Monday, 22 March 2010


Looking out from Llandegla forest to Eclusham Mountain

22 in fact. Miles that is. First decent, longish run this year. I decided to run East along Offa's Dyke instead of West. I started out a bit late in the day after a very frustrating day's struggling laying a bathroom floor. The floor won. I got my kit sorted out in a rush, which usually means forgetting something essential. Slapped two sandwiches together (Ham and cheese for Dot, cheese and mayo for me) I popped two small bottles of fluid in the sack and off we headed East. I followed my regular route for the first 10 miles not really enjoying it, I hadn't cleared my mind from the DIY pain from earlier in the day, plus a tad too much red wine the previous night. I knew though that as I pushed on and clicked off a few more miles my mood would change for the better. At 10 miles we stopped for a top change and to take on a bit of fuel. I then decided the run needed pepping up a little. I had about an hour of twilight left, the weather was warm 'claggy' and misty up high with occasional drizzle. I decided to follow an unfamiliar narrow moorland path which wandered up and across a hill to the summit of Cyrn y Brain Only a small hill which was easy running with great views when the mist allowed. I must take more pics! Navigating by common sense I ran a big loop back to familiar ground and found it just as darkness fell. 7 miles home to do in the dark with only Dot's super-white coat glowing out of the darkness, no torch. Less than a mile from the car we happened upon a family of Badgers out enjoying the beginning of their evening feasting. I grabbed Dot quickly and led her away from a possible head on with the Badgers. They would have had her for breakfast.

That was a few weeks ago and the draft has been sitting in the drafts folder since. I've managed no long runs since, only managing to squeeze in shorter 'tick-over' stuff.
With only a few weeks to go before Cadair Idris and not so long before Osmotherley Phoenix and the Lakeland 50 I need to get some distance runs in. I was briefly tempted to join 'Collie Dave' on his Coast to coast challenge just short of 200 miles of cross country running. If you're reading this CD - sorry I couldn't join you and all the best for the run. I have to focus my efforts on getting the house finished which in turn will free me up for more running. I'm going to be dusting my road cycle down for the summer and getting out with my wife (Just bought her a nice road bike too - hope she takes to it!) not sure the cycling will add much to my running fitness but it surely won't hurt. Latest run was yesterday early evening. I did a 2000ft 13 miler across my local hills, the view out to the west was different a snap photo wouldn't have done it justice (that's my excuse for not taking them!) UK and Europe's been under the shadow of a volcanic dust cloud which has come down from Iceland. Apart from affecting air travel across Europe it made the sunset turn a deeper red than usual, above a blackened sky line, and below a blackened upper atmosphere sat a dull red slash of colour. It was a strange sunset, once again the power of nature. I've decided taking pictures is a problem for me when I'm out running because I only stop to lift Dot over gates etc. I do like to get on with it and not get distracted. I'm a bit muscle sore today proving that I really must be getting on with it!