Richard Wright

author of strange, dark fictions

Getting Fitter


November 6, 2014 by Richard Wright in Getting Fitter, Journal, Running

KicksThese are probably* my new kicks. Zero drop winter proofed running shoes. There’s plenty of life still in my Nike Frees I think, even if they’re looking a little worn around the edges**. Unfortunately, the Frees have a poor sole for wet, slippy, or icy weather and… well… Winter Is Coming. These new shoes are from Vivobarefoot, and go by the moniker ‘Trail Freak’. As that strongly implies they’re for running on trails, and I’m sure they’re up to whatever challenges a Glasgow winter can present.


I’m going to need them, because there’s going to be no slacking off on the running for me over the ice-months, because Heather is my Alpha and Omega in 2015.

Which might require some disambiguation.

I have this friend, see, who for the purpose of this blog I’m going to refer to as ‘Heather’***. She’s only just started running. When I say ‘only just’, I really, really mean it. She’s been out maybe a couple of times so far. Because I saw her enthusiastic FB post about her first Zombie Run, I asked whether she fancied a challenge. She did. I asked her if she fancied two. She did. I gave her until the end of October to pull out.

She didn’t.

In April then, Heather and I will be running frantically around Regents Park in London on a mad Easter 10K dash that we have been promised will end with chocolate. Then in October we’ll be pounding through Glasgow doing the half marathon event in The Great Scottish Run.

I say again, Heather’s hardly ever run before. Despite that she’s just committed herself to eleven months of running in wind, sleet, rain, snow, and (hopefully) some sunshine too. She possibly has no idea quite what she’s gotten herself into, but I hope she enjoys finding out. I’m going to feel terribly guilty if she doesn’t, because I suspect she is the kind of lady who sticks to something when she starts.

Never really run before. Signed up to two proper races just as winter is coming…

Heather is my hero.

As for the Alpha/Omega thing, those two Heatheruns**** mark the start and end of my running year. I’ll be forty in January and I wanted to set up a good, achievable 2015 that’s somehow en route to my ambition to do some proper ultra running before I’m dead*****. It starts in April with Heatherun I. A few weeks later I’ll be lining up for the Edinburgh marathon at the end of May. A couple of months after that, there will be the inaugural Fort William marathon (running along the base of Ben Nevis!) in July, and then it will come to an end with Heatherun II in October. All being well, I’ll continue training over the winter that follows ready for something very long indeed early in 2016. We’ll see. A lot can happen in twelve months.

So, two Heatheruns, two marathons, all entered and paid for. If anyone else fancies joining us for any of this running about, let me know!


*I say probably – I won’t know until I rest them out tomorrow. They’re a comfortable, neat fit, but feet expand when you run a distance, and they might feel less comfortable after that.

**One of many good things about switching to barefoot style minimalist footwear is that there seems to be less of it to fall apart.

***Heather is also her actual name, which makes this alias particularly easy to remember.

****Possibly a thing now.

*****Even if it kills me…

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