Saturday, 28 September 2013

Parbold Hill Widdershins

A beautiful sunny autumn morning and I decided to just go with it, enjoying the fresh air and the morning. There's one or two photos here and my log from Endomondo. I found the route much more easily because I'd done some homework checking the route out on Google maps alongside the footpath as its marked on the OS map. You can tell how out of date the OS maps are as you can see on Google maps how trees have grown, houses have been built and paths have been diverted either officially or unofficially.

Here's the route and details of my 'performance'. Oh, and if you were wondering what 'widdershins' means, it's an 'old religion' word for anti-clockwise', which indicates less than a source of blessing, if you see what I mean. Next time I'll do it clockwise!
And some photos:
Boars Den Tumulus

All is safely gathered in

High Moor

Autumn Skyline

View over the Lancashire Plain

Parbold Church and Ashurst's Beacon

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Standish/Shevington Loosener

Went out on my bike this evening. The nights are really drawing in now that the autumnal equinox has passed. I set out at dusk and in about 20 minutes it was quite dark. Time to be lit up as much as possible on the bike. It may be safer than in the day time because with high viz jacket and all the reflecting fabric as well as lights on the bike itself I should say that you really stand out in a way you might not in the day. Anyway, here's some detail of the ride:

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

On the Verge

I needed to go for a run this morning. But I didn't relish the prospect of a lot of road. So I decided to run by the canal on the grass verge of the tow path and then on the grass verges of the road. That meant that about two thirds of the run was on grass. I didn't like the long flat of the canal bank though. I much prefer the ups and downs. My left hip began to be a bit painful by the time I got to the top of the hill but I managed to get back without doing any damage. I just took it easy.

Here's where I ran:

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Endomondo Challenge

Endomondo Challenge: has joined the challenge'Running Rotten Egg Award September (Most km - Running)' on Endomondo. Check it out on:

Well, I'm 5461st in the challenge out of more than 14,000. Lets see how near to 1st I can get!

Life lessons from running 1. (might be the only one)

I was going to do another trail run this morning but to be honest I couldn't be bothered driving into the countryside. There's some trails within a mile of home, over reclaimed industrial land which I'll probably explore over the winter. Anyway I decided to do a run on the road around home.

Wherever I could I took to the grass verges and I ran on the grass in the park. I also took advantage of any tarmac surface if it was the only alternative to paving stones and tried to keep to rough tarmac.

As I think I said before, trail running is more like a very vigorous massage of the feet and legs because of the changeable and uneven terrain; grass, mud, earth, stone. This contrasts markedly with the hard monotonous surface of the pavement where the high repetitive impact puts much greater stress and strain on muscles, ligaments and bones.

So this morning I was much more careful and discerning about the surfaces on which I ran. Uneven terrain is harder to negotiate and if you aren't careful it's easy to trip, stumble or fall. But together with running up hills, it provides better, more thorough exercise than monotonous hard surfaces. I find that hard, even ground and descents take much more out of my feet, legs and hips. So what you would expect to be worse for the body is actually better for it. That certainly applies to me anyway.

We think that when life is at its most comfortable and straightforward and easy going, we are better off. From what running tells me, it's the ups and downs, the uncertainties, the challenges in life that make us 'better'. As C.S. Lewis put it in The Screwtape Letters, 'the road to hell is soft under foot, without turning, without signposts and leads gently downwards'.

This is where I ran today:

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Up and Running

I'm running again - trail running mostly which I'm enjoying very much indeed. The movement is far less repetitive and so my body doesn't feel the strain as much as in road running. My foot is ok and it feels great to be back out in the fresh air again. Here's my latest run.

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