I’ve spent the last 4 days in meetings around Europe. Not dynamic “making deals” meetings that you see in adverts for aftershave and luggage in Time magazine but meetings where you wondering if this is some sort of punishment for transgressions in a past life.
You learn to look in an intelligent manner: a slight tilt of the head as if you’re working so hard to comprehend you’ve lost basic motor control; a gentle almost imperceptible nod of the head which both conveys intellectual convergence and the possibility of a nervous disorder.
You spend most of your time fighting the urge to pull a Reggie Perrin on the processes.
The only skill I think I have developed is that you do, over time, learn to filter out the fluff from the meat of the discussions you have to sit through. As Reggie might have said: I didn’t get where I am today by listening………….
I have had the chance to get in a few runs. I had a nice crisp run around Grunwald in Berlin and a run up and down the waterfront in Copenhagen. On these runs (apart from the basic activity of running) you try to mediate your basic impression of a place with what and who you meet along the way.
My one line conclusions of suburban German forest running is they like to walk their dogs.
My conclusion from my Copenhagen run is that a diet of black bread, cold air, cycling and expensive beer seems to be the recipe for a slim body and good looks (them not me).
I would say that the very cold (by Irish standards) weather does make the running much more pleasant. The cold air enforces a higher tempo of running which is a welcome change from some of the slower plodding required for a broad aerobic base you need for ultra running stuff.
The running is now settling into a nice steady routine that should help prevent my ambitions floating away from my physical limitations. Hopefully this will develop over the next 4 to 5 weeks and then some serious long running – 20+ miles can develop. That will be the time to start deciding/experimenting on food types.
Back home tonight and the routine of dogs, children and spinning too many plates starts again!