Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A Grand Day Out

Yeah I know. It's been a while. I've been getting eMails and phone calls thinking something was wrong.

First off - everything is simply grand. And I don't mean that sarcastically, I mean it in the way that folks in the UK say it. I was doing some work in Ireland years back and we were setting up a meeting with our customer via his admin. We were doing this face to face as that's just how it was done. So much more personal to 'pop by when convenient' she had said over the telephone. And as we settled on a time after a bit of haggling, this quite charming lady remarked, "Oh, that would be just grand" - and I instantly fell in love with the saying.

The other day I was watching Wallace and Gromit, "The Wrong Trousers". Now if you haven't heard of W&G, then let me just summarize by saying it is one of the most hilarious clay-mation creations to ever be made and you need to watch at least one episode. It also spun off Shaun the Sheep which is equally hilarious - although more Welsh than the proper W&G.

So I'm watching W&G with my son, and Wallace at one point remarks, "Well, that's just grand" as well as other very British sayings such as "Happy birthday chuck" (where 'chuck' means 'buddy') and "I'm down to my last coppers". It just got me to thinking how much I prefer that to the classic ways of expressing that things are going well... ok.... errr..... yeah, you get the picture.

So not to worry, things have been just grand.

But two things have hampered a bit of my training lately. Well, more redistributed as I've not slid the volume / quality index overall. First - a cold spell moved in on Friday night and dumped about 6 inches of snow on the ground. Luckily I had taken a day off on Friday and done a 3hr bike ride before all that set it, but the cold and snow hung around for a few days. Second - I've had this hamstring 'thing' going on. I avoid the word 'injury' because although it's an injury, it's not a classic injury. It's in my left leg and generally I never have issues on my left side. It's also doesn't affect the strength of the muscle, it's more a tightening when I run and sore to aggressive rolling. And, for the life of me - I can't figure out what happened. It just appeared on day about a week and a half ago. The only thing I've been able to tie it to was a pretty rough massage I got while I was in China that week. My guess is the masseuse just dug a bit too deep and bruised the muscle.

But it's getting better and in a couple weeks I'll be right as rain and sound as a pound. Just spending more attention to the bike / swim sports. In fact, the lack of a long run on Sunday gave me that much more energy to drive myself into the dirt during my Monday morning Masters workout.

The boredom of being stuck indoors on Sunday also caused me to spend some time looking online for various swim skills workouts. I found a video that covered a very simple concept - just ensuring you are really streamlining by bringing the shoulder closer to your head as you drive your hand forward on the glide. I  practiced it on my morning swim and it the few times I got it right, my glide was much longer and faster.

I guess what I'm saying in all of this is that - I could sit around and mope about my hamstring or I can simply redirect my energy into improving in my other disciplines. The first (moping) yields nothing after a few weeks, whereupon my hamstring will have worked itself out and I'll be running at full speed again (with all my other sports still the same level). The 'redirection' approach on the other hand, will still have me running full speed in a few weeks, but in addition, I'll be better at the other sports.

Finally - I came up with a great impromptu workout because of the cold / snow & hamstring the other day; which actually turned out to be a pretty freakin' brilliant workout in that I think it's going to pay some decent dividends after a few more repeats. I decided to put that in a separate post though - because not everyone wants to hear sift through my ramblings just to find out the technical details of a good workout they can incorporate.

btw - thank you to those who *do* want to hear my ramblings though and complain when they are missing.

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