Is there such a thing as OVER-organised?

Well I don’t think I need to say much since a picture is about 1000 words 😉 —>

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Isn’t it pretty??? Yes I know, I was drooling over it when I saw it too… But you know what? The moment I saw it I knew this new hype, bullet journaling, just isn’t for me. Even though I am quite creative, I can’t draw to save my own life… so this was out of the question 😉 now where am I going with this? Right here –>

I used to be the person (“used to be” is the KEY word in this sentence) who would plan out every hour of every day! My meals, my workouts, my free time, reading time… EVERYTHING! It obviously didn’t look as pretty as the diary above…

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Did it work? Well that depends on how you measure success… I can tell you the Pros and Cons and I believe you will clearly see if it worked or not.

Pros 

  1. I was always on time (and usually earlier) for everything.
  2. Things AWLAYS got done.
  3. I never had to ask myself “what’s for dinner”.

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Cons

  1. If my plan failed, my day would take a bad turn and my mood would immediately turn to grumpy
  2. I would say no, to friends and their impromptu plans for a drink or a coffee – since it wasn’t on my schedule!
  3. I would feel seriously guilty if I didn’t do the “designated” workout for the day. I’d still do it but not enjoy it 😦 (probably cause I was in the mood for a different work out but of course…can not possibly deviate from my plan!!)
  4. Too much pressure on myself!
  5. Not being spontaneous at all… well isn’t that a romance killer…
  6. Apparently, trying to “fit people” into your schedule is also frowned upon.

So this is my list. These are all the reason why i decided to STOP this kind of planning. As it turned out it was just  not for me. the moment I would structure my workouts -written in stone etc… – I would have trouble getting them in and sticking with it. I strongly believe it is a mental thing…

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So what I do now?

Well, i still plan but in a more “weekly” instead of daily fashion. I know what I have to accomplish in this week, running workouts, other plans etc, and I just juggle my day. If I feel like running a my Tempo run – great! If not, I’ll spin or lift weights. I have most of my groceries at home and able to pick out of 1-2 dinner option 🙂

Impromptu runs & workouts with friends are so much more fun and keep me motivated! – – So what have I learnt so far? (And of course this is totally personal, the fact I can’t plan like that doesn’t mean no one can or should do it!)

I have learnt that daily planning suffocated me! It feels like it puts too much pressure on me. Knowing what to exactly eat, what exact work out to do… really didn’t work for me. It was like, every time time I tried it my fun time would turn into an obligation and I ‘d be knee deep in denial… Oh the brain is such a powerful thing! I learnt that it is OK to let go! Over organising (or should I say controlling) every single aspect of life is just not necessary!

I have an idea (name it a week plan) about all the things I would like to accomplish in this week (some sort of a veeeeery long to do list) and I tick things off as i go 🙂

I would love to hear your opinion on this people! What type of planner are you? Any one can relate with me on this?

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Crafty Saturday!

Hi friends 😀

I hope you are having an awesome weekend! We are having a blast so far just chilling at home or relaxing in the park enjoying the sunshine…

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So, I have been feeling extra crafty today (and yesterday) which could mean only one thing! More holes in our walls and a lot of glue on my fingers LOL 😛 Here is what I made today, which I really thing it is the least messy and easiest craft I have ever tried! Oh and did I mention that it costs almost nothing to make?

All you need is:

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  • scissors
  • stick glue
  • thin rope
  • any kind of metal can – size depends on what you would like to make. I wanted to make a vase so I used this old tennis ball can. If you want to make a pencil holder a tin can from beans is the ideal size 😉

(Sitting on the floor is completely optional by the way 😉 If you have more space than me the results is potential better if you use a table LOL!)

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Well, is as simple as that; apply -generously- the stick glue on the outside of the can and starting from one end roll the rope all around the can. Apply the glue on increments as you go so it want dry out. Also make sure that each wrap is nicely tighten with the previous one. Since this was meant to be a vase and I didn’t want the can to rust and ruin my flowers I put a small plastic bag in the tin can before I filled it with water.

Would you like to see the final result???

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I really believe it is very pretty 🙂 And extremely inexpensive! If you are into handmade gifts, things like this would be a great idea. It is also a kids’ friendly craft as long as an adult handles the scissors at the end.

Here are some other things I ‘ve made using the same technique:

The painting is simple cardboard and some cinnamon sticks, star anise and a golden marker. And the little basket is the newest addition to our kitchen. I used the same technique and wrap the ugly metal bar holder with the same rope! – the chilli peppers are from our own little plant! @mymamus loves spicy foods so they will come handy once they are ready!

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Simple, elegant and pretty. Pencil holders for all my coloured pencils and pens!

How is your weekend going so far?

Do you guys enjoy crafts and DIYs? Feel free to share any ideas here with me! I’d love to see your creations! You can also email me any pictures at taleoftworuns@gmail.com and I’ll make sure to share them with everyone here!

Have an awesome weekend!!! And stay tuned for some serious #SundayFoodPrep tomorrow!!

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Home Gym – pocket edition!

Hi friends 😀

I hope all of you had a great weekend!

So, as you all know -since apparently according to @mymamus and all our friends I keep mentioning it 😛 –  we recently moved to London from New York city. Do I miss the city? Yes of course I do… but London is (very slowly) growing on me. There is one thing though that no matter how long we live here I don’t think I’ll be able to mentally embrace! How expensive a gym membership can be… We all thought NY was expensive?!?!? Yeah right…. This all changed in my head when we moved here and good ol’£££ entered our lives…. Well granted there are alternatives such as “classpass” where with £79($110)/ month  you can get unlimited access to gyms and studios but it is mostly for classes and right now that doesn’t really appeal to me and my needs.

So before I go on and tell you -or more likely show you – my solution let me tell you why to my opinion working out from home isn’t such a bad alternative.

  1. It is not expensive at all – you can find very cheap exercise equipment in places like Target (or for my UK friends Sports Direct and Argos).
  2. Given that UK weather isn’t the nicest thing, and most mornings are gloomy, rainy, cold and … dark. Not having to get out of the house sounds like a blessing to me!
  3. 24/7 gyms around here….? erm not really. London isn’t as “anytime,anything,everywhre” as NYC even though I have to admit is getting there 🙂 So, if for some peculiar reason you get the urge to workout let’s say at like 11:30pm – you know after scrolling down some SERIOUSLY motivational IG posts 😛 -then no problem at all, because all you need is right there! No need to hop on the subway (or…the tube) and get your butt to a gym 30′ away from home.
  4. It makes it fun and … comforatble! Do you get bored on the treadmill/spin bike? Imagine doing it while your kiddos or your partner are around to crack a joke…Or imagine just getting on your spin bike or lifting weights on your PJs – yeap been there done that… no judging 😛

So here is how I do it in our very – VERY – tiny apartment! This –> is how our living room normally looks like. Pretty right? The only two things I couldn’t store away anywhere are the stability ball – which doesn’t really take up any space behind our entrance door and my FREE spin bike. Yes I did say F-R-E-E!! Try freecycle people, it works!!

Before layout livingroom

And here –>  is how our living room looks like when I am in full blown work out mode! Granted this usually happens during the weekend, but during the week I can always bring out only what I need to work out depending on my plan 🙂

DURING LAYOUT LIVING ROOM

So what do I have?

  • 3 set of weights
  • 1 kettlebell
  • yoga mat
  • resistance band
  • (mini) bosu ball – also doubles as a feet massager 😉
  • push up handles

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And now the 1 million dollar question… Where do I store all these?!?!?! Right in here –>

OTTOMAN

Remember this inconspicuous little ottoman in the corner of our living room, that also looks very pretty? Well this little piece of furniture has many different roles in our tiny apartment 😉 First of all it is @mymamus desk chair, then it is my mini home gym storage and it also doubles as a workout bench and step! Yes it is THAT sturdy!!

And finally, here are three of my favourite things for my outdoor workouts.

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  • jumping rope – I can’t really do this inside the apartment like I used to in NY 😦
  • heart shaped *essential* hand warmers
  • and yes, theses are hand weights for walking/running with a little light to make you extra noticeable in the dark! I haven’t used them in a while but they are AMAZING to built endurance during your run. I have to admit… I did carry those in my suitcase from NYC!! And of course @mymamus wasn’t very excited about it since we had to leave some other stuff behind – like the power supply thingy for his computer … not that important right?!?! Well as you can all see I do have my priorities straight!!!

So as you can see, all you really need is very few ££ (or $$ or €€) and very little space to have your own home gym and eliminate every single excuse as to why you can’t work out LOL 😛

See you soon!

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Commuter Runner

Hello Friends 🙂 Happy Hump day!

There is always something about Wednesdays isn’t it? Where you know the weekend is coming but it isn’t here yet so you feel like half celebrating… Confusing eh? Well Wednesdays are also notorious for making our fitness motivation dip. My solution to this “Wed-belly” in my motivation (as i like to call it) is to make sure I log in a few good tempo miles. How i do that? I commute home from work running!

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This is a concept that became quite popular a few years ago when it seems to me that people decided to be more healthy and also there was an increase in environmental consciousness or just people got tired of traffic and packed public transportation… Which ever was it, runner commuters are everywhere nowadays, in every major city. People that either run to work in the morning (if they are lucky and their workplace has showers) or they run  home from work at the end of the day (like me 🙂 ). I realize that as a first impression it sounds a little crazy, like “It’s -1C (30F) outside at 6 am how am i suppose to run 5 or so miles to work?” or maybe more like “I can’t imagine working a full 10-12 hour day and then run 5 or so miles back home”. I assure you these are very legitimate thoughts to have, and i had them too before i started, but bear with me here and I promise you reasoning will prevail!!

I am the “run home from work” kind of commuter runner. I go to the lab at about 7:45 am and usually leave between 5:15 to 5:45pm. That makes a full 10 hour work day, some times even longer. And let me tell you being a scientist it is -usually- not a desk job. There is a lot of standing, carrying, walking around involved and my “get home” route is about 7.5 to 8 miles.So how do I stick with my decision to run back and don’t cave in and hop on the subway at 5:15pm?

Well here are few things that help me and motivate me with this:

Plan it!

If i have this run planned and the milage calculated that makes it way hard to skip it since it is a substantial amount of miles to lose

Fuel Up!

Have a yummy snack and half cup of coffee about 45 minutes to an hour before your run. This will give you the energy you need!

Gains!

Think of what you are gaining by running home – for me it is always the fact that i get to avoid the subway (or the “tube” as its called) which is overcrowded and so not pleasant.

Reward!

Think of the reward, the feeling that you get after a nice run that literally didn’t take longer than your commute with public transport/car and you didn’t have to allocate an extra amount of time for it. Also think of how you ‘ll feel after you get home – this euphoric feeling after every run? Yeah that’s the one!! Save money/time and help the environment along side as well by decreasing your carbon dioxide footprint – Bonus 🙂

Now that all the reasons are laid out does this crazy idea sounds a little more sensible and reasonable? I knew it would! But before you guys go ahead and create your own commuter runner routine, here are some essentials to have that will make your commute easier and more enjoyable.

1. Reflective running bag-pack

Of course if you are at work you can just leave everything there and run home. There are a few essentials that you will need for the next day. For this a running bag-pack is an MUST! I have seen so many times people who run with huge, bulky bag-packs that bounce around with every step… It makes me wonder! This is a very important accessory for such runs. A good fitted running bag-pack. (Note: try not to take your laptop/tablet with you since it is not a very safe option. I always leave mine in my locker drawer at work.)

2. Fuel

If your route is more than 6 miles make sure you have some extra fuel with you like gels or a small snack. I know that usually our bodies don’t need re-fuelling for runs shorter than 10 miles but remember you also had a full working day prior to this run.

3. Cash/credit card

Make sure yo always have some cash or a credit card with you along with your cell phone in case of emergency. You don’t want to find yourself stranded and not being able to get home.

4. Follow a public transport line

If possible follow a public transport line, like a subway or bus line. I always make sure i follow the subway line that gets me home in case i get too tired or there is an emergency and have to get home faster. It also makes it easier not to get lost since bus or subway stops are like mile markers.

5. Tell someone

Make sure that at least one person knows that you are returning home/going to work running. And they are also aware of the time you are suppose to arrive. Better safe than sorry!

I hope this will get some of my fellow runners to try running commute! So what do you think? Would you consider it? Are you a runner commuter? How far is your work place?

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