Run (x5), walk (x3): new year, old tricks

Pictures from 2020 in this year’s family calendar. Whatever happened to 2020 – it all started so well …

A thin layer of snow was forecast for Monday morning – but it was just raining as usual. Surely, the recapturing of our sovereign power under Brexit means we can choose our own weather in future?

During a break in the rain I got out for my standard 10.2km run (6.3 miles) – the first since consuming enough calories to fuel an entire army battalion for a 10 mile hike.

While I was running there were some snow flurries. I was dressed in many layers, so although I remain towards the top of the ‘dressed like a wimp in cold weather’ league, I feel I may have moved down a notch in the ‘too much of a wimp to go out in the cold’ table.

The promised thin dusting of snow did greet us on Tuesday morning and hung around. With the likelihood of it being slippery underfoot, we went for a 5km (3 mile) walk. It snowed again, briefly, in the afternoon but that didn’t come to much.

I ran with my wife on Wednesday – still bitterly cold but clear and bright. It was just below freezing and we had to abandon two routes because they were too slippery underfoot. We ended up on a track which was hard work but reasonably safe to run on. I did two loops for 10.2km (6.3 miles). We walked again in the afternoon – this walking lark just might catch on.

New Year’s Eve on Thursday was cold again but we walked 6.7km (over 4 miles) before seeing in the New Year. Although I enjoy Christmas, I’ve never been a big fan of New Year for some unknown reason, so a good meal and some drinks with just the three of us suited me well.

We have a family tradition that my wife gets a calendar produced for us, our sons and our parents (when they were alive) as a Christmas stocking present. The calendar is made up of family pictures from the previous year – generally special occasions and holidays. This year’s starts well with photos from skiing in January 2020 and our older son’s holiday in South Africa in February 2020 – but goes rather downhill in terms of exotic locations and family get-togethers after that. How could that be?

I started the new year at 68.5kg (151lbs) which is about 2kg (4.4 lbs) more than my normal weight. I’m surprised it’s not more; I have decent willpower in terms of not bringing chocolate into the house – but no willpower at all when it comes to avoiding eating it once it’s here.

Friday was (yet again) very cold with a heavy frost. I wanted to start the year off with a run so I waited until the afternoon for safer roads and pavements (and went minus one of my usual cold weather layers). I had a really enjoyable 10.2km – 6.34 miles – at 5:28/km. That put me on course for over 3700km (2300 miles) in 2021, although admittedly at a rather early stage of the year.

Saturday was cold and bright again but safe enough underfoot, with care, and I ran with our younger son – the standard 7km (4.35 miles) at 5:36/km. Already down to being on course for 3100 km for the year. I’d better stop thinking about the year’s distance projection before the inevitable slide downhill becomes depressing. The fifth run of the week was on Sunday, this time with the three of us. The usual 7km (4.35 miles) on a cold and damp morning.

That’s on target for 2870km for the year (damn, I said I’d stop doing that).

Five runs in the week is more than my knees and Achilles would sign up for but it seems to have gone petty well. With the gym closed it’s probably going to have to be back to the turbo to keep up the number of exercise sessions without overdoing the running.

As ever, for me, the clicking over of the calendar between 31 December and 1 January makes rather less of a difference than it is always build up to. It might be another year but it turns out to be just one more day! (but I still hope 2021 is a great year for us all).

Interesting stuff this week

1. African wise words: Bits of food you pick from between your teeth with a stick cannot fill your belly

Seemed somehow appropriate immediately after Christmas

2. BBC News website: Hundreds of British skiers flee Swiss Verbier quarantine

More than 200 British skiers fled a coronavirus quarantine in Verbier on Boxing Day night after Switzerland imposed a 10-day quarantine backdated to 14 December because of the new virus strain spreading in the UK. Some Swiss hoteliers only discovered that guests had vanished when room service trays were left untouched outside doors. 

Understandable, but disgraceful, in equal measure?

3. BBC News website: Lorna Jane: Activewear brand in court for ‘anti-virus’ claims

In July the (Australian) company claimed its clothes had been sprayed with a “anti-virus” substance called LJ Shield. Adverts on its website and in stores used the tag “Cure for the Spread of COVID-19? Lorna Jane Thinks So”.

After being fined in July, Lorna Jones said it was not trying to claim the clothing was a cure for Covid-19. “We are not saying LJ Shield will stop you coming into contact with bacteria, we are saying LJ Shield is an added protection like hand sanitiser but for the clothes you wear.”

Thank goodness, now we can rest easy knowing that our clothes won’t catch Covid

4. The year began with news that over 1 million people have had their first Covid vaccine jab in the UK. It’s a good start. They began with the over 80s and care workers but there are something like 12.4m of us over 65s, so I’m not holding my breath for mine just yet.

5. In answer to my own question of a month ago: no, when running, I cannot tell the difference between two identical pairs of trainers, one with 800km on the clock and the other with under 50km.

8 thoughts on “Run (x5), walk (x3): new year, old tricks

  1. unironedman

    Nice work there on the 10k. I’ve just treated myself to some new runners – Adidas Supernova Boost – but I have rather comically ordered online, despite the rather messy experience during the last lockdown. But with at least a month or more of restrictions here at our highest level, all shoe shops are closed. So online it is. Wish me luck…
    (I am hoping I WILL be able to tell the difference; certainly my other runners are all falling apart)

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. The Omil Post author

      I went to one of the big online sports shoe shops but couldn’t find them, despite them stocking 193 Adidas mens road running shoes! I guess some are just colour options but after Solar Boost 3, Solar Boost ST, Ultra Boost Winter RDY, Ultra Boost Summer RDY, Solar Boost 19, Ultra Boost 20, Ultra Boost PB and Pulse Boost I felt anything but boosted.
      No doubt we don’t get the good stuff now we are not in the club. Back to HiTec Silver Shadows for us.
      They always give lots of useful info on these sites but I can’t find one that will answer the simple question ‘Do they come so high up the heel that they will irritate my Achilles tendons?’
      Hope they are great (and fit properly).

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      Reply
  2. unironedman

    This review (https://www.runningxpert.com/en/inspiration/review-adidas-supernova) specifically mentions Achilles but then, it also suggests that the shoe would in some way ‘support’ the Achilles tendon. I’m no medical expert, but I suspect if one is relying on a shoe to support that tendon, you have bigger worries. In your case, you just don’t want it to rub the heel, which makes more sense. Time will tell. I have a really old pair of Adidas Energy Boost 2s (well, old in shoe years) and I loved the snug fit and bounciness of them. I still use them for fast 5ks and triathlons, since I swapped out the laces for the elastic locking variety, essentially turning them into slip-ons. But for longer stuff, I was a more traditional runner, and have enjoyed Sauconys more recently.
    But yep; fit is the big issue for me so hopefully by the end of the week, they’ll arrive. I’m easing back on running this month, so it’s not a big problem. In fact, let’s be honest… the whole damn thing is a luxury problem! 🙂

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  3. olderrunner2

    Nice running and walking and I love the calendar idea. I may have to steal that one. I’m a wimp when it comes to running in colder weather too, that’s why I bought a treadmill years ago. I’d much rather sweat than freeze.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. The Omil Post author

      Thank you.
      I’ve tried treadmills in gyms but find that I am constantly putting the speed up in order to bring the miserable experience to and end sooner – and, of course, that makes the experience even more miserable. I can manage the turbo trainer, perhaps because the bike speed is the output from my effort rather than the speed of the treadmill being the input that I try to live with (if that makes any sense).
      I hope the calendar idea works. Judging by the angst my wife goes through each December, I think it would be made much easier by keeping a file of candidate photos as you go along.

      Liked by 2 people

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