Sunday, 23 January 2011

London Marathon week -13.

Stats this week - Miles 46, weight 165.8lb.
It's coming off but slowly..
As a running week, it has all been 'steady as she goes'. So, I shall say little more than my pleasure at completing all the planned sessions including track, threshold on Friday night (now that's tough when it's cold!) and a 21 mile long run.

A big shout-out to Janet, who ran the Romsey 5 today, and was delighted to beat her previous best time, in spite of having a poor training build-up, went for it and did really well.

Being a modern boy as I am, I have turned to my iPhone to see if an App can help me with logging my food intake. I have found this the best way to take a long and honest look at what you are really doing. It's all too easy to forget something that you know you shouldn't have eaten! I've found this fantastic free app called MyFitnessPal in which you set up your vital stats, goals and exercise levels, and then it sets you an intake level to meet that. So far, so good. Then you log everything you've eaten - and it has access to a fantastic database (it find everything from the major supermarkets - incredible!). Finally, once you finish the day, you press a button and the cruel rating comes up 'if every day were like this, in 5 weeks you'd be....' and you just hope its downwards! So, useful for a couple of weeks of control and monitoring.
Of course, by way of contrast, two wines this week that I have really liked. One is the excellent Sicilian white wine called Polena by Donnafugata (available online, £10ish) It is a blend of Catarratto, a classic Sicilian grape, and, peculiarly,Viognier. The first vintage was in 2006, and this was the 2009. Quite lovely. Dry, with a peachy lift to the nose. On the palate, a full mouthfeel, a great combination of citrus and minerals, combined with a fleshy fruitiness (from the Viognier, I assume). Absolutely perfect with Salmon. I know very little about Donnafugata, beyond the fact that I recognise the name. I read from their website that "The figurehead, which in Italian is called Polena, is the unchallenged queen of marine ornaments and stands over the bow of a ship. Polena has once again the silhouette of a woman, it is evocative and fascinating. It is a new wine to accompany you on the discovery of new sensations.". Well, that is perhaps a bit overblown, welcome, marketing blurb! I bought this from a great shop called Caviste in Stockbridge (about 10 miles from Romsey for you non-locals). Quite upmarket - really a place for £10 plus wines, though they do have an everyday selection, albeit at the price that the majority of the UK would call 'splash-out'! A great selection and a lovely wineshop. Quite new world focused as well. Lots of very big Pinot Noirs from Oz. Not my style, those.

The other wine, from the cellar, was Kanonkop Pinotage 2003. I have long been a fan of Kanonkop, and they manage to tame the pinotage very well, though it does require, I think, a good bit of ageing. This example is perfectly balanced and mature, with just a prickle of acidity suggesting that today was the right day, of all days, to drink this wine (sometimes it's just like that!). The fruit is a mellow, palate-filling mouthful of cherry and cassis, with a hint of banana (!). Really well balanced, and with none of that rawness and burnt notes you can sometimes get from Pinotage. More modern vintages are fairly widely available for about £15, and worth laying down for  a few years. When I consider what I said about the Batailley a few weeks ago - I know which I would rather drink right now.

 And that's just what I will be doing with a beef casserole in about 15 minutes..

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