Day Eleven: Eduardo’s Road To Fitness

I remember watching a film in a motel a while back.  It was in a nameless motel. All I can tell you is that it was about twenty minutes ride in a freezing transfer coach from the airport. I had, through no fault of my own, been persuaded that another drink in the Irish Pub at Amsterdam Schiphol airport was fine and that there was no way we would miss our connecting flight to Barcelona.

As his flight from London arrived some forty minutes before mine, my friend, who, for reasons of national security, shall remain nameless, had already found the departure gate, which was but a short stagger away from the pub. We enjoyed the Guinness, feeling comfortable and happy to be on holiday, confident that we could casually saunter to the gate in due course.

What we didn’t realize is that access to the gate was from the level above the one we were on.  Reaching the gate actually involved a hundred kilometre run through the airport complex, via the cleaners room on deck 65 and the duty free shop on deck nine zillion and finally via security on level 1.

We missed the flight with clockwork precision.  My nameless friend cancelled his holiday on the spot and caught a flight back to London leaving me with about fifteen hours to kill.

The sheets in my motel room were made of a material that produced electric shocks.  The mini bar was full of rust and the entire bathroom smelt like an old pair of Wellington boots filled with onions.

The movie was about a guy that wakes up to find that he is the last person alive on the planet.  Through some wicked twist of fate he has managed to avoid whatever it was that killed every other human being, leaving him to wander around spooky cities and towns trying to find out what is going on.  I remember wondering how on earth they managed to film the movie, the incredible planning and logistics required to clear vast tracks of a capital city.

What I didn’t realize is that Barcelona on a Sunday morning in August is already devoid of any human life. Filming would be easy.

By ten o’clock on a Sunday morning everyone in Barcelona has returned home from an all night bender and is now tucked up in bed, or are in a quaint village retreat up in the mountains, probably also in bed after an all night bender, or are in a modern holiday flat up the coast, sleeping in bed after an all night bender.

The streets are silent.  Newspapers drift along the pavements.  It is quiet.  There are no cars.  The traffic lights cycle from green to red and back again, their function wasted.

I am running.  I am alone and I have survived the holocaust.

I ran for just under forty minutes yesterday and saw no other survivors. I felt good and enjoyed the run more than any other I have done since I took up the sport again.  I feel as if I have progressed to the next level in terms of run fitness.  I will probably plateau for while and stay at this point before clicking up again to the next level.  The same happens in my cycle training.  You shift up a level and enjoy the change, then stay at the new level for a while before moving up again.

Today I shall do another steady beach run, heading out to El Masnou before turning back and running along the sand to Montgat.  I have a new playlist that I shall try out today, timed so that the more upbeat tracks start as I begin the beach run section.  I suspect it will be busy today, the scene from a different movie from that of Sunday.

I can’t wait to get my road bike.  The very thought of riding it puts a smile on my face.  I shall think about my cycle routes and training whilst I run today, or is that a bit like meal planning whilst still eating?

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