Now, I’m not what you might call a fitness freak. Every time I pass the gym on Upperton Rd and look at the row of people all cycling towards me without getting anywhere, I feel like laughing. Joggers are more liberally-sprinkled on our pavements than lamp-posts, but I think jogging is a form of torture and marathons an extreme form. On the news, both national and local, there are daily reports of outlandish feats of endurance raising money for this or that; but I don’t begin to comprehend why anyone would want to put themselves through something like a triathlon. My leisure time is taken up with reading, watching TV, drinking beer with buddies and listening to music. And when I go on holiday I enjoy a gentle walk; a stroll along the beach, a little light climbing perhaps, a bit of a swim. Nothing too demanding. Yet the last two church holidays I’ve been on have involved rather over-enthusiastic types who think nothing of shooting up a steep mountain the moment they’ve pitched their tent. Such as this one:
which I declined to ascend at that point as I’d spent all night in a freezing tent and had to get up twice to pee.
The beach holiday, years ago, was much nicer. Still on the first morning I wanted nothing more than to laze in the sun and hope my children didn’t drown themselves. But it became clear that a group of these said hardy individuals were planning to latch themselves onto a rope for the purposes of pulling a bus along the promenade! Why they would wish to do such a thing when they could be soaking up the sun, was a mystery to me, and when they had all charged up the shingle yelling ‘huzzah!’ I expressed my view to someone sitting near me. ‘They’re bonkers, aren’t they?’ I said. ‘Why don’t they just sit and enjoy the sun?’
She gave me a look, part-sorrow and part-anger. Turned out she was just putting her trainers on so she, too could dash up the shingle and go pull a bus!! I ask you!
But recently all this determined non-climbing and non-bus-pulling has started to catch up with me. Living where we now do, I need to cycle a fair bit to get around; and so I’m having to supplement my usual diet of fairly gentle yoga and sporadic walking with some good hard chugging up slopes and down again. I’m getting better at it; and the other night when it was cold and wet I actually broke into a spontaneous jog! Whatever next?
Better save me a bus, I guess…
Spring! workshop tomorrow, folks at the Embrace Arts centre. Our workshop starts at 12 so see you there!