Already breaking the rules

25 10 2011

Easy by mcneilmahon at Garmin Connect – Details.

Having gently upped the distance yesterday, the new rules say no running til Thursday, but since the wife wanted to go running, I was called upon to accompany her.

I tried to take it as easy as possible and certainly ran slowly, but still almost ran 5km again the day after running the distance for the first time in over three months.

It was hard work but at times I felt good and at others I felt not-un-surprisingly leggy.  I’ve managed to get back to the coach and the ice pack without signs of being worse for wear.  Hopefully I’ll have built up some stamina with the double shift over the last two days without putting the comeback at risk.  Time will tell.

The worrying thing is I spent most of the run thinking that I’m getting old.  The body’s not responding as well as it used to, the mind is starting to struggle to find the right word at times, I’m clumsier than ever.

Hence the need to get the comeback right and run consistently back into shape to try and keep the years under control…


Take Five

24 10 2011

Easy 5km by mcneilmahon at Garmin Connect – Details.

After a third easy run last Thursday which I didn’t record properly on my watch (hence the lack of a blog post) I decided it was time to up the stakes a little today, so I ended up running 5km although keeping it at quite an easy pace.

After a heavy weekend food wise, I felt pretty sluggish. although I started out at 6:30 pace, which is quite sprightly for my present lack of fitness.

I was pretty knackered at the end, although i did toy with the idea of a second lap of the Palermo lake since I was feeling pretty good as I came to complete the first, but in line with my new slowly slowly philosophy I managed to resist the temptation.

About the only thought I remember having on the run was that my target for the Nike 10km should probably be just to finish. Although I’d hope to finish in under 1:10:00, this may not be possible since I only started training again so close to the race.  To think I could run a 56:00 10km and run to work every day (3.5km) and hit 90kg a couple of years ago now fills me with amazement.  If I can get back to that level, I’ll appreciate it a lot more than I did at the time, that’s for sure.

Comment on Blackburn 1 Tottenham 2 on Spurs Community

23 10 2011

A real difference between the result and the performance today and when looking at the table the result is more important, but let’s hope we can continue to grow as a team by learning from the performance. 

We scored two good goals, let in a sloppy one and gave the ball away carelessly far too often to deserve to win the game. Almost everyone was culpable on numerous occasions. Let’s hope Harry can work out the reason why soon so that we can get more fluid and hold onto the ball much better. Was it a lack of running into space to offer an option? Lack of concentration? Brilliant Blackburn pressing? Just one of those days? A combination of all the above?

What was most noticeable for me was the lack of options for the man with the ball coupled with a lack of time on the ball due to Blackburn’s pressing. As the game wore on we seemed to lose confidence in our passing game and just clear our lines as quickly as we could. We were second to everything coming out of our penalty area and this invited Blackburn to put it straight back in there. 

But credit goes to everyone for hanging on in there and coming away with an excellent three points. Things were looking very similar to last week and we could easily have given away an equaliser (although Blackburn simply didn’t have as much composure as Newcastle in the final third). 

Overall, four points from these last two away games is an excellent return and other results (so far) today are looking good for our challenge for fourth turning into a challenge for third or even second. With Sandro back to full strength we will definitely improve our ball retention and hopefully make for less nerve-wracking finishes and hopefully the centre of defence and centre forwards will grow in confidence as the goals and points keep coming. Good times.

Still Taking It Easy

19 10 2011

Easy by mcneilmahon at Garmin Connect – Details.

Another Easy run on Monday, trying my hardest to keep myself in check and slowly and surely build it up, so as to avoid injury.  The short term goal is to complete the Nike 10km without injury, the long term goal to run next year’s Buenos Aires marathon – haha!

Managed to run a tad quicker this time and keep running the whole time, so pleasing progress.  Was also able to ponder how to attract teachers to record and certify their professional development.  Conclusions?  Needs to be continuous, inclusive and as much as possible teacher centred and teacher chosen.  All of which make it more difficult to administer from an organisational point of view, but there’s the challenge.

Hopefully once I start running a bit further I’ll start having time to think more too…

Comment on Newcastle 2 Tottenham 2 on Spurs Community

16 10 2011

Game of two halves entertainment wise. A game we should have won but looked more likely to lose once they equalised. Unfortunately, going back to my original post on the team selection, we’d have one this game comfortably with Sandro in midfield rather than Jake, who was out of his depth today. 

Think this game shows we’re better than last year’s team and are right in the fight for fourth, or maybe even third, but a team with pretensions to challenge for the championship would have taken this game. 

What do we lack? We need even more of a cutting edge (I suggest Defoe should be starting ahead of VDV), a stronger midfield (Sandro) and better defending as a team (Livermore and then BAE were at fault for the goals) and when we have our first team out we’ll have all of these. Let’s get some people fit, although worrying that Walker, Bale and Modric all got knocked about today.

Feedback Fiesta

16 10 2011

Ways of Varying Feedback Handout that goes with the session

One of my favourite subjects and favourite workshops, I have recently revamped and improved this session for talks I have recently done for Macmillan Argentina, at the APIZALS conference in Bariloche, Rio Negro on Friday 30/9/11 and at KEL in Martinez, Buenos Aires on Saturday 15/10/11.

I intend to explore different aspects of this talk in more detail when time permits, adding posts on why feedback is so important and others giving more details and activities for personalising, etxending, revising and motivating – stay tuned!


I presented the latest version of this workshop at the inaugural IHWO Teachers Online Conference (IH TOC) on November 15th 2011.  And will be repeating it on February 10th and 13th as a Live Online Workshop (IH LOW) for International House teachers around the world.  After these workshops I will add the latest edition of the slides and hopefully a video of the session.

Comment on @ChrisOzog blog post ‘If You Were a Dogme, Would You Regret Barking?’

16 10 2011

Hi Chris, Ben et al,

Thanks a lot for the post, Chris, I love reading accounts of classes and find it really helpful to compare with my own classes and use this as a way of reflecting on them. Reading your post brought back fond memories of observing you during my visit and as I read the main thought that kept recurring (and then you mention yourself in response to Dale) is the personality factor.

Having enjoyed seeing you teach I know you have a lot of qualities that I see essential in a teacher if they are to use Dogme successfully – ability to think on your feet, ability to steer a conversation, extend it and take it where you want to go, an openness with the students etc. etc. – that enhances my impression that to teach in a Dogme manner successfully you need to be a ‘natural’.

However, reading about your class also makes me wonder if you need to have a certain type of student in order to create a successful Dogme learning environment, or if there are things you can do and ways to develop the class dynamic in order to create a successful atmosphere for using Dogme techniques with all and any types, level or number of students? Would love to hear what you think…

Back on track

13 10 2011

Easy by mcneilmahon at Garmin Connect – Details.

Almost three months after injuring my foot and I finally hit the roads again.  Gentle as you like and with plenty of ice afterwards, but I managed 3km and 25 minutes of slow jogging and it just felt so good to be out there again.

The aim is to take it slow and build it up and try and have an injury free summer, but since I ran today almost continuously I feel like I’ve already overdone it.

And since I was really focused on how my knees and feet were doing and how I was running, there weren’t really any flowing thoughts today, just a blurred feeling of relief to get through it and happiness about finally being back on track.  Long may it continue!

Wedding Hues

5 10 2011

This was written when I was still at school and it’s one of my favourite early songs.  It has a pattern, a story, some bearable rhyme and goes to a pretty decent tune too.

Colour blue

Waiting for you

To return

To me.

Colour red

Lying in bed

Wanting you

Beside me.

Colour yellow

Feeling hollow

Without you

Within me.

Colour black

Please come back

You belong

Next to me.

Colour orange

It’s so strange

Alone with you

Noone but me.

Colour white

Tonight’s the night

With love to you

from me.

Colour green

Never seen

Naked bodies

Beside me.

Colour purple

Your disciple

Follow you

Sacrifice me.

Colour pink

Please don’t sink

I’m here

Hold me.

Colour grey

Please say

That you

Love me.

Colour brown

Virginal gown

Wear to wed

Propose to me.

Colour of money

Love me honey

Don’t do it

unless you love me.