First Sprint Duathlon of 2015 Complete!

This morning I took part in my first ever Sprint Duathlon event. Last month I wrote (‘Duathlon Training as a Vegan‘) that I had started training on a 10 week beginner plan to prepare me for this (with several lapses and modifications I add). Previously, I’ve only ever taken part in 1500 metres (in secondary school) and a BAGBAR 6.4km fun run about four years ago. Endurance and long distance running is not my element, but I wanted to challenge myself to do something new and out of my comfort zone, as well as of course getting back into shape.

The Sprint Duathlon took place at the Bedford Autodrome and consisted of a 5km run, 20km cycle, followed by another 5km run to finish off. My times were:

5km Run 1: 0:21:48
Transition 1: 0:00:5520km Cycle: 0:46:43
Transition 2: 0:00:51
5km Run 2: 0:28:45
Finish: 1:39:03

I’m not sure what a good time should be for such an event, but I’m pleased with the effort I gave in my current condition and I hope to improve on this time at the next three Duathlon events I will participate in this year.

It was a very tough race and wasn’t helped in the slightest by the heavy rain and strong winds on the open racing track. After defrosting on the first 5km run stint, it literally felt like cycling against a brick wall at times, as the wind bashed against me. I could only admire some truly awesome bicycles as they whizzed by me like F1 cars. Half way through my second 5km run I got cramp (vastus medialis) in both legs, so I was reduced to periods of power walking, rubbing and tapping the pain areas and jogging. Funnily enough, the pain was more bearable when I jogged as opposed to walking. Nevertheless, I managed to finish the race with a big smile on my face.

A great event and I certainly developed a massive respect and appreciation for triathletes and similar athletes. Also, the staff and stewards were all fantastic and gave great support! The 10 week training schedule starts again tomorrow, but I think I’ll take a few days or a week off!

Know Yourself, Know the System, Have No Limitations!

There are loads of videos out there across the internet. Below is a list of just some videos (in no particular order) I feel that should be watched. Ones that will help you to better know yourself, know the system and have no limitations on the things you can do, as well as give you wider food for thought. I don’t necessarily endorse everything said in some of the videos, but nevertheless the videos as a whole should help to create wider self-reflection. Enjoy!

HOME
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqxENMKaeCU

Sir Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iG9CE55wbtY

A Message to all of Humanity ~ Charlie Chaplin
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsgaFKwUA6g

I Am Bruce Lee – Be Water My Friend
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kl1sS1kVAvA

People are Awesome – Best of the Best
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vY7LrQ1ndYo

Working to Live or Living to Work?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNRldP18bH8

The Lie We Live
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipe6CMvW0Dg

Dr. Phil Valentine – Metaphysics Of The Matrix, Melanin & Mind Control
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YPY5UD56Zc

Well-being Beyond GDP – Statistics for Everyone

Web-COSI

Web COmmunities for Statistics for Social Innovation (Web-COSI) is another project I am currently working on that brings together two passions of mine: well-being and social entrepreneurship (entrepreneurs who are passionate about making social and environmental change whilst developing a sustainable business/project).

Web-COSI is a European Union (EU) grassroots co-ordination action project with communities in mind and the general objective to improve the engagement of citizens and society at large with statistics in the area of new measures of societal progress and well-being. Under the mantra ‘Statistics for Everyone’, Web-COSI will be exploring innovative ways to bring the production, promotion, access and engagement with statistics to life. Using the opportunities given by Web2.0 the project, built upon the increasing trust in collectively generated statistics, will improve the collection, production and visualization of data towards the integration and complementarity of official and non-official statistics.

In 2014, the official Web-COSI website, wikiprogress data portal, university programme, youth portal and brochure were created, as well as many digital initiatives completed, reports and presentations shared and events held. This year 2015 the Web-COSI team will be digging into the relationship social entrepreneurs have with data and statistics in addition to an EU seminar, workshop and more reports and presentations for you to enjoy and get involved with.

Consortium partner i-genius, will be leading on the relationship between social entrepreneurs and data. Specifically, i-genius will be focusing on how social entrepreneurs use data to:

1. Get started, e.g. assess social needs

2. Forster their ventures, e.g. raise finance

3. Evaluate and measure impact

4. Better understand and communicate the overall phenomenon of social entrepreneurship

This feature of the project will kicked off with i-genius organising a working group in London last month and will follow up with four focus groups around Europe, a report, film, and concluding with a conference at the OECD, Paris in December.

How you can be involved:

1. Visit and use the data mapping website – An open knowledge base of well-being and sustainability projects from around the world: http://wikiprogressdata.org

2. Sign up to Web-COSI newsletters

3. Offer your expertise if you are engaging with statistics in an interesting way team@i-genius.org

Find out more at: www.webcosi.eu

UK Solar Eclipse 2015

 

Last Friday morning many people in the UK were invited to view a partial (near total) solar eclipse. Luckily being based in the East Midlands of England meant we were in a good region for witnessing the 2015 Eclipse.

With live footage being beamed from the BBC on our laptop and our solar glasses in hand my family and I relaxed in our back garden for the stunning cosmic event.

The sky got darker, the earth got colder and the birds went silent as the solar eclipse reached its climax. Watching the moon go past the sun whilst sitting on earth was both a magical and humbling experience!

In Harmony With You

In Harmony With You

You are my lucidity, the cosmic elements and my ether
The mother of our beautiful children, you are the gravity of our family,

You compliment my existence like the ethereal stars do the night sky
The only person who this heart of mine will explore in this world,

You are my soul mate, my source of strength and inspiration
And in harmony we grow stronger together than apart, my wife.


B. L. Crisp

Mental Well-being Survey

xerox-buck-consultants

As some of you may already know, well-being is something that is very important to me (as outlined in my pocket guide Replug YOU). Employee mental well-being, especially related to issues such as workplace stress and employee burnout, is a growing concern for employers worldwide as they seek to address employee well-being more broadly and holistically.

According to Buck Consultants’ 2014 Global Survey on Health Promotion and Workplace Wellness, stress is the primary health-related driver globally for implementing wellness programs. This finding is echoed by numerous studies on work-related stress, burnout, low morale, lack of engagement, and diminished productivity, as well as by increasing levels of sick leave due to mental health issues. Employers are becoming more aware of this trend and are increasingly concerned about the more holistic well-being of their employees. In addition, a growing number of countries now mandate a risk assessment of the psychosocial work environment (in addition to the physical environment).

Global Centre for Healthy Workplaces (an organisation I work with) has jointly sponsored a survey with Buck Consultants at Xerox: Promoting Mental Well-being: Addressing Worker Stress and Psychosocial Risks. The survey, which closes shortly is designed to measure employer strategies and practices to promote and improve the mental or psychological well-being of their employees. The results will be released at the Global Healthy Workplace Awards and Summit in Florianopolis, Brazil on May 18-19, 2015.

There is no cost to participate. The survey should take approximately five minutes to complete and all participants will receive a complimentary copy of the survey results. So it’s definitely worth taking if workplace health is something that you’re interested in or is important to you.

To access the survey, Click here or visit http://bit.ly/mental-wellbeing-survey

Note. Firefox web browser has extra security settings than most other browsers (i.e. Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Safari, etc.) – therefore in order to take the survey you will need to trust and add the security exception. Or alternatively use a different web browser to access the survey.