Conquering the nerves

I decided, when I found out about a week ago that there was going to be a second edition of the poetry night that I went to last month, that I was going to get organised and bring along some poems on the very marginal off-chance that I would be brave enough to volunteer for a reading slot. Of course, I didn’t end up writing said poems until yesterday morning – the morning of the poetry night – because of life and its continual determination to get in the way of my writing. However, I got them written, printed out, and shoved in my handbag. Just in case.

Ukulele class last night was good – we’ve just got one more session now before the end-of-term performance in a couple of weeks’ time, which is yet another thing to be nervous about. After class finished, I got back on the Metro and headed to Drink Art Bar for the poetry evening.

I probably wouldn’t have dared volunteer to read if it hadn’t been for the fact that the bar staff asked if I was going to! Once I had signed up, though, I felt strangely calm about it and just rehearsed everything in my head until it was my turn to go on. I felt quite confident reading my poems, but my limbs decided differently and would not stop shaking. Apparently it wasn’t noticeable to anyone else, but it certainly was to me!

I’m really, really glad I worked up the courage. I never thought I’d be able to tick that New Year’s Resolution off the list so early in the year.

Today was a fairly standard Thursday, with a speed run, Slimming World (I lost six pounds this week, getting rid of last week’s gain plus a bit extra!), and Pilates class.

Our friends Kieran and Lisa are coming to visit tomorrow, so I’m just getting a few things ready, and then it’ll be time for the weekend 🙂

OOTD 21st March 2019
OOTD: comfy Pilates outfit, slightly dishevelled! Hoodie Internacionale (2000), t-shirt Roly for Blaydon Race (2018), leggings Primark (2018), trainers Reebok (2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Alison Moyet – Love Resurrection
Duran Duran – Hungry Like The Wolf
Barry Manilow – Copacabana
Oasis – Songbird
Pinkfong – Baby Shark

It’s been a bad day, please don’t take a picture

Things have…not gone to plan today.

I didn’t get my run done because I’ve still got a twingey ankle after Sunday’s race. I’ve been resting it all week (apart from walking, of which a lot has been necessary), but if it’s still complaining on Saturday I’m just going to have to run through it, because I need to get back to the training plan now.

Geth didn’t come to Slimming World because he was still feeling unwell, so I went on my own, and I wish I hadn’t. I’ve had weeks and weeks where I’ve been on plan and barely made a dent in my Christmas weight gain. One bad eating week due to being away and I’ve put on five and a half pounds. I feel like I just can’t catch a break with it at the moment.

More crappy things contributing to my bad day included: (1) my prescription sunglasses frames snapping, which means I have to go and buy new ones; (2) forgetting an essential item on the shopping list, meaning I had to trek out to the big Sainsburys twice today; and (3) general stress and anxiety about what’s happening in Parliament.

At least Pilates class was semi-relaxing, when I wasn’t doing exercises that killed my post-race legs. Also, I finished some editing for a client, so I guess that’s…something?

Hoping for a better day tomorrow.

OOTD 14th March 2019
One of the few takes where my hair wasn’t being blown in my face. Jumper Carlo Colucci (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017), leggings Primark (2018), trainers Reebok (2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Abba – Dancing Queen
Squeeze – Up The Junction
Jean McCarthy – I Own It
REM – Bad Day

Bits and pieces

Today has involved various bits of catching up after being away in Inverness. I had a bit of editing to do for a client, and got lots of tidying and admin done. Geth is feeling poorly – he seems to have caught a cold from the weather during Sunday’s race – and so the next few days will probably be quite low-key for both of us.

I also had my ukulele class for the first time in a few weeks – we had a double half term break due to some building works at the Sage Gateshead, so it was good to get back to it.

Not expecting a great result at Slimming World tomorrow after being away, but I have many quiet weeks stretching ahead of me to get back on plan and back into target range!

OOTD 13th March 2019
OOTD: bright light, bright light! Scarf unknown brand (2019), jacket unknown brand (estimated vintage 1990s, bought at vintage shop 2003), t-shirt Punk Masters (2018), skirt Calvin Klein Jeans (2004), tights Primark (2017), trainers Reebok (2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Arcadia – Election Day
Men Without Hats – Safety Dance
Ariana Grande – Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored
The Beatles – We Can Work It Out
Dire Straits – Romeo And Juliet
The Dave Clark Five – Bits And Pieces
Avicii – Hey Brother
Fleetwood Mac – Dreams

Keeping the legs ticking over

Geth and I were both a bit tender after the Inverness half yesterday, so today we went for a long walk to make sure our legs didn’t stiffen up too much. I took lots of photos and will do a proper post about it tomorrow!

Other than that, we’ve just been eating a lot, so the aim is to get back on plan for the rest of the week. The calories you burn during a half marathon will only let you get away with so much!

OOTD 11th March 2019
OOTD: plenty of space for overeating in my too-big race t-shirt. Hoodie Sonar (2006), t-shirt Inverness Half Marathon (2019), leggings Primark (2018), socks unknown brand (2007), trainers Reebok (2013).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Queen – Somebody To Love
Justin Timberlake and Chris Stapleton – Say Something
Duran Duran – American Science
Gala – Freed From Desire
Anastasia – I’m Outta Love
Lewis Capaldi – Someone You Loved
Roxette – The Look
Prince – Raspberry Beret
Bananarama – Nathan Jones

And a bonus track that Geth was humming earlier:

Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton – Islands In The Stream

A slightly off-kilter Thursday

I did my speed run and went to Slimming World as usual this morning (and got some editing done for a client inbetween), but my Pilates class was an hour earlier than usual (which is going to be the case for the whole of the current course), so I didn’t have as much getting-stuff-done time in the afternoon as I’m used to. I’ve shifted everything to the evening instead, which makes sense as Geth’s out boardgaming tonight, but I need to have a think about organising Thursdays a bit better for the next few weeks.

Looking forward to a quieter day tomorrow, and to finally getting my book draft finished and submitted!

OOTD 7th March 2019
OOTD: too busy and rainy today for a proper photo. Jumper Carlo Colucci (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Ariana Grande – Breathin’
Chic – Le Freak
Fleetwood Mac – Dreams
Whitney Houston – How Will I Know?
Jennifer Lopez – If You Had My Love
Steps – Tragedy
Glenn Frey – The Heat Is On

Hazy shade of winter

Last day of meteorological winter, and it was a good day today! I did my speed run first thing as usual for a Thursday, and then went to Slimming World. It was a bit of a special group today as it was the last day for our consultant, Katie – she’s retiring and it will never be the same 🙁 It was also the taster session for the group’s Greatest Loser award, which I won for the second year running. Nice to have a shiny sticker for the new book I got at Christmas! Geth got some more ‘bling for his book’ too, as he was joint Slimmer of the Month for February.

In the afternoon, I was tempted by the usual Thursday afternoon doze, but I did have a lot of work to do so I stayed awake and got that done instead. Following some celebratory pizza and ginger beer (Geth and I have both had successes at work this week), I’m now settling in for an evening of writing.

OOTD 28th February 2019
OOTD: love those Slimming World award flowers! Glasses Emporio Armani (2017), scarf Leonardi (vintage 1970s/1980s, thrifted from Anne out of Granny Bessie’s collection 1995), hoodie Internacionale (2000), dress unknown brand (thrifted from Steff 2016), tights Primark (2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Duran Duran – The Seventh Stranger
The Police – Roxanne
Soft Cell – Say Hello, Wave Goodbye
Dexy’s Midnight Runners – Come On Eileen
Jonas Blue and William Singe – Mama
Ed Sheeran – Bloodstream
Crowded House – Weather With You
John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John – You’re The One That I Want
Duran Duran – Girls On Film
Howard Jones – Hide And Seek
Bucks Fizz – Making Your Mind Up
Bros – When Will I Be Famous?

Girls just wanna read books

I’ve been finding on Thursdays recently that after doing my early morning speed run and walking back and forth to Slimming World group, I get really tired and don’t have much energy for doing stuff (probably ’cause I don’t eat or drink till after weigh-in, but that’s sort of a necessary evil!). I think I’m going to stop scheduling work for Thursday afternoons and move it to the weekend instead.

I was feeling especially dozy this afternoon after a fairly hectic twenty-four hours. Following a day of editing, yesterday evening I went to ukulele class, then to a poetry evening for a few hours (I’m still looking to get into performance poetry and so I’m in the process of checking out a few nights to see what it involves), then I was up early for my speed run and Slimming World as usual. As such, I decided to spend the afternoon reading, which has cleared my brain fug nicely and means I finally feel up to getting a few minor writing tasks done this evening.

Hoping for a more energetic day tomorrow.

OOTD 21st February 2019
OOTD: this is still a good Thursday outfit even on a non-Pilates day. Glasses Emporio Armani (2017), jumper Carlo Colucci (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Cadet and Deno – Advice
Little Mix and Nicki Minaj – Woman Like Me
Cast of The Greatest ShowmanThe Greatest Show
Bros – When Will I Be Famous?
Halsey – Without Me
Joe McElderry – The Climb
Ariana Grande – 7 Rings
Jess Glynne – Thursday

Gradual progress

A typical busy Thursday. I did my speed run first thing, went to Slimming World (another half a pound off this week, still crawling slowly back to target range), and then went to Pilates in the evening. That’s our current Pilates course finished, so the next couple of Thursdays will be slightly less busy.

Geth and I didn’t buy cards or really do anything for Valentine’s Day (we normally have takeaway, but we’re trying to avoid that now we’re both on Slimming World), but he did bring me back some tasty ginger beers last night, so I’m enjoying one now.

Another hectic day tomorrow! Hoping next week will be a little more sedate.

OOTD 14th February 2019
OOTD: it’s Thursday! Glasses Emporio Armani (2017), jumper Carlo Colucci (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017), leggings Primark (2018), boots Primark (2017).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Tears For Fears – Change
Backstreet Boys – Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)
Elaine Paige – Memories
Yazoo – Only You
Ed Sheeran – Thinking Out Loud
Marshmello and Bastille – Happier
David Bowie – Life On Mars
Pulp – Common People
Gnarls Barkley – Crazy
REM – Losing My Religion

Close to the edit

I did another treadmill run this morning, which means I’m getting through my recorded TV programmes at a good pace!

I also got a couple of editing jobs done for clients – as I said yesterday, it’s nice to have ‘day job’ work again after a quiet month – and then got on with my own editing. I was nervous about hacking down my novel wordcount as I wasn’t sure there would be much I could cut without losing story content, but I’m actually finding it a lot easier and more satisfying than expected. I should have a pitchable manuscript by the end of the month at this rate.

I also tried out the slow cooker that Geth and I won in the raffle at Slimming World last week. I made curry, and it was delicious. I’m going to leave it for an extra hour or so next time, though, as the potatoes weren’t quite as done as I would have liked.

More editing work to do tomorrow – both for clients and for myself.

OOTD 12th February 2019
OOTD: it’s my comfiest dress again. Dress Triumph (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2018), belt H&M (2017), tights Primark (2017), boots Moda In Pelle (2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Yazoo – Only You
Tears For Fears – Shout
Duran Duran – Save A Prayer
Ariana Grande – 7 Rings
David Bowie – Fashion
Pet Shop Boys – What Are We Going To Do About The Rich?

Still chipping away

It’s been a pretty good day, but also quite tiring! I had a first go on our new treadmill this morning and immediately remembered why I find treadmill running quite hard. You have to go at the exact pace you’ve set, rather than intuitively speeding up and slowing down like you do on the road. However, the documentary I’d put on helped to distract me, so once I got the speed right it actually went okay.

I lost two and a half pounds at Slimming World, so cutting out the second Healthy Extra A choice is clearly working! A couple more good weeks and hopefully I’ll be back into my target range.

In the afternoon I submitted one of my novels to the Northern Writers’ Awards – always worth a try – and got a bit more writing done before I had to head off to Pilates class.

Just a few more writing jobs to do and then hopefully I can relax for an hour before bed! It’ll be nice to have a full day with my sofa and laptop tomorrow as well.

OOTD 7th February 2019
OOTD: couldn’t get a picture where the wind wasn’t playing some kind of havoc with my hair! Jumper Carlo Colucci (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2017), leggings Primark (2018), boots Clarks (2009).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Kraftwerk – The Model
Yazoo – Only You
Duran Duran – Rio
Gene Kelly – Singin’ In The Rain
Pet Shop Boys – Heart
Jess Glynne – Thursday
Hue & Cry – Labour Of Love
Tears For Fears – Head Over Heels