No one else is going to do it for you.

“No one else is going to do it for you.”

I was finishing my 6 km run in the rain at Pennant Hills shops and walked into the car park to find a rail to do my stretches.

While I was doing my stretches on a path a gentleman was walking at pace towards me. Because I was in the ramp and in the way he continued along the back of the cars.

I finished my stretches and I spoke to him the other side of the car park. It was evident to me that he was actually doing his exercise by doing laps of the car park.

So I asked him how much walking are you doing? He said 10 km in two hours in the car park due to the weather and he replied with the quote at the top of this post.

I guess no one else is going to do your exercise for you.

Kudos to the gentleman for not making excuses and getting his exercise during this weather event.

Cheers Plu

Six Readings on Running

Six Readings on Running

No winners in the 2021 Barkley  Marathon

The Ground Round 2.0 by Random Forest Runner  – John Kelly.

The Woman Who Outruns the Men, 200 Miles at a Time – Courtney Dauwalter

I am a running researcher

The power of running with Friends

Catching up with Tim Olsen

Marathon Number 44: 60 km for 60 Years – Run Report

Marathon Number 44

60 km or Six decades and Sixty Years

May be an image of Martin Plüss, standing, tree and road



Not sure I will be doing 70 km for 70 years,  so enjoy this post.

In October last year I turned 60 and set the goal of running 60 km for my 60th year.  With Covid and life I could not find the time and the motivation to do the run.  Last weekend on the spur of the moment I went for a run.

On Friday night I saw some  posts about the Six foot Track race which was being held the next day.  I last did the race in 2005 and 2007 and no longer would be able to qualify nor finish under the cut off.  I noted it was the last fine day for a number of days and I had a camp for three days and know I would not get any runs in.  So, I decided to wake up naturally in the next morning and head out the door for a Virtual Six Foot Track.

My run around Sydney has two rules where each leg has to be more than 42 km and the course has to touch on the course of any of the previous courses. I naturally woke up and was on the road by 10:05 am. I was organic in my approach to this run.   On the back of little much preparation and minimal gear I packed into my Salomon pack, two bottles of water and a carry bottle, two boiled potatoes and a few Nutri-grain bars, some cash and a spray jacket. 


0-10 km 10:05-11:37 am

I had mapped out a course in my mind and wanting to get some easy km into my legs  before the slower trails,  I headed by road to Westleigh.  I went past the station up the Esplanade, left into Duffy’s Road and right out along Quarter Sessions Road.  This course was actually the 10 km look of my cycle course and it was a different experience running it.  On one such I had a moment to pause where Cliff Young had passed me in the Westleigh half marathon in the 1990s. Although I had ridden the section hundreds of times it was the first time, I had run it I decades and the memories came flooding back. 

While on this section of the run I was working through how the day could plan out.  I thought I would do 10 km social media posts letting people know about the Virtual Six Foot Track run I was doing and perhaps someone might see me on the course. I was hoping my first photo would be on a nice bush trail, but it was a suburban street in Westleigh.  Taking the photo also meant I would walk or stop to write, compose and send the posts, giving me a bit of a break.


10-20km 11:37 -1:25 pm

Within a km I was in the bush heading back to Pennant Hills and welcomed the coolness of the bush after the heat of the road.  I crossed Zig Zag Creek and turned right to track the creek along the walking trail to Jungo Jungo.  I was not on my 6km trail run course.  After a 1.2 km I hit the fire trail crossed back over the creek to the northern side and started the climb into Cherrybrook. The time was passing quickly along this section of the course.  I was just at peace with my own mind and the environment because I had decided to run the course with no podcasts or music.

It soon got hotter and all my clothes were soaked.  I have been working on the clothes I wear because in the past with these long runs I have been wet the whole time because the clothes had not dried properly during the run.  This time I had purchased and had experimented with some outdoor shorts and briefs from Wild Earth.  The test would be if they would dry over time.   I came out of the bush at the fire station at Cherry brook and after speaking to a hot looking mountain bike rider about my age gazing in a trance at a map I popped into  the service station to buy a vanilla coke.  It was a treat because I normally only buy diet products so real sugar was going to be a great, and I suspected most needed.

I had now broken my running into walking the hills and jogging the downhill and flat sections along the roads to Purchase Road Cherrybrook as it made its way to New Line Road.  I knew I was coming up to the first real steep climb while I was in the run walk mode.  As I headed down the hill, I could hear a siren behind me, and the traffic was backed up in both directions and I wondered how the ambulance was going to get through.  I started to give the drivers on both side of the road the sign to move over as I suspected they could not hear the approaching sirens.

As I was cresting the hill Ian called me to see how I was going.  He joined me o the manly run a few years ago.  We finished up the call and I had the trickiest part of the course from a traffic perspective.  The downhill to the Hastings Road turn corner had no foot path and I had to run into the oncoming traffic with very little verge.  Right at the lights was 20 km and I stood on the medium strip and too the 20km selfie. 


20-30 km 1:25- 3:12 pm

The bush track adjacent to the road up the hill to the McDonalds Dural was rough and overgrown and not easy to post while on the move.  Also,  it was hot and found the hill hard, so I welcomed the break to get the social media posts organised while I sat on a rock. I only had a km to go to the service station where I was going to have a feed. 

At the service station opposite Quarry Road, my next leg,  I purchased a sandwich and a 1.25 litre coke and smiled when he tried to upsell me three for $8 – it was  good deal but not practical for the run. I collapsed with  my back to the gas bottle as I could not find any grass sitting looking at Quarry road and planning how I would approach it. The sandwiches seemed a bit too much but thought I needed to food to keep going.  After transferring  the coke to smaller bottles, while having a cup of tea,  I was soon  on  way.  As I set off,  I was going to be out here for 7- 8 hours for 45 km, which is the Six foot Track distance,  I was contemplating doing the whole 60 km which I had planned to do in October 2020.

Any way that would sort itself out I thought to myself  – one step at a time I headed out.  Now I changed the way I was approaching my running. Given I now had undulations and downhill I settled into my Day 2 training routine of running 400m of each km and walking the next 600m. for about 4 km I ran past Pacific Hills Christian School on the left, the Dural Tennis Courts on the right and a couple on trail bikes  trying to do wheelies on the road.

I was now on what I thought would be familiar territory – the Quarry Road trail where I had done a lot of training for my Six Foot Track races in 2005 and 2007. It looked different now.  There were gates blocking the traditional path and a more formalised track at the Trig Station by-passing the rifle range.

I hit 30 km on the Dural side before the decent into Berowra River Valley in about two hours and was immediately daunted at the time of 5 hours and another more than 5 hours to get to 60km.


30-40 km 3:12- 5:41pm

 I pushed the thoughts to the back of my mind and trotted briefly down the hill , stopped and sat on a stump to do my 30 km  social media post and eat one of  the cooked potatoes.  I took a moment to observe a  fast runner on the course thinking about the days when I could run like that.  With the social media post done, and in an attempt to make up time, I ran all the way to the river because I knew I would not be able to run the uphill on the other side.

I closed my eyes for I reached the top exhausted but was looking forward to the grass at the end of the trail to lie down on.  Since last hear the house on the right had taken off the tap so I could not get any water.  After a while enjoying the soft grass and warmth of the sun and be stirred by a mountain biker touching the gate for his out and back ride.  We chatted for a while as we both rested and soon, we were both on our way. 

At this stage it was too early to head back towards to Pennant Hills if I was going to go get to 60 km.  I had thought I could go through Bobbin Head and around but was not sure how much sunlight I needed to do this.  So,  I decided to run towards Turramurra via Hornsby and  Edgeworth David Drive where I looked at the houses opposite Waitara Oval wondering which of the houses, I was passing on the left was the family home of a friend of mine.  I got up the hill near the shops and that friend Graeme actually called me  to see where I was. He was on a run and checking in if I was in his area.

I soon reached the shops on Eastern Road Turramurra at 40 km and was able to combine at the same time an ice coffee, banana and the 40 km social media post.  I was still 5 km from the end of the Virtual Six Foot Track and had passed the cut off tine in this section of the course.  In the real race I would have been pulled off the course  – at least now I could keep running.


40-50km 5:41-7:35 pm

This section was to be mainly uphill and I did not feel running along the Pacific Highway.  It was more peaceful  for me to track along the back streets reaching the marathon as I crossed the railway between Turramurra and Warrawee.  If each km section had hills at the beginning, I noted the distance and made up the 400 m running per km in other sections of the km. 

Now and then as I got tired, and needed a seat, I gave up on the run for that km and started again at the next km. After a small section of running along the Pacific Highway I headed down Fox Valley Road, turning right at the SAN Hospital to go through the bush coming out on Pennant Hills road Normanhurst.  I had to sit on a stump again as I climbed out of the creek. 

I knew that when I was at Penno Road I was 4 km from home but 14 km from 60km.  Psychologically, I did not want to get to Pennant Hills too early.  In decided to turn right and run back towards Hornsby. Now for the first time I felt like I was struggling:  the balls of my feet were hurting more than usually;  I wanted a cuppa as I passed McDonalds but did not have the energy to stop and start and my stomach was playing up – maybe the iced coffee.  Strange because I thought three hours earlier the sandwich would be causing me grief.

Between Hornsby and Normanhurst, I made 50km just as it was getting dark. As I did the social media post – I was getting faster as I fatigued more – I noted I was 6 km from home and needed a 4 km detour without crossing over  any of the course form 10 hours earlier.


50-60km 7:45- 9:26pm

As I reached Normanhurst Station my plan was to run along the railway line along Penno Road and then through to West Pennant Hills and  back to Penno for 60 km.  Passing Penno  Station and coming back was doing my head in.  I realised I could cross over the railway line doing the rat run to Duffy’s Road then back to Penno Road added another km.  Once on Duffy Road I knew it was flat and downhill for the next km and I ran a 7 minute km past McDonalds at Thornleigh.

The next km took me to the Toyota dealership and managed 1 400m run non the downhill section.  At this stage I knew I had to do a loop to get to 60 km.  I went down Boundary road, Bellamy Street, Stevens Street past the station and up Trebor to Weemala, my street, and passed my house at 59 km.  By now I was worried my watch and phone would runout of battery and I was making mental notes of km markers in case I had to run a  bit extra to assure I passed 60 km if my devices ran out of battery. 

I did  a loop and a half of a small block in front of my house and walked into the front years and home exhausted.


The recovery

It hurt the pad of my left foot metatarsal area of my foot pretty much from the beginning,  but this is something I have been contending with for a while now.

It flared up after 6 weeks of barefoot beach running.  I actually found it easier to run slowly than walk but in the hills. I just had to walk because understandably the hills were pushing my heart rate too high.

Other than that, I had no stiffness or soreness at all.  My weight when I finished was 76 kg down from my normal 78kg. 

I remembered at about 47 km I had not been to the toilet at all.  I forced myself to go just to be sure I could but did not need to go. There were signs of some dehydration in my urine colour, but I judged it was nothing to worry about.  Actually,  it was nice being able to run without worry about  where I had to find a toilet.  I had kept the fluids up all day with plenty of water and 2 litres of coke.

This is the first time I did not take any salt tablets and except for a brief moment near 30 km I never felt like I would throw up which had happened a few ties on these runs in the past.

In relation to food, I think the two potatoes with some salt hit the spot.  I had been reading in in ultra-running books that fat burning id the key but a little bit of carbo on the run accelerates the fat urning and it would be fair to say I did not feel week on energy.  There was a small period of time when I felt like a sleep at around 10 km and it was after I had a Nutri-grain bar  – it was like a post sugar sleep.  So, I made a mental note of this effect. 

I really was quite exhausted immediately after the run.  When I spoke, I could not get words out.  It was like I had been at a #parraeels game and cheered for 8 minutes,  however, it was almost 12 hours of speaking to no ne and it was the first time I was required to speak. Jenny had gone to the shop to buy me some food,  but I could not eat anything.  After a swim I went the bed with the fan blasting as I was very hot.  After about an hour jenny went to bed I got up and I had some yogurt, ice cream a schooner of diet coke and a piece of chicken.

I spent Sunday on the lounge just slowing reloading with food I felt like.  I was conscious I was going on a three day camp on the south coast and I wanted to make sure I was not ravenous on the camp and walks.

That’s a wrap for marathon distance Number 44    


The Data

Pace per km:

6 km in the 7 minute km range

5 km in the 8 minute km range

20 km on the 9 minute per km range

12 km in the 10 minutes per km range

11 km between 11-15 minutes per km range

3 km in the 16-20 km per min range – must have had three stumps to sit on.

3 km in the 22-24 minutes per km range – some food longer than usual social media posts and a lie down.

Average Pace 9.56 minutes per km

Average speed 6 km per hour

Time: 11:13:43

Moving time: 9:55:50

Average Heart Rate: 131 bpm

Cadence: 110 steps per minute

Stride length: 0.85 m

Elevation gain 2049 m – Six Foot Track is about 1500m

Calories: 5008

Average temperature 31 degrees

Heart Rate Zones

Zone 5 >167bpm


1.04.50 hours

Zone 4 150-167 bpm


1:45 hours

Zone 3 131-149 bpm


2:45:14 hours

Zone 2 112-130 bpm


2:41 hours

Zone 1 94 -111bpm


2:26 hours

Life on the Run Observations 1-48 Episodes 1 -5

This is Episode 1 of Life on the Introduction and Observations 1-6

  1. Modesty
  2. Excellence
  3. Place
  4. Past
  5. Future
  6. Present

This is the second Episode of Life on the Run Observations 7-24

  1. Compromise
  2. Tension
  3. Pressure
  4. Stress
  5. Effort
  6. Mastery
  7. Perfection
  8. Anxiety
  9. Sacrifice
  10. Faith
  11. Belief
  12. Arrogance
  13. Creativity
  14. Patience
  15. Ignorance
  16. Time
  17. Change
  18. Better
  19. Creativity
  20. Patience
  21. Ignorance
  22. Time
  23. Change
  24. Better

Here is the third episode of my observations (25-36) about my life on the run. Includes a bonus phone call break.

25. Courage

26. Tenacity

27. Carefulness

28. Regret

29. Honesty

30. Humility

31. Freedom

32. Risk

33. Understanding

34. Love

35. Detail

36. Average

Episode 4 Life on the Run Observations 37-42.

37. Obsession
38. Tolerance
39. Forgiveness
40. Storytelling
41. Perspective 
42. Lifecycle


Life the Run Episode 5 Observations 43 – 48.

I really enjoyed doing this episode. It focuses on

43. Passion
44. Legends
45. Vision
46. Implementation
47. Simplicity
48. Sharing

Think Again by Adam Grant


The bestselling author of Give and Take and Originals examines the critical art of rethinking- learning to question your opinions and open other people’s minds, which can position you for excellence at work and wisdom in lifeIntelligence is usually seen as the ability to think and learn, but in a rapidly changing world, there’s another set of cognitive skills that might matter more- the ability to rethink and unlearn. In recent months, the pandemic has forced us all to reevaluate our assumptions about health and safety and multiple acts of police brutality have challenged most of us to reconsider our responsibility for fighting racism. Yet in our daily lives, too many of us still favor the comfort of conviction over the discomfort of doubt. We listen to opinions that make us feel good, instead of ideas that make us think hard. We see disagreement as a threat to our egos, rather than an opportunity to learn. We surround ourselves with people who agree with our conclusions, when we should be gravitating toward those who challenge our thought process. The result is that our beliefs get brittle long before our bones. Intelligence is no cure, and it can even be a curse- there’s evidence that being good at thinking can make us worse at rethinking. The brighter we are, the blinder we can become to our own limitations.As an organizational psychologist, Adam Grant has spent his career exploring how we can open other people’s minds–and our own. As Wharton’s top-rated professor and the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take, one of his guiding principles in life is arguing like he’s right but listening like he’s wrong. With bold ideas and rigorous evidence, he investigates how we can embrace the joy of being wrong, harness the surprising advantages of impostor syndrome, bring nuance into charged conversations about abortion and climate change, and build schools, workplaces, and communities of lifelong learners. You’ll learn how an international debate champion wins arguments, a Black musician persuades white supremacists to abandon hate, a vaccine whisperer convinces anti-vaxxers to immunize their children, and how Adam has coaxed Yankees fans to root for the Red Sox. Think Again reveals that we don’t have to believe everything we think or internalize everything we feel. It’s an invitation to let go of views that are no longer serving us well and prize mental flexibility, humility, and curiosity over foolish consistency. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don’t know is wisdom.


Amazon Review

Product Description

Discover how rethinking can lead to excellence at work and wisdom in life 

Intelligence is usually seen as the ability to think and learn, but in a rapidly changing world it might matter more that we can rethink and unlearn. 

Organizational psychologist Adam Grant is an expert on opening other people’s minds-and our own. As Wharton’s top-rated professor and the bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take, he tries to argue like he’s right but listen like he’s wrong. 

Think Again invites us to let go of views that are no longer serving us well and prize mental flexibility, humility, and curiosity over foolish consistency. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don’t know is wisdom.


A thought-provoking exploration about provoking thought. It mines research into how to encourage open-mindedness and arrive at better results by regularly re-examining assumptions ― Financial Times

Think Again is a must-read for anyone who wants to create a culture of learning and exploration, whether at home, at work, or at school. With warmth and humour, Adam Grant distils complex research into a compelling case for why each of us should continually question old assumptions and embrace new ideas and perspectives. In an increasingly divided world, the lessons in this book are more important than ever — Bill and Melinda Gates

Wise, frank, and funny; a fabulous book about how to think more clearly and more kindly. Think Again offers a spellbinding mix of storytelling and groundbreaking research — we urgently need this book right now ― Tim Harford, bestselling author of How To Make The World Add Up

Adam Grant believes that keeping an open mind is a teachable skill. And no one could teach this hugely valuable skill better than he does in this wonderful read. The striking insights of this brilliant book are guaranteed to make you rethink your opinions and your most important decisionsDaniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize winner in economics and author of THINKING, FAST AND SLOW

THIS. This is the right book for right now. Yes, learning requires focus. But, unlearning and relearning requires much more — it requires choosing courage over comfort. In THINK AGAIN, Adam Grant weaves together research and storytelling to help us build the intellectual and emotional muscle we need to stay curious enough about the world to actually change it. I’ve never felt so hopeful about what I don’t knowBrené Brown, Ph.D., #1 New York Times bestselling author of DARE TO LEAD

Life on the Run Part 1 Posts 1-10


My running did not always lend itself to modesty, though it should have.  The better I got at running, especially at the start as I got faster, my modesty evaporated.

I was at my peak of fast running over short distances up to 12 km in 1986. I was not that good in reality just now and then sneaking under 4 minutes a km up 10km, but I felt like a real athlete. I knew the base I had come from within two years and was proud of the progress

I did not have an ounce of modesty and was very confident in my running which cut across to my life in.  So much so that I did not see any issues in what I said and did. 

On reflection this lack of modesty, and more so not even recognising the need for modesty, did have negative impacts on my life and running.  

Lesson learnt and I would do things so differently now. 


All through my life I have struggled with the concept of excellence.  Many years ago, I came across the quote:

“Don’t let perfect get in the way of better.”

I believe everyone has something that they can be excellent at but the trick for me was working the journey to find this excellence. 

I need patience when it comes to excellence in my running.  

I have found a sweet spot. I am comfortable that 6 km running is my special niche. It took me a while to get here but if I have anything, I could claim to be good at it is  #6kmrunning

As for excellence I am still looking. 


All my running embraces an appreciation of the places in which I run. 

When Standing Bear was moved off his land in the 1880s in USA, he said the following: 

“ If you don’t know where you are, you don’t know who you are.”

Running has always been for me about the place I am running in and the experiences of these places.  When I  think of my running I initially think of where I have run, where I am running and where I will be running the future.  

Whether it is Bowral, St Ives, Berowra, Galston, Avoca, Main Beach and for the past twenty years Pennant Hills, running in each of these places evoke memories,  experiences and associated emotions.  

I am drawn to arid landscapes like Tibooburra.  I was last there in 1982 and remember fondly the people I travelled with, the locals, the footprints of explorers like Charles Sturt, who endured like and ultra-runner. I just want to go back and run the dry saltpan between the sand dunes of Sturt National Park on the way to Cameron’s Corner – one day. 

Sense of place: knowing oneself – Standing Bull was onto something.  


My first history university essay question was :

“History is  nothing more the justification of the winning side by scholarly means.”

I started running in 1984 and I do view my running in the past through rose coloured glasses but don’t necessarily justify successes or otherwise by any means.

I have kept records and I am glad I did. 

In 1984 I started what I called the pubbook where at the end of the week while having beers to wrap up the week and prepare for the weekend.  I would write  about all sorts of things including running and in fact other people would write in the Pubbooks as well.  I have  a dozen of these books and then went to different forms of digital pub pools such as blogs,  word documents and now social media posts.  

I had a brief period of disillusion and tossed out some detailed running logs in the 1990s and tossed a lot of records.  Thankfully I do now have a pretty good supply of my own primary sources documenting my past experiences of running.  Fortunately, the memory is still pretty good, but the logs are useful to check dates, times and events.  

The pub book was one of the best things I did while having a beer in a pub in Bowral in 1984.


I spend a moment of each day projecting forward to where and when my run will be for the day.  

Runs are locked in the week ahead factoring in life to determine which days I can run, then when I can run on these days.  This is part of a monthly road map of getting to at least 100 km per month and if I reach 100 km early, I give myself a taper towards the end of the month, providing my body a rest not for a race.  

It is extremely rare for me to run in the morning except when training for the Host City Marathon in 2000. Typically, I run in the evening either just prior to a late meal or after dinner on a weekday. 

I cannot imagine my future without running but I do imagine my future with a changed nature of running – a lot slower, more walking and shuffling but there will always be one step after the other.  


In 1986 I had to travel from Bowral to Parramatta for a tax audit.  I rarely do anything wrong and when it comes to tax don’t deduct anything.  

I was nervous and annoyed because I thought the tax person I had would deal with the situation.  I had some time to spare and went into Dymocks and popped into the New Age area of the bookshop which was a trend in the 1980s.  I was flicking through a good book on Buddhism by Christian Humphries  and stopped on then chapter on Buddhism for Westerners.  It was here I came specifically across Zen Buddhism and the importance of living in the here and now.  

There are only a handful of runs in over 20 000km of running where I have been in the moment and conscious of this moment.  Often my mind is in the past and the future, but I have to let go to be in the present.  

I often don’t know I am in the present until after it has passed.  I run on the road against the traffic and I can sense the traffic but don’t think about it.  I used to be able to bound down single bush tracks leaping between rocks and not thinking and as soon as I started thinking about what I was doing I risk the chance of a fall. 

Sometimes I try and consciously be present to the moment to the sound of semi-trailers on Pennant Hills Road, the rhythm of people running next to me in races or the sound of the silence on a bush run – until I realise, I am lost and then panic sinks in.  

That trip to Parramatta changed the philosophical direction of my life and running.

07_ Compromise

The by-line in my pub book and social media is:

Running and Life: Life and Running

The biggest compromise in my Life on the Run is the relationship between running and life.

In the early years, particularly the 1980s,  it was all about running and a bit of life, in the latter years, including now, it is as about running being part of life but an important part of life.  


There is a tension associated with running as I have had have competing social, personal, family, professional and running priorities.

I have been known to skip social events, leave them early, being uncooperative in the organisation of functions, missed my mother’s 80th birthday, and resentful of social events, including my 25th birthday because I had to  miss a triathlon. 

I have to live with these decisions. 


The only pressure I feel in running is making sure I get the time to go for my run.  If I miss runs even for a for a short period of time, I am irritable and not pleasant to be with – nor I would want to be with myself as well.  


The stress  running comes from not being able to run.

Initially,  it was stress over not accepting I was slowing down,  then it was accepting walking was ok, I got stress over running not reducing weight and now it is hoping I don’t get and injury that will prevent me from permanently running.

I accept there will be a time when I won’t be able to run – then I will substitute another stress.