Strange times #2

I’ve forgotten what it’s like to run solo. Forgotten what it’s like to push myself on a run. I’ve comfortably settled for enjoying social running instead of solo running. I found I got a lot more from running with others than running on my own.

So I set up a lunchtime running group at work so I could always run with others.
I run with my partner regularly, my colleague weekly, my brother sometimes, my clients. I very rarely run on my own.
I forgot what it’s like, to run free on your own.

Music on, my running tempo as slow or as fast as I want.
My workout, whatever I want, easy, tempo, fartlek, intervals, hills, long. My heart rate, whatever I push it to be.
My thoughts, internal chatter, processing the day, the week, my life.

Today, I decided I’d run out and back, however far I wanted – it ended up being to Bella Park track and back.
The roads were mostly empty of cars – the streets and the M77 as I crossed it from above – even at 11am. There were walkers, runners and cyclists out, bit bit too many.
I kept my distance, pretending like I had the plague and didn’t want to spread it to them.

The cute little girl, oblivious to what was going on around her, walking behind her parents with the old Labrador. The couple pushing their son is in his pram.
The cyclist who passed me at the track and gave me a wide berth.
The neighbour at the end who has just started a zero to 5k plan as she ‘might as well try to push herself‘.

It’s a beautiful sunny (but cold) Spring morning out there. And today we should be flying back from Portugal. ☹️
But instead we’re safe inside our home or garden and getting the time to think, to exercise, to just be.
I’m hoping what we all do stops this virus in its tracks, and I think it’ll be like this for some time, so we better get used to it.

Two weeks into social distancing for me, some of it feels easy, some of it feels forced.
There’s no anger or frustration left, I’m just thinking of ways to make it better. Today I waved, smiled or said hello to everyone I could when I passed them. A bit of socialising with strangers, whilst still keeping our distance.

Why don’t you say hello if you’re out and about?
Or give a smile and a wave.
People might think you’re odd or crazy.
Or maybe they’ll appreciate the gesture and give and hello, a smile or a wave back?

Recognising that we’re all in this together – these strange times that may only get stranger as we go in. Maybe this is a time to reflect and realise how good things have been. How clever things have become.
A time to take stock and be grateful for the little things in life.

Facebook tells me that this time 5 years ago I was on a hen weekend with my good friends. The weekend we went cliff jumping and river tubing,
And my little body couldn’t deal with the cold and shut down and fainted. 😂
The photo above is of me after fainting, eating a mars bar to get my sugar levels up. 😳
The hen weekend for the friend who was getting married then, now has a daughter and baby son, born just recently.
These are the important things in life – the babies, the children, the families, our friends and families – and that we all keep healthy, and keep in touch.

I’m grateful that I’m fit and healthy and able to run – solo (or with others in other times). Grateful that I have a good home, and good secluded gym set up. Grateful that I have people who care about me, and I care about them. And many many more things.

I posted the above a few days ago, and it’s true.
But for me, week 1 was like day 1, and week 2 was a bit like day 2. I was all motivated and keen to keep healthy, fit and active in week 1.
In week 2, I felt a bit lost and the fridge seemed to be my closest friend – anyone else??! 😳😂

So I’ve decided from next week, week 3, I’m going to make an effort to do what I can to make things good.
As long as I’m well I’m going to exercise every day, first thing – Run, walk or garagym. I’m going to eat well and get plenty of sleep.
And I’m going to do things I enjoy.

I’m having strange dreams.
Someone in my dream last night asked me if I was pregnant (I’m not!),
Then I was looking after my friends son in another dream, and the roads were all iced up, and I was walking on them in bare feet. 🤷‍♀️ Strange times, strange dreams – anyone else??!

I’m going to call friends and family, check in and see how they are. We’re going to look after each other.
And I’m going to watch boxsets and films and listen to music and podcasts.
I’m going to set a training plan to get fit and use what I have to do it – solo. I’m going to use this time to reflect and do some good.

Now I leave you with three things:

1. Brave your Day podcast – give it a listen.

2. Words from Jason Leitch, on the Brave your Day podcast. His advice is:

In order to break the chain of this virus you should:
– stay at home to save lives.
– only go out when necessary, and keep social distance when you do.

3. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/stories-52066956 – this piece from the BBC is not only great factual storytelling and journalism but also reminds us of how far this has all come and how much everything has changed in such a short time.

I hope you’re hanging in there. And if you’re not, phone or message someone for a chat.

Get another perspective, I find that usually helps me. Stay strong and I think I’ll say it now, stay safe and well. x And at least the sun is shining. 👍🏻

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