Posted on: 12 Feb 2020

I don’t know if it’s actually a thing – I don’t care – I’m making it a thing.

I suspect many of you will recognise it even before I’ve given definition to the word.

Slowtivation (noun) - a state of mind where internal motivation exists, but is very slow to come out.

I am most definitely feeling slowtivated at the moment.

It’s been an odd start to the year really.

Things are happening in my life that I really wasn’t expecting to be there, no need for detail here, but change both good and bad, in both my home life and my work, is certainly going to be a feature of this first year of the 2020s at least, and probably for some time after.

January started well in terms of exercise, as it does for many I guess. Not that I’m one of the resolution gang that fill up the gyms in January, I’m not. Sustainable lifestyle choices are the way forward for me, and sustainable includes sometimes having a break. Come to think of it, sustainable is utterly dependant on having a break. Remember this from school?

We are made of the Earth. We are made of its water, of its carbon, of its heavy metals and the elements of its air. Just as the land needs some time to lie fallow, so too do we need our time to repair. Why on Earth would any of us think we are any different to that from whence we came?

My own fallow period ends when the darkest of the nights are illuminated by the ever increasing glow of Chevy Chase, who now occupies I think every 4th house in Wrexham, nay Wales, nay, every 4th house in Britain, in Europe, possibly the world!

It bothers me when I look out of the aeroplane window at night, and look down onto a planet that is illuminated like that house. 10 years to save the world – and we keep on lighting up more lights. Consumerism never seems to lie fallow. Perhaps it’s time it did?

Anyway, that’s a diversion, albeit one to think about. Before I can save the world I have to save myself, right?

Restored, I usually come back with a bang in that blissful week between Christmas and New Year, when the chance to soak up a whole week’s worth of mid-winter daylight enters the fray. My good intentions got side-tracked by a very quickly upon me trip over to California, working for a week over there. I did at least get an exciting run round the Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park after I landed – and found myself participating (sort of; I was stopping people entering the danger zone) in a helicopter rescue for an injured mountain biker.

It was while I was over that side of the pond that things went a bit wobbly, very wobbly as it happens, in my spine. Last time a disc bulge troubled me to the extent that this one has, it was 2014, and I was just about to run the Welsh 1,000’s. I couldn’t run that race, but I walked and got a D.N.F. after choosing self-preservation over stupid pride at Pen-y-Pass. The walk had done me right though – my back was pretty much repaired by what those mountains gave to me that day. Not the same opportunities when you’re working. Then I caught a cold. Sneezing and coughing became an adrenaline rush extreme sport with the condition of my delicate spine.

So with cough and cold and aching back I returned to the UK and I worked at getting my spine to mobilise properly again. As the pain eased off and the cough and cold subsided, I thought I would get going again, but I didn’t. That’s when it hit me – the slowtivation.

Was it the loss of my beloved Garmin that was at the forefront of this dip in drive? I’m not even joking, just before that trip over to America’s West, I’d realised my watch was missing. I know the last time I used it, the last time I saw it, I know exactly what I was going to do with it. Sadly, the most likely cause of me not having it anymore, is that somebody I know, if only a little bit, has picked it up and walked off with it.

 I guess I’ll never really know ☹.

So at a time when one of the best tools I have for keeping my fitness up is riding my old racing bike on the rollers in the shed, I didn’t feel in any way inclined to do that, the effort just not worth it if there’s nothing to record.

I’m not normally too fussed about recording things, but for 2020, I set myself a little target in my head:

Last year I was persuaded to join a “run 1,000 miles this year” group on the old Faceache there on that there t’internet; so having set myself targets for 2020 aimed at building on that, suddenly I have a need to log data.

I'm staying off Facebook as much as I can at the moment - I've come to the realisation that within most of the groups I've joined, thinking that I'd have things in common with other members, what I've actually found is a bunch of dullards whose inane and utterly meaningless chatter is actually driving me daft - this has been mostly prevalent amongst groups declaring they exist to help people's mental health, which is a shame. These groups seem to have been hijacked by a bunch of arseholes pretending to understand or suffer themselves, whilst showing zero empathy for anyone who clearly genuinely suffers, even to the point of blatant nastiness. I'm better off without that ****.

Another diversion.

I wasn’t going to declare my targets publically, not yet at least, but what the heck – 2,020 kms each, running, cycling and walking (walking includes just every day steps, which I know to be pretty much 2,000 per mile).

Walking is comfortably on target so far, but the other two; pah!

So I tried to get working on putting the cycling miles right, and ended up on my ass on a roundabout on my way to work for my troubles. Gear hanger and lever both trashed, skinned knee, and a rather unpleasant mouth full of dirty tarmac too.

Can’t afford to mend the bike yet, but I have now replaced my lost / stolen Garmin, and started back at a little bit of running again. Feeling slowtivated you might say. Reluctantly, back on it.

All in all, I’ve run about 40 miles since the Snowdonia marathon last year.

Don’t know how the **** I’m going to manage the one I’m now signed up for at the start of April.

I will maybe see you there Mr Anderson ?

Best not mention the other mad idea I've had - the other target I haven't quite committed to yet - if I say it out loud I'll have to do it - and I'm pretty sure I can't do it in a state of slowtivation 🙄.

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