Tag Archives: dogs

My big fat Janathon effort

25 Jan

It was blowing a hoolie out this morning, so I wimped out took the  decision to reorganise my run until later in the day.

Which then meant there was the small question of work and my French class to take  care of before trainer time.

Ray, our long suffering French teacher, today exacted his revenge by  springing a surprise test on us. He’ll regret that when he marks my  paper.

So with thoughts of French vocab, a pleasing smugness that Sky Sports has acted upon its HR policy and the incentive of another compulsive episode of My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding if I ran fast enough, I set off.

Tonight I opted for three miles along a straight out and back route – not the most inspiring choice, but I wanted to run further than 1.3 miles, and in the dark I prefer to stick to main roads.

I’d be lying if I said it was a really enjoyable run, but it was OK, especially once I got past the escape route diversion and was thus committed to the whole lot.

A runaway puppy provided a bit of drama – I helped to herd “Scamp” back towards its owner who was chasing it across the road in her dressing gown, so that’s my good deed for the day.

Turning back towards home, running against the clock to see what kind of criminal frocks the show would serve up this week was very motivating and I made it back with 12 minutes to spare – just enough time to stretch, shower and assume position on the sofa for the jaw-dropping BFGW experience.

Distance: 3 miles
Time: 0:32:00
Pace: respectable



8 Jan

My brain probably did the lion’s share of today’s Janathon exercise because although I managed another 1.5 mile walk my mind wandered much further.

For the first time since Tuesday evening I’m starting to feel myself again to the point where I might be – whisper it – better.

The route was the same as yesterday, only today’s mission was to get a copy of the Times (their paywall is working in the sense that now it’s not free online I buy an actual copy) and more milk to feed my tea habit.

While I’ve been sick I’ve been merrily ignoring NHS Direct’s advice not to drink it because it’s a diuretic. I reason that the issue of tea-associated dehydration would pale into insignificance when stacked against the inevitable caffeine withdrawal symptoms I’d suffer.

To get to the newsagent I walk across a field popular with dog walkers. Today being a sunny Saturday and all the snow melted they were out in force – my favourites were a pair of raggamuffin twin terrier pups who were all scruffy ears and toilet brush tails.

But when did dogs start wearing coats? It wasn’t even that cold and they all had them on – bar one old labrador who was so obese I suspect it’s owner couldn’t find a pet store stocking XXXL.

One poor spaniel looked mortified by the embarrassing red tartan get-up it’s owner had lovingly inflicted on it. Recently someone described their friends to me as their “urban family” – the family they would have if they got to choose their own relatives. The thought occurred to me as I looked into the spaniel’s sheepish eyes when you’re a dog you can choose your friends, but you can’t choose your owners.

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At this point I caught myself day-dreaming about a blog post dedicated to dogs and realised my thoughts had completely wandered off by themselves.

This pleased me greatly because when I start running again if I can substitute my default thought pattern of “expletive-Ow!-expletive-Ow!-expletive-expletive-Ow!” with more diverting ruminations on what to write in that evening’s Janathon blog I might fare better.

By the time I got to the newsagent I was already trying to remember Wordsworth quotes – he is probably the most famous “poetwalker” whose work was directly inspired by his own rambles.

And he’s not the only one, walking and writing are old bed fellows. Perhaps Janathon is just a very modern twist on an age-old tradition – although I can’t quite see Baudelaire in a pair of Nikes.

Distance: 1.5 miles
Time: 0:20:15 (minus a minute to coo over the terrier puppies)
Pace: respectable

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