If we were having coffee, I’d ask for a large hot chocolate as I don’t like coffee. Also, I object to paying obscene amounts of money for a cup of tea. I’d ask how 2020 was going for you so far. Then, because I’m a talker, I’d fill the next hour with conversation.
…I’d talk to you about parkrun volunteering
If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’ve volunteered as a Run Director at parkrun three times so far this year. It’s an amazing feeling. The huge numbers at the start of this year were quite stressful. A token mix up at the largest event of the year (with 1612 runners) took me 7 hours to resolve. As a consequence, I treated myself to my first alcoholic drink of the year.
It can be a bit disheartening when people complain that their result is a few seconds out. All of the volunteers do their best.
…I’d drink to a new year of parkrunning
If we were having coffee, the conversation about parkrun would continue. Following on from my New Year’s Day Double at parkrun, I’ve run another two parkruns. I’m determined to start chipping away at my time again.
My first parkrun in Southampton in 2020 was a buggy run on a very crowded course. It was impossible to overtake, so I just did the best I could. I spoke to a few friends along the way and enjoyed being back to running.
Yesterday, I ran again in Southampton at parkrun. Again it was congested but as I didn’t have a buggy, I was able to pick up the pace a bit. My legs were a bit tired from my long run the previous day. My Garmin told me that I still needed 8 hours of recovery time, so I didn’t do too badly:
It still doesn’t beat my 29:31 from New Year’s Day. I’m feeling confident that if I continue running regularly then I’ll smash that.
…I’d talk about my training and races
If we were having coffee, I’d drink to a new year of running goals. I’d tell you all about how my training’s been going and what I’ve been doing recently.
A week ago, I went for my first long run of the year. Rachel and I went out for a long run in the New Forest. We stuck to gravelled paths as Rachel was pushing her daughter in a running buggy. We ran over 11km and although it was slow, I felt great and I really enjoyed it.
On Monday, I ran down through the parks in Southampton, over the Itchen Bridge and back to The Common. It was almost 10km. Then on Tuesday, I ran 5km in my lunchbreak. Unfortunately, I was ill in the evening and decided not to run again until Friday.
On Friday, I went out for a 12.45km run with Pete. It was meant to be 14.5km, but I felt shattered and was really struggling. When we were close to my house, I finished. 7.7 miles isn’t a terrible start to my half marathon training. I need to get both my fitness and my speed back if I’m going to run a sub 2 hour half marathon this spring.
I’d also tell you that I’m really excited to have entered some big races in 2020, such as Brighton Run2Music.
…I’d moan about blog scrapers
If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’ve been really frustrated by the number of sites that have scraped content from my blog and just won’t stop.
The one that is frustrating me most is yournaturalbeauty.com (If you’re reading this there, please call them out on it! The administrator’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org). They’ve plagiarised one of my recent blogposts and mangled it. The post now says “My father frolicked in a hospice in Cornwall prior to he kicked the bucket in 2012”. That’s definitely not what I said and I’ve found it to be particularly offensive. I can guarantee that my father was not ‘frolicking’ when he was terminally ill.
I’d then ask you if you had any suggestions about how I can tackle this.
…I’d celebrate some online recognition
If we were having coffee, I’d celebrate some online recognition that I failed to notice in 2019.
A positive of searching the web to find out who’s stealing my content is finding some plaudits that I was unaware of!
I was listed in Rayburn Tours ‘Who to follow in 2019 – Sports list’. Ok, it’s a year on from when it was published, but it’s nice to know I was there!
…I’d tell you that I’ve been reading a lot
If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I’ve been reading a lot, but that there’s never enough time for reading everything I want to.
I’m currently enjoying The Shakespeare Requirement by Julie Schumacher. It’s a satirical novel set on a small university campus. Before that, I read Wild by Cheryl Strayed and Get Strong, Get Fit, Get Happy by Stuart Robert. They’ll both be featured in future blog posts.
I also enjoyed reading I am 35 and running faster than I ever thought possible. I can’t imagine running a sub-4-hour marathon (let alone a sub-3-hour marathon). Maybe it would be possible if I could devote more time to training.