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OK so it turns out that writing a blog is a lot harder than you might have thought, and it has been ages since I last updated this; worst still I have just nine weeks to sort myself out and so it’s time to get walking more – having done a number of successful walks earlier in the summer, I haven’t put boot to trail for nearly a month
All of which is fine because I have been doing a load of training at the excellent Crossfit Cirencester – except…well…except I appear to have borked my left knee. So if you are in need of some investment advice, which is naturally why you came to a blog about walking for the Army Benevolent Fund, my hot tip is buying shares in Rock Tape. They make tape which is sort of stretchy and very sticky for sticking on bits of you that used to work but don’t anymore. Sort of gaffa tape for the gymbunny. Buy the shares before my knees are fixed and I’m pretty sure you’ll get a handsome return.
For those of you unfamiliar, as I was, with the process of strapping up an appendage, there are many useful videos featuring unbelievably glamorous ladies having various bits of themselves tapped together…no not like that….by a man (and it is *always* a man doing the taping) who is typically bald and bored looking. This is good as they provide you with a beginner’s guide to making sure you don’t fall apart. However there are a a few bits they leave out.
I mean to start with I am a fairly large bloke. I have, you know, actual legs. This means I need a lot more tape than the 5.5 stone lady in the videos. Reams of the bloody stuff. I also lack any form of advanced origami skills and have fingers like sausages. And I am not double jointed. Typically this means that my first attempts at strapping my knee result in either taping my knee to my hand, or my hand to my other hand, or on one occasion my nose to my knee (it’s elasticated, and springs. Shut up) Once applied of course the problems are really only just begining. Like many people I have hairy legs (and I am not judging cyclists here*) and find that as one begins each movement involving the leg, the tape acts like a trainee beautician just back from a heavy night and armed with wax that really isn’t up to the job. Each hair will be plucked, pulled, tweaked and turned with even the slightest movement. Squats, which hurt in the first place and hence you are using the tape, suddenly become a thing to dread, and should you be foolish enough to attempt cardio and are thus perspiring** the tape will slip from time to time and find new, previously unmolested areas of the leg to work on.
Also the tape comes in many funky colours, as if to say “being injured can be fun”. Well quite possibly. However quite why Rock Tape make their stuff in camouflage pink, the sort of thing you see early 90s girl-groups wearing, is beyond me; perhaps the copyright has expired so the pattern was cheap. Who knows.
Worse than all of this is the near certain knowledge that this is really all placebo and my knee is just as fucked as before – so on goes the delightfully-fragranced MAX STRENGTH IBUPROFEN cream FOR REAL MEN. It has a bull on the packet so it must be good. I have no idea if this is working either so I have purchased 20 cold packs from the delightful little corner shop on my phone e.g. Amazon.
Suffice to say I am going to have to keep training now, because of the 4 weeks I missed, irrespective of middle-aged body malfunctions, which is likely to result in more problems down the line, but that smells like the problem of Future Will, and fuck that guy he’s a douche.
All of which is to say, yeah, my knee, not so much.
The training programme is now built around completing the Ridgeway Walk in two or three sections over the next month, plus a bunch of shorter training walks around my local area which Willow (my feckless and now slightly ancient hound) and I will be doing very early in the mornings each weekend. I reckon if I can knock 10k out each Sat and Sunday we’ll be golden. Of course, what I hadn’t quite processed when I read and then threw away the ABF approved training plan, was the references to hill walking. See, Northern France is notoriously flat, or so I had understood. Except the vertical ascent on the course, now that I have downloaded it onto an app, suggests about a 500m net climb each day. Hang on, wtf? I mean the good news is I live in the Cotswolds so finding hills isn’t a problem. But still. Hills. Not even once.
OK, so here’s the thing. I need your money to make me bugger my knee over big sodding hills whilst gently epilating myself with sticky plasters. So give me your money and I will update this blog with the bald patches on my legs for your pleasure.
*Well, no more than usual. When I retire I am going to buy an electric car, one of the quietest I can get my hands on, and fit and *huge* airhorn to it, and then spend my days sneaking up on peletons before unleashing a fog horn 2.3 inches from the riders’ ears.
** Glowing is a thing done by radiation sources, not by someone actually working out