SS: Sunday Saves (#88) Running.


Good morning and welcome to another edition of my Sunday Saves. I haven’t posted an edition in a few weeks, I’m currently adjusting and reviewing how the series is going to see how I want to approach it, so please excuse the delays. Today I’ll be talking about various aspects of running because as I’m coming up to my next 10K race, I am constantly on the look out for running blog posts so there’s a nice mix of 10K race tips (before and after) as well as runners starting out their running journey again.

1) A Luxury Travel Blog (Running 10K Every Day For A Year – 10 Top Tips)

Yep, you read that right, 10K every day for a year! Crazy right? That’s what I thought when I first read it too so I knew this post by Paul had to be included in this. While I won’t be taking on this incredible challenge, he gives some good tips that can be translated into any type of run. So if you’re getting into running for the first time, coming back after a long time or even trying to run a longer distance, these can work pretty universally.

2) goPhysio (Top 10K Recovery Tips from goPhysio)

While we’re on the 10K race theme, I thought it would be appropriate to also include some recovery tips. Recovery is something that I still haven’t made a priority when it comes to running longer distances so this advice from goPhysio certainly puts me on the right track.

3) Sunderland City 10K (It Would Have Been So Easy To Just Give Up Running All Together)

Coming back to the running scene after an injury can be quite daunting and although my injury wasn’t too serious, Graeme’s post resonated with me and that’s why I wanted to include it. While it’s quite a short post, his experience is one that I think a lot of people can relate to, including starting to run with a friend which takes his mind off running, his training so far and his future plans.

4) Medium (Time To Go Running… Again) 

This guest post by Shrey had me at the first sentence, “I am not going to lie, running is not something that comes naturally to me.” Shrey, I know how you feel! He begins to talk about his FitBit Blaze (smartwatch twins!) and how something that didn’t feel natural was now a hobby. He started running in the early mornings, he took his running gear with him on holiday and now he had a 5K personal best to work towards. I feel a little proud of a fellow runner!

5) The Average Runner (Do We Compare Ourselves To Other Runners Too Much?)

I believe Nick and I are on the same page; this post is very similar to one that I wrote about this subject a number of weeks ago (It’s linked right here if you want to take a read!) so it’s nice to see in blog form that I’m not alone with comparing myself to other runners. That’s what Nick’s post is all about so naturally, I gravitated towards it and can completely understand how he feels.

Well that’s all from this week’s post, I hope you enjoyed it. If you have any running posts that you have either written or read, send them over my way, I’d love to take a read of them.


Fear and Emotional Attachment On Social Media.

As human beings, sometimes we’re programmed to over think in certain situations, and I would say I have been dealing with this lately, more so on social media platforms. I think intently about what I want to post on platforms and not only how it could affect me in the future, but what it was like at that present moment. Over the last few days, this thought has been stirring up quite a lot and I’ve found it very hard to put it into words, so forgive me, my head is a little scattered. 


Recently I went down for a lovely weekend trip to Dublin with my boyfriend who had organised the entire trip and it was a complete surprise. We had a lovely trip but not once did I feel the need to post about it on Twitter or Instagram at the time. I didn’t feel the need to lift my phone for a photograph like I normally would and this behaviour for me, it wasn’t something I was used to. I’m not attached to my phone but as someone who loves to share photographs of what she does, where she eats or where she visits, I was conflicted. I took a small number of photographs but it wasn’t anything significant.

I love having memories, even the upsetting ones. The feature on Facebook where you can look at your posts from a year ago or however long you’ve been on Facebook, I almost have to put up an emotional barrier to stop myself getting attached to certain memories. As much as they can hurt sometimes, it’s nice to have a memory of a place I visited or an activity I took part in that day, in photographic form. That’s where my issue lies, it could be seen as fear. Do I put something out in the social media atmosphere that while I love it now, could be upsetting in the future or do I continue to post what I would normally but try and let go of an emotional attachment? 

victoria-wilson-5(Photography by Jess Lowe Photography)

I could consider myself an emotional person. Having been in therapy for a few years, I know that this isn’t a bad thing, it’s very much the opposite. It shows you aware of your emotions and you are passionate but it’s also a curse. I’m very sensitive so when it comes to criticism, I have gradually learned not to take criticism personally but that is still very hard and it takes time. Looking back on a memory can be very rewarding but if I have an emotional attachment to something I have posted about, then those emotions can go into overdrive. Having dealt with symptoms of depression and anxiety over the last two years, my emotions if they aren’t controlled quickly, can spiral out of control and it can take time to come back from that (depending on the situation). 

Both scenarios that I spoke about earlier, aren’t what I want. Posting on social media while having that fear, is living in the past of what has happened before but worrying about the future. Continuing to post and trying to cut off my emotions is telling myself that my feelings are not important and I should avoid feeling sad or disappointed. Surely that’s not the way to live my life? When you realise that negative feelings and being upset are part of life, why should you try and shut them off because they’re uncomfortable to deal with? 


Living in the moment will never be one hundred percent sustainable for me and I’m completely fine with that. I will never not worry, I can work on my personal development skills alongside my emotions to combat my stress and worry in particular ways but I am under no illusion that I will be able to cure my worry of predicting the future or thinking too far back into the past. What’s more important right now is that I am aware of this behaviour because while I can’t control every single emotion, it also lets me think more intentionally about what I post online and why I post it. That is more important that fighting the internal battle of trying to let go of emotional attachment or pushing against the past and the future at the same time. 

Training for a 10K Race: Three Loops and One Long Run.

Recently I wrote about signing up to my second official 10K race and in that post, I said I would write about my running progress every two weeks, so that’s what I’m doing today.

Altogether over the last two weeks, I’ve had four successful runs. Ideally, I would like to get about six in but four isn’t bad considering the amount of bad weather and snow we have had. These four runs consisted of three loops around the same area and one long run so I’ll start with the three loops first.


This particular loop Scott introduced me to and it had daunted me because it’s around an industrial estate that I didn’t know too well but once I had been around it a few times, I knew what turns to take and knew when to cross over. When I ran with him, he stopped us at the 5K mark so I could mark my timing correctly and see how well I was doing. However, when I ran on my own, I decided to start a little further back than the last time and I ran past the last point, so what first became 5K then became 6.5K. I didn’t realise I had added an extra 1.5K to the route entirely.

Saturday Afternoon Loop Route


This run was my favourite run out of the three, mainly because this was the first day of sunshine we had seen in weeks and it was when I discovered I had added on an extra 1.5K so I was over the moon. In terms of pace, I find it very difficult to determine my speed if Scott isn’t there. I never know if I’m going too fast or too slow because he keeps me in line but this is something I’m trying to work on. I may have went overboard on my running gear on this run, I knew it was sunny yet I continued to wear my warm hat and my fleece coat so I was half way done with the run and I was so sweaty. I got about three quarters of the way finished and that’s when the mental battle started because you would think that when I knew I was nearly done, I would push through to tell myself I’m “almost there”. That’s where my head differs, it does the opposite and makes me feel like quitting at the last hurdle. Understandably, I was running then walking for twenty seconds and then back to running, I had a few of these periods towards the end. This is another issue I want to work on because this could potentially hold me back from breaking personal best times and I don’t want that to happen of course.

Tuesday Evening Loop Route


Tuesday evening’s run went quite well but there was a significant difference in this one and the one on Saturday afternoon, I hadn’t worked on Saturday so understandably, I was feeling tired from work but I pushed myself out of the door anyway and the majority of the time, I am always glad that I do. I wrapped up warm for this run because it wasn’t a nice sunny day and it was a very cold night, but by the end, I was very sweaty. I earned every little sweat drop though! I was over a minute slower than the previous run which I tried not to be too disappointed with and I did slow down towards the end (just like the previous run) and that currently held my time back too. Apart from those few points, it was a good run.

Sunday Morning Loop Route


Fresh early Sunday morning air. I want to say that I was running at around half seven on a lovely fresh Sunday morning which was so refreshing. I absolutely love running at that time because your body hasn’t quite woken up so it gives you an extra boost and that certainly helped me time wise with this. While I still had the mental block towards the end of the route, this was my fastest solo time on this route so far and I couldn’t have been more pleased.

Last but not least is my big run for the two week period. The full 10K, now it might sound strange that I’m running 10K distances even though this training series is for the purpose of training for a 10K race. Well, fortunately I know that I’m perfectly capable of running that distance but I have a number of objectives. I want to track my progress for this race like I was meant to for my last race, I also want to get better time and pace wise because that is something I can aim for.

Belfast City Centre to Dundonald (via Greenway)


This 10K started in the centre of Belfast, around by the Lagan River, up towards the Albertbridge Road heading for Connswater and finally heading up to Bloomfield Avenue where I knew there was continuing part of the Comber Greenway. I don’t know where the Connswater Greenway starts in the centre of Belfast so for me, I knew that route from walking it a few times and I then began running on the Comber Greenway route. By the time I was getting on it, it was coming up to about half five and it wasn’t too dark but by the time I got to the end of it, it was considerably darker. I was still able to see and I thankfully didn’t need my head torch but it was cutting it close. If you’ve never been on this particular Greenway, it’s not very well lit and the only light you really have is in front of you when you can see the next set of traffic lights so it’s quite closed off apart from coming up to the next stop.

There were a few obstacles for me on this run. Firstly, I was heading to an appointment back where I used to live so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to run back there. In doing that however, I had a backpack with me filled with my work clothes and everything that I take to work. Mind you, it wasn’t very heavy but it still had some weight in it and it was on my back the whole time. Another obstacle was again, the mental block but it didn’t seem to pop up as often as I thought it would, it still popped up here and there but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I over dressed for this run again, I would say that it was even before the half way point where I felt like I didn’t need my hat or my coat anymore but because my bag was so jam packed, my only option would have been to carry them in my hand and I didn’t want to weigh myself down further so they stayed on.


The Comber Greenway is really gorgeous in the day time so I would be tempted to run down it more at the weekend during the day to build up my endurance because you don’t see the distance go in as much as you would if you were running up the main Newtownards Road right up until Dundonald, and it’s always nice to run with very pretty views, right?

That’s all for this fortnight’s running progress. As I said, I’m hoping to keep this up every two weeks until the race itself so I hope you’ll keep reading along with me. Thank you so much for reading!

Becoming Comfortable With Calling Myself A Runner.


Over the last number of years, the term of “labels” or “labelling ourselves” have started a lot of conversations. Many people don’t like to label themselves because they find if they do that, they’re almost stuck in a box and they can’t veer out of it. I have been very open and honest when I have spoken about being vegan; initially I didn’t want to put that label on it and preferred to say I was eating a plant-based diet. By calling myself vegan, I thought I had to be perfect at it one hundred percent of the time and I was almost afraid if someone called me out on something I did wrong (especially if it was accidental). I am not longer afraid to call myself a vegan and I do when it’s brought up in conversation. I can understand completely that some people don’t think it’s appropriate to label themselves and I’m in no way dismissing that, everyone has the right to what they choose to call themselves (or not call themselves), I’m simply speaking about my experience and not only about how I choose to label myself but why it has been difficult for me. 

What am I? I am a woman. I am a daughter. I am a grand-daughter. I am a sister. I am a friend. I am a best friend. I am a girlfriend. I am partner. I am a work colleague. I am a vegan. I am in the media industry. I am a blogger. I am a gym go-er. I am a yogi. I am a learner. I am independent. All labels I am proud of. 

So why was it so hard to call myself a runner? Expectations were a huge barrier for me and it goes back to the point of putting too much pressure on myself and being worried I was going to be judged by other people. When I first started out I told myself that I won’t be a real runner until I can run a certain distance without stopping, so when I did that, I automatically told myself that I had to run further to be classed as a runner. When I ran that further distance, I told myself that I had to do it within a certain time, so again, when I did that, I told myself that a real runner would do it faster. I also told myself that I couldn’t be a runner until I ran in a race but then when I did, it still didn’t feel right. Without me explaining over a dozen scenarios that went through my head, you can see the pattern developing and it’s not a healthy one. 

Changing my mindset and perspective on this particular battle was hard, it really was. I like to think I’m determined (when I truly am passionate about something) and I have even been called stubborn. I’m not sure if stubborn is the right word but I believe when I want something, I work for it and I try not to ask for help along the way. In doing so, I’ve learned that sometimes you can’t do it all on your own and that in itself, has been a huge life lesson for me. 

victoria-wilson-1(Photography by Jess Lowe Photography)

Look at Olympic athletes, did I think they weren’t runners because they “only” ran 100m? Of course not. Did I think those who took part in a ParkRun weren’t runners because they weren’t hitting the specific time that I had in my head? Of course not. Did I think that runners were only “real” runners if they ran in official races? Of course not. So why did I think I wasn’t a runner? 

I was listening to an interview with Tim Ferriss; I’m a huge fan of his work when it talks about mindset and routines specifically. I know I’ve heard him say this quite a few times but I’m not sure if this is his quote or someone else’s but he says “Always try to be the weakest person in the room, in some aspect” It’s a valid point because if you’re always the strongest person in the room, I truly don’t believe you will learn anything from others because you are at the highest point and everyone is looking to you. Whereas, if you are the weakest person, you’re looking towards others for advice and education on whatever that particular subject is. So next time I’m taking part in a race or a ParkRun for example, I know I won’t be the strongest person there and I’ll be getting overtaken right, left and centre but I can only look at that as a positive rather than a negative. I’ll be picking up my pace and I’ll be looking at them to see if they’re using any techniques I haven’t used yet in order to improve my running ability. 

No matter how fast or slow I go and no matter how short or long the distance is, I am a runner and I am proud to call myself one. 


SS: Sunday Saves (#87) Stress.


Good morning everyone and welcome back to another Sunday Saves! After a break last week, I’m back with some fresh Sunday ideas to share with you all and we’re going to talk about stress, something I’m sure we all struggle with at some point in our lives.

1) Free2BYou (Going Through The Motions: Stress and Anxiety)

Starting us off is Mrs. Johnston and she talks about her life as she tries her best to handle stress and anxiety. I noticed in her post that gratitude is very prominent which I think is fantastic but she also talks about trying to balance it all and admits that it’s good to talk about it, even though it might be hard. It’s a nice short post so it’s a quick read but I think it will be a post that, regardless or not whether you have children, most people should be able to relate to her story.

2) Escapes and Epiphanies (Guest Post – How To Avoid Stress While Travelling)

Despite not going on very many holidays, I do love heading away to get out of my own head space and my environment. What I don’t love however is the stress that seems to happen no matter what. I really do applaud those that go and travel who don’t know where they will be staying the next day and they wander so freely. I will never be that type of person and that’s okay with me, because in all honesty, I would be a stress mess. Shelby from The Shelby Chronicles guest posts on Meera’s blog and she talks about avoiding stress while travelling; her tips include choosing who you choose to go on holiday with wisely and not putting yourself under too much pressure to see absolutely everything in just a few days.

3) Life in Recovery (Wellness Basics: Breathing)

While Mrs. Johnston talked about breathing very briefly in her post, I wanted to feature this post by Life in Recovery (I can’t seem to find their name anywhere, sorry!) where they concentrate on the power of breathing, why we should care about our current breathing technique and if you could possibly even be breathing wrong? Yes, you can actually breathe wrong, I found this out when I went to my first yoga session, I felt like I was living a lie for so long! In the post, they also give some quick handy tips to help you control your breathing more and to be more open with it; they include joining a choir (if you’re open to singing in front of others), downloading a breathing app and even joining a Tai Chi class.

4) Glitz and Glamour Makeup (How To Handle Confrontation) 

I, for one, need this blog post more than anything. I can admit that I can blow a fuse within a few seconds and while it’s something I’m not proud of, it’s one of the hardest things to try and battle because really, the battle is all in your head focusing on other people’s opinions and your anger is fueled by something someone has either said or done. Kathy goes very in-depth in her post and if you do recognize yourself in her words, she has some great pieces of advice for you. So whether you bury your head in the sand, give in at the first hurdle or blow up completely, she can help.

5) HubSpot (The Surprising Relationship Between Stress and Creativity) 

I wanted to end the post with this surprising article that after reading it, isn’t as surprising as I first thought. From my own experience, when I’m put under stress because of a deadline, most of the time I seem to be able to fly through the work and hit the deadline. Braden talks more about this in detail in his article but he references Thomas Edison, explores the relationship between stress and creativity which makes logical sense and the three types of stress that we can encounter. It’s fascinating.

That’s all from this week’s Sunday Saves, if you have any blog posts or YouTube videos that you’d like to share with me regarding stress, please send me them through any of my socials (contact me here!) I’d love to take a look!



Training for a 10K Race: Wait, again?

If you’re a regular reader of the blog, you’ll know that in the middle of last year, I decided to take up running. This was partly influenced by my boyfriend but it was something that I had wanted to do for a long time and I didn’t really know where to begin. Luckily for me, he was more than happy to come running with me, teach me how to run properly and be my support system.


(Back at my first official 5K race: The Connswater 5K)
Through my running, I’ve taken part in about a dozen parkruns, quite a number of my own personal runs with various distances, mini run club runs, a charity fun run, a 5K official race and a 10K official race. While I documented my running journey of building myself up to a 5K race, I didn’t do that as well as I had hoped for the 10K and that’s one big regret of mine. Not so much for the blog, although I would have liked for it to worked as inspiration even just for one person; it was more so for myself because I would have liked to see written progress of that process too.

Being the romantic that I am, for Valentine’s Day, I signed us both up for the Titanic Quarter 10K race happening at the beginning of April. He told me that he’s done this particular race before and because it’s in a newly developed part of the city with views of the water, it’s a really nice backdrop for a run. He didn’t know I was signing us both up but he seemed really pleased that we would get to run together in another race, and this also means going out on more training runs together whenever we can.


(I don’t stop to take photographs too often on a run but on occasion, it’s nice to take a breather)
My plan of action for the build up to this race is pretty simple. If you follow me on Instagram, more often than not, I post my runs on there so I plan on still doing that and additionally, I’ll be doing a blog post every two weeks talking about them more in-depth. I don’t want complicate it because running shouldn’t be complicated so why make my blog that way?

I hope you’ll follow me along on my latest running journey because it’s something I’m very passioniate about and I love that I can share it with others too. While you’re here, you can catch up on some older running posts too:

Training for a 5K Race: An Introduction and My First Run.
Training for a 5K Race: Running and Negative Mental Health.
Training for a 5K Race: The Lone Run.
Training for a 5K Race: My First (Unofficial) Park Run.
Training for a 5K Race: Last Minute Training.
Training for a 5K Race: Race Day!

SS: Sunday Saves (#86) Valentine’s Day.


Good morning everyone and welcome to another edition of my Sunday Saves. Today I’m focusing on Valentine’s Day because it’s coming up soon, and I wanted to share some blog posts that I have came across over the last week. There’s one for everyone, not just for the loved up or the single folks.

1) Mummy Style (Writing A Love Letter To Yourself)

Renee’s post about being herself is such a lovely read, whether you have children or not, I believe we can all relate to it in one way or another. She talks about feeling different after having children but making sure she still looks after herself. She has written up a list of ten things we can all do to make sure we look after ourselves which includes buying new pajamas (which I need to do!) and lighting new candles (because who doesn’t love new candles).

2) Natalie Leanne (Spending Time Together for Valentines)

If you’re looking for cute Valentine’s Day inspiration on how to spend the day or evening with your partner, you should read Natalie’s post. She’s teamed up with Henry London to talk about their watches but towards the end of the post, she gives ideas on what to do, so whether you’re interested in cooking a nice meal at home or treating yourself a massage, there’s something for everyone.

3) The Fearless Love Coach (One Reason Why Your Guy Moans About Valentines)

Admittedly, when I clicked on this post for the first time, I was expecting it to be a post based around men hating Valentine’s Day because of the money aspect. I was very surprised about when I read in fact, really had nothing to do that. Special occasions like Valentine’s Day, birthdays and Christmas; unfortunately whether we want to admit it or not, there is so much pressure on men. They want to make it special, they want to treat their partner and they want them to be happy. I personally never try and put pressure on a significant other because I’m a very simple woman who likes something that comes from the heart, and if that’s a card with a lovely message, then I’m happy. I never thought men would feel so insecure, it’s definitely an interesting read and it might even make you question how you approach these subjects in the future.

4) Ashleigh Jane (Caring For Your Valentines Flowers)

Flowers are cute and adorable, there’s no denying it. Whether you’re buying them for yourself or if they have been bought for you, I love either scenario. They brighten up your room and depending on what flowers you buy, they smell lovely too. In order to keep the prettiness alive, you need to look after your flowers and Ashleigh has some very quick tips to help, if you’re not too sure how to look after them properly.

5) Atwater Village Therapy (Why Relationship Goals Are Dangerous: Five Reasons It Isn’t A Competition)

This last post isn’t focused on Valentine’s Day but I feel it is important to still talk about relationships. We all go through them at some point in our lives and each of us has our own different experiences from them. We’ve all heard the phrase “relationship goals” right? I know that even in the past, a previous relationship was “goals” to some people, and I’ve even said that fictional characters had “the perfect relationship”. I believe this article really hits the nail on the head and it goes in depth about much more than just changing your mindset about a relationship being perfect. Vanessa talks about unhealthy relationships, why some people choose not to be in relationships and why being in a relationship is not a competition. A must read for everyone.

That’s all from my Sunday Saves today. If you celebrate the day, then I hope it’s lovely, and if you don’t,  I hope you have a great Wednesday anyway. Thank you so much for reading.