Q I always feel the same every Christmas: I make a huge effort to buy thoughtful gifts for all my family and no one ever does the same for me, and it (...)

The first rule of committed running is to run whatever the weather conditions. Photograph: Getty Images

Dear Grit Doctor, it’s raining pretty much all day every day, and I never seem to have an opportunity to run. The only time it’s not raining is when I(...)

Olfactory blues: what are you to do when something doesn’t smell right in your relationship? Photograph: Thinkstock

Q I love my partner dearly, but he is dirty – and not in a good way. He doesn’t wash or wear clean clothes. He wasn’t always like this, and he definit(...)

The grit doctor says: ‘Remind yourself through your gritted teeth that none of it is supposed to be easy.’ Photograph: Thinkstock

Q First four-mile (6.4k) run done in ages, I’m soo slow and shattered, u take the eye off the ball for one second and you’re screwed @gritdoctor help!(...)

Don’t restrict yourself to your Tinder app. Get online with other dating agencies. Photograph: Thinkstock

Q I have a moral dilemma. I recently broke off a five-year relationship and have been enjoying being single again. I met a younger guy and the chemist(...)

Being active is every bit as necessary to me for a great holiday as all the wine, cheese and merrymaking . . . and the long stretches of runnable sandy beach are drawing me in. Photograph: iStockphoto

Q So, Ruth, do you really run on your holidays or do you just say that to make us feel bad about ourselves? I don’t see how it is possible with three (...)

Being constantly told that these are the best years and how much we should treasure our young children can add to the pressures of being a parent. Photograph: Thinkstock

Q The thing is, Grit Doctor, I find being a mum so hard. I get up in the morning with the best intentions to be kind to my kids, but have always sc(...)

To start getting real kicks out of it all again, you are going to have to stretch yourself. Photograph: Thinkstock

Q I have been feeling completely uninspired by my runs. I am doing them but feel as though I am getting nothing out of them. I don’t have that high fe(...)

If you cannot resist the pull of an ice-cream snack, opt instead for an ice lolly, which will hit the spot without hitting your waist. Photograph: Thinkstock

Q It’s getting warm and it’s actually easier to motivate myself to get out running in the sunshine, but at the same time I feel more bloated and swoll(...)

All set: there will come a time when that American holiday works for you again, but it is not now. Meanwhile the older children might love to go and stay with their American family on their own

Q Every year my husband and our four-year-old son – and, now, another baby who is six-months-old – have to spend our summer holidays in Massa(...)