Tub on the Run

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A blogging challenge: 52 weeks of gratitude

Hello February! I’ve seen a lot of people say that January really dragged on for them.  I have to admit, the time didn’t seem to be a problem, but it wasn’t an easy month for one reason and another.

Over the last week, what I have managed to do is get home on time (ish) and remember that the Blogtacular twitter chat was on, on Wednesday. While waiting for that to start, I saw that the We Are 30 Plus bloggers also hold a chat on Thursdays, which I thought I’d join in with for the first time.

I really enjoy the Blogtacular chat and often leave with a few hastily scribbled notes and learning points, but wasn’t sure what to expect from the 30 Plus Bloggers chat.  Well, I came away from that on Thursday having got chatting to a few lovely people, and added a couple more blogs to my reading list. One of the conversations I had was with Jenny from And The Beat Goes. Of course, there ensued an obligatory stalking of Jenny’s twitter profile, and I spotted the pinned post on her twitter page, which is a 52 week gratitude challenge.

So, as Week 1 calls for – why this challenge?

I struggle to see the wood for the trees a lot of the time, and feel that I am constantly operating from a platform of stress and worry. Matt and I have had a lot of conversations lately that revolve around me overthinking anything and everything, turning the world into a gloomy, doom-filled place. The reality? It isn’t anywhere near as bad as I think, and in a way, the fact that I know this almost makes it worse. It’s like my logical brain says “it isn’t that bad, and you know what to do to stop it from getting there”, but the scatty, frazzled part is constantly working on the “what if that goes wrong, and this goes wrong, etc”. If a friend came to me, getting stressed about the things I think through on a daily basis, I would be able to reason with them, talk them through it, and have perspective. But I cannot seem to do that for myself.

For me ,this challenge is therefore about trying to see the good, write about it, enjoy it and remind myself that really, it isn’t that my world is imploding, it’s that my thinking has focused on the wrong bits. It’s an exercise in mindfulness, and I’m hoping that a weekly focus on the things to be grateful for will help me maintain better perspective.

How’s 2017 going for you so far?

Moving to pastures new

It’s been a busy summer that has not left a huge amount of time for writing or reading, which is a shame, as I have missed both.  Work has been eventful with some new changes for me to get used to.  We bought our first house, and moved in over the bank holiday weekend in August.  We’ve sadly lost a couple of relatives along the way too, so it really has been a bittersweet summer.

One thing that being away from blogging has done has made me evaluate where I am.

Tub was a really great place to start blogging and I enjoyed it.  It started as a way to document my adventures in to Couch to 5k.  I was going to the gym, spinning and going to Zumba Tone.  I was also a member of Slimming World.  All in all, I was pretty active and usually had a reasonable amount to write about – Tub was indeed, on the run.

As time has passed, I feel like I have less to say about the running and weight loss as I have lost my way a bit.  The thing is, I don’t want to stop writing about these things, but I also don’t want to just write about them too.  So, for a fresh start I’ve decided to start a shiny new blog over at Beyond the Sofa.  I hope you’ll come over and have a nose around!

I am not importing the blog posts from Tub over to BTS, so this blog will remain here but will no longer be updated. I have changed the name of my Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest, so if you’re one of my lovely followers, you’ll hopefully have seen my social media stuff change name.  Don’t worry – it’s just me!


Saying sorry and moving on

Dear me,

I owe you an apology.  Well, two really.  The first will be for the cliché that follows.  The second is for taking you for granted.

You’re not ill.  Well, at least I’m pretty sure you’re not, but I know you’re not right either.  You’re not right because I had stopped caring.  I made you sit on the sofa while I wallowed.  I parked us at the desk for the whole day and avoided walking anywhere because, well, I’ve caught sight of us in the mirror.  I’ve stuffed you full of junk food for a silly amount of time, knowing full well that it isn’t helping.

Every time I have caught sight of you in the mirror, I’ve mentally beat you up.  Your eyes seem to have disappeared into your now pudgy cheeks.  Your side profile is wide.  Your skin has broken out badly.  I’ve called you the traitor, but really, I think it is me.  You’ve made the best of what I’ve given you – processed junk with little nutritional value, and kept you indoors, out from the fresh air, and away from other people.  The paranoia that has come with all of this means that I constantly think people judge you.  Hell, I have judged you.  I haven’t valued you.

But I wanted to let you know that things are changing.  Friday just gone, instead of making a song and dance about new leaves and all that jazz, I decided to stop.  We’re going back to more whole foods and homecooked meals and turning away from the junk.  Saturday morning, I stepped on the scales and saw the highest number I’ve ever seen.  Later that day, I bought the biggest size jeans I’ve ever bought.  But I’ve decided to stop beating you up.

You’re better than that.

You always make the best of a bad situation.  And we will have bad situations ahead.  Giving up the junk food is going to be hard, especially after the free rein we’ve had.  Exercise is going to be hard, but we’ll remember that there was a time when we enjoyed it, and that will come again.  You’re going to change, and not all of it will be for the better – I worry especially about the amount of loose skin, but we can deal with that.

There will be plateaus, life, stress, celebrations and excuses, but we’re aiming for consistency and progress, not perfection.  This time, we’re not rushing it – I’m not going to shake up the food and demand 5 days a week of exercise.  I can’t sustain us like that – it just gets too much.  And you’re still struggling to get over the sprained ankle from March.

I’ve also decided to try and make this a bit more fun.  If there is something I have realised, it’s that we have missed life.  As our first outing in the hope of being more fun, I signed up us to Run or Dye at Great Fulford.  I’d signed us up for it ages and ages ago, working on the premise that (obviously) we’d be on Week 9 of Couch to 5k again.  Clearly that hasn’t been the case.  I had all but decided to pull out, but I’ve since decided “what the hell” and will be digging out a white t-shirt specially.  Don’t worry, we’re not going to run it – we’re there purely for the colour!  It’s going to make a hell of a #TransformationTuesday photo one day!

So I guess what I’m trying to say, aside from sorry, is that I believe in us.  We are going to make it.

Love, me xx


Winning streak! (and protein powder)

I go through phases of winning things.  These phases are usually years and years apart.  Probably my last significant “win” was when I won a load of Spiderman books and several packets of the amazing games that was Pogs.


Well this year, I entered one giveaway – Miss Wheezy‘s two year blogiversary, and won a crate of Coco Cafe drinks (which were very tasty), and a £20 voucher for Wiggle.  Unusually for me, I didn’t go straight and and spend the voucher.  Instead, I waited until recently, trying to work out what would be a good choice.  With my autumn plans starting, and specifically, the running part, I thought it would be a good idea to get a jacket.  The problem is that when you’re the size I am, there aren’t many running jackets that fit.  I won’t say that I found one that fit right now, but I have found one that isn’t too far off – the Brooks Boylston jacket.


It arrived while I was away in August, and I have to say, I am impressed with Wiggle’s speed of delivery, the Haribo star mix that came with the jacket were a nice touch, and I would definitely buy from them again.  I really love the jacket.  I cannot believe how light it is – it’s practically weight-less.  There are also thumb holes.  No idea about whether it actually works as a jacket yet – the weather hasn’t been too bad!

So – thank you to Beki at Miss Wheezy for the voucher!

The second part of my giveaway winning streak is from Julie at Too Fat to Run.  Julie’s website is a fantastic resource for the larger than typical runner, with advice, good humour, and now, merchandise catering for the larger lady.  Julie asked for some ideas for future blog posts, and one of my suggestions was chosen.  She contacted me, and sent me a technical tank top in orange.

Too fat to run

I love the colour – you definitely cannot miss me!  Julie stocks a vibrant green and pick too.  What I really like about the top, aside from the colour, is the length.  I am not extremely tall, but I do have quite a long body, and finding a top that is long enough, regardless of whether it is gym wear, or normal wear, can be difficult.  So this definitely wins all round.  The only thing I would change is the logo, purely because I prefer small logos on my clothing.

Thank you Julie for the top, planner and cards.  I’ll definitely be coming back for my next size down!

My last thing, which I didn’t win, but bought, but I thought I’d mention was a new protein shake.  I had read about Purition on Wedges and Weights.  I always seem to hurt a huge, disgusting amount, after kettlebells, and protein shakes help to minimise the pain (and therefore allow me to actually function on a daily basis).  The previous shake I’ve had is full of unpronounceable chemicals, and I wanted to have something a bit more natural.  Purition only uses natural ingredients.  The taste is therefore much less sweet than other protein shakes I’ve had, but I actually think I prefer that.  The seedy bits in it are also a bit different, but okay.


I bought the coconut flavour, and it is subtle, but nice. The speed of delivery was pretty good too.

I think that rounds up all my fitness based wins and purchases lately.  I’m looking forward to using them, and I’m actually wishing for some wet weather towards the end of the month so I can test drive my jacket!

Have you won anything recently? Or bought any new-to-you things?


Tub on the parkrun

The week seems to have run away from me.  Thursday, I went to my first spinning class in a very long time.  It was brutal and my ribs hurt from too much breathing heavily.  I went with N, and we went to her’s for tea afterwards.  She very kindly cooked me a Slimming World meal.  We spent the rest of the evening talking wedding, and colours in particular.  We’ve settled on colours, which are in keeping with the original autumnal theme.  It was midnight before I crawled into bed.

Friday was exercise free.  It was Supper Club though.  This time, we decided to go to Olive in Newton Abbot.  Olive is a tapas restaurant.  We went to Olive about 2 years ago, and didn’t much care for the service.  The first time around, the woman was surly and lacked any real customer service skills.  The food was nice though.  This time, the food was ok and the service much improved.  I’m not sure we’ll be back in a hurry (I personally found the food a little too oily to want to go there regularly, but that’s my personal preference), but we will be back.

When I got home last night, I decided to set my alarm for a decent time this morning, vowing to do my local parkrun.  The alarm went off, and to my joy, there were clouds and drizzle (I’m not being sarcastic – this is perfect for Tub Running).  M very kindly came with me (well, I needed back up/someone to hold my bag/next of kin).  He was also chief photographer (for me, not the parkrun).  While he missed my graceful jaunt over the finish line, I think you’ll agree that he got some nice pictures anyway.

How was it?  It was great!  I really enjoyed it.


As we walked up the hill towards the startline, the Race Director (Run Director?) asked if there were any newbies, so I stuck my hand up and shuffled through to the front for an additional briefing.  After the general briefing, the horn went, and off I toddled.  I probably ran about 20 steps then had to stop to tie my pants, as they kept falling down.  Sadly, I was the last person already (and not something that got much better), but I was kept company by Tim, the sweep.  A couple of things I learned (fairly early on):

  1. I was incredibly glad it wasn’t too warm or sunny.
  2. Trails are HARD.  Like really hard.  I’ve only really ever run on tarmac.  I went from being quite pleased with myself for being able to run, to being a little bit miserable for not being able to run better.
  3. I can (just about) talk and run and breathe at the same time.


Tim was really nice, and very interesting to talk to.  He told me about how he got into running (cheering people on at the London Marathon, then vowing to do it himself – which he has done, multiple times), and is now, this year, running 13 half marathons (number 8 is tomorrow).  He was telling me about the charity he runs for and his time at parkrun.

So, good company and beautiful scenery took the sting out of being at the back for the majority of the run.

IMAG0180 IMAG0181 IMAG0188

Unfortunately, M didn’t get a photo of me actually running, so you’ll have to make do with my time instead:

Parkrun 22.6.13

Yep, I was last, but I had fun.  I hope to do it all again next week (to beat the 40 minute mark), and try hard not to be beaten by a power walker (though he was amazingly consistent in his speed) and a child who had suffered an ankle problem.  I will also try to remember to bring a little bit of loose change with me too so that M and I can have a coffee (or hot choc) in the tearooms next time.


Weekend Prep

You’ll be pleased to hear that I feel like I am on the way out from the stupid black hole I ended up in earlier in the week.  I have tried to get some perspective on the issues, and while I will confess to having wedding wobbles (not about getting married to M, but about the event itself), weight wobbles (and the wobbly bits of weight), along with work stresses, ultimately, they are piddling problems in the grand scheme, and perfectly manageable without the use of chocolate.

My morning weight is back down again, properly down.  I know, I am going against the Slimming World/general dieting advice of “don’t weigh every day”, but it works for me sometimes.  It’s working right now, and that’s the most important thing.

I haven’t managed to get a proper run in this week, which is frustrating, as I now have pink splodges on my otherwise green training plan.  Yes, I like to colour in.

training plan

I remember having a couple of off weeks on Couch to 5k, so I’m not too worried, but worried enough to make sure I get my proper long run in at the weekend. 

The weekend is nearly upon us.  This is a good thing, definitely.  M and I are off camping again, and while I am looking forward to a weekend of motorsport (British GTs to be specific), I am not looking forward to the camping conundrum that is food.  I have planned to take Tesco’s Irish Stew, but I am stumped for other foods.  I think I may resort to couscous packets and rice packets that you can just add water too, and take a couple of bags of apples or something.  I don’t mind the idea of eating out on Sunday night, as we won’t be eating too late, and there are plenty of places around to eat at.  It’s an unusual weekend, as we leave Silverstone and come back via Castle Combe for the day, getting home on Monday night. 

I’ve got a busy evening ahead – I need to get the bags packed and start loading the car, as well as go to kettlebells, then make sure that the flat is visitor welcome for when my mum comes to cat sit.  It’s going to be a stressful evening, and probably a late one.

On that note, I will almost definitely not be around to blog until Tuesday now, but it will give me plenty to catch up with when I get back in terms of reading.

Have a wonderful weekend, whatever you’re up to!


Woo! Made it to Week 4

Ok, so I am pretty sure I look like this…

But, for the first time, I am now running more than I am walking, I feel like this…

Yes, I probably am that cross-eyed when I have finished too.  Nonetheless, I can now run for 5 whole minutes.  I think that is the longest I have ever run for.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s not quick, and it definitely isn’t pretty, but hell, I can do it!


Tub’s First Post

Hi there!

Firstly, please bear with me – I am trying to get my head around all of this blogging stuff, and am working on my page currently.  Thanks!

Why am I blogging?  Accountability really.  I am already a member of Slimming World, and the weekly weigh ins make me accountable for my weight.  I am, in part, accountable for my exercise in so far as I go with a friend and have activity dates, but I want to start running again.  I also want to be successful at it.  I don’t want to start running with someone (maybe other than M) as it’ll only dishearten me (I can be intensely competitive and a sore loser).

How am I going to throw my weighty bulk into running?  Slowly!  And using Couch to 5k.  I’ll be starting in February.  (the first week of, not the end of).  A couple more good weight loss weeks and I’ll feel better about my poor old knees having to absorb the shock of weight bearing activity!

I need to break the food/reward cycle, so will be having a think about non-food rewards for my weight loss milestones and running treats.  All suggestions welcome!

Thanks for reading!