Temptation

By | Running

Temptation Deeper than an emotion, it’s an irresistible drive or uncontrollable desire, the magnetic pull of inevitability, the tractor beam dragging your physical form towards an unknown conclusion, one that may have destructive and permanent repercussions. The rational mind temporarily overridden, sense trampled and realities blurred. Mental and physical scarring distinct possibilities, it could all be so easily avoided, and yet once that carrot is dangled, that poisoned apple plucked, for some of us that temptation is a force that overrides all. It could be a vanity? A midlife crisis? The need for intrinsic or extrinsic verification? Probably a combination…

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Turn Off, Tune In

By | Running

A gentle ‘on your right’ as I aimed to nip past the walker who was occupying the whole trail, poles spread wide… ‘JESUS CHRIST!!!’ A shocked screech as she jumped further into my path, forcing me on to the peaty hummocks, throwing me an aggressive accusational stare… ‘You could’ve f**cking warned me!!’ The apology almost fell from my lips, the curse of the polite, bumped into on the high-street and still issuing my regrets, but something overrode and instead I ignored and ran on, yards away before my brain computed the hard facts.  I’d been approaching for minutes, the epic…

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Fluctuating Fish – The 64th Yorkshire Three Peaks Race

By | Running

Big Fish, Small Pond I love the Northern Irish mountain running scene, although of late I’ve been rather invisible within it.  It’s buoyant, flourishing and boasts many brilliantly organised events, from the iconic Slieve Donard race to the prestigious Mourne Skyline, with many other classics between.  With evening club races attracting over 350 runners, it’s clear to see that fell running in N.I. is no longer solely the preserve of the grizzled minority, and many new faces are being lured away from the gimmick laden world of compulsory finishers medals and garish t-shirts towards the purity of the open hills….

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JFDI

By | Running

Many years ago I had a boss called Ed, a brash, self-assured Mancunian, a man both larger and louder than life.  Ed had a catch phrase, JFDI (just f***ing do it!), regularly reeled out to silence hapless staff as they stuttered out excuses over solutions.  There was no comeback, no argument, resistance futile to the connotations of the sentence, the final vowel dragged out long enough to drown the most vehement protestations… ‘JFDIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII’ I liked Ed, my kind of leader, a zero bullshit type in an industry full of perpetual talkers.  His ‘can and will do’ attitude echoed and shaped…

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Bitten On The Arse

By | Running

Sometimes you just have to let the fitness come to you… Recently, in defiance of notable leg-speed limitations I won a Cross Country race.  And not just any race, it was a national title, albeit the Masters title (for moderately more mature athletes) but still a prestigious and highly competitive event.  It was a huge surprise to me and no doubt also to the gathered experts of Northern Irish running, given that I have virtually no pedigree in the discipline barring an Ulster Intermediate team gold medal acquired several years back that owed a lot more to the strength of my…

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