On success and embarrassment

How can one run contain two such differing emotions – success, and embarrassment? Surely one would preclude the other?

Well the success is easy. When you’re running and a man walking the other way tells you the path ahead is closed but you keep on going, it’s a success. When you reach this sign on the path :-

and you decide to carry on to see where the problem is, it’s a success. Despite this, it can still look like your run is going to be a failure when you reach the bridge that is being rebuilt and orange safety netting is completely closing the footpath. However if you then ask the man fixing the bridge how you can get around and he pulls the safety netting to one side and says you can come through as long as you’re careful, then that’s a success!

Now for the embarrassment. It was very foggy today, and most people seemed to have decided to stay indoors. Running along the canal that’s in the process of being renovated and which is normally busy with dog walkers, tourists and cyclists, I was surprised to find it was practically empty.

On my way back up to town as I came to the one bridge on thepath, I ran under the bridge and couldn’t resist making loud “woo woo” noises to hear the echos. They were great echos, but as I came out from the bridge I came face to face with a man and his two dogs. Any hopes that maybe he hadn’t heard me were shattered when he sniggered and said
“Bet you didn’t think there was anyone here!”

I will leave you to imagine how red my face was as I slunk off. At least I gave him something to smile about.

What any Sane, Normal Person would do

As Thursday’s long run was the longest run I’d had for months,  I resolved to take it slow and steady and allow myself tobe easily distracted. After spotting myself in a mirror designed to help someone trying to get out of their drive safely I pondered for some time about safety when running and the usefulness of hi-viz clothing.

Running on down a quieter lane, with wide grassy (muddy) verges I was surprised to spot a sword. A kid’s plastic sword, unbroken, abandoned and just lying flat on the grass.

Abandoned sword

I eyed it up for a few moments, just lying there, then did what any sane, normal person would do*.

The sword in the stone (mud)

I must go back that way and see if Arthur has reclaimed his sword.


* My daughter disagrees that this is the action of a sane person. But teenagers have to be contrary, it’s in their job description.

Autumnal Hills

I decided it was time to run up and down some hills in the woods. Well it was Thursday and it wasn’t raining.  Amazingly it wasn’t a mudfest, it was stunningly beautiful with the trees just beginning to change colour and the first sun for days.  As I ran down the little lane to the woods, the sky was huge with awesome clouds. I wish I’d had a decent camera with me, but my phone did its best to capture it.


The path through the woods was wet and slippy,  but very quiet with just my puffing and panting disturbing the peace.


I did find a little lost soul in the woods, so if anyone’s looking for them,  they’re stood on a gatepost waiting for you.



The best bit about runs like this is looking at the stats afterwards. Not pace, that’s always frighteningly slow, but the elevation profile.

Impressive Elevation Profile

See – impressed now?


Back In The Swing Of Things

Finally I seem to have run a ‘proper’ week, with a short tempo run, an easy run, an MP run and finally a LSR. All felt good, even if I did have to force myself out of the door when it was pouring with rain.

On one of my favourite long run routes (the one with the bridge with the sad story that I told you here), I also realised I passed another secret door – but a secret door on a somewhat grander scale than I usually see! Regular readers will know how I love ‘secret’ doors – I seem to find them all over the place, in the most remote corners of the countryside. I think this one beats them all hands down though!

'Secret' Gates!
‘Secret’ Gates!

A sad tale of young lives wasted


On a run through our local Stately home grounds, the path goes over a little old stone sided bridge. As you get closer to this bridge, you can see lots of carved names, and initials in the stone.

“Pah!” You might say, “what are people like? Almost as bad as the litter in the lanes I’ve seen this morning.”

Before you get too huffy (and before you start me off about fast food littering – that’s a whole post in itself!), let me tell you the story behind the carvings.

During the First World War, Corsham Town Hall  was used as a hospital for soldiers. As part of their recuperation they were encouraged to walk in the grounds of Corsham Court. Apparently, if they were well enough to reach the little bridge (about a mile away) then they were well enough to be shipped back out to the front line. The carved names and initials were made by these young men.

After running over the bridge and looking at the carvings (as I do every time I run this way) within 2 miles I ran past the town’s War Memorial. The thought that stuck in my mind was wondering how many of the names from the bridge ended up on the memorial?

What a waste. Let’s make sure we live our lives fully as a mark of respect.

A different wet view – Christmas Run!

Fed up of seeing photos of soggy Wiltshire fields ? Me too – so how about these photos of a different view on my run this week? Perfect for shaking off the Christmas cobwebs, and hopefully burning off some chocolate on the way round.

Its good to run in different places, and I’m very proud that I got myself out the door running whilst away from home. Anyone else manage this over Christmas?

Tall Ships – more suitable than running shoes in this weather?
That’s what I call a wet run!

Name that Flower!

So when that LSR is getting you down, when you’re feeling tired, and you’re still achy after that hilly run 5 days ago, when you need a sneaky excuse to have a little stop, what finer excuse that to take a photo??Not sure what is planted in this field, but it has very pretty blue flowers. If anyone knows what it is, please let me know so I can casually drop it into conversation and appear knowledgeable!

Oh and I found another ‘Secret Garden’ gate …

Don’t you just want to see where it goes? Or is it just me who’s so nosey? (That was a rhetorical question – no need to answer, thank you very much!)