A line in the sand

Most people measure their advancing years by reference to a century;
you know, a quarter of a century, half a century, whatever. My good
friend made reference to his using the same, but a slightly different
number: one third. Or 33 1/3 years. That’s 33 years and four months, I

This stuck in my mind, and sure enough that value was achieved by me a
few months ago. I didn’t altogether notice it when it went by, but now
I reflect on it. Does it have any significance, or am I just seeking
to extract meaning. I suspect it’s little more than advance warning of
the usual mid-life crisi we all promise ourselves.

I’m too young for an inappropriate car, and have no desire to run off
with a younger woman (even if I could). But I am getting fat. Of
course, this means that young woman are less likely to find me
attractive, and I won’t be able to fit into the bucket seats of a

Now, the cause of my increasing girth is self evident: greed and
boredom. Greed because I choose not to restrain my nutritional
proclivities, and boredom through the usual vital ennui. Riding to and
from work has little impact – an hour each way isn’t long enough to do
anything other than just slow the outward curve. So, it’s time to do
something else. Not necessarily instead of, but in addition to, and
with some care.

I’m going to start running.

It’s an activity that has always appalled me – it has always been
tedious and painful, even in my lithe days of fitness and vigour. But,
it seems obvious: run and empty the mind, just like cycling, but for
less time and with good effect. There is a related purpose: the
arrival of junior North any time soon. Time will inevitablly become
less elastic, as will my own ability to shape it to suit. And, being
in my second third-of-a-century, I am becoming increasingly well
boiled. To that end, I am armed with some knowledge from others, and a
short training plan to cover the first 8 weeks. Time will have to be
accomodated, amd patience tested. This time, it has to work.

Trainers on, and off we go.


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