Month: July 2013

Begging for the mercy of a never-come rain.

Hot. Damn hot. Hotter than a snake’s ass in a wagon rut.

To be honest I think the BBC’s weather reporting is getting a bit too informal.

It has been beastly. Mainly due to the garage pissing me about so I’ve been riding to work every day in this damnable heat. Not that I wouldn’t have anyway. Committed triathlete and all. *coughs*

The insurance people and the garage’s own telephone crew said “it could be as long as 5 days.” That was 19 days ago. They say the replacement panels they were sent were damaged so had to re-order them. Then when they came to fit them they noticed the front panel was damaged as well so they’ve had to order that. Now they are saying they should have it done for Monday, so I’ll be able to pick it up Tuesday. Bah.

To be honest it’s just the weekly big shop that has been the problem. Riding to work is what I’m supposed to do. I’ve not been able to give Wendy a lift in of a morning, but that just means I get more of a lie-in, so her loss is my gain. And my training’s loss. Lie-ins mean I’ve no time to train before work.

Talking of which, I read a forum on Runners World about who was up for next year’s Outlaw. I read a few pages and got a bit irritated with the preachy attitudes. Noobs, you’ve got to be able to ride X miles in Y hours and swim like a dolphin or you can’t do it.

I commented that I’d done one ride over 60 miles, less than 20 swims in 2 years and had buggered my run fitness with an injury for several months before this year’s Outlaw, finishing in 14.09. “If you are a bit stubborn and eat at every feed station you can do it.”

I thought this was an encouragement to the newbs, if a fat old useless duffer like me can do it, anyone can.

What I failed to consider was some of the people on there had trained really hard and only just scraped a finish and some were DNF.

Oops. My well meaning post was perceived as saying they were all shite.

As you can imagine, this generated some comments.

I later backtracked. As that was my second a basic level of fitness was enough to get me through. The first year was tough going from my first half marathon to my first Outlaw in 9 months. But I did it. So what was that? Just over a year to go from coach tatty to Outlaw.  Of course it was hard, it’s meant to be. Grit your teeth, man-up and do it.

Which brings me neatly to today. I thought that 50 mile run was in about 4 weeks and I’ve not done any distance training. So I strapped on my trainers, loaded up my bag, found a 38 mile run route and set off.

It was bloody awful. Well, the first 10 miles were fine. Nice easy trot, no bag. Then I got back to the house to load up for the next, 14 mile loop. That was pretty bad, 3 water bottles in my bag, blazing sun and mad muggy. Then I had to do it again. That was really bad. On the second and third laps I headed the Ultra runner’s discipline of walk/ run. They mostly said 20 minutes/ 5 minutes walk. I found one that said 25/ 5 so I went with that. It turns out it’s not really about resting your legs, they don’t feel much better when you get going again, it’s the mental thing of knowing you rest in a set time. Anyway, I baked my arse off. So much for the promised rain and coolness. The good thing is when I took my shower the bag still hadn’t given me webbing burns or bruises.

I was a bit disappointed as when I set off I got to thinking that perhaps I could continue and do the last 12 miles. By the end of the 38 miles though I was in a state. I’ve never run more than a marathon before. Some people consider that quite challenging. Doing a marathon plus 12 miles, carrying a bag and 3 water bottles took it out of me.

Then I strolled (OK, staggered) around the corner to Sainsbury’s to get some pancetta for a quick carbonara feast.

And it rained.

Of course it did.

Then I went to the link for the 50 mile run. It’s not until the 22 of September. *weeps steaming tears* Oh aye, I’m red and poached. Glowing like a ‘lecy toaster element.

With 3, 15 minute pitstops (to change water bottles, eat, cry like a girl etc) it took me 7 hours. In that sun.

But as Wendy pointed out when I’d only done 24 miles and was trying to steel myself for going out again, possibly to do the full 50, if it came to it I could walk the last 12 miles and still be within the cut-off.  It’s 13 hours so I could walk and have a picnic. And a nap. And take a long, hard look at what the hell I’m doing with my life to be running for 50 miles.

The big bright side is the Chester marathon is going to seem really cushy. No bag, only a marathon distance and no other events first. Easy life.


I’ve been thinking about the Arch to Arc again.  A bucket list tri if ever there was one. (You know the one, run from Marble Arch to Dover –88 miles-,  swim the channel, then ride to Arc de triumph in Paris –300k’s-)

I made thought I was on safe ground mentioning that on the Runners World (triathlete section) forum. I said ‘”I mean the ‘proper’ one where you swim the channel. I’ve just checked and there is one where you kayak it.”

Got a reply, “The kayak one is on my bucket list.”

I give up.


Sunday; weighed myself this morning, I’ve lost 3½ lbs after my trot yesterday.

Another crap sleep, the weather has cooled down but I am cooked to a turn. Not good for sleeping.


Well, what else?

Not a lot.

We’ve just watched Kick-Ass again in preparation for Kick-Ass II in 3 weeks. *excited face* I’d forgotten just how good it was. Brilliant.


I’m a bit tired and my brain is not really working today so I’ll just update you on the wonderful world of Twitter then get off and try to recover.


The DMreporter had this;

PHWOAR: Six bikini clad beauties flaunt their enviable assets as they help police with their enquiries after witnessing brutal decapitation.

PHOTOGRAPHERS: The Daily Mail is looking to fill a number of freelance positions. Please get in touch if interested

USA of AMERICA: Detroit saved from last minute bankruptcy by corporate takeover by up-and-coming conglomerate Omni Consumer Products.

PHEW: Mosque bombing suspect revealed to be Ukrainian, thus protecting our carefully cultivated ‘terrorists are foreigners’ narrative.

THREAT TO RECOVERY: Food banks to be privatised, run for profit and renamed ‘McDonalds’ say government.

THUNDEROUS GOOD LUCK: Number of lazy scroungers identified by government is exactly the same as those on benefits, making cuts much easier.

CRIME: Paul Gascoigne charged with assaulting two people in drunken attack. The loveable rogue.

ROYAL BABY SPECIAL: Kensington Palace spokesman denies baby is cynical move to reduce Bedroom Tax for the royal couple.

ARROGANCE OF WOMEN: Exposed – the militant feminists mothers of Mumsnet claiming to ‘know how the Duchess feels’ in hate-filled forum posts.

BUSINESS: Monsanto buys private security form Blackwater; changes company name to SPECTRE.

CELEBRITY: Fury as pregnant girlfriend of Peter Andre keeps Facebook privacy settings turned on. We ask, what is she hiding?


In politics/ tory scum we had this:

1st it’s alcohol& tobacco; now the govt delays action on gambling machines. Amazingly they all donate to the tories!

Dear @BBC UR really showing your disgusting #Toryscum bias with "We All Pay Your Benefits’. Don’t forget WE All pay your gagging payouts!

Tax breaks for everyone! (*Check terms and conditions. All UK citizens excluded, with exception of party donors)

There’s NO connection between tax cuts for fracking companies and George Osborne’s father-in-law being a lobbyist for them. NO connection.

Very under-reported fact: people who are now assessed as ‘not disabled’ by ATOS will no longer be able to get legal aid to appeal.

Dave what is corroding childhood is your government taking from the poor and giving it to the rich!

David Cameron secret deal with porn baron to censor Internet porn so adult DVD sales rise …



And my favest section, general tweets;

JK Rowling has also been revealed as Keyser Soze.

Anyone got a photo of a church that looks like a confused chicken? Oh hang on…it’s ok.. found one!

Poker! A game of cards. Poker! A great way to meet new friends. Poker! There’s too much milk in my tea. Poker! Someone stop that wasp.

Big Man – Bigger BIRD,


Son: Can I try a brothel? Me: You’re 11, you shouldn’t be thinking about paying for sex! Him: …. Me: ….. .Him: I thought it was soup.

Whenever our neighbor’s dog is barking, I know there’s either someone at their door or literally anything else in the universe has happened

WANT to look as though you’re buying a Womble costume in instalments? Simply get some Ugg boots.

Why isnt the NRA saying the tragedy wouldn’t have happened if Trayvon Martin was armed,& calling on young black men to get themselves guns?

Turns out it’s not National Gullibility Awareness Day after all. Got t-shirts made up and everything. Not impressed.

Very big woman at Highbury & Islington station wearing bright yellow t-shirt with "FAT POPLE ARE HARDER TO KIDNAP" on the front. I love her.

"Money has no motherland; financiers are without patriotism and without decency; their sole object is gain." – Napoleon, 1815

And while we say it’s not ok to kill an unarmed kid, Republicans try to repeal #ObamaCare again as a back up, in case the next one survives.

Just noticed this on the Lakeland’s Doctor Who range. Well played, Lakeland. Well played

If I said I love quoting Perry Como songs, would you say A) You’re adorable B) You’re so beautiful or C) You’re a cutie full of charms?

Those whining about ‘nom’, English evolves, deal with it. Except for ‘chillax’. Obviously the use of that should incur sterilization.

The elderly are particularly vulnerable in this heatwave, as nobody gives a fuck about them.

Other people ask me: "What is social media?" And I always say: "Close your eyes. Think of a bee." Then I run away. It buys me time.

I hate hipsters. Their smug faces, vegan diet, tiny feet & sawdust bedding. No wait. Hamsters. I hate hamsters.

I’d forgotten about dobby!

Anyone who says ‘honesty is the best policy’ really doesn’t understand insurance.

Q. What’s the best Australian Wine? A. "Why aren’t we good at rugby or cricket any more?!"

Reptile vets have been called to in to help the delivery / hatching of the Royal Baby.

comments on BBC child p0rn story: "pier-to-pier sites that should be closed down or licensed" – especially the one from Brighton to Southend

"Truth or dare” “Truth” “What’s your credit card number”

Horse photobomb:

Quentin Tarzan Ernie Che Raoul Tito Joesephus Duke Earl Junior Delbert Lamont Zebediah Ezekiel Chandler Evander Billy-Bob #RoyalBabyNames

London switched from sun to thunderstorms within hours of the birth of our future overlord. Based on that, I’m guessing Prince Damian. #omen

Any truth to the rumour they’re calling this baby Stormageddon Alastair Lethbridge Davros Sarah Jane TARDIS Rassilon Perpugilliam Windsor?

Frankly, putting token blocks on internet porn may be the best thing the government could do for British computing science.

Today you stand on the edge of tomorrow. You are lost. You’re meant to be in Redditch. Google Maps eh?

Driving through warm, muggy fog in the Lake District earlier. Like driving through a sauna. But with less screaming and paperwork afterwards

Early tests of our new ‘Anti-Porn Pop Up’ look very promising…

Does the sight of scroungers having kids at the taxpayer’s expense infuriate you? Probably best to avoid media coverage of the Royal baby

‘Why d’you never see an old estate agent? Because it is possible to die of shame.’

Give the #RoyalBaby an opportunity to rise above his station and become the first true Burger King #PrivatiseTheRoyals

Great Private Eye Cover! Gets to the point!

America: where obesity is genetics, but homosexuality is a choice"

Abandoned building that flooded, creating a surreal and perfect water reflection

Lo! As you walk through the valley of the shadow of death, footage of you walking will be used to invalidate your disability benefit claim.

UKIP supporter to me yesterday: "I’m fed up this country welcoming immigrants…I’m going to move abroad". !!

This image probably won’t make it on to any of the official royal merchandise

A "report abuse" button on Twitter is a good idea, if only because it would create enough work to completely wipe out world unemployment.

Looking after a friend’s dog. Kid A announced that he’s "put the dog to sleep". Dog is merely napping. Blood pressure returning to normal.

Everyday I watch the carnage of human suffering, the suffocating despair in the absence of space. I am not traveling by bus anymore

And on that note of existential angst I’ll bid you farewell.


Moving on.

We’ve done the Outlaw. No-one wants to hear about that any more. That would be very boring.

However, I will say in passing that it was so bad on the day I was thinking that was my last triathlon. Until I got that statistic that once I finished the swim I managed to overtake over 200 men. (That was how the statistics were presented, ‘men’s race’. I’m not trying to fudge the figures or discount the women, shitloads of them kicked my sorry arse.) That is incredible. If I took swim lessons I could be a contender. I’m up for it again now.

Here’s some snaps and we’ll move on, saying no more about it.

Pushing it out for the finish. Every inch exist in miles.

And over the line, unaware I was being photographed;

Do. They. Ever!

As I said on Twitter, “This is what it’s all about:

“You can talk of personal growth and aims, but really it’s all about wearing a T-shirt that says ‘I am awesome, bow before me’”


This week I’ve been back to training, perforce, as the garage have my car. I did the first two days in this beastly heat on the bike, nearly 22 miles a day commute, flat out in top gear and lost 2lb! Bonus.

As I’m thinking of kicking some triathlon arse next year I’m trying to heat acclimatise myself. If you can race in this you can blitz a cool day. So I bought a hat, donned my gallon of water holding bag and set off this afternoon. Goddamn! It’s a great idea but heat kills me stone dead. Still, keep at it.

Check the hat with the neck curtain thingy:

As one of my Twitter chums noted, Beau Buck!

I was getting strange looks on my run today, with my hat and backpack with the water bottles and such. People obviously thinking I was taking the bit of sunshine too seriously as they were running in just shorts. It’s heat conditioning, dammit. And it killed me.

What else?

Not a lot. Sleep, train, work.

I did make a resolution to avoid the A30 in Cornwall when I do my LEJOG (Land’s End- John O’Groats) as two Scottish riders were killed this week shortly after starting a LEJOG.. They’d only been riding a few hours  when they got twatted by a HGV. Dead as Betamax, just like that. Lorry drivers! They’re all arseholes.


Anyway, on to more fun stuff, namely the wonderful world of Twitter. Again I’ve been a tad busy so I’ve not been on that much. But I have two weeks of it. Here goes;

The DMreporter had:

SNOOPING: Cameron tackles President Obama over claims the US spied on Britain – “it’s cool, I don’t mind, we’re still friends right…?”

BONKERS: EU ruling to reduce mobile roaming charges ‘threatens UK companies profits, lowers tax payments and takes away orphanage funding.’

DISGUSTING: Fury as radical feminists undermine Andy Murray’s Wimbledon victory by claiming a WOMAN won it in 1977.

DEBATE: Single mothers – is it all their fault?

KATIE HOPKINS: “I’m rapidly running out of easy targets. Quick! Hands up who hates the cripples…”

BREAKING: Mosque near funeral of Lee Rigby bombed, in what we’re assuming to be an inside job designed to frame non-Muslims.



In politics/ tory scum there was:

#Tories: "We can force you to work for nothing; we’re powerless to stop MPs getting an extra £10,000 pa"

I, for one, am glad* my overlords will be getting a pay rise. And if that means 500k families using food banks, so be it *furious

Means test MP salaries, only pay actual expenses, no 2nd jobs, no family members on payroll, no lobbying, & jail for fraud

Five percent pay rise for the Queen. Six percent pay rise for MPs. Half a million people in the UK relying on food banks.

Who’s on the MP’s independent pay commission? Any nurses? Council workers? People on Workfare? Odd, that, isn’t it? #bbcqt

I don’t recall money from Wonga to the Tories being referred to as a symptom of their party being dragged into the loan sharks’ camp. #bbcqt

Tories funded by bankers, Labour by unions. Remember that time unions were bailed out with £bns and caused a £1tn debt? No, me neither.

Surely now it’s the Tories’ turn to sort out their links with the National Union of Shady Bankers And Chaps We Went To School With.

Whaddya mean we gotta abide by the rule of law? Damn eurocrats, coming over here and making informed decisions.

Govt says prince Charles’ letters to remain confidential while #gchq spy on plebs. Nothing to fear if nothing to hide only applies to plebs

To say that socialists are "as much of a danger" as fascists is a statement that could only be spoken by a rich white straight businessman.

Govt pushing ahead to privatise a publicly owned company that made over £600m profit & over 95% of workers voted against the move #royalmail

What is the point of the government holding a summit on the growing payday loan crisis when the Tory Party is funded by Wonga?



And lovely, lovely general tweets:

My first Glastobury was 1994. It was before Twitter so I had no idea who to like or who to hate and had to just enjoy myself. It was awful.

There has never been a better photo of a neighbour’s dog saying hello.

TENNIS FACT: Tennis players are so superstitious that they only ever refer to Andy Murray as ‘The Scottish Player.’

Baffles me when ppl call Andy Murray "dour". He’s from central Scotland. We consider him dangerously flamboyant, talkative & over-emotional

I noted : Finished the second CD (of 8) in my "learn yourself right good German to speak" course. *proud face* Of course now I want to invade Poland.

On the train home a couple of hours ago, someone answered their phone with ‘WAAAAASSSSUUUP’. I’m still not over it.

Kinda got a thing for redheads. And brunettes. Blondes too. As long as she has hair I guess. Or not, it’s probably not a deal breaker.

Today’s radiotherapy music was Mariah shitting Carey. This has possibly been the lowest point of my journey so far.

A cute guy asked if I was single and I just shouted, "CHEESE IS MY BOYFRIEND!" then high-fived his face. Flirting is hard. 🙁

Those bloody trade unions undermine our society by working hard to protect & further the rights & interests of working people. Stop them!

The ultimate flow chart:

Eating donut in car on the way to exercise class. #doingitright

The most inappropriately named Ice Cream van ever

Blimey ! That Stuart Broad must be a solo Axis of Evil.He’s been accused of dishonesty by that paragon of moral rectitude @piersmorgan

I see tensions are running high with the atheist marching season…. No, hang on a minute

Have YOU suffered the devices of Satan, and it wasn’t your fault? …

Man in park shouting “You’ve been warned about this, Horatio” at a squatting dachshund.

Ten-year-old girl warned by Kent police that hopscotch lines are ‘illegal’ and constitute ‘criminal damage’, …

To which I commented: PC gone mad! You see what I did there? *gets coat*

ATTACH a chiminea to the bonnet of your car to give it an authentic ‘steam powered’ look

I just rang Alcohol Concern. I told them I was worried I didn’t have enough beer in the fridge. They’re quite rude, aren’t they?

Never go to bed angry. Stay awake and plot your revenge.

Wolverine 7: This Time It’s More Wolverinier.


That’s your lot folks,

I don’t get time to put in the necessary Twitter hours any more.

Oh, before I go, one thing. Rod Stewart as an uncredited session singer on ‘In A Broken Dream’. Absolutely fantastic. ‘Rod’ and ‘fantastic’, I know. But it really is.

Keeps on surprising me on my ‘phone and blowing me away.




Phew, what a scorcher!

Well that was fun. In no way, shape or form.

As last time I stayed in a hotel and only got a few hours sleep due to the bar and the loud drunks at throwing out time, this time I had a plan. Nip to Nottingham, register and drop my bike and kit off, come home, sleep in the day then drive back fresh as a daisy for the start.

Due to the bloody heatwave the A50 was rammed with all the families going to Alton Towers, so that screwed me up. I skipped the ‘mandatory’ race briefing, (yadda yadda, don’t get killed, yadda yadda,) and tried to come home the long way around, up the M1 to Leeds then across the M62. As it was a new route for me I was having issues with lanes in Nottingham. I was in the outside lane of two when someone in front of me stopped to turn right. I checked my mirror, saw a gap and darted to the inside lane. I hadn’t checked my blind spot. BANG! Someone was undertaking me. Oops.

That’ll be a new wing for me, please. And two doors for you.


When I got back I realised I had 10 hours before I had to get up so I did some last minute sorting of kit. Then I had an hour and a half in bed, but woke up again. I couldn’t get back to sleep but I wasn’t worried, I’d still be able to get some kip when it got to night time. Then next door came back with a bunch of her coke-head mates to celebrate the heatwave. Ace. So I ended up grabbing another hour about 0130, then I had to get up at 0230 and get on the road for 0300. I was a bit tired to start with.

We started at 0600, I took this snap on the way on to the site, sunrise over the Outlaw lake:

Not a bad snap from a camera ‘phone, I think. But look at that evil yellow bastard. You can tell what’s in store.

Look at this:[f7941e]

Astonishingly, after the swim (the weakest of my three weak disciplines) I made up 200 places on the ride and run! Gobsmacked. I’ve just this minute found that out. *chuffed face*

Anyway, the swim was just a matter of getting my head down and doing it. Then came the transition, I jogged out of the lake, very conscious of the fat, shell-shocked geezer I’d seen wobbling out of the lake on my last video. I was feeling alright. Last time we weren’t allowed to get naked in the changing tent as there were female assistants about, so I swam with my tri-suit under my wetsuit, took my wetsuit off put my cycling shorts on (on top of my soaked tri-suit) then set off for the ride. Had I of attended the race briefing I would have know you could get properly changed this year.

I did not. So I found out at about 50 miles that my super-duper, no-pain cycling shorts (which you are supposed to wear on their own) are useless if you are wearing a tri-suit underneath. The pain was just as bad as the first time. Possibly worse because this time I was sure it wasn’t going to hurt at all.

I was flying for the first two laps (of a three lap course) then suddenly the heat (and arse pain) got me. I just faded and it was horrible. You know you’re not having fun when you are hoping you get clipped by a bus so you can quit with honour.

I ground it out but I felt like I could have cried it was hurting so bad.

Then on to the run/ shuffle. Dear god that was bad! 30C, the slightest of breezes and wide open spaces with no shade. I really thought I was going to have to drop out on the first lap of the lake. It was hellish. When I got to the end of the lap they’d set up a sprinkler, I stood under that until I was totally soaked and managed to set off at a slow jog! Eureka! The secret is to stay soaked. So I kept on drenching myself in the lake and the river on the long laps. By the turn around point at 20 miles I was up for it. Well, I had a hell of a lot of motivation to make the misery stop, anyway. Amounts to the same thing. I set my face to flint (as Wendy would have it) and pushed on. I passed two feed stations without stopping and down the last mile and a bit actually forced myself to open the pace up (to zimmer frame speeds) and almost ran in.

It was a terrible time,14.09:52, which is 37 minutes 49 seconds slower than last time, but I really think it was more of an achievement to have finished this one.

I was thinking about it afterwards, I went for probably less than 20 swims in the two years since my last Outlaw, I did one (count them; one) big ride (over 60 miles, two if you count big as over 30) and I’d buggered my run fitness for the month or so before the race with that injury.

This has lead me to two conclusions; 1, if you have a base level of fitness and a degree of stubbornness you can do an Outlaw. 2, it’s a whole world less hellish if you put the training in first.

Btw, that running soaked thing, it meant I had to run the whole distance with squelching, heavy feet and now my feet are ruined with the inevitable blisters. I can barely walk. But I simply couldn’t have completed it otherwise.

I got in at 2340. I did stop off for a McDonalds on the way home, mind. I was ravenous. And I needed salt. So I forced myself to observe strict triathlete dietary protocols by having a Big Mac, a quarter pounder with cheese and a medium fries. And a diet coke. Only joking, no coke. Then I had a chicken leg and a thick crust of bread when I got in.

In the morning I’d lost 3lbs. Tough day!

Back to it.