Wisely and slow

Tender woman mourns a man
Sits in silent sorrow with a bottle in her hand
Tell me all you need to tell
Why is it you whisper when you really need to yell

‘Wisely and Slow’
The Staves

Well the next few months is starting to take shape.

If all goes well, Mark and I will run the half marathon along the Royal Canal, the Lock Up The Year run, on the 31st January. S is hoping to do the 10k. There is a marathon too, but a half is a fine way to finish off the season.

Then hopefully step up into the serious distance of the Donadea 50k, which I guess is technically an ultra marathon, on the basis that anything longer than the standard marathon is an ultra.

I like my dictionary’s entry:


an ultraconservative view: extremely, exceedingly, excessively, immensely, especially, exceptionally; über-, over-; informal mega, mucho, majorly, oh-so, real, mighty, awful, powerful, way.

And then if my legs haven’t fallen off by then, we will tackle the Stone Mad Ultra in June which is a 62k jaunt along the River Barrow in the heart of the midlands of Ireland. It’s a self-supported trail run with the odd table of goodies to keep you going. I note, though, that Donadea is a serious event, for serious runners. You need a qualifying time (a sub 4.10 marathon, which I don’t have), and there is a strict 5 hour cut-off and that would be the sort of time I would be guesstimating I would manage if all goes swimmingly well. A nice, neat 6 minutes per kilometre. Ho hum… I may need to find another long distance event as a warm-up for Stone Mad. No doubt there are plenty out there. Or I’ll just make one up…

At the moment, training consists of three mornings a week in the gym doing a mixed bag of squats, bench presses, sit-ups, lat pull downs, planks, leg raises, clam shells, clean and clears and other bits and bobs. It’s an all-round sort of thing, and I try and add on a few reps each week, or the odd extra weight to keep me honest. It’s hard to stay motivated on your own. The Monday Pilates session, by contrast, is fun, hard work, and there are a few other lads there, and we shout at each other by way of motivation. It’s not that we are tying to get six-packs. We’re just trying to avoid getting kegs…

This is exactly the sort of thing that will not help with training, d’ya hear? Tell you what, though. It was delicious!

Apart from the gym, I try and get out running at least three times a week. Most of these are between 8 and 10k and are all done in the local park, unless I can get a parkrun in. What I need to work on is mixing up the runs; a bit more tempo/speed work mid-week wouldn’t hurt. The odd hill run here and there, and then a longer, slower session at the weekends. Certainly we will have to up the distance in the new year if we are going to tackle our first ultra. And that ‘we’ is the royal we of course…

Just a quick shout out to a fellow blogger. Jim blogs at https://fitrecovery.wordpress.com/ and I have been following his prodigious output for months. Initially it was just to get some tips on cycling as I was pretending to be a real one when I tackled the Hardman long distance triathlon this year. Jim’s blog is chock-full of sound advice and great wit. And of course, as I read the blog, it was clear Jim had other reasons for sharing his great knowledge. Jim has signed off for a while to do more important things. Yes folks, there are more important things in life than blogging. I salute you, Jim, and wish you well on your travels. Most of which will no doubt be done on your trusty Venge. 😉

And so, to The Staves. And why not. They are indeed magical. I will take their advice, and go wisely and slow in my training. Cheers for now.

P.S. I knew there was a reason why I wanted to do a quick post. Yesterday I soldiered on through grim weather for an 8k run in the park, in the pissins o’ rain, to use the vernacular. Along by the river, in an old oak, was a Jay. That was a nice sight, but it was to get better. Just a few hundred yards further on, a Little Egret took off below the weir. I could hardly believe my eyes. As a young kid interested in wildlife, I would often stare at certain exotic species in books, and assume I would never see them in Ireland. The snow-white herons would have been one such bird, normally living out their lives in Africa or the Middle East. Their range has been slowly extending northwards, and this may be one of the consequences of global warming and other environmental factors. It was still a wonderful sight though.

3 thoughts on “Wisely and slow

    1. Yes, Donadea is a national event, so perhaps it’s not the best one for me, as I am shy of the automatic qualifying time. I did see something about the cut-off in Stone Mad but I can’t recall it now. As with many of these events, the info tends to trickle down slowly, especially when they’re months and months away. But the sweeper wouldn’t be as ruthless as the Donadea race for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

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