Monday was very grey. No, I haven’t read the book or seen the film and I didn’t count the shades, but there were a lot of them. It was also drizzling off and on so it looked very much like a turbo day.
That was a late afternoon effort undertaken with little enthusiasm – the only two positives that came out of it were that it ended and I stuck with it. In all 1h 04m for 30 km. I did get out to the charity’s pop-up shop during the day to collect a bike for renovation – a rather sorry specimen but let’s see what can be made of it.
Australian bushfires shake rural Oxfordshire
Some very good friends who live nearby sent us a clip of an Australian news report about bush fires at the edge of Sidney, with one house gutted by the flames. It was the house rented by their son who is working out there (and got out safely, thank goodness but with only what he was wearing). Small world!
Happily, he had just finished doing a wash when the fire started and, having been able to get back into the shell, found that he at least has some clean clothes still in the machine.
… back to the more mundane …
Tuesday was colder but bright and dry. We got out for the usual 7km run which was every bit as enjoyable as Monday’s turbo session wasn’t.
The gym reopened on Wednesday and I was there at the crack of
dawn 8am. It was extremely good to be back but it was ‘see your breath’ cold.
My abs ached a bit on Thursday. It would have been easy to do sit-ups at home during the lockdown but, rather pathetically, I never managed to make them part of any routine. My legs were also generally cranky.
It was also cold and raining steadily but I got out for a run, despite my general bad-weather wimpishness (or perhaps to confront it). After all that it was an enjoyable, if rather wet, run – 10.2km (6.33 miles) at 5:39/km.
I did a session in the pop-up shop in the afternoon, playing bike mechanic – breathing life into the rather sad specimen I took in on Monday.
Back to the gym for another hard hour on Friday morning, with some fairly unhappy muscles. Bitterly cold again – I wore a compression top, a long-sleeved top, running tights beneath track suit bottoms, a hat and gloves. They have to keep the doors and windows open for ventilation as no air conditioning is allowed, and so the heating is off for economic and ‘green’ reasons, no doubt.
We went up to London in the afternoon – just for a short break and managed to see our younger son which was good. On Saturday morning I had the delight of a run to Hammersmith Bridge and then down the Thames Path to Barnes Bridge, and back.
The Garmin went crazy. It shows me having run from Luton to London (Luton is about 50 miles north). Despite that, the Garmin recorded it as being 21 km (just 13 miles). At least it got the time right (54 minutes 42 seconds) but for the 21km that’s a world half marathon record.
Not surprisingly, Strava had some doubts about it all …. the run was actually 10km in the 54m 42sec.
Back home, for some reason I decided to run on a very cold Sunday. Look on the bright side – the Garmin worked properly and it got a little warmer when it started to rain. Another 10.2km (6.33 miles) at 5:50/km.
That was an exercise session every day in the week, 9 days in a row and 26 sessions in the last 28 days. I don’t know what I’m trying to prove or to whom – but it’s a bit too much.
Interesting stuff this week
1. African wise words: A group of ants can drag a gecko away
I can’t get the latter bit of ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ out of my mind when I read this. If you’ve read it, you’ll know why.
2. BBC news website: US ends era of emotional support animals on planes
US airlines will no longer be required to transport emotional support animals after passengers insisted on bringing on board their horses, pigs, peacocks and turkeys for psychological reasons.
The rule change now says only dogs qualify as service animals. The agency said unusual animals on flights had “eroded the public trust in legitimate service animals”.
If you need to bring a pig on a plane with you for emotional support, you have probably proved your need for emotional support?
3. BBC News website: Nasa to pay company $1 to collect rocks from moon
The fee is not the motivation for the company (you don’t say). There are expected to be many scientific benefits to the mission such as allowing firms to practice extracting resources from the lunar surface.
The fee will be paid in a three-step process. A total of 10% of the funds at the time of the award, 10% when the company launches its collection spacecraft, and 80% when Nasa verifies the company collected the material.
You wouldn’t want to have to pay all that in one go, of course
4. BBC News website: Kenyan man ‘who woke up in a morgue dies’
A mortuary attendant was preparing the “body” last week when the man woke up and started screaming before passing out. Peter Kigen, 32, who had been suffering from a chronic disease, was then taken to hospital for treatment and was discharged later.
He told Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper last Thursday that he was happy to be alive. “This is the work of God,” he told the paper.
On Thursday, a family spokesman confirmed that “Kigen was pronounced dead upon arrival at Kericho County Hospital where he was being taken for further treatment and management”.
5. Disappointingly, I failed to make the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year shortlist (again). They seem to have been rather blinkered in their thinking and largely gone for world champions like Hamilton (F1), O’Sullivan (snooker) and Fury (boxing). Apparently an old bloke doing a bit of running, cycling and weight training doesn’t cut the mustard. Speechless.