Caffeine smaffeine.

IMG_0714I just had an interesting conversation with my daughter( well interesting to me) She has big exams coming up and she mentioned that she might have a green tea mochi before one particular exam. I have to add here that the particular matcha green tea mochi she eats have a surprisingly high level of caffeine in them, which neither of us realised until her pupils reached alarming saucer like status.  Up to that it seemed all very innocent and almost healthy sounding but my anxiety radar shot up. I said to her that if she did well there was the danger that she might put it down to the caffeine rather than the hours of study and healthy eating regime she has put together for herself. Now I’m well aware I’m an over thinker but she got it.

The same child(19🙂) once wrote the most convincing debate on why everyone should be allowed take performance enhancing drugs in sport.I won’t go into it but she had me convinced. She doesn’t actually believe that, but she is a very clever gal/wordsmith. My point is I think caffeine has the power to lead us to underate our selves. In my early days of running I would take caffeine gel before a 5 k park run, I shit you not. If I had a good run I’d put it down to the gel, if not I’d convince myself I hadn’t taken it in time…ah, you’d have to laugh at yourself really.

Maybe it’s just me and my fear of any mind altering substance, it can fill in that place in my head that tells me I’m not good enough. And that’s it, exactly. Bing, light bulb moment.

 

https://www.google.ie/search?q=one+more+cup+of+coffee&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en-ie&client=safari

Lucky Seven

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What a sight to come home to.

Today I feel a mixture of feeling sad and incredibly lucky. I am celebrating 7 years hangover free and I feel so ridiculously grateful. I got to celebrate at the weekend ( my belly button birthday also) with my amazing family and friends. They were celebrating both events equally with me. They have been with me through the rough and the tough. As I said ridiculously grateful.

 

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Then there’s this…I’m not one for “quotes on social media” but to be honest the events post gig last night in Manchester are so unbelievably sad, heartbreaking and depressing that when I saw it posted today it really summed  up how I was feeling. Be kind, tolerant and hug those nearest and dearest to you.

Roll up, roll up…

No, not in a rizla kinda way but the carnival kind. Myself and the UM have just returned from a trip to the carnival. Now, I’m fairly petrified of heights so the visit was purely nostalgic, I love all things retro and vintage and I enjoy the buzz at old Skool events. I just wanted to take some pictures. I could have stayed at home doing all the things that needed doing or in fact gone  for a run. But I didn’t…and the best part of this is that I didn’t frickin’ bully myself for not doing those things either.

I’ve  noticed  that since I started practicing mindfulness ( still can’t believe I’m saying that) I’ve gotten much better at acknowledging that bullying voice in my head, letting it sit there like an unwelcome guest at a party, and carry on regardless. So instead of beating myself up for not running,not doing the books or generally doing stuff that can wait, I’ve started doing other stuff that makes me happy . Baking, walking, taking pictures, watching another documentary on the tv or indeed watching crap on the tv.

Today I choose to ignore the ever growing pile of ironing and go visit the fair…

Tomorrow I may run or I may not. Happy weekend whatever you’re doing.

Walk in the woods.

Years ago I read a book by Bill Bryson called ” Walk in the woods”. It is up there with my all time favourite reads. One day I would love to do the same walk, this is probably a bit too adventurous but never say never. It’s only in recent years that I’ve been brave enough to run/walk through our own local woods. It was a fear I really had to get over, for myself but also when I realised that I was passing my anxieties about walking alone onto my daughter to the point that I was still walking her to school at 18.

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The woods in my head

My fears are not totally unfounded, during my teen years I had at least 3 occasions when strange men decided to expose themselves to me. One of those times it was in a pretty isolated area and quite scary but my instincts kicked in and I was able to get myself out of there fast. So for me being able to take a nice run without seeing the run as the quickest way in and out of the woods is serious progress. Even better and to my dogs delight I’ve taken to long leisurely strolls and enjoying the sounds of nature rather than hearing every creaky branch as a potential threat.

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The ACTUAL woods.

 

I’m not about to start running through the woods at midnight to prove a point( although this DiD happen during the early dating years with my now husband, there was whiskey involved) but I now have a ” healthy ” fear. Not one that stops me from enjoying and connecting with nature and people. This is sort of a mirror of what’s been going on in my noggin recently. As someone who experiences anxiety it can be easier to take the staying in option. But what would I miss out on. Don’t get me wrong , waking up in the morning feeling like there’s a 50 kilo weight on your chest and a free floating feeling of fear doesn’t make getting out of bed easy but when there’s even a glimmer of hope that everything will be okay…if you just trust. I’m so happy to be in a place where most of the time I try to keep an open mind. Another bit of good advice I picked up along the way. That and willingness.

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A guarantee that I will definitely walk here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Live and let live

I can’t say that without Axel Rose belting through my head. Ear worm for today then…  Yesterday I came home from work and the first thing my daughter said to me was ” Well, who did you judge today?” Jesus h . Now there’s a question. First of all, I asked her ” Where’s this coming from?”  ” That list” she said, as she pointed to a list I’d stuck to the fridge.

For the past few weeks I’ve been trying to be more ” mindful” I know, I can see some of you rolling around on the floor laughing. But, do you know what? It’s working… to quote another admittedly annoying saying( Dec, you just love this one) It works if you work it😀So anyhoo, the list was given to me by a friend and by friend I mean Freud based nice lady I go to talk to. One of the ways of being more mindful is to notice when you’re judging someone and then saying to yourself ” just like me” So, for instance, Jesus, that person is so self involved, they are talking so loudly on the phone on the bus ( have I NEVER done that?) I had a good think about it and yes, we are constantly judging others or even just comparing ourselves. I’m glad my daughter asked me this, it’s not enough to have the list on show…gotta put it into action( sound familiar?)

On the running front it’s a bit stop and start but that’s ok. This time last year I was in full triathlon training mode. No races planned for this year but as soon as the water heats up a bit we’ll get to Lough Owel for some open water swimming 🙂🙂 Really looking forward to that! I’ll leave you with a pic I took a while back of a run I took with Holly lovely hound, I can’t take her out running now as she’s deaf and nearly blind and the last few times she’s just gotten lost and been a bit of a liability to runners/cyclists. Have a safe fun weekend lovely people.FOT8456

Pride in the name of…well, pride.

I’ve just been for a run, a pretty remarkable run really. Well remarkable in that I didn’t vomit. I almost did, the only thing stopping me was pride. There were 2 Sunday drivers up my arse. I can’t believe my fitness is back to where it was about 3 years ago, well that’s how it feels.So why should it be any different? I’m 47, haven’t run for nearly 4 months bar the very odd dreadmill session and some long walks. I really need to have a word with myself. Pride ain’t my friend.

Job done, move on. Run again tomorrow. Get a program (another one) stick to it and be grateful. And remember pride comes before a Huey.

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The art of mindlessness.

On our way back from a rugby game last Saturday, we spotted a pair of gold stilettos dangling from a telephone wire in what is known as a rather affluent pair of Dublin. I wondered was it some kind of ironic take on the hanging of trainers from telephone wires in less well off parts of the town. This,for those of you that don’t know is a sign that criminal gangs work in the area and is thought to mark a ” patch”  It made me think of my own trainers and how unused they have been for the past 3 months.

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Cinderella must be fuming

The result of not running seems to be that my back feels pretty good…but that’s physical. On the nogaroo side my head has been in a bit of a spin. So I went over to the online learning site futurelearn.com which has a fantastic range of free online courses. I signed up for a 6 week mindfulness course which was pretty great, even for a cynic like me. I’ll tell you what though…it ain’t easy(no,no,no…) My mind wanders…ALOT. But I’ll keep at it, if nothing it’s sending me to sleep.

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Thanks UM for this book, he’s even more cynical than me…but he also runs faster.

So,what’s it to be? A bit of both I hope. I’ll go out tomorrow for a gentle run and try to be gentle on myself if it doesn’t go so well. I believe self compassion is where it’s at.

Acceptance

via Daily Prompt: Acceptance

It’s a funny one this… I use to think acceptance was about laying down and letting people walk over me. I put so much energy into fighting against things, thinking it would make me stronger. But it just wore me down. Until I came across the acceptance  quote  from Bill and Bobs excellent adventure (in joke).

You don’t have to be religious to find it useful( I’m not )Once your ego can get over the fact that you are not in total control of all things(insert smiley face so no one gets offended) You may find it useful.

“And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed,it is because I find some person, place or situation unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person ,place or situation as being exactly the way as it is supposed to be at this moment ”

Its not the full quote but it’s not difficult to find. I’m not naive , I know there are situations where we think “REALLY? This shit is MEANT to be happening?” Well, yeah, in those situations, I usually have a snot-fest cry/rant and try to move on and do the next right thing.

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Calvin and Hobbes, we’re big fans in this house. Have a super weekend.

Oh I do like to be beside the seaside.

I’m frustrated, I made a plan and it hasn’t worked out. After a period of not feeling brilliant physically and otherwise I had planned an epic return to running. My body thought otherwise. The return of sciatica has led to no running,sleepless nights and if I’m being honest low mood. A visit to the doctor resulted in a suggestion of an MRI, rest and some other stuff I won’t bore you with.

My own prescription? Well thanks to another blogger(slowrunnergirl) and her inspiring sea photos, I knew a good injection of sea air would help lift the mood. So on a rare shared day off , myself and the unironedman took ourselves off to do the gorgeous Bray/Greystones cliff walk. It did the job…

In a few weeks all of this will have passed, it’s how I fill in the middle bit now… it’s a wee bit too chilly for open water swimming just yet but my legs still work and if I’m being honest I love a good walk! And there’s always the bike.The days are brighter and there’s a gig I’m going to on Wednesday. My kids are healthy , my husband makes me laugh and my dog thinks I’m wonderful. The list goes on, a visit to the seaside and suddenly everything seems better.

That’s what friends are for.

I have a good friend, let’s call her Carolyn( for that is her name…) This is a short post of thanks to her and also my super duper ironman husband. For the support.

So Carolyn has been listening to me hum and haw about what events I’m going to do this year, I mean she has listened ALOT. She is a body builder, all natural,clean. A kind of Audrey Hepburn with incredible muscle definition. Anyhoo.. after months of me procrastinating she sent me this in the post. It’s a wonder woman wetsuit…

It was her gentle way of saying “Get your shit together ” She believes I can do anything, one of the most positive people I know ( you too unironedman)

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