Saturday, 28 April 2012

Spring, where are you?!

The month of April has been dire, weatherwise. It has been generally grey, damp and unseasonally chilly, although the odd day of warmer weather and glimpse of sun has poked its way through just to tantalise us. But the fantastic thing about the area that we are in now is the abundance of 'all weather' possibilities for running and mountain biking in the form of a vast network of tracks and woodland trails that surround us. I had forgotten just how much fun my mountain bike is and can't wait to explore more of the marked circuits.
But the best thing about the move here is that the social life has taken a turn for the better. I have met up with an old school buddy, Lee, who I haven't seen for around 34 years and who got back in touch with me via Facebook. He introduced me to another couple who live locally and who are keen cyclists and runners. Andy I have been out on the road bikes a couple of times now with Suzanne and Steve and it is great to have company again. We have even been out for dinner!!!! Suzanne is also my new running buddy - yee haa! Good times.

On the house front, we finally completed the sale of our house above Massat last week which is a big relief. Our hunt for a new home in this area is ongoing. We have visited several potential properties, none of which have ticked all of the right boxes. I have been getting increasingly frustrated and disheartened. But it feels like our luck may, yes, just may be changing. Suffice to say we currently have offers in on two properties and will hear early next week whether we have been successful with one or the other! It is both a nervous and exciting time. Watch that space.

Thursday, 5 April 2012


It has been a very stressful and hectic few weeks, which is standard fayre where a house move is involved. But we finally completed the move out of Pissou yesterday and are now attempting to settle into our new 'home'. This naturally is not going smoothly but at least I have got a few boxes unpacked and have plenty of tracks & trails on the doorstep to explore. The area is wonderful and I am really hoping I can find a new home here in the coming months, although I have to say I am dreading moving again. But getting settled is more important.

In other news, the running has unfortunately taken a nose dive. I did the Trail de Quillan race 10 days ago which is a  27kms/1300m+ circuit which I successfully completed last year in 3h24m. This year however it was a disaster. I experienced exactly the same problem as I had in my last long run from Varilhes. The liquid fuel and gels that I was taking in were quite simply not reaching my legs. In technical running terms, I bonked and it was an incredibly unpleasant experience. My energy levels hit zero and I found myself grinding to an uncomfortable and discouraging walk - it took me 30 minutes longer than last year to complete the course! Something was very wrong. Time for some research. Quite by chance, Pat had just sent me a link to a website that included a pertinent article about sustained stress, adrenal hormone imbalances and resultant problems with the metabolism of carbohydrates and glucose absorption by the muscles. I have had all kinds of other physiological problems in recent weeks that also seem to tie in with the notion of adrenal hormone imbalances. Another article that I found on the internet gives further fuel to the theory. Things are starting to fall into place. Unfortunately, there is no way I can contemplate a 40K race when there is a very high probability that my body will fail me. So the Citadelles this coming weekend is off. It would be stupid of me to even contemplate the longest race I have ever done when there is a high probability that my body will fail me and besides, I need to be up for and excited by the challenge rather than approaching it with apprehension and worry. It can wait until another year.

So, running will take a back seat for the foreseeable future and mountain biking and possibly even some road biking will take its place. There is so much potential in this area and there is even a cycle club that runs from the village, so some good times are ahead. There is always a silver lining to the cloud :-)