soggen

I went to the doctor yesterday to get the results of my blood tests. Not too good – HbA1c is 9.4%, not much down from the 10.5% on 21 April :( Cholesterol levels now:  total 5.9, ratio 4.5 – I’ll have to find out how to relate those results to the earlier ones. The doctor wants to put me on metformin, but I’m going to hang on for six weeks and see if I can knock it down a bit more on my own – I’ve not been as good as I should be recently, I know.

And so, I set the alarm for 6 a.m. this morning, and set off at 6.30 for a bike ride and then a swim. Runkeeper crashed out on me, so I’ve had to estimate how far with Google Maps – I think about 7 miles, but I don’t really know how long. It started to rain about 1 mile out, and got heavier and heavier – I stopped at the Baths, and very nearly said “soddit” and went home, but I had to lock the bike up anyway, and go in and collect the headphones that I’d lost there last visit, so I did go for a swim. Only did 16 lengths – was tired after battling the rain, and I did some weights and resistance last night too. Still, better than nothing.

Put my wet clothes back on and pedalled home – not a long route, but not the most direct either. The parcel man had been while I was out, bringing me red shoes of stompiness from eBay – nearly all my shoes are too big, since I’ve been losing weight, and so I have to buy more; such a hardship.

choose your animal

I’ve had a bit of a summer cold the last few days, and so haven’t done any exercise, which has left me feeling a bit sluggish, so I went out for a brisk walk this morning at 6.30. It was going to be a Couch to 5k session, but sadly (or not) the leggings I was wearing were bought when I was two sizes bigger than I am now, and would have caused an Embarassing Incident had I carried on jogging, so I didn’t, and just walked instead; just over 3 miles, on a new route which included the KC Stadium, and back through the cemetery. I was catching up with Desert Island Disks podcasts – Stuart Rose, then Frank Skinner – and as I trundled across the Walton Street wasteland, I thought the headphones were making an odd noise, until I realised that it was a car behind me tooting its horn, waiting to get by. One more reminder as to why I’ll never wear headphones when cycling!

choose your animalA lot of pavements in Hull are chalked with the sign “pick it up”, which exhort dog owners to take their animals’ mess home with them. I was amused to see a “get a cat” chalking while out this morning – must have been done in the last couple of days, I think, as I’m sure I would have noticed it before.

eleventy

Bridlington beach

Pete and I had the sense to get married on a bank holiday – 29 May 1999, to be precise. The weather then was biblical, with a huge thunderclap as we left the register office in Weston-super-Mare, and rain that sent the wedding guests hunting for gopher wood. No matter, as it was a joyous day.

We planned a day out to Bridlington to celebrate this year’s anniversary; the forecast was not encouraging, but a little rain never deterred us, and we sallied forth, armed with various layers of windproof and waterproof clothing, and a flask of warming tea.

We started with a walk along the beach for a couple of miles, which was almost deserted. The tide was on its way out, leaving loads of streams running down towards the North Sea, some of which were too wide to leap across, and too deep to ford, even in sturdy walking shoes, but it was lovely all the same.

Then lunch (liver for me, something I never have at home, and fish pie for Pete), and a mooch round Brid’s charity shops, which turned up two pairs of size 14 trousers for me, and English asparagus and strawberries from the market. Then we went to see Flamborough South Landing, and then for a couple of miles trek around Bempton Cliffs, the RSPB sanctuary.

Then home to Doctor Who – a grand day out, Grommit, and it hardly rained at all.

On Sunday, I went into Hull to do some necessary shopping, while Pete finally mended the wing mirror on the car, went to get a headlamp bulb, tested the bike rack we bought before we moved and never even opened, and fettled the bikes.

And yesterday, we loaded said bikes onto said bike rack, popped into Asda for bulk cat fud, nipped into the motor factors for the *right* headlamp bulb and a number plate for the bike rack, then went to Humber Bridge country park, where we took the bikes for a 5 mile ride along the Hessel foreshore (Runkeeper map here). It was a beautiful spring afternoon, and I could have gone further, but that’s how far the path runs, and I don’t feel confident in traffic yet.

We bought these bicycles at least 2 years ago, and probably longer, but I’ve only been on mine 2 or 3 times – I was so desperately unfit, and Long Ashton was quite hillish. But I’ve been using the exercise bike, and more importantly, it’s *flat* here.  The time was not spectactular, but it involved several on and offs at cycle gates, which are too narrow to ride through, even if my cycle steering was up to it. The bike felt very big and heavy, and the back brake needs adjusting, or possibly a new cable, but it was really nice.  Next stop: Spurn Point, I think, but not this weekend, as we are sallying forth to that Lunnon for a wedding (hurrah! – see lots of you there!).

So that was our bank holiday weekend – hope you had a good ‘un too.

constitutional

I took this morning’s daily constitutional (3.21 miles, starting at 6.15 a.m., thanks for asking) accompanied by two Desert Island Discs podcasts – Fay Weldon, and about half of Rob Brydon, so the remainder of the latter is a treat waiting for next time.

I was fascinated to hear Ms Weldon say that one of her best ever moments was sitting *on the stage* at a Grateful Dead concert; apparently they invited her to do so, although I don’t think she said why. Fascinating woman.

I came home through the cemetery – I don’t know when they unlock the gates, but they were not open the other day at 6.15, and were today at about 6.55.  Lots of birds singing, and squirrels running about, including some baby ones.

Easter weekend 2010

We had no plans, because the weather forecast was so horrible, but actually it wasn’t too bad, at least in the mornings.  On Thursday, we decided to walk to the appropriate Post Office to tax the car – this involved a round trip of  6.7 miles (on top of the 2 miles + swim I’d already done that morning).

We had a “down day” on Friday, just pottered about the house, and on Saturday we did another short walk of  7.3 miles over to Ennerdale Leisure Centre to book a gym induction, as they have “lost the coach” at the local council gym (how careless).  They could do it there and then – £12 each to be shown how to use a stack of machines that a) we know how to use, and b) are not the same at the machines at Beverley Road was, we thought, something of a ripoff, but hey ho.  We walked there along the river bank, and on the way home decided to walk on the other side of the river; this was fine, until we ran out of path, and in getting back to civilisation, had to cross some very damp terrain, and I got water in my trainers; this was officially Not Enjoyable, and I had a grump.  Rest of the day was slumpage.

Hessle foreshore />On Sunday we actually got the car out (shock horror!) and went over to the Humber Bridge Farmers’ Market. It seems you need to get there a lot earlier than 11 a.m. if you want any bread; it looked as though a plague of locusts had descended, but we picked up some locally milled wholemeal flour and oats, which I’m pleased about.  Then we strolled along the Hessle foreshore for about 3 miles (can’t be sure, as the GPS/Runkeeper ran amok, and thought we’d actually crossed the bridge). Came home and cooked a roast chicken with roast veg and new potatoes.

Sunday evening brought a bit of a panic, as one of the web servers had threw a wobbly, and we couldn’t log into it to make it stop (it had a load average of 453 when my log window gave up!).  In the end we had to ask Merula to reboot it, which they did at 23:30 – above and beyond the call of duty, really!  We got up at 6 on Monday morning, and upgraded some server components in the hope of putting a stop to such nonsense, then had a slumpage in the afternoon, although I did do 8.3 miles on the exercise bike while finishing episode 1 of Cranford.

We also managed to watch the two movies from Lovefilm that had been sitting on the coffee table for about a month: Wall-e and In Bruges. Very different, of course, but both utterly excellent.

morning exercise

2.23 miles, including a half hour swim in the middle. Really really enjoyed it. Haven’t been swimming for over 6 months, and it was tough – only did 10 lengths, and the last one was very hard. But boy, am I pleased with myself!

[Edited to remove the map]

this morning I did something astonishing

I went out for a run. Yes, me. Honestly.

I really do need to get a bit, well a lot, fitter, and I’ve been reading up on the Couch to 5K programme. “Surely even I can do that”, I thought.

I dug out my old trainers, some jogging trousersand the sports underwear. I downloaded an app for my iPhone. I thought about it some more. “How hard can it be?” I thought.

This morning I woke at 6.30 – it was a beautiful crisp morning, sun coming up, light frost on the ground. And so off I went.

I managed 7.5 out of the 8 x 1 minute runs (ran out of steam half way through #4), but I DID IT. Pete, of course, slept through the whole thing, even my triumphant, if rather breathless, whoops when I got home.

I need some proper running shoes, which I will sort out a.s.a.p., but I think I might actually stick to this.