What would Rorschach say?

A week on. A week closer to Hardman.

Training continues, as does life. Obviously. After the long spin last Sunday, I didn’t imagine I would do much on Monday, but as the diary clearly shows (and I’m not that senile that I can’t remember back about six days), I went for a run of about 11k in the park and trails. I didn’t think I would be up for it, but I enjoyed it, and managed a reasonable pace too.

Tuesday was a rest day, and perhaps it was just as well.

On Wednesday, I hit the gym in the morning and did my usual routine, which is a warm-up on the bike to get the blood flowing, and then a circuit which includes sets of step-ups with weights, bench press, sit-ups, lateral pull downs and the side version of the same thing on the same machine; no doubt it has some equally fancy name but I’m blowed if I can work it out. It should be good for swim strength. Allegedly. Then clean and clears. 20 reps of each, 3 sets, then a warm-down. Later that evening, I managed a 55 minute run in the park, with heavy legs. Maybe I should question the wisdom of gym workouts and runs in that order on the same day.

Thursday, and a morning swim. We were pushed for time, so just did a mile. Felt reasonably good.

Friday was another gym session, but this time I did a quick 20k on the exercise bike (well, when I say quick, actually it was about average, which for me means roughly twice the distance (in kilometers) in minutes. So 20k takes me about 40 minutes. I then jumped on the treadmill and did a quick mile (okay, okay; so it wasn’t actually a quick mile… it was more like a 9.30 mile, so not quick at all. But it was my first official brick session of the training programme to date. And when I say brick, I really mean briquette.

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This is an Irish-themed joke, so I appreciate those abroad may not get the reference. Suffice to say, if you’re Irish, into triathlon training and have a warped sense of humour, you will find that last gag hilarious and will be laughing hard enough to risk a hernia. The rest of you can look away for a few minutes while we compose ourselves…

I followed that wee session up with yet another run in the park and I knocked out about 1 hour and 20 minutes. Overall, a decent enough run. I didn’t exactly leap around like a gazelle, but I was happy that I was able to keep tipping away on the various loops, paths and trails, not least after a reasonably busy week.

During the week, I wore the wrong top for one of the runs. It’s a heavy cotton sweatshirt from a great T-shirt shop based down in Lahinch. You can read more about the shop and their designs here. The weather this last week has been unseasonably cold as Polar air has been streaming down over the country, keeping temperatures below 10 degrees. It makes it hard to know what to wear. Getting cold on a run is no fun, but then over-heating is not much craic either.

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I sweated buckets. The waterproof top over it didn’t help. When I returned home and stripped for a shower, the designer in me was taken with the design of the sweat stains. (Relax, the internet isn’t scratch and sniff yet…)

It reminded me of the Rorschach ink blot tests. Obviously I need to do a lot more statistical analysis to see if I can find any correlation between certain shapes and the frame of mind of the wearer. I’m no psychoanalyst, but I reckon whoever wore this out was crazy.

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The comic-book version from The Watchmen. I’d say jogging in that outfit would clearly get you committed. Though no doubt some nutter has done just that, in a marathon, for charity…

I usually include some wildlife reference in my posts, and this week is no different. Below are a couple of not very good pics, but they are cute nonetheless.

One is a nest under construction in a covered area in my parents’ house next door. Time will tell what is nesting here. Over the last few years we’ve had robins doing their thing in similar spots. You can’t see it in this pic, but the nest sits atop an old gas burner.

The rabbit is right outside our house. It’s an odd place to see a rabbit, perhaps enjoying some of the stored heat from the sun on what was still a cool day.

Tomorrow, with any luck, Leicester City will beat Manchester United to win the Premiership. Enough has been written about the miracle season they have had so I won’t labour the point. As it happens, I’ve been a United supporter all my life but as I was born in Leicester county, I am up for the Foxes. As is just about every other footie fan around the world, bar maybe a few Spurs fans.

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