16 Oct – The kNAFFTAs* are here

white clothes line trousers past
*Knickers and Foundation Fitness Training Awards – the ‘k’ is silent

 

In English we have a phrase ‘don’t get your knickers in a twist’ or a knot is also a variant on the adage. This came to mind during my run this morning. It occurred to me that whilst I had created a scoring method for my sports bras, I hadn’t done the same for the nether region’s needs. What’s good enough for upstairs is good enough for downstairs, so here we go.

Here is my indispensable guide to working out whether your running/sporting undergarments pass muster.

A  – Appearance

In relationships, for some of us, looks are all. Others prefer character or even a good sense of humour. How your underwear looks may just make the crucial difference between running and running scared.

Score yours as follows:

0= Who said knickers were necessary? I run commando.

1= I re-purposed granny’s bloomers/ grandad’s plus-fours, they are a bit bulky under the lycra

2= Other than the rotting elastic, they’re looking good for 10 years wear

3= So-so, I wouldn’t die of shame if my shorts fell down

4= Nearly new, neat and rather natty

5= The haute couture of knickers, I prefer to be seen in these rather than my running shorts

B for Bounce

For us runners some moving flesh can be problematical. Underwear providing a bit of support can be the difference between being able to sit comfortably post run and being forced to apply anaesthetic cream in places you rather wouldn’t.

Score yours as follows:

0 = I run commando, bounce hardens you up

1= OMG, there’s a flesh rollercoaster down/back there, it’s all unrestrained

2= I yelp occasionally when my parts get out of synch

3= An occasional hiccup, but otherwise it’s settled nicely

4= Firm without constriction

5= There ain’t nothing going on down there

C – Chafeability

The feel of your undergarment fabric can change your whole demeanour, for better or worse

Score yours as follows:

0= I’ve already told you, running commando makes me ‘meanour’

1= I think they call it glass paper at B&Q, this material takes no prisoners, I’m on my way to A&E

2= Hessian is not as eye-watering as you may think and runner’s lube helps

3=  I gasp occasionally in the shower – as a consequence my partner is somewhat suspicious

4= Seamless, wicking technology – need I say more?

5= My personal shopper sourced the most wonderful, hand woven Tibetan silk underwear. Please define chafe for me.

D for Dirt Management

Running underwear needs laundering, most of us can’t afford the time or have the inclination for special treatment

Score as follows:

0= Commando baby, nothing necessary

1= Handwoven Tibetan silk requires a Tibetan silk hand washing specialist, luckily I can afford one

2= Who doesn’t use a dry cleaner?

3= Hand washing preferred, with like minded clothing, we don’t like conditioner

4= Washing machine but please make it gentle with no tumble drying

5= Washing machine – any programme, these babies are indestructible

E for Expensively Branded

Running is supposed to be cheap, but as we know that’s not really true especially if you fall prey to ‘swoosh envy’, so how does your underwear size up on cost?

Score as follows:

0= I’ve told you so many times, I go commando, no cost impact for me, but my partner doesn’t like touching my running shorts

1= Handwoven Tibetan silk, doesn’t come cheap and my undies don’t either

2= Usain Bolt recommended these and he deserves the money

3= Goldilocks Porridge – just right

4= I’ve got money left over for lube

5= How cheap?!?, Better buy a multi-pack

F for Form

We’ve all fooled ourselves from time to time over the form of our clothing, for example ‘I did look good in the 80s’. Your choice of shape/type of underwear speaks volumes about you as a runner.

Score yours:

0= Runnng commando, my form is perfect and I won’t hear otherwise. I actually don’t hear otherwise as no-one will or does run with me

1 – I do everything in my boxers, although I concede they do look odd over my running shorts

2 – Going for a thong, who doesn’t like a cheesecutter?

3 – The old, grey faithful, no longer recognisable in form, colour or age. I can’t even be sure that they’re not my partner’s knickers

4 – My Bridget Jones Big Pants – my wife/husband says they suit me and provide a very useful tummy tuck service at the same time

5 –  Proper, pucker, perfect running knickers. No seams, wicking technology, no riding up with wear – heaven in a brief.

For scoring – anyone with a zero score – I think we all know how you run, more or less naked and most definitely alone. 😉

The higher the score the better the knicker. You can find the excel sheet here, to help you score your drawers

kNAFFTA2019

P.s. Run Done – same issues as yesterday – the fog meant Map My Run recorded me as doing 56kms today

Playlist

Dad Dancing Classics

Come On Eileen – Dexys

Money For Nothing – Dire Straits

Ballroom Blitz – Sweet

This Town Ain’t Big Enough For The Both Of Us – Sparks

Sit Down – James

Jump Around – House of Pain

Oops Up Side Your Head – The Gap Band

Bat Out Of Hell – Meatloaf

Rockin’ All Over The World – Status Quo

Papas Got A Brand New Pigbag – Pigbag

Born To Run – The Boss

Greased Lightning – John Travolta

Dreadlock Holiday – 10cc

Mr Blue Sky – ELO

I’m Too Sexy – Right Said Fred

Timewarp – The Rocky Horror Show Cast

Tubthumping – Chumbawumba

Pretty Vacant – Sex Pistols

Prince Charming – Adam and The Ants

Living On A Prayer – Bon Jovi

Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen

Sex On Fire – Kings of Leon

Stats

Distance 10.08km

Time 1:05:08

Average Pace 6:27

Elevation Gain – indeterminable

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Done 1674.64

Kms To Run 343.36

 

 

 

14 Oct – The Search For Red October Goes On

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Bin Lane isn’t all bins…

 

or more precisely red October’s migraine source. Sunday morning, Mr JCR is off cycling at ridiculous o’clock despite us not getting home until after 2am. I wake up and the red mist has already descended, not anger – but another effing migraine or maybe it is the remainder of yesterday’s making itself felt once more, with hazy sight and an icepick attacking my retina.

Having vowed off the rose, my total alcohol consumption as the self-designated driver last night, was three sips of prosecco and one sip of sweet fizz, to toast the birthday girl. This is hardly the stuff of conspicuous consumption or an alcohol dependency, but clearly something is not agreeing with me.

I’ve stopped the HRT, which seemed to help. I’ve cut down on my alcohol consumption, to the point where I feel both virtuous and virtually teetotal, yet the sledgehammers and pickaxes are  still attacking me.

I didn’t eat chocolate yesterday, nor cheese – two of the favoured food migraine triggers. Maybe it is just one of those things, I am miffed, really miffed. I don’t understand why all of a sudden it’s a problem. Had the MRI scan – nothing, had an eye test only this week, in case it was a case of eye strain/similar – nothing.

Or is it just a case of WMAS? Whatever it is, I do wish it would go away. Losing half your day to a pounding head is a complete and utter waste of time.  Okay rant over – I did manage to get out and fortunately I only had a planned 5km to do.

A quick route to the café saw me take in Royston Vasey Ridgeway, where out of the village I spotted road markings for the local running club’s annual 12km/5km/dog walk/fun walk event. The arrows indicated the 12km route – they were pointing uphill to some particularly nasty gradients. Luckily for me my plan was more modest and not up those pesky hills…

I took it slowly to avoid increasing the pounding in my head and entered fish shop village, where to my embarrassment the finish gate for the event was still in place. I snuck around the back of it, so it didn’t look like I was a running ‘bandit’. There were quite a few fit looking folk carrying their medals and goodie bags, which we were told contained a pair of running shorts and a bag of pasta.

I managed to pootle off without attracting any attention and continued a gentle pace to Bin Lane and beyond. At the café I met Mr JCR – he’d kindly dropped by to rescue me from the walk home up the Bitch of a Pitch – funnily enough she doesn’t seem quite as bad in the car.

6kms done, despite red October’s provocation – and a dry week beckons in the name of finding out whether being virtuous gets rid of migraines.

Playlist

Planet Earth – Duran Duran

Glory Days – The Boss

See You – Depeche Mode

Rumour Has It – Depeche Mode

You Love Us – The Manics

Night Fever – Bee Gees

All Those Things I’ve Done – The Killers

Let’s Stick Together – Bryan Ferry

Let’s Go Crazy, Darling Nikki, When Doves Cry – His Purple Highness

Stats

Distance 6.42

Time 43:45

Average Pace 6:49

Elevation Gain 12 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 1654.48

Kms to run 363.52

 

 

12 Oct – Hot or Cold?

 

I had cold feet about getting up for my run – mainly laziness. But the weather was hotting up, so after much faffing I finally got out. What a glorious October morning, 18 degrees, sunny, no breeze and very little traffic around.

The usual long run route from home to the coffee shop, taking in the delights of Mill Lane, Lovers’ Lane, The Hill That Kills, Bendy Scary Road, Royston Vasey, Fish Shop Village and Bin Lane.

At Bali, I spotted the roses basking in the morning sun, and they were beautifully fragranced too. Summer’s last rays of sunshine encouraging the late flowering.  This was quite prophetic for my run, as I was a little slow on my feet at this point, I think the September reduced runs are having an impact and I’m a little less used to doing longer distances. Still October will get me back on track. The downside of the sun, is that the pesky biting insects are around and I’m nursing two bites on my legs which line up perfectly with my capri seams. It’s not an elegant run when I have to stop for a scratch and hope that no-one sees me.

Onto Royston Vasey and I smiled when I saw the hot water bottle cover on the washing line – at this point it was about 20 degrees and it seemed really incongruous, given I was boiling hot and rolling up my capris to cool down somewhat.

At the 6km mark, the late flowering came into effect personally and I managed two kilometres at under 5.50 pace, which is quite a rate for me, especially in the sun. Eminem and ‘Lose Yourself’ did help as it’s one of my favourite running tracks, then All Saints made an appearance with ‘Never Ever’ which also kept me trotting along nicely. Of course this pace wasn’t sustainable, but it’s the first time in a while I’ve done sub 6 minutes per km.

Bin Lane came into view and I had to slow down, but another 10km clocked on the challenge, on a day that started with cold feet and ended up with a happy hot runner.

Playlist

Ju-Ju’s 90’s Playlist

Get Here – Oleta Adams

Don’t Need The Sunshine – Catatonia

Say My Name – Destiny’s Child

Lose Yourself – Eminem

Never, Ever – All Saints

Love Is All Around – The Wets

Barbie Girl – Aqua

Believe – Cher

Wannabe – Spice Girls

Nothing Compares 2 U – Sinead O’Connor

The Power – SNAP!

Gangsta’s Paradise – Coolio

Move Any Mountain, Ebeneezer Goode – The Shamen

I See You Baby – Groove Armada

Devotion – Nomad

The Key, The Secret – Urban Cookie Crew

Everybody’s Free – Rozalla

Baby One More Time – Britney Spears

Dub Be Good To Me – Beats International

Stats

Distance 10.44km

Time 1:08:00

Average Pace 6:30

Elevation Gain  47 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 1639.75

Kms to Run 378.25

 

 

 

9 Oct – Running Mathematics

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Target 10km

Achievement 11km

Result  = 1km put in the running bank and 1 smiley runner

Playlist

The weather has improved and my weather playlist seemed appropriate as it was a fun run in the sun.

Misty Blue – Dorothy Moore

Thunder Road – The Boss

It’s Raining Men – The Weather Girls

I Won’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me – Nik Kershaw

Something In The Air – Thunderclap Newman

Mr Blue Sky – ELO

Ain’t No Sunshine – Lighthouse Family

Thunder In My Heart – Meck and Leo Sayer

Purple Rain, Thunder – His Purple Highness

Downpour  – Backstreet Boys

Sunshine After The Rain – Berri

Walking On Sunshine – Katrina And The Waves

Boogie Shoes – KC and The Sunshine Band

Cold As Ice – Foreigner

Sunny – Boney M

Lightning Bolt – Jake Bugg

The Real Slim Shady – Eminem

Summer Breeze – The Isley Brothers

Cold Cold Man – Saint Motel

Warmth – Bastille

Sunshine On a Rainy Day (twice)– Galimar

Boogie Nights – Heatwave

House Of The Rising Sun – The Animals

Cloudbusting – Kate Bush

Lightning Strikes – The Black Seeds

 

Stats

Distance 11.11km

Time 1:21:49

Average Pace 7:21

Elevation Gain 87 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 1623.98

Kms to Run 394.02 -brilliant  Im now on the threes…

8 Oct – Babbo Natale is Back

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Babbo Natale 

 

Sunday was a run day, and it became reordered due to a pesky migraine. I did get up late to do my run at 10 o’clock – evening not morning – Sunday therefore became a ‘no run’ day. I estimate I’ve lost about 100km this year due to migraines, which is somewhat irritating but the situation is improving, so fingers crossed that’s the limit of impact reached.

Today’s run needed to be a good one on distance to make up for the slippage. Mr JCR promised to pick me up at the cafe, giving me a +/-10km target for today.

Monday’s are always sleepy and today was no different. Up to Mill Lane the crunch of leaves and a few slippy acorns underfoot led me into Lovers’ Lane. Ahead of me Mr & Mrs Walking Sticks, I’ve seen them a few times over the summer, I think they must do mid-morning walks as I rarely see them early on in the day. Mr WS was very polite and stepped out of my way when I pootled past and on my return loop, they both said buongiorno.

Down the Hill That Kills and onto the Bendy, Scary Road, I was warming up nicely and then tasted my water. Eeeuuggghh it was full of saline – we evidently have an issue with our water softener, as this is the second time in a week. Okay never mind, just focus on getting the run done without water – luckily as it’s cooler I don’t need as much so it’s hardly a crisis. As I was wiping my mouth one of the many Puntos  here passed me – it was Babbo Natale and he tooted me. My assumption is that it was a toot of recognition rather than irritation.

Onto fish shop village, just about hitting the 8km mark and I was passed by a very bright lime green cyclist, talking on his mobile phone, whilst he was being overtaken by a car. Brave or stupid – you decide.

Up to Bin Lane where all was quiet and my run passed without incident – after the 9km mark a little dog joined me for a jog – he lasted about 25 metres and then turned back home. He was much nicer than the nasty, yappy, jumpy dogs in Argo’s loop. Finally, I hit 10km on the All Roads Lead To Rome road, and whilst my legs were a bit tired, I felt I’d had a lovely run out, seeing Babbo Natale and meeting a new dog friend, oh and passing the 1,000 mile mark which, for the curious amongst you, is 1609.34kms.

Playlist

Disco Divas

Ring My Bell – Anita Ward

I Say A Little Prayer – Aretha

Yes Sir, I Can Boogie – Baccara

Cruel Summer – Bananarama

Sunny – Boney M

Young Hearts Run Free – Candi Staton

I Feel For You – Chaka Khan

Hot Stuff – Donna Summer

Love Come Down – Evelyn Champagne King

Rhythm Is Gonna Get You – Gloria Estefan & The Miami Sound Machine

Pul Up To The Bumper – Grace Jones

Ain’t Nothing Going On But the Rent – Gwen Guthrie

Somebody Else’s Guy – Jocelyn Brown

Funkytown – Lipps Inc

Borderline – Madonna

Forget Me Nots – Patrice Rushen

Stir It Up – Patti LaBelle

Jump, I’m So Excited – Pointer Sisters

Car Wash – Rose Royce

Ain’t Nobody – Rufus and Chaka

Let The Music Play – Shannon

Lost In Music – Sister Sledge

How Will I Know – Whitney Houston

Stats

Distance 10.42km

Time 1:11:13

Average Pace 6:49

Elevation Gain 43 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 1612.87

Kms To Run 405.13 ( three hundreds in sight!)

 

 

 

6 Oct – Eight Ferraris

 

on the country lanes.

Today, Autumn decided to arrive. Yesterday we had sunshine and 20+ degrees, today’s it’s skirting 14 and misty, which has put paid to my ideas of running in shorts. Winter running gear is taking its place.

Having decided to reorder my day and do things differently (according to Mr JCR, I just couldn’t be arsed getting up) I wombled out shopping, taking the bendy, scary road to fish shop village.

On my approach, I heard a large throaty rumble and a glorious procession of Ferraris went past, low slung, sleek, fast and sporty, I counted each one as they went past and there were eight.  Some of the villagers applauded and said brava/bella – the love of the home-grown sports car is alive and well in Le Marche. I’m always looking for some inspiration or focus for my runs and a Ferrari per km was a perfect target for me.

Meeting Mr JCR after his cycle ride, I donned my dayglo and set out. My hips are a bit achey and I wasn’t too sure I’d be hitting the 8km, but as I warmed up they improved. I did a loop of the Slope of Hope, the Hill That Kills, Lovers’Lane, Mill Lane and back to the house. There I saw a large black Mitsubishi, who appeared to be stalking me. As I ran up the hill he stopped driving and watched, when I turned back he crawled to the gates of our house. I crossed the road – then he crawled behind me and turned off into a cutting. I turned back to take a look and he stopped his manoeuvre and continued along a track. Curiouser and curiouser – I think he was probably lost because the track he was taking would lead him to a closed restaurant.

I did half of Mill Lane and turned back to Argo’s Loop, where I caused mayhem running past the beagle kennels and the house with the horrid, happy, barking, manic dogs. At this stage I’d done about 5km and the hips seemed a little less sticky. I continued to Laundry Lane and saw the lovely trees turning colour for Autumn and then my running rhythm appeared and I had a glorious 4km run. It wasn’t particularly fast, but I wasn’t aiming for speed – the Ferraris had done that this morning. This old banger was just happy to have met her 8 Ferrari target, because I’ve just snuck over the 1600km mark.

Playlist

Joan of Arc, Live and Die – OMD

The Reflex, Hungry Like The Wolf – Duran Duran

Marvin Gaye – Puth and Trainor

Purple Rain – His Purple Highness

All These Things, That I’ve Done, Andy You’re A Star, Smile Like You Mean It – The Killers

Runnin’ Down A Dream – Tom Petty

Rock the Casbah – The Clash

World In Motion – New Order

Rain On Your Parade – Duffy

Disco 2000 – Pulp

Blasphemous Rumours, Dreaming of Me – Depeche Mode

Avalon – Roxy Music

Stats

Distance 9.32km

Time 1:08:27

Average Pace 7:20

Elevation Gain 89 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 1602.45 – yay!

Kms to Run 415.55

 

 

4 Oct – Chicken on a Zebra

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I have some running to do, to make up for the good living of September. This morning saw me up and out, slightly earlier than yesterday but not much.

Autumn in Le Marche is a time when lots of work gets done after the ferocity of heat in Summer and prior to Winter’s grip. This is why I guess, none of my usual running buddies such as Anouska and Albino, Dame Duvet are around. Or it could be that I am so late out, they’ve done their thing already!

A very quiet run today, 3 cyclists and one cat seen, the cyclists all nodded – the cat didn’t. But then that’s cats all over.

I was better dressed this time out – short sleeved tee-shirt and capris, therefore no need for me to repeat my Compo look thank goodness.

A gentle pootle down the Slope of Hope and onto the Bendy, Scary Road, leaves crunching underfoot. Someone please tell me how did I manage to trip over a twig? After giving myself a shake and concentrating a little more, I came across the half-painted zebra crossing. In Italy you take your life into your hands on a zebra, there’s no guarantee that people will stop; you regularly play a game of chicken with the oncoming traffic. This zebra is upping the ante on excitement/danger, you’ve got to be even more confident of the traffic stopping given that it runs out halfway across the road.

Luckily for me, an old gentleman stopped to let me cross – no chickens were harmed in the making of today’s run. I was about 4kms in at this point and continued my pootle onto fish shop village. Again, very quiet and my pace was easy. Bin Lane, came and went and so did the 8km marker.

Chicken for dinner, maybe it crossed the road without the aid of a zebra?

Playlist

From my new famous names playlist

Michael Caine – Madness

Geronimo – Sheppard

Grace Kelly – Mika

The Joker – Steve Miller Band

Clint Eastwod – Gorillaz

Prince Charming, Picasso Visita El Planeto De Los Simios – Adam And The Ants

Sherlock Holmes – Sparks

Joan of Arc – OMD

Rasputin – Boney M

Bruce Lee – Robbie Williams

Moves Like Jagger – Maroon 5

Walks Like Rihanna – The Wanted

Rock Me Amadeus – Falco

Axel F – Harold Faltermeyer

Buddy Holly – Weezer

Al Capone – Prince Buster

Dear Prudence – The Beatles

Victoria – The Kinks

Frank Sinatra – Cake

Stats

Distance 8.56km

Time 1:01:03

Average Pace 7:07

Elevation Gain 37 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 1593.13

Kms to Run 424.87