Gym Memberships: Worth the dosh or a load of tosh?

Bikini bod or couch potato?

So it’s been a while since my last blog due to work placements, enjoying my last few months at University and just generally making the most of everything, so I thought it was time to re kindle my blogging love.

Since I was 15, I’ve been a member of the gym. I originally joined to get myself fit for a mountain trek I was taking part in in Kenya. Since then I’ve always tried to keep up my fitness and work out regularly.

I was recently reading in a teen mag that there’s no point joining the gym at uni because you won’t get your money’s worth, but I personally think that’s a load of tosh.

Okay, so it is hard to pull yourself out of bed when you crawled in 4am that morning, but it can be done.

The UCLan gym is very small and that put me off going to the gym in first and second year. It was enivatable to bump into someone you knew and it would always be the day I looked like I’d been pulled through a few bushes.
For Preston students, you’re be happy to know the uni is awaiting the opening of the new sports centre with a brand spanking new gym with plenty of space and equipment. Shame I’m graduating in a few months…

My best advice for people trying to weigh up the idea of the gym is whether you actually enjoy it.
My friend Chloe and I enjoy going to the gym (most of the time.) We try to mix it up a bit. Sometimes we’ll go for a full on gym sesh, one day we might go for a swim and sauna and every now and again we’ll go to a exercise class. (Although just some advice… if you’re new to it all, make sure you check you’ve signed up to a beginners class as opposed to the expert class, we made that mistake and nearly died.)

My dad hates the gym, but pulls himself out of bed three times a week to keep fit. Good on him. The gym is great for losing weight or keeping fit, but you’ll only make the most of your membership if you do have a bit of a drive in it.

I’m not fat. But i’m not thin. I’m a normal 2o year old girl who is constantly looking at herself in the mirror and wishing her stomach was flat. My biggest problem is I LOVE FOOD. I don’t understand how some people don’t.
I’ve never got really fat but I do have my binge sessions, especially when I’m stressed or bored.

Over Christmas I have put on half a stone, HALF A STONE! It’s all those mince pies, christmas leftovers, selection box chocolates. Shit happens. But I will lose the weight and go back to normal (I hope.)

At university I walk everywhere. 15 minutes to uni, 20 minutes to town, 15 minutes to the gym- my house is positioned in a good area that forces me to walk everywhere and I quite like it- apart from when it’s pouring down with rain. Then I wish I lived in my lecture theatre.

You’ll find at uni that you’ll have many days where you’re not in lectures and may want to get out your flat/house and do something different- so why not join the gym?

GYM Newbie? Here’s some advice on joining the gym whilst at uni:

1. It’s okay to love food. Don’t stop eating, just start exercising a little.

2. Don’t think just because you’ve done an hour at the gym means you can order an extra large Dominoes. Big mistake.

3. Forget dieting. Just stop eating rubbish every day of the week. Keep your treats for the weekend.

4. If your a student who’s out a few times a week partying, clear spirits are the least calorific and opt for diet coke/lemonade.

5. If you can’t afford a gym membership, go running. Preston, for instance, has loads of parks and hilly areas where you can go for a jog.

6. Find a friend who wants to keep fit too. It’s much more fun exercising with someone else.

7. Don’t be a barbie doll who feels they have to put five coats of make up on before they hit the gym. You’re gonna sweat and get all red, deal with it.

8. Don’t buy £2 Primark pumps to exercise in, treat yourself to some proper trainers. I assure you, you’ll thank me.

9. If you’re hungry, chew gum or drink water rather than snacking. You’re not really peckish, your mind just thinks it.

10. And finally... Who cares what you weigh, it’s how you feel. I weigh myself every now and then but I work on the basis on how I feel when looking in the mirror. After all your friends are staring at you not your scales.

I’m off on holiday in a few weeks time and want to look extra good for the beaches in Dubai, so I need to keep exercising to tone up, feel good and lose my Christmas tyre.

So if you are a fitness fanatic or just want something else to do at Uni, why not join the gym. I still manage to work hard, play hard and get myself to the gym three or four times a week, even if it does mean dragging myself there. You feel better afterwards, I promise.


New Year Resolutions… Contrived?

Every year we commit (or atleast for a while) to New Year resolutions. But are they really worth it and do we truely stick to them?

The stereotypical resolutions which I’m sure you can relate to are …
1.To lose weight- to pack in snacking, eating chocolate, crisps and biscuits at all times of the day
2. To go to the gym regularly and to create a really healthy lifestyle
3. To find the perfect man/woman
4. To quit something such as smoking, drinking too  much, casual sex…
5. Learn something new like a language or how to cook better
6. Write a diary
7. Help others more, maybe do some chairty work
8. Make more effort with those relatives we never talk to anymore

Let’s be honest. There’s no point writing down a resolution. If you want to do it, then you would have succeed way before now. But I guess there’s no hard seeing 2011 as a new start and to plan out your aims and objectives.

I can’t believe how many exercise videos are out at the moment. They always seem to show a terrible picture of the person (usually a wannabe celebrity such as Kerry Katona) in a bulging, fat state and then put an incredibly air brushed picture of the celeb closely next to it.
We’ve got to face it. If you want to lose weight it’s simple. Stop snacking,  eat smaller portions and exercise.

It’s all very well to set New Year resolutions, but they’re only truely real if you get to 31st December and can truthely say you’ve acheived them.

So mine for this year?
Quite simply really… Graduate from University and to find the perfect job.
Not asking for much am I!?

1st semester 3rd year.. DONE

Many readers of my blog are University of Central Lancashire students, either currently studying there or have been signposted to readi my blog in preparation to join the uni for three whole years.

It’s weird to think that this time next year it will nearly be Christmas and I could be doing ANYTHING. I might be back at Sainsbury’s working full time on checkouts, I might be travelling the world or I might be a world famous television producer…
It’s weird when you have NO idea what’s going to happen. A lot of the time it’s being at the right place at the right time.

Even though third year at university has been pretty damn hard, I’m definitely going to hate leaving (and it’s not just about the high and cheap alcohol consumption.) In fact, I have barely gone out this year.
First and second year were a breeze in comparison.
The good thing about this, is that there have been less drunken pictures of me ‘letting my hair down’ and more pennies kept in my pocket.

The work load has been horrible towards the end of the year. It seems that with Journalism (and probably a lot of other courses), you study so many modules and all the assignments seem to fall in to the same two weeks. It’s no ones fault, it just means you have to work really hard.

So overall…
Year 3, Semester 1….. 7/10

p.s. If any of you are students moving in to a house next year and it’s a pretty ancient building, I suggest you invest in a heater, my room is bloooooooming freezing!

I don’t need The Pogues in my Christmas thanks.

I know a good 90% of you will argue with me, but quite frankly I don’t care because I’ve had several debates the last week or so on this.

Fairytale of New York by The Pogues. This is my problem.
I’m not saying I totally dislike the song, because it’s alright. But, it’s the fact that nearly every christmas it appears Number 1 on the music charts.

If you ask people what there favourite christmas song is, so many people don’t even hesitate and say The Pogues. But WHY!

Let’s take a look at some of the lyrics…

” You´re a bum you´re a punk
You´re an old slut on junk
Lying there almost dead on a drip in that bed
You scumbag you maggot
You cheap lousy faggot
Happy christmas your arse I pray god it´s our last.”

A lot of people argue that the song just signifys so many people’s christmases. Arguing, Joking, just generally being vulgar. But, I can definately say that a part from the odd hiccup on Christmas day, I would never turn to anyone and say ‘I hope this is our last christmas together’ or to argue. It is Christmas after all!

Now you’re probably starting to get really annoyed at me now. But just to clarify, I don’t hate the song, I just think it shouldn’t be constantly voted as the best christmas song. We need happiness, jingle bells, snow, santa etc. Not two drunks singing an overplayed song. Or is this the alcoholic society we’ve turned in to… Who Knows.

I can never quite put a finger on what my favourite christmas song is, but I think you should all definately check out this slightly modern, ‘funked up’ version of The Snowman’s ‘Walking in the air.’
It’s an absolute cracker…

KELE: One of the many God’s of music

I was lucky enough to be on the guestlist for the KELE gig in Manchester: The Ritz Club last week. It was amazing.

For those who aren’t familiar with Kele, he’s the lead singer from legendary band: Bloc Party. I absolutely love Bloc Party and even though I was pretty gutted when they announced they were going solo for a while/ for ever, I was very excited to hear of Kele’s new album.
I also have gained a (little) crush on Mr Okereke. What a smile!

Here’s my review for the gig. It’s also featured in PR1 magazine and on PR1’s website.

Best known as Bloc Party’s main man, Kele Okereke has gone solo, touring around the country following the release of his debut album ‘The Boxer.’ And yes, the album is a good’un. After last seeing Kele, he’s definitely had a few sessions at the gym, bulking right up and wearing one of his very fitted merchandise t-shirts.

First listening to the album, I thought it all sounded quite similar and very much like another Bloc Party album, but the intimate gig proved me wrong. Kele had constant energy singing the majority of his album with favourites, ‘Tenderoni’ and ‘Everything you wanted.’ We were also treated to three Bloc Party songs that got the crowd going wild including ‘One More Chance’ and ‘Hunting for witches.’
Kele has an infallible voice, hitting all kind of notes I didn’t think existed and has such a distinct, excitable sound you could never get bored of. With his sexy smile and great personality, Kele has definitely moulded to the solo career.
Whether you’re a Bloc Party super fan like me, or want an album that’s fearless, wild and has some great dance tunes, then ‘The Boxer’ might need to the be put on your Christmas list!

If you like the sound of Kele, then why not check him out on Youtube. He’s also currently touring the UK if you want to grab some tickets and watch him in a fantastic set.

Have you got X-Factoritis?

X FACTOR. X FACTOR. X FACTOR. X FACTOR. Where do we begin?

Love it or loathe it, you can’t get away from it.
Social networking sites, websites, text messages, billboards,  tv sets… yep you name it. It’s EVERYWHERE.

If you’re one of those X factor haters, (which to be honest, I don’t know anyone who absolutely detests the show) you’ve got to admit, it’s not as bad as I’m a Celebrity Get Me out of here or Big Brother.
It’s got a bit more class and a bit less tackiness, I feel.

The problem with X Factor  is that it’s hard not to get obsessed. It’s the talk of twitter and overtakes our television sets for 5 hours each weekend- as well as repeats.

We all sit nervously at the edge of our seats to see what Cheryl Cole decides to wear for the evening and we are excited for the judge’s banter.

I do feel sorry for people like Katie Waissel. Okay, she has come across very drama queenish, but at the end of the day she can sing, she’s pretty and I don’t understand why people are so nasty about her in the press.

It has been reported that despite the X Factor’s biggest efforts to cancel Katie’s record deal, a song she has duetted in has been released this week.  Crafty? Malicious? Coincidence?

Another thing I think many of us have in common with the X Factor is the fact that SECRETLY we want Wagner to win. Okay, he won’t. And yes, he doesn’t deserve it. But it would be funny. And, he’s not as annoying as Jedward- they were a bit of a ball ache at times, but they’ve done pretty well out of the x factor.

He isn’t a sex god, he can’t sing, but boy do we enjoy it when Wagner gets through every week… Cheryl’s reaction is priceless.
I do feel sorry for him that he gets booed every week.
It does make me laugh how him and Louis Walsh can’t get their head around the choice of song… You choose one, not two. Whatever floats their boat.
Louis also needs to learn how to pronounce his contestant’s name… VA-G-NA not with a W. get it right, yer!

Once X factor disappears again off our screens, a tiny part of us will be sad. Maybe it’s because we’ve found a reason to get excited about television programmes again, or maybe because the x factor is a great way to fob off any social plans and to chill at home in front of the good ole’ box.

I’m most looking forward to seeing who’s going to get #1 this year in the Uk’s top 40 charts. Last year, Joe McElderry was knocked off by Rage Against the Machine last year. Who know’s what will happen this year?

Rumoured runners fighting for Christmas No.1 this year are:

The Winner of X Factor (obviously guys)
Metallica-Enter Sandman or Pulp- Common People are already popular facebook groups
John Cage- 4-33 (this is literally a song that’s 4minutes and 33 seconds long of silence. By a composer! Creative…)
Harry Hill- ‘I want a baby’
Mariah Carey- ‘All i want for christmas’ (Brilliant song, but get some new material Carey!)

Time will tell….

Life as we know it.

I’ve been thinking… isn’t life weird?

I  just find it strange how we are one person, we think, move, speak and control ourselves without even realising.
I was walking to the gym earlier and was on the phone and once the call had ended, I thought… ‘How did i just walk from A to B without thinking about it. I was distracted but still got to the gym.’

I think I’m just being far too philosophical, but Hey, we’re all allowed to be sometimes.
I studied Philosophy for A Level, and my perception on a lot of things changed. For one, my religious beliefs were kind of put on hold. I still see myself as a Catholic. I’ve been baptised, had a First Holy Communion, been Confirmed, attended a Catholic School my whole life, weekly visits to church until i was 16 and I do want to get married in a church, but I wouldn’t say in this stage of my life I’m a fully pledged holy moly.

Studying Philosophy was very insightful but ever so complex. One of my favourite idea’s which I think was quoted by Richard Swinburne, said; We might as well believe in God, because if he is true we will go to heaven and be forever happy, and if he isn’t true, we’re not missing out.
As you can tell he was a bit of an agnostic.

I do have a  lot of  time for religious people. My nan was one of the most holiest people I know. She wasn’t a bible basher or someone who walks through Oxford Street proclaiming the Lord’s word, but she was religious, attended church almost daily and was a great woman. She died last week. But I know that she lived a long life and faith was something she always had with her.

What I’m basically saying is that life is how we make it.
We can sit in our room’s day after day playing video games. We can be in a relationship with someone even though we know it’s never going to work. We can eat and drink ourselves silly.
But what we don’t have to be like that. We control what we do, and sometimes our mind makes huge decisions in life. Sometimes daring, sometimes precarious, sometimes naughtily. But if it makes you happy, Why not.
Learn from yesterday.
live for today.
Hope for tomorrow.
Life is what you make it guys.
Me.. I have a great family, super friends, a fantastic boyfriend and a bright future. Surely that’s a start, yer?

(Yes, I am the orange one in the middle, but it’s all natural. Brownie honour.)




I literally can’t stop tweeting.
It’s taken me a while to really get in to the whole ‘tweeting’ shannigans, but I can finally say… I am really enjoying twitter.

The social networking website only gives you 140 characters to proclaim your love, hate, anger or general random thinking to your followers.

It’s no facebook, but then again, we used to all rave about myspace and now I would never think of logging in to my very cringeworthy myspace account with plenty of vain photos that would today make me shiver and CCCC_RINGE.

Being retweeted by Phillip Schofield today was probably my offical turning point about my opinion on twitter.  See, celebs do tweet back!

So, if you haven’t already got a twitter account, then why not treat yourself. It’s free, takes up seconds of your life and is always a good way to spy on the celebs. (Although, if you do get hooked to twitter, it’s more likely to take up hours and days as opposed to seconds!)

@katiedoyle_    <<< ADD ME ? 😉

How 2 Be…

For the last two years, I have been very lucky to work for PR1 magazine, UCLan’s fantastically brilliant weekly/monthly mag.
As section editor for ‘The List’- also known as the random section where you can find out weird and wonderful things, I felt it would be appropriate to put on some of my work on to my blog, so even more lovely people can enjoy my articles and random discussions.

First ISSUE: Halloween…

HOW 2… be a tarot card reader

It’s nearly Halloween so let’s get a little spooky. The ‘tarot’ is a pack of 78 cards with different pictures and symbols on them, originally dating back to the 15th century. The images on the cards represent virtues, vices, death and torture etc and mystics use these cards to read people’s futures.  Here’s a step by step guide on how you can become a card reader:
1. Pick a mystical outfit from the local fancydress shop and buy a pack of tarot cards
2.  Use a cloth or scarf to wrap your cards in to create a clean and pure environment
3. Sleep with your wrapped up cards for a week, keeping them next to your heart or under your pillow
4.  Do your first reading- get the person to ask a question to you, concentrate on it, shuffle the pack and then cut the deck. (As you cut the deck, make sure the person loudly repeats the question they want answered.)
5.  Deal the cards using a tarot spread of your choice- e,g, a diamond shape
6. Look at the pattern. Cards that are right side up are in a positive position for the reader. If they look upside down, it is reversed. Reversed cards indicate blocked energy or conflict
7. Begin to learn the card meanings as each picture represents something. The more confident you get, the more you should perform your powers.

There are hundreds of different types of decks, and you can even make up your own cards and symbols.  Tarot card reading and collecting is still very popular and is one way to connect with your inner powers. For more, complex ruling, why not buy a book on tarot cards and how to read them!

What to do…On Halloween

it’s that time of year when you need to dig out your craft knife and carve a pumpkin. Love it or hate it, Halloween is celebrated  all around the world and is seen as one of the best times of year. As students, Halloween is another excuse to dress up in fancy dress and to purposely look ugly on a night out.  Promo at 53 Degrees, always puts on a great night at the time of Halloween, so don’t forget your fake blood and plastic teeth.
If you fancy dancing the night away with zombies and scary creatures, then make sure you pre-drink and hold a Halloween themed party. Why not make a punch and put food colouring in it and place it in a massive cauldron. You could also decorate your house with pumpkins and fake spiders to scare your guests!
if partying’s not for you, ­why not go to the cinema and night and see Saw 3D. Gruesome than ever, the film will definitely make the cinema scream and get in to the Halloween spirit!
You could also organise to have a few friends out and just watch loads of scary films, grab some Halloween themed snacks and even put your tarot card reading to the test!
Halloween isn’t for everyone, but you might as well enjoy it. You don’t want to be stuck in your room on the scariest night of the year…

Follow PR1 Magazine on twitter at:

And of course me at:

That’s all for now.

Red, brown or bright, bright blue?

Cheryl  Cole. A beautiful, 27-year-old woman, who both males and females are jealous of. She’s definitely one of the most pictured celebrities and we love to hear the new gossip on her, her fashion and the love life!

But what’s been on the ends of our tongues for the last few days is Cheryl’s new hair colour. There has been a total mixture of opinions, but I actually like it.

Her hairstyle on Saturday’s ‘X-Factor’, probably wasnt the best to show off her new hair colour, but overall I am very much enjoying the reddish with a hint of brown hair.

But what’s your favourite hair colour on Cheryl?










Okay… so maybe blue isn’t the best colour for Cheryl, but I’m sure it would still suit her.

If you’re a CC fan, then tune in on Saturday night (after the X FACTOR) to Piers Morgan’s life stories with the lovely lady herself. She even sheds a few tears for her ex hubby, Ashley Cole!