Tuesday, 2 August 2016

Tough 10K - Week 1

My first week of training has been a short and sweet one. I've gone out twice during this week and have done 1 mile each time. I'm an early bird so I've been running first thing in the morning before work but I might switch that up in the upcoming weeks and see how I feel going for a run after work. On top of that the weather has been rather cold and rainy but I guess I should get used to that since that's usually the forecast for November!

As you can see both of my miles were run in around 14 minutes which isn't too bad. Hopefully in the next couple of months I can knock that down a bit and also look at increasing the distance of my runs.  If I'm honest I never thought running was for me and I'm still not 100% sold on it yet but that might change in the next couple of weeks so let's do it!

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Tough 10 Talk - Introduction

Fitness and health are something that tends to play on my mind a lot. Whether it's because of a news article, a magazine cover or a conversation at work it seems inevitable. The latter of these options is prominent in my life considering that I am undertaking a PhD in regenerative medicine and share office and lab space with students and researchers from different disciplines. 

So one way I though I could help both my fitness as well as give back to research was to challenge myself to complete a race. I chose Cancer Research UK as my neighbour recently passed away from pancreatic cancer, a rather difficult cancer to treat. I'm taking on the tough 10K which is a new set of runs that are over more difficult terrain. Mine is taking place at Margam Park along the mountain bike paths, and considering that it is in November it's likely to be pouring down with rain. 

Over the next couple of months I'm planning to keep you all updated on my running progress and being a complete novice I'm sure the journey will be a painful one but well worth it in the end. If anyone wishes to donate they can do so at my justgiving page.

Check in next week to see how my first week of training has gone!

Sunday, 28 February 2016

The Number One Rule For Girls - Rachel McIntyre

Title: The Number One Rule For Girls - Rachel McIntyre
Publisher: Egmont UK
Series: N/A
Service: NetGalley
Release Date: 25/02/2016
Pages: 309
Format: Kindle PDF

Rating: ★★★

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Daisy knows a thing or two about love and romance. She's surrounded by it - in fact, there's no escape! Not only are her parents childhood sweethearts turned soulmates, they also run a vey successful wedding agency 'Something Borrowed', helping couples tie the knot in whatever frilly, quirky, tasteful, outrageous way they choose. So it's no surprise that Daisy has a pretty clear vision of how her life with her boyfriend Matt is going to pan out.

There's one major flaw in this plan - Matt and Daisy have split up! Determined not to brood, Daisy sets out to re-invent her life and her dreams. And that's when Toby enters the scene, who appears to be perfect, but is turning all the Rules upside down...

An irresistible exploration of post break-up life featuring Rachel McIntyre's trademark wit and observation.

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Why do you say that?

I was invited to read The Number One Rule for Girls and was interested to pick it up and find that it wasn't entirely what I expected. The book follows 16 year old Daisy Green after she has split up with her boyfriend and deciding to attend college instead of sixth form. Daisy meets he prince in the form of Toby Smith but not everything is at it seems.

Rachel McIntyre dives into the world of girl codes, growing up and questionable choices in boyfriends.

The main theme that stuck out for me in this book was the controlling and abusive nature of Toby. Although it frustrated me how much Daisy would forgive him I also understand that rational thought is not always there, especially at 16. She sees him as her saviour and doesn't have to deal with loneliness at college when he is with her. Daisy ignores the advice of her friends starts to feel ostracised from her old group of friends.

I enjoyed seeing the development of the girls friendship throughout the book. They started as close friends with a solid set of rules and the strain of being at different colleges slowly takes its toll. New friendships are made and jealousy inevitably rears its ugly head.

As much as I did enjoy the book I did struggle with some of the embarrassing language and more cringe worthy scenes that felt a bit stereotypical for teenagers.

Overall I would recommend this book to an audience younger than myself. A mixture of lightheartedness and serious tones that we all deal with as we grow up.