Monday, 6 April 2015

good friday, great saturday, spectacular sunday

Easter Weekend.
If you don't have kids or work in an organisation that still recognises holidays based on an archaic Christian calendar, you probably don't know its "Easter". Richard is apparently coming round for his dinner on Easter Sunday and I have no idea when we'll see him. Is that tonight? Anyway the only folk taking their scriptures seriously these days are the Muslims, and no wonder if Al-Shabaab are running the quiz nights. Meanwhile Christian holidays (holy days) have been downgraded to food festivals where one eats junky-snack foods that mock the significance of the occasion. And nobody can really remember or give 2 hoots about the original significance anyway. These days it is just a chocolate binge and alcohol soak. Hallelujah. 

I see the tv is taking the mocking even further with more than 2hrs of a karaoke programme that not even people who hate music would watch. It's as if Richard Dawkins was in charge and quietly satirising Christianity. And we won't have time to watch tv, thank god, because Mr. Dennis may or may not be coming round for dinner. Best go and prepare the pizzas - it was a pizza that rolled away from the mouth of the cave wasn't it? But first here is what has been happening in the running news....

Well you don't get much more Eastery than this - carrying your own cross over Easter Road. I had to stop Mary rolling down the window (of the Berlingo as we drove past) and shouting "you'll need a bigger cross than that if you're planning on a crucifixion..." But maybe they were just going to nail up an Easter bunny. What is the world coming to?

We drove to Gullane for a small slow run around the golf course and beach for no apparent reason. Mary has hastily brought her outdoor swimming to an abrupt halt now that the sea and air are warming up. We called past Lucy and she came too.

Eider ducks (or something else.)

When we got back to Lucy's the key in her hand was not the one for the front door so she apprehended a passing BT engineer with a ladder to break in via a back window. He was very accommodating about the whole process while incongruously sporting a black eye. This is not the first time this has happened; last time it was me climbing in the back window at Lucy's place in North Berwick. (I didn't have a black eye.)

This hadn't shown up on Richard's googlemap route plan. 

On Saturday I went out for a 20 miler with Richard L. I had proposed a training run I had noticed on the internet where instead of "just" going for a long medium paced training run, you do a 30min tempo section, then recovery jog then another 20min spurt, recovery, 10, then 5 etc. until you are on your hands and knees. This is better for you than an average Long, Slow, Distance run. However we were both feeling a bit flayed from Thursday evening intervals (not to mention Wed at club and Tuesday at spin-gym) in Holyrood where what had sounded easier than the usual hill reps - a tour of Arthur - had turned out longer and worse. Some intervals up the back of the crags, a continual dash up those awful zig-zag gutted haddie steps, a sprint down to Dunsapie, more intervals over Whinny Hill, a long wheeze up from Dunsapie, then a race from Nether Hill back to the car park. Also there were no slowies to hide in front of and a real danger of being last. Desperate!

Saturday's run started out fine although Richard was concerned he wasn't going as fast as I might have wanted. I see from the Garmin read out we ran 6 of the first 10, sub7 and I had no desire to run faster than that. In fact if I had put the garmin on pause at a couple of the points (see photo with gate) where we debated route choice it would probably have worked out at an average of around 7 min miling. You can tell how hard I found it by the lack of photos. Normally I take about 100 per hour. Over the 2.55 we were out, I took 7, and only 2 usable. No time for food and drink either. I did slow to take a sip of the generic red bull drink I was carrying in a soft flask but would have preferred water by then. Richard also had a sip but that was all we had for the three hrs. It was quite intense and by the time I got home I was well shredded. However 2.5 pints of fluid later (including some protein shake) and a couple of paracetamols, and I was fit to cycle to Tesco's for the shopping for dinner with Dennis. I also did a stretch and bend yoga session with Miss Mary which left my legs, if not refreshed, then at least workable for the long Sunday run I had arranged with Lucy. I don't know if Richard L managed to get to the lakes as planned on Sunday to do his 110mile cycle, but I wasn't jealous of his plans. He is training for an Ironman as well as London Marathon, AND getting married sometime soon as well. That is some schedule.

This route mostly worked out well. From our start at Holyrood it was around 21, with a mile there and back from home. Hardest decision of the day was whether to turn left (downhill, shorter) or right (uphill, longer) when we got back into Holyrood at the Commie Pool. Teeth were gritted and we turned right.

Sunday and the sun came out for our earlier start. Anticipating the cp at Bonaly would be busy we parked at the bypass. We kind of made up the route on the hoof going out for approx 3hrs, turning round at halfway.

We followed the 7 Reservoirs route from Bonaly past Torduff

Then up towards the hills at Maiden's Cleugh and over to traverse round Black Hill.


Hare Hill and a brief sit down and snack stop.

This was the scene of the weekend's second worse crime against music. The first being the Voice. Now you may ask how do I know a programme is dreck without watching it? Similarly how could I pan a book at Book Group when I refused to read it? Well sometimes you just know these things. You don't need to eat a (---insert inedible object---) to know you wouldn't enjoy it. Anyway Lucy insists, despite my protests, telling me what awful tunes are worming round her ears and have been doing so for the last 30mins. On holiday she had been exposed to the cheese-tastic Peña Colada Song and now passed that, like a dose of flu, in my direction, adding injury to insult by singing lines. Holy crap now I'm running along on a beautiful day and every time my mind isn't busy hopping puddles, jumping ditches and taking photos it dredges up "If you like Pina Colada, and getting caught in the rain..." My sincere apologies for passing it along.

the view north

the South ridge

From Hare Hill round the front (South) of Black Hill and along the side of the reservoirs until...

...taking the first left (North) back up towards Bell's Hill

Bell's Hill 

Then a traverse round Harbour Hill and back towards Bonaly

Lucy worried that she wasn't going fast enough. I had to laugh as I was working hard to keep up, with legs only partially recovered from the day before. We ran for the same time as the day before - 2.55 (16.4miles mostly off road,) - although the weather and scenery were more pleasant. No offence meant, Richard! We made up the route as we ran and it worked very well, avoiding the high tops but getting a good off-road workout over pleasant terrain. 

Lucy dropped me off at the Parliament Building and I took great pleasure in paddling through the small ponds outside to clean my shoes, feeling I might have been getting some value for money from my council tax for the first time.

Richard D did come round for dinner and the pizzas (same recipe as book group) worked out fine again, even though the dough, made the night before, escaped from the clingfilm prison in the bottom of the fridge and expanded to a huge size which it shouldn't have been doing in the cold. Great to see RD before he heads to Irvine and a new job, new home and possibly new running club. Bon voyage!

No comments:

Post a Comment