Holidays at last! Obviously options are pretty limited right now in terms of fun things to do, but I was just looking forward to a couple of weeks without work, especially knowing that next term is going to be pretty full-on. I also wanted to enjoy running just a little later and having the space to stretch the distance a teeny bit. Here’s how it went:
Monday – 4 miles + Hatha yoga via Zoom
Tuesday – 5 miles + living room workout + home yoga
Wednesday – 6.3 miles + home yoga
Thursday – 5 miles + home yoga
Friday – 4 miles + home yoga
Saturday – 6.3 miles
Sunday – 10 miles
Having realised over the weekend that I was actually super tired (that tends to happen in teaching – we keep on going and going and going then as soon as we stop for the holidays it all catches up on us) I promised myself a really easy day to begin the holidays. That meant no alarm and taking my time in the morning to read in bed with no rush to get out on my run.
This was doubly useful as I still had “lunch time run” to cross off on my bingo card so this was the perfect day for that one. As it turns out, I don’t think lunchtime running suits me. Perhaps I could adapt to that in the same way that I adapted to running before work, but I definitely noticed as I set off that I was hungry and in need of my lunch (I had eaten a light breakfast earlier) and wasn’t sure how I would feel as I ran, but it did improve as I went along.
I made sure to eat something as soon as I got in as I wanted to get showered and changed before lunch, then the rest of the day continued to be an easy one. I caught up on some tv and vlogs and finished up my book. I really enjoyed this one, which I’ve been meaning to read ever since I read Michelle Obama’s a while back.
I also headed out for a short walk in the early evening to get a little more air and movement before my yoga class. By the time I was heading to bed I was feeling pretty good so this easy day was definitely what I needed.
On Tuesday I did have an alarm to wake up to (not as early as a work day, but I don’t want to fall into bad habits over the holidays) and discovered I had over 80 messages in WhatsApp. Whaaaaaaat? It turned out to be the group chat with my sister and her friends who are Disney fans. One of them had spotted an ad for special screenings of The Muppet Christmas Carol with a live orchestra this coming December and they were organising tickets. Thankfully I didn’t miss out by being asleep (quite late the night before) as they had gone ahead and got a ticket for me on the basis that if I didn’t want to go they would easily find someone else who wanted it. I’m hoping that by December events like this are possible again, but for now it just feels nice to have something a little different in my diary to look forward to – a little treat after all the craziness of the past year – and this is one of my favourite Christmas movies. I suspect I will be singing along!
All this meant I was already in a good mood before I even got up and that good mood continued into my run as this time I was crossing off “listen to music”. I couldn’t tell you the last time I listened to music on a run (other than music being played at a race) as I prefer to listen to podcasts these days, but I had decided to download a Disney playlist to my phone and it led to a really fantastic run which I wrote about in a bit more detail here.
Once home it was another reasonably easy day: I took care of a bit of life admin and some quick things I wanted to sort out (one being that I added some additional tracks to my Disney playlist since I hadn’t updated it in a while) then spent some time with Smokey sleeping on my lap while I worked on that blog post.
Steve was also having an easy day as he had his first dose of the Covid vaccine the day before so had set the time aside in case he experienced any side effects. As it turned out, other than a sore arm he just felt a bit tired so he went out for a walk in the afternoon. When he returned he took me through a workout using the resistance band and some press up variations (my arms were dead afterwards!) then I did my yoga session before dinner. We’ve had a few tv shows on the go so having already watched the latest Line of Duty on Monday, we opted for the last episode of the current series of Unforgotten followed by an episode of Keeping Faith.
I actually felt quite tired again in the evening, so we both headed to bed fairly sharp and while Steve fell asleep really quickly, I read my book for a bit.
I felt much more refreshed on Wednesday morning, despite some time awake in the night (thanks Sooty – another middle of the night hairball 🙄). Again, I began my day with some reading in bed as I was close to finishing my book, then got ready for my run. The final challenge to cross off on my bingo card was “draw a Strava picture”. Uh oh! DEFINITELY not one I would find easy! I had left this one until I was on holiday so I would have the headspace to think about how to do it. Steve had been keen for me to “freestyle” it by going to some park space and having a go at drawing something, but it seemed to me that the logistics of something like that would be tricky as I felt like I would need markers to make sure I was going to the right spots to create different parts of the picture. Instead, I wanted to use streets so I would have a bit more control. I spent AGES staring at different parts of the map of town and squinting my eyes a bit to see if I could make some kind of shape jump out at me, but to no avail. In the end, I decided I could probably manage some letters so found a place I could trace out TG (for Tough Girl, the source of the challenge). I used the markup function on my phone to work out how to draw out the letters without any funny extra lines, then decided to record it as a separate workout so it would be really clear.
As a result, my run was in 3 parts – a run to the spot where I would trace out the letters, the letters themselves, then a further run to loop home again. I did some basic sums while I was out and realised I was at around 3.25 miles after I finished drawing my picture, so figured I’d record a further 3 miles as I wanted around 6 miles for the day. Typically, it also rained more heavily than it has on any run for a while so I got a bit of a soaking, but I still had fun. Drawing out the letters required a lot of checking of my saved map to make sure I went to the right places, so hats off to anyone who has managed a more complicated design. Nonetheless, bingo card completed!
I spent some time during the day working on blog posts and finished up another book. I wasn’t sure what to expect from this one and for a while in the middle I felt like it slowed a bit, but it really picked up towards the end so I’d say it’s worth persevering.
I also got wind from my sister that it was National Wear Your Ears day (I remember this from last year). Always happy to oblige!
A slightly random moment came in the early evening. I was pulling together a batch of chilli for the slow cooker when Steve said there was a post in our area’s Facebook group that the mascot for the football team was going to walk around here (one of our neighbours is, to put it in Disney parlance, a friend of his) and we couldn’t resist joining everyone else outside our front door to grab a couple of pictures. Just the sort of weird moment that really makes a difference in your day. I headed upstairs after that to do a little yoga before dinner.
We rounded out our day by finishing up the most recent series of Keeping Faith. Time to choose a new box set again! And our viewing was accompanied by Steve’s latest bake: coffee cake.
Thursday was April 1st so not only did I get to start my day with some reading in bed, I also had the fun of looking out for all the April Fool jokes from various companies and news sources. My favourite running-related one came from parkrun and the “floral poi” shade for a future milestone T-shirt. I’ll admit there’s a teeny bit of me that’s disappointed this isn’t true since I love the colour!
The run itself was good. There’s nothing quite like the freedom (and extra rest!) of being on holiday to make for an enjoyable run – no pressure to get out the door, nothing specific to be back for. I really enjoy going just a little further than I would have time for before work so this was a very pleasant 5 miles. I actually arrived home right as the courier was delivering my Shop Disney order. Since they now take a photo of the parcel being delivered rather than you signing for it, I got a fun post-run delivery photo to add to my collection of random feet and legs at the front door 😂
As ever, the kitties were pleased since my delivery meant a new box for them to play with (I think they really like the Disney ones because they are a good size; I like them because they’re a bit more “decorative” to have lying around the house!).
Next on the agenda was a quick project. I once again had the last of the wax in a couple of candles with burnt out wicks and an empty jar, so I wanted to melt that wax down and pour it into the empty jar to start creating my own mix ‘n’ match layered candle.
I kept things pretty chilled after that – some work on a blog post, reading and a late afternoon walk with Steve before my yoga session. For our evening entertainment we picked Grace. This is a new series where each episode is standalone and it looks like one will be released every so often. It’s another one based on a book and was pretty good.
Steve had quite a lot on on the Friday morning so I enjoyed reading my book in bed then got ready for a run. The sun was shining but the temperature had dropped overnight so it felt pretty chilly at first (it did warm up later on). I kept to a fairly easy pace and just enjoyed the time out and about.
The mail was a little later on Friday (it was Good Friday) but brought with it two things for me. First up, the last of my princess-themed medals so I now have the set:
And, much less fun, my latest antibody test for the Public Health Scotland Antibody Survey. Steve was out again for a bit, but once he was home we just took care of the test right away then headed out for a walk together to put it back in the post. There was then time for a little yoga before dinner.
For our Friday night movie we continued with our new (but fairly short) project.
I have seen the original 3 movies a number of times before but didn’t fully remember what happened in this one. It was fun to be reminded of some of the key moments.
My Saturday run brought with it a bit of excitement as I had a little event to take part in. Last year I was invited to join in with the Easter World Run, a free event organised on Facebook, and recently got a message letting me know that the event was happening again so I could sign up. The idea is really simple: you “register” by messaging the organiser with your name, where in the world you are and your timezone. On the designated day (the Saturday of Easter weekend) you run at 9am for an hour then share your proof (a screenshot from e.g. Strava) on the group page to show that you ran. The idea is that with everyone running at 9am, the run should move like a kind of relay around the world, without anyone ever having to meet or hand over any sort of baton. Like with the recent virtual semi marathon de Paris en duo, it brought a fun new element to my run, even though I still ran my usual Saturday route. For the purposes of the event I recorded it as one run this week (rather than my usual warm up, (not)parkrun, cool down) but still wanted to record a (not)parkrun time so I just noted the time I had at 5.1 miles then took off the first 2 mile splits since I usually run a 2 mile warm up. I was running at a steady pace for the whole thing, rather than the variety I usually have on a Saturday, so that was close enough.
I pretty much chilled out the rest of the day – tv, Disney quiz on Youtube and I started series 3 of The Crown (the one where the cast changes which felt so weird after getting used to the original cast) – all accompanied by my faithful (sleepy) boy.
I also enjoyed a relaxing bath and some time reading.
The book I was reading was really interesting. My dad lent me it and I wasn’t sure what I would think but it was very well written and I’m now keen to read others by this writer (pretty sure I bought dad one of them for either Christmas or his birthday). I had made my way through it quite quickly and finished it up on Sunday morning before heading out for my run.
It was a super windy morning but I wanted another run out to the woodland park, this time as part of a 10 mile loop which includes a fairly steep hill. I ran this loop a few weeks back and feel like it might happen more often in the weeks ahead now the weather is better).
Again, the rest of the day was relaxing with tv, reading and a bath before bed. A lovely way to end the first week of the holidays and I was definitely feeling a bit fresher by this point.
Have you ever tried to create some Strava art?
What was the best April Fool you spotted?