Monday, 31 May 2010

OK, Spring, you can come back now

This morning was horrible. Thoroughly cold, wet and miserable. One of those Ugh days when you just feel like crawling back under the duvet. But I resisted the temptation. Fortunately. Which meant I have actually got a fair bit done today. Nothing too exciting, mind. Although, I guess you could, at a stretch, class getting the request for a 'Certificat d'Urbanisme' for the barn dropped off at the Mairie as relatively exciting, if that's your thing. If a CU is granted, it means the value of the barn goes up as it means everything is in place for it to be converted to a dwelling, which is not a bad return for doing nowt but submit some paperwork now, is it!

However, we have the somewhat sticky matter of sanitation to tackle before a CU can be granted. We are OK on the supply of electricity and water to the barn but neither it nor the house have got sanitation facilities that that fantastic institution ( you have picked up on the hint of sarcasm there, haven't you?) that is Brussels approves of. If, after a site visit by the local peeps that are responsible for such matters, it is concluded that there is no suitable ground on which a septic tank or micro sewage system can be installed, then the CU will be refused which means the barn cannot be converted to a dwelling and it's value remains that of a barn which is 30,000 euros less than if it had a CU. The irony is, that the waste from the house (yes, we are talking toilet waste here) has been quietly disposed of down onto the slope below the house, which leads off into the wilds of the woodland, without even a murmur for the past 200+ years. It affects nobody, but nobody. But as from 2011/2012/soon, Brussels dictates that every household in France must have 'proper' disposal facilities, whatever that means. We shall watch that space with interest.... maybe.

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Moth identification

Last night, I encountered the biggest moth I have ever seen in my life. Its wingspan was at least 6 inches - it was stunning, but I have been unable to identify it. Anybody got any ideas?

It looked like it had been in the wars as a chunk of it's wing was missing.

It's been really stormy here today, but after spending much of the day indoors doing various stuff, I eventually got out with the pooch for a wild, wet and windy stretch of the legs up to the Cap de Carmil.

Saturday, 29 May 2010

Mish mash this n that

Look what I found this morning amongst the nettles and weeds that appear to be taking over my strawberry patch!Woo-hoo, strawberry season has started! The little alpine strawberries are also nearly ready. Yum yum!

So, anyway, on to more important matters. 'Projet camping-car' has offically commenced. Andy is back in the UK with strict orders not to return without a Mercedes Sprinter long wheel base van and the necessary Stuff for converting it into a sooper dooper campervan which will take us on our travels around France. The conversion will keep him out of mischief for a few weeks at least ;-)

After dropping him at Carcassonne yesterday, I returned home and had a frenzied afternoon and evening of cleaning and tidying in anticipation of a potential visit today (waste of time as it happens). The house was filthy with various layers of accumulated grime from woodburner fallout, our wood working efforts and my potager potterings and was in desperate need of a thorough cleaning. I have also been getting on top of those silly little DIY jobs that you just never get around to doing such as applying another coat of linseed oil to the kitchen worktops, finishing off the grout on the tiles above the hob splashback and applying the primer to the wood-filler patched stairs which means I can now finish them off with a top coat tomorrow.

This afternoon, I needed to get out for some exercise. I wanted a run of sorts but without too much ascent/descent (my legs have, for some reason, really suffered after the past couple of outings) and I didn't want to drive too far. A tall order. Until I remembered the forest track that I discovered in December above the Vallée de Liers, just around the hillside from here. The road/track up to Gaspard where I parked was rutted and uneven, so it's a good job I had taken the Rav out for a spin. The track itself was, however, good underfoot and it was lovely to explore it in summer conditions. I love the wildness of the Vallée de Liers and the views towards Pic des Trois Seigneurs and Pic de la Journalade are beautifulIt was a gentle, unhurried outing but that was just what I needed. Tomorrow, possibly a mountain bike outing somewhere. We'll see.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Team Motley Crew

Well, the storm never materialised and it was still dry this morning, so I headed over to Pat and Kev's for an outing on the roadies. Their good friend, an American called Julie who owns and runs Ride Strong Bike Tours is in the area at the moment. Pat and Kev will be supporting and she will be guiding some clients of hers through a Pyrenean tour next week, so what better opportunity for us to hook up for an outing. We were joined by Kev's riding buddy Cédric who is a Rather Good Cyclist. Together, we formed Team Motley CrewWe had a hoot. The outing was billed as a 'bimble', as Pat's knee cannot cope with any daft exertion such as going up hills, Julie had keyhole knee surgery just a couple of months ago and I am a punter with short legs. Cédric and Kev on the other hand, well, they are both fast, strong cyclists so it was going to be interesting to see just how much bimbling they were capable of.
It was fun riding with four other people which is more than I have ridden with before, but we soon got into a rythmn of Kev and Céd blasting ahead, Kev and Céd slowing down, us girlies catching up and picking up a tow and then, ah, café stop already - hurrah! It was lovely riding on fantastically quiet roads and with pretty sceneryWe eventually reached a point where the boyz could carry on up that hill and us gurlz peeled off for the shorter ride, which still turned out to be a respectable 60kms with 525m of ascent which is probably more than Pat should have done, but she took it steady and heeded her knee when it told her to knock it down a tad. We happened to pass through Laroque d'Olmes just as P&K's cycling club buddies were about to set off for their Wednesday afternoon outing. It was fun to ride the last few kms with them as their ride passed P&Ks house.

All in all, a wonderfully sociable outing of which I hope there will be many more in months to come.

Stats and figures are on the usual site

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Before the storm

Sticky hot again today. Storms are forecast throughout France over the next 48 hours thanks to a weather system that is pushing in from the Atlantic and the Bay of Biscay. Before the storm hits us and to escape the heat, we headed up to the beautiful Coumebière valley which is at 1400m alt, just over the other side of the Col d'Agnès, 25 minutes from home, from where we meandered the 3.8kms up to the Port de Saleix (1800m alt) which is the col to the left of the peak in the photo. It's a spectacular spot - from the Port de Saleix there are stunning views of the high mountains above Aulus les Bains and towards Mont Valier in the distanceWe encountered a fully equipped group of hiking ramblers about half way up the path and passed them again during our running descent, no more than 200m further on from where we had last seen them. The bemused looks that we get as we run past walkers never fails to amuse me!

Tonight, the clouds have built quite dramatically and the air is oppressive. We need a storm to clear the air, but I do need dry weather in the morning, as a roadie outing with Pat and Kevin and some other peeps is on the cards. Fingers crossed.

Monday, 24 May 2010


It's been even hotter today, so it's been a day of gentle pottering. I wondered along the little chemin behind the houses which used to be the main thoroughfare before they put in the tarmac road. The Spring flowers are out in all their gloryand the meadow above the house is awash with yellow and purpleThis vetch is one of the prettiest flowers at this time of yearMore hot weather tomorrow before a break on Wednesday. I could do with some rain to water the veggies!

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Sometimes a simple pootle is just the ticket

It's been ages since I have seen Pat.... weeks, months, I don't know, but ages and I miss riding and running with my mate. She is still trying to work through a knee injury which has been plagueing her for 6 months now, which is a bit of a problem when you are a personal trainer. But she is finally able to ride both the mountain bike and roadie again, but only for short distances, so we met up down on the plain at Saint Felix de Rieutord this afternoon and scooted round a waymarked 19km circuit which was an interesting mix of short sections on quiet tarmacced back lanes...of overgrown and decidedly tricky, narrow riverside footpaths (you try spotting tree roots, stumps and holes when they are covered in foot deep grass!) and lovely riding on farm tracks..... Great views tooDistance and time were not an issue. This wasn't a training ride. This was a lovely girly pootle which really does you (OK, me) good sometimes. We had a real giggle as only girlies can and started planning for bigger things when her knee is fully healed. The Trans-Ariege mountain bike ride in October is the objective. I have no doubt she will do everything in her power to make sure she is fit for that!

In the meantime, Andy decided to give himself a beasting on a ride from Foix, up the Col de Marrous to the Col de Peguere and home. Steady and persistent ascent over 20+kms. And it was hot. And yes, he did suffer. Sheesh. You'll never catch me doing something silly like that ! So a chill out this evening with a wood-fired BBQ, lamb kebabs and a glass (or 3) of rosé. Chin chin!

Saturday, 22 May 2010

A handy little roadie outing

Another hot day today with temperatures up in the high 20s. But fortunately, over towards the high mountains, clouds were starting to build which took some of the heat off our ride this afternoon. We started from the Quercabanac roundabout and headed along to Seix before a steady climb up to the Ustou Valley (one of my fave places) and then the real climb of the afternoon up to the Col de Latrape. But the legs were feeling good, the heart rate was steady and I didn't crumble into an exhausted heap when I reached the top.... which is good! A fun descent to Aulus and a refill of the water bottles before the ride back down the valley to Oust. It was going to be a gentle tootle back, with Andy leading off and me tucking in behind him and vice versa. But on my lead, we spotted three club riders ahead so I was 'encouraged' to put the hammer down and try to catch and overtake them.... which we did and which they didn't seem too happy about, (probably because they were being overtaken by a GIRL!)....... only for us to pull in a kilometre further down the road at Ercé for a coffee (him) and panaché/shandy (me) which gave the club riders the opportunity to make a sarcastic comment as they passed us, along the lines of 'finished already have you?' to which they received an equally sarcastic reply! So after that brief pit stop, back on the bikes for a pootle the rest of the way back. WRONG! Andy spotted another group of riders ahead (from the Saint-Girons cycle club from what we could tell) and decided it would be fun to try and catch them too. What is it with blokes needing to catch people ahead!! So this time, he took the lead, I tucked in behind and, battling the headwind, he caught them just as we arrived back at the roundabout. It was a good final spurt.

So, a nice little outing in wonderful weather. Sum total of 2 hrs 8 mins in the saddle, 48 kms and 663m of ascent (not the 905m that Garmin Connect is showing in the ride summary!). But I trust their calculation that I had burned over 2000 calories so I felt entirely justified in stuffing my face after the ride with a delicious 'tartelette à l'abricot' from the divine boulangerie/patisserie in Seix. Nom nom!

We are seeing an increasing number of professional teams out training in the area at the moment, with the Orbea team car out and the Colnago and Bouygues teams on the roads. It's that time of year :-)

Friday, 21 May 2010

The 'S' word

I'm almost too scared to pronounce it. S ... Su.... Summer.... There, I said it. Phew. But I think it is fair to say that all risk of frost (and hopefully snow) has now passed. At 9pm this evening it was still 21 degrees. COME ON! For the first time this year, we have enjoyed the terrasse in the evening - wonderfulIt's set to get hotter over the weekend with temperatures possibly up to 30 degrees on Sunday.

But in the meantime, we had a hot, sticky and decidedly sweaty afternoon clearing some more of the wood that fell during the snows just over 2 weeks ago (crikey, what weird weather that was). We now have enough stockpiled to see us right for 2-3 months next winter. Against nearly every tree we have stacked various lengths of wood that will dry so quickly in the summer heat. We still have more to clear, so I don't think we need have any worries about running short.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Riding in the sunshine

Wall to wall blue with a good dose of yellow - oh yes, and a reading of 24 degrees C when we left the car for our roading outing from Foix. I think this could be summer?

So, anyway, we had a lovely outing on quiet country lanes today, through beautiful rolling countryside, Foix-Ganac-Brassac-down to Serres-sur-Arget and then a 5km climb up to Alzen which is a beautiful spot at 720m alt.Then a 6km descent down to la Bastide-de-Serou before picking up the rolling country lanes through to Unjat and Cardacet and then on to Labouiche and back to Foix. Not long, at just under 46kms but with just over 700m of ascent, it wasn't a pushoverFull stats are on this link as usual. I wasn't firing on all cylinders as my legs were still tired after my daft run up the Peguere hill the other day and also developed stomach cramps probably due to the combination of having eaten an energy bar and drunk a slightly too strong solution of energy drink! But apart from that, it was lovely to be out turning over the legs in the lovely warm sun. It looks set to get even warmer over the weekend, possibly reaching 30 degrees on Sunday. The potager is going to be needing some serious watering attention at this rate - I am not complaining!

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Frantic activity

It's here! And about bloody time too! Oh yes, that glowing yellow orb is making a much awaited comeback and it's return has been accompanied by scenes of frenetic and indeed frantic activity here. Like animals that finally get a whiff of fresh, sweet grass after being penned in for months on end, we were out, mowing the jungle of grass, strimming, weeding, sowing, planting.....I'm shattered! It's been a productive day, spent under the warm, 0h the wonderfully warm rays of the sun.

The potager was the focus of much of my attention, as it has been sadly neglected over the past month due to the appalling weather we have had. I have re-sown the French beans, planted out the replacement tomato plants, the three types of chilli pepper and the aubergine plants which should start to thrive now that some warmer weather is finally here.

Tomorrow, we will hopefully get out on the roadies for a blast somewhere down on the flatlands. The Atlantic high pressure system that has brought us this sunny weather looks set to be with us at least through to the weekend and we will be making the most of it!

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Up a hill

There has been a slight, but only a slight improvement in the weather today, in that it has almost stopped raining. The wintery cold is still with us but the forecast is for that to be replaced by something resembling Spring warmth during the coming week. Oh, I hope so!

So anyway, this afternoon while Andy was doing more work on the stair treads and working on the hole in the ceiling into which the woodburner conduit disappears into the chimney, the pooch and I headed out for a beasting on the Peguère road. The road up to the Col de Peguère is 3.42 kms long with 400m of ascent, an average gradient of 12% - good hill training territory! I am determined to run it without stopping one of these days. However, that day is not yet here. So, I warmed up on the first 1km which is the steepest section (it reaches 18% at one point - aagh!), striding briskly for 12 minutes to get the legs and lungs working. It was there that I noticed a problem with my heart rate monitor which suddenly warned me that my heart rate was over the max!!! Whaaaaat!! Fortunately, it was because my chest strap was slipping and the rate soon returned to 'normal' when I adjusted it. I then ran for 2 minutes, walked for a minute, ran for 4 minutes, walked for a minute and then was able to run for 9 minutes before walking for another minute to gear up for the final 3 min 50 sec/0.5km blast to the top. It had taken me 33 mins. I was pleased with that. I was all the more pleased because my heart rate was around 86% of my max whilst I was 'running' and I seemed able to sustain that pace for longer than I had thought possible. On the final half a kilometer I pushed up to 90% of my max but I could not sustain that pace for much longer! So it was a useful training session and good to see just how my fitness on the hills is coming along. Full stats are here just in case you could be vaguely interested - the heart rate section shows where the monitor 'blipped' on the initial stage.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

House stuff

The weather is, well, it's dire at the moment. Cold, wet, more snow threatening but thankfully, so far, held at bay. The cold and wet looks set to be with us into next week unfortunately. For the past 3 years, May has been rubbish, weather-wise. Consistently wet and cold. Quite depressing. But it is a spur to getting indoor jobs done. On the house renovation front, we are nearing the end of the jobs on the Must Do list. But the stairs and staircase are still very much on the list. Now, I love bringing up old wood that has seen better days, restoring it to its former glory, if you will. The handrail system of our staircase is a perfect example. It is beautiful dark wood that has been sadly neglected since forever. This is the case in point, a photo taken over 2 years ago. Paint, plaster, grime, goodness knows what tarnishing the wood...
And this is the finished top rail after a gentle sanding down and wipe down followed by a simple coat of chestnut stain/matt varnish. I think it looks gorgeous.Next step is for Andy to fix one of the stringers before I can sand down the treads, apply wood-hardener and also filler in parts and then paint them. It will be job well done! But a bit of sun and warmth wouldn't go amiss ......

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Another VTT spin out

The plan was to get out on the roadies today, but the weather was marginal this morning, so we played safe and took the mountain bikes out again. This time, we combined a visit to the shops with what was supposed to be a reccy of a section of the Trans-Ariege mountain bike route from Pamiers. The section we did turned out to be far too short so we picked up signs for a waymarked VTT route from Saint Amadou which I knew would take us back to our start point. It was beautiful weather down there, warm but with fluffy white clouds in the sky.
The ride turned out to be a wonderfully interesting mixture of quiet side roads, solid hardpacked tracks and narrow paths with just the odd big puddle/muddy rut to keep us on our toes. On the return leg, Andy was obliged to replace a link in his chain - not a bad spot to have to make a repair!We covered 22.4kms with very little ascent and spent 1 hr 28 mins riding. It was a lovely ride out, only marred by a painful twinge in my left buttock/top of hamstring which I can only assume is due to yesterday's exertions hauling wood about!

Monday, 10 May 2010

Cleaning up and clearing up

Today, we made a start on clearing the trees and branches that fell last week. The little chemin/track behind us was littered with fallen cherry, beech and apple branches which would provide a good base for next winter's wood supplies.Andy set to with the chainsaw, snedding the leafy branches and cutting the useable sections into lengths that we could move and store, whilst I cleared, removed sections and stacked. It was warm, physical work, but the kind of work that I really enjoy - I love the physicality and the tangible reward for the effort. We got a fair bit cleared but still loads to do.

On the potager front, unfortunately today, the sweetcorn, french beans, squash, courgette and cornichon young plants are all looking decidedly sorry for themselves and appear to be giving up the ghost which is disappointing. Despite my initial optimism, last week's dramatic temperature reversal appears to have taken its toll after all.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Mountain bike action

It's been up to 20 degrees again today - it's amazing just how quickly the snows are melting. A dent is even being made in the enormous avalanche piles that are in front of the house - I can't wait until I can look out of the window and not see snow and I can't wait until the snow at higher levels has also melted so that I can go running locally again. This afternoon, however, we popped down to Saint-Girons then up the valley to Engomer for a quick spin on the mountain bikes around a 12km circuit with 300m of ascent, partly on easy quiet lanes up to Castillon-en-Couserans with great views up the Biros and high mountains beyond. But the second half of the route which was mainly on the offroad GR de Pays included some short but very stiff climbs on narrow footpaths which tested the legs and the lungs somewhat - it took us through to Audressein and up to Arrout, down to Alas, up again through the woodland and finally a steep, tricky descent back down to Engomer on which I admit I was obliged to get off and walk, the wuss that I am! But my new fatter tyres otherwise did their job and held the ground well offroad which gave me much greater confidence and allowed me to 'let loose' rather more than I would have done before - hurrah! We were back at the car in under an hour. A brief but welcome little outing after our confinement of the past week, topped off by a quick visit to Castillon itself where today was the annual plant and flower market at which I picked up some tomato plants to replace those that I lost because of the snow. I also bought some aubergine, courgette and hot chilli plants for which I now need to find space! I can see them ending up in big tubs on the terrasse. Tomorrow we will start clearing some of the trees that fell last week and tidying up around Pissou with the chainsaws - it will be quite a job but I am already looking forward to building up our wood piles for next year.

Saturday, 8 May 2010

And the good news is ......

.... there is still life in the potager! Yes, despite the stupid weight of snow that threatened to crush the life out of them, my veggies are (mostly) more robust than I had imagined - hurrah! In particular, I am chuffed to bits with the brave little soldiers that are my peas. Before the snow came, I covered them with a protective strip of horticultural fleece and today I was able to remove the snow from the strip and peel back the fleece to reveal the (mostly) still strong little fellas! A couple have naturally succumbed to the crush but the rest should grow up to be strong, productive little plants
The celery, rocket, carrots, mixed salad and French beans also seem to be bouncing back. But the same cannot be said for the poor raspberry canes which have taken a right hammering and are mostly buried under the snow (in the right of the picture below). But raspberry canes are generally robust things and hopefully, given some space and warmth, will bounce back in no time. The tomatoes, as I expected, are broken and bruised thanks to the collapse of the cloche and will probably all have to be replaced. But generally, things could have been worseThe rickety fencing around the potager will all have to be replaced but I have been able to re-establish the electric fencing this afternoon, so no hungry animals will be able to profit from the gaps. The temperature has been back up towards 20 degrees today and the melt looks like it should be rapid, thank goodness. My neck/shoulder is pretty much back to normal (provided I continue to look after it), so we will be heading down to the plain tomorrow for a much needed outing on the roadies - I can't wait!

Thursday, 6 May 2010

On the turn

We had another few centimetres of snow overnight but this afternoon, the first sign that this God-awful weather system has moved on, as temperatures climbed to a heady 8 degrees. The melt has started and probably over the weekend we will see the streams and rivers reach breaking point as the massive quantity of meltwater makes its way down from the mountains.

But here and now, it is time to take stock. From a 'growing' point of view, I am thankful that I had the foresight to protect the new cornichon plants with upturned plant pots and the young sweetcorn plants and curcurbits with plastic bottle halves. They have escaped the snowy onslaught unscathed. The same cannot be said for the rest of the potager - the cloches that were supposed to protect my new sowings collapsed under the weight of the snow and I was quite patently stupid to even think that I could plant out the tomato plants before mid May! I should have listened to the locals - I blame the intoxication of the fantastic hot weather that we were enjoying, before Winter decided to give us one last, painful and totally unexpected metaphorical slap!

In fact, I am feeling generally pissed off at the moment - not only am I decidedly unhappy about the blow that the weather has dealt us from a potager and 'growing stuff' point of view, but I have pulled a muscle in the back of my neck/into my shoulder, probably when throwing a ball for the dog the other day (I did exactly the same thing last year for goodness sake!). This means that I am going to have to restrain from all physical activity until it is sufficiently fixed and no longer giving me pain. So no biking (not that the current conditions are exactly commensurate with col-bashing and the turbo-trainer is now out of action due to the power unit blowing up (or something) and tripping the circuit when we had a power-cut when Andy was using it this afternoon - gah!), no running (not that there will be anywhere snow-free around here for the coming few days but let's not let details get in the way of a good moan) and no clearing of snow or sorting through the fallen wood around us. A sedentary few days ahead and I don't 'do' inactivity particularly well. Anybody got a dose of patience they can spare me?!

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

C'est un catastrophe!

That is how our neighbour Claudine describes the events of the past 24 hrs. You have to go back to records for the 1940s before you find an equivalent snow fall for the month of May - over a metre in the space of 24 hours. The snow avalanched off our roof several times during the night which made exiting from the house somewhat interesting this morning!
The damage caused by the shere weight of snow is extensive. The mobile phone network is down as is the ADSL broadband but fortunately the land line is working again this evening so dial up access is possible. The electricity is on and off, on and off but we have not been totally without power for much longer than an hour so far, whereas I gather that the town of Foix has sustained more prolonged outages. We're lucky!

This morning, we checked out our little road, playing russian roulette with the snow falling from the trees. It was obvious that the plough would be unable to make its way up to Pissou until the fallen trees and branches were cleared. Sure, it is the commune's responsibility, but we reckoned that they would have their work cut out so we set to with the chainsaw, ably assisted by Claudine and within a couple of hours our section of road was clear and, as if on cue, J-P rocked up in the plough just half an hour after we had finished. Good timing! The one good thing to come out of this is that we will now have enough wood to comfortably see us through at least another winter (one it has dried of course). But the clear up has only just started. Temperatures are now rising and the snow will start its slow melt. That in itself will bring its own set of problems. Hurrah for Spring!

Tuesday, 4 May 2010


The blizzard continues, the snow deepens (over 50cms so far), ...the power is on and off and trees all around us continue to buckle and break under the weight of the snow. Trees and branches are strewn across our little road, effectively imprisoning us here until the snow stops enough to allow some clearance with the chainsaw.I just wonder how much more there is to come .....?


What date is it? Ah yes, May, 4 May. And we are currently in the midst of a full-on blizzard. May. Blizzard. The two don't go together somehow, now, do they. You remember that rather nice piccy that I took on Sunday, of the beech trees and their wonderful new foliage? As I type, I can hear the heart-wrenching gunshot sound of tree branches, complete with their new coat of fresh leaves, splitting and breaking under the weight of the heavy, wet snow in the woodland opposite. How very unseasonal. How very unwelcome. Let's hope we have a stinking hot week next week and the melt happens quickly. I have road biking and running to do, not to mention potager potterings to be getting on with!

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Conquering lasyarseitis

It's too easy when the weather is pants to make a pint of tea (yes, I know, we're weird), kick back and stay snug and cosy in front of the warming glow of the woodburner. So it took a herculean effort for me to drag my lazy arse upstairs, get changed and then head up to Peguere to do the route forestière circuit with the pooch this afternoon. But oh, did I enjoy it once I got going! It was wet but a perfect temperature for running. My legs turned easily on the soft ground but I made time to stop and absorb the beauty of the beech trees in their new green fineryI have no idea what time it took me to do the 6km circuit as the battery on my Garmin died very quickly after I left the car. Still, I wasn't out for a full-on training run so the time was irrelevant - I felt good which was all that mattered. So now I am back and enjoying a pint of tea, snug and cosy in front of the warming glow of the woodburner happy in the knowledge that lazyarseitis has been conquered.... for today anyway.