A few weeks ago when it was blistering hot myself and my partner decided to book a short weekend away in Tywyn, North Wales with our dog in tow!
Tywyn is a coastal town and we spent a lot of time at the beach whether that was laying down reading, walking the dog or running along the shore. The Tywyn Leisure Park which is about ten minutes walk away from the beach front is brilliant. The leisure park offers loads of outdoor games such as tennis, bowls and my favourite game, crazy golf! Crazy Golf cost us £2.50 each and it is great way to kill an hour. It was open until eight as well so there was plenty of time. On the Sunday there was a boot sale along the seafront, I managed to bag myself a couple of board games!
If you fancy another beach, Aberdovey is another coastal town about nine minute drive away from Tywyn. I didn’t get much time to spend in this coastal town as it was difficult to park and quite expensive (in Tywyn the car parking near the beach front was free and you could always get a parking space even in the middle of the day). There are plenty of restaurants and cafes if you wanted to stop by for something to eat.
I love the countryside, and I stayed in a lovely little cottage located just a ten minute drive away. Most fields have public walkways which we used to I didn’t get to do much walking as it was during the heatwave but we did visit Dolgoch Falls. Dolgoch Falls are about a fifteen minute drive away, the falls are easy to get too and had plenty of parking (you do have to pay and display) the falls are beautiful to look at and there was even a small cave that you can wander down.
So that was my 72 hours in Tywyn Wales. Have you been, if so what was your favourite part?
I do enjoy fitness but like everyone I go through stages where to be honest I am sick of working out. With a little over a month to go until the Great North Run it is crucial that I keep my preparation and motivation going. Today I am sharing my tips for keeping the motivation going when you feel like giving up.
Think about the end goal
For me being motivated to finish the week or thinking about the finish line of a race reminds me why all the running and time spent at the gym will be worth it. People so often see the finish product but not the times when you were running and got caught out in the rain or donning the thermals because it was freezing outside.
Set mini goals inbetween
I still remember really well wanting a Pure Gym water bottle when I first started working out there. I decided until I had gone to the gym five times I wouldn’t buy myself one. Buying pieces of kit or something else I find keeps the motivation and persistence going. Funnily enough I don’t buy that much kit my last piece of fitness kit I did buy was two pairs of shorts from My Protein and that was because I didn’t have enough pairs in the first place. Certainly do not buy new kit at the beginning of starting a new sport unless you absolutely need it. You hear so many stories of people forking out hundreds for new kit and then not using it.
Switch it up a bit
Sometimes just listening to a new playlist or going cycling instead of running keeps you away from the couch and motivated to finish the workout.
Plan your workouts
For me just seeing what I want to workout on paper, makes me more likely to complete the workout so I can tick it off.
Get your gym bag or clothes prepared
By having your gym stuff laid out or in a bag in the car ready makes you less likely to give up on going out because you cannot find your stuff.
What do you do to keep yourself motivated?
Since at the moment I am spending time either watching telly or reading books. So a book review is the way it is going to go!
Bryony Gordon is a Telegraph Columnist, mental health advocate and author of the famous Mad Girl (which I have written a blog post about) and her latest book which is about running with a mental health condition. Today I am focusing on her first book The Wrong Kickers which she recalls her twenties in absolute hilarity. Bryony Gordon first rose to popularity because she wrote the popular Girl about Town column which ran from …. To …. In all honestly I was too young to read or even know about the column. I knew her from the Mad Girl book but you don’t need to know that history to not enjoy the book.
The Wrong Knickers opens with Bryony round at a a guy’s house, it is the morning after the night before, and he throws her over a pair of knickers – which turns out to not even be hers. This kicks off her adventure of her parents divorcing, the numerous weddings she has gone too, drug taking, experience about her low self-esteem, moving out into dodgy flats, watching her career grow, having an affair with a married man and eventually finding peace.
I loved the book, Bryony tells her stories so vividly and all of the chapters interlink. There are quite a few life events in the twenties that most of us can relate to at least one of them in one way or another. I find that people forget or don’t realise what a rollercoaster being in your twenties can be. Someone said to me that your twenties is where you go through more change then any other decade in terms of work and life, as beyond your thirties you are putting down roots and when you are a child and in your teens you are largely based at home. I kind of agree with that and Bryony puts that across well. The only negative I found is that I do feel that Bryony should have had some kind of self-restraint, it does go from one car crash to another which yes it is part of the appeal of the book but you do think that either at times she just didn’t know where to stop or she knew what she was doing was wrong but didn’t stop anyway- which is just awful.
If you want a good laugh or you are feeling pretty shit about your own and you want to feel better then yes this book is worth a read.
I am seriously derived of reading material at the moment so I picked this up at the charity shop in Newark. Eloise is a book written by Judy Finnigan (from Richard and Judy fame) and it is her first book. The story, set in Cornwall, is about Cathy whose best friend Eloise has passed away from cancer. Cathy starts seeing Eloise in her dreams and gets frustrated as Eloise keeps warning her that her twin daughters will come to harm and to keep them away from her husband Tom.
Cathy’s husband Chris, who is a psychiatrist, does not believe her at all and believes that she is heading towards a break down. Mental illness is a strong theme in this book, there is this constantly to and throwing because Cathy has had a previous breakdown she is constantly doubted by her husband. Without giving too much away we learn a lot about Eloise’s family and it becomes a race against time to save the twins from danger and for Cathy to leave for London permanently.
The book for me was a real slow burner, half the book was about Cathy grappling with her dreams about Eloise. To be honest I was getting sick of it, as well as the really long rambling descriptions of Cornwall. Maybe because I haven’t been to Cornwall so couldn’t relate at all. But it just went on and on and on. The book just didn’t really get going until the last quarter really.
I couldn’t shake the feeling with the book that Cathy was Judy so the main character I just keep imaging is Judy, which was frustrating. You could tell Judy loves Cornwall and although the rambling descriptions annoyed me you could see it was full of meaning. In the authors notes Judy mentions that Caron Keating (daughter of Gloria Hunningford) who died of cancer in 2004 did inspire Eloise’s character. I have actually read both Gloria Hunningford’s books about Caron’s death and I knew that they were both close (Judy was mentioned in the books) and I did wonder if Eloise was based on her. The book is alright but I have read better and it wouldn’t be a book that I would recommend.
Having been listening to Emma Gannon’s Ctrl, Alt Delete podcast I just so happened to listen to the episode with Dawn O’Porter and it was such a good programme and her latest book sounded so right up my street so I thought, why not! So if you are looking for a new book, that will give you a laugh with strong women that make mistakes and learn a lot about themselves then read ahead!
The Cows is about three women, Tara who is 42 and works as a documentary maker. She is constantly belittled at work by her misogynistic male colleges. Tara also has a 6 year old child from a one-night stand but the father does not know about the child. There is Stella, who is still mourning the death of her twin sister and mother from cancer, also she has the BRCA gene (which puts her at high risk of developing cancer) and is yearning for children although at the same time her relationship is falling apart. Finally there is Cam Stacey, owner of the blog howitis.com. Through the blog she has turned into a bit of a feminist icon as she doesn’t want children, much to the dismay of her mother.
The story really gets going when Tara gets caught masturbating (yes really, I wasn’t expecting that either) on the tube as she is travelling home after a date with a guy called Jason and a nearby passenger films it on his phone. The footage gets put on YouTube and goes viral. Tara becomes the butt of all jokes overnight, she can’t eat, she doesn’t want to leave the house, she got a warning from the police and she has lost her job. Tara finds solace in Cam Stacey who has been the only person to support her by writing a blog post sticking up for her after the tube incident. They soon strike up a friendship and constantly email each other. Stella on the other hand is Jason’s PA, it just so happens Jason is on an internet ban as he tries to finish his book. Therefore Stella goes to great lengths to protect Jason from finding out about Tara. Yes, it does feel very six degrees of separation.
I am not going to lie this book is a bit bat-shit crazy. There are a lot of themes touched here – feminism, misogyny, whether you should tell the father of your child that he has a child. The fact that women enjoying sex is deemed to be wrong (there is nothing wrong with it, just not on public transport regardless if you are male or female!). The characters are all flawed in some way and that women are just as bad as men. For example Tara is judgement about all the Mum’s at the school gates, thinking that they all stay at home and that they all judge her when she comes to the gates, on her own, from work. Which we find out later it couldn’t be further from the truth. Cam doesn’t see that her fuck buddy has feelings for her and when she does she tries to dismiss them. Stella is probably the most flawed of all- she literally does everything wrong. She lies and trolls all for her selfish gain. What I did like from the book that as the women are older, so you see clearly the impact of their actions unlike books about women in their twenties who are just starting out.
Have you read The Cows? What do you think?