The Latest In An Occasional Series

Posted on: 29 Dec 2014

The Ongoing Ramblings Of A Man With Man Flu

What happened I ask myself? A year back and I felt the need to blog and blog. As a new (and late) comer to this running thing, it started out as a suggestion from my London Marathon charity, the wonderful CLIC Sargent. And I loved it. Blogging is good for the soul I told myself. Setting off for a long run on a Sunday I would lose myself in profound thought. What's it all about? I questioned of myself and the time flew by as blog entries took shape in my head. And now months go by and not so much as a solitary tweet from yours truly.

So what about the people, my fellows in the Real Buzz blog community? How I prized each and every response received. And the culmination with bloggers picnic on 12th April, followed by the big run on the Sunday. I pay tribute to the great people I met along the way, for the support network you provided on that long and winding road, and for becoming my family for those few magical days in April.

I know I can be a pretty self contained person. Maybe there were other people that needed the support more than I did. Generally if I had a problem I'd work it out for myself – pick yourself up, dust yourself off … etc etc.  Guess I don't always like to ask – maybe you know what I mean (and maybe you don't). Is asking for help a sign of weakness? But come that weekend in April I truly felt the love :-) There are some pretty inspirational people out there.

So what changed? The VMLM project was a total leap in the dark. Somewhere along the line I became a member of a running club. But as alluded to above I largely continued to hunt alone. I didn't run with the pack (on a Tuesday) nor did I (long) run with the pack on a Sunday. Shame really! When I put in the occasional appearance there were some good folks who made it pretty clear how pleased they were to see me (and how disappointed they were that I'd largely chosen to “go it alone”). And since then we participated in the summer “pub runs” and now the cold winter night “training runs”. And then of course what about parkrun? Feels like a real family gathering at 9:00 AM on a Saturday. And not just in Weymouth.

What of the running then? At the start of 2013 I was a somewhat overweight 55 year old on a first skiing holiday for too many years. And not run in anger since cross country pergatory around Greenwich Park as a schoolboy back in the 1970's. And now at 57 I have the London Marathon and four half marathons under my belt. And plenty more too, 10 miles, 10 Ks, 5 Ks, road runs, trail runs, parkruns.

And what's up for 2015. My first rational thought on finishing on the Mall in April was “I have to do this again” and so ballot I did. But as time passed I thought that maybe those London roads were in truth my own Damascus road, and maybe London 2014 should be left to stand alone. Now you can see the world, and let's just start in Paris, April 12th. I must have been one of the few people who was desperate for a “sorry” response for London 2015, and this time I wasn't disappointed. So my relationship with CLIC Sargent lives on, and I'm hoping to be able to take it further around the 2012 Olympic Road Race cycling course for Ride London 2015.

Christmas Present To Self

 Christmas Present To Self

And if these are the serious challenges, there are one or two others to do just for fun. March is the Grizzly, 20 miles of “Grime and Punishment” on the South Devon coast: July and Les from the running club aims to re-run last year's Tour-de-France Grand Depart around Yorkshire: August there's talk of the Dorset Doddle, 32 miles of (hilly) coast path from Weymouth to Swanage: And scariest of all “Challenge Weymouth”, a full Iron Man returns to our town and Mr Gullible has been talked into having a crack at the half triathlon (or as I like to think of it maybe not so much an Iron Man as a Plastic Man). But first I have to learn to swim something other than crap breaststroke.

Sea At Weymouth

Shit - Am I really Going Swimming There!

I don't know how long this will last for, but just for now this has been a life changer.

Christmas Wrapping Up

I guess it takes some time to feel a part (and not apart) when attempting to become part of some new community. But I reckon we're getting there. And what really strikes me about it is how many people there are out there that genuinely just want to help. Last year they were there, if I wanted them, in the Real Buzz community. And this year so many people at the running club and at parkrun. A wealth of experience (and maybe just as important inexperience) at you fingertips and everyone so pleased and willing to share with you. Thanks to you all and have a great 2015,


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