20.3.12

A spring in my step


It is exactly a year since I took up the first serious, regular exercise in my 44 year life. Trying to fit jogging in around work and everything else is not easy, but I do make it a priority. It's something I have to force myself to do and I can't say I enjoy the actual experience, but I do feel great afterwards. One of my proudest moments was when I managed to do over three miles without stopping. It's not much compared to 'proper' runners and took me months to achieve. But for someone who has never been at all inclined towards physical exercise and who is not athletically built for it (I have had clunky knees since I was a teenager and have to strap one knee up with two bands before I go out) - I think I've done alright.



As you can see, I'm never going to be a willowy stripling, gliding effortlessly along - I'll always be a slow old dobbin, plodding along, slightly red in the face. It will always be a challenge. But I do it, because it's made me so much fitter, so much happier and to anyone of average health, who thinks they *can't* do it - start as I did, jogging for as far as you can go (not very far in my case), rest, walk and take off again when you feel ready. It's amazing how quickly you build up fitness and your heart and mind will thank you for it. However I'm not promising it will be easy.



I don't normally jog in these glorious fields - I tend to stick to our village lanes, but spring has arrived in the Cotswolds and so we turned our walk into an exercise session, hopping over the county border to the Salperton estate, where I proceeded to do a few stints of 'plogging' and fast walking. Not a bad place to workout.


On the way home, (tired but virtuous) we passed through Little Barrington - one of the sweetest villages in an area crammed with sweet villages.


It's a huddle of cottages clustered around a large green, but has the chocolate box appearance expected of the English countryside. This comes with a hefty price tag, as does all property in the Cotswolds, which is why we are on the move. We're just not wealthy enough (or wealthy at all) to stay here.




(Is it safe to say Winter is over?
)





23 comments:

Dru Marland said...

That's big open country! -reminds me of how I described some bits of Offa's Dyke- you never know what's round the next corner, and you carry on not knowing for aaaages..... well done, you; I'm too creaky for running, and shall stick to the bicycle.

Chloe said...

What beautiful countryside :) And your post has reminded me that I keep meaning to start going out jogging again, must get around to it one of the days!

Kim said...

Wow, the only time I tried running I gave myself shin splints so bad I couldn't walk for days lol!!! I'm impressed and good for you! And the scenery isn't bad either!

Twiglet said...

Stunning photos and well done with the jogging.

Jules said...

Fabulous, awe-inspiring countryside Gretel. You put me to shame re. your daily exercise but I really like your appraoch, it makes sense! Now this move of yours....Shropshire be the place? love it to bits!

Vy said...

How beautifull!! Nice day! Kisses from Brazil!! Vy

Jane Aston said...

Hi there, you are so good jogging like that. I have a dodgy hip, I can't really jog. I should try cycling.
My sister lived near you in The Slaughters. She rented a cottage then when the lady of the Manor died she was kicked out! She now lives in Herefordshire. I live in France on a farm. Impossible for me in England. We have shorter winters, though colder. The summers stretch out though much further and more settled.
I love your animals, we have running ducks and geese more trouble than yours. Goosey has been in my vegetable garden twice so far today!!

Purpletreebird said...

What a stunning place to go for a jog! I think you're brilliant doing this and to keep it up as you have. My own good intentions have been put on hold as I wade my way through a 'bug' that is the most obstinate I've ever encountered. Good luck with your house move, I hope you find somewhere equally as beautiful :)
Jess xx

Vintage Jane said...

Go girl! I started jogging a couple of years ago building up, like you, from "can't do it", to just over 3 miles. Then as the weather got colder I just gave up. I regret that so much now ... decided to give it a go again last week and only just got to the end of our (very short) street, so back to square one again now! M x

Tonia said...

More power to your knees! Think I'll stick with walking the dog though - the change in weather does make it easier to get outside with him.
House prices in the Cotswolds are ridiculous even in my little on-the-edge corner. Over t'border is MUCH cheaper.

Jeri Landers said...

If I had villages like that around me, I would take up jogging myself. But honestly, I really hate to jog.When I see joggers huffing and puffing down the sidewalk they always look so darn miserable, I have to wonder why they do it! Well, you say it makes you feel invigorated afterwards, so there's the answer. Keep it up! But don't give up your bicycle..

Lynn said...

Beautiful skies in your photos. Congratulations on your determination to get fit, and so much better than a treadmill in a gym.

Biba said...

You're so lucky to live in the most gorgeous piece of the world :)

BumbleVee said...

Good for you...but, do take it a bit easy with your knees Gretel..... quick walking is easily just as good as jogging for the actual exercise you get without damaging knees..... it works every muscle in the body.

I can't jog anymore ...mine have had it. But I do exercise ..usually daily or at least every other...except for now...with this damn coughing.... worst I've been in decades.... hope I can get back to it soon.....oh, I will be way behind the eight ball when I do.... ....I usually begin with a quick walk around the neighbourhood and in the winter on my treadmill ( about 40 minutes)...and then I do other things for another hour and then some good stretches. I've done it all my life since I was about 23.... I used to be 50 pounds heavier ..but, have managed to keep it off and keep a bit of shape and muscle til my old age... I do walk a fine like with osteoporosis and my other silly syndrome... Ehlers Danlos...but, pretty much have it figured out as to how hard I can go before I do myself an injury...oh, alright...the extra whacking of the golf balls last summer did get to me...and that elbow is still not great...but coming along. I'll get a brace to use this season.....sigh...getting old is not for the faint of heart. It ain't no golden years either and whoever coined that phrase should be shot in the kneecaps.....

Soozcat said...

So beautiful, that country. Your photos of it reveal to a great extent the inspiration for a number of your drawings and paper cutouts.

Exercise is hard to get in on a regular basis, even exercise you enjoy (or at least enjoy when it's over). Hats off to you for persisting at it and reaping the rewards!

Anne said...

Well done on the running - Stuart is keeping up with his too. It won't be long until I start walking in the mornings instead of using the rowing machine and cross trainer. Like you I am very lucky, and have wonderful scenery on the doorstep.

Rowan said...

Lovely countryside especially at this time of the year. I've never been a jogger but I've always walked and I do 3 or 4 miles every day and since I live on the edge of the Peak District not much of it is flat!

rossichka said...

What a beautiful countryside, Gretel! I always exclaim, when you post photos. I imagine the sounds and the fresh smells in the air... I've never thought of jogging. As a matter of fact I can do it only in the city park, but it's far away from home and I'm in a quite busy period of the year... But good for you! I'm sure it's not that easy and pleasant, as it sounds, but how wonderful to feel refreshed and full of energy! That's the point, isn't?:)

Frances said...

I think the opportunity to be in such lovely, varied surroundings would encourage some kind of exercise, and I guess that jogging lets you see more than walking would!

As others have said, I also remember to bicycle tours you've taken us on.

My daily exercise involves miles of walking Indoors, with lots of up and down Stairs involved. There's certainly no magicial landscape involved.

Thank you for these signs of spring...winter's crept away for sure. xo

jfidz said...

The best I can manage to do is walk to school or down to the local! You certainly put me to shame Gretel.

Limner said...

Oh, what I wouldn't give to have space like that where I live. It's a piece of heaven. I'd walk in the rain, snow, and all days in between. *sigh*

Very lovely. I am smitten. Such beautiful works of art.

The BUTT'RY and BOOK'RY said...

Hi Gretel,
What BEAUTIFUL sights!! I feel a FRESH BREATH as I see them!!
I feel inspired to go outside right now and move my slow body!!!
Thanks for the lift ;-D
Many many BLESSINGS Linnie

Lin said...

Not a jogger or a runner. I prefer swimming--but then that's always interesting with the odd folks who are in the pool with me. Ugh.

I think I would like to just walk around your 'hood--it's LOVELY!! Expensive, eh? Really?? Who knew?!