After running and using the turbo trainer on Thursday I gave myself a day off on Friday. I was tired and not motivated but we went for a long walk and spotted 7 deer in one of the nearby fields which was good.
On Thursday the UK had its highest day of Coronavirus deaths – 181 – taking our cumulative total to 759. It’s entirely natural to focus on your own country’s experience but, although it doesn’t alter the tragedies behind all of the UK deaths, it was sobering to realise that the cumulative total we reached on Thursday was less than the deaths in Spain on that day alone.
So sad for Spain – and very worrying if it is true that we are tracking their experience, but two weeks behind. Let’s hope that our trajectory is helped by recent measures and that Spain (and Italy which is suffering even more) can soon see signs of getting through the worst.
Still feeling rather helpless but we are part of our village’s response and have been appointed as buddies to some of our neighbours – and we have both signed up to the national voluntary service to support the NHS and vulnerable members of society.
I used my Saturday’s one-a-day outside exercise pass to deliver cards for the village buddy scheme so I did 45 minutes on the turbo later and I ran on Sunday – a ridiculously hard 13.75km (8.5miles) in a cold 40mph northeasterly wind. If I thought all runs were going to be that tough that would probably have been my last.
A decent number of people out walking but very few cars which is a good sign.
Three runs (30km) and two turbo sessions (43.5km) for the week. More of a tick-over than anything but it’s fresh air and exercise.
Although it’s a trivial and (currently at least) futile exercise, I’ve been trying to think of appropriate challenges for when this is all over (or in the first significant lull). It’s good to try to focus on better times ahead and I’d like something to celebrate survival.
The hardest things are trying to work out what sort of shape I might be in at that time – and when ‘that time’ might be.
On the assumption that the ultra marathon is postponed, it might still be possible to do it later this year or in 2021. If it’s cancelled, I will try to get up on the Ridgeway and run some of the route solo. Logistics (and likely lack of fitness) would say it will be a rather shorter run but I’ll aim at a half marathon at least – or better still 25km, to do half of the real thing.
For 2021, if timings work out, I plan to do either
- the Marmot (174km and 5,180 metres of climbing) including the cols Telegraph and Galibier, Glandon and finishing up Alpe d’Huez. or
- the JPP sportive that finishes in Les Carroz. The eponymous ‘JPP’ is Jean-Pierre Papin, the former French footballer who won the Ballon d’Or in 1981. The longest route is 130km with over 3500m of clmbing. The fact that the start is about 8 miles, and the finish just a matter of a few hundred metres, from the apartment would be a bonus (as would the easier – but still not easy – course).
The Marmot is notoriously tough – I’ve done the Telegraph/Galibier double climb (excellent) and the Alpe (I was a bit underwhelmed – perhaps I was expecting too much) – but not together and not with something like Glandon. Our older son was in one of the bars in Carroz last year and got talking to a Brit who recommended the JPP sportive and it’s daft not to do one that is so local (and cheaper and with a free cycling shirt).
The other thing to try is a duathlon. I’ve done a short triathlon but my swimming holds me back from trying one in open water. I will see if I can improve my swimming so I can go for a ‘proper’ triathlon, but in the meantime a duathlon looks like fun.
Has it really been less than a week of lockdown?
Confirmed cases of Coronavirus for Oxfordshire: population c. 690,000