23 January 2017
Reading and activity report, 23 January 2017
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Kathryn at the Book Date and is "a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week."
Visit the Book Date to see what various other book bloggers have been up to in the past week.
I didn't do a whole lot of reading in the last week. I decided to focus on crafts and listen to podcasts and was quite productive.
Through the week I worked on an adult-sized Call the Midwife blanket.
During the weekend I took a break from the monotony of the blanket and made two amigurumi toys.
These are all yarn buster projects - I own a lot of yarn and decided it was time I used some of it.
I did finish a couple of books:
Maybe This Time by Jennifer Crusie was a reread. This is a 20th century reimagining of The Turn of the Screw, or perhaps it's about what happened after the house was disassembled and then rebuilt in Ohio. Here's the author's explanation.
I love the cover!
The Hollow by Agatha Christie. Audio book read by Hugh Fraser. The detective elements in this novel would fit nicely into a short story, but never mind: it's the characters and their relationships and mind games that make up the bulk of it, and that is highly enjoyable.
I also started listening to Christie's Endless Night, but could see the conclusion a mile off after less than one chapter, and since I found it depressing, I stopped listening to it. This is not a good time of year for me for books with depressing endings.
I'm still reading Marco Polo's Travels and expect to finish it this week.
One thing I forgot to mention last week, perhaps because it has nothing to do with books, is my quest to find a type of exercise I actually enjoy. Exercise is a must for me, as it helps keep my blood sugar at acceptable levels. However, finding exercise I actually enjoy has been a pain.
I find aerobics, running, stationary bike exercise and machine workouts boring. I like dancing, but would have to find a stranger to dance with because no-one I know wants to take lessons with me. I classify Zumba as a glorified form of aerobics. I loathe competitive sports, so team anything is out of the question. I love cycling but after an accident involving black ice that damaged my knees I no longer cycle during the winter. I like swimming, but I don't like the light-headed feeling I get after spending a long time in the water.
My favourite form of exercise is walking and hiking, but I felt I needed something that would exercise more of my body than just my leg muscles and my heart. I could, of course, go for pole-trekking to exercise my arms as well, but I'm such a klutz that I would probably end up accidentally stabbing someone with my trekking poles or putting a spike through my foot.
Last year I participated in a 6 week exercise programme that alternated Spinning, Body Pump training and Hot Yoga, and quickly found that Spinning was definitely not to my liking (seriously, if you get intestinal cramps 10 minutes into the exercise, it's not for you). I did like the Body Pump exercises, but would gladly have swapped out the Hot Yoga for Hot Fitness or Pilates. Additionally, I am not masochistic enough to try the Boot Camp training someone suggested to me.
At the beginning of this month I finally bit the bullet and decided to try weight-lifting, and I also joined a hiking club. The weight-lifting entails three hour-long sessions per week and I'm now on my third week and I love it! The muscle pains after the first class were so horrendous that I had difficulty getting up and down the stairs at my house (I live on the fourth floor and there's no elevator...), but by the second week I was already lifting heavier weights and doing deeper stretches than in the first week, and I can see myself continuing with this exercise once the programme ends. I have done one hike with the hiking club, and discovered that all the walking I have been doing has paid off so well that I barely felt tired after covering 11 km in 2,5 hours.