Adventures in Tea… teapigs everyday brew taste test

A tea filled March is ahead and I love it already.

teapigs kindly sent me over some everyday brew and an everyday brew themed mug to take part in their everyday brew campaign real tea taste test. I am switching my normal tea (usually whatever is offer at the time I need to stock up) and having the everyday brew instead for two weeks!

teapigs

I started yesterday on the 1st and I already love it!

The tea is very different from the standard tea bags you get. It proper full leaf tea, not some semi powdered stuff and you taste the difference. This does mean it comes with a slightly higher price tag. I’ve always saved teapigs as a treat tea and have it every so often, rather than all the time and this is all to do with cost. However I am willing to experiment and see if quality can win out quantity. I hope that I can switch to having less cups of much better tea it will make it balance out and be economical for me to continue with after the campaign.

I have already noticed a difference. The tea is much less dusty and tastes lovely through the whole cup, with none of the bitter residue the tea I’ve been drinking leaves behind. Someone also made me a cup of tea at work using the normal bags we get supplied and I it was a completely different taste! The one we get in work I’ve always thought was quite good, but when you taste it pretty much side by side you notice the difference straight away. It’s quite eye opening!

So for the next two weeks follow me here, on twitterInstagram, and Tumblr to see how I get on switching my everyday tea to everyday brew!

 

Life update

The blog has had to a backseat these last few weeks as life has been super busy. I think 2015 is going to be about quality over quantity in general, not just the blog, but also training and how I use my time.

Big news time!

I am now a qualified level 1 swimming teacher!

I spent last week in Bristol on my swim teaching course with a great group of people and a great course tutor from the Institute of Swimming.  I chose to do the intense course for my level 1 as I need to do this in order to do my level 2 course, which is what my swimming club really need me to have. It was a full on week of learning and teaching crash course kids lessons on top of commuting to Bristol. The course is all about how you assist a level 2 teacher, but we still had to write lesson plans and evaluations and were taking the swimming lessons in pairs. It was good fun as well as information overload. With swimming, like any sport, it is all about safeguarding children and vulnerable adults. It is serious and can have serious consequences, therefore keeping yourself safe as a teacher is also extremely important.

I have decided to focus my efforts and spare time on developing my swimming skills and that means my teaching/coaching skills as well. I thought about continuing my triathlon coaching, but it is not where my full interest lies. Swimming is my passion and where I want to learn and challenge myself.

Later this week I am having a video analysis session to look at my front crawl and learn what I need to do to become a better open water swimmer. I have saved up my pennies and splashed out on this and a follow up session including 4 121 lake sessions with my coach. I will let you know how it goes!

I want to do more swimming focused posts to share my love and hopefully point people to some good resources out there. I’ve been looking at Critical Swim Speed training (CSS) for myself and think I’ll do a post on that once I’ve got my head around it as well as share more about my club training.

I’m still not where I want to be mentally when it comes to the 70.3 triathlon, but I am enjoying my swimming and cycling. At the moment I hate running and I know it is all down to my weight. I’ve reached out to some people in the running club for support and will continue to work on this aspect of my life so it complements my training.

Life is full on at the moment and that is okay. As long as I make time for myself to unwind everything is good.

Next Week

Sometimes getting things off your chest does wonders.

I didn’t realise how much my thoughts and doubt about my goals was having on other aspects of my life. I was distracted by constantly trying to figure things out. Then once I had sat down and written it out a weight lifted. I made myself some action points and can move forward. I don’t have the answer, but I am moving forward.

This has made me look forward to next week, when before I was feeling guilty as I will probably not do much training.

I’ve taking my Level 1 Teaching Aquatics qualification!

I’m officially becoming a swimming teacher. I really enjoyed the triathlon coaching course last year, but have been honest with myself and said that is not the way forward I want to go with teaching/coaching as I want to concentrate on swimming. So i started helping with the kids section of the my swimming club and in return for my commitment to continue volunteering they will pay for the level 1 and level 2 courses I am taking this year.

Next week is going to be full on. I have to be at the venue 9-5 Monday to Friday and will then have session planning and evaluations as homework every night.

I chose to take the week off work to get this done as my club need level 2 qualified teachers, but you have to be 18 to take that course, which rules out the older kids in the club who help out. This means I can get on a level 2 course early in the year.

I’m now excited (if a little nervous) about this and am not worrying about what this mean for running and cycling. August is a long way off and I know it will come round quickly. However if I peak too soon I really won’t want to train for this event.

I want to enjoy the journey and becoming a swimming teacher is part of that.

Making it easier for myself

Since admitting I was out of sync with things yesterday I have been thinking of how I can re-align things for myself.

A big part of my struggle right now is my schedule. I like having some evenings in during the week to myself. I do not like coming home and then waiting to go to club, specifically running club, as I feel I can run anytime I want to and am not restricted by getting pool time.

So for running I am going to start going on my own straight from work. I will then go to the club as and when i want. This way I come home from work, feed the cats and go back out from home rather than have to drive anywhere. My other option is to run at lunchtime at work. This is the only thing I can do at that time as I would have to drive to a gym or pool. I would just need to be a bit more organised.

For cycling I need to get into the routine of heading out straight after swimming on a weekend at the moment. Once it is lighter I can mix things up and cycle to and from work or go straight after work. I have got a turbo trainer, but have yet to use it or find a space where I can set it up and leave it. I also need to get into the routine of cleaning my bike on the return from a ride. So having an area set up for this would make it easier.

Swimming isn’t an issue really. I am restricted to club pool times to get the most out of my training. I’m rubbish in public sessions. I am having some 121 sessions for lake swimming and video analysis later this month and am really looking forward to getting to know my Critical Swim Speed and train with that.

Making easier for myself will mean getting organised. I would like to make it easier to head out the door so I will take a look at my fitness bags and have they set up and ready to just add clothes.  Looking at where and how I store my clothes and changing things up to make things more accessible (and easier to put away after washing!) would be another thing.

I might have a rethink of how my house is set out:

  • Is there a way I can have my turbo and bike indoors during the week?
  • Where can I keep my fitness bags for easy grab and go?
  • Can I store my fitness clothes and accessories in specific boxes?
  • Can I make room in the spare room by getting rid of crap?

This is turning into a slightly bigger task than I thought when I started writing this post, but I like the way it is heading. I want my life to be focused around health and fitness and my home doesn’t currently support what I need, so I need to make some changes.  However I will not try to do this all at once. I will start with the actual fitness scheduling and over the next few weeks start making changes at home to support it. I need to figure what I have when it comes to storage and where I can put things and therefore if things need to be moved.

I feel so much better for getting yesterday’s post out there as it has helped me move onto the problem solving rather than be stuck in the problem.

I also do want to do the 70.3 this year. I’m just scared at the moment.

Out of Sync

Things haven’t been going to plan.

The plan I set last year.

The plan for the goal that isn’t resonating with me anymore.

When things aren’t aligning with your values everything feels like a struggle. Feels like punishment.

I’ve been absent from the blog because I don’t know what to say. I set up 2015 to be the year I completed a 70.3 triathlon. But I’m not feeling it anymore. I don’t know if I ever felt it really. I signed up because everyone else was – bad reason!

Things just feel out of sync.

Until I think about swimming. There I know I want to swim a 5k and a 10k event. I feel excited thinking about those goals. I want to put the effort in there. I want to spend the summer at the lake.

I am taking some time to figure things out. If I hadn’t signed up for the triathlon already I wouldn’t sign up now. I need to decide if I want to do this. I know I do deep down, or I will at some point. The opportunity is here now and I want to take it, but at the same time I don’t.

I’m hoping this is all just a severe case of winter blues and hating the dark. I’m on my swim teaching course next week and each day it is getting lighter so I’m hopeful in a couple of weeks time I’ll be back on form and set on my goals.

Everyone must hit the wall or the sticky lake of mud that slows you down but doesn’t knock you off your feet. It’s frustrating more than anything.

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