Week In Review – The Corona Chronicles Part 41

It was that part of the festive season when nobody really knows what day it is anymore or what they’ve done with their day and we all have a sneaky suspicion we may have eaten too much/drunk too much/sat around too much. Mind you, we could say the same about most of 2020, right? With a week off work stretching ahead, I tried to keep a reasonable grip on what was going on by continuing with my morning runs (still hampered by wintery  conditions), getting back to some yoga again and making sure to split my time between a few household projects and some serious relaxing:

Monday – 5 miles + Hatha yoga via Zoom
Tuesday – 5 miles + living room workout + home yoga
Wednesday – 5 miles
Thursday – 5.2 miles + home yoga
Friday – double (not)parkrun + 3.9 miles
Saturday – (not)parkrun open sandwich + home yoga
Sunday – 5.56 miles + home yoga

I began my Monday in the time-honoured (for holidays) fashion of reading in bed with a cup of tea. I was super close to the end of my book so I finished it off then started my next one (which I’d had the foresight to set by my bed the night before). It looked really cold and slippy outside so I wasn’t in a rush to get out the door and run (don’t get me wrong, I wanted to run but am so wary of frosty, icy days in case I fall). As it turned out, it was marginally better than the day before and I was able to find a 5 mile route that seemed fairly safe underfoot.

I then spent the remainder of the morning on a little project I had wanted to undertake – rearranging some of my bookshelves. As a lifelong avid reader (and English teacher!) I have A LOT of books – including a pretty big pile of as yet unread books. I wanted to rearrange some of my shelves and make the higgeldy piggeldy piles of unread books more visually appealing by keeping them in some nice baskets we had stored away. I actually really like doing things like this, but it’s most definitely a holiday job. I also did all the dusting since I was moving things around and enjoyed catching up on some YouTube content while I did so.

In the afternoon I settled down to watch some tv, including the movie Planes, Trains and Automobiles which was on tv. It’s an absolute classic!

For something a bit more routine, I had a holiday session of my Monday night yoga class (so good!) before dinner and Steve and I finished the evening off with another episode of The Valhalla Murders.

Tuesday also began with some reading. It had snowed a bit overnight and it was so good to be cosy in bed with my book and a cup of tea.

When I did head out the door it was with my trusty Yaktrax firmly attached to my trainers and I headed off on the same 5 mile route as the day before as I thought it would be pretty clear in town. What I found was that it actually seemed icier there, I guess because with everything shut there just isn’t so much footfall. I still enjoyed being out and when I found soft snow to run on it was brilliant!

I had some more sedate bits and pieces to do – ordering some new winter running shoes and spending the money my parents gave me for Christmas (I knew exactly what I wanted, I just hadn’t ordered yet). I also had another Covid antibody test to do (I did this last month as part of the study going on here in Scotland). I got the text inviting me to take part again last week but with post stopping over Christmas, my kit only arrived that morning so we just did it straight away since Steve was heading out on some errands and he could post it back.

And when Steve headed out, I settled down for a movie. I chose The Princess Switch: Switched Again. I’m DEFINITELY getting addicted to these cheesy Christmas romances! I followed that up with the second episode of The Holiday Movies That Made Us which was about The Nightmare Before Christmas. These programmes are definitely worth a watch if you’re interested in learning more about how these movies came to be made.

All that sitting around must have been exhausting so I had a little nap before my afternoon workout. Then there was just enough time for a little yoga before dinner and the final two episodes of The Valhalla Murders.

It was still pretty wintery looking on Wednesday morning so after a bit of reading I bundled up in similar kit (including Yaktrax) to the day before and completed the same 5 mile route. Once again pretty slow, but I’d rather keep the pace easy and feel in control over the slippy surfaces than have a fall and get hurt. It was so icy that when I balanced my phone against the lid of our wheelie bin (letting you in on my photographic secrets haha!) it actually slid in the ice and I ended up with an amusing burst of shots as it did!

My morning task was to vacuum thoroughly – tools out and everything! Always a good opportunity for a bit of a tidy up, especially with all those new kitty toys from Christmas strewn around the living room!

I then settled down to catch up on some blogging and had some vlogs running in the background (again, a bit of catching up with some of the vloggers I like to follow), before spending some time finishing off my book. That brought my total number of books read in 2020 to 57!!! I certainly haven’t read anything like that amount in recent years and imagine the last time I had a total like that would have been at university (I did study English after all!) but I didn’t keep track of them all back then. That’s more than a book per week this year, certainly helped by the additional time at home and, while lunchtimes at work have been a little lonely with all the restrictions, it’s been nice using the chance to read a bit more so I can switch to a different activity (otherwise I would end up working through lunch and not having any break at all).

After a yoga session and our dinner, Steve and I finished the day by watching the first two episodes of The Sister which we recorded a couple of months ago. A bit unsettling but intriguing.

I awoke on Hogmanay (or New Year’s Eve to the rest of the world) to find that there had been some rain on top of the frozen snow so I assumed it would still be pretty slippery. I read for a bit in bed, then got bundled up to head out, still with those Yaktrax on my shoes. I’m glad I did as there were some stretches of the road which were super slippy and it was good to have the extra traction. I had checked my annual mileage before I left and calculated that a tiny addition to the route I had been running this week (5.2 miles rather than 5 miles) would have me finishing on as round a number as I could hope for: 1780 miles!

To put that in perspective, here are my stats for the previous 5 years – there are years which you could add together and still not come up with as high a number as that! It continues to astound me how my running has changed throughout my accidental run streak this year and I’m looking forward to seeing how that continues.

I also checked out my Strava stats for the year. That adds up to a LOT of laps of the track!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Run done, I had some chores to do. First, another pot of French Onion Soup for our New Year’s Day dinner, then another batch of the peanut butter fudge and finally another quick vacuum since some “enthusiastic” playing with the Christmas toys had resulted in loads of kitty hair and bright blue fluff on the carpets.

After some lunch I relaxed for a while with yet another cheesy Christmas romance, this time choosing The Knight Before Christmas. It’s starting to look like Vanessa Hudgens is the queen of the Netflix Christmas Universe haha! This film was a bit silly (and you DEFINITELY have to suspend your disbelief) but if you can’t watch something a bit magical at Christmas, then when can you?

I also got my annual “top nine” instagram pictures. A little different this year to previous years as none of them are travel-related!

I finished my afternoon with some work on the blog, and then after a quick yoga session it was time for Steve and I to settle down for the evening. We’re not really into staying up late to see in the new year, so we finished watching The Sister then went to bed as normal.

New Year’s Day itself was, unsurprisingly, a little different to the past few years. It has become our habit to do the parkrun double then head up to Blairgowrie for their long-standing 6k fun run. That brings us in at 10 miles for the day to earn our New Year steak pie! Of course this year there’s no parkrun at all (and they announced earlier in the year that there would be no more New Year doubles anyway) and for the first time in over 30 years the fun run couldn’t take place either.  Not for the first time, we decided to make our own fun and made plans a couple of weeks ago to create our own virtual version of these runs with two (not)parkruns and a 3.9 mile run.

But then the wintery weather hit and it wasn’t looking too hopeful to be out for a longer run on slippery paths. When we got up on Friday morning it looked really slippy in our street so we decided just to cut our losses and follow a similar route to the previous Friday (when we had our Christmas Day run) as that would cover one (not)parkrun and a cool down. As it turned out, the paths were actually a bit better than they have been and there wasn’t much traffic so running on the road was easier. As we were running back up the road and I stopped my watch at 3.1 miles, I suggested to Steve that we take a detour to lengthen our run and maybe clock that second (not)parkrun. Then as we passed the turn off to our street, we were only about a mile short so I suggested carrying on with a short out-and-back to complete the 3.1 miles of that second (not)parkrun…until I decided we should just go for it and do what we originally planned!

It was so nice to feel like I was running a bit more freely (although there were still some slippery patches to watch out for) and I was enjoying exchanging New Year greetings we others we passed. One of my favourites was that my friend’s granny, whom I often wave to as I pass by her window, was actually out at her front door so we were able to stop and wish her a happy new year then have a quick chat. She was beaming from ear to ear and just looked so pleased to have a chance to say hello – a real highlight of the run.

And we did it – a total of 10.1 miles (timed in three sections) in our run. More than we thought we were going to do as we set out the door, but then what else were we going to do with our day?

While Steve got showered, I thought I would take a quick picture with Smokey to send to my mum by way of New Year greetings:

It turned out nicely, but the outtake proves the old adage about never working with animals 😹

Once I was showered and changed I checked my emails and had one from IHOP suggesting seeing in the new year with pancakes! That sounded like a good idea, so in the absence of IHOP we made a batch of our own pancakes to refuel from our run and (since it was after midday) had a glass of fizz to celebrate the new year (we always save the new year fizz until New Year’s Day so we can have it after our running) and I put on the recording of the New Year fireworks from the Magic Kingdom at WDW which was recorded in 2017 and broadcast last year. It just looked so crowded to my Covid-wary eyes!

After that, we really just wanted to relax. I settled down to read for a bit and Steve watched a movie on Netflix.

Later on we got on with the important matter of our New Year’s Day dinner: the French onion soup I made the day before, steak pie with homemade chips, sprouts and gravy, then Steve’s homemade sherry trifle. It was delicious (so delicious that I forgot to take a photo of the steak pie – oops!).

We spent the evening relaxing with some tv. It was such a lovely day – running, good food and quality time relaxing with a book (I even had a 20 minute nap – bliss!).

The Saturday was a bit of an odd day as after all the festivities, it felt very much like all the Saturdays since we first went onto lockdown in March. It had been cold overnight again and whilst debating what my route should be for my (not)parkrun, Steve mentioned that he was going to run off-road and invited me to join him. We thought that the trails would be better underfoot, but this turned out to be a mistake!

We ran about half a mile up the road to the start of the farm road Steve planned to take, but it was a sheet of ice!

We switched to the footpath running alongside it – a narrow and winding path – which was ok in places but rutted and frozen in others. It was passable, but soon we had to run through a section that was really icy and it just didn’t seem like a good idea. It had only been another half mile, but I made Steve turn back. Unfortunately, this brought us home with just 2 miles covered (and half of that not really running). Steve was happy to go inside, but I wanted to stretch my legs and run a bit more so I headed off to run on the road for a bit to round it for to 3.1 miles then added on a further mile to make up for the off-road section which just didn’t count as a run for me.

After our bacon roll I got on with one or two chores then settled down to watch a movie. I hadn’t found time to watch the live-action Mulan just yet and this felt like as good a time as any. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but really enjoyed it.

It was the first proper day of the annual Yoga with Adriene 30 day yoga journey, so I completed the practice before my bath (yes I did watch another cheesy movie from the Netflix Christmas Universe – The Holiday Calendar) and I’m really glad I did as Steve and I later watched the return of Casualty and it was a VERY hard watch!

I somehow ended up sleeping a little later than I meant to on Sunday – oops! – but probably just as well since the conditions still weren’t good enough to get a “proper” long run in. Instead, I looked at my overall weekly mileage and calculated that precisely 5.56 miles would bring me to a round 40 miles for the week. So I ran precisely 5.56 miles! My route gave me this view:

And when I arrived home I had an email telling me it was my parkrun anniversary. Just rub it in while we can’t have parkrun! 😫

With the food shopping done (still fairly quiet, but how come some people just seem to have no awareness of others/social distancing? Do they not understand the situation we’re in?) we had a fairly chilled afternoon of tv, reading, more yoga for me and dinner, after which I headed for the bath and watched the second last of the moves in the NCU: Holiday In The Wild.

Thus bringing a full week of holidays to a close. There were 2 more days off for me, then a return to work (albeit working from home).

Do you like to stay up to see in the new year?
Did you run on New Year’s Day? 

12 thoughts on “Week In Review – The Corona Chronicles Part 41

  1. The snow looks so beautiful- I am very envious. Although not of the ice- that is the worst condition to run in.
    I definitely watched more cheesy Christmas Disney type films this year than I usually would but I think my brain just needed something easy and cheerful.
    I was grumpy on NYE evening as Brexit was happening at 11pm (Europe having the last laugh as it was CET and not GMT) but some people near us were letting off fireworks for that so it just made it more depressing. I don’t usually stay up late anyway.
    Love the kitty outtake photo!

    Liked by 1 person

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