Sober October starts tomorrow…

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Chris and me enjoying a bottle of wine recently

My husband Chris and I are both doing a sober October challenge meaning today is the last day of alcohol for the next 4 weeks (ours is a ‘4 week October’ challenge to end on Monday 29th…)

No more bottles of wine to accompany meals… no cocktails when I’m in Liverpool again soon and no alcohol on a forthcoming walking weekend… maybe it should be ‘somber October’…

The main reason for this challenge is health in order to give my liver a rest and a chance to repair itself. Drinkaware has some guidance on this and its quite shocking that a woman who drinks a couple of glasses of wine a day for a couple of weeks can start to develop ‘fatty liver’ where the liver gets “stuffed with fat”… this doesn’t sound too good however the promising thing is that if you stop drinking alcohol for 2 weeks the liver starts to shed this excess fat!

I’m not sure if I have a fatty liver or not (quite likely as I probably do drink a couple of glasses of wine a day on average), but I’m hoping that 4 weeks should give it a chance to become much healthier.

Alcohol is also connected to 7 types of cancer so another good reason to reduce my intake.

I’m also interested to see if my sleeping improves… last night I had a large glass of red and a Cointreau and then found myself wide awake from 00:45 to 03:45.

Will provide an update in due course…

 

 

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Week 39 walking update

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Makarska

Running total (to week 38): 1,560

Miles walked in week 39: 54

Total walked so far in 2018: 1,614

Having arrived home last Tuesday, this weeks’ walking includes our final day (Monday) in Makarska, Croatia. The first 6 days were lovely and sunny however the last day was a different matter in which we were somewhat battered with a storm! The storm didn’t start until lunchtime and I still managed to walk 9 miles around Makarska on that day!

Today being 30th September means we are now 75% of the way through 2018 already! The good news is that as my revised walking target for this year is 2050 miles I am well on my way to reaching this 🙂

I have 436 miles to go which is an average of around 33.5 miles a week or just under 5 miles a day!

 

 

 

Plastic reduction update

According to Greenpeace, 12.7 million tons of plastic are dumped in our oceans each year, choking turtles and seabirds and ending up in the stomachs of sea creatures such as whales.

I’ve made some small changes throughout this year to reduce my plastic footprint:

  1. Using a refillable water bottle rather than buying single use bottles of water. The only exception I can think of was during my week in Cuba where I didn’t have my water-to-go bottle with me. In Croatia last week I drank tap water from our apartment’s kitchen tap every time which was apparently safe to drink… well, I had no ill effects throughout the week 🙂
  2. I was annoyed with myself for recently buying a 3 small packs of pineapple chunks which were supplied in 3 lots of plastic tubs. What an idiot… I could have brought a single fresh pineapple for the same price and with no extra plastic used.
  3. I’ve finally got myself organised and have just ordered an organic fruit and veg box from Riverford Organics. Riverford have an environmental policy for their packaging and use cardboard boxes rather than plastic bags. I’m hoping this is going to be viable to do on a weekly basis… my concern is that I have to be at home to take the order so I need to fit around my ‘work at home’ days which vary on a weekly basis…
  4. I use soap instead of shower gel… sometimes…
  5. I buy chocolate wrapped in foil and paper and try to avoid plastic wrapped chocolate. For example, a few months ago I brought a large bag of Dime bars from an airport and it only occurred to me when I got home that each of the 80 or so dime pieces were wrapped in 80 small pieces of plastic…

I haven’t done any research but from my own memories of the 70’s and 80’s, fizzy drinks and milk were supplied in glass bottles, sweets were put into small white paper bags, chocolate bars were wrapped in paper, fish and chips were provided in newspaper (and not placed in a plastic bag), packs of toilet rolls were produced in a paper outer wrapping, parcels arrived wrapped in brown paper (rather than plastic bags) and fruit and veg came in brown paper bags.

I feel I still have a way to go before I confirming I have significantly reduced my plastic consumption but will continue working towards this…

 

 

 

Job app news…

… “you have not been shortlisted on this occasion…”

Second job applied for and no interview for this one either. At least this one didn’t inform me that I must be disappointed! I was politely wished ‘every success’ in my future career!

I’m still thinking of this as a ‘win win’ situation… I now have an up-to-date CV and 3 pages of my work achievements all nicely summarised so if any future opportunities arise, it wouldn’t take long to put in an application.

And as a director role it would have meant more pressure, more responsibility and probably longer hours. At the moment I’ve got an excellent work/life balance and I’m in no hurry to work late or work weekends or have a stressy job.

Unless it pays a big fat salary… as this one did…

But all is good! I’ll continue to enjoy my current job and maybe apply if any more ‘exceptional’ opportunities arise.

 

 

September book review

Book number 16

Book read: Cycling the World Part 2: Into the Sunrise, Sydney to Mori by Chris Pountney

Another amazing adventure! I read Chris’s first book, part 1, Paris to Sydney in February and this has been one of my favourite books, if not my actual favourite book since I began this challenge in January. While I enjoyed ‘part 2’ immensely it didn’t quite have the same style of writing as the first and I found myself skim reading over small sections of it. Maybe I’ve just been reading too many cycle touring books this year?

 

 

 

Week 38 walking update

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Makarska sunrise

Running total (to week 37): 1,512

Miles walked in week 38: 48

Total walked so far in 2018: 1,560

46 of these 48 miles were walked in Croatia this week, mostly in and around Makarska, our base for 7 days. We stayed in an apartment and while close to bars, restaurants and the sea it was about 1.5 miles to walk into the Old Town and marina. Some days we did this 3 or 4 times which soon racked up extra miles! And most mornings I got up an hour or two before the rest of my family and went for a 3 – 4 mile walk.

The above photo was taken during one of my early morning strolls where I could see the sun rising above the mountains behind Makarska. This was a lovely time of the day before the resort became busier with holidaymakers!

 

 

 

Job app number 2…

Second job of 2018 has now been applied for! I’ve decided on my job application criteria… as I enjoy my current job, it pays me enough money to travel fairly often and it gives me an excellent work / life balance I will only apply for and consider exceptional opportunities.

This job is pretty exceptional and as ‘Director of Digital and Technology’ would be a substantial promotion. The closing date was today so fingers crossed and lets wait and see…

 

 

Week 37 walking update

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Barton Hills (12 miles on Sunday)

Running total (to week 36): 1,459

Miles walked in week 37: 53

Total walked so far in 2018: 1,512

Good effort this week! 53 miles is an average of 7.5 miles walked each day 🙂  As a little snapshot, this was my mileage for this week:

  • Monday = zero (quite unusually these days for me not to walk anywhere)
  • Tuesday = 11 (walking to and from work and the stations and using the treadmill and cross trainer in the gym)
  • Wednesday = 11 (same exercise as Tuesday)
  • Thursday = 13 (same as Tuesday and Wednesday but I had an extra walk into our local town and back this evening)
  • Friday = 4 (walk to retail park and back)
  • Saturday = 2 (walk into town and back)
  • Sunday = 12 (walking with local walking club)

 

 

 

Hello Eastbourne!

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Eastbourne Pier

Eastbourne is situated along the south coast of England and was the recent end point of my 13 mile Seven Sisters trek! A ‘Victorian landmark’ the Pier is one of Eastbourne’s famous sights and I had a quick wander to the end and back while we waited for the bus to take us to Seaford to begin our trek back to Eastbourne.

Eastbourne seemed a typical British seaside town complete with amusements, fish and chip shops and… stripy beach huts!

The walk took around 5 hours in total and we arrived in Eastbourne at 7 pm, just in time for dinner in a local pub and a couple of drinks 🙂

I certainly have Eastbourne in mind for future adventures… this is the end of the South Downs Way, a 100 mile trail which begins in Winchester. Definitely something I would love to do at some point…

I admit that I slightly tweaked this challenge… originally it was to visit a new city in the UK however I’m not sure I’ll get to a new city this year so decided to settle on a new town instead… the good thing about a personal blog is you can make up the ‘rules’ and chop and change as you go along…