After yesterday’s kNAFFTA award nominations, I was persuaded by some running buddies to try running commando as it’s supposed to be more comfortable. In the interests of discretion, I shan’t say any more – and I won’t be repeating that experiment.
My second test, was to see if I could run without a playlist – not naked, I’ve tried that and didn’t like listening to my rasping breath and thumping feet.
I listened to a talk radio show which intersperses music with dialogue. My issue is that I can get highly irritated by some of the rather inane conversations and sweeping generalisations made. The tendency of the programme to choose guests with ragingly opposing views to create a sense of conflict, tends to stifle the debate. Hyperbolic statements thrown from both sides create no sense of nuance. But I thought I’d give it a go, because change is good and it stops you forming habits.
I discovered I was slowing down to listen to some parts of the dialogue and in fact I stopped a couple of times, because I wanted to hear what a particular expert had to say. That was unexpected, what wasn’t was a few ‘Oh for goodness sake’ type exclamations when I was running. Thank goodness no-one saw or heard me – the nutty runner muttering to herself!
Would I do it again? – it’s a different type of run, I enjoy my playlists because I can get lost in the music, sing or hum along and although I famously have little coordination/sense of timing, there are some tracks that really help me run. Eminem’s Lose Yourself is a great example of one of those.
A general chat/music show may not be the right formula, I’ve heard about two comedians who run and do podcasts, so maybe I’ll try one of those next time.
In the meantime, today’s run, short, slow and a little testing on weary legs – but the third daily run usually is.
Average Pace 9:08 (really, really slow! – may have had something to do with stopping to listen to the radio)
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
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.
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
it’s misty, which makes it easier to run as it’s not so hot
GPRS gets confused
And how GPRS got confused today! Map My Run claimed I ran 81.18kms in one hour and 6 minutes my new personal best of 48 seconds a km. Take that Usain – who is the lightning bolt now? How I wish any of that was true – the distance, the speed and the elevation gains were all over the place.
But this was a well-trodden path; luckily I have on a previous run recorded this route and the distance was not lost. I started out happily onto Mill Lane – no-one there. Lovers’ Lane and Bali – no-one. Hill that Kills – no-one. Bendy, Scary Road – no-one. Royston Vasey – no-one. War of the World’s Lane – at last humankind is in sight, I thought everyone had been abducted by aliens. There ahead of me was Hairy Biker Man and Artur his dog. HBM was wearing blue tinted aviator sunglasses, Artur just his collar, and me wearing a bemused look. It was foggy, why was HBM wearing sunglasses? But then, Italians in my experience, always manage to look cool, and he did, although I would have looked ridiculous wearing them in the fog… 🙂
I don’t know him well enough to ask, I’m only really on petting terms with Artur and it seems a tad impertinent to ask. Arthur is 4 years old and likes a long walk, his un-named companion dog was at home as she is 15 and not up to the long walks.
It was nice to see them and stop for a chat, except for one slight thing, I had been running quite pacily and this was definitely an unscheduled stop, but a nice one nonetheless. Clearly, HBM and Artur each had a magnetic field to attract more folk out, because shortly after I saw my first cyclist and then two walkers.
Lovely, misty run – not 81kms but a touch over 10km, nor was it a lightning bolt run, but it’s not bad for an old girl!
Mummycav playlist – thanks Bev for reminding I hadn’t played this in a while
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.
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
Thump, thump, thump goes my head and yes another migraine, funnily enough after having drunk some wine last night. That’s the sum total of 1.5 glasses of rose and a snifter of prosecco. Today’s reward for last night’s indulgence is an ice pick headache – oh joy.
I’ve tried running with headaches and it is too painful, the pounding of your feet seems to worsen the pounding in your head. I have one nuclear grade migraine tablet left before we get back to London, so settle for an unhealthy dose of Paracetomol instead. 5 hours of sleep later at 2pm, I rise to go for my planned ‘morning’ run – given the headache is now just a muffled thud, I decide a gentle trot is in order.
I appear to have missed another beautiful morning, we still have temperatures of 20 degrees+ with glorious sunshine to boot. I take my time down the Slope of Hope and pootle up the Hill That Kills, onto Lover’s Lane where I find numerous picnickers taking advantage of the last of the ‘summer’ sun. Some hunters are loading their beagles and guns back into their 4X4s – I’m not sure where they hunt, as most of the land in this area is agricultural and hunting is specifically banned if you are displaying the appropriate notices.
They overtake me on my run back up Lover’s Lane and we part company, I aim back towards Mill Lane and take the Slope of No Hope back up towards Argo’s Loop. I manage to do my stealth ninja impersonation past the beagle kennels, but failed miserably going past the yappy house, where the horrid monsters did their usual leaping and barking and received an Angle Saxon tongue-lashing for their trouble. I’m not entirely sure the lady of the house knew what I was saying to her dogs, but she must have known from my tone of voice that it wasn’t complimentary.
I took Laundry Lane to complete my run, – I had in plan to do 8km and just squeaked past that at 8.3km. It was very slow today, but I forgive myself as I really wanted to get out and a slow eight km is much much better than nothing at all. Another night out tonight, I think I’ll be passing on the rose.
The C25K Mentor List
Keep On Running – Spencer Davis Group
Snail – The Smashing Pumpkins
Happy Pharrell Williams
Smile – Lily Allen
Pink Panther Theme – Henry Mancini
Smile – Gregory Porter
Nowhere Fast – Eminem and Kehlani
Hey You The Rock Steady Crew – Rock Steady Crew
Compression – Francesco Digilio
To Jan – Leonard Anderson (aimed at a c25K mentor not me!)
Miami Vice Theme – Jan Hammer
Running Up That Hill – Kate Bush
Ju Ju Man – Dave Edmunds
Marathon – Rush
The Streak – Ray Stevens
There Are More Questions Than Answers – Johnny Nash
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.
Not me for sure, I saw him on my recovery run today, and not only was he on his moped, but he was shadowing a lady runner as she did some circuits. All this time, he’s been leading a double life – delivering presents at Christmas and a running coach for the rest of the year.
But I am somewhat perplexed – anyone who has seen my progress in running, would see I am probably in need of some coaching too and he has kept schtum. The one thing I can say is that I was running marginally faster than the other lady, although I was on the 4km mark and nicely warmed up, whereas she looked as though she’d just started. Maybe I should put personal coaching from Babbo Natale on my Christmas list.
Today’s route took me up Mill Lane, Lovers’ Lane and a sleepy Villa Bali where a guy was sunbathing on the grass – rather him than me – there’s lots of biting insects around at this time of year. I’m nursing bites received through my lycra!
At the 3km mark I took a detour to Argo’s loop and managed to sneak past the beagle kennels, without them stirring and then past the horrid yappy dog house, where I got past and they started barking once I’d gone. Onto Laundry Lane and there was Babbo Natale doing his secretive running coaching. He waved and smiled as I ran past in the other direction. After 0.5km I looped back and saw him once more, and he said Ciao. Shortly after my 5km target was reached. Recovery run done. Now Babbo Natale – what did you think of my technique and stride length?