The month started in the Hebrides - the last day of our trip before the ferry back to the mainland the next day.
Our original plan had been to travel back by ferry across to Skye, stay in Falkirk overnight taking the chance to visit The Kelpies - which I have never managed to see - then home the following day, however, before we’d even arrived in the islands at the start of the trip that plan had to change due to new travel restrictions being introduced from Boxing Day.
After a long drive here me we returned to our first taste of the delights of covid tier 4, not far off lockdown but with schools being planned to open as usual after the Christmas break, and with no restrictions on leaving home for exercise. Within a few days though it was all change again as we were plunged back into full national lockdown for the third time.
My main aims for the month were around movement and fitness - I decided to join in with Alice Liveing’s January challenge - a programme of workouts designed to build strength, as well as looking to get as many miles as possible under my belt for my first distance challenge of the year - the “Walk the Thames” challenge at 214 miles. To balance the strength and the walking I also decided to also do the Yoga With Adriene 30 day challenge - titled “Breath”.
I always knew with Alice’s challenge I probably wasn’t going to be able to keep up with her pace of workouts - 4 strength sessions a week is really too much for me, my muscles just don’t recover that fast! I did manage 11 sessions though and certainly felt the difference from the beginning to the end of the month. I’ll be continuing to work through the remaining workouts to finish the challenge next month. The yoga was a real challenge for me - I’ve tried Adriene’s practises before and struggled - partly as I always felt that her explanations of the poses and transitions weren’t that easy to follow, and partly because she was just a bit too “yoga” for me - and yes, there is certainly still a quite high degree of “woo” to deal with! Having done a bit more yoga now though I found the cues far easier to follow, and by half way through the month I was really starting to enjoy a lot of it. I’ve noticed a lot of difference in things like my strength in holding some poses, and also my balance too, as well as in my flexibility. I’ve done 23 days and will do the remaining ones from the challenge over the next week. I managed to walk almost every day - mostly in the mornings on weekdays doing anywhere between 5 and 7 miles. By the time some additional walks to the shops were included, I clocked up 178.5 miles which I’m pretty pleased with - it means I should have my challenge wrapped up inside the next week.
Another month of lockdown has certainly been challenging - but at the very end of the month a small light at the end of the tunnel (literally!) appeared in the shape of the scaffolders turning up to remove the scaffolding we’ve been surrounded with since November. As always it comes down far faster than it went up - by the end of Wednesday we had daylight flooding back in to the kitchen, bathroom and spare room (aka MrEH’s office) and by mid afternoon on Friday the front room and bedroom were also flooded with light once more. The sheer delight of being able to look out and see the sky again is indescribable!
So here we head into February - it will be more of the same really I think, with the addition of starting my second week of jury service tomorrow as well - and it sounds like this week we might actually spend rather more time at the court.