It's Saturday morning, I'm up early after a kindly and refreshing night's sleep (the week was a 7, perhaps a little more on the Hall rush around like a fool/ get stressed scale), I'm in my study, looking out over a yellow sunlight Exeter, and I'm contemplating some exercise.
For me it comes in two forms. There's the straightforward go to the gym, do a bit of running, some rowing and a few weights, or there's the jog around the river. The latter is my favourite by far; it's much more interesting in terms of scenery, fresh air and variety and is wonderful for getting my mind going.
If I've got a problem to solve, either in life or one of the tvdetective books, it's remarkable how often the answer will come to me when running around the Exe. It can't be a coincidence, it must be to do with the body working hard also prompting the mind to get a shift on too.
Curiously, as an aside here, I've come to enjoy running most in the rain. There's something about its cooling, atmospheric effect, that I enjoy more than sunlight. Or maybe that's more to do with my sometimes depressive and pessimistic personality?
Anyhow, before I went off on the traditional Hall meander, the point of the blog was this. An enjoyment - or at least, a sufferance - of exercise is something Dan and I share. We both find it great for working off the stresses of a day, or week, and more than useful for giving ourselves some effective thinking time.
I've noticed in the tvdetective books that Dan can often make a breakthrough in a case when he's out on Dartmoor with Rutherford, or just running around Hartley Park. Commonly I haven't planned that, it just feels the natural point for it to happen. I got into the exercise habit almost 20 years ago now, just after my time at university (college days were too filled with DJing, drinking beer and chasing girls!), and am very glad I did.
So now it is I'm off for some exercise (after a cup of tea and a bacon sandwich of course - a true athelete's preparation!), with a range of things to think over. I've got a week's teaching of writing at the Swanwick Writers' Summer School next month, and there are a few little exercises and some strange bits of fun I want to try out on the poor students. Well, you know me... nothing's ever straightforward!