Not settling for mediocre

Another post around dating. I thought, why not as I have a few things on my mind.

I go through periods where I’m like “right, let’s do this!” and get really enthusiastic about going on dates and meeting new people. I re-install Plenty of Fish (*sighs*) on my phone and get about chatting to guys who’ve messaged me that don’t seem like a psycho/weirdo/offering a threesome.

I’ve been on some really lovely dates recently with a nice guy but sadly it just didn’t pan out. I’m not one for going into the nitty gritties as it’s hardly fair but I’ll just say he just wasn’t for me. This is much to my mother’s frustration because she couldn’t seem to understand why he wasn’t for me. Or why other dates weren’t for me. Or why men who she suggests aren’t for me.

In her eyes I’ve become too picky. I’m giving up on guys too quickly. I’m not trying hard enough. In fact this was something my friends mentioned to me the other day when I tried to explain why someone else I knew wasn’t for me despite being a) single b) around my age and c) a perfectly normal guy seemingly with his schizz together.

Before I delve too deeply into “becoming too picky” I will firstly mention that age (within reason) is actually not a barrier for me. I’m no spring chicken myself anymore and so can’t really afford to segment a good portion of the male species because they’re too old (or too young, but let’s be real here, I don’t think I’m going to attract many young’uns!).

Am I too picky though? Are my requirements for a partner too specific, too narrow and unrealistic? Maybe they are. But do you know what, why the hell shouldn’t they be? Why settle for a mediocre life? Why settle for “he’s nice” or “we seem to get on well”? Why can’t I have fireworks, explosions, rainbows and magic? Why can’t I have someone who I want to throw all my plans out the window for? Drive a million miles for? Ignore the alarm and miss the gym for?

Am I so far past it, so far gone, that I should just settle for who’s available who kind of ticks the right boxes because I won’t find better. Because I don’t deserve better.

Absolutely not. I REFUSE to settle.

Let’s be clear here. I’m not unhappy. My life is not empty. I may be alone but I am not lonely. I have a life full of excitement, full of plans, goals and ambitions. I have a fantastic network of friends and family. I actually love my life.

I am a whole person and don’t need someone else to complete me. I am not a puzzle with a missing piece. I am bloody good puzzle with all the pieces already stuck together and it looks pretty damn awesome. There may be that someone special and amazing out there for me but I’m not hunting them down and I’m not sat in a tower waiting for them to rescue me. I’m living my life exactly how I want to and if I happen to bump into “Mr Right” then fantastic. But until then, I won’t be settling.

Dating, what’s been your experience?

Am I being unrealistic?

Feeling a bit lost

Initially I wasn’t really sure whether to write a post like this or not. But then I guess I like to be honest and transparent in my blog so might as well.

In general, I’m a very happy and upbeat person. I’m a glass half-full kind of girl. And a lot of times this can get me into trouble because I won’t have back-up plans or contingencies because I assume everything will be fine. I don’t like to dwell on sad things or not see things in a positive light – I’m very much an optimist. I’ll bat of things with positivity and jokes. Happiness is my default, and I know I’m lucky in that respect.

But lately I’ve been a bit down. I don’t really like to mention these sorts of things on my blog as my blog is, in general, a happy space where I waffle on about running and random fluffy stuff. But sometimes it’s good to be honest and to show that whatever you might see on the outside, it’s not necessarily true of reality.

I feel like I’m lost. I don’t know what I’m doing any more (did I ever? Does anyone ever?). I’ve just turned 29 and I don’t know where my life is going. I thought I had it all figured out. When I was growing up I studied hard, always with the goal of university and a career I loved. That sort of turned out as it should but other things happened and the years flew by and now I’m not so certain of anything anymore.

Yes it’s partly that horrible comparison trap again. Seeing what others are doing around me. My friends, family and people on social media all seeming to have such control and direction in their life. While I feel like I’m a ship in the middle of the ocean and I don’t know which direction to sail. I’m floating aimlessly. I’m not sinking but I’m not going anywhere either.

I’m happy in general, don’t get me wrong. Life is very good. I have a good job, I earn good money, I own my own flat, I have wonderful and supportive friends and family, I can go on nice holidays and buy nice things…I really have nothing to complain about. But I have no purpose and a bit of an emptiness inside. Oh I know, this is such a “first world problem” and one of those horribly cliched ideals of modern life. I am well aware of how blessed and lucky I am. But I still can’t help but feel down.

I think my issue is my current lifestyle. I live in a lovely suburban area full of lovely friendly people… but people who have their 2.4 children, their family homes and they’re all settled down. I however am not in that world. I don’t have kids, I don’t have a “family”. But nor am I living the lifestyle of a young (yes? I’m still young right?) single woman. It’s a full on 20 minute drive to get into town and the nearest shop to me is the huge Next Home shop and PC World.

I should be in the thick of it, amongst other young, carefree people who aren’t planning their baby showers or what they’ll do in the school holidays. But I’m not. I’m going to work and coming home, going to work and coming home. I can’t go out with my work colleagues because it’s an hour away from where I live (by car) and I have Alfie at home waiting for me. I can’t, on a whim, ring up a nearby friend and just head out for the evening because they either live too far away or have family-orientated plans. I’ve got all these barriers stopping me from living a proper single life. The only way to date is online dating and so far this has not gone particularly well. I feel like I’m watching life pass me by.

I’m happy and comfortable…But I’m worried that I’ll tick along like this on autopilot and one day wake up and I’m still single, still floating aimlessly and years have flown by. Something has to change I guess. It’s just being brave enough to make that change.

Have you ever felt like this?

What advice would you give?

Why I’m OK with being average

No one is going to write a book about my life. That much I’m fairly certain. In fact, I’m always quite shocked that people actually read my blog.

Though I’d still write it even if people didn’t read it. I find the whole process very cathartic and it’s a great way to keep track of races, restaurants and significant events and the fine, mundane details surrounding them that I’d probably never remember otherwise. I’ve often referred to my blog when trying to remember certain things – like where was that place I went to that had that amazing cake? Or what time did I run that race two years ago? Or just being able to flick back to old posts and see how much I’ve changed, or in some cases, how I haven’t changed at all.

But it’s not ground-breaking stuff. I’m not smashing through glass ceilings with my critical thinking and diverse approach to different topics. I’m not even that great a runner. I’m middle of the pack and, worse still, injury-prone. My running is not exactly awe inspiring and I’ll never get super fast times or do a super amazing challenge (spoiler alert on my life right there, guys).

I’m not selling myself short. I’m not being pessimistic. I’m just being honest. That honesty doesn’t make me sad. And I don’t want to be famous (jeeze, what would I be famous for? I daren’t even think… some weird cake eating competition or girls vs. food event – but even at that I’m hardly remarkable to the people who genuinely do those things).

In general, I’m a very happy person. Day-to-day/hour-to-hour this obviously changes (I hate you, commute! *shakes fist*) – as it does for everyone. But when I get home at night, lock my door and get into bed, I’m happy – alone but not lonely. I don’t have any huge regrets in my life, aside from small and insignificant ones (why didn’t I start running earlier?).

I don’t regret getting married and that period of my life. We had good memories together and it helped me grow during that time. And when it ended I learned a lot about myself as a single person, rather than being part of a pair.

It was actually something my physio said to me that made me think. He said, “People underrate feeling fine”. They only come to him when they’re in pain or something’s not right. Then they only realise how incredible feeling normal and not in pain actually is. I know this well; it’s always a momentous occasion when I tell my physio that I feel fine.

This same logic applies to life. Though my life is so very average, that’s OK because I’m happy. I have no major gripes: I’m healthy, I have a loving family, a solid group of friends, I have no money issues, I enjoy my job, I don’t think I look too much like Quasimodo in the great scheme of things, I have a lovely flat and, of course, Alfie. Yes it’s average, mundane and, to a lot of people, boring but I’m happy and healthy, and that is certainly not something to take for granted.

Sometimes I think it’s important to take stock. Your stock may not be one in a million or the stuff of blockbusters, but if you’re happy and healthy, that stock is pretty damn good.

Are you above average at anything?

Would you ever want to be famous? And what for?

Perhaps a fairly personal question, but are you happy?

Moving on

This is a bit of a random post. I just felt the urge to get some words down in a cathartic kind of brain fart, mainly triggered by the fact that I will finally be moving soon.

It’s been over eight months since Ben, my husband, told me he no longer wanted to be with me. Not a day goes past that I don’t think about it. Whether it’s wondering where the cracks began, why I didn’t see them or what my life is going to be like going forward. It’s not something I feel depressed about or cry about anymore. I don’t want sympathy or pity. That isn’t what this post is about. I actually don’t know what this post is about. It’s just a mental dump, forgive me.

I’ve been given a completion date for the flat I’ve bought (finally) so should be moving Friday 4th December. Ben lives in Switzerland and is enjoying his new life out there, with a new job and ambitions. I’m happy for him. We still keep in touch and this makes me both happy and sad. We’re still friends but it’ll never be the same.

I’m happy in myself and enjoying life. I will never regret the time Ben and me had together because we had so many good times and we grew together as people. But I do worry about the future. I have a ticking clock in the back of my mind which I’ve never had before.

I don’t want to get all Bridget Jones and Sex and the City on you, but I do worry that I’ll be that girl. I’m not outgoing and don’t thrive hugely well in social situations… I won’t ‘put myself out there’. Insecurities have cropped up that I never had before… What was wrong with me? Will anyone want someone as running obsessed as me? Am I boring? Nothing makes you face your flaws like the thought of dating. I was with Ben from when I was just 18 and was still ‘finding myself’ and growing as a person. Well, I’ve found myself and there’s not much I can do about changing now. This is me.

Thankfully I’m not really ready to look for anyone else. I feel exhausted and terrified by the whole idea. I’m happy on my own and enjoying the truly selfish aspects that that entails. No one to dress up for, no one to look good for, no one to try and make a good impression for. Just me, sat at home in my pyjamas, my hair a mess, eating too many apples.

I just worry that’ll I’ll get used that lifestyle. It’s so easy to just get stuck into my routines, my habits and introversion. I know what I’m like. I can become very routine-fixed and like things ‘just so’ and without anyone else there to mess up those routines they only become a bit more ingrained. But, like I said, I like my life at the moment and I like those routines. On to the next chapter!

But, still, that damn ticking clock…

If you’re with someone, how did you find your partner?

If you’re single, are you happy being single?

Do you worry about the future? I never used to. I thought I had my whole life planned out.

Spring is round the corner – WIAW

Hello! And what a beautiful week it’s turning out to be. The sun is shining and it definitely feels like spring.


I just love this time of year. There’s a lot of hopeful feelings of summer being around the corner. Waiting for that one blissful week of the year in British weather where the sun peaks out behind an overcast sky…no I joke, maybe it’s two weeks! Winking smile

Either way, there’s a feeling that winter is almost over and longer days and warmer weather could be on the way soon.

And to keep with a happy mood, let’s get on to What I ate Wednesday.

Thank you Jenn!

This is pretty much my usual routine for a working day in the office.

Breakfast is the same as usual. Eaten just before 8am.


Good old oatmeal and almond milk. Can’t beat it. I tend to buy Scottish Oats because for some reason they always turn out a bit thicker and stodgier than normal plain rolled oats with the same volume of oats (so more almond milk is needed, yum).

I try to make sure breakfast is one of the last things I do before I start my ‘wonderful’ commute to work. I don’t like eating too early in the morning if I can avoid it as otherwise come midday I’m starving. This is the case even if I run in the morning. I know some people say you shouldn’t run on an empty stomach but honestly I a) couldn’t stomach breakfast at 6am or before, or b) don’t have time to eat breakfast and then digest properly before running. Plus how good does breakfast taste after working out? Open-mouthed smile

Lunchtime at work usually happens 12.30-1pm. I don’t have a snack in between breakfast and lunch, just black coffee and peppermint tea. Last week I mentioned feeling really hungry and needing more food. I experimented a bit and have come to the shocking conclusion that maybe a good old fashioned sandwich would be the ticket (sarcasm alert). I did try those bread thins last week and beefed out a bit on the filling but I think that was missing the point…whoops. They really weren’t that filling (shocking, I know).


So in said sandwich is turkey, cream cheese and salad. With a side portion of more salad. Just because. Alongside this I also have a beasty fruit salad. Definitely been feeling better after this. I do love my salads but I love running fast more Smile

Snackage in the afternoons at work is usually some chopped carrots (to the delight of those nearby my desk), a banana and an apple. And more coffee and herbal tea.

Herbal tea

Honestly, I drink so much throughout the day I’m up and down all the time either getting more drinks or going to the loo. People will start talking…

Dinner: there is no denying that the first thing I want to do when I get in from work is EAT. But Alfie needs to be walked if Ben hasn’t got back from work before me and comfy clothes need to be put on. Occasionally some jobs are done, like putting washing on and general tidying but usually we’re fairly ship-shape and dinner is on the agenda pretty quickly. So dinner is usually 7.30pm. This is dinner from Monday night.


This is what I like to call Single Anna’s Dinner. No Ben hasn’t left me, he was away in London. Essentially that meant that I could eat whatever I fancied without fear of the Healthy Food Alarm going off (aka Ben). Anything too healthy and he runs a mile. It doesn’t look great but it tasted pretty darn amazing and used up a lot of veg that needed consuming.

In the mix was salad, cucumber, beets, tomatoes, chopped plumb, roasted veg (1/4 bell pepper, 1/4 zucchini, couple of mushrooms, sweet potato, butternut squash), chickpeas, half an avocado and breathe. Hmm, yes quite a bit. I think Ben’s head would have exploded.

And last night I had one of my favourites:


Chicken paprika with grated sweet potato. I love this meal but I really, really hate grating sweet potato. Seriously one of the most annoying tasks. Ridiculously strenuous as well on my arm! And then I’m always finding tiny flecks of sweet potato about the place afterwards. Grr.

Pudding is my usual two apples chopped. And then later I always tend to have a packet of Snack a Jacks…

Snack a jacks

…and a couple of squares of Lindt Mint Intense dark chocolate:


(Old photo: it’s the top one…obviously)

There’s something about an evening that just requires chocolate. I feel sad when dinner is over…I just need that little something else before going to bed. Bliss.

So that’s my day…hope you enjoyed! Smile

If you exercise in the morning, do you eat breakfast before or after?

What’s your favourite sandwich filling?