The Great Reset

No, I don’t mean some Covid-19 or New World Order conspiracy theory, I mean me as a person. Someone who has to stop the slide, someone who isn’t getting any younger, someone who is as unfit as he has been for years and someone who doesn’t really want his life to just coast along for his remaining time of which there hopefully will be lots.

2020 was pretty rubbish for us all. I am blessed to have, so far, remained almost totally unaffected by that cursed virus other than generally by the succession of lockdowns, restrictions and worries.

But the year was still a bad one for me, as was the latter part of 2019. I’ll not elaborate on that but it was life changing, and I want to arrest that aforementioned slide, turn it into a positive and make it a change for the better.

The events of 2020 have had a pretty devastating effect on my fitness and, specifically, my running.

I reached the halfway point of the year having completed The Longest Day challenge in June – running a mile an hour on the hour for 24 hours. It was an amazing experience, on a par with any of my marathons.

I really should have pushed on from there. Instead, it turned out I ran more in those 24 hours than I did for the following six months … combined! Quite frankly, that’s ridiculous, although it does correlate with everything else that was going on with me.

The signs were there. My mileage in 2019 was over 50% down on the year before. Granted 2018 was my #18in18 year but, even so, to reduce things by so much was, in hindsight, not the best for me.

Running is so important to my health, both physical and mental. I let things drop and I duly suffered on both fronts.

Not any more.

During the latter part of 2020 I resolved to remove excuses. This included embarking on a fairly major redecorating project (tidy house, tidy mind etc.), improving on my cooking abilities and nutritional knowledge plus investing in some home gym equipment so that “it’s cold outside” or “it’s raining” are no longer enough valid reasons for stopping me from looking after my physical health.

I’m also working on other areas eg: time management and trying to implement a structure into my day-to-day life, looking at future plans, reading more, listening more and so on.

In short, I’m striving to eradicate the parts of me that I don’t feel are helpful, replace them with ‘better’ and focus on those aspects that I do like or think can progress me as a person.

That’s why I waited until today to post this, and not the tired, cringeworthy New Year New Me bollocks on January 1st. Today, the third Monday in January, is commonly known as Blue Monday, the most depressing day of the year.

It’s no more than a cliché or PR stunt, but I still wanted to stick two fingers up to the idea, to post the big change in my outlook over the past while and, perhaps, as a way of holding myself publicly accountable when I hit the inevitable bumps in the road going forward.

As much as I can’t stand the whole New Years Day thing, I will admit to using that date as my starting point but only because I wanted to actually complete RED January for once.

I’ve tried the Run Every Day (RED) challenge before but it has never worked out for me. However, as I said earlier, I’ve removed as many excuses as I can now so decided I’d give it a crack again. I’ve been combining it with healthy eating and other forms of exercise.

So how have I been getting on 18 days in?

The nutritional side has thrown up some interesting but positive findings, the other forms of exercise have reawakened muscles deep within my body that must have thought they had retired while the running has, at times, been a struggle but a pleasant surprise in many cases too.

I’m focusing this month on fast tracking myself through C25K again to get it completed by the end of the month. I’m up to ‘week’ five now, and whilst today’s run was a big struggle I did complete it and I’m not beating myself up over it. I know I’m basically starting from zero again so the odd bad run is to be expected, probably not helped by the 40 push ups/squat pulses beforehand!!!!

I’ll go again tomorrow.

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