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Fetch Five - Big Feck

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54 Entrants Club PB SB Pred Time WAVA
_andy Kinross Road Runners 29:58 34:17 1:13:00 30.23
Argie East Essex Triathlon Club, Halesowen Triathlon 37:00 40:30 39:38 54.68
Barky Hermitage Harriers RC, Mickleover Running Club 33:50 34:32 38:34 59.39
Bimblebelle Unaffiliated 1:06:25 1:06:25 1:15:00 1:04:53 38.97
Chicken Licken Unaffiliated 50:30 1:01:00 1:00:00 41.14
Clueless Kenilworth Runners 36:22 40:50 39:56 64.93
Discovery Dave Truro RC, Truro Running Club 34:42 51:56 41.38
Drell Unaffiliated 44:10 48:09 57:53 46.78
EarlyRiser Unaffiliated 34:50 34:50 39:55 60.59
Fannyfernackerpan Unaffiliated 45:57 53.11
Firestarter Hermitage Harriers RC 31:52 31:52
Forest Faerie Thetford AC 40:06
frangale Beverley AC 45:36
Gasping 4 breath Unaffiliated 48:05 54:00 48.01
Grumpy fella Unaffiliated 49:00 49:15 46.86
Hamsterbolt Durham City Harriers & AC, Sheffield Hallam University AC, Trafford AC, Sarum Orienteering Club 28:42 40:00 51:15 47.96
HerefordshireLass Black Pear Joggers
Hirsty Unaffiliated
hls York Postal Harriers 56:43 44.00
Hoaxster Unaffiliated
Iris Long Eaton Running Club 44:02 47:09 53:31 45.48
JJ Flash Spa Striders RC 39:16 68.13
jude FERC
LeGreg - 41% toeslag, 59% onderzoek Unaffiliated
Lizzie W Unaffiliated 52:28 54:36 50:00 47:27 51.59
loopy Stornoway R & AC 39:40
LukeStur TeamBath AC 29:02
Maclennane R2D2 Hash House Harriers 44:16 47:27 45.16
Maisy Robin Hood Striders 33:32 41:00 39:10 55.08
McGoohan Unaffiliated 38:45 44:23 1:00:00
MissChappo Unaffiliated 58:49 41.78
Nightjar Bedford Harriers AC, LDWA 36:28
oldbiddynandi Longdale Striders 37:24 45:09 51:10 45:09 64.91
Peacey White Horse Harriers AC 29:00 32:34 35:48 60.03
RFJ Swindon Striders 29:31 29:42 44:00 43:45 51.57
Roobarb Dagenham 88 Runners 55:49 49:18 55.62
santababy Harmeny AC 38:16 45:00 42:25 58.83
SherryB Petts Wood Runners, Reebok Running Group 52:01 52:01 55:00 55:03 47.56
Shin-Twigs Unaffiliated 44:46 48:08
Silvershadow Bedford Harriers AC 50:45 57:01 46.40
Simo Ealing, Southall & Middlesex AC 37:15 39:54 44:49 56.85
smash Unaffiliated 39:28 51:42 49:23 49.07
Snapstinget FERC 45:00 44:16 56.91
solitude_fairy Unaffiliated 47:07 47:07
StuartM Unaffiliated 43:43 43:43 35:52 66.89
Sushi. FERC 41:15 45:39 54.35
TooLilac Unaffiliated 50:13 48.75
trumpton riots Evesham Vale RC 36:02 38:48 45:00 50.90
Ultracat Metro Aberdeen 48:35 55:00 53:10 54.37
Velociraptor FERC 36:06 40:02
Vi Ninety Day Challenge Burton AC 46:45 48:12
Winniefree Penistone Footpath Runners AC 46:26 56:15 46.09
Woffy Unaffiliated 32:03 38:00 37:59 61.23
XB FERC 47:28 49.76
Clueless
I was pleased to do my 5 mile run this morning. The time is not too bad really, my PB was set on a perfectly flat course, and my town is not really flat! I did catch up and overtake a runner so that kind of helped create the race atmosphere :o) As far as the good turn goes, well, honour and virtue are contained in my discretion ;o)
Peacey
5.01 Miles
35.48
Nice fairly quick tempo run.

My Nice turn…. I gave my Maylarch Enysham 10k entry to Don Bubbles, reason for this was simple. I wanted Don to get his sub 45 10k time and as we are running out of decent 10k races for 2008 I wouldn’t get a better chance. I have my target 10k time for 2008 so was happy to give DB the entry, this is a quick course so knew the sub 45 was on.

*UPDATE*
DB does a sub 45 with ease by around 30 seconds. Froze my nuts off watching with my lad Max but was worth it for Don’s PB. Nice!
oldbiddynandi
I have an idea :):)

This was a reallygood run and I'm very pleased with the time. gonna blog it
Snapstinget
Done in conjunction with Phoenix Park Races as I wanted a Mass Participation Event With Photography (thanks Antbliss!). The sight of all the runners doing the other races brought that warm glow of gratitude to my heart that you get when you know you don't have to compete with them. I never knew that so many children did FECKs but perhaps they weren't aware of it? Children often aren't, and anyway they wwere doing 800 metres and not 8 kilometres. I had nice thoughts for the leading man who lapped me on the second lap and several tikes when he was warming down. I had even nicer thoughts for the first lady who won by at least a hundred yards. And even nicer thoughts for the little boys at the back of their pack in training to be Me. Photos of me Having These Nice Thoughts will be available online for purchase from Antbliss at a later date. I made sure i clapped and cheered, too: it is amazing how you can put the spark back into a lagging Under 9 by telling him to hammer it or an under 15 girl when you tell her she can catch the girl in front :-) My Word of Wisdom to All Race Spectators is to remember that you really can help. I discovered that this even held true in the Senior Ladies when i helped to heckle as they came down the hill. So a great day and a great FECK.
santababy
So i had a plan of sorts, run to Princes St war memorial garden, stay for 2 min silence and run home again, hopefully making it in time for Big bro & families appearance.plan was to stop and give money to any homeless people i saw

Set off just before 10am, as i got to bottom of hill i realised i'd forgotten my poppy, duh. Decided to stop at nearest shop and buy one. Goes into shop,man being served at counter was moaning his head off about the prices, *how much are the crisps, how much is that, etcetc* i popped £1 into box and took a poppy, hmm no pins, i asked the shopkeeper if there were any pins, i thought he said,theyre in box.

So, i started poking about poppys looking for pins but didnt see any, so i asked again
Obnoxious man said to me loudly *he said they are behind counter, but you'll have to wait,I'M BEING SERVED* i said *sorry, i wasnt trying to jump queue (there wasnt one) i only want a poppy* wtf was i doing apologising to this twat? Anyway, i waited patiently while this guy abuses the shopkeeper about his prices, then starts moaning that he was crushing his crisps, couldnt he have another plastic bag? after all, he's spent so much money etc, shopkeeper quietly opens another bag and packs it, then ask man if he'd like a reciept for that? *no, dont bother, i'll have take mask next time tho seeing i'm being robbed* omg, why did i not speak up, i'm ashamed of myself, rude bastard.

Turns out shopkeeper no pins, i leave shop dejected only to see obnoxious fucker getting into brand new BMW, felt like kicking the damn thing.

The had ereuka moment, i'm a runner, i have safety pins, always! sure enough, there in my bumbag i found a safety pin, stuck my poppy to my running top and set off again.

Ran my 5 miles, stopping breifly to give money to big issue seller,saw no homeless people though. Got to Scott Monument 5 miles bang on, fecked woohoo,had 15 mins to spare. Bought a big poppy from hut and put it in remembrance garden and stood waiting on Gun from Edinburgh castle going off to start the silence. Had lovely chat with couple next to me who go there every yr, i think he was an old soldier (although not that old if you know what i mean!) Gun went off, 2 mins of silence follwed, then gun went off again at end of it. I said my goodbye and set off back home.

Struggled running home a bit, wind had really picked up and going up the mound my lungs were burning, i soldiered on and ran 3 miles (which was the plan) and got bus rest of way home, i was coughing like a 20a dayer all way home, might explain my burny lungs and lack of appetite last night.

Got home started cooking mounds of sausags , bacon and tattie scones, big bro arrived with dozen rolls, his wife, 2 hungry kids and stephen who'd went to watch his cousin play(they won 9-1, so well happy).....

mucho tucking in and mucho thanks, and off they went as Mardi was on nightshift (midwife) and was knackered.

Another good deed done :)

Going for bath now, not coughing so much now, not sure if it's start of something or not.

fecked but not out...
_andy
Ran this as an epic fell run in slippery winter conditions - 2200ft of mud and soft snow.

My mileage has been a bit lower over the past three months due to a new baby - and the wee laddie is almost three months old now and it's getting tough. My good deed will involve the sacrifice of less races, less mles, probably even missing out on the Fetch Scottish mile in early December and doing all I can to help out my wonderful OH. We knew that having four children would be hard work, but the just-turned-two-years and almost-three-months combo is really tough work at the moment. That's where I need to spend my extra time - with the family.
Maclennane
The big Horsham Feck

Well I know now a little bit of what Dave Bedford goes through in organising the London marathon. Today I ran the race I organised. OK, so there weren't any marshalls, or water stations, or mile markers, direction arrows on the course, medals, numbers or goody bags, but still...

There very nearly weren't any competitors, I was reasonably confident that LizzieLou was going to show but with less than an hour to go, Fanny started making ominous rumblings about pulling out and a quick call to Hoaxster was met with unintilligible monosyllables until he put the phone down, but after a long wait freezing in Chesworth car park, the Hoaxster finally showed up looking like he could do with a wash and some vitamin C (and some new conditioner).

We all shambled off unconvincingly as a group and there was remarkably little whingeing about the fact the first mile and a bit was uphill. Hoax and Fanny started to move out in front and LizzieLou and I maintained a good stteady pace, never completely losing sight before the last mile. It's good, pacing, you can get to run at just slightly below absolute bloody eyeballs-out, whilst making encouraging noises and getting that twinge of fear of being shown up every time the pacee puts a bit of a spurt on, which Lizzie did on a couple of occasions. I've never seen anybody take to downhills with such relish and I genuinely couldn't keep up going down Kerves Lane.

Back into Horsham, then, run the silly loop I had to stick on to get the course up to distance, into Chesworth Farm, and... no Hoax or Fanny. Had they got bored and gone home? No, that get Hoax had found the course slightly under-distance on his Garmin, so helpfully tagged an extra hundred yards on.

It took relatively little arm-twisting to get Hoax up to the pub for cheesy chips, but the others weren't keen, and so it was that we were eating breakfast cheesy chips, drinking breakfast guinness and smoking breakfast pipes, wrapped in blankets on the terrace of the Boar's Head. Afferleets? Youbetcha.

My good deed is to right a long-term wrong. When I did my sponsored fast for Oxfam at uni, I under-paid my sponsorship money cos I just didn't have it all at pay-up time, which is unspeakably and enormously out of order. I under-paid by £16, and I will sponsor anyone who's running for oxfam in any event £32 if you let me know today, otherwise I'll send the check tomorrow.
Iris
Looking at my training log, this was my longest training run for a couple of months. The weather was a bit warm and a bit breezy but OK. The technical bit-splits were 10.29,10.07,11.02,10.42,11.06 so as ever I'm never going to break any speed records but that's not what the Big Feck's about it is? So I was plodding and pondering, listening to my ipod and enjoying running through the autumn leaves. The ipod then chose to play Nina SImone so I was running along, singing under my breath

"I got my arms, I got my hands
I got my fingers, Got my legs
I got my feet, I got my toes
I got my liver, Got my blood

I've got life , I've got my freedom
I've got the life"

From here came the idea of charitable goodness. I can run, I'm not good at it but I can do it. I can get out and enjoy the freedom. At the moment Sam (my four year old son) has perthes disease. He's OK but he's not allowed to jump, for a four year old that sucks. He thinks I'm great for running and he wants to do the same as me (so run slowly, struggle, get injured but still finish and have fun). Because of his age he's likely to recover fully and will grow a new hip bone (seriously, he will) and he should avoid all the nasty treatment that some kids with perthes have. SO when he gets the all clear, which could be this year, next year or even the year after we're going to do a race together. We'll find a race with a short fun run and we're going to ask people to sponsor him to celebrate him being able to run around properly again. We'd like to raise money and awareness for perthes disease.
We are a pair of happy FECKers and I can't wait to be able to cross the finishing line with my little boy next to me. :-)
Treacle
I'm not going to say publicly what I was thinking about on this run as it applies to something at work and one person in particular. But it will be difficult for me, and should make a big difference to that someone. Thats all x
JJ Flash
A Friend in Fecking Need!
I have to admit, I spent most of November worrying about this Fecking challenge. I really wanted to do it, but I was struggling. I’m currently unemployed so I haven’t got money I can give away easily. I have got plenty of time though, so I could volunteer somewhere. The trouble with that is that I have no transport at present and my personal circumstances mean that I can’t about easily. So every five mile run I set out on to think about giving ended in me just coming up with excuses for why I fecking well couldn’t. I was disgusted with myself. I see myself as a giver, but what if I’ve been a taker all along? Has all my life been lived a massive cloud of self-deception?

Thank goodness I was able to pull myself out of it this morning.

I’ve known Dave for three years now. I recruited him into my last job and he has to be one of the nicest people you could ever meet. I have yet to find to single strand of unpleasantness anywhere in him. He quickly became one of the most loyal and reliable members of my team. Never the highest achiever he always tried and he would always be there to when needed someone to put in that little bit extra. I was never the kind of boss who builds barriers between herself and her team. Quite the opposite, I draw a clear line between business and personal. Business comes first and then I get to know people on a personal level as well because you spend an awful long time every week at work and it is quite dreadful when you’re unhappy. 18 months ago I helped him dig himself out of a depression when his partner left him. Partly that was work – I didn’t want to lose a good team member, and partly it wasn’t. Of a team of seven he is one of the four who keep in touch now that I have left the company, so I was concerned that he hadn’t called for a couple of weeks. Then last night I got a text – he is off with depression again.
I called him straight back. I won’t bore you lot with the details, but I held his hand for a while and listened. Why does the world always seem to treat really nice people so badly? So, anyway, it was a busy night last night. I forgot all about Dave and his problems until I was out running this morning. I don’t know about you, but I don’t run with an I-Pod because I find it interferes with my thinking and running time is definitely thinking time for me.

It was cold this morning. Living in a second floor flat I don’t always get to see what the temperature is doing, so for the first mile I was concentrating on warming my hands up. It’s a lovely route. The first three quarters of a mile takes you out of town, past a couple of housing estates and a cemetery but then the view improves as there are allotments and finally hedges and a stile into fields. At this time of year there is a new crop in, but the path is well defined and solid underfoot. The view in front is open fields and just over a mile in you go through a gap in a hedge and there is the River Avon below with the ruins of Guy’s Cliffe House. This morning it was breathtaking. There was a light mist and the house loomed romantically through it. There were no dog walkers for a change and I was in a world of my own. In a second I forgot my cold hands and my mind floated free as it tends to on a good run. The Saxon Mill loomed quietly out of the mist. The River Avon steaming gently as it tumbled over the weir. I myself avoided tumbling on the wood of the bridge. The elderly gentleman who is usually out on its balcony sweeping leaves or drinking his morning coffee when I run through was sensibly tucked up inside and my route swung back along the A road towards Warwick and the Grand Union Canal.
It was somewhere along here that Dave popped back into my head. I was musing on his situation as I dropped down the path onto the canal and turned back towards home. Last time he was in this situation I spoke to him on most days he was off. He unloaded a lot of his problems on me and I directed him to find some help. I visited him a couple of times when work took me down to cover problems near his home. I couldn’t really do any of that this time, or could I? I think it was at about the aqueduct that the idea popped into my head. I could bring him up here to take some time away from his problems. I don’t think I even saw the Avon as I went back over it on the towpath, I was so intent on trying to think the thing through. What could we do if came here? Adding a depressed man to my flat isn’t going to improve the general ambience, but we could go on lots of missions. The Cotswolds are only twenty minutes away. There is Christmas shopping in Birmingham (no, hang on, this is a man, that won’t work). He’s a keen photographer and like mountain bikes and there is plenty of opportunity for that kind of stuff here.
I couldn’t wait to get home. My Garmin tells me I achieved a genuine negative split out there this morning. The run is a little bit short of five miles, but I hope I will be forgiven for that. I couldn’t extend it, I was just too keen to get home and get on with it. I rang him as soon as I got in. He’s delighted and is arranging to come up next week. It’s made a big difference to him.

It’s made a difference to me too. I was going about this all the wrong way. I was trying to think of things to do. I was focussed on myself and on what I might get out of it. That was a big mistake. As soon as I focussed on someone else and their problems it all came clear. Perhaps I am a giver after all. The jury is still out, but it looks a lot more hopeful.
Woffy
Got out and did my Feck 5 on the last day of the month and thought about what I could do to show a little bit of human kindness. What I decided to do was to try and do several acts of kindness in the one day rather than try for a spectacular one off event, so I chose (and completed) 5 small acts:

1) I bought my lovely OH a nice big bunch of flowers just to say thank you for all her hard work and support and just because I love her
2) I visited old friends of ours, now in their 70s and 80s. Jim has fairly advanced alzheimers and has really struggled in the last few months, most times being almost incoherent, and very much out of it. Helen has continued to patiently help him and put up with his erratic moods. We sat for an hour or so and just drank tea, chatted - Jim was actually on good form today and was able to join in the chat which was nice. Made some practical arrangements to be able to help, mostly with my OH being able to take her to do shopping and other necessary things which are now much more difficult
3) Visited a friend who is in hospital who has terminal cancer, in reality he only has a few months left at the most, he has 4 kids, the youngest being about 14. The only thing you can do is sit talk, occassionally cry with him and offer support to him and his family, it is very sad but hopefully during the visit as we slag each other about football teams and other things, it can bring a few minutes of normality and help him forget about the terrible disease racking his body
4) Took a chinese meal around to good friends of ours because she went out for a walk, slipped on ice and twisted her knee so was in a lot of pain and not mobile. Took around a nice chinese, a bottle of wine - not for me as I was driiving and had a nice evening with them
5) Told my three boys (16, 14 and 11) individually how much they mean to me and their mother and offered help to particularly the older two who are in big exam years. Had a nice chat with them and made sure I told them how proud they make us (they also cause us stress at times but today was deliberately positive in tone). Was nice just to make sure I spent some time with each one of them

Without getting too 'biblical' but it does say that there is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving, I had a lovely weekend and enjoyed my family and friends
TooLilac
Ran the FECK 5 as the 1st half of Thirsk 10miler today. Was pretty nervous about this one. Fely much fitter and stronger when I did it last year, plus have been struggling with assorted lurgies & a dodgy r-hamstring. Set off steady then went slightly faster than intended to warm up (it was bliddy freezing!!). had decided to totally ignore my watch but did a little check at 3miles and was shocked that I'd been 10 min miling (fast for me) and was feeling ok. Then started thinking that if I could keep this up, I had a chance at actually beating last year's time (1hr 42m). felt pretty good, and was shocked to pull it off. My watch time was 1hr 38mins 30secs . I did it !!!
Now for my FECK deed, I will bake a mocha cake for my daughter's school Christmas fair on friday.
Lizzie W
22/11/08 Horsham FECK :-) in the sunshine, nicely paced by Mac (thank you) and watching Fans & Hoax disappear over the horizon!

My wonderful mum, MiL and both SiL were very happy to find out that none of them are cooking Christmas Dinner this year - I'll be taking control of the kitchen for 2 Christmas Days :-)
FECK on, people :-)
LeGreg - 41% toeslag, 59% onderzoek
I had decided that my Big Feck run would be on 7 December, where I had planned a 10K. As I left home, it was a truly magnificent day for running. Crisp, blue sky, not a hint of wind, and sub-zero temperatures that were guaranteed to keep me cool during the race. I was actually wishing I was going out for a 20-miler, not a 10K which would be over in 45 minutes. The aim was to aim for a PB, which would help me plan my marathon target. The 10-minute walk to the tube station was soon over, and I was glad to dump my heavy rucksack on a seat and stuff my hands under my armpits to coax them out of their bluish hue. As I exited the tube at the other end, I started regretting wearing my Brooks Adrenalines. They are great shoes, but they offer marginally less traction than a soap in a bathtub, and in that neck of the woods the roads had not been salted. As I slip-slided my way to the start, I was hoping that it would warm up sufficiently in the next hour or so, otherwise a PB was definitely out of question. I started getting ready, with all the usual pre-race faffage made even more acute by the importance of getting the timing right. Take the jacket off too soon, and you’ll freeze to death, take it off too late and you’ll have to sprint the half-mile between race HQ and the start. One thing I was glad of was to be able to get rid of my rucksack, which was really starting to hurt.
About 30 seconds after the start, I gave up any hope of a PB. I suppose if I’d paid attention to the course details when entering I would have noticed that while about half of it was in town, the other half was cross-country. Mud is fun, but once again the Adrenalines showed their limits, and with the heavy terrain, and slippery up- and down-dulates, staying upright took precedence over speed. In the end I decided to take it as a tempo run, and got to the end at an average of 8 minutes/mile.
As I sprinted the last 200 yards, I spotted Midi Greg, who had arrived for his race. I crossed the line, got a bit of cake and a glass of coke, then lined up again for the start of the kids’ race. It was Midi’s second race, after a 400m a couple of months ago. This one was a full 1k, and I was hoping he’d make it to the end and have a good time. We were off and, in typical Midi Greg fashion, he started looking around at the ducks, the puddles, the dogs, and not quite grasping the concept of racing. But this was all good fun, and he did run the whole way, his little arms pumping and his cheeks getting pinker and pinker by the minute. He crossed the line, got a bag of sweets, and confirmed that he had loved it. In fact, he spent all afternoon saying he wanted to go back and run the race again. He wasn;t impressed when I told him that he would have to wait until next year, but that I would try and find some other races for him in the meantime.
So a great morning was had, and in the process some Feckage was administered to the local community. The race was in support of the local food bank, which helps around 300 families in the local area. No entry fee, but payment in kind was requested, which is why I was trekking across town with a rucksack full of rice, pasta, peas, beans, and various other foodstuffs.
McGoohan
I intend to run along in sandals healing the sick
Chicken Licken
After 18 months of not running due to injury this is the furthest I have raced for a few years.....How better to do a solo race than with company! Stb came on his bike and we went through the back roads of our village which I must say are hilly and very pretty....so my race report and my Feck. Well my FECK is for everyone, I have enjoyed running in the countryside and the thought of running 5 miles on a treadmill would just kill me now! So we need to look after our countryside and maintain OUR heritage...my FECK is to give summat back to England! I have looked on the national Trust websites and next summer I am going to volunteer to repair hedges and plant trees on a working weekend’s holiday! nationaltrust.org.uk . The actual race it’s self was very good, with a host of lovely fields, hills and local wildlife to look at! Thoroughly enjoyed my first 5 mile race of the year.
XB
My first ever proper eyeballs out interval session. The plan was to run ten 1/4 mile intervals at c.7:30 mins/mile off a walky/joggy recovery. I surprised and amazed myself by running 9 of the 10 intervals at better than 7 minute miles even the uphill ones. Believe me, that is fast for me. I've got just enough time to go into Clitheroe and do something kind;-)
Barky
Today was my FECK 5, a nice steady tempo 5mile run while I had a thought about helping others. This may, and it probably is, a littel self centred, but please bare with me.

Like a lot of people on here, I have had my fair few problems with my home life. It may seem just a natural thing for a parent to do their best for the kids, but I do look at the events that LB and I have faced, and then look at LB and think - I havent done a bad job with her, after all she is a very brigh lively child. When one considers what she has had to out up with, esp in the first 4years of her life, shes pretty good.

My wife is no longer with us, but I try and help the people who helped us - the Encephalitis Society. It is a small charity, but when the chips were down for the Bark Family, they helped us. They help me explain my wife's condition and when needed, a supporting hand. So for me to go and run a couple of events tot ry and raise miney for them was a no brainer - and it is still that way! I might just add the Shakespear Marathon to the events to raise money for them.

The group at Uni I am part of are on the whole a noce bunch of people (and yes, they are younger than me), but we are all in the same boat of having to work together. We have all ready talked about doing the Robin Hood 1/2M for charity as a course group, and with me running as some mad scientist type bloke - in fact, it looks like I might be running as Prof Heinz Wolfe (Pop quiz - how many of you know who Prof Heinz Wolfe is????), so running in a lab coat and white fuzzy hair!

Then I was thinking - maybe all fecthies (I know - daft) should run for a charity? That way we will all help some one. Run for a cancer charity (McMillan ro Marie Curie), or after the evnst int he news recently the NSPCC, there are loads out there that need our help!

For me - roll on Shakespear and Robin Hood (as Prof Heinz Wolfe - supa geek)
smash
This was never about running quickly for me. So I ran and thought about ways to help others. Now, I reckon that this is for life, not just for November, so I've made a few resolutions.

1. buy extra cat food for the homeless kittens, and put it in the box in Tesco.
2. Donate a portion of my Ebay profits to charity (all I have to do now is actually make a profit!)
3. Get the drinks in at work more often.
4. Make everyone some kind of baked goods - mince pies, cakes etc. Take to work, or round friends, at least once a month
5. Try not to be such a cow first thing.

That'll do for now. If I manage to cheer one person up, I'll have achieved my goal.
Discovery Dave
[There's quite a bit of this - so it will also be copied in my blog, in case you find it easier to read there. Can't find the mapping option though to link it here.]

I’ve been thinking for a while it would be nice to do something to help my friend Ness.

She’s a single mum with an Autistic son who’s trying to raise £2,500 so she can go and do voluntary humanitarian work in South Africa… And I decided this would be a good focus for my FECK five.

I’ve been waiting to get a daylight(ish) run in, so I could concentrate a bit better – and finally, on the last day of November, I got my chance.

I decided to make the “race” the first five miles of my LSR – partly because this is the only way it wouldn’t trouble my “official” 5 mile PB in the listings (I’m a bit quicker now) and partly because I could run somewhere interesting – 5 miles takes me to North Cliffs.

I confess, I had been tempted to submit a couple of other ideas I’ve already had about fundraising for Ness as my FECK – I’m going to run the Camel Trail in February (fundraising opportunity for her, interesting pre-Edinburgh Long Run for me) – but that seemed against the spirit of the thing, so I thought I’d try to come up with something else.

In the past, I’ve had some success with a charity head shave – but that’s sort of “been there, done that” now. All my friends now know what I look like bald, and just shaving the beard off isn’t really going to (ahem) “cut it” either.

So here’s the plan. I’m going to present people with five options (it had to be five really, didn’t it?) for styles I can do to my facial hair (as amusing as possible without getting me fired from work)… and people can pay to vote in a kind of X-Whisker / Beard Idol stylie.

On the run, I decided the famous five options will be…

1) THE FULL BLESSED – basically leave the beard alone to it goes all massive and bushy a la Brian Blessed and assorted mad-eyed Biblical prophets.

2) THE GOAT – cheesy goatie style, as sported by Max and Paddy, and Rafa Benitez.

3) THE SQUADRON LEADER – classic ‘tache, as all RAF officers surely must have. Also known as the “Freddie Mercury”.

4) THE PRAWN STAR – elongated moustache, like my name is Gunter van Dongwelder or something. I’ll just get my wrench out...

5) THE MUSKETEER – ‘tache and pointy-little-beard combo, so beloved of 17th-Century cavaliers (as opposed to the Vauxhall type), William Shakespeare and all good Robin Hoods.

SO…. one of those five things will be happening to THIS lovely beardage…

[IMAGE 3387_20951]

(Photo taken while still out on my run – it was blimmin’ windy up there! I had to do the rest of the run holding onto my hat…).

…the choice is yours!

(Well, it’s anyone’s who gives Ness a quid, to vote, anyway).

I will, of course, endeavour to make voting cards available to the Fetch community – it would only be right, after all.

It’ll be a laugh – and if it gets Ness nearer to those kids in South Africa, it’ll be a… er… snip.

(PS – I don’t expect to win the trainers, but I also decided during this run that, if I do, I’ll run my marathon in them next May. That way they’ll always be my special “first marathon” shoes – and I’ll have a permanent reminder that going a little bit out of your way for other people can actually help you to achieve your own ambitions).
EarlyRiser
Today I ran a typical early morning run. It's a little over 5 miles, so instead I've put in a time that matches my overall pace for the month. For the first time I'm averaging under 8 mm! So what do I put here? Earlier in the month I'd decided to start donating blood on a regular basis. No excuse not to, I'd done it once years ago and for a long time regarded myself as a blood donor ffs! Addenbrookes is only 5 minutes down the road with a blood clinic open all day every day. So I went down and blow me if my iron level is low normal (or at least was on the day.) After initial shock and disappointment (I'm bloody fit for god sake and I eat my greens and red meat!) I considered it to be either a glitch, a temporary dip, or if not then something to do about. So started taking iron once a day and will try again in the New Year. Set my sights on this, so a bit down on something else. As a result a smorgasbord of actions and intentions. Signed up online to have my organs removed (a good one this.) At point of death obv. Added link to SOS Childrens Villages on my email signature. Doh simple really, but why not, just do it. They're my charity, I've supported a village in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe ever since I started taking up running. It is about putting something back. I have the good fortune to be here, in good health, in comparable wealth (for all complaints, there is no comparison.) I was brought up in a loving family and my parents are still here. So I'm fortunate. These are children with no parents, who had no-one for them, who now have a new mother, a loving environment and a place to learn and grow up in. I think it's a wonderful, well-thought out, well executed endeavour and I should do more for it. It looks like I have good chances of an FLM place next year with the club ballot coming up in a couple of weeks. If I do get it, I'll raise money and run for SOS Childrens Villages. Not at all the kind of thing I've done before, and I'll be uncomfortable doing so, not my style you see. But come on ER, stop being so frigging self-conscious. It's not about you, is it? If I don't get that place, I'll still be going for places next year and year after, so when I do, I'll run for them then. It'll do me good.
MissChappo
My first 5 miles ever. So pleased I ran it all (even though I am rejoicing in having the slowest time on the list!). Big toe went numb. So, had a chance for a good think too. Without going into any detail about the insane ramblings, my conclusion is this:

There are 2 things to consider when thinking about doing good stuff (for me anyway), at home and the rest of the world. I'm going to cover them both. It may sound odd/self centred/not what this exercise was intended for but I need to sort myself out because I will be no good to anyone if I don't, in particular my little family. Right now, this is probably the best thing I can do. So I'm gonna be honest and do whatever I need to do. Regarding the rest of the world I think its important to remember that we may all be feeling that money is a bit tight but we have got to remember that, despite that, we still have so many advantages. So, anyway, without getting into no doubt double-standards preachiness, what I am going to do is run a half marathon in 2009 and make sure I get proper sponsored for it.
RFJ
A Time (Quoted from the NIV Bible) Ecc chap 3 v 1-7, There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: A time to be born and a time to die, a time to pant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refain, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to give away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak.

FECK............ what has that got to do with all the above, well after the day I have had, a lot.....

Step one, day off..
Step two, Kids get unexpected lift to work
Step three, sort family holiday and kids saving plans
Step four, dismantle Jnrs table foootball and deliver/donate to local kids after school center who desperately need funds and toys
Step five, quick lunch to rebuild strength
Step six, in the car foer an hour to North Bradley Baptist Church
Step seven, say goodbye to Chris, 48 taken by cancer
Step eight, Rememebr MUM, Malcom and Chris all taken this year
Step nine, reflect on wonderful memories with friends form yesteryear, but still here today
Step ten, home, tired and beat
Step eleven, 5m (43:45) on the tready reflecting on what a day it has been

Common Kindness, covers many things, today there has been lots of love and tears, but I would love to see is every neighbour being kind to his next neighbour, in work, in rest and in play.

A time to: ...................................
Grumpy fella
First run for over a week thanks to a strained back so I'm more than pleased with that. Would have tried a bit harder if I'd remembered my predicted time !
Cold day but that wasn't an issue. The wind was really strong and I ran into it for the last mile and suffered.
Beauty of being a slower runner is that you have more time to think. I've decided that as I get free access to a gym through work I'll make sure I contribute to a charity each month. To spread the goodwill about I shall make sure it's a different one each month,
On a more personal note I'll cook the dinner tonight.
Simo
That was actually a 5+, but since it is no REAL race, I guess it is fine.
I have been thinking about the 'nice thing to do' for quite a while. Well, I already give to charity, bring old clothes to charity shops (maybe that shouldn't count, they are doing ME a favour, really, by taking them in), I am a potential organ and bone marrow donor... but I do believe lots of people tick all these boxes in the running community (yes, we are nice people).
So, the one thing I have come up with will not sound really grand, but I believe in the power of little things repeated over time. When I do my solitary runs on the canal I make a point to say good morning and smile to everybody. Most time I am greeted back and I see a lot of smiles blossom on people's faces. Some faces really go through a transformation, from closed, absent, wrapped around maybe in unpleasant thought, to awake, open and friendly. Sometimes I wish I had a video camera to record this magic moments.
The other great thing is that smiling and greeting makes me feel good, and makes my run even more enjoyable. I happen to see some surprised faces. Some people do not respond, but I am sure they will, in time...
Oh, last but not least, it is a free gift, so the credit crunch has no influence on it...
hls
This was 5.12 miles. I am already giving blood this month, I have a pile of stuff for the charity shop, and I agreed today to do a race next year with a fellow fetchie cos her friend keeps dropping out on her and that is what being a fetchie is all about. Then again there are so many more fetchies who do wonderful things for others that maybe I am not deserving of the new shoes........but I would not say no if they were offered to me ;-)
Firestarter
Not such an easy run but the warm -up and cool down of the mid-week track session added up to just over 5 miles so that must count:)
http://www.fetcheveryone.com/blog_other.php?id=2623 or..
"Can you do me a big favour ...?"

Says TR......."I was going to do it but since I've now broken my foot I can't, and I could really do with your help".....

So ever the one to help ou, I agree without really thinking about what's involved.......

Turns out, I'm to be the "Hare" for the local primary/junior inter-schools X-Country. "It'll be easy for you, Half a dozen runs around the school field, varying distances up to about a mile for the longest with kids up to year 6".......Well the "year 6" doesn't mean a lot to me, when I was there we were still classed by age and used chalk on a slate to write with!!...(just kidding I'm not quite that old:):)).....

So I duly arrive at the local School and am greeted by a very kind and appreciative bunch of teachers and govenors ( I think) all kitted out in hi-viz bibs to act as marshals......"hang on! I thought this was a nice gentle little affair, no real running involved - I haven't even bought the Garmin;);), wasn't expecting it to be serious stuff...

So I meet the Head and he gives me a guided tour of the course. Or to be more precise "Courses"!!!....Turns out there are 4 groups, from "reception kids" through Year 1-2, Year 3-4 up to year 5-6. Around 60 odd childen in all. The Reception group will be running together over a short distance of around 2 to 300 mtrs I think it was, and gradually increasing up to just over a mile for the year 5-6 kids.

Young TR1 has agreed to be the first "Hare" for the reception kids both boys and girls together...then I have two runs at about 4-500 mtrs for the next group girls and boys seperately, then about 800-900 mtrs for the year 3-4, and just over a mile each for the year 5-6, twice at each distance for each group the boys and girls raceing seperately.......Hang on.....Thats almost interval training - X-country stylee....

"They'll not be quick" says he......" they're only youngsters".......Yeah Right!!. Young TR1 does his bit and comes in panting after a "sprint" with the youngest kids...Then it's my turn.....I'm introduced to each group as they line up, I wave and smile, and the Starter says..."There's the "hare", see if you can catch him"......What!!!!.....Bang they're off and like little greyhounds the lot of them....I'm running at a gentle pace for the first couple of races and the kids, after an "entusiastic" sprint start soon run out of steam....but when we get to the last two races I'm actually starting to tire a little. The thing is, no sooner do I finish one race than they are lining the next group up at the start, I have to jog across the field and take up position just ahead of them. Each time I wave and smile....which becomes less convincing each time I'm sure..;););).....and off we go again...

By the time I'm at the last two races, each one just over a mile each, I've had to get gradually quicker and quicker to avoid being caught. The oldest boys line up and I notice that a couple of them have the right gear....proper footwear for X-Country racing and everything...Gulp....I'd even noticed a jacket or two emblazoned with local Athelics Club Emblems......I might be in trouble here..;);)....

The Whistle goes and we're off again, Bliddy hell this lot are really moving.....I'm actually working quite hard to begin with, just to get ahead and stay there.....!!!!!.....Luckily for me the youngsters stamina doesn't hold out for too long and they start to ease off after about half a mile......Fortunately, 'cause I actually thought briefly that they might catch me at the start;););).....I reckon the lap of the field, which was acually more a figure 8, was somewhere around a mile and a quarter....and as soon as I had finished with the boys it was over to do it again with the Girls......

To be honest, it was really great fun, I think all the kids enjoyed it and I got a really good feeling inside, watching and leading what might just turn out to be some great athletes in years to come, around a muddy field....:):):):) And to cap it all my legs got a good turn over before tomorrows High Peaks Relay:):):).......Plus I was given a very nice, and totally unexpected, bottle of wine as a thank you for my troubles......It really wasn't necessary guys but thank you very much. I actually really enjoyed the morning and thank you for inviting me to do it TR........I think...:-S...;););)

So what do you think, can claim this as my contribution to FERC...?

Oh and by the way TR.......next year........I might just be available if you want me again.....Maybe...;):):)
Bimblebelle
Couldn't complete in November as I was on the injury bench.
I have signed up to be a volunteer for the Cinnamon Trust who help people in need with long and short term fostering of their beloved pets. I also sent them a small donation.
Gasping 4 breath
Took it eazzzzy
Ultracat
going to plod around 5 miles on 6th November: 94 years since my dad was born: Today on 6th November it was cool, damp and a bit gray with no wind. I drove down to Duthie Park and decided to do my 5 miles along the Deeside Way which is a traffic free footpath used by runners, dog walkers and cyclists. Past 3 runners this morning, one cyclists and so many dog walkers and their various dogs I lost count. The path is nice and flat and fairly sheltered and with the beautiful colours of autumn a very pleasant run. Made a point of saying hello to everyone I met and they mostly said hello back. As I have never ran a 5 mile race before I got a PB:) and the good deed I thought of was to convert how many mins it took into £s and donate this amount to various fetchie justgiving pages over the next couple of days.
trumpton riots
WOW - I go away for 5 minutes and nice stuff breaks out all over the place.
Will have to get my thinking cap on for this one. :-)
*EDIT*
Did my five home from Evesham swimming pool after a lovely family swim on Rememberance Sunday.
The distance is accurate but the time is an estimation. It was about 9mm, so long enough for a good ponder.
While running, I was thinking of a "big" nice thing to do - then I realised that a "big" thing is not the point of FECK.
It is not about loads of money, saving the world or inventing sliced bread - it is about people.
This got me thinking about stuff I have done for other people in the past.
Last year, I helped organise our clubs first race (Evesham Vale 10K) which was hard work but really well received.
Pudds, Boingy, Surreystrider, Han, Woodley and other fab Fetchies and non-fetchies did it, so ask them how good it was.
Organising it was time-consuming, frustrating and not an easy thing to pull off, but we did it.
I was thinking of not doing it this year due to pressures of work/home/life but today decided that I will MAKE time.
There. Done. Fully FECKED up.
I was also thinking of a comment that JenJ and a few others have aired about FECK, that some people don't want to be told to do something nice and then accept (or expect) plaudits and acclaim.
This is very true, and a fair point so in the unlikely event of me winning the FECK Five, I will send £50 to Lums to give to the charidee of his choice.
Winniefree
First five miles of a longer run - had to do it this way as I'm running out of November!
I've also finally replied to the e-mail I had asking if I would participate in our town's Christmas homeless Shelter again this year. I will. Happy fecking Christmas!!
Sushi.
I had planned this race to be a planning session for how I could help Dad remain independant once he returned home. Instead it was in his memory.
Nice things I decided to do for him-
1. Dress him in the clothes that he picked with me the week before he died to wear at our house on Christmas Day.
2. Bring him home for Christmas.
3. Place a light on my work place 'Tree of Lights' this Christmas in his honour.
4. Aim to run a 1000m to raise a £1000 in 2009. I will confirm charity later.
5. Carry his picture on my vest at Edinbro- one of his plans was to be well enough to watch me cross the line.
6. He wants to be scattered a a special place in Wasdale (lake District) where we had many family picnics. I'll talk to the National Trust about a picnic table in his memory to go there or at a suitable near by spot.
7. Place a bench in the quiet garden at his chuch.
8. Place a bench at the church/church school where he was Deputy Head for many years and a member of the choir.
9. Keep his memory alive for my son so he'll never forget his 'Grandad Scooter'.
Silvershadow
This week has bought two evenings of harrowing and thought provoking performances. The first, on tuesday, was a group of Rwandan genocide survivors touring with the Aegis trust. They came to work with our students over the course of two days and held a performance for parents and staff in the evening. I will blog about them more fully another time as tonight I have been blown away by my son's GCSE drama class.

Mrs B. Drama teacher at No2's school always lets the boys do 'rehearsed improvisation' She gave them the theme of 'Missing persons' and they created a piece based around the true story of Andrew Gosden.

news.bbc.co.uk
Andrew, a bright 14 year old set off for school one morning over a year ago. Returned after the family had left the house. Put his blazer neatly over the back of the chair and put his shirt and trousers in the washing machine. He withdrew £200 using his cashpoint card and was last seen on CCTV footage at Kings cross station.

The boys explored in their play what might have happened to him and what had led him to run away. I've been reading BrynT's blog and he mentioned that one of his boys had threatened to run away. My own sons have threatened the same in the heat of the moment but to have it actually happen to you would be unimaginably heart breaking.

The most tear jerking line in the play was when 'Dad' said. 'It's heartbreaking news when a pretty little girl goes missing but with a 14 year old boy you just don't get the press'

So for my FECK 5 I want to raise your awareness. It is estimated that 100,000 children go missing in the UK every year.

Please look at those pictures on the back of milk cartons and if you think you see one of these children.

uk.missingkids.com
SherryB
Well so I had a think as I was running along - what can I do to help somebody ... and I started thinking of different charities, and what I could run for. The charity I work for is very well known in certain circles but doesn't exactly pull at the heart strings of those that don't know it.

So I thought a bit more ... and a bit more ... and I came up with an idea to run my first HM for a charity. And what better than the charity that Buzzard's Sis supports. Or the hospital ... not sure what exactly but I'll get in touch with her tomorrow to see whether this is something I can do some fundraising for - especially as she didn't get to do that duathlon - or was it a triathlon - that she was training for in September.

As forthe five miles - it was good and now my legs hurt.

*EDIT* It's The Brompton Fountain - provide support to families whose children are receiving heart or lung treatment (often for life-threatening conditions) at the Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Trust. Sponsor me at justgiving.com
Fannyfernackerpan
Feck 5
So today J went to tennis, and i arranged a babysitter after being nagged by Mac that i had to do this Run managed to talk MIL into doing the deed ;-) so was this going to be my good deed for the day???? Making sure that Grandmother and grandson spent quality are time together!!!!!!nope that was not it !!!!

I said I Love you to all the people that are closest to me :-) but i do that anyway.

So i jumped in the car and drove down to meet LizzieLou and Mac who were freezing their T*ts of.

And i joined them we waited and waited and waited for Hoax to arrive Mac had already called him twice and was scared to ring him again so i rang him and just got a mumbled i am on my way !!!!!

Bless and he did look a bit worse for wear *no sympathy* Nothing new there then!

We went over the route and the gun went and we were off !!!!!!

It was a beautiful morning for the first mile we stayed together and then Hoax and i went on ahead up the hill, that hilll is a B*gger and i did not enjoy it Raspberry!Raspberry!Raspberry!Raspberry!

Got to the top and i was able to get into my stride a bit more and i started to enjoy the run we went down kerves lane some lovely hoooooge farmhouses down there and i used to work at one as a groom it was a western riding stables and its where i had my first encounter with a stallion oh er missis !!!!!! (but thats another story)

As we came down the Hill Hoax decided to do airplanes i just rolled my eyes *shakes head*

When you get to the other end of the road you are then back in town and we ran past the running shop yay!!!!!

Past the pub where i used to be found passed out on the floor on most friday and saturday nights

back round and to the finish i managed to keep up with hoax and mac and Lizzielou came in a few minutes afterwards :-):-):-):-):-)

Said my goodbyes, it was a lovey run and thanks for inviting me , i went home after picking J up and cooked a hoooge fry up, bath and then christmas shopping :-)

Well i shopped till i dropped got most things on my list including most of the boys christmas presents and a special present ;-) and i also brought myself a present, a new suspender belt and some pink fishnet stockings to go with my purple dress they are fabby, although i did want black ones with glitter on them so may try again nearer the time :-)

At this point my arms were full of bags so we did a drop at the car :-) as we were coming out of the car park, i was stopped by a old lady who was using walking sticks, can you tell me where we pay for the car park, (we were on the 2nd floor)
Yes sweetie its downstairs, her face fell she was really struggling so i ran downstairs and paid for her that is my good deed for the day :-):-):-):-):-):-) she was soooooooooooooooooooooooooo thankful made me feel nice she called me a Angel ;-) That made me laugh LOTS (I am soooooooooooooooooooo a Angel) J was with me and said that was nice mummy, i do nice things sometimes :-):-):-):-):-):-):-) I then carried on with my shopping and tried to get an upgrade on my phone, bu was not allowed , even though i am due one, so will be following that up Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr !!!!

Emma is round tonight :-):-):-):-):-)

And i have had a fabby day :-)

I was thinking earlier if i could choose a pop star to go out in town with for a girls night
it would have to be this lady Link (roll over me to see where I go) of all the mischief we could get up to :-):-):-):-) and i could borrow her clothes ;-)
Drell
Late entry, but I realised that my first ever 5m run would just make it into November, so I'd be able to count it. More details in blog. Nice things I have done/am going to do: 1) sign up for organ donation (prompted by CanaryYellow); 2) Give blood 3) set up a regular donation to a charity I support (most charities really like regular giving, even if only a few pounds a month - you can do it directly with the charity, or through the Charities Aid Foundation, http://www.cafonline.org/).

Race Noticeboard

For useful updates, lift shares, cancellations etc:
  • On 4th Nov 2008 at 11:29am, Woffy wrote: Provided my fizzio gives me the all clear will run this.
  • On 4th Nov 2008 at 3:56pm, StormProof wrote: Bribe? Not etihcal mate! (Did you know that I can cook?....)
  • On 28th Nov 2008 at 11:59am, JJ Flash wrote: A Friend in Fecking Need!
    I have to admit, I spent most of November worrying about this Fecking challenge. I really wanted to do it, but I was struggling. I’m currently unemployed so I haven’t got money I can give away easily. I have got plenty of time though, so I could volunteer somewhere. The trouble with that is that I have no transport at present and my personal circumstances mean that I can’t about easily. So every five mile run I set out on to think about giving ended in me just coming up with excuses for why I fecking well couldn’t. I was disgusted with myself. I see myself as a giver, but what if I’ve been a taker all along? Has all my life been lived a massive cloud of self-deception?

    Thank goodness I was able to pull myself out of it this morning.

    I’ve known Dave for three years now. I recruited him into my last job and he has to be one of the nicest people you could ever meet. I have yet to find to single strand of unpleasantness anywhere in him. He quickly became one of the most loyal and reliable members of my team. Never the highest achiever he always tried and he would always be there to when needed someone to put in that little bit extra. I was never the kind of boss who builds barriers between herself and her team. Quite the opposite, I draw a clear line between business and personal. Business comes first and then I get to know people on a personal level as well because you spend an awful long time every week at work and it is quite dreadful when you’re unhappy. 18 months ago I helped him dig himself out of a depression when his partner left him. Partly that was work – I didn’t want to lose a good team member, and partly it wasn’t. Of a team of seven he is one of the four who keep in touch now that I have left the company, so I was concerned that he hadn’t called for a couple of weeks. Then last night I got a text – he is off with depression again.
    I called him straight back. I won’t bore you lot with the details, but I held his hand for a while and listened. Why does the world always seem to treat really nice people so badly? So, anyway, it was a busy night last night. I forgot all about Dave and his problems until I was out running this morning. I don’t know about you, but I don’t run with an I-Pod because I find it interferes with my thinking and running time is definitely thinking time for me.

    It was cold this morning. Living in a second floor flat I don’t always get to see what the temperature is doing, so for the first mile I was concentrating on warming my hands up. It’s a lovely route. The first three quarters of a mile takes you out of town, past a couple of housing estates and a cemetery but then the view improves as there are allotments and finally hedges and a stile into fields. At this time of year there is a new crop in, but the path is well defined and solid underfoot. The view in front is open fields and just over a mile in you go through a gap in a hedge and there is the River Avon below with the ruins of Guy’s Cliffe House. This morning it was breathtaking. There was a light mist and the house loomed romantically through it. There were no dog walkers for a change and I was in a world of my own. In a second I forgot my cold hands and my mind floated free as it tends to on a good run. The Saxon Mill loomed quietly out of the mist. The River Avon steaming gently as it tumbled over the weir. I myself avoided tumbling on the wood of the bridge. The elderly gentleman who is usually out on its balcony sweeping leaves or drinking his morning coffee when I run through was sensibly tucked up inside and my route swung back along the A road towards Warwick and the Grand Union Canal.
    It was somewhere along here that Dave popped back into my head. I was musing on his situation as I dropped down the path onto the canal and turned back towards home. Last time he was in this situation I spoke to him on most days he was off. He unloaded a lot of his problems on me and I directed him to find some help. I visited him a couple of times when work took me down to cover problems near his home. I couldn’t really do any of that this time, or could I? I think it was at about the aqueduct that the idea popped into my head. I could bring him up here to take some time away from his problems. I don’t think I even saw the Avon as I went back over it on the towpath, I was so intent on trying to think the thing through. What could we do if came here? Adding a depressed man to my flat isn’t going to improve the general ambience, but we could go on lots of missions. The Cotswolds are only twenty minutes away. There is Christmas shopping in Birmingham (no, hang on, this is a man, that won’t work). He’s a keen photographer and like mountain bikes and there is plenty of opportunity for that kind of stuff here.
    I couldn’t wait to get home. My Garmin tells me I achieved a genuine negative split out there this morning. The run is a little bit short of five miles, but I hope I will be forgiven for that. I couldn’t extend it, I was just too keen to get home and get on with it. I rang him as soon as I got in. He’s delighted and is arranging to come up next week. It’s made a big difference to him.

    It’s made a difference to me too. I was going about this all the wrong way. I was trying to think of things to do. I was focussed on myself and on what I might get out of it. That was a big mistake. As soon as I focussed on someone else and their problems it all came clear. Perhaps I am a giver after all. The jury is still out, but it looks a lot more hopeful.
  • On 28th Nov 2008 at 1:10pm, Simo wrote: That was actually a 5+, but since it is no REAL race, I guess it is fine.
    I have been thinking about the 'nice thing to do' for quite a while. Well, I already give to charity, bring old clothes to charity shops (maybe that shouldn't count, they are doing ME a favour, really, by taking them in), I am a potential organ and bone marrow donor... but I do believe lots of people tick all these boxes in the running community (yes, we are nice people).
    So, the one thing I have come up with will not sound really grand, but I believe in the power of little things repeated over time. When I do my solitary runs on the canal I make a point to say good morning and smile to everybody. Most time I am greeted back and I see a lot of smiles blossom on people's faces. Some faces really go through a transformation, from closed, absent, wrapped around maybe in unpleasant thought, to awake, open and friendly. Sometimes I wish I had a video camera to record this magic moments.
    The other great thing is that smiling and greeting makes me feel good, and makes my run even more enjoyable. I happen to see some surprised faces. Some people do not respond, but I am sure they will, in time...
    Oh, last but not least, it is a free gift, so the credit crunch has no influence on it...
  • On 28th Nov 2008 at 11:22pm, Mr. White wrote: Have just set up a DD for the Fishermen's Mission. They looked after my cousin and his colleague after their boat sank off Portland Bill in Dec 2006. The Mission found my cousin somewhere to stay and paid for some clothes and a flight home for them both. They were both really luck to get out alive, the skipper didn't make it unfortunately. Anyway, I've been meaning to donat some money to the FM as they don;t get any govt help so the Fetch Five has kicked me in the pants to finally do it!

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santababy 9th Nov 08, 14:22

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