Verily badass

I’ve been an impoverished magazine journalist for the best part of a decade. Despite working for a variety of magazines, the most valuable lesson I ever learned about writing actually came from my beloved grandmother Verily Anderson. Not the sprinter, the other granny, whose name I have tattooed across my back to remind me to be more badass. (It’s freaking huge, I know. It wasn’t supposed to be that big, but a well-tattooed gentleman friend influenced me somewhat on ink day).

Verily badass

Verily means truly. Verily truly was the distilled essence of badass. In the 1950s she’d waltz into any public bar and order a pint of ale long before it was considered socially acceptable for women to drink alone. She also had five kids, travelled the world aged 85 with her youngest granddaughter (me) and wrote books for a living. She finished her last book the day before she died aged 95.

The only literary advice she ever gave me was ‘never start anything with I’ as apparently it sets a self-indulgent tone. Oops. Oh well, maybe it’s okay to be a little bit self-indulgent every once in a while. Considering Granny Verily’s other stock saying was, ‘When things get bad, go to the pub. When things get really bad, throw a party’ I don’t think she’d have disapproved of the occasional moment of self-indulgence all that much.

So to that end, I’m going to unashamedly boast about my latest article in Women’s Running magazine. You’d think I’d get used to seeing my name in print, but I still get completely overexcited on press day. It’s a fantastic feeling to see my words on a big shiny page (minus all the fucks. Magazine editors always edit out the F word if you try and sneak it in) and know that at least a couple of people in the world will read it.

This month feels exceptionally exciting because, although I was on staff at Women’s Running for nearly three years, this is my first published article since becoming a FREELANCE JOURNALIST (sorry for shouting but it’s well grown up and scary) so it feels like a big deal.

Read me baby

My latest article is also about a very newsworthy subject, vegetarian running! Everyone should go veggie. Not because I give a shit about the baby animals or environmental impact (although I really do) but because it would make eating out and dinner parties much easier for those of us that choose to eschew animalia. I always feel like such a loser in restaurants when I have to ask if there’s anything on the menu without a mum or a face. Plus my brother-in-law Jay Scrimshaw is a head chef who specialises in offal, which sucks balls as I never get to taste his cooking. Christmas day is a logistical nightmare. If only they all liked quinoa and alfalfa sprouts as much as I do.

It’s also nice to have it in print that being a vegetarian will have absolutely no bearing whatsoever on your ability to run a marathon. True story. But I won’t ruin the plot, go and buy the sexy running mag now so they commission me to write loads more, sales pitch over. Who fancies a quick pint of ale?


  1. Faith Tait
    September 5, 2012 / 5:09 pm

    Love reading your articles and snippets from your life.. Still full of fire…

  2. September 6, 2012 / 9:05 am

    I LOVE YOU SO MUCH! Awesome post & tattoo! Your gran sounds superbad! And well frickin done on the article 🙂 Proud of you little tiger – will see if I can pick it up to read it this weekend xxx

  3. September 6, 2012 / 9:58 am

    I loved this article! I didn’t notice the byline though! Congrats on being a grown up writer type. Sporty veggies and vegans need to be more vocal and shouting from the rooftops that meat is a choice, not a necessity, so well done you for sneaking it in the mag!

    I used to be vegan and was persuaded by various friends and family members that meat and dairy would help alleviate my GI related illnesses. I don’t think that meat has really helped at all and 2 years later I have started to cut it out again. I’m noticing that a more veg-oriented approach to eating is improving my running and overall health, and the article is a good reminder of how to do veggie right (because let’s face it, it’s so easy to do it wrong… cheese on toast anyone?).

    • September 6, 2012 / 2:53 pm

      Yayy thanks for your lovely comment! I’m so happy my ramblings were well received. Funnily enough next month I have an article in WR on food allergies and intolerances which sounds like it might appeal to you. I’ll keep you posted when it comes out. I definitely agree about your more veg orientated approach. Even though I’m 100% veggie, I don’t judge anyone else’s diet choices, but the whole meat and two veg approach does confuse me a lot. It neglects so much delicious food!

      Happy running foxy ladyyy xx

  4. Aidan
    September 6, 2012 / 10:32 am

    Brilliant Rhalou, Well done dear! A milestone has been reached. We miss you in London xxx

    • September 6, 2012 / 2:54 pm

      I miss you too! I might pester your good woman for some advice actually. Thinking about training in hypnotherapy to supplement the income, ooer… Lots of love to Triangle road x x

  5. September 12, 2012 / 11:03 am

    Rhalou! I loved your article in the magazine!

    As a fellow vegetarian, I too have to contend with the whole ‘has this menu item got any meat in it?’ at restaurants. One time, a helpful waitress said ‘it’s suitable for vegetarians, but it does have a bit of chicken in. SAY WHAT? No really, WHAT??

    Your grandmother sounds like an amazingly vibrant and exciting woman! Wow, I bet she had some stories!

    • September 13, 2012 / 6:27 pm

      Hey Liz,

      mutual blog LOVE! I am your new no.1 fan. If only I could run (still injured, boohoo) but as soon as I’m back on it I’ll be blogging about sensible things like running. Maybe…

      So get you on the chicken front, I’ve been served all sorts of weird shit. Nothing with a mum or a face, it’s not hard!! x x x

Leave a Reply