Christmas offers such big temptations for mass body abuse, more than any other time of the year. Mince pies, boxes of chocolates, plates of turkey with all the trimmings, Christmas pudding, wine and beer, the list is relentless.

I resisted so well up until the eve of Christmas, when a well delivered toad in the hole, lemon meringue pie, chocolates and beer duly dropped my guard and I gave in to it’s loveliness. Even the four mile run earlier that afternoon would barely cut into the calorie intake for this evenings display of weakness.

Christmas Day must be a “free for all” day in anyone’s training schedule. Guilt wasn’t going to play any part in this traditional day of feasting, despite the unveiling of various running related presents to remind me of what I should be doing.

One unexpected benefit of wearing a t-shirt with an integrated drum kit was the strengthening of my core by the constant pounding it got from the variety of nieces and nephews during the day.

I managed another four miles on Boxing Day that was neutralised with the introduction of a roast beef dinner and a continuing afternoon of grazing.

My plan on Friday was to do some chores at Sue’s work and run the six and half miles back from Harpenden. The chores didn’t quite go to plan and by the time it came to running back, I was low on enthusiasm and felt even lower on energy levels. I did manage to scuff my way home even with a less than impressive plod across Batchwood golf course and a tired chug through Verulamium Park.

We spent three days between Christmas and New Year at a health farm near Beachy Head on the South coast. Well, the Tiger Inn in East Dean is close to a farm and I may have embellished it with the word ‘health’ to make it sound good. The ten mile walk from Birling Gap to Seaford over the Seven Sisters and Seaford Head was a great workout and felt surprisingly more draining than the ten mile run I had done just a few weeks ago. It was a beautiful sun drenched day with virtually no wind, the views along the coast were just stunning.

That sadly, was the end of the good weather while we were away as high winds and heavy rain moved in to hamper any further good walking over the next two days.

We left East Dean on New Year’s Eve, but not after an opportunity to get in a cheeky four mile run down to Birling Gap and up to the lighthouse near Beachy Head. It was a good opportunity to take a quick selfie with a dramatic backdrop before returning to the Tiger Inn for a cooked breakfast and a fond farewell to this lovely part of the country.

Tonight would be the last blow out for a few months and then serious training will have to resume, I can’t wait!!!

Happy New Year.

Distance run since last entry: 17.54 miles
Accumulative distance run: 210.57 miles