En Route

There is a famous running track in Melbourne called the Tan. I’m not sure why, but I always thought it was because it’s covered in tanbark (that could be the reason, who knows. If I wasn’t in the air I would Google it and just tell you the actual reason. But I am in the air, and therefore have no internet.)  From memory it’s about 5km around.  I have never run it, because as I’ve mentioned several times in the past, I wasn’t a runner until after we moved to London.

Mr. Neon is super excited about running the Tan together, but I’m not sure I am. I just don’t have that relationship with Melbourne. But, I have changed, and no doubt Melbourne has changed, and we will have to renegotiate our relationship anyway, so I may as well run on the Tan.

I think this really embodies my whole idea of this trip. It’s been three years since we left and I’ve no doubt everything has changed, and people have changed.  That’s not to say I’m not looking forward to the time in Melbourne, I am. I am just apprehensive about it.

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Mr. Neon and the Neon Toddler at Heathrow

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On not running

I haven’t been running this week, for various reasons which are rubbish in the scheme of things.

Monday night I worked late, it was a bank holiday and Mr. Neon had the Neon Toddler, and anyway – I ran a half marathon on Sunday, so that was a little bit more understandable.

Tuesday I went out for cocktails, and Wednesday some friends came over at the exact same time that running club meets.  And now it’s Thursday and I haven’t run.

And I can feel that I haven’t run.  I’m feeling lazy and snappy and irritable.  I’m feeling restless.  It doesn’t help that I know I won’t be able to run until Sunday because of the flight.  Oh yes, that’s right, we’re leaving for Australia tonight.  A trip that I a equal parts excited and terrified about.  No, mostly excited.

So, I might try and sneak in a run today, with the toddler.  But I still need to pack, and drop some keys off to a friend, and do some washing.  I still have a bunch of other things to do, but I need to run.

I need it.

Week in Review

So last week was a bit of a lazy one, and this week has seemingly got off on the same foot seeing as I am posting the Monday Week-in-Review post on a Tuesday.  Yesterday was a bank holiday, though, so that sort of makes it better.

My sister was in town for most of the week, so there was a lot of being out and about and drinking more wine that I would normally have in a week.

Monday

Monday I weighed in up on last week at 73.6kgs with 33% body fat.  I am trying to get my weight down because I think it will be a lot easier to lug 7 or 8 kgs less around some of the long runs I have coming up.  I worked all day and not much else – and didn’t make it to the club run.

Wednesday

Wednesday I managed to make it to the club run, and sacrificed dinner and drinks to get there.  Hooray!

Ran 3.1kms there and then the 7.8km ‘long’ route.  It was meant to be easy, because I was still playing around with the idea of ‘tapering’ for the Bushy Park half on Sunday.  So the pace was a bit up and down.

Thursday

I weighed in down at 72kgs and 32% body fat.  So, that was down on Monday, which was good.  Was going to head to park intervals, but decided against it and went for a beer instead.

Friday

Work, work, work.  Then ran a massive 1.7kms with the Neon Toddler in the buggy.  About half a km from home I remembered that I was getting a delivery.  Went to the supermarket and then home.  Nothing amazing.

Saturday

Saturday I stood in the rain cheering for runners of the Thames Meander marathon, of which Mr. Neon was one.  He ran a PB, so happy with that!

Sunday

Sunday was the Bushy Park Half!  I will write a full race report so I won’t say too much here.  I did run a PB of 2:14:25 so I am stoked after slicing a good few minutes off the time!  It was also my first race as a (terrible, slow and not a real) club runner!

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And that was my pretty boring week!  This week we are all over the place and leaving for Australia on Thursday, so hopefully I will still get some good runs in, even if I’m jetlagged!

How not to treat race spectators.

Something happened to me at Mr. Neon’s marathon yesterday, which I wasn’t sure I was going to blog about but have decided to.  It’s about the way that runners treat sppectators.  Particularly in small races like the Thames Meander Marathon, which is not a big, closed road race, but a very small one that shares 100% of its path with others.  As it happens, the place that Mr. Neon and I had decided that I would be was a good one that had a few other families waiting there for their runners (though, I want to say that I was the only one who stayed after my runner went though, and no one was cheering other runner’s until I arrived and started doing so – more on this in the weekly wrap up, though.)

Every runner than went by (well, every racer – there were a lot of non-racing runners as this was the very popular Thames Path…) I cheered for by clapping and saying something.  Usually ‘great running’ or ‘great job’ or something similar because that’s what I like to hear (not ‘nearly there’ or any other such nonsense!).  Of the 250 odd runners that went by me (I was there for several hours) they all responded – from a huge ‘Thanks’ and thumbs up, to a small wave or ‘I’m hurting but thanks anyway’ grunt.

That is – everyone except one.  A woman who was running with a (very amazing, and very expensive) running buggy.  Her kid was about 6 months old (we’d seen them at registration) and she was a triathelete. 

She pointed at the Neon Toddler’s buggy and said ‘maybe next year you should participate.’

Um.  Fuck you. 

For several reasons. 

1. I’ve been running with my kid in a buggy for a long time and at 6 months it’s easy to throw them in there and head off on a four hour run.  At 2… that same 4 hour run would be a NIGHTMARE of epic proportions.

2. How dare you make assumptions about my life and what I do.  As my sister later pointed out if she’d stopped to think for a few moments then she’d realise that I clearly have some connection to running.  A person who doesn’t care about running (or care about a runner) doesn’t stand out in the rain waiting for them to shoot by.  She’d be able to tell I was the former becasue I was clapping and cheering for all the runners, not just mine.

3. I might not have been running yesterday, but I was still participating.  Particularly in very small races where there aren’t many spectators, and the ones that are on the course usually only cheer and clap for their own runner, being a specator who does get involved is participating in the race.  249-odd other runners acknowledged that.

So, I’m a little bit annoyed by this (so much that I’m blogging at ten to 6 on a race morning!), will include more positive stuff in the weekly roundup on Monday.

Cheers!

On running (changes afoot at Neon Anonymous)

If you have a very keen eye for detail you might have noticed some changes here at Neon Anonymous. I have stripped the category list right down to running, kit, vegan and life. Everything that was in those other categories is now in ‘life’.  Similarly, the PhD and ECR links are gone. Neon Anonymous has been ambiguous for too long, and now is coming out firmly as a running blog.

The blog itself won’t change much. I will post a page containing all my gear reviews, and will now accept sample products for review (whereas previously I would only review products which I owned and liked).

I will also be doing some more regular posts – starting with a Sunday/Monday training-week-in-review post.  I will blog more about running particulars, my own running, and running issues. I will also blog more about organism and nutrition, in relation to running.  I have some guest blogs in the works.

Neon Anonymous v. 1.2 is here, and it’s going to be great.

I am not my bipolar

Since writing this post – when I first signed up for the Royal Parks Ultra and decided that I wanted to support Mind – things have changed for me.  I had a mini-break down that saw me sitting in a Samaritans house on a Sunday afternoon.  Monday morning, I got in contact with both my doctor and Mind and, after a few very hard weeks, have been re-diagnosed as type 1 bipolar.  Type 1 is categorised by heavy manic episodes.

When I told my mum about this she wasn’t surprised.  She was relieved.  She told me that the diagnosis explains a lot more than my previous diagnosis had.

I’m not sure what I would have done had I not been able to get in contact with Mind, and use the resources on their website, both before and after my new diagnosis.  I was scared, but now I feel empowered.

I wasn’t my depression.  I am not my bipolar.  Simple.

But, for a lot of people it isn’t that simple.  And that’s why we need to support Mind.  And you can help by sponsoring me here.

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