Why do holidays always whip by so quickly compared to work days? Despite the luxury of two weeks off to relax and spend my days doing things I enjoy (although limited right now by Covid restrictions) it still felt like it had been but the blink of an eye and a new term was waiting. I knew the first week would be an adjustment back into the routine of work so I decided to go easy on myself and make this the cutback week in my running which I should have ideally taken the week before. I also knew that I would likely be at work fairly late each day so made sure to go easy on myself when it came to fitting in workouts. The week ended up looking like this:
Monday – 3.5 miles + home yoga
Tuesday – 4 miles + home yoga
Wednesday – 5 miles + home yoga
Thursday – 4.5 miles + home yoga
Friday – 4 miles + walk + home yoga
Saturday – (not)parkrun sandwich
Sunday – 8 miles
It’s always a shock when that alarm goes off for the first day of term, but I got myself up and out the door for my usual Monday recovery run and it was a cold one! The temperature had dropped again overnight to below freezing with an even lower “feels like” temperature so it was most definitely a day for leggings (and my hands were chilly even inside my thicker gloves!). I had managed to get the new scavenger hunt list before I headed out, so grabbed a couple of pictures for that while I was out.
The day itself was fine, just lots of things to get my head around for the days and weeks ahead. Of course I ended up working quite late then had to get some petrol on the way home, so I was pleased to find that the calendar for my yoga sessions this week features really relaxing wind-down/bedtime sessions. Just what I need as I adjust to being back in the work routine!
It was so nice to be able to sit down for a bit in the evening and Steve and I watched the latest episode of Line of Duty – things are really picking up!
I got to bed reasonably early but I think the second day of getting up earlier is always harder than the first. This wasn’t helped by the temperature still being really low (leggings again!). I must have been more tired than I realised and that weariness had settled in my legs making them feel like lead for the first 3 miles of my run. It was like there was just nothing in them and nothing would make them move any quicker. Somehow for the final mile things changed and I felt much better, but by that point I had already altered my route to cut the distance a little (listening to my body!) so stuck with my decision and headed in to get ready for the day.
It was another busy day with a meeting at the end (still via Teams rather than in person) and although I had hoped to be home in time to fit in a workout, it just didn’t happen as I got caught up in some tasks I wanted to finish up. I was tired so went straight off to get changed and do some yoga while Steve organised dinner, then we watched another episode of Intruder before I headed off for an early night. I must have fallen asleep quickly as I have no recollection of Steve coming to bed!
Thanks to a good sleep I felt much better on Wednesday morning so set off to get the last three items on my scavenger hunt. I knew where on (or close to) my planned route I would find them, and although cold it was a really pretty morning as the sun came up. One of my scavenger hunt items was a church spire and thanks to the light I ended up with this really pretty picture:
There’s no escaping busy days right now (and I think that will be the pattern for the whole term) so despite my best hopes I just couldn’t get home early enough to fit on a workout. In actual fact, the first thing to do when I got home was to take my lateral flow test (I’ve decided the best thing to do is just get it out the way when I come in) then once I had the (negative) result, I did a short but relaxing yoga video. This restful week of yoga videos really is coming at the perfect time for me.
In the evening we finished watching Intruder then I had time to read a little before bed.
Still chilly on Thursday morning and I have to say I was beginning to get a bit fed up of it – why was I having to scrape my windscreen in April? To liven things up I decided to head down to the river and around the bridges for my run. I was glad I made that choice as the water was flat calm and I got a really nice picture:
Steve arrived back from his run at the same time as me and “intercepted” my photo. All I could think of was the “Tiny Steve” reference from With Me Now (for those who know!).
The rest of the day was much as the rest of the week had been – busy! I had one of those days where a lot of classes were working in locations other than my classroom so there was lots of moving around the building and getting technology to cooperate. Of course I STILL didn’t get home in time for a workout, but for the first week of what will be an exceptionally busy term, that was ok while I got some kind of routine established. I did make sure to do some yoga then after dinner we watched the first episode of Too Close, a 3 part series shown at the beginning of the week.
Even better, Steve (who declared when we were getting our food shop that he wasn’t going to bake this week) had baked a cake. I asked what had prompted his change of heart and he said that since I was having such a long and busy week, he had decided that I deserved cake. I’m not going to argue with that logic!
By Friday morning I was finding it tough to get up early and was glad it was the last working day of the week. I considered an out-and-back route for my run but decided I wanted something different so headed towards the river. Rather than go over the bridge, I turned to run by the river and back via different streets.
After a pretty productive day I managed to leave work just a smidge earlier than I had been and when I arrived home Steve was just about to head out for a walk to get some fresh air. Although the mornings had been cold all week, it was actually pretty nice later on so I tagged along too. But heading out for a walk meant no workout again and when we got back the cats were needing fed then Steve got started on our dinner while I did some yoga.
I also took the chance to dive into my latest Disney delivery which had arrived while I was at work. I seem to have accidentally fallen into collecting the collectible keys they have been producing after getting a few as free gifts with previous orders, so had timed this order to coincide with the latest one being released. I finally succumbed to ordering a NuiMo after they released an outfit inspired by my favourite Disney princess. I also ordered a pile of face masks as they had a huuuuuge reduction and I thought it might be cool to have the full set for posterity. Besides, I’m not seeing the need for masks ending any time soon and with the need for a fresh one every single day for work, it’s good to have loads available. The face mask is fast becoming the fashion accessory I didn’t know I needed!
Neither of us had given any thought to a Friday night movie so we watched the remaining two episodes of Too Close and I had a little time to read before bed.
It was so nice to wake up without an alarm (well, I did have the kitties who will ALWAYS make sure someone wakes up to feed them!) on Saturday morning. Once the kitties were fed I settled down in bed with a cup of tea to read a chunk of my book until it was time to run. And hallelujah, going out a little later meant it was mild enough to get back into my shorts. You have no idea how happy this makes me!
Since I had made this my (delayed) cutback week I decided not to run particularly hard. I followed my usual route and division of my run into a warm up, faster (not)parkrun and cool down, but kept that middle section to a steady pace rather than really going for it. I thought this would be a good idea since I was in the process of re-adapting to early runs again so I wanted to give my body a break. And so, I simply enjoyed turning my legs over a bit quicker and being out in the sunshine.
My Saturday routine is fairly fixed now and this week was no different – This Is Us, Disney quiz, a couple of episodes of The Crown and then a bath. Still regularly watching Christmas movies in the bath so I have them fresh in my mind before listening to the Christmas Crackers podcast and this week was The Santa Clause 3. I’m actually not sure I have ever seen it before, but if I have then it was a loooong time ago!
When it came to Sunday, I started the day by finishing up my book. This one was actually written about 15 years ago and at the time nobody wanted to publish it as the backdrop of a global pandemic and the associated restrictions was seen as too far-fetched! Reading it now (it was published last year) it has an eerie familiarity and the backdrop seems perfectly plausible. So strange to consider how rapidly our point of view has shifted over the past year or so.
As it turned out, the kitties must also be interested in reading as I found one of my bookcases like this:
I can only assume they were highlighting the books they want to read next😹
For my run I opted to keep it to 8 miles so I was genuinely cutting back the mileage and I had a route in mind. I was also able to don not just one new piece of kit, but two! The other new pair of shoes I bought recently and a new pair of shorts which arrived right when the temperature plummeted and I had to switch to leggings!
Wearing new kit always means a good run!
After lunch, food shopping and my lateral flow test (I guess I need to just accept these as a routine part of my week now), we settled down to continue with a series we began the day before. On the recommendation of a friend, we were watching Pizza Boys, a 5 part series following a pair of Welsh pizza chefs taking a road trip to Italy to take part in a pizza-making competition. It was really good so if you like foodie travel-type programmes then I would recommend it.
There was a treat in store after dinner as my sister had dropped off some of mum’s first rhubarb of the season. The young rhubarb is nice and sweet, so Steve made a delicious crumble with it.
After which it was time for me to run my bath so I could relax with The Falcon and the Winter Soldier before heading to bed. I need to get my rest to make it through this term!
What do you do to change things up when your body needs rest?
Read any good books lately?