Christmas is close upon us, as is the delightfully aesthetic new year, 2020.
So I decided to do a little look back at the year – a review if you will. I want to keep it mostly positive because lord knows we need some positivity around here what with the election, Brexit and my own personal knee strife. But I’ll start with running, which will inevitably tumble down into a bit of negativity but then I’ll move on quickly to more happy affairs.
For running, 2019 has been a tale of two stories for me. The first half of the year I felt like my running was going really well. I ran a really strong Portsmouth Coastal Marathon at the end of 2018, then headed into 2019 and hit Barcelona Marathon (3:31:45) and Manchester Marathon (3:23:04) fairly close together with similar good results.
Good results for me basically means feeling strong in my running and finishing happy. I did both of those things for both of those marathons. Barcelona was quite hot and Manchester was quite boring, but asides from that they went really well.
I also managed to score a new PB for my 10k at the Manchester 10k (41:40). Considering I detest 10ks this hadn’t been a particular focus of mine but a happy outcome of some consistent strong running.
Then came the Hamstring Saga which stretched on far too long but eventually I was able to overcome this issue with a lot of rehab, support and whining. So much whining. I saw the end in sight as I hurtled towards the Chicago Marathon. The week before saw my knee blow up and I ran cautiously through the marathon (thank goodness painlessly) and here I stand over nine weeks later and my knee is still not right.
Regardless of the second half of the year stuttering to a rather sad running-less end, I’m proud of what I’ve achieved. Three marathons – two very strong ones and one “victory lap” marathon. I got my Six Star Finisher medal. Of course I’m proud of that and happy I achieved it this year when so many times throughout the year the threat of my hamstring (and then knee) made me doubt myself.
But running aside… There have been so many good things this year.
Favourite food: Ah jeeze this year was bloody amazing for the food I ate. So many new restaurants tried and I even managed to go out of my usual habit of ordering chicken wings all the time (shock).
The top contenders are the incredible Jayne Salad from The Parade Tearooms as this speaks to my soul in a big way – I love salads but I HATE tiny portions. This is the perfect salad for me and my greedy personality.
The meal we had after I finished the Chicago Marathon was incredible. I mean, everything tastes incredible post marathon but this was really tasty. It had everything I craved: wings, rib bites and loaded nachos. Heavenly.
A recent addition was the meal we had in Brighton at MEATLiquor. The wings of course were awesome but it was the hot dog that I keep thinking about. It was amazing and opened my mind to ordering something different. I wasn’t sure if I liked it but not I just want to eat hot dogs all the time.
And top of the list must be the INCREDIBLE roast dinner we had in Bristol at Pasture. It was INSANELY good.
The meat, the vegetables, the gigantic Yorkshire pudding and of course the oh so tasty side dish of creamed leaks. It rocked my world and back.
Favourite books: I’ve read a number of books this year and a few highlights have been Ready Player One which I read in like two and a half days, I just loved it. It was so gripping! Way better than the film.
I also loved Big Little Lies – how I’d managed to avoid all spoilers is incredible because that twist at the end was really enjoyable! My favourite book though was the Cows by Dawn O’Porter.
I loved the feminist issues it brought up and it really made me think. As a side note, I’m currently reading Crazy Rich Asians and I’m loving how batshit it is.
Favourite films: Well Kyle and I have seen 40 films (so far) this year. Next week we’ll be adding probably four more before the end of the year. With our Unlimited Cards it has been AMAZING.
My favourite was Knives Out, followed closely by Green Book, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, Long Shot, Beautiful Boy (that film destroyed me) and Us. On my dud list was Hellboy (horrifically awful), Detective Pikachu (I fell asleep) and Alita: Battle Angels (too much uncanny valley).
We also worked out we’ve spent about £180 on Subways (we always get a footlong to take with us to eat in the adverts) – that’s 480 inches of subway. The mind boggles.
Favourite song: I’m still as obsessed with Billie Eillish as ever. I’ve been listening to her music for years and was a fan before she sort of exploded this year. I’m so happy she’s so successful of course but part of me is a little bitter that now I have to share her 😉 She’s so talented (with her brother of course) and her voice is INCREDIBLE. Yes she’s a bit weird and quirky, but I love it.
So 2019 was a pretty solid year. I have made so many amazing memories, with both friends, family and of course Kyle. I’m a happy Anna right now, despite my sad knee.
What’s been your favourite movie of the year?
What food have you really loved this year?
What’s been your favourite race?