The playlist and other internal dialogue 

Less than 10 weeks to go, most weekends now I’m doing a 2 -3 hour run each day. With this much time, often over fairly familiar ground, the brain has a tendency to wander….

 Sometimes I am breaking down the 100km into pieces my brain can comprehend:

100km equals 5 x half marathons, right…and my ideal goal then  must be 3 x 4hour legs to the final checkpoint at 75km (plus a final crawl home)…. 

Okay then I’ll have to be faster than 5.7km/hr for 13 hours to avoid the cut off at the final checkpoint. But what does 5.7km/hr look like well it’s slightly faster than a fast walk, or 10 minute K’s

Well that’s just a good honest shuffle….

Other times though, my internal playlist kicks in, and one of the true joys of being a Dad is the change in the playlist that has come about.

Now when I’m out running the songlist my brain chooses from is less of this…

And more of this

And this

100km is going to be a doddle….

Early mornings, late nights and everything in between

I’ve been been trying to ramp up my base level of activity, to make up for my otherwise unfocused training. 
Because of the winter daylight hours, I’ve spent an abnormal amount of time with a headlamp on, trying to do the extra k’s. It has also meant I’m exploring further afield. I have been lucky though as it turns out that someone spent some time recently building a fully lit, dedicated walk/cycle way, that is virtually on my back doorstep. 

I often have just the dogs for company. The road, that the cycleway parallels, is often very quiet and the scenery isn’t half bad either.

The temperature is something that has been more noticeable, in its absence recently. but it hasnt stopped the exploring and on the good days it’s really just magic. 

WEIT – a moment

Only 15 weeks to go.

And I am doing this for a reason.

To highlight the absolutely amazing job that Wellington Early Intervention Trust (WEIT) do.

And hopefully fundraise a little bit.

They currently have 34 preschool kids who attend weekly therapy  and a waiting list of 14.

The therapy consists of  music, speech, physical and early intervention teaching in small groups

The children who come to the centre may have Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Autism, Aspergers, rare genetic disorders or developmental delays with no specific diagnosis.

The Staff at WEIT are AHH Mazing, and they frequently go above and beyond.

The kids get a massive benefit from their “target all bases” approach, as we have personally experienced with Nyah.

However as with many programs, they are not fully funded. And provide the music component of the program without it being funded at all. 

Any support would be much appreciated and any funds I raise will be used to help deliver this program and allow them to continue doing their stellar work.

A few thoughts on running.

Walking on an empty winter beach at dawn like I am prone to do sometimes, once in while I get a little philosophical…

Just this morning, a thought began to form….

There is a simplicity about running. A type of magic that causes a feeling of release. Just from the mere fact the body is moving like it is designed to do.

Sure we can complicate it with other things that remove us from that feeling; the needto get fitter or to loose a few pounds or to go faster.

But if you allow yourself to get past all of that. Its there you rediscover the pure joy of what running should be…

That first memory…

Running barefoot across wet grass with your friends…

When you were not trying to do anything, except exalt in the freedom of the movement, only going as fast or as slow as the moment demanded. Just existing in that exhilaration,

Speeding, straining, all jostling elbows before pausing breathless, then dashing forward again.

There are times now when I am running, where I get close to touching the ghost of that feeling…

When I crest the top of a hill with speed still in my legs, and begin the roll down the other side, just a little bit fast, just barely remaining in control.

Of running, busyness, and life

We recently added another little bod to the chaos in our house a rescue pup called Toby. I say “little” in a very limited sense, he is a 10month old huntaway cross. His feet are huge and in the short space of time we have had him, he has gone from a skinny bag of bones to a relatively sleek looking mischief maker. 

Having a new addition has limited my running somewhat in the short term; but based on Tobys current progress I am sure he will outrun me in no time. 

He is also becoming fast friends with Nyah

About motivation and family 

Last year it was about Nyah.

This kid

It was also a way for me to process all of it… it allowed me some normalcy over a period when nothing else was normal.  I  mean there is nothing more normal than going for a run. Right?

… Running is about as familiar to me as breathing….

As I’ve said, I rarely run fast. But I love the rhythm of going for a run…

The rare moments when you get a flow on and the only thing that your mind is occupied with is the steady drumming of your feet as they make contact and spring you forward…

The white noise of breathing, as your lungs pull life into you…

The pulse of the terrain, as you trace the topography…

My Dad was a runner too, a moderately good one in fact..

Our family grew up with the stories of him running. First in his younger days, when running was only being done by a few crazy individuals, and it was common to have less than 10 entries in a marathon field.

And after us kids came along, he continued running. There are pictures in the family photo album of Dad, crossing the finishing lines of any number of events, holding onto at least one of us 3 kids.

But he has a different way of describing the feeling of running, in his own desert dry humorous way that he has.

“…. it’s like banging your head against a brick wall. .. it feels best when you stop..”

My Dad and I don’t always agree on everything but we do both understand running … and he taught me the value of family… it is definitely because of him I know what it means to be a good dad.

And one day I might even be be a moderately good runner.

The reason and the new goal 

Just lately I have had a number of people who were aware of last year’s little adventure asking me if I am still running…

I have politely indicated that I didn’t really have anything in mind, and that I was only running a little bit at present….(both mostly true).

I have enjoyed a substantial break. but at the same time I have been trying to find a way to show my support for the people who have helped us, along the way and in so many ways…

One of the highlights of being Nyah’s Dad is seeing her develop and become this amazing cheeky little soul.

As part of her week Nyah has been attending Wellington Early Intervention Trust (WEIT). They have had a profound effect on Nyah’s progress and how well she is meeting her developmental milestones.

WEIT help children who may have Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Autism, Aspergers, rare genetic disorders  or developmental delays with no specific diagnosis.

They do this through group based therapy. They do amazing things and they do it without enough funding to meet the demand.

There are so many reasons why these guys deserve support and I will fill you in on the way…. To the 14th of October and to the start of the 100km Taupo Ultra.