The Southampton Half Marathon was over and Commando and I were both chilling over a cup of coffee. He’d run thirteen point one miles and I’d walked more than half that trying to spot him. In fact I’d even run a little bit but I’m keeping that to myself in case he starts expecting me to run all the time.
“Have you got my race pack and my medal,” he said.
“I haven’t even seen it,” I said with a sinking feeling. “You didn’t leave it in the pub did you?”
“I don’t even remember having it in the pub. I thought I’d given it to you.” Continue reading A slight cock up in the medal department and a ten mile walk
Once the last runner had trotted around the Bargate I thought about my options for catching Commando mid race. If I ran I could probably make it to the Itchen Bridge before he completed the return lap but it would be touch and go and I really don’t do running. Besides, it would most likely already be crowded with spectators. Instead, I headed back towards the race start.
The day of the Southampton Half Marathon started off chillier than I’d expected. Standing just off the Avenue, opposite the bottom end of the Common, waiting around for the rest of our group I shivered and wished I’d brought a hat. It was just after eight and we were early but, thankfully, it wasn’t long before the others started to arrive and we set off towards the City Centre. By the time the start finish arch came into view it had begun to rain. Now I really wished I’d brought a hat but at least I didn’t have to strip down to t-shirt and shorts and run so I could hardly complain. Continue reading Pacing the Southampton Half Marathon
With the cool salt air in my face I strolled across the grassy area where the kite skateboarders hang out thinking about ice cream. Sadly there were no lads performing acrobatics with their skateboards today. In fact there was no one about at all. Still the sun sparkled on the sea and the grass along the promenade was dotted with daisies. It was enough to keep me smiling. Continue reading Lost in West Wood
This morning I thought I’d get out early, well earlyish, and try to get some miles under my belt. Ever since my adventure in Tickleford Gully with CJ I’d been thinking about walking a circular route to the shore through the gully and back via the trails in Mayfield Park, or perhaps the other way around. Since we’d had a couple of days with no rain I thought today would be a good day to try it. If I was lucky there wouldn’t be too much mud. Continue reading The butterfly trail
CJ and I went for a little stroll along the river this morning. For my part it was mostly about trying to fit some miles in, in a month where I am fast falling behind on my pledge. For CJ it was more about the cygnets. There had been reports that the black swans had another clutch, two this time, and he was eager to spot them while they were still fluffy and grey. Knowing how illusive they are I did my best to lower his expectations but he wasn’t really listening. Continue reading Duckling surprise
Every Saturday morning Commando gets up early for the Parkrun, usually on Southampton Common. Although his ankle still wasn’t quite right it was feeling much better and he didn’t want to miss this week’s run.
“I’ll just pootle round at an easy pace,” he said, “see how the ankle does.”
I wasn’t entirely sure I believed that so I decided to go along to keep an eye on him. Besides, Parkrun was all over the news since Stoke Gifford Parish Council had controversially announced they were going to start charging for theirs. As the government are trying to persuade porky Brits to get off the couch and get moving, this seemed like a rather short sighted plan. Obviously, the popularity of local Parkruns made them look like a cash cow in need of exploitation. Continue reading Parkrun controversy and a record
Back in Southampton I needed something to cheer me up after the marathon disaster, even though it wasn’t me who’d been injured and unable to run. Not only that, I needed to get some miles in because I was falling behind on the coastal challenge. When I looked out on beautiful sunshine this morning I thought I’d kill two birds with one stone and take a proper look at Telegraph Woods. Hopefully this time it wouldn’t rain on me. Continue reading Telegraph woods, so many trails, so little time
After a light lunch and a rest Commando declared he felt up to a little more gentle walking and suggested we have a look at the canals. This sounded a lot more like it as far as I was concerned, although I knew he wouldn’t be anywhere near up to the walk I had originally planned, so off we went. Continue reading Avoiding the marathon
Marathon morning dawned and it wasn’t quite the day either of us had expected. We were both awake early but Commando didn’t want to go down to breakfast until he was sure all the other marathon runners had left the hotel so we sat in our room watching rubbish on TV. Still it was better than watching excited runners getting ready. That would have been more than Commando could bear. Continue reading Not running a marathon