Sunday, 30 August 2009

Staycation running 3 - the new slow

I think I've cracked it - don't drink the night before and there is a chance of running the next morning - Camber Sands beach is vast and wonderful - if I can stop looking down to pick up razorclam shells or stopping to take pictures of degrading groynes I can run for hours ...

The light first thing on the run was also amazing

Now groynes have always fascinated me - was it just a schoolboy snigger at the name or was it more ? A quick trip to Wikipedia reveals the following essential facts -

Groynes may be classified as attracting, deflecting or repelling. Attracting groynes point downstream, serving to attract the stream flow toward themselves and not repel the flow toward the opposite bank. They tend to maintain deep current close to the bank. Deflecting groynes change the direction of flow without repelling it. They are generally short and used for limited, local protection. Repelling groynes point upstream; they force the flow away from themselves. A single groyne may have one section, for example, attracting, and another section deflecting.

Fascinating and useless information ....

Best of all you sometimes get terminal groyne syndrome where sand doesn't do what it is supposed to do

So I managed 3 runs in 3 days - the answer seems to be no alcohol, flat vast beaches and be careful at all times of terminal groyne syndrome ...

Sunday, 23 August 2009

Staycation running 2 - the new slow

Hopes were relatively high on the running front until we hit the Glen Bar on the first night and it was downhill and uphill from there.

We managed a long walk on the next day down an amazing pass

taking in swollen waterfalls,

fast flowing, impassable rivers

and a particularly expensive but dangerous primus stove

We finished the next day with a fun trek up the local mountain and were rewarded with a wild bilberry scrumping session on the way down.

Last hope for holiday running was next stop - Camber Sands.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Staycation running 1 - the new slow

First stop on our British staycation journey this summer was West Wales - as for all holidays I diligently packed my running kit with high expectations of early morning runs on empty beaches and coastal paths.

Well we managed to fish for mackerel, below is the full catch)

complete a stunning coastal walk around St David's Head and

and play an epic round of golf in hurricane wind conditions

- but the evening drinking put paid to jumping up early and zipping along the local beaches.

Next stop, and hopefully run, Donegal ...

Sunday, 9 August 2009

The last straw

Ankle injuries and 50th birthday celebrations are this week's excuses for not running - at least the sprained ankle happened whilst on a training run.

Following on from previous posts concerning Big Ben, I was excited to see pictures of a straw replica in a Cheshire cornfield - 70 feet high and made from more than 500 straw bales , it also has a working clock and is illuminated at night.

Apparently, Jack Straw is to take over from Mandy as acting Prime Minister in 2 weeks time - I suggest we ask him to stand in a corn field and to save on energy costs, not illuminate him at night when the combine harvester is in action.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Do we ever actually run ?

I know what you are thinking - another Sunday goes by and yet again no running - is this blog about virtual running rather than the real thing ?

This week, I was for the first time mainly in Northumberland, walking on empty beaches and looking at numerous castles and lighthouses. The huts on stilts on the causeway to Lindisfarne were particularly striking - these are used by stranded motorists who don't make it across when the tide is rushing in ( at circa 20 miles per hour).

My camera is on its last legs so I took the next video and sandblasted the lens at the same time.

Have been singing Mandolin Wind by Rod Stewart ever since - clearly the lens wasn't the only thing sand blasted . Wierdly, the mandolin player on this track was Ray Jackson of Lindisfarne - oh no now I'll be singing Fog on the Tyne for the rest of the week.