Showing posts from March, 2020

Lockdown London week 1

  So it's lockdown London  29th March 2020 and I'm out for my usual run (as sanctioned by the government) and I've decided to take a few pictures of my experience of lockdown. People have adapted to social distancing quite well. It's not perfect but nothing ever is.  The only time it's been annoying is when a group of two walk either side of the path which means I have to run between them at less than a meter away to get past.... unless I cough! There seems more nods and smiles around which is very nice and usually absent in London. I'm optimistic we'll be back to misery soon, but meanwhile there's an irony that social distancing is less isolating than normal. Maybe we should question what's 'normal'? The top picture is the Sainsbury in Hornsey High Street. Note the social distancing queue, everyone two meters apart. Yesterday Fliss and I went to the big Tesco on Colney Hatch and we had to queue through an airport style snake

Alastair’s Coronavirus Marathon

So nothing much has happened this week. Apart from that virus thing... All pubs and bars closing, so that's my courses wiped out :-( The PM gives Churchillian daily press conferences on the coronavirus. Panic buying in the shops with many shelves bare.  Bounds Green tube station is closed and social distancing measures are being taken ever more seriously.  The government taking over the payment of all working people (except the self-employed atm). The general level of anxiety is growing but I’ve seen no signs of social disturbance, yet. Fliss and I are almost in lock down. The occasional walk down the shops but avoiding queues. I posted two letters today and found myself careful not to touch the letterbox. I’ve been having wonderful conversations with friends and family and I'm so grateful for their time. To be honest Fliss and I are in a privileged place. We have each other. A house with a garden and cats, near parks and walks and the countryside only 30m

How do all those blues songs go..

How do all those blues songs go.. I woke up one morning...... and read this email: “Dear Participant, Following the escalation of coronavirus, we have been taking advice from official bodies, while also working closely with other mass event organisers to understand the situation for the industry, our participants and supporters. It is with heavy hearts that we have to deliver the disappointing news that the Brighton Marathon Weekend has been postponed until Friday 18th September - Sunday 20th September 2020. (Brighton Marathon, BM10k and BM Ride taking place on Sunday 20th September.) It is a decision that has not been taken lightly by our team or our colleagues in the running events industry. We as organisers now face considerable challenges as a result. We apologise profusely to anyone affected by this postponement. We wholeheartedly appreciate the far reaching impact this change will have on the thousands of you who have trained hard and planned extensively to take part in Apri

Wow What a Wednesday

View from Ally Pally Friday 13th March M-37 I hear the term ‘personal best’ often but it’s seldom unpacked. There’s a negative voice in my head saying “Personal best means: That’s it. The best I’ll ever do. My limit.” What lies between: What we know we can do, and what we’re about to attempt, is fear. Fear we can’t do it. Fear we’ve peaked. Fear we’ve already done our best work. As F.D.R. said “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” and there’s a lot of it about lately! Thanatos Ultimately it’s the fear that our journey of achievement, and therefore our existence is over, which is our fear of death,  AKA Thanatos the ancient Greek personification of death. Freud (beardy guy who knows your mum) used the term Thanatos to describe Death Drive (which I thought was the A406 on a Friday night) as opposed to Eros our sex drive (There’s a tosser joke in there somewhere but I’m sure it would go down as flat as a pancake). So am I raging against the

Nothing's gone twang or pop yet!

M-45 Friday 6th March. Quite a week. I've been pushing the numbers with three 13.8 mile runs. 13.1 is a half marathon so not bad but.... If anyone said at the end of 13 miles you're only half way there.... On the plus side nothing's gone twang or pop. The only real pain is from chafing on my back because I wore a running top with a seam, thank you Nike! I also had a tooth out on Wednesday (after my run) and its throbbed a bit. The dentist thought I was joking when I ask for the tooth to put under my pillow. She also refused an extra injection to cover the pain of when she presented me with the bill. I'm working on the principle that if I can frequently manage long distances, then on the day I'll cope with the extra. I'd like to do a full 26.2 miles at least once before so that I have experienced the psychological effects of that time and distance. The last two runs I've taken a gel pack. For those not in the know, they've taken eve

Sign Up M-47

So, I’ve signed up for the Brighton Marathon on April 19th!  That's 47 days away hence M-47. Tick tick tick tock! Yes, I checked the small print and cynics are allowed to do marathons, and yes, I was surprised by that as well! I’m already finding the experience difficult as it involves being nice to pretty much everyone! My only recourse is to bring balance to the universe by venting my thoughts, feelings and beliefs in this blog. Many of you will think, as I often do, ‘Here goes another weekend warrior banging on about doing a marathon.’ well perhaps not this time. Even reading back ‘I’ve signed up for the Brighton Marathon!’ fills me with anxiety. That's what I want to bring to this blog, my emotions. And just when it gets all heavy and gooey I'll deflect them away with humour. Some say that anxiety and excitement are the same thing dependent on context. These people sign up to courses on motivational speaking in the forlorn hope that if they become skilful