Sublime Sundays – A Fresh Start

Sublime Sundays

Okay, okay, that post title is a bit dramatic. It’s not like a proper fresh start. I’m not moving country or changing career. It’s just the start of a new week and a nice little chance for me to change a couple of things.

So, whilst it’s not strictly a fresh start, in the super exciting, life changing sense, next week will mark the start of something new to me. Not new, new but new by comparison to now. Are you with me? No? Didn’t think so.

I love using Mondays as a benchmark point to change habits. Mondays are a great time to set new goals and try out new things. They also happen every 7 days which means that if you fall off track, you can start again the following Monday without too much time passing by! Perfect!

So tomorrow marks the start of my Marathon training. It’ll be the start of me getting back into healthy eating and also back into the routine of trying to run 5 times a week. I’ve downloaded myself an official Brighton Marathon training programme which is only 16 weeks long so I’ve got a few weeks to get back into my old pacing before starting the proper training programme. I’ve also tried to build up a bit of motivation by watching the Fittest On Earth Crossfit documentary today.

Although I’ve made a start on going dairy free, I want to cut down a bit more from tomorrow too. That’s going to be the main change to my diet as well as cutting back on the general crap I’ve been eating lately. I’d say that I’m also going to cut back on drinking too but I rarely drink anyway and it’s almost Christmas so…well, mulled wine basically.

It’s Halloween tomorrow, which means that it’s the end of #blogtober (I’ll be doing a post all about it tomorrow). Without writing two blog posts a month, I’m going to have a lot more free time to work on the eCourse that I’m hoping to launch on Flourishing Freelancer in December which is super exciting. It should also give me more time to work on the business elements of the site more generally too.

I’m going to use tomorrow evening, as the first evening that I won’t be writing new blog posts, to set myself some goals for November. I’m determined to step up my game in a number of parts of my life and tomorrow/start of November seems to be the perfect time.

For now, I’m going to make the most of my last night of being able to eat whatever I want and lounge around watching TV because there won’t be much of that going on any time soon!

Hope you all have a lovely Sunday evening.

Friday Thoughts 4

friday-thoughts

This week’s Friday thoughts is a little different to the last couple. I don’t have a list of my highs and lows for you today.

Instead, I want to talk about charity. Stick with me for this one please. Charity work has always been a huge part of my adult life. I decided to take a gap year before starting university so that I could volunteer abroad. I chose Ghana and immediately fell in love with the country and its people. So much so that on my 3rd or 4th day there, I changed my stay from one month to four months.

Ghana 2013

I’ve spent 6 summers over the last 9 years in Ghana. Teaching, playing, caring, supporting. The people who I’ve met through the charity in the UK have become my best friends. The people I’ve met in Ghana have become my inspiration and motivation.

I spent the whole of 2014 raising money for the Raising Hope Foundation. Since then I haven’t done much and this week I’ve been thinking of ways to get back into my role with the charity, both in terms of fundraising and volunteering.

People often ask my why I’ve stayed with the same charity, visiting the same place year after year and the answer is simple – the children. They fill every minute of my time with them with love, light and laughter. I’ve run around in the baking Ghanaian summer sun playing football with them, taught them how to read and count and taken them on day trips, I’ve sat up all night with them when they were sick.

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A while ago, I wrote a blog post where I said “They [the children] are the reason behind everything I do and I am eternally grateful to them for everything they have given me.” And, whilst this is still true, I feel like I’ve lost sight of this slightly over the last couple of years. They’ve always been on my mind but I’ve not be pro-active enough about things.

I miss the children in Ghana, hell I miss everything about Ghana. It breaks my heart that I haven’t been for the last 3 years. I need to see the children and the progress that’s been made on the Child Care Centre. But more importantly, I need to step up my game in supporting the amazing work that the Raising Hope Foundation does from this side.

The first step in this is the Brighton Marathon. I’ll be using this event to raise money for the charity. I’ll be setting up a fundraising page this weekend so keep your eyes peeled for that! I’m also looking for something a little more unusual to do later in the year. At the moment I’m thinking about a Saharan trek next October but I’m open to suggestions right now.

My Favourite Things About Autumn

my-favouritethings-about-autumn

Today has felt really Autumnal so I decided to do a short post on all the things I love about Autumn. It’s definitely my favourite season…only because Christmas isn’t an actual season.

  1. Pumpkin Spice and Ginger Bread lattes – Basically anything pumpkin or gingerbread flavoured to be honest but being a caffeine addict, the coffee always wins!
  2. Cold, misty mornings – I love, love, love cold, misty (sometimes even frosty) mornings. There’s just something magical about them especially in the city or over water.14724622_774569769348635_2165616186075387070_n
  3. Candles…all of the cinnamon, mulled spice candles – I actually got a new spicy candle from Waitrose today that smells amazing! Added bonus, it’s a huge jar candle so will hopefully last through to Christmas.
  4. Snuggly scarves – Look how cute we are! Need I say anything else?untitled-design-8
  5. Saturday nights in watching X Factor with pizza – X Factor is actually really annoying me this year but every Saturday night without fail, we curl up with pizza and wine and watch it.
  6. The colours – orange leaves, blue skies, red (mulled) wine. Autumn colours are so incredibly beautiful. As soon as the leaves start turning a little more, I’ll be out there with my camera. d2cff780d0d69a1642747fee9e94fb06
  7. Rainy days cuddled up under a blanket watching films – there really is nothing nicer than hearing the rain fall against your windows knowing that you don’t need to go outside.
  8. Comfort food – Okay, all the food but I love the switch over from salads to soups and pies. Oh and being able to eat Sunday roasts without overheatinguntitled-design-9
  9. Warm, cosy clothes – onesies and knitted jumpers especially
  10. It’s almost Christmas – which means mulled wine and Christmas markets! Eeeeeee!untitled-design-10

Simple Tips for Staying Healthy

simple-tips-for-staying-healthyStaying healthy can be difficult, especially when you’re busy, busy, busy. Sitting at a desk all day and takeaways at your fingertips when you get home make it really easy to slip into bad, unhealthy habits. But there’s a few little things that can build into your every day life that can help you stay a little bit healthier.

Stick to the 30 Minute Rule

Research says that we should be active for at least 30 minutes a day. So whether it’s walking, running, cycling, swimming or whatever else you fancy, try to work out for at least 30 minutes every single day.

A great way to get you moving more is to track your steps. I’m a big fan of my FitBit but you don’t need an expensive way to track your steps. Here’s some Apps I love for tracking steps:

  • Pacer – Pedometer plus Weight Loss and BMI Tracker*
  • Track My Steps –  Pedometer Activity Tracker*
  • Map My Walk – GPS Walking and Step Tracking Pedometer for Calories and Weight Loss*
  • My Fitness Pal – Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker* – This one does a lot more than track your steps. It’s one of my favourite free Apps as it lets you track your calorie intake, exercise and weight.

Drink More Water

Everyone knows this. There’s not a lot I can say really except “do it!”. Once you get over the need to pee more, you’ll notice the benefits of drinking more water really quickly.

Have a look at this post for some ideas on how to spruce up your water in healthy ways.

Stay Hydrated

Stretch

Stretching is so underrated! It’s not just to ease your muscles after a workout. Stretching is important throughout the day – a little stretch can help boost your mood, increase your energy and relieve aches and pains. Why wouldn’t you want to stretch.

Setting aside some time to get out your yoga mat, stretch and chill out is a great way to end the day but check out this article on stretches you can do without ever leaving your desk (although you really should leave it at some point!)

Sleep More

I know what you’re thinking. Haha, that’s a joke right?! Whether you feel like you sleep enough already, or you struggle to sleep, asking you to sleep more will probably seem impossible. But it will help, trust me. Getting more sleep will help you in so many ways. You’ll have more energy (which means more working out!), your body will have more time to rest and recover and it can help lower your risk of illness. Getting more sleep will also help your mind – a refreshed mind will help you tackle the challenges of the day ahead.

Getting more sleep might sound impossible but check out this post for some handy tips.

Sleep Better

There’s lots and lots of little habits you can get into that will help improve your general health and well-being. Whilst they’re only small changes, it can be easy to forget about them. They say it takes 30 days to change a habit (or introduce a new one) so stick with it and before long, it will be second nature and you’ll wonder how you ever survived before!

*This site uses affiliate links but only for products I have used and enjoyed (and not been paid for). By following the links and purchasing products through those links, I will earn small commission at no extra cost to you.

Friday Thoughts 3

friday-thoughts

Hey folks, super quick update this week as I’m on the train on my way to see my bestie for a catch up and drunken night out!

So, without further ado, here’s what my week has looked like:

  1. I’ve been working on the next stages of my business plan. Nothing has really changed but the next steps needed a bit more work on them
  2. My post-half marathon high has just about worn off from last Sunday. I’ve decided that half marathons are my favourite distance. 10k doesn’t really seem like much of a challenge but there’s very little chance of my running a full marathon any time soon!
  3. And, following on from that, I’ve signed up to the Brighton Half in February next year.
  4. My dairy free diet has been pretty poor this week. I’ve definitely cut down a lot but there’s still some more to get rid of!
  5. I’ve registered for my first ever blogging event this weekend! Eeeeek!
  6. I’ve had a mini meltdown about how slowly I’m paying off debt and (not) saving to go travelling. I’ve decided to be a real grown up and just ignore it for now and think properly about it next week.
  7. I’ve been totally loving the dark evenings and cannot wait for the Christmas markets to start!
  8. I’ve been totally hating the dark mornings. It’s been so difficult to get out of bed this week (also because I’m still sleepy from the weekend)
  9. I’ve really enjoyed writing some more travel posts. They’re so much more time consuming than I ever thought they could have been – hats off to full-time travel bloggers!

That’s about it for this week. I’ll have more to update you on by Sunday after my girly night out and blogger event!

Hope you’ve all had a lovely week.