Wednesday was to be my first proper running day since I was first unwell – except it wasn’t. I have had a few sessions on the exercise bike and I no longer get out of breath hoisting myself into the saddle so the time felt right, but it is not. When I run, I run alone. I avoid other people as far as I possibly can and it has lately occurred to me that, should I keel over, I am many lifetimes away from a defibrillator. I am fully aware that the benefits of running far outweigh the risks, but you have to be honest, the benefits are not quite so… terminal. The pay-off of keeping fit may, if I am lucky, stretch twenty years into the future; the perils, if I am not, may stretch six feet into a box.
Exercise so far this week has consisted of being grandad. Of being used as a trampoline by two three-year olds and football/tennis/cricket opponent by a six year-old. I haven’t counted the baby, although God knows, the amount of walking up and down the room I do whilst holding her must count for something. Being grandad is much more fun than running, but twice as tiring. I have a ‘babysitting’ mode on my Fitbit that just says ‘Go and have a lie down’ every thirty minutes. I would like to introduce the physicist, searching for the secret to perpetual motion, to my grandson. Even when his body is stationary, his mind is moving at a frightening pace. He is capable of the kind of leaps of logic that would make Einstein blanch. You want to witness something moving faster than the speed of light, look inside his head whilst he’s sleeping. While the world slumbers, he hatches plans for rocket-powered shoes, upscaled building projects based on super-sized Lego and the possibility of growing chocolate from Smarties. An hour in his company is both life-enhancing and draining beyond belief. My spirits soar whilst my head throbs and my limbs ache.
I will not have run today either because I will have been at work and a day at work starts and ends with a long walk. When the sun shines, the morning walk is a golden thirty minutes, when it rains it is filled with the misery of knowing that I am going to be damp for the rest of the day. There is something about the water that runs down your back and into your pants that means that it can never dry – like badly stirred gloss paint on a plastic door. The journey back to the car on such a day, wet-panted, is never pleasant even if the sun shines. Steaming underwear is never comfortable.
Tomorrow, however, I am not at work. Tomorrow I will run. Next week’s running diary may well not be about running, but it will at least have its seeds in a run, and whether my pants are wet or dry and as long as I make it to the end without the attentions of the paramedics, you will hear all about it.
Ain’t life grand?
In an attempt to ‘glam up’ my content, I thought I’d try to post this piece with an intriguing title. I toyed with ‘Quantum Fluctuations of Time within the Somnambulant Cerebral Cortex’ but I was worried that someone might ask me to explain. I considered ‘The Mortal Coil: How to Shuffle Off – the Facts’ but I was held back by the fact that, by and large, these blogs are not, in fact, fact-heavy, but rather more fact-less. I then took a leaf from Bryntin’s book and went for ‘Easy Blogging Tips for Successful Lifestyle Investments’ but I feared litigation, so I went for the ‘what it says on the tin’ approach, which means that we can keep it to ourselves. Just the two of us…