Thursday, 30 April 2015

Happiest Days of our Lives - Pink Floyd

Lyric:- 'Exposing every weakness' - Waters

Song Choice:- As the Pink Floyd Tribute continues, I'm here feeling like I doing my homework on the bus catching up on my blogging in the middle of one of the busiest weeks of coaching ever. Don't get me wrong as it's where I'm happiest but it does expose my own weaknesses in my time management  for things in my life outside of running that are also vital for a well-balanced life.

Now it’s easy for me to say that as I know it and I don’t need anyone to point that out to me as I’m fully aware of my own short comings BUT do you find in ‘Your World’, it seems that EVERYONE is only too happy to tell you just how rubbish you are at anything they care to pick on. It’s become a National Habit and with the Election coming up we are again preparing to judge a load of people we’ve never met working out whether we want to vote for them, not by what they are good at but rather where their weaknesses lie.

It’s a bloody tragic state of affairs…The USA has a different way of looking at folk and look rather to folks strengths and want to be associated with people who are successful as they believe it’s better to be associated with Life’s Winners it seems.

I believe we are ALL winners it’s just that we are down-trodden by others who expose weakness for their own gain.

Are you weak? Or are you just told that you're Weak…

Stand Tall Folks!

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Another Brick in the Wall Part 1 - The Pink Floyd

Lyric:- 'Leaving just a memory' - Waters

Song Choice:- 'As I continue into my theme of 'The Wall' in my blogs, Another Brick in the Wall Part 1 heralds in the school days and distant memories of days gone by for Roger Waters and his Character 'Pink'.

It really hits home for me as I was reminded earlier today that it was 35 years ago that I left my secondary school and headed out into the outside world, all wide-eyed and innocent hoping that life would bring me health, wealth and happiness.

Luckily, it's brought me all of the above, more times than not but for some folk I meet, even those of a similar age to me, I find are still trying to embark on their adult life voyage and have spent all of their adult lives serving others rather than achieving their own aspirations.

For them, I hope they can find a way to release the chains that are currently holding them back.

There's a great world out there, and I think that these are the Happiest Days of Our Lives, Don't You?

More tomorrow...

Rory Coleman - 901 Marathons - 232 Ultras
12 Marathon des Sables - 9 Guinness World Records - 21 Years' Alcohol Free.

Monday, 27 April 2015

The Thin Ice - The Pink Floyd

Lyric:- 'If you should go skating on the thin ice of modern life' - Waters

Song Choice:- Carrying on my 'Wall' theme, The Thin Ice highlights just how much our lives hang by a thread. It's amazing that our fragility is something we nonchalantly take for granted until it's taken from us in our ever increasingly manic lives. How I reached 53, I'll never know!

But life is fragile and it's something that's being highlighted to me more and more, the more people I meet. Not through chance but by choice.

How on earth do we get ourselves into such a mess? Everyone's in a bloody pickle it seems... and when you look in from the outside (which I'm lucky that folk let me do and look in on their lot), it can be a simple fix to get life back in control and be able to start over again with some fresh rules and guidelines. Booze free, in a couple of cases today!

We all love a few rules, (not too much hi-viz in my case), but we need to know where the boundaries are and where we can make our mark on life. A lot of folk believe that wealth will bring them happiness but maybe 'Skating on the Thin Ice of Modern Life' might bring you a much bigger reward.

Of course, 'Don't be surprised, when a crack in the ice, appears under your feet' Waters goes onto sing but then again where would we be if we didn't take a few chances eh?

Luckily it didn't crack under mine when I went skating as a youngster on a very thinly frozen river! Sorry Mum.

More later...How Thin's Your Ice?

Rory Coleman - 901 Marathons - 232 Ultras
12 Marathon des Sables - 9 Guinness World Records - 21 Years' Alcohol Free.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

In the Flesh - The Pink Floyd

Lyric:- To feel the warm thrill of confusion - Waters

Song Choice:- I listened to a live version of 'The Wall' recorded in 1980 from Earls Court and I'm going to write the next few blogs following the track listing starting with the first track 'In the Flesh'. It's an autobiographical statement of where the band was at the end of '77 and I completely get where Waters was coming from.

Incidentally, the baby featured in the last couple of bars will now be at least 37 - now that's a thought!

Anyway, I was in the flesh today at my 10th Shakespeare Marathon, hitting my 3:59 predictor spot on. I did have to push the last couple of miles but I felt great all the way if I'm being honest.

It also felt great to be stripped bare of the MdS, Clients and Sand as there's nothing like a good road marathon to find out where you are both in fitness and in life.

Running past three of my old houses in Luddington Village added to my nostalgia and speed as it happens. As did kissing both Boswell Sisters who didn't want me anywhere near them in 1977...then again I don't blame them!

Back in 1977, I never thought I'd be less than 100 marathons away now from my 1000th.

Life's strange ain't it! More tomorrow...

Rory Coleman - 901 Marathons - 232 Ultras
12 Marathon des Sables - 9 Guinness World Records - 21 Years' Alcohol Free.

Friday, 24 April 2015

The Voice - John Farnham

Lyric:- 'Make a noise and make it clear' - Qunta, Reid, Ryder & Thompson

Song Choice:- You can't beat a bit of the 80's especially with the current revival for all things orange, brown or cheesy. Can you believe he turned down 'We built this city' later sung by Jefferson Starship.

Anyway, I love the lyrics of this belting song and the lyrics are a great instruction to shout out, make a noise and be clear about who you are and what you are wanting. I'm pretty clear myself nowadays but back in 1986 I might not have been so forthcoming with my views and opinions as I am now. Maybe it's part of being an over 50 but I'm amazed at how much people bow and beg in the professional and personal life without having the strength to say, 'Hold on there a minute, I think I need to put you straight on something' or 'Hold on, who do you think you are talking to'...

It's amazing how the most bullying of colleagues, customers and quittances immediately jump a big pace back when they are challenged by a little Feistiness. Yes, Feistiness not rudeness as that gets you nowhere.

Next time, someone takes a liberty - get Feisty. The results are amazing and folk will think far more of you in the future and take far less liberties.

If you are at the Shakespeare Marathon at the weekend, please say hello as I'll be there running. It's one of my favourites :-)

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Tiny Daggers - INXS

Lyric:- No need for sweet revenge - Farriss & Hutchence

Song Choice:- This is taken from the excellent 'Kick' Album which I totally played to death back in 1987 and a very apt choice for my blog today that follows on from yesterday's 'Domino' theme.

You see the thing is that apart from never being able to line up all of our Dominoes, we waste a huge amount of our time, energy and thoughts on seeking revenge from those who stab us with their 'Tiny Daggers'.

And it's these 'Daggers' that become super-corrosive voodoo and distract our thoughts away from the more important bigger picture that really needs our concentration. However becoming a 'Big Picture Person' isn't as easy as it might be and a good way of taking a giant leap towards 'Big Pictureness' is to think what someone you respect might do in that situation and then act like them. What would Sir Ranulph do, perhaps?

I've learned to walk away from things and ignore others and move-on. 

Don't get me wrong, I don't suffer fools and I expect folk to give me the 100% that I give them BUT I've backed down and moved on a lot recently and it's extremely liberating and it's freed my mind for the things that really matter.

What's eating you up and corroding your thoughts? 
Do you need to let go?
Who else are you kidding apart from yourself?

I'd love to know.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

The Last Domino - Genesis

Lyric:- 'Play the game of happiness' - Banks, Collins & Rutherford

Song Choice:- 'Probably their best track post Gabriel and an amazing live show performance in 1992 at Earls Court is well worth a watch. Phil Collins vocals are totally spot on and the show is exceedingly high-tech considering it's now well over 20 years old. Certainly one I wished I'd gone and seen...what a missed opportunity.

Things didn't line up back then for me but then again life isn't the simple line of dominoes that Collins sings of. A+B+C+D+E doesn't equal Happiness (it makes ABCDE of course, ha ha), but no it's a virtually impossible sequence to get right and pan out perfectly. It's something that we all try and do and wait and wait to get the sequence started instead of getting on with what we can at any one time.

Am I making sense...let me put it another way. I believe that people procrastinate for weeks. months, years and even decades waiting for the right time to start their domino sequence of whatever it is that's f*cking them up. Their A+B+C+D+E... or in fact their 'Life Lottery'.

I've done it myself far too many times esoecially in my Selling Days and really it's only a way of making excuses of not doing something in case we fail and in the case of sales, that's most of the time. It's not surprising that we have a good chunk of comfort factor at heart to stop the hurty pains of life.

The trouble is we spend too much time setting up all of our Dominoes...So instead of wasting time, get some of your's on the table and you'll find it really improves your game no end.

BTW Which one are you? I'm a Double Sixer of course!!!

Monday, 20 April 2015

The Tempest - Pendulum

Lyric:- You dropped the drawbridge, You let the Vampires in - Swire Thompson

Song Choice:- Love Pendulum, Love this Song, I don't love Vampires!

They are everywhere, all around us. All day. They invade our heads, hearts and homes and if you're not careful you'll become one too.

It's a form of mediocrity, a slide of personal standards and an opportunity to be downright ordinary. Facebook has become a breeding ground for them and before you know it you're liking and sharing their venomous ways.

Lesson:- Don't drop your drawbridge, don't lower your standards, stand tall and be Vampire Free.

It's most liberating!

Rory Coleman - 899 Marathons - 232 Ultras
12 Marathon des Sables - 9 Guinness World Records - 21 Years' Alcohol Free.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Election Day - Arcadia

Lyric:- Restless (so restless indeed) - Le Bon, Rhodes & Taylor

Song Choice:- The ‘Duran Duran Lite’ Combo's Election Day track has always been one of my favourites and the lyrics match my mood perfectly my mood today. It’s a great song and my choice has nothing to do with the continuing squabble for UK leadership which is quite frankly a very dull thing to come back to.

It’s the ‘Restless’ part of the lyric that hit home earlier on as that’s how I’m feeling today ‘Post-MdS’, ‘Pre-Deep-Breath-In’, and prior to the next marathon escapade. It’s the lull after the storm I suppose and a state of mind that I don’t enjoy even though I know more good times are around the corner.

A couple of long runs with a few hours of Prog Rock will no doubt help clear my mind of any Desert Debris but for now I know I’m fatigued in Mind, Body and Soul and that it will pass. I’m better off right now just going out and letting the miles cleanse my tiredness and renew my enthusiasm.

Do you ever get like that, sort of totally wiped out? Bit like a Party Leader on a Live TV Debate?

I’d love to know if you do and how you get over it… who'd be a politician eh? 

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Evil Angel - Breaking Benjamin

Lyric:- 'You are the faith inside me' - Klepaski & Burnley

Song Choice:- Breaking Benjamin are quite a new act to my music repertoire but they have made a sound mark with me especially with the above track and the brilliant anthem, 'The Diary of Jane'.

I had to have faith today as I went out for my first tentative post MdS run. I started with a simple 2.5 mile brisk walk out followed by a jog back home.

Boy it hurt!!! Well the running bit did anyway as it feels like weeks since I ran anything. It's amazing just how out of condition your body can get in such a small time when you are not running and smashing 156 miles of walking in the Sahara Sand.

No doubt there is a bit of PTRD in there too (that's Post Traumatic Race Disorder to you) as it's hard to reignite the furnaces post Sir Ranulph and all that there media.

Ah well, I'll give it another bash tomorrow.

More then...

Written in Cardiff - 899 marathons - 232 ultras - 9 Guinness World Records - 12 MdS

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Definitive Gaze - Magazine

Lyric:- Got this bird's eye view and it's in my brain, clarity has reared its ugly head again - Devoto & McGeoch

Song Choice:- The 1978 'Real Life' album has some great tracks and this album opener has always been on my hit-list. Have a listen yourself here from 'Whistle Test' all those years ago.

Well I'm back from the desert, sadly without my luggage as yet (that's still sunning itself in Morocco) but I'm still wearing a huge smile from the whole MdS Experience with Sir Ranulph. The 'clarity' that Devoto sings of in the above song isn't necessary ugly but it has definitely entered my thoughts over the past couple of weeks and the 156 miles of Sahara Sand provides a wonderful place of solitude. 

It's a great time and place to consider and re-evaluate one's life. It's always been like that for me and it's the reason I return there every year... It's never been about the running for me, it's always been about being at one in the desert and the time for reflection is just priceless.

No doubt the weeks ahead are going to be super-busy and I'm grateful for that but I'm going to keep hold of my clarity, that's reared it's ugly head for as long as possible. 

Do you ever get to feel like that?

More tomorrow...

Rory Coleman - 899 Marathons - 232 Ultras
12 Marathon des Sables - 9 Guinness World Records - 21 Years' Alcohol Free. 

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Don't give up - Peter Gabriel

Lyric:- You're not beaten yet - Gabriel

Song Choice:- I listened to this during the 56 mile long stage and the lyrics fit my emotions today as I try to take in covering 156 miles of the Marathon des Sables with Sir Ranulph Fiennes, as this year's race has all been about him and not me.

Everyone taking part has their own reason for entering the race and have their own race expectations, just like I've had in my 11 previous events only this year I've been extremely fortunate to share my entire race with the incredible Sir Ranulph Fiennes.

And incredible he is on so many fronts...mostly because he's so humble, approachable and loveable. I've laughed so much at his extremely dry sense of humour and heard all of his life stories first hand. Talk about hair-raising...

Most of all, I witnessed first-hand how he kept-on going despite being completely broken, in constant, life-threatening pain when others I the race far younger, in far less discomfort threw in the towel.

This MdS will be the 'Sir Ranulph' year for me and one I will always treasure. Playing a part in his life history is a real privilege and we've ended up being such good friends along the way.

Everything you've ever read about him or heard about him is true. If you need inspiration he's the man and if I can do MdS at 71 years of age, like he can...I'll be a happy man.

Did I think he'd ever give up? Of course not, he's Sir Ranulph Fiennes...

Rory Coleman - 899 Marathons - 232 Ultras
12 Marathon des Sables - 9 Guinness World Records - 21 Years' Alcohol Free.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Still of the Night - Whitesnake

Lyric:- 'In the heat of the day' - Coverdale & Sykes

Song Choice:- I love a bit of Whitesnake, partly because of the great songs they recorded in the classic era of New Heavy Metal Pomp of the 80's but also for the ridiculous hip thrusting, leather spandex clad videos that accompanied the music. Totally entertaining and take a look here for yourself - it's an awesome guitar solo!

Joking aside the 'Still of the Night' is something I'm looking forward to at this year's Marathon des Sables. The time when it's completely dark, silent and there's that wonderful cool feeling of peace that follows a day of being burned alive in the sand.

If you've been there, you'll know what I mean. Even in a tent where you don't even have to reach out to touch the people next to you, there is a feeling of solitude that is most overwhelming. It's one of the reasons I go back each year and it's become my annual pilgrimage and a real retreat as you can easily leave the camp and all the other runners and feel the liberation of being alone in the sand.

That long walk out into the sand is one of my real life pleasures and it's one I'll get to enjoy again the still of the night.

You see it's not about the running - it's about the experience of being alone with yourself and being happy with the person you are with.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

The Price of Love - Roxy Music

Lyric:- A debt you pay with tears and pain - Everly & Everly

Song Choice:- I love a bit of Roxy and I didn't realise that the Everly's wrote this baby. Anyway, it seems quite apt that you pay with tears and pain eh?

Success comes at a price. The cost is an investment of pure hard work and determination. You can't 'buy' success, just ask a Billionaire Premier Club Chairman, as all the millions in the world can't guarantee your desires when there's sport and people involved.

There's a 'Life-Experience Hiatus' happening right now accompanied by having all the 'Right Gear' but really having 'No Idea'. Just take a look at 'Ironman' photos or folk in their MdS Logo'd up kit and you'll see what I mean. It's doesn't look natural at all and just highlights the 'Look like a Right Plonker Factor'.

The '10,000 hours Ideal' is SO right. Having the RIGHT gear is of course a much better approach, I don't need Logo's or a Desert Uniform to get me in the 'Zone'. The 'Zone' is in my head and it's business as usual for me on Sunday for 250kms of Sand, Mountains and Extreme Fun.

As I head off with Sir Ranulph, at least I know he is 10,000+ on everything so there's no worry on his part but for some of the  500 Brits going, I do think that some might have 'Bought' off more than they can chew...I'm envisaging a huge pile of discarded compression gear, front packs and blister management at the end of Stage 1 this year, apart from those people I've trained for the race! 

Rory Coleman - 897 Marathons - 231 Ultras
11 Marathon des Sables - 9 Guinness World Records - 21 Years' Alcohol Free.