Aliveandrunning August 20 2014



Victoria plums, grown on an actual Victoria plum tree, near the cottage. How fecund nature is! My tomatoes are doing reasonably well despite having their branches splayed all over the place and mainly on the ground. Apart from drinking enough water to fill an Olympic sized swimming pool, they also need industrial scaffolding to hold them up. Too fecund by half.

Out with the running club last night. I opted to do the fartlek  around Granchester Meadows rather than the 8 x 1 minute with 3 minutes recovery time between each minute running. I’ve done this before off track. It doesn’t sound like much running but I found it demanding. However, out of choice , I usually prefer distance to pure speed work and fartleks combine both. This particular fartlek requires courage and faith. At this time of year we frequently meet a herd of cows blocking our path. Yesterday the coach asked if anyone was fearful of cows. No one admitted to a specific fear so we ran through them. These cows, living in the shadow of the University, are very intelligent and thankfully familiar with idiot humans rushing towards as if they were as insubstantial as vapour. They simply stepped out of the way (on this occasion) rather than scatter in all directions you don’t expect them to go in.

We do plenty of warm up exercises and plenty of stretching exercises post run. This contrasts with me typically forgetting to do warm up or downs after a long run. I do them occasionally but there is no correlation between lack of excercises and injury or cramp. At least on runs up to 10 miles. I had some calf problems at mile 12 during the Edinburgh half marathon a couple of years ago but apart from that, I’ve been injury free. Except when I’ve decided to lift something heavy in the full knowledge that I’m taking a risk. I dare myself to do it and I’m the loser. It’s so difficult being super sensible all of the time.

Adult parkrun on Saturday and junior parkrun on Sunday. I only need to do 9 more adult parkruns and I’ll have completed 200 since I had my heart attack 5 years ago.


Aliveandrunning June 3rd 2014 Juneathon Day 3




I devised a competition “See how long you can tolerate fecund nature obstructing your front door before you can’t get in and have to cut back”.  Strangely, I was the only entrant. With much regret I have to inform blog readers that Lorna brushed aside the hanging rose, dislodged a sleepy bee which flew behind her specs and necessitated  her flinging them off. Neither Lorna or the bee were hurt and the specs were undamaged. I later spoke to the bee and apologised for Lorna’s reckless knocking of the rose to one side but agreed with the bee’s comment that perhaps it was time to suspend the competition on the grounds of health and safety. I duly did this and declared myself the winner.

The weather in Cambridge was cloudy, with some sunshine, and warm today. Of course, just as I set out to go running with the club, it started to rain and continued intermittently until we  finished. Nevertheless, it was enjoyable because it remained warm. We did various fartleks on pavements, paths and fields (no sniggering, please, non-runners) and covered around 6 miles+.

On my return home I ate my evening meal which included brussels sprouts. On this occasion they were frozen and then micro waved. I don’t understand why brussels are usually pretty awful when they have been frozen. Since I am an optimistic chap, I assume they will be delicious but sadly this is seldom the case. Roll on the British brussels season. I can hardly wait.