Turbo (x2), run (x2), gym, plus goldfish, chess, trains and goldfish (did I mention goldfish?)

After battling through Covid, we both tested negative at the start of the week and something like what passes for normal life resumed, but cautiously as we both still have the remains of a cough.

I decided to miss the swim doctor session on Monday but took a trip up to our older son’s place to help with some decorating (there is a lot to do) and pick up the car he’s been borrowing and which needs an MOT.

Going via our flat I left a key to the place in Bournemouth for our younger son to collect ahead of his half term trip there with his girlfriend, next week. As teachers, they have no choice but to be off for the expensive holiday weeks so it’s good to be able to help them.

After the necessary domestic chores (it’s fair to say very little cleaning went on last week), my mind started to turn towards exercise. I had no plan to jump back in to the same amount as I was doing before the virus but I felt it would be interesting to see what effect it had.

I decided on a turbo trainer session on the basis that, if it wasn’t going well and I had to bail out, I wouldn’t be far from home. I tried it on Tuesday early evening – more out of curiosity than expectation – I knocked it down a gear to be cautious, but I managed an easy 30 minutes @ 27.7kph (17.2mph) and everything seemed to be working OK.

Everything felt fine on Wednesday – despite my continuing cold – but I took it gently and got back on the turbo again on Thursday. Another 30 minutes, a little faster, at 28.1kph (17.5mph).

I drove the car to the garage for its MOT on Friday morning, ran to the gym, did a 45 minute session on the weights, and then ran home. Only 4.2km (2.6 miles) but the first running and the first weights since the virus. Again, it all went pretty well.

Perhaps I’ve been listening to too many tales of post-Covid suffering but I’ve been expecting the worst all week … and it’s not happened, although I do feel quite tired and wouldn’t say I was entirely back to full strength. The gym was followed by the usual shift in the bike shop and a trip for my ‘flu jab.

Of course, not everything can go well – the car failed the MOT emissions test so that’s a new catalytic converter needed. Friends we had to postpone from last week came for lunch on Saturday which was great – and helped to put off any inclination I might have had for exercise.

Back down to Bournemouth on Sunday to do a few chores and set up the house for our younger son and his girlfriend who were arriving on Monday. It rained, with thunder and lightening, but at least I managed to put up a replacement gate post. I usually regret leaving Bournemouth without having done a run down the promenade – but the weather made it easier.

Strange week in many ways – Covid gone and some light exercise restarted but still with the feeling that normal service has not yet been resumed.

Interesting stuff this week

1. African wise words: Nobody is born wise

2. BBC News website: The memory of a Goldfish?

A team from Oxford University trained nine fish to travel 70cm (2.3ft) after which they were prompted by an external cue – such as a researcher waving their hand – to turn around and swim back to the start position. They then received a food reward.

The researchers then tested if the fish would swim the same distance if the starting position was changed and the cue was removed. They found eight of the nine fish accurately remembered when to turn back to get their reward, without being prompted. Researchers said it showed the fish could accurately estimate distance and that the study disproves the long-held belief goldfish have little or no memory.

Do you sometimes think ‘researchers’ have too much time on their hands?

Goldfish Times’ led with the story about how goldfish researchers trained some scientists to give them food for something as simple as a short swim.

3. BBC News website: The growing environmental problem of “e-waste”

This year, 5.3 billion mobile phones will be thrown away although many people are keeping old phones, rather than recycling them, research suggests. It is estimated that in the UK alone, more than 20 million unused but working electrical items, worth as much as possibly £5.63bn ($6.29bn), are currently being hoarded.

Precious minerals not extracted from waste electronics, such as the copper in wire or the cobalt in rechargeable batteries, have to be mined.

4. BBC News website: Motoring In-convenience

A man whose job it is to help preserve Japan’s cultural heritage has accidentally smashed his car into the country’s oldest toilet at a centuries-old Buddhist temple.

The communal loo in Kyoto dates back to the 15th century and is designated an important cultural asset. Its ancient door was ruined after the employee hit the accelerator without realising the car was in reverse, police said.

5. BBC News website: The train not standing at platform

The mayors of Greater Manchester and Liverpool City Region were late for their press conference about “rail chaos” in the north of England because their train was cancelled.

6. BBC News website: The chess stakes get higher

As mentioned previously, in September Norwegian world champion Magnus Carlsen, accused US chess grandmaster Hans Niemann of cheating in a match against him. Niemann is now suing Carlsen for at least $100m (£89m).

Niemann is also suing website Chess.com, which published a report saying he had probably cheated in more than 100 online games. He says the defendants colluded to destroy his reputation and livelihood.

I wonder if the Sicilian defence works in Court


4 thoughts on “Turbo (x2), run (x2), gym, plus goldfish, chess, trains and goldfish (did I mention goldfish?)

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