Friday, 31 January 2014

.....Erm....It's still Raining!

Hello blog lovers.

What can I say? I wake up each morning looking forward to seeing blue skies, dry grounds with maybe a soupcon of a nippy chill in the air, after all it is winter!  Well that didn't happen this morning. The skies were grey with rain pouring out of it! Oh well, this is Britain, and if we only go out when it's sunny, then we will never go out and we will all be the size of houses!

I arrived at the rec and met up with the rest of the Thursday crew.  I.L. is recuperating from her sickness and I believe PinkladyJo is still hobbling with a sore foot.  Which means it is just me and Arvinder.  But he has decided to run with DiscoRich and his crew, understandable really, as he usually runs in group 4 I believe!

So of course there was just me!  Now I could go home and park my car outside my house and then do my usual 3.35 mile route,  I was planning to do a road route anyway.  After last weeks paddle through the woods and the change of direction, I decided that I would give it a miss this week, and try and get a good run in instead of a paddle! But then DiscoRich said "Why don't you come with us?" I though about this....for one second.....and said "No, that's fine, I shall only hold you all up" Which is not nice on this really wet horrid day!  "That's fine, we can loop back to you, we can still all keep warm" 

So in the end I started off with them.  DiscoRich was going to go through the woods, after the slight slating I gave him last week for hitting the pavements.  But the girls really didn't fancy the mud either today.  I think everyone was just a tad fed up of the wet weather now.  So a new route was quickly discussed, and when I heard, "Oh yes, we can go through Jubilee park and then over those little hills" and I am sure I heard Chislehurst mentioned!  Now to get from Jubilee Park to Chislehurst then the only 'little hills' that I knew about was of course Summer Hill! What have I just agreed to?

As we started running I already felt the divide happening, but I just ran that little bit harder to keep up with them.  Of course their 'warm up' first mile pace is a lot faster than my 'warm up' mile.  On cold legs, in the wet, and also feeling a little apprehensive made for a hard first mile.!  But the crew was as good as DiscoRich said, and looped back for me.  But by then, feeling guilty and puffed out, I decided to tell DiscoRich that he and his group carry on with the rest of their route, and I was going to turn left and head towards Southbourough Lane.  It will make for a good Thursday morning run, and I can wait for them at the rec, just so they know that I got back ok.

As I saw the last of the runners disappear from view I settled into my own pace, with my own thoughts for company.  And today, I really do have some lovely thoughts.  It made for a very emotional run down Southborough Lane today. I guess that is the one good thing about solo running in the rain!  I will tell you what my thoughts are, my thoughts are all about my first born baby.  My daughter, she is in Australia and she and her boyfriend are getting married today!  Or at least my today,  it's their Friday!

This is them, don't they make a beautiful couple!

The tears flowed, a smile spread across my face, as I thought of all that she had done in the 29 years she has been in my life.  Yes, it was an emotional run today, a mixture of happiness and sadness that I couldn't be with her today to watch her as she takes the next steps of another new adventure. That of being 'The Wife'

Just I kept up pace as I ran towards Pettswood. I walked a bit, I ran most of it, and I thought of my lovely family, and how I miss my little girl, even though these days I probably speak with her more than when she lived in the house!  All the while the rain came down, just relentlessly, when is it going to stop! At least my little girl will have a glorious sunny day down under in Australia.

When I got to the Newsshopper car park, I decided that I will head on to the left of me, and take the longer route back to the rec. Well, I'm wet, I'm out anyway, and besides I had to wait for DiscoRich to get back as well.

So that's what I did. By the time I clicked on the stop button of my Garmin I had covered 4 miles!  Well I am pleased with that! So Geeky stats for.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Club Runs - Pleasure and Pain(?)

Hello blog lovers.

Group zero to Hero!

Tuesdays is one of my favourite days of the week, it's club running day.  And now my group Zero2Hero is going really well.  We had the same people as last week, with just a couple of people who couldn't make it, but we also had one new person, a chap called Nick, that came and joined us as well.

HitchyJo and SingstarJo couldn't assist me today but the delightful Julia offered to come along and run with the faster runners, which was Nick and Julie.  My route for them today was just probably a tad over 2 miles, taking in the hill first. The hill is the one on Birchwood, it's a good hill to take in when you are first practising with the whole hill thing.  I remember when I used to look at this hill and think, "Never will I be able to run all the way to the top" I can now, but still very slowly!  I don't think I will ever actually 'beat' a hill.  You know, they way the elites just fly over them as if they are a minor inconvenience.  Any way, the group all managed to get up there,  Julia with Nick and Julie just seemed to fly to the top and beyond, and me with Michelle, Michelle and Lisa making sure that today, the hill didn't win! 

Everyone did really well!  The next part of the route is a nice and easy flat route to the roundabout and then turn left to enjoy the hill again, only going down! Although I started my garmin it didn't find us until we got to this part of the run, or at least from here it said that had ran for only a quarter of a mile! But I thought we had done more than that!

At the bottom of this road we turned right to go along the nice undulating road, the nicer way, with the longer hill being the down hill.  The two Michelle's and Lisa were doing really really well, they only had a couple of walking breaks for just a few minutes, and then just carried on running!  I think soon they will be ready to get back to group 1.  Once we start on the speed bits then there will be no stopping them!  We were lucky with the weather too, this run was quite a pleasant run!

Group 1

SingstarJo was leading today, thankfully she was back from Cambridge to be able to do this as I.L. is still under the weather.  Her route was her (Non flat)Flat route, which takes in cardiac hill, but going the running down it instead.  I was sweeper at the back, I am not feeling a hundred percent anyway, so I knew I would be at the back. 

This week at club we are having 'moving up' week, where we encourage people to move up to the next group, and the leaders will run at the slower end of their predicted pace.  I think SingstarJo did a remarkable job of persuading group 1 runners to move up as our group today was over half the size as last week,, either that of the weather has put people off from venturing out of the warm homes!  The rain had just started, just ever so slightly, but the weathermen has said that we are going to be for some rain!  Oh well, hopefully we will be back before it really gets started!

We head off towards Willet Way en route for Cardiac Hill. I am really looking forward to running down here.  Just to let the hill do all the work, and pick up the pace and not to feel it, is one of the highs of my running! I'm sure it is the only time time that anyone enjoys going down hill! 

I ran along after the group floundering at the back, really enjoying the little walking sessions that a couple of the other back markers were doing! Our next official stopping for a regroup was at the off license.  I just hoped I didn't keep them waiting to long before I came over the little bridge, the rain was coming down a little harder now. 

From here we were going to run to Tudor way and then turn into the Fairway and run along to Townsend road and then up there, turn right and back into crossways! Simples.  When we went under the railbridge I noticed that the rain was really coming down quite hard.  I must have been really concentrating about keep up with everyone that I really didn't noticed the rain at all.  My glasses was steaming up, and my legs were feeling very cold and very heavy!  I was looking forward to the end of this run, to get home and showered up and a nice bowl of homemade soup and bread!  so as the title suggests, this was the 'painful' part of my running today, although really I enjoyed it!

It was a good run and it was a good route too!

Here is geeky stats for group 1 run. and it isn't 5 miles as the Garmin shows, my hands were so cold and wet and my glasses steamed up, that when I pressed the stop button on my garmin, I head the beep to tell me it had stopped.   But when I got home I realised that I must have heard SingstarJo's Garmin being turned off instead!  Anyway, the route was about 3.5 miles long.  Nice and easy does it!


Thursday, 23 January 2014

A Tale of Two Feet!

Hello blog lovers

It's Thursday which means it's mudfest day through the woods, with me leading! I do enjoy these sessions as I get to run through my favourite place, the woods.  I have ran through here alone, by myself, but those times have been when its dry and warm and sunny,  not as sticky and wet and slippery as it has been of late. 

I decided to leave my running jacket at home, try not be too wrapped up, usually I am wrapped up like an onion, but today......well today I felt more like a right plum! Because as I was walking through the gates of the rec I felt the rain just starting to come down. "Darn it, the only day I don't bring a jacket and it rains" I said out loud!

At the rec was DiscoRich with his lovely ladies and David waiting eagely to be told where their route is, but Illustrious Leader and PinkLadyJo from my group was no where to be seen!  I could either trot along trying desperately to keep up with DiscoRich's group or.......go home.....oh and do my own route around the pavements near my home..... of course!  But there was one other person that showed up today, someone who hasn't been running for a while and wanted to have a nice gentle run with his fellow PWR's "No, you don't have to go home" Says DiscoRich "Arvinder here can run with you, as he hasn't been running for a while" 

Now, Arvinder ,when he was running before, he was running in group 3 or 4!  But he did say that he didn't want to do the 5 miles that DiscoRich and his gang do each week, and was quite happy to accompany me on my route.  So there is no 'get out' for this Old Girl, just because it's raining, just because I don't have a jacket, doesn't mean I can be slack and go home, to a nice warm house, making a cup of lovely hot tea, have some breakfast, curl up under my blanket on my chair........and be totally cheesed off that I didn't go running!

DiscoRich is the first one to bail out of going through the woods, (sorry, it's not a competition of who is chicken, it is not a competition of who is chicken, it is not a competition of who is chicken!)  Ok, sorry, I mustn't gloat that I/we  are still  going to brave the woods!  DiscoRich was planning on a road and paths route, even though one of his runners had come prepared,  with a pair of spanking brand new, beautiful purple colour trail shoes! "I've had enough of slipping about in the mud, I've got these" she said as we all admired her lovely clean trail shoes. But alas, that still didn't deter DiscoRich from heading out to the paths and roads!

I, however, was planning on doing one our usual routes, through 'Dog Poo' ally and turn left to run along beside the rail way line.  But a lady walking, or should I say paddling along the very, very wet muddy path advised against that way, as a bit further on it was even worse that what we was looking at already!  And let me tell you, what we was looking at was a quagmire! So a change of plan, but still sticking to the woods, I headed on up through the middle so that we could run along the top of the woods down Goss hill.  The mileage is the same, more or less, so really its not an issue.  You would think that being as its the top of the woods, with the water running down, it just has to be better!

You would have thought so, wouldn't you.  But it wasn't. We had to pick our way carefully along the route, finding the less muddy bits to place our feet, running on the little gravel streams that look as if its the veins of the woods cascading down hill. feeding the stream at the bottom.  Avinder is doing a great job of finding the less muddy puddles. and managing to go splashing through the puddles.  But there is still......dun dun duuuun.......The Path At The Back of The School!  (pause for dramatic affect)

This path has been split in two, one side for walkers/joggers and the other side for all other woods traffic, i.e. horses and bicycles.  It's hard to decided which side is the most 'runnable' as both are really well used, so they are well churned up!  I opted for the walking side first, and was running side to side with the muddiest bit in the middle,  straddling along the path until this became to muddy, so I had to limbo under the wire fence and run on the bridle path.  I look behind me and noticed that Arvinder had decided to opt for the bridle path a little further back than I did. We had to limbo under the wire fence again further along here before we eventually got to Botoney Bay Lane.

As we just walked down a bit chatting I had noticed that Avinders shoes looked remarkable clean! How on earth has he managed to do that! Was he hovering, could it be, and dare I say this, could it be that he is lighter than me, and just don't sink into the mud,  could it be that my Christmas indulgences are still with me, pushing me deeper in the mud?  There is not much muddy bits to go now, I shall have to work on getting Avinders shoes the mud that they deserve!

Going down Goss hill was a bit scary. The path was very wet and slippery, and there is that stupid barbed wire fence on our right!  Again, my nightmare scenario comes to mind as I look at those sharp little points as I'm slipping through the mud.  Of course we made it, safe and sound. With his shoes still looking as if they just came out of the box!  There is no chance now of getting any sort of mud on those today.  There is only the road and through Jubilee Park to go now.

Next time Avinder, we shall christen those shoes!  Or maybe by then he could even buy some trail shoes.  Which reminds me, I must start looking for some for myself!

Here is a picture of mine and Avinder's shoes, seriously, do you think he could have hovered!!

Even with the 'soft focus'
there is no disguising the mud!

Geeky stats.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Club Runs

Hello blog lovers.

Group Zero2Hero

It's Tuesday which means club runs.  I am having my second week of Group Zero2Hero today, with a few more people.  In fact, there were six members to my group today,  plus also joining to assist me was HitchyJo and SingstarJo. It couldn't have worked out more perfect if had I planned it!

The four new members to the group are Michelle (now I did have a nick name for her, but do you think I can remember what it was?) And Michelle is a PWR who has been out of the loop for a while and is now getting back to her running. Also we have two totally new members to Pettswood runners and who are also fairly new to running is Lisa and Michelle,  they came along last week to the group 1 run. They did really well to keep with the main group but they felt that a couple of weeks in Group Zero2Hero would help them to get up to speed.

Also we had Julie who came last week, Tracy who is also a PWR and is getting back to speed, and a completly new person who turned up an hour early for the usual group runs but wanted to come along and that was Nora.  So that meant the leaders had 2 runners each to help lead through a 2 and half mile (ish) route. 

Again, this week,  it is all about the running, just to see where they are all, see how far the can run and at what pace. So no hill training, and no interval running.  Because I want them to get straight into the running, I did a warm up session, to get our muscles loosened up, and our heart rates going.  Also its a good way to look at the style of running they all do, and to offer any advice if needed.  HitchyJo took the faster to group, I took the middle group and SingstarJo brought on the last group.  Setting out of the rec we turned left and then left again, heading towards Pettswood, with those little hills on the way to get our hearts working just a little harder.

The group soon started to split into the three sections, I was so pleased that the two Jo's were with me today.  I couldn't have managed running between each of the runners!   We all settled into a good pace, steady, each pair going at their own pace with the leaders encouraging them all the way.

Our first stop, just to catch our breaths after the hills, was at the memorial hall.  Then it was through the High Street, under the bridge and the back down the road we just ran up!  But at least it is the nicer way of running this road, as the longer hills are the down hills and the shorter ones are the up hills.

We arrived back at the rec all very pleased with what they had done having enjoyed their run today, I know I did!  HitchyJo led them through the warm down to stretch out all those muscles that we had been using so that our muscles don't come scream at us later on!

I am loving this new group,  I love this encouraging runners to get back to running, or encouraging new runners to do their very best, just love it!  Who wouldn't! Fantastic.

Geeky stats for Group Zero

Group 1

Todays run leader is Illustrious Leader.  "Today it's going to be a flat route" she says in her briefing!  Well, unless she has a coach, (one with wheels and engine, not a smile and heartbeat) to take us to the flat lands, then I know there is going to be a hill in this evenings run somewhere.  It's all a matter of degrees or is it percent or steepness?  Anyway, somewhere along the line there will be a hill!  But I was still buzzing from having the enjoyable second session with my group, so I was like "Yeah, bring it on"  Well, I was sweeping so I could take it easy at the back!

The route is one of my favourite routes actually, as I never quite know where I am until we get to a certain road and then I think," oh yes, its this way".  I love those types of routes, as you never know how far you have to go.  Also the hill, which indeed is in this run, is quite a steepish one and it zigs and zags up, but it's not a very long one, thank goodness!  After that it is quite flat, all the way back to the rec.

I was running along with Julia who had been a beginner last year, encouraging her to keep on running,  especially on those hills.  But even I had trouble running up every bit of them!  But those little down hills, well we took advantage of those and just squooshed down them!

Group 1 was quite a large group now, and we had split into 2 distinct groups.  So, on one of the catchup stops we had a 'confession' time, about who could move up to group 2 if we have a move up week.  There were a few tentative hands that went up.  It's always scary moving up to a fast group, as you don't want to be the one that holds everyone back, but actually having a move up week, the leaders of each group will run on the slower side of their predicted pace, for instance group 1 runs at 11:30 to 12:00 min/mil, so if it had been us we would run at 12:00 mi/mi.

And also when there is a few people ready to move up then you can all stick together at the back anyway!  It's a great way to improve your speed. (something I haven't done so far!)

But todays run with my running club buddies was, again, a brilliant run! Love this running stuff! Love these running buddies!

Geeky stats (oh and ignore the last bit of my geeky stats, the route today was 3.55 miles long! I seem to have started my Garmin again while I was in the car!)

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Solo Sun Day Sunday Run!

Hello blog lovers.

When I woke up this morning, I looked outside, I just felt that it was going to be such a lovely morning!  I knew that today I had  to go for a run at some point. Not only that but I was going to go Garmin free!  I had decided that much yesterday as I thought all the running that I have done! No pressure of sticking to a timed pace, no idea of how far I shall run, nothing but being out! Just getting out there and enjoying it! Now that's what I'm talking about!

So after church, and after a bit of shopping, and preparing Sunday dinner, I put on my running gear, and left the house.  There was no hanging about with my arm up in the air waiting for the satellites to find me, which was most refreshing (and not so daft looking).  My music going on in my ears and I was there, running along,  just out for fun.

Now, where shall I go?!  There is not many directions that I can take from my home, running, not driving I mean, that is not going to take me more that and hour or so to get back, ( I guess there is one pressure then, I don't want to cremate my chicken dinner!)  So I had a general direction in mind that I can take.  It's pavement pounding, but towards the end there is always Jubilee park!  If it wasn't so wet and sticky in the woods I might have thought about taking in some miles in there.  But today I just want to run for as much as I can.  I will betaking some walking breaks, I know I will be but I'm ok with that.  This is a fun time run, just out to have a great time.

So it was straight up southborough Lane to Bromley Common, and turn right.  Going this way I can add miles or take miles off depending how I'm feeling.  If I went left it would mean running up the A21, and only the A21, nothing but the A21!  Right on until Locksbottom! It's a good run if I was training to do something like a half marathon or a 10 miler, but I'm not, and I need to be able to change my route, go this way or that way when I feel like it. Turning right has loads of options to to go for.

I felt very relaxed as I ran along, the 'no agenda' run suiting me well.  Well, the only agenda is to run for about an hour or so.  Maybe next week I will make it a little more, who knows, but I am loving this Garmin free run.  As I turned the corner by the Dripping Tap I knew the hill at the end of this road was waiting for me.  But I just smiled. It's only a small hill really, but usually by the time I get there I am normally cream krackered!!  Getting up it in one go, jogging, is usually a struggle!

But right at that second, as I was heading towards the small hill,  I felt as if it wasn't even a slight incline, let alone a hill.  I felt as if I was running towards a down hill stretch of the road!  I have never felt this confident about getting up a hill! Yes, it's a small one, and yes, it normally gets to my psche first and I start to panic. But right now I started smiling, something I have done a lot of on this run so far, as I headed for the little lump.  I could see the railway bridge, and just on the other side is where it starts to rise. I ran towards it, I felt as strong as anything, squooshing past pedestrians on the narrow pavement as I started run up.  It felt like along a flat part, I really couldn't feel this incline at all! How comes this little hill used to have me puffing out of my ass?!..... yet now here I was running right to the very top of it!  But then I had to stop! If I could have ran on I would have but I needed to let the traffic stop before I crossed the road!

After that very small conquest I ran on homeward bound still smiling.  I made my mind up I was definitely going to go through Jubilee park.  I felt as if I went any further then would be pushing it and spoil my great fun time run but going the shorter way through the play park that is near my home would leave me disappointed with myself that I didn't go further.  I really had a great run.  I must have been smiling as I was thinking about which way I was going because an old man waved and smiled over at me and I nodded in acknowledgement. Yup, I was feeling good.

Going through the  Jubilee park, with the sun just at its best, there were people walking their dogs, arm in arm with each other, they were out with their kids on the Christmas bikes and scooters!  We have all had enough of the rain, we have had enough of water and flooding of staring out of our windows wondering if it will ever stop raining.  We need to get out, I need to get out and breathe in and just enjoy being alive!

Estimated run 4 to 5 miles, estimated time, ooo, about 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes, put it this way, when I got back my spuds had only just gone in the oven, Big Son had remembered my instructions, and the chicken was smelling gorgeous!

Friday, 17 January 2014

Silence Is........Not needed here!

Hello blog lovers.

Well today I had no plans, apart from making sure Big Son gets out on time with everything he needed and drop off to the station.  Then I can go for my run.  Ok, I could have got up early, I could have enjoyed the short bright spell we had this morning, but my bed was just hugging me too much!

So after I dropped Son of, I came back, hoping and hoping that the rain will have eased off a bit.  But it didn't! In fact it got even heavy.  So I stared out of the window, listened to some music, sang some songs, tidied up, sang some songs. Then there was a break! As I was already to just leave the house (I left my jacket and hat on!) I made for the door, went out and made sure it was shut! 

It was still just slightly raining, just a few drops could be seen but that is something I can tolerate.  I can even tolerate the rain when begins after I have left the house.  But starting in the rain, coming from a nice warm house, with goodies in the fridge, to the grey, wet and cold of the outside was something I don't like to do.

I had my music in my ears. This run is going to start off with my  running to music style' And that means what ever starts playing then that is what I run too.  It could be blues, it could rock it could be easy listening or it could even be classical!  I am just going to run along to the beat of which ever fills my ears.

For the first half of my run I managed to keep that going, I had some good tunes blaring away that kept a nice steady pace for me.  I was a bit cold to start with, (I should have done some warm ups!) but once in my stride I was feeling pretty good.  The rain came down a tiny bit more now, but it was still nothing like it was, and besides, I am half way round. 

I was beginning to feel a bit tired, and I knew that further along this route I am going to use the 'lamppost' method again, no matter what music was playing, but it might help decide just how fast I run on the 'run faster' lampposts!  I was enjoying my run, I was enjoying my music, I always enjoy my running.  But the thoughts that were going through my mind just as I was running up Magpiehall Lane were "Old Girl, its blooming winter time, you should have stayed in and read a book" I was just over half way of the run today, and I have noticed that I always think things like this when there is just as much to do as I have already done!  I am sure there is a name for this 'Half way blues' if not, then I've just invented it! (or at least named it)

The music playing was taking my mind off the rain, mainly because I was thinking "I wonder if my IPod is water proof?" and the lampposts were coming up fast and furious! At least it seemed that way when I had the walking sections!  But it was nearly all over with, just the last road to do, non stop jogging along, no lamppost to worry about, the music was just there in the background as thoughts about getting in and dried off kept me running.

I got back home, stopped the Garmin and then took a walk around the green!  Yup, that's right, a walk in the rain before I walked into my nice warm home!

Geeky stats.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Muddy Pathfinder Day

Hello blog lovers.

Thursday morning and the day is bright! It's still remarkably mild for this time of the year. In fact it is so mild that I went back home to change out of my warmer top and into a short sleeved top!  I was looking forward to the run through the woods.  I am determined to find the path that I took the first time when I looked at the route for my first Thursday led run.

Illustrious Leader and PinkladyJo was with me today, and they were both ready for the traipse though the woods, and also to assist in a path finding, because who knows, there are lots of paths through the woods that we could take, and we may just run on a few! This is going to be one of the fun day runs where we are not sure where we will end up.

So first of all, we tackle the hill. Unfortunately for me, yet others just love, love, love, I still not a fan of hills.  All of my mantras, my evil thoughts and tricks and tips and wisecracks to get to even like hills, has still to work.  I am not going to say that it will never happen!  And as the delightful Illustrious Leader said as we headed up "This looks like a hill Old Girl"  "Yes it does" I replied to her "Unfortunately there is only hills in this part of the woods" 

I think during the summer months I will run from the rec, to the woods near me, and see if I can work out a nice Group 1 distance route that can take them with the time that we have on a Tuesday, or even for a Thursday session.  Sparrow woods are a bit flatter than Pettswood, Hawkwood and the others! 

Anyway, back to today.  The paths were still pretty sticky.  I was hoping that they had dried out a bit, like the paths and fields that we ran over on our Sunday Train Run.  Last year it was pretty wet and muddy, just like the paths in our woods today.  Oh well, onwards and upwards! As I thought, I really did warm up.  I had forgotten to put my hat on and little streams of....glowing ran into my eyes!  I miss my hat!  It was lucky I had a hanky with me!

Running along the top of the  woods now, parallel with the road,  I concentrated hard on paths.  I didn't want to pop out to early onto to the road, otherwise we will have to run on the pavement.  I saw a path that led to the road, but I had a feeling that it was too early to cross the road and we headed of take a slightly left deviation along a wider path. 

This bought us to the memorial! I didn't want to continue with the left path, and said that we should turn back and head for the smaller path that was just at the back of us. But the PinkLadyJo pointed at another path and suggested that one.  As I had said in the beginning, this is a 'fun path finding' day. An adventure, expedition through the woods! So we ran off on that path.

It was really quite nice, and I believe it was actually the very first path that I did by myself back in September! So I was very happy to have come across it again.  It bought us to the road, opposite the entrance to the path on the other side!  So now we can continue our run in the woods, and leave tarmac for a little later on.  And it was a very little later on.  We only ran through he for about 3 or 4 minutes and then we had to cross back over.  I was going to run down the road, and then down Botney Bay Lane but then Illustrious Leader reminded us of the path that goes through this lovely estate, with some beautiful buildings! 

I have not been down here before, it's always nice to head off on different paths.  It's not as if we are going to get totally lost.  After all, we have a main road on one side of the woods and the railway on another!  I guess we could end up running round and round of course! Now wouldn't that make for an interesting Garmin geeky stats map!

The path through the lovely houses bought us to a place I knew, and to where I was heading for anyway!  We had taken a short cut to get here!  It's good to know where these paths go, because we can build them into other routes!  Now that I know were we are, I continued to run the 'original skeleton' route before we 'fleshed it out with the new paths (or in this case cutting off a limb).

 Down towards the railway line now.  With maybe just a mile or less to go I suggested that we may have to run around the block before going into the ground, which both ladies were fine with.  It will give us a chance to bash the mud off our shoes!  And boy, did we need to do that.  A lady dog walker was walking towards us, and gave us a warning "You're doomed, doomed, if you go that way, its like a swamp down there, doomed doomed I tell you" Ok, so she wasn't that dramatic, but she did warn us that it was very swampy down that!

 I feel sure that the lady was right! This next bit of woods has to be the most stickiest yet!  Huge muddy holes with very little places to even tiptoe through.  We did as best as we could, having to walk through this bit.  I.L. had found a slightly firmer path and me and PLJ followed her behind.  I.L. has this super trail shoes that helps her to stop slipping as much! (My next pair of shoes, very soon) but then she was just following the muddy path around to the left, and I had in mind to go straight down. 

After the correction, and the warning of the lady dog walker going through my mind, we started back down the path.  It was then that I decided that this particular bit of path was the stickiest yet!  It was so sticky and muddy that I suggest taking a path to our left, one I feel sure that I haven't been on, (but probably have at some point, I am no good at orienteering) and just seeing where that brings us out.  P.L.J. has been on here before, as she regularly takes her dog for a walk here, so we was all in favour. And besides, the railway is just there, on our right, we can hear the trains!

I was quite surprised where it bought us to, as the path itself kind of snaked left and right, and when I saw 'Dog poo Ally' I knew that I had actually been on the path running before!  See, you can never get lost in our woods! It's impossible!  But we were still a quarter of a mile short of at least 5k, so the longer route to the park to finish up our muddy but very enjoyable run.

It was enjoyable ladies, wasn't it?

Geeky stats for you.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Club Run - New Group and Group 1

Hello Blog lovers.

Well, this evenings club runs were very interesting indeed!  And I just loved them.  I am doing something I love doing while doing something I love doing! And that is running while at the same time encouraging others to run as well!  It's a win win situation for me!

Group 0

The first run this evening was with my new group that I have started this evening.  It's a kind of inbetweeners group.  Not quite beginners, but not quite ready from group 1 and upwards!  This group is going to be a stepping stone for those who want to become group runners, and also for those who have been out of running for a while, either with injury or circumstance or just sheer lack of time or even enthusiasm.

Running in a group, with other people, for me, is the best motivation that you need. Just the camaraderie that is there will keep you on your toes, wanting to do yourself proud as well as your running buddies.

I had two ladies with me today in my group, with Jo also helping to lead. Tracy has come back to get back to group 1 fitness and there was also another lady that wants to get on to the fitness trail.  The first thing was to get some warm ups done.  Although it's quite mild for mid January, trying to run with cold muscles is not good.  That is just asking for pain!  So I used the quite road to do some gentle jogging and butt kicks, and side stepping to get things warmed up, but making sure that I kept it nice and quite so as not to annoy the neighbours! 

Then it was on for the first run of Group......well, I shall have to think of a name for this group!  Maybe call it Group Zero, because after this we become hero's!  My route took in Great thrift, and Hazelmere roads.....twice!  On the way out and on the way back!  This first run was a 'Lets see what you all can do'!  And let me tell you, both of them did really really well!  Going up towards Pettswood, on those two inclines was a test for them, and they both did well. 

I said to them both that if they needed a walking break then they should take it, as this evening is just for me and for them to see how much running they can do.  So to see them get up the hills without stopping was pretty good.

At the top of the hills, near the memorial hall, I suggested to Jo that she and the Julia do a run back, as Tracy caught up.  We had a little stop then and carried on with the rest of the loop.  But just to keep it a little bit interesting for Julia, as she was a tad faster, then her a Jo was to do some loop backs.  When they were about 2 lampposts in front of us, then they were to run back to us and then carry on again.

It really was a lovely run.  We covered about 2 and half miles.  But the main thing was, is that both of them enjoyed it.  Both are coming back next week, and I really enjoyed it too.

Geeky stats for this first run.

Group 1

We had quite a big group for todays session.  SingstarJo was going to be leading, and her route is heading towards the Harvester and back!  But then DiscoRich called me to chat with a couple of new people who had turned up today.  They were first timers and only had run a few miles here and there, a couple of 5k charity races, and wanted to get into running properly.  In fact, these ladies are perfect for my 7:00 session! 

But instead of just sending them away to come back next week to the earlier session, I offered to run with them and we can chase after group 1.  You never know, they might surprise us and keep up with them all the way round!

DiscoRich stayed at the back with me, while Illustrious Leader had  the sweeper role for the main group.  For the first half of the run we were never that far behind the main group, they were also in eyesight. As we were running one of the ladies said that this was the furthest, so far, that she had ever ran!  When she heard that we were heading towards the Harvester, she said to her friend that she didn't think she could do it!  Yet look at her, she had ran for about a 1.5 miles and she was just so pleased with herself.  "My son didn't think I would be able to do it" she said to us.  Well I think her son will be very proud of her now! 

The route that we was taking is more or less the same as the main group, but they will be doing the little loop around before heading back up Southborough Lane.  And knowing SingstarJo she will also be doing the longer way round to the rec, Great thrift, Hazelmere route.  But I thought that just 3 miles for a first run is plenty! Probably a little over done to be truthful!  I think one of them is going to ache tormorrow!  I am hoping that it is going to be a nice aching, the kind of aching that reminds you of what you had achieved to feel like that in the first place. 

The both said that they are going to come back next week to my 7 o'clock session, I think Tuesdays are going to be double fun again. 

I do like to encourage others into this sport.  It's free, and you can do it anyway!  There is no need to wait for 'outdoors' to open, no fees to pay for the use of 'outdoors' you just put on your trainers, tracksuit and away you go!  Perfect, and the outdoors is there, 24/7, when ever you need it, what's not to love!

Geeky stats this second group 0 run.


Sunday, 12 January 2014

Back in the Chain Gang!

Hello blog lovers.

What a beautiful morning it turned out to be! But first thing on waking this morning my thoughts were, "It's far to early, I want to go back to sleep" I got up and looked outside.  On top of the houses was a nice covering of......FROST!  "I really want to go back to sleep" I thought as I opened the window and saw my breath!

But still, I will warm up when we get going.  As I had said to someone during the week, "Enthusiasm waits for you only after you get back from your run, Determination is at every lamppost!" or in this case it will be trees and bushes as well!  And the more I thought of that, the more I thought it was right.  Who in the right mind can be enthusiastic about getting up at ridiculous o'clock on a Sunday, to put on thin layers of Lycra, thermal socks and hats, to go out on a train with some 40 other crazy people, only to run back again! But that is exactly what I did!

Here, this is some of them at the station.  We sort of took over the little area at the top as this was the warmest place!

Just some of the our runners today.
Checking tickets and hats!

Say cheese ladies.

We loaded on the train and filled up the seats.

 One chap appreciated our banter as it seemed to have given him a wake up call before his stop came up!

This is an annual event with two groups running at two different distances and pace!  Group 1 - 3 were getting off the train at Knockholt while all others were going further, to Sevenoaks.  Both routes are run over country fields, lanes, paths and roads.  So it will be lots of fun for all runners.

Now that I was at Knockholt, I really was looking forward to the run, I always enjoy running, but that first bit, of getting ready, getting out and getting going, has always been a struggle for me.  Being with all my running buddies, however, has put me in the right frame of mind.  Here is a picture of us just before we started, just as we left the station at Knockholt! 
I thought I would show you that I was actually there!

Me and SingstarJo were sweeping for todays run (it was no surprise that I would be at the back today, especially with some group 2 and 3 members running as well!) and we set off running along towards the A21.  It's not as bad as you think,  Illustrious Leader has found a great route through fields and paths, so running 'along' the A21 will feel like you are in the middle of no-where.  With the sun shining down and birds flying over, you could almost think that it was the middle of summer as well.

There are a couple of rather nasty, cheeky little hills this on this route.  Steep little blighters that have you gasping just at the sight of them.  But it is still a whole lot better than running along side pollution spittng traffic.

All though the sun was shining, there were still some patches of frost on some of the paths that we had to run on, the frost still hiding from the sun in the shade of the trees and houses that we passed.  I was wondering if the fields that we were to be running on will be sticky and muddy like they were last year, or if Old Jack Frost had been at work and made the ground as hard as stones.  It wasn't that long before we found out. The ground was hard, at least there would be no wet feet early on in the run!

The first field done, and we were back running next to the traffic along the A21.  When there are two or three different groups running together as one, it does seem to pull along at a faster pace than that of the slower paced groups.  I glanced at my Garmin and I could see we were 'racing' along at 11 minute miles.  All though later on it will show up as an average slower pace, I still wanted to just slow it down a tad and just relaxed a bit more.  I was trying to keep up with them, but then me and SingStarJo decided that we would do our normal pace.  They will be stopping soon for I.L. to explain the next bit.  And besides, she had said to the faster runners that they were to do 'loop backs'  Their run today would probably end up as 6 and half miles with the extras they are doing!

We soon came to one of the cheeky little steep hills that I mentioned.  Last year we stuck to the tarmacked road, but this year we kept the 'off-road theme going as stayed on the footpaths through the woods that ran along side of the road.  This was particually interesting, as during the recent stormy weather a  tree had come down and had blocked the foot path.  We had to scramble over it. 

Here, this is how it looked.

I.L. hoicking herself over
the fallen tree

Just one at a time!

It was nice getting back into the woods again, although I must say, I had walked up most of this hill.  When we crossed over the road to continue on the other path I managed to jog along again.  Well, it was down hill and flat sections!

We came out of the woody area and crossed over the road and entered another field. This was also a hill!  I stopped to take a couple of pictures! 

This is SingstarJo showing how we do our sweeping!

SingstarJo, showing the
Sweeper Arms!

And this picture is taken of the direction we have just come from! It doesn't feel as if there is any houses or traffic around!

Some joggers and dog
walkers going the other way

On the other end of this field is a housing estate.  We had to run through here to get to another little section of wooded aread!  There are lots of little wooded areas around here!  I feel very foturnate to be able to live so close to some great places.  The townie that is still inside of me is quite happy to see the houses and roads and tarmac, and to know that London is but 30 minutues away by train, yet the runner that has been hiding inside is being totally spoilt to pieces with the miles and miles of brilliant trails just on my doorstep.

Nearly at the end of our run today, and we are running by the woods that reach down to my road.  No race to train for, a 'just run for fun' run, I could quite easily say to the group that I shall head on home from here.  But I like to finish what I have started.  The end of todays run is not my house. It doesn't cut through Sparrow woods it just skirts it. The run ends at Pettswood, where we started!  And also, someone mentioned popping into the coffee shop to finish off the morning!

We got to Crofton road and crossed over the road, but SingstarJo, Sue and some others continued along the road, heading for Southborough lane, adding another 2 miles to the 6 miles that we have done today!  A great effort by everyone, really had a great time! Can't wait to do it again! (See, there's that enthusiasm!)

This is just a few of us at the coffee shop.

Sandwhich and coffee already enjoyed!

All very happy to have been running today.

Geeky stats.

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Splish, Splash, Squish Squelch!

Hello blog lovers.

Thursdays are back on, now that all the little people are back at schools, and the parents can get to grips with the continuation of getting rid of some over doing the Christmas Cheer! 

The weather wasn't like yesterday morning at all! Today it was windy, cold and the sky was threatening to unleash what its trying to hold up there.  Why couldn't we have had yesterdays weather instead!  But there were quite a few willing victims.......erm.....runners that had turned up today.  DiscoRich had his bevy of beauties....and our race director, David, and in my group there were a couple of new members that had joined us.

Considering the rain has been totally relentless over these past few weeks, and some days it has been pretty heavy! I gave the group an alternative non splashingsquishysquelchy route to do.  A bit of pavement pounding, to the Cinder Path. It will still keep us in some wooded area, but  only for those few moments while we run on the path!

Illustrious Leader came fully prepared to paddle her way around the woods, and PinkLadyJo had her old shoes (unless that is what I have helped create by getting her to run through the woods last year?) But then when one of the new ladies said that she had new evil grin appeared on my face......ha ha ha ha (read that with little finger  raised to lips in 'Dr Evil Style'!) A baptism of fire (of mud should I say) for her new shoes, so to the woods it is.

I love going through the woods, and knowing that DiscoRich and his crew were going through some other nearby woods, I didn't want to 'whimp' out and act all 'squeamish' by not hitting the mud, the change of route had been decided and all agreed, but I  still had some trepidations about how muddy it was going to be.  I had no need to worry though Of course it was muddy, we had been ploughing our way through it for most of December, yes maybe the puddles were slightly deeper, and maybe the mud holes slightly wider but on the whole, still quite accessible. 

Now, the two new ladies look rather 'runner like' and I half expected them to be, maybe a tad disappointed with the pace of todays run, so I had to make sure that I tried at least to keep myself mostly in front of them, but I didn't want to wear myself out before I get even a quarter of the way round.  So the only one thing to do, as Illustrious Leader had said on todays route, "I am just embracing the mud" I embraced the mud with love and with gusto! 

I made my way around some of the big puddles and particularly the squishiest areas, but only if there was enough space to put your foot on the little 'trodden in' part around it, was straight down the middle!  On the big wide path I found it easy to run on the gravel that seems to have appeared there, where the water was running down it, like a little stream. If we stayed running on that there was no squelchy mud to run in! And no slipping and sliding anxieties!

We soon got to the top of the woods and turned left to go passed the schools fields, with yet more mud.  I kept to the bigger path, going down the skinnier one could have made us slower, as it is more 'flight of stairs like' rather than hill like. And I do need to keep the pace up, and keep us all safe of course.

Going through the middle of puddles was quite a liberating feeling.  I can imagine the crosscountry runners just having a field day (pardon then pun!) every time they run. Just squishy through mud and puddles, just like you used to do when you were kids, no cares, no worries, no problems!...... after all, the was no need to worry about shoes, socks etc,  every time you went to your cupboards and draws there was always clean clothes there, just like magic!  It's only when you get older, and have to do your own washing that you tend to worry about how dirty you get, (apart from chaps that is!)

It was going along this particular path that I managed to tread ankle high, into the deepest puddle so far of the run.  But for some silly reason or other, I just smiled! I was really enjoying this mud fest! I also realised that it was actually easier to just go straight through the middle of even the squishiest puddles, rather than try and pick your way around this them.  I am deffo going to get some trail shoes! I may even try and get to the occasional KFL run, if the team don't mind!

The next path is one that I don't particularly like.  Just down the lane a tad, and then turn right. It's quite narrow and has these little undulations, like a mini rollercoast type of ground. On the right is a field with cows or sheep or what ever the farmer leads in there at moment, but it is fenced with a barbed wire top.  I always have visions of me falling on to this and cutting my hands or face.  So I went very carefully. I ushered the others by in case they wanted to go a bit quicker than I was doing.  By the time I got to the other end of here they all had found their 'mud zone' mojo and was just heading down Goss Hill

Goss hill was a bit tricky for me, there they were, all  in their stride and concentrating on the path, me? I was trying to play catchup as well as watch the path.  The Hill was teasing me, wanting me to run faster and faster, but I had to watch my step, I don't want any falls at this stage! I expect the group will wait for me at the bottom.  I was still smiling though.  I must have looked like some inane escapee from planet Smiley.  I was thinking about my soaking wet feet, and how at this minute, they were quite warm and not uncomfortable. I was thinking that my socks, my rather old pink socks will probably have turned brown by now, and I was thinking, "I hope the others are having as much fun as I am" That would just be the muddy cherry on top of the cake! Or should I say mud pie!

From here to the end we were back on to the tarmac.  And also found,  I was quite comfortable at the back, or it could be that the others had just found a little bit extra and started to push a little harder and faster.  Illustrious Leader did what all good leaders do though as she took the lead, she had them do a loop back to the corner, and then run back to catch me up as I continued to run to Jubilee Park.

With he mud drying on our clothes and legs, and trainers looking suitable brown, we really did look like XC runners! The little bit of pavement pounding gave chance for us to bash most of the mud from our shoes, and just as well, as I had forgotten to bring clean shoes and socks again!

A great run, I thouroughly enjoyed it today! A lovely run, ok its the same route, but it's always a different experience!  Geeky stats for you. Oh and a couple of pictures of my shoes and socks! I still had plenty of mud to photograph!


Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Club Run - Hmppffs, Awws And Groans!

Hello blog lovers!

And a Happy New Year to you all (again). I say that because I have not seen my Pettswood buddies since last year.  And some of them have not been running since last year!  The group leaders were aware of this and were taking it easy on their group members, by running at a slower pace for them this evening!  Mind you, for all those in Group 8, it's the complete opposite, start the year as they intend to be, a hard run and usual speedy pace!  As the leaders were telling of their routes, and who was going slightly easier and who wasn't, you can imagine who was groaning, and those who were stifling a little giggle!

It was good to see them all again though, as I pulled up in my car near the park, there were quite a few people heading into the gate, getting out of their cars, eager to get the new year started with a good first club run of 2014.  The buzz in the rec was excited and happy as we all talked about what we had or hadn't done over Christmas, mainly a lot of eating and no running!

Of course I was a bit smug, and said I had done a couple, thankfully they didn't ask how far and fast I went, because it was far from group 1 pace!  When all the leaders had given out their routes for their groups were ready to get going.  I was sweeper and was very happy to be at the back today, (trying to catch the Old Boy yesterday had shown me where I had hidden my thigh muscles!)

There were quite a number of us running down Crossways, and heading up Willet Road. Everybody still chatting away and all feeling pretty happy to be back.  Nagging Sister was here, Jan, Linda, Julia Illustrious Leader up in the front. Oh yes, it is good to be back! 

I wasn't quite sure of the route today, as I had missed what I.L. had said. As we were running along, I was a bit surprised of the turnings we took.  I wasn't quite sure of where they would end up.  I am not sure if we have been on this route before, or if it is a combination of two routes.  I know we have been on these roads before, but I was really disorientated.  It could because I haven't been on a club run for a few weeks and just like my Garmin, I have wiped my memory!

My legs were aching slightly, and the slower pace at the back was suiting me, but we still kept sight of the main group of runners (just as well really as I wasn't quite sure exactly where I was!)  Getting back to club running, though, was outweighing any muscles complain that have worked too hard.  I am smiling, (even lost a pound or two already this week, although I shouldn't weigh myself now until the end of the week, or month!)

It was a great run though, and a nice easier route and slighter shorter for a 'Get Back To Club Running' run.  There was also an 'opt out' part built in to this evenings run. Instead of going around the block if you felt that you were struggling, then you could go straight to the entrance of the park as we pass Crossways to run around the block!

And today, I had my Garmin. Yeah, so here is the geeky stats.

Monday, 6 January 2014

And So We Begin Again!

Hello blog lovers.

Hands up, who has over indulged, or have I already asked that?! Phew!  Still feeling heavy, but a bit more emptier than I have done!  Just after one day of eating healthier, less tea, fresh fruit smoothie and less sugar in todays meals, has made a difference....or it could be that I am thinking positive about my attempt to get back to post Marathon fitness! (by the way, did I tell you I ran last years London Marathon)

(Wow, it's true, it is so easy to tell who has ran a marathon, because us marathoners bring it up whenever the opportunity to arises)

The Old Boy has been feeling a bit under the weather as well this past week or so and decided that he would 'tag' along with me, although I know that it will be me chasing after him!  I was going running as 'Inspector Gadget' with my new IPod Shuffle and of course my Garmin, but for some reason my Garmin has ran out of battery again! Can't figure it out!  So it's just me and my IPod and of course the old man.

The pace is all down to me, and when the O.B. gets into his zone, then I shall try and keep up with him too.  Having no Garmin to check out, I was feeling naked!  But of course all your out there reading this, always tell me that it's good to just get out and run, and I even tell myself that too, but today I really wanted my geeky stats! And felt a bit sulky as we started our run.

The evening was .... well it was quite pleasant!  Even though I was wrapped up like an onion again! With long sleeve warm top, hat, jog pants (new ones for Christmas!) and also a windproof jacket and some gloves!  The rain had stopped, it was a perfect time to get out and run/jog! We started running at together along the road, I chosen one of my old 3 miler route, to Turpington, Greenway and then back home again, nothing to strenuous for the Old Boy! And also, nothing to strenuous for me either!

We kept together for at least half the way round, but then he started to pull away from me as his mojo started to show it's self, mine was still hiding under the last slice of cheesecake, drowning in the last weekly pint of lager! (until the totally dry month of February!) I was feeling like I wasn't actually breaking any records with this route, my back was aching slightly, a sure sign that am heading my way back up those numbers on the scales!

I have, actually weighed myself again this January, and did the usual MOT checks with the tape! and I have also put on, over all, at least 3 inches, and I measure everything! Arms, vitals, thighs, knees and calf's! Ok some might only be a half inch difference, but I still don't like it!

But I am pleased with my first, proper, day of healthy eating and back on track with my training, what I'm training for I don't know, but I shall work on that!

No geeky stats, but hopefully, I shall get my watch sorted and it will have its rightful place back on my wrist!

Friday, 3 January 2014

First Solo Run In 2014

Hello Blog lovers.

I have just realised that I neglected to write up my last Thursday run of 2013, but it was a very nice run through the woods, the weather was good for us.  And it was a good run.

Here is the Geeky stats for that run

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Now you know what I write things down on the day or even the day after! Any more time between a run and me actually putting down on paper (or tapped out on a computer), especially after a very good Christmas and New Year, has no hope of getting 'out there'!

So todays run.  Just me, no one else.  Didn't even have my new IPod with me! (I had forgotten to charge it up!)  Also I couldn't wait around for my Garmin to catch the satellites so I just pushed the button and started to run, with no intention of looking at it until I got home!

You know, as I was running along I had that thought. You know the one, it goes 'You know how, after the Christmas and new year holidays, you're feeling bloated, full, lazy, work is looming and really all your body feels like doing is pulling the duvet over your head and stay there till summer'. I felt like that today. All the 'mum' bits done, the 'sister' bit, the 'wife', the 'nanny' the 'friend' 'aunt' etc etc etc, right this second it was just me.

               Just Me

      Looking out, the sky so blue,
      Looking out the sun's shining too,
      This moment, is mine,
      This moment is now.
      This moment is where I resolute and vow

      Get back to running,
      Running for running sake,
      Get back to having fun,
      With the resolutions I make.

      Right now I am nobody.
      Not mum or aunt, nor wife or nanny, no, not even a friend.
      Because right now, this, this few running moments, its just me in the end.

      No music, no Gadegts, no agenda, no route,
      No people, no worries to boot!
       Running is good, its fun and its free
      Running is where I am just me!

These were just some of the thoughts that I started out in my head, for the first  mile or so.  My Garmin counting down the seconds, but no satellite tracking me.  No-one knew where I was, my phone was at home, and I was just out there, uncontactable!  A very liberating moment!  Then the Garmin found me! I know, because I hoicked up my sleeves and just got a glimpse as it said I had ran .30 miles, in whatever minutes it was.  I made sure I tore my eyes away before I saw it!

I didn't have any route in mind was just going to run until I wanted to go home. As I started on one of my old routes, going towards Southborough lane and heading for Bromley Common I smiling.  My heavy body complaining!  I can really tell that I have overindulged over Christmas and New Year!  The weight always hits my hips and back! But knowing that I am back in the programme feels really good. Fat deposits will be shaken and stirred, they will fuel my runs and my cycle rides, they will burn up and help build up muscles, and unveil, finally, the skinny bird underneath!

With Turpington turning way behind me I had a choice of left or right at the end of the road.  I chose to turn left, towards Locksbottom.  I hadn't decided if I was going to run that far yet, as this is just my first 'just do it for me'  run.  I still don't have any races booked! But who is bothered about that, not me, not when I'm running for running sake!

As I was running along towards the first turning, Turpington Lane, the top end! I noticed the sky started to not look as bright! I had a feeling if I ran passed Magpiehall Lane, then the only other turning to take me home after that would be by the church, Trinity Church, which would mean my run would be shorter one than I had been thinking about, even though I had no agenda!  So I decided I would just all the way down Magpiehall lane and then back home from Southborough Lane. A sort of deflated balloon shape, probably how most of us were feeling after the festivies!

I did start to 'beat my self up a beat. Being lazy, keep stopping and grabbing my aching 'cuddly' sides. So I gave myself another firm talking to, me, just me, here running, no one else. "So, what you gonna do Old Girl?" was the question I put to myself.  Now what do I always tell all the newbies who join our group 1? Oh yes, lamppost to lamppost of course. So that's what I did, kept the lampposts in sight. Sometimes it was jog/run between lampposts other times it was walk/jog/run/jog between them!

Until, that is I got to Farringdon Avenue. From there it is jogging all the way home! Well I was on the road affectionately known as 'The Road Where I Can't Stop!'

Back at home I finally look at my Garmin as I switch it off! Not bad, just over a mile of  'undetected' running, but most enjoyable. That's the first one out of the way! Bring on the next run!