Friday, February 16, 2018


For those of you who have not heard of the movement that is parkrun, head over here for a read.

Basically it's an international, free, timed, weekly, 5km event, that you can walk or run.  I guess you could skip or hop it too if you felt so inclined 😉

I went to my first parkrun about 12 months ago, there was one 7.5kms from my house.  I have running friends who are totally devoted to "parky" as they affectionately dubb it.  I admit I was nervous that first day, however really had nothing to fear.  I didn't feel the same love my buddies did though & didn't go back for quite a while.  Plus I prefer to do my long run on a Saturday morning, so running 5km at 8am wasn't working for me.

Then one opened in my home town a few months later, so while I was down visiting my folks I went along.  I'm not sure whether it was the familiarity of the course or being a new event, but the people felt friendlier & I really enjoyed it.  I went back to my local thrice more, but didn't love it enough to reschedule my long runs.

I went to a couple of other country parky's as a tourist, but still wasn't really on board.  While away in Junee (country NSW) for a running event in Waga Waga late last year, the friend who I was staying with had her TV on sunrise (or it's opposition morning show) & they were broadcasting live from the Brimbank Park parkrun launch.  This is close to home for me (very close to work & I'd run in the location) & we actually spotted a few people we knew on the telly!

Next minute they are advertising the next parkrun  launch which was 1km from my house, in the park where I walk my dog every second day, where I run on a weekly basis!  Oh my!  Such a great location!  
Along I went to the launch.  No TV camera's but a lot of fanfare & 278 runners!  

I went back the following week to see what it would be like on a normal week - 96 runners.  The Run Director did a shout out for volunteers during his brief, so I put my name down for a couple of slots over the next few weeks to help out.

After about 6 weeks I was asked if I'd be interested in joining the team as their 3rd run director, of course I said yes.  For some reason I have become very attached to my local parky & want it to succeed!!! I believe in the concept & I love the location.  Although it took me a while to warm to it, I must say I am now a parky enthusiast.  I've volunteered more times than I've run it; but that's OK - encouraging others to give it a go for me is where it's at!

Now all we need to do is find 2 more Run Directors & we'll be set!  Have you tried parkrun?  Remember you can walk it!  And you can never come last as we have a volunteer who does that for you!

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

What do you see?

What do you see when you look at yourself?  Is it just a female thing to cast a critical eye over your physique, noting all the imperfections?  Do blokes do it too?  Do you cast the same critical eye over your behaviour & think should I have done more, been more?

As a recreational athlete I'm not sure whether I'm more critical than others of how I look, but generally I feel my running form is a bit shite.  I ran an event on the weekend & was tagged in a picture taken by one of the course photographers & I'm hard pressed to find something I don't like!  Flattering angle perhaps?  I know I'm not as lean as I was & that I have a wobbly belly & a bit of a muffin top - but that is me being critical of me.  I am proud to say that this form is good.  That I look lean & strong.

I guess what I am trying to say is that I don't see this when I look at myself most of the time.  The same for my character I guess - always noting where I could have done more, been more, instead of acknowledging the kind & supportive things I say & do; noticing that I did go the extra mile for someone or something.  It's something I need to work on.

What do you see when you look at yourself? Do you need to remind yourself that you are enough?  I hope not, because you are.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Where does the time go?

Down a rabbit hole methinks!  

Despite quitting blogging then deciding to come back with some commitment I am way behind with posts.  I guess I'll excuse myself because December is a busy time.  

I was sick for a week with a chest cold & couldn't run the week before Christmas.  We also celebrated my niece's 18th Birthday!  

The last week of the year I spent playing running catch up to achieve my goals of firstly running further than I did last year, & then rounding it up to 1300kms.  Mission accomplished.  

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas & were able to spend time with the peeps you love the most!  Wishing you all a Happy New Year: may 2018 bring health, happiness & new challenges.  

Early morning running, cooking, volunteering @ Parkrun..

Saw Hannah Gadsby's comedy show Nanette with a mate - I cannot begin to describe the profound effect this show had on me.  If you have the chance to see it I urge you to do so.  She has a powerful story to tell; one that will make the world a far better place should we take heed.  

I ran my last event for the year; Carmans 10km

 Got bitten by my cat & ended up on antibiotic's after my hand swelled up!!  Ran some trails; saw some interesting sights out walking the dog; hung out with said dog & fanging cat.........can't believe I got them all in the same picture!

Planted my tomato's; work Xmas party at a micro brewery

Went to the country for my niece's 18th Birthday & encountered some wildlife.......

Ran some more & prepared for Christmas.....

Then cleaned up the mess! And that is pretty much a wrap!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Five on a Friday

I'm reviving 5 things to be thankful for each Friday because frankly, I've been in a bit of a funk & I think being thankful is a good state of mind to be in!

1. I am super thankful that the Marriage Equality Bill as passed here in Australia.  Nuf said.  

2. I am thankful that I can run.  I almost can't believe that I didn't start running earlier in life.  I'm not sure I was ready then.  I am now.

3. I am thankful the volcano in Bali has chilled out.  This allowed friends to return safely home & my niece to head over on her first adult holiday!  Today she & her mate got up at 2am to hike to the top of a mountain to see the sunrise!!!!

4. I am thankful for the rain for the farmers but equally thankful it stopped this morning.  Working in the construction industry, the weather can wreak havoc on our work plans.

5. I am thankful for a quiet weekend ahead.  I need to catch up!!!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Hamster Wheel: Day 3

Some people call Wednesday Hump Day; me, Hamster Wheel: Day 3.  Every morning when I'm about to leave for work, one of the 4 leggeds will look at me with sad eyes as if to say "can't you stay home with me today?"  I say sorry guys, Hamster Wheel Day whatever & off to work I go.  

It's not that I dislike working or my job; but I do long for more time to myself; to work part time; to do something different.  I know, I'm the only person who can change that.  It's not always that easy when you run a small business with your significant other though.

I'm hoping to implement some changes in the new year that will change this; but in the interim, hamster wheel it is.

Meanwhile, in Melbourne Australia we're having a mini heat wave: 35 degrees C today & summer hasn't even arrived!!  

I've had to get up at 4.15am to run to beat the heat twice in the last week.  Go Figure.  So far, so good though: I haven't tripped over my own feet & I haven't been mugged etc nor worried about it.

Anyhoo, hamster wheel or no, life is what you make of it!!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Have you ever seen Sydney from a 747 at Night?

I would have last weekend if it were not daylight savings!  We took what is called Cup Week off work in Melbourne (horse racing carnival) & headed up to Sydney, Canberra & Wollongong to visit family.

Airport bound

We usually try to take a week off around this time to recharge before the inevitable Christmas rush - it was much needed this year!

A quick drink at the airport & we were away.  

Spent the weekend hanging out with my cousin's mainly eating, drinking & catching up on each others lives.  While we live in the same country, sometimes we only see each other once or twice a year if we are lucky!

 12 hour smoked goodness above & some funky street art below

a local Sydney brewery who's beer & cider we enjoyed

Monday morning arrived in a flash & time in Sydney was done.  Next stop: Canberra - the capital of Australia - to visit my aunt who has lived there for about 4 years now.  This was our first visit to her in this location.  I hadn't been to Canberra since I was a teenager & remembered little about the city other than the roads going around & around in circles & Mum being sacked as map reader.  I got promoted to the front seat - not sure I was any better!

                                flowers from my aunt's dining table arrangement

Canberra is home to many national things of which we visited the National Gallery, National Portrait Gallery, National Library & National War Museum with my aunt as tour guide.  We particularly liked the sculpture garden that is part of the National Gallery.

And the portrait gallery was amazing.  We spent a couple of hours in the national gallery & saw only a small portion of what was on offer.  This piece affected me the most:

We attended the war memorial twice: the day we arrived we spent a couple of hours in the afternoon before attending the closing ceremony for the day whereby a solider is remembered & the last post played, very moving.  We went back before we left for Hubs to see G For George - his father was a mid & rear gunner in this plane in during WW2.  It was hard to get the whole plane in the picture due to the space it was in, but you get the idea.

The plane was impressive & it was both good yet horrifying to learn the statistics about the men who flew in these things.  The survival rate was not high.  Hubs father survived, but did not have a single friend who survived at the end of the war.

We moved on to look for information on the Black Cat Track which is where my grandpa Blue fought - no a mention although a little of the area; most was about Kokoda in the Papua New Guinea campaign section.  Lastly we found the names of my great uncle (Blue's brother, who's grave we saw when we trekked the Black Cat in 2013) WW2, & my Great Great Uncle (Blue's uncle) WW1.

While I am interested in the history because of my family & in particular Blue, I found this place incredibly sad.  So much death.  So much destruction.

The last leg of our journey was Wollongong, an hour or so South of Sydney on the East coast of Australia to visit friends.  There was much eating & drinking (way to much of both) but we had a lovely time just hanging out & again catching up on each others lives.

And finally, what would a running blog be without running!  I'm still in the recovery phase from the Melbourne Marathon - 4 weeks ago today.  I ran lakeside in Canberra, in the suburbs & on the beach in Wollongong & the same again + Parkrun also in Wollongong.

5kms lakeside in Canberra - chilly 12 degrees @ 9am

7.5kms through the burbs to the beach & along the beach in Wollongon - maybe 17 degrees by 9.30am; the view below across to the City of Wollongong from Corrimal beach

Parkrun morning I set out from where we were staying & ran down to the beach, along the beach to the park where Parkrun starts - or so I thought, to find that the start point had moved to the other side of the park back at the beach where I pretty much started from!  

Luckily I'd allowed plenty of time.  It was a beautiful morning & I didn't mind the extra kms - it was the longest I'd run since the Marathon.  

Nice & sweaty here - maybe 18 degrees by 9am.

Back home to 30+ degrees & I'm scrambling to keep up & get back into routine.  Need to shift the 2kgs I acquired around my middle while I was away!  Onwards!