Archive for Andy Joyce

Back in Blighty

I thought I would have seen a remarkable difference in my running but actually it started pretty much the same. The John Wayne waddle to get my carcass moving and then when I am going it is alright.

I am just settling back into the dark days of England and therefore other than my default conversation, the weather, I have little to tell you. The Ryanair flight back yesterday was not as bad as we had anticipated, other than trying to over charge people £5 for ‘Drinksssssssssss and Snacksssssssss’. Funnily enough the Land Anchor pointed something out to me whilst she was waiting for the aforementioned refreshments and I would invite you to look the next time you are on a Ryanair flight. Their menu card has a page dedicated to meal deals. It even goes so far as to have a Lichtenstein style carton lady saying something along the lines of “These deals are out of this world”. The “deal” is for 3 items that add up to €10. The same three items bought individually however, add up to €10. I am altogether sure that there is no real deal for anyone. It is another example of the smoke and mirrors that this specific newsagent with wings, adopt to charge you the exact same fair as every other airline.

Day: 113
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 281.36
Miles to go: 761

Friday 21st

Today was a real treat. I was tired and did not want to leave the bonfire in the front room to get my shorts on and run around. Things were made slightly easier though by the music – 2 songs in particular.

Never before had I thought that I would be fussed for the Reebok Classic white trainer and the West Ham football shirt, but the shrill cries of Bruce Dickinson and Run to the Hills was an absolute life saver. It was then followed by the full version of Layla. Why, when you have such an iconic riff like that would you then tag on to the end of the song, making it twice as long, an almost Chicago type ballad. Why? Because I am Eric Clapton and I can do what the hell I like.

Fair enough.

Day: 112
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 278.36
Miles to go: 764

Thursday 20th

20 Nov
Today I got dropped off after popping to the supermarket, and ran a one way distance, which involved cars and everything. People looking at me as if I was a mad man, them wrapped up in the 20 degree heat with coats boarded by Eskimo collars and thick boots. My in my thin shorts that unfortunately leave little to the imagination.
Nice though. The height gain was not as impressive as I thought. Maybe Garmin giveth and taketh away, like someone else I know, to give an average. Anyway, my legs were not appreciating the up hill nor the down hill. That is the funny thing with me and hills. Unless you are a fell runner and are an expert at throwing your weight forward and extending your gait, I find plodding down hill and putting undue pressure on my knees is actually quite detrimental/tiring; so when you come to the end of the down hill you legs are still tired and not ready for the resultant flip side.
Anyway. another day closer to the seemingly planes of Surrey.

Day 111
Miles today: 3.09
Miles completed: 275.36
Miles to go: 767

Wednesday 19th

19 NovTo the bins again today. I stumbled across a shoot, which was slightly disconcerting as I wasn’t sure if they could see me and I could really see where they were aiming, as they were nestled in amongst the vines.
Anyway I dodge the wayward guns and plodded to victory avoiding the gnashing gums of the old guard dogs on the farms that I run past. Nothing to report other than I am half way through the hills week and am both happy and sad about it at the same time.

Day 110
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 272.27
Miles to go: 770

Tuesday 18th

18 NovI can tell that my body is getting tired from the extra effort. My ankles are starting to give way and the calf muscles are working overtime (as I am forcing myself to run up the hills on the balls of my feet). At least it should in theory help with sprints and the like, a bit later on.

Anyway the lethargy is a fair one. I am not upset with myself for the fact that the drive took me an extra 2 minutes today. Not altogether sure why as I did not stop this time round, but did go a bit slower so that I wouldn’t stop, if you know what I mean.
By the way, the monthly mentor will be coming out at the end of this month, due to my overseas trip. This month Is Charles and his Cotswold Way run.

Day 109
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 269.27
Miles to go: 773

Monday 17th

17 NovRan to the bins and back today. long gradual climbs as opposed to the sharp mile long ones of the drive, but nevertheless tiring. I can still feel the benefit of the last two days though. I do have to stop at the top sometimes to catch my breath.
I had a very odd experience where my heart put out such a ferocious beat that it forced the air in my mouth out and then back in again. Kind of like the effect of an explosion under water. It was slightly disconcerting for a second as I thought I had reached my natural resonance and would collapse into a puddle, but when I realised the integrity of my structure was still in tact I was a great experience.

Still nice to run in the sunshine but it does make one perspire a little more.

Day 108
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 266.27
Miles to go: 776

Pranzo

16 novToday marks the annual pilgrimage to Rosina’s, a restaurant that it packed to the gunnels every Sunday with local families celebrating a birthday, christening, anniversary or the like. Simply put, it is a cacophony of smiles, laughter, chatter and simple (yet amazing) food. We dream of this place. You have two choices of a starter and two choices of a main. The wine comes in a school cafeteria glass jug and the fluorescent tube lighting is only just surpassed by the look of inconvenience as the waiting staff realise you will be sitting down. It is brilliant.

So I put an extra bit of effort in today to try and earn the midday glut. It was worth it.

Day 107
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 263.27
Miles to go: 779

Saturday 15th

15 NovFirst day of the hills today. I got it done before lunch so that I could enjoy a beer whilst watching the autumn international on TV. Fat chance of that happening as the stratosphere was not in alignment apparently, so the foreign TV was not working.

Anyway, I chose to run up and down the drive, which is in actual fact a country road upon which our house happens to be, but it has not been used at the top end for 40 odd years so it is green and overgrown. Other than the plodding nature of the first run out it was interesting to see how my running style, which has since August been fashioned by flattish pavements, would now deal with proper inclines. I was still running on my heels, which is ridiculous, but maybe it will improve over the week. The good thing is that it is half way through November and I get to run in twenty degree heat in the sun during the day. What a pleasant change.

Day 106
Miles today: 3.25
Miles completed: 260.27
Miles to go: 782

We’re on uz holidezz

Last night with a friend staying over, I got rather excited that I had a week off. Eight rather easy beers later and I woke up at 0600hrs to go for my run before heading to the airport. It was the last chance that I had to run on a relatively flat surface, so I made use of it.

It was not an extraordinarily slow pace but it took into account my natural and self imposed fragility. Very foggy, cold, dark and autumnal. Sums it up really.

Day 105
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 257.02
Miles to go: 785

Anti-distinctly- minty-monty

What an interesting and thought provoking blog it was yesterday, A fine piece of short yet intense writing. I am not altogether sure I will be able to beat that.

The boss was out so I went running this afternoon in the misty rain. Fine rain – “you know the stuff that soaks you right through”. Am not sure what I have done to the Garmin watch but it started half way down the road and registered 30 yards less than it normally does.
Anyway, the bad thing about the route to Cobham rugby club is that I have to pass a butty van in a layby. Its chimneys belching out the fantastic fairground smell of onions. It takes all my will power to prevent vomitice and to not stop and purchase a double banger and mustard.

I know that vomitice is not actually a word (I don’t think) but I believe myself to be on a par with Samuel Johnson and therefore within my statutoralistic and divinicative rights to make them up. Maybe I will get a call up to be the editor of the next Collins Dictionary. I will let you know.

Till then.

Day 104
Miles today: 3.00
Miles completed: 254.02
Miles to go: 788