Training, tapering and (baby) time…

As I’m sitting here writing this, I’m ignoring a number of things;
The dishes, the mess in the lounge, the fact that we need more firewood brought in. The noise of the static trainer humming away in the spare room, as Jules rolls out some extra energy. But mostly I am trying to ignore the countdown timer on the sidebar of this blog which says I’ve got less than a week to go before the first leg of this treble.

Six days to go and I’m “tapering” that magic period before a big run when paranoia is the norm. Every muscle twitch is questioned as a possible strain. Most times this is the point when I’m quietly admitting to myself, that I haven’t really done as much training as I should have.

But this time, I have done enough, I think, which is a nice feeling. I am still fair s#@ting myself, however… I am confident that I can finish this first leg, it’s whether I can finish it, and still be in good enough condition to continue training towards the second event!

I’m enjoying this easing up on the training, it feels like someone has gifted me more time.

Something which I relish, because I’ve found that as the training has increased. I have become even  more focused on ensuring I still spend good quality time with Nyah.

I’m even more stoked than normal, to be able to be share time with her, as she had just passed a couple of her own milestones in the last week or so.

She has gotten almost to the point of sitting up unaided and her increased awareness and interactivity was marked by her first word (well her proud parents are taking it as a word). She really has provided a huge number of reasons to smile and laugh this week.




Weekend Hills and Recovery

Long run training on weekends are always a bit of a challenge, and trying to schedule time around normal new family life, even more so.

I have a VERY Understanding Amazing and Beautiful Wife. Jules has completed an incredible array of her own endurance events not the least being a half ironman. She will always be my inspiration.

But as a consequence, there is a fair amount of FOMO, in our house. I’ve come to accept that instead of the Hangry’s (hungry angry’s) that some people get, Jules get’s the Fangry’s (Fit angrys).

I haven’t always got the balance or timing right, and I do feel guilty whenever I go sliding out the door to spend some time on the trails. But I am getting better at ensuring Jules also gets time to spend on her own exercise.

This Saturday’s run highlighted the conflict between everyday chores and getting the training done, even more than usual.

While running I sent a couple of pictures as a way of letting Jules know how I was progressing.


Screenshot_2016-06-21-21-16-17 And In reply Jules, also let me know how her morning was progressing.

Screenshot_2016-06-21-21-16-39Needless to say I came home on time… folded the clothes, fed the baby and cooked dinner all while Jules had a much deserved soak in a long hot bath….

Actually, I did. But Jules, rather than a long hot bath spent an hour on the exercycle instead, go figure?

A bit of progress and goal setting.

I’m slow.. I’m slow enough that I don’t generally like to check my average speed, as it’s hideous how miniscule any improvements are.

But with the interest in this little adventure. I thought it was worth downloading a running app, to record my efforts in some form.

I’ve been using the App inconsistently since I started and my first few attempts almost put me off completely.

When I jog/walked to work the first few times I couldn’t even manage to run one kilometer without slowing to a walk, my time for the flat five kilometer route was a dawdling 48 minutes.

But yesterday after running like “T H E  W H O L E  W A Y”  I checked the app again and …

32 minutes.

Now I doubt I’m up for Olympic selection (the current NZ record is 13.10).

But on my current rate of improvement…

Hey who knows….


The commute to and from work is useful, not only do I do a majority of my weekday training this way. It also gives me a real block of time to plot and plan both work and home life, dream about holidays and generally put things in order.

Cross Training- Making the most of every opportunity.

I’ve found very quickly, to fit anything that looks like actual training into the normal everyday busyness of life, you have to get creative.

I’ve got into an almost routine bike ride to and from work, although in deference to the wettest days, I still get the bus sometimes.

I’ve substituted some longer weekend runs, with hours trying to tame the wilder parts of our garden.

But this weekend there has been an exciting new development! It was a very mild winters day so I extricated Nyah from her Mum’s arms, bundled her up in all kinds of layers into her pram, and we went for a nice long walk through our local wilderness area.


We have been finding that Nyah is motion deactivated. So Nyah slept through most of the explore, (as you can see in the photo) but she did wake up in time for the last part along the beach headed home.


I cant wait for more days like these.



Don’t sit in dog shit and other dodgy encounters.

“I must look a weirdo” he said holding up his shorts at eye level.

“I just sat in dog poo”.

“Aww that’s shit mate” I managed to gasp, as I crested the top of the rise where I’d found this peculiar sight.

I continued on down the track the image of “the weirdo” – shorts off, in between two bushes, apparently trying to wipe off the offending dog poo on the scant bits of grass on the side of the track, burnt into my brain.

I was 7km into a 9km loop at dusk, without a torch. I reflected on who looked the more weird, and chuckled to myself.



Trying to cram a run in around normal work hours, in the winter time, often meant I was hitting the trails with those other fringes of society, that liked to hide their furtive activities in the semi darkness.

I had one such encounter on a recent morning, I’d taken the dog with me as I often do and coming to the end of the track I slowed to a walk to put the dog back on the leash.

Drawing level with the driver’s door of a parked car I’d presumed was empty. A light flared inside the car illuminating a hand holding a lighter under a glass pipe.  As I continued on towards home, I kept one ear open for engines starting, or car doors opening.  But the driver I believe was too intent on the hit he was getting to register, exactly how close this weirdo and his dog came to intruding on his morning time routine.


The realisation.

My ever convincing brother in law, Marcus, persuaded me that going for a run after work was a good idea. Running the two blocks to his place felt great. After saying hi to my sister and two nephews, the shoe laces were tightened and we were out the door.  After another two blocks facing into a stiff head wind, I reduced to a walk. Great four blocks and I’m done!!

We continued on sometimes running me mostly just trying to breathe, Marcus bouncing along next to me telling me how good he felt because he had several runs under his belt this week already.

It shouldn’t hurt this much… I had run before – just keep going it will get better. It was just 25 minutes out and Marcus finally felt sorry for me. We walked the short way home along the beach.

Mulling over exactly how UN-fit I was, it was a bit of a rude epiphany.

At least the view was nice.




The last year – or how we got to where we are.

In explaining how I got here I have to explain where we came from. So to keep it brief the last year or so reads a bit like this.

In 2013, Jules and I had moved back to New Plymouth to be near family. We had a number of other friends and family also with kids around town and felt it was the right place for us to focus on having a family. The job that I applied for was not “the career position”, but it did sound interesting, and Jules quickly found herself a role that she really enjoyed getting her teeth into.

The Mountain
The Mountain

In November 2014, the organisation I was working for announced that there was going to be an organisational realignment. This was about the time I started to explore other options.

New Job New Town, New House and other News
I got offered a job in Kapiti. The timing of the new job offer, when it came, couldn’t have been more like kismet.  At exactly the same time, Jules found out she was expecting.

Shifting town was and is something I swear I’ll never do again. I started my new job end of May 2015. After finishing up her job and selling our house in New Plymouth, Jules moved down with Cat, Dog and Goldfish into our new house at the end of August.