I was thinking as I walked home last night, that I've got two pairs of new work trousers, that I bought towards the end of last year, and that I've never actually got round to wearing because they're rather too tight at the moment. Ignoring what the scales have been telling me, my clothes definitely tell me that a little less food and a little more exercise wouldn't go amiss at the moment. Things still fit, but they're snug, so it will definitely be interesting to see what another 8 weeks of HM training will do to my body shape, especially if I can keep my eating at least moderately on track. My eating may not be perfect at the moment, but I am tracking all of it honestly, so I'm conscious of what I'm getting through.
(Just a little aside - I still freak out everytime I think about that fact that I'm training for a half-marathon. Holy crap!!! I used to think that running a 5km was the holy grail and well beyond my abilities - how things change! Two months today, I will be recovering from yesterday's race, and I'll have a new bit of bling to show for it. Less than two months to learn to run over twice as far as I've ever run before ..... panicpanicpanicpanic ....)
Last night, after a delayed finish from work, I walked up to my new flat-to-be to go and see the girls for a post-Christmas catch-up. It was the first time I've walked there from my office, so it was interesting to see what my new daily commute will be. Even though I was running later to meet them (stupid busy office), I deliberately walked at my normal pace so I could get a feel for it. It was more hill than I thought, but also a bit quicker than I was expecting - or more accurately, I think I just crammed more gradient into a slightly shorter route! I made it up the hill in 25mins last night, and I suspect the other route, which would also be via the supermarket if I needed it - hello Waitrose now being on my way home! - would be more like 30mins. That's going to give me a nice bump of exercise everyday, more than doubling what I've been doing for the last year.
I've also made the decision to stop including my daily commute to work in my activity points when I track. I haven't done so since I started back last week. I just think that I probably over-rely on those few extra points, and since it's a walk I do 5 days a week, it's probably not as much of a challenge for my body as other exercise. Proper walks, or days when I've been on my feet a lot, will still be included, I'm just ommitting my commuting miles.
I really like the new district I'll be living in - it's a different part of town from my old flat and Hannah's place, and it has a much more bohemian feel. Up til now, I've been living on and around the harbourside - Hannah and I both do - which is very close to the city centre. It's quite a chic area, I suppose - lots of modern architecture and conversions like my old place, a few nice bars, but not really much in the way of shops, etc, until you get into the city centre itself. I'm moving up the hill to a different side of the city centre, into a district of grand Victorian and Georgian houses. The flat is over the top two floors of a big Victorian semi-detatched place, on a little side road full of similarly big houses and lots of trees. Walking up last night, I realised that just round the corner there's a thriving local high-street full of independent businesses - within 3 mins of the flat there's a whole foods store, deli, independent coffee-shops, bars and restaurants, a bike shop, book shop, a film company - it's quite a cool area really. The flat itself is more shabby-chic than the more sophisticated place I was living before, but it's comfy and I'm sure it will be homey once we're all in and have made it our own.
One lovely thing about moving to the new place will be my housemates. I'm blessed with two supremely chatty and happy new housemates, one of whom (plus her best friend who lives just round the corner) is also very outdoorsy and active. Yay!! Sam's training for the London marathon (so can give me tips) and likes climbing mountains and wants to do more mountain-biking as does her friend Lynsey. Sounds good to me. Both housemates, Sam and Krissie, have said they'd be interested in trying a bit of surfing some time too. I love the idea of having some active housemates to get out and do stuff with - awesome! Plus it means we're dedicating the hallway shelves on the way up to the attic to "kit" so I don't have to try and hide it somewhere in my room - all the tents and sleeping bags and general stuff is going to be easily accessible in future - whooop!
Now - something completely different - when I first mentioned that I was seeing Chris, I had several people demand more details, especially how we met, and I've realised I never told that story. It's quite sweet, so I thought I'd share. I haven't always talked much about my dating, just snippets here and there, so I realise a little back-story is required here, and I'm not quite sure where to start.
I suppose there are 3 key facts to this story:
- I'd sworn off Canoe Club boys, and I broke my own rules.
- I was actaully seeing someone else when I met Chris.
- I've known of him for a couple of years, and thought he was rather yummy, but never had the opportunuity to talk to him before now.
In 2009, just as I'd made a deal with my best friend Jo that we would do something about our respective waistlines and fitness levels, I went snowboarding with friends. Some of those friends were ex-Canoe Clubbers, and there was another big group of their friends going to the same resort as us the same week. We decided to share their coach up to the resort from the airport and, as we got on the coach, I saw a guy who I remember thinking was rather cute. A big, tall guy with dark hair, very blue eyes and a near-constant smile. He seemed like the kind of friendly, popular guy who's easy, fun company; the kind of person I instinctively like.
Back then though, I was feeling (really) low about myself. My weight had been creeping up uncontrollably for a while, hence the final snapping point that triggered Jo and myself to say we'd finally make the change. Smiling at cute guys was not really on my radar. Entertaining my friends as the "fat girl" and otherwise fading into the background was the norm, so as much as I thought he was cute, and probably kept a sideways eye on him during the 3 hour coach trip, that was it.
That holiday was the second time I'd been snowboarding, and as I pushed myself I ended up falling hard several times. I guess it's hard to fall lightly when you're 16 and a half st and snowboarding. My back, already injured (and cleverly left untreated) after a horse-riding fall in 2002, finally gave up. I had one rough fall too many, and 3 days after we arrived, I was confined to the chalet by intense pain, and I stayed there for the rest of the week. So I wasn't with my friends when they hooked up with the other group on the piste mid-week, and although we went for dinner with them towards the end of the week, I was too lost in pain to enjoy myself. I was still like that when we got the coach back to the airport - ripped ligaments and muscles in your back will do that to you.
I remained aware of the guy's existence over the next couple of years though, as I'd sometimes catch a glimpse of him at various events or hear of him through mutual friends, but that was it. We were in the same social universe but on different orbits. Nothing would ever happen.
You know - this is turning into a bit of a long post ..... I think I'd better leave it there .... :o)