It has been a bit of a bump back to earth, exercise-wise this week. By that, I mean that I actually started to do some exercise again and was shocked at how stiff and sore I felt afterwards! I managed a grand total of six hours of exercise which I was quite pleased with!
(1) Late nights and lots of stress – this doesn’t seem to have changed. I was in Court all day Wednesday, supervising university students on a summer scheme over the last two weeks, fielding urgent enquiries in relation to Brexit (none of the Tories going up for leadership actually seem to understand what the single market is), and trying to get on with my usual work (even this week, I’m on my way home now at 10pm after a 13-hour day in the office without a lunch break). On top of that, James and I have been in the process of selling our flat and buying a house we love and at the last moment that all might fall through for something completely outside our control. We have a meeting with the person who could cause the whole thing to come crashing down tomorrow morning and to be honest I feel physically sick when I think about it. That’s why not much blogging has happened recently…
(2) Yoga in the park: Saturday dawned bright and sunny so I headed out for a short run/walk down to Brockwell Park. Brixton Yoga has moved to the park when it’s sunny, so I walked up the hill and stumbled upon a group of yogis lying on mats at the top of the park, with beautiful views over London. I grabbed a mat and joined them, yoga-ing to the sound of the wind in the trees, tennis balls being hit, and occasional giggles as a curious dog ran too close. It was blissful.
(Photo stolen from Brixton Yoga’s Facebook page. Its also an incredibly open and welcoming yoga group, with a wonderful teacher who hosted a special post-Brexit class, with all proceeds (whatever you wanted to pay) going to charity).
The next day, however, it added to my growing realisation of how much fitness I’ve lost over the past few weeks. On Tuesday, I went to do weights in the gym. I used to do 3 x 10 reps on the leg press machine, this week I couldn’t even move the machine at those weights!! And I felt incredibly sore for days after. My run into work also tired me out much more than it would usually and left me with aching muscles. And my arms and sides were so sore they felt as if they had been bruised after yoga!
(3) A long, tiring cycle: despite being sore from yoga, it was a lovely warm sunny day on Sunday and I was determined to get out on my bike. For the first time since September James joined me and we had a lovely cycle around Richmond Park. It wasn’t that long, but given my lack of fitness it really felt like it! When you cycle the same route again and again its a great gauge for how you’re doing, and yesterday I could feel going to the first hill that I was not doing well!
(4) Two lovely dinners: as well as all the negativity, from work and fitness, there had to be some positives to the week, which began at 6pm on Friday night when my friend and colleague came into my office proclaiming that she was done for the week. I laid my head on my desk and wholeheartedly agreed. We picked up another friend (and colleague) and got away from Canary Wharf as fast as we possibly could. We headed to Soho, to Blacklock.
Blacklock specialises in chops, so that’s what we ate. A huge plate piled full of beef, lamb, pork, all on top of a pitta bread that had become soaked through with meat juices. We did have some vegetables – sweet potatoes, baby gem lettuce, grilled courgettes with cheese – but this meal was really all about the meat and oh it was good!! We ate until we were completely stuffed and drank loads for only £35 a head – very reasonable!
A less hipster place for dinner on Saturday – the Manor in Clapham. It was along a similar vein as Picture Restaurant, with diners encouraged to have 3/4 small plates and to share. I can’t remember the last time I went out and had a starter and main entirely to myself! But I much prefer this way, a great excuse to try more of the menu, and there was lots on the Manor menu I wanted! We had a lovely meal and wandered home as the sun set.
(5) Enjoying the sun: summer seemed to have finally hit the UK on Sunday and so after our cycle we sat outside for brunch and to read our books / magazines.
So while life can be stressful at times, it’s certainly not all bad!