Tub on the Run


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Settling in to 2018

Hello hello! Yes, I know – I’ve managed to blog twice within 10 days, which is already a vast improvement on my 2017 attempts!  Hurrah!  I’ve been thinking about what it is that I enjoy, and I remain firmly in the enjoying blogging and reading blogs camp, so clearly need to do more of it.

So looking at the last week, I think I’m building the foundations of a good year.  New Year’s Day was spent with my mum and sister, and involved a walk down the beach. It was nice – cold, but nice to blow out the cobwebs (and try and reduce the impact that my Mini Cheddar consumption may have had). After the beach, Matt and I headed home to start thinking about getting ready for work on Tuesday.  Matt wasn’t actually back at work until Thursday, but for my sins, I was back on Tuesday.

I did not sleep well on Monday night, and zombied my way through Tuesday. It wasn’t quite the start of the year I was hoping for, but I did have a good day for the most part. I even tried to sneak in my actual lunch break (I’m terrible at taking a proper lunch break). The rest of the week passed by uneventfully, and ended with me attending a yoga course on Friday.

While I’ve not made any New Year’s resolutions (I think impending job change and the required reining in of spending covers a couple of bases), I do need to look at reducing my weight. Still. I thought about doing another Whole 30, but I decided to take the pressure off the start of the year.  I have also given some thought about what I want from a weight-loss group.  I’ve been to this yoga studio a few times for their yoga nidra classes, which I love, and when I found out that there was a weight loss course being run by the same lady, I signed up. I’ll perhaps do a blog on this another day and go into a bit more detail, but safe to say, I really enjoyed it, and think the group is going to be wonderfully supportive.

Ahead of the weekend, Matt and I agreed that it would be good to have a quiet weekend, one where we could regroup and not put pressure on doing anything and everything. On Saturday, I needed to pop out to get some more yarn for my temperature blanket.  Matt came with me, and we made a walk of it, coming the scenic way home.

When we came home, I settled down and started working on my project, only to be joined by Timo. He isn’t the most helpful of “supervisors” when you’re trying to join a long line of squares.

Knowing that fresh air is good for my mental health, we went for a walk around Killerton today. A long lie in, some faffing and a couple of episodes of The West Wing later, and we made it out in time for a late lunch.  Bellies full of leek and potato soup, and a cake for good measure, and we headed out for a wander around the Acland Walk.

It was nice to get out with the camera and take some pictures as the sun set. What I hadn’t accounted for was how cold it was! I feel like my ears will fall off and my legs will never be warm again. Time for a cup of tea!

How was your first week back? What’s the weather like in your part of the world?

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It’s been a while (again)

So I am currently sat in a hospitality tent at Brands Hatch (tent isn’t really a fancy enough word. Is marquee a posher tent?), and for the first time in ages I actually have some capacity to write! I apologise if it comes out a but skew whiff as I am writing on my phone.

Yeah sure, I could be outside, walking about with Matt who is currently off photographing the Porsche 919 Hybrid which is making some sort of track debut, but I’m parked at a cafe style part of the tent/marquee with a diet coke, pick n mix and a water. And it’s quite lovely. 
These last few months have been really trying. Mostly it is work related. I’ve debated about what to post about all of this but I think it is just safest to say that it isn’t the team that I used to love working in any more. It’s changed and for me, has really taken its toll on my mental health. I have ended up in a really dark place but now feel like I am coming out the other side. 
The point of my ramblings? As much as anything, I just wanted to check in. I miss writing but my head hasn’t been in a place to write at all. I also wanted to share a couple of the things that I have been trying to practice over the last few months to get out of my funk: 

  1. Realising that my self-worth is not intrinsically linked to my job. This has been a tough one and one that I haven’t really mastered yet. Doing well in my job has always been a validation of how good I am. I don’t have the highest self-esteem at the best of times and doing well at work has always been a crutch. So what if I don’t have a social life? I am kicking ass at work. Dont feel like I’m a good person? That’s ok because work thinks I’m pretty great. Then, work isn’t going as well, I am not top of the class and suddenly I have no other validation. But that doesn’t make me a bad person. It doesn’t make me unworthy of anything. It’s tough to remember that sometimes though. 
  2. Focus on the good people. I have a wonderful family, who have supported me so much through all of this, whether it has been just letting me talk about the same old crap, time and time again, or corralling me out into the fresh air, or just giving me space when I have needed it, they have been the rocks of my world. Conversley, this time has definitely showed up a couple of false friends during this time, which has been painful and tough. 
  3. Wallow, but not for too long. I have wallowed. Good God have I wallowed. And sometimes I have really needed to do that, and not just shove things down and carry on. But at some point, I had to realise that in constantly wallowing, I am always the victim of my story. It has taken me a while to commit to a course of action, but I have. 
  4. Get outside. I feel better when I have moved from my sofa, got dressed and made it out of the house. Even if it is just walking the 10 minutes to Tesco and back. As it turns out, I have discovered a new part of Killerton with my mum, sister and Matt and had fun doing it. Matt and I had a lovely wander around Knightshayes garden. I’ve enjoyed a lovely lunch out with my parents-in-law, and Gatcombe was soggy but enjoyable. I’ve been to a few home games for Exeter Chiefs and thoroughly enjoyed myself (and they’re doing pretty well!).

I really do hope to post things that are a little more upbeat soon, and also get back into some sort of regular posting schedule. 
Enough of my blathering, what’s new with you? 


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Killerton Classic Car Show 2016

The alternative title for this post was “A risk of getting a tan this year”. When we lived in the flat, I used to get so miserable that going outdoors was just not going to happen. Between not feeling comfortable in my own body, the humidity of living in the middle of a seaside town to the ridiculous amount of tourists lazily dawdling through the town, I didn’t enjoy summers there. This year though, with the bonus of a garden, I’m really enjoying getting out and about more (and surprise, surprise, my mood is better for it!).

Saturday

I got home really late (for me) from my friend’s leaving do, flopping in to bed at around 1:30am. I’d had a great night out though, despite not drinking at all. After sleeping in a bit, I put a couple of loads of washing on, cleaned the kitchen thoroughly and had a coffee. I’d bought a couple of jars of Little’s instant coffee a couple of months ago, and also got a packet of ground chocolate caramel infused coffee. I don’t own a cafetière, but I wanted a proper coffee so improvised and used my tea pot and strainer. It worked!

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Happy days! As I was sorting myself out, Matt popped down to Cullompton Farmer’s Market and bought some sausages from Moonbeams Farm for breakfast. I then popped out to get some bacon (also Moonbeams), picked up some wild garlic bread for Matt from Bread of Devon and some venison for a casserole from Garlandhayes Farm. I haven’t cooked with venison before, so I am going to the oracle that is Pinterest later to work out what I can make.

For the rest of the day, we popped up to Matt’s family as we had some stuff to drop off for him mum. While we were there, we picked up some gardening tools which had been offered to us. A nice evening in followed, and we watched The Hateful Eight (very bizarre – a typical Tarantino film).

Sunday

Hasn’t it been glorious today! Matt had spotted that Killerton House was hosting a classic car show this weekend, so we thought we’d pop on over (make the most of our National Trust membership!). After I’d hung the washing out, made another coffee and pottered, we jumped in the car and headed to Killerton.

Killerton House - Classic - London Transport Bus

I wasn’t sure what to expect to be honest. Often, we find these types of events quite underwhelming, but actually this was really good!

Killerton Classic Car Show 2016

We wandered around the fields with hundred of classics, ooh-ing and ahh-ing at various cars. For us, classics have always been old cars, things from the 1940s until the 1970s. Classic car owners are also “classics” themselves if you catch my drift. As we were walking along, we came across a Maestro.

Killerton Classic Car Show Rally Maestro

I’d be lying if there wasn’t a bit of a horrifying realisation that Matt and I grew up with some cars that are now considered classics. How on earth has that happened?! I remember the red Maestro that we had as a family when I was little (though it wasn’t in as good nick as this one). Then we came across a Rover Metro. Dad had a Metro in the mid-90s which was his driving school car. I’ve turned into one of those people who says “I remember when MG Fs were cool”.

Killerton Classic MG Bear

There were some really great cars on display, and it was interesting to read about various exhibit’s restoration processes and owner history. What really struck me was how loved these cars all were – the amount of time, money and love that goes into them is so evident.

Killerton Classic 2016

I really enjoyed wandering around. There was a craft section too, but I wasn’t too interested as it was mostly jewellery or things for children.

When we got home, we nipped into the garden to discuss the next steps that we need to make to reclaim the borders, get things tidy and start planting things and making it our own. We agreed the grass desperately needs mowing (mower to be bought next week) and the borders rotivating and neatening. Then we can work out what can go where.

I suspect I have some sunburn now, despite slapping on the sunscreen. It’s been a really nice, relaxed weekend though.

Have you had a nice weekend? What did you get up to?


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T minus 1 to my Whole 100

It’s Whole 100 Eve today! I’ve decided to take some time out to blog about where I am right now, with pictures and everything. In my January Whole 30, I made the mistake of forgetting to take any before pictures. This time, I’ve remembered!

Starting Point

This is my starting point. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I felt like an over-stuffed sausage, squeezing into these capri pants again. It’s a long time since I wore them last, and man can I feel the extra pounds in this! I am also cringing a little to post this, but I’m desperately trying to remind myself that this is my “before” photo. It’s going to get better from here.

Whole 100 Minus Day 1 Beyond the Sofa

Obviously it should go without saying – apologies for the awful hair and lack of make up. It’s Sunday – that’s my excuse, and I’m sticking to it! I’ve weighed myself, measured myself, and taken photographs. One thing? I am definitely hoping for a bit more of a tan in 100 days! I’m still undecided what I am going to do about weighing in over the course of the Whole 100. In my Whole 30 round up from January, the creators of Whole 30 think you should look at the achievements beyond the scale, but when you have such a large amount to lose, I think it is helpful, so I am going to do what works for me. I don’t want to be beholden to the scale like I used to feel when I did Slimming World, but I also don’t feel ready to go it solo.

Anyway, I think it’s fair to say that my weight loss seems to have ground to a halt lately. I’m bobbing around the same couple of pounds, and I find myself regularly overeating just because it’s there.

Energy and other stuff

I honestly feel like I live in a kind of “coffee cannot cure this kind of tired” way at the moment. I have quite defined peaks and troughs in my energy (don’t ask me for anything between 3:30pm and 5:00pm – it won’t get done). My procrastination levels are possibly reaching new highs too. This has been further compounded by some really awful sleep. Normally I’m a good sleeper, but lately, my sleep has been quite broken. I’ve been quite good at getting to bed on time, as I had promised myself that I would do, though my weekends need some work! The sleep itself though has been decidedly naff.

Let’s talk about skin, hair and nails. Now, I’m going to paint you a lovely picture with words. I think I’m turning into a crust. My skin is so awfully dry and flaky. My scalp is sore with painful dandruff. My nails are super thin and brittle. I’m truly gorgeous! I had a facial a couple of weeks ago in the hope of sorting my skin out, but even that didn’t really help.

About my Whole 100

When I wrote my post about doing a Whole 100 a couple of weeks ago, I thought I’d be able to breeze through it with no real issues. How hard can it be? It’s only 3 lots of Whole 30 plus 10 days. I’ve done 3 Whole 30s already after all. Then, I suddenly start thinking that actually, 100 days is really long and that I don’t want to be a hermit. Then I remembered it is the Devon County Show in a couple of weeks, and I won’t be able to eat the wonderful cheeses, breads and other samples. Then I remembered that I am out with friends the following week. Then I remembered that I am actively choosing to do this, for good reasons, and that in the grand scheme, 100 days really isn’t very long and I will be able to eat out as normal but I’ll have to be that person. It’ll be fine.

I’m expecting the first couple of weeks to be a standard Whole 30 affair, with some grumpiness, some breakouts, some issues with tiredness and concentration. From around Day 30 onwards, I would anticipate either some food boredom or plate envy, and maybe a desire to binge eat. I suspect I’ll probably have a bit of a grump around then too, though that is wandering into uncharted territory at that point.

I’ll be blogging about it, but it won’t be as frequent as my January Whole 30, as, y’know, 100 days and all.

I have a “send off” of chicken fajitas and tiramisu, so I am going to head off and have my tea. Wish me luck!


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Weigh in Wednesday 14: Bad eating will catch you up

Weigh in Wednesday 14

It’s been a busy-ish week. I’ve worked some pretty long hours, and had a weekend away. On Friday night, I popped down to my parents’ house to spend some time with them as my sister would be going home over the weekend, and I wouldn’t get the chance to say goodbye after Friday. I finished off my Green and Black’s mint chocolate Easter egg while I was there. Thinking about it, that is probably the longest time it has taken me to eat an Easter egg. I was always the child who ate them over the course of the Easter weekend.

On Saturday, I had to be up early. Matt wanted to get on the road early on to get to Brands Hatch for the first British Touring Car Championship meeting of the year. He’d won tickets on Twitter and booked us in to the Travelodge at Dartford for Saturday night.

BTCC Brands Hatch

We’ve never been to Brands Hatch before but arrived in good time, and what a gorgeous day! We were really blessed with the weather. It was warm for most of the day, but turned a bit nippy as we took a seat in the grandstands to watch the touring car practice session.

Breakfast was a bit of a mish mash of stuff, but not unhealthy. Lunch was a different story. It was a burger and chips from one of the local vendors. Tea was then Burger King. I didn’t think to check what the facilities near the Travelodge were. I’m used to staying in Premier Inns with work, which always have proper food facilities there and I tend to forget that Travelodges aren’t like this. On Sunday, breakfast was a bacon bap from the circuit, lunch was a steak sandwich (with brie – this wasn’t really a winning combination). Tea was then from MacDonald’s as we hadn’t thought forward to get anything out for tea when we got home. If I see another burger in the near future, I will probably scream.

Perhaps unsurprisingly then, I’m recording a 3lb gain this week. More importantly, I’ve learned that my body just isn’t that keen on bread, despite what my taste buds say. After the first couple of mouthfuls, I always get hiccups. I kind of knew this already from my previous Whole 30s, and I don’t tend to have much bread these days, so it was a bit of a surprise.

I am back on it now though. I feel like it’s turning into salad weather now, so I have had salad for lunch and batch cooked meals for tea with loads of veggies. One thing I do need to kick is having cereal around 9pm. I don’t need it, I’m not hungry, and it’s just turned into a bit of a habit. Anyway, onwards and downwards!

Did you have a nice weekend?


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Whole 30 Days 28 to 30: Round 3 complete!

finished-the-w30-fb-cover

Happy Day 30 to me! I am going to get my thoughts down on how all of my Whole 30 went during round 3, but for now, I’ll carry on with my previous format.

Day 28

Breakfast: Fruit and almonds

Lunch: Beef stew with carrot and swede mash

Tea: Chicken korma with cauliflower rice

How I’m feeling: I have to admit I feel pretty sad today. It isn’t food related, but I was shocked to hear about the passing of Terry Wogan. As a self-confessed, and perhaps premature Radio 2 listener (a TOG if you will), Terry Wogan, Deadly Alancoat (Alan Dedicoat), Lynn Bowles and Boggy Marsh accompanied me on all of my commutes to work when I lived in Chesterfield. There were a lot of times that I had to stay in the car just to hear the end of whatever they were talking about, often belly laughing about snorkers or a poem. Incensed when Chris Evans joined, I reconverted back to Radio 1 with Chris Moyles, but it wasn’t the same (I don’t dislike that many people, but I really don’t like Chris Evans). Instead, Terry then accompanied Matt and I when we went on Sunday morning journeys. It was fitting then, as I was at Mum’s for lunch, that we ate and listened to her CD of Janet and John stories (please check them out if you haven’t heard of them before, they’re pure genius).

Anyway, back in Whole 30 land, Mum very kindly cooked a beef stew and served it with swede and carrot mash, which made it completely Whole 30 compliant. It was really tasty too. I had a lovely afternoon catching up and putting the world to rights with Mum, and providing a warm lap to this nutter…

Harley

He’s so gorgeous. It’s been another good day, plenty of energy despite the late night last night. I definitely feel that I’m riding the crest of the wave.

Day 29

Breakfast: Fruit and almonds

Lunch: Salad with a couple of slices of beef

Tea: Pulled pork with sweet potato

How I’m feeling: I am pleased about the return of sweet potatoes! It has been quite a long time for us to have gone sweet potato free. It was another late night, and all things considered, I don’t feel bad at all. I’ve had a really productive day at work, which continued in to the evening. I had some stuff to do when we got home, then had tea, and then made up a meatloaf and prepared a stew which will be cooked tomorrow. It does mean that we’re eating meatloaf for the next few meals, but I don’t mind that too much. I also prepared breakfast. I can’t believe it’s Day 29 already!

Day 30

Breakfast: Eggs with pancetta and tomatoes

Lunch: Meatloaf

Tea: Meatloaf with carrot noddles and cauliflower rice

How I’m feeling: I am feeling excellent. I had a long team meeting this morning, and I felt that I was alert and able to contribute without any mental fug or distractions about feeling hungry. I have kept back up on my fluid intake again, though I have noticed I’ve started to get a sore throat. I am hoping it’s nothing and I’ll be able to fight it off quickly if it does develop in to anything. Matt weighed himself this morning, and he reckons that he has lost a whopping 25lbs! That is really fantastic, and I couldn’t be more pleased for him! He’s ready to go down the next jeans size too, so he’s pretty chuffed with it all.

I really can’t believe how quickly these 30 days have gone and how different this Whole 30 has been compared to my previous two efforts. As I said, I will be doing a full recap of all the 30 days over the next couple of day, but if you want to catch up with my previous days, they’re all here:


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Whole 30 Days 19 to 21: on the up!

After a pretty miserable few days, I feel like I am on the up again! And about time too! It isn’t (cringe) the “tiger blood“/superhero feeling, but I am feeling more together.

Day 19

Breakfast: Diced bacon, hard boiled egg and sweet potato

Lunch: Chicken in Matt’s amazing tomato sauce and veggie couscous

Tea: Steak with onions and sweet potato

How I’m feeling: I am glad it’s Friday, that’s for sure! It was one of the busier days in the office again today, and I didn’t end up eating my lunch until nearly 4pm. I had planned to have it earlier, but a meeting overran and then I had a couple of others to go to. One thing that I was pretty glad of was I didn’t get ravenously hungry (or grumpy). Yes, I was hungry, but I wasn’t chew-on-your-arm kind of hungry. I also noticed I seemed to keep a better concentration level going. All in all, it’s been a pretty good day.

Day 20

Breakfast: French omelette

Lunch: Ham and a juice

Tea: Chicken stir fry with sweet potatoes

How I’m feeling: Refreshed! Finally! I woke up, having had nearly 9 hours of sleep and felt good. Over breakfast, Matt and I were talking about what we wanted to do in the day. His nearly-Whole-30 is going really well, and he decided his treat would be a new Xbox 1 controller (how it’s different from the other one, I’m not entirely sure, but I’ve been told it is MUCH better than the other). Unfortunately the only place that had it was an Argos in Plymouth (which is about an hour away). We’d also been talking about rejoining the National Trust, so decided to do it today and stop by Saltram House on the outskirts of Plymouth on the way back from Argos.

Saltram House

It was a really murky day, but the weather is clearly confusing the plant life – the daffodils, snowdrops and crocuses were all out in force. We didn’t get to go around the whole house, as only the east wing is open at the moment, but it was a nice way to spend a couple of hours. We’re going to go back in the spring (when hopefully the sun is shining!) so we can go around all of the house and gardens.

Gardens at Saltram

Around 3:45pm, we headed home, stopping at Tesco to see if they had a magazine that Matt was looking for. Because we hadn’t had lunch either, we picked up a couple of things to munch. I picked up ham and a juice. It wasn’t the best thought out meal, but it filled a hole until tea time. This evening, I’ve put in a big Muscle Food order, which will hopefully be here on Wednesday. I’ve included a couple of their paleo snacks to see what they’re like. If one thing that this Whole 30 has told me is that I can’t be prepared all the time, so having a back up plan is a good idea.

Anyway, it’s been another pretty good day today – the Whole 30 goodness is beginning to come through!

Day 21

Breakfast: Banana, melon, apple and orange juice

Lunch: French omelette with ham, followed by dried apricots and pistachio nuts

Tea: Prawn stir fry with carrot noodles

How I’m feeling: Another good long sleep, and I’m feeling good! We decided to get a juice for breakfast in the Guildhall in Exeter rather than eat at home. I realised that the smoothie I usually like (Banana Boat) has yoghurt in, so I asked for one without the yoghurt. It wasn’t quite the same, but it was a nice change. It wasn’t an exciting shopping trip (conditioner, deodorant, lip balm), but it was nice to get out the house for a bit. I definitely think I am procrastinating a bit less than I have done in the recent past.

Fancy catching up on my January Whole 30 so far? Here you go: