A journal of running, healthy food, mountains, bikes and technology by Julia Revitt


This week has all been about sunshine, speaking French – oh and new shoes & sim cards!

Ahhh – the sun – getting in it to warm up, not getting burnt by it and enjoying the sunny view from our apartment. The weather is hotting up with thunderstorms due in a couple of days. I love thunderstorms in the alps because they usually happen at night, the lightening lights up the lunar landscape and the thunder echoes around the mountains followed by the noisy deluge of rain!

This week we finally managed to buy our French mobile phone SIM cards only to realise that it’s gonna cost a fortune to run them! We were told that you could buy the cards from one of the main supermarkets in the valley but there was no sign of them and the assistant looked most unhelpful so I daren’t ask. Later we rode to the Orange shop in Chamonix only to be told we needed our passports and phones to buy a SIM. Last week we finally made it back to the shop with the documents and phones and eventually got our SIMS. All well and good I thought but when reading the small print it seems that if I put 5 euros on the SIM it will only last for 7 days. What a con – the more you put on the longer it lasts. We only need the phones for the odd emergency text message and I was hoping that 5 euros will last us all season not just one week! Have decided only to run 1 French mobile and use my iPhone as it’s cheaper.

It’s been an active week since the sun came out. Have been building up my runs to 35 mins (so as not to aggravate the adductor injury) and it’s been lovely to be able to run further and further. Need to build up the long runs though for the Swiss Alpine Half Marathon at the end of July so no time to waste. It’s a fine balancing act between wanting to do more and not re-injuring the adductors. I hope to get another couple of 35 min runs in this week and providing there is no more pain increase it a little bit more.

Have been a little bit naughty this week though as I have been to the North Face shop twice! Once to buy a new Flight Series running kit and the second time to buy some matching Singletrack shoes. I justify the 2nd visit though as I did the whole transaction in French – so really it was just like a French lesson – I just happened to end up with a cool pair of running shoes!

We also managed to get out on the mountain bikes for our first ride of the season last week. We rode the blue route which winds from Chamonix to Les Praz and Les Tines and back to Chamonix. Last time we rode it, it was on our old heavier mountain bikes (Orange Patriot for me and Specialised SX trail for hubbie). This time we’re both carrying less weight in the form of an Orange Diva 5 for me and a Commencial Meta 5 for hubbie. This really made a difference because although we have little fitness at the moment we found the climbs quite enjoyable. We both came back relieved that we’d managed to ride without feeling awful and with big grins on our faces.

Yesterday, we walked up to the Sources de L’Averyon which takes about 3 hours door to door. It’s by far the longest, hardest hike we’ve done since arriving in Chamonix 3 weeks ago. Felt really good to be out but my adductors started to get sore when we started to climb and then descent the steep technical trails. Fingers crossed they have not pulled and am having a rest day today on the balcony in the sun.

Right best be off – gotta take being an unemployed layabout to the next level – where’s that bikini??