Sunday, June 25, 2017

Sunny? Almost Got Hypothermia!

Parking field. Sunny. Mountain top. P!55ing down, windy, cold.

So, seeing as I'm not really racing at the moment I thought I'd volunteer to marshal at the Tour Du Calch. I was on Check Point 3 so it meant I could get a decent hike out and back in the sunshine - well that was the idea anyway.

What a difference a few hundred metres of altitude makes. It really was quite pleasant down at the race HQ. (And I actually sprayed on some sunblock before I headed out - although I'm not telling you that). I set out with plenty of time but as I neared the top ridge the weather started to get ominously inhospitable. So it was out with the map and compass in order to make sure I made it to my check point spot on time.

I eventually made it to the general area of my check point. It was a check point without a specific feature so I needed to recce the area to make sure I was indeed at the right point. Mr C's hand drawn orienteering style feature sketch was spot on and I was indeed at the right spot - as borne out by my GPS plot which shows me as near as damn it on the 620 contour.

So, having reached my spot, like a boy scout, prepared for all conditions, I put on extra layers to try and keep out the cold and rain and waited for the runners. Fortunately I only had about a fifteen minute wait for the first runner and they were all through inside the next fifteen. Marshal duty fulfilled I headed off the mountain as quickly as my feeble legs would let me.

Back down to the race HQ you would not believe it. Sun shining. Back to being a lovely day. Glad I went. Good training session.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Still Haven't Found My Mojo...

but at least it was another run done. In fact, I'm so slow at the moment I actually think I have to classify myself as a jogger. So I guess it was really another jog done. Despite the slowness of it all I do still enjoy it - when I manage to summon the effort to bother. 

Sunday, June 04, 2017

If I Was A Football Chant....

I'd be 'oooooooh, I am sh!t ahhhhh!!!' (at running). It isn't surprising though, seeing as I've been doing almost no running of late. Really need to find some mojo. Bigsweir Wood was picturesque as ever though.

Strava Activity

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Wake Up Call

You know you've gone to seed when your legs hurt the day after a pathetically slow 5k run. I really do need to do some training...

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Almost Like The Old Days...

as I locked horns with my old running compadre from back in the day, Crumpy - not that anyone has ever referred to him by that totally made up name. And I say almost like the old days as back then I could run a bit.

It was my first time out on the Newent Park run. A very enjoyable two lap course - apart from having to stop for 30s 600m out from the finish to throw up. The effort of running was obviously too much for me.

Apart from that I enjoyed it. The route was better than I was expecting and it was nice to catch up with the Crumps after such a long time.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Official Route Checker

At the Gilwern Grunt. I headed over to the Tumble for nine o'clock. Collected the marker tape and bits and bobs from the secret stash pick-up point and headed off around Gilwern Hill to check all the route markings were still in place ahead of the race.

Despite the sun shining it was surprisingly chilly to start with. As I pootled round it soon warmed up - or was it still chilly but I'd warmed up? Anyway, all the markers were safely in place - hopefully no one got shot for going wrong. With my job complete I reported back to base and then trundled off back home.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Lovely Day For It...

Orienteering on Painswick common. There were some cracking views from the top - and at the speed I was 'running' I had plenty of time to take them in but back to the orienteering.

Unsurprisingly it was flippin' hard work and I made a few mistakes. Most in the more densely contoured areas of the map. Although I did muck up eleven by bad nav, ending up to the right of where I thought I was and generally making a meal of it.

Despite the struggles it reminds me what I'm missing so I'm going to redouble my efforts to get out there and 'race'...

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Well That Was Hard Work...

but I'm glad I did it. I struggled. I expected to struggle but I navigated okay considering I'm a bit ring rusty. I didn't have any major 'headless chicken' moments and although I steered off a bit too far on one or two controls, on the whole I did alright.

So despite the threat of some rain in the lead up to today's Compass Sport Orienteering Qualifier, the actual conditions were good. There was a lot of cloud cover but it didn't rain and it wasn't cold. I made my way to the start early to espy in which direction the early starters headed out - turned out to be a bit of a waste of time as there was only one way to go. Down the path, round the corner and out of sight....

I got off to a reasonable start. Found controls one and two accurately before steering off too far for number three. Four, five and six were all okay with a small wobble on seven where the map detail was confusing but I stuck to my guns and despite taking my time, headed into the control accurately.

I mucked up eight a little but quickly corrected myself. On the climb to nine I started to die. Across to ten, eleven and twelve I was sllllooooooow. The terrain was hard going with lots of dead bracken and shit like that to climb across. With no stamina left that was hard going.

Thirteen and fourteen were good but I stayed too high to fifteen and overshot the crag. It was a longish leg to sixteen and I went far too high but knew what I'd done and got back into it okay. Then it was down to the last few controls and the finish.

Best of all... I wasn't last (16/27) but with a few more on the course that'll change a little bit. I believe I might sleep like a log tonight - just hope I don't wake in the fire place - BOOM BOOM!

Thursday, March 09, 2017


found a bit of mojo. A short and very slow run over at Bixslade in the Forest. I have a feeling Sunday's orienteering might be a struggle...

Sunday, February 05, 2017

Pure Green

I was planning to go 'run' the orienteering taking place in the Forest today but I've been coughing and spluttering since Friday and couldn't face it. It's all being going a lot pants on the running front of late but hopefully I can get going soon. I've been looking through the race calendars to pencil in a few possibles.

Monday, January 02, 2017

Time For The Big Guns...

Yep, it was time to take the wraps off the ex-german army mittens for the first time this winter as I headed out for another run. I started with a quick spot of recycling at Broadwell - I say quick, but I think practically everyone in the forest had the same idea so it wasn't quite so quick as I'd hoped.

Anyway, with that out the way I parked up just down the road. With the temperature hovering around zero I wasn't going to get cold hands today, donned the mittens and headed out. It wasn't the longest run in the world but quite enjoyable in the bright sunshine. Still bloody cold though - but the hands stayed toasty warm. Mission accomplished.

Sunday, January 01, 2017

A Slightly Inauspicious Start To 2017...

It was wet and cold. Oh so cold. And wet, did I mention that? The rain was sleet like as it hit the windscreen on the drive over to Ninewells for the orienteering. Not my most favoured conditions. I don't really mind the cold or the rain for plain old running because of a thing called gloves - and when it's really cold, my ex-german-army mittens. For orienteering in the wet, my current gloves don't cut it. I guess I should invest in a good pair.

Anyway, suffice to say, my hands got really bloody cold, really bloody quickly and I wasn't long into the hour long score event before I was struggling to manipulate the map. In the end, the discomfort in my hands was too much and I headed back in early without reaching all the controls. I think I would probably have been there or there abouts on getting them all if I'd continued but it wasn't much fun out there. Still, I'm glad I went. Maybe get some better weather at the next one...

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Almost Time Up For 2016

and it's time I start gaining a focus.... That's what 2016 lacked. Firstly I am going to try and do more orienteeting - after all, I do have to try out my first pair of orienteering gaitors! (Thank you Santa). Strong possibility that will be kicking off at tomorrow's Ninewells Score event...

Furthermore, this year I did not get away to the Lakes or Snowdonia even once! I am going to put that right next year. Dates are going to go in the calendar and holiday time will be booked - fact.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Not Been A Good Boy

I've dodged a lot of runs of late. An awful lot. If I'm honest, way too many but I got over to my new favourite woods again today. Dymock Wood. Or Oxenhall Wood - depending on which map you look at. It was an enjoyable run - if somewhat not quite what I planned. The lie of the land is a little different to the map...