Janathon 30/31 – in which eventually I “get out of the bloody car”

Ginge has very kindly summarised day 30 with the following:

“It was cold, I didn’t want to run but my mean husband made me cos if I didn’t I wouldn’t be allowed to have my post-Janathon annual unseasonal barbeque. I FAFFED ROUND FOR YONKS AT WOM (‘home’ for my southern readers) BEFORE WE SET OFF TO TESCO. And I ran 3 miles the quickest I have in aaaaages. One more run to go. Ginge doffs his cap to all who have finished Janathon”.

That basically covers it, but I feel that I should elaborate a bit. It was cold. I didn’t really want to go to Tesco, let alone go to Tesco and then run. I stalled for as long as possible before we set off (including an attempt at hiding under the kitchen table at one point, although I suspect that was never going to work while I was wearing hi-vis) and then stalled for as long as possible in the car before I was kicked out in the layby at the side of the road. In Ginge’s defence, he did kick me out where I had asked to be released. Personally, I would have thrown me out before we’d even left the car park.

I had fully intended it to be an easy stretch of the legs after yesterday’s efforts, but somehow I managed to find a 9:29min/mile pace in them, which I would be more than happy with on any given day. I’m not sure whether it was the very cold legs, the prospect of the end of Janathon, residual Disaronno or the slightly scary but slightly wonderful email telling me that I’ve got a place in the Royal Parks Half in October. Whatever it was, it worked.

Tomorrow Janathon will draw to a close. I will run in the morning, donate my armful of blood after work and then be rewarded with a post-Janathon barbecue of Welsh Dragon sausage on homemade (Dan Lepard recipe) buns. Wherever you are, you are likely to hear my sigh of relief.

Large soft white baps. Fnar.

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Janathon 28/31 – in which we continue our adventure in Blackpool

I woke up this morning at 7:15, peeled my eyes open and felt quite alright. I lay there trying to work out whether this meant that I had managed to swerve a hangover or meant that I was still a bit drunk. Everything seemed to be working ok so I embarked on a frosty 3 miles up to the Tower and back. Ginge accompanied me at walking pace and acted as official photographer.

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Outside the Tower is the Comedy Carpet featuring the gags and catchphrases of 1000 comedians. As a tribute to those people featuring Jokeathons on their blogs, this is one of my favourites from Billy Connolly.

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Tonight is where things will become potentially messier. Everyone will buff up their shiniest shoes, comb their best toupees and check their ties for last year’s gravy stains before heading down for a night of stand up bingo, after dinner speaking and possibly the naffest mobile disco in Lancashire. Wish me luck for tomorrow…

Janathon 27/31 – in which we relocate our adventure to Blackpool

Once a year, Ginge and I venture to Blackpool for a rugby dinner. Usually it is one night of fairly predictable (see Janathon 2011 for a full itinerary) but generally enjoyable entertainment. By generally enjoyable, I mean soundly alcohol fuelled.

This year we are doing not one but two nights. I’m not sure what the end result of this will be. Those of you who know the potent combination of beer and rugby league fans will understand my concern. These days both my liver function and ‘am-I-making-a-tit-of-myself-ometer’ are calibrated to a much lower tolerance and I may survive to finish Janathon with my 100% record intact.

As it is, we spent ages sitting in the car waiting for the torrential rain to pass…

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Before long my bladder won and we had to venture out into the cold and wet of Stanley Park. After nipping to the loos, we stood in the lashing sleet debating the merits of postponing the run by a few hours, before deciding I was already cold and wet so I might as well do some running. I left Ginge on the AstroTurf (well I never expected that brand to be in the predictive text) practising his rookie quarterback drills and hacked out w very cold and very wet 2 and a bit miles.

Tomorrow promises subzero temperatures and a hangover the size of Fleetwood

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Janathon 26/31 – in which I read the paper and survive another morning run.

Last night’s yoga class was one of those where I lose what little spatial awareness I have and I end up being rendered unable to differentiate between left or right, foot or knee. Chaotic would best describe my style last night. Well until it we did the relaxation at the end where ‘asleep’ would best describe it. Not only did I manage to drop off during the relaxation, but also in the few minutes we spend wriggling our extremities in an attempt to gently return our consciousness to the room. Ah well.

This all lead me to suspect that an early run would be challenging to say the least. I was right. However, I did manage to drag myself out of bed before six (just) and clattered out some Audiofuel intervals before returning home and narrowly avoiding a major porridge disaster (excess milk leading to a near miss porridge volcano).

I accompanied my porridge with last weekend’s Observer Food Monthly which veered from ‘what do Olympic athletes eat’ to ‘what happens if I live off only food advertised on the telly for a month’. The first did that thing of wide-eyed amazement that athletes eat, whisper it, actual food (albeit in bizarre quantities/timings) and most of the athletes concluded that if they eat the wrong stuff, their performance is affected. The second article continued was similar ground breaking research – food manufacturers advertise processed food and if you just eat processed food for a month, you start to feel a bit ropey. Who’d have thunk?

Both articles feature pizza. Nutritionist John Briffa was predictably horrified at the concept, talking “of compounds called gluteomorphins in the wheaty dough and casomorphins in the cheese, both of which “basically have a drug-like effect on the brain”. I suspect that he doesn’t mean that in a good way. However, I intend to take the advice of hurdler Dai Greene who recalls “after I won, the first thing I did was order pizza – now that’s the food of champions!”

Janathon 25/31 – in which there is light at the end of the tunnel

There is indeed light at the end of the tunnel. It’s not just that we are now in the final week of this folly, but this as I set of this morning the birds were singing and the sky seemed just a touch brighter and the promise of spring seemed a little closer.  On the subject of darkness, over Christmas I read an incredibly spooky ghost story called Dark Matter. It tells the tale of a 1930s expedition taking place in the endless darkness of an Arctic winter and quite honestly scared me half to death in places (admittedly this may have been my own fault for choosing it as reading matter when I was having trouble  sleeping. Idiot).

Heartily recommended

The kit that they took on these jaunts was absolutely incredible (Scott took a printing press and a piano to the Antarctic – I learned this on honeymoon courtesy of Kelly Tarlton’s Antarctic Encounter and Underwater World, or as we call it Kelly Tarlton’s World of Fish) and always makes me feel slightly better when I worry about excessive packing for a weekend away.

For any NZ penguins (hello H!) enjoying Frozen Planet at the moment

Tonight is yoga night and it’s another early one tomorrow.