Best day

Another recovery mile this morning…

…followed by a nice walk in the early September sunshine. The first of September is one of my favourite days of the year – it’s the start of meteorological autumn, my favourite season, and of the part of the year starting with ‘-ber’ – the best four months of all. This autumn will probably feel a bit different, just as this spring and this summer felt a bit different, but I’m hopeful that the magic of the season will still be there. I’m still running a GNR, even if it’s virtual; the BBC are doing a truncated and socially-distanced Strictly series (the first participants are being announced tonight!); and of course no pandemic can stop me from binge-watching horror films and eating all the Hallowe’en chocolate during October!

I’m also excited about my 24-hour London Marathon challenge in October, which will keep my training focused for another month or so (Geth and I are also booked for an actual live race – the North Tyneside 10k – on the 18th of October, but we haven’t heard yet if it’s going ahead or not…).

Lots of other hopes and ambitions for the autumn months, including house decor (a few bits and pieces arriving this week!), writing (I have three potential projects for NaNoWriMo) and coding (I can’t decide which game to work on next, but I would like to release at least another two this year).

It should be a good autumn, even if it’s a quiet one. I might even make an effort to go find a Bonfire Night fireworks display this year (I usually can’t be bothered!).

In the shorter term, it looks like I’ll be fairly busy with day job work over the next few weeks, so September will probably fly by… as usual!

Pictures to go up
I am determined to get some of my pictures hung up on the wall by the end of the year, even if I don’t manage any other house projects. If nothing else, it’ll stop them cluttering up the dressing room!

Today’s earworm playlist:

Jared Emerson-Johnson – ‘New Location Unlocked [Midtown Remix]’

Running plans

Back to my Monday recovery mile today…

…and I’m getting really excited now about finally finding out what is happening with the London Marathon this week! I have two totally different sets of running adventures planned for the next couple of months, depending on what the decision is. We’ll definitely hear by Friday, apparently!

As I have done for the past couple of weeks, I’m taking today off – I got all of today’s work done yesterday so that I could do this again. I’ve got a couple of decent-sized videogames that I want to get into this week, so I should be able to get a good start on those today.

It’s the first week of August, so that means new writing and game creation projects. I’ll get cracking on those tomorrow!

Rainbow loungewear
This week’s new loungewear, continuing my ‘bright colours to cheer up 2020’ theme.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Dave Cummins – ‘Belle Vue’
Nathan Lane, Jason Weaver, Joseph Williams and Ernie Sabella – ‘Hakuna Matata’

Late days

Not my planned run today…

…so I just did a mile. Feeling very unmotivated at the moment, largely due to waking up late every morning. If I don’t get out for my planned longer runs until after half past ten then I can’t really get started with my day until early to mid-afternoon. However, I have to be up at seven tomorrow morning as I’m driving Geth to a hospital appointment, so hopefully that will jolt my sleeping pattern back to what it should be. We’ll see.

Other than my short run, I’ve just been getting on with day job work, admin and writing, as usual. The rest of the week will be a bit busier because of various appointments, but hopefully I’ll still manage to get a few things done.

realMyst: Masterpiece Edition
I finished realMyst: Masterpiece Edition on the Switch last night, just in time for the new Paper Mario game to arrive this weekend. The bonus Age is short, but a nice addition to the game.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Nobuo Uematsu – ‘Town’
Nobuo Uematsu – ‘Main Theme’
Dire Straits – ‘Walk Of Life’

Still not woken up

Another slow recovery mile…

…leading to another slow day. I’m still a lot more tired than usual. I got some day job work done today, and also a bit of my own writing, so I am getting stuff done – I’m just feeling really sluggish and out of it this week.

I’ve got a bit more admin to do this evening, but I’m hoping to get it finished soon so that I can explore the last bonus world in realMyst: Masterpiece Edition. I want to finish the game before my copy of the new Paper Mario game shows up at the weekend!

A slightly longer run tomorrow, and probably another day that feels like wading through treacle. We’ll see.

Pencil notes
Videogaming notes written with paper and pencil, like it’s the 20th century or something. I’d started off writing them on my phone, but then I had to draw some physical maps, and so it all got a bit retro.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Nobuo Uematsu – ‘Temple of Chaos’

Late starts and small achievements

I finally managed a slightly longer run today…

…which I’m really happy about! It was only three miles, but still. I really had to fight for the motivation this morning, and it could very easily have been yet another one-miler, so I’m going to take it as a win.

We didn’t end up driving to Geth’s office this morning, as we had a bit of a late start after his birthday yesterday. Geth says he has enough work to be getting on with as it is for the next week, so we’ll collect his books next Friday instead. I’m actually fairly glad we didn’t, as the roadworks near us are so bad today that they’re having a knock-on effect on the whole surrounding area. Hopefully the traffic will be slightly better this time next week.

I’ll be settling down to work on my game over the weekend, but will post my running vlogs (and possibly a few extras) as usual.

Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition
Geth is happily esconced in Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition. When he first played the original in late 2011, the soundtrack got me through my first NaNoWriMo; I’m hoping it will provide a similar creative atmosphere for my various projects this time round.

Today’s earworm playlist:

ACE+ – ‘Riki The Legendary Heropon’

Blue skies, but still inside

Just a short run this morning…

…and then the same kind of cross-training that I did yesterday. It’s nice to be getting some non-running exercise in this week.

Speaking of non-running exercise, I still haven’t been for any of the walks that I planned to do when the exercise restrictions were relaxed last week. It’s really nice weather out there, and I know it’d be an enjoyable thing to do, but I’ve just been too busy. Things are taking longer than they should during the day because I feel sluggish and distracted by various situational stresses, and then in the evening I’m burnt out and just want to play videogames (and to be honest I’ve not even had the energy for that the last couple of nights).

In short, it’d be nice to get a walk in, but I’m not sure when I’ll manage it, because other things take priority.

A different kind of run tomorrow, and hopefully also some writing.

RingFit Adventure
I’ve been enjoying RingFit Adventure the last couple of days as a quick bit of cross-training after my shorter runs.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Michael Land – ‘Edward van Helgen’
September 87 – ‘Bad Dream Baby’
Ollie Wride – ‘Back To Life’

Triple cross

Just a short run this morning…

…but then I did also do a level on RingFit Adventure and a YouTube yoga session, so I feel like I’ve got a good amount of exercise in for the day!

Other than that I’ve just been getting on with editing and admin. Back to the writing tomorrow and Thursday.

Exhibition Park
Exhibition Park wasn’t actually foggy during my run yesterday – I think my phone camera lens had just steamed up in my pocket.

Today’s earworm playlist:

The Weeknd – ‘Blinding Lights’
September 87 – ‘Bad Dream Baby’
Ollie Wride – ‘Back To Life’

Still not firing on all cylinders

Just another mile today…

…as I woke up with a slightly sore shoulder (I had planned to do closer to two miles today but decided to keep it short and gentle again).

I’m still not sleeping well, and I don’t feel productive at all this week – I’m a bit slow to get going with everything. Still, I’m managing to get a bit of work on my current writing project done every day, which is great.

Despite the uncertainty about absolutely everything at the moment, I am 100% certain that two things will be the case by the end of 2020:

  1. I will have made a significant dent in my videogame backlog. There’s no way I’ll have cleared it completely, but there will at least be light at the end of the tunnel…
  2. I will own enough leggings to last me for the rest of my life, and yet I will still want more. So many shiny patterns!

Everyone needs a hobby, or twenty in my case. Especially at the moment.

Videogaming tonight, running in the morning, writing during the day, rinse and repeat.

Computers, 1980
I’m running out of pictures that I can take during lockdown, as my world is obviously a bit samey right now. As such, I’ve been going through the family archives for old computer pictures. I love this one from 1980.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Billy Idol – ‘Rebel Yell’
Revo – ‘Ship Upon The Open Skies’
Thought Beings – ‘Shakedown’

A slow day

Back to my mile route today…

…and my legs were pretty thankful for a short recovery run after the last few days!

I’ve been finding it really difficult to concentrate today. I slept very badly last night because I can’t stop worrying about everything that’s going on, and there are various COVID-related stresses that are really starting to get to me. I find myself kind of wishing the next two months away, simply because (I would hope) there will be a bit more certainty by then in terms of some of the things I’m concerned about.

In the meantime, I’ve just been trying to get on with my routine as best I can. I’ve planned out my next competition writing project, which I’ll be working on over the next few weeks, and I’m trying to keep on top of my admin and housework (not always successfully, but it’s nice when it happens).

Videogames have been my absolute salvation in all of this. They’re the only thing that allows me to relax properly at the moment – I drift off in my own thoughts if I’m just passively watching a film or TV show, and even sometimes when I’m reading. Writing, meanwhile, though it’s my passion, is tiring and requires brainspace, so I try and keep it for the ‘work’ hours of the day. Videogaming is just brain-engaging enough that I can lose myself in it without feeling like it’s tiring me out – it strikes the perfect balance.

I’m hoping to feel better tomorrow. The exercise restrictions are being lifted slightly, so though I’m still being cautious about going outside, I have an afternoon walk planned in addition to my morning run. It’ll be nice to get a bit of extra fresh air.

Trees
Now that it’s May, the blossom has disappeared from our front garden trees along with all the others. As such, it was a good time to have them professionally trimmed back! Our tree worker came and did them today, and they look a lot tidier now.

Today’s earworm playlist:

Revo – ‘The Land Of Beginnings’
Bucks Fizz – ‘Making Your Mind Up’

Bank holiday time!

Another quick (well, slow) mile this morning…

…because I had a lot of things to get done today so that I would be able to relax properly over the bank holiday weekend! I finished my editing, and also got a piece of writing finished for a competition (the submission deadline was today, so I was cutting it a bit fine – I wish I’d had more time to work on it, but this week ended up being a bit mental!).

Geth and I have celebrated the arrival of the bank holiday with pizza (weigh-in went fine this morning, so we’re allowed) and special drinks (beer for him, alcohol-free fizzy for me). It feels strange having a bank holiday on a Friday when it’s not Easter – I think the last time was the Royal Wedding in 2011! The fact that it’s the 75th anniversary of VE Day feels a bit odd too, as I remember the 50th anniversary in 1995 and the WWII school project we were doing at the time. Difficult to believe that a whole third of the total time since the war itself has gone by since then.

It’s meant to be lovely weather tomorrow (it certainly was today), but other than helping Geth with the gravel in the garden, I think I will probably be inside with my videogames as usual!

Nosecco
A bottle of alcohol-free fizzy to celebrate the bank holiday! Excuse the blurry photo – my phone camera was more interested in the Xbox next-gen showcase on TV for some reason (no idea why, it was dreadful!).

Today’s earworm playlist:

Revo – ‘A Crystal’s Sparkle’
Revo – ‘The Land Of Beginnings’
Vera Lynn – ‘We’ll Meet Again’
Tinchy Stryder and N-Dubz – ‘Number 1’