A Different Christmas

This year Christmas was different for us.  For the first time in 12 years my son had been invited to spend Christmas with his dad.  Now although I knew I’d miss him, I was also pleased he would have this opportunity.  It did mean that we decided to have a total shake up on what was becoming a ‘routine’ at Christmas time.  We normally host on Christmas day, which as I’m sure most of you are very well aware, means running round preparing food / drink / tidying / making up spare beds etc etc !  With different people arriving and leaving at different times of the day it generally results in a very exhausting day.  Now don’t get me wrong, I love to host – but also don’t want it to become so routine that people presume we will just do the same year after year.

Christmas 2016…….20161224_085543

Christmas Eve, being a Saturday meant parkrun.  My son decided to not go to his dads until late morning in order that he could join in the fancy dress fun.  A friend visiting in the area also come to try our local course – all in all a great day.  The weather was very wet and cold which put a slight dampner on proceedings, but fun was had by all.

Afternoon and evening was spend curled up on the sofa in front of the tv.  I can’t remember the last time that we did this.

20161225_085833Christmas Day.  For the first time in 15 years there were no children in the house.   No guests.  Did we have a lie in?  Of course not !  We’d decided to visit Hull parkrun for the first time for their Christmas day run.  And very pleased we did.  A flat, tarmac course, around the lake in East Park on an unseasonably warm day, added up to a very pleasant way to spend the morning.

We spent a few hours with family in the afternoon for Christmas Dinner, before coming back home to watch a film.

On Boxing Day we often have visited one of our local hunt meets, but this year I had been reading about a local group of bloodhounds – Highmoor Bloodhounds.  They use runners as the ‘quarry’ for the hounds and are looking for more people to be the quarry.  Now this sounds like fun to me, so we decided to go along to their Boxing Day meet to see what it was like.  I definitely think this is something that we will try to organise in the new year.  Seemed like a nice bunch of people, gorgeous hounds and a different way to get some trail running in !


Was I happy with this Christmas?  Loved the running, and pleasing ourselves (that sounds selfish doesn’t it….).  But I also love to host.  What have I learnt?  That it is good to mix it up – do different things each year.

What do you do at Christmas – always the same routine or do you mix it up?  Do you manage to still fit in your normal running?


Hanging in there

So the usual Christmas madness is well and truly upon us.  Dragging myself through the day any which way that I could has generally been the attitude over the last few weeks.  It really is a rubbish time to not be feeling top form as I’m sure many would agree.  It seems that the coughs and colds, tummy bugs and general malaise is upon lots of friends, including the dog – who has recently had to have an emergency castration due to a bad infection (picture it, the dog with the lampshade on, banging against every wall / leg / piece of furniture he could find), following a week of being very poorly when we had no idea what was wrong, therefore worrying ourself sick.  We push ourselves to live up to the ideals and expectations that this time of year brings.  ‘how many Christmas parties have you got….?’ ‘have you bought and wrapped all the presents yet?’.  Hmmmmm……. the last posting date (first class, bloody expensive) is pretty much upon us, and only today have I managed to write any cards.  No, I have not wrapped all presents yet, I haven’t even bought all presents yet.  Don’t even ask about decorations at home… do we have to bother?  And today, when the stresses are really piling on, I find out that the teenager has run up and extra £65 of mobile phone data bill – just what I need a week before Christmas, I mean, why not – I deal with everything else, why not this…..


Running?  Ah yes, this is supposed to be about running.  I have managed the odd run – trying to get out three or four times a week, but very rarely managing more than 3 miles.  I’m still taking the iron tablets, still feeling rubbish and starting to worry very much about the 5 mile, night time, trail run entered at the end of January !

I hope you are all hanging in there, hopefully looking forward to the festive period with more glee than I am.

Where have I been?

There has been a bit of a hiatus in writing…..  but why?  In short, because I’ve been struggling.  And part of that for me is struggling to make sense of my emotions and the jumble of words going round inside my head !


So what happened?

In the week after the Yorkshire Coast 10k I had a couple of very steady runs which were OK and then turned up to parkrun as usual on the Saturday.  It was horrid.  My OH was running with me as we had decided on a nice easy run – I wish!  I walked several times, but my effort levels seemed much higher and I just felt rubbish.  It really knocked me and I didn’t feel like going out running for quite a while.


A few days after I was at the docs for some routine blood tests (I have them occasionally due to thyroid disease) and the following day had a phone call to tell me that I was anaemic.  Not something I’ve had experience of before!  At least it may be explained why I had been feeling so rubbish….  Unfortunately that weekend was the weekend of Dalby Dash 10k – my son’s first race.  I was determined to run, and hoped to just be able to keep up with him.  No chance !!!   He did fab, coming in at 57:27, amazing for a first race and without that much training.  I was pleased to cross the line, promptly burst into tears and struggled to regain composure.  It is a shame as it is a really nice run and one that I’d like to do again.


Ever since I’ve just been plodding along, trying to do 3 miles every few days and hoping the iron tablets will start to take effect soon.  I’m disappointed with just how much it has knocked my confidence but am trying to just go a little easy on myself.

A gorgeous Yorkshire morning


A few days ago my OH and I got up early to aim for 3 miles before work.  I love being out early like this and a gorgeous morning helps.  I’m not worrying about how fast or slow I am and just trying to get some pleasure in being out.


Anyone else experienced anaemia when trying to run?