Ah the seasonal shift from Halloween to Christmas. Days are getting shorter, the sparkle of Strictly is in full swing and I’m starting to eye my festive running attire! Ok, so there are still a few weeks to go yet, but right now I’m in need of something to look forward to as work is feeling pretty tiring. The good news is that my hip issue seems to be gone and I’m back in the swing of my usual running distances again. Here’s my week:
Monday – 4 miles + Hatha yoga via Zoom
Tuesday – 4.5 miles + home yoga
Wednesday – 4 miles + living room workout + home yoga
Thursday – 4.2 miles
Friday – 4 miles + living room workout + home yoga
Saturday – parkrun sandwich
Sunday – 10 miles
After successfully running a little further each morning the week before (in comparison to the two previous weeks to that) I felt happy to up things a little bit again this week, starting with my usual 4 mile easy run on the Monday morning. With the clocks changing it was still dark (I had hoped I might just sneak a little hint of daylight at the end) and the weather is definitely getting cooler. Still in shorts, but a lightweight long sleeved top rather than a T-shirt was much better. Oh, and I ran through town where I noticed that the Christmas lights are going up now – hurrah! Of course there was still plenty of Halloween decor too, including at the Sir Walter Scott statue.
Basically, we were here:
I had a couple of things to sort out at the end of the day so only had a short time to myself when I got home from work before settling down for my yoga class. After having a week off the class the previous week it was very welcome.
If anything, the Tuesday morning actually felt a bit cooler. I still had one more Together Run to catch up with (plus this week’s episode) so that was my company for the run. Tina was talking about how this is “our” weekly run together, albeit in a remote format, and I was reflecting on how nice it has been to have TWO runs with her in the week while I caught up!
Steve was heading out to a client when I arrived home so I got changed and organised then did a really relaxing yoga video (I was feeling pretty tired!). I even had time for a little tidying up afterwards before it was time to eat.
As it turned out, my grand plan to return to more “normal” mileage this week hit a speed bump: I was REALLY tired. It was just one of those weeks where there was lots of stuff going on that was mentally taxing and I was feeling the impact of it. This meant that I woke up on Wednesday morning still feeling really tired so I gave myself slightly longer to rest, which had the knock-on effect of reducing the time I had available to run. 4 miles rather than my planned 5 it was. At least the sky was beautiful:
I don’t think I ever really shook off the tiredness through the entire day so headed home reasonably sharp since I wasn’t achieving anything at my desk. Steve took me through a workout with the resistance band, then I did some yoga as normal before relaxing for the evening and making sure to get an early night.
At least I had a bit of cheer when my Disney Halloween sale order arrived. It may have been after Halloween, but I saved more than I paid, so worthwhile picking up a couple of items I had my eye on while I had that chance.
I did feel better on Thursday morning, but to make sure I still got up a little later and knocked around a quarter mile off my running route by running by the river (rather than looping around the bridges). This still let me see my favourite view but without making me late.
But for various reasons I was feeling pretty fed up when I arrived home and when Steve headed out to a client he instructed me to put my feet up and relax. So I got changed, made a cup of tea and caught up on a tv programme. It was really nice to stop and just be still for a while.
On the plus side, this arrived:
And Steve conducted another sticky toffee pudding experiment. He’s determined to hit on the PERFECT combination of sponge and sauce!
This “night off” was clearly exactly the right thing to do as I felt so much better on Friday morning: my mind felt less tired and my body felt stronger on my run. For the first time in days I felt good on my run and ready for the day ahead.
I needed to stay at work a little later so there was only time for a very quick workout when I got home. Steve made sure to still work me hard with a variety of press ups so my poor arms and abs were really feeling it! Thankfully Adriene had my back with a restful yoga video to follow it.
We spent the evening catching up on a couple of tv programmes then I spotted a Facebook post announcing that the Disneyland Paris fireworks (which have not yet returned since the Covid park closures) had been added to Disney+. Having spent the evening listening to back garden firework displays for Bonfire Night, it was good to watch what I would consider a “proper” display – co-ordinated to music and so on. It might not be my beloved Happily Ever After display from Walt Disney World, but still enjoyable to watch.
After a good sleep we were awoken by Smokey when the appointed hour for his breakfast arrived (honestly, how to pets know how to tell the time???). Steve went to feed the kitties and came back with a cup of tea for me so I enjoyed that whilst reading in bed for a bit before it was ready to get changed for parkrun. The forecast suggested some rain and I could hear a pretty strong wind outside so dressed for rain and adjusted my expectations to account for the wind.
I got a little held up at the start of the run but once I had some space was able to stretch my legs a bit and pass some people. I ended up only a few seconds slower than the week before, which feels fairly consistent (and that week we were on our all paved alternative course) at a time of year where the weather really starts to affect times. I’m happy with that. I’m most happy, however, with the fact that we had a photographer and for once I was actually paying attention and got a reasonable picture rather than a gurning mess 😂
There was also a really lovely parkrun moment. When the team was setting up, a couple approached them to find out what was happening. It turned out they were visiting from Salt Lake City and they asked if they could help out. To be clear, these were not parkrunners. They had never taken part in an event before and I’m not sure if they were even aware of parkrun. But nevertheless they donned the pink volunteer vests and helped out at the finish. It was so nice to come into the finish funnel and hear a friendly, enthusiastic American voice telling me, “good job!” and noticing that I was still smiling. I know they won’t see this, but thank you to that couple for joining us. One of the really lovely things about parkrun is how it connects people together in new ways.
With my token scanned I actually went over to help out with a bit of scanning myself as we were running on a minimal number of volunteers this time. I tend to finish at the time when the numbers build up a bit, so a few minutes of scanning helps to keep things moving quickly. I like to do this as it means I can run and also find a useful way to help out.
Steve was also scanning and when we were done he got set up to take a photo. After all those times he ducked into my post-workout selfie, it was my turn to infiltrate 😂
The rest of Saturday was restful. I watched some tv, had a bath and enjoyed another week of Strictly Come Dancing.
Sunday began in suitably relaxing fashion with some reading in bed (I’ve been struggling for reading time during the work week so appreciate this time at the weekend) before getting ready to run.
Yet again, I wasn’t entirely sure how far I would go but figured I could go to at least 8 miles (I’ve still been building up again after that niggly hip issue a couple of weeks ago). I headed out of town and had a lovely time visiting a pond I was aware of but had never stopped at before. There were so many ducks and a family of swans.
I then ran through the woodland park and noticed the autumn leaves carpeting the ground.
In the afternoon I had an eye test booked so Steve went for a coffee while I was there and I went round to meet him and pick up my free coffee with my Vitality voucher. Our route back to the car took us by the river just as it was getting dark and the bridge lights were coming on, and we both liked seeing it at this time of day.
And with that, the week was done. I got organised for the working week, had a bath and got to bed to try and get a good rest.
Halloween or Christmas?
Where are you enjoying running just now?