Cat flaps!

Posted: 05/07/2012 in Uncategorized

Wow, what a day. It started (after a quick trip to a well know DIY store to get the blade that should have come with the jigsaw I bought yesterday) with me maiming the back door to fit a cat flat so we can finally exhume the cat litter tray from the house. Then, a spot of woodwork to fit out an old cupboard so we can use it – new ceiling in  it so dust doesn’t get in from the floorboards above. After that, I finally got around to making a plinth for the front of the platform the washing machine lives on, and then I painted a pile of things, including the cupboard, some walls and a bit of ceiling. Did I mention I did some filling as well? Bust day, eh?

After all that excitement, it seemed like a run was in order. I’m currently one day ahead of my marathon training programme, due to other things happening on the days I’m supposed to run, so I fit ’em in early. In this case, tomorrow’s weather forecast says “rain of death”, and you know the Met Office don’t mess with that kind of thing, so I figured tonight was a better time to nip out. Five miles at a comfortable pace was order of the day.

I’m not are whether it’s down to the bit of barefoot transition that I’ve done, a couple of short runs in the last few days in my newly acquired Vivobarefoot Neo shoes, or whether it’s down to tonight’s experiment around in-run fuelling, but I was feeling pretty light on my pins tonight. Whizz, whizz, whizz, off I went. But hang on, what’s this? It’s mist, and not in a “here’s a wisp of mist” kind of way, more a supernatural, suck-your-brains-out sort of affair. Ir was not only difficult to see more than ten feet in front of me, it was also a little disconcerting to run along the cliff tops, hearing the sea crash below me, but not be able to see it…

At one point on the trail past the lighthouse I became convinced there was someone running behind me, at exactly the same pace – it took a minute, but I realised I was hearing my own footsteps echo back from the clouds…. weird.

Given that I’m now a registered athlete, it will also come as no surprise that I started to generate my own micro-climate, so great was the heat I was producing from my laser-eyeballs. The edges of my specs steamed up and my peripheral vision vanished entirely. How very strange.

Tonight’s fuelling experiment was a symphony in raw food. I’ve been vegetarian for years, and I now have a partly raw diet (aiming to increase that to ‘mainly’*). However, I’ve always used electrolyte drinks when I run, which clearly are neither natural or raw.  I’d heart form somewhere that grapefruit juice is a good thing to use, and having looked into fruit juice employing my usual ten-minute-googlesurf** methodology and discovered that a half juice / half water mix is a decent consistency. So, two juiced grapefruits, one juiced lime and a squirt of agave nectar (it’s a sweet thing, to offset the grapefruit a smidge) later, I topped up to a full bottle. It tasted pretty good, and kept me on the move, so it gets a tick. Not even the faintest threaten of a stitch either, which is one up on the electrolyte for starters.

If I can just sort the side effect of bits of grapefruit clogging up the nozzle on my drinking bottle it could be a winner.

I would tell you more about the run, but to be honest it was mostly gauzy white or a thicker white. I realised part way around that mist must mean high humidity, which probably explained why I was drenched with sweat – it wasn’t that far or that hard a run, but it must have looked like I’d run myself ragged. It’s lucky that I hadn’t gone with my mid-afternoon dalliance of a plan of heading out to Hadrian’s Wall for a jaunt – if I hadn’t known exactly where I was headed, I would have been hopelessly lost in seconds.

Hopefully as I slowly lengthen the runs with the barefoot shoes I’ll reach the point where I can use them on longer runs. Missed out on a place at an event with Northumbria University next week where they will be discussing barefoot running – the Doctor (in a PhD sense, though he may also be a medical man, I don’t know)  who organised it said they may put another on, the interest strong.


  • Distance: 5.51 miles
  • Time: 52’41″93
  • Average pace: 9’40” per mile

* I’m likely cutting out the drink and fags while I’m on. It seems silly to be a little spiky because you haven’t had an egg for a week –  might as well have a good reason that people will understand, no?

** I will perform a more rigorous search for information soon – it will involve a spreadsheet, and as such it will be at least 67% more scientific, though that’s merely a planning number.


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