Some days, you just have to make your own sunshine...

Some days, you just have to make your own sunshine...

2017 and four runs completed. One on the 1st January, one on Tuesday, one Friday and one this morning!

The runs this week have been steady. Running on the first day of 2017, with a new year, hovering above, over a waiting world; slate grey skies and the heavy cloud-portents of times to come. A slow and gentle 5K, over familiar fields and tracks, just me, in the emptiness and silence of the morning. Thoughts whirling around my head, as they always do at this, for me, strange time of the year. Tuesday and another grey and somewhat damp run… no sign of any sunshine as I headed out into the morning… I usually feel a little bit flat after Christmas and New Year, but the past events of the last few months have added a spring to my step and a smile to my lips. Time spent with our newest family member bring sunshine to the dullest day.

I ran, on the lanes on this morning… the fields were too muddy and the tracks too slippery. The wet leaves under the huge trees by Rookery wood made the going tricky… I am overly wary at the moment of falling, after the rib incident, and slowed down almost to walking pace. The light rain, made looking around, difficult… and I shortened my run, to get back to the welcome warmth of home. Two runs, gentle, no pressure of time or distance, just getting back into the swing of things; checking that the ribs are fully healed and concentrating on the way I run.

Friday’s run was different. Clear skies, but no frost or ice, slate grey again, and no hint of sunshine, but a run day. I set out, a little later for me, after the school rush. No-one around as I left the Close and skirted the Crescent, a brisk warm up and then a lovely relaxed pace. This morning, I took an old friend with me, along with my many friends who accompany me on most runs. Laura came on Friday and she brought Stamina with her! Since breaking my ribs and using my cross trainer more, the improved strength in my legs is noticeable… I have got my breathing sorted too… and I set out at a fair pace. I was not sure if I was keeping pace with Laura, but I was finding the strides long and easy. As I headed down the hill, I could see the traffic backed up at the closed railway crossing. Knowing that it would be difficult to get across when the barrier opened, I sprinted down and across the road! ( davelinks , you would have been proud of me).The air was icy, as I breathed it in through my nose… (Buff forgotten this particular morning)… I thought it was mild! Over the road and up to the barrier as it opened, keeping a cracking pace, as only runners do, when they know someone is watching... tummy tight, shoulders relaxed, arms pumping and around the corner to the lane and up… I am not sure how I kept going, I was not really listening to the changes of pace and just felt like I was floating... breathing in and then out... until at the top of the hill I stopped. 3K in 18 minutes! Gosh...Leaning on the gate at the edge of the field I was sucking the cold, cold air in and steadying my breathing. I felt so alive.

The rest of the run was slower, much slower:) I was pleased with my burst of speed… but aware that I am an old snail and need to be careful! :) So, just into the next village and a return trip over the fields and home .

This morning… another run! Gear laid out, (including my Buff Ullyrunner ), or rather placed on the radiator last night and a slightly longer run planned. I was taking some chums again today… a week into this year. Chums who are having a bit of a tough time right now, and need our support and friendship; they were tucked tightly next to my heart. I also took a new chum ,who is just about to start this wonderful journey... I promised I would take her with me, and she could just enjoy the ride. She is going to love it, when she gets on the way…:)

Not a stunningly beautiful morning, as my photograph shows, and maybe not much of a view… but the running, well that makes up for it.

I set out early; it was only just light, with angry black clouds bullying their way across a sullen sky. No hint of blue as I made my way down to the village. A light mist dropping and clinging now, not fog, but mist at this time. The last Christmas decorations have disappeared from the houses in the Crescent, but in the gardens, new growth and brave green shoots are appearing. Folk have been busy already; winter pansies, in neat rows and glistening red berries on the shrubs in gardens, dug over before the frost of the last two days. A few For Sale signs have gone up, un-curtained windows stare blankly as I run past, empty rooms and silence; a new dream waiting for someone to wake it and bring it to life. I ran down the hill, and into the village, there are no trains on Sunday.

How many Sunday runs have I had like this? With no-one around, just me and a sleeping world, it is quite surreal. Up the hill and past the schools, gates locked, and play yards deserted. Up the hill at an easy pace; concentrating on landing lightly and breathing steadily. Lifting my feet in a rounded motion whilst keeping hands and face relaxed. Trying to do all the things that Laura teaches us, when we take those first faltering steps. Along the pathway past the Primary School, yellow galleon still sailing across the yard; manned by countless small sailors in the week, but at anchor, in the corner harbour at the weekends. The picnic tables beneath the trees are empty and damp, twig shelters lie half constructed in the rough ground play area, Ray Mears, watch out!

Through the small estate and up onto the Old Lane. Always mysterious but the mist was thickening here and I could not see the end of the lane; I did have a weird experience here once, as if I was being watched, but, keeping my pace going, (maybe a Tad quicker) :) and concentrating on the road, I was soon at the turn, A variation now, back down the hill, past the cottages and onto the field. My majestic tree, leafless still, huge branched arms stretched against the mist, the track muddy and treacherous, as I headed to the far field. The undergrowth dank and limp beneath the hedges, and although there is an absence of colour, the first small shoots which are those harbingers of a Spring to follow, are already bravely showing themselves. Over the steam railway line and up into the big field. I stopped and looked around. I could see very little in the near distance, but took a photograph for Swiss Lady. Complete silence, as I stood there, shoes clogged with mud, and the sensation of wet socks…the Kale in the field, still growing but only small shoots; no voices ,no little train, no dogs barking, any sound deadened by the thickening fog.

I ran up to the big gate, past the copse of trees, a glorious blaze of colour last autumn, but sadly greyish-brown in the eerie half-light. Lost in my own thoughts, a loud crash made me jump; the Steam Railway, clearly in Steam today, the early risers, volunteers starting the chores. Over the big gate and another pause as I retraced my tracks, and back down into the centre of the village. I passed only one other person. A young lad, who delivers the morning papers, he sees me often and always gives me a wave. I am fascinated by him, he moves so slowly, at a totally easy relaxed pace, and he covers a huge delivery area; I do not think he will ever suffer from stress :)

Running still steadily, nearly an hour now, and time to head home for breakfast. There was a time I always walked up the hill, but I can run up it now! The pleasure I get from this simple fact makes me smile.

So Swisslady , after a long ramble, (which my friends on here are, thankfully, used to), this run was for you; it is all out there waiting…wet days, dry days, cold or warm, dull or bright… we run, and the sunshine is inside us…and it is simply amazing :)

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44 Replies

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  • Oldfloss, you continue to astound me with your mesmerising words! I feel like I've just got back from an adventure.

    One day. One day, I will run to Rookery Wood!

    Wonderful post xxx

  • Thanks you.. you were with me, of course :)

    But, yes, you will and then we will go to my home for well deserved, yummy treats!

    It would be splendid :)

  • Lovely post Floss, so positive its inspiring! :) and 18mins for 3k! that yellow stripey snail is speeding along! Great that you are doing so well, have a great week , love Ali xxx

  • Hi you... thanks, but the bursts of speed, are just that.. I cannot keep 6 mins per K up...yet :)

    Are you still one a break or back at work ? x

  • Back at work I'm afraid😕xxx

  • Oh dear... never mind.. running and Spring await :) Big hugxxx

  • How I have missed your descriptive posts! Lovely! I went out this afternoon and it was drizzly, quite a lot of people out walking though so not as quiet as I prefer it. Like you, I got wet socks from splashing in the puddles. I am so glad that I started this adventure last summer!

  • Yes, getting back to a bit of normality... the small one has had such an impact on our routines! In a good way!

    It has been, weather wise a grey sort of damp week..but I started C25K in Winter 2015, so am fairly used to the dire conditions.. we just have to go with it don't we?

    Wet socks and squelchy trainers... go you... wonderful! :)

  • Lovely stuff. Certainly putting me to shame, did a 10k on the 1st and nothing since. Not sure why but I decided to have a week off. Couldn't have run 5 of the days anyway and have enjoyed not feeing guilty/pressured to go the others. However - the plan is to get out bright and early tomorrow and you have inspired me on.

  • You run a lot..and great runs too... I have been taking the easy options, but I am walking an awful lot too with the small one in pram!

    I think the thing is, just to enjoy it and not feel pressured. that is the point isn't it?

    I hope it is bright for you and you have a lovely run :)

  • Yes, it's no fun if it's pressured. I woke to find mfamilias' Gary gremlin's cousin Graham had moved in overnight. Hour late getting out - and at one point did think - you told Oldfloss you were going so you will have to. Half way through the warm up walk found I couldn't wait to start running and had a lovey 3 mile jaunt.

  • Lovely to catch up with you Floss and privileged to feel I was running alongside you, savouring every moment.

    Getting very speedy! A snail no more.

  • Well Ully, it was fun.. but I can only do short snail bursts :) I love taking my friends with me, and you have been with me from the start of my running journey :)

  • Thank you for taking us all with you on those runs, Oldfloss. So good to hear your voice again and be out there with you. And how speedy you have become! No more snailtalk, you are officially a hare now!

  • A hare! Goodness... maybe that is the case for a short burst, but i still enjoy my gentle pace for most of the time :)

    Iben, you know I love taking chums with me.. I wondered where you were? Hope all is well with you after your super 10K race :)

  • I've been quieter than usual because I have been working too many hours😕. When I told one of my running mates how much I work at the moment, he said "remember there is only one show" and that really hit me. I am trying to cut down and it seems to be working😇

  • Oh dear... :( Well.. your running mate was correct!

    Glad you are being kinder to yourself now.. and looking forward to your next post :) x

  • Great post Floss, you're certainly enjoying your running! You've already clocked up a few miles, well done, happy and injury free running to you. 😎

  • I have Frank; I will never match the likes of you and the other really great runners, especially that IOW bunch of fleet feet :)

    But, my running, brings me so much... besides running! You do some super runs too...I love reading your posts! :)

  • Lovely post, as ever, Oldfloss -you certainly know how to capture the essence of a run. Good to hear you're completely healed now and back to your speedy self again :)

  • Thanks you... it is really good to be back to normal.... I love my runs and just being able to get out again.. pure joy! We are so lucky aren't we? :)

  • Loved reading your wonderful description of your run! Wow you are such a speedy and strong runner - very inspiring!

  • Only speedy for short bursts, the rest of the time.. I poddle along taking it all in :)

    Maybe when the weather improves, I will challenge myself a little more, but until then... I will carry on running and rambling :) Thank you x

  • Oldfloss, thank you for your beautifully written, inspirational post. You have reminded me that while running, I should take the time to observe and enjoy, rather than plodding along, listening to music and in my own world!

  • You are welcome..it is just my way, my world, and we all have our own ways:)

    But, there is beauty and interest everywhere, I feel. sometimes we look, but don't see, listen but don;t hear, and it is good to take some time to just soak it all up...

    Happy running!

  • Beautiful description of your runs. It's a reminder of how every run is different - visually, aurally, physically and mentally, even when you follow the same path. Great to hear you are fully recovered too.

  • Thank you... :)

    They are all so different, aren't they..? I often, as you know run the same routes, but see something new every time!

    Watching the seasons change as I run, and feeling part of it, is a never ending source of wonder to me..

    I am grateful, that I healed so quickly too, I am much more careful now, and the light goes on when I get up in the dark, before my runs now :)

  • ..........and she's back.......normal service is resumed.......and all is and will be, right with the world...........

    Fantastic Floss 🤗

    Mx

  • You are so lovely!!!

    It is really good to be back, rambling along again :)

    Flossx

  • Delighted to read your beautiful post Oldfloss. That has truly made my morning. I have so enjoyed reading it whilst eating a bowl of natural yoghurt with fresh strawberries and blueberries. I can't wait to get back out there and enjoy the changing seasons. In the meantime, I can live my runs through you and others kind enough to post. Thank you! :) xxx

  • Yummy!!!! That sounds delicious :)

    I just had a treat for breakfast... scrambled eggs and smoked salmon bits.. ( the salmon left over from a flan I made yesterday) and the plus is, I do not have to feel guilty, I am allowed to do it, because it is part of our eating regime... :)

    I do feel for you..just getting out, rain or shine, does the heart good... not too long now sweetie.. and you have your Running magazine to keep you happy! :)

  • That was a fantastic read. You are a very gifted lady. I loved the description of black clouds bullying their way across a sullen sky.

    You put you finger on so many things I relate to, but particularly the way we tuck people away close to our hearts when we run.

  • A bit like you, I just say it like it is for me :)

    I am embracing the greyness currently, so much of it around.. although I did manage to walk home from Little Mum's, this afternoon, and it was still light at 4.30!!! :)

  • Thank you for sharing your runs so far this year with us Floss, I felt like I was there with you taking it all in. No doubting your fitness and stamina has returned after your accident, you have done so well using your cross-trainer to exercise on whilst out of action.

    No sunshine, but such happy moments with your new grandaughter to think about, more than make up for that.😊

    It was lovely of you to take Swisslady with you. I do hope she sees this post and is inspired to start.

    I think those having a tough time at the moment appreciate your thoughts too.

    Sounds like your next running year is going to be full of joy. It can only get better with the addition of a little bit of sunshine to help those new shoots you noticed start to grow.

    Look forward to hearing more.xxx😊😊

  • I have been fortunate to heal well and having had the trainer to help me keep going.. thank you!

    Yes, the small one adds sunshine to every day, and to spend time with my daughter and now, her daughter is priceless :)

    I have another run tomorrow morning... I am hoping for something brighter, but if not.. well, we just take it in our stride :)

  • Beautiful as always, Floss. Love the image of the small sailors manning the galleon. :) You're so right about making our own sunshine. We don't even need to do that, though, when we have posts like this on the forum shining for us! xx

  • Lovely person.. yes.. schools are so different when the children are not there.. obvious I know, but when I taught,the empty school felt so odd...the only thing i miss, now i am retired, is the children :)

    I love to share my rambles and you are kind enough to read them :)

  • I was a teacher too (still am, of sorts, but no longer in a school) and I totally agree. An empty school just doesn't seem right.

    The forum wouldn't be the same without your lovely descriptions of your runs - I have missed reading them in my forum absence but resolve to be around a bit more. I have just got in from my run and was thinking about yours as I was going along. It was lashing rain with vicious wind so I was using your description to add some sunshine! :)

  • What a lovely post to read after a busy day at work Oldfloss! Felt like I was out there with you and now looking forward to my next run tomorrow! 🙂🏃🏽‍♀️x

  • Well.. you know you are there with me... you have been a support to me for a long time! If it helps after a day's work.. I am glad :)

    Enjoy your run.. I am out tomorrow morning, too.... I shall choose a good route for us! :)

  • ...and I shall do the same and take you too!☺☺

  • Beautiful words as always Floss. Your posts never fail to soothe me , like a port in a storm, and also very uplifting , thank you xxx

  • Lovely PP... thank you.. I find so much in my running, as you well know... and.. any time you want a port to rest in.. you head here to Staffordshire x

  • Lovely descriptions, wonderful words and beautiful images.....Thank you oldfloss, really good to hear that you are out and about on your adventures once more!

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