Life in Lockdown: Seaside Visit

Life in Lockdown: Seaside Visit

It’s June. Time has flown by for me. With the glorious heatwave we’ve been having in the UK, I decided to head on down to Southsea last Thursday. I wanted a little break away from home & my local area. Honestly, it felt like there was no pandemic. Everyone had come down for the same reason as me. To enjoy the beach in the glorious sunshine.

Social distancing is a struggle when you can’t control everybody’s movements. Okay, it was nice to see people with smiles on their faces. Plus some were social distancing with their friends & families. But I think it’s crazy to forget that the coronavirus is still out there. It’s not going to go away in a hurry.

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A short walk along the seafront

Seeing the sea for the first time in several weeks gave me a good boost. I love living near the sea – especially when the weather is a glorious as it has been. It almost gave me a sense of peace. Well, when I took the time to forget about the mass crowds around me. Maybe there was some hope on the horizon (or in the literal sense, the Isle of Wight).

First stop was to walk by Clarence Pier. I wish it was open but as always, the rides were sat there. Waiting for the day they can open safely. Looked behind me and it was a surprise to see the local mini-golf was open. Yes, there were signs everywhere informing everyone of social distancing. All golf clubs & golf balls were sanitized. Staff members had masks & gloves. Screens were added to the till point.

It was surreal but I almost felt a sense of acceptance that this would be the ‘new’ normal. God, I hate that expression. But it’s somewhat true.

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With my new fitness regime, I wanted to get a good walk in. So my plan of action was to walk from Clarence Pier to South Parade Pier. And loop back down to Clarence Pier again. A good solid 4.5km(ish) walk in my eyes. Walking past runners, cyclists, walkers, party-goers, it was nice to take in the fresh sea breeze.

A couple of hours was all I needed to boost my spirits before I headed home. I did spot some new rides over at South Parade Pier – including a ‘new’ wacky worm cred & pirate ship. I can’t be sure if this is a new +1 for me since there’s been so many rotations of wacky worm coasters on the pier over the last few years. If anyone does know if this is a new cred for the pier, do let me know!

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I never thought 2020 would turn into a key part of history but here we are living it. Who knows what will happen in a months time? 3 months time? Or even 6 months time? I hope that we’re somewhat prepared for what is to come. Whatever that may be.

Hope you are all staying safe. Much love. xoxo

LOTTIE TRAVELS

Life in Lockdown: My Favourite Workout Moves

Life in Lockdown: My Favourite Workout Moves

Disclaimer: Please note that this is meant to be a lighthearted blog post. If exercise/fitness is a triggering subject for you, please do not continue to read my post below.

2020 has turned into the year of finding my love for exercise. In particular, it’s been a time to discover my favourite workout moves. I’ve been victim to fad diets and cutting back my daily calories without exercising at all. It wasn’t sustainable so there’s no surprise my weight crept back on.

This year I’ve made it my mission to start being proactive with exercise. I’ve increased my exercise regime and started eating a varied healthy diet. I started all this back in March and I’ve discovered exercise is enjoyable. All whilst staying away from the temptation of fast food & snacks. Maybe lockdown has had some perks, right?

My current workout stands as 3 days of cardio (mix of running & walking) & 3 days of resistance workouts. I like to focus on specific areas of the body including arms, legs & core. I’ll admit that working from home has given me the chance to add in more exercises. But this is still sustainable even when I get myself back to the office. So let’s crack on with my favourite workout moves.

Which are my favourites?

Russian Twists

These are a killer, not gonna lie. However, they are good at helping me to strengthen my whole core. The first time I did this move, it hurt like hell and I honestly wanted to give up with core workouts. Perseverance has shown me that it does get easier as long as you try to work through the burn. Now I’m loving this move and hopefully, I will start to see some results around my waistline over the next few months!

Mountain Climbers

There’s nothing better than getting your heart rate up with the Mountain Climber move. For me, it not only helps to build up my core strength but it also gives me a guide on how strong my arms are. It’s taken 2 months but I can comfortably do this for 30 secs for at least 3 sets, give or take.

Lunges

Forward lunges, I love. Reverse lunges, I loathe. So why have I collated the two? Simply because lunges are a great way to keep the legs toned and strengthened. Even though using my bodyweight seems easy peasy. Add a dumbbell and you’ve got more resistance to work with. Challenging but effective. Plus it’s been a real help for getting my legs into shape for my runs.

Squats

You see it everywhere. If you want to grow your booty, pack those squats in. Whilst I agree squats are good for helping the glutes, it’s also about strengthening your lower body. Compound moves such as lunges are perfect for toning and building muscle across multiple muscle groups. Again, I always add a dumbbell to the mix to make it more challenging & add more resistance to the move. I will be looking at using my new resistance bands to see how well I can work my glutes & quads too.

Shoulder Press

A killer move where I feel the burn every time. I like to start my arm workouts with this move as it gives my muscles a chance to get into the swing of things. Yes, my arms do start to feel like jelly but I’m always determined to finish the workout regardless. Building my arm strength will certainly help me when embarking on those Go Ape courses – last time I went an instructor had to help me up on the Tarzan Swing because my arms wouldn’t move lol. Embarrassing but bloody hilarious.

Tricep Extension

A simple move that can help to lose a bit of arm fat, or the ‘bingo wings’. Whilst this move may look easy to achieve, I try to add a heavier dumbbell to feel the effects on my tricep. I’ve always looked at my upper arms and think they could be more toned. This move helps me to target the triceps in the right way.

How have you been exercising during the lockdown?

What are your go-to workouts?

LOTTIE TRAVELS

Life in Lockdown: After Lockdown Bucket List

Life in Lockdown: After Lockdown Bucket List

The original idea for this post was inspired by Alice Spake, check out her post here: After Lockdown Bucket List. It made me think about what I want to do when we return to some sort of normality. Granted we don’t know when ‘normality’ may return in the UK, 2020 has certainly turned into a topsy-turvy kinda year.

Okay, it’s not exactly a bucket list we’d all want to be writing at the moment. However, it’s certainly given me some excitement & hope during this lull of a lockdown. These little things in life that I may have taken for granted before lockdown began, I can’t wait to have back in my life again.

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My After Lockdown Bucket List

(not specifically in order!)

  • See my boyfriend Jared – long-distance relationships are hard and I want cuddles
  • See my friends
  • Work back in the office & see my work colleagues
  • Go out for lunch/dinner with my family
  • Visit some country parks to enjoy the beautiful spaces we have in the UK
  • Go to the cinema
  • Have a proper date night with Jared
  • Go food shopping without having to queue to get in
  • Visit a Go Ape course
  • Drive down to Southsea and walk along the seafront
  • Visit various UK theme parks including Thorpe Park, Alton Towers & Chessington
  • Go on a UK cred trip – cause it’s tradition to grab some new creds each year, right?
  • Visit Center Parcs Longleat with Jared – booked our week holiday last year and in the process of moving it to September
  • Go to Nando’s – just can’t beat a cheeky Nando’s!
  • Be able to comfortably run 5k
  • Have a weekend away somewhere in the UK
  • Travel to a European theme park – provided that the COVID-19 situation is under control!
  • The freedom to drive to wherever I want even if it’s to a local business or open space near my house
  • Be confident enough to experiment with my make-up & potentially share on Twitter/Instagram
  • Book Florida 2021 – it’s mine and Jared’s 30th birthday next year so we would like to be able to get our joint birthday celebration holiday booked at some point

It’s not a massive list by any means but it’s enough to keep me going. I hope you are all staying safe & keeping well during the lockdown. Sending all my love to you all. xoxo

What would be on your After Lockdown Bucket List?

What are you missing most during this lockdown?

LOTTIE TRAVELS

 

Life in Lockdown: 25th April 2020

Life in Lockdown: 25th April 2020

Howdy! So it’s been 25 days since I last wrote a blog post… Honestly, I’ve lost all my passion for writing on here at the moment. Granted a huge influence on that is having no freedom to travel anywhere, therefore the main essence of my blog is on hold whilst we all tackle the COVID-19 situation. My creative spark has disappeared slightly so I’ve been putting all my energy into other things. So what’s happened since my last Life in Lockdown blog post?

Not a lot has changed in all fairness.

The UK lockdown was extended for a further three weeks, meaning it is currently set to end on 7th May 2020. Not gonna lie, this extension so far has been more a struggle for my own mental health. I’m missing having the freedom to go out and see my friends when I want. I’m missing my boyfriend. I’m missing theme parks. I’m missing the office environment – I don’t think I could work from home 24/7!

So I guess the big question is…

How have I been keeping busy?

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FITNESS/EXERCISE

5 days after my previous blog post, I ended up ‘overtraining’ myself with my workouts and exercise. For someone who is still very much a beginner in exercising, it’s easy to fall into the trap of overdoing the workouts. Exercising for me has been a great escape from the reality of what’s happening. In a way, I may have replaced my love for theme parks with exercise for the time being in order to keep me feeling sane during these troubling times.

This week, as I write this on 24th April, I’ve started running. And no, it’s not the Couch to 5K kind. Whilst this is a great way for people to get into running, I’d rather build myself up in smaller sections. Starting with a 1k run on Monday and just slowly progress every other day. This can be increasing the distance slowly by 0.5km or trying to run for longer intervals. At the moment, I can run for 1 minute comfortably but making sure my walking interval at least 1 minute or more. Gotta take it slowly obviously!

Having started this, I’ve learnt to love the sport. Okay, I work for a multi-sport retailer so everyday I am surrounded by exercise enthusiasts. Honestly, you can enjoy exercise if you find the right one for you. Exercise releases endorphins so it’s perfect for calming down those overthinking thoughts running through your head. Running can now be added to my list alongside resistance training. I may be losing my excess body fat slowly but it’s more sustainable in the long term. Plus, it’s great for boosting my fitness for when theme parks can open again.

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ANIMAL CROSSING

I was going to write a paragraph about gaming however there’s only one game taking my attention at the moment. Animal Crossing: New Horizons has been a great way to keep me busy during those dull periods when I’m not working or doing my exercise. I’m not an OG player but when I heard about the hype of this game from people on Twitter, I had to discover what all the fuss was about.

I’m a little bit obsessed. Whether it’s catching the various bugs, fishing the finest fish or constructing lots of exciting DIY furniture to place around my island, it’s highly addictive. Plus, you know you’re sitting on a goldmine when Turnip prices are at a really good selling rate! Here’s to many more weeks of me playing this.

YOUTUBE/NETFLIX/DISNEY+

Of course, a good staple to my daily life is keeping up with the latest YouTubers I’ve subscribed to and watching the latest series & new releases on Disney+ and Netflix. Key YouTubers that I’ve been loving at the moment include: Natacha Oceane, Emma’s Rectangle, James Turner, Plumbella to name a few.

Recently I binge-watched the new Netflix Original series, Spinning Out, a drama based around professional competing ice skaters and the turmoil of drug use. It was very well done and some gripping moments throughout the series. I love Netflix Original series as these provide great binge-worthy shows to watch. Other particular favourites of mine include After Life, Orange is the New Black, Tiger King, Cheer and so much more.

2020 is certainly turning into a funny old year. Even though we can’t change the situation we are in, we can certainly find ways to keep ourselves busy. Who knows what will happen in the next few weeks to come. Hope anybody reading this is staying safe & well during these troubling times. Sending my love to you all.

What are you doing to keep yourself busy during this situation?

Who else is loving Animal Crossing?

Any tips or ideas on what else we can do to keep ourselves busy?

LOTTIE TRAVELS

Life in Lockdown: 1st April 2020

Life in Lockdown: 1st April 2020

Well, the last few weeks have been a crazy time, hasn’t it? I know I haven’t written any blog posts for the past 3 weeks, and I’m going to be honest, I haven’t felt like writing anything. The whole COVID-19 situation has really shaken up all our routines. With my blog focused on travel, this will be on hold and I’ll be writing updates about my general day to day life and fitness regimes. Provided I get the motivation to write anything each week that is.

I miss travelling and having the freedom to see my boyfriend and close friends whenever I want to. All I want to do is get in my car and go for a long drive to see the people I care about. I’m incredibly grateful for having my family around to support me and keeping me sane. It’s certainly going to be the new normal for the time being but I’m trying my best to remain positive. We can’t control this situation but we can control how we deal with it.

So, how’s life been for me?

I’m still working but from home. Yes, I’m in a very fortunate position amongst the crowd of people around me who are key workers, been made redundant etc. However, I do feel for those who are unable to work from home. You are all troopers and you will get through this. So effectively my Monday to Friday routine between 8am to 4.30pm has remained unchanged other than my work location. Getting used to working from the kitchen table whilst using Microsoft Teams to keep in contact with my work colleagues where I can.

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A couple of weeks ago, I made the decision to start exercising again. I had some dumbbells sitting on the floor in my bedroom so I thought I’d give these style workouts a go. You know what? I’m enjoying this way more than pushing myself to do any kind of running or excessive cardio. My aim was to do at least 3 workouts per week of at least 45 mins to 1 hour. I’ve now increased that to 5 workouts per week however have started to introduce HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) workouts into the mix. I have lost some weight over the last 4 weeks so it’s certainly more motivation to keep going.

Exercising has been an escape for me. It’s 1 hour of my mind focusing on strengthening my body whilst improving my own health. A bit ironic given the current circumstances but it does seem to be helping (in my mind at least). I’m not invincible so who knows when COVID-19 may decide to hit me. I guess this is what I hate. Not knowing when it could strike me or my own family members. Especially with my Mum being a key worker at our local Supermarket. The unknown is well and truly here for the time being.

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From my workouts to healthy eating. I was quite worried about doing mindless snacking whilst working from home. In the office, I like to have a couple of snacks with me – mostly fruit but a little sugary treat every now and again doesn’t hurt. However, by some miracle, I’m not snacking as much as I used to. Why? I have no idea. However should I need to have a quick pick-me-up, I’ve got a couple of bags of almonds & mixed dried fruits to keep my satisfied. And yes, I do still have chocolate but that’s the last resort if you know what I mean. *wink*

Since the UK lockdown last Monday, the Government have said we can go out for exercise once a day, whether that’s a walk, run or cycle. As long as we comply with the social distancing measures, it’s been nice to get out of the house and take a walk around my local area. I always make sure I keep my distance from people, crossing the road if necessary. From what I can see around my area, people do seem to be observing the social distancing rules which is great to see. Hopefully, this lockdown can be lifted over the next couple of weeks. Fingers crossed, ey?

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Of course, this lockdown has meant I can’t see my boyfriend, Jared. We’re in a long-distance relationship, roughly 1-hour drive from each other. We live with our families and have high-risk people in our households. This means it’s incredibly risky to see one another (physically at least). However, the joys of technology have allowed us to be able to FaceTime every day. It’s been a real pick-me-up and I’ve tried to be the rock in our relationship for Jared. I hate seeing people I love struggle through a situation they can’t control, and I can’t be there to help them.

And that is my life in a nutshell at the moment. When I’m not working or exercising, I’ve been using my spare time to play some Animal Crossing: New Horizons on my Switch – those tarantulas are a pain in the arse but I’ve managed to catch one now! Alongside this, I’ve been playing Smurf’s Village (thanks to Jared!), Candy Crush Saga, Tetris etc on my phone. I’m also currently looking at starting my scrapbooks which were Christmas presents. Certainly, the perfect time to start them once I’ve managed to sort through the photos I want to have printed. Sometimes you need to look closer to home to find new things to keep you entertained.

I hope you are all well and staying safe. Sending my love to you all and just a small reminder that we will get through this together.

Much love xoxoxo

LOTTIE TRAVELS