You may remember I told you I had signed up to run my first ever full Marathon. Although I’m not the best runner I had a full year to go and thought I’d have plenty time to get up to speed (pun intended) .Well, now I have around 8 months till marathon day and I have barely done any running since signing up. I just can’t seem to find my mojo.
Reading blogs and posting here on WordPress has always been a huge motivation in my running journey so that’s exactly where I headed to find the kick up the butt I needed. I read some blogs and came across the idea of running and taking snaps as you go, a gentle run/walk. I thought for people like me who have lost their running mojo it would be a great way to ease yourself back in, having fun and also a way to take note and appreciate whatever your town or nature around you has to offer. I decided that’s exactly what I’d do head to town and ‘Run, Walk & Snap’. Apologies I really can’t remember where I read this so I can’t give the credit due for the idea.
I also received a sign from the universe when I then stumbled across Worldwide WordPress 5k (#wwwp5k) a lightbulb lit up above my head…I would combine both.
I live in the town of Stirling, my mistake, the City of Stirling, city status was granted in 2002 as part of the Queens Golden Jubilee celebrations, although to me and to most it’s a town. Originally a medieval fortress town.
I’ll be honest, I really enjoy travelling, learning about different cultures, traditions, architecture and history but I have never really had any interest in Scottish or British history (how very unpatriotic of me) it’s full of stories of violence, war, poverty, monarchy and battles of power its a real life Game of Thrones (well minus the dragons and hocus pocus). In fact the season 1 episode 1 scenes at Winterfell were filmed in Stirling at the nearby and much smaller castle in Doune. #GoTfacts
Everyone loves King and Queen stories but I imagine it was a very difficult time to live in for the working class people, saying that, one of our Queens had her head chopped off by her cousin who thought she was a threat to her own throne in England… I guess no-one was safe!
Anyway on with my run.
Ironically the day before was a gorgeous day, super sunny but with an autumnal chill. I considered waiting for the next sunny day to get some good photos but I’d have missed the window for #wwwp5k and I could have been waiting until April(no joke, summer is over) so I thought it would be more genuine to just show you what Scotland looks like 99.999% of the time. WET.
I ran around part of the old town known to the locals as ‘the top ae the toon’ (the top of the town)if you are ever unfortunate enough to find yourself in Stirling, it is in fact the highest part of the town, around the castle area….. Excellent for hill training, it was actually a killer for the calves and glutes.
So here’s my 5k in photos, castles, kings, terrible selfies and some realtime bi-polar Scottish weather..
Also, apologies for the hat it was covered in fluff from a scarf, but it didn’t look as bad in real life as it does in the photos.
Don’t worry that’s not a real wolf. It’s wooden. Rumour has it that vikings who were planning to ambush the town accidentally trod on a wolf pups foot, it yelped for its mother who howled to the pack then all the wolves howling woke up the town and the royals alerting them to the ambush, stopping it before it happened. That’s why that particular part of town is called Wolfcraig…who knew. I’ve only lived here for 33 years.
The Castle gates
Knight in shining armour anyone? Think they missed a rather delicate area from his armoury…ooops!
My face just can’t hide my feelings about the weather. That thing you can see standing on the top of the hill in the distance is Wallace monument (who has seen Braveheart? They actually held the premiere of that movie here in Stirling Castle. Terrible movie)
Can you see the head above the door. This is the Tolbooth which was once the jail. I’m not sure if the head is supposed to be the king or god with a disapproving look on the entering criminals or just a reminder as you enter that you will probably lose your head for stealing that chicken to feed your family of 12.
The Tolbooth is now a music and arts venue.
This jail eventually became a military prison.
At the top of the hill is the church that my sister was married in back in April
This was once a hospital.
Don’t quote me on this as I mentioned Scottish history is not my thing but I overheard some American tourists (and I vaguely remember learning this in School) this church, The Church of the Holy Rude (my sisters wedding church) opened in 1129 is one of only 2 standing churches to have held a royal coronation, King James VI in the 16th century. Westminster Abbey is the only other. I’ve officially learned more on this run than I did in Higher History!
I even got some action shots, my crazy sister does some voluntary work handing out leaflets and giving information for the Tourist Information Centre (she used to work there) so she offered to take some snaps as I ran past her spot then she wandered around and managed to get a few of me when she finished too. In return I treated her to a lunch at The Boozy Cow a new burger place that’s opened in town. Healthy is all about balance after all 😉
Wait till you see her work outfit…
I had so much fun doing this, looking at things I haven’t before and running a route I’d never ran before. I usually run on more rural country roads with just trees and horse poop to look at.
I can’t wait to read other people’s #wwwp5k let me know if you took part?
Have you ever played tourist in your hometown?
Thanks for reading 😊
Have a great day ❤️️