About Me

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Wife (to Shaun), Mother (to Danni), Dog walker of Archie the JRX, improving cyclist, reformed gym bunny, broken runner Collector of exercise DVDs & equipment. Cake is my weakness together with cider (Westons only thanks)and brandy. Noisy spectator of running & cycling events. Owner of Tribby the campervan

Friday 27 December 2019

Not much time for blogging - 2019 is nearly done

My god what has happened this year - the blogging is really slipping.   I have considered stopping altogether and just leaving it as a memory bank.  We'll have to see how next year goes I think.   I'd like to document my mayoral year, but this year's been busy enough with functions and learning the ropes.

Since I posted in July it's been quite busy.   Some nice Deputy Mayor duties including 3 carol concerts, a radio appearance, a Breakfast Prayer Meeting, Dieppe Landing commemoration in Newhaven, Remembrance Sunday and a tree planting event which saw 800 trees planted on Riverside Park.

Plus lots of Council meetings!

We've spent a lot of time on the house getting the roof mended and to a stage where we have a spare room ready for Christmas guests.  Just the living room and garden to sort now.

Sadly we lost Shaun's mum last month.  She'd had Alzheimers for a long time and her condition deteriorated fast one weekend.  It has been a very hard time for all the family, notwithstanding the fact we haven't been able to arrange a funeral yet. 

My 1000km cycle challenge hasn't gone as well as I expected due to weather in the latter part of the year and Shaun changing his shifts meaning I couldn't do the other 200k with cycle commutes.   I have done 800km which I am ok with.  It's been a busy year and the bikes have barely been out the shed.  Must do better next year.

I've swapped gym provider.   Wave was getting boring so Danni and I now go together to Underground.  It's much better although we have yet to try any classes.  Danni's doing really well, I'm not and really need to get myself sorted.   The wedding is now only 10 months away and I've still got the same amount of weight to lose as I did this time last year!

That's about it for this year I think - see you in 2020!

Friday 26 July 2019

Soooooo busy!

What a slacker - I appear to have missed March, April, May, June and July (I actually started drafting this post in March and every time I revisit to edit I realise I've missed even more)!

I've missed birthdays, holidays, local election madness and moving! Basically the last 5 months went something like this :-

March - not much happened apart from spin classes and some cycling to work.

April - birthday and a long weekend in Jersey to celebrate birthday, have a break from the moving stress and revisit our honeymoon destination after 30 years.   We found our favourite pub, The Smuggler's Inn, and had a yummy prawn based lunch the same as we did last time.

I tried really hard to replicate a photo Shaun took. 

I think we did ok - maybe not quite right!

And to celebrate 30 years Shaun bought me a bracelet with a freshwater pearl in it.

May - Local elections which I stood for Town Council and bloody well got elected.   Not only did I get elected but I'm also Deputy Mayor for the year.  I actually have no idea how it happened.   We came back from Jersey, I signed the paperwork and off I went helping with leaflet delivery and doorstep canvassing with my fellow candidates. 
Election night madness - having sat outside a poling station for 2 hours in the cold

Leading the Children's Parade with our Mayor

Blown away was an understatement and I still have to pinch myself occasionally - especially when I'm walking around with my Deputy Mayor ribbon on.  I've carried out a few duties including leading the Children's Parade for our Fish Festival, attending Year 6 leaver's assemblies and opening our Peace Day event and opening the new local skate park and pump track.

Oops, two separate events wearing the same clothes, need to change that!

Shaun's birthday and a week in Salisbury in Tribby.   A much needed break from election and house moving stress!

Our trip to Salisbury was lovely and whilst we were there Antiques Roadshow was being filmed, so off we went to hunt down Fiona Bruce. 

The weather for the whole week was amazing and it was great to get away in Tribby for the first time in the year.   We should've gone to Canterbury the following week but it was looking like we might have been able to exchange contracts that week so we stayed at home.

June - WE ACTUALLY BLOODY MOVED.   Very mixed emotions on the day.  Lawes Avenue was our first home, where we bought before we were married, brought up our beautiful daughter, lots of lovely happy memories and some we'd rather forget.  Saying goodbye to our neighbours was horrible but luckily we're only a 5 minute walk away.

July starts with our 30th wedding anniversary in our new home, still trying to unpack and settle in.

1000k in 2019 isn't going great - no cycling in June whatsoever but I am now up to 480 km for the year so far, not really where I want to be.   I'm struggling to get to spin classes with council meetings thrown in to the mix.

Plans for Danni and Joel's wedding are going ok.   I need to get to grips with the diet and exercise and get some weight off before I decide what to buy to wear as MOTB !

Friday 22 February 2019

Whoosh and there goes February

February is such a weird month - the weather's unpredictable but the days are definitely getting longer.

The distance challenge is going well with Your Mile Challenge - I'm only 5k short of cracking 200km out of my 1000 in 2019.  I think I can honestly say I've never done so many miles during February.  This has mainly been helped by the fact I've managed 3 cycle commutes this month.    I'm struggling with getting to the gym to do miles on the static bike so it's good that I've been able to get outside.   I've not been to spin for a couple of weeks either.

The weather has been mostly great this month - and on one cycle to work I managed to get to the Undercliff to see the sunrise.

There's nothing like a lovely sunrise to make the ride more enjoyable.

I've made a couple of purchases over the last couple of weeks - two from Velochampion who are fast becoming my go to for kit.

The first was a very fetching luminous yellow gilet

photo from VC site (not me!)
This gilet is going to be very useful later when the weather warms up and I don't need my rain jacket. 
The second purchase from Velochampion was a hi viz back pack cover.   I already feel safer with this over my back pack

Photo from VC site

I also bought some more lights, cos a girl can never have too many lights!

I also bought some Merino Wool socks from Wiggle.   They look great but they have made absolutely no difference to the temperature of my feet.   Guess I'm going to have to put up with cold feet on winter rides or resort to tin foil.   

The house move is still ongoing - just waiting for some paperwork to be signed off with the house we're buying and hopefully we can complete ready for Easter.  At least we have another month before that deadline arrives!

Friday 1 February 2019

January - the longest month in the whole year!

I had a "halfway through January" post partly drafted but I just couldn't find the words to finish it off, so it's binned and I've started again.

The end of January has seen the finish of RED January.  I've tried to stay active every day - that has included spin and core classes, a couple of cycling to work and walking Archie.  Shaun has worked a few very early morning shifts so January has also seen the return of pre-work walks.  I'm useless at getting up in the morning at the moment so it hasn't been easy but it has been a joy not a chore.   I've managed my first "in the dark" cycle to work - I'm now perfecting the lighting of me and the bike.  It's also been quite cold too so perfecting the layering has been interesting.  

It has proved to me that I am actually quite active anyway but it has made me think about what I get out of each activity I take part in.   Dog walks with Archie are quiet, calm time and appreciating my surroundings.   Spin & exercise classes are social and full on fitness.   I haven't quite worked out how cycling impacts my well being - I'm still finding myself asking what the hell am I doing this for! I do mostly enjoy it otherwise I wouldn't do it.  Cycling to and from work does mean that I get some exercise in without it impacting on the rest of the day.  Going to the gym doesn't bring me joy and although I've planned gym sessions they've rarely come off 

The moving situation hasn't changed, we're still waiting.  Fingers crossed we exchange soon then we can start planning the move.   It looks like it's not going to happen until the middle of March now.  Still plenty of time for more decluttering and boxing up. 

To have something to look forward to in the meantime we've booked a long weekend in Jersey.   Shaun and I went there 30 years ago for our honeymoon so we thought it would be nice to return for a few days this year.  It's not until mid-April (in time for my birthday as well) but at least it's not stressing about the house situation.   

We're also looking at our Tribby road trip for this year.  Shaun's main summer holiday this year is the last 2 weeks of May.   There are so many amazing places to visit in the UK so the destination changes quickly.   It is a work in progress but we need to get booking sites soon.   Fingers crossed we have a lovely May this year. 

I've also signed up for the Your Mile Challenge - 1000km in 2019 (it was originally supposed to be 1000 miles but I clicked the wrong entry!)    I'm a little behind on my mileage but fingers crossed as the weather improves there will be more rides.  I managed 800km last year so with the added cycle commutes I should be ok to reach 1000km this year.   If not, I'll be visiting the gym more to do some gym bike miles! 

Friday 28 December 2018

And there goes 2018

Well that was one hell of a year !

We sold the house and are waiting to move.  The conveyancing is taking a little longer than it should thanks to a retaining garden wall at the new house.  Fingers crossed we'll be in by the end of January.

I was awarded a Local Hero award for my work volunteering on my local park and we went to Portugal.

I've taken part in a couple of challenges, both for Challenge the Norm in aid of Mind,

only one cycle sportive this year but the big change is that I started cycling to work during the summer.   I'm hoping to do it more in 2019.

I'm quite pleased with my stats for 2018 compared to 2017 - 20 more rides and over 300km further - an average of just over 11km per ride.   It would be great next year to do some longer weekend rides with Shaun instead of going out on my own.   Could have done with a few more active days but then Strava and Garmin don't count dog walking - which is more or less every day.

We've had some lovely trips in Tribby - my favourite was definitely the Isle of Wight, probably because we had amazing weather and for the first time we took the bikes with us. 

We're currently deciding where we go in 2019

Life is a bit on hold with the house and we've also got a wedding to start paying for.   Danni and Joel have booked their wedding venue for October 2020!

It's our 30th wedding anniversary this year so we're hoping to do something special - watch this space!

I didn't manage to lose much weight this year so it needs some working on in 2019. 

As we go in to the new year I've signed up for RED January and hoping to be active every day.

Had a good reading challenge in 2018 - managed to read 13 books!  I've got all my reading lined up for 2019.

Saturday 1 December 2018

Challenge the Norm is Done !

Hooray November is done and so is my Challenge the Norm cycle challenge in aid of Mind.

My original pledge was 86 miles as I wasn't sure if I could do any rides other than spin class.  It did however go better than I envisaged even though I didn't manage to get to all my planned spin classes.

To complete my miles I've cycled to work, been to spin, gone back to the gym and done the spinathon at work.  You can read about most of it here.

My second November ride to work was lovely - I managed to get my clothing right to keep warm as it's now getting colder but it was dry with a horrible easterly wind - which was good to get into work but not so pleasant on the way home.   It's on days like that you feel glad to be alive and it's always enlightening to see the sun come up!   The last couple of times I've cycled in I've wanted to keep going instead of going to straight into work.  I got in a bit too early to make an appearance at the office so I pushed on to Hove Lagoon.  I was glad I did because I was rewarded with a lovely sunrise

Cycling home was less enjoyable with the easterly wind and it started to rain.   I'm hoping that I'll be able to cycle in during December but I'm not doing it if rain is forecast, or high winds!

I've completed 200 miles over November and I'm now in possession of this beauty.

The best thing about the challenge is that I'm back in the gym and I'm goping to keep it up during December.   I'm already signed up for RED January which is similar to Janathon in that I've got to exercise every day during January.   No idea how successful it will be as Wednesdays are always a sticking point.

The arrival of December also sees the last month of the reading challenge - I'm on my last read of the year which means I should complete the 12 reads of the year.    We're already deciding the categories for 2019 but I might try and push it to 14 reads.

Wednesday 14 November 2018

Challenge the Norm - Halfway

We're halfway through November already and my Challenge the Norm #cycleforMind is going well.  I originally only pledged to ride 86 miles (depending solely on the regular spin classes I could do during the month).   Turns out at half way through I've already cycled/spun through that so now I'm heading for the 200 mile mark.

It's great when you get an unexpected boost in your challenge - in the July challenge it was taking the bikes to the Isle Of Wight and having a lovely cycle path to put some miles down.   November has been a different kettle of fish altogether.    I actually managed to get to the gym in the first week and a road ride which I wasn't expecting.   The weather has been great for most of the autumn so far

As part of the #BeMoreSnail fundraising campaign work had organised a "spinathon".  Each willing colleague got a 15 minute stint on a spin bike.   It was the most atrocious day weather wise but luckily we had an event shelter up.   The event was overseen by the two PTs from Fitness Hub at Brighton.  They were certainly very motivating and played some great music to help focus on the task in hand.   We haven't been told how much we raised yet.

me warming up whilst our HR Manager does her bit!
I've never been known to sit on a spin bike without going hard so an unexpected 17 miles to add to the total.

I even did a Sunday morning spin class - 9am on a Sunday was a shocker!  I missed out on spin class last night but went to the gym instead and used the bike again.

The weather's looking good for tomorrow so I'm cycling to work - if it stays mild like this hopefully one day next week and maybe one or two the following week - that should bump the target a bit!

If I can muster the energy I'm going to the gym a couple of more times too unless I can get out on the road at the weekend!