Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Nearly there

Stef and I ran up the Dales Way to just shy of the Friends Meeting House and back this evening. We only had to put our headtorches on for the last mile or so in spite of setting off around 5-30pm. Stef wanted to know how long this run is and got 3.6miles on an on-line measuring site. I wasn't far off with my guess of 3.5miles! We timed ourselves and plan to do the run from time to time through the spring to monitor our fitness

I was running in the New Balance MT110 trail shoes I bought at the weekend. I think the MT101 are okay but the 10mm diff is too much. The new shoes seem much better with a 4mm diff and a much grippier sole and were perfect for the (mostly dry grassy) trail run. Great value at a penny under forty quid from Sports Direct too

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Up the dale

Stef and I went up to Starbotton today for our run. The weather was a bit cool and misty on the tops but it was lovely to be out and about. It was my first run since the Trog because of the MANflu and my French trip and we did around 7miles with 2500feet climb

We saw loads of lambs around Bolton Abbey and the curlews are back in the dale now in decent numbers too. There's a real feel of spring in the air with green woodpeckers yaffling (Upper Wharfdale is well populated with woodpeckers), snowdrops everywhere and the dafodils close to blooming. Brilliant!

Thursday, 23 February 2012


If I remember correctly the song is about Jim Morrison, who is buried in Paris. Okay, so the guy was a drunken buffoon but what's wrong with enjoying a few ales every now and then

A week in France

My week is passing very quickly. I've been in Western France the last two days and nights and went out for dinner in Tours last night with a colleague. We have a big customer to see here this afternoon and then we'll be heading back to Paris. The colleague I've been working with is a keen runner and in particular triathlete but we've been too busy to find time for a run out. What's the chance I'll address someone with a jaunty 'bonjour' when I get home at the weekend instead of my more usual 'hey up'?!

Monday, 20 February 2012

Joe le taxi

I'm off to Paris in a couple of hours for a week of training with my new employers. Car parking is ridiculously expensive at Leeds-Bradford airport so I've booked a taxi

Sunday, 19 February 2012

The Axe

I got up early this morning and went down to the bird hides on the Axe estuary. Highlights were shoveler, the local over-wintering common sandpiper and a very handsome pintail drake. The weather has been decent all weekend down here and I watched the sun come up this morning from the new hide by the tram lines. It was beautiful!

Beach Boys

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Reasons to be cheerful part 3

1) I've largely shaken off my cold, err, MANflu now

2) I'm really enjoying my new job

3) We're celebrating Tom's 18th birthday later today

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

MANflu survivor

I'm amazed how much better I feel today after getting up yesterday with an extremely sore throat and what I thought was the beginings of a chest infection. I've not run but have a bit of time at home between work meetings tomorrow and Friday and might see if I can sneak out for a half an hour or so steadily away

Pull up to the bumper

Tuesday, 14 February 2012


I was struck down on Sunday morning by a bad dose of MANflu. I'd got a sore-throat, head-ache and a tight chest and it got worse and worse for the next three days. However, after getting up feeling truly awful this morning I think I might just now have seen the worst of it. I've not even thought about running since the Trog, especially after hearing tales recently of folk having weeks and weeks off after trying to run with a bad chest. Maybe a nice hot Valentine's Day curry later this evening with Stef will help?

Chet Baker

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Wadsworth Trog

There had been some doubts during the week as to whether the course was safe to run but a bit of clever route re-organisation meant the race went ahead yesterday. Conditions underfoot were challenging to say the least but I had a brilliant day running round with Raj from Wharfedale, Phil from Calder Valley and Elise from Tod Harriers. Results where available directly after the finish and my friend Ady was out taking photos for Sportsunday Ady gave me permission to use the above image which gives some idea what conditions were like! Many thanks to Ady (it was great to see you yesterday), and to all involved in the organisation of what was a really memorable day

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Friday, 10 February 2012

Trog eve

It's the Wadsworth Trog tomorrow and the word is that it's going to be extra tough because of icy conditions over in Calderdale. The Trog is hard enough at the best of times and I'm slightly anxious. In fairness not anxious enough to jettison the traditional Friday pre-race crisps and beer but a bit anxious. The race is usually superbly organised and I'm looking forward to a proper run out in one of my favourite areas of the West Riding and a good catch up with friends afterwards in the cricket club

Soul II Soul

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Mood Indigo

I went to the funeral today of a very special man; a kind and generous man and a good father. As is usually the case it was a terribly sad and sombre event and I left with tears streaming down my face

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Work: the curse of the blogging classes

It's seemed to be all work, running and bed the last few days. I'm enjoying the new job and last night Stef and I met Martyn and Helen for a full moon headtorcher up the Beacon followed by a couple of pints in the Swan. Tonight it's the club mid-week run out from the White Lion. This week is flying by!

I Travel

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Fun in the snow

Last night Stef and I ran up the Beacon with headtorchs. Snow was falling heavily and there was a couple of inches or so already on the ground when we set off. It was fairly wild on top and we didn't hang around by the trig point too long. As we hit the top road on th way down a guy passed by in a 4 x 4 and as we ran past he wound down his window and said, 'you must be bloody bonkers!'. We were still laughing about this this morning

This afternoon we ran over to Bolton Abbey along the Dales Way. The weather was improving all the way there and we stopped a few times to take photographs. We did very well with the birds along the river with dipper, grey wagtail, little grebe, heron, goosander and cormorant all seen. A pair of woodcock were flushed too in the woodland close to Bolton Bridge and we had good views as they flew away

Look around very corner

Saturday, 4 February 2012

All change

It's all change for me. I handed my notice in at work three weeks ago and start a new job on Monday. This meant leaving my lap-top, company car and maybe worse of all HTC Desire smart phone at the office yesterday. I've got an ancient Nokia I've borrowed from Stef but cannot get on the internet with it

I'll be getting a new car, computer and my first ever Blackberry on Monday. The job will be similar to previous, but with more UK customers to see, which is good. Overseas travel will be around 12 to 15weeks as before too

The snow is falling steadily now here in Wharfedale and we'll be out later for a run; possibly a headtorcher up the Beacon before tea tonight. Running in the dark with snow on the ground is fantastic and looking out of the upstairs window it looks likely we'll be doing just that later!

Rock Lobster

Kate mentioning 'lobsters' on her post about commuting reminded me of this fantastic song

Friday, 3 February 2012

Bourgie Bourgie

I've not heard this for a while. Next stop Edwyn Collins and Paul Quinn's version of Pale Blue Eyes

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Two more headtorchers

Stef and I met Becca on Tuesday night to show her my old BG training hill-rep route from Wells Road near the start of the Ilkley Moor fell race, up past the White Wells and on to the big cairn above Rocky Valley. It was a cold night but dry and we did two reps together, albeit going the long way round rather than back the way we went up (the steps were icy and none of us fancied it)

Last night the White Lion was closed for ongoing refurbishment but we ran from the Kings Head in Silsden. It was up to Nab End, over to the Doubler Stones and back via Brunthwaite. The Kings had a couple of beers on from the Revolutions Brewery Co The Clash-inspired London Porter was excellent ( I had two pints; Stef was driving) and I'll be looking out for their other beers from now on. When we got home we had fishfinger sandwiches with plenty of ketchup. There are worse ways to spend a dark February night!

The Flamingos

Wednesday, 1 February 2012