Thursday, March 31, 2011

MOTIVATION

You only ever grow as a human being if you're outside your comfort zone. Percy Cerutty

11:15 am ... The wind is blowing, the rain is pouring down and somehow I've got to get out to the shed to do today's workout, probably another hour on the treadmill. I've lost another pound as of this morning's weigh-in so some thing's working. But as everyone knows, it's difficult to judge weight loss when you're exercising. The more you do, the more muscle you put on (in my case, in my legs) and the more muscle you put on, the more weight you put on. Much better, perhaps, to get into the habit of measuring my BMI (body mass index) as a more accurate indicator of fat loss.

Still no car. I know, I'm sounding like a broken record. Hector misses his runs on the beach so I walked him over to Balephetrish and let him have a wee tear about. To my surprise we ended up walking a total of 4.8 miles, and that was on top of the 4.7 I'd run on the treadmill in the morning. So all in all, that was a good day's work out.

Something I really regret is not getting the shed properly waterproofed from the inside. It would have cost me and extra £400 and at the time I thought it was an unnecessary expense. As it turns out, though, when the wind and rain blow out of the north or the north east the rain gets blown under the door and the floor gets flooded. At times like that it is, perhaps, unwise to turn on the electric treadmill and do a workout. Today I should be okay, however, as the wind seems to be coming from the south.

Time to get on with it.

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

1500 CALORIES BITE THE DUST

A 4.7 mile run plus a 4.8 walk with Hector. Life's good.
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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

SOCIAL EXERCISE

I missed my German class last night simply because I had no way of getting to the Business Centre. I'd like to say I made up for it by working on my own here at home but I didn't. Instead I watched another two episodes of Sons of Anarchy.

The day wasn't a complete waste though. In the afternoon I'd gone for a bike ride with Fifi. When we were seriously into training Fifi and I used to meet up at 6:30 in the morning and go run a few miles. Maybe we'll get back to that. It was a great way to start the day and we got seriously fit into the bargain. As it was we cycled something like 7.5 miles at a leisurely pace and talked the entire session.

The really good thing about training with someone is that it definitely relieves the boredom and takes your mind off what your doing. That's why I got so much from Circuit Training and Boot Camp last week. It transforms the training session into a social gathering.

This morning when I took Hector for his walk it was pleasant to listen to all the different birds calling. Lapwings, seagulls, terns, they were all out this morning, calling away. I stopped for a while and watched a couple of lapwings chasing a predator away from their nesting grounds.

Don't really know what the day ahead holds. I've got more recording to do plus I need to get out and run (in spite of the blister on my left heel).
 
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Monday, March 28, 2011

Parc éolien de Tiree? Non merci!

I'm no scientist. For every convincing argument for the proposed Tiree Wind Farm Array there's an equally convincing argument against. The one thing I do know is that the scientists and men of learning I respect are all coming out against Wind Farms as a pointless and very expensive fad. It seems that if you covered the entire country with Wind Farms there still wouldn't be enough power generated to provide all our power needs. As for the benefit to the environment the building and taking down of these wind farms may actually cause more damage than they are meant to prevent.

And here's the controversial bit. Notwithstanding the terrible situation in Japan the only clean, efficient and economical way to provide our needs is by nuclear power. (I'm talking here about the country as a whole, of course. I'm not proposing a nuclear power plant on our wee island.) We've had nuclear power in the UK for nigh-on 60 years. That's right, 60 years. The technology has been developed, refined and heavily invested in. It works and it works well.

I'm not in either camp. I don't want it near Tiree and I don't want it far away from Tiree. I don't want it at all. I also don't want these things deforming our countryside either.

Like I say, I'm not an expert on this matter so don't send me comments or expect me to take part in the debate. When I sat down to write my diary this morning this was in my head, that's all.


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Sunday, March 27, 2011

SATURDAY INTO SUNDAY

The car is in the garage, meaning I had to cycle to Boot Camp on Saturday morning. There.'s nothing wrong with this. It meant I got an extra special work out. The round trip was about 7.5 miles.

I ran 2.4 miles on the road in the company of Jackie Jones. We covered 2.4 miles in just over 28 minutes and we were both pleased with this. This is the fastest I've run on the road in ages. My thigh injury has been keeping me back. Hopefully, this run signifies the turnaround.

After the run we did about twenty minutes of circuit training in An Talla itself.

Thing is, when I got home I really felt like I didn't want to do anything for the rest of the day. It was a very sunny day and all I wanted to do was laze about the sun or amble along the road with Hector.

Meantime, Catriona took Jo across to the Co-op at Scarinish to get in some supplies. Tomorrow I'll borrow Andy's car and get some more shopping in.

I'm still not missing the car as such but I'm starting to get a little anxious about the bill. The car's been getting worked on since Thursday or Friday and there's no word yet of when it will be ready. I am full of foreboding.

John in Glasgow has sent me up the latest backing track for a song we're working on and I need to turn my attention to laying down some vocals. We'll be playing together at a gig in Glasgow early in May. This will be the first time we've shared a stage in 31 years and we're looking forward to it a lot. The songs we wrote back in the day have become a little famous in an underground kind of way. It'll be nice to try out new material on the audience. We're playing a support role so no real pressure.--
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Friday, March 25, 2011

ONE DOG AND HIS MAN

Just as his helicopter is about to crash in the film A Life Acquatic, Bill Murray's character says, with great understatement, 'This is going to hurt.'

There was no word from the garage yesterday regarding my sick car. I have a feeling, though, that this is going to hurt  too. I'll phone in a wee while and get a progress report.

In the meantime I've been pottering about, doing this and that.

Yesterday I took Hector for his first real run on the road. I have one of those spring loaded leads that lengthen or shorten depending on how far or near the dog is. It came in useful, especially when Hector had to stop for a sniff and a pee.

People passing in their cars only had eyes for Hector. They hardly looked at me - but hey, who can blame them?

Last night it was off to circuit training at An Talla. It's good to have Will back and to see young Maurice there with his Mum and Dad. Maurice - Will and Becky's baby - just lay there and watched as we worked ourselves into a lather working through the exercises Will set for us. He was perfectly content and the object of a lot of attention.

The rest of the evening was spent at home catching up with my Sons of Anarchy DVD's and watching James Cracknell almost kill himself running the Marathon des Sables. Fair play to him, he finished 12th, the highest British finisher ever.

This morning I'm sitting outside with Hector and Guinness (next door's doggie). It's still a bit overcast but the forecast is good. Not much of a breeze either. I tried to be a good boy and hang out the washing while Jo got ready for work. All she did was come out and take over from me. This, by the way, is the lady who says 'you do nothing around here'.

Ye cannae win!

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

SCOTCH MIST

I awoke really early this morning. I couldn't get back to sleep so got out of bed at 6:15 am. What a foggy morning it is! I was about to take Hector for a run as there will be no traffic at this time in the morning. I'm having second thoughts. Visibility is very bad. It's always a possibility that someone will be driving at this ungodly time of the morning. I'd hate to start the day with tyre tracks up my back.

Yesterday should have been a bad day. My car broke down as I was taking Jenny to work. I think the clutch has gone. I called the AA and they, in turn, called out MacLennan's garage to come and tow the car away for repairs. If that had happened a couple of months ago I would have been very upset. I'm in a good frame of mind these days. You have to view these things in perspective. There's no point in getting all worked up about it. The car's broken and that's that.

After we left the car at the roadside and our friend Pat Campbell (who lives nearby) had very kindly taken Jenny to work in Scarinish, Hector and I began the walk back to Cornaigmore. On the way a flight of 30-plus swans flew right over our heads. That was a beautiful sight. I don't think I've ever seen so many swans in the air at one time. They were flying in a v-shape and heading for the loch.

There's something liberating about not having a car around. Of course, it's an inconvenience as Joanne and Jenny will have to get the school bus to work. I'm glad to see the back of it for a day or two. I can hardly afford to run it at the moment anyway. The price of diesel is going through the roof here on the island. A couple of days of the road means a couple of days when I won't be using fuel.

Tonight circuit training gets back underway at An Talla. Coach Will has returned from holiday pumped up and ready to put us through our paces. I'll blag a ride and get there somehow.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

SEASON 2011

Okay! So let's get this blog up and running again. (If this was a US drama we'd call this 'Season 2011.)

When I started my first Tiree news site - Isle of Tiree Online News - back in 1999 there was no web presence with which Tiree folk at home and abroad (descendants of emigrants for example) could look to the internet and see what was going on. Eventually, Isle of Tiree Online News grew in popularity where it received over 3000 hits a month.  The URL was sold quite a number of years ago after the site ran its course and I decided to move on to other things.

Since then, and until relatively recently, I've blogged on and off and tried to disseminate information and news about Tiree.  But everyone and everything has caught up. Tiree is now served very well on the 'net by An Tisideach Online, not to mention all the Tirisdeeach you can find on Facebook, Twitter and a whole host of other social networking outlets.

So my Isle of Tiree Diary will become ... well, a personal blog from now on.  What's happening in my life, what I'm thinking about, the challenges I set myself and so on.

I remain available to anyone who wants to email me requesting information about Tiree.

I will now set myself the task of writing something here everyday. 

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