I have too much sleep and get up knackered and I think why am I knackered, I haven’t had a drink for a week and have been getting early nights and everything and I should be as fit as a fiddle but I decide I have to do my six miler anyway and I even have some cereal for a change in the hope that it will give me energy and I set Cedric to pace me at 10:30 minute miles even if anything over 10 m/m is really crap and means you’re not a proper runner because apparently you’re only a proper runner if you do 9 m/m but who wants to do things properly anyway? and I do my usual wasting time on Facebook thing and laugh at the old school pictures the former Miss Lamb has put up and I put a potato in the oven to await my return from my long run and I get out the door and see the recycling bins and remember that someone stole the clothes I put out for recycling and I wonder if they were cold or just had an impeccable sense of style and I also wonder why they took the orange jumper but not the black Diesel combats that had only been worn once and I get towards the bridge and there’s a car coming towards me and I look behind me and there’s a man running up to me and I slow down to let him overtake but he tucks in behind me while the car goes past and then he overtakes me and I should have said thanks or something but I don’t as I’m too knackered and I go through the bridge and think what if I didn’t turn the gas on the oven properly or what if the flame goes out and there’s gas pouring into my house? and then I remember I’ve got an electric oven and I go over the next bridge and there’s plastic covering all over it and it’s quite nice and cosy although it’s a shame I can’t see the river while I’m going over it and I remember I nearly skidded across the next bridge and so I walk over it this time instead of skating over it and I’m feeling really knackered now and I think I’m going to have to stop and walk and so I do stop to walk and then I see the cows and two of the cows are kissing and then they stop kissing and one of them starts licking the other one’s neck and the one having its neck licked is looking at me like what are you looking at? and I’m thinking well, I’m looking at you having your neck licked by the other cow, it’s not something I see every day and I’m still walking and I’ve got two miles to walk and then I think ah, I’ll call it cross-training, cross-training is good and I cross the boardwalk and up the steep bit and onto the path and there’s two girls running and I think not fair, I want to be running but it’s not happening today and then they start walking and I think maybe I should run now and overtake them but then I think no, because I’ll probably have to stop and walk after two yards and they’ll laugh and point at me and so I walk a bit faster and overtake them that way and then one of them runs and overtakes me and I wonder why she’s left the other one behind and I get to the stables and wonder if I can manage a bit of a jog and I think I’ll wait ’til I’m round the corner where no one can see me if I have to stop again and I get round the corner and run really slowly up to the bridge and I get over the bridge and across the road and my iPod’s playing crap songs, well it might be crap but I’ve never heard most of it before and I think I’ll skip through the songs and see if there’s one that will give me a bit of a boost and Death House Chaplain’s Wherewithal comes on and I think hooray, I like that one and although it’s not exactly a good running song I decide to run until it finishes and then Graham Coxon is singing All Over Me and Graham Coxon is cool and although I hate to skip through Graham Coxon, this song is even less of a good running song and so, sorry Graham, I skip through it and Marc Almond starts singing Sex Dwarf and I think ah, that’s more like it.
Stats (running bit):
Distance: 1.76 miles
Pace: 10:34 m/m
Thieves with impeccable dress sense: 1
Plastic bridges: 1
Cows kissing: 2
Cows having their necks licked: 1
Stats (walking bit)
Distance: 1.70 miles
Long runs successfully completed: 0
Proper runners: 0
I get an early night and get up full of beans (well, I am a vegetarian) with my fake sunrise and don’t forget my rucksack with my gym kit in it today and I go to work and check Facebook and find out Tracy – another mountain mate – has also signed up for the Reading Half and I’m beginning to feel like the Pied Piper of Half Marathons and maybe I should get a musical pipe and lure everyone to the pub afterwards and I should go to the gym after work tonight and do the two miles I should have done last night but didn’t due to my responsibility to the human race involving not falling asleep whilst running and therefore being a danger to myself and others and I go to the gym and Blame it on the Boogie is playing and I’m not sure they should be playing songs by
kiddie fiddlers Celebrity Big Brother contestants and I get on the treadmill and I think shit, I don’t know what two miles is in kilometres and I’m thinking um, 5k is 3.1 miles so it’s a bit less than that and 10k is 6.2 miles so it’s about a third of that and I’m thinking idontliketocount and I’m wondering if 1.6k is 1 mile or is it the other way round? and I decide it’s 1.6k to a mile and that means 2 miles is about 3.2k and I decide to stick on that and on the TV is Come Dine With Me and I want to watch and listen to it so I stick my headphones in the speaker thingy on the treadmill but the volume’s not working so I stick my headphones back in my iPod and on the other screen is an advert for Celebrity Big Brother and it’s showing Ukrika and Lucy up for eviction and I decide Lucy should be evicted because I haven’t a clue who she is but then I think I haven’t watched it all week, so have no idea who is the bigger pain in the arse and I decide they both probably are and therefore should be be evicted and while they’re at it, they should evict the rest of the Z-listers too and I take a peek at the man on the treadmill to the left of me and he’s doing 15.4kph and I take a peek at the man on the treadmill to the right of me and he’s doing 9.5kph and I think oh, that’s ok then, as I’m doing 10kph but after 10 minutes I slow it down to 9.5kph and at 15 minutes slow it down further to 9kph and I’m getting fed up of the treadmill and think the faster I go, the faster it’ll tick round to 3.2k and I speed it up to 10kph at 18 minutes and at 19 minutes I speed it up to 11kph and it eventually gets to 3.2k and I do the five minutes cooling down bit which involves walking really slowly like you’re in a Race for Life or something and I think I’ll go on the rowing machine while I’m here and I get off the treadmill and no rowing machines are free and I think DAMN YOU, NEW YEAR RESOLUTION PEOPLE, don’t you know it’s Friday, no one except me goes to the gym on a Friday night, don’t you have pubs to go to? and so I go back to the changing room and I get changed and there’s a girl fully dressed, using the hairdryer to blow dry her armpits and I think what the fuck…?
Distance: 1.99 mile
Time: 20:45 minutes
Pace: 10:26 m/m
When I get to the station this morning, as the train is pulling into the platform, I go to take my rucksack off and realise, oh, I’ve forgotten my rucksack. Duh. It’s still on the chair where I packed it this morning with life’s essentials such as my gym kit, mobile phone, money, book and umbrella and I think shall I go home and get it or shall I get on the train? and I decide to get on the train without my life’s essentials and I wonder if I forgot it because I’m getting old and maybe I’m on the slippery slope to being proper old and next I’ll be buying my clothes at Marks and Spencer and going to bingo, and probably not even leaving the house to go but playing online bingo as that is more in keeping with being a hermit and at lunchtime I go for a walk along the Embankment and there’s a lot more runners than usual and they must all be new year resolution runners or something and I’m wondering if I’ll be bothered to go for a run when I get home and maybe I don’t have to, I can just watch these runners along the Embankment and maybe their training will rub off on me and there’s a girl in shiny new kit and I wonder if she’s a newbie runner or maybe she’s been running for years and got the shiny new kit for Christmas and as I go back to work, there’s a man in a wheelchair wheeling down the middle of Fetter Lane and I think if Wheelchair Man isn’t too much of a wuss to go in the road, why aren’t cyclists? and I get back to work and I’m really tired and I don’t know if I’m going to have the energy to run when I get home and I get the train home and it’s foggy and I think it’s probably dangerous to run in the fog and just as I get to the corner of my road I do a big yawn and I think falling asleep when you’re running is probably just as fatal and a danger to others as falling asleep when you’re driving so the altruistic part of me thought it was probably best that I stay in tonight and don’t have a fatal accident or cause others to do so.
Rucksacks full of life essentials taken to work: 0
Slippery slopes to buying clothes at M&S: 1
Runners along the Embankment: loads
Men in wheelchairs wheeling down Fetter Lane: 1
Big yawns: 1
Rare acts of altriusm: 1
Because I am such a self-disciplined and highly motivated individual, I duly trot off back to the gym after work today to do the two miles or cross training that my schedule insists I do or forever be damned. Or something like that. But at lunchtime I am struck down by mystery stomach cramps after consuming half a litre of homemade mushroom soup and I think ooooooooooh no, I have mystery stomach cramps, hope they’ve gone by the time I go home and I spend the rest of the afternoon feeling so-so and I see the banana on my desk and think maybe the banana will make me feel better so I eat the banana and the banana makes me hungry so I eat the Special K cranberry cereal bar that I got for free in the gym on Monday and haven’t eaten yet and the cereal bar makes me want something else sweet so I have some hot chocolate and by the time it gets to home time I’m wondering if I’ve eaten and drunk too much as my belly is feeling rather full but I go to the gym and they haven’t got the air conditioning on high tonight, they’ve got the heating on full power instead and I get changed and get on the treadmill and at three minutes I don’t think I can carry on and at 6 minutes I think I’m going to stop at ten minutes as I’ve definitely had enough and at 9:15 I think I’ll put the speed up a bit for the last 45 seconds and then I do the cool down bit and get off the treadmill and think I might as well go on the rowing machine while I’m here and then I think actually, that’s a good idea as my schedule says to do two miles or cross-train and so if I do a bit of both then I haven’t failed and I won’t be forever damned or anything and there’s a girl on the cross-trainer in front of me being a shining example of why you shouldn’t wear grey marl to the gym as her sweat forms a perfect outline of her knickers and I do 15 minutes on the rowing machine and then I think I might as well go on the cross-trainer while I’m here and I get on the cross-trainer but after three minutes I’m feeling a bit sick so I get off and get back to the changing room with it’s heating on full blast and I go home and look at my schedule and it says to do 3.5 miles tomorrow and I think oh fuck.
Distance: 1.00 mile
Time: 10:00 minutes
Pace: 10:00 m/m
Today’s attempt at half marathon training called for 3.5 miles and I think shall I get the train half way home and run from there? and I think na, I’ll go to the gym and do it on the treadmill and hopefully not leave an important part of my brain on it, unlike when I did my 90 minute eight mile treadmill extravaganza the year before last and was unable to walk for about two months afterwards and I get to the gym and the air conditioning’s on high in the changing room like don’t they know it’s minus 10 outside? and I get on a treadmill as fortunately they haven’t all been nabbed by the new year resolution people and the girl next to me’s doing 11.2kph and I think oh, I can’t go that fast and I set mine to 9.5kph and I’m looking at the TV screens and on one of them someone’s making runny brownies and I think mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, I like brownies and on the other screen is Jasper Carrott and I wonder if he’s always been that bald and then after the runny brownies programme it says Celebrity Big Brother‘s Little Brother’s coming on next and I wonder if I should be a saddo and put my iPod headphones into the TV socket thingy and listen to it and I decide not to as I’m not sure I can balance on a treadmill and watch TV at the same time and then Jack Off Jill start singing their brilliant cover of Love Song and it spurs me on and makes me forget about the Z-listers on CBBLB and I’ve gone over the 20 minutes allowed on the machines between 5pm and 7pm and I think ho hum, I didn’t get arrested by the 20 minutes cardio police when I did my eight miles and it gets to 5k and I wonder how long .6 of a k will take and why can’t they put the machines in miles? and there’s an RSPC advert or programme or something and it’s showing two dogs getting kicked and I think I’m going to be sick and then they show some puppies and I think OOOOOOOOOOOOOH PUPPIES, YAY, and then I think actually I don’t want a puppy, I want a blue fuzzy cat and I eventually get to 5.6k which is about 3.5 miles and I press the cool down button and do the five minutes cooling down thing which has me walking at 4kph for the last minute and I hope no one can see me walking really slowly on the treadmill and then I think no of course they won’t, there’s only about 100 people in here and I’m sure no one noticed and I look at my watch and I’ve killed it with sweat as it says it’s 8pm so I look at the clock on the wall and it says it’s 6:15pm and I wonder if I should go on the rowing machine for fifteen minutes and I get off the treadmill and my legs are wobbly and the floor appears to be moving underneath me and I think hmm, maybe I’ll just go straight home and I go to the changing rooms and the air conditioning’s still trying to freeze everyone to death and I get changed and go home and tomorrow’s schedule calls for 2 miles or cross-training and now I have to decide whether to go to the gym at lunchtime and cross-train or do two miles on the treadmill after work or try and motivate myself to run in the street after work in the evening when I get home.
Distance: 3.48 miles
Time: 36:00 minutes
Air conditioning’s on: 1
Bald Jasper Carrotts: 1
Blue fuzzy cats: 1
Jack Off Jill
I didn’t slack on New Year’s Day, I ran. I just slacked on the blogging bit and although I’m aware that the blogging bit is every bit as – if not more so – important as the running bit, I’ll just have to live with it. But the New Year’s Day run was a spectacularly feeble run, I’m not even sure if it can be called a run, what with it being a poxy 2.62 miles at an 11:15 minute mile pace. Oops.
But today I got up with fresh resolve to carry on the training for the Reading Half Marathon which has even more cool people doing it now that Running From 30 has joined the roll call and today’s schedule is for five miles so five miles I will do and I try on my new running tights that I got from Lillywhites and fuck me, they’re taking the word tights to the extreme as they’re see-through and I think I don’t want people to see my knickers so I take them off (um, the tights not the knickers) and put my usual ones on so people can’t see my knickers and I get to the footbridge and there’s a man walking across it towards me and I realise I’m not scared and I wonder why I’m not scared and thinking eek or anything and I get to the ice rink and there’s people learning to ride motorbikes in the car park and I think oh, so that’s where the learning centre is and maybe I should learn to ride a motorbike again and I think maybe not, I wasn’t very successful last time and even fell off when it wasn’t moving and nearly ran over two pensioners and crashed into the railings outside the test centre and then Spellbound by Siouxsie and the Banshees comes on which is my favourite song in the whole world ever ever ever although not the song I want played at my funeral because I want Joining the Plankton by Cardiacs played at my funeral and I go over the next bridge and there’s a man with a very big beard and as if beardy men aren’t bad enough, his beard is GINGER and I think why would you grow a beard, let alone a ginger one? and I can’t see if the hair on his head is ginger as he’s got a woolly hat on and I’m thinking hmm, woolly hat, ginger beard, bet you’re lucky with the girls. Not. And I get to the rowing club and there’s no tables outside and nobody eating bacon sandwiches and drinking tea and I wonder why the cafe’s shut and then there’s a cyclist coming down the path and I wonder which one of us is going to move out of the way and I decide it’s not going to be me as I don’t want to go close to the river’s edge and so I stick to the side I’m on and she moves out of the way and then there’s a girl running down the path towards me and she appears to be doing a Charlie Dimmock and I think ouch ouch ouch, get yourself a sport’s bra and then L7 start singing Pretend We’re Dead and it reminds me of when it first came out and Gary said it was about people like me: apathetic and I think I’ll remind him of that when we go to the pictures tonight, not that I’ve been bearing a grudge for 16 years or anything and then I remember that today is the third year anniversary of me not being a smoker. Yay.
Distance: 5.18 miles
Time: 55:07 minutes
See-through running tights: 1
Men on footbridge not scared of: 1
Car parks being used for motorbike lessons: 1
Favourite songs in the whole world ever ever ever: 1
Men with ginger beards: 1
Shut cafes outside rowing clubs: 1
Charlie Dimmock impersonators: 1
Years of not smoking: 3
Adam & The Ants
Siouxsie & The Banshees