hold your breath

A few years ago, I drafted a blog post about how I sometimes hold my breath when I walk past bins or smokers or people who, for one reason or another, look like they might smell. I never finished writing this post, and never published it because I thought it was too weird. 

(But I don’t mean to be judgemental. Sometimes it’s obvious that someone has just been to the gym, or maybe I’m out running, and there are other sweaty people out running. And it’s not always body odour — sometimes people who exercise wear too much deodorant.)

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine shared an article that detailed the findings of a Belgian study on the kinetics of exhaled air/vapour during exercise. Specifically, the study looked at walking, running and cycling; and the aim was to determine whether or not it was safe to walk/run/cycle behind or beside someone, with a view to minimising transmission of airborne viruses.

As it turns out, you probably want to stay at least five metres away from other runners, and stay further away from other cyclists, if that is your exercise of choice. 

Recently, I’ve noticed that I hold my breath more and more when I walk past people — perfectly normal-looking people with no suggestion of body odour or excessive fragrance usage, and not even a cigarette in hand.

The other day, I happened to walk past a man in the street, and he turned his face away from me as we passed each other. Perhaps it was just a coincidence, and perhaps he happened to see something interesting across the road, but maybe he was holding his breath too.

Who’s the weird one now, hey?

shaping up

In the last two weeks I wrote about my reading and study goals for the year and beyond. This week I’m looking at health and fitness. I’m sure I’ve read somewhere that physical activity is good for one’s intellect and memory as well, so it’s all connected, really, and it would be remiss of me to not set some goals here too.

I actually wrote this post in mid-January, and scheduled it to be published almost three weeks later, so hopefully I’ve made more progress, or otherwise this will help serve as a reminder to myself about what I’m supposed to be doing! Continue reading

as I ran

Last night I went for a run. As I started running, I calculated how many hours I’d worked this past week: full days from Monday through to Saturday, a bit extra here, a bit less there – all up about 54 hours. I redid the maths a couple of times in case I missed a half-hour somewhere. No, 54 is right.

Strange, I thought, that after 54 hours of work, all I wanted to do was go for a run.  Continue reading

let’s catch up …maybe

These last few weeks have been pretty hectic. Everything’s a bit of a blur. I’ve been doing a lot of overtime at work because of this new arrangement in place involving other hospitals. (Can’t say too much, of course, because of privacy reasons or whatever.) I just worked six consecutive days – some of which were 11-12 hour days – and I am quite exhausted, but also not. I think I’ve just been running on adrenaline all week because I only had a total of maybe 3 cups of coffee and one cup of tea the whole week (and the most recent two beverages were probably unnecessary anyway).

Well, maybe we’ll call it adrenaline and fear/panic. There have been many times these last few weeks when I’ve felt like I was working as if my life depended on it. It’s like a fear of death (i.e. consequences) or fear of God (i.e. management – except I’m not really afraid of management; they’ve been very supportive). Continue reading

race day

Yesterday was the annual Bridge to Brisbane fun run and, my goodness, it was a very interesting day! It had been a few years since I last participated, but my workplace entered a team, so I was pretty keen to be a part of it. Unfortunately, I got a cold last week, so I was still recovering from it yesterday (still have a bit of residual cough now), so I was not expecting to have a good result, but we’ll get to that later. I want to go over the whole morning. (Yes, there may quite possibly be a lot of menial details in this post, but I want to document as much as possible.)  Continue reading

61 minutes

On Saturday evening, I went for a run around my local park (which is more like a network of parks linked together by a creek and a cycling/walking path that runs along it) and the surrounding neighbourhood. It is probably the best run that I’ve ever done – it’s at least the best run I’ve done in the last few years. I was pretty chuffed (I’m still quite chuffed) to complete 10.1km in under 61 minutes.

I don’t think I’ve actually run 10km since the last time I did Bridge to Brisbane (which was back in 2013). Well, actually, I might’ve done a couple of 10km runs in the intervening time, but certainly not many. Maybe I got to 8km a few times? I am passionate about running, but I never really bothered to properly keep track of these things. (It’s not about the numbers, really.)

But I do know that, in recent months, most of the runs I’ve done have been about 5-6km. That distance takes about half an hour, or a bit more, and has generally satisfied my need to run. However, since signing up for the Bridge to Brisbane fun-run (B2B) again this year, I needed to step this up. For so long, I’ve been telling myself that I’m probably more suited to shorter distances; running 10km would be too much. Maybe I told myself that I just didn’t have the time or energy to run so far, and then maybe I started believing it. Continue reading