Sunday, 20 March 2011

20th March 2011

         A relatively quiet weekend, managed a gentle climb with friends up the Old Man of Coniston, about 830 metres, 2600 feet (roughly, don't get pedantic on me!) stopping enough so there was no strain on anything, just gentle exercise. It was clear enough, and the old man is a simple enough climb for a starter, (a couple of mountain virgin's came with me.) And it is quite rewarding, being southerly enough that you can see for miles south, all the way to North Wales, the Isle of Man was visible through the haze and the view over Coniston Water and Windemere is worthwhile. It was still a little cold up there though, despite being the end of March!
On top of the Old Man. Coniston village is to the left, near Coniston Water, and Windemere is further up on the left.

                The only problem with going up the "tourist" fells on a clear weekend is the queue of people snaking down the mountain, usually all kitted out in thousands of pounds worth of useless mountain gear from the Windemere branch of "I Saw You Coming". And the dozens of people on the top, which does little to add to your sense of achievement on the climb, although the "newbies" declared their affirmation, and started to plan another climb later in the month.
         So, no walking as such, climbing helps the back, stomach, hamstrings and calves, and is excellent Cardio so not a wasted day. And, it's great for the mental well being, gasping all that fresh oxygen into the system.
         Today, (Sunday) I was at work this morning, a ship with windmill (sorry, generating turbines...) parts came in, so a definite rest day walk wise. Just a gentle walk after dinner, 30 minutes, to aid digestion. I have a race next Sunday so the diet changes. One of the big problems encountered by Parish walkers is due to diet change, and preparation of diet is almost as important as diet itself. I cooked a large chicken today and the leftovers will be made into a stew, carefully made to have equal protein, carbs, fat etc, and well cooked so that it is easily digestable. No more red meat, spices or man made fats or anything like that, red meat can sit undigested in the system for years, at least a week gives it a chance to clear.
          The other thing is frequency of eating. Okay, next weeks race is only 20k, so it's not essential to change the diet too much, but its good practise so I do it. During the Parish you eat little and often, and as much as possible, simple sugars or liquid food so the embattled digestive system can cope. This is good, quick burning fuel and taken often so the stomach can burn the fuel and prepare for the next lot, but if you carry on eating large three course meals every day up to the saturday, then change the diet completely for the parish, you will suffer as your stomach will be expecting the sit down full english, not a walking banana and mars bar, so think about acclimatising the stomach with the foods you are going to be consuming the week before the race, and try eating and drinking the same foods on those weekly long training walks to see if they will work for you.

Got an outbreak of "Morris Dancers". I dunno, you turn your back for five minutes and they move in. I might have to get Rentokil in to lay down some poison; the only way to clear them I suppose.

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