Q & A

So, the lovely Becky, decided to nominate her step-mum (me) as her one and only nomination for this Q&A.  Now, if anyone else had nominated me I’d probably have politely declined to answer the questions but as it’s Becky, I’ll give it a shot.  I will, however, not be setting any of my own questions or nominating anyone as the only person I’d nominate would be … Becky.

Here goes.  Firstly, the rules as copied and pasted from Becky’s post:

Rules

(as taken from AJ’s blog post)

  • Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the questions sent to you. 
  • Nominate around ten bloggers. I will nominate one blogger – my step-mum, Fi (and whoever else wants to answer my questions).
  • Create your set of questions for your nominees. See below…
  • List the rules and display the Brotherhood Of The World logo in your post.

Now onto Becky’s questions:

1.  Why did you start your blog?
I initially started my blog on MSN as a private blog in about 2006 as an online journal to record my thoughts about being a mature student at college, and then university.  I then started a public blog when the MSN one was moved on to WordPress in around 2010 and I couldn’t be bothered to keep it all private anymore.  The WordPress blog started as somewhere to record my exercise goals and whether or not I reached those goals as well as some of the challenges faced having a child with a disability.

2. What do you wish others would blog about more often?
I’m not particularly bothered about what other people blog about.  I have some which I follow but I don’t wish they would blog about certain topics more than others.  I choose to read them because they are interesting to me.

3.  Where do you go to for blog post ideas when you’re out of them yourself?
A few years ago I found a list of questions for a “Journal Jar” and printed them out.  I have them sat on my desk and every so often I’ll put my hand in a pull out a prompt.  I also have a list of “interesting dates” in the front of my diary which is useful too.  Did you know it’s Strawberry Ice Cream Day today and Nothing Day tomorrow?

4.  Have you made many friends through blogging?
I haven’t made any friends who I’ve met up with or anything but I have a few bloggers who I follow and who follow me and we interact fairly regularly.  Well, we used to when I was blogging a lot more regularly/frequently than I do now.  I don’t have time to read loads of blogs and then comment on them too.  Sorry fellow bloggers x

5.  What are the best things about reading blog posts written by others?
I love reading lots of different blogs for different reasons.  Some will inspire me to get out there and get my butt in gear to reach my exercise goals.  Others will give me ideas for things to make or do.  Others make me laugh out loud.  I love reading Becky’s blog because it gives me an insight into what she’s been going through even though we do speak to each other on a fairly regular basis, some things are easier to write about than talk about.  Also, if you haven’t read some of Becky’s earlier posts, there are some laugh out loud reads on there.  Her recent stuff is good too 😉

Thanks for this Becky.  I promise, I’ll try to blog more regularly this year but I can’t guarantee it.

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Journal Jar – Favourite toy?

I decided to put my hand in my Journal Jar again and today I came out with:

Did you have a favourite blanket or toy? Tell about it.

I did have a favourite toy as a child.  I had a blue and pink bear called Herbert.  Unfortunately, I can’t remember much about him as he decided to take a trip out of the packing box when we moved between countries.  I don’t know why he wasn’t travelling with me in my bag on the plane but he wasn’t so he got lost.  After he got lost, my dad bought me a Care Bear (Grumpy Bear) and named him Bill.  He was then my favourite.  I gave Bill to Adam when he was little but he is now back to being mine and sits on a shelf in the bedroom with my Eeyore and a few other cuddly toys.

It’s Saturday so …

it must be parkrun day 🙂 I’d like to say it was a lovely parkrun day but it really wasn’t.  There was hail!  At least I think it was hail, if it wasn’t it was heavy rain which hurt like hail.  At least Poppy Coffee were there for post-run tea (for Adam), chili mocha (for the Man) and hot chocolate (for me).

After finishing 2017 with two good runs of sub-31 minutes, I was a little disappointed to run 32:08.  However, as I only went for one run this week instead of the planned 2-3 and I reduced the running interval to 3 minutes, we have been doing 4 minutes, with a view to running faster (the rain and wind meant the running interval wasn’t faster) a 1:20 drop in time for 5k wasn’t too bad.

I got Jeff Galloway‘s Run Walk Run book for Christmas and have been reading it.  I’m a great believer in run walk run and all of my running PBs have come from run walk run intervals and Adam has never completed anything longer than 1 mile as a constant run, and his 5K PB is 30:18!  From reading the book, it looks like a 7-minute mile pace is achievable on 3 minute run, 30 second walk, that would be around 21 minutes for a 5K! I don’t think I’ll ever get that fast but I’m going to work on bringing my intervals down to that and then aim to get the running part faster.  Next week, I’m going to try 3 minute run, 55 second walk.  I’ll be borrowing the interval timer I bought my husband for Christmas for that 😉

After getting cold and wet at parkrun, we walked home and while Adam and my husband were having their showers I thought I’d do day 5 of True (Yoga with Adriene).  I’m loving this “me time” which I have created by doing the yoga.  For the first 4 days, I made a conscious effort to turn off the TV between 9.15 and 9.30 pm so I can do the day’s practice before going up to bed at 10 pm.  I’m hoping this will become a regular routine which will continue after the 30 day journey/challenge is over.

So, this is also day 6 of REDJanuary completed 😀

Are you still meeting your goals this week?

Motive …

Yesterday was day 1 of Yoga with Adriene’s new True 30 day yoga programme with the theme of Motive.  If you sign up to the programme via the website, you get a daily email to help you get the most out of the practice (today’s theme is Trust).  In yesterday’s email, and through the 24 minute practice, Adriene asks:

What is your motive for joining True?

Now, I hadn’t really thought about it but, having followed 9 days of one of the previous 30 day challenges in the past, I know that daily yoga helps me in so many ways.  It isn’t only the stretching, although that certainly helps, and it is more than the self reflection.  It helps my mood, my running, my posture, my body has less aches and pains.  It’s time for me to concentrate on me for anywhere between 24 and 40 minutes before I go to fight with Adam about bedtime.

I also find that yoga practice also complements, and maybe even enhances, all the other changes that I have made/am making to my life.  I am, usually, careful about what I eat.  I don’t eat “clean” but I don’t overeat and I don’t eat cakes and chocolates as much as I would love to.  I exercise on a regular basis with running or walking most days, if not every day.  I am aiming to add strength training back into the mix too but at the moment the yoga will have to fill that void.

However, this time round, I think my main goal/motive is to get further than day 9 and, maybe, even get to day 31!

If you haven’t done yoga before, or even if you have and haven’t found Adriene yet, check out her youtube videos.  The runners’ post run practice is a must for me and, when I have time (and I’m not doing a 30 day challenge) the runners’ yoga is great too.  What I really like is that Adriene tells you to do what feels good to you, you don’t have to stay and hold a pose with out moving, if you want to wag your tail while doing cat/cow then do it!

Day 1 of True was completed last night.  Bring on day 2 this evening.

Look for the good

I think I’m on about day 17 of my #100happydays challenge.  I say, I think, because although I have written them down in a book I don’t have the book with me and can’t be bothered to get up and find it.  I have tweeted them either as @fisefton or @TupperwareYork, or both, with the hashtag #100happydays.  For the past couple of days, I have been using Action for Happiness’ Happy New Year calendar for prompts and here is day 2 of that:

Look for the good in others and notice their strengths

I try to look for the best in people and one of the best places to do that, outside of my own family, is at parkrun.  Where else can you get a large group of people, even the core group of volunteers is huge, who get up on a Saturday morning to go out and organise an event for people to complete a 5k route and get a time … for free?  At lots of parks and open spaces around the UK and, I think, about 15 other countries in the world.  At our local parkrun, we have at least 30 people volunteer their time each week so that an average of around 450 people can run and/or walk the 5k course and get a timed result.  It isn’t the same group of 30+ people each week either.  There are also a number of people who, even if they don’t volunteer, will run with other people to help them improve or will stay in the finish area to cheer home those who finish after them.

Today, I went for a run this morning.  Fortunately, it was before the rain started otherwise I don’t think I would have got outside, REDJanuary pledge or not.  I will be starting the yoga challenge today too so I would have completed some activity today.

 

Looking forward to 2018

As I mentioned in my Making 2018 Happy post a few days ago, I found the Action for Happiness calendar for January and printed it off.  Well, being 1st January, it is day 1.  Today’s “action” is:

Find three good things to look forward to this year

So, here they are:

1.  It is my, and my husband’s, 25th wedding anniversary this year and we are going to celebrate at, where else, Disney World!  Very much looking forward to that 😀

2. More running and volunteering at parkrun.  We went to the New Year’s Day parkrun this morning and all volunteered as run/walk pacers.  Adam has been a run/walk pacer before but my husband hasn’t.  He volunteered as the 1 minute run, 1 minute walk pacer and absolutely loved it.  Adam and I were both 2 minute run, 1 minute walk pacers but took separate groups round as there were runners who wanted to try to finish in different times.  It’s one of the things I love about the run/walk pacing, you go at the pace that the people you are running with want to go rather than having to keep to a time.  Don’t get me wrong, the timed pacers are great and I’ve chased down a few of them in the past couple of years but I have a special affection for the run/walk pacer role.

3.  Decluttering my house!  Our house is quite small and we have a lot of stuff.  I need to go through each room, one at a time and sort through everything to see if I can clear the floors.

What are you looking forward to most this year?

 

Journal Jar – Best Christmas Present

Wow, how spooky is this?  I put my hand in my journal jar (I haven’t used the prompts for a while) and pulled this one out:

What is the best Christmas present you received? What is the best one you gave?

I think, this year (and actually the last two years), the best Christmas present I received is also the best one I gave.  parkrun on Christmas day!  This year, and last year, we all volunteered at York parkrun and had a blast!  I love parkrun anyway but there is something special about attending parkrun on Christmas day.  Adam and I first went to parkrun on Christmas day back in 2015 as runners.  We enjoyed it so much that we tail walked last year and Rob was the photographer.  This year, the tail walker slot was taken so we volunteered to give out the finishing tokens while Rob was one of two photographers.  Here are some of the photos Rob and Christine took showing the fun:

You can find the rest of Rob’s photos on Flickr along with those of Christine who was the other photographer.

Going to Make 2018 … HAPPY!

I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting on 2017 over the past few days while I’ve been sitting, cooking, walking and running.  The main thing I can claim about 2017 is that I was happy.  Sure, I set goals and met some of them but the vast majority of the time I was happy and enjoyed my life.  I did things that made me, and my nearest and dearest, happy.

So, how am I going to build on this going into 2018?  First, I am going to do more of the stuff I was doing towards the end of 2017.  Namely, running with a great group of people on a Tuesday and Thursday morning, continuing with parkrun (I only missed 2 of the York parkrun events this year and either ran or volunteered at the rest), continue in a job that I love and which is flexible enough for me to continue to be my son’s primary carer, continue to be a Tupperware lady 🙂 it will probably never pay the bills but I have enjoyed the fairs and parties I have done this year.

I have also been scrolling through Facebook and Twitter, as you do when you have time off from work and not a lot of stuff to do, and found Action for Happiness’ HAPPY New Year Calendar – January 2018 so I’ve printed that off.  There is one simple task every day so let’s see how far I get through the 31 days …

happy_new_year

I have aslo signed up for Yoga with Adriene’s 30 day yoga journey – TRUE which starts on Tuesday 2nd January.  I have done Adriene’s 30 day challenges/journeys before and loved them.  I regularly do her yoga for runners and found that it has helped with my running.

A final goal for January is to continue the “exercise every day” streak which I started last week as part of the REDJanuary.  The goal is to run, or do some form of exercise, every day.  My goal is to run 3-4 times a week (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday) as well as walk 1-2 times per week and practice yoga every day.  That will give me at least 20-30 minutes of exercise/activity every day.

What do you do to make you happy?  Do you exercise?  Do you meet up with friends and family?  Do you take time for you?  Do you volunteer and help others?