Macphail

The Oban Times - - LETTERS - AN­GUS MACPHAIL an­gus­macphail@ya­hoo.co.uk

THE ed­i­to­rial pow­ers-that-be at this fine news­pa­per are clearly tir­ing of my dull weekly drib­ble about mu­sic.

This, cou­pled with my re­cent re­lo­ca­tion from the par­ty­ing, bo­hemian ghet­tos of the leisure pages to the pres­ti­gious leafy sub­urbs of the let­ters dis­trict, means they have pressed upon me to steer away from mu­sic a lit­tle more of­ten than be­fore.

In ac­cor­dance with this, I’m go­ing to in­tro­duce my most re­cently and ac­ci­den­tally ac­quired hobby – run­ning.

As part of the usual gim­mickry of so­cial me­dia mar­ket­ing when we were re­leas­ing the Alive sin­gle a few weeks ago, An­drew and I boldly (stupidly?) promised that if the song made it into the top 80 on the main­stream charts, we would run the Tiree half-marathon in April.

We were de­lighted that it sur­passed all our ex­pec­ta­tions and reached num­ber 26.

This was all well and good, but it means that two of the most un­likely long- dis­tance run­ners in the his­tory of the sport have to de­liver on that ridicu­lous and ill- con­ceived pledge and now must pre­pare our com­bined 36 stone to move un­aided over 13 miles of road and beach by April.

In se­ri­ous­ness, both of us had said over re­cent times that we must start improving our fit­ness and that as we are ap­proach­ing the hor­rors of mid­dle age, we need to keep a few steps ahead of mother nature and com­pen­sate for too many years of abus­ing our bod­ies with mu­sic and all that goes with it.

We’ve luck­ily man­aged to get away with it so far and are both pretty healthy, but phys­i­cal well­be­ing is not some­thing to take for granted and we are not get­ting younger.

So, in ac­cor­dance with my pon­tif­i­cat­ing on New Year res­o­lu­tions of a few weeks ago, a new en­deav­our has been ten­ta­tively em­barked on.

We are not plan­ning to pur­sue this any fur­ther than April and don’t strive to set any records. Get­ting round the course and do­ing some­thing healthy for a few months is all we are con­cern­ing our­selves with.

It has ac­tu­ally been a very pleas­ant ex­pe­ri­ence so far. I’ve seen parts of Glas­gow and Fort Wil­liam that I have never seen be­fore, and the banks of the Forth and Clyde Canal are be­com­ing as fa­mil­iar to me on vis­its to Glas­gow as the gantry of the Park Bar – and in the morn­ing it’s the legs and feet that are scream­ing at me and not my head and my con­science.

If we don’t pick up any in­juries, and if we don’t give in too of­ten to that lazy but loud voice in the head that can craft the most con­vinc­ing ar­gu­ments against un­nec­es­sary phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, then hope­fully progress will be made and by April 29 we will be fit enough to fin­ish.

If we do man­age it, we may well be happy to cel­e­brate with a less healthy ‘half’-marathon of a dif­fer­ent kind.

Up­dates on progress will be given pe­ri­od­i­cally over the fol­low­ing months, and we may speed up one of our songs from Walk­ing to Run­ning on the Waves!

The new Skip­in­nish sin­gle Alive fea­tured a run­ning women – now An­gus and An­drew are be­ing forced to do the same by run­ning the Tiree half-marathon in April.

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