Monday Motivation 

Monday Motivation 

Hello, I hope you’re ok- particularly if you’re in the UK and affected by the dreadful flooding and poor weather this weekend.

We’ve been lucky this time around, as we weren’t hit too hard: there was a landslide on the Rest and Be Thankful, however the debris nets did their job and the road remained open- yay!

So I was able to make it to Glasgow and back on Saturday where I had a lovely festive lunch with some of the Dream Team. We even had a lovely walk around the Christmas lights, in the rain 🙂

This week, I don’t have Clubbercise and I probably won’t make my Pound class either, so I’m contemplating using that as a reason to lace up my trainers and bust out a short run. I really have to get back out there!

Here’s something to help with my motivation: 

 I hope it helps you too 😉

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Celebrating World Gin Day!

Celebrating World Gin Day!

I  mentioned yesterday that @TheWelshWookie and I had been to one of our very favourite places on Saturday: Portavadie Marina.

We were looking for any excuse, really, to take a trip on the new hybrid ferry, MV Lochinvar 😉 What better excuse than to go for lunch – and celebrate World Gin Day – at Portavadie!

The weather was absolutely beautiful: it was gloriously sunny as we strolled down to the ferry terminal. We popped into a few shops on the way, buying  bottle of white grape & elderflower presse for adding to gin later on in the evening.

The first thing we noticed about the new ferry was how quiet she was! The engine, being a hybrid, merely purred, making for such a pleasant journey. The interior lounge has much more seating than before, and there are two observation areas with seating on the upper decks. Impressive!

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We arrived at Portavadie, and walked around to the marina. We saw that construction is now under way on the leisure complex: I can’t wait until the pool and its facilities are built!

As we entered the restaurant, we were greeted by Chris, who’s service is always fantastic. We took a seat on the sofas while we perused the lunch menu, and ordered a Botanist gin each. Oh, my. It’s definitely my absolute favourite gin of the moment: it’s from Islay, which is much more famous for its whisky. We had a chat with Ian, the General Manager, and it was so great to hear of the future plans for Portavadie: it’s exciting times ahead!

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When we were ready we were seated for lunch. Most of the other guests had opted to sit outside, but I much prefer to eat indoors (I’m weird, I know). I had the smoked haddock with mustard potato salad and pancetta crisp; @TheWelshWookie had Tarbert scallops with black pudding and roasted potatoes. Both were -ma-zing!

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Of course, we also had dessert. I had a white chocolate mousse with mini toffee apples and raspberry sorbet; @TheWookie had pineapple crumble with coconut ice cream. Yum.

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After taking a stroll around the marina, having a look in the shop (of course), we had another G&T before heading home on the ferry.

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We had a fabulous day, as ever!

Did you celebrate World Gin Day on Saturday? Do you prefer to eat indoors or outdoors?

Let’s Do Lunch

Let’s Do Lunch

Today, as I was having my lunch, I was thinking about how predictable this meal is for me. I’m a creature of habit. I don’t deny it 😉

I’m very fortunate, as we have a staff canteen on site. And almost every day I have soup for lunch. There’s always a choice of two home made soups available, and there’s a great range of flavours which staves off boredom.
I also find that this keeps me going until my run when I get home from work.

Despite my understanding of how counter productive it can be, I tend to eat my lunch at my desk, while working. I know, I know the benefits of taking a break, and I’m the first to tell everyone else to walk away and have a proper break, but I struggle to do it myself!

Tonight, I got in a great four mile run, in lovely weather once again! So, that’s another 6.44 kilometres, totalling 11.47k for the week so far, and 40.25 for the month.

So, how’s your lunch? What do you have? Do you take a break?

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My Favourite Cafe

My Favourite Cafe

Well, hello there, Monday, you’ve come around too fast!

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Today, I received a reality check, after spotting the following goodies in our local Co Op:

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Erm, hello, the Hallowe’en goodies haven’t even hit the shelves yet, and you’re selling Christmas goodies?!

Anyhoo, how has your day been?

Tonight, we’ve headed to my favourite cafe for dinner. I’m pretty sure that I’ve mentioned it before. It’s called Cafe Ca’Dora, and it’s in Tarbert, conveniently located easily within walking distance. And we love it!

What is really tempting is that virtually every run goes past it. It’s difficult not to just pop in!

We visit it regularly- too regularly, and every time we have visitors, we’re guaranteed to be in there a few times: for breakfast, or lunch, or coffee, or dinner. Or any combination of those!

@TheWelshWookie loves the burgers.

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I love the nachos, wraps, pasta and fajitas.

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They also make their own ice cream. It is delicious!

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All of this talk of food is making me hungry again! 🙂

And I’m having a rest day; so no running to burn any extra calories off! 😮

Hot Hills and Hazelnut Pavlova

Hot Hills and Hazelnut Pavlova

Today, I met the DreamTeam for a spot of lunch, where we promised that we would not talk about work for a whole hour. We didn’t even last five minutes! Anyway, we had a lovely lunch at The George Hotel in Inveraray. It was busy, and as ever, the food was great. We all had dessert, as their selection is fantastic. Knowing that I would be heading out for a run after work, I still decided to have a Hazelnut Pavlova served with blackberry & cream ice cream. It was amazing! Want to see?

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I knew that I’d need to head out for my hill run this evening, but being absolutely stuffed a little full after lunch, I was able to have a quick flick through my BodyFit magazine, which arrived in the post today:

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When I felt that I couldn’t put it off any longer I could actually begin to run, I headed out for a hill session. Now, this is something I’ve been putting off for quite some time! I’m the first to admit that I like to run on the flat, and any incline is difficult for me. Anyway, having signed up for the TT10K in August, I thought I’d better try out a couple of the hills that I know are en-route.

I headed out along the harbour as usual, and along to Garvel road end, which is the start of the TT10K. I ran along Garvel Road, and turned onto the main road to face the first, and the smallest, of the hills I was tackling today:

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Doesn’t look to bad, eh? It was actually ok, I wasn’t heaving and gulping in air when I got to the top. Immediately after this one, though, I crossed the road, and turned the corner onto the high road, to face the second hill. Don’t be deceived by the next picture- this is only the start of it, and the rest of the hill is over the brow of the one in the picture below:

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Yeah, right, I hear you say. It can’t be that high? Well, just to show you how high it is, I took a pic of the harbour where I started, from the viewpoint at the top of the hill:

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Pretty high, right? And gorgeous, of course. So lucky to live here.

Anyway, I managed the second hill OK too. I continued my jog back down the high road, and back along the front of the harbour, making my way to the hill that would take me up to Tarbert Castle and the Castle loop, which is a trail part of the run. This is the monster biggest of the three hills, and it snakes and winds its way up to the Castle. Here’s the first part:

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Well, by this point, my large lunch was beginning to take its toll and my legs were a bit heavy, so I lumbered powered up as best as I could. I admit that I had to stop and walk for about a minute, then I continued to run to the top of the road and onto the trail.

I had planned to finish here, but as I am totally crazy it was such a lovely evening, I thought I’d just take on the Castle Loop too.  😮

This was tough going- much more hilly to run than I remembered from walking it in the past, but I’m glad I stumbled, walked and jogged my way around it. I stopped at a bench because I was knackered to take a picture, but it doesn’t really show much, I’m afraid, though it is really pretty:

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I then headed home, to watch Andy Murray win! Woo Hoo!

Today’s stats:

Run: 3.5 mile hill run

Time: 40:25 (lots of walking!)

Trainers: Lunarfly GTX

Weather: sunny- yay!

Fave running track of the day: Gotta Get Thru This, Daniel Bedingfield. This track came on as soon as I reached the hill up to the castle!

Today’s life lesson: Don’t expect to have lunch with work folks, and avoid talking about work.

Also, don’t have a big dessert and expect to run as if you haven’t!

Have you ever regretted doing anything before going for a run?