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New Game

I changed jobs in the new year, and that includes a whole new commute. I'm now working in Oxford, so I have to get the train (driving would be madness). That gives me two options for the journeys to and from the stations: bike or run. Each section of the run is around 1.5 miles - the Didcot end is slightly shorter and the Oxford end slightly longer. If I did it every day, this would give me more miles per week than I've ever done before, but I'm mixing it with cycling. 

So, what's the game?

Well, the Oxford end of the run is right through the middle of town at some busy times of day. Some people say they hate urban running, but I've discovered I quite enjoy it. There are a number of rules:

  • Don't hit anyone.
  • Don't get hit by anyone/thing.
  • Don't get trapped and have to walk.
  • Don't break an ankle on the potholes in the pavement.

There may be others, but those are the core. It takes quite a lot of concentration. Tactics employed so far: 

  • Make myself big (well, ish) so people coming at me move when there's space.
  • Make myself small so I can overtake people who are walking abreast and filling the pavement.
  • Change speed to time getting through gaps - slower if one is about to appear, faster if one is closing.
  • Last resort - check the traffic and run on the road. This one needs a lot of care about bikes.

I got it down under 15 minutes this morning. The game went well. Still got trapped a couple of times though, so room for improvement!

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Reader Comments (2)

Any side routes that might be less busy? Or those cow bells could come in handy for approaching from behind :-)

See you in March I assume?


February 2, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJo

I've been running as part or all of my commute for many years and I love it. After all, you have to spend time commuting so why not use the time to get/stay fit? However, I have done most of this at a time of day when there are minimal pedestrians around (or cars), and I (used to) run on the road. Sounds like your Oxford run is a whole different story. Now I am a walker, I find great frustration with groups of people who insist on walking slowly, together (even holding hands!), occupying the entire width of the pavement . . . and texting at the same time - probably to the person walking next to them. Hmmm...I'm sounding like a cranky old git raving about the young generation - that can't be me!

February 2, 2016 | Unregistered Commentermichael

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