With a spring in my step, I set out this morning from Hampstead Hospital, passing about 20 smokers outside – at least 4 of whom had visible NHS staff badges on. And one patient smoking whilst still attached to his walking frame drip… Having never smoked, I thank heavens I never got addicted to the weed and for sure it wouldn’t be much of a help to a runner.
It was a lovely morning, sunny and breezy in equal measure and I was in good spirits, having had a ‘night before’ Gourmet Burger and fries, from Foxlow in Clerkenwell, which is our default place for when the ‘I need to eat meat’ craving comes on. I’d also had some red wine, so I wasn’t entirely sure this was the best preparation for my run, but in actual fact it seemed to be exactly what the doctor ordered.
I bounded down Hampstead Hill, towards Camden which was chock a block with people and pop-up market stalls on the pavements. Loads of men in shorts – some a nice sight, others well, let’s just say they were a tad sartorially challenged. I had my new running belt on today, which has nifty pockets for all manner of things including the phone. At Camden Market, according to my phone I turned in a record breaking sub 1 minutes kilometre, and within yards of the pop-up orange juice stall, I had supposedly clocked up 2 kms. Mmm, maybe the belt is obscuring the GPS. I continued on my way towards Euston which as ever was choked up with traffic, I bombed down Southampton Way and made my way toward Holborn. It was now prime lunchtime, so a lot of worker ant dodging became necessary. I didn’t feel out of puff, but did need a drink, so removed the integrated bottle from the fit belt. Replacing it, I felt a rather unfortunate trickle of liquid, aiming for where the sun don’t shine… The integrated design obviously has some wrinkles to work out, because I don’t need to water my bum when I’m running.
I aimed towards the City to add a couple of kms to my run – I had in mind maybe doing 10kms today, then as I got bewitchingly close to home, I realised I needed to pick up a prescription from the Doctors, which was in exactly the opposite direction to my travel. Oh well, pick up the pace and run up there then. I ended up behind a lady who was not in a good way, she was puffing and very out of breath, I too was wheezing slightly, but that was more to do with having run quite a distance and at quite a pace. My business was done and I ran back out towards home. Eventually I did run out of steam, with my legs aching quite a bit, but it felt like a fab run. I’d run really fast, done some sprint intervals as well, so all in all a good one.
Then I looked at my stats – oh yes I was a record breaker – except the records weren’t true, I hadn’t actually run 17.5km as it said, at a pace of under 5 minutes. So huffing and puffing a bit, I had to be honest and recalibrate the stats, and remove 2kms from the record.
I’ve still done well and this has been my fastest run for ages, which I put down to a few days extra rest this week, the excellent Foxlow meat and wine, and the sheer joy of being back in the Big Smoke, with so many distractions to keep me occupied.
Ode To Billie Joe – Bobbie Gentry
My Girl – The Temptations
Oh! Carol – Neil Sedaka
A Whiter Shade of Pale – Procol Harum
You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling – The Righteous Brothers
Let’s Spend The Night Together – The Rolling Stones
Help – The Beatles
Take Good Care Of My Baby – Bobby Vee
Dream Lover – Bobby Darin’
The Locomotion – Little Eva
Will You Love Me Tomorrow – The Shirelles
Do Wah Diddy Diddy – Manfred Mann
Stupid Cupid – Connie Francis
These Boots Are Made For Walkin’ – Nancy Sinatra
Blue Velvet – Bobby Vinton
Bye Bye Love – The Everly Brothers
No Regrets – The Walker Brothers
The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore – Ditto
That’s Life – Frank Sinatra
Chain Gang – Sam Cooke
Wake Up Little Susie – The Everly Brothers
Be Bop A Lula – Gene Vincent
He’s So Fine – The Chiffons
La Bamba – Ritchie Valens
Blueberry Hill – Fats Domino
Sweet Little Sixteen – Chuck Berry
Then He Kissed Me – The Crystals
Tell Laura I Love Her – Ricky Valance
One Fine Day – The Chiffons
Downtown – Petula Clark
Average Pace 5:45 mins/km
Elevation Gain 50 metres
Kms Run 816.37
To Run 1201.63
(oh bum, if I could have genuinely run 17kms, I would have been under the 1200 to go mark)