The Well-Meaning Offspring

I’ve just concluded a phone conversation with my son Jonathon. A verbal interaction during which he told me he’d recently upped his exercise regime; a move embarked upon to not only address post Christmas weight gain, but also towards training for running the Leeds Half Marathon in May. The latter a race I normally voluntarily marshall for Macmillan Cancer Support.

My Maytime voluntary remit ordinarily undertaken standing around three quarters of the way around the course. A race juncture where fatigue hangs around amateur runners shoulders like a veritable millstone. A tiredness the uninitiated will experience which, like childbirth, will manifest their notions of “Never again!”

Footnote – I’ve clearly never gone through the emotion strain of childbirth. However, am reliably informed my spectating role during the birth of my two offspring was significantly less agonising than their mother’s!

Further Footnote – Coming to think of it, I’ve never ran the Leeds Half Marathon either. Consequently, my observations about runners levels of tiredness at the three quarters stage of the course are also made from the conduit of hearsay.

Further Further Footnote – When I say hearsay I’m referring to the fact I was informed of  the angst experienced running around our metropolis via a buddy; a chap who has completed the 13.5 mile ‘fun’ run…… I’m not alluding to members of reality TV band Hear’Say once felt moved to inform yours truly the fatigue endured running around the streets of Leeds.


After enlightening me with his New Years fitness regime, my son enquired how his pater’s resolution of revisiting the gym was proceeding. I was touched by his concern, particularly my boy’s offer, as holder of a personal training qualification, to provide yours truly with an exercise plan to follow.

Advising he’d incorporate a raft of gym exercises I could undertake in conjunction with watching Netflix shows on my iPad. With me currently procrastinating about when I start to fulfil my resolution, I told him I quite liked the watching boxsets on Netflix idea, although the other bits within his strategy didn’t overly inspire me…… GJ Strachan going on to ask JA Strachan if watching someone jogging in one of the streaming company’s broadcasts would constitute me exercising.

Despairingly, Jonny sighed, labelled me a lazy get; prior to suggesting I train with him to run a half-marathon. A notion borne from my offspring claiming he knew of a guy who’d ran that distance race a mere six months after suffering a heart attack. An affliction I similarly endured last January.

A suggestion which, as someone who despises jogging, moved me to point out to my eldest child that “I wouldn’t run a half marathon even if I’d not suffered from cardiovascular issues, never mind post a heart attack!”

In a comment which set me pondering whether Jonny was attempting to receive his pater’s inheritance sooner rather than later, he then posited “You should do it, dad!….. What’s the worst that could happen about getting to that level of fitness?!”

“I could chuffing cark it!!” I pointed out indignantly.

“You won’t if you follow a qualified personal trainers programme!” he retorted dismissively.

“You do realise Jonny that if I end up pushing up the daisies your legacy from me is a meagre 37 self-published books I’ve penned, along with a few old coins!” I felt moved to re-affirm to my son.

“Actually, coming to think of it, dad…… Maybe running a half marathon is too early at this juncture of your cardio recuperation!!!….. I’d wait until the books are worth something!” my lad ‘thoughtfully’ backtracked.

Incidentally, does anyone know any Netflix shows which broadcast frequent scenes of gym sessions or jogging?!…… I’m asking for a friend!





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