I ran in London on Monday morning – pretty much the usual route to Hammersmith Bridge and then down the Thames Path and back. Breezy but otherwise good running weather and not too crowded.
Running along the Thames is always great but it was particularly enjoyable this time as I’d forgotten that we were staying there on Sunday night and I’d written off the chance of getting in a run.
I tried to see if I could run faster than my usual plod and it seems I can – just over 7km at 5m 09s per km (almost 4.4miles just inside 8m 20s per mile) according to Strava. I guess the Garmin lost its signal at some point and I’ll be very surprised if it was really quite that quick – but Strava must be obeyed (and believed) so I’ll take it.
On Tuesday morning I got out on the bike with the friend I did Ventoux and L’Eroica with – only my 5th proper ride of the year. A very good social spin around the country lanes for 60km (a bit over 37 miles). Perhaps I should have done another 5km to do my age ‘metrically’ (three days early).
Wednesday morning was a run with my son – a gentle 7km (4.3m).
Thursday was my birthday ride: 65 years, 65 miles, 65 year old bike. I’ve posted it separately but the summary is ‘hard but enjoyable’. It was a day early but it’s not the most social sort of thing to do on the day itself. It was very tough using the Elswick, mainly because of the 3 gears and its weight – but it makes me wonder if that might be useful for training purposes when I actually have something to train for.
I guess it’s more of a town bike than a tourer – I wonder if it’s ever been on a ride of that length. Were riders much stronger in the old days – or were the roads much flatter?
I’ve realised that I have the Dayton Hawk in the garage. I built it up for L’Eroica back in 2013 on a 1946 frame. Perhaps I should be celebrating its birthday next year: 75 miles on the 75 year old bike. Undoubtedly it would be easier than 65 miles on the Elswick – cable brakes that work, 5 gears, a proper riding position and a lot lighter.
OAP or no OAP?
I’m trying to work out if I’m now an Old Age Pensioner. The age of 65 was the UK male state pension age for many years but it is being shifted further out in view of increasing longevity. I don’t get mine until next year – am I an OAP before I get the pension?
I’ve decided that the ‘OAP’ status attaches to the receipt of the pension and not the age of 65 so I’m not yet an OAP – I feel younger already.
Someone told me that I’ve been entitled to free prescription medicines since I was 60. The fact that I didn’t know that makes me grateful that I enjoy good health and haven’t needed a prescription medicine for a good deal more than 5 years.
A great tapas birthday lunch on Friday at a local pub by the river and a fine evening meal cooked by my wife and younger son, It doesn’t get much better. Even the chickens had saved up and bought me an egg.
More pointing of new stone walls and mowing on Saturday together with my first haircut since February or March, followed by croquet on the newly mown lawn. I think that counts as a big day for someone of my age.
It’s been some weeks since the willow tree has assaulted me while mowing but it managed to remove my ear defenders this time. I’ve been lulled into a false sense of security and outfoxed (again) by a tree.
I ran with my son on a glorious Sunday morning – just the 7.5km (4.7m).
A very fine week was rounded off by a loss to the West Indies in the cricket. I couldn’t have expected everything to go my way, could I?
Interesting stuff this week
1. African proverb: An elephant never tires of carrying its tusks
2. Barbados PM invites us all to ‘work at home’ there
Having been there on holiday last year, I can think of so many worse places …. if only I still worked
3. ‘Cheese is milk’s leap to immortality’
I’ll go along with that provided it’s not blue cheese
4. Cricket has restarted with a test match between England and the West Indies, played behind closed doors. We batted badly in the first innings, prompting one observation that it was good to see the English batsmen implementing proper social distancing between bat and ball.