It’s My Birthday!

It’s my birthday! I’ve turned the ripe old age of 25 today. I can now be rounded up to 30. I’m half-way to 50. I’m a quarter of a century old. In my head I’m still 19 though Winking smile I don’t feel like I should be an adult yet. Do you remember when you were younger and your twenties seemed like the age when you became an Adult. Responsible. Old. Confident. You knew what you were doing.

Hmmm. I’m not quite sure I’m there yet!

T Rex

Well anyway I’m one year older and I’d like to think one year wiser (ha!). Though I do feel more confident in myself and where my life is going. I’m head of heels in love with my husband, we’re enjoying our life in our little home and I feel happy with where my career is going. So not bad!

And in a nice coincidence it’s What I Ate Wednesday (thanks, Jenn).

Here’s a mix of today’s breakfast and lunch from yesterday and dinner and snacks from the weekend (random I know, but more interesting this way…believe me).

Birthday breakfast: oatmeal…seriously what else would I be eating on my birthday!


This morning Ben had set up a treasure hunt for my presents so I was running all over the house to get my gifts. We decided to do a surprise this year so I had no idea what I was getting. The boy did good though!

For Lunch I went crazy and had something different. Mainly because I was running late and had forgotten to make my lunch the night before but hey ho.


Chicken salad with beetroot that I had from home. With this I also had popcorn and fruit with Greek yogurt (I had just enough time to get those in order – and seriously, I’ll be late for popcorn Open-mouthed smile). My office is used to the smell of popcorn now…but unfortunately I’m moving into another room as I’m changing teams and so I’ll have to explain my popcorn obsession again to a whole different set of people…

Dinner: on Sunday after the 10k race we had roast chicken.


So, so good. I love the smell of the house as it’s cooking away. So homey.


With this I had roasted butternut squash, Brussels sprouts and watercress (but of course) that we got from the race. And I went back for seconds of the chicken (in fact I’m pretty sure I had a breast, a thigh & a drumstick). It was so good. I obviously had a big dollop of BBQ sauce by the side as well…

Snacks: on Sunday I carved up the beast of a watermelon we had. I can eat a never-ending amount of watermelon. I’ll get full and then 5 minutes later I’m ready for more. It must be the water content. Great for after the race to rehydrate!


Happily I found Ben hates watermelon, which meant more for me!

Running: my running is almost back on form. I ran 4.5miles on Tuesday morning and my leg still didn’t feel completely better. Not painful, just discomfort and it felt like it was holding me back. But I’m continuing to stretch and ice it.


Today’s run (because I have to run on my birthday!) was better but towards the end it became tough. And stretching afterwards felt amazing.


I’m also loving the below yoga moves for helping get back into good shape (read: avoid injuries):

One-legged pigeon pose

Pigeon Pose


This is great for stretching out tight hips and the muscles right near the bum!




Good for hips (again), spine, abs and bum, while also stretching outer thigh, back, chest and shoulder. Nice.




Good circulation stimulator.

Dandayamana Bibhaktapada Janushirasana



Stretches the hamstrings.

So I’m giving those stretches a go when I can and though I’m definitely not looking as good as the pictures in terms of form and position, it does feel good and I swear each time I do them it feels a teeny bit easier (probably psychological…) Seriously though, what kind of names are they!!

Unfortunately this weekend I can’t celebrate my birthday as I’m off tomorrow on a team building event with work. A crazy orienteering/mountain biking/puzzle solving/running around getting lost in Dartmoor thing. Wish me luck. I’m the only girl going!!

My parents should be coming over tonight…potentially with a cake. Hopefully by the end of tonight I won’t look like this:

Mm cake

But let’s be honest, knowing me it’ll be something like that haha

How do you like to celebrate your birthday? We’ve postponed the celebration for a few weeks (as we have friends coming over the next weekend). Our plan is to go for a lovely meal and get a taxi home.

What do you think of yoga? If you’re a runner, does it complement your running?

Do you always have a cake on your birthday? I always try and drop not-so-subtle hints to my parents to get me one…

Sleepless Nights and a Special Birthday

There are good times during the day when it is sensible and productive to think about important decisions, tasks at work, and things that you need to do.


I have found that 3.30am is not that time. At 3.30am everything can seem like a complicated problem. Everything gets ruminated and examined from every possible angle. Time gets sucked away and your mind whizzes at ninety miles an hour. Problems are not solved at 3.30am.

That was last night for me. I tossed and turned all through the night with a mixture of a zillion things going through my mind and achy legs from my running club run that evening. Consequentially, I did not sleep well.


Loving that peak from 3-3.30am…not

I didn’t need the Sleep Cycle app to inform me that I had pretty rubbish sleep quality. I was fully aware of that at several points during the night. In fact, I’m sure I ruminated on it at 3.30am.

I love running club but it does mess around with my sleeping after I’ve had a hard run only hours before. And on top of a tough week at work…well I had no chance really. It’s funny because at that time in the middle of the night, you almost want you alarm to go off so you can get up. When you do eventually fall back asleep however, those thoughts are long gone.

Anyway, so this week has been tough at work and tough running. My 10k on Sunday pretty much savaged any energy I had left in my legs and left my runs feeling tough beyond belief. I usually comfortably run between 7.30-7.45mins/mile. On Tuesday I was struggling to hit 9mins/mile. Very humbling! Reminds me that I’m not superwoman and rest is important.


But I enjoyed the run regardless and just ran at a pace that my legs felt comfortable. I think it’s important to get back into it after a tough race but I also think it’s important to that slowly and sensibly. Shake out those achy muscles and get some fresh air.

And importantly – a big happy birthday to my amazing, super mum.


I couldn’t ask for a better mum. She may not be the best cook in the world Winking smile but she is definitely a great listener, a loving person, kind beyond words and always there whenever I need a mum-daughter chat or coffee.

On to some good food. The other night I tried a new recipe. It’s loosely based on THIS recipe that I had pinned (follow me if you fancy!)


Tomato and Feta Chicken (serves 2)

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • Tin of chopped tomatoes (I used chopped cherry tomatoes)
  • Herbs (e.g. oregano, thyme, basil, rosemary)
  • Garlic

– Pre-heat oven to 200C/400F.

– On the hob in a small pan, cook the chopped tomatoes with the herbs and garlic until bubbling.

– Add most of the feta (reserve two heaped teaspoons) and stir so it begins to break down and melt.

– Season the chicken with pepper (no salt as the feta is very salty) and add to a small casserole dish. Cover with sauce, pop in oven and cook for about 15mins.

– Remove then sprinkle over the remaining feta and pop back in for another 5mins (until the chicken is cooked).


The sweetness of the tomatoes and the saltiness of the feta worked so well together. And so easy to make, definitely one to repeat as an easy midweek meal!

So it’s Friday today, hurrah! This weekend is a long weekend with the bank holiday on Monday (a day off in the UK). I plan to enjoy a nice relaxed Parkrun tomorrow – NO PRESSURE allowed. And then Ben and me might have signed up to another 10k for Sunday….um, yes we are obsessed.

Have a lovely weekend!

What are you up to this weekend?

What’s your favourite kind of cheese? Mine is goat’s cheese without a doubt. But I do love cream cheese.

Do you wake up in the middle of the night with thinking-overload?

Weekend Catch-Up

Helloooo. Another week and closer to summer!

And it’s my lovely husband’s birthday – happy birthday, Ben!!


(A photo from a couple of years ago, but one of my favourites)

So catching up from the weekend. We had a great one! Friday night was ice cream and movie night. We watched Looper and though there were several times Ben and me had to pause the film to discuss it as it was such a head warp, we really enjoyed it. And the ice cream was obviously AMAZING. I’ve successfully trained my body into being able to consume an entire litre of the chocolate brownie frozen yogurt Ben and Jerry’s. Not a talent I’m hugely proud of, but delicious none-the-less.

Saturday morning I got up early and did my 10 mile run. This time I started slowly, took it slowly and didn’t push it. Though I’m currently suffering from a cold at the moment which is highly irritating. [Ben keeps informing me that I sound really creepy because when I’m sat next to him and breathing through my nose I breathe really heavily because it’s slightly blocked – like I can help it!!] So the run wasn’t the easiest despite slowing the pace. I just can’t win!


And thankfully I had no issues from my Achilles and only slight pain in my knee at the end. But I’ve been doing lots of stretches to loosen my ‘hip flexor’ which has definitely helped. Funnily enough I listened to a Marathon Talk podcast on my run (one from a few weeks ago as I’m a bit behind) and they had a physiotherapist on and they literally talked about my exact issue. What a coincidence!

After the run I did lots of housework while Ben was out doing something-or-other to his car (installing a head-unit…I thought this was some strange technical device he had to wear on his head but it’s actually the CD player…who knew). As it was his birthday weekend he was allowed to forgo his housework duty. I try to be a good wife sometimes Winking smile

My outfit for the day:


Jeans from Republic (in the sale as they’re sadly closing down), top from New Look, scarf from Accessorize, necklace from Mango, shoes from Next.

Then we met up with a couple we’re friends with and went to Nando’s for lunch. It became a bit of a chicken eating competition as we ordered. The two guys went for WHOLE chickens and two sides and us two ladies went for half chickens and two sides. Now usually I’m the greedy one out of Ben and me so I was fairly impressed. Though Ben did cave at the last minute of ordering and gave me one of his sides. The embarrassing part is that when I ordered for us at the till the man asked me if I wanted three drinks because he thought there were three of us eating…

And we had a mezze board to start!! With the world’s worst photos I’m afraid. It was so dark in the restaurant!


And for my main, my half chicken with a corn on the cob and side salad (I wanted to maximise on the chicken experience):


Sorry that really is a terrible photo… I had mango and lime sauce on it and it was really good. After my run this was a truly appreciated meal. I finished this off and had Ben’s other side (another corn on the cob; I have a crazy obsession with them) and helped Ben with some of his chicken when he was struggling.

Literally could not move afterwards. Needless say I don’t want to see chicken for a while now.

Afterwards we all needed to get outside and walk a bit for fear of exploding. I managed to get a steal in French Connection – a lovely sparkly clutch down from £65 to £10!!! Crazy. Apologies no photo…but it’s very dainty and pretty. I also got some Estee Lauder BB cream. I love BB creams because they’re so lightweight. I don’t usually wear make-up but if I’m going out or having an ugly day I’ll slap some tinted moisturiser on so this is perfect.

~gpr v1 @ 7/13/2011 @ 4:26 PM~gpr v2 @ 7/18/2011 @ 6:45 PM~gpr v3 @ 7/18/2011 @ 8:00 PM~bt v4 @ 7/20/2011 @ 4:51 PM~bt v4 @ 7/20/2011 @ 6:41 PM~bt v4 @ 7/20/2011 @ 7:49 PM~bt v4 @ 7/20/2011 @ 8:02 PM~bt v4 @ 7/20/2011 @ 10:42 PM~jd v5 @ 7/22/2011 @ 11:49 AM~GPR v6 @ 7/27/2011 @ 4:40 PM~gpr v7 @ 7/28/2011 @ 4:43 PM~bt  v8 @ 8/1/2011 @ 4:07 PM~bt v8 @ 8/1/2011 @ 6:37 PM~JD  v9 @ 8/2/2011 @ 1:38 PM~TS v10 @ 8/8/2011 @ 3:42 PM~jd v11 @ 8/9/2011 @ 4:19 PM~JD v11 @ 8/10/2011 @ 9:54 AM~JD v12 @ 8/10/2011 @ 12:39 PM~TS v13 @ 8/11/2011 @ 6:39 PM~JD v14 @ 8/12/2011 @ 9:35 AM

And I also got some running leggings as well from Nike.


They’re perfect for when it gets a bit warmer. I have shorts for the summer, long leggings for the winter and capris for the in-between bits but I hated how they flared out at the bottom just under my knees. Also the new ones have a zip just above the bum where I can put my key. Perfect.

Then we had a drink at a little bar and then went home where Ben and I enjoyed a nice evening of Game of Thrones series one (watching again because series two is almost released). Dinner was porridge for me and toast for Ben. Seriously, nothing else would have fitted after all that chicken.

Sunday was a quiet day of family coming over to wish Ben a happy birthday and basically doing not much else (on my part, Ben was still doing his head unit thing – this was his birthday present, by the way). Though I did enjoy a truly delicious lunch.


Butternut squash and coconut milk soup. I forgot how much I loved this soup. It really hit the spot.

And a standard pudding at the weekend for me:


Melon! And do you know what, I’m embarrassed to say that I went back and had the other half a few hours later. So yeah, an entire melon was consumed. On a random note, melons really freak me out. Ben has to cut them for me because I honestly can’t stand the inside of them. All those seeds just make me feel really sick. I’m not sure why. The same happens with bell peppers. I’ll use a word that I really hate to describe it: clustering of seeds. GROSS.

I’ve also recently been thorough enjoying snacking on these bad boys:


I was sent these from Lord Poppington’s range of popcorns to review and honestly loved them. I did get the Four Cheese flavour as well but for some reason didn’t manage to photograph it. Probably because I gobbled it down too quickly.

I’m a big fan of popcorn so I was looking forward to trying these. They’re gluten free, low in fat and with no artificial flavours. And being a wholegrain product it means they’re a good source of fibre. And each pack contains between 94-128 calories. And you get a fair amount for this! Better than Snack a Jacks I have to say.


My favourite flavour by far was the Chilli and Lime. It was so flavoursome. My mouth was a little bit on fire, but in a good way. The Four Cheese was my second favourite. I just love the flavours.

But the only thing I will say is that they only seem to be available on Amazon and quite expensive. I’m a little bit devastated by this as I would honestly swap these for my Snack A Jacks. They’re probably a lot better for me than the God knows what they put in Snack A Jacks.

But, inspired by the above, I have since bought some plain popping kernels to make my own…watch this space.

What did you get up to this weekend?

Sweet or salty popcorn? I would have said sweet but after trying the savoury flavours I’ve changed sides for a bit.