It’s been a busy week of walking and keeping in contact with people and I think during this time I have added yet another war wound to my little list.
After a lengthy trek the other day around Stourport on Severn (story here) I think I’ve developed ‘shin splints’ in my left leg. From what I read online the near constant dull pain I have in my shin is often caused by being overweight and having tight calves – along with having footwear thats not cushioned enough – but it seems mostly associated with runners.
I’m not a runner but I am overweight, have tight calves and my walking boots are stiffer than they were since I had the soles replaced – so maybe this is to blame. Either way it hurts – and made me glad I had a large tube of ibuprofen gel tucked away in my medicine chest for just such calamities.
On the bright side though I now have a new ‘friend’ for the plantar fasciitis in my right foot. It’s been getting a bit lonely lately so at least it has something to compete with for my attention.
Despite this yesterday I managed to hit (and exceed) my self imposed target of four miles walking – bringing my weekly total to 41.
It was a pretty leisurely day of strolling and chatting though rather than power walking (which was a good thing with my shin issue) that started in Memorial Park with my friend and his dog then ended up in a really eclectic shopping arcade in Coventry called the Fargo Village.
The park held a hidden surprise for Boris – which it’s fair to say made him a very very happy little Frenchie.
A deflated football.
There’s something absolutely hilarious about watching a deliriously chuffed dog carrying and shaking back and forth an object that’s twice the size of its head.
After squashing and deflating it enough to get it into his mouth Boris’s pleasure centres seemed well stimulated. After trotting in circles for a few seconds he finally managed to hold the impossible object in such a way that he could see over the top and then skipped along beside us like a cat that had just discovered an everlasting cream fountain.
There have been many times I’ve wished I was a dog and I have to say this was one of them. To experience such pleasure from something so simple is a fantastic thing – and to have goals in life that are satisfied by the discovery of a deflated football could be an answer to pretty much all of the world’s problems.
It would certainly solve all of mine.
I resolve to ‘be more Boris’.
I was still thinking about him later when we arrived at Fargo Village – a wonderfully diverse, offbeat and individual selection of shops made from shipping containers and caravans near Coventry City centre.
Randomly hanging outside a shop was possibly the best shower curtain I’ve ever seen – made from individual cells of film reel – all showing tiny but incredibly detailed images of nature. I was tempted to buy it until I realised I had nowhere to put it – and that I’d probably get so lost in looking at the pattern of it it that I’d never get out of the shower!
There was also a scooter showroom just outside with some lovely Lambretta scooters of all colours and configurations parked up in front of the shop in lovely neat rows waiting to be sat on, photographed or played with.
I don’t feel in the least bit trendy usually – and this kind of territory proved that I have a long long way to go before I had any kind of image based cachet with the kind of people that frequent such a place.
I needed to be far more urban, and I’m pretty sure that my jeans were tight in all the wrong places.
To be honest I also had some serious beard competition nearby that made my chin fur look rather pedestrian. Hirsute envy immediately began developing deep inside me when I caught sight of the frankly epic facial hair sitting waiting to be coiffured in ‘Dashing Blades’ – the cool little barber shop on the site.
I couldn’t help but laugh when my mate suggested what a stampede and pandemonium we could cause if one of us stood outside and shouted ‘death to all hipsters!!!’
Every time I passed the shop as I strolled around there seemed to be a new and bushier set of facial plumage waiting to be trimmed and waxed.
Fargo village is also offbeat enough to have a Sgt Bilko / Phil Silvers memorabilia museum. This is possibly better than the Redditch Nail Museum – although just like my unfulfilled desire to explore the history of nails last week (here) I was denied the chance to investigate further.
It was closed due to family illness when we arrived – so all I could do was peer through the left hand window at the FULL SIZED RED DALEK (which I don’t remember seeing in the Phil Silvers show…) and the huge cardboard cutout of Rick from The Walking Dead.
Feeling a little parched after the morning’s walking we stopped a few doors down from here for an ethically sourced, ethnically aware, vegan, fair trade and socially responsible coffee at the nearby bookshop. This was (ahem) not cheap – but I guess diversity and individuality has to be financed somehow.
The economy of scale that underpins my usual cheap and refillable Starbucks filter coffee comes with many hidden social costs that I often choose to ignore while I sit in their premises writing my blog posts on their free wifi.
Musing over these and other topics of conversation my friend and I left, unable to find what he had originally been looking for.
For my part I departed with an unexpected and great sense of longing – for I had quite out of the blue fallen in love with a hat.
Normally I’d have thought that such an item would leave me looking like a pretentious idiot – however since I am recently getting a cold head and since the consensus of (Facebook and Instagram) opinion appears to be that this suits me I’m genuinely tempted to go back and get it. I’m just not entirely sure it will match the rest of my clothes…
Comments are always welcome!
The week however has not been completely plain sailing. Today I appear to have had a blip on the scales and managed to put 3lbs back on.
If I’m honest when I sit in the cold light of day and examine why – it’s not a complete mystery. I’ve had a bit of a sweet tooth this week and have been eating a lot of fat free quark and natural yogurt with frozen fruit and sweetener to stem the craving.
I’ve also had a lot of apples, plums and oranges. My blip therefore is not a magical mystery, nor is it unjust and unfair. I ate too much free food and not enough speed. I should have eaten less overall.
Truthfully I thought I could get away with it given all of my walking, but it appears not – so this coming week I’m going to have to double down, keep a food diary, go back to basics and make more effort.
Truthfully I felt a bit peeved and disappointed on the scales – but you know what? I’m not alone and it’s not the end of the world. All the other members at the group have blip weeks and get right back on their metaphorical horses. I stayed to the image therapy talk with Angie afterwards – was honest about all my mistakes during the week and I’m owning the responsibility for it.
I’m going to draw my inspiration from the ladies that cheer me up every weekend and just get on with it.
However (ironically enough given it’s the first week in ages where I put weight ON) today I won the Mr Sleek 2016 award (with a commemorative tie). This morning we all voted for the person we’d most like to win.
It was a nice surprise and I had a photo taken with the wonderful winning Miss Slinky 2016 (withheld as it’s not just a photo of me).
I can’t think where on earth I would wear this rather bold tie (Miss Slinky seemed the same with her eye catching sash) but I can now add it to my wardrobe safe in the knowledge that I have at least one item of clothing that will never get taken to charity!!!
The rest of my day internet will be spent with a cool tube of ibuprofen and my leg up on a pillow. I’m not going to give it the two weeks off that the NHS website suggests – it’s going to have to learn that these days we do things differently at casa du davey and it’s going to have to get with the program in the same way other parts of my tubby frame have.
Today pouffe – tomorrow the world!