time the suspension bridge will be open again so we would not have one of the problems anyway. Still good to remember the light as it is getting darker earlier and earlier in Finland.

The paths in the park were mostly wide and gravel, but ascents were at times more rocky and rugged. At least during Autumn it was pretty wet and slippery, but good hiking boots and you are fine.

Then again if you only take the gravel roads you can get to nice picnic spots without climbing too much. So this kind of option would be great with kids for example.

If you do decide to climb up to one of the tops with views beware that there are sudden drops down so with smaller children it is good to know and in case you are scared of heights stay further from the edges.

If you have knee problems just skip the biggest climbs and enjoy the lakeside or give it a try on one of them with the help of poles!

The route took us 4 hours and 26 minutes, but it is not really comparable as we walked so fast the last bits. I would reserve a day to come here. Come early in the morning so that you can enjoy the views, nature and relax without the pressure of sunset. Generally calculate 2,0 to 3,0 kilometers and hour as the average speed depending on your fitness level plus time to stop, take photos and eat.

I totally fell in love with this place and we will surely visit it again now that we know how ”close” it is to our home. Definitely recommend!


  • 17 kilometers
  • Ascent 276 meters
  • Descent 276 meters
  • Highest point 141
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Training W42 – Getting back to it slowly

Finally the flu seems to be subsiding and I have been slowly getting back to running. I still have not dared to do any HIIT training, but normal run 5,5 kilometers felt pretty OK. Unfortunately after that my nose was blocked again so put running to halt again for a few days, not that I would have had time either.

Gospel Helsinki (my current choir) had two concerts short ones at this new shopping Mall of Tripla opening which is apparently the biggest shopping mall in Scandinavia!Check video/post; FB post and FB video

So two evenings went there, and I could not even sing properly on Thursday so I was pretty down again thinking that I won’t be able to go to our planned hike on Saturday to Repovesi National park with my husband. Again decided to take it hour at a time and decide when it would be time to go.

I felt ok in the evening so we decided to drive there. It is one of the best high places in Southern Finland they say so I have been wanting to go there for a while. After the hike at home in the evening I suddenly got this feeling that hey I’m fine. The bug is gone and I feel good, finally! So it took three weeks to pass this virus or whatever it was.

Looking forward to next week, finally normal execise routines and writing a blog post of the visit to national park! Life is winning <3


  • 1 run 5,5 kilometers
  • 1 walk 3,6 kilometers
  • Indoor climbing once
  • 1 hike 17 kilometers


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Training W41 – Flu continues, training at stand still

There is really not much to tell about training last week. I did go to the Gym and a short walk after the Lake District challenge hike, but that was pretty much it. There was a lot to catch up at work and I still had some cough and runny nose so decided to just rest to make sure it does not go worse.

I unfortunately also managed to get an infection to my skin which I did not notice until my lymph node started to swell. It did not seem to heal so had to go to the doctor and I am on antibiotics now.

All in all feeling is pretty down and useless after the injury from orienteering, then the flu and now this infection. I have not been able to train properly and have been physically feeling bad for so many weeks now that I truly hope I can get back to training soon, my mind needs it! The fundraising bit has also proven to be really hard as it is not that common here.

Positive thing is that my leg is almost completely healed now so I was able to go to the gym, but did not put full weights yet. The gym session itself was not a triumph either. I was aching from everywhere and my body just was not working as it normally would so did not want to push myself. Maybe I should have.

Anyway since there is really nothing I can do about this but wait, that is what I will do. Wait and hope that next week I will be better.


  • 1 hike 6,4 km, Third day of Lake district challenge
  • 1 Walk 5 km
  • 1 gym session


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