I surprised myself today. Last night I wrote a draft blog post in response to the day 3 prompt about songs that inspire writing or running. I couldn’t think of a particular song so was listening to my You Tube running playlist. I’ve never actually run to it because I didn’t have the list on my old phone. This afternoon I decided most of the music on there was too slow to inspire me to run. Fast music inspires me to move. Rock and roll, disco, pop, the cheesier the better, it seems. I don’t claim to be able to keep up that speed myself for long, mind you, but it does make me want to Jump, think Let’s Get This Party Started and get Happy.

I was standing in the kitchen, just listening to a few bars of each song when it struck me I could actually do something more productive than just listen to snippets. So I picked a likely song (The Communards’ Don’t Leave Me This Way), clicked on You Tube’s suggested mix and got the ironing board out. A couple of hours and a huge pile of ironing later and the bottom of the ironing pile is still not in sight, but I’ve had my own private ’80s party, have a huge smile on my face and avoided spending all afternoon sitting on a chair.

Can I count this as planking?

One of my first blog posts on this blog was written during the FIFA World Cup (football or soccer, depending on where you live) and claims that Persieing is the new planking. I have been sitting this evening reading other challenge members’ blogs about their running and thinking I should do something more active today than just bop around the kitchen with an iron in my hand. I was inspired by Serena Hicks’ Run Amok blog and  her idea of setting a minimum goal to achieve each day, in her case, just a mile. I love this sentence: “Every day I set a PR, because I’ve added a day to this journey that shows me what I’m made of.” There are many things I could (or should) set up a daily streak for. Would it become as automatic as cleaning my teeth twice a day or putting on my seat belt when I get into a car? Personally, I’m more likely to get rained on cycling to the gym than I am to run every day, but it’s a tempting goal to at least do some minimum level of exercise a day. That’s one of the reasons I’m involved in this challenge. Planking (the exercise) is one of those achievable mini-goals that I could do every day, without fail, if I had the willpower.

What is the link between planking (the internet trend), the plank (the exercise) and ironing?

It occurs to me belatedly that for English-speakers, the link between ironing and planking might not be as obvious as it is for me. The answer is simple: the Dutch word for ironing board is strijkplank. Strijken is ironing. The plank is the board. It’s also the word for a shelf. Of course, plank is also a word in English, but it’s not used in quite the same way. The source is the same, though, Latin planca, via old French.

Surprising results of the #writeandrun31 challenge today

  1. I went mountain climbing – on my ironing pile.
  2. I wrote this unscheduled blog post in response to the day 15 prompt (even if it is day 16).
  3. I have measured out something approaching a mile on MapMyRun. I am tempted to start streaking tomorrow. The idea of setting a PR every day is appealing. Thank you Serena, for the inspiration.