Category Archives: London
During the Woodkid concert this wonderfully spontaneous moment happened when he was saying his goodbyes following the Run Boy Run.
We all started to sing the string section from the song (which I believe from Woodkids reaction on Facebook, this has never happened before) and then this happened…
I am so happy someone caught this on camera and really pleased that Woodkid himself posted this on Facebook stating “thank you London, this was a wonderful moment in my life that I will never forget”.
Brilliant. Truly the power of the crowd and the perfect example of what a fantastic concert we witnessed on Tuesday.
I went on another lunchtime time run with Paul today and we extended our route to Lambeth Bridge. This added about 1.5K onto the run we completed last Friday.
We learnt from last weeks experience though and stuck to back roads as much as we could.
That said we had to stop to cross Westminster Bridge at Westminster Palace due to the crowds, government vehicles and traffic lights.
I was happy to run close to Paul’s pace (even though he was on a go slow due to a lively night out on the beer!)
Conditions were ok although it was quite windy in places.
I felt a few twinges here and there but persisted as I was determined to keep up with Paul as much as I could. As you can see we managed a pace of 5:07 at one point so we were certainly motoring along.
Next week we are going to change tactic and do some speed work instead – this will be more like the work I have been doing with the Gipis training.
Not long to go until the Richmond 10K and the more I run with Paul the more confidence I get and the more enthusiastic I am about race day
Coming back into work and carrying on working does seem to astound my colleagues but I like to think it’s testament to what I have achieved
Well the mid section of tonight's training was fairly long and fast. I had a tough central 15 minute section where I had to run quickly and I managed to maintain my pace for most of the run.
Of course electronics coaches such as Gipis cannot keep calculate for hills and wind but I think I managed pretty well considering.
As you can see from the map it's very warm with plenty of green streaks in there. I am really happy with tonight's achievement especially as I had a few nagging doubts about a pain in my knee/back of my leg. It feels fine now. I am sure it's a result of last nights activities…
I was unsure how I would cope on tonight's run as I was at the Woodkid concert last night jumping and dancing around all night. I think I managed about 5 hours sleep to so I was tired and achy today.
I did adjust my playlist so that the Woodkid tracks were closer to the start of the run and in the fast section and it worked. Believe me once you have been in a concert where there are massive drums thundering out the beat and you see his enthusiam – it's nothing short of infectious.
I did chuckle today as I walked past St Paul's and the bells started to chime, I was immediately transported to last night, th eglantine white statue of the boy and the opening bars of Run Boy Run. This brought a huge smile to my face.
In fact we enjoyed last night so much we have already booked for his next show in London in November as he will be accompanied by a full orchestra.
I have now told everyone about my half marathon ambitions and am very pleased with the positive response I have had from friends, family and colleagues. I have already raised £150 which is brilliant – thank you. Some people are confused and think I am running a marathon, I'm not. This is a daunting enough challenge for me!
The Richmond Park 10k is a couple weeks away and I am confident that I will be in good shape for it. I plan another run with Paul during Friday lunch break so that should give us more opportunity to time into one another's running rhythm.
Today's fastest track was The Conquest of Space by Woodkid
I convinced some friends to come along and I was worried they would be disappointed. Worried Paul, Enda and Bogdana would think I was mad.
I can safely say I am not.
Woodkid at the Roundhouse was fantastic. There was so much music filling the dome, the echo of the drums, the orchestra, the choir. What a performance.
I am not sure what stood out more, Woodkids enthusiasm, the electric light show or the thunder of the drums.
All the way through he engaged with the audience and genuinely seemed to be having a fantastic time in London. I've never seen a performer act so normally or humbled by the reaction he got and we were pleased for him.
I don't know where his music gets played so I didn't know what would stand out. This crowd knew their Woodkid though as favourites such as Conquest of Space, Iron (which we were treated to twice as he did a stripped down version with the orchestra during the encore) and favourites from the ep such as Brooklyn and Fireflies all got a massive response from the audience.
Run Boy Run was definitely the highlight but purely because the crowd made it so. After the extended rousing rendition the crowd alone started to hum the choral section. Amazed and please Woodkid and co joined in and the music continued on and on and on. I thought running to this track was hard work, dancing to it is even more so.
There were so many highlights in this monochrome cacophony of light and sound I really do not think I could do it justice.
Lets just say we will be booking for his return performance.
If you have not heard The Golden Age please give it a chance. Take the time to immerse yourself in the whole album and fill your head with this massive orchestral adventure.
I have been thinking about this for so long and after some deliberation and a false start I can confirm I have a place in this years Royal Parks Half Marathon in London.
This is my first ever half marathon and I have to say I am more than a little bit nervous. I thought I was nervous about running the Mo Run 10K last year but I am more than a little daunted by this prospect.
That said it has been just over a year since I started running so to contemplate a half marathon last May would have been laughable. I really am amazed at how far I have come in such a short space of time (regardless of the winter set backs).
I have a great support network though, Richard is fully behind my decision and understands why I feel the need to run this Half Marathon.
You may recall I cojoulled my friends to sign up for the race with the intention to run as a group. Sadly I did not get a place and some of them did which left me feeling a little guilty.
I have been thinking about a charity to support as I can only get a charity place now and with the recent events (let’s call them 2013 events) I now know the charity I want to support.
I am therefore announcing I am running for the British Heart Foundation on the 6th October.
I have a fundraising target and I would very much like all your support to not only help me reach this target but to help me raise as much as I can to help such a worthwhile charity.
My mum was recently taken ill and ended up going into hospital for an angioplasty (her fourth such operation).
The maternal side of the family all suffer from coronary problems and my mum has been through the wars the last couple of years. Mum however has been fortunate and survived all of her procedures – her siblings have not been so lucky.
My parents have found help in the literature and support the BHF offer and I have had my mind put at rest by the informative and supportive information on their web site.
It is because of this (and many others reasons ) that I have chosen to run for the British Heart Foundation.
Paul and I are already working on getting me up to pace for the Richmond 10K at the beginning of June and I am sure Janice, Enda and Em (to name but a few) will do all they can to encourage me towards my 21K target.
I have no doubt my friends will support me and my training efforts and I am sure those who I talked into running the Royal Parks Half will be pleased to hear that I will be running alongside them (or maybe a little behind them as they are all super fit!).
I will charge up the Kindle and re read the Half Marathon Guide I downloaded months ago and start to think about how I can achieve my running target. I am however not going to obsess over it as the race is not until October and I have more than enough time to train.
I am asking for your support to help me reach my target and I am sure you won’t let me down. I have set up a Virgin Money Giving page to raise funds online as they do not take a cut in the proceeds (unlike Just Giving). I would like to see every penny I raise to go to the charity.
And before you ask, no I am not planning on running a full marathon in the future!
According to Nike I ran a famous route which started at the office, across Blackfriars bridge, down the South Bank to the London Eye, across Westminster Bridge and back along the Embankment.
This was just a shade over 4K and appears to be my best 4K to date with a good pace.
Paul was very kind and held back when I needed it (he’s so super fit he ran home after we finished and had been to the gym this morning!).
It was a little busy around the Eye and Westminster with tourists. This is very unusual for me as I run in a rural spot at home and see very few people. Thankfully Paul was ahead some of the way so I followed the path he cut through the crowds.
I did take the lead on some of the run and found myself ducking and diving around the various two legged obstacles.
I definitely want to run London again as this was an exhilarating run and of course there are lots of sights on this route.
I enjoyed running with Paul too – made a change from the normal head space of music and electronic coaches that I am used to. With Paul I kept going and stopped worrying/focusing on my inner monologue of doubt.
He doesn’t know it yet but I’d like to squeeze in at least one run a week I. London as its pretty exhilarating, it’ll get me used to running with Paul and it’ll help me focus.
It was great to run midway through my day as I’d had a shit morning so this allowed me to switch off.
Now I’ve toned up I’m not so self conscious on the work showers either!
I hope we can get some more runs in together before the Richmond 10K on the 1st June and I am confident I will crack the 10K in good form.
Bring on the next run
It was a glorious day in London and I chose to find a bench on the Embankment and watch the world go by whilst enjoying the sun.
Of course this meant I got to observe all the runners heading up and down the river.
This used to annoy me (as a non runner). It used to give me a chance to look for cute guys too but not any more…
Before long I found myself watching how people run, their form if you will.
I wonder if all the runners have read about techniques, whether they have received coaching or wondered how long they have been running.
I’m no expert but I find it interesting how we all have different styles of running and I wondered what I look like when I run. I did try to catch a glimpse of myself in the window of a merendero on Spain but couldn’t be too critical at speed!
In Chi Running you are taught to lean into the run to help gravity move you forward and these guys seems to be doing that with some success.
So people’s posture was all over the place. These two appear to have it sorted.
The other thing that fascinates me about runners is their arms. Chi running states you keep you elbows at 90 degrees, push your arms back (not forward) and use them as a pendulum. Trying not to cross too much in front of the body.
I really try to remember this one and was amazed how many people seemed to look like they were trying to fly, didn’t move their arms at all. One guy looked like he was treating himself as horse and jockey and kept slapping his own arse!
I guess when it comes down to it you run what is comfortable and you find your own rhythm.
I may read about this kind of stuff but whose to say I don’t look as ridiculous as everyone else.
Maybe I am being too critical.
All I know is all shape and sizes of runner are out there to observe and it’s interesting to see how we all differ.
Running topless is a brave move. I think you have to have a certain confidence (which this guy obviously has), but even with the best body in the world topless running is best avoided. You could burn. You sweat faster. Technical clothing exists for a reason people!
And who wants to see that when eating their sandwiches!
I know there are no pictures of women but I find the way they run very different from men as they have very different shapes and curves to consider when running.
Maybe next time I’ll join them and look just as ridiculous running down to Westminster and back… Maybe
It’s back! The sun, the warmth (kinda), the ability to go out in my shorts.
I finally ditched the running tights for shorts and compression shorts (still not quite that warm). What a difference it made. It was 16 degrees and yes there were high winds of 26 mph but it didn’t matter. I could breath, I was comfortable and I wanted to continue with the run. The wind didn’t hinder me and I noticed my throat was filling up with crap and I managed to keep going..
It’s been so nice to finally get out in some good weather and to enjoy running again Not only have I been out running but I got to use the garden to do my cool down stretches – this is a first this year! I have forgotten what our back garden looks like!
I am trialling a new app called Gipis. It popped up in Apples currently promoted running apps (cause of the London marathon this weekend) and it’s one of the only ones I have yet to try.
I ran it in conjunction with iSmoothRun as I do not want to loose all my logs etc that I have accumulated there. Both apps seemed to work perfectly together and they seem to be pretty much in sync.
Gipis trains you so that you an tell it what you are running for and it comes up with a running plan, a calendar and some voice coaching to get you through each training session. The voices didn’t work for me today but I am not sure if this was because I ran it behind iSmoothRun. That said todays run is tagged as a general workout run so I guess there is no coaching at this stage.
It has my ability and it knows I am running the Richmond Park 10K in June (by the way I am running the Richmond Park 10K in June – did I mention that?). It then creates a running plan and guides me through each session, coaching me as I go an adjusting to what I actually achieve.
Early days for the app yet but it looks promising and it creates a new social network so you can follow and encourage (and compete) with fellow Gipis users. I have been talking to the team behind it using the app and they seem like a friendly bunch.
It of course connects with Facebook and Twitter but I like that it also connects with Run Keeper and has imported all my current run data from there (which was recorded on iSmoothRun).
I was recommended to run 7.71K today by Gipis and this wasn’t my plan when I left the house but once I got going I found my strid.e I did stop twice to take on water but carried on until I reached 7K and then walked back to the house. I was a little under 7.71K and Gipis has already adjusted my next run.
This is great as it gives me some incentive and something to work towards, something that has been missing from my running of late.
I also managed to capitalise on the fact I did not commute into London today. I decided to work from home to avoid the crowds at Margaret Thatchers funeral. My office is just around the corner and London was already heavily locked down with barriers, extra police and security gates which were slowing down my journey across London. As I write it looks like it all passed off peacefully but I am glad I didn’t have to do the commute today. I used that time to head out a little earlier and to take advantage of the sunshine and the peace and quiet around here.
I found todays run a little hard work, my legs are sore and I got pins and needles in my feet but I continued. I didn’t wimp out I simply got on with it and am really pleased with the 7K I clocked today. This takes me level with the Nike Flyknit run I participated in, in London. Todays run was quicker – but that’s probably because it didn’t involved impromptu raves, glow torches and flares!
I am trying to decide whether I need to replace my beloved Nike Lunarglide +4′s as the soles are starting to show some wear. I noticed some of the pads are definitely much lower than they were but I wonder how much wear I can get out of them? What do you think?
I don’t want to renew them now as I am on holiday next week and I plan to run in Spain along the promenade (which is a couple of kilometers there and back). Thinking about it the mild temperature and the wind was probably the perfect practice for running along the beach next week… I cannot wait.
Fastest track today was Alive by Empire of the Sun – and I certainly feel it after that run!
Someone did ask about what music I run too and I did post this running play list some time ago… It is a little different on Spotify as not all tracks are on there but you get the idea.
I have created a fresher list of tracks from current favourite artists and have uploaded this today. This is just the right tempo and length as the opening track is great for the warm up and cool down walk.
The selection may seem a little off the wall but trust me the tempo is just right. Why not download it to your device and take it with you next tie you head out running?
So it's certainly been an odd week. One I didn't see coming and one where I never imagined I would be writing a blog entry on the train heading down to Devon.
As you may know both Richard and my mum have been unwell and I am currently en route to see my mum post heart surgery.
I cannot remember the last time I took the train home and its kind of odd. I spent a lot of my late teens and early twenties taking the train to London to see the sights and to experience what the big city had to offer.
It was these trips that lead me to make the decision to leave the south west and find something bigger and better. I knew that Plymouth had had its hay day and knew that I would find what I was searching for in London.
I also knew (by the time I left) that I was gay and that the manner and opinions at home were not conducive to me living a happy independent life
That was thirteen years ago and I have not looked back.
I of course miss my parents but being an only child do not feel committed to the large extended family we have. I made the choice to move away, find my self, enjoy my life but ensure that mum and dad were always cared for. That's what I have done and I am proud and surprised at what I have achieved since I left Plymouth all that time ago.
I cannot condone people for wanting to stay where they grew up but I have to say it saddens me when so many people I went to school or worked with are still there. Same locations. Same lives.
Don't get me wrong many others have gone much further than I and some are tied due to commitments etc but I find it a shame that people stay put. I guess it's comfortable. I guess now I am comfortable too.
I am sure there are other places like Plymouth (or maybe Devon or Cornwall) where you could be born and raised and think you were living a million miles from anywhere.
That mentality still exists and I have taken years to break this mindset that everything is miles away from where I live. I commute 70 miles each way every day and to most people at home, they wouldn't travel that far to go to an airport on holiday.
Family and friends constantly insist we live in London. We don't. It's where we work, where we tune our careers and where we socialise. We live in Colchester and we love it there. It's taken us further away from Plymouth and that's why I have a six hour journey under way but you know what, if you want to do it you make the time. You make the effort. You get off your ass and you do it.
It may sound like I am knocking people – I am not. I made a choice and I am glad I did. I just find it sad some people never even get to that initial decision. Or maybe they regret not doing it later in life…
I fear for the generation growing up at home, there's no airport, no major road links and the local economy is declining faster than anywhere else. All government support (as always) heads up north (no it doesn't make it to London event though it feels like it) and the south west is left to suffer.
But then again the NIMBIES in the area need to stop complaining and be more proactive. If the people of Plymouth saw the value in a motorway, their airport or investing in big business and trade, the place wouldn't be in such a state as it is now.
I often spend these train journeys thinking about things. Mulling things over and I find it incredible that I can now pen these thoughts and store them for myself and anyone who cares to read them. Technology has opened these barriers. Could I have ever imagined such a device as an iPad or iPhone to allow me to do this when I first embarked on my journeys to the big smoke?
I was blogging back then but had to wait to get home to put finger to key…
This is purely my opinion but I love going home. I love this journey and I love my folks. I also love the fact that I made the decision years ago to move away and get a life. I simply hope all the grand children, nieces, nephews and friends kids at home wake up and do the same (before its too late).
I obviously love my husband and miss B and will miss them terribly whilst I am away. I am only gone for two days though and soon Richard and I jet off to the sun for some much needed r and r.
Oh… The duffle coat reference? That's Paddingtons fault. I loved Paddington Bear as a child but could never have imagined how many memories and feelings that little lost bear from Peru would evoke.
I wonder if he has reverted back to marmalade sandwiches following his brief dabbling with marmite?