What I’m Loving Lately – May/June

Time is flying but also moving so slowly, eh?

So Kyle and I have been continuing to settle in nicely to our new little home and while there is still so much to do (not one room is fully “finished” yet) we’re loving our new way of life.

Luckily we’ve only had to paint one wall, and that was only because we wanted to change the colour. The whole house was left in such pristine condition and the previous owners had only recently decorated so thankfully it’s just furniture and organising that we need to sort out. (But big thank you shout out to the previous owners for their kindness and thoroughness – and the bottle of fizz they left us!)

Though we did have a rather stressful time of lack of internet which wasn’t fun. Ordinarily this would just be annoying but because Kyle and I are working from home we needed something to cover us for the week that our internet wouldn’t be in place. We bought a mobile broadband thing (like a dongle I guess) to cover us but the signal wasn’t great. But after a week or so, we now have proper internet and it’s lovely and fast. Work has become so much easier I can tell you! No more fuzzy stuttering Team meetings or waiting for a webpage to load.

My standing desk is doing well!

Anyway I thought I’d catch you up with some things I’ve been loving lately…House warming gifts

We’ve been really touched and grateful for lots of lovely cards and presents we’ve received since arriving. Kyle’s sister, Lucy, popped round (well, stood outside the door 2 metres away!) and gave us these gorgeous cupcakes she’d made (she’s actually got a baking Instagram that she’s looking into starting as a full-on business –> @dirrty.cakes to check her out).

There were some lemon flavoured ones and some chocolate flavoured ones. And they were INCREDIBLE. I’m not usually a big chocolate cake fan but damn these were so good.

So fantastic detail!

My lovely friend Emma made us some DELICIOUS rocky road as well and had it sent to us. This was amazing!

We adore rocky road and honestly it really didn’t last long… Such a thoughtful and lovely gift.

Marshmallows, cherries, biscuits… so good

And Kyle’s dad gave us a selection of Tony’s Chocolonely.

This was incredible! So many flavours I’ve never tried. My favourite is the dark chocolate and pretzel one, but the almond and honey was SO good too. A bit like Toblerone. Trying to pace ourselves and not eat them all at one.

FourfiveCBD Immunity Bundle

I was also recently sent the fiveCBDd Immunity Bundle, which contains a whole host of cool products:

  • CBD Effervescent Multivitamins (containing 5mg/0.13% Broad Spectrum CBD, vitamins, minerals and amino acids
  • Advanced Daily Biotic
  • Raw Organic Cacao Powder
  • Vitamin C supplements
  • Vegan Vitamin D3 2000iu supplements
  • Peanut Choc protein bar
  • Food-Grown KSM-66 Ashwagandha supplements

What’s cool is that they have a charity partnership with Compassion London who are supporting those most in need during the pandemic – which is just such a fantastic scheme. When you purchase this box, £5 is donated to help provide three meals to vulnerable people, the homeless and key workers.

The CBD multivitamin is easy to take – you just drop a tablet into water (like the nuun or High 5 hydration tabs). It has sweet organge flavour and 5mg of CBD per tablet.

The cacao powder which is untreated, high in magnesium and iron (good against fatigue) and can be used in protein shakes or baking (a great addition to porridge too!).

I didn’t know what Ashwagandha was before getting this box, but apparently it’s clinically proven to reduce feelings of anxiety and lower cortisol, as well as aid muscle recovery. It’s also supposed to help optimise libido in men and women, wahay 😉

The Daily Biotic provides Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, which is apparently the most scientifically studied strain of beneficial bacteria. This helps to support general wellbeing and keep you healthy.

I really like this selection box as it has a bit of everything. And to be honest, recently it’s been a big help what with all the stress of moving house, sorting things out and what with one with and another… it’s been a nice boost to my health I feel.

33 Fuel Ultimate Daily Greens

And to top  up my health even more, I’ve also been sent the Ultimate Daily Greens from 33 Fuel. I’ve tried other products from 33 Fuel and really like them (their chia seed energy gels are fantastic – I did a review of them a while ago).

The Ultimate Daily Greens is like a power drink for your health, containing good stuff like wheatgrass, barley grass, chlorella, spirulina, kale, spinach and without sugar, sweeteners, preservatives or flavourings.

Also what I love is that they don’t give you a plastic scoop – the world definitely needs less plastic (side note: MyProtein should really get on board with this as people who regularly buy protein powders have no need for more scoops! Just buy one separately if you need it). For this you only need a tablespoon so you can work that out yourself. You just add it to water and guzzle away.

I add it to squash and it’s perfect. You can add it to your porridge as well if you so desire. It’s an easy mix-in.

So things are very good round here at the moment. With lots of fantastic (and super tasty!) stuff from lots of lovely people and cool companies 🙂

Do you take any supplements?

Do you add anything to your porridge?

Do you have a favourite Tony’s Chocolonely flavour?

**Full Disclaimer: I was sent the immunity box and daily greens for free in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own honest ones.**

Grumpy running, good snacking and a leg workout

Brrrrrrrrrrrr!! It is cold! Sorry to state the bleeding obvious but it really is. OK we don’t have snow and I know we’re far better off than you warriors up North or in countries with lots of snow, so apologies for my pathetic moaning.

Saturday morning I optimistically put on my shorts for parkrun but after taking Alfie for a quick walk I realised this would not be a wise move. It was so much colder than it had been in the week – and very windy.

I had intended to wear all three of my new running tops and take one off on each lap (as I mentioned, jokingly, in a previous post – then people actually wanted me to do it) but it was too cold for short sleeves! Before realising how cold it was I did put them on with the intention of wearing them…IMG_6151Top layer was to be the Bournemouth finisher’s t-shirt, then the Marathon Talk t-shirt, then finally the parkrun 50 t-shirt.IMG_6153It was going to be so good… Then I stepped outside with Alfie and thought “yeah this isn’t going to happen”. There was no way I’d want to strip off any layers when I was running!! Instead I put on some leggings and a long-sleeved top.

I got to parkrun to meet the other set-up crew guys and we were all pretty miserable and cold. It was windy and wet as well as stupidly cold. As the minutes ticked closer to the start I started to feel more and more apprehensive and, well, moody about the whole thing. I was so close to just going home. My muscles all felt really cold, creaky and just niggly. I was worried about my knee and worried about needing to stop.

I did a quick warm-up with some of the guys and I just felt myself sinking further and further into a bad mood and was certain I couldn’t run the whole parkrun.

At the start my friend Mark realised I wasn’t in the best of moods and, bless him, he tried to pull me out of it by running with me and chatting. At first I just wanted to stop and give up – I gave him fairly blunt responses to his questions and conversation attempts. I was so cold and I couldn’t warm up. I couldn’t seem to run any faster either, and I was nervous to push it anyway because of my knee, which was feeling uncomfortable.

Mark realised how cold I was and gave me his jacket mid-run which was nice of him and did help. Possibly because I wasn’t running very fast (for me) and how cold the wind was I just didn’t get warm until the 3rd mile. By then I had started to come out from my dark place and actually be a nice human being to Mark. He was very patient with me and I wouldn’t have blamed him to have left me!parkrun splits




In the end I ran 27:18, my slowest parkrun in a long while and possibly one of the worst in terms of enjoyment. We were also on the winter course which is worse anyway in terms of hills (and wind). I was so glad when it was over. My knee didn’t hurt but it was uncomfortable, but given the conditions I’ll take it!

I was in such a better mood afterwards as you can imagine. I was warmer, relaxed and just glad to have got it done. And there was cake made by my lovely friend, Sheryl, who was celebrating her 150th parkrun!!IMG_6154

Mar bar crispies and Malteaser bites

I was in my happy place once again 🙂 The hot drink in the cafe afterwards was much needed as well!

Later on my friend, Tom, was celebrating his 30th birthday with a Mexican and Cowboy themed party. His wife, my close friend Louise, had made some really tasty cupcakes and an immense Cactus cake. There was a spread of nachos and dips and a chilli slow cooking as well.Cactus cakeThere were churro cupcakes (with cinnamon sugar and a doughnut texture) and piñata cupcakes that had Smarties in the middle!! I can attest that both cupcakes were very tasty 😉

I also brought round some popcorn I’d found in Budgens.IMG_6156For 99p and buy one get one free I call that a definite bargain! Marshmallow popcorn?? Yes please! To be fair though, it actually just tasted like sweet popcorn with a slight marshmallow hint.1 I think I was expecting chunks of marshmallow stuck to pieces of popcorn (what an idea, eh??) and the salted popcorn was basically sweet and salty. But tasty nonetheless!

I didn’t do a very good job at the fancy dress by just having a checked shirt so Louise did my hair in plaits for me and lent me her hat 😉IMG_6167I couldn’t stay for the evening sadly as my parents had invited me over for a meal with some friends, which also meant I didn’t see the main cake being cut 🙁 Lou, the lovely friend she is, said I could pop over the next day to pick some up. Always need friends like that in your life!IMG_6194After seeing Lou and Tom on Sunday morning, I headed to the gym for my leg workout. I don’t know if you guys care to see what I did but here it is anyway…

  • Squat: (warmup sets first): 4x 65kg, 6x 62.5kg, 8x 62.5kg x3, 10x 60kg x2, 8 x60kg
  • Box squat: 12x 60kg, 12x 65kg, 12x 70kg, 10x 75kg x2
  • Deadlift (warmup sets first): 6x 65kg x2, 8x 62.5kg x2, 10x 60kg, 10x 55kg x2
  • Hack squat: 12x 47.6kg, 12x 57.6kg x4
  • Sumo squat: 20x 10kg, 20x 20kg x4

Followed by some glute kickbacks/sidekicks on the cable machine and ab work. It’s a lot quieter on Sundays than Saturdays so it was nice not to feel crowded. The hack squat was a new machine to me, which focuses primarily on the quads. I prefer the leg press machine but it wasn’t working annoyingly. The hack squat machine was quite painful on my shoulders and left marks, despite there being cushions on it. It wasn’t a fun experience!

Anyway the rest of the day was same-old same-old: Alfie walks, housework and watching a new-to-me TV series, True Detective. The first episode was soooo s.l.o.w. I’m hoping it’ll pick up. My physio leant me the box-set so I need to get through it fairly quickly (I feel bad hanging on to borrowed things for too long).

What’s your favourite popcorn flavour?

What machines do you like to use at the gym?

What’s the coolest shaped cake you’ve seen (in real life, not on the Internet!)?

Random Tid Bits

Hi guys. I hope your week has been whizzing by as quickly as mine has. Missing out Monday does help!

My week hasn’t been that exciting I must admit…same old same old. I thought I’d do another post of randomness…

1. We’ve had a lot of rain round our parts so it’s been pretty depressing. Kind of ironic that as soon as the long weekend finishes it begins raining. Though rain sucks (hello stupidly long commutes because people forget how to drive), I do love going to bed hearing the rain outside. It sounds so cosy!

2. Last night I went to running club and it was TOUGH. The usual guy who leads the faster group was on holiday and so one of the other guys led it. He took no prisoners. Usually the other guy keeps a nice speed up but will stop to wait for the people at the back and let us all catch our breath. It’s more relaxed that way and not so intense.

However, last night the leader just wasn’t keen on stopping or waiting. We kept having to tell him when someone dropped behind and he just sighed as if irritated and then doubled back. So it was relentless with limited stops. I was shattered by the end.


I wasn’t too impressed with him to be honest. Yes OK he said we were going to do 7.30mins/mile pace but at least two of the guys struggled and he should have pulled back for them.

3. Does anyone else get seriously bothered by this??


I hate it when my music doesn’t have proper track names, artists or albums. Gahhh. It means I need to listen to each track to figure it out. It’s on the to-do list…

4. Alfie apparently likes watching TV. He goes mental though if there’s any windscreen wipers. I think he had a bad experience with them when we drove him home after first picking him up. It was raining and we had the wipers on and he really didn’t like it.


I also fed him a bit of an apple on the journey home as well (probably the one and only time I’ve ever willingly shared an apple). He gobbled it up quickly. Only to throw it back up on me an hour later. What a waste *sighs*

5. In other Alfie-related news, he loves to sit by the window in the sun and get a fur-tan Winking smile


6. I’m loving my running socks. They have little bits of padding on them in nice places (how vague is that? I won’t lie, I don’t know foot anatomy…) and they have “L” and “R” so you know which foot they go on. It might be psychological but I really think they help my running.


7. I love having customers in the office. We get exciting fruit platters and delicious food. OK it’s supposed to be for them but there’s always left-overs.


There is no easy way to eat a massive slice of watermelon at work. It’s messy and un-ladylike. And I love it Open-mouthed smile

8. This is the amazing red velvet cupcake I got from the Swallow Bakery at the weekend. I realised I hadn’t shared a photo of it.


HEAVENLY. It actually makes me sad that it’s gone.

9. After my running club runs on a Thursday night, I always find I’m just not hungry for dinner at all. But I do have dinner because I know otherwise I’ll die of hunger a few hours later (slight exaggeration perhaps). But it’s just never that appealing when I get in. The day after though my hunger goes into overdrive. I always need more food than usual. Which works perfectly today because tonight we’re off out with friends to the amazing all-you-can-eat Brazilian restaurant we went to before. Amazing.

And that’s all folks! Have a great weekend Smile

If you have a dog or a cat, what crazy things do they do that make you laugh?

What’s your favourite flavour of cupcakes? I love lemon flavoured ones and red velvet. I’m not a big fan of chocolate (weird, I know).

Do you have any fitness clothing/gear that you find really helps with your performance?

Bank Holiday Weekend – Part 1

Hello lovely people! How good does a long weekend feel? And with such lovely sunny weather! Ben and me have been really enjoying the weather and have been fairly busy these past few days.

Saturday morning we both naturally woke up early. So nice to have the sun gently wake you up. We did a couple of chores and then headed out to our local Parkrun in the lovely Victoria Country Park.

This time I did not make the mistake of having breakfast beforehand!! I was quite nervous due to last time. When we got there we found out we were doing the ‘harder’ course which was three laps and had an incline in it. To be honest I wasn’t too bothered as I didn’t know what to expect as I haven’t done a proper 5k in ages. And there was a pacing event on as well so there were lots of volunteers pacing different times which was cool.

On the first lap I managed to get slapped in the face with a stinging nettle as I turned round a corner. I thought “ha, well I won’t make that mistake on the next lap!” But by the second lap I’d forgotten it and got slapped again. And you wouldn’t believe that it happened on the third as well… I clearly have the memory of a goldfish.


I was enormously pleased with this! It’s funny because I saw the ‘Sub 22 minute’ pacer on the second lap round and thought well I’ll just stick with him as I was happy with getting 22 minutes! But as we carried on running I felt myself have enough energy to get past him and carry on a bit faster.


And I came first girl! It also felt great to be cheered on by the volunteers and then to cheer on everyone else as I waited for Ben to finish (not that he was that much further behind me!)


He got 25.07, a new PB Smile

So we felt pretty good after that. We went home, had some much needed breakfast as by this point it was after 10am.

After showering and chores we were off to Chichester to have lunch with my family for my mum’s birthday. Between my dad, my sister and me we had decided to surprise my mum by not telling her that Rachel (my sis), Nick (brother-in-law), Ben and me would be there. She just thought it was her and my dad. So we zoomed to Chichester to get to the restaurant before her and waited there for her to arrive. We got her a glass of Prosecco as well ready and waiting.


We were sat in a window seat so I was worried she’d see us but when she walked past but she was completely oblivious. My dad did a discrete nod and then they headed inside. Honestly, her face was a picture. She was so surprised and over-the-moon it was just lovely.

Mum's bday

And the food was divine, as always. This restaurant is a big favourite of our family (it’s called Trents).

For starters Ben and me had our usual thing…


A ‘dipping board’ with olives, basil pesto, hummus, pittas and crudités.

And for main I had a chicken Caesar salad.


Really chunky croutons, anchovies and chicken. Yum. The dressing was so good as well.

Then we moseyed about and looked in some shops. We went into one of my favourite sweet shops (Ye Olde Sweet Shop):

Sweet shop

Look at that huge Sherbet Fountain (do you remember those?? I hate liquorice but I used to love dunking the liquorice stick into the sherbet and licking it off).

We also went to another of my favourite Chichester food-places: The Swallow Bakery.

Swallow Bakery

Wow word: AMAZING. Honestly I spent a good 10 minutes perusing what I wanted….marshmallow cupcakes, carrot cupcakes, rainbow cupcakes…and all these other cakes, brownies and flapjacks as well.


I’m not sure if that’s clear enough to see, but you can have a cupcake MILKSHAKE. A cupcake blended in a milkshake. Disappointed smile And they had gluten-free option cupcakes too which I thought was great.

Ben and me went for strawberry meringues and red velvet cupcakes. Then we parted ways with the family and went home. Such a lovely day out!

After dinner, we ate the meringues. We just couldn’t not. I mean seriously, it was a push waiting that long to tuck into these bad boys (we didn’t share; we had one each).


Sugar-induced coma occurred promptly after this. But it was so worth it. We still have the cupcakes (I’m not sure how we haven’t eaten them yet, but seriously they well be gone by the end of today).

We were shattered and so had another early night as we had yet another 10k the next day (yes, I know. We are official obsessed. You don’t want to know how many we’ve signed up to. Our bank account is not pleased with us).

Right, I will stop there as this is becoming a bit lengthy. Hope you’re having a great Monday off (if you have indeed got it off)!

What’s your favourite way to spend time with your family? Going for a meal is definitely one of my favourites. Or coffee and a cake with my mum. Can’t beat that mum-daughter time.

Are you doing any Parkruns? Or races in general? We’re completely hooked on both. I love the adrenaline and feeling of accomplishment of a race. It definitely beats solo runs! Also Parkruns are a great way to measure improvement/progress every week.

Cupcakes, brownies, cake…what’s your favourite baked sweet treat? Mine is cake. A big slab of cake. But I do love cupcakes. And brownies. And cookies. Oh and scones obviously Winking smile

Moral of the story

Hi guys, hope you’re having a lovely weekend. The weather has been chilly but sunny and dry here which makes for lovely crisp days.

Yesterday I can’t say I did anything terribly exciting I’m afraid. Ben and I went for a nice run. Mine was a short, sharp 2 miles as I ached from my lower body routine from Friday…


…but Ben went for a whopping 6mile run. I’m so proud of him! He’s starting to get back into it which is great as I missed running with him. I have to say, I was a bit jealous when he told me how far he’d run.

This week’s workouts have been great. My usual strength routine’s Monday, Wednesday, Friday and a 3 mile run on Thursday. The 3 miler was really tough. I’m running a new route that hits a hill about a mile in and the hill goes on for .5mile. I think I started a bit cocky as by the end of that hill I was ruined. It really took it out of me. Moral of the story: PACE MYSELF.


I was going to run on Friday as well but I just didn’t have the energy.

In a slightly related story…When I said I was running the other week a guy I work with seemed keen to join me. He goes to the gym and kept bragging about how many miles he’s run and how fast he goes la-de-da so I was really excited about running with him as (and please don’t take this as me being big headed or anything like that) I haven’t run with anyone who runs at my pace before. OK I don’t really run with many people so that’s probably why!

So anyway, I was looking forward to it. We started off at a nice pace of 8.10mins/mile. Then we hit that hill I mentioned above. Suddenly all that bragging and hot air disappeared very quickly. The pace dropped to over 9 mins and he was dying. I felt quite chuffed with myself as I was OK. By the end of the run, he was done for. Now, I might be a leeeeetle bit too competitive for my own good and we weren’t racing. But if we were…I would have won that race. Just saying.

So my run on Thursday was the same route but me on my own to see how fast I could do it alone. Hence why I ruined myself.

I have to mention lunchtime yesterday. It was amazing. Now I realise that this may seem gross and wrong and random, but it tasted gooooooood.


Three egg omelette with chocolate peanut butter (PB2) and Brussels sprouts. Before you judge me, you need to try it. I love it when lunch tastes a little bit like a dessert. With vegetables. Win-win situation. Basically I ran out of my plain peanut butter and had to improvise quickly before the hungry beast that is Anna at lunchtime took over the world. Not my finest hour, but definitely one of the tastiest.

Then last night Ben and I went out for a fireworks night at a friend of the family’s house. It was Ben, my mum, my dad, my sister, brother-in-law, niece and me in convoy. The house was packed full of people and it was all very relaxed and fun.

The fireworks were brilliant. A home-made affair in the back garden. Ellie, my niece (on the right), and her new found friend Abbie loved it. Abbie kept asking her dad to turn it down though haha.


There was a slightly unsafe feel to the fireworks when two fireworks clashed together and made a huge explosions. Cue all the mum’s grabbing the small children and running inside (yes, that might have including me. I’m small and I was scared).


But otherwise it was great! Seat of your pants stuff.

The hosts provided a mass of food and drink – amazing punch (the bottom one was apple and ginger – with marinating apples floating about, the top one was tropical punch):


And I happily tucked into a bowl of hearty chilli.IMG_2858

Followed by pudding.


Look at those home-made cupcakes! The were sparkly and everything.


Ah yes, that is a piece of rockyroad. To be honest, I’m not sure how that got in my bowl. Think it fell in there by accident…

As amazing as the cupcake and rockyroad was I think I was too quick for my own good (yes I’m one of those people who’s pretty much first in the queue at buffets). After stuffing myself full they brought out crumble. I was devastated. I did contemplate having crumble as well but I’m not sure I could have driven us home afterwards without being sick. Moral of this story? Wait until they’ve finished putting all the food on the table before stuffing yourself.

So, a pretty good evening!

And we woke up this morning to this furry, scruffy hound:


I really need to get his haircut sorted. He is a mess, bless him.

What’s everyone up to this weekend?