Tag: Albert bridge

It’s A Matter of Perspective

Life is a matter of perspective. Of course, there’s more to life than perspective but how something is viewed can determine much about it.

Let’s take the Thames, for example. While running alongside it three times per week, if rain permits, I find the air coming off it energising. It beats the stuffy air of a gym any dry day, and certainly that of running along a road, where there are cars and so on. It edges out running in a park just slightly, only because I have to go quite a distance to get to the park when all I need to do is go a few yards to reach the Thames nowadays.

But let me be clear, I don’t find it appealing. Sure the buildings around it catch my eye, some of them more than others, but the water itself is rather murky. Sometimes while stretching, I stare at it and am able to see beyond its obscurity, but for the most part, it is dim water to me.

A change of perspective, however, got me seeing a much more attractive river, one where boats can sail smoothly, well on certain days, where the water can flow and shimmer, even under cloudy skies. Friday I decided to take the River Bus instead of a taxi to Embankment and walk from there to Covent Garden to meet Paul for dinner and theatre.

So glad I did. For starters the ride took my focus off the problems of the world and got me concentrating on life on and alongside the river. As much as I’ve seen The Church of St Mary, it was picture pretty from the Thames and the Albert Bridge was even more impressive than when running or walking on it.

The Thames Under Cloud
The Thames Under Cloud
The Albert Bridge Up Close
The Albert Bridge Up Close

You see it is all about perspective. Now to put perspective to the test with real life experiences! With the uncertainty of Britain since Friday’s decision to leave the EU and the upcoming presidential elections in November, I’ll have plenty of opportunities to look at life from a different perspective. I might need to stand on my head to catch a fresh glimpse of these two world events but hey, it’s a different perspective.

Expat writer prepares to go the distance

Yesterday morning I completed my last run before my first 10K on Sunday. Hurray! As I came to the end of the 5.1-mile run, I felt like I had accomplished the 6.2-mile job already.

Make no mistake about it, the run wasn’t easy and I’m sure Sunday’s won’t be easy either, maybe tougher. Meanwhile, I caught up with Paul before he dashed out to work and he, who never tells me I look a mess, couldn’t hold his tongue.

Never mind!

But having come back from the US just over a week ago with little preparation during the month of June, I wouldn’t have thought that I could make four miles, certainly not five.

And though I struggled at the 3.86-mile marker, I dug deep. The Chelsea Bridge, a mile behind me and the Albert Bridge, less than a quarter of a mile, I looked towards Wandsworth Bridge, theoretically. At that stage, I couldn’t see it for the bend in the Thames Path.

Still, I somehow convinced my knees and the rest of me that it was a necessary task to reach that bridge. It would serve us all well.

If the lady who smiled widely at me around that time is reading this, I’m glad for the opportunity to explain my singing, more like moaning. I was struggling and found myself digging deep to keep going. Thank Heavens for Kirk Franklin’s Smile and your smile too!

I couldn’t help smiling that last mile myself. After stretching and showering, I went through my email messages to find tips from the race promoters and the training program I am following:

Pick up my race pack  – ✔

Plan attire – ✔

Hydrate – Working on it but admittedly was stomped by the advice not to drink sports drink with protein until I read up on it. Eek so protein might have been at the centre of my digestion woes during Monday’s run. In any case, all is well that ends well!

Head to the start line – Will do with plenty of time.

And remember you always have one cup left. Good because I am going to need it!

In the meantime, I’m continuing to carb load but not too much and I’ve given my muscles some strength training as promised today to ensure that my knees are not the only ones working. Tomorrow, I’ll spend recovering.

And Sunday, I’ll run, bringing the mileage since April to 86 miles. A closer inspection might reveal that I didn’t put in nearly enough miles to properly prepare for a 10K , but at first glance, it looks like a heap of miles. Yeah!