New Year, Older Me.

We made it through another xmas. The rest of the year is gravy now.

I’m on countdown to Blackpool marathon now. Because I have Sunday/ Monday as my weekend I do my long run on Monday then have Tuesday as my rest day. Which means I’ll be starting my 16 week training plan properly on Wednesday.

Today I went for a long run. I wanted to run to Carr Mill Dam then back to Widnes. A full circuit of the two ends of the canal. It’s about 31 miles. Because it was New Year’s day, a Monday when everyone was off, full of mince pie lardiness and fitness resolutions, it was heaving. I had to stop a few times, slow down a bunch of times and weave in and out of herds of ambling pedestrians waddling along. That didn’t improve the run, but I was suffering. It was slutchy underfoot, and I was wearing un-plated, ploddy, trainers, but that’s no excuse. I lost my mojo after the Carr Mill Dam loop and didn’t do the other loop. I ended doing a 20 mile run at 8.29m/m average pace. It shouldn’t have been so hard or painful. Worrying. I’ve been having calf cramps and pains in the back of my quads on the runs lately. I’m wondering if running is mainly a quad based activity. I’ve not been cycling for a year now, and my calves are playing up. I suppose I’m going to have to set up my turbo trainer again. Maybe start cycling to work. It’s only 2.2 miles each way, but it’s better than nothing. Maybe sell my motorbike.

I’m also looking at getting a rowing machine. That’s good for a bunch of muscles, particularly your glutes and core strength, but it does work your calves as well. I’ve been putting off strength training for years. A rowing machine would tick a lot of the strength training boxes, and it’s something I don’t mind doing.

Now I have to dig in and commit to every run on my training plan for Blackpool marathon. Then I’ll have a few months of maintenance runs, then start again for Frankfurt.

I’ve booked the flights and accommodation and started learning German. The accommodation was a pain. We’ve been scammed again. Two marathons I’ve booked a pad through, (this one had 4 different reviews so I thought it was alright). They ask for the money up front, no worries, then a few days later you get a message off saying the reservation is cancelled. The business renting the property don’t reply and don’t refund. Last time I contacted, and although they hadn’t taken the money or had anything to do with that side of it, they covered it. That was really good of them and I’m hoping it’s policy. However, you have to wait until after the booking date before they cough up. So 10 months, in this instance. There’s been no reply to my emails to the renter, I’ll try again tomorrow, then Wendy can ring them on Friday, then I can contact I made damn sure I screenshotted all the correspondence with the renter. The only good thing about it is that they cancelled straight away. If we’d have got off the ‘plane, on marathon weekend, and found out we had no place to stay Wendy would have had a breakdown.

I think I’ve got the trick of it this time. Go on, find a good pad, then search on the internet for independent reviews. If the reviews exist, the company probably does. I’ve found a decent pad for us, and it all seems genuine.

Work has gone worryingly quiet. The first time in the 3 years I’ve been here I’ve not been allocated a shift for the whole week. The week after New Year. It should taper and be quiet, but it’s never done this.

The other news is the diet starts today, obvs (it’s the cycle of life). I was 10 stone 9lbs this morning. So 9lbs to go. After the gluttony of the season that’s not too bad. I’ll try and blast it off quickly before my training plan gets too demanding.

Hmm, now I’m wondering about the bike sale. If the Tanker job comes up I’ll want to have transport for the interview immediately. The other jobs I’m looking at are next to where I’m working now. Hmmm. No rush to sell this bike, I suppose. It will sell better in the spring, anyway. But that means I can’t shop for more motorbikes. Wait and see.