This is a quick catching up post. I’m sorry it’s been such a long time since I have been here to blog about things. Actually I have really missed blogging both here and on my other blog.
My absence has also meant an absence from cycling; I’m not sure what I feel more regretful about – not cycling or not blogging! It has taken quite a toll on me as I’ll explain a little later on. So, I think I need to summarise a few of the things which have been going on and also to say a big “thank you” for the camaraderie from family and friends. It means a lot.
I have astonished myself by switching career. This was not really of my choosing but instead as a response to the Transforming Rehabilitation reforms ripping the Probation Service apart. Amazingly I survived an eye-watering restructure, the like of which I’d never seen before in my 23 year career. Having survived the restructure I just couldn’t feel right about staying and through a certain amount of good fortune I was able to step sideways into my Local Authority. Now I am almost having to learn a new language as I get to grips with the new terminology and structure. I have found, in many ways, the ideal job at the right level. I like not being tied to my desk and instead I often spend time with colleagues in other offices and working with other organisations alongside the Authority. I like building bridges, establishing and nurturing new relationships to our mutual advantage.
So with all things job-wise I feel incredibly optimistic and positive. When we hit a bit of a snag at work (and I cannot remember what this was) my manager asked whether I had any regrets in moving across. Absolutely not. While if I was left to my own devices, I think I would have stayed there in the jolly old criminal justice world until I retired, it’s probably a healthy thing to move at some stage. After all, I have about 10 years before I hang up my ID badge.
On a personal front, I unexpectedly said farewell to my father who passed away on 31 December. He was 88 and although increasingly frail, there wasn’t actually anything obviously wrong with him. And so it was quite a shock, for all of us, that without any warning, he collapsed and died. There was nothing the ambulance crew or Emergency Department could do.
During this time I haven’t cycled. I really regret this as cycling is something I have loved so much and will continue to do so. Now one of the reasons is lending my turbo trainer to a friend to try out earlier in the year and this was quickly followed by lending him the rear wheel skewer to enable him to snugly fit his bike to the trainer.
Instead I have run quite a bit but far less than last year where I was averaging almost 90 miles a month. Worst of all is that my weight is creeping up and my BMI has hit 23.5 and I feel HEAVY and SLUGGISH. Additionally I am feeling stiff, not very supple and certainly not flexible at all. I know my core strength has dropped like a stone and my fat/muscle ratio is now less favourable. So I’m starting to pull myself around. Without any doubt my running and cycling has benefitted from exercises beyond simply clocking up the miles; working those arm, shoulder, chest and core muscles is really important when it comes to running and cycling. In fact I think the difference it makes is quite amazing.
So here I am, catching up and bouncing back, feeling positive and pleased to be back blogging once again! One of the perks of working in my Local Authority is that I get a discounted membership of a brand new, bright, shiny and well equipped gym. I am definitely going to make the most of that. So definitely half full, never half empty.