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Down, but not out

Well this site has laid dormant for far too long! Welcome back me!

So, what have I been up to? Essentially, trying to get my life in order. I think some may refer to this as a mid life crisis but if that is the case then I feel I’ve been in mid life crisis since I was about 20 years old.

I’m not going to witter on about how bad life is for me etc. It’s not. Life is good.  Life is rewarding. I wholeheartedly appreciate the small things in life – birds chirping, sunny days, green meadows, a friendly smile. However…. I’m finding it increasingly hard to be truly happy. I think the last time I felt close to happy was during an epic solo walk of over 900 miles. The journey was 49 days and took me to my physical limit. It was another time… Other worldly. I felt so detached from normal life on my return. I recall sitting on a tube station platform bench thinking “is this it? Is this all there is?” I had the major league holiday blues. That was a few years ago and I’ve been trying to clamber out of the doldrums since.

Wow this sounds negative! Trust me, I’m positive. Things WILL get  better. I know they will. If the long walk taught me one thing it is this – for each and every bad thing/time/event, there is an equal opposite good time waiting round the corner. It’s what makes our life tapestries vibrant.

I’ll not leave this blogging lark so long next time. There is a catharsism that comes from putting pen to paper (or index finger to smart phone in this case).


Cramp anyone?

Today I was maintaining pedal power. It was a nippy 1° or 2°c this morning but a good brisk cycle into work warmed me sufficiently to enjoy the ride. Although I have 2 negative points or rather points of vague interest.

1. I am starting to cramp like I have cramped before in my legs. The reasons are varied dependant on who you speak to but dehydration seems to factor high in more opinions than not.

2. I am definitely feeling the muscular exhaustion of daily, similar, exercise. I deliberately put “similar” in that last sentence because I think its interesting that muscles show fatigue over days of usage. I’m learning more about how my body reacts to stresses and strains. This should teach me to slow down or change exercise patterns. Maybe one day I’ll get it right!

Also of note which I’ve not yet mentioned is equipment. I use a specialized road bike and am trying out a face mask in an attempt to cut down on the amount of car fumes I am sucking in during my 35 minute journey through southwest London. So far, so good.

Rest day tomorrow with light runs at the weekend.

Wheels only today

Trying not to do too much too soon and still trying (successfully by the feel of it) to reduce my weight. By how much I am not sure. 2x 7mile cycles today. Very mild 11° over the past few days but tonight the temperature has dropped like a stone to near freezing. We will have to see what things are like tomorrow AM weather wise. This will dictate what exercise I choose.


A tentative start to the week?

I started the day early today. 6 am I was up and out out by 6:40 am. My plan was to cycle to work (just over 7 miles), then run for 3 miles during the day, then cycle back, taking things very easy of course.

My working day did not allow the 3 mile run so decision made, I would run when I returned home. I have a route of 4 miles that I like to run from my home. It’s slightly hilly and a nice little loop. However, it is 4 miles and not 3 so this means I have slightly over done things. It feels like it too. Take a look at the Endomondo link below and you’ll see how I have over stretched my exercise. This is exactly what I was trying to avoid but it does show how addictive (to me) exercise can be. You may hear people say “once you’re out there you’ll love it” and it’s true. To move and feel your blood flow is a joy and a privilege and I emplore you to get out and get amongst it if you are able, even if it’s for a 30 minute walk just head out in one direction for 15 minutes, turn around and come back again. I guarantee you’ll appreciate it afterwards.

3rd run of the year Having run a lot of runs over 10 miles I have returned from the last three runs (all below 4 miles) feeling absolutely spent! This tells me I am in horrendous shape with a mountain to climb, it also tells me how sedentary my lifestyle has been. This is a perfect reason why runners should not run themselves into the ground as I did back in October 2012. A break for a few days now.


Struggling through a short run

Struggling through a short run

This was only the second run of 2013 and already my legs are burning after such a short distance. It’s horrendous to get out and get amongst it, but this tubby belly is not going to move itself!


The start of the Grand Union Canal (GUC) training.

The start of the Grand Union Canal (GUC) training.

It’s the start of a new year. It was always going to be hard but here I start my training for running the Grand Union Canal. I am SO out of shape it is not funny. I weighed in at 206.4lbs and 30.2% body fat. Not great!