Building great foundations

28 Jan Thurs 

Helen Glover double gold medalist announces her return to rowing for the Olympics this year, if it takes place. I bet the marginal team members are cursing that. 

Take a longer run, the weather is milder, though the ground remains sodden, so careful underfoot. A gently paced run of 44 minutes feels pretty comfortable. Followed by short stretching session. 

Tennis AGM. I have agreed to arrange the online meeting. During proceedings the report on seniors tennis announces that I will be captaining the over 60s. That is the first time I have heard that said publicly and I feel immediately old. There are no gasps of surely not, must be some mistake – difficult remotely as it may be to convey such surprise – so I guess I have to accept it.

We could of course have agreed to remain in the over 55s, which might have been better for our fragile egos. However with all bar one player having reached 60 years of age it was the sensible decision. We did joke about not moving up age bands, as 60 we agreed sounds old, though in reality over 55s are not exactly spring chickens either. I am sure we will get used to it.

29 Jan Fri 

Stare accusingly at weighing scales. Weight is the same  as last week. Slightly disappointing as I was expecting at least a 1lb loss. Don’t dwell on it as everything feels right diet wise apart from the half loaf of a small cheese bread I devoured when it arrived fresh Thursday afternoon. That could be the reason! 

Shorter run, round Trenance Gardens. Gentle running interspersed with speedplay. Fast overall at just under 25 mins. The faster paced parts – fast by my standard anyway – are definitely getting faster and easier. Stride length definitely feels longer, a result of the stretching I guess. What a heartening relatively immediate benefit. Follow with 30 minutes of stretching accompanied by a Spotify Road Trip selection – Born to Run by Springsteen stands out. 

The more disciplined approach to stretching I think is working. I am stretching further and feeling the muscles relax so getting further into each stretch. It’s a different feeling. The initial upfront stretch is painful, but if I try to remain relaxed the stetch goes a little further and the pain changes, a different pain, for some reason more bearable.  

It remains for the most part more difficult to work hard in the home setting as opposed to the gym, which is only there for the purpose of working hard. Home has so many other functions to fulfill.

Having been very disciplined to finish work at 4pm I have arrived at the weekend in good spirits. 

After showering and gathering up a week’s worth of kit and clothes from the floor for washing, the working week feels complete.  

What a fantastic feeling, my body and mind are responding in a way I had not quite expected to, both increased exercise, stretching and more disciplined approach to work. Laying down a great foundation of general fitness which will hopefully hold good for life and tennis. It is easy to get into a groove with exercise, so I need to bear in mind that running of itself at the moment is not an end in itself.  

Time to get a little more specific. To this end I pick up my racket for the first time this year and with an orange ball, find  a small piece of wall to gently push a few balls against for 5 minutes. Didn’t see the point in anything longer, as there was no plan, just get racket out and see what happened. The racket feels heavy. 

Excellent, celebrate by tucking away the best part of  a big bag of wine gums and two slices of bread.  Two steps forward one step back

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