9 April – J in the City lacking some K



You should never show you’re too keen when your date comes calling, and so I made Mr Smooth wait for my company today.

Nothing to do with playing hard to get and all to do with finding it very hard to get to sleep last night. Half past three in the morning saw me reading the newspaper, trying to tire myself out, as a consequence my sleep pattern shifted by a good three hours.

After a groggy lie in and a mental telling off, I got changed into my running gear and went for a nice light run in the City. Run 2 Week 3 of Couch to 5K, last run in July 2017 in Italy, in the sun.

Fast forward 18 months and it’s being run in the sun, but London. I don’t know if it’s the lack of pollution but I’ve never seen so many blue sky days all at once, which is quite an encouragement to go out. I had hoped to wear my newly ordered shorts and running top, however they hadn’t arrived, so I was wearing full-on winter gear, which made me a little red in the face, as overheating took hold.

Like my last run, I thought I’d collect smiles during my run, but evidently the smilers had decided to self isolate, not a glimmer of a smile, no head nodding, no thank yous, but in fairness not that many people around, so today was an epic fail on smile collecting, but a win on completing the run.

Imagine a beetroot wearing camouflage leggings, grinning inanely at random passers-by.  Note to self – I think I’ve just realised why people didn’t respond, me looking like a loon was probably a tad off-putting for most people.

Mr Smooth suggested I maybe feeing a little tired and so water would be a good idea – ah yes, water flask, I thought something was missing. Never mind JCR it takes a little while to get back in your groove. How did the run feel? Well, in truth I could go faster and I could run for longer (presumably this is muscle memory kicking in), but my hip is still quite sore, and I don’t want another year off running, so slow and sensible will do the job, although I cringe at having run an eight minute kilometre – I could ‘fast walk’ it more speedily.

For the warm down, I took the opportunity to jay walk on a closed road – pedestrians are usually potential roadkill in the City, so it seems slightly naughty to do it, but it kept me in the shade and in good spirits.

Music was my Disco Divas re-mix on Spotify, with the most appropriate track being Cruel Summer, because it’s warm and we can’t do what we would like to. But I ended up on Donna Summer’s  I Feel Love, which pretty much summed up how I felt about the run

In all it’s eight runs of C25K done, a bit of jay walking some kit missing, but some new kit ordered. I got home to a parcel of Lululemon running goodies – summer shorts, two summer tops and a front-loading bra, (which I thought would be better than my Shock Absorber, which I find really hard to fasten), so JCR got some new K (kit)

Well what an absolute hoot it was, wrangling my boobs into the front loader, in truth it wasn’t so much putting on clothes as a full yoga  and wrestling work out. So this J can’t really handle her K at all. And I thought finding motivation might be an issue on running, it could be the hardest job is getting my boobs in order.


Bridges – which are pelvic thrusts without the thrusting – 10

Pelvic thrusting – 2 sets of 10 reps, I’m not sure that’s what they are called, but it’s what Rocky did in Rocky Horror Show…

Clams – 15 each leg

Hip Flexor Weights – too difficult to count the positions but 3 sets of reps each side

Squats – 2 sets of 10 reps

Demented Crab movement – 1 set of 12 reps for each leg (the bedroom isn’t that big so I can only do 4 in any one direction)

Boob Wrangling – 10 minutes and a few eff words

Toe touching – am not in the least bendy, so let’s leave it as a work in progress



Distant Socialising or Social Distancing?

Yesterday was official rest day from C25K, but a walk was in order to keep up a minimum amount of exercise during lockdown.

The City was quiet as ever, and Mr JCR and I were chatting about how much nicer it would be if people were smiling when out. In fact, Mr JCR commented it would be like collecting happiness, and would help you feel so much better during these sad days.

With that in mind today I went on Week 3 Run 1 of C25K, determined to collect some happiness. Whilst we have to do social distancing we needn’t be socially distant and I made up my mind to smile through the run at fellow exercisers, pedestrians, workers whatever.

Mr Smooth decided we were alternating between 90 seconds of running and then three minutes intervals. Not exactly a stretch for me on the puffing and panting front, but a bit of a stretch for the gippy hip, which did start to grumble on the second three minute interval.

The sun was shining and I ticked off my first two smiles, a fellow runner and I dodged each other and both of us smiled  in thanks to each other. I know I said let’s not be socially distant, but this is London you can’t just talk to strangers randomly it will get you arrested.

A little later on a little old lady passed by laden down with her shopping, so I pushed my back to the wall so she had space, she smiled and nodded her thanks.

A few metres later I was jogging happily along and two walkers were coming towards me, the pavement space was limited so I darted into Moorgate on the road, and they both smiled and she said thank you.

I was avoiding the sun, as ordinarily by now I’d be running in Italy, (which is where all my summer running kit is) in London I just have winter running gear, which is a little bit too warm in this gorgeous weather. Keeping in the shade listening to a rather glorious Two Tone and Ska Playlist, I hit the last run interval and I felt fine save for an occasional twinge from my right hip. Turning back towards home I saw the workers in Moorgate not distancing at all – real workers and fake social distancing, but on my cool down walk I saw these cute fake workers in a window, but they were doing real social distancing.

Note to the real workers – maybe it’s not a bad idea to take a leaf out of the fake workers’ book…

Whilst I ran with social distancing physically, I wasn’t socially distant and so my stats are:-


Run 3.8km

4 Smiles

1 Nod

1 Thank You

And the usual physio routine, pelvic thrusts, squats, clams, bridges, hip flexor weight training

Playlist – Two Tone and Ska – perfect for a run in the sun.






Week 2- Don’t Lock Me Down

Quiet, empty blue skies in London

To be honest it was a toss up between using Chris Rea’s Road To Hell and ELO’s Don’t Bring Me Down (with some artistic licence from me) on the post title.

The sun was shining and it’s a beautiful day, hey hey, with Mr Blue Sky going around my head.  It was no contest, ELO won out on the title battle. I’ll keep Road to Hell for when the lockdown gets tougher.

But what about my battle to keep going on Couch 2 5K. Well Mr Smooth helped as always, his dulcet tones getting me out of the apartment and onto the mean streets of olde London Town.

My alternative lyrics for Don’t Lock Me Down,  these took me quite a while to work out whilst running in the City, as I kept on getting sidetracked by cyclists.

With thanks to Jeff Lynne

You got me runnin’ to keep my mind
You got me thinkin’ that I’m wastin’ my time
(Don’t lock me down, no no no no no)
I’ll tell you once more, the lockdown’s a bore
(Don’t lock me down)
You want us to stay away from friends
I’m tellin’ you it’s going to be the end
(Don’t lock me down, no no no no no)
I’ve told you before, there’s no wine anymore
(Don’t lock me down)
Don’t lock me down, Boris
Don’t lock me down, Boris
Don’t lock me down, Boris
Don’t lock me down
What happened to the PM we used to know?
You used to run all the way down the road
(Now you’re locked down, no no no no no)
I’ll tell you once more before I get out the door
(Don’t lock me down)
You’re always talkin’ how we’ve lost our rights
We must stay indoors all thru’ the nights
Don’t lock me down….and repeat
The thing is I think we’re due the full lockdown, there were people in the City but not many so it was easy for me to social distance and run, except for the arsey cyclists, who despite having empty roads, insist on cycling on the pavement.
I interrupted my run to stop for a cyclist who was on the pavement and then cycled sooooo slowly past me. He didn’t even say thanks or nod or acknowledge the gesture. and what’s more he made me mess-up my run, I started running although I was actually on a walking session, and I got totally mixed up on my intervals.
This cycling on the pavement drives me crazy – in London we have little public space and usually it’s chock full of folk. Now we have lots of space, no folk and still plonkers think it’s okay to cycle on the pavements, even though the roads are EMPTY.
In fairness, these were not lycra clad cyclists, it was the Boris bike bunch mainly. Twelve cyclists on the pavement in a 3.5km run in an empty City. Oh and yes three of them were cycling in a group within touching distance of each other.
I wish them a bad bout of cyclists arse. The thing is, they just don’t think that it’s them that may cause us to lose the right to exercise outdoors. We have a tiny balcony, about four paces long – if we are restricted to home all day every day, it’s going to be a really tough time.
Rant over – the run in the sun was lovely, and I’d forgotten the bliss of it.
That ’s Week Two, Run Three done and dusted.
So Mr Smooth, we’ve done two weeks dating, are you ready to up the commitment?
3.5kms of running ish
Razouski Playlist – loads of 80s gooduns
Pelvic Thrusting – I know it’s inappropriate to say so, but that’s what I was doing
Some back bridge thing with weights
Clam shells



Joining Runder

Very appropriate advice in lockdown times

It’s been a year.

A whole year.

Since I’ve run. For the following reasons:-

  • Injury
  • Physio
  • Flu/Cold thing lasting two months
  • Flu/Cold necessitated visit to a hospital for air and antibiotics – it wasn’t flu
  • It was acute bronchitis, followed by;-
  • Paroxysmal Vertigo, which caused me to fall over at the physiotherapists – he promptly banned me from running as it was too dangerous.
  • Two sets of kidney infections.
  • Distinct lack of mojo.

And the worst thing, Alzheimer’s took my dad, giving me and my family one of the shittiest New Year’s Eves ever.

January saw his funeral, which was delayed because pops died between Christmas and New Year. A visit to Cornwall helped do some healing by the sea.

February saw me go to Liverpool to scatter some of dad’s ashes and visiting Anfield, which was one of the most emotional things I’ve ever done. He loved his team, and it was only fitting he made his final visit there.

March – a significant birthday coinciding with the first day of the UK’ s official COVID 19 lockdown – no birthday meal and no birthday trip to Tel Aviv either. And for me now, the first month of a new year.

Who knew that a COVID lockdown would start me running? I’ve joined the running app ‘Runder’ , where swiping right or left is not an option, you can choose your running coach and take it from there. All of which means I’m dating the gorgeous Mr Smooth again. Me and Michael Johnson are an item. And no there isn’t an app called Runder, it’s the Couch to 5K app.

My fitness issue is not one of having enough puff, it is whether my dodgy hips will stand the load and so far the physio is hurting way more than the running. Still hopefully the old adage ‘no pain, no gain’ stands up to scrutiny.

Being stuck in a small apartment in London, the fresh air beckons and it is much fresher now there’s little traffic. There’s joy in running down the middle of the tarmac roads in the City, with very few folk around. Social distancing works just fine.

I’ve started my playlists again, but I’m not fixating on distances or times. Let’s see if me and Mr Smooth stay the distance.


5 runs done

5 playlists played

5 lots of sports washing done