I’m getting slow in my old age.
Since the run around the hills on Thursday I’ve been mostly complaining that my left leg is hurting again. All below the knee, all a bit bloody frustrating. The run was fine and the recovery seemed reasonable but a pain each time I put my foot down isn’t something I can put up with for long.
So running took a back seat. Each morning the pain has stayed away slightly longer – from putting my sock on it eased out until I got in the car. But it’s always present.
Today was the day to get my motorbike serviced, however. Which meant either a load of faffing about driving there, cycling back, riding there, driving back and then doing the same again (it’s just over 4 miles away) to collect it. Or simply wearing a pair of shorts under my leathers and carrying some trainers in a rucksack and running home, leaving leathers helmet and boots at the workshop.
But that’s not an option on damaged legs.
So with some caution I left there this morning with dreams of a run, knowing I might have to stop if pain revealed itself.
So I kept the pace down (good job, since I’m a tad unfit after not enough running lately combined with floorlaying and gardening instead of cycling as a fitness offset) and eased out onto the road. And felt ok. I opted for the flat direct route which brought me onto the Greensand Way for about a mile of footpath through fields. A splash of rain last night softened the top but hasn’t begun to make puddles or close cracks in the soil (in April. We need rain. Lots of it. And fewer new houses to increase our demands on the resource. But there you go….hypocrisy at peak…maybe I should stop building them!) so a low impact mile was experienced. And very pleasant, too. Many stiles, a farmer fertilising his crop but not another soul for a few minutes made me feel good to be out.
And all too soon I was back home.
A continuation on making my floor trims was interrupted by JB demanding we go and see lambs so the closer lamb field was chosen just in case it had a few. They’re late around here, though – 10 miles away there are millions of them – all our local fields are sheep free areas at the moment. Probably waiting to build houses on them.
We saw a few far-away lambs and then returned. Whereupon my knowledge of road construction and traffic control technology demanded to be shared by a fellow who wasn’t too keen on the option. Arriving at the newly placed lights erected on a corner to allow more houses to mess up the countryside, I proceeded through a red light. Very bad, admittedly, but fair. The lights are controlled for priority by strips which detect metal; basically a detector recognises a lump of metal passing over it and lets the light control know there’s something waiting. Only a largely alloy pedal cycle doesn’t contain enough metallic element to trigger the system so common sense prevails and encourages caution to head around the corner and hope drivers can. Drive, that is. The road wasn’t light controlled until a few years ago, so all used to be fine. But today a prick in an 02 reg dark blue Rover 75 (I’ll probably find it next time I head into the new estate where he clearly came from) decided we were an obstacle he couldn’t avoid, so he chose to use his horn (to let us know he was there as is the horn’s use as identified by the highway code? I feel not since I made eye contact to make sure he was aware of me..and yes, I am aware of slight irony referencing the highway coed when I’ve run a red light!), then slowed and shouted at Cathy before swerving in towards me and shouting that I need to learn to obey the lights.
I am getting slow.
I opted for sensible-ness for a millisecond which was a millisecond too long with hindsight. I should have reacted as I used to in such a situation and eased right as he slewed left, placing my pedal through his door (DMR V12′s are great, pointy objects for such a purpose). Or reached into his open window as he passed amd shouted. Instead, having decided to avoid the risk of injury, I simply shouted for him to pull over. My intention was to educate him as to the vagaries of the traffic light detection system and ask if the delay he didn’t experience on a road plenty wide enough for a car to pass a pedal cycle justified being a knob. But instead he chose to speed off. Despite my best efforts my fully suspended knobbly tyred cycle wasn’t going to catch him without traffic intervention and he got onto the bypass before I could catch him. I’ll have to find his house and leave a note under his windscreen wiper.
And some dogshit all around his doorhandles and filler cap.
Upon returning home I headed back for the return leg of the 4 miler to collect my bike.
A little apprehensive with a slight ache in my shin, I once again took it easy. A gentle plod along the off-road bit again tied in well with my lack of fitness and keeping things steady was great for morale as the traffic of rush hour kept me diving for the verge to avoid vans and trucks.
Home again after a quick ride around and my legs feel fresher than I feared. A lawnmowing session has hopefully kept things free. I’ll see for sure tomorrow when a haircut might be the highlight of my activities.
Birthdays aren’t what they used to be!