Wednesday, 1 June 2011

National Running Day

Today is National Running Day in the USA, and I’ve been thinking about what this will mean when I become King of Everything Important. As you might expect, it will mean a lot.

Public Information Broadcast: National Running Day – what this means for you in my brave new world

1.       There will be no work on NRD. Yes, good news, you can have the day off as a bank holiday. This won’t be one of those rubbish bank holidays that moves about erratically, or one where your employer reschedules your work pattern to stop you having it off. Literally everybody gets the day off. No exceptions. This will be the only day in the entire year when everyone is free (sort of free, see point 4). I may have to think of something clever to free up the doctors, nurses and other essential types – maybe I’ll fly in some French people to cover for them. Anyway, whatever happens, no work for you on NRD.

2.       By contrast, there will be lots of running in NRD. Up and down the country people will shun their cars and bikes and run everywhere, all day long. There will be races and fun runs and casual jogs and hill sessions and sprinting and trailrunning and ultramarathons and treadmills and babyjoggers and parkruns and freerunning and steeplechasing and barefoot running and relay races and backwards running and more or less any other type of running you can imagine. There will be so much running you won’t have time for anything but running. Running running running. That is what people will say.

3.       It will definitely be sunny on NRD. But not too sunny. In fact it will be ideal running weather.

4.       Obviously, running will be mandatory on NRD. Anyone found not running will be chased with a pointy stick, which will make them run. I’m not sure who I will detail to chase them, as I’ve given everyone the day off to go running. Maybe it will be the French again.

5.       Running stores will all open early and close late, to allow people the opportunity to purchase running-related goods. There will be massive discounts on everything, subsidised by the benevolent government I will have founded. I will pay for this subsidy through extortionate taxation of all sports-related industry other than running. As with the chasing, the running stores will probably have to be staffed by the French. I’m sorry if they’re rude.

6.       Like at Christmas, families will come together on NRD to exchange running-related gifts purchased at French-staffed running stores, eat a feast of pasta and energy gels, and then go out for a nice bracing run celebrate. People will sing running carols like ‘Born to Run’ and anything by Run DMC. It will be wondrous.

I hope this clears things up and you are all as excited about National Running Day as I am. Just imagine. An entire country smelling of Deep Heat and a population throbbing with post-run endorphins...

Mull of Kintyre Half Marathon

Ridiculously good stash from the Mokrun
Only the briefest of comments on this one – if you want the full story you’ll have to pick up the August issue of Runners’ World UK. It should be in newsagents from the first week in July.
 The two main features of my race experience were the brilliantly mad course (honestly, it’s completely bonkers – full details in main article) and the insane weather, with wind so extreme that it felt like running through soup at times. I struggled a little with a stomach upset and shin splints so had to back off the pace in the final miles to avoid ‘doing an Alloa’, but still managed a respectable 1:41:15 for my trouble. To my amazement I later discovered that this was good enough for 38th place in the half marathon, out of 260 finishers.  The winner made it home in 1:19:02 – a time which some of my old cross country team could probably challenge. Just saying, guys...

Alloa Half Marathon report hits the interwebs

For those of you without the means, motivation or inclination to actually buy magazines in order to read my published articles, my review of the Alloa Half Marathon, which appeared in the June issue of Runners’ World UK, is currently available online. Click here to read in full

Next up for me is some more long running – looking forward to pounding out a solid 16 miler this weekend and maybe even –gulp- starting to do some proper speedwork on the hills. Eight weeks, four days to the San Francisco Marathon. Fear.

Happy running,


2011 to date - miles: 536.42, parkruns: 6, races: 3, miles biked: 47.44, metres swum: 925

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