Square Two

Clearly, it’s been a while since my last blog. Sufficed to say, news of my death has been greatly exaggerated. In fact, I do believe that I did warn you that I might be going away for a while, just while I get some things out of the way.

To spare you the obvious joy of reading a series of very small, yet doubtlessly interesting posts about the minor things I’ve done between then (August 21st) and now (September 6th), here you go:

1. I managed to find the time for a quick run into Silverdale – about 4km – a week or so ago (I think Twitter mentions it), which was only cut short by the encroaching darkness and the dull glow coming from my parent’s window as I ran past. I felt pretty fit on that run, and it was another example of trying to run without “woman” to see what it did for me. Turns out, it did me good, but I get the feeling that this would only be the case on 0-5km runs. More than that, and I think I do still need her to get me pacing myself whilst my poor lungs grow up and my heart remembers what it was genetically encoded to be capable of.

2. I/we had a well-deserved weekend away with friends in Cheltenham, during which little more than walking to the nearest bus stop was the order of the day. There was whisperings of trekking up a nearby hill, but the group consensus echoed my own laziness.

3. Today I finally took that all-consuming exam that I have been using as an excuse to stay of the streets at night (mind you, that was the right thing to do). I’ll know the results in just over two weeks, so hopefully a) I don’t have to look back, and can get back to personal pursuits, or b) I’ll need to swot up for a re-sit in November. Not good.

4. Work has also been a bit of a nightmare recently too, with a lot of evening work eating into what would normally be my ideal time for going outside and cramming in a “quickie”.

So that’s that.

Tonight was the “Preview Night” for our new gym – Pure Gym – which is opening little over a mile from my house. Sarah and I both had emails asking us to book onto an induction session this evening, so we managed to both get onto the same 6pm timeslot and headed down. By car, of course.

The gym is very impressive. I think I’ll update this blog with a couple of “spy photos” when I remember to dig my iPhone out, but sufficed to say, if you can picture a large retail warehouse – which it was (an old MFI of all things) – and then think of that filled with a hell of a lot of brand new, very impressive looking, equipment, you won’t be far off the mark. It’s clearly been built to cope with high capacity. We’re talking maybe 12 treadmills at the front of the gym, and another row of 12 at the back. And then the same for cross trainers, the different breeds of cycles, rowers and steppers too. And between those two big banks of cardio kit is about 24 different pieces of weight/resistance stations. Plus a drove of 10 spinning bikes for classes in one corner, a big studio for classes in another, and a further section with TRX frames and vibration platforms. So there’s plenty to keep yourself amused. (There is also a side area with big free weights in, but that is bound to be the domain of meatheads, so will doubtlessly be ignored)

Our induction-cum-tour guide was “Dave” who was your typical personal trainer with his skin-tight logo t-shirt and fake bake tan. He had clearly walked a number of groups around the gym during the day, as by 6pm, his heart really wasn’t in it, but seeing as I already know what a treadmill looks like, the tour was less educational, and more a curiosity quencher.

One of the key things I did take away from the induction was the fact that you book the special classes using their website, and you can only do so 2 weeks in advance. This translates to a new day of classes being posted to the online calendar system at midnight every day, followed by a bit of a mad rush to book the best classes before they “sell out” (they are free, however). There are no classes online for the next/first two weeks, but in two weeks time, I managed to book myself a Spin class, an Abs class and a Boxercise session. More to see what they’re like than anything else.

Anyway, the second important thing I took away from the induction was that the treadmills look like good, big pieces of kit (much better than my ickle treadmill in my kitchen), so they should make a suitable supplement for the roads in the Winter. The only drawback to that is the fact that my Nike Plus kit won’t register, but that’s the way it goes.

The reason for the title of this blog entry should tell you one thing. I’m pretty nervous that having 2 weeks away from my training shoes hasn’t done me much good. I doubt I’m back to square one with everything, but I have a horrible feeling that those record times that Paula has been sharing a glass of champagne with me over may be difficult to repeat any time soon. Gulp.