Running

How’s that New Year Resolutions thing going?

My previous blog was a little side track into the real world out there where the crazy nonsense is going on. That may happen from time to time when I crane my neck from beneath my shell, peer around, and then shudder back into my cave of safety.

This time I’m concentrating on the non-dramatic mundanities of my personal life which I prefer.

We are now on January 17th and over the halfway mark of the month and I’ve completed 57 miles of my hoped for 100, so I’m still on track to put a fat tick against this one.

Mornings like this reminds me why I love to run!

Have you ever run to the top of a hill and then felt like barfing? No? Me neither. I ask the question because it happened to my frequent running buddy neighbour, Bev. One of the times we went out and slogged our way up Rest Hill Road (nothing restful about this road – unless you’re going the other way perhaps), she got to the top so much quicker than me. Then, when I eventually crawled up those last few steps, I found her leaning against a wall and colour slowly coming back into her cheeks.

Rest Hill Road … from somewhere near the top

‘I nearly threw up then’, she said cheerfully, as we carried on along a nice flat bit. And she was completely fine after. She just had pushed herself on that hill to a serious level.

This got me thinking, as being a bit of a nerd I like to read articles about running a lot, and that feeling isn’t uncommon. Pushing your body so hard that you nearly spew or you go past the nearly and actually do. I am not sure if it is a good thing or not, but I’ve never felt that because I would have given up and walked well before I got to that stage. Despite the icky, I am a little in awe of people who have the drive and will to keep going, right into the nausea and get to the top of the hill, or the end of the race. I wish I had a small amount of that.

It is an enormous benefit to me to be able to run sometimes with another person. Ideally someone, who is faster than me but thoughtful enough to accompany me at my pace. It makes me up my game just a little bit. Bev is someone who kindly kicks me up the proverbial when I’m feeling lazy and comes out with me a lot, which is phenomenal considering she’s got four kids, a job and in the middle of a degree course! She’s bloody amazing.

On our little three miler today I was discussing my progress. I have noticed that my calves aren’t anywhere near as tight with the amount I’m running and that must be because I’m still on top of my yoga. It’s only about half an hour a day but it is definitely doing something to me as I’m nearly able to touch my toes whereas before I couldn’t get past my knees!

In fact the only big resolution that looks like being broken any time soon is the story writing one. Which is ironic as the reason I started this blog lark was to get me practising putting pen to paper in order to write my magnum opus. I have sat several times, and stared at the empty page. I’ve started several somethings and then tossed them aside. I can’t seem to get my imagination fired up so far. Is it because I don’t have one or because the real world is just too crazy to make stuff up? I don’t know.  I’m not calling it as a fail yet as we’re only just over two weeks into the year. But we shall see.

Even when we are in a safe space, sometimes sad things happen. My wife Anne lost her brother last weekend very suddenly. Mark had, in his last few years, suffered from Motor Neurone’s Disease and perhaps his passing has prevented more indignities and physical debilities than he was able to suffer. Yet to lose a brother, a son, a friend so quickly like that is difficult to come to terms with. Especially now when we can’t even get together. Anne is one of six and has been Zooming with the rest of her siblings and mum a lot this week. They’ve shared memories and photos and thoughts but they won’t be able to see each other for real until the funeral. We can’t even give his wife a hug. That crazy world out there has ways of permeating ours, however much we try and hide in shells.

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