Saturday, 28 March 2015


Obligatory toilet shot.

Poor Mr Mouse. It wisnae me.

I know what you're thinking and I don't blame you. "Did you honestly run the road from Edinburgh to North Berwick again?" Well yes I did. I wasn't going to.
For some reason I've been feeling compelled to get in quite a bit of long training for the EM way early. And it's not doing me any good. I've done this lots of times before. I keep running on sorer and sorer legs and slow down incrementally so I'm about at my worst just before the marathon.

This weekend I was going to do something different. I thought I'd try to push out a faster and shorter run - maybe a 15 miler round the lagoons. But then the weather...strong Westerly with 50mph gusts. Running round the lagoons would mean running the last 7 miles into a stiff head-wind. So I thought I might as well load things in my favour and trundle down the road with the wind behind. I could have got a train from Longniddry, but it was only 14 miles in, which seemed too little. I could get a bus back to Edinburgh from a number of places along the road but it's a long haul, boring and often I kept going.

I didn't get a good sleep last night so I was tired today. For some reason Leith's finest were out in full voice last night. I thought I should record them and make an album "Sounds of Leith". Maybe I still will.
I stopped to get a coffee at the Co-op at Preston Pans. I think whoever was out in the street last night was in the PP Coop today. I tried not to make eye contact with anyone and I got out alive but it was a near thing. I spent a while choosing what I should eat for optimum performance. I settled on a raisin and biscuit Yorkie because it said it was Man Fuel. I don't know what the implications of this claim are or if they have an evidence-base...

I know me and Peter go on like caffeine was some kind of hallucinogenic but it does make a huge difference. For the first time on my run I was able to forget about the run. A very welcome release I can tell you. I found myself, instead, thinking about poetry.

I was thinking about a poem by Robert Creeley that I 75% like. I think that, just for a change, I will include it here and tell you what I think about it.

The Rain

All night the sound had   
come back again,
and again falls
this quiet, persistent rain.

What am I to myself
that must be remembered,   
insisted upon
so often? Is it

that never the ease,   
even the hardness,   
of rain falling
will have for me

something other than this,   
something not so insistent—
am I to be locked in this
final uneasiness.

Love, if you love me,   
lie next to me.
Be for me, like rain,   
the getting out

of the tiredness, the fatuousness, the semi-
lust of intentional indifference.
Be wet
with a decent happiness.
Robert Creeley, “The Rain” from Selected Poems of Robert Creeley. Copyright © 1991 by the Regents of the University of California. Reprinted with the permission of the University of California Press,

Source: Selected Poems (1991)
First of all, what I don't like about it is the second last stanza, because it's a bit cheesy. See what you think yourself. There's something a bit sexist, fruity and wet-lipped about it. But there are other things to like. The main thrust of the poem is about being unable to forget yourself and how tiresome that is. I've been reading a book called 'My Stroke of Insight' by Jill Bolte Taylor. (If you Google her she did a Ted Talk). It's about the author, who is a neuroscientist, having a massive stroke in the left hemisphere of her brain and what she experienced as the left side was knocked out and only the right hemisphere was functioning. Apparently our sense of ourselves as separate selves is in the left side of the brain, along with all the detailing and our sense of past and future. She was locked, quite blissfully, in an ever present now, with no sense of who she was.
It happens occasionally when you're out running. But most of the time, especially these days, it seems to be just stumbling down the road to North Berwick on sore legs, taking Selfies and wishing it was all over.

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