Did Someone Say, “Taper”?

Here we are, halfway through my taper. I’ve not been doing much running, but it’s been pretty full-on apart from that.

I made life easy for myself on Friday, just cycling in to the St Andrews, to have a drink at the St Andrews Brewery ‘tap house’.

Jan and I had set the weekend aside for mountain based activities. Seeing the weather forecast, it looked like the east would be best place to be, so we planned a trip to the Cairngorms, with a stay in the small refuge hut in the corrie east of Braeriach. This turned into rather an epic, thanks to tough weather and an already-occupied refuge! Bivvying in light rain, out in the open wasn’t ideal for a romantic night away, but we survived quite well. By Sunday night we were eating Italian buffet at La Taverna in Aviemore: the night before seemed a world away.

Me before my rough night in the Cairngorms!

Me before my rough night in the Cairngorms!

The Lairig Ghru looking like the entrance to Mordor

The Lairig Ghru looking like the entrance to Mordor

The Northern Corries of the Cairngorms, still glowering under at the end of our walk on Sunday

The Northern Corries of the Cairngorms, still glowering under cloud at the end of our walk on Sunday

When I returned to the house on Sunday night, I checked my phone, which I had left behind, for messages, and was partially dismayed, partially delighted to get a message from my friend, Huw asking if I fancied a mountain bike ride in the East Highlands the next day. I was delighted because it sounded like immense fun, and dismayed because my legs were pretty sore. I texted Huw to say I would decide in the morning, but I already knew what I would probably do, and sure enough I was over to his house the next morning with my bike in the car.

We went, with two of his friends, Robbie and Mike, to the Spittal of Glenshee, to ride a circuit that included Glas Tulaichean, a new Munro for me. We enjoyed a fairly sunny, breezy in places, 26-mile circuit, although I pushed rather more of it than the other 3, not being a ‘proper’ mountain biker, or having a ‘proper’ bike.

Grand views over the Grampians

Grand views over the Grampians

The MTB Boys Enjoy a Break

The MTB Boys enjoy a break

My bike, which has hub gears and a fat (29x3) front tyre, but no suspension, was a bit less suited to the more technical parts of the ride: a partial excuse for me to walk a lot!

My bike, which has hub gears and a fat (29×3) front tyre, but no suspension, was a less suited to the more technical parts of the ride: a partial excuse for me to walk a lot!

I’ve not exactly given my legs an easy ride on this part of the taper, but I’ll be away from home right up until the Kent Road runner after tomorrow, so they’ll get plenty of rest before then.

Please don’t forget why I’m blogging:
http://www.justgiving.com/excellentlondonmarathon

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