11 July 2016

Running in Kyoto

The nasty back spasm I thought would take 10 days to get over took 3 long weeks. It meant that training under new coach Scott Brown had to be delayed and finally kicked off in earnest on Monday 4 July albeit rather gingerly. The image above captures me on Sunday at the end of my long run and the prescribed 76 km for the week. I really shouldn't have looked that bad but given the heat and humidity I’m surprised I had the energy to take that selfie at all!

In Rotorua, New Zealand runners are spoilt for choice when it comes to roads or trails to run. Giving that up and the opportunities they presented was so very hard to do. Regret … maybe, but with the discovery of the Katsuragawa Cycle Track here in Kyoto life may not be so bad after all.

Sundays long run gave me the perfect opportunity to run a large chunk of the 45km it offers and to my surprise, it was way better than I had expected. Starting in the very beautiful Arashiyama town, it meanders through Kyoto along the Katsura and Kizu rivers to finish somewhere near Nara. Here are just a few of the snaps I took so judge for yourself.

Nakamura san was just one of many highlights that morning. A fitness fanatic, an age defying (66) lover of life and all round good guy. The chat we had was a welcome distraction to the 30 minutes or so I still had to run in what was 31-degree heat. I certainly hope coach Brown reads this and cuts me a little slack for the week ahead.

Have a great week everyone. Oh, by the way ... check this out (here).


  1. I've heard Coach Brown is one mean M**er F***er so I don't think so Mark. With a bit of luck he'll want you to run 90ish k next week so you can get away with 84.
    That looks like an inviting path - I can see you wearing out quite a bit of shoe rubber up and down there. Well done.

  2. Brilliant. I am thinking about 84ish but let's keep that to ourselves. The speed work which is new to me seems to be making a big difference. I'm determined not to let Coach Brown down. Just need to stay healthy.

  3. Just wonderful shots Mark! Despite what Ewen say I'm considered merely "hard but fair" and what I lack in experience I make up in beers. I hope to share a few over the summer! All the best Mark.