Thursday, 28 October 2010

Flab fighting

My job as student blogger for Platform has begun.  I'm writing posts specifically for Platform now so my own blog seems to have suffered the consequences of having to prioritise one over the other.

Hey ho.  Such is life.

I'm fully wound down from the Philosophy module now, thoroughly glad it's over and am now getting well into the swing of my Social Policy module.  It makes all the difference when it's a subject you can read and understand and find really interesting, I'm genuinely looking forward to getting further through this module and I don't think I'll find it difficult to lose myself for a couple of hours at a time in one of the books so it's great to know that I'll hopefully be finishing off my BSc with a smile.

I've been thinking about my health again over the past few days.  I'm getting a little bit too pudgy for my comfort and contemplated diving back into Weight Watchers full throttle, but then I remember what happened last time I did it; I was constantly hungry, really missed some foods and got a bit miserable counting up points and half points, and although I'd lost weight I was still a bit weak and flabby.  So I'm considering taking my better half's advice and approaching it from the other way round.  The way I view WW is that calories in must be less than calories out (ie you must eat less than you burn), however Gordie's stance is that calories out must be greater than calories in (ie you must burn more than you eat), so rather than cutting back on food, which to be honest I'm not good at doing (I'm a bulemic amnesiac - I binge then forget to purge!), I'd be better off just upping my exercise.


In my usual over the top manner, I'm giving consideration to setting myself some challenges for next year.  I'd thought of setting 3 challenges, each in a different discipline, and each ensuring that I'd have to train to achieve them, so here's the 3 I'm looking at doing:

  1. Allendale Challenge - a one day 40km trek through the Northumberland moors in April 2011.  This is considered a very tough walk but I love walking and the area it's in is one of my favourite places.
  2. Northern Rock Cyclone - a 64 mile road ride around the back-roads of Northumberland.  I've been meaning to do this ride for years so no excuses this time.
  3. Great North Run - this will be the worst as I currently can't run for more than 2 minutes at a time but running's a great way to shed flab so I'll just have to force myself to enjoy it.  A couple of friends run so I'll try and team up.
 I usually hate mass-start events, I'm a slow & steady girl, I chug away at the back on rides and am quite happy to do that because wherever I'm going I'll get there in the end regardless of everyone else's pace, but I felt if I had paid money to enter and had to get sponsorships it puts the obligation on me to actually do it.

I fear I may be biting too much here.

Saturday, 16 October 2010


As I walked out of the Britannia Hotel in the grounds of Newcastle Airport I took a deep head-clearing breath, let it out, felt the calm wash over me and smiled.

I've done it.  I've finished my philosophy module.

I don't think anyone quite fully understood how important this was to me.  Well it was, and it was important for the following reasons:

  1. It's the first OU module I've actually completed since 2005 (due to cancelling modules for various personal reasons and doing my foundation degree etc).
  2. It's the first level 3 module I've done so it's also the most challenging one I've done.
  3. It's a level 3 philosophy module...  Need I say more.
 I certainly don't think by any stretch of the imagination that I've done as well in the exam as I did in my TMA's, but I'd be very surprised if I had to resit put it that way.  And how many people get to say that in their exam they had to answer questions about robots, zombies and Humpty Dumpty; my favourite bits of the module!

While I was winding down from it yesterday I started to reflect on the time I'd actually spent on it and decided that while I've done quite well on it, I've not put anywhere near the effort possible for this module.  The OU has SO much information which is available at your fingertips; library resources filled with journals and book extracts and more, online games to help you cement your knowledge, module forums where you can quiz your fellow students.

It's tough when you're studying part time and have other commitments alongside but I've made the promise to myself that for this last module I'll try and make the most of all of the available resources; go to tutorials, keep in touch with the tutor, have a presence on the module forum etc etc ad infinitum.

And it all begins today.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

It's one of the s7ven deadly sins isn't it?

My head is utterly done-in with Philosophy.  It's my final exam tomorrow and quite frankly I think I'll be lucky if I can remember ANY of the names of the ga-zillion theories in order to write a coherent and logical response to any one of the 3 out of 10 questions I have to answer.  My thoughts have been completely consumed with my exam over the last couple of weeks and it's starting to get me down.

I'm a fairly intelligent person and I'm hoping that once I get sat down in the exam room, calm my nerves and take the time to think about my answers and write some notes that I'll be fine, but at the minute I truly feel as if I'll not remember enough to be able to answer the questions.  I've found this module very challenging; perhaps more challenging than I can realistically cope with but if I can just get through this exam and get a pass (even if it's a bare pass) I'll be suitably pleased with myself.

I've had a very eventful couple of weeks to unproductively distract me from exam revision; been down to Walton Hall twice for meetings as a Central Representative, have gone through the election process for OUSA Executive Committee member for the North and am awaiting closing date for ballots to find out if I've been elected or not, I've had the chance to meet Robyn from the OU's Platform team a couple of times and have made myself a good friend there, and a whole host of other things with the exception of going out and doing something nice with my beloved Gordon.


After my exam tomorrow, Gordon and I are going to paint the town red.  Well, we're gonna go to the cinema and go for a slap up meal (not quite red, maybe maroon).  Can't rest for too long though, TMA01 for DD305 is due in by Wednesday lunch time and I have a school Governors meeting on Wednesday evening.

No rest for the wicked, I'm obviously a glutton for punishment.