Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Yak in a Buffalo

It was a nicer day today and my flourishing and increasingly productive cold was fighting with the desire to get out and do some training since I'm off work for a week. (Random annual leave to preserve sanity before Christmas.) While enthusiasm was winning I dreamed up a plan to go and do mile intervals at the meadows at 10K pace with half mile recovery jogs X 5. I went to tell Peter about this (who was still in bed having been up tinkering with the website and putting some friends' wedding video together) but even while I was explaining the session I realised that I felt dizzy and maybe it wasn't a good idea. Luckily he didn't think so either and instead he suggested we noise up his brother Neil and see if he would be available for a gentler run round the park.

Neil is strikingly like Peter to look at and presumably has similar running potential but he only dips his toe in from time to time so he remains in the first stages of running. It was a nice change to jog down to his house about a mile away and set off for Arthur's Seat by a different route from normal. We went round the perimeter in the mud and thorn bushes, rather than round the roads, starting at the London road end. For once we stuck fairly consistently to chatting pace.

I had worn my Buffalo - a nice bit of kit made of fleece on the inside and pertex on the outside that friends who live down in the Lake District swear by. It hasn't seen much action over the couple of years I've had it as it often turns out to be too warm. Its got zip-down sides for ventilation and is designed to be worn with nothing or a minimum underneath, so ventilation has to be balanced against indecent exposure. It was just about right for today anyway. It was raining on and off after we started running but it didn't affect me at all. Neil and Peter were chatting pretty much all the time and it was nice to run along in company but not say much. I'm not good at running and talking anyway and my breathing was a bit laboured with the cold.

Once we'd gone round the park we were still quite fresh so we did a couple of laps up one side of Hunter's Bog and then along the path that takes you up to the top but branching left so we came down a ridge at the other side...it might be called the Dasses. The trouble with having been running round Arthur's Seat for years is I've made up names for bits of A.S. where I know what I'm talking about - but nobody else would. I call this the old middle way. So we went round the old middle way!

It was grey above (although there were some nice views of a sunny looking Fife from time to time) and it was wet and muddy under foot, but it was good to be out and about. We tried to talk Neil into various adventures...with who knows what result. He has the sporting gene too but has concentrated more on swimming thus far. (Although he has run a marathon - he's done more than many people with his running.)

Anyway - another winter's day's run so we will be allowed to eat again this evening! We are both just trying to minimise the damage of our colds and this time of year's pull to be lazy and eat too much. Tomorrow night is Club championship awards night and Richard's nasty handicap race in which we get given a hellish handicap as punishment for making off with our age group prizes for another year. I have to say Peter probably deserves his - and I deserve mine for consistency, attendance and resisting the temptation to have a baby for another year - but I'm maybe not the best runner in my age-group! You know I would gladly relinquish my champion status if more of the women would come and do the championship races. If any of you are reading - come on, it is fun! and it makes you good at racing.

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