14 Days to Go

Training is beginning to get in the way of my social life!  Last week I only ran once.  I was away skiing in Niseko for five days and missed my weekly long run and a short run.  I also over indulged a bit whilst I was away so for the first week since the Christmas break, I put on weight.

The ski break actually began with a very shaky start as I discovered on the first day skiing, that my trusty hip flask which I keep in my ski jacket pocket for a quick confidence booster during the chair lift ride, had sprung a leak and needed to be retired.  Luckily, I found a replacement at a store in town and although it has a less-than-classic design, it does have a more generous capacity so it all balances out.  I nearly lost it though when going through security at the airport because I had forgotten that it was in my backpack.  Luckily security was satisfied with me sculling the contents at the check point and didn’t confiscate it!  I’ve never felt more confident on boarding a plane.

Turns out skiing doesn't replace training runs.

Turns out skiing doesn’t replace training runs.

We got back last Tuesday night (another missed run) and I decided that from Wednesday on I would be serious with the training, even to the point of giving up alcohol until the race.  This plan collapsed entirely the very next day when that evening at Sushi Club, the waitress was so shocked with my refusal of my usual hot sake, that she served me a bottle anyway.  Since I had had the one, I didn’t see much point in not having a second, so I did.

When I got home later that evening, I checked my SmartCoach for the run for the next day only to discover that I was supposed to have run that day too.  So on my first day of serious training, I failed in every way possible!

Thursday I ran.  I was unable to complete the run however and had to finish a kilometre short of my goal distance for the day.  The last couple of k’s were really hard and I ended up basically hobbling!  This shocked me a bit because I had been finding the runs challenging but manageable and I had done this distance before.  So again, I refocused and decided to get serious with my training again.

My next run was just 5 km and scheduled for Friday but it snowed all day so I couldn’t run.  I was going to do it yesterday but after falling off my bike when riding to the shops because of all the snow, slush and ice on the roads and footpaths, I decided against it.  Today I finally ran.  I did my weekly long run and although I was quite tired at the end and my feet were soaked because I couldn’t avoid all of the snow melt, I did manage to finish the full 18 kilometres.  I was quite pleased with myself until I checked my SmartCoach and discovered I was supposed to run 19 kilometres.

Still not serious.

Skiing in Summer

My Hutt 2013

View from my Hotel in Methven

Day One

Arrived in Methven after taking the red eye to Christchurch from Perth.  Eyes definitely red.  Stood in rain, waiting for bus.  Arrived Methven at 4pm.  Went to bed at 6pm!

Day Two

Beautiful day for skiing – blue skies, lots of snow.  First day of NZ school hols.  Bummer.  Met Nigel, Andrew and Mark at the bus.  Nigel, Andrew and Mark are all married and in their late 50’s.  Interesting characters.

When I went to pick up my ski gear, I had to firstly go to a computer terminal and enter in my shoe size, age, weight, ski preference and ability etc and all this information was transferred to my ski pass card.  I thought to myself that this is going to save a lot of mucking around.  Wrong!   I then had to go and pick up my boots where the girl scanned my card and then asked me all those questions again.  I asked her why she needed that information as I had just entered it in the card and she told me that it doesn’t come up on her screen.  I had to be asked all the questions again at the second counter to pick up my skis.  It is much easier to enter your weight into a computer than to say it out loud to a good-looking, 25 year old ski bum.

Met Nigel again on the slopes and skied with him for most of the morning.  Ran into him again just before I left for the bus back to the hotel.

After a hot shower, went to the bar and saw Andrew and Nigel.  At least I thought it was Andrew and Nigel.  Got drink and boldly sat beside the two men, asking them how their day went. After a few minutes of conversation, realised I didn’t know either of them.  Damn those skiing goggles!

Falls = 2.

My Hutt 2013

View from the summit of Mt Hutt

Day Three

Magic day again.  Had first ski lesson.  Was second best skier in group. Two other people in group and one was useless.

Discovered Mark is only 41.  Now wondering about Andrew and Nigel.

Falls = 0

Day Four

Good weather in morning but windy and cold in afternoon.  Have developed head cold.  Soldiering on with drugs and trying to kill the bug with mulled wine.  Not successful yet but will keep trying.

Today’s ski instructor was also the bus driver.  Should stick to buses.

Falls = 2 (second fall whilst standing still in lesson but managed to keep number two ranking regardless – third guy still useless.)

My Hutt 2013

Cloudy in town but magic on the mountain

Day Five

Another beautiful day on the slopes!

New people in lesson.  Group of three again and I’m still the second best in the group.  Made a capital expenditure and invested in my own boots.  No discount for cash.

Head cold still persisting.  Have increased dosage of mulled wine to kill bug.

Falls = 1 ( whilst in line for the lift.)

Day Six

Last day skiing and yet another cloudless, beautiful day.  New boots caused my ankles to burn so have to get used to them.  No lesson today as it was really busy on the slopes.

Head cold is almost gone.  Will knock it on the head tonight at the sake bar in town with Sarah and Tim.

Falls = 0 (must be the new boots.)

Day Seven

Spent the day reading Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy before getting the shuttle back to Christchurch.  My next book to read will be of a slightly different nature – World War Z by Max Brooks and yes, Z stands for zombie!

Bye New Zealand!

My Hutt 2013

Brilliant camera work by me. Phone case just visible at the top of the pic!

Konnichiwa Japan!