New Year's Resolve

The day after my non-operation I receive a nice pile of ‘Get Well Soon’ cards (if only) and an appointment for a return trip to see Mr Shoulder Man… except the letter says, Mr Shoulder Man (locum). Does that mean Mr Shoulder Man is a locum or the appointment is with his locum? If that’s the case it’ll be the third consultant to see my shoulder. Will this one be pro or anti op? And as for the urgent referral to a physio? Nothing. Still, liberal coatings of Talisker did for my mouth ulcer which is a blessed relief.

The same day a message pops up in my email to tell me that it’s only eight weeks to the Llanelli half marathon. (Strangely enough, not a million miles away from where I was for my non-op.) And the trouble is I’ve got a bit comfortable. A slight tear in my calf muscle after the Cardiff half meant I had to rest for a while and although I’ve resumed my usual running, I haven’t really done much distance training. To be honest, I haven’t really felt like going arse over tip on icy roads so I’ve played it a bit safe.

Sunday dawns with heavy rain and blustery wind but no ice so I drag myself out to do eight miles. Mindful of calf tears and other horrors I have a cunning plan to make myself run ve-r-y slowly rather than going off like a bat out of hell. For the first six miles, it’s great. I feel strong, mighty. What is this wind and rain to me? Then, suddenly, my legs refuse to run any more and I have to walk home! And it’s p*ssing down and I can hardly stand up in the wind. Pah! Talk about pride before a fall. Clearly there is work to be done.

To encourage myself to send out more writing, I’ve made a list of deadlines, entered my first competition this year and have two short stories ready to go out. Looking at the entry fees though, I wonder if this plan isn’t going to cost me money! Whilst the amounts are pretty small in themselves, with post they add up to a fair outlay. And I’ve got to make a start on the next novel. Or rather, carry on with the next novel since I’ve got a couple of ideas on the go. I had a really horrible thought about FTT the other day; the publishers asked for the full script by email and I had to check my outbox again to make sure it really had gone. Even then I started torturing myself with thoughts of it being lost in cyberspace.

And finally…Can you see my ‘Good Girl’ glow? I bought tickets for us to see a folksy, girlie, ‘sweetness and light’ band that Tom likes and I don’t. It’s always good to hear live music but I much prefer doom, gloom and bad boys. Ah well, tonight it’s my turn to declare the evening ‘sheer purgatory’ then.

Painting is 'Christmas Morning - High Preseli' by Tom Tomos


elizabethm said…
I should think if you can do 6 miles now you can do your half marathon in 8 weeks, seriously impressed here. I also note that you don't have to join in with our weight loss movement which presumably is down to your running. I am still thinking and not doing it - too cold, too wimpy. I know, I should just get off my butt.
Lane said…
Six miles in wind and rain? That sounds pretty good going to me. I had to stop myself from thinking about a little moo cow crying though (calf tears).:-)

Well done on entering some comps. The entry fees and postage certainly adds up. I prefer the ones with email submissions and Paypal but seems they are still in the minority. Are you having a punt at Mslexia?
Pipany said…
Lord, I couldn't run to the loo let alone manage a six mile stretch Chris! Just make sure your shoulder doesn't get hurt (shows how good I was at running as I don't think the shoulder is too involved is it?). Good luck with the comps xx
nimblejacks said…
I think the only way I'll drag my skinny though unfit body out is with my 7yr old daughtet who fancies running with mum. I used to run a lot just these days it's after my kids. My fingers nearly fell off from cold just getting to school today! Good luck with the band, i get to listen to my mans folsky, skiffle band each week as they play here most weeks. It involves numerous instruments, tea, coffee and always cake! They'll be the fattest folk band if I keep home cooking for them they're called "Mr Noboody" we'll ahve to call them "The Bloaters" if I carry on making them cake!!! Good luck with that naughty shoulder , mine is twinging when I type so i'm typing like a snail today to avoid it going "kaping " again.
Frances said…
Hello Chris,

We don't use that term locum over here. What is a locum? Is it possible for you to call Mr. Shoulderman to find out more?

I confess to never having done any running, and am rather awed that you continue to run in bad wintry weather. Please do take care, though!

Tom's painting is another beauty. I am wondering what its dimensions are.

And please do write us up a review of the girly music night. Please include performances on and off stage.

JJ said…
Running in the wind and rain? Eweewh. 6 miles sounds most impressive though.
bradan said…
I did some running yesterday, but doubt if it was 600 yds, I only ran cos it had started to rain heavily whilst out with the dogs - v. impressed that you deliberately go out in the rain to run!
Hope you get your shoulder sorted soon and good luck with your writing. Oh and as ever, love the painting. xx
Edward said…
I also ran in the wind on Sunday (was out for over two hours, owing to getting lost) and had a terrible dose of "jogger's nipple" - titter (sic) ye not, it's bl**dy painful. Good luck with your upcoming half - have you tried The Stick for calf injuries?

I often get small calf injuries in the cold weather, but a physio (my ma, actually) told me that they were more likely to be spasmodic contractions owing to running in the cold. So I always wear long tights from October until April.

What was the name of the band, by the way?
Pondside said…
Beware of a locum with too many different ideas - unless they line up with yours.
You are amazing. I can't imagine even walking the dog in the rain and wind, but maybe that's why I'm in the fat forum and you're talking half marathons. Good luck!
ChrisH said…
Elizabeth, there are lots of good things about running that offset the, 'Bum-it's-raining' effect and one of them, for me, is that I can eat a lot!

Lane, you would be surprised at how many cows cry at the sight of me puffing past! Yep, I'm trying Mslexia but I doubt very much that I'll be able to come up with something to impress Helen Simpson.

Pip, and I couldn't do anything artisic with a needle and thread if my life depended on it!

Nimblejacks, you too, another clever, crafty blogger - love 'The Bloaters'. Tom has The Fat Boys.

Frances, locums stand in for the professional who can't be there. I think there are several firewalls to stop you talking to anyone! Thanks for admiring the painting - it is 90cm x 90cm.

JJ, you would be less impressed if you could see me!

Bradan, ditto! And thank you for the painting comment which I will pass on.

Edward, glad I was not the only b*gger out there. Sheesh! Joggers Nipple, I think I've got enough to deal with already. You do know some useful site - the chirunning was very helpful. Do you think an ordinary stick would do or does it have to be a special Stick? Hmm, wish there was a volume control on this as I don't want to shout this... the band we are going to see are The Poozies.

Pondside, at this rate every consultant in Wales will have a view of my shoulder. Confused? I will be!
Debs said…
The only time I do run, is in the rain, and that's to get to the car quicker.

Best of luck with comp, and the ms at the publishers. I would also have been checking the outbox!
Six miles - I can't run six steps - also like EM very impressed.

Why did your op not happen - sorry seem to have missed this and so sorry too it didn't happen as you should now be recovering and looking forward to a pain free year.
Crystal Jigsaw said…
I feel tired just reading about you running 6 miles. I so wish I could do the same.

Hope you do well in the comps. I recently sent off a short story, mainly to cure my writer's block!

CJ xx
Milla said…
not good on girly bands either, whinging whiners on guitar, no sirree.
Good luck with the comp - I've always meant to ask you, incidentally, how did you get hold of your agent??
Fennie said…
I am wondering, Chris, do you write when you run, so to speak. I mean can you think about your characters, plots, what you would do to them around the next corner. I wonder if any of them run, or have bad shoulders, or even locums. You don't think the shoulder is caused by the running - the displaced pain of a half-marathon relocated from pelvis to shoulder - or all that pumping back and forth with the arms? You do really deserve a medal.

I've just calculated that a hundredth marathon would be about 450 yards. We could all do that if you organised it for us. But would it mean we could eat as much as we like, I wonder?
Flowerpot said…
well done on your six miles Chris - sounds amazing! As someone who never runs at all I am deeply in awe... though I do walk a lot I suppose!
LittleBrownDog said…
Firstly, can I just say I think that is my very favourite Tom Tomos painting EVER. (Mind you, I think I've said that about a few. It is pretty darn gorgeous, though - want, want, want...)

Do you know what? I didn't make any resolutions this year - well, none to break, then. But well done you for getting out there to run at all in weather like that. Hope things get sorted out with your shoulder op and jolly good luck with the writing comps - would love to read some of your short stories, I bet they're great.

ChrisH said…
Debs, I just want my photo in a magazine like you (the woman with a terrific work rate). good luck to you to, hon.
WW, don't make me explain again! In a nutshell the whole of Wales has an opinion on my shoulder - though no one's actually doing anything.
CJ, thank you. And good luck to you too.
Milla, glad it's not just me - I have pm'ed you.
Fennie, yes, absolutely, work out knots in the plot as I run, though not knots in the shoulder. I have got a medal from the Cardiff half which I keep on my erm, looks for volume control again, my ego board to spur me on. Yes, yes, whole point of running is to be able to eat anything!
Flowerpot, yes, you walk all over the place - and then you write so beautifully about it.
LBD, will pass painting comment on, thank you. Slight clue as to how we spent Christmas day! You don't need to make resolutions, you have been quietly researching, writing and completing a book. WELL DONE!
Preseli Mags said…
I ran on that Sunday too... mad or what?! Not the worst I've been out in, but still... and why is it that I only see people I know when I'm running into the teeth of a howling gale bright red in the face, eyes running? I had that same e-mail, by the way. It rather put me off. Maybe next year. In the meantime I'll do the 10k on the same course. In June.
Sally's Chateau said…
Oh woweeeee I just feel a lazy old so and so reading your post, all the more admirable as you claim lousy weather :) what are you like when it is marvellous ? the mind boggles.
Fiona said…
Running is very hard. Don't do it - a nice dawdle is better.

Huge congrats on your stonking TMA. Not high hopes for mine as I found more mistakes after I sent it out. I had checked it loads of times too. Can I sit next to you for the next one? You can have my troll pencil if you share.
Cait O'Connor said…
I do admire you Chris. I don't do running, love walking and even in the rain.
I love the painting, it is very now, season wise.
I have read some of your posts and would like to revisit.

If you like reading short stories from an Indian writer, then a visit to my blogs would be an interesting one for you.

Naval Langa
Another Interesting Blog
ChrisH said…
Mags, It put me off a bit too! Luckily I only seem to meet crusty old farmers when I'm running!

Sally, I seem to remember cycling and swimming from your posts - not all lotus-eating!

Fiona, I bet you don't need to worry about your TMA. Troll pencil sounds good. I'll get my Bay City Rollers pencil case!!
ChrisH said…
Cait, walking's good, too, especially in this beautiful part of the world. Thank you for the comment about the painting.

Naval, Welcome. Good to hear from you.

The selection of the painting at top is a nice once. I tell so, as I am fond of painting, too. I like to read your passages, so simple, so filled with neat words.

Naval Langa
Naval Langa

Another Interesting Blog
BT said…
You ran 6 miles and are disappointed in yourself?? I think you deserve a medal! Hmm, methinks it definitely means you'll be seeing the top man's locum. That's the usual thing.

Good luck with the competitions and newly acquired enthusiasm for your writing.

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